Thursday, October 6, 2022

Ode to Murder by Nicole Dieker

 Ode to Murder

Book Summary

Join Larkin Day on her first mystery!

Larkin Day just moved back home—at 35 years old. With no money, no job prospects, and nowhere to live except her mother's guest bedroom, Larkin is pretty sure this is the worst thing that's ever happened to her.

Then her mother signs her up for community choir.

Then the accompanist asks her out—and stands her up.

Then he turns up dead.
Larkin didn't kill him, of course—but she quickly learns that there are plenty of other women who might have wanted him gone. Although Larkin never planned on becoming an amateur detective, she finds herself getting more and more involved with the death of Harrison Tucker—while making new friends, setting her mother up with a local police officer, tackling six figures of student loan debt, discovering the benefits of protected bike lanes, and learning what ingredients are (and aren't) in a scotcheroo.
A fast-paced, cleverly plotted mystery that includes both Beethoven and baking, Ode to Murder is for cozy fans who have been hoping to find a Millennial-aged amateur detective who practices old-fashioned sleuthing in a world of smartphones and social media.

My Thoughts

Ode to Murder by Nicole Dieker is the debut of A Larkin Day Mysteries.  Larkin Day has moved back home to figure out her life. Larkin’s mother signs her up to participate in a local community choir.  One evening the accompanist, Harrison fails to return to rehearsal after the break.  At the end of the evening, Larkin finds Harrison dead.  Larkin decides to investigate Harrison’s death in the hopes it might help her get her life on track (makes total sense).  Larkin with help from her new friend Anni sets out to get answers.  

I struggled to finish Ode to Murder.  It seemed to go on forever.  I was not a fan of Larkin Day.  She is thirty-five and has no clue what to do with her life.  Larkin is supposed to be working on her dissertation, but she spends more time lounging then writing.   The murder happens early in the book.  The mystery progresses slowly.  Larkin questions her fellow choir members on what has not been ruled a murder.  She gets help from fellow choir member Anni.  In the end, Larkin identifies the killer (if you make it that far).  There are clues to help readers solve the crime ahead of the reveal. Larkin makes friends along the way, finds some romance, and, maybe, her purpose in life.  After the crime is solved, the chapters following are lethargic (a good cure for insomnia).  It would have been better with peppy pacing.  I can tell the author is a musician from the many musical references.  I felt that the characters lacked development.  It was difficult to know the age of the secondary characters.  Their clothes, though, are described in detail.  I believe Ode to Murder is supposed to be amusing, but I failed to find the humor.  There is a lot of repetition especially about Larkin failing to notice details.  As you can tell, Ode to Murder was not for me.  Ode to Murder is a midwestern cozy mystery with a community choir, a departed pianist, mounds of debt, cups of coffee, and a caught killer. 

Ode to Murder is available from Amazon*.  While Ode to Murder was not for me, I suggest you obtain a sample to judge for yourself.  You can find Nicole Dieker's other novels here.  Thank you for joining me today.  I have been busy since Hurricane Ian cleaning up the garden, putting the awnings back up, and other clean up tasks.  I was very lucky compared to those who live south of me.  Tomorrow I am a stop on the Celebrate Lit Tour for Anything but Plain by Suzanne Woods Fisher.  I hope that you have a happy day.  Take care and Happy Reading!


The Avid Reader 

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