Category Archives: Book reviews

Cozy Mysteries? Is it or isn’t it?

ISBN 9780957252080

available on Amazon 

I have just tweeted for someone to explain to me what a ‘cozy mystery’ actually is. A tall order I know in 140 characters. Anyway, a tweeter sent me a link to Wikipedia. I know this may not be the definitive answer but it is certainly a start.

I questioned it because I was wondering if Murder Now and Then’ would come under this category, so let me break this down.

 

 

  • Sex and violence are downplayed or treated humourously  ~ certainly there are no explicit sex scenes and the violence is not graphic to the extreme
  • The crime and detection takes place in a small and intimate community ~ in Murder, Now and Then, this is certainly true on the whole and the book has been likened to Midsommer Murders ~ say no more!
  • The detectives are nearly always amateurs ~ No, in Murder Now and Then the detection is undertaken by police officer, although they do not always work ‘by the book’
  • The book revolves around the amateur detective’s hobby ~ not true and yet there is an underlying theme of an interest in family history which binds the characters together
  • The murderers are not psychopaths or serial killers and are usually known in the community ~ true
  • There is little or no profanity ~ true
  •  Emphasis is on puzzle solving and suspense ~ true
  • There is a great deal of humour ~ not true

The verdict ~ six out of nine are true. I believe that readers who love cozy mysteries will enjoy Murder Now and Then even though it does not quite fit into the category.

With 24 good or excellent reviews so far, why don’t you give it a try and let me know what you think?

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Filed under Book reviews, Murder Now and Then, My books, Occasional Posts, Reading a novel, Writing

Offer of 12 Book Reviews on Diana’s Book Review Spot

Would you like me to review your book on my blog and on Goodreads in the next twelve months?

Are you a Scottish author in particular?

I would like to focus my book reviews in the next year on good Scottish literature. Now, I am happy to choose famous, less well known or debut authors. These would be honest reviews, but I would only post my review with your permission. I read historical fiction, fantasy, mystery, crime, saga and women’s lighter fiction. I’m not too enthusiastic about passionate and explicit romance.

If you would like me to consider your book, then all I ask is a small donation of £3 or more for Kinghorn Community Library, which is only just opening this month due to hard work from many enthusiastic volunteers.. I don’t consider this as payment for a review just a donation to a worthy and needy cause.

Here’s our Just Giving Page

Firstly get in touch by email diana@dianamaryjackson.co.uk and request a review.

Then we’ll agree a month and you can make your donation.

I’m looking forward to hearing from you. Please RT and share if you can. I will consider any books outside of Scotland too, especially if I’ve already reviewed one of your books favourably.

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Filed under Book reading, Book reviews, Fife, Libraries, Scotland

Crime author Laura Read’s review of ‘Murder Now and Then’

Laura Read and I have been following each other’s blogs for some time and so agreed to review each other’s novels with honest reviews. It is always refreshing as an author to read reviews like this and to learn from them.

ISBN 9780957252080

Murder, now and then available on Amazon Click on the cover link

Here is an extract:

‘The novel reminds me of the TV series Midsomer Murders, with strong themes of family, time and place featuring throughout. Diana describes all of the various suspects in detail, and frequently changes perspective to tell her story and reveal more clues. Her descriptions of the locations in Bedfordshire and Jersey, as well as how she brings her characters to life, are what make the story.’

Author Laura Read’s Blog

I take her points about technology and politics. Having written the story in 2013 the world was changing but I tried to predict short term future ~ a dangerous game when the novel is only launched in 2015 and the novel begins in 2016 and it is still circulating in 2017. I will have a more detailed blog post about this shortly.

Laura’s crime writing is much darker than mine. She refers to ‘Murder Now and Then’ as cosy in comparison, which is probably why it has been read in libraries. I am happy with that description since it focuses on the mystery and intrigue rather than the gritty nature of the murders.

I am in the middle of reading ‘Deadly Sins’ at the moment and I’ll review it due course, but I wish her all the luck in the world in her writing career.

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Filed under Blogs, Book reading, Book reviews, Murder, Murder Now and Then