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Murder of a Small-Town Honey

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When school psychologist Skye Denison left Scumble River after high school, she swore she would never return to such a small minded town. But when credit card and boyfriend trouble caused her to slink home, she tries to blend in unnoticed. However inconspicuous has never been one of Skyes attributes, as the small-town busybodies try to bring her out in the public eye whene When school psychologist Skye Denison left Scumble River after high school, she swore she would never return to such a small minded town. But when credit card and boyfriend trouble caused her to slink home, she tries to blend in unnoticed. However inconspicuous has never been one of Skyes attributes, as the small-town busybodies try to bring her out in the public eye whenever they can. When she stumbles upon a dead TV personality, the police accuse her brother and she is forced to prove him innocent. This proves to be a daunting task, but Skye is up to the task. She is bright, persistent, gutsy and the perfect amateur sleuth.


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When school psychologist Skye Denison left Scumble River after high school, she swore she would never return to such a small minded town. But when credit card and boyfriend trouble caused her to slink home, she tries to blend in unnoticed. However inconspicuous has never been one of Skyes attributes, as the small-town busybodies try to bring her out in the public eye whene When school psychologist Skye Denison left Scumble River after high school, she swore she would never return to such a small minded town. But when credit card and boyfriend trouble caused her to slink home, she tries to blend in unnoticed. However inconspicuous has never been one of Skyes attributes, as the small-town busybodies try to bring her out in the public eye whenever they can. When she stumbles upon a dead TV personality, the police accuse her brother and she is forced to prove him innocent. This proves to be a daunting task, but Skye is up to the task. She is bright, persistent, gutsy and the perfect amateur sleuth.

30 review for Murder of a Small-Town Honey

  1. 5 out of 5

    Kevin

    3 star This feels less like a cozy and more like a traditional mystery in many respects. I like the main character Skye and her job as school psychologist gives her ample opportunity to snoop. Her brother Vince and Uncle Charlie are the only other characters I really warmed to as the story open. Simon the coroner (view spoiler)[her potential boyfriend starts out as a real jerk and while his behavior toward her from rude to attentive changes wildly we’re really given no good reason for it. (hide 3 star This feels less like a cozy and more like a traditional mystery in many respects. I like the main character Skye and her job as school psychologist gives her ample opportunity to snoop. Her brother Vince and Uncle Charlie are the only other characters I really warmed to as the story open. Simon the coroner (view spoiler)[her potential boyfriend starts out as a real jerk and while his behavior toward her from rude to attentive changes wildly we’re really given no good reason for it. (hide spoiler)] While I didn’t fall in love with the characters, I must say the mystery and the logicalness of the case really appealed to me. I’ll be reading more of this series in the future, in fact I signed up for 12 books in the Scumble River Challenge that’s what lead me to read this book in the first place since I’d never heard of the series before. I hope the next 11 books are as good or better then this on. Cozies Reading Challenge

  2. 4 out of 5

    Shannon

    I expected to like this series a lot, but the first book really disappointed me. It wasn't funny, I disliked the main character, and I groaned when someone was identified as a "born-again Christian" who quotes Scripture on a first date, knowing immediately that person would likely be a hypocrite, if not the killer. (Why is it okay to negatively stereotype Christians but no one else?) Not to mention that some details of the plot bugged me. For example, the detective didn't ask any of the question I expected to like this series a lot, but the first book really disappointed me. It wasn't funny, I disliked the main character, and I groaned when someone was identified as a "born-again Christian" who quotes Scripture on a first date, knowing immediately that person would likely be a hypocrite, if not the killer. (Why is it okay to negatively stereotype Christians but no one else?) Not to mention that some details of the plot bugged me. For example, the detective didn't ask any of the questions that would seem the most obvious to ask, and some of those questions weren't even answered at all.

