Book Review: In the Shadow of the Glacier (Constable Molly Smith #1) by Vicki Delany

In the Shadow of the Glacier by Vicki Delany
My rating: 2 stars (🌟🌟)
Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press

I came across this series during the winter due to one in the series taking place during the winter. I don't like to read out of order so I decided to give the series a try. The setting is Trafalgar B.C. (really incognito Nelson) in the West Kootenays and I found that to be pretty cool. So, I was basically here for the setting and have to admit that's mostly why I stayed.

I'm going to assume lots of the quirks were first in a series foibles but some were quite grating. One of the main characters is Constable Molly "Moonlight" Smith and she's called all three throughout the book. This wouldn't be much of a problem if her boss didn't call her both Molly & Smith or if everyone other character picked one and stuck with it. It was jarring and took me out of the story more than I liked. Sergeant Winters was a bit flat as a character. His most distinctive characteristics are having a storied reputation after being lead on a serial killer case in Vancouver before moving to Trafalgar and being in love with his model wife. On the upside, there's plenty of room to flesh him out in subsequent books. Also prominent in the story is Molly's activist mother Lucky. She's so put out that Molly's a police officer it's weird.

The murder mystery was a bit of a letdown. The confession was related to an officer in an almost happenstance way. I had to read it twice to convince myself that, that was indeed, that. There's a lot of small-town angst and strife over resort development and a monument proposal to people who fled the US during the Vietnam War. The worry about American tourism and how this affected the town was somewhat interesting but after a while, the handwringing was a bit much. There's only so much patience and worry to afford people who are being unnecessarily obnoxious. In the end, a compromise was reached and that was pretty satisfying.

I'll read the next (because the one I really want to read is third in the series, I think) and hope for more awesome setting, a better mystery and deeper characterization.

Summary:  Trouble is brewing in the small, bucolic mountain town of Trafalgar, British Columbia. An American who came to Trafalgar as a Vietnam War draft dodger has left land and money to the town. But theres a catch. The money must be used to build a garden to honor draft dodgers.

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