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cmjwallace

cmjwallace

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John le Carré
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Henry Hartman's Boondoggle Crisis (An "Off-the-Books" Mystery, #2)

Henry Hartman's Boondoggle Crisis (An "Off-the-Books" Mystery, #2) - Sara M. Barton Barton has written a delightful, humorous story about FBI Agent Henry Hartman and his wife, Sydney, who are on their honeymoon—and on the run from the Boston mob. Mixing work with pleasure, Hartman operates a sting while he and Sydney flee and try to avoid being whacked by various hit men.

Barton’s writing is the most mature indie author style I’ve come across yet, and kudos to her for that. She has an easy technique that makes her characters believable and likeable. Henry Hartman’s Boondoggle Crisis lacked the depth of a top-drawer novel and slowed a bit toward the end, but it was a light, pleasant read.

Then why the low rating?

Those of you who follow my reviews know that I’m an editor, and if a book has problems, they clamor for my attention and distract me from the story. Boondoggle was plagued by typos and grammatical errors. Examples include spaces before periods and commas, single rather than double closing quotation marks and extraneous quotation marks (“Oh? “What gave it away?”), dangling participles (“Once inside the building, the sounds of yelping”), hyphenated adverbial modifiers (“politically-connected”), typos (“Wrentham” vs “Wretham” for a character’s name; “make it a eye-catching”), misspellings (“snow bank” [snowbank], “bird baths” [birdbaths], “slight of hand” [sleight], “Pet Smart” and “Petsmart” [should be PetSmart]), redundancies (“direct beeline”), word misuse (“violates federal laws or flaunts ethics” [flouts]), and logic errors (“I have a man I love and a dog. Four sets of brown eyes that make me melt.” [1 man + 1 dog = 2 sets of eyes, unless this was a sci-fi book and I missed that somehow]). Most of these mistakes occurred within the first 19 pages of the 163-page book, and the list isn’t exhaustive.

There’s great potential for this book, and I hope Barton publishes a revised version.