Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Book Review: Microphones and Murder by Erin Huss (Podcasting Sisters Mysteries #1)

Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Great characters, twisty story, laughs and fun
Cons: A couple of scenes I could have done without, but they are minor
The Bottom Line:
New true crime pod cast
Featuring missing person case
Fun fiction debut

Don’t Miss This Debut

I have recently confessed that I am late to podcasts, but I’ve enjoyed the ones I’ve found.  When I spotted Microphones and Murder, the first in the new Podcasting Sisters Mysteries from Erin Huss, I decided I had to give it a try.  The true crime podcasters hook definitely worked on me.  I’m glad it did because I really enjoyed this debut.

After several years working as an engineer on a popular true crime podcast, Liv Olsen has decided to launch her own.  She’s risking quite a bit as she’s used all of her savings to purchase the equipment she needs.  Liv teams up with her younger stepsister Camry Lewis, and the two travel to Santa Maria, on the central California coast, to tackle their first season of Missing or Murder.

Just over ten years ago, Amelia Clark vanished a week after an embarrassing video of her went vial on YouTube.  Her car was discovered at the head of a local hiking trail a few days later, but no sign of her was ever found.  The retired detective who handled the case originally has asked Liv and Camry to devote their first season to this case in hopes that public pressure will force the police to reopen the case and finally solve things.  However, the detective’s notes prove to be less useful than Liv hoped they would be.  As she begins to interview the people who knew Amelia back then, she feels like everyone is hiding something.  After ten years, can Liv and Camry generate enough interest to reopen the case?  What happened to Amelia all those years ago?

With all the murder mysteries I read, it is always nice to find a book that starts off with a different kind of mystery for the sleuths to solve.  And just because the book doesn’t start off with a murder doesn’t make it any less compelling.  As I teased, Liv quickly begins collecting a large group of suspects, and it seems that each interview leaves her with a new question that needs to be answered.  Don’t worry, everything is answered before the book is over, and we get a satisfying ending.

I also came to really love the characters.  Not that it took much.  Everyone comes across as warm and friendly from the moment they step on the page, and I enjoyed every minute I got to spend with them.  Liv and Camry have quite the crew by the time the book ends.  I did find one of the characters, who speaks with a stutter, a bit annoying to read because of that, but it was a minor complaint.  All of the main characters grew as we spent more time with them, and I am anxious to see where their relationships go as the series progresses.  The suspects are just as real.  They might not always be warm and friendly, but they are suspects, so they should make us question whether they are hiding a deep secret, right?

I did find a smattering of mild foul language in the book, but that’s often true for books from Henery Press.  There are also a couple of conversations I could have done without, but both of these are worth noting only in passing.

Have I mentioned this book is funny?  No, it’s not a laugh on every page kind of book, but there are some very funny scenes that definitely made me laugh out loud.

Microphones and Murder is a delightful debut.  I’m so glad I gave it a chance.  I will definitely be back when the sequel drops.

NOTE: I received an ARC of this book.

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