So, What’s Wrong With Plot?

It seems strange that a mystery reviewer would denigrate plot. Isn’t plot a particularly important element of the genre?

In the Washington Post, reviewer Patrick Anderson faults the thriller Still Missing by Chevy Stevens for not having interesting characters, calling it “blatantly commercial” and complaining, “The strength of the novel lies not in its characters or insights but in a shrewdly calculated, suspenseful plot that uncorks one surprise after another.”

After a strong review from Janet Maslin in the NYT two weeks ago, the book rose to #35 on Amazon; it is now at #106.

Still Missing has been a favorite on our Galley Chat sessions. One of our regulars says it’s one of the most memorable titles so far this year. Several libraries are showing heavy holds.

Still Missing
Chevy Stevens
Retail Price: $24.99
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press – (2010-07-06)
ISBN / EAN: 0312595670 / 9780312595678

Brilliance Audio UNABR

8 CD’s; 9781441843203; $79.97
MP3-CD; 9781441843227; $39.97

One Response to “So, What’s Wrong With Plot?”

  1. Cari Says:

    I completely disagree with the reviewer. Plot was secondary to the strength of the narrator, her mother, and the kidnapper. The other characters weren’t as well-drawn, but the novel rests on the shoulders of those characters. (It also had a great plot, though.)