Motif for Murder Hardcover – Large Print, Jan 2007
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From Publishers Weekly
Childs's fourth scrapbooking mystery (after 2004's Bound for Murder), her first in hardcover, offers plenty of action even if it doesn't take full advantage of its setting, post-Katrina New Orleans. Just when series heroine Carmela Bertrand decides that reuniting with Shamus Meechum, her bad-boy ex-husband, might be a mistake, Shamus is kidnapped. Carmela rushes across the alley to seek help from Shamus's elderly uncle Henry, only to find Henry murdered. Det. Edgar Babcock isn't thrilled to have another case involving the meddling Carmela, and his irritation increases when Carmela and her best friend, Ava, rescue Shamus from the kidnappers themselves. Once Shamus is safe, he reverts to his old ways, adding to Carmela's woes. Mix in the usual scrapbooking and craft tips, and you have another engaging read from this reliable cozy author. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Plenty of action ...Another engaging read from this reliable cozy author."
"A charming mystery series with lively, quirky characters and plenty of how-to." --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
This book doesn't spend as much time in Memory Mine (her store) and gives us a much more indepth look at Shamus' character. I'm still not sure if I like the ending...you'll have to read it and see what you think. I'm also not sure what my opinion of Shamus is anymore, either. We'll all have to wait and see where Childs' goes with the Shamus/Carmela link.
This mystery is really all Carmela and her friend, Ava. The book begins with the kidnapping of Shamus and the murder of Shamus' uncle, Henry Meechum. Glory throws her usual little tantrum (I really hate that woman) and Carmela is off on her own. Shamus is rescued pretty quickly and he wants Carmela to help him solve Henry's murder, but while Carmela keeps at it, Shamus keeps going off on other things and getting distracted. While I wasn't able to guess the murderer, I did figure out pretty early where the clue was going to be once Carmela figured it out.
Although I liked this book, I really think this is the weakest so far. I definitely enjoyed the other books more. Childs really tantalizes us with Shamus and Carmela getting a little "happily ever after" at the beginning and then pulls it out from under us (yes, I admit, I like happy endings).
If you are just coming to this series, I would recommend starting with Keepsake Crimes, the first in the series, and not this one.
The biggest letdown? Laura Childs is a pretty good writer. Her prose flows and the descriptions are fun and colorful. I suggest she get a better editor, one who actually does his or her job.