Monday, May 17, 2021

As The Christmas Cookie Crumbles + Be Our Ghost - Mini Cozy Mystery Reviews

Goodreads:  As the Christmas Cookie Crumbles (Food Lover's Village Mystery #5) by Leslie Budewitz

Blurb:  In Jewel Bay, all is merry and bright. At Murphy’s Mercantile, AKA the Merc, manager Erin Murphy is ringing in the holiday season with food, drink, and a new friend: Merrily Thornton. A local girl gone wrong, Merrily’s turned her life around. But her parents have publicly shunned her, and they nurse a bitterness that chills Erin.

When Merrily goes missing and her boss discovers he’s been robbed, fingers point to Merrily—until she’s found dead, a string of lights around her neck. The clues and danger snowball from there. Can Erin nab the killer—and keep herself in one piece—in time for a special Christmas Eve?

My Thoughts:  I read an earlier book in this series and really enjoyed it but I think I might have liked this one even better!  Erin Murphy is days away from her wedding and in the middle of the holiday shopping season when Merrily Thornton is killed.  On the surface it looks like an easy case to close but Erin is convinced that all is not how it seems - especially when it comes to Merrily's past.  The investigation was interesting with lots of twists and turns and the end came as a surprise to me which does not happen often!  While I own them I've yet to read the earlier books in the series but it just landed itself next in line for my Year of the Series project.  If you enjoy foodie/small town cozies this one is a must!  My Rating:  Really Liked It!

Goodreads:  Be Our Ghost (A Merry Ghost Inn Mystery #3) by Kate Kingsbury

Blurb: The Merry Ghost Inn is well and truly open for business. Melanie West, her grandmother, Liza, and their beloved sheepdog/wolfhound mix, Max, are rapidly getting the hang of running their charming bed-and-breakfast inn on the rocky Oregon coast. Not that business goes without a hitch―when your hostelry boasts its own laughing resident ghost, you’d better be expect the out-of-the-ordinary. But Melanie and Liza take it all in stride...until a hotshot real estate developer arrives in Sully’s Landing, touting his plans to build a tacky amusement arcade smack dab in the middle of the tasteful cliff-side town.  No one in Sully’s Landing can stand the gaudy developer, but it’s still a shock when he ends up murdered. It’s even more shocking when Liza’s friend, Doug, emerges as the chief suspect. Melanie and Liza put on their sleuthing caps yet again and set out to clear Doug’s name.

My Thoughts: This is a fun conclusion to a fun series.  I like Melanie quite a lot and enjoy her page time.  Liza is ... well she's a lot.  I usually adore grandmother/granddaughter relationships but Liza can be trying at times with her insistence on investigating this murder despite everyone else's reluctance and the occasional peril.  The main mystery was entertaining with lots of possible suspects.  I do love when the murder victim is one that pretty much everyone wants to murder.  There is also a background mystery that has been around since the beginning of the series that is nicely resolved in this book and the series ghost makes a few appearances.  This isn't the most memorable cozy series but it is good on audio and appears to be concluded so if you like a cozy with a little bit of ghostly action this might be one to pick up.  My Rating: Liked It


  1. Yay for entertaining cozy mysteries. I'm reading a Mercy & Elvis mystery which involves a retired, Army veteran and her K-9.

  2. Would be definitely be drawn to the food lovers series. And the Christmas aspect of this one would be fun.

  3. It is about time that I read a cozy again. Both of these sound really good.

  4. So glad you enjoyed the trip to the Food Lovers' Village!

    1. FYI -- the 6th book, Carried to the Grave and Other Stories, a collection of 5 contemporary short mysteries and a historical novella featuring Erin's great-grandmother, will be out May 25. Available for pre-order in ebook and pb now.

  5. A Christmas cozy! I was just thinking how I can feel a Christmas/Holiday mood coming on and wondering if I could hold off for a Christmas in July type theme. Both of these sound good.