Deadly Devotion, Port Aster Secrets Series #1
Kate Adams had become close friends with her mentor, Daisy Leacock, as they worked together in a research laboratory testing herbs as possible medicinal treatments. They were close to a breakthrough in a treatment for depression when Daisy was discovered dead. An investigation ensued, but with no evidence to indicate foul play aside from a cup of tea, the case was closed and Daisy's death was ruled a suicide. Kate knew her friend's strong spiritual beliefs and refused to believe that her mentor's death was self inflicted. Approaching Detective Tom Parker with her suspicions Kate insisted that she would find the truth surrounding Daisy's death. Several suspects had motives to want Daisy dead, and Kate insisted on investigating on her own to clear Daisy's name and prove she was murdered. Much to Detective Parker's dismay, Kate's insistence on following her instincts placed her in a number of dangerous situations. Parker's job was on the line because of the time he spent keeping Kate out of trouble. Kate's motives were also questioned as developments revealed themselves.
Sandra Orchard has written a compelling murder investigation that kept me on the edge of my seat and up into the wee hours of the morning! The suspense in this novel was ceaseless, and the questions regarding each of the suspects were endless! Characters in this fast-paced book are well defined and varied, some suspicious, others colorful, but all individuals of interest. The author creates settings that are detailed and descriptive, creating atmospheres of suspense in themselves. Underlying spiritual concerns were blended throughout this book, including faith and forgiveness. I thoroughly enjoyed this suspense-filled novel, and look forward to reading more books by this talented author.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion. All opinions expressed are my own, and no monetary compensation was received for this review.
October 17, 2013
A great mystery with action on every page. Really enjoyed this book because it was an enthralling mystery with an added romance between Tom and Kate.
The Christian faith of the characters was well presented as you see Kate really rely on her faith when she goes through some difficult times.
The way Sandra shifted suspicion on various characters threw me off the real criminals trail and as a result the ending was quite a surprise to me.
Very much looking forward to the next book!
September 3, 2013
best cozy mystery I've read in a while
I haven't read a cozy mystery this good in ages. There is action on nearly every page. And there are so many suspects, people with motive and means and opportunity, well over half way through the book I still had no idea who the killer might be. And Sandra does a great job of shifting the suspicion from one character to another as the story progresses.
Kate is a research scientist studying herbal cures. When her mentoring colleague and good friend Daisy dies, Kate is heartbroken. When the police rule the death suicide, either deliberate or accidental, Kate is angry. She knows Daisy would never deliberately take her own life nor would she, an expert in herbs, mistakenly drink a toxic mixture of herbal tea.
While the local police department turns a deaf ear to Kate's demands for an investigation, one detective takes an interest in Kate. Tom is an ex-FBI agent, back in Canada. He watches over Kate as she tries to find out who killed her friend. Tom finds out his interest in Kate is serious when it looks like the killer is now after her.
This is a great mystery where people are rarely what they seem. And it is a good romance too. Kate and Tom struggle with their relationship as Tom tries to remain loyal to his police role while protecting Kate too.
The Christianity of the characters is well presented. Daisy mentored Kate in her faith so Daisy's death was a spiritual shock as well as an emotional one. Kate relies on her growing faith, however, as she pursues the truth.
Several of the characters either research or grow herbs, so we learn a great deal about them, especially in their use for teas. A great mystery and romance and you learn about herbs too.
The end left me a little frustrated but a sequel is in the works. I'll be looking for it.
I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher fort he purpose of this review.
July 31, 2013
GREAT Mystery With Humor, Friendship, Faith!!
Kate refuses to believe what the headlines say about her friend and colleague, Daisy, that she committed suicide. Since the case is closed and the police have stopped investigating, Kate boldly chooses to do her own investigating. But does she know the danger lurking behind every possible suspect?
Detective Tom Parker is immediately attracted to Kate when she shows up at his desk and demands answers. He tries to pacify her and gives her his business card with cell phone number. However, he has his own suspicions of Kate and the seemingly cover up case. Will he be able to guard his heart and keep the stubborn minded Kate protected at the same time?
From the FIRST page, this book had my attention and I was very satisfied with the fast paced storytelling as well as KateÃ¢ÂÂs feisty behavior. This is the perfect light hearted mystery needed for good summer reading and even though the ending leaves points unanswered, it still delivers a great plot. Orchard does a stand up job of writing a mystery filled with humor, friendship, betrayal, corruption, loyalty, faith, and herbs that have the ability to kill or heal quickly. There were several laugh out loud moments and my favorite character in the story was easily TomÃ¢ÂÂs dad, retired officer Keith, who is recovering from his wifeÃ¢ÂÂs death. Kate is also the maid of honor for best friend and roommate, Julie, and their conversations were a delight added in to the mystery going on. I COULD NOT believe Kate got arrested, but I felt she handled herself nicely throughout. I highly recommend this book and IÃ¢ÂÂm so glad I had the chance to read it!
July 20, 2013