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  • The latest A Kelly Jackson Mystery

    4
    By Kris Anderson, The Avid Reader
    Murder at the Mushroom Festival by Janet Finsilver is fourth installment in A Kelly Jackson Mystery series. Kelly Jackson, the manager of the Redwood Cove Bed-and-Breakfast, is looking forward to the Mushroom Festival in Redwood Cove, California. She has agreed to let Elise Jackson teach her mushroom class in the multipurpose room. Elise will be teaching the participants how to identify various mushrooms, how to cook with mushrooms and provide maps on where to find the fungi in the local area. One of the highlights of the festival is the mushroom hunting contest. Ned Blaine, reporter for the Redwood Cove Messenger, is attending Elise’s class and manages to anger a few people before it disperses. The next morning Deputy Sheriff Bill Stanton arrives to speak with Kelly. Ned Blaine was found shot dead (I’m so shocked) on sacred tribal land in Mallory National Park. When Daniel ends up the prime suspect, Kelly and the sleuthing seniors known as the Silver Sentinels dig into the case. Ned was investigating illegal redwood logging which included the stealing sinker logs and writing a book on places to locate mushrooms in Redwood Cove. Both items stirred up dark feelings and could have gotten Ned murdered. Someone is not happy with Kelly’s snooping and attempts to take her out of commission. It is up to Kelly and the Silver Sentinels to find the wrongdoer before they strike again. Murder at the Mushroom Festival can be read alone. Everything you need to know about Kelly is included in Murder at the Mushroom Festival. I thought the book contained good writing and had a steady pace. Janet Finsilver has a conversational writing style that makes the story easy to read. I thought the characters were well established. Kelly’s coworkers, friends and the Silver Sentinels are friendly, welcoming characters. They are the type of people I would like to know and have as my friends. I appreciate that there is a diverse group of people. I especially enjoy the younger characters as well as the dogs. They provide levity and humor to the story. Kelly is friendly, caring, smart and level headed. I like the setting of Redwood Cove. It sounds like a great place to live with the water and forests (I have always wanted to life in the Pacific Northwest). It was interesting to learn about mushrooms. I had no idea there were so many varieties and how easy it is to find them. People do need to be careful since there are numerous poisonous varieties (great weapon for a killer). I would never have thought of using mushrooms in a dessert. The mystery had a couple of different components that all come together in the end with the loose ends wrapped up. Identifying the guilty, though, is a piece of cake. I really like that Kelly actively investigates. She asks clever questions while being subtle. Kelly does not blindly dive into dangerous situations (hooray). There are many cozy moments in the book (cooking, chatting, mushroom hunting, cookie baking and decorating, horseback riding, traversing down the river in a canoe) that aid in making Murder at the Mushroom Festival a delight to read. My rating for Murder at the Mushroom Festival 4 out of 5 stars (I liked it). This is my favorite book so far in A Kelly Jackson Mystery series.

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