The Naturalist

The Naturalist (The Naturalist #1)The Naturalist by Andrew Mayne

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I’m not super picky about the accuracy of fictional crime investigations, so I liked all the stuff in this book about Theo’s science, insights, and methods. I don’t love first-person present tense, but that’s just a personal preference. My two main complaints are both character-driven:

1. Theo barely remembers Juniper Parsons, but somehow her death motivates him for the rest of the book. He descends into a guilt/grief that seems implausible and self-centered.

2. The author states several times that Theo is a little vague on social cues in a harmless dorky-professor kind of style. However, he seems to scrounge up a miraculous insight into humanity at key plot moments. He can tell if someone is lying by looking in their eyes, and he picks a killer, as a child, no less, out of a group of photos of strangers because the kid apparently has the cold look of a killer. That’s not how it works.

The audiobook narrator was excellent!

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