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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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4.4 out of 5
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All Book Reviews

  • Study in the Past

    Having been a genealogist for many years; this story was great. Research leads to death, cousin connections, romance, and the past effecting the present. Family tree strategy leads answers to a murder committed in the 1840's. Lucy Lancaster races to evaluate the past and help the FBI with a present crime. "A copy of this book was provided by St Martin's Press via Netgalley with no requirements for a review. Comments here are my honest opinion."

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  • Cold case cozy

    Cold case, cozy mystery, and history are combined in this new series.  Austin Texas genealogist Lucy Lancaster has a knack for uncovering long hidden details. When her latest client, a successful businessman, hires her to trace his family tree, Lucy discovered that is ancestor was murdered and likely by a family that is still prominent today. As Lucy tries to dig deeper, a good friend is murdered trying to protect the family’s historic pictures and Lucy is determined to solve the case on both fronts to serve justice all around. But will Lucy become another dead branch in her family tree before she can figure out the truth? I say this is more a 3.5 as I had to get about halfway through the book before I became engrossed. Perhaps it was adapting to a new author’s writing style. Perhaps it was just a tad too much genealogical data for me to wrap my head around when I read to relax, and perhaps it was just the writing. But after that halfway mark I was invested and the pace picked up. Will be keeping an eye out for the second book in the series.

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  • The first An Ancestry Detective Mystery

    Murder Once Removed is unique for cozy mysteries. Our main character, Lucy Lancaster is a genealogist who runs a company called Ancestry Investigations. She can uncover your ancestors, provide a family tree, obtain photographs, and so much more (I had no idea). Lucy can provide a beautifully bound book and a website for her clients is they desire. She uses land records, census records, journals, photographs and numerous other resources (there is a veritable font of information available if you know where to look). I would have liked more information on Lucy and for her to come across as a more mature main character (not the best idea to get blotto in front of a client). Though I do find it appealing that she is a Downton Abbey fan. There are two intertwined mysteries in Murder Once Removed. The death of Seth Halloran from 1849 and the current murder of Winnie Dell. I like how the two mysteries relate to each other and that they were wrapped up at the end of the book. There is action as Lucy evades the killer. She asks questions and does research to solve the two crimes. I do wish that the modern mystery had been laid out differently. It is the type that plays out with little opportunity for the reader to solve (which is my favorite part). There is interesting genealogical information and history included in the story (though I am still baffled by the once removed—there is a handy chart included). Special Agent Ben Turner was an interesting, handsome and charming character. His history background gives him plenty in common with Lucy who finds him attractive. There were sparks flying between the pair. I liked the humorous dialogue between them at the end (made me laugh). Murder Once Removed is an enticing new cozy mystery that will appeal to the history and genealogy enthusiasts.

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  • MURDER ONCE REMOVED by S. C. Perkins

    MURDER ONCE REMOVED by S.C. Perkins is the first book in the Ancestry Detective series. It’s the story of Lucy Lancaster who owns Ancestry Investigations. She’s a sweet southern gal who is not only very smart but definitely packs a lot of spunk for her petite size. Lucy shares her office space with Josephine Haroldson and Serena Vogel, each with their own companies and her best friends. The story opens with Lucy thinking she is at the end of her assignment of trying to help Gus Halloran trace his family ancestors. In doing so, checking out any records she can find, DNA and official documents, she was to try to figure out if his distant relative, Seth, had indeed been murdered as his wife claimed and if so were any clues to be found as to who did the deed. She presents her finding to Gus showing his family linage and telling him that Seth had been murdered. She also tells him that she has proof thanks to Jeb Inscore who left not only journals behind detailing the murder, but also photographic proof. Lucy is intrigued by information she’s found, but it lead to a possibility of two suspects with the initials C.A. When Gus takes it upon himself to make this information public accusing his son’s political rival as THE C. A., troubles begin and danger lurks. When Dr. Winnie Dell, curator of the Hamilton American History Center at the University of Texas at Austin, and dear friend to Lucy, is murdered after agreeing to help Lucy continue the research to figure out which C. A. really was guilty of murder, Lucy takes the news hard and is more than determined to finish her research and aid in figuring out who murdered her friend. S. C. Perkins, takes us on an exciting roller coaster ride that will have you turning pages and shaking your head. There are clues being uncovered on the murder from 1849 that tie into the murder of Dr. Dell in the present day. We see the showing of supportive friends from Flaco of Big Flaco’s Tacos, who considers Lucy like another daughter (who happens to have a past and evidently enough pull in the present to pull strings) and her roomies who finally find history research fun who are always in Lucy’s corner, to even a feline determined to help the one that feeds him (now known as NPH - Neil Patrick HEROcat). These make the story believable, make your mouth water and even chuckle here and there. There are dangerous attempts to life and limb that will have you sitting on the edge of your seat hoping that the sometimes irritating but rather handsome Special Agent Benton A. Turner (aka Ben or BAT in the Bureau) will show up to save the day. All the while being informative and showing us how to trace a family tree and explaining how clues can be followed up on. There is even a genealogy relationship table in the front of the book that helps explain family linage. I highly recommend MURDER ONCE REMOVED to anyone that loves a great cozy mystery, shaking family trees finding out that all that falls out isn’t always pleasant but still forms who we are, or if you just love a well written, exciting story. I can’t wait for the next book in this series to come out to see what adventures Lucy Lancaster will take us on. It will be exciting to see if there is a future together for Lucy and Ben.

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