"All the best stories in the world are but one story in reality -- the story of escape. It is the only thing which interests us all and at all times, how to escape."
--Author Christopher Benson



Wednesday, August 31, 2011

COZY WEDNESDAY - Mind Over Murder by Allison Kingsley

There are no authors visiting this week so that I can tell you 
about two new cozies coming out next week!

Cover Illustration
by Griesbach/Martucci
Cover Design
by George Long
Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
Published by The Penguin Group

A Raven's Nest Bookstore Mystery
A Brand New Series
Release Date: September 6, 2011
ISBN-13: 978-0425243770

Set in Finn's Harbor, Maine, Stephanie Quinn Dowd owns The Raven's Nest Bookstore.  Her cousin, Clara Quinn, has returned to Finn's Harbor unexpectedly without much of a plan.  Stephanie has convinced Clara to help her out at the bookstore until she finds another job.

These cousins have always been close but it is not just being family or friendship that keeps them together.  It is what Clara calls the family curse.  Clara has "Quinn Sense".  Little voices in her head that make observations, enable Clara to read other people's thoughts and even see into the future.  Clara has spent her life shutting out the voices and willing her "Quinn Sense" to go away.  It is the very reason she left Finn's Harbor in the first place.  She thought the further she got away the less effective the family curse would be.  Stephanie wishes she had the gift and Clara wishes she didn't.

Raven's Nest Bookstore is located downtown among a variety of shops and stores.  Right next door is Ana Jordan's stationary store. She is extremely upset with Stephanie because she carries books dealing with the occult in her store.  Ana believes Stephanie is corrupting the youth of the town with those books and she has let everyone in the town know of her outrage.  Stephanie's employee Molly ends up having a very public argument with Ana on the subject. 

The next day Ana is found dead in the bookstore storeroom.  She has taken a fatal blow from a bust of Edgar Allan Poe made by Molly.  All the evidence seems to point to Molly as the killer, but Stephanie knows it can't be true.  She begs Clara to use her "Quinn Sense" to track down the real culprit.

My Thoughts:
Allison Kingsley is another pseudonym of a very well know author. Dorren Roberts Hight also writes as Kate Kingsbury and Rebecca Kent. This is her first contemporary mystery series. Mind Over Murder is a fine debut to this series.

I am not usually a fan paranormal but have been reading a few mild ones lately like this one and I am really enjoying them. I don't have a problem with visions or friendly ghosts or "Quinn Sense" but still not a fan or the undead, vampires or werewolves.

"Quinn Sense" is very subtle, helping Clara piece together the clues and make observations clearly. I enjoy the process of Clara learning about her gift.  I am sure it she will continue learning in future editions.  

The dialogue between the characters is very real and at points quite humorous.  Stephanie's high expectations of Clara's gift kept me laughing as if Clara could just will the murderer to come forward.  It is also set in a small town where everyone knows or thinks they know everyone's business and in Finn's Harbor this turns out to be a good thing as even the best laid plans can go awry.   

I would say the author's first contemporary mystery is destined to be a huge success as will others in this series!

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Berkley Prime Crime. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” 

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