Wednesday, December 26, 2018

A Holiday Yarn: Review

A Holiday Yarn (2010) by Sally Golden Baum takes place, as one might guess, in the days leading up to Christmas. Mary Pisano has been hard at work turning her family's Massachusett's home (and her recent inheritance) into a charming Bed and Breakfast. All her friends in Sea Harbor have been encouraging and helping her--and she's so close to putting the finishing touches on it. But then she opens the house to her family--for the traditional clan gathering. Oh, not for holiday cheer exactly--but to go over the family finances and see how everyone has been taking care of their portion of the inheritance from the Pisano patriarch, Enzo Pisano. 

Mary's cousin, Pamela, is one of the few people who don't think a B&B is such a stellar idea. But then, Pamela doesn't seem to think any idea that she didn't come up with is all that. Pam stirs up trouble among her relatives and manages to ruffle feathers all over town. So, we really shouldn't be all that surprised when she's found dead of a gunshot wound--sprawled in a snowdrift outside the future B&B. Her murderer tried to make it look like suicide, but either forgot or never realized that their victim was left-handed. Planting the revolver in Pam's right hand was just their first mistake. And Nell and the Seaside Knitters are ready to pounce on other mistakes and hunt for clues to help Chief Jerry Thompson find Pam's murderer and keep the rumor mill from blaming Mary and her Bed & Breakfast for bringing a murderer to their town.

This was a nice, middle-of-the-road cozy mystery. With more emphasis on cozy than on mystery--it is a comfortable little book about good friends in a small town who knit and eat and, apparently, occasionally solve murder together. [After all, this is book four of a series that currently has 13 entries...] The characters show a nice, diverse slice of small-town life without being cardboard cutouts or stereotypes. It was also refreshing to have a theme-based [knitting] cozy where the theme didn't overshadow the whole book. The knitting references were worked into the story carefully and it didn't feel like they were shoe-horned in. The mystery isn't terribly complicated, but that was all to the good for me--it's a busy time of the year and it was nice to settle down with an easy, charming little mystery. ★★

[Finished 12/24/18]

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