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A Grand Murder
Sammy Young Piano Tuner Mystery – Book I
Kate Lucky

Seven Owl Press
10 April 2016 / ASIN: B01E4C0S7Y (ebook)
Mystery / Cozy

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde


Sammy Young is a piano tuner in the small town of Rooks Creek in Illinois. One of her customers is the church of St. Xaviers, but they are not keen on paying her bills. One afternoon she gets into an altercation with arrogant Father Mick Shaunessy and storms out, forgetting her tuner’s equipment. Returning next morning, she finds Father Mick stuffed into the piano, dead. This makes her a suspect, and soon nobody wants her to enter their homes to tune their pianos. Facing ruin, Sammy decides to turn detective herself.

There is a lot to enjoy in the debut to this fun new series. Firstly, I haven’t read anything with a piano tuner as protagonist and originality is always a plus in my opinion. I have a tin ear for music so hoped there wasn’t going to be too much information about pianos and there wasn’t, very little in fact. This series also omits two of my least favorite cozy clichés - sexy detectives and wacky relations - earning further points in its favor. There is a lot to amuse, plenty of suspects and some entertaining characters including a tattoo artist, garage owner, card playing mobster, creepy caretaker and cake eating church secretary. There is something happening on every page- and this time the old formula of having the protagonist blunder into danger is played for a laugh- which works better as it is funny. I hope some of the characters will return in subsequent books, which I will certainly want to read. A lively and original new series.

Reviewed 2016