A few weeks ago I posted an excerpt for Neila Young’s cozy murder mystery Brewing Up Murder, and today I am delighted to share a glowing review for it. For me, this was the perfect book for a lazy day on the beach and I have no doubts that I will continue to follow the Coffee Cup Mysteries as the series progresses.
Title: Brewing Up Murder
Author: Neila Young
Publisher: Red Adept Publishing
Publication Date: July 19, 2017
Genre: Fiction, Literary Fiction, Murder Mystery, Women’s Fiction
Themes: Family, Murder, Romance
Features: Feature Recipes
My Rating: 4.5/ 5
As the owner of Mystery Cup Café in Wilton, Missouri, a town made famous by a string of long-ago murders, Blake Harper is used to the mysterious. When her barista is found strangled in a mound of coffee beans, Blake vows to find the killer, even though her sister, the town’s lead police detective, tells her to stay out of it.
Blake finds plenty of suspects, like the owners of a rival coffee shop and the handsome new bookstore owner. But when new threats are made, she soon realizes the danger is centered around Mystery Cup and someone is targeting her personally.
Will Blake be able to solve the murder, find a new barista, and perfect her recipe for espresso brownies before she becomes the next victim?
There are few things I love more in this world than a good book and a great beach, and that’s exactly how this baby went down. Now add in the fact that there’s an awesome setting, a steamy little love triangle, a good degree of mystery without the hardcore gore, and an enduring yet bumbling protagonist and the situation is just about perfect! At 205 pages I powered through this baby in between swims, and I can’t wait for the next instalment in the series.
Yes there are a few things that we see a lot of in chick-lit and cozy mysteries – there’s a love triangle with the good boy and the bad boy, there’s another cozy set in a coffee shop, and heck there’s even the family that’s always trying (and failing) to set someone up. But here’s the thing, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! And the formula behind Brewing Up Murder certainly isn’t broke! Part of what I loved so much about this book is that it had just enough of what you’ve come to expect from the genre that I powered through some scenes with that empowering feeling of ha! I got that right, but also more than enough red herrings to throw you for an unexpected loop.
I loved the humour, wit, and easy to read writing style. Also, the nicknames. I giggled more than my fair share at some of the names, but also found them helpful when it came to remembering characters and their actions. And while some of the characters weren’t entirely as flushed out as I typically enjoy, I wasn’t overly concerned as this is just the first book in a series and I am sure that the character development will continue with each instalment. On this one I am taking the stance that this one is a marathon, not a sprint.
Would I recommend this book? Oh heck yes! It’s perfect for beaches, gardens, living rooms on a rain day… If you like murder mysteries and chick-lit Brewing Up Murder is the perfect combination of the two.