Overkilt (A Liss MacCrimmon Mystery)
12th in Series
Setting – Maine
Kensington (October 30, 2018)
Hardcover: 304 pages
Kindle ASIN: B079KTLCYD
Liss MacCrimmon’s meddlesome mother is back in Moosetookalook, Maine, to serve a hefty portion of trouble in time for Thanksgiving. But when a scandalous murder case threatens to leave Liss alone at the table, family drama takes on a terrifying new meaning . . .
While Liss preps the Scottish Emporium for November’s inevitable shopping rush, other local businesses aren’t half as lucky. Year after year, her father-in-law’s rustic hotel can barely turn a profit during the stretch between autumn’s peak and ski season. Except this time, Mr. Ruskin realizes that the recipe for success lies in enticing an untapped niche clientele—childless couples desperate for a holiday away from family . . .
The unusual marketing tactic has everyone in Moosetookalook talking. Unfortunately, it also inspires a scathing social media campaign aimed at persuading tourists to boycott the hotel for affronting family values. Liss dismisses the bad publicity as being totally “overkilt”—until angry mobs fill the streets, the troublemaker who started it all turns up dead, and her loved ones are suspected of murder . . .
With so much at stake, Liss can’t possibly follow police orders to stay out of the investigation. There’s just one wee problem: saving her own clan could mean sending a friend or two behind bars. Now—partly helped, partly hindered by her difficult mother—Liss must digest a slew of unsettling clues and catch the real killer . . . or else everything she’s ever been thankful for may vanish before her eyes.
Thanksgiving in Moosetookalook Maine should be delightful, right? Not this year. The Spruces’, a rustic hotel owned by Liss’ husband’s family is facing an uphill battle. The new marketing director came up with an idea to fill the rooms this year with childless couples that don’t want to join their own families over the holidays. It was a good idea and reservations were up until a fringe group decides to make trouble. Going so far as to truck people from away into town to boycott anyone supporting or connected to the Ruskin family claiming they are all against family values. Businesses were even vandalized to stir up trouble. But before the angry hoards have left the town square a member of the radical group is found dead and all clues lead to the Ruskin family. She can’t just sit on her hands, she has to help, but if things go wrong there will be absolutely nothing to be thankful for this year or a long time to come.
This is my second visit to Moosetookalook and I enjoyed myself. The author takes on a hot topic and her approach was very stirring. A group with a very narrow viewpoint feels they can press their beliefs on an entire town. As the story continues we find the group isn’t as tightly knit as we believed at first as the death of the member of the group brings cracks in their make up to the forefront.
Liss digs deep to solve this mystery, going back, again and again, to try to uncover the truth. The way the author wrote this was very gripping making it a hard book to put down. The way the community rallied together was heartwarming and at times hard to read because difficult questions had to be asked to clear people from the list of suspects.
The subplot of the family dynamics in Liss’ family was captivating too. Her parents, Mac and Violet “Vi” MacCrimmon, have just moved back to Maine from Arizona. Vi and Liss have a had a strained relationship but circumstances bring them closer in this story. I didn’t like the way Vi kept a secret about her health from her daughter though. I believe it is things like that that put the strain in their relationship in the first place. I may have to go back and read the series from the beginning to see if my theory is correct.
This was an entertaining mystery that kept me guessing right up until the suspenseful conclusion. The characters were unique. I want to get to know the core characters better so I am excited about Ms. Dunnett next book in this series. For me, it was a 5 Starfish read and a Perfect Escape!
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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.”