Cover Image: Death Overdue

Death Overdue

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Member Reviews

This is the first book,in a new series,I hope.
Carrie,has returned to Clover Ridge,and is living with her Aunt and Uncle.
She's working as a library assistant,til she offered the job as the library's event coordinator.
Her first event,is a presentation by a former Clover Ridge detective,regarding a murder some 15 years before and is still unsolved. The former detective is killed at the event.
The next day,Carrie,meets the friendly ghost hat haunts the library.

Carrie and son of the woman murdered 15 years before team up to solve both murders.
Along the way Carrie finally realizes she wants to make Clover Ridge her permanent home,and rents a cottage from Dylan Avoy.
Well written,great story and plotting.
Never saw the murderer coming at all.

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This is a really good cozy mystery book and an excellent start to a new series. We get to meet Carrie who is at a crossroads in her life when she decides to accept the position as the head of activities at the local library. While excellently suited for the job anything permanent tends to make her run so this is a big adjustment for her. Adding a dead man at her very first large event just makes things even more difficult. The discovery of a ghost haunting the library seems like the cherry on top of the cake which lends a touch of whimsy to the resulting investigation. This book is full of characters that the reader will both root for and hate as they jump off the page. The story line is saturated with library details that I found very enjoyable showing the amount of work that really goes into running one with a nice surprise ending. I highly recommend this to fans of cozy mysteries that have just a touch of the paranormal. The writing is excellent and I really enjoyed reading it so it gets 4/5 stars

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My rating: 3 of 5 stars, I liked it.

A great start to a new series.

A haunted library? I'm there! Combine ghosts and books and you've hooked me. And Death Overdue continued to keep me reeled in. With two mysteries interwoven through the book, I didn't want to put it down.

My only complaint was that at times, main character Carrie wasn't very likeable. She comes off as rather immature for a 30 year old, still caught up in a teen-aged rebellion. But by the end of the book she seems to have finally grown up and found herself and her place in the world.

I look forward to seeing what she's up to in the next book, along with her aunt and uncle, and of course, the library ghost!

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This is a hit new cozy series ! This cozy has everything mystery readers love, a wonderful library setting, a resident ghost, a cold case murder to be solved and a spunky smart protagonist we love.
I adore the independent sassy protagonist Carrie who is offered a promotion at the library as events coordinator. she relishes the new positon and sets up a program with a retired police detective to discuss a cold case. As he proceeds he falls over dead and Carrie takes on the sleuth to find out if the two murderers are connected.
What a delightful read from page one. I loved the setting of a wonderful library, the ghost who is fun and adds to the story and Carrie with her cynicism and great sleuthing abilities. The mystery is very well crafted, the writing is fast paced and the characters all add to the story with depth and fun. This is a fun read and I look forward to the next in series by this author. Thank you Net Galley for this ARC which did not influence my review. This is a series to watch for as the next cozy mystery hit !

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Two and a half stars: A cozy with lots of great cozy elements, but the romance is a flop and the pace drags.

