Stowed Away (A Maine Clambake Mystery)
6th in Series
Setting – Maine
Kensington (December 26, 2017)
Mass Market Paperback 280 Pages
E-Book ASIN: B06XZSXYQ6
It’s June in Busman’s Harbor, Maine, and Julia Snowden and her family are working hard to get their authentic Maine clambake business ready for summer. Preparations must be put on hold, however, when a mysterious yacht drops anchor in the harbor—and delivers an unexpected dose of murder . . .
When Julia’s old prep school rival Wyatt Jayne invites her to dinner on board her billionaire fiancé’s decked-out yacht, Julia arrives to find a sumptuous table set for two—and the yachtsman dead in his chair. Suspicion quickly falls on Wyatt, and Julia’s quest to dredge up the truth leads her into the murky private world of a mega-rich recluse who may not have been all that he seemed . . .
Summer in Busman’s Harbor means a lot of work for the Snowden Family. Preparations for the summer clambakes are underway and a decision needs to be made about Windsholme, the home on Morrow Island that been empty since the 1920’s and that suffered additional damage in last summer’s fire. Do they update and renovate, restore the historic home to its glory or do they tear it down? Everyone has their own opinions but the decision is up to Julia’s mom. After her financial windfall last year she can afford to take on this huge project but a family friend, Quentin Tupper has brought in an expert to look over the home. Julia is shocked when she see’s the expert is her old roommate from prep school, Susan Wyatt Jayne, she just goes by Wyatt Jayne now. She is even more shocked to learn that the huge yacht docked in the harbor belongs to the woman’s “boyfriend”. When invited to meet the wealthy yacht owner Julia reluctantly accepts and finds she knows his chef too.
The next day Julia receives a frantic call from Wyatt begging her to come to the yacht. When she arrives, she finds a table set for a romantic dinner and the billionaire dead at the head of the table. Everyone living aboard the yacht has become a suspect. Quentin asks Julia to investigate to help Wyatt but what she discovers is the most shocking thing of all.
I eagerly picked up this book excited to return to Busman’s Harbor and I enjoyed every single minute of this trip.
Chris and Julia are transitioning away from their winter restaurant and to their summer jobs. Julia managing her family’s clambake business and Chris back to his landscaping and bartending, meaning they are not going to see each other much. The whole Snowden family returns including baby Jack. Sonny, Livvie, and their kids will be moving to the island for the summer. Julia and Livvie’s mom will be taking a leave from her current job to return to work at the island gift shop, We meet several new characters including the crew aboard the Garbo and a mother and daughter that have moved to the area.
This story takes place before the Snowden family clambakes begin giving Julia plenty of time to investigate. She has a bit of a vested interest to part of the mystery that adds a really cool element to the story. There is also a mind-bending twist that turn that turns the whole mystery on its ear.
I really enjoyed when Julia paired up with someone unexpectedly as she started to form a theory about the murder. I also enjoyed that when she had more details Lieutenant Binder was willing to listen and then included her as they got closer to solving the case.
The subplots fit nicely into the main mystery. Some secrets are revealed and decisions are made that may change some relationships. I am excited to see how they are addressed in upcoming installments of this fantastic series.
A cozy escape to Maine always proves to be a good time. Great characters and the drama they create and that is created around them will grab you and hold on tight. The story is so well written and the dialogue realistic. Barbara Ross knows how to set the scene too. I was ready to dish up my plate at the friends and family clambake and relax on Morrow Island.
The author does a wonderful job so that all her books can be read on their own, but I encourage you to read the series from the beginning. Be sure to check out the recipes too!
Barbara Ross is the author of the Maine Clambake Mysteries, including the Agatha-nominated Best Contemporary Novel Clammed Up, as well as Boiled Over, Musseled Out, Fogged Inn, and Iced Under. Her story “Nogged Off” appears in the holiday novella collection Eggnog Murder along with stories by Leslie Meier and Lee Hollis. Barbara blogs with the Wicked Cozy Authors and Maine Crime Writers. In the summer, she writes on her big front porch overlooking the water in Boothbay Harbor, Maine. You can visit her website at http://www.maineclambakemysteries.com
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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.”