“Planning a wedding can be murder. Planning weddings for a living is nothing short of suicide.” (page 1)
Title: Better off Wed
Written by: Laura Durham
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Publisher: Broadmoor Books
Publication Date: July 2017
Paperback: 234 pages
“New Kid on the Wedding Planning Block” Annabelle Archer has almost completed one of her most stressful weddings. She has successfully dealt with the MOB’s (Mother of the Bride) irritating antics and has only to get through the after-wedding party before she can wave the MOB a very happy ‘good bye’. But before that happy ending occurs Annabelle and her assistant stumble over the MOB’s dead body and Annabelle’s longtime friend/go-to wedding caterer is accused of the murder. Annabelle is determined to find the killer but with so many suspects and little evidence as to how the MOB was killed she discovers getting someone to say “I killed her.” is not as easy as getting a bride to say “I do.”
I’m on a cozy mystery kick and I’m not sure it’s a bad thing. I was looking through a list of free cozy Mysteries on Amazon Kindle when I found this book. Once I saw it won an Agatha Award I thought I might as well give it a try since it was free, and award winning Kindle books can’t be too bad right?
*quietly deletes half-a-dozen books from Kindle library.*
Anyway, I thought this book was funny, had a satisfying twist and answered all my questions – so I’m happy. However, I didn’t appreciate Annabelle’s assistant wearing so much inappropriate clothing even if it is a book. I’m also getting sick of every murdered person being the most hated man or woman around. (although, to be fair it is a trope that works and I can’t take my frustration out on this book)
Can we please have a murder where everybody loved the victim?
This was a low swear word count book, which is always something I love to find, and even better, a low romance book. The fact that the next-door neighbor is always trying to set Annabelle up on a date, and Annabelle is a wedding planner didn’t really bother me. Not to mention that the farthest Annabelle’s love life goes is some blushing when the cute detective walks into the room. (*Disclaimer:* I have not read the rest of the series -besides a free-be short story – but I’m guessing the relation does grow into something bigger.)
I recommend this book for anyone who enjoys cozy mysteries.
For More Information about the Book and Author Click: HERE
Age Range: 12 – adult
Cautions – *Contains Slight Spoilers*
Violence: Two people are poisoned. Annabelle is in a car accident and later is almost strangled. A man is beat with a shovel and punched in the face.
Sensuality: Annabelle is a wedding planner so there is lots of talk about weddings and the murder takes place at a wedding. Kate wears revealing clothes and gives potential suspects a “Cleavage Test.” Two different couples were having affairs. Richard stays over at Annabelle’s apartment to protect her, but they are simply friends and nothing happens. Annabelle’s neighbor tries to set her up with every eligible man. A drunk man tries to woo Annabelle. Annabelle starts to have feelings for the FBI agent in charge of the case.
Profanity: God’s name is taken in vain a few times.
Other(drugs/alcohol): People drink at the wedding. Annabelle has wine on several occasions. A woman is deliberately drugged up. A man becomes so drunk he passes out and a woman stumbles around in a drunken stupor. Almost everyone is glad Mrs. Pierce is dead and the memorial party for her is more of a “Ding Dong the Witch is Dead.” party. Annabelle eavesdrops behind a curtain, and sneaks into several offices to investigate. She lies to cover her tracks.
Personal Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Cleanness Rating: 4 out of 5 stars