  3. 4 out of 5

    David Peters

    Don't read the author biography prior to reading the book. If you do then you realize a lot of the heroine is autobiographical; and then at least for me it becomes hard to look past the pretentious, self-indulgent portrayal that is supposed to pass off as charm. The heroine is constantly shown to be smarter than everyone else, and ALWAYS know just the right thing to say to put everyone in their place. You know when you have an argument with someone and then like ten minutes later in the car you t Don't read the author biography prior to reading the book. If you do then you realize a lot of the heroine is autobiographical; and then at least for me it becomes hard to look past the pretentious, self-indulgent portrayal that is supposed to pass off as charm. The heroine is constantly shown to be smarter than everyone else, and ALWAYS know just the right thing to say to put everyone in their place. You know when you have an argument with someone and then like ten minutes later in the car you think of just the right thing to say; well that never happens here because she always thinks to say it. She doesn't need to remember. In the real world nobody would like this person. That said the mystery was okay and I am going to read the author's second effort to see that she hopefully got all of "it" out of her system and starting writing a real character.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Trish

    Decent enough first cozy in a series. It took me a while to take to the POV character, though, hence only three stars.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Suzanne

    Maybe just me This was ok. I had trouble getting into it and not sure why. I liked the characters and the story line. It flowed well yet I felt like something was missing. I did like the fact that the MC didn't fall into mad passionate love with anyone and she is sort of a loner which adds to the story. That's why I can't figure out why I didn't become enthralled and read in one sitting. Oh well, on to the second book. Maybe just me This was ok. I had trouble getting into it and not sure why. I liked the characters and the story line. It flowed well yet I felt like something was missing. I did like the fact that the MC didn't fall into mad passionate love with anyone and she is sort of a loner which adds to the story. That's why I can't figure out why I didn't become enthralled and read in one sitting. Oh well, on to the second book.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Moondance

    When Skye Denison was forced to return to Scumble River, Illinois, she knew it would be humiliating, but she never dreamed it would be murder. Skye has come home after a bad break up with her fiance and an even worse situation with her job. Imagine her surprise when she stumbles over the body of a woman that everyone thought was a gentle old lady. Skye leaps in to sleuth mode when her brother becomes a suspect. This was a good start to the series. I enjoyed meeting Skye and her family. I was a bi When Skye Denison was forced to return to Scumble River, Illinois, she knew it would be humiliating, but she never dreamed it would be murder. Skye has come home after a bad break up with her fiance and an even worse situation with her job. Imagine her surprise when she stumbles over the body of a woman that everyone thought was a gentle old lady. Skye leaps in to sleuth mode when her brother becomes a suspect. This was a good start to the series. I enjoyed meeting Skye and her family. I was a bit concerned about her feelings for the married police chief. Her possible budding relationship with Simon from the funeral home is a bit iffy as well. I cannot imagine the finesse it must take to be a school psychologist. I give Skye all the props for doing that job to the best of her ability. Skye is quite the detective and she digs up all kinds of dirt on a variety of people. I must admit that I had my suspicions early on in the book. It did not distract from the story or the conclusion of the book. I look forward to reading more in this series and learning more about the folks in Scumble River. 3.5 stars

  7. 5 out of 5

    Leah

    I was looking for a fun, light-hearted read for a snowy weekend and thought this one would be perfect. Initially I was on board with the dated references (characters compared to those in Gunsmoke and The Andy Griffith Show, a town scandal is compared to that of the Lindberg baby) and even thought it was kitschy that the main character didn't have a cell phone. So imagine my surprise when I flipped to the front to see when this was released - fully expecting it to have come out in the 80s or VERY I was looking for a fun, light-hearted read for a snowy weekend and thought this one would be perfect. Initially I was on board with the dated references (characters compared to those in Gunsmoke and The Andy Griffith Show, a town scandal is compared to that of the Lindberg baby) and even thought it was kitschy that the main character didn't have a cell phone. So imagine my surprise when I flipped to the front to see when this was released - fully expecting it to have come out in the 80s or VERY early 90s. Nope. The 2000s. Granted, this book is now 2 decades old, but even when it was released the references would have been horribly dated. The main character is seemingly the only one who dreamed of bigger things and the only one who left town after graduation...12 years later she returns and practically everyone in town remembers word-for-word what she said during her graduation speech. Her mother (god awful) at one point stated she couldn't possibly remember all the girls Skye's brother dated because he was "so popular." Yet one of his girlfriends - a woman now in her mid to late 30s - is slut-shamed for having had multiple partners in her life. Skye and her mother also bizarrely are obsessed with having their shoes be the EXACT same color as their clothes. One scene had me laughing it was so absurd: Skye "momentarily forgot" what she was wearing, just so she could look down at herself and have her clothing described for the reader. I really wanted to have a good time with this one, but it just didn't work.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Christine

