Trowel and Error (The English Cottage Garden Mysteries #4)
by H.Y. Hanna
My Rating: 4 stars
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Age Category: Adult
Type of romance: MF
Autumn has arrived, with crisp, cold mornings, dew on the grass and hedgerows full of blackberries… When budding garden sleuth Poppy is invited to a party in a beautiful orangery, the last thing she expects is to witness a lethal wasp attack! As authorities investigate the possibility of murder, Poppy is horrified when local handyman Joe Fabbri, her friend and mentor, becomes the main suspect. Determined to prove Joe’s innocence, Poppy sets out to solve the case – with help from her “mad scientist” neighbour, his new robotic invention, and a particularly stinky mushroom! Meanwhile, Poppy is also learning that gardening isn’t just sunshine and roses. As she grapples with wind, rain, and unpleasant autumn chores, she wonders if she’s bitten off more than she can chew. With limited horticultural experience and a long winter ahead, can she really make a success of the cottage garden nursery that she’s inherited?
As Oren, the talkative ginger cat, lends a paw, and crime author Nick Forrest helps her dig for clues, Poppy makes a startling discovery: could there be a link between the murder victim and her long-lost father? Would solving this case also give her answers to the biggest mystery from her past?
I received a free copy of this book from the author and voluntarily reviewed it.
I really enjoy this garden mystery series by H.Y. Hanna and was excited to dive into a new book in this series. This was another solid read. I liked following Poppy along as she struggles and works hard to get her business off the ground, as well as solves a mystery in each book.
This mystery was a good one. I was surprised by who the murderer was and was thinking in a totally different direction. There were plenty of suspects and clues and looking back I see enough clues that point toward the murderer even though they weren’t as obvious to me while reading that they pointed to that person. The whole set up for the murder was a bit weird and strangely similar to another mystery I was reading with the whole wasp thing. I like how the mystery progressed with clues popping up and Poppy finding out more, but it still took till the end of the book for it all to come together. There were a few scenes that where a bit too convenient or coincidental how Poppy was just in the right time at the right place at times, but this doesn’t really detract form my enjoyment of the book.
Besides the mystery plot line there is the usual plot lines surrounding Poppy’s garden business and her search for her birth farther. Poppy is struggling a bit now the weather is turning colder ad her business is drying up, she has some big set backs, but also some good things that happen and I look forward to see how she gets through the colder seasons. She also follows a lead about who might be her father and comes in contact with two people who were involved in the music scene when her mom was younger which provides a bit more insight into that.
There also is the same enjoyable cast of characters as in the previous books, especially her two neighbors and their pets are great to read about. And then there is Bertie’s creation CLARA, who was quite interesting to read about too. And Poppy’s friend Joe, who is suspected of being the murderer and how Poppy gets even more involved as she wants to prove his innocence. I like how she has found friends in this new place and seeing how they’re art of her life. Then there are some new characters. she meets who are connected to the mystery as well.
To summarize: This was another fun read in this series. I like reading about the mystery as well as the other plot lines surrounding Poppy’s garden business, her search for her father and her relationships with her new friends here. The mystery was a solid one. The set-up was a bit weird with the wasps being involved, but I liked how it developed. There were plenty of suspects with most being clear from the start and then Poppy slowly figuring out more of what happened and what was going on. I was surprised by who the murderer was as I was thinking in a different direction, but looking back I can see the clues that point in this person’s direction. Poppy is a fun character to read about and I like the side characters, especially her two neighbors and their pets. All in all another great read in this series and I look forward to the next one.
This sounds like a lovely read, I have a few books by this author on my kindle but of course have not gotten around to reading them yet!
Heather @ RandomRedheadedRamblings recently posted…Review – All Systems Red by Martha Wells
I definitely recommend this author’s book. I’ve read most of her books and almost all of them are great :). I hope you get around to reading one of her books.
Being surprised by who the bad guy is works for me. I like being surprised. Sounds like a good book.
Mary Kirkland recently posted…Review: Virgin On Vacation by Emily Vincent
I also like it when I am surprised by who the bad guy is and when it makes sense too, like it was the case here.
I need to start reading this series of hers. I’ve heard they are good!
I really like this series. The gardening theme is great.
What a quirky title – and I love the colourful cover… Thank you for a great review – I do like the sound of this one, Lola:)
Cozies do often have fun titles like this and the cover is a great one.