Jackaby by William Ritter
Published September 16, 2014
I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect when I picked up this book and honestly the only reason why this book came onto my radar was because my book club was reading it. This book was extremely similar Sherlock which made sense since it was marketed as “Sherlock meets Doctor Who” but since I’m not familiar with Doctor Who, I’m just going to go along with Sherlock with the supernatural/paranormal.
While I liked Jackaby’s character and his interactions with “normal” people, there were many times when I seriously wondered if he was simply crazy. He seemed really out of it most of the time and he seemed lost for majority of the book yet somehow managed to solve cases after cases. He was definitely an intriguing character but he didn’t really grab my attention as much as, say, Sherlock. Gosh, I really like Sherlock.
Abigail, or Abby, was probably one of the most ordinary character I have ever read about. There was absolutely nothing going on for her. She would state the obvious yet somehow Jackaby always missed the obvious and looked at the extraordinary so maybe that was actually a good thing since she gave her obvious insights to Jackaby. However, other than that, I don’t think she was particularly interesting. And the little minute romance between her and the cop was so out there, I didn’t even notice there was something going on between the two of them until he left town and she admitted having feelings for him. I thought that was seriously way out there.
The plot itself was okay, I suppose. Nothing too interesting to be perfectly honest. There were a few interesting oddities about the book such as the frog in Jackaby’s office that if stared upon, will release this godawful stench that will linger for hours or the random friendly ghost named Jenny. These little fun information kept the book light but the murder mystery and the intrigue just didn’t really get to me.
The writing style also wasn’t something I was particularly fond of. It’s not that it was bad or choppy or anything – for some reason, it just didn’t click for me. It didn’t flow as well as I would have liked but it wasn’t choppy or all over the place either. It’s difficult to describe.
Overall, this book is solidly in my “meh” pile. There were definitely some pluses for this book such as Jackaby’s character and personality along with some of the interesting happenings in the book but other than that, I’m not sure if I will pick up the second book.