Wednesday, December 28, 2022

Death in the Margins by Victoria Gilbert Book Review

About the Book:

It’s early summer, and while Richard Muir and his dance partner, Karla, are preparing their new choreographic piece, Richard’s wife, Amy, is gathering the dance’s source materials. Based on folktales and the music of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the production is set to premiere at an old cinema that has been converted to a theater. But when dancer Meredith Fox—Richard’s former fiancé—is found dead backstage, Amy is once again propelled into a murder case that threatens the careers and lives of those she loves.

After Amy teams up with Chief Deputy Brad Tucker and the sheriff’s department to discover the killer, they find that there’s no shortage of suspects: Meredith’s wealthy ex-husband, several fellow dancers, a romantically spurned accompanist, and others whom the talented but haughty dancer dismissed or betrayed over the years.

With Richard and Karla’s help, and information gleaned from locals who know a wealth of small-town secrets, Amy desperately tries to unveil the killer before the premiere. But she’s pursuing a ruthless murderer who’s willing to kill again - and who might just be waiting for Amy in the wings.

My Review:

This cozy mystery combines a little bit about books and libraries with quite a bit about theater and the dance troop. I was not so interested in the theater information. I really would have liked more about library work and books. The dance emphasis may have been because of Amy's new husband Richard, organizer of the dance production. His character was developed more in this novel.

The murder plot was good. Gilbert did a good job creating Meredith, the unlikable character who gets murdered. There are many potential suspects because Meredith had alienated so many. Some people lie initially so it is difficult for readers to figure out the villain. It is not until near the end when enough truthful information is revealed that the villain can be identified.

It is interesting Amy, the amateur sleuth, works with law enforcement, at her deputy friend's request. I liked that rather than when an amateur sleuth operates on opposition to the police. Amy and Richard experience some suspense near the end. I felt it was resolved a little too easily.

This novel is part of a series but read relatively well on its own.

My rating: 4/5 stars.

About the Author:

Victoria Gilbert, raised in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains, turned her early obsession with reading into a dual career as an author and librarian. She writes both traditional and cozy mysteries. She’s also written fantasy and science fiction.

Victoria has worked as a reference librarian, research librarian, and library director. When not writing or reading, she likes to spend her time watching films or TV, gardening, or traveling. She loves animals, chocolate, and all the arts.

Crooked Lane Books, 336 pages.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.

(My star ratings: 5-I love it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)

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