My summer of cozy mysteries continues!
Grounds for Murder is the first book in a four-part cozy mystery series set in Devil’s Beach, Florida. Our hero is Lana Lewis, a journalist-turned-barista. (Tara Lush is a journalist, as well!) Lewis was doing great as a reporter in Miami, but a series of unfortunate work and personal events led her to moving back home to the Beach. Her hippie dad owns Perkatory, the local island coffee shop. She takes over as the shop manager as she tries to stabilize her life and figure out what’s next. Fortunately for Lana, she has a star Italian barista at her shop to keep things busy. Unfortunately for Lana, somebody’s about to get murdered in Perkatory!
Lana uses her reporting skills, her dad’s town gossip skills, and her will they-won’t they relationship with the hunky police chief to try and solve the murder before it ruins her coffee shop’s reputation, and maybe her life!
I listened to this as an audiobook, and I will tell you right now that I loved it. It’s not exactly a deep book, but it certainly is a fun book. It’s got an interesting mystery, a PG-level of wild island characters, and an appropriate amount of coffee talk. My favorite side characters were the punk rock barista and the hippie dad trying to find his footing after losing his beloved wife.
While I would give the book 3.5/5 stars, the enjoyability of cruising around in the summer heat while listening to the book bumps it to 4/5 stars. I’ll definitely continue the series, but mostly likely I’ll do so when the books go on sale (that’s how I got this one).