Book Review – The Conductors by Nicole Glover
Meet Hetty Rhodes, a former conductor on the Underground Railroad who now uses her magic to solve crimes in her community in a post-Civil War world.
As an escaped slave, Hetty Rhodes helped dozens of people find their own freedom north using her wits and her magic. Now that the Civil War is over, Hetty and her husband, Benjy, still fight for their people by solving the murders and mysteries that the white authorities won’t touch.
When they discover one of their friends brutally murdered in an alley, Hetty and Benjy mourn his loss by setting off to find answers. But the mystery of his death soon brings up more questions, more secrets, more hurt. To solve his death, they will have to not only face the ugly truths about the world but the ones about each other.
I received this e-ARC for free and this is my honest review. Thank you to Netgalley and Random House UK for giving me the opportunity to read this book.
I really, desperately wanted to like this.
At first glance, it had everything that I wanted in a book. I loved the cover, it was eye-catching and colourful and the idea of a magical murder-mystery involving freed slaves just sounded so unique that I couldn’t wait to pick it up and see what it was all about.
I realised very early on that this was not a book I was going to enjoy.
From the off you are introduced to characters with little to no real development and are thrown into the magic systems with absolutely no explanation.
Half the time I had no clue what was happening while I was reading this.
The main characters are fairly dull and unrelatable, although they definitely had potential. There were so many side characters that I often found myself completely lost as to who was who.
The book jumps between past and present in various chapters but then doesn’t even pick up from where it left off which left me feeling even more confused.
The reveal of the murderer was anticlimactic too as I felt like I didn’t know enough about the murderer to really care that much and I found the motive to be very weak.
I found it difficult to concentrate on the story for long periods of time and even found myself skimming just to try to finish it faster. My head just felt fuzzy and disconnected the entire time I was reading.
As a debut novel the premise is a very interesting one and I think with a little more polishing it definitely has the potential to be a great read. Unfortunately as it is at the moment this one wasn’t really for me.