by Kathleen Costa
Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of the book, and links to purchase it.
Trouble Comes All Kinds of Packages
Amy York-McLevy’s mother, Barbara York, is recuperating from a broken ankle she managed in a motorcycle accident…don’t ask. It was necessary for her to have help, so she’s staying with her daughter and her husband Daniel. But, the challenge having her around is real. Her own son, soon off to University, wasn’t this kind of trouble…like waking up at 3 a.m. finding her mother in the kitchen, whispering on the phone to someone named “Carl,” with an odor of wacky-tobacky permeating the room. Are you really having a discussion about illegal drugs? When asked “Who’s Carl?”, Barbara reminds Amy he’s a good pal of her father and hers from college, someone whose farm she visited as a child, and almost the one she married. The “sure would love to see him,” and “who knows if either of us will live long enough,” and “his dodgy heart” prefaced reminding Amy that with her ankle she’s unable to drive herself. Is Amy going to take the hint?
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Road trip! Amy took the hint and decided to take her mom to see her long-time friend, Carl Forster. Although a late start, the eight-hour trip is uneventful, except for the Stutger’s Beer jingle rattling in their heads. Barb checks in with Carl updating their ETA to about three hours out. He didn’t seem himself on the phone informing Barb he had an important appointment to keep, and the key will be on the porch and dinner in the refrigerator. But, the conversation ended abruptly after using some coded language she remembered from college: “Holy, Moses! What next?” When she called him back, he wasn’t picking up. Arriving at the house, along with a storm, lightening and all, the two run into no electricity, a missing key, and an unlocked door. The lights come on long enough to enjoy the pizza and beer provided by their host, but the storm causes the lights to go out again. Looking for the fuse box in the basement, of course, Amy finds a body. Carl is dead!
Cheers! Kate Fellowes has penned a nice, entertaining mystery with a fascinating mother-daughter dynamic with which many can identify: exasperation, conflict, love, connection, and always having each other’s back. In a way, the choice of victim was disappointing; you’ll have to read the story and decide for yourself. However, discounting that detail, it was an engaging drama that lead readers through the victim’s work as an investigative reporter, and his most recent story about Stutger Brewery which interested too many. I liked the short chapters and how each had a curiosity, an oops, or a cliffhanger that lead directly into the next chapter. Kate portrays an interesting, yet in many ways realistic, relationship between Amy and her mother Barbara. Although, how many of us have a free-spirited, Harley riding, toker as a mother? There are opportunities where the two connect through their collaborative investigation and a bit of personal peril which makes for an endearing, as well as compelling, drama. Hope to see more.
To enter to win a copy of A Menacing Brew, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “brew,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen August 15, 2020. U.S. residents only, and you must be 18 or older to enter. If you are entering via email please include you mailing address in case you win, it will be deleted after the contest. You can read our privacy statement here if you like. BE AWARE DUE TO THE CURRENT PANDEMIC BOOKS WILL TAKE LONGER TO GET TO WINNERS.
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