Buried in a Good Book
Her young daughter who's more intrigued by dead bodies than she probably should be
An isolated cabin in the woods that's probably―definitely―hiding something
The tiny mountain town that seems less than troubled by a sudden abundance of murders
Bestselling thriller writer Tess Harrow is almost at the end of her rope when she arrives with her teenage daughter at her grandfather's rustic cabin in the woods. She hopes this will be a time for them to heal and bond after Tess's recent divorce, but they've barely made it through the door when an explosion shakes the cabin. Suddenly it's raining fish guts and...is that a human arm?
Buried in a Good Book by Tamara Berry is the debut of By the Book Mysteries. Buried in a Good Book is a lighthearted cozy mystery. I am torn on my thoughts about this book. In the beginning, I was amused by Tess and Gertie as well as the mystery. I love Gertie (my favorite character). She is a precocious teen. Gertie is helpful and comes up with good ideas. She is often several steps ahead of her mother. Gertie is, though, going through that teen angst phase thanks to her absentee father (and arguments with her mother). There is a large cast of characters (Sheriff Boyd, Peabody brothers, Ivy, Nikki, Quinn, and Carl to name a few) which can make it hard to keep them all straight. Tess is a strong character. She can be hard to like at times, but I do find her amusing (for the most part). Her thought processes are what I love (she always has murder on the brain). Her mind can wander at times when a writing idea takes hold (usually at inappropriate times). Sheriff Victor Boyd is a good counterbalance for Tess. He is normally a calm, levelheaded man who conducts his investigations by the book. Tess likes to take liberties with the rules which ruffles Sheriff Boyd’s feathers. If the poor man did not have high blood pressure before meeting Tess, he will have it now. Gertie also loves being part of a murder investigation (which upsets and impresses Tess). The mystery is convoluted. I felt the author tried to put too much into one book. However, it is a fun crime to solve. There are a variety of suspects, a red herring or two, plus plenty of humor. I like how it all wrapped up at the end with an entertaining reveal. I did find it challenging to keep track of the differences between the real crime and Tess’s books. There are numerous references to Tess’s crime thriller series. In addition, we have the bookmobile librarian who has read all of Tess’s books (knows them very well) and a deputy who has written a science fiction novel that she would like Tess to read. I did find it amusing how she got Tess to read her lengthy manuscript. Let us not forget the errant ex-husband who shows up and causes drama. If you like light, comical cozy mysteries, then you will enjoy Buried in a Good Book. I wonder what Tess and Gertie will get up to next time in On Spine of Death. Buried in a Good Book is an entertaining whodunit with flying fish, a derelict dwelling, bothersome brothers, a blue bookmobile, a vexing ex-husband, a staid sheriff, and a witty writer who loves whodunits.
The Avid Reader
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