Thursday, February 3, 2022

Book Review: The Twist and Shout Murder by Teresa Trent (Swinging Sixties Mysteries #1)

Stars: 4 out of 5
Pros: Great characters and a fast-paced mystery
Cons: A little hard to get into initially
The Bottom Line:
Local politics
Murder complicates the race
Fun first in series

I’m Going to Shout About This Twisty Debut

After years of bemoaning the lack of historical mysteries that appeal to me, I seem to be finding lots of them right now.  And I’m not complaining.  The latest to cross my radar was The Twist and Shout Murder, the first Swinging Sixties Mystery from Teresa Trent.  It was as much fun as I had hoped it would be.

It’s 1962 in the small town of Camden, Texas.  Dot Morgan is about to finish up her secretarial school, and is hoping to get a great job.  Meanwhile, her father has reluctantly thrown his hat into the race for the city council.  Dot is certain that he will make a great councilman, so she is doing everything she can to help him, including joining the Camden Ladies’ Club.

And it’s at one of the club’s events that Dot first meets Anson Manning, her father’s opponent for the seat.  To say that Anson makes a bad first impression on Dot would be an understatement.  Still, she is surprised when Anson dies at another event a few days later.  The police think it was a tragic accident, but Dot isn’t so sure.  Of course, if it does turn out to be murder, she and her father would become prime suspects.  Can Dot figure out what happened without implicating herself in a murder she didn’t commit?

I’ll admit, it took me a couple of chapters to get into the book.  I’m not sure why.  I think it is because not all the relationships were obvious from the outset.  Even late in the book, there were a few things that could have been smoothed over a bit more, but it didn’t bother me too much.

Once I got pulled into Dot’s world, I had a great time.  Local politics always makes a great backdrop for murder, and this book was no exception.  There were plenty of twists and complications for Dot before we reached the logical climax.

Meanwhile, the characters were fun to be around.  I really came to care for them, and I wanted to see Dot, in particular, succeed.  Her family are just as wonderful, and I enjoyed their obviously close relationships.  There’s a hint of romance, and I’m anxious to see where that goes.  Yes, this means I’m already looking forward to the sequel.

The historical details are good as well.  I felt like I was back in the 1960’s and the shifting that was happening in our culture at the time.

If you are looking for a trip back to the 1960’s, you’ll be glad you picked up The Twist and Shout Murder.  I’m looking forward to seeing what happens to Dot and the rest of these characters next.

(And I hope you are proud of me.  I got through this review without one groovy pun.)

NOTE: I received an ARC of this book.

I’m reviewing this book as part of a blog tour.  To view the rest of the stops, please go here.  And to enter the tour wide giveaway, please follow this link.


  1. Oh this sounds terrific!! I definitely entered the contest thank you!📗

  2. Thank you for such a great review. I'm glad you enjoyed "living" in 1962. I did too! I'm working on the next book right now which takes place in 1963 and can't stop researching. Thanks for hosting me today.��

  3. I loved this one. I'm part of the blog tour, too, so my review won't go up until next week.

  4. I loved the 1960s. Thanks for bringing this book to my attention.

  5. It is hard for me to think of something set in the 60s as historical, but... I'm just old, so I remember the 60s.

  6. Can't help but have an earworm with a title like that!!

    Thanks for sharing this to the Historical Fiction Reading Challenge!


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