The Readaholics and the Gothic Gala (Book Club Mystery #3)
by Laura DiSilverio
Release Date: August 2nd 2016
Ebook Edition; 336 Pages
Genre: Fiction / Cozy Mystery
Source: Review copy from publisher
4 / 5 Stars
Amy-Faye Johnson has her
hands full coordinating the Celebration of Gothic Novels in Heaven,
Colorado. The festivities start off smoothly, but the weekend is soon
cursed with large egos, old resentments, and uninvited guests. Matters
become truly grave when a dead body is found at the gothic-themed
The out-of-town authors claim not to know the
victim, but Amy-Faye has doubts. With skeletons turning up in all of the
suspects’ closets, Amy-Faye and the Readaholics must tap into their
knowledge of gothic literature to find a killer who lurks in the
The Readaholics and the Gothic Gala is the third entry in the Book Club Mystery series and it was a light and interesting romp, something I easily read in an afternoon. This one naturally drew me in because of the gothic theme running through it and I was curious as to exactly what that was about - and it was enough to send me scurrying through my bookshelves in search of a dog-eared, long-lost copy of Rebecca I haven't seen in years, longing to read it again.
What I really like about this series, and it certainly continues in this novel, is the emphasis on friendships and the responsibilities one holds to main those friendships. The author definitely takes the time to develop Amy-Faye's friendships as well as continuing some alternative story lines that have nothing to do with the mystery; it's something I rather enjoy in these books and always look forward to learning more about the various characters through these interactions. While the secondary characters are not quite as developed as I would like to see however, it was still fun to learn more about them and the problems in their lives and how these might develop into other story lines in the future.
While I didn't find the mystery overly difficult to figure out, challenging mysteries is not why I read cozies to begin with - I save that for those rather difficult police procedurals I love to read. I like this book because it's lighthearted and fun, and the main character doesn't go out of her way to antagonize the police and hide important information from them, something which tends to drive me crazy in some cozy mysteries. Amy-Faye goes out of her way to make sure the police are informed as soon as she knows something, and doesn't sculk about breaking into other peoples' homes and so on; she does the right thing. It may sound a bit boring, but the author does such a good job at describing a scene and including witty dialogue that you don't really think about Amy-Faye doing the right thing.
The Readaholics and the Gothic Gala is a fun mystery with some twists and surprises, one of which caught me off guard because I wasn't paying too much attention. I loved the Gothic theme to this novel and enjoyed the references to other famous Gothic authors and books, most of which I'd read, especially the tie-in to DuMaurier's Rebecca. The secondary characters were fun and interesting, and I look forward to learning more about all of them in future novels.