Title: The Green Rush (Reckless Camper Cozy Mystery #3)
Author: Libby Howard
Published on: 2 July 2022
Genre: Cozy Mystery
The Green Rush is the third book in Libby Howard’s Reckless Camper Cozy Mystery series.
Lottie picks Sassy and Elvis (Sassy’s bloodhound) in her car. Before Sassy could park her behind on the car seat, Lottie drives away. Sassy thinks of the worse – maybe her elderly mother had a medical emergency or something happened at the camping ground. But turns out, Lottie doesn’t want Sassy to miss an opportunity of a lifetime.
Let me explain. Have you seen a pig stuck on roof top? This is no ordinary pig. This one rushes every afternoon to the local bar for a game of Checkers. Pig rescue is a big deal in Reckless. The fire department is busy so the locals have joined in, and are making plans to rescue Squeakers and his owner Celeste. The owner says she will not get down until her darling piggy is rescued.
Finally, a local farmer named Danielle arrives with her tractor and a bucket. Squeakers gets into the bucket and Danielle starts to lower it when there is a loud noise and the bucket stops seven feet from the ground. Pillows and a table are brought in so that Squeakers can jump to the ground safely. He’s getting quite agitated you see – the Checkers game at the bar will end in a while and he must reach as soon as possible. Squeaker jumps and has a soft landing – he falls on Sean, a local policeman. Ouch!
Sassy gets chatty with Danielle and learns that apart from growing soybeans and rearing cattle, she has sixty acres of pot farm. Lottie, along with Sassy and Elvis, take Danielle to her farm so that she can bring the repair tools to Celeste’s place where the tractor is currently stuck. Elvis picks up a scent and scurries off. Sassy pursues him and finds a dead body. The police are called in. Jay Bailey, Reckless’ ‘sometimes deputy’ and Sassy’s neighbor arrives at the farm and secures the crime scene. The forensic expert/coroner (small town = one person playing multiple roles) arrives and the victim is identified.
Mr. Kendricks worked for the state department’s Cannabis Control Authority as a cannabis inspector. Finding his dead body in Danielle’s farm makes Danielle a main suspect. The locals did not like the fact that Danielle converted her grandparents’ farm to a pot farm. They formed a group CAD (citizens against drugs) and tried their best to stop Danielle from growing pot in Reckless. Was one of the group members in the middle of vandalizing the farm when Mr. Kendricks caught them? Is this why he had to be silenced for good? No car is found in the vicinity of the form and this raises the question of how Mr. Kendricks arrived at the farm.
What a fantastic addition to my favorite cozy series. I discovered this series at the beginning of this year and I have been following all the latest additions. While the first two murders – which occurred within a month of Sassy’s arrival at Reckless – happened at Reckless Camping grounds, this one happens in a pot farm. Sassy is compelled to dig into the case, do a spot of amateur sleuthing and prove Danielle’s innocence. But this isn’t easy when there is no evidence suggesting Danielle might not be involved.
Apart from the murder mystery – which kept me hooked on to the story, mind – there’s one thing that piqued my curiosity. It’s got to do with a broken washer and Sassy checking out YouTube videos to repair it on her own. Running a business of your own is not easy, especially when there are repairs to be done. So Sassy wants to save a couple of hundred dollars when one of the washers at the camping ground breaks down.
Also, do you know the best remedy for poison ivy rashes? Hair spray! Sassy uses it instead of calamine lotion.
When Sassy tells her mother about the incident at the farm, her mother does a bit of internet searching. She ends up with a cart load of information about pot farming and the victim’s past. Well, a bit stalker-ish perhaps but she does give Sassy some info on the victim’s connection to Reckless. There’s also a funny reminiscing of Sassy’s mum’s “pot” adventures which makes Sassy tell her “I know whom to ask about Pot from now on”.
The mystery behind the murder kept me guessing till the end. The story takes an interesting turn when Sassy learns something about the victim. Turns out, he wasn’t of the honest kind. So, did someone kill him in a fit of rage?
I absolutely adore Libby Howard’s storytelling. The characters have quirky streak which makes the story interesting and entertaining. I could not identify the perp. Unlike last time, Sassy wasn’t injured in the process of coming face-to-face with the killer. Thank god for small miracles!
If you love cozy mysteries set in camping grounds and are looking for an engrossing and completely entertaining read, I recommend you to give The Green Rush by Libby Howard a try.