Flower Power Trip (Braxton Campus Mysteries)
3rd in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Creativia (March 30, 2019)
Print Length: 270 pages
Digital ASIN: B07NDK76WF
At a masquerade ball to raise money for renovations to Memorial Library, Kellan finds a dead body dressed in a Dr. Evil costume.
Did one of Maggie’s sisters kill the annoying guest who’d been staying at the Roarke and Daughters Inn, or does the victim have a closer connection to someone else at Braxton College?
As Kellan helps school president Ursula bury a secret from her past and discover the identity of her stalker, he unexpectedly encounters a missing member of his family. Everything seems to trace back to the Stoddards: a new family who recently moved in.
Between the murder, a special flower exhibit and strange postcards arriving each week, Kellan can’t decide which mystery in his life should take priority. But unfortunately, the biggest one of all has yet to be exposed – and when it is, Kellan won’t know what hit him.
Poor Kellan, he finds another dead body. This time in the courtyard at the Memorial Library during the fundraiser masquerade ball. Crime sure has been on the rise since he came back to town. The body may tie into a situation Braxton’s school president is facing. The school is also hosting a special flower exhibit, one of Kellan’s siblings is back in town, Nana D is running for mayor, and Kellan’s not so dead wife is sending him postcards from places they had traveled together.
Kellan Ayrwick is a protagonist pulled in so many directions this reader almost got whiplash. Thankfully he handles it all pretty well. Some really big things happen in this book in addition to the murder and I need to be very careful because I don’t want to spoil anything.
The story sets a quick pace from the beginning and doesn’t let up even at the end because there is a heartstopping cliffhanger. A story full of twists, the book is practically impossible to put down. I think I suspected everyone at some point in the story, except maybe Kellan. His parents were surprisingly absent from the masquerade ball but that didn’t mean one of them wasn’t hiding in the courtyard. So they were on my list too, like I said, everyone was a suspect in my mind. The author did a great job of keeping his readers guessing.
The characters Mr. Cudney has created are top-notch and continue to grow as this series continues. Nana D. continues to be my favorite. I love the relationship she has with both Kellan and Emma. His parents are actually missing him now that he has moved to his grandmother’s guest house. Kellan’s relationship is evolving in a surprising way with another character. It gets kinda humorous in places.
While the main mystery of this story reaches a very satisfactory conclusion, a continuing storyline hits a major arc by the final page. I loved that and I hated that. It has become a trait of this author that I just have to get used to. 🙂 Thankfully the author has the next book Mistaken Identity Crisis set to be released on June 30, so I won’t have to wait too long to see what happens next.
I have seen James J. Cudney writing chops grow in each of the books in this series. He is clearly finding his footing as each book is better than the last. I recommend reading the series in order for maximum enjoyment, but each one can stand on its own.
About the Author
James is my given name, but most folks call me Jay. I live in New York City, grew up on Long Island, and graduated from Moravian College with a degree in English literature. I spent fifteen years building a technology career in the retail, sports, media, and entertainment industries. I enjoyed my job, but a passion for books and stories had been missing for far too long. I’m a voracious reader in my favorite genres (thriller, suspense, contemporary, mystery, and historical fiction), as books transport me to a different world where I can immerse myself in so many fantastic cultures and places. I’m an avid genealogist who hopes to visit all the German, Scottish, Irish, and British villages my ancestors emigrated from in the 18th and 19th centuries. I frequently blog and publish book reviews on everything I read at ThisIsMyTruthNow via WordPress.
Writing has been a part of my life as much as my heart, my mind, and my body. I decided to pursue my passion by dusting off the creativity inside my head and drafting outlines for several novels. I quickly realized I was back in my element growing happier and more excited with life each day. My goal in writing is to connect with readers who want to be part of great stories and who enjoy interacting with authors. To get a strong picture of who I am, check out my author website or my blog. It’s full of humor and eccentricity, sharing connections with everyone I follow—all in the hope of building a network of friends across the world.
When I completed the first book, Watching Glass Shatter, I knew I’d stumbled upon my passion again, suddenly dreaming up characters, plots, and settings all day long. I chose my second novel, Father Figure, through a poll on my blog where I let everyone vote for their favorite plot and character summaries. It is with my third book, Academic Curveball,, the first in the Braxton Campus Mysteries, where I immersed myself in a college campus full of so much activity, I could hardly stop thinking about new murder scenes or character relationships to finish writing the current story. Come join in the fun!
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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.”