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Publisher's Summary

After inheriting a house in Seattle, Jax O'Connell is living the life of her dreams as a glass bead maker and jewelry designer. When she gets an offer to display her work during a bead shop's opening festivities, it's an opportunity Jax can't resist - even though the store's owner is the surliest person Jax has ever met. The weekend's events become a tangled mess when a young bead maker is found dead nearby and several oddball bead enthusiasts are suspects. Jax must string together the clues to clear her friend Tessa's name - and do it before the killer strikes again.

©2016 Janice Peacock (P)2017 Janice Peacock

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Fun cozy mystery

Any additional comments?

A fun cozy mystery in the world of glass beadmaking and hand-made jewelry. Lots of background and character building through first third of the book, but mystery is worth it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fabulous storyline

Wonderful quirky characters. Good descriptions of all the players which made it an entertaining story to follow.
Looking forward to reading more of her work.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

A slow start.

I almost didn't finish. The beginning was too slow. I'm glad I hung in there. It got better as it progressed.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Murder with a bead maker

In High Strung by Janice Peacock, Jax O'Connell has moved to Seattle after inheriting her great-aunt's home and sets to work making amazing and intricate glass beads. She is excited to be invited to participate in a high brow bead show, but getting there, she discovers that Rosie, the woman staging the event, is the meanest person around. Putting up with Rosie, Jax and her best friend, Tessa, do their best to enjoy the opening evening. But then Jax hears the screams of Rosie's 20-something daughter and rushes to find Rosie being strangled by her beaded necklace tied to the stair railing. Managing to get the necklace cut, Jax joins Rosie in the ambulance and is glad to learn that the woman will pull through. Everyone assumes this was an accident of Rosie's slipping on the steps and her necklace's getting caught in the railing. But then the next day, Jax goes to throw away trash in a dumpster and finds the body of a young bead maker. When they learn that the woman has been strangled, it leads to questions that Rosie may have been attacked intentionally. And disturbingly, the police seem to be focusing on Tessa as the criminal, so Jax gets involved in the case.

This book has a creative premise of using bead making as the backdrop of the murder, with the comparison being made between sorting through beads to find the perfect matches in the same way detectives must sort through clues. I just wish that the book had done more to play up this fact. It had so much unexploited potential. The mystery itself was fairly weak, with few clues to point the way. The characters were reasonable but not too memorable.

Mary Ann Jacobs does a good job of narrating this audiobook. I like the sound of her voice and her inflections as she performs the book.

High Strung is a book with a lot of promise that I felt was left unfulfilled. I am disappointed that it didn't fill out the the clues better and especially that it didn't develop the interesting plot device of comparing jewelry making with detection. I give this book three stars.

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  • Indydog
  • McKinney, TexasUnited States
  • 07-31-17

Excellent!

I love to make beaded jewelry! Which is why this book appealed to me. That being said, this was a well written story with several twists and turns. The characters were great and unlike some themed mysteries were well developed and actually reminded me of people I know. I enjoyed the performance, and listened to it in one day!! I look forward to the next book!!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing to read, and equally amazing to listen to!

Would you listen to High Strung again? Why?

I would! It's a wonderful story, and educational story. Not only was it a great mystery, I learned a lot about the art of making glass beads.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I don't like to pick favorites, but if I have to, I would say the story's protagonist, Jax.

Have you listened to any of Mary Ann Jacobs’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

This was my first, and my second is waiting for me.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I did listen to it in one sitting. It was so entertaining, I didn't even feel time passing!

Any additional comments?

Author Janice Peacock has written a book that with the narration of Mary Ann Jacobs, has translated to audio perfectly.
As entertaining in audio as it was in print, I had just as much fun listening to HIGH STRUNG as I did reading it. Narrator Jacobs brought to life the cast from this series in such a way, that along with Peacock’s written descriptions, I now feel as though I have really met these wonderful characters.
As with my printed copies, I had the audio of book two, A BEAD IN THE HAND ready to listen to at the end of HIGH STRUNG.
If you’re a fan of audio/Audible books, you have got to give HIGH STRUNG a listen.

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Great Fun

Would you consider the audio edition of High Strung to be better than the print version?

I loved both

What was one of the most memorable moments of High Strung?

The characters

What does Mary Ann Jacobs bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Love Jax

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Light hearted and fun

Any additional comments?

Great read, loved it and can't wait for the next one.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Don't Bother

This is a poor example of a cozy mystery. The characters are flat and uninteresting. The lead character is preachy, goody too shoes who seems to have everything handed to her. I listened until it put me to sleep. At that point, I gave up and returned it.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful