A Tourist Trap Mystery, Book #9.75
By Lynn Cahoon
Author’s Website: www(.)lynncahoon(.)com
’Twas the season of Christmas, and all through South Cove, California, Santa is working overtime to deliver a special gift . . .
Jill Gardner has volunteered her Coffee, Books, and More to host a Christmas adopt-a-pet party. Among the potential forever friends is a male terrier named Baby, whose owner died of a heart attack. With few clues to go on, even finding the name of Baby’s human is a daunting task. But there’s no challenge too big for Jill this holiday season.
Playing Santa’s Little Helper, Jill is determined to find out what happened —and to fulfill a long-time coming Christmas wish . . . (Goodreads)
Well, nothing like jumping into a series when it is well underway. Santa Puppy is the 9.75 book in the A Tourist Trap Mystery series and the first book I have read of Lynn Cahoon’s. I am now asking myself…why? While this series has been on my to-be-read (TBR) pile of books for quite a while, I had not managed to read one of the books until now. Generally, I am not a fan of novella’s but during the festive holiday season, I try and find worthwhile novella’s to fit into the bustling season. So I pulled this from my TBR pile and what I found was a charming and engaging story!
I love how this story starts – with Jill Gardner (owner of Coffee, Books and More), her boyfriend Greg King (South Cove’s primary police detective as well as a hottie) and other friends off to the Humane Society – to wash dogs in preparation for the next week’s event showcasing the animals to boost adoptions.
I really enjoyed the beginning when after a couple of pages of storytelling, the reader encounters introduction of both Jill and the setting:
“I guess I should introduce myself. I’m Jill Gardner, and I run the only bookstore slash coffeehouse in South Cove. Well, I own the place. My aunt Jackie is the manager and she runs the store-and me, most days. Of all the places I’ve ever lived, South Cove feels like home. The town is the perfect little tourist spot right off Highway 1. We have one restaurant and a tone of art studios and galleries and a few specialty shops, so if you’re looking for coffee and a treat, it’s either my place-Coffee, Books, and More-or Diamond Lille’s. We have a pretty good hold on the food business. The closest grocery store is in Bakerstown. A fact I’d bemoaned more than once.”
So the scene is set…Jill and crew are at the Humane Society…and with the title Santa Puppy – you know a dog is a major component of the storyline. Baby, a small ten-year-old terrier dog seems to catch Jill’s eye. Turns out his history is tied to the recent death of his owner – a homeless man found on the beach having died from an apparent heart attack.
So a mystery is borne. Jill is determined to find out all that she can about Baby and his deceased owner. What ensues is an intriguing and captivating novella.
I came to enjoy the people of South Cove and as such, want to learn more about Jill, Greg, Aunt Jackie…. the whole darn town actually.
The ending ties up the story with a nice, neat little bow. A true feel good Christmas time novella leaving this reader happy she picked up this book. If you like short reads set around Christmas time, I suggest Ms. Cahoon’s Santa Puppy as your next read. For now, I am off in search of the first book in A Tourist Trap Mystery series – Guidebook to Murder.
*OBS would like to thank the publisher for supplying a free copy of this title in exchange for an honest review*