I read this book for a book club. It took me a bit to get into it. Two very different sisters interact to each other and to events in very different ways. The older sister, Mary Alice (65), is larger than life, flamboyant, and assertive. The younger sister, Patricia Anne (60), is more methodical, analytical, and reserved. Mary Alice has been married three times, and gets richer as each passes on. Now living with her boyfriend, she buys a Country Western Bar on a whim. The previous owner is murdered before the signatures are dry, and the adventure begins. The interaction between the sisters makes the book. They stumble into and through one mishap after another. Each has children who are adults, sensible, and not easily excitable, which makes situations even funnier. I liked it and would recommend it for a light summer read.
This is the first book in the Southern Sisters cozy mystery series. Two senior sisters are the focus of the book: “Mouse” (Patricia Anne) is a former teacher and is happily married. Her sister, “Sister” (Mary Alice) is much more of a wild child and is bold and sassy. Mary Alice decides, to purchase a country western bar as an investment, a purchase that is something of an impulse buy. From day one, she runs into trouble with the place, starting with a dead body. Mary Alice wrangles her sister’s help in sorting out her troubles and it leads them into an investigation of potential suspects, one that puts them both in danger. This was a nice introduction to the characters and setting.
(Read summary above for plot synopsis--not going to rehash it here)
When the former owner of a Country-Western bar is murdered on the premises, the new owner, Mary Alice, drags her sister, Patricia Ann into the mess. Their sibling rivalry & curiosity lead them smack dab into another murder & scandal. Patricia Ann is very detailed, conservative & practical. Mary Alice is outlandish, brash, & boisterous. They are polar opposites that play well off each other. Their repartee is funny & has a true sense of realism to it.
This book has some other great quirky characters. It's just what you would expect from a cozy mystery. The author does a fine job giving each a distinct personality & voice. The dialogue is extremely witty & well done. This, in my opinion, is the strongest part of the book. You can tell more attention is given to this aspect of the book rather than the mystery. It could be to help 'set up' the following books in this series. I haven't read them, so I don't know for certain.
The mystery itself is weak. Little attention is paid to it and the ending resolution was rushed. Also, the author revealed details out of the blue at the end that were in no way eluded to anywhere previously in the book. While this makes it impossible to guess 'who did it', I would like to at least be able to try & figure it out.
An ok read, not the worst. Characters & dialogue are the strongest suit. Might give others in this series a try IF the plots are tighter.
I was surprised I could love these stories anymore than I already do, but the lady that does the reading is just staggeringly good. I feel more than ever I am friends with these familiar characters and they just sound as I would imagine. How gifted can one person be to have such a way to be so many people played out in a C.D./ book or audio rendition. Just amazingly how good these two are together. Anne for her creations and the woman that brings them to life with sound. She does all Anne George's books.
Patricia Anne is a retired school teacher who has been married to and in love with her husband for 40 years. Patricia Anne likes "normal", but her sister, Mary Alice, lives in a fun, exciting, chaotic, world of partying and she has an array of husbands and boyfriends. These sisters may be polar opposites, but they love each other. Their family and friends make this book an invitation to all the best that humanity has to offer, warmth, support, love. Mary Alice has just purchased her favorite party spot, but she discovers that the previous owner has been murdered in her newly purchased business. Anne George weaves a funny, heart-warming tale of two sisters plunged into unknown territory, murder. The character development is excellent. There is much to love about the circle of delightful friends, neighbors, and family. Humor is on every page. This is a fun, light read . It is a who-dunnit that keeps its secret of who murdered poor Ed, the former owner of the neighborhood bar until the very end. The mystery takes a distant second to the characters' family involvement, however, and one is left with the feeling that more pages should have been allotted to the unfolding of the mystery. it is still a pleasurable read, though. I will definitely read this whole series of 8 books.