Published: 8th October 2019
Trigger warnings: Alcoholism, sexual references, drugs
Tuesday Mooney is a loner. She keeps to herself, begrudgingly socialises, and spends much of her time watching old Twin Peaks and X-Files DVDs. But when Vincent Pryce, Boston’s most eccentric billionaire, dies – leaving behind an epic treasure hunt through the city, with clues inspired by his hero, Edgar Allan Poe – Tuesday’s adventure finally begins.
Puzzle-loving Tuesday searches for clue after clue, joined by a ragtag crew: a wisecracking friend, an adoring teen neighbor, and a handsome, cagey young heir. The hunt tests their mettle, and with other teams from around the city also vying for the promised prize – a share of Pryce’s immense wealth – they must move quickly.
Pryce’s clues can’t be cracked with sharp wit alone; the searchers must summon the courage to face painful ghosts from their pasts (some more vivid than others) and discover their most guarded desires and dreams.
The synopsis of this book makes it seem very intriguing, but sadly that is where the excitement ends. There was barely a redeeming feature to speak of as the plot is lost in the depths of a writing style that lacked any kind of cohesion, and characters whom I established no connection with whatsoever.
I would have DNF’ed it had this not started off as a buddy read. After a while we were already some way in and struggling with it so much that we decided to stop and finish the book in our own time. It took me over a month and I was essentially skim reading long before the end, which not make the experience any more satisfactory.
The writing was just impossible to follow as it went from one tangent to the next, just making me feel more disassociated with the story by each turn of the page. Although the author did have a way with words, it was little more than incessant rambling and as such any semblance of a plot simply fell by the wayside. A billionaire suddenly dropped dead; there was talk of hidden clues and a girl who went missing sixteen years previously, but the way it was told meant nothing seemed to make any sense.
As for Tuesday Mooney herself, she was presented as something of a curiosity, but there was no real evidence of that at all. I could not stand Dex, while many of the other characters were fairly forgettable and it was difficult to tell the Arches brothers apart. The one exception was Dorry, but once again the writing style prevented me from connecting properly with her story.
There were actually one or two decent twists, but by the time they occurred I had lost all interest in the plot and so their impact was extremely limited. Even before I had started skim reading, a lot of the time I just had absolutely no idea what was going on, while everything that had been promised in the synopsis failed to properly materialise.
Overall, it was a book that I totally failed to comprehend. The writing style was a major flaw, not engaging in the slightest and providing next to nothing for me as the reader to latch on to. There will of course be many others who find much to love about this one, but sadly for me it was a huge disappointment.
As well as being an author, Kate Racculia has worked in an eclectic range of jobs, involved in industries such as bookselling and marketing. Having studied illustration, design, and literature at the University of Buffalo, she now balances her time between writing, working at her local library, and singing in a choir.
Now living in Pennsylvania, she published her first novel This Must Be The Place in 2010, followed by Bellweather Rhapsody four years later. That won the American Library Association’s Alex Award.
From my point of view this book was a bit of a disaster, and as such I could not flatter it with a full review. Others may like it but I just could not connect with it at all.
My rating: ⭐