Book 1, A Britton Bay Mystery
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Former Army brat Molly Owens is ready to put down roots, and the picturesque seaside town of Britton Bay on the Oregon Coast seems like the perfect place for it. Especially when she lands a job as editor of the local paper. But she’s got one colleague who’s very bad news . . .
As an experienced journalist, Molly is eager to bring the struggling Britton Bay Bulletin up to speed. But when she pushes Vernon, one of her less welcoming reporters, to dig a little deeper into the story of a prominent local family, the man ends up dead. The fact that he wasn’t well-liked makes finding the killer extra complicated. The lists of suspects range from his ex-wife to his own son to Molly’s boss, who has a secret of his own. But when Molly’s attempts to sleuth out the truth result in her receiving frightening threats, the trouble is just beginning . . .
The one bright spot is Molly’s newfound flirtation with Sam Alderich. The sexy mechanic is used to taking things apart and piecing them back together, and between the two of them they just might be able to solve this deadly puzzle—if Molly can survive peaceful small-town life long enough . . .
“The news is all good for this cozy mystery! Deadly News will make you want to pack up and move to the seaside town of Britton Bay, Oregon. The characters are vividly brought to life, there’s a perfect touch of romance, and the mystery has enough twists and turns to keep the reader guessing. Don’t miss out on a charming new series—grab this cozy while it’s hot off the press!”
—Sarah Fox, USA Today bestselling author
Entertaining new cozy mystery!
Deadly News by Jody Hedlund is set in Britton Bay, Oregon. Molly Owens has moved from Lancaster, California to Britton Bay to become editor for the Britton Bay Bulletin. The Britton Bay Bulletin’s owner, Alan Benedict, is hoping Molly can revitalize the struggling paper to increase readership and revenue. Vernon East, a reporter for the paper, is antagonistic and resents Molly’s presence. She assigns Vernon to interview Vanessa Phillips on her family and two days later he is found dead in his home. The suspect list is long since Vernon was disagreeable, but Molly did spot a good clue at the crime scene. Molly works her way through the suspect list which includes an ex-wife, victim’s son, and her fellow employees. Someone feels Molly is getting too close to the truth and leaves her a threatening message. Molly is a reporter and not about to be dissuaded in her quest for the truth. When not out on the trail of a killer, Molly is settling into her new abode and making friends. She also finds an adorable bouncy puppy in need of an owner. Britton Bay will be a lovely home for Molly once she pinpoints Vernon’s killer.
Deadly News is a cute new cozy mystery. The cover is adorable with the black and white puppy who Molly names Tigger (it suits him). Molly is a likeable main character. She is starting over after catching her boyfriend in flagrante delicto with his ex-girlfriend. Thanks to mechanic, Sam Alderich, she finds a charming carriage house to live in with a landlady who will become a good friend. I would have liked more backstory on Molly, but she is an interesting, friendly character. I did find it odd, though, when she spilled out case details. As a reporter, I expected her to keep details to herself (it seemed out of place). The pace alternates in Deadly News. It starts out brisk, then slows down through the middle (especially when Molly is thinking about the case) with it picking up towards the end of the book. The mystery has several suspects with subtle clues. Avid cozy mystery readers will find this whodunit a cinch to solve. I was surprised by the quick romance between Molly and Sam. The sparks fly right away between them and he jumps into to help her with the mystery. I prefer a romance that develops slowly and is not as prominent in the story (the mystery should be the focus). I am giving Deadly News 3.5 out of 5 stars. A Britton Bay Mystery series has potential, and I will pick up the next book in this new cozy mystery series.