Mayhem at the Orient Express (League of Literary Ladies #1)
by Kylie Logan
published by Berkley
genre: Adult, Mystery, Cozy
Summary (Goodreads): At a local Chinese restaurant, it's the owner who gets taken out...
Most folks aren't forced by court order to attend a library-book discussion group, but that’s just what happens to B and B proprietor and ex-Manhattanite Bea Cartwright, hippy cat lover Chandra Morrisey, and winery owner Kate Wilder after a small-town magistrate has had enough of their squabbling. South Bass, an island on Lake Erie, is home to an idyllic summer resort, but these three ladies keep disturbing the peace.
The initial book choice is Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express, and that sets their mouths to watering. The Orient Express is the island’s newest Chinese restaurant. They might not agree about much, but the ladies all love the orange chicken on the menu. But their meal is spoiled when the restaurant’s owner, Peter Chan, has the bad fortune of getting murdered. Now, with Christie as their inspiration, the League of Literary Ladies has a real mystery to solve…if they can somehow catch a killer without killing each other first.
My Thoughts: I always forget how much I enjoy mysteries (or cozies) until I pick one up. I don't know if it's the covers that make me pause or something else but I should read more.
With the premise of a judge ordering people to form a book club as punishment I had to give this one a try. The four ladies in the book club are very different and their personalities just clash. It's not really explained but it sounded as if this was not the first time they had been in court complaining about what the others were doing to annoy them. Bea was the hardest to read for me, her personality didn't seem to be as defined as the others. Chandra was all over the place and trying to cleanse everything and Kate was the uptight rich girl type.
I liked the integration from Murder on the Orient Express and how the author made the case the ladies were trying to solve run parallel to the book. Considering the winter we had reading about everyone getting snowed in with no power was very easy to relate to. Since Bea's inn was the only place with a generator, it put all the main characters under one roof.
I'm not sure if I missed something or just did not have the correct mindset at the time but the twist with who the guilty party was was a surprise to me. It's always nice when that happens. Other than trying to force some romance into the story, I was happy with this book and will have an easier time picking up book two.