Grand Central Publishing
Hachette Book Group
A Deborah Knott Mystery
16th in Series
We return to Colleton County, North Carolina just in time for the holidays. Sadly they are overshadowed when a very popular Senior in high school, Mallory Johnson, dies in a car crash on the way home from a party. This was not the only tragedy this area has had to face, a few days later two not so popular kids were found shot to death. This happening all after another car accident just two months earlier where two other youths were killed and another was severely injured. To stay the town in stunned by these events is an understatement. Mallory was known not to drink or do drugs so what caused her to go off the road is a mystery and is her accident connected to any of the other deaths.
As usual Deborah’s many nieces and nephews are always dropping by for a visit, plus it is time for the annual cookie baking party. All these kids either knew or went to school with the victims. So Deborah does what any judge/wife of a chief deputy sheriff would do, she keeps her eyes and her ears open. As she and Dwight share their gathered information they find the clues may connect to a death from several years ago. It is time to solve these mysteries before anyone else is lost and Dwight and Deborah are on the case.
This has been one of my favorite series and I enjoy every trip into the world of Deborah Knott. The closeness and trials and tribulations of the whole family dynamic never disappoint. The mystery that tags along is an added bonus.
The author is a wonderful storyteller and her characters continue to grown and develop. In this edition it was about the teenagers. I have to say I was very impressed in the way she took on a very relevant teen issue, cell phones and texting. She also makes us aware of dangerous things that can happen at teen parties, stupid pranks can have deadly consequences. She handled them without being preachy, she just put it out there and reminded us all about the dangers. This week the National Transportation Safety Board has recommended that all cell phone use be banned all non-emergency use of cell phones and other portable devices for drivers. This makes this story quite timely. I realize it was published last year but I didn’t get to it for last year’s holiday season and saved it for this year and I am glad I did. It helped me to remind my own kids of these dangers. Teenagers always think it can’t happen to them. In this story it happened to kids that probably felt exactly that way. The mystery was great but the message was gripped me and held me in this story.
This is not your typical Christmas story but you knew that from the title. It is an excellent addition to this series.
Christmas Mourning was from my private library collection.