There are those who say their mom is the best. Well, I disagree because my mom is the best. Both she and dad instilled into me a love a reading. I remember TEDIOUS hours when my (then perceived mean) mom would make me study the alphabet. I quickly reformed and fell in love with a set of first reader books that I read well past the age I was beyond them. Then, my mom introduced me to Jane Austen. Since then, we’ve both developed our favorite genres, talk books often, and frequently exchange books between us to read.
But, our tastes do differ. Mom loves cozy mysteries, while I tend toward anything romance. To that end, my awesome mom has agreed to occasionally review a cozy mystery for us! How exciting. For her first review, mom brings you Murder in the Mystery Suite by Ellery Adams.
Tucked away in the rolling hills of rural western Virginia is the storybook resort of Storyton
Hall, catering to book lovers who want to get away from it all. To increase her number of bookings, resort manager Jane Steward has decided to host a Murder and Mayhem week so that fans of the mystery genre can gather together for some role-playing and fantasy crime solving.
But when the winner of the scavenger hunt, Felix Hampden, is found dead in the Mystery Suite, and the valuable book he won as his prize is missing, Jane realizes one of her guests is an actual murderer. Amid a resort full of fake detectives, Jane is bound and determined to find a real-life killer. There’s no room for error as Jane tries to unlock this mystery before another vacancy opens up…
And here’s mom:
I enjoy many types of reading but mindless entertainment is my favorite and cozy mysteries are at the top of the list. Something that is entertaining (after all it must hold ones interest), not too gory (I know people are dying but I don’t need two pages of spurting blood and guts), not too sexy (I’m single and that just gets me frustrated!) and not too suspense filled (I do want to sleep at night) is just up my alley.
This past Christmas Katherine, my youngest, bought me “Murder in the Paperback Parlor” and “Murder in the Secret Garden”. A new series by Ellery Adams which she terms “A Book Retreat Mystery” [Kat here- I read lots of book backs and picked something I thought she’d like. I had no clue there was a series order]. After looking at the opening pages I realized these were the second and third of the series so immediately I got on the computer and ordered the first in the series “Murder in the Mystery Suite.”
On the welcome page I loved that Ellery listed her cast of characters. An interesting mix of staff from Storyton Hall and the varying merchants of Storyton Village, Virginia. Years ago the Steward family dismantled their ancestral home in England and brought it to this quaint and quiet valley to reassemble brick by brick.
Now it resides on a lovely, though well-worn, estate as a retreat for book lovers. Jane Steward has returned home after her husband’s death to help with the family business and manage the resort. To bring in extra income she puts together a theme event, the Murder and Mayhem Week. Little did she know that it would turn into just that!
While the guests think the police and patrons in handcuffs are just part of the show, Jane knows there is a murder in the building. Is it one of the guests dressed up as a favorite sleuth or one of her trusted staff?
“Murder in the Mystery Suite” is an easy read with short chapters that makes it perfect for a few chapters with a cup of tea in the evening or one during your break at work. As with other cozy mysteries it is a perfect fit in the purse size. The price online was less than ordering the eBook version and I do love to hold pages of paper in my hand.
I would give it three out of five stars for being a pleasant story, but not extremely riveting.
Well I must be off. Time to pick up the second book in the Book Retreat Mystery series!
Ellery Adams is the “New York Times “bestselling author of the Books by the Bay Mysteries and the Charmed Pie Shoppe Mysteries. Ms. Adams has held many jobs, including caterer, retail clerk, car salesperson, teacher, tutor, and tech writer, all while penning poems, children’s books, and novels.