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Publisher's Summary

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

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    112
  • 4 Stars
    98
  • 3 Stars
    48
  • 2 Stars
    13
  • 1 Stars
    10

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    134
  • 4 Stars
    80
  • 3 Stars
    30
  • 2 Stars
    4
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    5

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    102
  • 4 Stars
    83
  • 3 Stars
    42
  • 2 Stars
    13
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    13
Sort by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

comfy and fluffy

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.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful

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

Cozy 4+ for me

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.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Nilda22
  • BETHLEHEM, PA, US
  • 01-14-17

Terrific Find

Any additional comments?

A cut above the usual cozy mystery! This book has it all; winning protagonist, great supporting characters and well designed mystery! I cannot wait to listen to the entire series! And best of all it is set in England!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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

Great to listen to while weeding

I hate weeding but this book helped me through it and I plan to continue the series. Laugh out loud funny in spots.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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

Good Story Concept Except

What did you like about this audiobook?

The narrator did a wonderful job of making distinctions of the American's voice/tone verus the variety of british characters. The plot premise was interesting, as was a portion of the story line

How has the book increased your interest in the subject matter?

none - i enjoy cozy mysteries

Does the author present information in a way that is interesting and insightful, and if so, how does he achieve this?

the botanical comeent were interesting but thats not what i picked the book for.

What did you find wrong about the narrator's performance?

The narrator did a wonderful job of making distinctions of the American's voice/tone verus the variety of British characters. The plot premise was interesting, as was a portion of the story line

Do you have any additional comments?

the character of Pru was very wishy washy and seemed almost manic or bipolar in larger portions of the book. It was as if she was a twenty something trying to act like a grown-up. I'll give the second book in the series a fair go - hoping the author has given Pru more grounding ...

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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

Great Mystery! Not Typical Story

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!

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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

Really good cozy mystery

I enjoyed the entire book. The characters were very realistic and the storyline kept me interested until the end

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Repetitive

The same thing about Pru’s financial worries is repeated ad nauseum! The plot is very slow to unfold and once it does, the outcome is predictable.

The impersonation of a few characters were annoying and I did forward to skip hearing them.

Not a fan of this one!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Kathy N
  • Long Beach, CA United States
  • 04-18-18

Pleasant Story With Some Flaws

This is a pleasant cozy mystery, and the narrator is very good and handles multiple accents competently.

There are flaws, though. Minor ones include a small but pivotal plot inconsistency and the need for an editor who understands the appropriate uses of "who" and "whom." The major one is a police officer character who not only ignores an obvious suspect but engages in serious conflict of interest that probably would get him fired in the real world.

Those flaws distracted me but didn't ruin an otherwise enjoyable, though lightweight, read.

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

Fantastic First Entry

If you're a fan of the Cozy Mystery you're sure to fall in love with this series. The characters and the plotting are so well executed and kept me in suspense to the very end. I hope this is just the first of many books in this series.