Murder's No Votive Confidence

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 28 Jun 2019

Member Reviews

I love scented candles, and the art of mixing different scents into something pleasing that makes you think of your favorite season or memory or book, etc. fascinates me. So when Murder’s No Votive Confidence came across my radar, it was a no-brainer for my TBR pile.

The Nantucket setting complements the candle-making hobby nicely – there’s something about a seaside island town that seems to just encourage you to make candles. Stella’s keen nose for scents – and her ability to match people with scents that represent them – not only makes her business successful but also her sleuthing. The author does a great job of incorporating this aspect to the plot without stopping the story to go into the step-by-step details of candle-making. Instead, these notes are tucked away at the end of the book, where I prefer them to be.

Stella is a very likable heroine, and my friends-to-more kissingbook senses are on high alert around her childhood friend (and town’s sexiest cop) Andy … even though new-in-town reporter Peter seems to have temporarily stolen her affections. Peter has his good points, to be sure, but he just kept showing up too frequently out of the blue for my tastes. And I’m partial to best friends falling in love, so my vote is for Andy! All of the secondary characters are likable, for that matter, but they also could have been developed a bit more – something I’m looking forward to in the rest of the series!

Bottom Line: Murder’s No Votive Confidence is a great debut for the author as well as the series. Delightful characters (including & especially Tinker the cat) keep the story moving at a steady pace amid the chaos of a festival, a wedding, and a murder. There’s a slight romantic angle involving the heroine Stella – and two possible love interests (I’m pulling for Andy!) – and I’m curious to see how that plays out. A clever niche as well for the series, the candle making aspect of the story was lots of fun!

(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book.)
Was this review helpful?
Excellent start to a new series! I enjoy reading about small business sleuths. The New England whale oil history was interesting as well. The idea of a personal scent for a wedding is a novel idea and if I would have known I would have been sure to have my unity candle crafted by someone as talented as Stella Wright. of Wick & Flame. This story is full of twists and turns as Stella vows to get to the bottom of the mystery in order to save her fledgling business and clear family friend Bill Duffy. Who would use a wedding candle to bludgeon a man to death? Needless to say, in a town the size of Nantucket Island, word gets out fast and that word is murder by unity candle. Stella is on the trail of the killer as she eliminates suspects and manages to get a couple of dates with the new reporter Peter Bailey who is hot on the trail of story. Of course those dates have included climbing trees, following leads, and small picnic snacks. I think that this storyline is the beginning of a great series and I am ready for the next book I also enjoyed reading the note regarding Candles 101 workshop notes at the end of the book.
Was this review helpful?
Murder’s No Votive Confidence has a lot going for it up front because it incorporates two of my very favorite things – Nantucket and candles. On top of that, Christin Brecher has created an entertaining and clean cozy mystery, steeped in small-island atmosphere. This is a fun traditional cozy read, a story that I can easily recommend.

With its cobblestone streets, quaint shops, whaling history, and beauty, the island of Nantucket is the perfect setting, as there’s just something magical about it for this reader. I’ve been blessed to visit Nantucket twice and can say that the author vividly captures its villages and events, which are creatively woven throughout the story.  

Stella, owner of the Wick & Flame, is an appealing leading lady. The idea of crafting a unity candle for an island wedding is a creative touch, until that candle becomes the murder weapon. I could understand Stella’s desire to help solve the crime when a friend of her family is quickly arrested. And the making of candles is a great theme for a cozy mystery series. I love this quote from Stella’s “Candles 101” workshop notes at the end, where Brecher writes … “Candles are a source of light, a symbol at celebrations, the start of a romantic night, a balm for the senses, the heart of ceremonies, and a wonderful way to make a house into a home.” I hope there will be even more emphasis on candle making in future novels.

The mystery itself was well crafted and I enjoyed trying to figure things out along with Stella. There’s a delightful scene close to the end that had me cracking up. All I’ll say is that it involves a chase to beat all chases on the water, the craziest cat ever, and Stella’s friend going into labor. 

There’s a lot of potential for this series, including deeper character development from Stella’s interesting family members. I’d like for the writing to be tighter at times, with less clothing descriptions, etc., that I tend to skim over. Also, I really hate love triangles and hope the potential one that seems to be building will quickly disappear. Don’t want to choose sides this early in the game, but I do like the police officer/childhood friend, Andy.

Murder’s No Votive Confidence is a fun read overall and I look forward to future visits to Nantucket. 


