Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Single Malt Murder (Review)

Abigail Logan never expected to inherit a whisky distillery in the Scottish Highlands. But in the first novel of an engaging new series blending fine spirits with chilling mystery, Abi finds that there are secrets lurking in the misty glens that some will go to any lengths to protect . . . even murder.

When Abi inherits her uncle’s quaint and storied single malt distillery, she finds herself immersed in a competitive high-stakes business that elicits deep passions and prejudices. An award-winning photojournalist, Abi has no trouble capturing the perfect shot—but making the perfect shot is another matter. When she starts to receive disturbing, anonymous threats, it’s clear that someone wants her out of the picture. But Abi’s never been one to back down from a fight.

Arriving on the scene with her whisky-loving best friend, Patrick, and an oversized wheaten terrier named Liam, Abi seems to put everyone in the bucolic village on edge—especially her dour but disturbingly attractive head distiller. Acts of sabotage and increasingly personal threats against Abi make it clear that she is not welcome. When one of Abi’s new employees is found floating facedown in a vat of whisky, Abi is determined to use her skills as an investigative journalist to identify the cold-blooded killer and dispense a dram of justice before he strikes again. But distilling truth from lies is tricky, especially when everyone seems to have something to hide.
Single Malt Murder
Whiskey Business Mystery #1
Melinda Mullet
Pub Date: 3/21/17
Alibi (Random House Publishing)
Genre: Mystery
Rating: 3/5
Amazon | B&N | Kobo

If you have a fascination with Scotland and whisky, then the Whisky Business Mystery series deserves a spot on your TBR list. Melinda Mullet takes readers inside the world of whisky distilling to solve a murder mystery in the first novel, Single Malt Murder.

Abi Logan just lost the last remaining member of her family. Her Uncle Ben raised her when her parents died in an accident. Now that he's gone everything he owned belongs to her, including a Scottish whisky distillery. Someone, however, is trying to scare her off. A series of threats follow her from London to Balfour, followed by sabotage to Abbey Glen. Abi, along with her fierce dog companion and best friend, is on the case. She'll complete the terms of her uncle's will, and on top of that, figure out who's trying ruin the distillery.

Single Malt Murder is a typical cozy mystery that falls just short of truly intriguing. I liked the in-depth access to the whisky distilling business, but that's only a small part of what keeps me ensconced in a mystery. There isn't a strong suspense factor involved. Maybe it's the writing style or my inability to see if the story was leading me somewhere I absolutely wanted to follow, but I had a hard time keeping my mind in the story. Abi uses the skills she's learned from her photojournalism career to try to solve a murder, but those skills don't help her. The answers fall into her lap and she puts it all together after the culprit practically shouts it from the rooftop. She's a passive amateur sleuth who only follows where her instincts lead her and she doesn't see the big picture.

I'm trying not to be too hard on Abi. This is her first mystery, after all. However, I did want more than a linear plot from Single Malt Murder. Fireworks would have been nice, but maybe I'll find it in the next Whisky Business Mystery.
*ARC provided in consideration for review*


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