Joanne’s Mystery Picks

61rlcwciypl-_sx331_bo1204203200_PLUM TEA CRAZY by Laura Childs

The latest in the Tea Shop Mysteries is pretty much standard fare for this series.

Theodosia Browning, owner of the Indigo Tea Shop, is asked to investigate the murder of a financier, shot with a crossbow during a public event.  There are the usual twists and turns involving the colorful characters who people Charleston and Theodosia is confronted by more than a couple of the less pleasant ones.

This is a “cozy” is all senses of the word.  I was constantly compelled to “put the kettle on” every time pots of tea were being prepared in the tea shop and only regretted that I didn’t have any scones to go along with my cuppa!  Childs provides a good little mystery along with some delicious recipes.  The perfect combination for a pleasant summer’s day!

Joanne’s Mystery Picks

51-p5opyuzl-_sy344_bo1204203200_TWELVE ANGRY LIBRARIANS: A Cat in the Stacks Mystery by Miranda James

This cozy mystery featuring Charlie Harris and his Maine Coon cat, Diesel, is a quick read that’s perfect as a palate cleanser after reading any intense, and disturbing police procedural.

The annual meeting of the Southern Academic Libraries Association is being held at Athena College and Charlie, as interim library director, must deliver the welcome speech.  He soon discovers that the keynote speaker is none other than Gavin Fong, a former colleague from library school.  Fong was a know-it-all back then and certainly hasn’t had a character up-grade since.  He’s reviled by all who have ever had to work with him.  But would anyone go so far as to kill him?

The mystery of who killed Gavin is rather clever and makes up for the often stilted language and repetition that we’re subjected to.

Joanne’s Mystery Picks

9781564745750_p0_v1_s192x300MATRIMONY IN MINIATURE: A Mystery by Margaret Grace

Retired teacher Gerry Porter and Henry Baker are about to tie the knot.

What could possibly prevent Gerry from excitedly joining in the preparations for her special day?  Could it be her thirteen-room Victorian dollhouse that she eagerly wants to work on?  Could it be the miniature version of a recycled water treatment plant that her grand-daughter, Maddie, is creating for a school project?

Or could it be murder?

If you guessed “murder”, then you’re correct.  A body of a woman is found floating in the swimming pool at the very B&B where Gerry and Henry are getting married!  And if that isn’t enough in itself, she turns out to be the wife of one of the members of Gerry’s craft club.  What else can Gerry do but help find out whom killed Ron’s wife, Audrey, whilst trying to keep Maddie from wanting to join in the search for the murderer?

Her investigation takes her to Audrey’s workplace where, under the guise of visiting her neighbour, June Chinn, who works in the very same office, Gerry is able to ferret out little bits of information from Audrey’s co-workers.  She’s anxious to share what she’s found out with her nephew, Detective Skip Gowen, but he’s making himself scarce.  Gerry always looks forward to Skip’s late night visits where they sit and discuss the day’s events over hot chocolate and her famous ginger cookies.  But Gerry’s cookies go uneaten and Skip isn’t even returning her phone calls…

Grace’s ninth “miniature mystery” provides avid fans of this genre with a good “who-dunnit” along with lots of great tips for the dollhouse/miniature enthusiast.