Bank Robbery or Murder?
Typically in the books I read, the murder victim is an awful person. This allows us to have many realistic suspects to make the murder harder to solve. I like it when the murder victim becomes a real person to us, however, and isn’t the one note victim. That’s what happens in Something’s Knot Kosher, the fourth Quilting Mystery from Mary Marks. What makes it even more remarkable is that the murder victim never appears on page.
Martha Rose is shocked when she learns that her good friend Birdie Watson’s husband, Russell, was killed in a robbery at the bank he managed. Even more surprising are the questions the FBI and local police are asking Birdie. They are making it sound like Russell was a target. Martha and her friend Lucy are concerned that, if Russell was a target, someone might go after Birdie next, so when Birdie announces that she intends to take Russell’s body to his home in Oregon to be buried, they are happy to think she will be out of town. Being the supportive friends they are, they plan to go along.
Martha can’t help but start nosing around, and what she learns about Birdie and Russell surprises her. But are the authorities right? Was Russell a target and not an innocent bystander?
Since Birdie is one of the main characters in the series, we’ve met Russell briefly in other books. Very briefly. What little we’ve seen, colored by Martha’s perceptions, hasn’t painted Russell in the best light. I was actually happy to see a different picture emerge here. We gain quite a bit of sympathy for Russell before the book is over, and I was very sorry he was dead by the time I finished.
Of course, his death does present a great mystery for Martha to solve. We get several potential motives before Martha figures out the real reason for his death. The road trip does slow things down a little in the middle, but I’m still impressed with how the author was able to keep the plot moving forward in two very different locations, Los Angeles and Oregon, without making it feel too disjointed.
I’ve talked a bit about Russell, but the other characters are good. I did feel a few fell into stereotypes, although some of those characters were pretty funny and didn’t have much page time, so I didn’t mind. The main trio of Martha, Lucy, and Birdie are strong and continue to grow in each book.
There is just enough info on quilting in the book to make me want to learn more without slowing the plot down at all. There are some tips at the end for caring for your quilts.
While I’m not crafty myself, I’m glad I’ve started this series. The characters are great and the mysteries are solid. If you are behind on this series like I am, you’ll be glad you picked up Something’s Knot Kosher.
Enjoy the rest of the Quilting Mysteries.