Carrie is convinced it is time to take flight and leave Clover Ridge. She has enjoyed living with her aunt and uncle and working in the library but she has worn out her welcome. She is floored when Sally, the head librarian, offers her a job promotion. Carrie decides to give the job as head of programs a try. Unfortunately, Carrie’s first program featuring a retired detective discussing a cold case goes horribly wrong. The detective dies right there in front of everyone by poison. Carrie starts digging trying to figure out who wanted to silence Al and why. Surprisingly, Carrie has a new ally, Evelyn, a ghostly librarian. Can the two crack the case?
What I Liked:
*A cozy mystery is always fun. I usually enjoy the settings and the light mystery. I did like the cozy setting in this one, what isn’t to like about a library in a small town? Plus, I liked that this one was set during Fall around Halloween. Add in a friendly librarian ghost and you have the makings for a good cozy.
*I enjoyed the mystery. Sometimes the murders are trivial, but this one centered around a cold case murder that occurred fifteen years ago, and then the murder of the detective who had taken up the cold case. The mystery itself was solid. There were plenty of suspects and red herrings to throw the reader off the real culprit.
*Evelyn, the ghost, was an interesting addition. I liked that she popped in and out with her motherly advice. I thought it was funny that she was able to change clothes.
*I appreciated that Carrie ended up forming new friendships. I especially enjoyed watching her win over the demanding and prickly head librarian. It seemed that by the end, she had even won over her enemy.
*The ending reveals all the secrets and ties up the mystery. No unanswered questions.
And The Not So Much:
*I am not sure where this one went wrong, but I found the second half dragging. The pace was so slow, and I quickly grew bored.
*Even though I enjoyed Evelyn the ghost, I didn’t like the lack of detail on her character. She just shows up, with no explanations. She hides a lot of things, not sure why. It was also strange that she could change her clothes and come and go. Where did she go? How did she change clothes?
*I found the whole murder of the detective implausible. Who would poison someone in front of a crowd?
*There were several characters who were negative and nasty. They took away from the cozy atmosphere and charm.
*The romance was a big miss for me. It appears that she is going to strike up a relationship with the man she is working with the to solve the case, and then she suddenly goes cold toward him after spending a lot of time with him. She quickly develops feelings for her mysterious landlord who behaves strangely. The romantic feelings come out of nowhere. I just didn’t feel the romance at all.

Death Overdue was a book I wanted to love, but it feel flat for me. The pace dragged toward the end, and I was bored. The romance comes out of nowhere and it lacked chemistry and development. The characters, especially the ghost, needed more details. In the end, it was not a good fit for me.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own, and I was not compensated for this review.
Posted@Rainy Day Ramblings.

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I went into this book with really high expectations. There are so many of my favorite things here - an old murder, a library, a ghost, and of course the small town with an incredibly high crime rate (aka The Jessica Fletcher Syndrome). And this book delivered! It was fun with lots of library goodness, a strong main character, an intriguing mystery and a ghost that I really just want to hang out with.

I was a little worried I wasn't going to like Carrie at first. She had a rebellious streak at the very beginning but while she still keeps that streak she isn't rebellious to the point of self-sabotage. Her reasoning for getting involved in the murder made sense especially as she begins developing a friendship with the original victim's son. The mystery kept me turning pages - just what had happened to Laura and was it really connected to Al's death? What had Al discovered? I was pulled in to the story completely. I had a few suspicions as to the whos and whys but it did keep me guessing until the final reveal!

As well I enjoyed all the politics and managings of the library. It isn't one big happy family but not everyone is hostile either. It felt very much like a real workplace and I enjoyed watching Cassie get her footing. I also enjoyed her relationship with her Aunt and Uncle.

My only nitpicky complaints was with the ghost. I loved her immediately but the introduction seemed a little anti-climatic. I think it'd be a little annoying if the MC responded realistically to a ghost (there'd be a LOT of shock and disbelief) but I think I expected something a little more than I got. I do love this character and hope we get more back story in future books.

This was a really fun cozy mystery and a great start to the series. I'm looking forward to spending more time in Clover Ridge with Carrie and the rest!

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I really have to stop reading books set in libraries, because they all seem to be so much better funded than my library! Okay, seriously, I knew I had to read this when I saw it, because how could I not read a book with a librarian for a detective heroine, even if I did have some reservations about the ghost aspect. Despite an enjoyment of the Aunt Dimity mysteries, I'm not a big fan of the ghost mysteries that have become popular lately, but to my surprise, I found I didn't mind the ghost in this one at all. Mostly, my mind just accepted her as another character and allowed the willing suspension of disbelief so I could get on with the story.

The mystery in this case was decently constructed, and the writing solid, so that it was a quick, enjoyable read (due to a mix-up, I didn't get my copy until Friday, but I had no trouble sitting myself down and reading right through the book). It caught my interest from the first chapters, and if I at times got impatient with Carrie for doing stupid things (WHY did she keep telling people what she was finding out, even after that led to trouble and she was warned to keep it to herself?), I never stopped wanting to find out what she'd do next. I had a pretty good idea who the murderer was before she did, but the author managed to make me doubt myself with a couple of last-minute reveals about various characters, so there was never any doubt I had to read to the end.