    This is the first book in the Scumble River series. Skye Dennison is back in Scumble river after a failed engagement. Her honorary uncle, Charlie, gets her a job as the school psychologist. A T.V. star is found dead and Skye's brother, Vince, becomes the main suspect since he knew her when they were in high school. Skye knows her brother could never kill anyone, so she sets out looking to clear her brothers name. I originally read this many years ago when I was still in high school. It was inter This is the first book in the Scumble River series. Skye Dennison is back in Scumble river after a failed engagement. Her honorary uncle, Charlie, gets her a job as the school psychologist. A T.V. star is found dead and Skye's brother, Vince, becomes the main suspect since he knew her when they were in high school. Skye knows her brother could never kill anyone, so she sets out looking to clear her brothers name. I originally read this many years ago when I was still in high school. It was interesting to go back and to see how the series began and to see different things that I missed the first time. I always loved the idea of Skye as a school psychologist. It makes for some interesting cases. Some of the side characters were interesting and likeable. I loved that Skye's family is portrayed as a realistic family. I love the character of Skye's mom, May. She is overbearing and a little too involved in her children's' lives, but I think that is part of the reason I like her. I am excited to reread this series this year and look at the series in a different way from when I first read it.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Shari

    **Audible** Narrator may have contributed to my lack of enjoyment of this book. She was not horrible, but not my favorite either. I really wanted to like this one. I has some small element of romance, it is a series and I need to find a series that I can dig into and enjoy. But, this is not the series for me. I did not like the main character. She just came across as a spoiled brat. She had a job in her field, near her family, had a cool home, and had sorority sisters willing to help her in a cr **Audible** Narrator may have contributed to my lack of enjoyment of this book. She was not horrible, but not my favorite either. I really wanted to like this one. I has some small element of romance, it is a series and I need to find a series that I can dig into and enjoy. But, this is not the series for me. I did not like the main character. She just came across as a spoiled brat. She had a job in her field, near her family, had a cool home, and had sorority sisters willing to help her in a crisis. Yet, everything out of this character’s voice was negative. She hates her car, her boss is a jerk, and her brother criticizes her weight, her parents are not perfect. Poor her, she had to come back home and now she is a failure. For crying out loud, Scumble River is an hour from Chicago! In what reality, do you walk in a police station and just answer the phone? UGH! If I get really desperate, and there is a very good sale, I might try the second one on kindle.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kellene

    I made the mistake of reading several of the GR reviews for this one before starting it, so I was prepared not to like the MC at all. Having finished the book, I'm not sure what exactly the reviewers who called her haughty and snooty were talking about, unless they were referring back to her graduation speech that the whole town was still holding against her. As an educator, I found her to be exactly the kind of school psychologist I would want to work with. I enjoyed the other characters in the I made the mistake of reading several of the GR reviews for this one before starting it, so I was prepared not to like the MC at all. Having finished the book, I'm not sure what exactly the reviewers who called her haughty and snooty were talking about, unless they were referring back to her graduation speech that the whole town was still holding against her. As an educator, I found her to be exactly the kind of school psychologist I would want to work with. I enjoyed the other characters in the book as well, and found the mystery intriguing. It was an easy, quick read and I enjoyed it. Looking forward to a return trip to Scumble River.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Zack! Empire

