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  • Quaint Southern cozy mystery!

    The Moonshine Shack Murder by Diane Kelly is an entertaining new cozy mystery. Hattie Hayes is opening the Moonshine Shack in Chattanooga, Tennessee where she will be selling her Firefly Moonshine. Her great-grandfather made moonshine during prohibition and Hattie is getting back into the business thanks to the recipes taught to her by her Granddaddy. Late one night after her grand opening, Hattie wakes up wondering if she properly locked up the shop. Hattie is in the storeroom when she hears odd noises outside. She looks outside the window to find the owner of Limericks bleeding out on the ground. Unfortunately, Hattie is at the top of Detective Ace Pearce’s suspect list. If Hattie does not want to end up in jail like her great-grandfather, she will need to find the bar owner’s killer. The Moonshine Shack Murder is fun story. I thought it was well-written and moved along at a quick pace. I like Hattie Hayes and her grandfather, Ben. Hattie is a savvy businesswoman as well as a warm, kind lady. I find Hattie’s granddaddy a hoot. He is feisty and a talented whittler. I like the variety of characters in the story including Hattie’s best friends. The author’s descriptive writing brought Chattanooga to life as well as the Moonshine Shack. Hattie has a love interest in Officer Marlon Landers, a mounted police officer. I did feel that there was too much romance for my liking (I prefer slow moving romances that play out over the course of the series) especially with Hattie a prime suspect in the murder. The whodunit was well thought it. I like how it was set up with the various suspects, misdirection, and the clues. There were more suspects than varieties of moonshine available at the Moonshine Shack. Avid mystery readers, though, will have no problem identifying the guilty party early on in the story. The why takes longer to figure out. I had a good time following Hattie as she questioned people and collected clues. It was interesting learning about moonshine. I had no idea there were so many varieties available. I am looking forward to the next book in A Southern Homebrew Mystery series. The Moonshine Shack Murder is a quaint Southern cozy mystery with modern moonshine, jealous girlfriends, an unscrupulous bar owner, a compassionate mounted officer, a gutsy grandfather, and a merry moonshine maker.

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  • Great start to a new cozy mystery series

    The cover of The Moonshine Shack Murder by Diane Kelly caught my attention, and then reading the synopsis had me handing over my money! Kelly does a fantastic job with developing her characters, and that is why so many people keep coming back to cozy mystery series. She’s able to mix the mean ones with the quirky ones and throws in a grumpy one, along with a very attractive romantic lead and a protagonist who actually uses her brain and passes along information to the police. And Smoky, the cat is fantastic. I wish one of our cats wanted to travel in the car and hang out with us all day at our work. Combine well written characters, a couple who are really unique, with some history of moonshine, detailed descriptions of the region and town, along with lots of suspects, and you have a very enjoyable first book in the Southern Homebrew Mysteries, and a book I highly recommend.

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