The Readaholics and the Gothic Gala (A Book Club Mystery #3) by Laura DiSilverio
Rating: Very Good
Description: One sleuthing book club finds themselves in the midst of a gothic-esque mystery as they read Du Maurier's Rebecca in the latest from the author of The Readaholics and the Poirot Puzzle. Reading the gothic classic Rebecca already has the Readaholics spooked, and the chills only get worse when someone in town actually gives up the ghost...
Amy-Faye Johnson has her hands full coordinating the Celebration of Gothic Novels in Heaven, Colorado. The festivities start off smoothly, but the weekend is soon cursed with large egos, old resentments, and uninvited guests. Matters become truly grave when a dead body is found at the gothic-themed costume party. The out-of-town authors claim not to know the victim, but Amy-Faye has doubts. When skeletons turning up in all of the suspects' closets, Amy-Faye and the Readaholics must tap into their knowledge of gothic literature to find a killer who lurks in the shadows... (from Goodreads)
Genre: Mystery - Cozy
Why I Picked This Book: I love books about books especially if it's a book dealing with one of my favorites like Rebecca! Plus this is a series I've been wanting to try since the first book came out.
My Impression: One of the things I like best about cozies is the gimmick - whatever non-mystery thing that is a big deal in the detective's life. Sometimes it's food, sometimes it's organization, or DIY, or collecting various things, and sometimes it's books. Bookish mysteries are probably my favorite and I've read bunches of them. There are tons of mystery solving bookstore owners and librarians but I think this is the first one that involved a book club that really discussed a book in detail. In this case it was Rebecca which is one of my favorite books and they also discussed Gothic-ness as a genre including other authors such as my personal favorite - Barbara Michaels. It made my bookish soul very happy and I'm just giddy knowing the book before this focuses on Agatha Christie!
I have been on a roll when it comes to new mysteries and this one is no different. In fact it may be my favorite of the bunch! I liked Amy-Faye and her group of friends. They're intelligent women with a range of different skills and interests with the primary thing in common being that they all like to read. I liked her relationship with Hart. They didn't act like children and they seemed to really enjoy spending time together. While Hart was probably a little more permissive about Amy-Faye getting involved in the investigation than strictly realistic it didn't seem too over the top. Her event organizing business felt like a real business and not like something she just talked about and it enabled her to have greater access to a few locations than she would have if she was just a regular person.
The mystery itself didn't disappoint and there are so many unknown aspects. Who was the victim? What was he doing here? Who was he here to see? And of course the big one - Who killed him? I really had no idea on the who or even really the what until the reveal. I was really hanging on every word and trying to puzzle it out right along with Amy-Faye and thoroughly enjoyed the reading experience. There was one little discussion right at the end that I kind of fizzled out that I could have lived without as it only created a little bit of uncertainty but that's a teeny tiny complaint.
This is the 3rd book in the series but I had absolutely no problem jumping in here. I really enjoyed the mystery, the characters, and the bookish elements and this is a series that I'm really excited about continuing!
Would I Read More of this Series/Author?: Absolutely! I'm tempted to pick up one of the first 2 right now!
Would I Recommend this Book?: Definitely! I think most readers would really enjoy this one.