The Ruby in the Smoke

by

I got this on a two-for-one deal via Audible. I thought it was a recent Pullman release, but it was originally published in 1985. It’s the first part in a quartet of Sally Lockhart novels.

There’s plenty of mystery and intrigue as you follow the protagonist — the aforementioned Sally Lockhart — but everything just falls into place far too easily. Every time she needs something — a new home, a helping hand, a crucial clue — one falls in her lap with little or no effort.

I can live with that at the start when you want to get the narrative on its feet, but it gets a bit ridiculous towards the end.

I wouldn’t class it as a bad book, or a bad story, it’s just a bit too much of an easy read. It’s the equivalent of a popcorn movie — switch off and enjoy. I suspect that, had it been written today, it would be a bit more complex.

I enjoyed it, but not sure I’d recommend it to anyone out of their teens.

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Reviewed: 5th July 2019