I received a copy of this book through Great Escapes Tours. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.
Was this review helpful?
Title:   Murder’s No Votive Confidence

Author:   Christin Brecher
Chapters: 33
Pages: 297

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Rating: 4 stars

Publisher:  Kensington Publishing Corporation

Murder's No Votive Confidence is the first book in the Nantucket Candle Maker Mystery series by Christin Brecher.  Stella Wright is a candle maker who's landed the job of making a unity candle for a big wedding.  Business is looking up that is till her candle ends up being a murder weapon.   When a local who's well-liked by the town is arrested and other brides start canceling orders, Stella decides to find the real killer and find a way to save her wedding candle orders.   Even though her friend and local police officer Andy doesn't want her involved.  
This was the first cozy mystery that I've read that had a Nantucket setting and it's the first crafty cozy I've read focusing on candles.  For a cozy mystery, it was fairly fast-paced. I finished it in a couple of hours over the course of a few days.  If I had had multiple hours in a row, I probably could have finished it one day.   I enjoyed it I look forward to the next book in the series as well as other books by this author. 

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through netgalley. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
Was this review helpful?
Murder's No Votive Confidence by Christin Brecher is the first book in the Nantucket Candle Maker Mystery series.  Stella owns a candle store and has done all of the candles for an upcoming wedding.  When the bride's uncle is found murdered with the large unity candle, Stella begins sorting through suspects.  This was a nice opening novel to the series.  Stella and the other characters work well together although I can already see the beginnings of a love triangle.  I thought this was a good first book and look forward to further character development as the series progresses.
Was this review helpful?
This is a great first book in a series.  I loved the cast of characters along with the setting of Nantucket, Massachusetts.  I am looking forward to reading more of this series.
Was this review helpful?
Stella Wright owns a perfume shop in Nantucket where she crafts candles with inspiring scents. She is commissioned to come up with a custom scent for an upcoming wedding and to provide candles for the wedding weekend. The Unity candle she created for the happy couple is part of the murder investigation and then it feels like it is going to go downhill for Stella from there. Stella starts to investigate the murder because her reputation is on the line. The more Stella investigates the more she learns about the wedding party and it also gives the readers an introduction to the supporting characters in town.

I didn't know what to expect when I started reading. Once I really got into the story, I really liked the characters and wanted to know who murdered the victim and why! Once I really got into the story and reached the end, I was eager to see what would happen in the next book!

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this ARC.
Was this review helpful?
This book follows Stella Wright whose owning a candle store hoping to branch out into weddings and other decorations for her friend Jessica's wedding.  When Jessica's uncle winds up dead and the candle is in sight, Stella wonders if her business is ruined?  A local bartender is arrested and Stella finds out what his story is she is more determined to get to the bottom of the real story.  Everyone in Nantucket seems to be hiding something now it's up to Stella to figure who really killed Jessica Sterling's uncle and why!

This is a cute cozy mystery than centers around candles and the Sterling Wedding.  You find yourself meeting all sorts of people wondering which one of them was up to no good and why?  The author has you chasing along with Stella to find out what is going and who has the most to gain by the death!  

Definitely a great book that I couldn't put down until I was finished it pulled me along on a wonderfully bumpy ride that I'd love to go on again and again!
Was this review helpful?
this mystery is well planned and fast paced and contains enough twists and turns to keep you guessing until the very end,  I am looking forward to reading the next book in this series.
Was this review helpful?
I absolutely adore candles and Murder’s No Votive Confidence was absolutely perfect for me.  Stella was a delightful character that had the amazing ability to pick out the perfect scent for a client as well as sniffing out clues to a recent murder.  I loved the love triangle that came about in this fun story and I have a feeling that this is going to be one of my favorite new series.  I’m excited to read book number two so I can learn more about making candles.
Was this review helpful?
So I like books that are set in unusual places or with unusual jobs. For me this falls into that category. I enjoyed the characters and the writing style. It was a quick. light, fun read that I would recommend to others. I would read more books in this series.
Was this review helpful?
Nantucket is on my bucket list of places to visit so anytime I can read a book set there I jump. Murder's, No Votive Confidence is a great addition to the Nantucket setting. I was pleased the author went to the roots of Nantucket and had Stella own and operate a candle store.

I am looking forward to the next installment in The Nantucket Candle Making series. I'm interested in seeing how Stella's love life progresses. Andy, in my opinion, is not out of the running. The jury is still out if I like Peter.
If you are looking for a new series with a different cozy setting than small-town landlocked America and a theme different from culinary then I suggest you grab this book. It is a fast-paced read that has no problems holding your interest.  

