Pru Parke always dreamed of living in England. And after the Dallas native follows an impulse and moves to London, she can't imagine ever leaving - though she has yet to find a plum position as a head gardener. Now, as the sublet on her flat nears its end, the threat of forced departure looms.
Determined to stay in her beloved adopted country, Pru takes small, private gardening jobs throughout the city. On one such gig in Chelsea, she makes an extraordinary find. Digging in the soil of a potting shed, Pru uncovers an ancient Roman mosaic. But enthusiasm over her discovery is soon dampens when, two days later, she finds in the same spot a man's bludgeoned corpse.
As the London police swarm her work site, ever inquisitive Pru can't quite manage to distance herself from the investigation - much to the dismay of stern Detective Chief Inspector Christopher Pearse. It seems that, much as he tries, even handsome DCI Pearse can't keep Pru safe from a brutal killer who thinks she's already dug up too much.
©2014 Martha Wingate (P)2016 Tantor
Although the main character, Prue, behaves, thinks, and talks much more like a young, inexperienced girl than a woman of 50, I still enjoyed this book. Yeah, she is a little dense and makes a lot of annoying choices that make her seem emotionally immature and totally oblivious. Yes, every chapter starts with a rejection letter as part of the theme, but unattached to a scene in the writing, which probably works well in the written book but is annoying to listen to again and again in an audiobook. And the contrived internal conflict that is repeatedly used as an excuse for Prue's emotional issues is harped on incessantly as if we would forget if it weren't mentioned one more time.
But even with all the "faults" of this book's writing (or said in a more objective way, all of the things that annoy me personally about the book) it is still a really nice cozy mystery that I enjoyed in a low-key way as I had it playing in the background of my life. It never really had much going on that I had to listen to very closely, but it had lovely descriptions of gardens and plants, and a genuine and non-sappy sweetness and gentleness to it that is hard to find in any entertainment. Prue's loyalty to those who treat her kindly, her empathy and desire to help others, and her need for the feeling of connection with others were all heartwarming. I liked that she was so passionate about designing gardens and living in England. I also liked that she wasn't your typical weak and boring heroine. I really enjoyed all of the British accents, the gentle and slow-moving intrigue, the tea times and the little dog Toffee Woof Woof. I reveled in the atmosphere of this book and was really sad when it ended and I no longer had a comfy British cozy playing while I cooked and cleaned and drove.
I thought it was awesome that the author added a bit of romance to this mystery, as many mysteries don't have any and for me that brought a lot more interest to the storyline. It was nice that the romance was subtle, slow-moving, and seemed realistic without depicting sex scenes ( I don't mind sex scenes but I think it fits the feel of a cozy much more not to have sexy-time details).
I absolutely loved this readers' voice and enjoyed all of her spot-on accents and thought she even did the male voices very well.
Overall I would recommend this book if you enjoy cozy mysteries, British accents and fun stuff like tea and biscuits, and gardening. It is pretty much the best cozy mystery I have listened to, and although it had things that annoyed me, overall it was a very nice and enjoyable listen.
Someone Who Cares
I thoroughly enjoyed this book because the mystery setting was not typical. A gardener trying to solve crime? Very interesting. One thing bugged me, no physical description of the main character, other than height. I went back to the beginning and read the book just to see if I'd not been paying attention. But, no, nothing, at least not in the beginning where descriptions are normally found. (If I missed it twice, forgive me.) I kept picturing a dowdy gardener, but that didn't seem to suit the character's ability to walk long distances without difficulty. Sorry, I wanted hair color, eye color, and build to go with her height. Now that I think of it, most of the characters were denied descriptions, but with those I was able to fill in the blanks in my mind. I just couldn't do it with the main character. Oh well, it was a great story and Erin Bennet did a fantastic job reading this book. I normally don't like voices, but she did amazingly well! I would definitely recommend this book!
No spoilers from me! Sexy, romantic stories, thrillers, mystery, relationship stories.. my library is a crazy mix.
Complaints about this book did not deter me - the intro price was an incentive that I am glad I snagged.
I liked it, was entertained, will listen to the next one. Much better than most cozies.
No, i got bored and couldn't finish it.
I with I could have enjoyed it ,but sadly I didn't
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