Out of Options by Dianne Ascroft

out of options cover

Title: Out of Options (Century Cottage Cozy Mystery Series 0.5)

Author: Dianne Ascroft

Published on: 26th April 2019

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Out of Options is a prequel novella to Dianne Ascroft’s Century Cottage Cozy Mystery Series. The first book in the series is called A Timeless Celebration. When Lori sent out the invites for this blog tour, I couldn’t say no. Having read the first book in this series, I couldn’t miss a chance to read the prequel!

The story starts with Lois Stone waiting for her friend Beth. They were supposed to meet for lunch but Beth is nowhere to be seen. Beth, Brent and Lois are a part of the Historical Society and are going through Reverend Payne’s documents. Beth calls up Lois to say that she’s discovered something interesting about the late Reverend and wants to share it with Lois. But a day later, Beth’s gone incognito.

The late Reverend was well-known for his sermons during the Prohibition period. It’s been years since the ban’s been lifted but some districts of Toronto are still dry (no wine or anything else!) Amy, Beth’s niece is worried too. The police refuse to help. Lois knows that something’s wrong and goes sleuthing around.


I like Dianne Ascroft’s writing style. Though the story is a tad slower than other cozy series, there is something magical about the way Ashcroft weaves stories. The Century Cottage Cozy series is more of an inverted mystery. There are times when you will want to dive into the book and warn Lois of the upcoming danger!

Out of Options was an engaging and engrossing read. I was really curious to know who, why and how? Halfway through the story, the clues were all there and it was pretty obvious as to who the perp was. The scene where Lois identifies the perp was superb. There’s another short story in this book – the events leading to James’ death (Lois’ husband) and what made Lois move to Century Cottage.

Ribbons and Raggs are Lois’ pet cats. When James goes out for his usual evening jog, Ribbons starts to act weird. Lois fails to recognize this as a sign of something bad that’s about to happen. In reality, this is true – animals can sense danger to those who are around them (owners, especially).

Out of Options is a short and sweet read and a nice introduction to the Century Cottage Cozy Mystery Series.

There’s a giveaway for this tour. If you like to participate in the giveaway, click here.

Thank you, Lori, from Escape with Dollycas for giving me an opportunity to be a part of this blog tour.

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