An Intriguing Mystery in Underground Chinatown #ARCAugust

Mystery Book Review | Catacombs by Mary Anna Evans

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An action-packed thrill ride in a mysterious underground Chinatown, Catacombs delights and regales readers. Another bomb has gone off in Oklahoma City, but it seems that this bomb was only designed to kill one person. Is it a suicide bomber, or did someone else set off the bomb? As the questions pile up, the FBI turns to Archeologist Faye Longchamp-Mantooth for help in finding the answers.

The main character, Faye, and her husband Joe are both relatable and admirable. It’s not often I run across characters I genuinely like as if they were real but Faye and her husband, Joe, are just such characters.  They are unassuming and hardworking family people who love and respect each other healthily and genuinely.  This genuineness is precisely what drives me and other readers to read book after book in this series.

I liked the way that the story explores social issues.   The characters confront racism in a way that enables the reader to see the racism through the main character’s eyes, rather than being told about the horrific way people can act. The same is true in regard to the theme of invisibility, where groups of citizens – older adults, Chinese in the early 1900s and the working class are virtually invisible to society.  The plot of the story and the way the characters are developed leads the reader to empathize, which has a profound effect.

Learning about the Underground Chinatown in Oklahoma was fascinating and created the perfect setting for a mystery.  This piece of history has a story all its own, and the imagery in the novel enabled the reader to see and experience it.

I wish I knew more about the life of the bomber and that bomber’s family.  The story included relevant information, but it just felt like there was so much more to tell about them.  They were interesting enough that I wanted to know more.

I enjoyed reading this novel so much that I hope more stories feature Faye Longchamp-Mantooth and her genuine family ties.

Read the whole series if you haven’t already.  This book offers so much more than the typical who-done-it, you can’t miss it.

7 Replies to “An Intriguing Mystery in Underground Chinatown #ARCAugust”

  1. This one intrigued me from the time you featured it as a to-be-read on your blog. The characters sound wonderful and the mystery is appealing. I also like that the protags are a married couple. Great review!

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    1. The characters definitely stood out the most to me and the novel is very well-written. The plot is tight and overall, the writing is smart but not inaccessibly so.


  2. Great review. This series is new to me. The mystery sounds fascinating and different. I’ll be on the look out for this one. Another series to add to my TBR stack. Thanks.

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    1. I love city undergrounds. The first one I ever experienced was in Seattle. It seems like many cities built on top of the original city. That really gets the imagination going 🙂


      1. It really does. I’ve never toured one, but I watch specials on the History Channel all the time. They’re fascinating. How lucky you’ve witnessed some in person!

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