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February 15, 2020

A Palette for Love and Murder by Saralyn Richard ~ a Review

by Donna Huber

A Palette for Love and Murder is the second book in Saralyn Richard's Detective Parrott Mystery series. It is not necessary to have read book one, Murder in the One Percent to enjoy this book.

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

January 2020; Black Opal Books; 978-1644372043
ebook, print (389 pages); mystery
Detective Parrott is investigating an art theft with little to go one. However, when the artist is murdered, he has to wonder if the crimes are connected. One thing he is sure of solving the art theft just became more interesting.

A Palette for Love and Murder is my first novel by Saralyn Richard and it was enjoyable. The novel was a little slower than I typically like, but the characters are interesting and I liked getting to know them.

I know the copy I was reading is a galley and presumably still had a round of editing before the final, polished copy. I found some of the phrasing awkward, such as Parrott putting his finger parallel to his nose and saying shh. Why not use the more common phrasing of putting his finger to his lips to describe the action? There were only a few instances of awkward phrasing, but they distracted me from the story.

There isn't a lot of suspense in the story. The mysteries of both crimes are pretty straight forward and easily solved by the reader. The riddle left for Elle was simplistic and I knew the answer as soon as I read it. I didn't know why it took her so long to figure it out.

I thought the characters were well written. They were realistic, like people you would meet in real life. I liked that the bad guys weren't overly evil or bumbling idiots. Only one started to go off the deep end of realism, but his actions could be attributed to desperation. Still, I was glad it was brief. I liked that Detective Parrott was an even-kilter character. Brandywine Valley seemed more small town than a big city but apparently not too far outside South Philly. So Parrott could have been much grittier, but Richard kept his character inline with the more upscale, suburban atmosphere of the setting. I felt that his wife Tanya might have been a bit of an underused character. I would have liked to have seen more from her and I hope that future novels in the series continue to explore her PTSD and that it wasn't just a convenient plot point for this story.

If you're looking for easy reading to while away the weekend, then this book fits the bill.

Buy A Palette for Love and Murder at Amazon

Donna Huber is an avid reader and natural encourager. She is the founder of Girl Who Reads and the author of how-to marketing book Secrets to a Successful Blog Tour.

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