I read cozy and historical mysteries, a bit of Paranormal/UF, and to mix it up, I read science and gardening books on occasion.
I've decided to stop reading this series after this one. Oddly enough, this one ended up probably being the best of the 7 books in the series so far. But I'm still done.
Why? Because at the end of the day, I don't care what happens to the main character, Meg. Or her roomie Bree, or very nearly every other character in this series. Except Seth - I always liked Seth and as this book ends on a rather happy note where he's concerned, this is the perfect time to walk away.
From a series perspective, I've found Meg to be a bid dreary, plodding, angsty and prone to massive amounts of internal dialogue that has always had me thinking "blah blah blah" while skipping copious amounts of useless copy that add nothing except bulk to the story. Some of it is to be expected in the course of the theme: a city slicker becoming an apple farmer. But it's just repetitive and overdone and blah blah blah...
Bree, her Orchard Manager and roommate spent the first 6 books being surly, snippy and generally a real grumpy trousers. She spoke to Meg, her boss and the woman giving her a place to live! as though she were gum on the bottom of her shoe, and I think the author wanted us to like her. Uh, no. I will say though that she's gone through a major attitude adjustment in this book. Thank god.
The mystery in this book though, was interesting and well done. Different and creative. I like the way Ms. Connolly wrapped it up at the end and it was plotted well enough that I was sure the mystery was going to end in a completely different way.
While I think the author's characters leave a lot to be desired, I find no fault with her plotting skills - most of her mysteries are excellent and non-formulaic. If only I cared at all about her characters.