Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Review: Lost Under a Ladder by Linda O. Johnston

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Lost Under a Ladder by Linda O. Johnston
Publisher: Midnight Ink
Publication Date: October 8th 2014
My rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Publisher's description

Is it luck or is it . . . Destiny?

Are superstitions real? Rory Chasen doesn't think so--until her beloved fiance walks under a ladder and is killed by a car five minutes later. Needing closure, Rory takes her dog Pluckie to a town called Destiny, where superstitions are a way of life.

Rory's visit to Destiny takes an unexpected turn when Pluckie saves the life of Martha, the owner of the Lucky Dog Boutique. To show her gratitude, Martha offers Rory a job at the pet store. But when Martha becomes the prime suspect in the murder of the local bookshop owner, Rory refuses to believe that she would do it. Rory is convinced the real killer still roams Destiny's streets, and she must uncover the truth before Martha is hauled off to jail. 

My Review

It was cute enough. I got a bit tired of reading the word "superstition" over and over. It was established very early that this town was based on superstition and a few reminders here and there would have been fine… but it felt like nearly every paragraph featured the word in various forms (noun, adjective, etc). Some of the setup of the story seemed a bit far fetched. The protagonist, Rory, visits the town of Destiny after her fiance dies tragically moments after walking under a ladder. She wants to find out whether or not superstitions are true. Who does that? Once she gets there, Rory, a pet store manager back home, finds the local pet shop owner collapsed in her store. Not knowing Rory AT ALL, this woman asks her to run her business - her livelihood - while she is recovering. I don't know many business owners who would entrust their livelihood to a complete stranger on a moment's notice... nor many complete strangers who would upheave their own lives to accept this challenge! There are other instances where the device to move the plot along is pretty clunky. 

BUT the characters are likable. While, annoying at first, Rory starts to grow on you as well as Justin and other characters from the unusual little tourist town. Now that the background story has been laid out, however inelegantly, I see some fun potential in this series. I haven't yet decided if I will read another in the series yet but I'll probably give it at least one more before I make a final call on the series. 

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