A Dark and Stormy Murder – Julia Buckley

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5/5 Writer’s Apprentices

On The Back:

An aspiring suspense novelist lands in the middle of a real crime, in the first in a captivating new series by the author of the Undercover Dish Mysteries.
 
Lena London’s literary dreams are coming true—as long as she can avoid any real-life villains…
 
Camilla Graham’s bestselling suspense novels inspired Lena London to become a writer, so when she lands a job as Camilla’s new assistant, she can’t believe her luck. Not only will she help her idol craft an enchanting new mystery, she’ll get to live rent-free in Camilla’s gorgeous Victorian home in the quaint town of Blue Lake, Indiana.

But Lena’s fortune soon changes for the worse. First, she lands in the center of small town gossip for befriending the local recluse. Then, she stumbles across one thing that a Camilla Graham novel is never without—a dead body, found on her new boss’s lakefront property.

Now Lena must take a page out of one of Camilla’s books to hunt down clues in a real crime that seems to be connected to the novelist’s mysterious estate—before the killer writes them both out of the story for good… 

My Thoughts:

*I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review from Berkley and Netgalley. This title will be released on July 5. All thoughts and opinions stated in this review are entirely my own.*

If A Dark and Stormy Murder is any indication, you’d better get ready because Julia Buckley is soon going to be a common name in the cozy mystery world. I loved this book so much, I absolutely couldn’t put it down and I was honestly disappointed that it ended so soon.

Lena was an absolute joy to read about. She was smart, kind, and had just the right amount of snarkiness to make her funny at times. Camilla, though, was my favorite character. Even at the end of the book there’s some holes in her life that I’d like filled, but I believe we’ll see them filled in the next book. There’s a slight love triangle happening (which is the only downpoint of the entire book) but by the end it seems to be wrapped up. Both of the love interests were equally wonderful in my opinion, so I hope the story continues on the same track to dissipate the love triangle but keep both love interests.

The setting was beautiful and different from the cozy norm. Most cozy mysteries take place in the east or in the south, and honestly it can get tiring reading about the same areas. However, I love it when I stumble a book set in the midwest, which is actually where I live. It’s a nice change of pace.

The mystery was also great. There were actually two mysteries going on at the time and both were well plotted and honestly surprising. I can’t wait to see where Ms. Buckley goes with the second book and the second mystery, which was left a little bit of a cliffhanger.

Overall an startlingly good first in a series book. After reading this book and The Big Chili I can say that I’ll be following Ms. Buckley’s work for awhile yet. Highly recommend!

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