Scones and Scoundrels

3 stars – released 1-2-18

I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

This is the second book in the series. I haven’t read the first book, but didn’t feel like I missed too many things because of that. There were enough references to the last book to fill in the missing pieces. This was a fun, easy, quick “cozy” mystery read. I’ve only read a couple of these kinds of books so don’t have a large frame of reference, but this book was pretty good.

The story is set in Inversgail, on the west coast of the Scottish Highlands. Four friends from the U.S., Janet Marsh and her partners, moved there and opened up a bakery and book store in the small town. When they first moved there, they helped the local police solve a murder, so they think of themselves as amateur sleuths. In this book, the town welcomes back a former resident, Daphne Wood, that is now a famous environmental author. She is going to stay for 3 months as their resident author and teach classes.

Much to their surprise, Daphne is an abrasive women with very little social skills. She quickly becomes a problem for the school, the library and the book store where she is supposed to do her book signing. The night she arrives, a young American tourist is killed. Daphne tries to get the ladies to help her solve the murder and starts poking around town. As the mystery deepens and the crimes increase, the ladies have no choice but to get involved to help the local police solve the crimes again.

The main person, Daphne, was very unlikeable and I didn’t like reading about her. Janet and her partners were pretty one-dimensional characters and didn’t have much to add to the story. The book is very G – the murders are mentioned in passing, the characters (other than Daphne) are genteel and pretty generic and there is very little action in the book. Maybe this is pretty typical of a “cozy” mystery, I don’t know. The identity of the killer and the reasons for the crimes seemed a bit rushed and didn’t make a lot of sense. It almost seemed like an after-thought.

Overall, this was an ok, fun read. I may check out more of these books if I need a quick, easy read to pass the time.