On FlashbackFridays I will share with you
the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.
I snapped this book up last year when I saw it took place in Oklahoma. A hard state for me to fill on my Literary Escapes Challenge.
Gone with the Wings (Meera Patel Cozy Mystery Series)
1st in Series
Self Published (June 7, 2017)
Paperback: 269 pages
Kindle ASIN: B071WHNM6K
Murder strikes a sleepy college town!
Meera Patel has not lived up to her potential. She’s back home after dropping out of grad school. She dishes up spicy food at the local diner and picks fights. Then her old nemesis Prudence Walker turns up dead in the school pond. Meera is accused of murder!
Things get worse for Meera when a new student goes missing. Can Meera convince the incompetent local cops that she is innocent?
Fall in Oklahoma has never been so exciting!
In this story, we meet Meera Patel and her family. They are a very close family of Asian Indian descent and we see quickly how important their culture is to them. The story takes place in a small college town in Oklahoma. Meera works at the college library and her father is a professor there. His assistant is Prudence Walker, also a professor, and she has a huge crush on the man and that makes Meera positively livid. In fact, they have a huge argument in the stairway of her father’s building. So when Prudence ends up dead, Meera becomes the prime suspect. Then a student from India goes missing right after Meera has words with her and the police believe Meera is responsible for that as well. Meera wants to clear her name but her family believes she needs to leave things to the police. Of course, she does do a little investigating on her own, and that’s a good thing.
I like Meera, her family, and her friends and I really want to know more about them. But I think this book is a prime example of the 1st book in the series “itus” where you have to introduce all the characters, try to engage the reader and give us a great mystery too. This story reads more like Woman’s Fiction with a murder happening on the side. We meet the family and how they all connect, but there are a lot of details left for future books. One thing I quickly learned is this family loves to eat. All the food described sounds wonderful and there are recipes in the back of the book. However, the mystery definitely is playing second fiddle to the family part of the story.
As far as the missing person part of the mystery, Meera really does try to find the girl, which was not an easy task, but in the end, I was underwhelmed by this part of the plot. The conclusion, while plausible, doesn’t fit with the student we met in this story.
I didn’t like the way the murder part of the mystery evolved either. The police officer was a family friend, dating the deceased and decided Meera was guilty immediately. His harassment of Meera was very uncomfortable and he should have been removed from the case. The way it wrapped up just didn’t feel right to me, it was a stretch to believe.
I did enjoy learning more about Indian culture and the food.
The authors writing style is unique, it really needs some editing to tighten it up. I hope I am right and that the mystery will be more primary in book 2 because I would like to visit this family again.
Find out more about Leena Clover and her books 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.”