Snake in the Glass is a cosy mystery set in Tuscon, Arizona in which Em Dowell, a local glass blowing artist, gets caught up in hunting down the murderer of someone involved in gem tampering and is increasingly worried by the fact her brother seems to have disappeared. The book is on the more credible end of the cosy scale though it treads the well-worn path of having the heroine in a relationship with the police chief to achieve some of that believability. I’ve no idea if the premise of the book (that rough gems can be improved upon by heating them to extreme temperatures and that this is perfectly legal) is real but Atwell did a decent job of making me believe it could happen. The characters are interesting and well-developed and there’s a nice mix of background information on glass blowing (and the gem selling industry) and if it had been about 50 pages shorter I’d have rated it higher (there was a quite boring section near the beginning where nothing at all happened except people ate a lot of meals).
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My rating 3/5
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime ; ISBN: 978-0-425-23031-2 Length: 290 pages Setting Arizona, USA, present-day
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