Release Date: Oct 30, 2018
Series: A Britton Bay Mystery
Imprint: Lyrical Underground
Molly Owens wants a new start and happily accepts a job as editor of Britton Bay’s failing newspaper. She is enthusiastic and has lots of ideas on how to expand the readership of the “Bulletin”. Molly gets a warm reception from most of the staff who are willing to give the new ways a try. However, Molly has a hard time getting along with one of the employees, the grouchy Vernon East. When Vernon is murdered after taking on a story forced on him by Molly, she feels responsible for his death. Even when Molly learns there were plenty of people who had reason to want Vernon dead, she still feels she owes it to Vernon to help find his killer.
Deadly News is the first of a new series taking place in Britton Bay, Oregon. I liked Molly’s upbeat attitude and competence in her job right from the beginning. It’s easy to see why she makes friends s0 easily and earns the respect of most of her new co-workers from the very first day. Even though she didn’t care for Vernon, Molly doesn’t believe he deserve what happened to him. I like how she decides to do whatever she can to get information on the case, even when it doesn’t endear her to local law enforcement.
Molly makes a fast connection with Sam Alderich who owns an automobile repair shop in town. Molly is often shy around Sam and their awkward moments getting to know each other are realistic and adorable. The author’s biography says she writes contemporary romances as well as cozy mysteries and that shows in this book. The story has the right combination of light mystery and sweet romance. I was just as interested in seeing how things would progress between Molly and Sam as I was in the solution to the mystery.
Molly has the same problem that other cozy mystery heroines have in that she has a tendency to jump headlong into action, based on incorrect conclusions. This sends her down a lot of false paths that could be avoided. However, the large number of suspects and possible motives for Vernon’s murder makes the investigation interesting and allows the reader to be surprised when the killer’s identity is revealed. The book is fast-paced and fun to read. The author does a great job of introducing the various side-characters in the book without being too overwhelming or bogging down the story. I am hoping this is only the beginning of Molly’s new life in Britton Bay and there are future books that show us what happens next in Molly’s life and let us get to know some of the supporting characters in the town a little better. Deadly News will appeal to fans of Lucy Arlington’s Novel Idea series.