There is a lot in this book that hints at an interesting backstory for Carrie, making her a character who seems worth the time to get to know. I hope I can check her out again in the future, as she makes many returns (I'd apologize for the library puns but...I won't).

My Recommendation:
This would fall under the heading of "beach reads" for me, I think. It was fun and had a good mystery, but had too much romance for my taste (so might be perfect for most cozy fans!). The writing could be a little tighter, but was never a significant distraction from the enjoyment of the story. Oh, and people working for under-funded libraries should beware of library-envy when reading this!

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Carrie Singleton is a free spirit. She doesn't stay in one place too long. She likes her freedom. But, then she gets offered the job as head of programs and events at the library in Clover Ridge, CT. It's a better paying and more permanent job than she has ever had before. She not only discovers that the job is a bit hectic, but that the library has its own resident ghost. Things get out of hand for Carrie immediately. Her first event is a presentation by a retired local police detective. Al Buckley claims he has new information about a decades old local murder case. But, before he can reveal the new evidence....he drops dead. Right in the middle of the library. Carrie feels a bit guilty because Al was poisoned at her library event, so she decides to investigate not only the death of Al Buckley, but the old murder case of Laura Foster as well.

I loved this book! Not only because of the haunted library theme -- perfect for an October release! But also because I just enjoyed the characters, the plot and the premise for this new series. Carrie is a strong and intelligent woman who loves her freedom but also realizes that being an adult requires....adulting. The ghost of a former librarian is a hoot -- and a helpful side character that is woven into the plot. Nicely done! And I got sucked right into the story from the beginning. Poor Carrie -- her first event at her new job and the speaker drops dead. Not only that but there is a bit of job tension, jealousy and funny goings-on at the Clover Ridge Library. I had to keep reading to find out if Carrie survived both her promotion, all the adulting, and her amateur sleuthing. :) A great mix of mild spookiness, humor and mystery. Great start to a new series!

The mystery moved along at a nice pace with a nicely complex plot. There were several situations going on with multiple suspects. It was a well-written,enjoyable read!

As with most cozy mysteries, the cover art for this book is supremely awesome. :) Definitely eye-catching!

I will definitely be awaiting new books in this series! Allison Brook is a pen-name for author Marilyn Levinson. For more information on the author and her other books, check out her website:

**I voluntarily read an advanced readers copy of this book from Crooked Lane via NetGalley. I also won a print ARC from Goodreads. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.**

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Carrie has been living with her aunt and uncle, after years of travel, and working as a float at the local library. She's getting the urge to move on when she's offered a permanent position at the library. She decides to accept, to the dismay of one of her co-workers who thinks she should have gotten the job. At her first big event that she puts on at the library the speaker keels over, dead. It doesn't take long before his death is declared a murder and Carrie gets involved.

I was impressed with the frequency and variety of events the library put on, especially for such a small town. My library does a good job with events but the Clover Ridge library does a great job. Carrie was a clever amateur investigator, working on solving the death of the library speaker, a retired police detective, and the cold case murder of a former library he was working on before his death. She used all the resources available to her and worked with a variety of people.

"Death Overdue" was appealing with its mix of a library setting, murder, mystery, a ghost, small town setting, and romance. Carrie seemed young to me, with her restlessness and unwillingness to settle down but as the story continues, she begins to set down roots and make commitments. She also gets involved, thanks in large part to the library's ghost, Evelyn, a former library employee. I liked Evelyn, and she was useful in Carrie's investigations, but I felt she was poorly defined. How did she die? Why was she a ghost? Why was she at the library? She wasn't haunting it so much as just hanging around. Why weren't more people able to see her? And why was Carrie so casually accepting of a ghost? Hopefully future books will provide clarity.

