Welcome to the first Cozy Wednesday of 2023!
I am so happy to feature Rum and Choke by Sherry Harris today!
Rum and Choke (A Chloe Jackson Sea Glass Saloon Mystery
4th in Series
Setting – Florida
Kensington Cozies (December 27, 2022)
Mass Market Paperback : 336 pages
ISBN-10 : 1496734386
ISBN-13 : 978-1496734389
Kindle ASIN : B09YL4V5R9
Chloe Jackson runs a saloon in Emerald Cove, Florida—and she also happens to be an expert at putting people behind bars . . .
The Florida Panhandle Barback Games are coming up and Chloe’s been drafted to represent the Sea Glass Saloon—competing in various obstacle-course events that conclude with rolling an empty keg up a hill. The rivalries are so fierce that some of the participating bars even stoop to bringing in ringers.
Meanwhile, Chloe’s friend Ann—a descendant of the famed pirate Jean Lafitte—asks her to come along for a boat ride as Ann dives into the Gulf of Mexico. She’s found some old papers that may identify the location of sunken treasure. Instead, she finds a sunken body—of one of the ringers hired for the Barback Games. Now that murder is in the mix, Chloe has to figure out whether one of the competitors went overboard . . .
We are back in Emerald Cove, Florida just in time to witness Chloe Jackson train for the upcoming Barback Games. The obstacle course can be tough and the trophy is such a coveted prize some of the bars have brought in ringers. Vivi Slidell the saloon’s co-owner and head bartender Joaquin Diaz both encourage Chloe to take the day off and check out the competition.
Chloe has also been asked by Vivi’s friend Ann to help her with a project regarding some hidden treasure linked to her family history. Instead of finding treasure, they find the dead body of one of the ringers brought in to participate in the Barback Games.
So while searching for sunken treasure with Ann they are also searching for a killer. Suddenly pushing a keg up a hill doesn’t seem so hard.
What a fantastic story!
I loved that Ann Williams who claims to be a descendant of the famous pirate Jean Lafitte was given a starring role in this installment. She is known as a “fixer” in the area and until now has been pretty mysterious. The fact that she asked Chloe to help her was very interesting. Chloe becomes a loyal friend really fast especially when they find themselves in dire straights.
Chloe has really grown over the course of this series. She and Vivi co-owing the Sea Glass Saloon has opened up a ton of possibilities. They have learned how to work together very well. Throw Joaquin into the works and they all make a great team. I am so happy that they have realized they need to hire more help. Chloe’s interview techniques had me laughing out loud. The other thing that makes me happy is Chloe’s relationship with Rip. It is evolving at a perfect pace.
Miss Harris really pulled out the stops when she penned the mysteries in this book. The mystery of a sunken pirate ship grabbed my attention right away. The subplot has several nice twists and a moment that stopped my heart. The murder mystery was compelling as well. Chloe did her best to link all the clues together and my oh my that final twist was a doozy.
Everything I have read by Ms. Harris has been fun and entertaining. Rum and Choke is just the latest in a group of wonderful reads. Her characters are well-developed, the mysteries are complex and even when it’s raining the setting is superb, especially when the snow is flying here in Wisconsin.
I am really excited for the next book in this series because the author has dropped a few breadcrumbs of probable coming events and the last line of the book had me grinning ear to ear.
Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent
Sherry Harris is the Agatha Award-nominated author of the Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery series and the upcoming Chloe Jackson Sea Glass Saloon mysteries. She is a past president of Sisters in Crime, and a member of the Chesapeake Chapter of Sisters in Crime, the New England Chapter of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, and International Thriller Writers.
In her spare time, Sherry loves reading and is a patent-holding inventor. Sherry, her husband, and guard dog Lily are living in northern Virginia until they figure out where they want to move to next.
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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.”