Injured in a bombing, war correspondent Kate Tessler returns to her hometown in Arizona to recover. For the first time in her life, she’s starting to feel her age of nearly fifty despite living like a teenager again: staying in her childhood bedroom with only a cat for company, trying to understand why her sister resents her so much and running into people who still refer to her as Kitty. The hardest part? Seeing her once-sharp and witty mother stuck in an Alzheimer’s unit.
When an old friend asks her to investigate suspicious deaths at the nursing home, Kate limps into action. Is a self-appointed “Angel of Mercy” killing patients to end their suffering? Are family members hastening their inheritance? Is an employee extorting money and removing the witnesses? Kate uses her journalism skills to track clues, but the puzzle pieces simply won’t fit.
If Kate can’t uncover the truth quickly, her mother could be next on the killer’s list.
Titles in The Accidental Detective series include — Something Shady at Sunshine Haven – Something Deadly on Desert Drive –
Title: Something Shady at Sunshine Haven
Series: The Accidental Detective #1
Author: Kris Bock
Published: April 7, 2022
Publisher: Tule Publishing
My Rating: 4 stars
Something Shady at Sunshine Haven begins The Accidental Detective series with a charming, at times funny, and at other times intense mystery that quickly grabbed my attention and never let go. This is my first Kris Bock story, and I enjoyed her style, delivery, and imagination… and will be looking for more.
Kate has returned home after an injury during her time as a war correspondent. While she’s hoping to get back into her work quickly, she also realizes that she needs time to heal and that her plans may have to change… if that becomes her reality what is she to do with herself as her work is really her life. Returning home brings its own battles of dealing with the reality of her mother’s Alzheimer’s diagnosis, her father’s efforts to keep the faith and family together, her sister’s unexplained hostility… and now, perhaps a very real danger to her mother and other patients at the nursing home she resides at now. Perhaps there is another way to keep those journalistic investigative skills sharp by figuring out who might be killing patients – an “angel of death” killer, family members who can’t wait for their family member to move on, or something even worse. To Kate’s mind, the only way to really keep her mother safe is to figure out who wants to harm these vulnerable people.
I loved the crew that Kate has around her helping in her investigations. Eclectic is probably a good word for this group. With laughter, tears, and an abundance of clues this crew sets out to get answers – and gives us a delightful mystery puzzle to solve along with them. While there are hints of a future romance, for now, Something Shady at Sunshine Haven serves well as the opening, world-building entrance into this series. It will be interesting to see where the loose ends (and there always needs to be some to move a series along) eventually take us.
I had fun in this world, and I’ll definitely be following along as Kate redefines her life, maybe finds romance, and definitely keeps us in interesting puzzles to solve alongside her and that eclectic crew of hers. If you love putting puzzles together, and starting a new mystery series, then you’ll want to pick this one up soon.
*I received an e-ARC of this novel from the publisher. That does not change what I think of this story. It is my choice to leave a review giving my personal opinion about this book.*
Available in e-book format