1st in Series
Setting – Texas
Lyrical Underground (December 6, 2016)
Paperback: 224 pages
E-Book ASIN: B01CWYTJVC
When kindergarten teacher Charli Rae Warren hightailed it out of Hazel Rock, Texas, as a teen, she vowed to leave her hometown in the dust. A decade later, she’s braving the frontier of big hair and bigger gossip once again . . . but this time, she’s saddled with murder!
Charli agrees to sell off the family bookstore, housed in a barn, and settle her estranged dad’s debt—if only so she can ride into the sunset and cut ties with Hazel Rock forever. But the trip is extended when Charli finds her realtor dead in the store, strangled by a bedazzled belt. And with daddy suspiciously MIA, father and daughter are topping the most wanted list . . .
Forging an unlikely alliance with the town beauty queen, the old beau who tore her family apart, and one ugly armadillo, Charli’s intent on protecting what’s left of her past . . . and wrangling the lone killer who’s fixin’ to destroy her future . . .
Just a quick trip from Colorado to Texas, sign some papers, get out of town and get back to teaching those kindergartners. Big problem, Charli Rae Warren is only in town a few minutes and she finds a dead body. The woman she was meeting to put Hazel Rock in her rear view mirror permanently is deader than a door nail and the cops think she did it. When they find Charli’s dad is missing too, they both share the top a very short list of suspects. To get out of this mess she needs the help of the people she left behind. She also needs to make some money so she can afford her trip back to the new life she has made for herself.
Oh, I almost forgot to mention, her father has a pet armadillo named Princess, and that is what he used to call Charli. He has renamed The Book Barn by adding the name Princess at the end. The inside may look like what she envisioned before she left town but the sign outside has that darn armadillo picture right on it.
The story was so funny and unique and has a great mystery too.
Kym Roberts takes on this small Texas town and gives us such rich characters. In this first installment she needs to reunite our main character with the people in her past. Some she barely recognizes and others she remembers way too well. She gives us enough back story to understand how much has changed and how much has stayed the same since Charli left town. She also creates a clever mystery that brings all the characters together. She fills the story with southern charm too. I mean seriously, a pet armadillo, maybe only in Texas.
I enjoyed the way that even with the years the characters have been apart they rally together to help not only find a killer but reinvent the Book Barn so Charli can make money to go home but also help her dad out so that when he returns he may not have to sell the place. They bought out a real sense of community that small towns are famous for. My favorite character was Scarlett, a high school classmate of Charli’s, who stepped right up to help Charli from the moment she arrived in town.
The pace was perfect, the twists are sharp, the hint of romance was just right and the humor was blended throughout the entire story with skilled precision. This is an absolutely delightful start for this new mystery series. I am excited to see what the author has up her sleeve for us and these characters next.
About The Author
Three career paths resonated for Kym Roberts during her early childhood: detective, investigative reporter, and . . .nun. Being a nun, however, dropped by the wayside when she became aware of boys—they were the spice of life she couldn’t deny. In high school her path was forged when she took her first job at a dry cleaners and met every cop in town, especially the lone female police officer in patrol. From that point on there was no stopping Kym’s pursuit of a career in law enforcement. Kym followed her dream and became a detective who fulfilled her desire to be an investigative reporter, with one extra perk—a badge. Promoted to sergeant, Kym spent the majority of her career in SVU. She retired from the job reluctantly when her husband dragged her kicking and screaming to another state, but writing continued to call her name, at least in her head. Visit her on the web at kymroberts.com. Find her on Twitter and at Kensington too.
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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.”