Monday, October 14, 2013

Review and Giveaway: Afoot on St. Croix

Afoot on St. Croix (Mystery in the Islands - Book 2) by Rebecca M. Hale

Publication Date: 10/01/2013
Publisher: Penguin Group
Imprint: Berkley Prime Crime
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Pages: 320
ISBN-10: 0425251950
ISBN-13: 978-0425251959

(Received for an honest review from Berkley Prime Crime)

Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, IndieBound

Rebecca M. Hale on the WEB: WebsiteTwitter, Facebook, Goodreads

Books in the series:

Adrift on St. John (2012), Afoot on St. Croix (2013)

Coverart: Click the image for a larger, clearer view of the covers in this series.

Excerpt from Afoot on St. Croix, courtesy of Amazon's Look Inside feature.


From the New York Times Bestselling Author of Adrift on St. John and the Cats and Curios Mysteriescomes a chilling new tale of mayhem in the Virgin Islands…
For tourists, the idyllic island of St. Croix is a perfect escape from the world. For Charlie Baker, it’s a trap. He hasn’t set foot on the island since his life fell apart there ten years ago. But now his ex-wife is luring him back with the promise of a family reunion—a promise she keeps breaking.
He always knew Mira was a little crazy, but returning one last time—determined to see his children no matter what—he’s about to discover just how crazy she is. And with a mysterious figure lurking in the shadows who could be the source of the terrifying Goat Foot Woman legend, he will also learn what dark fate the island has in store for him.


Author Rebecca M. Hale's cozy series, Mystery in the Islands continues with her latest book, Afoot on St. Croix. Hale fascinates with her knowledge of the Caribbean and it's many facets. Readers will find all of the cultural elements spot on, as well as the mystery aspect of this novel. Hale's ability to take several seemingly disjointed events and turn them into a compelling and entertaining mystery is nothing short of astounding. Readers will be enchanted by the setting, intrigued by the characters and amazed by the writing in this island cozy.

The setting for the Mystery in the Islands series, is the US Virgin Islands. The Caribbean is long been a great island destination for those looking for fun in the sun and in this case, a little murder and mayhem. Rebecca M. Hale is obviously a beach lover. Her writing about this wonderful area is breathtaking for more than one reason. Her descriptions of the landscape, the cultural heritage and the people is exceptional. Readers will fall in love with the legends and customs of this region from the first page of Hale's latest book. 

Afoot on St. Croix is set of course, on St. Croix. I loved the fact that the author makes the scenery and the people come alive for the reader. The setting is so much a part of the book that it almost takes on the characteristics of a character. Everything from the story of the Goat woman, to the food, the music and the cities of St. Croix is a wonderful blend of the Caribbean in every chapter. 

In the beginning readers may get the impression that the writer is a little scattered. Talking about several events that appear at first site, to have nothing linking them together. But as the reader continues reading Hale's seemingly disjointed plot starts to come together. When all the pieces fall in to place the reader will love the outcome. I liked the fact that is seemed like there were three or four stories going on all at the same time, but really it was just one big convoluted mess with Charlie Baker left right in the middle.

Charlie seems to find himself in the wrong place at the wrong time. He is trying to make amends with his ex-wife and spend some quality time with the children he hasn't seen in ten years, when all heck breaks loose. I loved the whole crazy ex-wife plot point. I was a little skeptical about how Charlie's being so out of touch with his kids, but it certainly added to the plot. It was interesting that even after Charlie and Mira decided to divorce, neither of them went very far, yet they seem to be separated by a lot more than just an small expanse of water. 

I can't really explain a lot about the plot without giving away too much. But let's suffice it to say, there is a whole lot going on in this book. It eventually sorts it'self out and the reader will be well satisfied with the ending. There are indeed some crazy legends out there in the world and I enjoyed the goat woman a lot. I thought that Hale took an obscure idea and really went with it. She applied what she wanted the out come to be right into the legend and seeing it unfold will offer the reader a really interesting and unique story. And don't forget, "Children ain't nuttin' but an appetizer." Doesn't that make you want to know what in the world happens in this book?

