by Vicki Delany
I'm a bit late in reviewing this, since it was launched in mid-April (Vicki & I had a joint launch -- but I promise to be objective!). This is the third in the Klondike Mystery series and as usual, the intrepid Scotswoman Fiona MacGillivray is in fine form. In fact, such fine form that she's kidnapped by a love-stricken suitor who also has a bad case of gold fever.
There's no murder in Gold Mountain but really, you won't even miss the lack of bloodshed! Fiona is such a delightful, if not unorthodox, character that readers are swept into her story and make the trek through the wilds of the Yukon as her captor searches for the elusive Gold Mountain. Is it real or a figment of his mad imagination?
Hot on their trail is the intrepid Corporal Richard Sterling of the Northwest Mounted Police, himself under Fiona's spell, along with her determined young son, Angus. It's a hazardous and rough journey for them all and the reader is kept wondering if the wilds don't do them in...will Fiona's mad captor do it?
There are many reasons to read Gold Mountain. First, it's a delight. Second, as mentioned, Fiona is a heroine who's quite unique -- feisty, with a checkered past, clever, sarcastic, quick-witted, headstrong and quite fetching. Third, the setting of the Klondike gold rush is so vividly portrayed, from the mud-drenched roads to those desperately seeking their fortunes. Consider it a mini history lesson.
Vicki Delany should be a well-known name in Canadian crime writing. She's that prolific and good. She has two series on the go and a number of stand alones to her credit and more on the way. If you've missed the earlier Klondike novels, you'll still be able to jump right in for a rousing adventure on the way to Gold Mountain.