Sunday, 15 January 2017

Book Review - Dead to Begin With by Vivian Conroy - Fab Firsts

Fab Firsts is my new regular Sunday feature, that is going to be highlighting books that are firsts. When interviewing authors, it will be about their first book, as well as other firsts in their lives. When reviewing books for this feature, there will be a mix of debuts, first books in a series, the first time I read an author, and possibly other firsts depending on what I can think of! 

If you are an author wanting to take part in Fab Firsts then please do email on gilbster at gmail dot com and I'll whizz the questions over to you. 

I hope you enjoy this look at a variety of hopefully fabulous firsts, while making some sort of dent in my review and paperback TBRs which are my current main focus!

Dead to Begin With is the first in a new cozy mystery series set in Maine.

Amazon UK
Title: Dead to Begin With
Author: Vivian Conroy
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: HQ Digital
Publication Date: 13th January 2017
Rating: 4 Stars

Coming home can be murder

Vicky Simmons is looking for the simple life. She’s ready to trade in London for a slower pace by opening a British Country Gift Shop in her old hometown on the coast of Maine. Little does she know a few old faces are back in Glen Cove, including unrequited teenage crush Michael Danning—having taken over the local Gazette and looking better than ever.

All is looking rosy until Vicky finds herself face-to-face with a dead body and Michael is the prime suspect. When the sheriff links the motive for murder to the unsolved disappearance of a teenage girl twenty years ago, Vicky must turn amateur sleuth. She’ll stop at nothing to save Michael…and unmask the real killer!

What a cosy story featuring a cozy murder, and some cute dogs! This has a lovely small town feel to it, where the neighbourhood grapevine is the fastest form of communications, and rumours can be started and exaggerated at the rate of knots. Even its name Glen Cove conjured up images of a pretty New England setting, and a far different pace of life to what I'm personally used to in London. 

Vicky Simmons was a journalist but on returning to Glen Cove, she is intending to set up a brand new shop, selling British gifts. What is is unaware of is she isn't the only person returning to Glen Cove - there is Michael who she used to have  a crush on, and Diane who is the twin sister of Celine, a girl who went missing 23 years ago from the town, and has never been found. 

Diane is back and looking for answers, and Michael was only just about cleared after being the prime suspect. Between Vicky and her new friends, other anglophiles in the town, who want to help with the shop too, they need to work out what happened to Celine all those years ago, as new unwanted events are now happening in Glen Cove. 

Vicky may be an amateur but she generally seems more clued on the the sheriff in town, and I loved seeing her thought processes as she tries to make sense of the information and clues that are about. I will admit I only worked out the who the bad guy was, a few pages before Vicky, but didn't know the motivation at all. 

Dead to Begin With was a very welcome change of pace and scene from a lot of the other books I read, and I was drawn into the story quite fast, and certainly once the first big incident occurred was hooked and wanted to know what happened and why. This is the first book I've read by Vivian Conroy and I enjoyed the way she puts together a story, and all the different characters in Glen Cove.  I am already looking forward to the next book in the series.  

Thank you to Netgalley and HQ Digital for this copy that I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 

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