Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Review of Margin of Error by Edna Buchanan (Hyperion, 1997)
Margin of Error is a kind of tart noir, with its sassy, smart, streetwise reporter pitching her wits against cops, criminals and anyone else that gets in the way of a good story, with the obligatory romantic subplot. It’s nicely written in an engaging style, with the story zipping along. Britt Montero is well portrayed as the committed reporter with a messy personal life, and Lance Westfell is a ringer for Matthew McConaughey, being all charm, wit, good looks and slightly vulnerable. The story felt a little cliched, both in terms of the general arc and the romance, but was blended with a handful of interesting, intertwined subplots, and was generally entertaining. However, as it progressed and Buchanan ratcheted up the intrigue and tension it became less believable and the reveal just didn’t ring true at all and firmly bumped me out a story. That was a shame as it had been working quite well up to the last third. Overall, a relatively light, fun read that didn’t quite strike all the right notes.