Tuesday, August 16, 2016
A Dark and Stormy Murder by Julia Buckley (thoughts)
"Camilla Graham’s bestselling suspense novels inspired Lena London to become a writer, so when she lands a job as Camilla’s new assistant, she can’t believe her luck. Not only will she help her idol craft an enchanting new mystery, she’ll get to live rent-free in Camilla’s gorgeous Victorian home in the quaint town of Blue Lake, Indiana.
But Lena’s fortune soon changes for the worse. First, she lands in the center of small town gossip for befriending the local recluse. Then, she stumbles across one thing that a Camilla Graham novel is never without—a dead body, found on her new boss’s lakefront property.
Now Lena must take a page out of one of Camilla’s books to hunt down clues in a real crime that seems to be connected to the novelist’s mysterious estate—before the killer writes them both out of the story for good..."
A Dark and Stormy Murder is easily one of the best beginnings to a cozy mystery series that I've read in a long time. It was pretty much a given that I would adore this one after I realized that it paid homage to older gothic romances. Barbara Michaels anyone?? I have a special place in my heart for her books and for many other authors like her so I was just thrilled to find this book. I loved how the author made this book almost feel like one of those books with the large, rambling house and the mysterious but handsome neighbor. Plus the author included at the beginning of each chapter a part of the book that Camilla was currently working on (which of course is a gothic romance). I'm grinning even now just thinking about how perfectly this book was set up. Then you factor in that there is a mystery as well and you probably can already see why I loved this book so much!
I also really enjoyed the characters in this book. Lena is an aspiring author herself but it was her love of Camilla's books that really helped me to connect with her. It was all so bookish and perfect and I loved every minute of it. I loved the parts of the book where Lena and Camilla were working together on Camilla's current work in progress. I liked that we were given a chance to see the writing process but through this book as well. I also enjoyed the mystery which was just suspenseful enough to help me want to read this book even faster. I tried to go slowly with this one since I was enjoying it so much but I also didn't want to stop reading. I found myself finishing it way too quickly for my taste but also very excited for the next book. I feel like I desperately need the next book because I loved this one so much. I really liked how the author ended this one because there was a complete ending but she also set up book two perfectly. And left me wishing that I had book two in my hands right now!
Overall, it should be easy to tell that I just loved this one. I am really excited about it and am already thinking of some of my blogging friends that I want to recommend this one to. If you love Mary Stewart, Barbara Michaels, or Phyllis Whitney then give this book a try. I'm betting that you will enjoy it as much as I did. I am just pumped about this series, and since I have a wait until book two, I've decided to try this authors other books in the meantime. I've got a list of favorite cozy mystery authors and Julia Buckley is going on this list. Highly recommended!
Bottom Line: I adored this book from beginning to end!
Disclosure: I received a copy of this book thanks to the publisher and NetGalley.