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Poisoned Petals Paperback – Large Print, Sep 1 2007

3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 421 pages
  • Publisher: Wheeler Pub Inc; Lrg edition (Sept. 1 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1597225991
  • ISBN-13: 978-1597225991
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 15.2 x 1.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 295 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
After identifying <b>Joyce Lavene’s</b> second novel, I resumed “<b>Poisoned Petals</b>”. Details had been irksome in several places: a possessive boyfriend at Steve’s mature age, authors' remarks about dogs solely understanding key gestures and words; demonstrating misunderstanding of animals. Peggy is suddenly vegetarian on paper, further indicating that these authors plop down well-meaning concepts without genuinely being in the know about them. Worse: Steve messes about, kissing Peggy, before attending to animal emergencies! No veterinarian would behave that way!

Dialogue comes across like snatches of popular phrases and personality types pasted in, instead of exuding life of their own. A road-worker played an ignorant oaf, who asked Peggy why she wished to save “a bunch of plants” from a ditch; valuable native varieties. It made a difference after I continued in order. I began to enjoy this novel more, because the false-starts were out of the way and I reprised upon interesting chapters. I would venture to say too, that <b>Joyce</b> hit her stride partway into this story. I groaned over a fifty year-old’s anxiety that having a younger boyfriend might shock her Mother. Thankfully that was the final stereotype.

Peggy’s Dad started as a rubberstamped southerner but ended up lifting the whole book. I enjoyed it tenfold, because Peggy included him in all of her sleuthing. Her family portfolio becomes stronger for readers and Ranson Hughes is an enjoyable gem. Peggy’s botany friend, Darmus, and his reverend brother, Luther, perish one after another. I love the twist pertaining to one outcome and familial revelations too. I didn’t buy the motive at all, nor the immature attachment of a person going along with the criminal. Again, natural behavioural psychology didn’t gel. Nobody acts criminally for someone they recently met. However I own the next several stories and will indeed read them.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 3.8 out of 5 stars 17 reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Botanical Series Feb. 16 2016
By Bettylouise - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I have read most of this series and enjoyed it. This book is poorly written and confusing in places. It did add the missing parts to the series.Peggy is slowly recovering from her husband's death. Peggy visits a friend, Darmus and is there when the house explores. Peggy goes into recused her friend, but she is too late as he is dead. Darmas was head FEED AMERICA. His brother Luther takes over the organization and is later found murdered. Peggy's parents are visiting her and Steve is becoming important, The botanical information is excellent as always in this series. The Potting Shed is growing. Peggy becomes a forensics consultant to the corner's office
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars delightful botany mystery May 2 2007
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Fiftyish Dr. Peggy Lee is coming back to life after the death of her beloved husband two years ago. Although she is still teaching at the college, her heart is with her garden shop, The Potting Shed and she has a new man in her life, Steve, a vet seven years younger than her. She wonders if she should give up teaching to work full time at the shop and as a forensic botanist consultant to the police.

While collecting endangered plants to replant in the Community Garden that is part of Feed America and led by her friend Darmus, she meets his brother Luther, who tells her he is dying of cancer. On impulse she goes to Darmus' house and smells gas; the place explodes and Darmus is declared dead. However when she looks at the corpse, she knows this is not Darmus. Luther who now heads Feed America dies a few days later. An autopsy reveals he was poisoned with the evidence pointing towards his sibling; Peggy thinks otherwise and plans to prove it.

Joyce and Jim Lavene are a fabulous team who create poignant entertaining mysteries. The investigation is cleverly plotted and potted so that readers struggle with the identity of the killer as Darmus looks guilty, but the heroine thinks otherwise; fans will wonder if she could be wrong. The support cast from her parents to her friends to her new man adds depth to a delightful botany mystery.

Harriet Klausner
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Read June 4 2007
By Alice Berger - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Dr. Peggy Lee didn't plan on becoming involved in a murder investigation during her family's visit, in the midst of her garden shop's busy season. But her dear friend, Darmus, has died in a terrible gas fire, followed by his brother, Luther, soon after. Now the police want to know why there was a flower in Luther's pocket, and who put it there.

Steve, her reliable new boyfriend, comes to the rescue and entertains the family while Peggy searches for clues. And her father is more perceptive than the others and insists on helping. Although she would prefer to keep the investigation to herself, she's grateful he tagged along when she gets into some tight spots.

Things are not always what they seem, as Peggy finds out from her mysterious internet friend. And her relationship with Steve is about to change in ways she never expected.

Peggy Lee is a middle-aged widow with a lot of spunk, who gets herself into situations no average woman would attempt. While her character is very well developed, this reviewer would have enjoyed getting to know several of the secondary characters a bit better, also.

Poisoned Petals blends a love of gardening with a well plotted murder mystery. It's an enjoyable and cozy read, perfectly suited for lounging in the garden on a summer day.

Muse Review Mark: Great Read

Reviewer: Alice Berger, Muse Reviews
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent-As Always! May 4 2007
By Shirley Priscilla Johnson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
In this third installment of the Peggy Lee Garden Mystery we find our main character Dr. Margaret Lee, better know as Peggy, trudging about pulling up endangered grass doing what she does best, saving our planet earth. Peggy is a teacher of botany at Queens University and runs a garden shop, but she is also the widow of a police officer and despite her best efforts, she seems to become involved again and again in solving one murder after another; often endangering her life in the process to the woe of her beloved son Paul, who himself is a police officer, and her boyfriend Steve.

However, in this story Peggy goes over the top as two brothers, and friends of hers, end-up dead, or that's the way it appears in the beginning of this tale, but is that the way it really is? What mysteries and secrets have weaved their web in the lives of these two brothers that have hiden truths even to the discerning eye of our beloved Peggy? There are just too many questions and not enough answers as far as Peggy is concerned, and she is determined to find her answers, one way or another.

Our authors bring more of Peggy's family into play in this story and I loved it. We get to meet her mother and father, an uncle and a cousin and believe me they are very colorful characters. You quickly become involved and familiar with each of them. I particularly loved Peggy's father and it was evident where Peggy inherited her thirst for finding answers. Our authors teamed up Peggy with her dad in many scenes where Peggy searched for evidence and this really brought the storyline of the mystery she had to solve and her home life together.

What can I say; this is yet another home-run for Jim and Joyce Lavene. A top-of-the-notch, over the fence mystery read with beloved characters, a fast paced storyline and a wallop of an ending. I absolutely loved this book and impatiently await another. I am happy to say that Jim and Joyce Lavene never disappoint me.
7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars One of the most frustrating books I have read in a long time July 24 2007
By M. C. Carter - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The initial premise is promising and the series was improving, book by book. This installment jumps from idea to idea, plot twist to more improbable plot twist and plods to the finish. None of the characters acts or reacts in any semblance of a normal fashion and with the introduction of each new character the focus turns to their reaction to the main character, Dr. Peggy Lee, rather than furthering the storyline. The problem is that Dr. Peggy Lee is unlikeable, the secondary characters' reactions are predictable and the lackluster plot unfolds like a Busby Berkeley musical....more friends, more suspects, more crazy reactions, more midnight chats with a mysterious on-line mentor...oh wait, let's throw in a love scene...here's the dopey cousin with sleep problems, the disapproving mother, the supportive but weary father, let's give Peggy a new job to obsess about. And on and on and on and on. The initial victim, is he a victim or a bad-guy?...isn't likeable and neither are any of the other characters.

The only reason I didn't put the book down in total disgust is that I was sitting in a hospital waiting room and had absolutely nothing else to occupy myself with for a couple of hours.