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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.

Iced Chiffon (Consignment Shop Mystery #1)

Iced Chiffon - Duffy Brown

In spite of several things being fundamentally wrong with this story, and the fact that I nailed the murderer almost from the start, it wasn't a bad book.

 

First what I didn't like:  The story is about a woman just coming out of her divorce who gets nothing except her house. Her ex has yet to sign over his half of the house to her, so when he's arrested for murder he claims he's going to force her to sell the house to pay his legal fees.

 

Now, I've been divorced in Georgia and the agreement for the house would be in writing in the legal document outlining the divorce agreement, so he wouldn't have the right to sell something he'd previously given away.  I understand not everything is truly accurate in cozies, but this is rather huge as it's meant to set up the whole motivation for her investigating this murder - to keep her ex from trial and to keep her house from being sold. So, the whole fallacy makes the plot much weaker and an amateur effort.

 

Also, throughout the book Reagan makes constant mention of what the lawyer fees are costing her - but never in the book is it mentioned that she's agreed to take on responsibility of paying for her ex's legal fees. Why would she do that? She doesn't like the man, has no residual feelings for the man. His legal fees are his responsibility, especially once the house is taken out of the equation. It feels like this, too, was contrived merely to give an excuse for the banter between her and Boone and it felt weak and amateurish.

 

What I did like:  I love stories taking place in Savannah - it almost guarantees a quirky setting and interesting characters. If a town was ever made for mystery, it is Savannah.

 

The supporting cast of characters are wonderful - each unique, quirky, and southern in the best way. Vividly written and likeable.  The tension between Reagan and Boone promises to be great fun and I love the friendship between Reagan and her Aunt Kiki. Boone has the requisite amount of mystery in his background that he could be interesting for a long time to come.

 

I'll read the next book in the series eagerly and hope for a more well developed, thought-out plot than this first effort offered. And I really truly look forward to seeing what the great cast of characters gets up to next.