Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Pains and Penalties (Geeks and Things Mystery #1), by Sarah Biglow

Sarah Biglow, March 2016

Kalina Greystone has returned home to the apparently fictional small town of Ellesworth, on the Massachusetts South Coast, in the equally fictional Salem County.. She's running the comics store she inherited from her father, and employing her nephew, AJ, as, currently, her sole staff. In  keeping with both tradition and good marketing, they're participating in the town's annual Solstice Fair.

The baking competition gets a bit more exciting than usual, when the winning scones are not Mrs. Grant. She is angry and she is vocal, and vents her anger at the judges.

A short time later, things get even more exciting, when Mrs. Grant's good friend, Mrs. Davies, drinks some tea and suddenly dies, rather unpleasantly. Mrs. Davies, famous for her fruit tarts, is not the offending scone baker. Kalina's nephew, AJ, witnesses the whole thing.

The detective investigating the death is Kalina's old high school boyfriend, Detective Chris Harper.

What happens from here is in some ways quite predictable, but the mystery itself, and the motive and perpetrator behind it, is not quite so predictable, and pretty well done. I like Kalina, Chris, and for that matter AJ, who is a pretty smart and likable teenager. And since it's a novella, it's not a huge time investment of time to see if it's your thing.

Recommended.

I bought this book.