Freelance book editor Mikki Lincoln knows the makings of a well-written story. But she’ll need to choose her words wisely when a new assignment introduces a deadly plot twist . . .
Forgotten on the outskirts of quaint Lenape Hollow, Feldman’s Catskill Resort Hotel has outlasted its heyday as a popular tourist destination and now awaits demolition. But once Mikki is hired to edit a revealing memoir by Sunny Feldman, the last living relative of its original owners, the doomed resort quickly ends up back in the spotlight . . .
Unfortunately, everyone’s attention shifts to Mikki when a body is discovered at the demolition site. Seen arguing with deceptive entrepreneur Greg Onslow right before his shocking death, the editor has no choice but to spell out exactly why she isn’t guilty of murdering him . . .
Mikki’s dash for answers brings Greg’s shady dealings into focus, along with an unsettling list of potential culprits. As false leads and dead ends force her to revise theories on who really did it, can Mikki separate fact from fiction before the investigation reaches a terrifying conclusion?
My Review Intro
Michelle (Mikki) Lincoln is 70, a retired school teacher and a freelance book editor in New York. She’s returned to her home town from Maine following the death of her husband and has established a thriving and satisfying life.
Mikki has a very vocal and public loss of temper with the town’s reviled slippery character regarding the possible secrets an author may be including in a book she is editing. There is a video made and distributed of the altercation. When he is predictably murdered THAT night, the police obviously suspects her.
It’s a Small Town–There are no Secrets
The video quickly gets shared and soon there is no one who hasn’t seen it. The murdered man was not well-liked. His reputation for swindling investors preceded him. His office is populated with lots of twenty-something lookers more obviously suited for the view than the executive branch. The list of suspects is easily expanded and soon Mikki is working to clear her cousin.
Mix of Characters
First, the protagonist, at 70 and having dealt with hormonal teens for years, has learned to brook no nonsense from anyone and quickly puts most in their place–to the point of being rude. Her interview style tends to be direct. It’s difficult to invest in her. Her nephew, Nick (at his mother’s urging), comes to stay and make sure she is safe, but he seems a bit ineffectual and they clash. Her cousin, Luke, is hiding secrets and she is determined to see he is cleared and safe while not seeing the same dynamic in the relationship between her and her nephew. Whether or not you can invest in the characters, they are entertaining, if not wholly developed.
My Thoughts on the Cozy-Line Plot
The storyline is well-plotted and moves at an engaging pace. The mystery holds steady. There are red herrings and twists and the author repeatedly points to the obvious, which the reader has no doubt already discounted. But that leaves…who? A scene described in which 70-year old Mikki executes a jump without mishap might be a bit more believable were she a 50-year old. And she tends to get a bit reckless for a physically capable and normally smart septuagenarian.
Wrap It Up
The race to conclusion wrapped up the plot with only a slight surprise at the ultimate perp. I enjoy the author’s writing style, although I have some difficulty with the picture painted of War Babies and Baby Boomers (gave me more than one occasion to wince). This is my first experience with the author and the series, which I thought worked as a standalone, but I’d like to see a softening of Mikki in Book 4, as well as her cane-wielding friend. I appreciated the perfect grammar, definitely a few teachable moments, and the Fun Facts and “Write Right Wright’s Language and Grammar Tips at the end of the book.
I received this digital download through the publisher and NetGalley and appreciated the opportunity to read and review. Would recommend to those who enjoy cozy mysteries.
Genre: Cozy Mystery, Amateur Sleuth Mysteries
Publisher: Kensington Books
- ASIN: B07W6S73TB
Print Length: 288 pages
Publication Date: To be released June 30, 2020
Source: Publisher and NetGalley
Title Available for Pre-Order at:
Rosepoint Publishing: Four of Five Stars
The Author: [Amazon] Kaitlyn Dunnett writes the Liss MacCrimmon Scottish-American Heritage Mystery Series published by Kensington Books. She also writes under the names Kathy Lynn Emerson and Kate Emerson.
[Goodreads] Kaitlyn Dunnett is a pseudonym used by Kathy Lynn Emerson, author of the Mistress Jaffrey Mysteries, the Face Down Mysteries featuring Susanna Appleton, 16th century gentlewoman, herbalist, and sleuth, the Diana Spaulding 1888 Quartet, and the award-winning How to Write Killer Historical Mysteries, plus an assortment of other books.
As Kaitlyn she writes the Liss MacCrimmon series set in Moosetookalook, Maine and the Deadly Edits series set in rural Sullivan County, New York.
She is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime and other professional organizations and blogs regularly with Maine Crime Writers.
©2020 V Williams