Review of Second Look

Second Look

Writers Retreat Mystery, Book #2

Kathi Daley

5 Stars

Jack and Jill and the entire gang from the writers retreat agree to take a second look at a five year old murder investigation.

Five years ago award winning actor Rhett Crawford threw a Halloween party for a group of family members and friends. The party, which actually took place over a four day weekend, was held at his beachfront estate on Gull Island. On the third night of the party the groundskeeper, Wylie Slater, found the body of one of the guests, Georgia Darcy, bludgeoned and left in the toolshed beyond the garden. The authorities were notified immediately and interviews of all guests on the property were conducted. It was eventually determined that the victim’s date, a man named Dru Breland, had most likely killed the woman before fleeing the scene of the crime.

According to witness statements, Georgia and her date had been bickering constantly during the course of their stay, and more than one witness had seen Dru slap Georgia before stomping off on the night she died. The authorities conducted an exhaustive search but were unable to locate Mr. Breland. As far as anyone associated with the investigation could find out, he was never seen again. Dru was a wealthy man with a depth of resources. It was assumed by most that he had fled the country and started a new life elsewhere under an assumed name.

Then five days ago, the oceanfront estate, once owned by Rhett Crawford but now owned by an out of state developer, had been scheduled for demolition. During the destruction of the house a human skeleton was found in a hidden room off the wine cellar. After a thorough investigation by the medical examiner and his team, it was determined that the body in the hidden room was in fact the decomposed remains of murder suspect, Dru Breland. My friend Jackson Jones, owner of the fledging Gull Island News, latched onto the story and seems determined to find out who killed Georgia Darcy five years ago, and how her date, Dru Breland, ended up in the secret room.

Jack knew that the five year old mystery would be a complicated one to unravel, so he asked me, Jillian Hanford, if I would be willing to present the mystery to the writers group I currently lived and sleuthed with. I agreed to Jack’s request which brings us to the regular Monday meeting of the eclectic group of writers I call friend but consider family.   (Goodreads)

The author is very talented in her descriptive writing and I was drawn in right away to the setting, the action, the mystery and the characters.  The writing style flows smoothly and the book is an easy read.  But I must warn you, once you start reading you will not want to stop, so be prepared to be in it for the long haul.

The characters are well rounded and well developed.  I enjoyed spending more time with all writers and getting to know them a little better.  I liked seeing all of their quirks and personalities come through even more.  The author includes a list of characters at the beginning of the book that came in very handy.

The mystery is carried on well throughout the entire book.  There are a lot of suspects to consider and enough clues to sift through that solving this one will keep even the best armchair detective second guessing themselves.  Add in Blackbeard, a parrot (and one of my favorite characters) and Mortie, a ghost, and you have an intriguing fun mystery to solve.  

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a well crafted cozy mystery.  I am looking forward to reading the next book in this series, whenever it is released.



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