Against the Claw–review

This is the second book in the Lobster Shack series by Shari Randall. I read the first book when it came out and was excited to read this book, which I thought was just as good, maybe even better.

My Goodreads review:

Against the Claw (Lobster Shack Mystery, #2)Against the Claw by Shari Randall

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

It was great returning to Mystic Bay to visit with Aunt Gully, Allie and Loren, who was home for the July 4th holiday to help at the Lazy Mermaid Shack. Loren had also taken back up with a guy named Patrick who ran the most popular bar/restaurant in town and who had a reputation of being a bad boy. Allie could never see what Loren saw in him, aside from his good looks.

While helping Bertha, known as Lobster Woman, Allie was on her lobstering boat when they pulled up a dead body. The young woman’s body remained unidentified for quite awhile, but in the meantime, the restaurant was hired to cater a party at a wealthy woman’s estate. Allie, Loren and Gully went over for it. Loren and Allie were to spend the night on the woman’s yacht along with a famous singer and her friend. When the body of Lorel’s ex-boyfriend Patrick was found in an inflatable boat that had been tied behind the yacht, Allie figured they were all suspects and was determined to find the real killer. With her friend Verity’s help sleuthing as well as the occasional help from her friend Bronwyn who was a police department intern, the case slowly came together.

Meanwhile, Allie was appearing in a show while her broken ankle was still healing and she had to make sure she got to rehearsals, worked at the restaurant and did some sleuthing. While the showdown wasn’t exactly with the main perp, it was still pretty awesome. Let’s just say it involved Bertha chucking a vacuum cleaner over a railing at someone. I really came to like Bertha in this book and now she’s another favorite character of mine, along with Aunt Gully, of course!

I didn’t guess the actual killer but it didn’t surprise me when I found out who did it. There were a lot of secrets being kept by different people and a few twists along the way that kept this plot moving along and so interesting that I had trouble putting the book down. I’m anxious to see what happens in the next book. Allie doesn’t have a guy interest but I think she could be interested in Hayden, her old classmate, if he showed any interest in her. It’ll also be interesting to see how soon her ankle becomes able to fully dance ballet again. Will she travel back and forth to Boston to dance an occasional show or will she decide that Mystic Bay is too much of a home for her to leave Aunt Gully and the Lazy Mermaid? I hope we don’t have to wait too long to find out!

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Death and a Pot of Chowder–review

This is the first book in a brand new series that launched earlier this month. I had requested the advance reader copy from NetGalley and voluntarily read and reviewed it. The series is written by Cornelia Kidd, which is the pen name for author Lea Wait who also writes the Mainely Needlepoint mysteries, which I’ve been wanting to read. I really loved this first book and hope that she’s got lots more in store for these awesome characters!

My Goodreads review:

Death and a Pot of Chowder (A Maine Murder Mystery #1)Death and a Pot of Chowder by Cornelia Kidd

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed the first book in this brand new series! I love that it takes place in Maine. I have never been there but I love reading about it and hopefully will get to go someday and see some real Maine lighthouses. The author is also known as Lea Wait but I haven’t read any of her other series yet but I know I really am liking this one so far.

Anna Winslow was happily living with her husband Burt and 14 year-old-son Jake. Out of the blue, she got a letter from Izzie Jordan who said she was her half-sister. Anna was delighted to have a sister so she brought her to stay with them at Quarry Island and they really hit it off. They got their first chance at really working together when Burt’s brother Carl was found at sea but hadn’t drowned, it was murder. Since Burt had motive, means and opportunity, he was arrested for the murder. Izzie and Anna were determined to get Burt out of jail. After that they’d talked about owning a restaurant together but I thought it was really awesome on Izzie’s part to put Burt as a priority.

Izzy was really an amazing sister that anyone would be proud to have. She was generous and loyal, pitched right in when she started staying with Anna. I loved Mamie as well. She was everything you’d expect a sweet grandmother to be–she cooked, she fussed over people but she also listened.

There were a couple of side mysteries going on and I guessed one of them at least. I had the killer wrong but I wasn’t too far off. It was fun seeing how Izzie, Anna and their friend Rob, a retired detective would handle the showdown. Everything wrapped up really well. There was one interesting clue that wasn’t addressed, as in someone said oh yeah, that’s why that was. I don’t want to say what it was but it had to do with Burt’s tablet. That clue told me part of what I guessed.

I think it’s so cool that two sisters found each other and worked together to solve a murder. Now they want to be business partners and I can’t wait to see what happens next!

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