Death Overdue (A Haunted Library Mystery #1) by Allison Brook
Rating: Very Good
Description: Carrie Singleton is just about done with Clover Ridge, Connecticut until she's offered a job as the head of programs and events at the spooky local library, complete with its own librarian ghost. Her first major event is a program presented by a retired homicide detective, Al Buckley, who claims he knows who murdered Laura Foster, a much-loved part-time library aide who was bludgeoned to death fifteen years earlier. As he invites members of the audience to share stories about Laura, he suddenly keels over and dies.
The medical examiner reveals that poison is what did him in and Carrie feels responsible for having surged forward with the program despite pushback from her director. Driven by guilt, Carrie's determined to discover who murdered the detective, convinced it's the same man who killed Laura all those years ago. Luckily for Carrie, she has a friendly, knowledgeable ghost by her side. But as she questions the shadows surrounding Laura's case, disturbing secrets come to light and with each step Carrie takes, she gets closer to ending up like Al.
Genre: Mystery - Cozy
Why I Picked This Book: Really the whole haunted library thing got me at once. I mean who can resist a ghost in a library?
My Impression: I went into this book with really high expectations. There are so many of my favorite things here - an old murder, a library, a ghost, and of course the small town with an incredibly high crime rate (aka The Jessica Fletcher Syndrome). And this book delivered! It was fun with lots of library goodness, a strong main character, an intriguing mystery and a ghost that I really just want to hang out with.
I was a little worried I wasn't going to like Carrie at first. She had a rebellious streak at the very beginning but while she still keeps that streak she isn't rebellious to the point of self-sabotage. Her reasoning for getting involved in the murder made sense especially as she begins developing a friendship with the original victim's son. The mystery kept me turning pages - just what had happened to Laura and was it really connected to Al's death? What had Al discovered? I was pulled in to the story completely. I had a few suspicions as to the whos and whys but it did keep me guessing until the final reveal!
As well I enjoyed all the politics and managings of the library. It isn't one big happy family but not everyone is hostile either. It felt very much like a real workplace and I enjoyed watching Cassie get her footing. I also enjoyed her relationship with her Aunt and Uncle.
My only nitpicky complaints was with the ghost. I loved her immediately but the introduction seemed a little anti-climatic. I think it'd be a little annoying if the MC responded realistically to a ghost (there'd be a LOT of shock and disbelief) but I think I expected something a little more than I got. I do love this character and hope we get more back story in future books.
This was a really fun cozy mystery and a great start to the series. I'm looking forward to spending more time in Clover Ridge with Carrie and the rest!
Would I Read More of this Series/Author? Absolutely! I'm already looking forward to the next book!
Would I Recommend this Book? Definitely! If you enjoy cozies this is one you should not miss.