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Death in Room 7 by K.J. Emrick

Title: Death in Room 7 (Pine Lake Inn #1)

Author: K.J. Emrick

Published on: 3rd August 2015

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Rating: 2 out of 5.

Death in Room 7 is the first book in K.J. Emrick‘s Pine Lake Inn series.

Adelle Powers aka Dell is the co-owner of Pine Lake Inn in Lakeshore, Tasmania. Dell’s business partner is Rosie Ryan, who also happens to be the chef at the Inn. Jessica calls Dell to say she’s coming over for a visit. Dell is happy to hear the news but Rosie isn’t. Rosie says she knows something about Jessica and is not proud of calling her ‘a friend’. Jess soon arrives, the two ladies catch up for a while and Jess retires to her room. They agree to meet for dinner at 8. But when Dell goes over to Jess’ room at 8, she does not answer the door. Thinking her friend is fast asleep after a tiresome journey, Dell retires to bed. The next morning, Jess doesn’t answer the door once again. Dell wonders if something’s wrong and uses the master key to enter Jess’ room. She finds Jess dead in a pool of blood.

Horrified by the death of her best friend, Dell is drawn into the mystery surrounding the suicide/murder. The local sergeant insists Jess killed herself but evidence suggests otherwise. Things take a ‘paranormal’ turn when the ghost of Jess appears many times, directing Dell to the clues that might help catch the killer.

I read this book as a part of Lori Caswell’s Alphabet Soup Challenge – Author edition. I couldn’t find any other author who’s last name starts with an E and this book was in my kindle for a long time so decided to give it a try. It is pretty evident from my rating that I did not like this story.

First things first, the storytelling. I was being told every single detail of Dell’s life, her thoughts, her observations and whatnots. It was way too descriptive for my taste. The writing is simple though. There are a few Aussie slangs – one of the Goodreads reviewer has commented saying an average-educated Aussie does not use some of the slangs mentioned in this story. Then there is the mixing of tenses – normal and present continuous. This was so off-putting and I had a hard time following the story.

Next comes Dell’s son Kevin. He is a local police officer and mumma’s boy. Ugh! Dell fusses over him a lot. Overly-protective and interfering mother which Kevin definitely did not mind. There are times when Dell has interfered and ‘saved’ Kevin from his jackass boss. Dell also has a problem with Kevin’s boss – she thinks her son is better than his boss (she also says this has nothing to do with parents thinking their kids are the best; but she just knows her son’s the best…) One of the persons of interest is a prostitute. When Kevin mentions he knows her, Dell wonders if her single son ‘met’ the woman in question. (Really????)

Finally, the paranormal twist – Jess’s ghost, static on the phone and meeting a ghost at the church. Somehow, this was supposed to be the spotlight of the series – the paranormal thingummy – but I did not like it. Overall, this was an okay read. Like I said, I only read it for the challenge so I don’t think I will be following this series.

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