The Iced Princess
A Snow Globe Shop Mystery #2
By Christine Husom
Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Jeanie
The national bestselling author of Snow Way Out returns with more sparkling snow globes and cold-blooded murder…
It’s that time of the year again—the Christmas rush is about to begin, and curio shop owner Camryn Brooks and her BFF, coffee shop owner Alice “Pinky” Nelson, need to hire additional help. Their former high-school classmate, Molly Dalton, is not exactly who they had in mind. Has the rich socialite worked a day in her life? But Molly practically begs for the job.
On her first day, Molly seems to be in her own little world, and Cami worries that her new employee may flake out. The problem turns out to be far worse than that when Cami discovers Molly dead in the back of the shop, after drinking a poisoned cup of coffee. Soon there is an avalanche of suspects as Cami starts shoveling through the clues—including a shattered snow globe of Marilyn Monroe. Now Cami will have to venture out of her safety zone before the pathological poisoner stirs up more trouble…(from Goodreads)
I really enjoyed ‘The Iced Princess’. It is the second in A Snow Globe Shop Mystery series, and can easily be enjoyed as a standalone. This mystery nabbed my attention from the first chapter and wouldn’t let go until the last page was turned! Camryn “Cami” Brooks returned to her home town of Brooks Landing, MN with no job or prospects, but due to her changes in her adoptive parent’s lives, she began to run their specialty snow globe shop, Curio Finds, until they could return. Through an adjoining door is the coffee shop owned by Cami’s BFF, Alice “Pinky” Nelson, the Brew-Ha-Ha, and they often helped out in each other’s shop when necessary. Camryn returned after she was let go by her boss, Senator Ramona Zimmer, after she walked in on what she thought was Camryn and her husband in a torrid moment when in truth, Camryn was trying to get away from him.
Cami and Pinky discussed getting a part-time helper for the upcoming holiday season. When they agreed to do so, two ladies, neither of them remotely alike in any way, wanted the job – even willing to work on a volunteer business until their ability to do the job was proven. One was Molly Dalton, who they referred to as ‘princess’ due to the good life they thought she had. The other was Emmy Anders, a seemingly lonely widow who was a newcomer to town. While Pinky and Camryn did not expect a line going out the door to apply for a part-time holiday position, they didn’t think the wife of a wealthy attorney would want it as badly as a retired widow would. They decided to train both ladies for the position, and would possibly select one to keep at the end of a trial period. And what a first day they had!. At day’s end, Cami waited only for Molly to come out of the restroom before locking up. Which she didn’t. Cami finally unlocked the door and found Molly sitting, fully clothed, on the toilet lid. Dead. No. Way.
Told in the first person by Camryn, it was easy to step into her winter woolies and boots. At least until that punched in the gut feeling when learning that police thought Molly had been poisoned – and in the curio shop, a to-go cup from Pinky’s had the odor of almonds, as did Molly herself. Worse, the poison was planted by someone who had been in their shops.
Cami and Pinky are the main characters, and they are a blast. Friends since school, they knew most everything there was to know about each other. They are loyal and caring, living by the small-town values they were raised with. Gals who would be good to have as friends. Cami’s parents, the aunt and uncle who adopted her after her birth parents’ deaths when she was young, are the best of parents and an example of a loving marriage. Their best friends, Police Officer Mark and teacher Erin, have the same qualities as Cami and Pinky. We didn’t get to know poor Molly very well; her mother and Emmy are two kind and courageous women.
This story moves at a fast pace, leaving no moments for boredom. Humor intermixed with the solemnity of the murder, sparks of a possible romance, and a powderkeg of secrets kept for years, all contribute to the unexpected plot twists and turns that kept this reader on her toes. It was exciting, to say the least, to see Cami try to free the primary suspect by trying to determine who the real bad guys/ gals might be – especially when hoping she and her ‘helpers’ wouldn’t get caught. I highly recommend ‘The Iced Princess’ to cozy mystery lovers who appreciate well-written novels with a lot of suspense, some humor, and a little romance. The friends and families in Brooks Landing, MN make it the kind of place I’d love to visit again!