Monday, November 19, 2018

Deadly News by Jody Holford: A Britton Bay Mystery

Good Day!  Tiny House in the Trees by Celia Bonaduce comes out on November 20 along with Beauchamp Hall by Danielle SteelThe Coloring Crook by Krista Davis will be available on November 27 (I cannot wait to read it).

Deadly News by Jody Hedlund is set in Britton Bay, Oregon.  Molly Owens has moved from Lancaster, California to Britton Bay to become editor for the Britton Bay Bulletin.  The Britton Bay Bulletin’s owner, Alan Benedict, is hoping Molly can revitalize the struggling paper to increase readership and revenue.   Vernon East, a reporter for the paper, is antagonistic and resents Molly’s presence.  She assigns Vernon to interview Vanessa Phillips on her family and two days later he is found dead in his home.  The suspect list is long since Vernon was disagreeable, but Molly did spot a good clue at the crime scene.  Molly works her way through the suspect list which includes an ex-wife, victim’s son, and her fellow employees.  Someone feels Molly is getting too close to the truth and leaves her a threatening message.  Molly is a reporter and not about to be dissuaded in her quest for the truth.  When not out on the trail of a killer, Molly is settling into her new abode and making friends.  She also finds an adorable bouncy puppy in need of an owner.  Britton Bay will be a lovely home for Molly once she pinpoints Vernon’s killer.

Deadly News is a cute new cozy mystery.  The cover is adorable with the black and white puppy who Molly names Tigger (it suits him).  Molly is a likeable main character.  She is starting over after catching her boyfriend in flagrante delicto with his ex-girlfriend.  Thanks to mechanic, Sam Alderich, she finds a charming carriage house to live in with a landlady who will become a good friend.  I would have liked more backstory on Molly, but she is an interesting, friendly character.  I did find it odd, though, when she spilled out case details.  As a reporter, I expected her to keep details to herself (it seemed out of place).  The pace alternates in Deadly News.  It starts out brisk, then slows down through the middle (especially when Molly is thinking about the case) with it picking up towards the end of the book.  The mystery has several suspects with subtle clues.  Avid cozy mystery readers will find this whodunit a cinch to solve.  I was surprised by the quick romance between Molly and Sam.  The sparks fly right away between them and he jumps into to help her with the mystery.  I prefer a romance that develops slowly and is not as prominent in the story (the mystery should be the focus).  I am giving Deadly News 3.5 out of 5 stars.  A Britton Bay Mystery series has potential, and I will pick up the next book in this new cozy mystery series which is Deadly Vows (release date schedule for April 9, 2019).

Thank you for ready my review.  I will share my thoughts on The Shifter's First Bite by Deanna Chase tomorrow.  It is the third novel in Witch Island Brides series.  I hope you have a very special day.  If you love Gilmore Girls, the tune into UPtv starting at 3 p.m. for Gilmore the Merrier.  Take care of yourself and Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader

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