This is the first book in the new Beach Reads cozy mystery series by Maggie Blackburn, better known as Mollie Cox Bryan who writes the Cora Crafts and Buttermilk Creek cozy series as well as the older Cumberland Creek series. Who wouldn’t love a bookstore right there on the beach that happens to be part of an island?
My Goodreads review:
I really enjoyed this start to a new series and loved the idea of a bookshop right there on the beach. I can definitely say the author did a good job of not making me like Summer very much for a while. She totally came off as a know-it-all who had no use for any books except those that were Shakespeare and scholarly. But the more I read, I did feel a small connection to Summer with my hatred of spiders. True, I don’t spaz out like she did or sleep under netting, but I really dislike them a lot! I felt like during the course of the book, she did start to change just a little. She was always good to her cousins and aunt, but I think the island and her mom’s good friends were starting to get to her and soften that hard outer shell she’d put up. Reading and actually enjoying the book her mom had been reading for book club seemed to help her a lot.
There seemed to be a lot of repeating going on as far as questioning why or who, but hey, Summer was new at sleuthing, so I chalked it up to that. In the end, she came through during the showdown and showed some bravery although a lot of it was built-up anger. I had figured out fairly early who the killer was, but it was interesting to see this unfold and how the characters went about sleuthing.
I really enjoyed Aunt Agatha, Piper and Mia’s characters a lot as well as Glads and Marilyn, Hildy’s good friends. At times I just wanted to shake Summer, but at the end there was a super sweet moment. I think I’m going to like her much better in the next book after all she’s gone through in this one. Change in a character is sometimes a really good thing and helps them grow and develop, so I’m anxious to see what the author continues to do with Summer. I’m definitely interested in reading more in the series.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own.