Tuesday, 15 January 2013

A Murder in Death's Door County - Elizabeth Rose

Frustrated with her office job, Annie Malone in a dream like state yells at the thorn in her side, Tessa, politely telling her where to go and hands in her notice. Despite the beer and pizza later that evening, panic sets in - her other (real) job as a ghostwriter is not as lucrative as she'd hoped, so now what? Then she remembers to call her editor Harry back about a new writing job.

With a princely sum offered to Annie, Harry asks her to ghostwrite for a man who is somewhat difficult. As she asks more questions, Harry becomes evasive - what is he holding back from her? Jumping at the chance at both the work and the money, Annie agrees. But there's a stipulation - she has to move to Door County as her client, one Marcus Ladrostassis, believes she will have a better feel of his story if she stays in the idyllic county.

Moving and living at the Lighthouse Inn, Annie starts her work. But she soon realizes that interviewing Marcus is impossible and that his temper and even sanity is very questionable. When Harry announces that he will visit her she is surprised when he blows up at her and he so called treatment of her client. The next morning as she hurries to meet Harry for their scheduled 9am meeting, Annie discovers him dead in a pool of bathwater.

Along with help from her new found friend Lizzy they undertake some amateur sleuthing only to be stopped by the handsome insurance agent Donovan who isn't who he says he is. What exactly happened to Marcus Ladrostassis, why is Cindy the waitress at the Lighthouse Inn so nasty to her and who can she really trust in Door County? With explosions, mysterious blondes and threats to her life, will Annie be able to solve the mystery surrounding her ghostwriting gig?

Written in first person, Rose's story is quirky, funny and enjoyable. Whilst the main character doesn't seemingly have a lot of courage, she is able to rise above it in times of need and stand up for herself - or faint! Yes, Annie faints at the the most crucial times but it's all part of who she is. The author's characters are robust that add a good depth to this mystery. The dialogue is expressive and even though some areas touch on the surreal, the story is good and keeps you interested throughout.

Overall, I enjoyed reading this murder mystery. The author has created a distinctive main character and even though I found some of her behavior a tad annoying, I couldn't help but like her. The plot has some twists and unexpected red herrings and throw in a love interest, you have a good all round story. A recommended read.

I received a complimentary copy of the book to review from the author. The opinions expressed are my own and I am not required to give a positive critique.

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