Dead on the Vine
Elle Brooke White
A Finn Family Farm Mystery, Book 1
Perfect for fans of B. B. Haywood and Peg Cochran, Ellie B. White’s whimsical series debut is full of farm fun, complete with a helpful teacup pig.
Reluctant farmer Charlotte Finn needs the help of the livestock to sleuth a mysterious death.
Charlotte Finn never wanted to inherit the family’s produce farm–much less plow a heap of money into it. Her plan is to hammer a great big FOR SALE sign into the farm’s fallow furrows–but Charlotte’s sunny hopes of a quick sale succumb to a killing frost when she finds a dead body entwined supine in the tomato vines. The poor man, it seems, was run through…with a pitchfork?
Now, Charlotte is stuck with running the farm in the midst of a murder investigation. Charlotte’s knowledge of farming is smaller than her bank balance, so she relies on caretakers Joe and Alice Wong and their farmhands. Can she trust them? She doesn’t know them. There’s also farmer Samuel Brown, who still carries a childhood grudge. But the case gets personal when Charlotte learns that the victim might have been her own kin–and seeds of suspicion grow into a fertile field of suspects.
Charlotte turns to the farm’s teacup pig to help root out the killer. Soon, the goats, geese, and horse join in, but will Charlotte harvest a murderer–or buy the farm?
A charming and fun beginning to a new cozy mystery series.
Inheriting the family farm is not the ideal plan that Charlotte had in mind. She has it in her mind to sell but when a dead body is found amongst the vines that leaves her stuck on the farm for longer than she would like. Being new in town and not knowing who to trust, Charlotte sets her mind to some old fashion sleuthing to get to the bottom of this.
As Dead on the Vine begins to unravel the laughs just begin. Charlotte and her unlikely yet extremely helpful band of friends are a hoot and then some. This is truly a laugh out loud read. I love how the townsfolk come together To help and the personality of this town really starts to stand out.
Author Elle Brooke did a fantastic job with the story. The characters are bubbling with personality, the mystery will have you guessing and guessing again. I love the personal touches to the personalities of the animals within the story. I found that to be unique and added something special to the story.
Death on the Page
A Castle Bookshop Mystery, Book 2
Thousand Islands bookstore owner Shelby Cox sleuths the slaying of a true-crime writer who may have learned too much about a murder case that should have stayed shut.
There are a thousand stories in New York’s scenic Thousand Islands, and Bayside Books co-owner Shelby Cox stocks them all. But lately, the Blye Island bookseller’s life is more about investigation than inventory. True-crime writer Savannah Page caps off two successful signings at Bayside Books with a night in Blye Castle. She’s there to research Joe Cabana, a colorful Prohibition-era mobster who owned the castle–until he was found dead in the island Grotto.
But crime becomes all too true for Savannah. Her body turns up the next morning, in a secret passage at the bottom of the stairs. The last thing Shelby Cox wants is to sleuth another murder, but she’s intrigued about how a killer could have reached the island after hours. She’s not at a lack for suspects either. It could have been anyone from Savannah’s fiancé, Liam Kennelly, who argued with her the evening before, to island caretaker Matthew Kessler, recently cleared of his wife’s murder. Can Shelby keep regular store hours, elude the police chief, and assemble the clues into a hard-bound case without getting permanently shelved?
I will admit when I read the description of this book and the setting was a bookstore within a castle I knew I had to read it. What reader doesn’t love a bookstore? Add in the fabulous setting of the castle you had me from the get go. Now when you add a compelling Plot that involves a true crime writer getting murdered inside said castle and you have more than peaked my interest.
The second installment of the Castle Bookshop Mystery, Death on the Page is an interesting and enjoyable read. Shelby Cox, co owner of the Thousand Island book stores and has the nose of a sleuth, host a signing for crime writer Savannah Page, and she get more than her pages worth when the lady of the hour ends up murder inside the glorious castle. Shelby don’t necessarily want to help, yet she can’t seem to keep herself away from this binding murder.
Essie Lang knows how to catch her readers attention in more ways than one. The setting draws you into a beautiful place, the well-developed characters make the company fun and entertaining and then she gives you a plot that is well paced and keeps you attention fully in the book. Shelby and her aunt Edie are together. Shelby is a natural at sleuthing and entertaining while she does it. This is my first read by Miss Lang and I will tell you I was highly impressed.