Friday, July 13, 2012

Book Review--The Sholes Key by Clarissa Draper

From Goodreads:
All across London, single mothers are vanishing. Margaret Hill, mother of two, walked out of her house two months before, never seen again. A month later, Carrie-Anne Morgans takes her two-year-old son for a walk in the park and disappears leaving him alone in his stroller. Lorna McCauley leaves her London flat in the early hours of the morning to buy medicine for her sick child and disappears.

Newly promoted Detective Inspector Theophilus Blackwell is assigned the case of Lorna McCauley, which, on the outside seems to be a simple case of mid-life crisis and child abandonment.

Elsewhere in London, MI5 analyst, Sophia Evans, is working undercover to catch an animal rights group responsible for targeted bombings. As her case (and her personal life) fall to pieces, she receives a strange envelope in the mail. It contains a picture of Lorna McCauley’s lifeless face along with a daunting code.

Now the police and MI5 are forced to work together to stop the murders, and Sophia must find her way into the terrifying mind of a serial killer.

My Take:
Wow! My head is still spinning and I'm totally creeped out by all the secret watching and spying. This was a great read. Fast paced and intense. I'm glad there will be more books with Blackwell and Evans because they reminded me of Anne Perry's Charlotte and Thomas Pitt series--just modern London instead of Victorian London--and I ate those up.

The characters were distinctive and believable. I felt for Blackwell and his loss and worried over Sophia's need to see the good in certain people. Draper unfolded the mystery at a perfect pace, but kept all the most important things a mystery until the end. Loved it!

I give The Sholes Key by Clarissa Draper a 5 because I stayed up too late reading, and picked it up first thing this morning. It had me in its claws and I had to finish it before I could get on with my life. Total hours reading? Maybe 5-6?

My 1-5 scale and what it means:
1: I couldn’t even finish it / just plain bad
2: I hope I didn’t pay for this / disappointing
3:  On the line between okay and good / found myself skimming at times
3.5: I liked it and would recommend it
4: Solid mind candy / worth reading
4.5: So very close to perfection! / must read
5: I could not put it down and I’m still thinking about it! / a true treasure


  1. Clarissa will be happy to hear that! It doesn't surprise me that her first book would be brilliant.

    1. It was! I'll definitely be reading more as they come out.

  2. Wow, I am floored! Thank you so much for this review. I didn't even know you were reading it. I have more Sophia/Theo stories coming. I hope my readers like them just as much. Thanks again.

    1. It was excellent and I can't wait to read more Sophia/Theo stories. What an honor to be at the same publisher as you. I love that all of our creative energies come out in so many varied and unique forms.

  3. Sounds like I need to move this book up on my TBR list. Great job to Clarissa and a great review, Charity.

  4. I agree. This book was an excellent read. Very cerebral.

  5. ooh, such a great review! Big congrats to our Clarissa!

  6. "If you haven't any charity in your heart you have the worst kind of heart trouble" to cure it
    Help people, let's unite for one good cause, be a volunteer"save lives"!


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