BEA'S BOOK NOOK "I can't imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once." C. S. Lewis “If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.” ― Oscar Wilde

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Bea Reviews That Olde White Magick by Sharon Pape

Bea's Book Nook, Review, That Olde White Magick, Sharon Pape
Series: An Abracadabra Mystery #2
Publisher: Lyrical Underground 
Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: November 7th 2017 
Buying Links: Amazon* | Book Depository*  | iTunes* | Barnes & Noble
* affiliate links; the blog receives a small commission from purchases made through these links.

Blurb from goodreads:

It’s time to work her crime-solving magic again . . .

Kailyn Wilde enjoys running her shop, Abracadabra, in the quaint New York hamlet of New Camel, where she lives with her six cats. Her family’s been here for centuries, and she’d like to keep up the tradition. But the place may never be the same if a big hotel gets built, so she does her civic duty and attends a town meeting along with her aunt Tilly . . . and Merlin. Yes, that Merlin—though he gets introduced to folks as her “distant English cousin.” The wizard is pretty grumpy about being transported here, but there are things about the modern world he doesn’t mind—like pizza.

Kailyn was prepared for a heated debate about the hotel, but she wasn’t expecting murder. When Tilly finds the body of a board member outside the schoolhouse, Kailyn doesn’t want any suspicion cast on the wrong person. She plans to crack this case, even if she has to talk to every living soul in town—plus a few departed ones.

My Thoughts:

I love cozy mysteries, I'm a sucker for the Arthurian legend, and I often enjoy a twist of paranormal so I took a chance on this one. With so much catnip, how could I resist? Well, I wish I'd read the first book as I was often confused. You could do this one as a stand alone but I think it would work better if you read in order.

"That Olde White Magick" was a pleasant cozy mystery with some laugh out loud moments. Merlin the wizard is mostly played for laughs and he does provide quite a few. He's the proverbial fish out of water, and he's quite cantankerous. He tries to help Kailyn and her aunt Tilly solve a murder, and fight some controversial development. Kailyn decides to ask questions and see if she can solve the murder. The deceased was an acquaintance of hers but just as importantly, the deceased's vote would have been the swing vote concerning the development. Concerned that the vote, which has been postponed due to the death, may have been the reason for the murder Kailyn conducts an investigation. Meanwhile Kailyn is also trying to improve her magic skills and deal with her ghostly relatives who just can't mind their own business.  
Despite all of the magic and the paranormal aspects, this story felt more realistic than many cozies.  Pape gave a solid foundation to her world and characters that made the whole story believable.For instance, magick is a skill that must be learnt and practiced. A successful spell does not happen instantly but takes practice and effort. On the investigative end of things, Kailyn runs into stumbling blocks, makes mistakes, and doesn't get people to open up to her and tell her all sorts of useful information that there's no sensible reason for them to share. She thinks, reflects, utilizes resources, and yes, makes mistakes. But she's not  ridiculously stupid, just believably amateurish. 
Parts of the story were predictable and I never felt the romance between Kailyn and her boyfriend. There were certain circumstances that affected that but even so, I just couldn't see them as a couple. There was no spark or heat between them. What did work was the mystery. I was pleasantly clueless. I say 'pleasantly' because there were lots of clues and red herrings and putting them together and eliminating some was a challenge. 
"That Olde White Magick" was entertaining, the mystery was well done, and I enjoyed Kailyn and her wacked out family.

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