Publisher: Minotaur Books
Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: October 4th, 2016
Buying Links: Amazon* | Book Depository* | iTunes | Barnes & Noble
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Blurb from goodreads:
#1 New York Times bestseller Charlaine Harris returns to her Aurora Teagarden mystery series with a fabulous new book featuring the small-town Southern librarian.
Aurora Teagarden is basking in the news of her pregnancy when disaster strikes her small Georgia town: four kids vanish from the school soccer field in an afternoon. Aurora’s 15-year-old brother Phillip is one of them. Also gone are two of his friends, and an 11-year-old girl who was just hoping to get a ride home from soccer practice. And then there’s an even worse discovery—at the kids’ last known destination, a dead body.
While the local police and sheriff’s department comb the county for the missing kids and interview everyone even remotely involved, Aurora and her new husband, true crime writer Robin Crusoe, begin their own investigation. Could the death and kidnappings have anything to do with a group of bullies at the middle school? Is Phillip’s disappearance related to Aurora’s father’s gambling debts? Or is Phillip himself, new to town and an unknown quantity, responsible for taking the other children? But regardless of the reason, as the days go by, the most important questions remain. Are the kids still alive? Who could be concealing them? Where could they be?
With Christmas approaching, Aurora is determined to find her brother…if he’s still alive.
After more than a decade, #1 New York Times bestseller Charlaine Harris finally returns to her fan-favorite Aurora Teagarden series with All the Little Liars, a fabulously fun new mystery.
I've heard of the Aurora Teagarden series for years. Years ago I picked one up at my town library, flipped through it, and put it back on the shelf. Then I discovered her Sookie Stackhouse urban fantasy series and the first 5 or 6 were wonderful. Along the way, I read her Harper Connelly mysteries. Then back in the fall, I was offered "All the Little Liars" for review. I was intrigued, wanting to try this series again, but also hesitant to start with book 9. The publicist assured me it was a good jumping in point for new readers since it had been so many years since the last book and 'Aurora starts off with new marriage and a new way of solving the mystery.' So I said yes.
The book didn't grab me right off; I actually put it down and walked away from it for several months. The beginning is a lot of set-up and catching the reader up. On the one hand, that was good for me since I was clueless, not having read the series before. But on the other hand, it dragged the story down right when it should have been grabbing the reader's attention. The story finally picked up when the children, including Aurora's brother Phillip, go missing. It picks up steam from there as Aurora tries to figure out what happened to her brother and the others. There's a lot of family drama involving Phillip and Aurora's father, and there's drama around a couple of the missing children. Harris tackles the subject of bullying and touches on the added dimension that the Internet has given to bullying.
There were some other slow parts to the story, not just the beginning, and a fair amount of unnecessary detail concerning food and clothing. The mystery was entertaining and had some surprises. The relationship between Aurora and her new husband Robin was sweet and I enjoyed seeing them so happy together even though I hadn't read any of the previous books. Overall, it ended up being a good story, despite the pacing and extraneous details and I'll give this series another try.