Wednesday, February 11, 2015
Ken Holt #3 Black Thumb Mystery and #4 Marked Claw
As when I read this book four years ago, I had some trouble getting into it. We aren't given a reason to care about Mr. Brown and his plight. Sure, we know that he is a friend of the Allens, but Ken reflects to himself about how he doesn't feel as bad as they do, since he hasn't lived in Brentwood for long. That's how I felt since I didn't know anything about Mr. Brown. The bank robbery occurred before the opening of the book, and the guilty verdict came in at the beginning of the book. I always have more trouble with books when important parts of the plot occur before the beginning of the book.
Once I got several chapters into the book, I was fine. The mystery plays out in a similar fashion to The Riddle of the Stone Elephant and is enjoyable.
When I read these books, I always wonder about how Ken and Sandy can drive a red convertible and successfully trail other vehicles without being noticed. At one point in this book, Ken and Sandy stay back 100 feet from the other vehicle so that they won't be noticed. The road is rural.
The psychological game that Ken and Sandy play with Horn towards the end of the book is fascinating.
Once I got into the story, the book was great all the way through until the end. The end did not drag, and all of it was engaging.
I found that I enjoyed most of this book more than I did the first time I read it. I began to remember some details soon into the book and was certain that I remembered the identity of one of the culprits. That piqued my interest. Unfortunately, I did grow tired of the story towards the end and skimmed parts of the last three to four chapters.