Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Book Review: 'Twas The Knife Before Christmas by Jacqueline Frost

Author: Jacqueline Frost
Series: A Christmas Tree Farm Mystery #2
Audience: +18
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Release Date: November 13th 2018
My Rating: 4 Cups
Source: Netgalley
Blurb (from Goodreads):
A Christmas delight, ’Twas the Knife Before Christmas will charm the stockings off readers of Joanne Fluke and Leslie Meier.

It’s out of the cupcake tin, into the fire for Holly White’s best friend, Caroline. Can Holly clear Caroline’s name in time to go caroling?

When a body turns up in the dumpster behind Caroline’s Cupcakes, Holly White is horrified to learn her best friend Caroline is the main suspect. Everyone in town, including Mistletoe, Maine’s sheriff, saw Caroline fighting with the victim on the night of his death. Worse, Caroline’s fingerprints are all over the murder weapon, a custom-designed marble rolling pin.

Now, just ten days before Christmas, Holly’s up to her jingle bells in holiday shenanigans and in desperate need of a miracle. Juggling extra shifts at her family’s Christmas tree farm and making enough gingerbread jewelry to satisfy the crowd is already more than she can handle—and now she has to find time to clear her best friend of murder. Add in her budding relationship with the sheriff, and run-ins with an ex-fiancĂ© looking to make amends, and Holly’s ready to fly south until springtime.

But her Sherpa-lined mittens come off when Caroline is taken into custody. Can Holly wrap up the case in time for Christmas…even after she gains the true killer’s attention? Find out in ‘Twas the Knife Before Christmas, Jacqueline Frost’s second pine-scented Christmas Tree Farm mystery.
*Disclaimer: I received an eARC of this book from Netgalley and Crooked Lane Books in exchange for an honest review. This does not influence my rating or the content of my review in any way.

What a fun read! I read this back in August, during ARC August, and I have to say, it kind of saved the month for me, because I was slipping into a reading slump before I picked this one up.

'Twas the knife before Christmas is about Holly White, jewelry maker and soon-to-be innkeeper, on her quest to prove that her best friend, Caroline, is innocent of murdering the guy she was seen having a fight with the night before he was found dead. It’s a very cute story, complete with funny shenanigans, and Christmas miracles.

Holly is a very curious woman. It’s not that she wants to meddle, it’s that she genuinely wants to help those she loves. I think that’s why I love this types of books, because generally they’re about really good, helpful people. Holly is one of those really good people that when they love someone, they do it fully and they’d do anything for the people who managed to become a member of their little circle. So when Caroline is the number one suspect for murder, Holly will stop at nothing to prove she’s innocent, even getting in the murderer’s sights. I loved seeing Holly play the detective. What’s funny is that she had a way more open mind than the sheriff, and she managed to find some really interesting details about the victim.

I wish I’d have read the previous book in this series, because then I would have had a better understanding of the relationship between her and Evan, the town’s sheriff. I feel like I’m missing a few details, and I’m sure all the questions or at least most of them would be answered with the previous book. That being said, I was still able to enjoy this book as a stand-alone, since the author gave some small recaps of what happened previously all throughout the story. The book is pretty fast-paced and I read this book pretty quick.

I loved all the Christmas traditions and games going on at the Reindeer Games tree farm that Holly, her parents and her friends organized. Not only do they match the festive spirit of the season, but they also kind of got me in the Christmas spirit. There were a lot of funny scenes in this book that had me giggling like a mad woman, from the first page of the book to the last.

All in all, I rally enjoyed this book and I am definitely going to be looking out for more books by this author. Hopefully, there will be more books in this series, too.

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