Stars: 3 out of 5
Pros: Wonderful characters with strong relationships
Cons: Plot weak with even weaker climax
The Bottom Line:
A fresh idea
And likeable characters
Underserved by plot
This Series Debut was Snow Disappointing
I don’t tend to read the crafty cozies, mainly because the crafts used as the theme don’t interest me. However, when Snow Way Out, the first in a new Snow Globe Shop Mystery series crossed my radar, I jumped on it. Who doesn’t enjoy snow globes? I was hoping this would be a fun new series, but sadly it was disappointing.
Cami Brooks has taken on running her parent’s shop, Curio Finds, while her mother undergoes treatment for cancer. It shares a space with Brew Ha-Ha, a coffee shop run by Pinky Nelson, one of her best friends. While quite different from her last job working for a Senator in Washington DC, Cami is enjoying being home and reconnecting with her friends and family.
In an attempt to boost business in the shop, Cami and Pinky are jointly hosting a snow globe making class. Cami leaves work late that night after class and is walking home when she finds a man sitting on a bench in the park asleep. At least she thinks he is asleep until he falls over, revealing the knife sticking out of his back. Cami immediately recognizes the scene as identical to one she spotted in an unfamiliar snow globe in her shop just before she left, but when she goes back with the police, that snow globe is gone. What is going on?
Actually, there is a lot going on, but little of it is because of Cami. While she decides to investigate, especially when her friends start acting funny, she actually does very little active investigation. Instead, the book is filled with lots of events, and they do provide some entertainment, but it leaves the mystery very underdeveloped. And don’t get me started on one development with the police that would absolutely never happen.
Sadly, the climax isn’t much better. It’s actually a little anti-climatic, and the explanation for some of the strange things happening in the book doesn’t really satisfy.
This is a shame because I absolutely loved the characters. Cami is surrounded by some very good friends, and I got a feel for those friendships in their many scenes together. Likewise, I enjoyed the scenes with her parents. Yes, they could have used a bit more development, but I’d be willing to spend more time getting to know them better in future books if the plot of this one had been better.
There are instructions for making your own snow globe at the end of the book. It’s pretty much a summary of what we learn in the first chapter, but it is interesting and made me start thinking about the kind of snow globe I’d enjoy making.
Sadly, the plot doesn’t serve the characters well. Snow Way Out had plenty of potential with great characters and a great premise, but the average plot just drags everything down.