Afoot on St. Croix is available NOW from your favorite bookstore.

I'm giving this one 5 out of 5 apples from my book bag!

About the Author:

Rebecca M. Hale is a graduate of Colorado State University (Biochemistry 1994) and Vanderbilt School of Law (JD 1997). After almost ten years working as a patent attorney in the San Francisco Bay Area, she took time off to write her first novel, HOW TO WASH A CAT--and never looked back. She primarily writes fiction, in the form of quirky mysteries that reflect her travel experiences and many of the people she meets along the way.

She now lives in Western Colorado with her feline writing associates, that is, when she's not off researching future books set in San Francisco, the Caribbean, or wherever else her wandering spirit takes her.

Giveaway Details:

The publisher is sponsoring a giveaway for one copy of Afoot on St. Croix by Rebecca M. Hale.

~ You must be an email subscriber to participate.
~ US Addresses only.
~ The deadline to enter this giveaway is Midnight EST, October 28th.

1. Please leave a comment describing your favorite island location and what you like about it.
2. Please fill out the FORM.


Charlotte said...

Love Tybee Beach in GA.
It is a small town and the people who come seem to be families, which I like. It is a quite beach.

traveler said...

My favorite island locale is manitoulin Is. A special place. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

holdenj said...

In northern MN, we visited Madeline Island in Lake Superior. Although not tropical, it had beautiful rock and sand beaches.

LorettaLynn said...

I have never been. but I would love to go. One with white sandy beaches, water so clear and not so many people would be perfect.
Great giveaway, Thank you:)

NoraA said...

I've never been to any of the island vacation spots my kids love to visit. The ONLY island I've enjoyed all my life is Coney Island. Back in the early 60's I'd spend my days on the beach with my friends and just enjoy getting a tan and fooling around in the water.

This isn't the part of Coney Island with the rides and food vendors on the boardwalk. This is further west away from the crowds.

I've read and own all of Rebecca's Cat Cozies and also Adrift on St. Croix and loved them all. I'd love to win this new book in the series for my home library.

Sue Farrell said...

I've never visited any of the tropical island locations so I can't comment on them. However, I did live in Ketchikan, AK for 5 years and it's on an island---I loved the friendliness of the people. I think being cut off on an island makes the people closer.

Carol N Wong said...

Nantucket is my favorite island. I traced my mother's ancestors back to it. They were in the first group of people to settle there. My ancestors were sailing captains there and some of the women owned ships. Although I don't approve it, they were whalers. All of them were Quakers. When United States was working towards becoming independent from England, my family was on both sides. One of my ancestors was a double agent. It has never been determined which side she truly favored. A few years ago, I was very fortunate to see the island. I was esctatic seeing the houses that my ancestors lived in and learning the history of the island. I felt at home there and want to return there for at least one more time.


Rita Wray said...

I have never been to St Martin but would love to go. From the pictures I've seen it is lovely.


Carol M said...

I've never been to any island location but I would love to visit any of the Hawaiian Islands. From the pictures and movies I've seen, it is very beautiful there!

lag123 said...

I live on Pensacola Beach and I love the sugar white sand.

lag110 at mchsi dot com

bn100 said...

Haven't been on an island

Nancy said...

I would say it would be Hawaii. We stopped there for about an hour on our way to Thailand and I hated to leave. Since I was on a military flight, I had little choice but would love to visit there again only for longer.

Linda said...

Galveston Island. It's close 30 miles away. Just enough beach, great restaurants & other attractions! And love the historical aspects of it.

Barbara T. said...

Key West, Oahu, Martha's Vineyard and many more. Each has its own attraction.

Brooke Showalter said...

Thought I've never been there, The Galapagos Islands are at the top of my list. I love the terrain and all the wonderful nature species that live there.