Invisible (Ivy Malone mystery; McCourtney)

Invisible - Lorena McCourtney

A Kindle freebie. As a mystery, there is nothing much to object to in this story, except perhaps that the Little-Old-Lady heroine is given to taking remarkable physical risks and seems to suffer much less in the way of physical consequences than you might expect. Demure in the Miss Marple vein she is not. It probably qualifies as a cozy, since there's a lot of Southern banter, a bunch of "characters", and relatively little in the way of either horror or psychological depth. Ivy's observation that as an elderly person she's a bit "invisible" in the world strikes a chord, but it doesn't really work as a theme informing the murder mystery, since she persists in making herself both highly visible and a bit of a nuisance to law enforcement. A few too many sentence fragments aside, it's quite well written and edited, and the plot unfolds in an orderly manner, and if there are perhaps too many crucial characters introduced towards the end without adequate clue-planting for the reader, the conclusion is at least thought through. The groundwork for sequels is laid, but not in an objectionable way.


My main problem with this book is a labelling one. It is written specifically for a Christian readership, people who will find the frequent appeal to conventional Christian attitudes (of the Southern U.S. variety) to be reassuring rather than annoying; people who will not roll their eyes at the apparently necessary conversion of the nice young police officer from his agnosticism to church-going conventionality before he can get his girl. Had the book been labelled for its Christian content, I likely would have passed it by in favour of similarly competent but unremarkable mystery fare from a secular author.


Two stars are, inevitably, a shrug. It didn't hurt. It didn't delight.