Thursday, June 24, 2010

Review: A Fine Line

A Fine Line is the fifth and final book of the Baxter Series by Kathy Herman.

From the back cover: "The city council voted to let Thompson Tire Corporation build a plant in Baxter, threatening the town's quaint culture."  Once again there are rumors flying in Baxter.  It is believed that the mayor's vote was swayed because of an alleged relationship with Sheila Paxton, the attorney for the tire company, instead of his belief that this plant will help the community financially.  Ellen Jones, the editor of the newspaper, once again finds herself a part of the story after Sheila dies suddenly.  Will she dig into Sheila's past?  Is she in danger if she does?  Is she in danger if she doesn't?  Who is she in danger from?  And what do they want from her?

The other big plot point in this book is the ruined reputation of Mayor Charlie Kirby because of his alleged relationship with Sheila Paxton.  Will he and his wife be able to work out their relationship?

This book is one of my favorites in this series (the other being Day of Reckoning).  Kathy Herman kept the suspense high throughout the book, right to the end, unlike the last two where the latter part of the book was focused on relationships and reconciliation after the major conflict was resolved.  I also loved the way she tied important information from the previous books into this book to tie it all together, as a farewell to characters I have come to know and love.  A reminder of what the town has gone through.  It was finally in this book I realized that Ellen is the character who has a major role and who ties everything together.

All in all, I give this book 5 stars.  I love the sentimentality, the suspense gripping the reader throughout the book, the twists and the way she worked with Mayor Kirby and his wife through their relationship troubles.  And the reminder that there is a fine line to guard against going over when it comes to fidelity in marriage.

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