Musseled Out

A Maine Clambake Mystery, Book #3

By Barbara Ross

ISBN13: 9780758286895

Author website:

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Kayt


The busy summer tourist season is winding down in Busman’s Harbor, Maine, but Julia Snowden senses trouble simmering for the Snowden Family Clambake Company. Shifty David Thwing – the “Mussel King” of upscale seafood restaurants – is sniffing around town for a new location. But serving iffy clams turns out to be the least of his troubles….

When Thwing is found sleeping with the fishes beneath a local lobsterman’s boat, the police quickly finger Julia’s brother-in-law, Sonny, as the one who cooked up the crime. Sure, everyone knows Sonny despised the Mussel King…but Julia believes he’s innocent. Proving it won’t be easy, though. It seems there’s a lot more than murder on the menu, and Julia needs to act fast….

Includes traditional Maine clambake recipes!


Musseled Out is the third in the A Maine Clambake Mystery series. It is a wonderful sophomore effort. Probably the best yet. The main character, Julia Snowden, is facing a lot of decisions or should I say avoiding several decisions that need to be faced. She still has her old job back in the city and she only planned to stay to help keep the family business going for one summer. She has found love, but is it what she wants? Where will she live, what will she do? And although the family business is turning around, Snowden Family Clambake Company is facing some fierce competition in David Thwing the mussel King. When a boat is seen drifting with no one at the helm things really heat up. Her brother-in-law is suspected of getting rid of the competition and his best friend is missing as well.

What else can Julia do but try to find out what really happened out on that boat, where Peter is and who killed the mussel king. Was it the feud between the lobsterman, was it because of Thwing muscling in on the family business, why is the DEA involved and who is the dead man’s young business partner really? Twists and turns, red herrings, secrets, danger, it all plays out in the pages of this wonderful well written cozy. The characters are interesting and fun. The storylines are in depth and intriguing. Barbara Ross writing style is seamless and descriptive to the point where the reader can almost smell the salt air and fire pits cooking amazing meals. The details and side stories are cooked to perfection.

Even if you have never been to Maine, never eaten a mussel or lobster, you can sink your teeth into this wonderful cozy. I do not think you have to read the first two in this series to truly enjoy Musseled Out. Although they are wonderful so why not. Barbara Ross does a great job of getting the reader caught up with the characters and back stories while not dragging the momentum down one bit. Julia’s family and friends are wonderful characters, well written and full of life. One of my favorite characters, Gus, the owner of the town restaurant, is dealing with a horrible tragedy when his dear wife has to be hospitalized. The town’s people, including Julia and Chris, step up to make sure the restaurant stays open for the fisherman. The comradery is wonderful in this small Maine town.

Musseled Out is a wonderful one night stand. I could not put it down. I had to read it in one night. The characters are wonderful, even the mean ones. The writing is fun, enchanting and thoroughly entertaining. If you love cozies you will love this book. Delve into small town Maine life and enjoy a Whoopie Pie with some friends. The storyline is tight with side trips that delight. This is a wonderful mystery series and the latest installment is the best yet. The ending is intense and action packed. The last few pages brought a huge smile to my face. Grab a copy and sit back and enjoy the scenery, the people and the action. You cannot go wrong with this one!