Publication Date: 12/03/2013
Publisher: Penguin Group
Imprint: Berkley Prime Crime
Genre: Cozy Mystery
(Received for an honest review from Berkley Prime Crime)
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, IndieBound
Jennie Bentley (aka. Jenna Bennett) on the WEB: Website, Blog, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads
Books in the series:
Fatal Fixer-Upper (2008), Spackled and Spooked (2009), Plaster and Poison (2010), Mortar and Murder (2011), Flipped-Out (2011), Wall-to-Wall Dead (2012), Home for the Homicide (2013)
Coverart: Click the image for a larger, clearer view of the covers in this series.
Excerpt from Home for the Homicide, courtesy of the author's website.
Avery Baker was a big city textile designer, until she inherited her aunt’s old Maine cottage and found her true calling—home renovation. But she never expected her latest job would come to such a bone-rattling dead end...
For Avery and her husband Derek, renovating the Craftsman Bungalow was like stepping back in time. The quaint old home was just as its original owners had left it—from the beautiful butler’s pantry to the surprisingly exquisite ribbon tile. But it’s the attic that yields the most heart-stopping surprise.
In a discreetly hidden antique crate, Avery finds a clue to a decades-old missing persons case. As Avery works on the house and delves deeper into the sinister story, it becomes clear that someone very crafty wants the Craftsman home’s secrets to stay that way!
Jennie Bentley's seventh book in her Do-It-Yourself Mystery series, Home for the Homicide is part murder mystery, part home renovation, part Christmas decorating. Fans of the series will enjoy the tips and techniques in the back of the book as much as the story of the Greene sisters' home on North Street and what Avery finds in the attic. Bentley's attention to detail on everything from the wall paper to the Christmas decorations for Avery and Derek's home is spot on and readers will enjoy the festive seasonal atmosphere and a good whodunit.
What I liked:
This is a series that has always been heavy on the home renovation. I liked the fact that Bentley continues to go into a lot of detail about the renovations projects in this book, as well as, the details of the mystery. What makes this series so good is that readers can enjoy learning about home improvement while trying to put together the clues to the crime at the same time. I love the tips at the back of the book that the author always includes.
I'm happy that Derek and Avery are finally able to settle down into their life as a married couple. There was a lot of tension that surrounded that part of the story that may be missing in this latest installment, but Bentley continues to develop other interesting ideas for Avery's personal life, and of course Derek's EX is never far away. The secondary characters are definitely a big plus for this series.
I liked the Christmas theme and how Avery was decorating for the Christmas Tour of Homes, that's something I have always wanted to take part in myself. There are so many beautifully decorated homes that I would love to get to see. I thought it added a nice Christmas touch to the book and made me a little nostalgic for the time when I had the opportunity to enjoy decorating.
What I didn't like:
This one was a little light on the mystery aspect of the story. The main focus was obviously on the home renovation and the Christmas tour. Though the mystery of the infant bones in the attic was definitely intriguing I thought that the author should have spent a bit more time developing it. It was rather easy to figure out what had happened and who caused it early on in the novel. Readers will certainly pick it up a bit quicker than our protagonist Avery does.
It was a good book about home renovation but probably not the author's best effort as far as the mystery goes. The potential was there, but it just didn't quite have the punch that some of the previous books in the series had. I wasn't disappointed, just not overly excited about how this one turned out. As always take it with a grain of salt and read it for yourself.
Home for the Homicide is available NOW from your favorite bookseller.
I'm giving this one 4 out of 5 apples from my book bag!
About the Author:
Jennie Bentley is the author of the New York Times bestselling Do-It-Yourself Home Renovation mysteries from Penguin/Berkley Prime Crime, featuring Avery Baker, a textile designer, and Avery's boyfriend Derek Ellis, a handyman, who renovate houses in fictitious Waterfield, Maine.
As Jenna Bennett, she writes the Cutthroat Business mysteries, featuring realtor and Southern Belle Savannah Martin, who stumbles over dead bodies in Nashville, Tennessee, as well as the Soldiers of Fortune science fiction romances from Entangled Publishing, and a variety of other romancey stuff involving the usual hot and handsome heroes: dashing FBI agents, gorgeous Greek gods, and wealthy businessmen.
The publisher is sponsoring a giveaway for one copy of Home for the Homicide by Jennie Bentley.
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