    A pretty charming novel. I liked that the main character was pretty thought out right from the beginning. She comes off as a person who thinks she is smarter then most people, but since she is the narrator, she never comes right out and says it. It was also nice to read a book where the main character is putting on weight as she gets older, but doesn't let it bother her. Most of these mystery series I've read deal with women and it get's a bit tiring to read about how skinny they are. Women have A pretty charming novel. I liked that the main character was pretty thought out right from the beginning. She comes off as a person who thinks she is smarter then most people, but since she is the narrator, she never comes right out and says it. It was also nice to read a book where the main character is putting on weight as she gets older, but doesn't let it bother her. Most of these mystery series I've read deal with women and it get's a bit tiring to read about how skinny they are. Women have curves people, get over it. The writing is good, but it's not great. the story telling was clear but there weren't any passages that really stuck out. Sometimes you will be reading a book and come across a really beautiful description, or particular good line. This book, sadly, did not have that. Like I said though, it is well-written and easy to follow. My biggest problem with this book is that it was really set up to be in a series, so many of the problems aren't even touched. Why did Skye get fired from her job? Why did her soon to be husband leave her? We don't really know. You'll have to keep reading to find out and that pissed me off. At least give me something. I went out of my way to read the book and you're making me pick up the next one to see what happens? It's kind of like giving the reader a big middle finger.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Mary

    Well I found a new town to hang out in. I am leaving Fort Connor, Colorado, for awhile with the knitters and travelling to Scumble River. Skye Denison is a returning school psychologist to her home town. Where she will be taking over a job that no one has had in several years. The town has limited funds to get her some of the things she needs, but she tries to get by with what is handed to her. Skye has an older brother, Vince who owns the beauty salon in town and when a visiting TV star is found Well I found a new town to hang out in. I am leaving Fort Connor, Colorado, for awhile with the knitters and travelling to Scumble River. Skye Denison is a returning school psychologist to her home town. Where she will be taking over a job that no one has had in several years. The town has limited funds to get her some of the things she needs, but she tries to get by with what is handed to her. Skye has an older brother, Vince who owns the beauty salon in town and when a visiting TV star is found dead with a pair of Vince's shears stuck in her neck, the cops arrest him and their mother calls Skye to come and help clear her brother's name. Everyone in town knows everyone else and all their business, so they that Vince did not kill anyone. But it is left up to Skye to find the killer, because the cops are not looking past the shears in the neck with Vince's name on them. The book is funny and kept me interested and had twists and turns and when you meet May, Skye's Mom you want to sit down and have her fix you something to eat!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    I've read this entire series and it is one of the few that I am actually current on. It started out well and continued on. I love how the characters grow and change. Skye is very likeable and you can sympathize with her. #readforkimberly I've read this entire series and it is one of the few that I am actually current on. It started out well and continued on. I love how the characters grow and change. Skye is very likeable and you can sympathize with her. #readforkimberly

  14. 4 out of 5

    Di

    Read for #Book1CoziesClub and #MarchMysteryMadness This book was very easy to read and enjoyable. I thought Skye was very interesting as an amateur sleuth because she isn't really interested in investigating the crime until being persuaded to do so. I thought that approach was very refreshing as sometimes in Cozies, the sleuth becomes almost overzealous in their investigation. I had no idea who the culprit was until the reveal and the way the story proceeded seemed very natural. There is a scene w Read for #Book1CoziesClub and #MarchMysteryMadness This book was very easy to read and enjoyable. I thought Skye was very interesting as an amateur sleuth because she isn't really interested in investigating the crime until being persuaded to do so. I thought that approach was very refreshing as sometimes in Cozies, the sleuth becomes almost overzealous in their investigation. I had no idea who the culprit was until the reveal and the way the story proceeded seemed very natural. There is a scene where Skye gets manhandled by someone other than the culprit that is never reported to authorities, which I disagree with. Especially in the context of the situation, but that's really the only thing that bothered me in this story. I am interested to see if Skye continues to be pushed into investigating crimes in future installments or if she starts to get into investigating on her own. Looking forward to the next installment!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    Twelve years after Skye Denison, who left Scumble River, Illinois vowing to never return, has returned. She lost her job and boyfriend. Her godfather has gotten her a job as school psychologist. When Skye discovers the murdered body of a TV celebrity, her unusual adventure begins. Her brother is accused of murder. He was being blackmailed by the murdered woman. Skye discovers the dead girl was blackmailing several Scumble River residents besides her brother. A myriad of intriguing, colorful, quirky small t Twelve years after Skye Denison, who left Scumble River, Illinois vowing to never return, has returned. She lost her job and boyfriend. Her godfather has gotten her a job as school psychologist. When Skye discovers the murdered body of a TV celebrity, her unusual adventure begins. Her brother is accused of murder. He was being blackmailed by the murdered woman. Skye discovers the dead girl was blackmailing several Scumble River residents besides her brother. A myriad of intriguing, colorful, quirky small town characters that will keep your interest. Several residential places and the principal’ s office get trashed. Skye get manhandled plus knock over the head and left in a burning building. An easy, quick read.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Vicki Gooding

