Killer Characters (A Books by the Bay Mystery)
8th and Final Book in Series
Setting – North Carolina
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery (May 2, 2017)
An Imprint of Penguin Ransom House LLC
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
Kindle ASIN: B01K1ATZHM
Restaurant owner and aspiring novelist Olivia Limoges is happily enjoying her new marriage. Sadly, the same doesn’t hold true for Laurel, a fellow Bayside Book Writer. While struggling with a demanding job, twin boys, and a terminally ill mother-in-law, Laurel learns that her perfect marriage is mostly fictional. When she catches her husband fooling around with his mother’s hospice nurse, she issues impassioned threats that will later come back to haunt her.
After the nurse meets a deadly denouement, Chief Rawlings is forced to take Laurel into custody. While Olivia protests the arrest, the rest of the Bayside Book Writers become a group divided, with Rawlings and Harris on one side and Olivia and Millay on the other. Now the women must race against the clock to prove that Laurel’s not the sort for murder before her story ends in tragedy…
In this final installment to this beloved series we see Laurel struggling to hold things together. Her husband is basically absent from her life and she is trying to raise her twins, hold down her job, and dealing with a terminally ill mother-in-law that has never liked her. When Laurel finds out how her spouse has been occupying his time she explodes with some verbal remarks that could end up costing her everything. Olivia and the Bayside Book Writers pull out all the stops to prove her innocence.
First, I need to say this series was ended by the publisher, not the author. She has stating publicly that this book was very hard for her to write. Readers have built a connection to these characters but she was the one that gave them life. Whatever we are feeling is nowhere near the pain she felt and is still feeling about ending their journey. She chose to end it in a way for me that very surprising at first but when I took a step back I totally understood why she did this. This story invoked strong emotions for me and will for all fans of these characters. I recommend you have some tissues handy because you will need them for the ending.
That being said, she gives us a mystery we can sink our teeth into as it splits the Bayside Book Writers apart. Chief Rawlings is too close to Laurel to take the lead on the investigation and there is only so much he can pass on to Olivia and Millay. Harris is still working the case but he too has to be careful not to overshare and put the investigation in jeopardy. This doesn’t sit well with Olivia or Millay. So needless to say situations can get tense. There are twists and turns and suspense that really upped my heart rate.
These characters have grown so much since the first book in a way that was believable. Olivia as the main character brought this wonderful group together and readers fell for them almost immediately. Starting with the lovable Capt. Haviland, always by Olivia’s side. Chief Rawlings and Olivia’s relationship spanned the series bringing two very independent people together. Laurel, Millay, Harris round out the writer’s group and their lives intermingle within the pages. We also met Chef Michel and the fabulous roller skating waitress Dixie. Each of the characters have worked their way into my heart and I treasure the time I got to spend with them whether at the lighthouse, Grumpy’s Diner, The Boot Top Bistro or out and about in Oyster Bay.
This series is binge-worthy if you haven’t started it yet or are a book or two behind. Fans will be emotional and moved by this final book.
Thank you Ellery Adams! You are a master storyteller. We are all blessed for the time we spent in Oyster Bay.
To find out more about Ellery and all her books visit her webpage here.
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. 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.”