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I liked this book a bit more than I expected to. Although NOT an atheist, I have chosen not to attend church and was leery of being overwhelmed with Christianity. That was NOT the case at all. There was a sense of family, comradery, and love. The main character, Jess the Vicar, is a warm, helpful, and open-minded person who is very slow to judge, and quick to help. I was duly impressed by her. I definitely recommend this book.
Just the book for those who like unusual amateur detectives. Jess Ward, vicar, slightly reluctantly, returns to the island she grew up in till she 13 to take over vicar duties. Her Aunt Cindy claims to be psychic and predicts Jess and her niece, Freya will continue the ancient family tradition of being goddess and godmother. A bit too pagan for Jess. When a member of of the parish council is murdered, leaving behind an alcoholic elderly mother, Jess is determined to see justice done. But she finds the murder has a connection to the death of her father, the reason her family left the island. The characters in this story are charming, some rascally and very close knit. I can't wait to see how the stories develop. 'The Vicar of Dibley'' this isn't!
With Steve Higgs involved, I expected a bit more fun. Possibly expected a lot more fun and twisty turns. This is a typical cozy and Steve doesn’t do “typical” but I realize Penelope is probably the primary author, despite being listed second. I have a pet peeve with calling a female priest in the Church of England “Reverend” as a male priest would be “father” but that’s getting picky. Maybe I picked up the clue to the killer too easily as well as how the killer attempted to elude discovery, but it became a very slow read that I kept putting down. Generally, I like the characters in terms of how they are located in the village and how they relate to Jess - and there’s certainly good potential for later books to pick up the pace. Just disappointed that I didn’t find the typical Tempest, Albert or Patricia Fisher characters that I expected. Reverend just needs a pair of sausage dogs to keep up with!
I would recommend this book to lovers of cozy mysteries. The characters were well developed and the clues to the mystery were easy to remember and engaging. Perfect flowing storyline and I didn't guess who committed the murder! Can't wait to read the next book in the series.
This is a good read , one I couldn't put down until the end. Why would someone kill such a nice lady, who had a terrible home life but was a good worker for the church? Who would believe that she had a secret which the new vicar unravels. Family and friends rally around the new spiritual leader while she finds out.
This started out for me, as a bit of a cross between the Vicar of Digby and Midsommer Murders, quaint characters and a picturesque setting hiding many a dark secret. It had promise but I finished it mainly out of duty than any real pleasure. The main character didn’t hold true for me. Presumably a vicar studies and trains hard to avoid falling apart in the first 5 seconds of a difficult conversation and swooning at a ridiculously handsome detective who winks! (Yes, winks!) I’m usually happy to go along for the ride without thinking too hard about whodunnit but neither do I want to work it out almost as soon as it’s happened! Obviously many people enjoy this series but it’s not to for me.