Review: Cracked to Death by Cheryl Hollon

August 29, 2016 Mystery, Review 26

LolaReview

Cracked to DeathCracked to Death (A Webb’s Glass Shop Mystery #3)
by Cheryl Hollon

Rating: 4 stars

Blurb:
When a treasure hunt leads to deadly plunder, it’s up to glass shop owner Savannah Webb and her trusty investigative posse to map out the true motives of a killer . . .

It’s the dog days of summer in St. Petersburg, Florida, and Webb’s Glass Shop proprietor Savannah Webb has an eco-friendly plan to help locals escape the heat–a recyclable bottle-crafting workshop taught by reticent store manager Amanda Blake. Turns out, the class is a bigger smash than expected, thanks in part to a pair of staggeringly old bottles brought in by snorkeler Martin Lane . . .

Linked to a storied pirate shipwreck, the relics definitely pique Savannah’s interest. But intrigue turns to shock when Martin’s lifeless body washes ashore the next morning, another glass artifact tucked in his dive bag. With cell phone records connecting Amanda to the drowning, Savannah must voyage through unchartered territory to exonerate her colleague and capture the twisted criminal behind Martin’s death . . .

My Review:
I received a copy in exchange for an honest review

This is one of those series that seems to get better with each book. It’s so fun to return to this town with characters I already know and learn more about the glass shop. It’s a solid cozy mystery series with fun characters and side characters and a new exciting mystery with each book. And every book has a murder mystery and some glass topics mixed in as well. I like how the characters have an active role in helping solve the mysteries. Next to the mystery there are some side plot lines as well. The new studio Savannah opened and Amanda is now teaching her first class. This series is a lot of fun and I really enjoyed this latest installment.

This book had a very different feel again than the others and I like how each mystery is very different again. One of the students for the up-cycling glass class Amanda is teaching is found death and there is some mystery surrounding his death and mysterious blue bottles that are linked to him. I liked the mystery and there are a few interesting twist related to it. We also get the detective his point of view a few times, which was a nice touch. The actual murderer wasn’t too big of a surprise to me, but I did enjoy the overall mystery and the story. The plot and build-up and progression surrounding the mystery was well done and kept my attention. I would’ve liked getting to know more about the murderer.

In every book we see things change and develop with both Savannah the main character, her life and the glass shop. In this book she has opened a studio were students can rent space to work and Savannah should be running that while Amanda runs the shop. I liked seeing how Savannah expanded the shop and how we see the shop change this way. The new glass workshop was fun to read about too. We meet a few new side characters in this book as well.

I also liked how Savannah was linked to the mystery as glass expert this time. They try to determine were the blue bottles come from and she also calls in some of her contacts. And there are some great returning side characters again like Edward, Amanda, Jacob and the twins. Who all play a role in the story. And some new side characters are introduced. There is a bit of development with the romance, but it still stays very much to the background, it just moves to the next stage.

To summarize: this was a great third book in this series and with each book I am getting more invested in the series. It’s fun to return to the sunny town, the glass shop and familiar characters. There are new plot lines going on and a different mystery. Savannah is linked to the mystery as she gets called in as glass expert due to some mysterious blue bottles that are linked to the death person. It didn’t came as much of a surprise to me who the murderer was, but the mystery itself and the progress was done well and kept my attention. There are some twists earlier on which were fun and changed things up. All in all this was another great book in this series and I am already looking forward to the next book so I can return to Webb’s glass shop again.

4-star

Links:
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What’s the last third book in a series that you’ve read?

26 Responses to “Review: Cracked to Death by Cheryl Hollon”

  1. sjhigbee

    Last week I completed The Demon Road trilogy by Derek Landy – a YA horror fantasy road adventure… Sadly I wasn’t all that happy at the way he chose to end the story.

    • Lola

      Oh that’s a shame you weren’t too happy about how the author ended the story. It’s too bad when that happens.

      This book wasn’t the last one in the series as far as I know, but it sure was a good third book.

  2. Jackie

    I’m terrible with series, and a rarely read past book one. I’m just as bad with cozy mysteries because I don’t even read them in order most of the time.

