The Worst Noel
Juniper Junction Holiday Mystery, Book #1
Amy M Reade
Christmas is supposed to be a time of peace, love, and joy, but for Lilly Carlsen, this Christmas is murder.
As a single mom, small business owner, and president of the local Chamber of Commerce, the last thing she needs is to find a dead body on the floor of her jewelry shop on the busiest shopping day of the year. And as if that isn’t enough, Lilly has to deal with a deadbeat ex-husband, a mother with declining mental health, and two teenagers.
But when a second body turns up, Lilly finds herself squarely in the crosshairs of suspicion. Can she figure out who killed the victims before she becomes one herself? And will her family’s Christmas be merry…or scary? (Goodreads)
The characters are well rounded and well developed. Lilly is a single mom who is also a business owner. Her children, Laurel and Tighe, are great kids that are very responsible. They help Lilly quite a bit by helping to take care of their grandmother, who is in the beginning stages of Alzheimer’s. She also has help from her brother, Bill, who is a police officer and her friend Noley. They all work together well, dealing with real life issues like everyone else. Throw in a couple of dead bodies and Christmas time just became a lot less jolly.
The author is very talented in her descriptive writing and these descriptions pulled me into the story from the very beginning and never let me g0. The mystery was well plotted and I did not figure out the culprit until it was revealed at the end. The best thing about the mystery is that Lilly did not involve herself in the case. She went about her daily living and left it up to the police to do the investigating. I really liked the relationship with her mother and the concern and love was so genuine. I would not even have minded if there was no murder to try to solve, I would have been very happy just reading about everyone’s life and spending time with them.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a well crafted cozy mystery. I cannot wait to read the rest of the books in this series, I know I am in for a real treat.
I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book and provided my honest review.