Date Published: 2014-03-04
Genres: Cozy Mystery, Secular Fiction
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Roanoke, Virginia, is home to some of the country’s most exquisite gardens, and it’s Camellia Harris’s job to promote them. But when a political fundraiser turns deadly, everyone’s a candidate for murder... Cam and her best friend, Annie, are planning a gala for a local Senate candidate—a murder mystery themed silent auction where the guests bid on who will be the night’s “victim.” Coordinating a beautiful display of fall flowers and planning the perfect fake crime is hard enough, but with a guest list that is a “who’s who” of the Roanoke elite, Cam has her hands full navigating the egos and grudges of her high society guests. When local financial tycoon Derrick Windermere is found dead next to a shattered pot of chrysanthemums, the night’s fun and games quickly turn serious. Half the guests had good reason to want Windermere dead, but only one is suspiciously missing in action—Annie’s father. Now Cam will not only have to figure out which partygoer is a killer, but find her friend’s father before all their reputations end up dragged through the mud...
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the Author/Penguin and was under no obligation to post a review, positive or negative.
This was a great read! Though third in the series, this book is easily read as a stand alone. From witty characters, to a plot line full of twists and chuckles, it keeps the pages turning long in to the night. And, being set in Roanoke Virginia made me love it all the more, since I’m a Virginia brat. Ms. Carlson’s cast of characters were ones that quickly became friends and I was happy to follow Cam and Annie around on their Garden Society crime solving.
Politics and murder. The two things that always seem to go together. Ms. Carlson did a fabulous job at blending the two. Cam and Annie’s characters were likable and often laughable, as they plotted and planned a silent auction for the high society folks of Roanoke. Concluding on a murder mystery style function, they were in for a big surprise when a guest really does turn up dead! The who-done-it of the story came to full play as they picked and weeded through who could have wanted the guest dead (and oh there were plenty!).
Add to the murder a missing person and Ms. Carlson rounded it out perfectly. Each page brought something new to the story and kept me on the edge of my seat and turning the pages long into the night. I finished this book in quite literally one day!
I highly recommend this mystery to all who want laughs, mystery and a cast of quirky characters that will become your friends in no time! Worthy of 4 stars and two thumbs up for sure! I am looking forward to going back and reading the first two books in this series and catching up with Cam and Annie again. Fabulous job, Ms. Carlson. Bring on the next!