Rawlings is en route to Boston, Massachusetts, to meet up
with a man who is interested in his carbonated drink recipe.
But the ship is wrecked, causing him and the rest of the survivors
to trek miles to their destination. Once in Boston, things
are not quite as he had hoped, and there is an atmosphere
of discontent. The colonists are not happy under British rule,
but when things reach a head at the Boston Tea Party, one
of Rawlings' erstwhile shipmates is found dead.
I am sure I am not the only one who thought this series over
after a tidy ending completed the fifteenth entry, but here
is John Rawlings back for a new adventure. There is very much
a feel of a fresh start here, and most of the book is not
about murder and detection but John's adventures at sea and
in a fledgling America. John witnesses the Boston inhabitants
edging towards revolution, makes some new friends, meets some
Native Americans and sets up a business. Reading about all
this is entertaining, and during the latter half of the book,
John gets to do some detecting as well, although at times
this feels rather an afterthought. This is the latest in a
long series and the characters have taken on a life of their
own, so reading about their other activities is as much a
part of the stories as the sleuthing. I feel that this series
is at a crossroads now and it will be interesting to see where
the author takes it next.