Friday, October 2, 2015

Scrapbook of the Dead

It is World Smile Day!  Make sure to smile to people you see during your day!  You never know who could use that little bit of sunshine.  

Scrapbook of the Dead by Mollie Cox Bryan is the fifth book in A Cumberland Creek Mystery series.  Annie Chamovitz is a freelance reporter working on her last story as a freelance reporter in Cumberland Creek, Virginia.  Randy Swanson found a dead body in the freezer of Pamela’s Pie Palace owned by Pamela Kraft.  The young woman is Marina Martelino.  She was found with a scrapbook page in her hand.  Marina worked at Pamela’s Pie Palace as a baker.  The next day her sister, Esmerelda is found dead.  She also had a scrapbook page in her hand.  Who wanted these two women (sisters) dead and why? 

Both girls are from Mexico. The two women came to America through an agency as do many of Pamela’s kitchen employees.  Annie, DeeAnn, Sheila, Vera, Cookie, Karen and the scrapbook group set out to solve the crime.  Annie is surprised to find out that there is a large Mexican population in Cumberland Creek.  She has not noticed it before this case (it’s a small town.  How could she not notice?  She is a reporter.)  Will the scrapbooking group be able to solve the crime before the killer strikes again?

I have read previous books in the series, but Scrapbook of the Dead is the first one in over a year.  I found it to be very confusing and hard to read.  It jumps around from Annie to Sheila to Karen then Vera.  It is hard to keep it straight.  There are just too many people in the book (you have the main characters as well as their families).  I wish just one person like Annie was the main character and a couple of side people or friends.  The scenes changed quickly which added to the confusion.  One minute you are with Annie and then Karen and then someone else.  There is too much going on in the book.  Besides the murder, we have Annie doing her last story, Karen dating someone that the group does not like or approve of, scrapbooking (I liked this part), Sheila’s not happy with her job, DeeAnn’s back injury and pill addiction, Cookie’s amnesia, and Emma Drummond agoraphobia.  I just think that too much was packed into one story (because there are too many characters).  I did like the scrapbooking and card making tips as well as information on digital scrapbooking.   Overall, Scrapbook of the Dead does have a lovely setting (Cumberland Creek, Virginia), interesting characters (just too many), and an interesting murder mystery.  The author provides some twists along the way to solving the murder.  I liked that the mystery was more complicated and not easy to solve.  I give Scrapbook of the Dead 3.75 out of 5 stars.

The first three books in A Cumberland Creek Mystery series are available on Kindle Unlimited.  The other books in the series are: Scrapbook of Secrets, Scrapped, Death of an Irish Diva, A Crafty Christmas. Novellas in the series are:  Scrappily Ever After and Scrappy Summer (on Kindle Unlimited).

I received a complimentary copy of Scrapbook of the Dead from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I am currently reading The Imposter by Suzanne Woods Fisher.  It is my day to pay bills (not one of my favorite chores).  I hope everyone has a great Friday and a lovely weekend.  Take care and Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader

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