Buzz Off Mass Market Paperback – Sep 7 2010
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Top Customer Reviews
Cousin Carrie Ann thought Story should have called up Clay and invited him to join the festivities at The Wild Clover's "one-day sale," but who in their right mind would invite a two-timing twit to guzzle up all her free champagne? The champagne filled flutes and freebies were being scarfed up by everyone from the foodies to the frumps and he was the last thing on her mind. While everyone was getting a buzz, Story's "beekeeping mentor," Manny Chapman, who taught her in his beekeeping course, was lying out by his beehives, apparently dying a horrendous death after having been stung by his honeybees. Just when Story thought things were getting bad, things got soooo bad, her hair could have curled without even so much as walking by the Stone Bank beauty shop.
Faye Tilley, Clay's current paramour, just happened to be found "sprawled faceup" inside a kayak . . . HER kayak. And guess who found the corpse? Story wasn't exactly on the right side of the law.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
In addition to learning beekeeping, Story runs a grocery store in an old church. I loved the way local farmers sold their goods at her store, making it seem like a natural hub for activity and gossip.
Many mysteries set in small towns thrive on gossip as one of the main ways of revealing plot elements and motivations. Move over, gossip mongers, Pity-Party Patti has got you in her sights. Generally referred to as P.P. Patti, this telescope wielding snoop sees everything and she makes sure everyone knows her version of what she's got to share.
There is plenty of romance as Story keeps the town buzzing about her relationships with sleazy ex-husband Clay, old flame Hunter, grudge bearing police chief Johnny Jay and rumors that she was more than an apprentice to her mentor Manny.
Toss in a disapproving mother and a rockin' grandma and we're off to a great start!
FIRST IN A NEW SERIES
Release Date September 7, 2010
Berkley Prime Crime
Set in the fictional town of Moraine, Wisconsin, Story Fischer is gearing up for National Honey Month (September). Her messy divorce is final. Her store, The Wild Clover, is very successful and is the only local grocery. It is a truly unique mercantile, as the building was formerly a church, complete with stained glass windows. She also works with her friend and mentor, Manny, who is teaching her all he knows about the honey business. They have harvested their honey and stock various honey products on The Wild Clover's shelves and on shelves in stores throughout the county. Everything seems pretty sunny in Story's life.
But it doesn't take long before things start to get sticky.
Her mentor is found dead, in front of his beehives, totally covered in bees and honey. The police and the entire town believes Manny was killed by his bees. Story tries to explain the difference between honeybee stings and wasp or yellow jacket stings, but no one will listen. The local Realtor, a crazy woman named Lori, wants all the bees killed including Story's bees.
While Story is working hard to save all the bees, another body is found in the Oconomowoc River, and this time the evidence points directly at Story's ex-husband. Yes, he is a jerk, thinks he's God's gift to women, and a "buzzkill," but not a murderer. Story shifts into high gear to save her bees, her business and even her ex. Honey may be sweet, but this mystery is anything but sweet. Story will be busy as a bee to untangle this mess and trying to keep herself from getting stung in the process.
I loved this book for so many reasons:
* The subject matter is truly unique. I have never read a mystery with bees as the theme.
* The characters are a hoot, or should I say a buzz since we are dealing will bees. Their humorous quips can be a sharp as a sting, and P.P. Patty will have you laughing out loud. You will come to love the entire hive.
* The mystery is solidly written, many twists and turns and will keep you guessing until the very end.
* This book is set in Wisconsin, my home territory. If Moraine was a real town, I could be shopping in Story's store or canoeing on the Oconomowoc River in about 45 minutes.
* Included in the book are some wonderful recipes.
* Why is my review written using bullet points, you will have to read the book to find out.
Seriously though Hannah Reed has written a truly extraordinary debut to start this brand new series. It is one guilty pleasure I am honored to have. I love to read what she writes and cannot wait to the next installment to this honey of a series.
I don't understand authors who choose to set their stories amid angry, rude people. I understand this is fiction, but it reads like a 12 year old's diary. 'So and so, a lifelong arch enemy...' 'This person, who had bullied me since I was a child' etc, etc.
The townspeople are so acrimonious that it's just totally unbelievable. Even the protagonist's family are so hateful that it sours the book from the beginning.
Of course, upon reading more of the book, one can see why people might treat Story with little respect or tolerance. She is, sadly, extremely unintelligent and immature. This character falls victim to another mistake some writers choose to employ; she is written as a farce. Story makes stupid decisions and then the reader is expected to find the resultant idiotic mess humorous. They're not. They are simply tiresome, as are the drawn out 'misunderstandings'.
I understand that the author is trying to put local color into her work, but the 'extras' thrown into the story are unrelated to the mystery and drag the story down. Also, the bullet points...ridiculous. Also, the main character's sister constantly talking in 'text speak' is extremely irritating.
I slogged through to the end because I dislike giving up on a book, especially one I've paid $5.99 for. By the time the mystery is solved, however, I didn't really care and was just glad I was done with the book.
A book that costs this much should deliver a LOT more. I will not be reading any more of this series.
-And Oh Em Gee, if someone spoke 'text-speak' out loud, you would hear LETTERS!
The story was okay, but if a second book is physically written like this one, I won't be seeing a third.
Really, it didn't need the gimmicks.