Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Book Review: Up Next, Murder by Erin Huss (Podcasting Sisters Mysteries #2)

Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Compelling mystery, great characters, fun
Cons: A couple of annoying things, but minor overall
The Bottom Line:
Tracking a killer
Page turning case filled with fun
A delight for all

Next Up?  More Fun

Since I enjoyed the first Podcasting Sisters Mystery a few months back, I was thrilled to see the second one was already out.  I was even more thrilled to see what case Liv and Camry were going to tackle in Up Next, Murder.

It’s been a few months since we last checked in on step-sisters Liv and Camry, and they are getting ready to start investigating and planning the episodes for the second season of Missing or Murdered?, their true crime podcast.  They are sticking with Santa Maria, California, and investigating the case of Brinkley Douglas.  Almost twenty years ago, Brinkley disappeared one evening walking home from her boyfriend’s house, only a couple of blocks from her own home.  Joel Zander, the boyfriend, has long had a cloud of suspicion hanging over his head, and almost everyone believes he did it.

Brinkley’s remains were found a few months ago, so the fresh interest is making this case hot again.  Liv is trying to keep an open mind as she begins her investigation.  She doesn’t think that Joel’s involvement in Brinkley’s death is so certain, but yet he refuses to talk to her to share his side of the story.  Is Joel guilty?  Can Liv uncover the truth?

As with the first in the series, I was hooked almost immediately.  The mystery is compelling with plenty of action and twists to keep me hooked.  I had to know what happened to Brinkley.  Fortunately, when we reached the climax, everything made perfect sense.

It helps that the characters are wonderful.  I really enjoy Liv, Camry, and the rest of their friends and family.  We can feel the pain of Brinkley’s family when they are on the page, so we want to see justice done for them.  And there are enough shady people to make us question who is doing what and why.

I do have a couple of issues with the book, and they are the same ones I had with the first books.  One of the characters has a stutter, which is very annoying to read.  Fortunately, we can understand his dialogue, but it still annoys.  Secondly, the romantic sub-plot continued to annoy me here.  Then again, it had to follow from what happened in the previous book, so that wasn’t a surprise.

Let me be clear, both of those are minor things overall.

Especially since this book has a strong sense of fun.  While the murder is serious and taken seriously, there are plenty of moments that made me smile and laugh.  Liv and Camry’s relationship continues to grow, and I enjoy how they interact with each other.

I’m so glad I gave this series a try.  If you are looking for a fun, compelling read, you’ll definitely want to check out the Podcasting Sisters Mysteries.  I do recommend you start with the first, but you’ll be reading Up Next, Murder before you know it.

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