The Scent of Murder

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 07 May 2019

Member Reviews

First in a new series from Kylie Logan "The Scent Of Murder is a definitely an interesting mystery and for my first read of Kylie Logan is pretty good.

This story follows Jazz Ramsey ( first in the new series Jazz Ramsey)a cadaver dog trainer and her (un)official boyfriend detective as they try to uncover the mystery behind the death of a young girl. Although I wish Jazz was give a valid reason for pursuing the death considering she's not in law enforcement or a private investigator. I think this would have made the story more realistic as to her involvement, especially if this is a series and more books are coming out.

Received an ARC from Minataur Books via NetGalley for an honest review.
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Interesting facts and science, investigative work, well written but flat at times. I lost interest halfway through and had to start over to finish. I'd still recommend to lovers of this genre but it wasn't for me.
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As a huge fan of forensics and criminal investigations, I was instantly drawn to the synopsis of this story. And what about that cover! While I had the impression that this was going to largely focus on the relationship, interactions, and utilization between the handler and the dog, the dogs ultimately aren't concentrated on much, honestly to the point of being inconsequential. There was interesting information provided about their training, but I really wanted more, especially the gritty details about the field of work. However, personal preference aside, this is a really solid and engaging mystery that set the stage for a new series that I am looking forward to continuing.

Jazz is in the process of training Luther when they accidentally stumble upon the body of a young woman who graduated years earlier from the Catholic girls school Jazz currently works at as an administrator. Jazz's likability and charisma help to guide her as she embarks in her own private investigation to determine not just who murdered Florie, but also what was really going on in Florie's life that may have led to her untimely demise. Jazz's ex-boyfriend, Nick, is the lead detective on the case, which definitely created some mildly antagonistic interactions that will provide interesting fodder for future stories to come.

Overall, this was a well-plotted and fast-paced mystery that has fantastic potential for a more immersive experience as the series progresses.
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Jazz Ramsey is training a cadaver dog, Luther. Luther is still fairly new to his training so Jazz takes him to the abandoned building to put his through the paces. Luther, however, finds the real body of someone that Jazz knows. The lead detective on the case just happens to be Jazz’s ex-boyfriend, Nick.  Can Jazz help solve the murder, will she Nick be able to move past their past history?

This is a great start to a series. This is the first book of this type that I have read. I really enjoyed learning more about the training of cadaver dogs. The author Kylie Logan uses a very descriptive writing style helps the reader picture what is taking place and how every character looks. The characters are very realistic and interesting. The mystery is well written with several well placed red herrings and keeps the reader engaged until the end. I am looking forward to the next book in the series. I recommend this book to all mystery lovers. 

I voluntarily agreed to read a copy of this book supplied by Netgalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own and in no way have been influenced.
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2.5 stars.  The mystery was a solid one.  But the rest of the story was a little lacking.  Jazz investigating the murder was weird and made no sense.  Writing seemed a little unexciting and amateurish.
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Spending time with Jazz while solving the mystery of The Scent of Murder was pleasant. We see the pieces of her life from family, to friends, to an old romance she may renew, which helps create a full picture of who Jazz is as a person.  By creating this background, it is clear The Scent of Murder will not be the only novel centered around Jazz.  It serves to get the reader attached to her character and does a decent job of it.

Due to the attentive character building, the mystery does move along a bit slow for my tastes.  Not that the pacing here is necessarily a bad thing, I simply prefer more of a thrilling approach in my murder mysteries. 

I found it a bit odd that a book in which the main character trains cadaver dogs showed so very little of that.  Hopefully, in future installments, there will be further insight into this part of Jazz's life.

Overall I enjoyed the early copy I received of The Scent of Murder by Kylie Logan.  The main test for me in any mystery is whether or not I could figure out the who done it beforehand, and here I could not.  I appreciate an author who gives the audience clues/ red herrings in a way that doesn't point the arrow too quickly at the culprit. It is a delicate balance for me, and here I enjoyed not knowing the answers until the end of the story.
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I love a good plot and sub-plot and this book delivered. And who can resist the canine partners. I’ll certainly be watching for more from this author.
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Jasmine Ramsey enjoyed her volunteer work with search and rescue dogs; she was an experienced handler and trainer, and often helped others in refining the training for their dogs. She was working with Luther, a cadaver dog in training, one evening in a building under renovation, hoping he would find the tooth she had hidden on the third floor. Instead, Luther found a dead woman, dressed in black with goth-style hair and makeup, and Jazz was horrified to see that the woman was a former student at St. Catherine’s, where Jazz worked as the administrative assistant.

Florentine Allen had changed considerably from the way Jazz remembered her, and she became obsessed with the case, determined to find out everything she could about Florie and why she had been killed in a deserted building. To add to her dismay, the police officer in charge  of the investigation is her former boyfriend, Nick, and Jazz’s personal investigation throws her into contact with Nick over and over again.

