Wednesday, October 12, 2016

The Murder of a Queen Bee

Welcome!  Today would have been my father's 79th birthday.  We all miss him so much.  It is hard when you lose someone close to you.  If you enjoy Christian or Amish novels, you should look into The Devoted by Suzanne Woods Fisher and The Angel of Forest Hill by Cindy Woodsmall.  If you are looking for a book to put you into the mood for Christmas check out Twelve Days of Christmas by Debbie Macomber. I will be reviewing both of these books soon.

The Murder of a Queen Bee by Meera Lester is the second book in A Henny Penny Farmette Mystery series.  Abigail Mackenzie runs a farmette in Las Flores, California.  Abigail had received a call from Fiona Mary Ryan, who runs Ancient Wisdom Botanicals store, about wanting to talk.  Abigail sets up a nice luncheon for them to enjoy, but Fiona Mary fails to show up (and does not answer her phone).  Fiona Mary is later found dead in her burning car.  What did she want to tell Abigail?  Abigail cannot help but do a little investigating especially after she finds out that Fiona Mary was murdered.  Fiona Mary led an interesting life.  She used to live in a commune until she was asked to leave.  Fiona Mary did not agree with some of the new practices set in place by Hayden Marks, the new guru.  Is there more to the commune than meets the eye?  Abigail is surprised when Clay Calhoun shows up at her house after leaving a year ago.  Clay is Abigail’s former boyfriend.  Why has Clay shown up now?  Is there hope for a reconciliation?  Join Abigail on her latest adventure in The Murder of a Queen Bee.

The Murder of a Queen Bee is a cute story, but it was lacking in the mystery department.  Meera Lester has a conversational writing style that makes for an easy to read novel (though she can get a little too descriptive at times).  Unfortunately, there was too much focus on Clay Calhoun.  Besides his good looks, I do not know what Abigail saw in him (he lacks substance).  Personally, I would not even have let him in my house (and he was not needed in the book).  We get quite a bit of information on herbs in the book (actually too much information).  It was interesting, but I wanted more substance in the story.  I found the killer to be very obvious (no clues needed).  I kept hoping there would be a twist or something unexpected, but I was disappointed.  It was more about finding the evidence needed to convict the killer (especially during the second half of the book).  One annoying thing is the tips at the beginning of each chapter.  Most of them are not helpful or interesting.  To me they just interrupted my reading pleasure.  There are also recipes at the end of each chapter.  I would prefer they were at the end of the book.  Kat is supposed to be Abigail’s best friend, but she comes across more as a source of information.  When Abigail needs information to help her investigation, she calls Kat (even though she knows Kat is not supposed to give out the information).  I give The Murder of a Queen Bee 3 out of 5 stars.  It was okay, but not for me. The idea or premise is good for a cozy mystery, but this author just did not make it work.  A Beeline to Murder is the first book in A Henny Penny Farmette Mystery series.

I appreciate you taking the time to read my review.  I hope they help you when you are looking for new books to read.  I am currently enjoying Fatal Frost by Karen MacInerney.  I will be back tomorrow to review It's Your Party, Die If You Want To by Vickie Fee.  I am off to relax for the evening (Arrow, Survivor, Younger, Code Black, and Designated Survivor are on tonight) and prop my feet up on pillows (they are currently swollen).  Take care and Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader

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