Release Date: March 28th, 2011
More Info: Amazon
Quiet Anchorage, Virginia, looks like paradise. When she's accused of murdering her fiance, however, the small town is anything but heavenly for Megan Connors. With her fingerprints on the murder weapon, it looks like an open-and-shut case, and Sheriff Fox, running for reelection and anxious to get credit for 'solving' a murder case, intends on ramming through charges and getting a conviction. Megan's only champions are her aging aunts. They don't believe she's guilty, but what can two senior citizens do against the powers of the state and the evidence against Megan?
Isabel and Alma Trumbo may be aging, even worried about memory loss, but they've read just about every mystery published in the past half-century. They're sure they've picked up the skills and knowledge they need to prove Megan's innocence. Starting with the town's gossips and loafers, then scaling up when the sexy ex-girlfriend of one of the Sheriff's deputies joins them, they search for alternate suspects, possible motives, and any evidence that might exonerate their niece.
Similar cozy mysteries are Anne George’s Southern Sisters and Rita Mae Brown’s Merry Minor Herristeen titles (also a series set in Virginia).
I like cozy mysteries, they can be a lot of fun. You get a mystery but it's as much about the characters as it is the mystery. Often, there's a theme to them - cooking, knitting, etc - but not always. "Quiet Anchorage" doesn't have the theme but it does give us cozy. We have the Trumbo sisters, no longer young, who now live together and take up sleuthing when their niece is arrested for murder. They are both avid mystery readers and waste no time putting to use what they have read. They have a lot of beginners luck, and the story gets very convoluted. There are some twists and turns, some believable, some less so and on occasion you could see that Lynskey is more used to writing more hard boiled detective stories .
I'm not familiar with the Southern Sisters series but I have read most of the Mary Minor "Harry" Haristeen books and other than the fact that they are both set in rural Virginia and are both cozy mysteries, there's isn't a similarity. Why, you wonder, did I bold those words? Because, in the description, which comes straight from the email he sent us when he requested a review and is also the Goodreads blurb, he misspells the characters name. Bad form when you are comparing yourself favorably to them, and poor editing. As some of you know, that's a major peeve of mine and it cropped up periodically in the story. I'm not sure it would bug someone who isn't picky about that sort of thing, but if you are, you've been warned. :P
Overall, not bad but I'm not rushing out to get the next one in the series.
JAX: Mysteries are not my genre of choice, but I do occasionally like to pick them up. Not to solve the who-done-it, but just to watch the story unfold: the false leads, multiple suspects, etc. This story in and of itself wasn't bad, but I found somethings distracted me from it. Odd scene changes, awkward turns of phrase, and I spent half the book trying to figure out why the Sheriff's name changed suddenly when both names were finally used together, solving a mystery that had my attention more than the murder at hand.
But, like Bea, I find some of the littlest details to be enough to jar me out of a story.
Outside those things, I think that the plot was good, and I liked the characters. There is a very clear set up for future books, and I can see the potential for the sisters to get out of their little town and into more trouble. I'd be willing to catch up with them on their next caper, see if they can use their small town wiles in a wider world.
The PDF was received from the author for review.