Thursday, December 30, 2021

Book Review: Pistols and Poinsettias by Bruce Hammack

Pistols and Poinsettias

Bruce Hammack
Series: Smiley and McBlythe Mystery (Book 5)
Publication:  Jubilee Publishing, LLC (September 21, 2020)

Description: Steve isn’t celebrating Christmas…he’s trying to survive it.

Blind PI Steve Smiley loathes Christmas—too many memories. When his partner secures an invitation for them to teach at a mystery writers’ conference in Miami, what promises to be a welcome early December escape turns into a tidal wave of mysteries to solve.

Steve and Heather walk into the midst of a raging civil war between two factions of the writers’ group. When they agree to locate a missing author slated to be the next organization president, they find themselves plunged into the midst of the battle. Before they can solve that mystery, another one lands at their feet, along with a dead body.

With more than a thousand mystery writers watching, Steve’s reputation is on the line. He and Heather make a plan to unravel the mysteries and expose the murderer. But the killer has a plan too. Steve’s no longer worried about enduring another lonely Christmas…this year he just wants to survive it.

If you like your Christmas reads full of mystery and suspense, you’ll love Pistols and Poinsettias!

My Thoughts: Blind detective Steve Smiley and his partner Heather McBlythe are traveling to a convention for female mystery writers when the story begins. Steve is also trying to avoid any mention of Christmas since the season reminds him of his deceased wife and threatens to throw him into depression.

The mysteries begin even while they are on the plane when they overhear an argument between two of the attendees. Apparently, the organization is threatening to splinter since the traditionally published authors and the self-published authors want to see the group take two different directions. 

Tensions are high among the attendees but that only starts the problems. Heather's family is a part owner of the hotel and she notices some lacks: banquet food that is inadequate, security cameras that aren't working, and a security chief who seems to have no experience. 

Things escalate when three different attendees from different factions all try to hire Heather and Steve to locate one of the missing members of the group who is a potential next president of the organization. Then the private chef who prepared a meal for them in their suite is found murdered in the VIP parking garage. 

Steve and Heather are both very busy trying to solve the crimes and also conduct their seminars and Q&As with Heather concentrating on the murder and other problems in the hotel and Steve concentrating on the missing author.

I enjoyed this story. The characters were interesting people and the setting was intriguing. This is the fifth book in a series and I am eager to read the rest of them. 

Favorite Quote:
She didn't have to travel far. "Glacier water, seltzer, mineral water or vitamin water?"

Steve shook his head. "I grew up playing outside and drinking out of a garden hose."

"Sorry, no hose water. How about Perrier?"
This one was a free Kindle title. You can get your copy here.

No comments:

Post a Comment

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!