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    Return to Sea Harbor with the knitting ladies

    How to Knit a Murder by Sally Goldenbaum takes us to Sea Harbor, Massachusetts. Rose Chopra has returned to town to heal after the death of her mother. Rose is admiring the display in The Seaside Knitting Studio when Bree McIntosh draws her inside. Rose saves a new shipment of yarn from water damage and then proceeds to fix the leak for Izzy Perry. When Izzy learns that Rose is staying at a run down boardinghouse, she invites her to live in the apartment above the shop. Stella Palazola, a local realtor, offers Rose a job as the fix-it person for her listings. Spencer Paxton III has been making enemies with his plans to destroy Sea Harbor’s historic district and his political aspirations. Spencer wishes to purchase a home that he father tried to acquire many years ago. That listing needs some dry wall repaired from squirrel damage and it is Rose’s first job with Stella. When Spencer is found dead inside the home, fingers point at Rose since she was the last person known to have been on the property. The Seaside Knitters rally round Rose and begin exploring Spencer’s murder. They have no shortage of suspects including Mayor Scaglia. Can the group stitch together the clues to reveal the killer? How to Knit a Murder is part of A Seaside Knitters Society Mystery series. If you have not read any of the previous twelve books in the series, I do not recommend starting with How to Knit a Murder (it would be confusing for new readers). While I enjoyed the earlier books in this series, I was not drawn into this one. I found the pace to be slow (the book dragged for me) with the murder not occurring until I was 39% through the book. By the time Spencer was found dead, I already knew the killers’ identity (plus I knew Spencer would be the one to die). There was little investigating by the knitting group (they did discuss the case). There are many cozy moments in the story with the group enjoying their Thursday night get togethers, chatting, eating, and knitting. I liked the reference to Grey’s Anatomy made by Mae. Bullying and its devastating effects are addressed in How to Knit a Murder. There is a knitting pattern for a slouchy cardigan at the end. How to Knit a Murder does contain all our favorite knitters plus the new addition of Rose with a quaint small town (good basis for a cozy). The characters are well-developed, but there are a number of them. It can be hard to keep them all straight. I like the charming town of Sea Harbor with the various artistic characters (creative bunch of people) and the charming knitting shop (I wish we had one in my town). I would, though, like the author needs to focus on the mystery element (make the story less predictable). The author needs to deviate from her formula and provide a complex mystery with active investigating (less eating). I hope Sally Goldenbaum ups her game in the next installment in A Seaside Knitters Society Mystery series. I am giving How to Knit a Murder 3 out of 5 stars.

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