I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, Kensington, through NetGalley. Any and all opinions expressed in the above review are entirely my own.
Was this review helpful?
I really loved this book for so many reasons.  The characters, the setting, the wedding, the mystery.  Need I go on.  I always love the first book of a new series, there is such great anticipation and expectation.  This book did not disappoint in any way and I look forward to more in the series. Thank you Kensington and netgalley for the opportunity to read the arc, the opinions are my own
Was this review helpful?
I picked this book because it is the first in a new series, something that always has potential even before reading it solely because it heralds an entry of new and possibly interesting characters. This book lived up to its role and puts us right in the middle of a very 'happening' wedding. Stella Wright is the local Candle Lady. It is a reputation she has built on her mother's beginnings from travels far and wide. This wedding is a golden opportunity to ensure that she gets more orders since the entire wedding is candle themed. Unfortunately, one of the wedding party is found dead two days before the wedding and this puts a lot of things into jeopardy. 

There is no dearth of suspects since the behaviour of the victim seems to have been reproachable, and one of the locals is quickly arrested. Stella has access to the hotel rooms because of her work at the wedding and the need to prove that the arrested man did not commit the crime. She is supported by the people around her, especially an old frenemy- Andy. Andy and Stella gave me Anne & Gilbert vibes (from Anne of Green Gables-LM Montgomery) and although they end up at different places by the end of the book I have hope for them in the series. I suspected a few of the diversions in the storyline as certain revelations were made but the only downside was that I am used to not feeling for the victim in these cozies but I had to feel for Simon once all the revelations were sorted. This put a pretty big damper on the read, which might have been the author's intention since it changed the tone of the narrative.

The writing was light, concise and revealed a lot of emotional bonds between the various characters mentioned and I would love to visit them all again. 

I received an ARC thanks to NetGalley and the publishers but the review is completely based on my own reading experience.
Was this review helpful?
Murder, vows, and candle wax... A candle shop cozy that is filled to the brim with quirky characters, a cozy setting, and a perfect mystery. I was quite impressed with this wonderful book. **thanks to the publisher for the ARC to review**
Was this review helpful?
I found this mystery really enjoyable, even though there were a lot of characters to keep track of.  I loved that the protagonist has a candle shop. The characters and storyline are enjoyable. I'm looking forward to more in this series.
Was this review helpful?
Stella Wright is engaging as a new small business owner on Nantucket. She made her dream come true by opening Wick & Flame, a candle store complete with classes. Her unique scents and designs draw in plenty of tourists, but branching out her business is a solid move. Enter best friend Emily, a wedding planner and now Stella is in charge of all things candle for Jessica Sterling's perfect wedding on the island. After a late night card game turns up a dead body next to one of her hand made unity candles, Stella can't help but try to find things out for a childhood friend on the force. I liked the gradual introduction to various people in Stella's life, including a cadre of cousins that I imagine will continue to make appearances in subsequent stories. Really enjoyed the book and the setting, can't wait for another candle book.
Was this review helpful?
My rating: 2 of 5 stars, it was okay.

First in the series.

This was a good start to the series, but I definitely think the main characters need to be developed a bit more. And it annoyed the heck out of me that this one seems to be falling down the love triangle hole of doom. That's an automatic downrate for me.

I liked the mystery, and I loved the candle making part of the story.

All in all, I enjoyed this book, and will look forward to the next book in the series. I just hope the author wraps up the love triangle pretty darned fast.
Was this review helpful?
It’s Memorial Day in Nantucket and candle store owner Stella Wright is hired to create candles for a huge wedding. It’s a dream come true for Stella, but things take a nasty turn when the bride’s uncle is murdered before he can walk her down the aisle. Oddly enough, the murder weapon is one of Stella’s candles. 

Stella is stunned when a local bartender is arrested for the murder. She’s sure he would never kill anyone and she intends to prove it. She’s even more motivated when her customers start canceling their candle orders when they learn it was used as a murder weapon. 

The local police detective is not happy to have Stella sticking her nose into his business, to say the least. However, she has no intention of backing down.

This is a great start to a new cozy mystery series. I liked Stella right from the start. She’s strong, although a bit nosy but aren’t all amateur sleuths? The cast of characters are interesting and quirky.

It’s a fast-paced story and I was surprised at how it all ended up. The author did a good job of giving several different possibilities of whodunit. She kept me thinking until very near the end. I’m looking forward to the next book in this series.
Was this review helpful?
*I received a free copy of this book which I voluntarily chose to write an honest review for.

What a fantastically fun book this is!! Stella is a candle maker in Nantucket gearing up to provide candles to an upcoming wedding. Things start out great with things going quite smoothly until the bride's Uncle is found dead with the unity handle next to him. The best cat ever alerts them to the body and I must say I had great fun waiting for the cat to keep popping up after that. The moments blend perfectly with the story making me fall in love with the whole thing. Superbly written mystery full of twists, turns, and humor that will have you hooked from the very first page. I can't wait for the next one! I totally loved it so I give it 5/5 stars.
Was this review helpful?