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Member Reviews

Death at the Dog Show by Peter Boland is the 3rd in the Charity Shop Detective Agency series, a  Cozy Mystery Series.

First, let me thank NetGalley, the publisher Joffe Books, and of course the author, for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Series Background: (Warning – May contain spoilers from previous books)
Fiona Sharp is in her mid-seventies, and enjoying a rather quiet life volunteering in a local charity shop called Dogs Need Nice Homes.   That's where she adopted her scruffy terrier-cross Simon Le Bon. She works with "Partial Sue" (who often opens her mouth before thinking),  and the rather meek, but tech-savvy Daisy.  Together, they formed the Charity Shop Detective Agency.  They live in a small sea-side town. They love their tea and cake, and are quite bored without a good mystery to solve. Neighborhood police DI Fincher and DS Thomas don't always appreciate the help.

My Synopsis:    (No major reveals, but if concerned, skip to My Opinions)
Fiona, Sue and Daisy attend the Christchurch Dog Show, where they see a woman being given CPR by the show's vet.  They are later shocked to discover that Sylvia Steadman had been murdered.  Who would want to kill Sylvia?  The women, of course, decide it is their responsibility to find out.

Meanwhile, they agree to accept a new volunteer at the shop.  Molly's parents are in prison from a previous case that the women worked, and Molly seems o be at loose ends.  It will be handy having an extra pair of hands around so that they can concentrate on finding a killer.

My Opinions:
Okay, I was hesitant with this book.  I loved the first in the series, and found the second one quite boring, but this was quite good.  Yes, it's probably still longer than necessary with a lot of descriptions that were not necessary (sandwich choices, etc.), but at least it didn't drag too badly.

The main three characters are quirky and loveable, but I still wonder why the author felt it necessary to have others in their close circle which are just aggravating (Malorie and Sophie are recurring antagonists).  I'm also not a fan of the Wicker Man.

There were a lot of suspects, and as everything is explained in such great detail, there were no real surprises.

I'm still wondering about the glossary of British terms for US readers at the back.  It's getting annoying.

Overall, the plot was good, and if you need a nice light read, this would be it!

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Thank you to Netgally, the publishers, and Pete Boland

When I requested this book I was unaware that it was apart of a series, one that requires you to read the previous books for this one to make sense. I am unable to read all the previous books along with this one before the publish date. Therefore, I will rate this a fair 3/5 stars and will adjust the rating and review when I am able to read all the books in the series along with this one.

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Death at the Dog Show is Peter Boland’s third book in the Charity Shop Detective Agency mystery series. I’ve enjoyed both of his previous books but I think this latest one is one of the best. Once again Fiona, Daisy, and (Partial) Sue are caught up in a mysterious death and as they help the local police ferret out clues, the three friends inadvertently put themselves in harm’s way.

This series by Mr Boland is a stand-out among cozy mysteries. The dialogue is engaging with touches of humor, the plot has some unexpected twists that keep the reader focused, and the characters are interesting. Of course, as with many cozies, you have to believe that three retired women would be allowed to help the police in their investigation. And, I would suggest that the previous books should be read first so that the characters and their adventures have been introduced.

This is a light-hearted read that all of us need sometimes. Frankly, I would love to have these three women for neighbors but I will settle for another book. Thank you Mr Boland. Death at the Dog Show came along just at the right time for me. NetGalley provided an advance copy.

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Death at the Dog Show is the third Charity Shop Detective Agency mystery by Peter Boland. Released 5th Dec 2023 by Joffe Books, it's 354 pages and is available in paperback and ebook formats. It's worth noting that the ebook format has a handy interactive table of contents as well as interactive links and references throughout. For Kindle Unlimited subscribers, this book is currently included in the KU subscription library to borrow and read for free. The first two books in the series are also currently available on KU.

This is an entirely whimsical, campy, often slapstick lark featuring three disparate volunteers at the same charity shop (Dogs Need Nice Homes) who find themselves dragged into sleuthing again by a sudden death at a local dog show. (Note: no dogs are harmed in this cozy mystery).

So much of the book is over the top silly that readers should bring a *hefty* suspension of disbelief to the read and expect some moderate amounts of eye-rolling at the seemingly random insertion of weird details about the world of dog fanciers and the comparative merits of dog biscuits vs. sausages.

The plot, resolution, and denouement are self contained in this volume and it works well enough as a standalone. It bears repeating that readers should bring a stout, nay invincible, suspension of disbelief, and expect a solution and epilogue that are fairly silly and over-the-top. Since there are three books extant in the series at this point, it would also make a light diverting binge or buddy read.

Four stars. Potentially just slightly on the wrong side of frivolous, but also undeniably droll and amusing. Readers should be in the mood for an extremely silly mystery to enjoy this one.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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Quite possibly my favourite new author. I adore this series and desperately can’t wait for each new one to come out. Perfect blend of mystery and characters.

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Thank you Netgalley for this ARC
A great cozy mystery. I really enjoyed this book. I didn’t realize it was part of a series. Definitely going to check out books 1 & 2

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Just what the doctor ordered, a perfect cosy mystery to snuggle up with. Which is highly entertaining and will have you laughing out loud, an absolute joy. This is the 3rd in The Charity Shop Detective Agency Mystery books and if you haven’t already read any of them, why not? You must, you won’t regret it. I always feel sad after reading one of the series knowing I have to wait another year for the next instalment but so excited as the countdown begins when the time is getting near.

