A Midwinter’s Tail (Lucky Paws Petsitting Mystery)
by Bethany Blake
About the Book
A Midwinter’s Tail (Lucky Paws Petsitting Mystery)
4th in Series
Kensington (November 27, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
Digital ASIN: B07B7C8XQY
To bark or not to bark . . .
Professional pet sitter Daphne Templeton loves the holidays in Sylvan Creek, Pennsylvania. And nothing gets her into the spirit more than the town’s annual Bark the Halls Ball. The whole community will be there to wag their tails, especially this year’s special guest—Celeste “CeeCee” French, founder of a national chain of pet care franchises, who’s returning home to announce plans for a bright new flagship store.
But not everyone’s celebrating CeeCee’s homecoming. Daphne’s friend Moxie Bloom, owner of Spa and Paw, a unique salon for people and their pets, has plenty to growl about. So when CeeCee is found face down under Sylvan Creek’s town Christmas tree, stabbed with a distinctive pair of professional-grade pet shears, suspicion lands squarely on Moxie. Despite Daphne’s promises to Detective Jonathan Black, she quickly reprises her role as amateur sleuth. Ably assisted by her basset hound sidekick, Socrates, she must hurry to prove her friend’s innocence before a killer barks again . . .
Includes recipes for homemade pet treats!
Do you want to live in a town obsessed with their pets, especially their dogs? If you do then the town of Sylvan Creek, Pennsylvania is for you. I’ve always been partial to man’s best friend and found the dogs in this story to be the most delightful additions!
This is book four in the series and works well as a stand alone. I have not read any of the previous stories and felt keyed into the major happenings and quirks of the town and recurring characters.
The mystery is very well-plotted. There are several viable suspects. Most have believable motives and opportunity. The red herrings are therefore well-placed and keep the reader guessing. The pacing of the story and how the clues unfold were also well done and made for a very enjoyable read.
The romance: what’s a Cozy without a little romance? Not my kind of Cozy 😉. I love that this one has a sweet, broody, delicious detective to keep our heroine on her toes, in more ways than one. The dialogue between these two characters is fun and entertaining. There is no hurrying into the romance either. This is book 4 and things are only now getting more serious.
The doggies, of course, need a special mention. I can’t say who’s my favourite because they are all so lovable, from flamboyant Artie to sensible Socrates and not to leave out the pretentious Snowdrop and cute but naughty Tiny Tim, who inadvertently helps find clues. They provide comic relief with their realistic antics and clued in sensibilities.
Maybe one little improvement? Many sentences seem to start with the expression “All at once”. Doesn’t take away from the overall enjoyment of the book but it is noticeable.
By the way, if you’d like to try your hand at homemade pet treats there are a few recipes at the end. They look pretty straightforward and I’m sure your fur-baby will love the Christmas treat.
Daphne and her menagerie wormed their way into my heart and I’ll be continuing with this series!
This was a delightful read chock full of doggie laughs, Christmas spirit and a mystery to keep you guessing.
I give this story 4.5 barking espresso shots.
Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. All thoughts expressed are my own.
About the Author
Bethany Blake lives in a small, quaint town in Pennsylvania with her husband and three daughters. When she’s not writing or riding horses, she’s wrangling a menagerie of furry family members that includes a nervous pit bull, a fearsome feline, a blind goldfish, and an attack cardinal named Robert. Like Daphne Templeton, the heroine of her Lucky Paws Mysteries, Bethany holds a Ph.D. and operates a pet sitting business called Barkley’s Premium Pet Care.
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