Today I review the newest book in the Retired Witches Mysteries by Joyce and Jim Lavene. But, it is with a heavy heart, because Joyce just recently passed away. JOYCE LILLIAN LAVENE May 23, 1954 – October 20, 2015
Joyce and Jim were married for 44 years. Our sympathies to the family. Lisa K's Book Reviews is hosting a Facebook Event today – Remembering Joyce Lavene. Feel free to stop by and share a memory or see what others are sharing.
Author: Joyce and Jim Lavene
Copyright: October 2015 (Berkley) 290 pgs
Series: 2nd in Retired Witches Mystery series
Mystery Sub-genre: Cozy paranormal
Main Characters: Molly Addison Renard, owner Smuggler’s Arcane Metaphysical shop and witch
Setting: Modern day, Wilmington, North Carolina
Obtained Through: Publisher for honest review
Molly's husband, a police officer, is working on a case of an apparent serial killer who murders young men along the Eastern seaboard. But Molly knows that the killings are of a supernatural nature due to a warning from the Witch Council that young male witches are being slain. The victims appear to be drown yet they have no water in their lungs. When their potential new coven member, young and powerful Brian Fuller, starts acting like he is under a spell, the small group of witches fears he is the next target and become determined to find out who the killer is.
A subplot is that Molly did the forbidden, told her non-magic husband she is a witch. She is terrified the Witch Council will find out and wipe his memory (which sometimes has disastrous results.) Then, her husband must work with his ex-wife on the case. Additionally, Molly is plagued by the powerful entity called the "Bone Man" who wants her to find his long lost wife, or else.
Molly is a great main character, a bit older lady who is fiercely loyal and the ring-leader of her little coven. Others in the cover include: Elsie is spunky and rambunctious lady, Olivia is a ghost and doesn't deal well with the prejudice against her kind among other witches, and Dorothy who is Olivia's daughter learning to control her powers that she recently discovered. The Grand Council is a bureaucracy of older wealthy and influential witches set in their ways. The Bone Man is far more than your expect, and I feel he was the breakout character.
The seaside town of Wilmington is used well, utilizing land and sea along with the coastal weather to great advantage. The plot is a solid premise and the writing did it justice while keeping the cozy feel. It kept my interest through the chapters and I found myself devouring the story.
The killer reveal was deliciously suspenseful and the resolution left plenty of complications and new hope to leave me wanting more.
Cute and quirky doesn't begin to describe this fun entry in the series.
Rating: Excellent - Loved it, it had a good grip on me! Buy it now.
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