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Murder by Death

I read cozy and historical mysteries, a bit of Paranormal/UF, and to mix it up, I read science and gardening books on occasion.

A Batter of Life and Death (Bakeshop Mystery, #2)

A Batter of Life and Death - Ellie Alexander

Disappointed in this one.  I thought the first book was a strong contender, but this felt like a weak follow up.


Alexander writes a beautiful Oregon setting, and creates a strong, likeable MC (Jules), but follows up with some stilted, awkward dialogue between characters.  A scene where Jules' mother and her old high school sweetheart treat her like she's 8 just made me cringe.  Most of the dialogue between Jules and her mother actually read like a middle-school after school special.  A brewing love triangle on the horizon also contributes to my growing unease with this series.


The plotting was... not strong.  I didn't guess the murderer, but I'm not sure anyone really could by using clues because there weren't any.  Jules berates herself at the end for not figuring it out but I don't see how she could have, information was never given to make this character a suspicious one.  


I suspect bad editing needs to be blamed for some of the books weaknesses; it felt like there were chunks missing from the plot and at least once Jules mentioned a character telling her something relevant that she was never actually told.


I think I already own the third book, so I'll read it but unless the quality changes dramatically, this one's going in the box.