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Monday, November 19, 2018

Murder at Harbor Village

Murder at Harbor Village
by GP Gardner

About the Book

Murder at Harbor Village
Cozy Mystery
New Series
Lyrical Underground (November 13, 2018)
Paperback: 216 pages
ISBN-10: 1516109007
ISBN-13: 978-1516109005
Digital ASIN: B079WM9X29

Young retiree Cleo Mack is trading in academia for a second act in Harbor Village, a community for active seniors in coastal Alabama. But someone in this picture-perfect coastal town is burning the candle at both ends . . .
It’s love at first sight when Cleo arrives in Fairhope, Alabama, after taking early retirement from her longtime position as professor of social work. Touted as “the nicest town in the world,” Fairhope is home to an eclectic community of retirees. Harbor Village boasts classes in painting, pottery, and photography, not to mention being a buyer’s market for husbands. It seems an ideal place to make new friends and rediscover life. Until a dead body is found in the pool.
When the victim turns out to be the unpopular director of senior living, Cleo is named acting director. Now she must rely on her well-honed people skills to uncover a killer in a place where short-term memory isn’t what it used to be, and age is just a number. And if Cleo keeps snooping around, her number may soon be up . . .

What I Thought:

This is the first book in the Down by the Bay series and I thought it was a great start to a new series. I honestly do not remember ever reading a cozy set in Alabama, so this setting was a first for me.  The author gave some really good descriptions of the setting though.  The characters in this story were well developed and likable.  The protagonist, Cleo, has "retired" from her position of teaching social work to move to the retirement town of Fairhope, AL.  Cleo isn't sure she really wants to retire and when the director of senior living is found dead, Cleo is named acting director.  With the help of some of the retirees of the community, Cleo embarks on a mission of becoming and amateur sleuth to uncover the killer.  I thought this was an interesting read.  I enjoy reading about those of the "senior population" as their antics are usually quite funny.  The story flowed well and had a great plot.  I was stumped till the end of the book as to who the killer really was.  I really hope there are more in this series and this was a very entertaining read.

I received a complimentary copy of this book.

About the Author

Born and raised in Alabama, G. P. Gardner earned BS and MA degrees in Psychology from the University of Alabama (Tuscaloosa, AL) and an MBA from Jacksonville State University (Jacksonville, AL). She also attended the University of Georgia (Athens, GA), where she studied biopsychology and primatology. But her heart belongs to Talladega College—an HBCU and the first educational institution in Alabama to admit students without regard to race—where she taught business. Her writing life began with short stories, some of which were published in regional literary journals and some of which won prizes. She enjoys the classic mystery writers as well as contemporary whodunits but reads widely. She is a knitter and once owned a knit shop in Fairhope, AL. She studied mystery writing with Terry Cline, another Fairhope resident. Murder in Harbor Village is the first in her series about social worker Cleo Mack. You can visit her at
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