Sins of the Heart

by Jo Bannister

Monday, February 18, 2002

Featured image for Sins of the Heart

I read this under the alternative title Charisma and it’s a struggle to decide which reads more like a bad romance novel. The book however does not read like any kind of bad novel. This is the second in the Castlemere series and the fifth in my out of order reading order.

I think this is probably the weakest of the series that I’ve read so far. It didn’t get under my skin the way some of the other books have. The characters continue to be wonderful and realistic but the inability of Bannister to let them get through the book without putting at least one of them in mortal danger is getting a bit wearing.

In this book a welsh evangalist preacher comes to town and does very well there in the wake of the obligatory murder. One of the parts of the book I had trouble with was when the preacher unwittingly fired up a lynch mob. I could believe in the preacher and in people’s reactions to him but something in the herd mentality seemed off key. I was also concerned that the lynch mob seemed to be forgotten very fast with neither the victim or the participants afforded much time in the rest of the book.

I had some misgivings when the IRA entered the story for a time, they are so easily villanified that it seems an author is cheating when they appear in fiction. This part of the story played out well without concurring with stereotypes though.

In summary the characters are enough to keep this series going and though the plots are rather outsize for the town concerned I’m still enjoying them.