While I had several guesses as to who the killer was, it wasn't until late in the story that I figured out the killer's identity. There was a most convenient deux ex machina at the end but the rest of the story was tightly written and there's plenty of potential for future stories. Smart, engaging characters, a hint of romance, some paranormal activity, strong use of setting, and a story that kept me reading, "Death Overdue" is a good start to this series.

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I am a huge sucker for cozy mysteries that involve books in any way, and because I'm also a librarian, when those stories also feature libraries and librarians, I can't get my hands on them fast enough! I absolutely love visiting these little communities where there is a small, locally owned business for anything you could ever want or need, everyone knows everything about each other, and the librarian is the resident expert in homicide investigations!

With just a hint of paranormal activity, this is a wonderfully light and fun choice to get into the Halloween spirit. Evelyn, a former librarian, haunts the library, but she is delightfully pleasant and extremely valuable in helping Carrie transition into her new role as the head of programs and events. While she only makes her presence known to a few people and doesn't come into the story very often, she is a great addition that I look forward to seeing more of as the series continues.

Although well written, the pacing would slow way down with so much description on the minutia of everyday life. I also started to feel that solving the mysteries became overshadowed by spending so much time in Carrie's new life and job with not much information to go on as to why Carrie would have taken it upon herself to look into these murders in the first place. Needless to say, these details do a great job contributing towards the upbeat and lighthearted nature of traditional cozy mysteries. When we are privy to the investigation, very few clues are revealed as the story unfolds, creating a well layered and plotted mystery that has to be read to the end in order to find out whodunit.

Overall, this was a well done debut. I can't wait to see the development in Carrie's character, the other situations she will find herself in, and what other programs she will create for the people of Clover Ridge to enjoy. I was thoroughly charmed by this haunted library and will definitely be checking out more of it!

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This new series has a few things that I enjoy in a cozy. It has a small town, quaint shops and restaurants, close to larger cities for shopping and entertainment, some romance, a murder or two, sheriff who grudgingly shares some information and a bit of the paranormal. Carrie has come home to Clover Ridge for a temporary stay. She is living with her Great-aunt and uncle and working at the local library. She is beginning to feel that it is time to move on, but changes her mind when she is offered a job as head of Programs and Events. At her first event, a retired homicide detective, who claims to know the identity of a 15 year old cold case, collapses and dies. It turns out he was poisoned. Carrie feels responsible for his death as he was murdered at one of her events at the library. She is also convinced that the two cases are related, so with the help of Jared, the son of the murdered woman from earlier, Carrie is determined to find out who is guilty of not one but two murders.

The characters are well-developed, and relationships between those characters are established without a lot of unnecessary background. While I thought I knew who the killer was well before it was revealed in the book, I wasn't sure until the reveal. I did waffle back a forth several times during my reading. There were also those irritating characters that you do not like at all which is what the author intends, I hope. The only thing that I had issues with was the amount of money a small time library has to spend on events and programs. I wish my local library could offer things like the ones in the story. I very much enjoyed this book and look forward to the next in the series.

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Carrie Singleton is more than ready to leave her hometown of Clover Ridge, Connecticut. She’s been living with her aunt and uncle who have been wonderful, but it’s time for her to spread her wings. When Carrie is offered the position of head of programs and events at the library, she jumps at the chance to prove herself. The job gives her the chance to stay in Clover Ridge and start a new career. She has no idea it’s a haunted library, complete with a ghost that tags along with her throughout the day.

Her first event is given by a detective who claims to know the killer of a 15 year old cold case. The victim happens to be a former library worker who had been beloved by the whole town. Carrie, as well as everyone else in Clover Ridge, is fascinated by the case and curious to hear his findings. However, the detective doesn’t live long enough to tell what he knows. He is poisoned in the middle of his presentation.

Feeling guilty for letting the presentation go forward, Carrie is determined to find out who killed the detective. She comes up with more suspects and questions than she has answers.

Allison Brook gives readers a captivating tale in this first book of a new cozy mystery series. She combines a captivating story with a cast of complex characters. I wasn’t sure I would like the main character, but I quickly grew to love Carrie and the people surrounding her.

