Between a Book and a Hard Place Book Review

Between a Book and a Hard Place Book Review

Title: Between a Book and a Hard Place
Author: Denise Swanson
Published: March 1, 2016, Berkley
No. of Pages: 290
Cover Price: $7.99 Kindle

Dev Sinclair, owner of Shadow Bend’s five and dime store, has plenty to worry about, but when her estranged mother, Yvette (who is a piece of work to say the least) shows up with her newest husband, Jett (who is purportedly very rich), extra trouble begins. The library in the small town of Shadow Bend has been closed for years because of lack of money, and a wealthy sponsor volunteers to fund a reopening. Unfortunately that sponsor turns out to be Jett, and he ends up murdered. Yvette is the prime suspect, and although Dev doesn’t have any loyalty for his runaway mother, she feels like she must solve the crime in case her mother isn’t guilty – even Yvette shouldn’t go down for a murder she didn’t commit. Between a Book and a Hard Place is the fifth novel in the Devereaux's Dime Store Mystery series by Denise Swanson. The novels are typical cozies, where Dev, the protagonist, is an amateur sleuth, and gets herself and others in danger due to her meddling in cases such as this.

Shadow Bend is a typical small town, and the goings on are typical small town problems. The characters are well developed, and readers will be able to relate to regular people they know who are similar. The scenarios are also typical of what happens in small towns, except, of course murder, and the book has a light-hearted feel even though murder is a serious thing. Dev gets herself involved in a much bigger investigation than she expects, and criminals who are related to the murder seem to appear just in time to cause Dev trouble and put her in peril for her life.

Between a Book and a Hard Place is a fun mystery; the series is upbeat, and has no graphic violence, sex, or profanity, so it’s suitable for all ages. It’s perfect for a summer or vacation read because it is fast-moving and easy to read. Cozy fans will want to pick it up.

Special thanks to NetGalley for supplying a review copy of this book.

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