Title: Slay Bells (Christmas Village Mystery #1)
Published: November 23rd 2018
Where I Got It: My shelf (Netgalley)
‘Twas the week before Christmas and all through the village, the night settled in over swirling-smoke chimneys; the air was alive with pine and holly, with sugar and cinnamon and cider, by golly!
Along snowy lanes and through shadows it crept, past windows behind which each villager slept, where sleeping dogs lie and cats rest a’purring—
Tonight, in Christmas Village, a killer is stirring.
Welcome to Christmas Village, a magical hamlet where even in December the roses hold their luster and bees buzz among the bluebells. You’re just in time for the week-long Christmas Festival, and nowhere is Christmas celebrated with such unrestrained merriment as the village which bears its name. Mayor Cobblestone and Sheriff Fell will be somewhere nearby, doing all they can to make sure you’re safe during your stay.
Provided you haven’t booked a room at Plum Cottage.
Nestled betwixt an opulent garden with meandering footpaths and an ancient grove of plum trees, Rose Willoughby’s boarding house is plum-full with lodgers. There are no vacancies but just wait. Soon there will be one…and another…and another.
Presently lodging at the cottage are: the juggler, the acrobat, the magician, the psychic, the strongman, the manager, and the pretty assistant. In town as festival entertainment they’ve each brought their own bag of tricks. And a closetful of skeletons.
When the entertainers begin dying in inexplicable ways, some villagers believe a beast from old village lore is the culprit. The sheriff knows better, but he’s just as helpless to catch the invisible killer as are the town folk with their eyes to the sky in search of a flying creature. But our mysterious murderer hasn’t counted on yet another lodger coming to the cottage: Maribel Claus.
Christmas and mysteries. Yes, please!
The story is set ion Christmas Village that is simply magical. At the lodge in town, murders begin to happen and the sheriff is clueless on what to do. He gets Maribel Claus to assist him to track this murderer down. Will they be able to find the murderer before Christmas or before things get out of hand?
I want to visit this town (sans murder of course). What a fun and magical place! This would be a fun place to hang out during the Christmas week. So pretty! The townsfolk seem like fun too even though they are all useless, especially the sheriff, without Madame Claus.
I didn't mind Maribel Claus, but she seemed too knowledgeable about people she didn't even know. Maybe she is magic too ;) I felt bad for the Sheriff. So dumb, so dumb. But yes, I didn't really connect with anyone. That was my biggest downfall for this book. I just didn't care as much as I wanted to. I just felt like I was along for the ride and didn't really connect with anything. Not the author's fault. The writing was done well enough. I just didn't really get into it like I normally do with mysteries!
The mystery did seem obvious but not obvious at the same time. I had my guesses who the murder was. I realized who it was after about the halfway mark. However, I wasn't too sure. My first guess had been wrong. Super, duper wrong.
The book dragged at the beginning until a certain event happened and then I was drawn in. I was worried there for a bit. I wanted to DNF, but I hung on and then what happened happened and I had to know the truth.
Overall, this wasn't bad. I enjoyed the mystery, but I didn't love this book. I didn't connect with anyone and I felt like it dragged too much at the beginning. I am curious to see what else this author has. Maybe more mysteries in this interesting town! I'll give this 3 stars.