Book Review: Rhys Bowen’s Evan Can Wait

Posted October 20, 2011 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Rhys Bowen’s Evan Can Wait

Evan Can Wait


Rhys Bowen

cozy mystery that was published by Berkley on December 1, 2001 and has 288 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.

Other books by this author which I have reviewed include Evans Above, Evan Help Us, Evanly Choirs, Bless the Bride, The Last Illusion, Evan and Elle, Naughty in Nice, Evans to Betsy, Evan Only Knows, Her Royal Spyness, A Royal Pain, Royal Flush, Evan's Gate, Royal Blood, Evan Blessed, Evanly Bodies, Rhys Bowen, Hush Now, Don't You Cry, The Twelve Clues of Christmas, The Family Way, Heirs and Graces, Queen of Hearts, Malice at the Palace, Crowned and Dangerous, On Her Majesty's Frightfully Secret Service

Fifth in the Constable Evans mystery series set in Wales, revolving around the undecided Constable Evan Evans.

My Take

This was a bit irritating for at least half the story with its jumping back and forth between one character’s thoughts and memories during World War II and current events and it took a good chunk of the book before the connection arose.

There is actually a plethora of suspects which Evans seems reluctant to pass on to Sergeant Watkins…he just dribbles the names over. I think it’s partly due to the newly-promoted DC Davies being partnered up with Watkins.

I have to wonder just where Evans’ mind is. He wants Bronwen for himself but doesn’t seem all that interested in her being his one and only. At least, not until his claim is challenged.

The Story

A small film crew has descended upon Llanfair to produce a documentary about raising an old World War II German fighter plane from the depths of Llyn Llydaw. Exciting for the village — especially for Betsy, as she is just dying to get into the movies; not so exciting for Evans as one of the crew is Bronwen’s ex-husband, Edward Ferrers.

When one of the crew is found murdered, it’s Edward who’s up for it and Bronwen begs Evans to help her ex. There are a number of other possibilities as Smith has been stirring things up in Wales looking to enliven the documentary with interviews with people who lived through the war. And he’s not looking for sweetness and light…

The Characters

Constable Evan Evans threw up a promising career in England to get back to his roots in Wales. Evans tends to think sideways and has managed to solve a number of cases much to DI Hughes‘ chagrin. His partner “in crime”, solving that is, is Sergeant Watkins.

Bronwen Price is a schoolteacher in the village of Llanfair and the target of Evans’ affections.

The dead man, Grantley Smith, is a selfish ass with a nasty temperament always wanting to poke at people to make them bleed. The suspects are many although Bronwen’s ex seems the most obvious. Edward Ferrers is the plane buff and holder of the money that is producing this documentary. Howard Bauer is a prize-winning documentary director helping out with his name. Robert James is the son of the man Smith shocked into a heart attack, and Gerhart Eichner is the brother of one of the dead pilots and is dead set against his body being disturbed.

Our trip back in time revolves around Trefor Thomas who had the talent and the desire to become an artist. Just, not enough desire since he remained in Wales and went down the mines when he was 14 just before WWII broke out.

The Cover and Title

The cover is a close-up of a many-gabled rooftop with mountains in the background. The most likely meaning behind the title, Evan Can Wait, is Evan having to wait for the next round in openings for detective. Seeing as how, the police department is determined to fill up the existing ones with women.