by Molly J. Ringle

February 2003
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Humor, romance, and ghosts? Itís all here in Molly J. Ringleís engrossing Tourist Attractions.

Eva Sonneborn, her sister Sharon, and her two friends, Eileen and Laurence are spending six months in Edinburgh, Scotland. Eileen has come in search of ghosts; Sharon for the experience; Laurence to share his witty sarcasm with the world. And Eva? Sheís come to Edinburgh to make sure her boyfriend Tony is the one for her.

The only way to prove this or so she thinks is by having a romantic fling with someone else. That someone else is Gilleon, a bartender in Edinburgh whose heart is already engaged. As Eva starts to spend time with Gilleon while continuing to lead Tony on, she experiences a shattering revelation. She has no idea which man is the right one. Her final choice is a pleasant surprise.

While Eva is discovering herself and her heartís choice, her sister and her friends experience the joys and pains of love. They also search for ghosts, and in the process, discover just as much about themselves as they do the history of Edinburgh.

I was hooked from the prologue, and even though I have finished the book, I continue to read the prologue over and over again. Perhaps because it is the best introduction Iíve read in years. It informs. It entices. It made me eagerly want to read Tourist Attractions.

Having spent several months in Europe over the past year, I had already started to miss the European life. This expertly crafted novel took me back there. I stood in the pub and walked the streets. It was nice to travel without having to search for my passport.

The character development was outstanding! All of the characters were well defined and had interesting, lively personalities. Eva and Laurence were my favorites.

I love a sarcastic man, and Laurence is pure, mischievous sarcasm. Molly J. Ringle outdid herself with his character. Laurence is an explosive catalyst whether he is speaking or just merely standing silently with a knowing smirk. His witty dialogue kept me in good humor throughout the book.

Even though Eva cheated on Tony to some extent, itís still impossible to dislike her. She is so adorably intriguing in her confusion and tolerance of others. The fact she is so unsure about her love life is something I think we can all identify with.

Iím still not quite sure about all the ghost stuff. Were there actual hovering spirits or not? Who knows? Maybe Iím not supposed to know. Either way, the mere thought of ghosts makes the story line incredibly attractive.

The one thing I didnít particularly like was Tonyís way of discovering his true path in life, the scene in the church. It was too strange for me, and though I was able to deal with the shadows of the netherworld without feeling a change of pace in the story, this incident tampered with the momentum a little. Luckily, it occurred near the end so I was still able to enjoy the book.

Notwithstanding that one circumstance, I really liked this book. It is an entertaining read that allows you to travel without security checks and puts a smile on your face. I look forward to other exciting works by Molly J. Ringle.

Reviewed in March 2003 by Natasha.

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