In Sibella Giorello’s book The Mountains Bow Down, FBI agent Raleigh Harmon is on a much-needed vacation from work. As the cruise ship she’s on makes its way up the Alaskan coast, however, the drama of the movie being filmed on board crosses over into real life. Priceless jewels are found, a woman is dead, and it seems no one — cruise employees, movie stars, and the like — can be trusted, and it’s up to Raleigh to figure out what’s happening before someone else is murdered. (Oh, and while she’s at it, she has to deal with her mother’s mental illness, an overbearing fiance back home who won’t quit calling, and an attractive ex-colleague who has come in to assist. So much for a relaxing vacation!)
I had never read any books by Giorello, which is unfortunate because I think this book must somehow be part of a series with Raleigh as the main character. Parts of the plot seemed just assumed (the murder of her father, her mother’s illness), which made for a difficult entry into the book. Perhaps if I had read the others, I wouldn’t have struggled to get into the book like I did. While the plot was fast-paced and there was plenty of mystery, I was unsure at the end how all of the pieces fit together, even as it was being explained to me. I also struggled to really believe the personal relationships in the book, most especially her relationship with her fiance back home who she seems to have absolutely no affection or good will towards.
If you like mystery and lots of action in your fiction, you’ll enjoy this book. And if you want to visit Alaska, you’ll love the descriptions of the scenery and travel.
Many thanks to Thomas Nelson Publishing for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book to review. All opinions expressed are mine entirely.