Bowled Over Americano (Sara and Sean Cozy Mystery Series Book 1)
by Carolyn Arnold
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Pub Date 11 Apr 2023 | Archive Date 15 May 2023
Sara Cain isn't your typical thirty-two-year-old woman. Murder detective by day, writer and… sleuth by night? Just as long as there’s enough coffee to keep her going…
When her first novel gives her trouble, Sara goes for a walk to clear her writer’s block and ends up stumbling right into a real-life murder mystery. Magnum, an adventurous beagle, comes running off leash toward her in the local park, and she returns him home only to find his master dead on the entry floor.
Cliff Cunningham was a championship bowler with a mean streak and a temper, and police are pegging his Golden Pin bowling trophy as the murder weapon. While any number of people could have clocked a strike by knocking him on the noggin, the prime suspect is a friend of Sara’s mother—and she expects Sara to prove the woman’s innocence. A tall order, as the case isn’t officially hers and belongs to a rival detective.
But a promise is a promise, and Sara soon finds herself sleuthing undercover—and off the clock—in a world of polyester shirts and rental shoes. It’s not all bad, though, as she’s taking her friend and partner Sean McKinley along for the ride. They are better together than they’ve ever been split, and they’re not amateurs at finding killers.
Despite being up against small-town hijinks and colorful characters who threaten to roll their efforts into the gutter, they are having fun. That is, until they get close to the killer and a dangerous twist puts their lives at risk.
A completely addictive caper full of twists that offers up a serving of murder, a dollop of romance, and a dash of humor. This perfect blend of robust and sweet is bound to hit the spot with readers who are fans of Verity Bright, Tonya Kappes, and Agatha Frost.
A Note From the Publisher
***THIS IS AN UNCORRECTED ADVANCE REVIEW COPY***
From KIRKUS REVIEWS on Bowled Over Americano:
“In this cozy mystery, two New York state detectives try to solve a pair of cases while teasing readers about their romantic entanglement.
“Sara Cain and Sean McKinley are homicide detectives with the Albany Police Department and work as a team. They are officially assigned the case of Aubrey Southgate, an investment adviser, who has been shot in what looks like a planned hit. But who did it? And why? Meanwhile, professional bowler Cliff Cunningham has been bludgeoned to death. Sara finds the body, but the case is assigned to the notoriously lazy and inept Det. Davenport. When Davenport decides, on little evidence, that Gladys White, Cunningham’s girlfriend and a pal of Sara’s mother’s, is the killer, the protagonists have little choice but to pursue that case off the books. These investigations involve quite silly undercover outfits and even the help of Cliff’s beagle, Magnum. The two detectives are determined to solve both cases. Aubrey’s death is a shocker but perhaps understandable. As to Cunningham’s murder, Sara and Sean attempt to get Gladys off the hook and find the real killer. In this engrossing series opener, Arnold is capable of some arresting phrasings: A police sergeant “gave the sirens life, and they wailed into the night air,” and “Sara peacocked her posture.” An enjoyable underlying story is the relationship between Sara and Sean. Clearly, they are deeply attracted to each other, but for some rather vague reason—having to do with APD policy—they are afraid to act on their feelings. Then Sean inherits a fortune—from a kindly millionaire with no family, a man whom the detective, always the mensch, befriended. Will good things follow? Arnold is a prolific writer and likely will be churning out these Sara and Sean mysteries for a long time. Some readers will wonder whether the appealing pair will become private eyes in a future installment, a Nick and Nora Charles for modern times.
“An engaging double mystery with a cute couple fans will want to follow.” — Kirkus Reviews
Readers love Carolyn Arnold!
“Arnold hooks me early and keeps me flipping pages. I am just going along for the ride, eager to go wherever the story takes me.” ~ Fundinmental
“Carolyn Arnold does such an amazing job creating a mystery that grips the reader right from the start and keeps the reader engaged through the entire book.” ~ Life as Leels
“I like Carolyn Arnold’s writing whether it’s a cozy mystery or an FBI thriller or something in between. Her writing flows well and her characters are realistic.” ~ Bound 4 Escape
“Arnold is one of the many authors whose work I will never tire of reading. Her writing pulls you in and before you know it, the story is complete.” ~ Totally Addicted to Reading