Plantation Shudders by Ellen Byron
Rating: 4 Stars
Description: It's the end of the summer and Prodigal Daughter Maggie Crozat has returned home to her family's plantation-turned-bed-and-breakfast in Louisiana. The Crozats have an inn full of guests for the local food festival - elderly honeymooners, the Cajun Cuties, a mysterious stranger from Texas, a couple of hipster lovebirds, and a trio of Georgia frat boys. But when the elderly couple keels over dead within minutes of each other - one from very unnatural causes - Maggie and the others suddenly become suspects in a murder.
With the help of Bo Durand, the town's handsome new detective, Maggie must investigate to clear her name while holding the family business together at the same time. And the deeper she digs, the more she wonders: are all of the guests really there for a vacation or do they have ulterior motives. Decades - old secrets and stunning revelations abound in Ellen Byron's charming cozy debut, Plantation Shudders. (From GoodReads)
Why I Picked This Book: I love books with old houses and this is a new-to-me cozy mystery author.
My Impression: A new cozy series with a puntastic name, a setting I'm familiar with, and a old plantation house? How could I pass that up? And it turns out I'm really glad I didn't. I really enjoyed this mystery. The setting definitely felt like small town Louisiana and Byron has definitely spent some time in the humidity of bayou country. There's a heaping helping of motives and secrets that very slowly get unraveled. Maggie makes a good amateur detective and her motives for getting involved with the investigation are completely understandable. Sheriff Ru Durand is awful but Bo and the rest of the officers are good enough that it doesn't seem over the top. I loved Bo, the Crozat family, and the rest of the Pelican residents - especially Maggie's friend Gaynell.
I thoroughly enjoyed this read and flew through it. The pacing is great without feeling rushed and while the solution does seem a little far-fetched it tied up all the loose ends nicely and was entertaining.
Would I Read More of this Series/Author?: Definitely! Byron mentions a 2nd book in the notes at the end of the book and I can't wait!
Would I Recommend this Book?: If you're a fan of cozy mysteries this is a really fun read.