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5.0 out of 5 starsI loved it
Reviewed in the United States on December 29, 2018
Maggy and her friends prepare to reopen Uncommon Grounds in an old train station. She and Pavlik are finally spending some quality time together.
This is the 5th book in the Maggy Thorsen Mysteries. Maggie has lost her location for Uncommon Grounds and is now looking for a new site. Through her friend Sarah, she is able to find the perfect spot - the old train depot. There are plans in the work that a commuter train will be stopping in Brookhills in the near future, so this would be perfect for a coffee shop. Many "accidents" happen to them and the depot - seems someone doesn't want them opening their shop there.
I have read all the books up til this..in order. I have been understanding about the characters snide remarks about the church near her. She has a right to her opinion. (by this I mean the author, of course) but in the book before this the character Maggie was so happy her son was gay and not flunking out of college. That's it. I am going to try to get my money back for this book.
Reviewed in the United States on September 13, 2013
Sandra Balzo has become one of my favorite authors. I'm currently going through the Maggy Thornsen series and afterwards plan to read the Main Street mysteries. I love her writing style and the down-home reality of her characters. Great books - keep them coming.
Forced to move her Uncommon Grounds coffee shop to new digs to a freak snow in the previous novel in the series,
Brewed, Crude and Tattooed (Maggy Thorsen)
, Maggy Thorsen agrees to a partnership with real-estate agent extraordinaire Sarah Kingston. Sarah's been Maggy's snooping sidekick since the very first novel in the series,
Uncommon Grounds (A Maggy Thorsen Mystery)
, and the two have formed a great friendship. But will Sarah's notoriously brusque manner destroy Uncommon Grounds -- or their friendship, as Jack Pavlik, county sheriff and Maggy's love interest, predicts?
Early on, Sarah's uncle by marriage, Kornell Eisvogel dies when a train hits his Buick. But authorities discover that someone sabotaged his car. Sure, Uncle Kornell -- dubbed Crazy Kornell -- was a thoroughly obnoxious old man, but who would kill him? But crazy Uncle Kornell's death is just the first of a series of accidents at the proposed new site for Uncommon Grounds: the old train depot at Brookhills, the wealthy exurb west of Milwaukee where Maggy and Sarah live. The site will prove pretty lucrative when commuter service from Brookhills to Milwaukee resumes in a few months. Could someone be trying to jettison the women's plans? Or is the threat more personal? So much of the "bad luck" seems to affect Sarah. Maggy doesn't think it's all a coincidence.
Sandra Balzo makes an excellent recovery from the lackluster "Brewed, Crude and Tattooed" with "From the Grounds Up." The novel spells the return of some wonderful characters and the introduction of a few delightful new ones. You won't regret picking up this book when you're looking for a breezy read.
5.0 out of 5 starsAnother great visit with Maggy & company
Reviewed in the United States on March 27, 2012
Maggy is looking for somewhere to house Uncommon Grounds, since the coffee shop burned down along with the rest of the small strip mall it was located in during events in the last book. On an almost non-existent budget and now sans Caron, her business partner, who must bow out due to financial strains, Maggy is wondering what to do. Then her moody friend Sarah, a real estate agent, offers to take Caron's place as her partner AND provide a building--an old railroad depot that (unknown to many) is about to become active again when Brookhills once again becomes a train stop. Sarah owns the building, as it was willed to her by her recently-deceased aunt, and her cousin Ronny is a contractor/developer, so it would seem that things are looking up.
However, as soon as the papers are signed and they begin making plans, accidents start happening at the depot site, including the death of Sarah's crabby step-uncle, whose car was t-boned by a passing train when it stalled on the tracks. Maggy senses that someone doesn't want her to re-open Uncommon Grounds--at least not at the depot--but who? Of course she begins poking her nose in and with a few dropped clues from her boyfriend the Sheriff, discovers that Uncle Kornell's 'accident' was actually a murder.
Love this series with its edgy, slightly irreverent humor, relaxed atmosphere and easy reading style. Maggy is a breath of fresh air compared to most of the cookie-cutter cozy heroines, and her friends are fully-fleshed, great characters too--including her gassy sheepdog, Frank. (She really ought to be nominated for a Watson award for the best sidekick! LOL) Very much looking forward to the next book in the series.