2 stars — it was okay.
I admit, the reason this book was even ever in my hands is because the synopsis made it out to be a really good mystery: When Theresa Maria finds out that her father has been murdered, and that his precious violin has been stolen, she's determined to find out the culprit — except she realizes the further she delves into the gruesome murder of her father, the more secrets and dirty, dark mysteries unravel.
Okay, I lie. The other reason was because there was a violin on the cover.
Which was actually the main reason.
I have a fascination of violins. I play one, and I hadn't yet read a book that connected orchestral music, mysteries, and murder. So to say that I had high expectations for this book is an understatement — I had very
high expectations for this book, especially since I realized the author had done a PhD in the study of music history and other nice, nice things.
I was confident Susanne Dunlap would pull this off.
With such a background history, in both music
and its evolution, I had no suspicion she couldn't not pull this off.
While Susanne Dunlap certainly had the information and its correct order, it seemed like that's what she focused on best. Not the story. Not the romance (as if there was any.) Not the mystery. Not the action.
She doesn't exactly have a knack for storytelling, basically. Maybe she should stick with essays.
I was bored out of my mind
for nearly the whole book. The climax scene was good. As was the ending. But the summary is fooling you: There is no romance in this book. None. At all.
I promise you that. You can stake my hand on a hot dog stick if you find that I'm wrong.
The romance interest is nice, though. I was dying, aching, starving for some scenes with him, but maybe it was the historical context of the book, or maybe because the heroine was such a wimp, or maybe the interest didn't have feelings for Theresa for 15/16ths of the book, I don't know, but nothing happened.
Murder is nice. Murder with intensity and suspense is definitely better. Murder with romance is beautiful. But murder with intensity, suspense, and
romance is brilliant.
I ended up skipping the last fifty pages. Bored to death.
(The book was okay, I suppose. Nice historical context — the author stayed true to the setting. And our heroine wasn't a ditzy, stupid klutz, so that was okay. And I liked how the book ended: not too happy, but not bittersweet.)