No Filter by Heather Day Gilbert

Title: No Filter (Barks and Beans Café #1)

Author: Heather Day Gilbert

Published on: 26 May 2020

Genre: Cozy Mystery

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Rating: 5 out of 5.

Newly single Macy Hatfield moves back to her small hometown in West Virginia. Her brother Bo has a plan to start a new café – Barks and Beans – a place where you can drink coffee as well as pet fur-buddies.

A golf instructor of a nearby Spiritual center is murdered and Macy ends up adopting his Great Dane – Coal. Macy finds a mysterious message sewn under the dog’s collar and a day later, Coal is dognapped. Macy starts to search for her doggie best friend and ends up unearthing the killer’s cruel and sinister motives.

No Filter is the first book in Heather Day Gilbert’s Barks and Beans Café Mystery series.

What a wonderful cozy series debut! I absolutely enjoyed reading No Filter by Heather Day Gilbert. Coal, the handsome Great Dane, is adorable! Aww! We have a murder mystery, an amateur sleuth helped by her brother, a petting cafe and a GREAT DANE. What else does a pet-lover/cozy mystery lover need?

Macy is one of the best amateur sleuths I  have ever come across. She is dealing with a lot in her life – her philandering husband left her and she’s still recovering from the shock of his cheating and divorce. But she’s not alone – her older brother Bo is by her side. She ends up adopting the dead man’s Great Dane named Coal. When Coal gets dognapped, Macy searches high and low – she even pays a visit to the local spiritual center in search of the dog.


Heather Gilbert is a master storyteller. The character portrayals and the plot to story development are simply marvelous. The mystery behind the murder kept me hooked on to the story. I couldn’t identify the killer until the end – the red herrings are sure to take the detective in you on a wrong path. 😀

As a debut novel in this new series, we are given a little background information on our main characters Macy and Bo. Bo is the protective brother any sister could ever ask for. Whenever Macy decides to poke her nose around and look for clues, Bo has her back – sometimes, even Macy isn’t aware os the fact her brother’s been on the lookout for her. The reason behind the murder is much bigger and sinister than what Macy and Bo think of it to be.

The romance angle isn’t explored much but we do see sparks flying between a certain two characters and the brother-sister pair. The petting area of the cafe has increased the sales of the local pet shelter by 50% and I cannot wait to see how Summer (the owner of the shelter) and Macy’s friendship evolves in the future books of this series.

Bo has a secret to share and this ‘secret’ forms the backbone of this series. I am definitely looking forward to reading the second book in this series. The story ends with a teeny-weeny cliffhanger and I am eager to see what’s next for Macy, Bo and Coal.

No Filter by Heather Day Gilbert is a must-read cozy debut of this year. Entertaining and totally engrossing, you wouldn’t want to miss reading this awesome cozy debut.

There’s a giveaway for this blog tour. Giveaway details are here.

Many thanks to Lori Caswell for the blog tour invite.

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