    What a great series. I like the characters a lot, except Lloyd, a man never harms a woman. Cannot wait to read the next.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Dawn

    Skye Denison is a school psychologist from Scumble River, Illinois. She left the small town after high school with no plans to return. After a failed engagement and losing her job Skye finds herself returning home and trying to rebuild bridges that she burned at her high school graduation. While volunteering at the town’s Chokeberry Festival Skye finds more than games and rides. When sent to escort a TV Personality to the parade Skye discovers the woman dead in her trailer, murdered. Unfortunate Skye Denison is a school psychologist from Scumble River, Illinois. She left the small town after high school with no plans to return. After a failed engagement and losing her job Skye finds herself returning home and trying to rebuild bridges that she burned at her high school graduation. While volunteering at the town’s Chokeberry Festival Skye finds more than games and rides. When sent to escort a TV Personality to the parade Skye discovers the woman dead in her trailer, murdered. Unfortunately the weapon used belongs to Skye’s brother and she finds herself working to prove him innocent of the crime. This is the first book in the Scumble River Mystery Series and the second time I have read this book. I first read the book 5 years ago and I am shocked at how much I have forgotten. The characters are well written, but evolve a lot throughout the series. The setting is a small town in Illinois. It is easily relatable to anyone living in the midwest. The plot in this book moves at a good pace and makes the book hard to put down. I have enjoyed all of the books in the series and recommend them all.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Vicky

    Damns! I have the entire series of Scrumble mysteries so I feel obligated to read them. This book was poorly written with badly defined characters. I kept reading it though despite the ridiculous premise. And to have skey remember word for word a one-time heard speech 12 years prior? Come on! I can only hope book 2 is better. Oh, and the use of song titles for chapters? Had nothing to do with the plot. Terrible.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Katie Sunsdahl

    Quick, simple read, but quite a bit of stupid in it.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly

    I’m so glad our cozy mystery group selected this series to read together this year. A Scumble River Mystery is a long running series too so I look forward to seeing how the characters grow overtime. I really like the main character, Skye. She has reluctantly moved back to her small hometown that she criticized quite harshly in her valedictorian speech before leaving for college. The locals definitely haven’t forgotten the terms she used to describe them either. I love the fact that she is a scho I’m so glad our cozy mystery group selected this series to read together this year. A Scumble River Mystery is a long running series too so I look forward to seeing how the characters grow overtime. I really like the main character, Skye. She has reluctantly moved back to her small hometown that she criticized quite harshly in her valedictorian speech before leaving for college. The locals definitely haven’t forgotten the terms she used to describe them either. I love the fact that she is a school psychologist who actually works really hard!! I enjoyed the scenes where she tested students and worked with the staff of several schools. I think that aspect will be a great way to introduce new characters or storylines. I also appreciated the fact that Skye isn’t perfect. She has made some mistakes, survived a rough relationship and has an average body type! I look forward to watching her become more confident and stick up for herself. The mystery starts when a T.V. star is found murdered in her trailer and Skye’s brother becomes the number one suspect. She does everything she can to clear his name and find the true culprit. I have to admit, I was stumped for a bit as I pieced together all of the clues. There were plenty of believable suspects and deep secrets to sort through. Upon reading other reviews, I noticed that many didn’t like Skye’s mom, May. I have to disagree. Yes, she is a lot! She is judgmental, controlling, makes rude comments and isn’t very supportive of her children, but I found that very refreshing. Cozy family members are typically the complete opposite and most of the time, that’s not very realistic. I think seeing the two of them butt heads, but also team up when needed is relatable. Some of their scenes made me cringe and laugh all at the same time. The character I disliked, was the principle. Especially when he forcefully grabbed Skye a few times. I’m ticked she didn’t report his behavior. The love interest grew on me by the end of the book. I’m excited to read the sequel. There were plenty of unanswered questions about Skye’s past so I look forward to learning more about her and seeing what mystery she stumbles upon next. Read for my dear friend, Kimberly. #readforkimberly

