Wednesday, September 2, 2020

ARC Review: Murder at the Bayou Boneyard by Ellen Byron


Murder at the Bayou Boneyard

Author: Ellen Byron
Series: A Cajun Country Mystery
Publication: Crooked Lane Books (September 8, 2020)

Description: Maggie Crozat has the Halloween heebie-jeebies in USA Today bestselling and Agatha Award-winning author Ellen Byron's howlingly funny sixth Cajun Country mystery.

Maggie Crozat, proprietor of a historic Cajun Country B&B, prefers to let the good times roll. But hard times rock her hostelry when a new cell phone app makes it easy for locals to rent their spare rooms to tourists. With October--and Halloween--approaching, she conjures up a witch-crafty marketing scheme to draw visitors to Pelican, Louisiana.

Five local plantation B&Bs host "Pelican's Spooky Past" packages, featuring regional crafts, unique menus, and a pet costume parade. Topping it off, the derelict Dupois cemetery is the suitably sepulchral setting for the spine-chilling play Resurrection of a Spirit. But all the witchcraft has inevitably conjured something: her B&B guests are being terrified out of town by sightings of the legendary rougarou, a cross between a werewolf and vampire.

When, in the Dupois cemetery, someone costumed as a rougarou stumbles onstage during the play--and promptly gives up the ghost, the rougarou mask having been poisoned with strychnine, Maggie is on the case. But as more murders stack up, Maggie fears that Pelican's spooky past has nothing on its bloodcurdling present.

My Thoughts: This sixth Cajun Country mystery takes place during Halloween. Maggie and her family along with other local B & Bs are hosting a "Pelican's Spooky Past" package to try to lure customers away from the new guy Gavin Grody who is buying up all sorts of affordable property and using them as rentals using his new app Rent My Digs. 

Halloween is not Maggie's favorite holiday and this one looks like it will confirm her feelings about the holiday. She has asked a long-lost cousin from Canada to visit and run the new spa that they created to try to generate some more income. But the cousin, her husband, and his two grown children prove to be a disappointment. She is running a side business as a psychic and taking business from other local psychics. She also has determined that she is the owner of some land adjacent to Maggie's family land. The land she says is hers includes most of Maggie's art studio which they are using as guest housing. 

Someone is also running around scaring the tourists by pretending to be a rougarou which is proving bad for business. Well, except for the paranormal aficionados who rent rooms at Maggie's parents' B&B after those more easily scared cancel their reservations.

When the cousin is found dead while wearing a rougarou costume, Maggie becomes the number one suspect in the eyes of the Ville Blanc police who have jurisdiction instead of the local Pelican Police Department where her fiance works. Maggie needs to clear her name or she'll find herself in jail instead of walking down the aisle in a double wedding with her grandmother.

But that doesn't end Maggie's problems. The widower decides to sell his newly inherited land to a chemical company who want to build a plant right next door to their B&B. But then he is found dead and even more suspicion falls on Maggie.

This was a fun mystery made even better by the recipes included in the book. After all, Maggie's mother Ninette is an excellent Cajun cook who delights in feeding her guests (and anyone else who happens to stop by the B&B).

Favorite Quote:
The tomb next to the recently departed Etienne boasted the statue of a fan dancer, his great lost love. Not lost to death -- bored with the country life, the fan dancer beat it weeks after tying the knot. Etienne, his heart broken, commissioned the tomb to memorialize the death of his one brief marriage, and segued into a life of mild debauchery.

I received this one in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the review. A new book and a new author for me.


I love getting comments. Let me know what you think.

This blog is now officially declared an Award Free zone! I do appreciate your kindness in thinking of me and I am humbled by your generosity.

Your comments are award enough for me. Comment away!