Once Upon A Book – Charlee Rae's Book Reviews

"Books Fall Open, You Fall In"

A Dose of Murder (A Pauline Sokol Mystery #1) by Lori Avocato


I rated this book 3 1/2 out of 5 stars

Pauline Sokol is a nurse who is feeling burnt out. After one particularly frustrating day, she decides she can’t do it anymore and quits her job. Desperate to find something else right away, her roommate Miles helps her get a job as an insurance fraud investigator with his slimy uncle Fabio. She’s never done anything like that before but figures all she’ll have to do is take a couple pictures, type of a report, and that will be that. How hard can it be? The last thing she expects is to be up to her stethoscope in murder.

Got this book at one of our local library book sales for a whopping 25 cents. What a bargain! Full of quirky characters, funny dialogue, and a sexy “who exactly does he work for” love interest, I was hooked!! Pauline Sokol is a likable and hilarious character. Bumbling around trying to investigate a medical fraud case with no experience, I spent most of my time laughing at her sleuthing abilities…or lack thereof. Not in a bad way mind you. She just cracked me up! Granted she did come off as completely dense at times and did some really stupid things, but she wasn’t annoying about it like some other characters in other books I have read. She just seemed genuinely out of her element all while trying her best. It’s what made her such an endearing character to me. Her roommate, Miles, was a bit on the bland side though, which was disappointing. But the story more than made up for it with Goldie. A fellow investigator and drag queen, Goldie was a fun and wonderful addition. My only complaint would be the overuse of the term “suga.” That did get a bit annoying after a while, but it was Goldie, so I forgave him. Another great, but sadly underused, character was Adele. I really liked how outrageous yet motherly she was. I hope she gets more time in future books because I really felt like she had something to add but didn’t really get the chance. As far as the on again, off again, is he or isn’t he, kinda sorta boyfriend Vance, well, he was as dull as I think he was supposed to be. With the sexy and mysterious Jagger coming into play, he didn’t stand a chance and I don’t think he was supposed to. I normally don’t care about romance in my cozies, but I will make an exception for Jagger. And last on my list is Spanky. I always enjoy the addition of animals in a story no matter what their role and Spanky was just too cute for words. Naturally there was a cast of other characters but their role was more secondary in nature and not at the forefront of the story so I don’t usually get into that. The only exception would be Eddy, but to not giveaway any of the story, I won’t touch on him.

As far as the tale itself, I have seen some complaints about a Stephanie Plum rip off. That could be the case, but I myself have never read the Plum series so I can’t say. All I can tell you is that it’s bound to happen with all the books out there in the world. I found this story to be fun and entertaining albeit a bit on the unbelievable side….but it is a cozy mystery after all. You can’t take those too seriously. It was somewhat predictable (most cozies are) and I was able to figure out the killer before the reveal, but it still had some twists and turns that I wasn’t expecting. I worked in the medical field for years so having the case be about medical insurance fraud was interesting, but I could see some finding it boring. However don’t let that part deter you. It is still a cute and light read if you are looking for some mindless mystery with a side of sexy.

Total pages: 306, paperback

Available on Amazon at the link below:

A Dose of Murder

Also available at Barnes and Noble at the link below:

A Dose of Murder



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This entry was posted on April 4, 2017 by in Books I've read and tagged , , , , , , .
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