"Books Fall Open, You Fall In"
I rated this book 4 out of 5 stars.
Karma is a Bitch is the first installment of the Pet Psychic series by Shannon Esposito. Darwin, the main character, moves to St. Pete, Florida and opens a Pet Boutique with her friend Sylvia. She’s trying to escape from the family gift and making an attempt to be normal. It’s alluded to that her family is full of psychics. Darwin herself is able to get visions from touching animals. She ends up befriending a homeless man, Mad Dog, who has a canine companion, Karma. When he ends up dead, Karma is alone and Darwin takes him in. She gets visions from him that shows her it is not a suicide like the police believe. She starts investigating on her own and finds out both the good and bad side of the homeless world.
I got this book free from Amazon Kindle and I have to say, I really liked it! The characters were well developed and the story was engaging. Darwin was very sweet and easily likable and I absolutely loved the dog, Karma. I was glad to see that the love interest side of the story with Will, the detective, flowed nicely and didn’t take away from the mystery part. That is something I have seen happen in other cozy mysteries. Although I do have a hard time really calling this a cozy. It is a bit on the darker side but not so dark that you could categorize it as a hard hitting mystery. I think the fact that the author used the homeless community for this story is why. She was able to show the way they become family to each other, while also giving you a glimpse into the darker side. It wasn’t as light as other books and while there is a fun tone to it, there is also a depressing one as well.
One thing I especially like though was the fact that when it came to the ending, it wasn’t one of those moments where the main character gets saved before anything happens to them. She didn’t walk away completely unscathed and it made it more believable. I was also not expecting the why. I had kind of figured out who the murderer was (I was not completely dead on, but close) but I had no idea really why they had done it so the ending came as a surprise to me.
There were a couple of issues I had which led me to not give it a full 5 stars. I was disappointed that she didn’t share her secret with anyone, especially Will, since it was looking like she was going to. I was also wishing the author would have given more of a back story on Darwin’s family and why she left. The idea is that they are psychic, but doesn’t explain why that would be something for her to run from. Aside from that though I really enjoyed the story.
Available on Amazon at the link below: