It’s been a while between posts because instead of dropping the witchy mystery series by Shawn McGuire that I was reading, I kept going and am now on book #9. I’m not even going to bother to list the titles, because they are all a variation on the word “secrets” with another word plugged in front of it.
It’s not that it’s the best (or even close to the best) mystery series I have ever read, but there is a certain satisfaction to be had in pursuing a series from the first book to the last (if this is the last—there will probably be more), and also a certain inertia. Once you get going, the characters and setting are already familiar, and if you have invested in them at all, you just kinda want to know what happened. So I have been following the exploits of Sheriff Jayne O’Shea, her employee / boyfriend / business partner (in their bed & breakfast called Pine Time) Tripp, and her extended “family” that includes her mom, dad, and sister, her deputy, Reed, and the whole cast of characters from the part-Wiccan, part-circus folk, part-psychic, and altogether unusual town of Whispering Pines.
I will say that this town must hold a record for “small town in Wisconsin with the most murders in a 15-month period,” which is the time that is roughly spanned by the nine volumes. The series also gets credit for some of the most unusual ways to die, from ricin poisoning to hypothermia. And there is, of course, the entertainment value of the kitchen witches and green witches and psychics and ex-nuns in town who are either secretly counter-cursing one another or trying to hold the line with positive thoughts, milk baths, and herbal teas, or holding bake-offs of their deliciously described food. If it weren’t for the high murder quotient and the below-freezing temperatures for a large part of the year, a reader might actually want to go there!
I’m halfway through the last, and I promise to get back to reading and reviewing new material soon!
I’ve also been having some fun painting some of my reader friends. Here is Michael, who read Tai-Pan as I suggested, and is now on to the sequel, Gai-Jin.