Release Date: Mar 7, 2017
Publisher: Penguin Group
Series: League of Literary Ladies
Bea Cartwright and the other members of the League of Literary Ladies are currently reading the classic novel Gone With the Wind. Some of the group members are enjoying the book more than others, but they can all agree that the celebrity twins who have recently arrived at South Bass Island are nothing but trouble. Bea is especially upset over Quentin and Riva’s arrival since their new bed and breakfast called “Tara” is taking business away from Bea’s own inn, “Bea and Bees”. However, that problem is the least of Bea’s worries when she finds herself involved in a murder investigation. When local real estate agent, Vivian Frisk, who had been working with the twins, it’s one of the Literary Ladies, Chandra, who becomes a suspect. Now it’s up to Bea and the rest of the League of Ladies to prove Chandra’s innocence.
I have read most of the prior books in this series, and I always enjoy the unique setting of South Bass Island in Ohio. I have visited there and the author does a fantastic job of capturing the atmosphere and spirit of the island that is nicknamed the “Key West of the Great Lakes.” I like the main character, Bea, as well as her unlikely friendship with Chandra, Luella, and Kate who are all so different, yet have come to become close friends. There weren’t as many meaningful scenes between all of the friends in this book compared to prior books and that dynamic between the four women is greatly missed in this installment. I do enjoy the romantic sub-plot between Bea and Levi who have chemistry even when the future of their relationship is up in the air.
The plot of the book is cleverly tied into the book Bea and her friends are reading with Chandra’s channeling of Scarlet O’Hara and the costume ball that Quentin and Riva host at “Tara.” Unfortunately, the book gets off to a slow start with a meandering plot, and the character of Riva is hard to take. Things do pick up toward the end, mostly because of the events related to Bea and Levi. I was pleased that everything wraps up with an enjoyable ending and a satisfying resolution to the case and Bea’s life. Although this wasn’t my favorite book in the series, I’m hopeful that future books will get back to the heart of the series – the friendship between women with diverse backgrounds that started with a shared love of books.