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Book Review: Music From The Dead by Bebe Faas Rice

Music From The Dead by Bebe Faas Rice is a young adult horror novel originally published in April 1997.  Marnie and her cousin Peter drive up to the mansion that Marnie's father rented for the summer ahead of her father.  When the cousins arrive at the mansion called Stonycraig and settle in, Marnie is nervous because she thought she saw a shadow in one of the windows.  Then, she starts hearing a woman crying late at night.  Are the stories about Stonycraig being haunted true? This is a book I originally read as a teenager, and I remember being impressed by the storyline and writing.  I recently decided to reread it as an adult to see if it was as good as I remembered.  I have to say it was phenomenal.  Well-written and unputdownable.   Even though there were parts that came back to me as I made my way through Music From The Dead , I still found it to be perfectly eerie and creepy.  There was even a little bit of romance but nothing inappropriate for a tween or teen.  The only com

Book Review: Christmas Scarf Murder by Carlene O'Connor, Maddie Day, and Peggy Ehrhart

Christmas Scarf Murder by Carlene O'Connor, Maddie Day, and Peggy Ehrhart is a collection of three novellas with an expected publication date of September 27, 2022.  I received an Advanced Readers Copy (ARC) from NetGalley and Kensington Books for free in exchange for my honest review.  I was delighted to have been chosen to read and review this collection ahead of publication.

All three stories in this collection had a common thread . . . they all had characters that knitted and a scarf played an important part in each story.  Each story was a continuation of a cozy mystery series.

Christmas Scarf Murder by Carlene O'Connor is about a theft at a local nursing home in Ireland.  When a dead body shows ups at the local tractor parade with the missing scarf around the deceased's neck, Siobhan O’Sullivan must connect all the dots.  This story started off slowly for me, and I found some of the slang difficult to figure out.  With that being said, the premise was skillfully done and reminded me of something Agatha Christie would have written.  Three out of five stars.

Scarfed Down by Maddie Day opens with Robbie Jordan and her employees trying to figure out Christmas specials for her restaurant in Indiana.  When one of her patrons dies while knitting a green scarf, Robbie must proof that her Aunt Adele has nothing to do with the death.  This story was easy to follow and the characters are likable.  I enjoyed the premise of the plot and felt it was well thought out.  However, some of the dialogue was a little over the top to me, and it made the characters seem like they should have been from the South instead of the Midwest.  Three out of five stars.

Death by Christmas Scarf by Peggy Ehrhart opens with a knitting club talking about the death of Carys Walnutt, who was strangled after the local auction for the public library.  Pamela Paterson and her friend try to figure out who murdered the sour lady and exonerate the person who bid on the scarf Carys was found wearing.  I enjoyed that Pamela worked for a magazine and that she had such a close knit circle of friends.  The storyline was enjoyable, but I figured out who the murderer was from the very beginning . . . I just wasn't sure what the motive was behind the killing.  Additionally, I didn't care for the dialogue.  It felt like the author threw in big words when common language would have sufficed.  Three out of five stars.

All in all, I enjoyed all three novellas, and they were quick reads, which was just what I was looking for at the time.  These stories were perfect to put me in the mood for Christmas, despite there being murders in each story.  Thankfully, none of the stories were gory.  Each story was a solid three out of five stars.

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