©2006 Joanne Fluke; (P)2007 Recorded Books
no ... I have loved similar mysteries with women involved in solving the crime but this one seemed so simplistic, predictable, and unbelievable. The hardest part was the reader. I will always wonder if I had read the book rather than listening - who knows, I might have liked the book more.
amatur-ish ... she would have been better off not changing her voice for each character. I managed to finish the book only because I distracted myself with my quilting projects while listening to her horrible characterizations. I didn't need too much concentration to keep track of the plot lines in this one.
boredom ... what a yawn ... I kept wanting it to grow on me ... didn't happen -
very sad ... I really wanted to like this series
It feels like the author was trying to mix all the necessary ingredients of a good cozy mystery (a small town, a small shop, a cat, even cookie recipes), but the dish just did not work out. I could not make myself to care for the characters; the location was neither interesting nor atmospheric, the mystery itself, especially the outcome, was just not good enough, or subtle enough. I do not think I will be listening to any more books in the series. That's how the cookie crumbles, I guess.
Retired bookkeeper, married, Mom of 2, two granddaughters. Love cozy mysteries.
I totally agree with most of the other reviewers. This book is BORING! Why isn't the brother-in-law doing his job (solving the crime)? It's just not believable that he would back off and let his cookie-baking sister-in-law play super-sleuth. What is HE doing while she's sleuthing? I found this book to be "light reading (listening)". Very little depth to the plot - very little to hold interest. Listened to about 3 hours. I'm done. Will not be buying more of this author's books. The narrator is fabulous. I WILL look for more books read by this gal. BTW, if this is of interest to you, the book didn't have any foul language - at least not in the first 3 hours.
I love cozy mysteries that feature cooks. However, I could not love this book. My life is far from perfect, and I don't know anyone who has a perfect life. There for I could not read about such a person. Her biggest problem is that her mother is a nag. It made no since for her to be involved in solving the problem in the story. Her brother-in-law, a police asked her to nose around an help him get a promotion. He might not need a promotion if Hannah is going to solve the crime. Everyone is thrilled to talk to Hannah and spill all of their secrets. She goes to a casino, and even though she doesn't gamble or even like to gamble, she wins a jackpot. I wish my life could be that easy. I confess I did not finish the book. I could not. I like my mysteries to have realistic characters with realistic lives. This was not one of those books. I will however buy the recipe book that Joanne Fluke is going to put out with recipes from this series.
Top 10 Series
Hannah - love that she is a snoop...:)
Some of this book (and the series) is laugh out loud funny. Mostly because Hannah and I have the same maddening and amazing mothers.
The characters are great and stories are fun and fast paced. Love the Goldie Baer books and this series is a nice addition to fill in when I need a fun listen.
Fun enjoyable light read with pleasant characters. Not deep or even 100% believable but that makes it fun sometimes
Hannah. She's hard working and fair and gemnerous.
We listened during a long drive and had no problem continuing in one drive
The title made me expect that this book would be a cozy mystery and it is. But I didn't care for the narrator's style. Her reading was too cute, almost childish, and distracted me from the story (but with perfect diction).
It seems to me that there are two types of "mystery novels." One type is probably read more often by a particular audience type, but is far too remedial for other readers. This is where I would put this writer. If you want a quick read, easy reader, pat yourself on the back because you figured it out way before the end, you read this type of novelette. If I didn't have to read it for book club, I wouldn't have finished it. It is predictable and too cliche' with not enough challenge for some readers.
She fit this level of book well, just not my type
The BEST thing about any book that takes on questions of cultural, ethnic or racial differences is when they bring us together as the human race--fellow dwellers on our planet earth--not enemies. This book did this very well. I especially found it comforting that posh Brit's could fall in love with another charming and different ethnicity.. but that's my own stereotype creeping in. WE ARE ALL humans, people, we all feel love and we all feel anger, we all feel hurt and we all feel joy. It has nothing to do with the color of your skin or the place of your origin. Good on ya, Joanne for that.
This was a wonderful cozy style amateur sleuth mystery.
The main character -cookie baker turned investigator- Hannah was immediately likable. She had a great attitude, and I liked both her internal sarcastic and flippant commentary and her reminders to be more tactful, and I appreciated her intelligence and the logical way she went about trying to follow up all of her leads.
Plot-wise, there were one or two things I picked up on earlier than Hannah (like Danielle's situation) but she caught up, and she always tried to do the right thing and help people when she could (like getting Tracy's old things to Luanne). I also realized the true identity of the murderer a step ahead of her, but she was biased a bit about her suspect, so I forgave her oversight. And of course the Eureka moment wouldn't have been nearly as suspenseful or well/satisfyingly played out if she'd come to the correct conclusion earlier. With Hannah doing all the sleuthing and legwork that she did, I wonder how Bill is going to get on during future investigations...
Great supporting cast of friends, family, and other townspeople ... Norman was entertaining, as were "the mothers" (though thank heavens my mom isn't of the matchmaking persuasion). Her shop assistant and friend Lisa sounds like a godsend, the kindest and hardest working young woman you'll ever meet. I wasn't sure about Hannah's sister Andrea but she grew on me, and her daughter was adorable. And I have high hopes for the new detective in town.
And I can't forget to mention the cookies! I loved all the cookies. I've bookmarked and copied out the recipes and can't wait to bake them -the chocolate covered cherry delights especially, they sounded to-die-for. My mouth is watering just thinking about them...
The narration was great. Suzanne Toren had the perfect tone for Hannah - sometimes she sounded like a no nonsense Catherine Hepburn type, which I thought was perfect. She did manage varied voices for most of the cast, though a few of the younger females sounded a bit too high and airy for my liking. For the male voices she didn't do anything too rough or growl-y sounding, she lowered her tone a little, but aside from knowing who was speaking, they didn't have a distinct masculine quality- but that's fine by me. I'd rather have it sound natural and distinct and less male sounding than to have to grit my teeth through a poor attempt at a deep or gruff tone that just sounds constipated or always angry (which I have heard female narrators do to the heroes of novels)... It was well done, no glaring inconsistencies in dialogue or other narration or editing issues.
I look forward to the next installment (both for the great story and characters, and for the recipes)!
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