Saturday, May 16, 2009
Pursued by Lynn Gardner
Pursued: A Maggie McKenzie Mystery
By Lynn Gardner
Covenant Communications, June 2009
Reviewed by Heather Moore
I must confess, this the first book I’ve read by Lynn Gardner. Pursued is the second installment in the Maggie McKenzie Mystery series. Like all good series writers, Gardner catches up the reader on past events in natural snippets throughout the book. I didn’t feel lost for information, or that I was missing out on something.
Lynn Gardner has an impressive list of published books, and from reading her author bio, she has some great real-life experience to base her chosen locations and plot ideas. During a family history trip to England, she took notes on locations as she traveled to put into her work in progress. The research and details are amazing. And I was impressed with the knowledge she shared with us in an unobtrusive way.
The plot is interesting, and gives a whole new twist on family history research. Maggie McKenzie is on assignment to cover a series of travel articles. Problem is, just before she boards the plane to London, she has a literal run in with a terrorist. He crosses in front of her as she is snapping a picture. Around the world, he is wanted for organizing a series of bomb attacks. Determined, Maggie continues her trip, blending it with seeking out her two brothers who were “given up” at birth. The intricacies of her family relations come to light as she meets each member of her newly discovered family.
The terrorist plot moves closer to home and Maggie finds that she is carrying a piece of information that could either save several major cities . . . or destroy them. But the trouble doesn’t end there as she realizes that someone in her family might be the head culprit.
Because I haven't read Gardner's previous books, I don't know if the constant shifts of point of view within scenes is part of her style or book-specific to Pursued. Yet I did find it distracting, as I did her tendency for a character to ask several questions in a row without letting the other character get a breath in. But all of this is fixable through editorial.
Overall, I think Gardner has built herself some nice credentials.