The plot is like a huge jigsaw puzzle. The author throws in a few red herrings and gives the reader many possible solutions. It’s a charming story and has the feel of a classic mystery.

Quite an intriguing plot. I only wish book #2 was already out so I could start reading it. Very nice start to a brand new series.

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Carrie is about to up and leave town when she's offered - begrudgingly - a position as the new Director of Programs and Events at the local library. She - also begrudgingly - accepts, and of course, her first day on the job, someone is murdered. At one of her events. The victim happens to be the detective who, after 15 years, has decided to reopen a long-cold murder case. He's about to share his new evidence with half the town, when he keels over. If only he hadn't eaten that cookie.

I'm sorry, but really? I don't think I've ever read a cozy that deals with a cold case, and there's probably a reason for that. (The poisoned cookie is par for the course, no issue there.) The first murder was pretty much a waste of time and energy, and didn't do much except introduce a level of complexity that wasn't really needed, never mind explored. Brook kept hammering home the idea that the two murders were related - which, of course, they were, but it added nothing and frankly, got a bit annoying. 

And can we please talk about Jared for a second? The love interest slash murder victim #1's son? Ugh. Just ugh ugh ugh. It wasn't just that he was an awful character - cozies are full of awful characters. No, it was more that he wasn't even a believable character. I simply couldn't imagine an actual person saying the things he did, because he was so...stiff. 

I did like the ghost though. She was fun.

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The setting of the story in a library really intrigued me. I worked at our public library for fifteen years. The author describes the workings of a library with excellent details. The different programs offered at the library were fun to read about and I was reminded of happy memories of working at my dream job.

Carrie has been staying with her aunt and uncle for awhile and working at the public library in the quaint town. When she gets promoted she is thrilled and also a bit nervous at the same time. She knows that she has a big responsibility to help make the library a fun place to visit. It seems that whatever job you take, there is always that one person who doesn’t like you. No matter what Carrie tried Dorothy took a dislike to her right away. I laugh as I write her name because I had a “ Dorothy” at the library I worked at. Dorothy was mean to Carrie and tried everything to sabotage her job. I had a soft spot for Dorothy though because she had a self esteem problem and wanted to be successful at something.

The story moves at a great pace and we find Carrie in the midst of two unsolved murders. One happened right in the library in front of people attending a program. I can’t imagine having to deal with something like that. An unsolved murder from years ago takes center stage again and I had my list of suspects written down. The author does an excellent job of creating doubt in readers mind as there were so many suspects to choose from. I don’t want to say much more but I will say that I enjoyed this book so much. It is definitely one of my top picks for cozy mysteries of 2017.

I have to mention Dylan. He plays a pivotal part in the story and I thought he was a perfect character. He was mysterious and became protective of Carrie that really made me love his character. There are so many wonderful character throughout the book and I would love to have an aunt and uncle like Carrie has. They are sweet, caring and so welcoming to everyone. Nit to be overlooked are the two brothers in the story. I won’t spoil it for readers so I’ll just say that they act like spoiled brats . One last character is well , should I tell you about the ghost in the library? I will leave that for you to discover. I was a bit surprised at who ended up being the killer but I think I might have cheered a little also. I can’t wait to read the next in this series. I hope it comes out soon. I have questions that need answers.

I received a copy of this book from The Great Escapes Virtual Book Tour. The review is my own opinion.

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Death Overdue
A Haunted Library Mystery #1
Allison Brook
Crooked Lane Books, October 2017
ISBN 978-1-68331-386-1

From the publisher—

Carrie Singleton is just about done with Clover Ridge, Connecticut until she’s offered a job as the head of programs and events at the spooky local library, complete with its own librarian ghost. Her first major event is a program presented by a retired homicide detective, Al Buckley, who claims he knows who murdered Laura Foster, a much-loved part-time library aide who was bludgeoned to death fifteen years earlier. As he invites members of the audience to share stories about Laura, he suddenly keels over and dies.

