Thursday, August 22, 2019

Book Review: Silent Night, Deadly Night by Vicki Delany (Year-Round Mysteries #4)

Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Strong mystery, great holiday spirit
Cons: Who do you think I am, an unthankful Scrooge?
The Bottom Line:
College friend murdered
Complicated this Thanksgiving
Holiday spirit

This College Reunion is Nothing to be Thankful for

There are cozies for just about any time of the year, but Thanksgiving seems to be one of the lesser picked holidays.  Yes, I can think of a few, but it isn’t as popular as its neighbors Halloween and Christmas.  Yet Vicki Delany made it the setting for Silent Night, Deadly Night, the fourth entry in her Year-Round Christmas series.

If you are new to the series, it features Merry Wilkinson, the owner of Mrs. Claus’s Treasures in the town of Rudolph, New York.  With a name like Rudolph, is it any wonder that the town has reinvented itself as a tourist destination for all things Christmas year-round.  Unfortunately, Merry is finding that murder happens year-round, too, since this marks the fourth time she’s gotten involved in a murder in the past year.

Merry’s mother, Aline, is thrilled to be hosting some of her college friends the weekend before Thanksgiving.  While they have kept in touch, they haven’t all been together since their college days almost forty years ago.  However, her joy quickly turns sour when the group arrives and they spend most of their time bickering and sniping at each other.  Desperate for some company and help reigning them in, she invites Merry to several of the group’s meals.

However, the tension continues to build until one of the women dies under suspicious circumstances.  Despite warnings to keep out of the investigation, Merry can’t help but gather some information.  And when a newcomer to town tries to use this to take over the job of town Santa from Merry’s dad, she really begins to try to find out what happened.  Can she figure out which of the women is a killer before they leave town?

Yes, I have been vague about who the victim is and how she died, but fans of cozies will be able to spot the victim and method of murder fairly quickly.  That doesn’t make the start of the novel any less interesting since we are meeting the suspects and getting to know the victim a little bit, too, before she dies.  Once the murder takes place, we are off to the races with several good twists in the story.  The sub-plot involving Merry’s dad drew me further into the book.  Everything built to a great climax.  Honestly, I can’t believe I didn’t pick up on a few things earlier, but everything was logical when Merry figured it out.

I was a bit worried when we meet all the suspects at once that it would be hard to keep them all straight, but that was never a problem for me.  Near the beginning, we were given enough context to remember which of the ladies was which, but as the novel progressed, I was able to keep them straight without any cues since their characters were better defined in my mind.  Naturally, the series regulars are as charming as always.  I really do enjoy this cast, and it was great to be spending time with them again.

You might have noticed I love Christmas.  That is one thing that initially drew me to this series.  Even though this book is set around Thanksgiving, it balances that line between the two holidays perfectly.  While reading the book, I got that late fall, Thanksgiving feeling, but the town and Merry’s store still provided the Christmas charm I was looking for.  After reading this, I’m about ready to start setting up my Christmas trees.  Too bad it’s only August.

Whether you read this book now or save it for the holidays (your choice of which holiday), you’ll enjoy Silent Night, Deadly Night.  This is a cozy mystery filled with murder, mayhem, warmth, and Christmas cheer.  What more could you want?

Need more Christmas cheer?  Check out the rest of the Year-Round Christmas Mysteries.

NOTE: I received a copy of this book.


Thanks to the publisher, I have one copy of this book to give away.  Because it is a physical book, the contest is limited to residence of the US.

Just leave me a comment with your e-mail address so I can get in touch with you if you win.  I will pick the winner Thursday August 29th, so please leave your comment before midnight Pacific Time on 8/29.  You will have until midnight on 9/3 to get back to me, or I will choose a new winner on 9/4.


  1. I am looking forward to returning to Merry's world! I love Thanksgiving, not quite as many books around then as Halloween or Christmas! Thanks for the chance to win!

  2. So glad there's a new book in this series! Thanks for the chance to win a copy. acate9(at)utk(dot)edu

  3. Love this series. Thanks for the chance

  4. I love those series and can’t wait to read the newest installment. Frauenb(at)gmail(dot)com

  5. I've enjoyed her other series & the ones she writes under Eva Gates, but haven't started this series yet. I need to remedy that. Thanks for the giveaway!
    turtle6422 at gmail dot com

  6. I can’t wait to read Silent Night, Deadly Night. I love this series...and everything else Vicki Delany/Eva gates writes. I’m really excited that this is a Thanksgiving story since Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Thanks for the chance! cking78503(at)aol(dot)com

  7. One of my favorite series - thanks for the chance!

    jtcgc at yahoo dot com

  8. Just found you and I'm enjoying your reviews. I've never read this author before, but would love to read this book since you gave it such a good review!

  9. Love this author & series

  10. This sounds like so much fun - and I love the cover! Thanks for the review and giveaway! aut1063(at)gmail(dot)com

  11. Thanks for the great review! I'm looking forward to this book.

  12. Good series. Thanks for the chance.
    kozo8989 (at) hotmail (dot) com

  13. Thanks for the chance to win! Haven't read any of this series yet. I would save it for November because I like to read holiday books near their holiday. My b'day (60th) happens to fall on Thanksgiving this year.

  14. Sounds like a great book - thanks for the chance to win. trwilliams69(at)msn(dot)com

  15. I love this series. Thank you for this chance. pgenest57(at)aol(dot)com

  16. Sounds like a fun holiday read. Thanks for the opportunity to enter.

  17. Sounds like a great holiday read. Thanks for the chance.

  18. Vicki Delany is a good writer...thank you for the contest.

  19. Haven't read any yet. I think I have one that I picked up at the library book sale. Christmas books are great!

  20. I adore these books! One of my favorite series.

    lauren51990 AT aol DOT com

  21. I can't wait to read Silent Night, Deadly Night. We don't have any Thanksgiving traditions other then a family dinner every year. Thank you for a chance to win a print copy of Silent Night, Deadly Night.


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