Wednesday, April 12, 2023

Overdue Reviews - Scheduled to Death + First Degree Mudder


Goodreads:  Scheduled to Death (A Maggie McDonald Mystery #2) by Mary Feliz

Blurb:   Professional organizer Maggie McDonald has a knack for cleaning up other people’s messes. So when the fiancée of her latest client turns up dead, it’s up to her to sort through the untidy list of suspects and identify the real killer. 

Maggie McDonald is hoping to raise the profile of her new Orchard View organizing business via her first high-profile client. Professor Lincoln Sinclair may be up for a Nobel Prize, but he’s hopeless when it comes to organizing anything other than his thoughts. For an academic, he’s also amassed more than his share of enemies. When Sinclair’s fiancée is found dead on the floor of his home laboratory — electrocuted in a puddle of water—Maggie takes on the added task of finding the woman’s murderer. To do so, she’ll have to outmaneuver the suspicious, obnoxious police investigator she’s nicknamed “Detective Awful” before a shadowy figure can check off the first item on their personal to-do list — Kill Maggie McDonald.

My Thoughts: It's been years since I read the first book so I was a bit afraid that I wouldn't know what was going on in this book but had no problem jumping in, picking up on who was who, and getting caught up in the mystery.  Each chapter starts with an organizing tip from Maggie's business which I really enjoyed.  As well, Maggie is frequently at work or tackling some project so that it feels believable that she is actually a professional organizer but it isn't so detailed that I feel like I'm reading a book on home organization.  One of my pet peeves with cozies is when it feels like the main character's career is just window dressing and that wasn't the case here.  The mystery hooked me.  Even though the victim is dead at the very beginning of the book I did feel like I got to know her and really enjoyed meeting Linc and the rest of the community and I loved to hate Detective Awful.  Maggie's a great lead character.   Her reasons for getting involved in the investigation do make sense and she's not so nosy and forceful with her questions that it seems over the top.  The story is well paced with likable characters and a bit of suspense.  Plus, there's a golden retriever and that's a really hard story element to beat! My Rating: Really Liked It (4 Stars)

Goodreads:  First Degree Mudder (Pacific Northwest Mystery #4) by Kate Dyer-Seeley

Blurb: Back home in Portland, Oregon, Meg is ready to take her career as an outdoor writer for Extreme magazine to the next level. Lesser journalists sling mud—Meg plans to run through it. To train hard for Mud, Sweat & Beers, an extreme 5K mud run, she’s signed on with the Mind Over Mudder team, run by ten-time mud marathon champ—and former drill sergeant—Billy the Tank. But when Meg finds her tenacious trainer dead in the locker room, she has a sinking feeling someone may have been pushed too far. Digging through the hidden secrets at Mind Over Mudder is a dirty job, but somebody’s got to do it. Meg will have to tread carefully, though—or she may soon be running for her life . . .

My Thoughts:  Poor Meg is in over her head once again with the Mind Over Mudder team preparing for her first mud run.  Honestly, I've had a few friends do mud runs and they sound really awful but it was fun watching Meg get ready for the run with full enthusiasm even if her body wasn't quite as enthusiastic as her mind.  Meg's also going through of a tough time in her personal life with her best friend possibly leaving the country, a dating situation that is as clear as the mud she has to run through, and being forced to see that her late father may not be quite the saint she thought he was.  Meg just seems so young and her struggles seemed very real.  With everything going on the mystery got pushed to the side a bit.  Meg suspected everyone and no one and was a bit all over the place with her investigating.  Despite that I did enjoy the read and enjoyed spending my time with Meg.  If you enjoy cozy mysteries with an outdoorsy feel this is a fun series to try though it is best to start with an earlier book.  My Rating: Liked It! (3 Stars)


  1. Scheduled to Death sounds like a lot of fun...especially with those organizing tips at the start of each chapter. :D

  2. A mud run! No thanks! I chuckled when I saw the golden retriever reference.