  21. 4 out of 5

    Caitlin Copp

    I have had this one on my TBR list for quite a while. I really enjoyed the beginning and I couldn't wait to hear more (on audio), but I got a little worn out with the story. I love all things psych, so I was really exited to read about a school psychologist and even more excited when they started talking about social workers! I enjoyed her tenacity and how she fought for what was right for the kids, but for some reason I didn't really get wrapped up in the murder. I would like to read another on I have had this one on my TBR list for quite a while. I really enjoyed the beginning and I couldn't wait to hear more (on audio), but I got a little worn out with the story. I love all things psych, so I was really exited to read about a school psychologist and even more excited when they started talking about social workers! I enjoyed her tenacity and how she fought for what was right for the kids, but for some reason I didn't really get wrapped up in the murder. I would like to read another one of her books, but it might not be right away. Skye Denison has returned to the hometown she shunned so many years ago. She has accepted a job as the school psychologist for the elementary, middle and high school. A local celebrity is found dead and it turns out he has a long tie to Skye's brother. Skye is determined to prove that her brother could not have murdered his ex-paramour.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Genevieve Bomes

    This book started off slow and I was sure I wasn't going to like it but I decided to stick with it and as I turned the pages I soon became involved in the story line and the characters. I love Skye and her mother May. I also liked the story line and became engrossed in trying to work out who did it. What I didn't like. I hate the character Simon and hope to high water that he isn't Skye's love interest. Honestly the only guy so far that I liked as a love interest would have been the married Chief This book started off slow and I was sure I wasn't going to like it but I decided to stick with it and as I turned the pages I soon became involved in the story line and the characters. I love Skye and her mother May. I also liked the story line and became engrossed in trying to work out who did it. What I didn't like. I hate the character Simon and hope to high water that he isn't Skye's love interest. Honestly the only guy so far that I liked as a love interest would have been the married Chief. I was kind of hoping his wife was dying when we kept hearing how pale and thin she was. Or that she was the one who committed the murder. All in all I liked the book and will be interested in seeing where the series goes and how it will develop.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Ana

    Skye moves back to the small town she insulted in her high school graduation. Nobody in town has forgotten her speech, so her reception is less than stellar. She gets a job thanks to a family friend, and is struggling to fit in, when a celebrity invited for a local festival is found dead, and her brother is the top suspect. The plot was good, but the killer was tops on my suspect list since early on. I have a couple more of the series in mt. TBR, so I may read them, but not right away.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

