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jenn

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.

Beach Town

Beach Town - Mary Kay Andrews

I actually finished reading this two days ago, but I've recently become insanely obsessed with a silly game on my iPhone, and I've been ... distracted  Luckily, I remember enough about the book to clearly remember that for the most part it was ... ok.  Actually, probably not quite as good as ok, but the setting fed my optimism bias enough that I'll remember it as being an ok read.

 

The MC is a location manager for the film industry, tasked with finding the perfect "Old Florida" town: run down, palm tree laden, white beach bordered.  This mandate was arguably the most interesting part of the writing for me; as a Florida cracker myself, I actually remember "old Florida" and genuinely wish we could bring it back.  And I have to say, Andrews nailed "old Florida" in a way that's startling, especially given that Andrews is a Georgia girl.  Cypress Key (which I'm assuming is fictional), is described as just outside of Gainesville and Alachua, so definitely in the northern part of the state, but her description of it so closely mimics my own home town - right down to the old casino at the end of a pier and a decrepit boathouse at the base of the bridge, that I felt right at home.

 

The rest of the story though, was just plain average.  The romance didn't spark, the lack of reality in the timelines, and complete absence of the red tape involved in filming a movie; the complete cliche of the 'star' being an out of control coke head.  All of this just felt dialled in and lacked any of the complexity that I've found in Andrews' earlier work.  It was ok enough that I don't regret buying my copy used, but had I bought it new I would definitely have felt underwhelmed with Andrews' effort.