This was an intriguing mystery, and I liked Jazz’s strength and courage in finding justice for Florie, even though she, as she admitted, was being nosy. Her curiosity led her into some strange situations and uncomfortable conversations, but that made for interesting reading. This is the first book in a series, and I’ll be on the lookout for Jazz’s subsequent adventures.
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Jazz Ramsey trains cadaver dogs, and while working with a new dog, Luther; Luther stumbles upon a body.  Jazz will be as tenacious as the dogs she trains to figure this mystery out.
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The Scent of Murder by Kylie Morgan is a complicated book. The plot has the works of an interesting murder mystery tale. However, there was a bit of the book that the writer barely touched up on. The dogs trained to find dead bodies. The whole focus was on the the trainer and her ex solving the case. This cast of characters were not as set in stone like they should be. Their parts in this plot were crazy at times. The mystery part was done right. It was missing the emotional thrill part of what I was expecting this story to have. In that section, it fell flat to me. Mystery, mayhem, and intrigue was there. Overall, the book was good but it could have been better.
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The Scent of Murder is the first in a new series about Jazz Ramsey, a volunteer cadaver dog handler. Working with Luther, a cadaver dog in training, Jazz is shocked to stumble across a body in the abandoned building they’re using as a practice ground - and doubly so when she realizes she knows the victim.

There’s a lot going on in Jazz’s personal life which makes her unwilling to walk away from this crime without getting some answers. In the last couple of years, she broke up with the man she thought might be the love of her life (who just happens to be the lead detective on the case and as attractive as ever), lost her hero firefighter father in a tragic accident, and lost her beloved dog to illness. She’s looking for answers for a lot of things, and finding them for Florie might, just maybe, help Jazz find some closure for herself, too.

There’s a lot to like about Jazz; she’s a very relatable, well-drawn character. The kind I could see myself sitting down with to set the world to rights over a bottle of wine or two. Her relationship with Nick, the detective, will ring true with every modern woman who’s found that juggling a busy schedule and a boyfriend who works strange hours sometimes means relationships just don’t work no matter how much you want them to. I could wish Luther appeared more in the story; not even being Jazz’s dog meant he had a much smaller part than I expected, especially with this being marketed as a cozy mystery. It just doesn’t quite fit into that category; cozies for me have more humour, and definitely more animal action. It’s more of a romantic suspense without a lot of romance, or even just a straight mystery series. Billing it as a cozy feels a bit disingenuous, and like many other reviewers, I felt slightly let down although I did enjoy the story.

I do think the story needed a bit more editing. There were some weird head-hopping POV moments, like the bit where we’re suddenly in minor character Khari’s head for all of one paragraph when he’s thinking about how he knows his girlfriend Tanya isn’t serious flirting with Nick. Jazz’s mother Claire is apparently 52, although Jazz is 36 and has two older brothers. Someone’s math doesn’t add up and a good editor should have picked that up. There are moments of unnecessary info-dump - Jazz is talking to her firefighter friend Matt about her feelings on having found a body, and ‘suddenly’ realizes that of course he’s seen a body too since he found a friend who suicided. At which point I blinked a lot - Matt’s a FIREFIGHTER. He’s seen a lot more bodies than just that. Again, something which should have been picked up in editing.

Despite these issues, I thoroughly enjoyed the story, even though it wasn’t quite what I expected, and I’d definitely read more in the series to find out how Jazz and Nick progress with their tentative steps towards a new relationship, and how Jazz gets on with the new puppy she gets at the end of the story - and hopefully more Luther!

Four stars for a solid start to a series I think could get a lot better with time.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for review through NetGalley.
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When I saw the darker looking cover of this book, I wasn't really sure if I'd end up liking it, but I knew that I liked other books by this author, so I figured why not. I'm very glad I gave it a chance and didn't judge this book by its cover--which is well-done, but doesn't come off as cozy. The mystery wasn't dark at all and was even a little funny in some places. It was interesting to learn about cadaver dogs and how they're trained to track. I enjoyed these main characters a lot. They were strong and likable. Jazz was strong too and not only in her personality-- and the fact that she'd had two older brothers to contend with at home came in very handy in her showdown with the killer.

I hadn't guessed the killer until the clues started coming, and it made total sense. I'm glad that Jazz softened just a little toward Nick. He brought her the sweetest surprise at the end. I definitely want to read the next book!

I voluntarily read and reviewed this book provided by the publisher via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own.
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"Scent of Murder" is the 1st in a new series starring volunteer cadaver dog trainer Jazz Ramsey in Cleveland, where she is administrative assistant at an all-girls school.

After a friend asks Jazz to work with his cadaver dog, she takes Luther for training to an abandoned building. There, they discover the corpse of a young woman in Goth gear, whom Jazz recognizes as a talented past student at her school.

I enjoyed the cadaver dog focus as well as the leads in this new series, and look forward to more.
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This is the type of book I’d like to call “luke warm” in that it never really gets that super exciting “oh my god” feeling to it. 

The premise of the book is fantastic- Jazz is a cadaver dog trainer, and heartbroken from losing her own pup takes on a friends to train(Luther). During their session, things get a little crazy and in comes Nick- the sexy, I still want you ex boyfriend. With Nicks entrance, Luther pretty much takes his exit, and it’s really quite sad.  There’s a scene where Luther’s dad has to take an emergency leave, and leaves him with Jazz- but you don’t see or hear from him again until his dad comes to pick him up. I feel like if the dog is on the cover, he should play a much larger role. 

