Meh. This is not a bad book. I just didn’t click with it. I was drawn in by the fabulous premise (fictionalization of the adventures of a real-life female deputy sheriff in the early 1900’s), but I was bored by the narrator (Miss Constance Kopp, said real-life female deputy sheriff). She related a romantic affair and being shot at in the same dull, flat tone in which she narrated her household chores. (For clarity, I’m talking about my perceived tone of the prose. I didn’t listen to the audiobook.) I was bored for more than half the book. The story picked up pace after the halfway point, but still, the only reason I’m finished with it now is because Daylight Savings always makes my insomnia go nuts and there aren’t many distractions at three in the morning.
One of the problems with historical fiction featuring real people is that everyday life isn’t all that interesting and the extraordinary moments are few and far between. The author tried to compensate for this by fabricating a fictional subplot to fill the gaps which I was able to peg as artistic license without any prior knowledge of the history. That sounds a little snooty, but it’s not that I think I’m amazingly perceptive or anything. It’s that the difference in tone between the fictional and historical components was just that glaring.
Overall, this was an okay read. Not horrible, not great, and not all that memorable for me. There’s only one thought that really stuck with me in the waning hours of the sleepless night after I finished the book, and I am fairly certain it’s not the impression Amy Stewart was hoping to leave:
On a formatting note, any and all individuals complicit in producing an ebook with the text aligned left should immediately rethink their life choices.