Thursday, March 21, 2019

Murder Once Removed - Cozy Mystery Review

Goodreads: Murder Once Removed (Ancestry Detective #1) by S.C. Perkins

Rating: Good
Source: NetGalley

Description:  Except for a good taco, genealogist Lucy Lancaster loves nothing more than tracking down her clients' long-dead ancestors, and her job has never been so exciting as when she discovers a daguerreotype photograph and a journal proving Austin, Texas, billionaire Gus Halloran's great-great-grandfather was murdered back in 1849. What's more, Lucy is able to tell Gus who was responsible for his ancestor's death.
Partly, at least. Using clues from the journal, Lucy narrows the suspects down to two nineteenth-century Texans, one of whom is the ancestor of present-day U.S. senator Daniel Applewhite. But when Gus publicly outs the senator as the descendant of a murderer--with the accidental help of Lucy herself--and her former co-worker is murdered protecting the daguerreotype, Lucy will find that shaking the branches of some family trees proves them to be more twisted and dangerous than she ever thought possible.

Genre: Mystery - Cozy

Why I Picked This Book: I love genealogy and I love cozy mysteries so a genealogist solving a cozy mystery sounds like the best thing ever. 

My Impression:  I wanted to absolutely love this and there were a lot of things I loved about it.  I mean solving a modern day murder and a murder that happened over 150 years ago?  How could I not love that?  I liked Lucy and her friends and office mates and I really enjoyed how much Lucy was fascinated by the hunt for facts.  I loved the links between past and present and really wanted to be right there researching with Lucy.

But unfortunately while I wanted to love it I didn't quite make that jump completely.  I enjoyed it yes but it didn't quite live up to my expectations.  The writing felt a little clunky and the explanations seemed overdone.  I'm hoping this is a first book in the series issue and once the characters and premise are established the second book will be a much smoother read.  As well the mystery got a bit convoluted.  As I've mentioned I really enjoyed the past and present intersecting but at times it felt unnecessarily complicated.

This was a fun read that I did enjoy even though I didn't love it as much as I expected.  I do plan on continuing this series and I'm hoping that some of the "bumps" will be smoothed out in the 2nd book. 
 Would I Read More of this Series/Author?  I would!  While this wasn't perfect this is definitely a series I think has a lot of potential and I did really enjoy digging around in genealogical research with Lucy.

Would I Recommend this Book?  I would with reservations.  If this is a topic that you love than I think you'd enjoy this but if you're lukewarm on genealogy/history I'm not sure you'd enjoy it as much. 

* I received this book in exchange for an honest review.  As always my opinions and impressions are completely my own. *


  1. I like the idea of genealogy in a cozy. Sorry this one wasn't quite a good as you had hope but look forward to your thoughts on book 2.

  2. It is a shame it felt chunky, and that thoughts were overdone. I love the concept. I will be curious to see if the next book is better.

  3. I liked it (3 out of 5 stars on GR). You make some very good points! I'd give the next one a try.

  4. I love genealogy but sorry to hear this one wasn't quite excellent. Hopefully the next one will up the wow factor a bit! And I'm with Lucy on tacos. A good taco is an amazing thing. :)

  5. I feel exactly the same way about this one! Too much detail left me confused and a little bored with the plot. I'm hoping the next one will be better because I enjoyed the series' setting, characters, genealogy theme, and Texas charm.