Review: Collecting the Constellations by Emily Steers

 Purchase on  Amazon  |  Barnes and Noble

Purchase on Amazon | Barnes and Noble

About the Book

Charlotte Daly is goal-oriented, inquisitive, and tireless— everything one needs to be a successful researcher at a prestigious museum. She is well-known amongst her colleagues as an up-and-coming talent. She just wasn’t expecting her most intriguing find to come from her great aunt’s basement.

Charlotte’s befuddled by the new treasure—a dagger as long as her hand made entirely of blue sapphire, flawless except for a few specks in the handle. With an unstoppable desire to get the to bottom of her mystery, Charlotte convinces her boss to let her re-trace her aunt’s travels to its source– with the company of longtime friend and co-worker, Rory Hobbs.

Charlotte’s clues take them to Kathmandu, where they discover Charlotte’s aunt may not have been the noble adventurer she imagined. Conspicuous wealth, violent attacks, and grand myths plague the pair as they jump into a world of secret societies and treasure hunters they never knew existed.

Review

Charlotte is particular, pragmatic, and thoroughly organized. She is Wiley inquisitive and a self appointed history detective. And this book is about her getting down to the nitty gritty of her great aunt's maybe not so clean past.

It all starts out with a dagger and unravels gracefully from there. I found the book intriguing and overall I thought the writing style matched Charlotte's way of particularity. There were quite a few times where I felt overwhelmed by the monotony of description, it began to feel almost obsessive at some points, but at the same time I thought it added a unique aspect to what I expected to be a fairly straight forward mystery novel.

At times the dialogue was clunky but mostly had a natural flow to it as you hope for in these kinds of settings. I felt an almost Sherlock Holmes vibe to the novel, with the intense pragmatism and overall theme and pacing of it.

It's hard for me to fully describe my experience reading this novel, which is strange, considering its genre and first person narrative, but I think mostly it was a positive one. There was something very endearing and relatable about Charlotte although I felt there could've been more said about her personally, but alas. Overall, I thought it was a fine novel, one that does actually stick out among other mysteries for reasons I just can't put my finger on.