This is the first book in the Faith Chapel Mystery series by Lauren Jensen Walker who also writes another new series I really like, the Bookish Baker mysteries. I really loved this book and Pastor Hope’s super fun sense of humor. Her snark was the friendly kind and most of it was said in her mind (shown by the italics in the book). She’s such a great character, and I also really like Father Christopher as her mentor and boss at the church. Her sister-in-law Virginia was pretty awesome too. I hope she sticks around town. She, Susan and Hope would make quite the team of sleuthing besties!
I’m so anxious now for the next book!
My Goodreads review:
This was such a fun and different cozy mystery! I really liked Pastor Hope as a main character. She’s absolutely a hoot, and I got the biggest kick out of her quoting movies, dancing around her house while she cleaned (much to the shock of the older congregation members, namely Marjorie!) and just her overall sense of humor. I enjoyed the little italics that indicated her thoughts to herself, those were so funny and spot on. I figured when a book started with someone getting bopped on the head with an Elvis garden gnome, the rest is going to be just as much fun!
Father Christopher was a great boss, and I loved how sweet and fair he was when it came to hiring a new office assistant, a high school senior who the older ladies didn’t approve of simply because she had a tat. What an assortment of crazy and interesting characters in this town though! There were so many that I wasn’t sure in the beginning if I’d ever get them sorted out, but it wasn’t a problem. They all started having their separate moments with Pastor Hope, so it was easy to get to know them that way. Her pastoral visits (where she could do her investigation as well) were a great way to hone in on the various congregation members.
I definitely didn’t see it coming with who ended up as the killer! It was a very refreshing non-nail biting showdown, or maybe I should say the killer had a come-to-Jesus moment. There was a side mystery that tied in with one of the families in town, but didn’t have anything to do with the current murder. It was still interesting and revealed even more about some of the characters. I’m very anxious to read the next book!
I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this books provided by the publisher via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own.