London In The Dark – Light of London series #1
reviewed by bookwolf4
Budding Private Detective Cyril Arlington Hartwell has a conundrum. London is being ravaged by the largest run of thefts in recent history. His hunch that it is all tied together may put him and those he loves in more danger than he could have reckoned.
Olivia Larken Hartwell is just home from boarding school for the summer anticipating time with her adoring parents. She misses her absent brother, Cyril, hoping for the day he will finally come home. But tragedy strikes, causing upheaval for all concerned and changes her life in a way she never could have imagined.
Olivia, Cyril, and their friends must bring the hidden to light, seek to execute justice, and dispel the darkness that hovers over London… and their hearts.
Content Rating – 11+ for semi-detailed deaths
“To trust God in the light is nothing, but to trust Him in the dark – that is faith.” C. H. Spurgeon
London in the Dark has been on my radar for a long time, and I finally got around to reading it yesterday. It was a fun read, a bit cliche, maybe, but good for fans of light-hearted mysteries set in England. As for Harlow Doyle, Cyril’s mentor…I’m guessing his name is a nod to Adventures In Odyssey?
Overall, London in the Dark was an entertaining afternoon read. Miss Lynn handles the drastic changes some of the characters went through towards the end of the book well. I’m curious in particular as to how Cyril will continue to change – such as how Miss Lynn handles the new changed Cyril while still staying with his original personality and tendencies. And book two will be interesting as far as two certain characters go…I’m still not sure how I feel about that ending!
What I Liked
Dudley Woodsworth was my favourite character.
I loved Olivia’s pets!
Olivia herself was alright – a tad gullible, though I suppose that can be understood given her sheltered life.
What I Didn’t Like
When the characters flip through the Bible and just so happen to land on the perfect verse…
Cyril. He blows his top when Olivia does something foolish to protect them, but then goes and does the exact same thing… Also, he is SO condescending! First he’s saying only girls cry when they are upset, and then that the thought of dying can be unnerving, especially for a girl!! Also, why was Cyril targeted? Him being the ‘best’ seems a bit flimsy…he sure didn’t act like it, anyway! The bad dude’s whole motivation is to make Cyril leave England, so that bad dude can get away with all his bad dude plans…riiiiiight. What about all the other detectives!?
Someone is converted (which is becoming somewhat of a common occurrence in Christian fiction). As soon as they say ‘amen’, they feel as if ‘a heavy weight they didn’t know they had was lifted’. So…yeah. Not bad, per se, just overused.
On page 47, Dudley says his little sister died of scarlet fever. On page 69, he says she died from smallpox.
Editing Errors (all direct, word-for-word quotes – it seems as if notes from editing weren’t removed?):
Page 104 – “You were sighted last night in —-[Should this be filled in?] district in the vicinity of a shop…”
Page 116 – “Cyril sat across from Dudley at the chess table, [not needed] and glared at him before moving his knight.”
“Never dwell on ‘if onlys.’ They steal your peace and weaken your faith.”
“You can never do too much for God’s forgiveness, Bancroft. He always forgives. You just need to ask for it.” “But I can’t ask. I’m not worthy to ask.” …… “You can never be worthy. That’s what makes it so special and beautiful.”