Milkshakes, Mermaids, & Murder by Sara Rosett
Series: Ellie Avery Mysteries (# 8)
Release Date: October 1, 2013
Publisher: Kensington Books
Source: book provided by the publisher for review
Ellie Avery planned a perfect family getaway: fun in the sun on Florida’s Gulf Coast, with a side visit to the eBay vendor who’d mistakenly sent her the wrong handbag. But what should have been a simple exchange turns into a fatal transaction when Ellie discovers Angela495 floating face-down in her pool.
With some savvy snooping, Ellie learns that Angela’s dangerous double life included blackmail, compromising photos, and a scandalous secret that threatens a local celeb. When a kidnapping shatters her family’s safety, Ellie leaves the white sands behind to face down a killer whose warm Southern charm masks a cold, cold heart.
Review: Professional organizer Ellie Avery has the family vacation all planned out, but of course things go awry before they even leave the house. Her husband Mitch is stranded in Canada waiting for a part for the squadron, and she receives the wrong handbag from the ebay seller. So with adjustments made to the schedule, Ellie and her two young children head to sunny Florida. Planning to meet Angela, the ebay seller, she is shocked to find her floating dead in her pool. Even more shocking is that her brother Ben had been dating her! So with the wrong handbag still in her possession, Ellie and Ben find a memory card from a camera secreted in the lining. The photographs on it that the dead woman had taken are shocking – they could very well reveal a secret someone would kill to keep quiet. When her brother is kidnapped at gunpoint, someone steals Ellie’s laptop and the memory card. The race is on for her to find the memory card and exchange it for her brother’s life.
I have been a fan of the Ellie Avery Mysteries from the very first book. This book is the 8th in the series, and I’ve loved them all. Ms. Rosett draws the reader in from the very first page, into the organized, crazy, and mysterious world of Ellie Avery. While this is a cozy mystery, I still found it to be very suspenseful. Even though I know in my mind that Cozy authors don’t let bad things happen to their “stars of the show” and their families, I was still worried about Ellie’s kidnapped brother Ben. That’s how drawn into the story I was. I was definitely kept guessing until the very end!
The author has a great talent for creating and showing settings that are vibrant and real, and I could almost smell the sea air as I read. Her characters are fun, and they make the reader want to be friends with them. Since it is the 8th book, the reader gets to see Ellie’s children practically grow up! I adore cozy mysteries, and this has always been a favorite series of mine.