    What a wonderful beginning to a Cozy mystery series! Skye Denison has moved back to her hometown after leaving upon her high school graduation 12 years prior with a serious "I'm-better-than-this-town attitude." Skye never expected to go back, but after a break up, loss of job and serious financial woes...there really is no better place for her to get back up on her feet. And that is all Skye has in mind when she returns home. She wants to put some work in, save some cash, and head right back out What a wonderful beginning to a Cozy mystery series! Skye Denison has moved back to her hometown after leaving upon her high school graduation 12 years prior with a serious "I'm-better-than-this-town attitude." Skye never expected to go back, but after a break up, loss of job and serious financial woes...there really is no better place for her to get back up on her feet. And that is all Skye has in mind when she returns home. She wants to put some work in, save some cash, and head right back out of Scumble River. Stumbling on a corpse sparks a change in Skye's short term plans. As Skye works on trying to find out more about the victim and solve the crime, the reader gets to enjoy small town life. There are quite a few people who aren't too keen on Skye any more, but plenty who are happy to see her back. Pretty much what you would expect out of people who really grow up and grow with you and then without you. It was also interesting watching her take on a job as a school psychologist, and that part totally gave me a new respect for the position. The mystery was perfect for me. I have read a lot of mysteries in my life (mostly thrillers), and I am always happiest when I do not immediately figure it out. Murder of a Small-Town Honey also had the benefit of that the author didn't throw anyone so far into the limelight that you were sure it had to be them and then pull someone out of a hat that couldn't have possibly been involved. I hate when authors do that. It all tied up in a way that made sense. All in all this foray into mystery and a small town made me want to come back. I enjoyed Skye and her whole family. It was nice reading about a character who is not described as absolutely stunning. Skye is a character you can relate to, because we have all pretty much stuck our foot in out mouths at some point and had to deal with the ramifications. And most of us aren't a size 2. The town sounds terribly small with everyone knowing everyone else, but living in a smallish town myself, I can definitely see how that can be. It is something I may have found ridiculous several years ago. I so looked forward to learning more, I quickly ordered the next book in the series. Which I will review soon. I received this book through PaperBackSwap. I actually had no prior knowledge of the author, but the title grabbed me.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Diane Morasco

    Denise Swanson had me laughing so hard tears rolled & rolled... & rolled again! This series is hysterical. Skye is friggin' hilarious! My favorite was the Cow Chip Bingo. I had to wipe the tears away. It was unbelievably uproarious! I would combust into fits of laughter telling anybody & everybody about the wickedly delicious Scumble River series. Watching Skye Denison return to her hometown was enjoyable. Skye is definitely well loved & is welcome w/ open arms. Of course, there are a few sarcastic Denise Swanson had me laughing so hard tears rolled & rolled... & rolled again! This series is hysterical. Skye is friggin' hilarious! My favorite was the Cow Chip Bingo. I had to wipe the tears away. It was unbelievably uproarious! I would combust into fits of laughter telling anybody & everybody about the wickedly delicious Scumble River series. Watching Skye Denison return to her hometown was enjoyable. Skye is definitely well loved & is welcome w/ open arms. Of course, there are a few sarcastic comments made about her extra padding ~ she put on a few pounds while away from home. Skye offers to be a jelly judge at Chokeberry Days, a local tradition that had me doubling over from laughing so hard. Some Scumble River residents advocate it as a way to bring revenue into the town, while others oppose it, groaning it is bringing a little too much change. Swanson knows how to create characters who are a vibrant mix of personalities. Skye's a quick-witted woman w/ an abundance of intuition into human frailty. Swanson does an excellent job keeping Skye credible. Skye's dichotomy of indecision is spot on. Skye's thrilled to be home embracing her family's nurturing affection, yet disillusioned by her own feelings of inadequacy. Which Swanson does an extraordinary job describing. Bravo to Denise!!!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Lynn

    I liked this book quite a bit. It is a cozy mystery, but instead of the usual foodie/innkeeping line of work, Skye Dennison is a school psychologist, which I enjoyed, having spent most of my life in public education. Skye is back home in Scumble River 12 years after accusing the small town of having "small minds" in her high school graduation speech. She in not there because she necessarily wants to be, but because it was the place where her godfather, head of the school board, could get her a j I liked this book quite a bit. It is a cozy mystery, but instead of the usual foodie/innkeeping line of work, Skye Dennison is a school psychologist, which I enjoyed, having spent most of my life in public education. Skye is back home in Scumble River 12 years after accusing the small town of having "small minds" in her high school graduation speech. She in not there because she necessarily wants to be, but because it was the place where her godfather, head of the school board, could get her a job after she made a major mistake at her previous one. Now the TV story teller who is a guest at the town's annual Chokeberry Festival is dead, and Skye's brother Vince has been accused of the murder. Skye is certain he didh't do it, but who did? Skye begins her own investigation, after promising her mom that she won't let Vince take the fall for this. This is the first book in the Scumble River series and I did enjoy it, although there was a lot of getting to know the characters, and way to much repetition of the fact that Skye doesn't WANT to be here, she just has to be if she wants to get on with her life. There were clues galore and the killer was fairly obvious, but it was a fun, quick read. I will be looking for more in this series soon!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Barbara

