I enjoyed this cozy mystery, the first in a series from Black. I liked the heroine, Jenna. She was escaping a bad situation only to find herself in another one. I liked her character developed as a compassionate person who was framed for murder in the past. Rather than being overwhelmed when confronted with a similar situation, she pursues finding the real killer.
The plot is a typical one with an unexpected murder, an unexpected opportunity, and a mean cop who wants to peg her for the crime. Jenna has a couple of people come to her aid and a couple of really quirky characters invading her life. I thought the introduction of an impostor heir was a plot point that did not work so well. His character portrayal was a little over the top and obvious.
I liked the setting of an antiquarian bookstore. That Jenna could take over the business without some serious training in pricing books was a bit far fetched. That skill takes years to acquire and I do wish she would have looked to a master in the business for some help.
Black's writing style is straight forward and reasonable for a debut effort. The novel is an entertaining and relaxing read.
My rating: 4/5 stars.
Laura Gail Black writes cozy mysteries on the shores of Lake Marion in South Carolina, where she lives with her husband and their five rescue dogs. You can find out more at her blog, http://lauragailblack.com/author/lauragailblack/
Crooked Lane Books, 264 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.)