This is a new author I have been trying out. Sandi Scott seems to have a unique twist on her characters.
Cream Puff Murder – Book #1
I would have liked more setting description. I feel like I didn’t get a sense of being in Seagrass. It does sound like an interesting place from what I gathered. I hope Sandi Scott does more descriptions in the future books so we can become immersed in the town.
But I did like the unique main characters. Could be developed a little more with background, but it works so far. None of them appear perfect, or even close to perfection.
Ashley seems a bit of a nervous or unsure kind of gal. Which is quite a change from the amateur sleuths who just go full force and don’t look back. So seeing an amateur sleuth who seems like me is a warm feeling.
Ryan seems a bit unsure of himself as well. Geez! Characters who seem like real people, not the over the top kinds, but ones who are just normal. Who would have guessed?
And Dizzy was so much fun!
Some reviewers didn’t like the cop distrust that happened, but there are so many cozies that have the main character falling for the cop that this is refreshing and unexpected.
The victim is poisoned at a catered event by Ashley. Nothing new there. The way most authors get a series started is making the amateur sleuth a main suspect. But the way it was devised made it not the same old, same old. Ashley fights tooth and nail to clear her name, with various obstacles that are standard, but added with the new twist of a character that has to fight the hard way, inch by inch, not the easy way by just flying through it.
I agree with other reviewers. There appears to be a lot of fast forwarding without warning. And when clues are uncovered, there isn’t any real explanation, or hint. For those who just want to read a mystery, this is a good way to keep them interested, but those who want to try to figure out everything that happened and why, a few more tweaks need to be done.
Tarte Tarin – Book #2
This series just got better. Sandi Scott left all the right clues and red herrings to make it enjoyable.
The characters are becoming more flushed out, more likeable, and yet they still have their flaws. And they are not unimportant flaws, these are real flaws that readers have. This makes it enjoyable to lose yourself in the books for a few hours, pretending to be Ashley, or even Ryan.
Uncle Charlie is a hoot. Talk about a man who appears so guilty it’s hilarious. He’s fun and trusting and yet wacky at the same time.
The setting descriptions need to be a little stronger. I have yet to visualize what the town looks like. But it is getting better. I know a lot of people skip the setting descriptions, but I feel they are a way to forget about the laundry and the dishes, and transport oneself to another place. I love Texas, and hope to see more about it than just the residents’ personalities.
The dialogue is fun. She adds quirks and quick repartee that is refreshing these days, with all the seriousness of books.
And I am discovering Sandi Scott throws little tidbit mysteries throughout the books so it is not just one long mystery. There are twists and turns that change things up and make the characters come alive with problems other than just solving one murder.
Her mystery skills are up to snuff. She has improved since the first book, with the clues and explanations shining now. She wrote clues that made me ask all the right questions, but I still could not figure out who the murderer was the end. This is important to me, because I don’t want the antagonist to be so blatant that I stop reading before I finish. Bravo!
Other books in the Series
Also in this series (in my TBR pile!) are
Madeline Murder (Book #3) – Published August 7, 2017
Praline Murder (Book #4) – December 26, 2017
You can get Sandi Scott’s books on Amazon Kindle here.
Plus she has another series A Pet Portraits Cozy Mystery that I will be reviewing later. No, these are not about a pet detective; the amateur detective is an older woman who paints pet portraits for commission. You can also by these books here.
Or if you can find her website here.