The third in Galenorn’s Chintz ‘n China cozy mystery series is Murder Under a Mystic Moon. The product description reads: After psychic medium Emerald O’Brien literally stumbles across the body of her friend’s best buddy, the police blame the death on a cougar attack. But Emerald senses something else wandering the forest–a killer of a more human kind. The back cover reads:
With her teenaged daughter’s birthday on the horizon and the town’s autumn festival in full swing, Emerald has her hands full with party preparations and teashop specials. But a request from her friend Jimbo has her using her abilities to look into the disappearance of his friend. In the woods surrounding the Klickavail Valley enclave, Emerald senses a strange energy manifesting itself-before literally stumbling across the body of Jimbo’s friend. While the police are willing to blame the death on a cougar attack, Emerald knows there’s something else wandering the forest-something that resembles the Klakatat monster of legend, but may actually be a monster of a more human kind.
I have enjoyed reading this series (which I have bought and downloaded from the Sony eReader Bookstore), and this book was not a disappointment. The characters continue to develop, relationships continue to grow, and murders continue to be solved. And, so far, it’s not boring. This book does lack some of the suspense of the first two, but it is replaced with an ethereal focus on the mythical (or not) creatures of the Earth. That focus, and its conclusion, is more mystical and appealing in many ways. It allows the reader to contemplate the land and our connections to it in unique ways.
Like the first in this series, the book does include a sex scene that is kind of unexpected for a “cozy,” but it was not very graphic or very long, so I hope that won’t keep you from reading it. Also, like the others in the series, the shop (the chintz and china) was really an after thought. And, although used a bit more in this book than the previous two, the tarot was still not very present. Emerald did consult the cards at key times in this book, though, which made the tarot more important to her (and thus more important to the reader).
There were several things left hanging / unexplained in this book (which is, I assume, because it was planning for the next installment), like why did a customer give Em a crystal ball and what destroyed Jimbo’s carrots? They weren’t major plot details, though, so certainly I am not anxiously awaiting the answers.
The book ends with a “recipe” (a charm) for “Mystic Moon Dreaming Pillows” which sounds, well, dreamy! I wish I add all of the ingredients. I could use a good night’s sleep.
Happy Reading & Happy Cinco de Mayo!