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Ratings and Book Reviews (4 12 star ratings
4 reviews

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4.6 out of 5
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  • 1 person found this review helpful

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    A new literary themed cozy mystery!

    Wine and Punishment by Sarah Fox is the debut novel in A Literary Pub Mystery. Sadie Coleman has purchased an old grist mill in Shady Creek, Vermont. She has turned the lower floor into Inkwell, a literary themed pub. The annual Autumn Festival is scheduled to begin in four days with the pumpkin catapult contest, a pie contest (which Sadie has got roped into judging) and vendor tents. Sadie is getting ready to depart for her Aunt Gilda’s birthday party when one of her employee’s tells her that her ex-boyfriend, Eric is in the pub. Not wanting a confrontation, Sadie sneaks out the back and enjoys an evening with her aunt and friends. On her way home, Sadie is shocked to see the Treasure Chest, a local antique shop and the building next door on fire. The next morning Sadie goes to her car and finds that someone has slashed all four of the tires. Sadie believes Grayson Blake of Spirit Hill Brewery is responsible and heads off to confront him. Instead, Sadie finds a deceased Eric sprawled by the edge of the creek. Sadie finds herself at the top of Detective Marquez’s suspect list which puts her wonderful new life in jeopardy. Feeling that she has no other choice, Sadie starts nosing around. She needs to discover why Eric was in town and retrace his footsteps. Can Sadie find the killer before she must trade in her pub apron for a prison jumpsuit? I thought Wine and Punishment was nicely written with a good flow which made it an easy to read cozy mystery. I loved the description of the old grist mill that has been turned into a literary pub called Inkwell (wood, stone and plenty of books). There are cozy chairs, books and drinks named for books and authors. Sadie Coleman has left Boston to start over in Shady Creek, Vermont where her Aunt Gilda resides. Sadie leaves her ex-boyfriend, Eric behind who has trouble recognizing the truth and a terrible gambling addiction. I liked the picturesque town of Shady Creek with its charming shops and friendly residents (minus the killer). The town is gearing up for the annual Autumn Festival which has the unique pumpkin catapult contest. Each team constructs its own catapult for which Sadie is thankful she has employee, Damien Keys. The scarecrow for outside Inkwell is dressed like Sherlock Holmes (how cute). Sarah Fox took the time to set the stage for the series by describing the town and giving readers details on the main characters. I hope we get to learn more about the secondary characters in future books (Damien and Melanie for example). There is even a cute cat named Wimsy. I liked the interactions between Sadie and Wimsy, but I was surprised that she let her cat run around outside. There are various books and authors mentioned throughout Wine and Punishment including Ellery Adams. The mystery was interesting, and some readers may be surprised by the killer’s identity. I did feel that the pacing was inconsistent. I would have liked a brisker pace. I am giving Wine and Punishment 3.5 stars. Wine and Punishment is a good beginning to A Literary Pub Mystery series and I am curious to see what the author dishes up next time.
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    I loved it!

    This is a fantastic first in a new cozy series. I really enjoyed the characters especially the protagonist. The premise and location were interesting and well described. The mystery was a top notch whodunit and kept me guessing. I highly recommend this book, and look forward to reading the next in the series. I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader copy of this book.
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    Nice Beginning to a New Cozy Mystery!

    Sadie Coleman moves to the small town of Shady Creek, Vermont to renew her life and leave behind an ex with a gambling addiction. Because of her love of books, she opens a literary pub named the Inkwell. Then her ex comes to town to win her back. When his body is found near Sadie’s pub, Sadie becomes a suspect and decides a little snooping is in order. But, will this nosey Parker find herself in more trouble than she can handle? This was a good beginning to a new cozy mystery series from one of my favorite authors. The plot was engrossing and suspenseful. The setting was either fun or spooky and helped with the thrilling plot twists. The main character was very interesting and likeable. I was curious about her profession of being a pub owner, but it was not distastefully written, but had an intelligent feel. When the culprit was revealed, I didn’t remember her. She was not that prominent of a character and I felt uncertain how she related to the main plotline. I loved the recipes found at the end of the story. I received an Advanced Reader Copy of this book from NetGalley and am voluntarily reviewing it.
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    New Beginnings

    Love the cover! Sadie Coleman is starting over in Shady Creek, Vermont. She has purchased a historical mill that will full fill her dream of a new beginning, let her be closer to her aunt, and get away from an ex- that has wasted four years of her life. I felt disappointed that Sadie was giving the hunky leading man a hard time and that their relationship did not end with hugs. A murder, an arson, and multiple instances of vandalism plague the pages during the back drop of their Autumn Festival. "A copy of this book was provided by Kensington Books via Netgalley with no requirements for a review. Comments here are my honest opinion."

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