Thursday, May 18, 2017

Great Escapes Book Tours Book Review: Bad To The Bone


Linda O Johnson
Bad To The Bone
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series Midnight Ink 
(May 8, 2017)
Paperback: 288 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0738746289


Veterinary technician Carrie Kennersly, owner of the Barkery & Biscuits bakery for dogs, is reluctant to sell her recipes to pet food manufacturer VimPets. Jack Loroco, a VimPets representative, assures Carrie that it would be a great opportunity to grow her business. His promising new relationship with Carrie’s friend, Billi Matlock, doesn’t hurt his cause. But the budding romance takes a bad turn when Wanda Addler, another VimPets employee, sets her sights on Jack. After threatening to ruin Jack’s career if he doesn’t give her what she wants, Wanda is found dead. Jack and Billi are put at the top of the suspect list, and Carrie is doggone determined to rescue them from a life behind bars.


Review:  Just looking at the title you have to know that this is a doggie cozy series. I'm a sucker for animal-centric series. This is book 3 in the series. I haven't read the first two, but that didn't cause me any problems. I will admit that reading this book made me want to go ahead and read the first books, because of the relationships that had developed already and the ones that formed and changed prior to the events in the book, especially the Jack and Carrie and then Jack and Billi thing.

I really liked Carrie she was a fun character and when a book is told from the first person, that character has to be fun. She is a typical cozy mystery heroine, but she's also one that cares about her job. (If you read cozies like I do, you know that a lot of these characters drop everything to solve the murder, that's not quite the case here). Carrie loves her bakery and barkery and her work at the vet clinic where her boyfriend Reed works as a vet.

The other thing that really feels different to me with this book, is how focused on the relationships Linda is. You quickly see how close Carrie is with Reed, even though they technically aren't totally committed, but there's a lot of dinner dates and some sex, though that is alluded to rather than shown, so anyone with delicate sensibilities won't be offended.

Another thing that I found unusual was the real lack of sleuthing that went on. The book was close to half over when Carrie started to look into Wanda's death. (Let me just say, Wanda is the character that most deserves to be offed in any cozy I've ever read) There was a lot of push for her to keep her nose out of things, which is expected, but the way the story was going it was pretty easy to believe that Carrie, might not investigate on her own

I liked that she wanted to find the killer because both suspects were friends, though she didn't rule them out.

I did want more from the mystery though, especially since there were so many people that had good reason to dislike the victim, including possibly a person from VimPets that Wanda, may or may not have been involved with, in her quest to get to the top. Speaking of VimPets, I really hope down the line, Carrie decides not to sell that company a recipe from her shop, I didn't get a good vibe from any of the execs we met in the story.

When the ending came around I was really surprised at who killed her, and a little bit let down. There were signs that something wasn't right with this character, but nothing that made you think, wow, they have a good reason to kill Wanda.

This was a cute mystery that will pass an afternoon easily.

linda o johnstonAbout The Author –

Linda O. Johnston’s first published fiction appeared in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine and won the Robert L. Fish Memorial Award for Best First Mystery Short Story of the year.   Since then, Linda, a former lawyer who is now a full-time writer, has published more short stories, novellas, and 38 romance and mystery novels, including the Pet Rescue Mystery Series, a spinoff from her Kendra Ballantyne, Pet-Sitter mysteries for Berkley Prime Crime, and Harlequin Romantic Suspense as well as the Alpha Force paranormal romance miniseries for Harlequin Nocturne.  She additionally writes the Superstition Mysteries for Midnight Ink.  Her latest cozy mystery series, the Barkery and Biscuits Mysteries are also from Midnight Ink.
  Author Links: Webpage: Facebook: Purchase Links: Amazon  B&N 
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diannekc said...

Love the description of the book and the cover. Can't wait to read "Bad to the Bone".

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