A Distance To Death
A Tink Elledge Mystery by Holly Menino
Review: Tink Elledge accompanies her best friend Isabel Rakow to the Sierra Nevadas for the Tevis Cup, "a very long [horse] race with strict requirements for staying in it." And when murder intrudes on the race, she finds herself right in the middle of it all, in A Distance To Death, the second mystery in this series by Holly Menino.
Tink and Isabel arrive a few days before the start of the race, to acclimate their horses to the elevation they'll be competing in. Nearby is the headquarters of AccuGen, founded by James Grant-Worthington, a company Tink's husband Charlie and his son Stephen are structuring a protective buyout for via their Philadelphia-based venture capital company. At the conclusion of the race, Charlie is scheduled to meet Tink to celebrate what they both hope will be successful conclusions to their respective jobs. But when Grant-Worthington suddenly dies, Charlie flies out early to try to save the deal before it collapses. It isn't until his death is ruled suspicious, and AccuGen's public relations manager Josh Untemeyer disappears, that Tink realizes there is far more going on than meets the eye.
The mystery in A Distance To Death is a little thin, and doesn't seem to have been completely thought through before the first words were put to paper. (The opening paragraph gives a hint to this, when it concludes with, "But if I started with the body, you would miss half the ride.") It's not that the storyline wanders, only that it doesn't come across as all that focused. The characters are, for the most part, interesting and well developed, and the stunningly depicted mountain setting makes for an ideal backdrop to the action. Those interested in relatively obscure horse racing events will be fascinated by the description of how the Tevis Cup — it is a real event, a 100 mile endurance ride — is structured and run, and, to be sure, there is some excitement and tense moments as the race gets underway. But for mystery readers, the interpersonal relationships are far too coincidental to be credible, and more importantly, without a compelling crime plot to draw them in and keep them engaged, this is an easy book to put down and possibly forget to pick back up again.
Acknowledgment: Minotaur Books provided a copy of A Distance To Death for this review.
Review Copyright © 2014 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …
Murder, She Rode
Minotaur Books (Hardcover), August 2013
ISBN-13: 9781250016515; ISBN-10: 1250016517
Location(s) referenced in A Distance To Death: Sierra Nevadas, California
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A Distance To Death by Holly Menino — A Tink Elledge Mystery
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Publication Date: August 2014
List Price: $25.99
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Page Author: Lance Wright
Site Publisher: Mysterious Reviews
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