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Adrift on St. John (Mystery in the Islands, Bk 1)
Adrift on St John - Mystery in the Islands, Bk 1
Author: Rebecca M. Hale
No one knows better than resort manager Pen Hofstra that the idea of a tropical paradise is an illusion. So when a young woman named Hannah Sheridan disappears off the island of St. John, she is not surprised that all is not what it seems to be. Pointing out Hannah's resemblance to the Amina Slave Princess from the 1733 slave revolt on St. J...  more »
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PBS Market Price: $8.09 or $4.19+1 credit
ISBN-13: 9780425246658
ISBN-10: 0425246655
Publication Date: 3/6/2012
Pages: 320
  • Currently 2.9/5 Stars.

2.9 stars, based on 26 ratings
Publisher: Berkley
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

ASJ avatar reviewed Adrift on St. John (Mystery in the Islands, Bk 1) on + 341 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 5
I would not consider this book a modern day cozy. More like cozies of days gone by. It is a bit dark, and no bubbly characters. I enjoyed the historical back ground of the islands. mystery was okay.
cathyskye avatar reviewed Adrift on St. John (Mystery in the Islands, Bk 1) on + 2260 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
First Line: Deep within the murky, unlit darkness of the Caribbean waters skirting the northern tip of the Lesser Antilles, the stocky shadow of a catamaran powerboat rocked against a wooden pier off the tiny island of St. John.

For the past four years Penelope Hoffstra has been a resort manager on the island of St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Penelope knows firsthand that there's no such thing as a tropical paradise, so when one of the resort's employees is reported to be killed when a water taxi sinks off the coast, she's not surprised that all is not what it appears to be.

If you begin reading this book expecting it to be a run-of-the-mill cozy mystery, you're going to become confused rather quickly. Rebecca M. Hale has written something different, and if you're willing to go with the flow, chances are you're going to appreciate it just as much as I did.

The main character is one Penelope "Pen" Hoffstra, resident manager of a resort on St. John. From almost the very beginning, we learn that she's not what she appears to be. She leaves most of the work to her assistant Vivian to take care of while Pen drinks more than she should and spends her days either hanging out at the table back by the dumpster outside the Crunchy Carrot where Richard the rooster forages for French fries, or sitting on her balcony chatting with Fred the iguana. Actually Richard and Fred were two of my favorite characters in the book. For one thing neither of them pretended to be something they weren't.

Yes, there are plenty of people pretending to be someone else, and we hear from several of them because Pen isn't the only narrator in the book. Hale also includes bits of the history of the island throughout the book, including information about eighteenth-century slave rebellion, which is woven into the plot.

None of the characters are particularly likable in this book, but that didn't bother me much. Why? Because Hale had me wondering what in the world they were all up to, and I had to keep reading to find out the answers to all my questions. The only thing that did bother me a bit was that, in the second half of the book, the narrator changed back and forth so quickly that it sometimes took me a paragraph or two to get my bearings once more.

Off balance or not, I really enjoyed this foray into the unexpected, and I look forward to reading the next book in this series.
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