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25 July 2016

Rambling About.. Lucy Quinn's New Corpse in Town

Amazon Description
FBI agent Cookie James is enjoying her extended leave from the agency on Secret Seal Isle, managing her quaint inn and flirting with the oh-so sexy-handyman, Dylan Creed…until her sixty-year-old mother goes skinny dipping and is almost drowned by a corpse. 

A phone call to the sheriff should mean the end of Cookie’s involvement, but when it’s clear the sheriff has no interest in the investigation, Cookie calls in reinforcements…her ex-partner Hunter O’Neil. Suddenly it’s like old times while the pair questions the residents of Secret Seal Isle. Except it’s not. Now she has both Hunter and Dylan vying for her attention, a wayward hippy mother, and a potential killer on the loose. 

With her love life heating up, her mother lighting up, and all signs pointing to the most unlikely suspect, Cookie does the only thing she knows to do—focus on solving the case.

"Lucy Quinn" is actually Deanna Chase and Violet Vaughn -- pairing up to write the Secret Seal Isle Mystery series starring Cookie James (formerly known as Charlie Jamieson before leaving the FBI and running from the mob). I've read several of Chase's books before and was thrilled when I found out that she was going to be teaming up for this cozy series and was offered the chance to read the series debut, New Corpse in Town.

Cookie and her mother, Rain, have recently purchased the Secret Seal Inn in a small isolated island community in Maine. It's the kind of place where everyone knows each other and nothing ever really happens so the only law enforcement is a deputy who likely only has the job because of family connections. When Rain runs into the dead body of the man trying to turn Secret Seal Isle into a tourist trap, Cookie calls her former FBI partner, Hunter, for assistance. 

No one is supposed to know who Cookie really is so it's not easy to sit back and pretend to be a "helpful citizen." It also isn't easy to pretend not to have been in love with Hunter -- especially when local Mr Fix-It Dylan has been sparking her interest. The two men aren't making matters any easier on her, either.

Lucky for us mystery lovers, the book is very much a cozy mystery with a romantic angle instead of a romance that happens to have a dead person. I always worry when they two are lumped in together but New Corpse in Town maintained a wonderful balance. The matter of whodunnit kept me guessing and over and over again I wasn't able to guess correctly. There's also a great deal of humor involved in the telling of the tale -- especially when Cookie's mother is involved. 

All in all this is a well-told tale with a good amount of character development -- including the overall character of Secret Seal Isle. I'm hoping that future installments in the series will expand on Cookie's life as Charlie in the FBI and I'm hoping to see what happens at Secret Seal Isle when the artist colony shows up. I can just imagine the entanglements free-spirited Rain could get herself into with a whole bunch of free-spirited artists roaming around!

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