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Publishable By Death: 1 (Harvey Beckett Mystery) Paperback – Import, 25 November 2019
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All Harvey Beckett wants to do is read books, help the residents of St. Marin's find the perfect book for that moment, and snuggle with her hound dog Mayhem. But when the small, waterside town's newest resident discovers the body of the community's persnickety reporter in her bookshop storeroom on opening day, Harvey finds herself bound and determined to figure out the crime. Her task won't be easy, though, since the town is flooded with visitors for the first annual Harriet Tubman Festival to honor the community's most famous resident. Plus, a quiet but charming mechanic named Daniel isn't helping with her concentration at all.
Publishable By Death is the first book in the Harvey Beckett Mystery Series by A. C. F. Bookens.
- Publisher : Andrea Cumbo-Floyd (25 November 2019)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 222 pages
- ISBN-10 : 173404912X
- ISBN-13 : 978-1734049121
- Item Weight : 272 g
- Dimensions : 13.97 x 1.27 x 21.59 cm
- Customer Reviews:
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None of the characters have their own 'voice'. They're all so bland and uninteresting, while being perfect little do-gooders too. The sad thing is, the backdrop of the murders is an interesting story, but it lost out to dog walks, cheesy romance and paragraphs about the author's favourite books.
I got this book for free. Very glad I didn't pay anything for it.
As a self-confessed ‘cozy’ novel it is expected it will be a ridiculous romp and ‘Publishable by Death’ should be a pleasurable, relaxing, easy read. It isn’t. Author ACF Bookens has a fixation with race and America’s shameful history and she describes her characters by the colour of their skin. Maybe this can be acceptable elsewhere – but surely not in a ‘cozy’. Also it may be inevitable that the plot of a ‘cozy’ should be interwoven with sub-plots – but there are too many irrelevant matters such as dog walks and mealtimes dictating narrative flow.
‘Publishable by Death’ is described as the first in a series, and one redeeming feature is that the book does not overtly prepare with cliff-hangers. However as a stand-alone it is only average – hence 3-star rating.
There's no suspense, no character development, hardly any sense of place, and very little actual mystery. The murders seem after-thoughts to the main narrative that goes on for pages about how the heroine launches her book store to great success in just 3 weeks (to the point that she's able to hire an assistant manager!) with a number of very unlikely co-incidences. Complete with the obligatory "help" who makes the best baked goods and coffee in the state.
The murder motive is completely unbelievable, as is the sleuthing style of the main characters. Just a lot of wandering about and jumping to conclusions. And as for the half-baked romance... oh dear.
I won't be bothering with No 2.