Jemma-Leigh’s mother told her “You don’t sleep with a man you just met”. It seems like easy advice, but when a sexy new guy moves in down the street, all bets are off. Running the antique shop in her rural Georgia town seems simple too, but when one of her customers is murdered the sheriff blames her new man. Can Jemma-Leigh clear his name and find the killer before the killer finds her?
This is a novella of approx. 20,000 words.
While erotica is not the focus of this story, it does contain detailed sexual and adult content. Reader discretion is advised (Goodreads)
This novella has all the elements of a cozy mystery: likable characters, a mystery to solve, romance and a small town feel (complete with nosey neighbors and family). But it also has a lot more heat in the romance department than a cozy does.
Jemma-Leigh is a real hoot. Her witty sarcasm had me smiling and laughing throughout the entire novella. The things that she thought and said are so natural and realistic that they made her character become more alive for me. I enjoyed reading about her interactions with her brother and her mother and Dawson. He did not seem quite as developed to me but that may happen in future books.
The writing style flows smoothly and the novella is an easy read. The mystery is well plotted and kept me engaged throughout the story. The culprit was a surprise but a very plausible choice. The author is very talented with descriptive writing and through much of the novella I felt like I was there, watching the action and listening to the characters. I enjoyed the small town feel of the setting and the fact that everyone was in everybody’s business. I felt that the romance happened a little too quickly and progressed a little too fast, but I guess in a novella, that is the way it has to be.
I would recommend this novella to anyone who enjoys a well crafted mystery with some heat. Because of that I do not think I would let a young adult read this book, but I do not believe that was the audience the author had in mind. This appears to be a debut novella and it was really good. I hope that this is the beginning of a new series that will continue for a long time. I really want to read more about the trouble and adventures Jemma-Leigh will get herself into.