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The Celtic Riddle: An Archaeological Mystery    by Lyn Hamilton order for
Celtic Riddle
by Lyn Hamilton
Order:  USA  Can
Berkley, 2000
Hardcover, Paperback

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* *   Reviewed by G. Hall

Canadian author Hamilton's fourth archaeological mystery takes place in Ireland and again features Toronto antiques dealer Lara McClintoch. Celtic Riddle follows previous stories set in the Yucatan, Mexico, Malta and Peru. Hamilton's strength lies in creating a vivid setting so that the reader really feels a sense of the place. It is probably no coincidence that the author has led a tour to Malta, presumably for readers taken with her Maltese location.

This particular book is centered around a Celtic riddle left in the will of the patriarch of a large and somewhat dysfunctional Irish family. The riddle relates back to an ancient Celtic poem and Lara and her fellow sleuths wander all over Ireland while they solve it, along with the several murders that naturally accompany its solution.

Although Hamilton's plots are reasonable she is weaker in her characterization, such that even after four stories her main character is still fairly two-dimensional. However, the settings are so well-done that they draw the reader back for future books.

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