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Frozen Stiff Drink by James J Cudney

Title: Frozen Stiff Drink (Braxton Campus Mysteries #6)

Author: James J Cudney

Published on: 18th March 2020

Genre: Cozy Mystery

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Rating: 5 out of 5.

Haunted House Ghost, the fifth book in Braxton Campus Mysteries, ended with Madame Zenya aka Constance Garibaldi warning Kellan of impending doom. She predicted a lot of dead bodies, snow creating havoc on the residents of Wharton County (a snow storm), Nana D’s life would be in danger and the Ayrwicks will go through their shares of downfall. 

Frozen Stiff Drink starts with Kellan trying to find a parking space at the local store. Ulan and Emma are going to Disneyland, Florida, with Kellan’s parents. Kellan does some last-minute deodorant shopping for Ulan. After driving in circles, trying to find a parking space, Kellan comes across one. But before he could park, another vehicle cuts in. The man teases Kellan and makes snide remarks. 

Hours later, Kellan meets the man again. He’s none other than April Montague’s (Kellan’s girlfriend/sheriff) soon-to-be-ex-husband Fox Terrell. Hiram Grey, Wharton County judge who was recuperating at a private home dies. Hampton, Kellan’s elder brother, is accused of embezzling from his father-in-law’s company. Eleanor’s diner is getting a lot of negative reviews and so is Kellan’s course at Braxton Campus. In all this mess, Nana D goes to a cabin in the snow storm and is not reachable/probably missing. 

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Let me start the review by saying this is the best book in the series and a new favorite. Um, all the books in this series have been my ‘new favorites’ but Frozen Stiff Drink is a favorite of a favorite. Okay, that didn’t make a lot of sense. 

Moving on, I absolutely loved this book. Elements of suspense, thriller and ‘haunt’ in a cozy mystery,  me likes. From negative reviews to life threatening scenarios, the Ayrwicks and Danbys are in for a whole lotta trouble. Not to forget, Madame Zenya’s predictions are coming true. Bodies keep dropping like flies and the Wharton residents are experiencing a snow storm of a lifetime. 

Hampton is accused of embezzling and another crime (purposely not revealing the ‘crime’ here). It’s up to Kellan now to prove his brother’s innocence. Yep, the same pain-in-the-backside who bullied Kellan years ago needs help!

There is a huge shocker as the story ends. Lots of ‘what ifs’ and a cliffhanger that makes your jaw drop. I certainly did not expect this. In the previous books, the ending was a little zap – one can hardly feel the sting. But in Frozen Stiff Drink, it’s like a lightning! Wow! Forget cliffhanger, I suppose there is a better word to describe this – what do you call a cart load of cliffhangers and shockers? 

The character development is excellent and the storytelling is mind-blowing. Frozen Stiff Drink kept me on the edge of a seat. There’s a twist in almost every chapter and the suspense is simply superb. Of all the Braxton Campus books I have read, there is no doubt this book deserves a prize. Like I said before, favorite of the favorites.

I highly recommend you to read Frozen Stiff Drink. A cozy mystery with elements of suspense, thriller and a jaw-dropping twist, you wouldn’t want to miss reading it, would you? 

3 thoughts on “Frozen Stiff Drink by James J Cudney Leave a comment

  1. Hello Rekha,

    You have done it again. We need to bottle these reviews and share them with the world. Not just mine, but all the ones you write. You really do have a way with words. And I’m grateful to you. The newest one is out now (or 4/15) and I am thrilled to share it with you. A little darker, but lots of complex relationships and a few surprise guests. 🙂

    J

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