I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Magick & Mayhem (An Abracadabra Mystery #1) by Sharon Pape
on Expected publication: May 2nd 2017
Genres: Cozy Mystery
What’s in a murderer’s bag of tricks?
Twenty-something Kailyn Wilde has learned to embrace her unpredictable life as a descendant of small-town New Camel’s most magickal family. She just didn’t expect to inherit her mother and grandmother’s centuries-old shop, Abracadabra, so suddenly. The surprises keep coming when Kailyn goes to finalize the estate at the local attorney’s office—and stumbles over the body of her best friend Elise’s husband . . .
As a brash detective casts the blame on Elise, Kailyn summons her deepest powers to find answers and start an investigation of her own. What with running a business, perfecting ancient spells, and keeping up with an uninvited guest of fabled origins, Kailyn has her hands full. But with the help of her uncanny black cat Sashkatu and her muumuu-clad Aunt Tilly, she’s closing in on a killer—who will do anything to make sure she never tests her supernatural skills again!
“Pape has a sure‑handed balance of humor and action.” —Julie Hyzy, New York Times bestselling author
This is going to be a tricky review. I like the book, but as cozy mysteries go, it wasn’t my favorite.
What I did like was the premise. The characters and how they dealt with the world around them. Kailyn is dealing with more than her fair share of problems. Especially since her mother and grandmother just passed away but can somehow still pop in to see her to complain about how she’s dealing with things. It’s hard enough to lose people but to have them come back to harass you is hilarious. She does not need this! Every time they popped in, I had to stifle a giggle.
What I enjoyed most about Kailyn is that even with magick being real, she doesn’t lean on it to move through life. She handles her problems just like everyone of us. Or tries to. I loved, loved, loved the hint of romance. Although she seems to trust people a bit too soon for my liking. There was just a murder. DO NOT TRUST anyone. Has nobody watched horror? In Kailyn’s defense she probably doesn’t have time but that portion of the character really got to me. Stranger danger woman!
The detective was actually getting on my nerves but I was hoping that their lack of chemistry was going to lead to some chemistry but they really just hate each other. Which was yet another layer or hilarity. Every time she gets information and had to take it to the police she hems and haws over whether or not to take it to him.
Whoops, already went into what I didn’t like. To continue, the familiar aspect was a bit strange. I never felt like it was fully recognized and brought out what happened and why. This part of the plot was huge and made a ton of differences in many parts of the story, so more information on this would have been fabulous. Also, while some clues are given, I didn’t guess the perpetrator but more because the clues seemed to point to other suspects. Maybe that was on purpose though? Or I’m losing my touch! NO!!!
All in all, although it wasn’t my favorite cozy mystery, it was easy to read and I really liked the characters. As a friend I would definitely remind Kailyn that strangers are bad, mmmkay? But other than that, it was super fun. I’ll be in line for book two, for sure!
|Overall:||3.4 / 5|
After several years, I left teaching to be a full time mom, and when my two children started school, I went back to writing. To my delight I found that the muse was still there, still waiting patiently for me to come around. My first novel, Ghostfire, was published at that time. It went on to be condensed in Redbook magazine (the first paperback original the magazine had ever condensed.) Then came The God Children and The Portal. Redbook also published my first short story, which was subsequently sold to several foreign magazines. With two great kids, a golden retriever and a loving, supportive husband (whom I’d met at the beach when I was fourteen — but that’s a story for another day), I felt like I was exactly where I was meant to be in my life. But fate had another plan for me, and it went by the name of “breast cancer.”
Looking back, I realize how fortunate I was that the cancer was discovered at such an early stage, but at the time it was all very overwhelming. Once I was back on my feet, I wanted to help other women who were newly diagnosed, worried and afraid. I became a Reach to Recovery volunteer for the American Cancer Society and went on to run the program for Nassau and Suffolk Counties on Long Island. A number of years later, with the help of my surgical oncologist and two other volunteers, I started Lean On Me, a nonprofit organization that provides peer support and information to breast cancer patients. When Lean On Me celebrated its tenth anniversary it no longer required as much of my time, and I once again found myself free to pursue my first love — writing.