In the small town of Doyle, California, UFO abductions are a budding tourist attraction. Susan Witsend owns a B&B known for its faux UFO on the roof. Susan brings X-tranormal, a UFO-themed fest to Doyle.
With Aliens roaming around (not the real ones!!) and murder in the midst, the festival is not so ‘festive’. Susan is one of the sponsors and she does not want to see her money go waste. Sherrif McCourt is her usual grumpy self while Arsen seems to be acting weird. Susan is the unofficial CI for the sheriff and she feels it is her right to inform McCourt of her findings. Where Susan goes, trouble follows.
Planet of Grapes is the second book in A Wits’ End Cozy Mystery series. Though it can be read as a standalone, it is better to start with book #1 – you do not want to miss all the fun now, do you?
I absolutely loved the story! It is hilarious! There are aliens (not just green men, all kinds of weirdos roam around), a man who decides to go au naturale – a new kind of alien I suppose, Team Fairy, the ever-so-grumpy Sheriff McCourt, the abductee named Yuri, the hsst-ing Madame X, Arsen, Dixie and the new grump master in town – Susan’s dog, Bailey. The characters are likeable and each of them portrays a unique role in the story – including the perp.
Susan finds Chuck Thorpe, a UFO conspiracy theorist dead in one of the tents – a wine tent that goes by the name “Planet of Grapes.” The cops are called to the scene of the crime and Ms Grumpy Sheriff shoos Susan away. Of course, Susan knows the shoo-ing away is all a part of an act – CIs are supposed to remain confidential, remember? So, off she goes, poking her nose where it doesn’t belong. The hsst, hsst-ing lady warns Susan. The hsst-ing lady can hsst as she pleases but Susan does what she wants! It’s all about being in control, baby!
I liked this book better than the first one. Susan is at her all-time wacky-doodle-doo self. 😀 Ooh the chemistry between Arsen and Susan – a dormant volcano ready to explode anytime… The story is wacky and entertaining. Yuri is an abductee and he has his share of episodes. The poor chap is so traumatized by his ‘abduction’ so you can’t blame him for his ‘episodes’.
There’s an on and off debate about the existence of aliens throughout the book. In the previous book, Susan wonders if Aliens exist. The Disappeared’s story makes an appearance in this book – A pub full of people disappeared (including the pub…) and days later, they were found in the forest having no recollection of what happened in between.
The mystery and the suspense are well-maintained until the end. The story is entertaining, engrossing and unique. I really love this series and I am looking forward to reading the next book – Close Encounters of a Curd Kind.
Have you read a UFO-themed cozy before?? If not, then you must check out this series. By the way, there are some delicious recipes to try out at the end of each book. Blueberry buttermilk coffeecake, spiral galaxy pancakes,…yummmm!
Writing Style: 4.5/5
Character Development: 5/5
Overall Rating: 5/5
Title: Planet of the Grapes (A Wits’ End Cozy Mystery #2)
Author: Kristen Weiss
Published on: 28th September 2018
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Purchase Link: Amazon.com