You may care…

One mark of a worthwhile, useful book review is whether it gives the reader a good idea of whether she or he would want to read the book. By that standard, Bob Moyer excels in this review.

Reviewed by Robert P. Moyer

A DEATH IN DOOR COUNTY. By Annelise Ryan. Berkeley. 322 pages. $27.

When a Door County (Wisconsin) police chief encounters a mauled body with unusual marks on it, he hires independently wealthy bookstore owner Morgan Carter to investigate. She’s a cryptozoologist.

Question #1: What is a cryptozoologist? That’s a person who hunts cryptids — “creatures whose existence is rumored but never proven to be real.” In other words, the Loch Ness monster, et al. The chief wants to find out if such a monster might be involved.

Question #2: Do you care?

Well, you may care if you enjoy books that discuss the many forms of “cryptids” through history, accompanied by a charming trip around the tourist spot that is Door County. Author Annelise Ryan knows her locale, and lays it out well. She even develops a premise that would explain how such a monster could make its way into Lake Michigan.

On the other hand, you may not care if you don’t enjoy books that introduce a flirtation between the two main characters, and never resolve it. You may not care if you enjoy your villain being hidden in plain sight until the conclusion, not just given a flash appearance and then brought back at the end. And, if you’re looking for proof of a real live cryptid (spoiler alert), you won’t find it here.

You also may care if you have read the other “best-selling” books by the author, the Mattie Winston series. Otherwise…

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