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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Finding Charli is a work of fiction in the visionary, mystery, and magical realism subgenres, and it serves as the fourth installment in the Lake Scugog Mysteries series. It is suitable for the general adult reading audience and was penned by author Maighread MacKay. In this fascinating tale filled with complex emotional intrigue and mysterious magical influences, we meet protagonist Charlotte Bancroft when she is at a crossroads in her life. Overcome by grief at the death of her grandmother, Martha, Charlotte finds herself in even more trouble when a winter storm sees her stranded at a strange hotel with a collection of people who are truly never what they seem.
It is rare to find a work of magical realism that actually settles into the realism side of itself so swiftly and convincingly, but author Maighread MacKay has a real knack for making you believe every mystical and unusual happening in this work. As such, the emotional realism of the work also becomes all the more convincing, as though any one of us could find ourselves wandering in a storm for shelter and end up in just as unnerving a situation as Charlotte does. The characterization of the piece is also a huge highlight, from Charlotte’s own highly relatable journey through to the weird and wonderful people she meets along the way, each of whom is easily memorable in the cinematic descriptive style of the author. For a highly engrossing mystery that stands alone well, but will also introduce readers to a talented, atmospheric author, look no further than Finding Charli.