Jan. 30th, 2017

chez_jae: (Books)
Just finished reading A Whisker of Trouble, which is the third book in Sofie Ryan's "Second Chance Cat" mystery series.

When Sarah agrees to clean out the home of a hoarder, in search of items she can sell at her shop, she and her cat, Elvis, come across a dead body. The victim was hired to appraise the deceased homeowner's wine collection, which turned out to have been fake. The homeowner's sister hires the Angels, a group of sleuthing senior citizens whose base is in Sarah's shop, to solve the appraiser's murder so that the sale of her brother's house can go forward. While the police are focusing their investigation in one direction, the Angels hone in on the wine scam, certain that the murder and the con are connected.

These stories are fun. I appreciate that they don't focus exclusively on the mystery. Instead, Sarah was seen running her business, socializing after work hours, and taking care of her cat. Her stepbrother, Liam, is back in town, and she spends time with him, especially after he gets roped into helping the Angels with a con of their own. Ha ha! I was able to suss out the killer, but it was interesting to see how other threads of the story tied into it.

Favorite line: Who was I to judge my brother's social life when I was sitting at home talking to my cat on a Friday night?

Marvelous! Five stars:

*****
chez_jae: (Books)
I spent a good portion of the day reading The Thrill of the Haunt by EJ Copperman. It's part of the author's "Haunted Guesthouse" mystery series.

Business at Alison's guesthouse is slow, and her resident ghost, PI Paul, is moping for lack of anything to do. When a woman hires Alison to tail her husband, in hopes of catching him cheating on her, Alison reluctantly takes on the case, both for the income and to perk Paul up.

In the meantime, a homeless man in town has been murdered, and a woman from Alison's past insists on hiring Alison to investigate. The man, Everett, had been claiming in the days before he was murdered that he was being threatened by a ghost. The woman who hires Alison does so in front of a group of her cronies, in an effort to humiliate Alison and out her as the "ghost lady", all in retaliation for the fact that Alison uncovered the woman's own adulterous affair previously.

Alison is soon at her wit's end, trying to run a guesthouse, keep her guests happy, juggle two investigations, figure out how to keep her new boyfriend, Josh, from learning she can see ghosts, take care of her daughter, and stop one of her guests from doing an exorcism on the house. When the alleged mistress in the cheating husband case is murdered, Alison has two murders on her plate, and that's just the tip of the iceberg.

My, there was certainly a lot going on! I felt sorry for Alison, who was being pulled in so many different directions that I'm surprised her head didn't explode. Her nemesis, Kerin, needed a punch in the face, and Josh became cool towards her when he sensed she was keeping something from him. The ending wasn't as satisfying as it could have been, because...

Spoiler Alert! )

Favorite line: Have you ever felt as if you were the slow-witted cousin at the Mensa family reunion?

Would have given this a five for its fast pace and intricate plotting. Instead, I'm knocking one star off for the aggravation:

****

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