Monday, April 18, 2016

FREEDOM OF THE MASK by Robert McCammon

*Book 6 of the Matthew Corbett series*

Will Matthew Corbett ever make it back to his beloved home in the New York colony? It seems like it's been forever since he's walked along the Broad Way! And this time, Matthew has been kidnapped by an old nemesis and is transported across the sea to London to be handed over to the evil Professor Fell. Although his partner Hudson Greathouse and his scorned paramour Berry Grisby have embarked on a mission to rescue him, Matthew must rely only on his wits and cunning to navigate the dangerous city.

It's gotten to the point now that a new book in McCammon's Matthew Corbett series is guaranteed exciting entertainment and Freedom of the Mask is no different. And in this installment the danger to Matthew and his friends are greater than they've ever been! Throughout the novel I was constantly wondering how Matthew would get out of this one! As usual, McCammon's talent for plotting is one of the things that makes the book shine. Where other authors writing a new episode in a book series treat exposition from earlier books as "previously on" plot-dump summaries (one of my biggest pet peeves), McCammon always skillfully incorporates this exposition into the story in ways that never distract.And the way that he brings the many subplots together into one big web of intrigue is really cool. And the way that London is portrayed here and the atmosphere it creates is gothic and dangerous. McCammon is prone to being a little long-winded at times in his writing but because I expect that I prepare myself for it whenever I read his books.

And the heart of these books is still Matthew Corbett himself. Here, he's more world-weary than he's ever been, more adept to dealing with violence but just as smart and courageous as ever. Throughout all of his ordeals and the dire straits that he's in, he still can't control his curiosity and his desire to solve problems. Whether it's discovering the identity of the person writing the local tabloid rag, the whereabouts of a kidnapped opera singer, or who is the face behind the masked vigilante stalking London, he just can't resist a good mystery. That is the biggest strength in McCammon's character and what makes him so likable.

So if you are already a reader of the Matthew Corbett books, be prepared for another great tale where the stakes are even higher than ever by the end of the book. And if you're new to the series, don't start here, but hopefully this review piques your interest in what is possibly my favorite book series. Pure entertainment! Can't wait for the next one.

*Advanced Copy from Subterranean Press through NetGalley in exchange for honest review*


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