Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Shimura Trouble: Final Rei Shimura mystery

Shimura TroubleShimura Trouble by Sujata Massey

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The final book in one of my favorite series, featuring Rei Shimura as a Japanese-American antiques dealer who is living in Japan and gets wrapped up in detective work.

Sujata Massey apparently lost her book contract because her books were not selling enough to satisfy her publisher, so she had to find another publisher for her last two books. (In spite of the fact that several of her books have won mystery awards!)

This book arrived at the perfect time, because it's set in Hawaii, and I read it in Hawaii. Shimura is taking care of her ailing father in San Francisco, and her family receives a mysterious invitation from a previously unheard of relative in Hawaii.

I would give this book 3-1/2 stars because I don't think it's her best book, but I did enjoy it. The characters were not as well developed as in some of her other books--for example, I never felt that I got to know her new love interest, Michael, as well as her Scottish ex-boyfriend Hugh.

There were a few editorial errors I noticed--Hanama Bay instead of Hanauma Bay, and a couple of others I can't remember at the moment.

In addition, it seemed that there were too many characters that were not fully developed (for example, Michael's boat partners and their wives).

If you are interested in this series, I highly recommend that you start at the beginning with Salaryman's Wife. Much in this final book wouldn't make as much sense to readers new to the series.

I'm glad to see that Rei is going to live happily ever after, and it captured perfectly why I too love Hawaii. Having her settle in Hawaii, halfway between Japan and the U.S., is a perfect ending for this series!

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