by Ashley Weaver
Series: Amory Ames #6
Publication Date: April 23, 2020
Genre: Historical, Mystery
Publisher: Allison & Busby
Amory Ames is travelling to New York, excited to be a bridesmaid at her friend Tabitha's wedding, but with Prohibition in full swing, her husband Milo is less than enthused. When a member of the wedding party is found murdered on the front steps of the bride's home, the happy plans take a darker twist.
Amory discovers that the dead man has links to the notorious - and notoriously handsome - gangster Leon De Lora. While the police seem to think that New York's criminal underworld is at play, Amory feels they can't ignore the wedding guests either. Milo and Amory are drawn into the glamorous, dangerous world of nightclubs and bootleggers. But as they draw closer to unravelling the web of lies the murdered man has left in his wake, the killer is weaving a web of his own.
I tried. I walked away and gave it a few days, and tried again. I couldn’t do it. While the series started off strong, and interesting, it has bottomed out with this book, wallowing in mediocrity with bland and tedious descriptions of every little thing (they went to an automat; she describes what an automat looks like, then describes all the categories displayed, then describes Amory and Milo getting change for the machines, then getting their trays, then which food they’re choosing). It’s endless. And the paragraphs of Amory’s internal dialog outnumber actual dialog by at least 5 to 1. I have decided that the abundance of internal dialog that has become so common in most of today’s mysteries is because authors and editors are forced to assume their average reader is stupid, and so lacking in critical thinking that they must be led through the steps of the mystery like a particularly dim child. The misanthrope in me understands the likely necessity, but I am not stupid, and I’m quite capable of thinking critically, so I find the trend irritating.
Oh, and speaking of irritating trends: wonder of wonders, she’s pregnant, only she doesn’t know yet, even though it’s obvious even to someone like me, who has never so much as had a scare. I’m willing to bet .50 cents that Milo will figure it out before she does.
And speaking of Milo – he’s an ass. I’m assuming the author is going for something akin to insouciance, but really, just an ass. He talks down to Amory more often than he ever has anything nice to say to her, and she just takes it. It’s all way too stiff-upper-lip for my patience.
It’s a shame to see this series go to the dogs, but after this one I can’t imagine it rebounding in my eyes, unless Amory were to ditch Milo in some spectacular fashion, and that isn’t going to happen, so instead I’m going to ditch the series and re-claim valuable bookshelf space.