PRAISE FOR GRAND OPENINGS CAN BE MURDER:
“With as many unpredictable twists and turns as the hurricane approaching Galveston, Grand Openings Can Be Murder is an intriguing cozy mystery set in a new chocolate shop along the island’s historic Strand. Readers will love learning about the bean-to-bar chocolate-making process while the store’s owner, Felicity, pursues truth, justice, and the perfect chocolate bar.”
— Diane Kelly, Award-winning author of the Death & Taxes, Paw Enforcement, House Flipper, and Busted mystery series.
Grand Openings Can Be Murder by Amber Royer is a fun whodunnit written by an author who clearly did her research on Galveston, hurricanes, and (most importantly) chocolate. As a Houston native who regularly goes to the island, I really enjoyed walking the Strand and enjoying the historical buildings through Felicity’s eyes.
It is difficult to put into words why Felicity quickly won my heart. Maybe it is because she is clearly talented, smart, and beautiful, yet is self deprecating and just a wonderfully kind human being. The little details that add up to this interesting person makes me believe that if she wasn’t based on Royer, she must be based on someone the author knows very well. There is an intimacy between the author and this character, and I found that to be the best part of this book.
I found the mystery exciting with little twists here and there, and the added danger of a looming hurricane definitely added an urgency that pushed the pace in a normally sleepy town. Although I figured out early on who the killer was, I just could not wrap my brain around the why. As Felicity works through the clues with her murder mystery book and TV show education (her admitting that was fantastic!), I enjoyed getting to know the other characters and their obvious love and respect for their small town.
I don’t know much about the people who live in Galveston, but this book gives me the impression that tourists visit and fall in love to the extent that they relocate. That Galveston natives might feel their need to spread their wings and move away at some point, but that there’s a likelihood that they will be back. Like birds who travel afar searching for better opportunities to flourish, the islanders find themselves migrating back home to the south when winter approaches. Royer gives us just the right amount of backstory about each of the characters to drive home this concept.
While there were a few typos here and there, Royer’s skill at crafting complex characters, a transportive setting, and thrilling scenes shines through brilliantly. She clearly saw each piece of this story in her mind and was able to translate it in a way that only good storytellers know how. I am excited to read the next installment of this series. I hope that each book will let us get to know more about Felicity’s friends and introduce us to places we have not yet discovered in Galveston.
|2/9/21||Excerpt||Texas Book Lover|
|2/9/21||BONUS Guest Post||Hall Ways Blog|
|2/9/21||BONUS Promo||LSBBT Blog|
|2/10/21||Top Ten||That’s What She’s Reading|
|2/12/21||Playlist||All the Ups and Downs|
|2/14/21||Author Interview||Rebecca R. Cahill, Author|
|2/16/21||Scrapbook Page||KayBee’s Book Shelf|
|2/17/21||Review||The Page Unbound|
|2/18/21||Review||It’s Not All Gravy|