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Flags of Our Fathers
James Bradley, Ron Powers
Paul Levine
Beauty And The Beast - Ed McBain The characters, especially the protagonist, and the storyline in books have about equal value when I rate books.

Although this book is number three in the series, of attorney Matthew Hope, it’s the fourth book in the series which I’ve read and my bonus for all of them is that they are set on the southwest coast of Florida, south of Tampa, in fictional Calusa.

It was good, don’t get me wrong but the storyline left a lot to be desired. To top it off, the reader learned of insignificant law cases, mostly real estate cases, that Matthew and/or his firm was involved with. This is what I call ‘fluff’ in the book, nothing which adds to the storyline at all.

What is enjoyable to me is how Matthew can battle with his divorced wife and seems to always come off on top (and the more rational and sensible parent) and finds a solution to their joint responsibility and custody for Jessica, their very bright 14 year-old daughter. And I always enjoy his interaction with Dale, his sweetheart who is also a lawyer; ditto for his law partner, Frank, a transplanted New Yorker who contends that everyone has either a fox face or a pig face. Matthew supposedly has a fox face and Frank, a pig face.

Another thing I like about Matthew is his ‘one-liners,’ his quick wit. I’m sure too, that he takes in little kittens from the rain; such a kind heart, Matt Hope representing people without a penny in their pocket, which, of course, annoys law partner Frank the more practical half of the firm.

This storyline is threadbare hardly intertwined enough to stay together to have any twists whatsoever. Matthew Hope though, is the only thing that keeps it from falling apart altogether.