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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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4.7 out of 5
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  • Multiple Story-Lines keep it interesting!

    I always look forward to a new Maine Clambake Mystery. Spring in Busman's Harbor, Maine can be a cruel weather season full of mud. Julia Snowden is preparing for a new season of the Snowden Family Clambake tourists and further construction of their ancestral home, Windsholme. When Julia's sister Livvie's employer Zoey Butterfield has her store vandalized and all of their pottery destroyed, Julia is determined to find out 'who-done-it". A later murder in the store's basement has the police focusing on Zoey, much to Julia's protests. There are multiple storylines running and Julia's romantic relationships play a major part of the backstory. Characters are all well developed and interesting. Episode 10 in this series focuses more on relationships than the actual clambake (which I really enjoy). I look forward to episode 11 and hopefully more construction on Windsholme. I volunteered to read an ARC from Kensington Publishing through Net Galley.

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  • One of my favorite Maine based cozies!

    Julia Snowden is still recovering from a broken heart. It’s the off season and she’s doing her best to keep busy. While walking in town she sees police cars in front of the local pottery shop where her sister works. Worried about Livvie she runs to the shop and finds that while LIvvie is fine, someone has completely trashed the shop and her items on display. Who would do such a thing in their small town?

The next morning when the other renter who shares the basement with the pottery shop is found murdered in the basement, Livvie asks Julia to help clear her boss Zoey’s name. The two business owners had a contentious relationship, but would someone really kill over disagreements? Someone did…but who killed Phinney and why? Julia intends to find out, but as she becomes friends with Zoey, the state detectives warn her to be careful as Zoey is their top suspect. Can Julia figure out who killed the older man or will she just be another piece of collateral damage in running Zoey off? This is by far one my most favorite cozy series set in Maine. I’ve bee reading it for years now and am always looking for the next entry to come out. Lovely scenery that you can almost smell and see, solid characters that you can relate to and a great whodunit every time. Can’t ask for more than that.

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  • a good read!

    Maine, law-enforcement, amateur-sleuth, felony vandalism, murder, murder-investigation, conflict, greed, family-business, family-dynamics, friendship, small-business, small-town, local-politics, tourist-town, cozy-mystery, divorce***** Julia is part of the family who operate the Snowden Family Clambake on their private island on the coast of Maine. This winter she is rather at loose ends and is staying with her widowed mother. Her sister works down the block at a pottery store for a gifted potter. The store shares a basement with the shop next door. The initial alarming incidents are a contentious argument at a town hall meeting followed by the discovery of felony vandalism at the pottery store. Then comes the murder of the next-door shop owner. Let the sleuthing begin. I love this series, but the author slips items of past history into the tale so well that it could probably stand alone. The ongoing characters seem so real and engaging, and the new ones are clearly presented. I loved it! I requested and received a free e-book copy from Kensington Books via NetGalley. Thank you!

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  • Did Town Politics Lead to Murder?

    Spring usually means that Julia Snowden is trying to get ready for the busy season with her family’s clambake, but this year, she is being distracted by local politics. Specifically, there is the heated debate in town about turning the downtown area into a pedestrian mall on Friday and Saturday nights during the tourist season. On opposite sides of the issue are business neighbors Zoey Butterfield, who owns the pottery story where Julia’s sister works, and Phinney Hardison. When Zoey’s story is vandalized, the only motive she can think of is this controversy. Then a dead body is found. Is local politics the motive for the violence? Or is something else going on? I’ve been anxiously waiting for this book since the last one came out. Yes, we do get to the storylines left open from the previous book, and I was actually impressed with the growth in Julia that came out of them. Of course, the book left me wondering where we were going to go next, but that’s a good thing. Yes, if you are new to the series, you could jump in here, but you’ll appreciate the growth better if you’ve read the earlier books. This is such a great series you’ll be glad you did. As always, Julia leads a great cast of new and returning characters, and I loved spending time with them. The mystery for this book is strong, and I was once again amazed at how everything was plotted when I reached the end. Fans will be happy with this book. If that isn’t you, fix that today.

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  • A Busy Tale!

    Muddled Through is the 10th book in the Maine Clambake Mystery series by Barbara Ross. In this book, I was pleased to be reacquainted with the proprietor of The Snowden Family Clambake Company, Julia Snowden of Busman’s Harbor, Maine. Julia helps out when her sister, Livvie, a potter at Lupine Design owned by Zoey Butterfield, gets into a spot of bother and the police are called. Zoey is supporting plans to turn part of the main street into a pedestrian mall during the summer and other tourist-friendly changes proposed for the town. Following a town meeting, Phinney Hardison, who shares space with Zoey, from where he sells antiques, is found dead. Although book 10 in the Maine Clambake Mystery series, this can be enjoyed as a stand-alone. With a compelling plot, drama aplenty, a great bunch of characters, and oodles of mayhem added to the mix, this was a fantastic read that kept me on my toes. The writing style of Barbara Ross is a good fit for me. Trying to unravel the mystery in the pockets of Julia was lots of fun and I welcomed the comfortable pace as well as the neatly packaged ending. I would like to backtrack and devour the eight books I've missed in this series as I thoroughly enjoyed Muddled Through and I'm game to see what adventures befall Julia and the Busman's Harbor crowd, next. The book leaves the reader with recipes to salivate over. Very highly recommended. I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from Kensington Books via NetGalley. This review is my own unbiased opinion.

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