I was, I’ll admit it, a bit skeptical when Fog Over Finny’s Nose: A Finny’s Nose Mystery by Dana Mentink (August 1, 2008) arrived in the mail. It’s a Heartsong Presents—MYSTERIES! book, in trade paperback size except thinner than most that size that cross my path. The title is incomprehensible until you’ve started reading the book.
Finny is a small town on the coast of northern California. Finny’s Nose is a hill (referred to in the book variously as Finny’s Nose, the nose, and people go “up nose”). The town is renowned for its prolific fog. To draw in tourists, they decide to hold a fog festival. This is the first year for the festival. Bad things (a toe is found, a hot air balloon is shot down, etc.) start happening right before the festival kicks off and don’t subside until the 10-day event draws to a close.
The main character cares for handicapped gulls, and she’s in the worm business. Yes. She’s a vermiculturist. She’s made herself an unconventional family, and her interactions with many of the townsfolk are quite enjoyable.
I enjoyed the story, at least to a certain extent, particularly in the first 1/3 to half of the 250-page book. I struggled with the entirety of the work, though, when a clear caricature was introduced. A stereotyped character. I couldn’t get past it. I was constantly analyzing, trying to find a way to redeem this conclusion, but I failed.
The book does have a few bad editing misses.
Perhaps I would have been better prepared for this book if I’d read the first book in the series, Trouble Up Finny’s Nose: Finny’s Nose Mystery Series #1, published in January 2008 according to Amazon.
Mentink also writes suspense books.