The medical examiner reveals that poison is what did him in and Carrie feels responsible for having surged forward with the program despite pushback from her director. Driven by guilt, Carrie’s determined to discover who murdered the detective, convinced it’s the same man who killed Laura all those years ago. Luckily for Carrie, she has a friendly, knowledgeable ghost by her side. But as she questions the shadows surrounding Laura’s case, disturbing secrets come to light and with each step Carrie takes, she gets closer to ending up like Al.

Carrie has itchy feet, never staying in one town very long, and she’s just about ready to take a hike again when the library director in Clover Ridge offers her a full-time position to head up programs and events. Her immediate reaction is that she doesn’t want to be tied down but a ghostly voice in her ear prompts her to at least ask for details. When Evelyn Havers reveals herself to Carrie, it’s all Carrie can do to not freak out but she’s really distracted by the frightening idea of actually settling down.

So, when Carrie decides to stay in town and accept the job, she jumps in with enthusiasm, taking on the position’s pleasures as well as its normal glitches plus some pointed small acts of sabotage by the woman who wanted the job. Carrie finds a way, with Evelyn’s help, to get Dorothy to stop and peace descends on the library, at least momentarily, until guest speaker Al Buckley, a former police detective, drops dead during a presentation regarding new evidence in the cold case murder of Laura Foster fifteen years earlier. Carrie immediately suspects foul play, contrary to her boss’s belief, but it’s days later before the police say that Al was poisoned.

As with many cozies, Carrie really hasn’t got any valid reason to investigate but that’s OK with me. I enjoyed going along as she followed one clue after another to finally get to the truth and she’s smarter than many amateur sleuths, avoiding the TSTL syndrome although she does suffer from running her mouth too much 😉 A plethora of potential murderers keep her busy as does a bit of romance but even that has its own surprises. Speaking of surprises, I was more than a little bemused by Carrie’s reaction to having a ghost in her life.

With Halloween right around the corner, the timing couldn’t be better for this supernatural cozy and, while Carrie can be abysmally self-absorbed and downright immature, I do like her and I adore Evelyn. The icing on the cake is the library setting, my second favorite book-related backdrop, and Carrie is actually a pretty good sleuth with this first case…or, two cases, in reality. I’m going to be eagerly awaiting the next adventure hoping especially to spend much more time with Evelyn.

Reviewed by Lelia Taylor, October 2017.

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An absolutely wonderful start to a new series. The characters were great, the setting was wonderful, and the mystery was amazing. I loved the light paranormal twist to the story.

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This was a fun Halloween/fall mystery to read! I don't usually make a practice of reading whole cozy mystery series, but I might continue with this one!

I've worked in a library before, but I've never encountered a library ghost! This one, however, is nice and friendly - a former employee named Evelyn - and she helps Carrie solve a 15 year old mystery.

I loved the descriptions of what Carrie ate and what she wore and what she did. I did find it odd, however, that when a friend who knew Indian food and invited her to an Indian restaurant, the friend didn't know what "mango lassi" was.

And Dylan ... where do I begin? He was awesome. I'd love to know more about him!

All in all, not a bad mystery, and definitely intrigues one enough to want to read more! Well done.

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I had problems getting into the story. Once into it, it was a nice reading.

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Being promoted to head of programs and evens at the library where she books is a big deal for librarian Carrie Singleton. It means she needs to change her wardrobe, and that she can afford to move into her own place. Too bad one of her co-workers is furious that Carrie got the promotion and tries to sabotage her at every turn. Even worse, the speaker at her first major event drops dead before he can even make his presentation. The murder mystery in this one is overshadowed by Carrie's new life, which includes lots of shopping and eating out. It's upbeat and a great choice for a reader who wants to escape to a nicely haunted library for a few hours.

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A quick paced read with its humorous moments just in time for my favorite holiday season.
I am an admitted cozy mystery addict. I am a lifelong library geek - I love all they offer. Add in a ghost who helps solve crimes and I am hooked! I am also partial to an amateur sleuth solving cold cases, doing what the cops didn't figure out. This all combines to make me a very happy reader.
Should I add I WANT to like anything to do with Halloween and I was not disappointed.

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