“‘Bow chicka wow wow!’“
We first met Sam Washington in The Plot is Murder, and we’re now onto book 7 in the cosy mystery series. Sam was widowed young but decided to make her and her late husband’s dream come true, by opening a mystery book store. Through the series she and her friends and family, Nana Jo and the ‘Silver Sleuthers’ have faced murders and incorrect suspicions, often aimed at themselves. This time, though, the prime suspect isn’t exactly a friend – and yet, they still can’t stand by and let Detective ‘Stinky’ Pitt take the rap for a crime they’re fairly sure he didn’t commit, no matter how bad things look!
Meanwhile, Sam’s first book, a mystery set in an English stately home, is about to be published – indeed, we’ve followed the story drafts through the series as bonus inserts. It’s nice to see Sam’s life going well, even if I haven’t been greatly impressed with the character’s writing. Although, it has been nice seeing some real-world historical events being mentioned.
It was also a nice twist having the team investigate someone as prickly as Stinky, who was so often on the other end of mistaken accusations. Caught up in politics and with shadows of past relationships, the case isn’t going to be an easy one to unravel.
As ever, I enjoyed the light read of this cosy mystery, but it still isn’t my favourite of the book-themed series I’ve tried. The tone is just a little too flippant for me, the characters somewhat tending towards cliche. And yet, this might be the best in the series, and the mystery was well enough done.
NetGalley eARC: 336 pages / 25 chapters
First published: 2021
Series: Mystery Bookshop book 7
Read from 18th-20th September 2021
My rating: 6/10