I felt very underwhelmed with The Scent if Murder. I had high hopes, but there weren’t any “aha” moments. Everything was pretty predictable and a little bland. 

Maybe my standards are too high, but I crave those books that really get your heart pumping, and having you biting your nails waiting to see what happened. But at the end of the day, this book was just too predictive. 


I gave this book 3 stars because there are minimal errors, and the writing as a whole is done very well, the story just doesn’t do it for me.
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Too much fluff and reads like a young adult novel. 	

Jazz Ramsey has recently lost her tracking dog Manny and has agreed to help with the training of a new cadaver dog.  Knowing that a building would be available she sets off for a night of training when what Luther, the new pup, finds is more than the tooth that Jazz had planted. 

Turns out that Jazz knows the woman.  Florentine “Florie” Allen had graduated a few years before from the private school where Jazz works.  Currently, Florie is a struggling art student and though people change, Florie looks nothing like the girl Jazz remembers.

This is where author Kylie Logan begins to through everything that she can into the story.  Arguments with old classmates, costumes, upcoming festivals, blackmail, personal relationships.  But the sad thing is, the final “gotcha” was no surprise.  Early on it made sense what Florie was up to since it is a well-used plot line. 

There is also a romance if the redundant narrative doesn’t suit you, but that too is tired and clumsy at best.
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This book was good up until I found out who the killer was. The dialogue was good, the story was good. I liked the characters. The subplot of training scent dogs was fantastic. But the killer left something to be desired. That being said I'm still going to read book 2 - I think Logan has created a very readable, likeable series. 3.5 stars rounded up to 4.
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Thank you to St Martin's Press and NetGalley for an advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This wasn't exactly the story I was expecting. I was looking for more of a story revolving around dog training and there wasn't enough of that to satisfy me. This book felt like reading a Nancy Drew story to me, felt a little tame and not enough heart pounding danger. It was an okay story but it just left me needing more.
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Murder mystery involving a complex young woman from a disturbed background. Good characters and interesting story.
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The Scent of Murder 
By Kylie Logan
Minotaur Books
May 2019

Review by Cynthia Chow

Jasmine Ramsay works as the administrative assistant for St. Catherine’s high school principal Sister Eileen Flannery, but what truly gives Jazz joy in life is volunteering as a cadaver dog trainer and handler.  It’s during a training exercise in a vacant Cleveland Flats building that her newest human-remains-detection trainee Luther succeeds a little too well, finding not the tooth Jazz planted as bait, but the actual corpse of a young woman.  Jazz is dismayed that the victim was a former student of St. Catherine, but what truly breaks her heart is being forced to again interact with Detective Nick Kolesov.  Once happily in love, their relationship ended not due to any dramatic betrayal, but because of conflicting schedules and priorities that slowly forced them apart.

Jazz becomes drawn into looking how the victim Florie Allan, once a popular and talented photography student, lost her college scholarship and transformed into a Goth girl.  As Jazz learns more about Florie, her family, and her broken friendships, it soon becomes apparent that the stigma of coming from the poor side of town may have made Florie desperate for money and willing to do almost anything to escape her former life.  Jazz’s honesty helps her to coax out information from reluctant young adults, and she is aided by her hilarious art teaching best friend and the extremely savvy and wry Sister Eileen.  

What is truly outstanding in this first of a series by the prolific, best-selling author is the development of a unique, extremely sympathetic heroine.  Jazz mourns the loss of both her adored dog and her father, a heroic firefighter captain who died on the job rescuing a family.  Jazz revisits the site of the fatal fire regularly, and clues sprinkled throughout may indicate that perhaps there was more to the incident than first thought.  Nick has a lot of work to do to break down the emotional shields Jazz has built around herself, as they both know that however well they always seem to get along, nothing seems to have changed enough to fix what originally broke them apart.  Hopefully future installments will contain more details of Jazz’s training sessions with her cadaver dogs, as scenes of her working with the German Shepherd she babysits are fascinating.  Jazz’s relationships with her supportive brothers are similarly entertaining, especially in light of how they are the firefighters she always wanted to be.  Jazz gave up her dream to appease her mother, but Jazz has found a rewarding life training the dogs whom she finds much more comforting than humans.  This smoothly paced novel slowly unravels the puzzles that are both Florie and Jazz, building the foundation for the start of a smart and compelling mystery series.
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A wonderful debut to the Jazz Ramsey Mysteries that kept me glued to the book from beginning to end and turning the pages as fast as I could to see what was going to happen. I felt a connection with Jazz, an administrative assistant at an all girls school who loves training cadaver dogs.

This is a must-read for anyone who enjoys well-crafted must-solve mysteries with interesting characters, twists and turns. I can't wait to see what happens next with Jazz and the folks in Cleveland. I received an advance reader copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley and am voluntarily leaving my honest review.
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