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The third book for the Charity Shop Detective Agency, and Fiona, Sue and Daisy are back solving another mystery at the local dog show. An ex-Crufts winner falls down dead in the middle of proceedings, seemingly from a heart attack. But after a visit from the detective, the tea-loving trio are on the case yet again to solve the death at the dog show.

I do enjoy these stories and like being in the world of the retired volunteers, but this one seems lacking somehow compared to the two previous stories. To me, it felt like the three ladies were just guessing and throwing around ideas until they somehow happened to land on the correct theory.

For a cozy 'easy read' mystery, it ticks all the boxes and it won't stop me revisiting the charity shop for future stories. If only just to see what other crimes they can try and pin on their nemeses Sophie and Malorie, as they seem to suspect them both in every book! 😆 I just hope the next book isn't as rushed as this one seemed to be.

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This was a cute cozy mystery.. The interaction of the ladies of the library are fun and I liked getting to know them.

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For those liking a great British village story with a some murder thrown in, this is for you. I don't think you need to read the others in the series and didn't feel lost when I started. I did struggle to connect with the story and characters as I felt like the story meandered and was a bit loose. I felt it could have been tighter to make the story better and not seem like a jaunt in the country! I did like the mystery and the characters, but overall, it was hard to finish and care about who the murderer was.

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Come for the cozy mystery, stay for the dry British humor and hilarious social commentary. Our heroes are at top form-tea, cake, asides on the quality of tv shows, more tea, more cake-and I was so here for it. This series is absolutely delightful mostly because of the quality of Boland's writing. Highly recommended!!

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This was a charming cozy mystery. It had a great storyline w fun characters and keep the reader interested. Looking forward to seeing what the author has in store next.

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Murder and dogs whats not to love. It was cosy, funny and fluffy and I loved it. It is the first I have read in the series and reading it as a standalone was fine but I definitely want to read more

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Thank you Netgalley for selecting me to review this book.

Coming in at the third book in the series I was worried that I would miss out on information from the other two books but the author does an excellent job of making it easy to start from book 3.

It was a cozy murder mystery that you could curl up with a cuppa tea and enjoy an afternoon of reading.

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The third in the series of the “cosy” murder mystery series. I read the first but somehow missed the second. Loved the first one as I thought it was a great example of what Richard Osman was trying to achieve.

Unfortunately this one didn’t work for me. The first time around I found the characters quirky and amusing, this time they were just annoying. Perhaps it was my mood as I seem to be an outlier this time. Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC.

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The day of the Christchurch dog show has arrived and after the best Biscuit Catcher competition, Fiona, Sue and Daisy from the Dogs Need Nice Homes charity shop come across the dog show’s vet performing CPR on a woman. The charity shop detectives must find out what happened to the woman.

This was the third instalment of the charity shop detective agency, which is one of my favourite series. I will admit that I didn’t like this one as much as the two previous instalments. One reason is because I felt like it took too long to get to who the murderer was and was when we found out who the murderer was, it made a big deal about evidence, but it doesn’t actually say what the evidence was that led to the murderer’s arrest. It also felt like the charity shop detective ladies, Fiona, Sue and Daisy were a bit all over the place in the book. In particular, Fiona. In this book, she kept forgetting things or having brain fog which felt out of character to the Fiona that I have read about in the previous instalments and loved. She came across as being very unsure about herself, which from the two previous books, it isn’t the vibe that I get from her at all. As always, I really enjoy Peter’s plots, his writing and the characters that he creates - they are some of my favourite characters and I love them all so much. This is a fantastic cosy mystery series, one that I will always recommend. Overall, I enjoyed this instalment of the series and I am excited to see how the series progresses.

⚠️ CWs: murder, alcohol use, mentions animal cruelty, cheating ⚠️

Thank you Joffe Books and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book!

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I signed up for this book because I love cozy mysteries and I couldn't resist the adorable Yorkie on the cover. I liked the setting because I've never seen it in a cozy mystery before. I learned that this read is in a series so I would like to go back to read the earlier books in the series. I loved the writing with the twists and the dialogue. Another cozy that did not disappoint!

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This book featured the Charity Shop Detectives, and I was interested in it because I have enjoyed others in this series previously.

It was a fun, entertaining read, and it made me chuckle. It was very light and easy, quite a humorous read, but I also found it an entertaining mystery, in the sense that it kept me guessing. Cosy mysteries are a favourite of mine, and a book like this is something that I might choose to relax with, or I may read something like this on a bad day, if I need a little lift. If you enjoy cosy mysteries with a little bit of humour, then you might enjoy this, especially if you're a dog person.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for a free copy to review.

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This one was fine, but nothing particularly stood out to me about it. The mystery was fine but fell a little flat because there was just so much else going on in the book and so many other criminals and crimes that it just felt a bit thrown together.

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As a dog breeder myself, I was very happy to be able to review this book! I loved the intrigue and the fact that everything happens at a dog show. I must add that I found it a little bit harder to enter the book as the dog shows that I go to in real life are something a little bit more serious but anyway, I liked the book. Thank you for the opportunity!

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