Once Upon A Book – Charlee Rae's Book Reviews

"Books Fall Open, You Fall In"

Hooked on Murder (Crochet Mystery #1) by Betty Hechtman

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I rated this book 3 out of 5 stars

Molly Pink is finding out what it’s like to juggle life as a newly single woman, a bookstore event manager, and due to a being in the wrong place at the wrong time, a murder suspect.

The weekly crochet group, the Tarzana Hookers, meet at the bookstore where Molly works. When group leader, Ellen Sheridan, accidentally leaves her bag behind after a crochet meeting, Molly takes it upon herself to run it over to her house. What she didn’t expect was to find Ellen dead. On top of that, the police show up while Molly is hovering over the body. Not a good look when you have a complicated past with the murder victim. Add the fact that on the case is Detective Heather, a woman who would love nothing more than to get Molly out of the way because she has an eye on Molly’s boyfriend Detective Barry, things aren’t looking good for our protagonist. Molly thought taking up crochet would be hard. Playing amateur detective so you don’t end up being arrested for a crime you didn’t commit is even harder.

This first in series is a light an easy read, albeit not a special one. I fully admit that I do not knit or crochet, but for some reason within the cozy genre, these tend to be one of my favorites. I’d never heard of a crochet themed one before so I grabbed it and ran. I ended up being slightly disappointed. It’s not a bad book, but it’s not great either. Landing somewhere in just ok-ville, I would say it’s a nice and simple read for a lazy day but don’t expect anything too complicated. One of the problems I had with it is that I could not form any type of relationship with the characters. They didn’t feel fully developed and left me wondering who these people were. Molly, our main character, waivered between likeable and unlikeable throughout the entire book. She is a widow who is trying to adapt to being single, all while dating a man who really wants to take the relationship to the next level. I often wondered why Detective Barry bothered considering that she constantly kept him at arms length while proclaiming to herself how she needed her independence. Only problem was, she wanted to both be single and in a relationship at the same time. There was one particular incident when Barry might have overstepped his bounds a tad, but was meaning to be romantic, and she completely overreacted. Which was baffling because the only time she tried to come off as strong and independent was with him. Everyone else she kind of let walk all over her. She was an odd character to me. One person I did like in the book was her friend Dinah. Unfortunately she wasn’t given enough time to shine. As far as the mystery itself, trying to guess the killer might prove to be difficult for some as the person was barely in the book. Something I have seen other authors do but I don’t particularly care for. I was also put off by the knitters vs crochet element…..is this really a thing??

Alas, I feel like I’m bashing on the book and that’s a bit unfair. I did actually enjoy it which is why I gave it 3 stars. I also liked the merging of the crochet group and bookstore element. Out of all the themes within the cozy community, bookstore mysteries are my top dog. The story was pretty well written but did start out a bit garbled. Too much too soon kind of thing but it evened out and made up for it. Although I did think Detective Heather and her attitude was a tad on the ridiculous side, I could see why someone would look at Molly as a potential suspect given the history between her and the victim so there was some believability there.  Molly’s sleuthing abilities did leave something to be desired but luckily she tends to learn from her mistakes and admits when she does something wrong, even though that doesn’t always stop her. Also, can I just mention that cozies have some of the best book covers ever!! All in all, not bad for a first in series and it definitely has room to improve. I’m willing to check out the next installment and would recommend to anyone looking for a lazy Sunday read.

Total pages: 280, paperback

Available on Amazon at the link below:

Hooked on Murder

Available at Barnes and Noble at the link below:

Hooked on Murder

 

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This entry was posted on March 28, 2017 by in Books I've read and tagged , , , , .
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