    Cracked to Death sounds really interesting, even though I’m reluctant to read a cozy that takes place in Florida (my least favorite state!) I think I’ll keep an eye out for it at the library.

    • Lola

      Luckily most cozies series can be read out of order, although I still prefer to read them in order. There are a few series that I got from netgalley since the first book and I keep requesting later books if they get available as well.

      I hope you get the chance to give this series a try. It really is a good one.

  3. Greg

    This looks like a fun cozy. I’ve always enjoyed glassblowing and the idea of a glass shop is intriguing- and good side characters are always nice too. Cozies are kinda good too because if they have characters you like they usually grow a bit or their lives progress, and that’s always fun to follow.
    Greg recently posted…Cover Characteristics CheerleadersMy Profile

    • Lola

      The glass shop is very fun and every mystery has something to do with glass in some way as well. And the group of characters in this one are fun to follow.

  4. Let's Get Beyond Tolerance

    The last THIRD book in a series I read was probably Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater. I have The Raven King- just need to find a good time to read it!

    As for your review, this sounds like a really good series. I love the theme that ties cozies together, like the glass shop in this one.
    Let’s Get Beyond Tolerance recently posted…New Auction + Two Goodreads GiveawaysMy Profile

    • Lola

      I heard good things about Maggie Stiefvater her books!

      It’s fun how most cozies have a theme like this one. I like how the authors handles the glass theme here with the glass shop and most mysteries have something to do with glass as well.

  5. Bookworm Brandee

    It’s wonderful that you feel like you’re meeting up with friends each time you pick up this series but also that the author keeps things fresh so you’re not bored. I’ve still yet to read a cozy, Lola, but reading your reviews makes me think I’d like to try one. 🙂
    Sorry I’ve been MIA for so long. The kids are back in school now and things should get back to ‘normal’. *haha*
    Bookworm Brandee recently posted…2016 Bookish Resolutions Challenge Update ~ AugustMy Profile

    • Lola

      It’s great this series has that mix of familiarity and freshness. I hope you give a cozy a try soon, I really like the genre and there are so many good ones out there.

      No problem! I haven’t been as active commenting as I would like either and hadn’t visited you for a while. I hope things return to normal for you now your kids are back in school.

    • Lola

      Yay! I hope you’ll enjoy this series. I gave the first book 3 stars, but the second and third were solid 4 star reads. The potential pirate link was fun and I like how each mystery has something to do with glass as well.

    • Lola

      The Lunar Chronicles is still on my wishlist. I love reading series, although a standalone now and then is nice too.

  6. Sophia Rose

    You got my attention talking about this one. I don’t remember encountering this series before. I like what you are saying about it feeling like coming back to something recognizable and fun with the glass shop setting, the recurring characters, and the involvement in solving the mystery. Love that this one is tied to undersea treasure.

    Nice review, Lola!

    Loves Sweet Revenge by Rosanne Bittner was my last third book in a series.
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    • Lola

      It such a fun series, I managed to get all three of these through netgalley. It makes my day every time I see a new one there and get approved for it :). That’s something I like about series, being able to return to a setting and characters you already know. The undersea treasure tie in, in this one was fun! And I like how they get involved in the mysteries.

  7. Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight

    Ooh, that’s such a pretty, brightly colored cover! I don’t recall seeing reviews for other books in this series, I feel like I would’ve remembered a glass shop since that sounds cool, but maybe not.

    Anyway, it seems like you’re really enjoying this series! I’m glad it was another good book for you. It must’ve been good if you enjoyed it despite not being surprised by who the murderer was. It is great getting to return to the same world and characters you already know and love. And having all the different plots keeps it interesting 🙂
    Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight recently posted…Discussion: Why I Don’t DNF BooksMy Profile

    • Lola

      I think might be my favorite cover in the series so far, all the bright colors are pretty. I have reviewed the fist two books on my blog as well, but you might have missed those. The glass shop is really cool and I really enjoy this series so far 🙂

      The murder mystery was a bit predictable, but it’s still fun to see them figure it out and al sorts of things happen during the investigation. And it’s fun to return to a world you already known with familiar characters.

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