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Thursday, April 4, 2019

Review - May Day Murder

I have only read one other in the series, the third book Yuletide Homicide (click here).  I was in the mood for a springtime book (aren't we all?) and this hit the spot.  Check out how the book fared in my opinion.

Author: Jennifer David Hesse

Copyright: March 2019 (Kensington) 352 pgs

Series: 5th in Wiccan Wheel Mystery series

Sensuality: mild

Mystery Sub-genre: Cozy, amateur Sleuth

Main Characters: Keli Milanni, family law attorney and Wiccan 

Setting: Modern day, Edindale, Illinois

Obtained Through: Netgalley

From the book cover: "Spring is in the air, but for Edindale, Illinois, attorney Keli Milanni, murder is the only thing blooming . . . 

Keli’s looking forward to Beltane, the time-honored Wiccan holiday that celebrates life with feasting, ceremonial dancing, and ancient Celtic rituals. But since recently leaving her law firm and opening her own practice, Keli has more on her plate than simple abundance. Still, she always has time for a friend. Erik, a Druid from a neighboring town, has had a run of bad luck he blames on a curse cast by his ex-girlfriend Denise, a practicing witch whose expertise in the dark arts can’t save her from her own deadly end.

When Keli finds herself a person of interest in the investigation, she begins to wonder if she herself might be cursed. With a little help from her friends, including her devoted boyfriend Wes, Keli aims to find out who poisoned Denise. What she uncovers is a witch’s brew of spells, hexes, and black magic that raises questions about her own Wiccan worldview. As the community gathers for the May Day festivities, it’s up to Keli to stop a killer from springing ahead to another murder . . ."

Keli Milanni is a smart modern gal struggling to  get her solo her law firm financially stable since she left a big law firm.  
Wes Callahan, a tattooed bartender, is Keli's boyfriend and I enjoy the move away from the CRI (Cop Romantic Interest).  Mila is the owner of New Age gift shop Moonstone Treasures and a Wiccan mentor for Keli.  Farrah is her best friend and trusty sidekick who is laid up with a bum knee in this book. The multiple suspects surrounding Erik and the victim Denise provide a colorful cast with a myriad of motives.

Edindale and a neighboring town are the prime setting with a few wilderness areas included.  The beginning of spring blossoms in the book and enveloped me as I read through a snow storm.

The plot begins fairly simple but the motive is murky as police and media complicate matters by claiming it was a witch-on-witch killing.  Subplots include Keli dealing with her Wiccan private beliefs becoming publicly known and how that will affect her new law firm and somebody sabotaging her business in addition to the murder.

The pacing kept a steady forward momentum with just enough twists.  The killer reveal was deliciously tense and dramatic!  Nicely done there, I must say. The wrap up was touching and also left one subplot to carry into the next book as a dangling mystery.  It effectively makes me want to read the next book to see the answer.

Keli is a touch too trusting in this outing.  I found myself thinking in a couple of scenes that she was trusting a stranger too much.  Otherwise, the book has a solid mystery with the subplots that all kept me flipping pages.  This was only the second book in the series I've read and I had no problem understanding references etc. I like the simple weaving of Wiccan beliefs in the story without too much detail.

Rating: Excellent - Loved it! Buy it now and put this author on your watch list 


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2 comments:

Mystica said...

The cover is appealing as well.

prince said...

You play bazaarfir se apna dil denge tumhe khelne k liye and satta king Kabhi udaas ho jayo to btana mujhe.

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