Saturday, March 19, 2016

Review: Plantation Shudders by Ellen Byron

I want preface this mystery series review with a few words. If you have ever stayed in a bed and Breakfast in the south, or visited Louisiana, lived in Louisiana then you know that colorful characters are as common as sweet tea. That hospitality is right up there with gumbo and you probably in one form or another have met characters like the ones in Plantation Shudders (A Cajun County Mystery), in other words you will enjoy every word and every character in this wonderful series.

The Crozat Plantation Bed and Breakfast was once just a plantation but it cost a lot of money for upkeep of any southern mansion. Hence why it is now a bed and breakfast with charm, sweet tea and wonderful rooms.

Maggie Crozat returns home to help her family with the bed and breakfast. This week will be a busy one as the food festival is one of many events that are happening of course this means everyone is booked to the hilt.

The guest checking in are Georgia frat boys to which Maggie named them  one two and three, the Cajun Cuties a fan club of sorts who usually stayed at another bed and breakfast but that mansion had flooded so the Crozarts were happy to help,  plus a stranger to die for who was from Texas his name is Kyle, if this isn't colorful character enough then a family arrives complete with children in tow and the couple are celebrating their fifth anniversary.
An elderly honeymoon couple is supposed to arrive and eventually do arrive late.

The elderly couple has everyone's attention because the husband is a tad more than grouchy but the wife has a smile on her face. I mean this smile is kinda scary, a little grotesque and much like a train wreck you want to look away but cannot not look at this face.

The first thing that happens the elderly honeymooners Bud and Beverly Clabber arrive late he complaints and the room access and stated they were supposed to be on the first floor. Maggie corrects Bud as they had not booked the first floor.
The rose room is beautiful but Bud went into the bathroom came out and had Maggie follow him into the bathroom. He told her the toilet paper roll was put on all wrong and this would not do that it should unrolled from the top not the bottom. There are some days nothing but the middle finger comes in handy. But Maggie never gives the middle finger that would not show a proper upbringing, or good manners, instead she just fixes the toilet paper role while keeping her middle finger out of sight.
Anyway this is just one example of colorful characters. 

Maggie's own family has gran whose accent becomes even more thick when she doesn't like someone and has to be nice and sweet as sliced pie to them. Her father Tug is a wonderful delightful man who is a hard worker and loves his life more than the south. Her mother will not be found idle, sprinkle in here and there a few cousins and you have a rich and wonderful family history, one of their history is that when you shudder it means something and not always in a good way.
Long story short this is a book full of mystery, just like it's southern setting it has something for everyone.  Murder is also on the menu and so is secrets.
Everyone has a secret or two the trick is to figure what secrets are worth killing for and of course finding in order to find this out Maggie must get her hands dirty.
In other words she has to clean to find the dirty secrets, she also has a little help along the way from a new Deputy who is the Sheriff's cousin.

I have never laughed, loved and wanted to solve a crime more than I did in this mystery.
I think Plantation Shudders should be in every creative writing class as a study of character, humor, plot and setting. I can see this series one day becoming a made for television movie or a Hallmark Movies and Mystery Series.
It might just become a classic series.

With every turn of the page the you will lose track of time and be transported to a southern bed and breakfast you won't soon forget...

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