Brought to you by OBS reviewer Laurie
It’s autumn in Sea Harbor, and as the tourists leave, a mysterious guest arrives. When she’s implicated in a crime, the Seaside Knitters must quickly table their knitting project and search out a motif for murder.
Fall is usually a relaxing time in Sea Harbor, but it’s turning out to be a busy season for Izzy Chambers Perry. Not only is she helping the Seaside Knitters make a magnificent throw to celebrate the fortieth wedding anniversary of her aunt and uncle, but she and her husband are finally selling the cottage she lived in before she got married and had a darling baby girl. To Izzy’s surprise, newcomer Julia Ainsley seems determined to buy the home—although she’s never set foot inside.
But on the day of the open house, things take a dark turn. A body is uncovered in the cottage’s backyard. When the police find Julia’s name and phone number in the victim’s pocket, this slender thread of evidence makes her a person of interest. Soon the spotlight of suspicion widens to include old friends and town leaders as a tragic happening, long buried in the sleepy seaside town, is slowly brought to the surface.
Before the joyful anniversary celebration can be realized, the Seaside Knitters must work to unravel the real reason Julia Ainsley has come to their town—and the tangled and troubled ties from the past that bind friends and townsfolk together.
There are quite a few things to like about the latest installment in the Seaside Knitters series. Set in a small town on the North Shore of Massachusetts, this book sees our knitters moving into the autumn, away from the busy tourist season. I absolutely love the atmosphere of these books. I grew up in Massachusetts, on Cape Ann, in fact, and I love Goldenbaum’s depictions of the environment. Massachusetts in early autumn is lovely, and the reader gets placed in the middle. Possibly a bit more sarcasm would have made it more realistic to the Massachusetts I know and love, but the sense of place is very well done.
I also enjoyed the fact that we get the perspective of multiple characters. The main sleuth in this book is Izzy, one of the younger members of the knitting group, but we learn details in the story from other characters too. This keeps the narrative less static, and certainly requires more work on the part of the author, to get inside the heads of the different women. As with any good cozy mystery there are also captivating descriptions of delicious food, smartly decorated houses, in short, the kind of sensory pleasures that really add to the genre. Sea Harbor has a very active social scene, I wish I had the social life of some of these ladies!
As for the mystery, the intertwined mysteries that the ladies investigate were scintillating, and kept me guessing. There are sufficient twists and turns to keep the amateur sleuth reader on her toes. I look forward to the next in the series.