Saturday, June 20, 2015

OMG! Cozy Surprise(s)!

The City:      Atlanta

The Date:      20 June 2015

Hmmm.  My goodness, where to begin?  You know, once in a while a Cozy Mystery will have one of those truly "OMG!" moments.  And that "OMG!" even breaks down into different categories:  "OMG!", "why didn't I figure that out?", and "OMG!", "I can't believe that just happened!".  Rarely does a cozy have both those moments, however, Lorna Barrett's recent title in the Booktown Mystery cozy series,"A Fatal Chapter" has them in spades!

Because I am a Cozy Addict and want to recruit more addicts, I will not reveal either of those two "OMG!" moments.  It's important that I don't because for those wanting to begin the series I think the two "OMG's!" in this title need to be experienced without any spoilers from me.

I am a great fan of this series, as is my 87 year old Aunt Lila.  The town of Stoneham, New Hampshire is where the two main characters, sisters Tricia and Angelica Miles, live and it is one of those wonderful cozy fantasy towns we all want to live in or visit in spite of the inordinate number of murders/crimes that occur.  Of course, I think the grounding tool cozy writers use to deflect the unreality of these fantasy towns is the inordinate number of murders and crimes that occur.  Yet somehow, I don't think that ever really stops any cozy addicted reader fantasizing about owning one of those never-failing businesses with their amazingly clever names.  

Haven't Got A Clue
"A Fatal Chapter" is the ninth title in this series and the ending was a true "OMG!" moment that made me burst into tears.  I won't say whether they were happy or sad tears.  However, I do want to say something about Tricia and Angelica.  Ms. Barrett's weaving of their characters, their personalities, and their relationship throughout the series has been intricate, interesting and quite wonderfully realistic within the fantasy structure of cozy mysteries.  Their development has surprised me on more than one occasion and as much as I like them both I confess that I have an ambivalence about them both; not something I'm used to in cozy mystery reading. My ambivalence towards Tricia and Angelica is rare for me.  Usually, that would be impetus to cease following the series, however, oddly enough my ambivalence isn't a turn off and  I see this as a testament to Ms. Barrett's gift in grounding her characters in a kind of reality.  Strangely enough, it's that reality that engenders my ambivalence, but at the same time, keeps me interested and caring about their lives and where they're going. That's the sign of a truly good writer.  

In "A Fatal Chapter"Angelica's character, has, for me, come full circle. And I think the ending of "A Fatal Chapter" sets the stage for Tricia to finally get on with her journey; and about time too.  That is a not-so-subtle hint, Ms. Barrett, to get Tricia a serious love interest and a clear picture of what she wants to do with her life. She's middle-aged and I don't want to see her end up an old-maid.  And I certainly hope I don't see she and  Angelica turn into spinster sisters!  But I know you won't let that happen.

That said, this a series most definitely worth reading. It's a series that will keep you on your toes I promise!  Please check out Ms. Barrett's website and Facebook page.  Did I really need to discover she writes two other series?

And, as always, I'd love to hear from fellow cozy addicts.  If you wish to know more about me, please visit my website:

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for reading my work. I'm so glad you enjoyed A Fatal Chapter.

    Lorraine Bartlett (aka Lorna Barrett)

    P.S. Besides my four mystery (Booktown, Victoria Square, Lotus Bay and Jeff Resnick) series, I also write the Tales of Telenia adventure-fantasy series (as Lorraine Bartlett). I hope you'll give these books a try, too.