Another Review at MyShelf.Com

A Spell for Trouble
Enchanted Bay Mystery #1
BY Esme Addison

Crooked Lane
May 12, 2020/ ISBN 978-1-64385-303-1

Reviewed by Laura Hinds


Aleksandra Daniels returns to Bellamy Bay, North Carolina, after a twenty-year absence. After her mother died, her father forbade her to return to the seaside town to visit her aunt and cousins. Now that her father is gone, Alex accepts an invitation to visit with her remaining family members.

Alex left her high-level job in risk management after the environment turned toxic. Visiting Bellamy Bay with her dog, Athena, seemed like a necessary change of pace. Working in her aunt’s herbal apothecary, Botanika, offers not only a distraction but also a chance to learn more about herbal medicine and more about her family.

When a man with whom Aunt Lidia has a past visits the apothecary and later dies from poison, Aunt Lidia is arrested as the murderer. , Alex decides to stay in town and use her logical skills to find the truth, yet the truth about her family is not what she expected. As facts unravel, Alex learns that she is one of a line of magical healers descended from mermaids and frequently accused of practicing witchcraft. She’d best figure out how to use these powers immediately.

As with most series debuts, there is the need to properly set the scene, introduce the protagonist and main and secondary characters, and to weave the plot of the murder mystery with the goal being to engage readers and capture their interest for not just this book, but for future books in the series. Esme Addison has done a commendable job that ticks all the boxes. For those reasons, I recommend the book to cozy mystery lovers who enjoy a touch of the paranormal.

Overall, it’s a good book. For me, though, the protagonist, Alex, was a character I just couldn’t like. Her behavior is bizarre considering that she is supposed to be an educated and professional woman. She won’t heed good advice from her family or even instructions from the police. She often says one thing while thinking another, even after she knows full well that her aunt and cousins can hear her every thought. Alex tries to hide her emotions but ultimately blushes, finds her skin hot, and gives her feelings away over and over. I sincerely hope that the character comes into her true self more in the next book instead of bumbling about and putting herself in danger.

I will absolutely look forward to book two so I can see how things move along in the series and hopefully read about the character turning over a new leaf and showing her intellect as she adjusts to her new normal.

Reviewed 2020