Stella Wright loves creating candles at her Nantucket store—and she also has a burning passion for justice. Now, after visiting a perfume conference, she must solve a vial crime . . .
Stella and her globe-trotting mom, Millie, have come home from a perfume industry conference in Paris, where their trip was marred by witnessing the stabbing death of a young man. It’s a relief for Stella to be back on her picturesque island, with the comforting company of her cat, Tinker. But lingering danger may have followed them back across the ocean.
After someone breaks into her candle store, the Wick & Flame, Stella starts feeling spooked. And just as things threaten to ignite, Millie suffers a blow to the head. Stella receives an anonymous note claiming that her mother smuggled a secret formula out of France—and threatening her life if it isn’t returned. Now Stella’s picked up the scent of a cold-hearted criminal and an intriguing puzzle, and things are about to get wicked . . .
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A Unique Cozy Mystery
(Saturday, March 7, 2020)
Stella Wright met up with her mom, Millie in Paris for a perfume conference. Right before Millie was supposed to speak a young man was stabbed right in front of them. After waiting to give the authorities the statements they just make their flight back to the states. Stella, happy to be home on Nantucket. Peter meets the ferry and he brought her cat Tinker along. Millie is allergic to cats so while she is staying with Stella, Tinker will be hanging out at her store, The Wick & Flame.
Stella finds herself spending the night at her store too, antsy about the murder she witnessed but also because it is impossible to sleep with Millie’s snoring. When she arrives she thinks that Tinker has been a very naughty kitty and made a huge mess. But then she realizes someone has broken into her store looking for something. Just as she is falling asleep, she hears the bell on her door and realizes she and Tinker hadn’t been alone.
When Millie gets injured in a freaky happenstance she ends up in the hospital and Stella learns someone from France has followed them home, Millie has something extremely important that they want. In an effort to save her mother Stella starts her quest to find the missing item and a killer. She is amazed by where her investigation leads.
Christin Brecher brings some international flair to this compelling mystery. This time Scents play a leading role.
The murder takes place in Paris but the majority of the story takes place on Nantucket. The author’s descriptive detail brings both settings clearly into focus.
The core characters we met in Murder’s No Votive Confidence are back. Police Officer Andy remains Stella’s best friend while Peter has moved into the boyfriend zone. I really enjoy the banter between Stella and her mom. Millie scent talents are just amazing and Stella’s are pretty darn good too. This is important because their noses can save an international incident from happening.
We do meet several new characters and most of them become suspects. Stella really doesn’t trust anyone new to the island, including Millie’s high school friends that have come together for a reunion. She is also concerned when a boarding school teacher they met in Paris unexpectedly shows up on their doorstep. Stella is troubled by another woman she noticed when they arrived on the ferry that was acting suspiciously too. There is even a mystery man lurking around town, Stella definitely has her work cut out for her. I enjoyed the way all the characters, old and new developed over the course of the story.
The mystery this time was not typical for a cozy mystery and a little unbelievable at times but it sure was fun to read and follow Stella through her grand adventure. Intrigue, action, and an elusive killer all come together tempered with a generous amount of humor to make this story so entertaining. It is full of unexpected twists and is very fast-paced.
Murder Makes Scents is well-plotted and written and an excellent follow-up to Murder’s No Votive Confidence. The international espionage theme may be a little over the top, but for me, it was a Perfect Escape!