House of Smoke by JF Freedman
When we were visiting the parental units earlier this summer, they had a box of books by the door ready to go out. Mom asked if I was interested in anything. I poked through the box and grabbed a Paul Theroux novel. She encouraged me to take this one as well.
This is a okay detective story, but nothing special. I kept getting ahead of the plot, which… I’m not sure why that is. I never used to be much of a plot-guesser. Maybe I’ve just read too many detective novels and I know all the elements.
The lead is a female ex-cop turned PI with Issues (her ex beat her, she’s lost custody of her kids). My main quibble is that it was obvious to me that this was a male writer writing a female character. He kept having her do either a) things guys think all women do (like wear sexy pink panties under her police uniform. WTF?) or b) things guys want women to do (like the requisite f/f “but I’m not a lesbian!” “me neither!” sex scene). Also, she inevitably had to be rescued by a dude. Arggh.
So yeah. Somewhat exasperating, but an acceptable beach read. Totally the kind of thing you’d pick up in the little new/used bookstore just off Main Street in the resort town you’re spending your vacation in to read at the beach. You know what I’m talking about. Which, come to think of it, is probably exactly where it originated 😉