Happy Sunday! A Wedding at Mulberry Lane by Rosie Clarke will be released on December 1. It is the second book in The Mulberry Lane Series. The Girls of Mulberry Lane is the first book in the series.
The Plot is Murder by V.M Burns is the first book in A Mystery Bookshop Mystery series. Samantha “Sam” Washington and her husband dreamed of owning a mystery bookstore. Before Leon passed away, he made Sam promise to carry on with their dream. Sam is just days away from opening Market Street Mysteries (not the best name) and has already started her second dream of writing a British historical mystery. After enjoying her last day of teaching, her family and friends throw her a party. The next morning when Sam lets her dogs outside, she finds Clayton Parker, the listing agent for her brownstone, dead on the patio. Detective Brad “Stinky” Pitt is assigned the case and he quickly zeros in on Sam. Nana Jo (not your average senior citizen) moves herself in with Sam (to keep her safe). Nana Jo has little confidence in Detective Pitt’s ability to solve the case. She rallies her friends (the Sluething Seniors) and Sam to investigate the victim’s death. Can they uncover the killer before he (or she) strikes again?
The Plot is Murder is not what I expected. I discovered that over half the book is taken up with the manuscript being written by the main character (Sam). I did not enjoy these sections and felt they detracted from the story. There is a mystery in the manuscript that is simple. I would have preferred the author had centered the story around the mystery bookstore (who wouldn’t love a mystery bookshop in their neighborhood). I did like most of the characters especially Nana Jo. She was feisty, smart, and very active. I admit that she overshadowed Sam in the story (and I hope to be half as active when I am her age). I wish the author had fleshed out Sam as much as she did Nana Jo. I found the detective to be cliched and overdone (the name, attitude, how he got the job). I am giving The Plot is Murder 3 out of 5 stars. The mystery has some good components. However, the guilty party can be identified early in the story (one tiny detail gives it away). I kept hoping for a twist so I would be surprised. Just because it is a cozy mystery does not mean authors need to skimp on the mystery. The majority of readers will figure out the solution long before it is revealed. The investigation is light with most of the work done by the Sleuthing Seniors. I was never fully drawn into The Plot is Murder. With the book divided into two, I feel the author did the main story a disservice. The next book in A Mystery Bookshop Mystery series is Read Herring Hunt which will be out on April 24, 2018.
I appreciate you stopping by today. I will return tomorrow with my review of X Marks the Scot by Kaitlyn Dunnett. It is the eleventh book in A Liss MacCrimmon Scottish Mystery series and will be published on November 28. I hope you have a fulfilling day. Take care and Happy Reading!
The Avid Reader
The Avid Reader