Review – Final Sentence by Daryl Wood Gerber

final sentence

Cozy mysteries are supposed to be like a warm blanket, comfort food and chamomile tea all wrapped up in 300 pages or so.  Unfortunately, Final Sentence let me down.

I received this book through the Goodreads-Firstreads program last year and tried to read it when I first got it in the mail.  After about 50 pages I put it on hold.  Last weekend I decided to give it another shot.  To be perfectly honest, I had to force myself to finish it and I am probably being very generous by giving this 2.5 stars.

When describing this story to my husband I used the words “paint by numbers”.  It seemed like the author has a template for a cozy and just filled in the blanks.  If so, that’s fine.  Part of what is comforting about these is their predictability.

BUT…there are some things that don’t work.  The protagonist is just plain annoying.  She becomes over-obsessed that she is a suspect in the murder (all cozies have a murder, that’s not a spoiler).  She also accuses almost everyone around her of being the killer when she clumsily tries to investigate the mystery herself.  It’s probably not a good idea to go up to random people, ask them two random questions and then say that they killed someone.

And, she’s a business owner who is never at her business.  She runs out constantly to do her ‘questioning’, have lunch, get her hair done or other nonsense. As a reader, I just didn’t care about her and almost hoped she’d be put in jail so she’d shut up.

Another pet peeve is overuse of a catchphrase by a character.  The eccentric aunt always says “too ra loo” and the chef that works for her says “Hoo boy”.  Too much.

The love interest, Rhett, is a kind of nothing character.  I just didn’t feel why she would be attracted to him. Other than his name.  This will probably be fleshed out in future installments but it didn’t resonate with me here.

The author clearly has talent and there are good things about the story.  But, you have to put up with some nonsense to get there.

2.5/5 stars.  Thanks to the Goodreads-Firstreads program.

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