Book Review: Medicine Wheel by Kelly Running

By on Nov 23, 2017 in Book Reviews, Fiction, Spring | 0 comments

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Medicine Wheel (The Lizzy O'Malley Mysteries Book 1)

Publisher: Kelly Running (November 12, 2013)

Publication Date: November 12, 2013


Rating: 2/5               

The blurb:

A murder interrupts Lizzy O’Malley’s work as stage manager for her brother’s Shakespeare company in Sedona, Arizona. Her efforts to clear her brother’s name lead her on an odyssey of Navajo visions, sweat lodges, medicine wheels, and mysticism. The journey promises to waken her latent psychic abilities if she survives numerous attempts on her life and figures out who wants her dead.



The story, set in Sedona, is told from the point if view of the protagonist, Lizzy O’Malley. Lizzy takes the reader on a wild adventure as she tries to solve a murder, clear her brother’s name, develop her mystical calling, save a struggling theatre, explore Native American culture, fall in the love, develop new friendships and make key decision about her future. Herein lies the problem with the book. It wasn’t clear to me whether this book was a mystery, an exploration of mystical culture or a romance.

By taking on so many subjects I felt, at times, that the story had some plot holes which in turn made the heroine less likable. For example, early in the book Lizzy’s brother is taken into custody. The author is moving so quickly to develop a love interest and to explore Lizzy’s mystical calling in the story that she skimmed over the angst that a sister at her brother’s incarceration. The omission (and several others like it) made Lizzy a less likeable character and detracted from the tension I look for in a mystery read. By the end of the book I found myself less invested in Lizzy’s well being than I would have liked.

The style of the book is relatively informal which made reading easy. The pace was fast and at times I wanted it to slow a little to allow for some character development.

I did enjoy the exploration of some aspect of Native American culture, with which I am not familiar.

Over all I felt like the author was trying to do too much in this book. Within the book there is the potential for a decent romance, mystery thriller and exploration of the mystical but by trying to do it all at once, I felt the book lacked the impact I was looking for.

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