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Monday, February 22, 2021

Review - A Glimmer of Death

From the author of the Tamara Hayle mysteries comes a new series.  Here is a teaser: "In the first of a thrilling new series, one woman’s extraordinary psychic gift plunges her already-troubled present into chaos—and puts her future in someone’s deadly sights... "  This is a brand new series and I love starting with the first book.  Let's see what this author and series has to offer!

Valerie Wilson Wesley

Copyright: Jan 2021 (Kensington Books) 240 pgs

Series: 1st in Odessa Jones Mysteries

Sensuality: mild (suicide is mentioned a few times)

Mystery Sub-genre: Cozy mystery

Main Character: Odessa Jones, recently widowed real estate agent

Setting: Modern day, Grovesville, New Jersey

Obtained Through: Publisher via NetGalley for honest review

Book Blurb: "Until now, Odessa Jones’ inherited ability to read emotions and foretell danger has protected her. But second sight didn’t warn her she would soon be a widow—and about to lose her home and the catering business she’s worked so hard to build. The only things keeping Dessa going are her love for baking and her sometimes-mellow cat, Juniper. Unfortunately, putting her life back together means taking a gig at an all-kinds-of-shady real estate firm run by volatile owner Charlie Risko . . .
Until Charlie is brutally killed—and Dessa’s bullied co-worker is arrested for murder. Dessa can’t be sure who’s guilty. But it doesn’t take a psychic to discover that everyone from Charlie’s much-abused staff to his long-suffering younger wife had multiple reasons to want him dead. And as Dessa follows a trail of lies through blackmail, dead-end clues, and corruption, she needs to see the truth fast—or a killer will bury her deep down with it." 

Odessa can see "glimmers", aura-like colors that correspond to a person’s emotional state and smell scents that indicate coming events.  Like smelling nutmeg means death is coming. She is grieving loss of her husband, and is starting her baking business on the side. She is a kind soul I'd like as a friend. Lennox Royal, and ex-cop, who runs the diner is a possible love interest.  Aunt Phoenix is her only close relative and source of information about her unique abilities. Daryl, her deceased husband is felt strongly throughout the story. He was a gem and she often recalls him to mind.  Bertie, Vinton, Harley, Juda, and Tanya populate the office and are suspects.

The plot is doled out in dollops as the story unfolds. The subplot of Lennox liking Odessa adds a gentleness to the story I really appreciated. Once I got past all the introductions of the characters and the murder happened, I was hooked.  The pacing is steady and shows an author who knows how to keep you interested.

The killer reveal was different than I expected, but it worked perfectly for who the killer turned out to be.  The wrap-up is the perfect ending.

I am officially a fan of Valerie Wilson Wesley now. She is a skilled author weaving the story and characters into a confection as fine as the cakes Odessa bakes!  FYI, a recipe is included that I just have to try.

Rating: Near Perfect - Buy two copies: one for you and one for a friend. 

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I will be more busy on my author Goodreads page, and I would love to see there. Please join me. 

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