Saturday, September 19, 2020

Book Review: Grounds for Murder by Tara Lush

Hello friends! Today I'm going to be sharing some thoughts about the upcoming cozy mystery release, Grounds for Murder. This is the first in a new cozy mystery series by author Tara Lush. I follow her on instagram and she shares a lot of fun photos and thoughts about her new series, so make sure you check her out!

Thank you to Netgalley for a digital ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. I'm relatively new to the cozy mystery genre and this was a really fun read.

Summary (from Goodreads.com):

Barista Lana Lewis's sleuthing may land her in a latte trouble as Tara Lush launches her new Coffee Shop mysteries.

When Lana Lewis' best -- and most difficult -- employee abruptly quits and goes to work for the competition just days before the Sunshine State Barista Championship, her café's chances of winning the contest are creamed. In front of a gossipy crowd in the small Florida town of Devil's Beach, Lana's normally calm demeanor heats to a boil when she runs into the arrogant java slinger. Of course, Fabrizio "Fab" Bellucci has a slick explanation for jumping ship. But when he's found dead the next morning under a palm tree in the alley behind Lana's café, she becomes the prime suspect.

Even the island's handsome police chief isn't quite certain of her innocence. But Lana isn't the only one in town who was angry with Fabrizio. Jilted lovers, a shrimp boat captain, and a surfer with ties to the mob are all suspects as trouble brews on the beach.

With her stoned, hippie dad, a Shih Tzu named Stanley, and a new, curious barista sporting a punk rock aesthetic at her side, Lana's prepared to turn up the heat to catch the real killer. After all, she is a former award-winning reporter. As scandal hangs over her beachside café, can Lana clear her name and win the championship -- or will she come to a bitter end?

My Thoughts:

While I am relatively new to the cozy mystery genre, Grounds for Murder has a lot of great elements to it. They are basically all of the elements that I look for in a good book.

Protagonist? 


Lana Lewis, an ex reporter and coffee shop owner in the small Florida town of Devil's Beach. I loved that her background in reporting helped her with figuring out her suspicions in the murder case in this story. She's a little bit nosy and I appreciated that about her, because I am a very nosy person as well.

It cracked me up when she was telling police chief Noah about some gossip she overheard and he's like, cool cool where did you hear that? And she's like, oh you know I was just peaking through some large leaves hanging from a tree. Haha.

Super casual, you know?

Setting? 


Devil's Beach, a small Florida town with a cast of unusual characters. I liked Erica, Lana's new friend and coffee shop employee. I loved the give and take between Lana and Noah, the town's police chief. I look forward to seeing their relationship develop in future books.

Please, please say there are more books in this series.

Family? 


I loved Lana's pot smoking, realtor father. He's a gem. And as you can probably tell from the cover of this book, there's a puppy sidekick as well. His name is Stanley and to find out his part in the mystery, you'll just have to read Grounds for Murder and find out.

Thank you again to Netgalley for the digital ARC of this book. I enjoyed it a lot and hope that there will be more books in this series. I felt like Tara Lush did a great job of introducing us to Devil's Beach and giving us the backstory, so I definitely want to learn more.

I recommend this book to readers who like:

- cozy mysteries
- humorous small towns
- coffee
- cute animals
-smart and educated protagonists

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