Boarding with Murder
by Kathryn Long
About Boarding With Murder
Boarding with Murder (A Sierra Pines B&B Mystery)
1st in Series
Setting – California
Publisher: Camel Press (March 9, 2021)
Paperback: 220 pages
Digital ASIN : B08SHLHD2D
Take one quaint B&B, two kind but quirky caretakers, a dead aunt, a murdered friend, and you have mystery. Ali Winston finds she’s inherited trouble along with her aunt’s B&B, but can she reveal the killer before the curtain closes?
Ali Winston arrives at her Great Aunt Julia’s B&B to find that she has passed away. She is greeted by Julia’s friends, siblings Gladys and Ollie Bellwethers just arriving home after the funeral. The Bellwethers have worked with Julia at the B&B for years. That’s a good thing because there are guests staying there that need attention. Gladys also has questions about Julia’s death but no one takes her seriously until they find another dead body. Ali takes on a volunteer job her aunt was working on prop and set design for a movie production being filmed nearby. Maybe if she keeps her eyes and ears open she can find the murderer because the local police seem to be focused on Gladys and Ollie.
All the characters in this story have a show-biz connection. Julia was an actress the worked with Cary Grant and Errol Flynn before opening her B&B. Ali’s parents are theater actors, Ali recently lost her job as a researcher for a television show, many others are connected to the movie being filmed. We get to know Ali and the Bellwethers well because they are pretty well fleshed out by the end of the story, leaving plenty of room for growth. There are a lot of other characters introduced as alternative suspects and residents of Sierra Pines. I made myself a character list to keep everyone straight at first. As we get farther into the story the characters become more defined.
The mystery itself is very complicated because Ali doesn’t know any of the suspects and they all seem to be hiding something. I found it hard to focus on one certain person or another just for that reason. I was totally kept guessing right up to the very end. I loved when a major clue was revealed and how it brought everything together. The story was very well-plotted and written with plenty of drama to keep those pages flipping.
I enjoyed the setting of the story as well. Sierra Pines sounds like a beautiful place and the historical victorian B&B would be a wonderful place to stay, without the dead bodies, of course. I loved the author’s descriptions –
Sunlight burst from behind a cloud and played its beam across the pavement. Fallen autumn leaves in rustic colors splashed along the sidewalk, giving the scene a warm glow. In the distance, the snow-capped peaks of the Sierra Nevada Mountains outlined the majestic background.
Doesn’t that sound like a great place to visit or live.
Boarding with Murder was an intriguing and entertaining read. Ms. Long has given the series a nice start. I want to get to know several characters better so I hope we don’t have to wait too long for the sequel.
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About Kathryn Long
Retired teacher, Kathryn Long now spends her days plotting and writing mysteries. Her most recent credits are romantic suspense novel, A DEADLY DEED GROWS and mystery, BURIED IN SIN. She’s a member of Sisters in Crime as well as of International Thriller Writers. Under the pen name, Bailee Abbott this author writes the Paint by Murder cozy series, starting with A BRUSH WITH MURDER soon to be released. Kathryn lives with her husband and furry friend Max in the quiet suburbs of Green, Ohio.
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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.”