Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Strong characters and mystery
Cons: A couple of minor issues, but none affecting the plot
The Bottom Line:
Leads Carol to twists and turns
In great mystery
Jewelry Robbery at Christmas
If you’ve paid attention, I try to save Christmas set mysteries to read in December. I had missed the fact that Without a Doubt is set during that month, or I would have tried to read it several months ago. But I wasn’t willing to wait until December this year to visit Carol Childs again, and I’m glad I didn’t.
Of course, December means something additional in Los Angeles, where Carol works as a journalist for a local talk radio station – the beginning of awards season. That means that some of the local jewelry businesses bring in fancier pieces for celebrities to either buy or rent for up coming awards ceremonies or parties. So when Carol is in the right place at the right time to witness a jewelry store be robbed, she quickly realizes the haul might be more than she originally thought.
Further complicating things is the fact that her boyfriend, Eric, who is an FBI agent, is also working the case, putting a strain on their relationship. As Carol tries to figure out what happened, she keeps coming back to Carmen Montague, a socialite best known for being famous. What might Carmen have to do with what is going on? Can Carol crack the case?
This book starts with a bang – literally – and keeps the pace moving until the end. The twists were very well done and help ramp up the tension before we reach the climax. We’ve got some sub-plots introduced in the last book that continue here as well, although you don’t need to read the series in order to understand what is happening in this book.
I really do love Carol. She’s a strong main character doing the best she can to figure out the crimes she gets involved in as a reporter. Because of how this plot develops, we don’t see as much of some of the series regulars, but the new characters are strong enough to keep us engaged.
There were a couple of things that slipped by the editor that needed a bit of polish, but they were both minor and didn’t impact the plot at all.
It turned out that I didn’t miss much by reading this book now instead of December. There were some scenes that made reference to the holiday, but the setting was more about the ramp up to the awards season than the Christmas season. Still, there were a couple of scenes that referred to Christmas that made me smile. This is definitely an LA set book, and these were only in LA in December types of things.
The ending of Without a Doubt left me wondering what would happen to Carol next, so I need to bump the fourth book in the series further up my to be read list. If you haven’t meant Carol yet, pick up this book today. You’ll be glad you did.
Looking for more? Here are the rest of the Carol Childs Mysteries.