Title: Little Bookshop of Murder ( Beach Reads Mystery #1)
Author: Maggie Blackburn (Mollie Cox Bryan)
Published on: 8 September 2020
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Summer Merriweather is back to her hometown of Brigid’s Island for her mother’s funeral. Hildy owned a beach side bookstore and succumbed to a heart attack on a business day. Summer was working as a professor at Virginia University when a video of Summer freaking out seeing spiders went viral. Ashamed, she left for England to work on her research paper until a call of her mother’s demise brought her back.
Summer discovers a threatening letter at the bookshop. Soon she learns there were many such letters her mother ignored. The developers were trying to coerce her mother in selling the shop. They also knew, if Hildy is out of the picture, her daughter would surely sell the shop and move away. Was Hildy murdered for a piece of property?
The average rating for this book on Goodreads is 3. I am certainly disappointed at the amount of bashing this book has received. Little Bookshop of Murder is a solid start to a brand new cozy series. A Shakespearean scholar returns to her hometown for her mother’s funeral and discovers her mother’s death was unnatural (murdered).
The local police refuse to believe Hildy was killed and they are certainly delaying the autopsy. Even when Summer’s life is threatened – someone tries to set the house on fire; Summer is attacked on her way back home – the police refuse to believe Hildy was murdered and Summer might be the next victim.
Hildy’s sister Agatha lives on Brigid’s Island with her daughter Piper and granddaughter Mia. The ladies, along with Hildy managed the bookshop. When Summer returns to the Island, Piper, Aunt Aggie and Mia join hands and decide to go searching for clues that can prove Hildy’s murder – and also bring the killer to justice.
The storytelling is a little different from usual but this is what makes Little Bookshop of Murder an interesting read. I loved the author’s experiment with the quirky writing. The character development is really good – at times, it didn’t feel like this was a first in the series. (As we all know, the series debut usually inclines towards character introduction and very little sleuthing).
Summer might be a lit prof but her sleuthing skills are appreciable. Though an amateur, she is on the right path when it comes to gathering clues – well, the killer certainly knows Summer is onto them, hence the fire and attack on Summer.
The identity of the perp was no surprise but… their role in the murder is well hidden until the end. It’s like you know someone’s out there to get you but they are in the shadows and you cannot see them… Okay, that sounded like a plot for a horror movie! Anyhoo, you get the gist, right?
Little Bookshop of Murder by Maggie Blackburn is an impressive and enjoyable cozy mystery
I received an ARC from Crooked Lane Books and NetGalley in exchange for an honest and unbiased opinion.