    Thought I may have read this one before, but nothing was familiar about the story line. I have read other books in the series, but this is apparently the first book. It concerns a young woman who has to return to her small home town in central Illinois after some setbacks in her life. Too make matters worse, she has to live down her remarks as valedictorian of her graduating class of 12 years ago, were she was vowed to leave the small town and small minds. The towns folk will not let her live th Thought I may have read this one before, but nothing was familiar about the story line. I have read other books in the series, but this is apparently the first book. It concerns a young woman who has to return to her small home town in central Illinois after some setbacks in her life. Too make matters worse, she has to live down her remarks as valedictorian of her graduating class of 12 years ago, were she was vowed to leave the small town and small minds. The towns folk will not let her live that down. This was an enjoyable read. Syke is trying to clear her brother of being the chief suspect in the murder of a children's show hostess, who turns out to be a former girlfriend of her brother. I must admit I didn't suspect the true murder until the end, after most of the other people Skye suspected had been ruled out. In her efforts to clear her brother, she also uncovers some shady dealings at one of the local schools were she works as a psychologist.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kristen

    If you love a great cozy, you'll love the Scumble River Mystery series by Denise Swanson. It's a charming cozy series with Skye Denison, the lead character, who gets caught up in an embroiled murder mystery. In the fictional town of Scumble River, everyone knows everybody in a small town. We see how close she is to her family and what happened to the past, ever since she left town. In a small town, anything can happen, when secrets rear their head. Skye is an ideal heroine for a small town as a If you love a great cozy, you'll love the Scumble River Mystery series by Denise Swanson. It's a charming cozy series with Skye Denison, the lead character, who gets caught up in an embroiled murder mystery. In the fictional town of Scumble River, everyone knows everybody in a small town. We see how close she is to her family and what happened to the past, ever since she left town. In a small town, anything can happen, when secrets rear their head. Skye is an ideal heroine for a small town as a school psychologist. And when her family's in the pickle, she's there to help them get out of the jam. We see how devoted she is to her occupation and how hard it was for her to come back home. There's also a romance blooming between Skye and Simon Reid. Anything's possible, even danger...

  29. 5 out of 5

    Dawn

    Boo. Ok mystery, pretty bad writing, absolutely horrible ending. It was a little too much on the tying-it- all- together -and -explaining-what-happened-and-why ending. Most of the book felt like she wrote the sentences because "that's how mystery books go". And the chapter titles were irritating. And it always seemed like the voice should be Skye's. I would be reading and my mind would read it as Skye's voice. Then, next sentence, I would realize it was third person. Strangest thing. There were Boo. Ok mystery, pretty bad writing, absolutely horrible ending. It was a little too much on the tying-it- all- together -and -explaining-what-happened-and-why ending. Most of the book felt like she wrote the sentences because "that's how mystery books go". And the chapter titles were irritating. And it always seemed like the voice should be Skye's. I would be reading and my mind would read it as Skye's voice. Then, next sentence, I would realize it was third person. Strangest thing. There were never any "I's", but it seemed like there should have been...

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jenn

    Not bad. I'd read several more of this series, starting with the latest, so I'm all out of order. Scumble River sure has some rude assholes in it, though. I mean, Skye was 18 when she made that bitchy statement. How didn't do something stupid at 18. But beyond that, I couldn't believe how many people commented on her weight. And beyond that, that she didn't tell them to go @*&$ themselves. Not bad. I'd read several more of this series, starting with the latest, so I'm all out of order. Scumble River sure has some rude assholes in it, though. I mean, Skye was 18 when she made that bitchy statement. How didn't do something stupid at 18. But beyond that, I couldn't believe how many people commented on her weight. And beyond that, that she didn't tell them to go @*&$ themselves.

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