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A Crafty Killing (Victoria Square Mystery) Mass Market Paperback – February 1, 2011

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Editorial Reviews

Review

A CRAFTY KILLING  begins with a bang! Katie is a likeable character with her quirky candy eating and her huge heart. The story line weaves you through multiple people's lives and leaves open going back into the past, or moving forward. Bartlett is an excellent writer, portraying perfect pictures with her words that the reader just steps in and becomes part of the story with ease.
--Romance Readers Connection

From the Author

Read all the Victoria Square Mysteries
A Crafty Killing
The Walled Flower
One Hot Murder

Don't miss RECIPES TO DIE FOR: A Victoria Square Cookbook.
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Product Details

  • Series: Victoria Square Mystery (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; Original edition (February 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425239853
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425239858
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (91 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #615,792 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By D. Fowler HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 1, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Katie Bonner had to admit that a corpse was good for business. Everyone and his brother would come rushing into Artisans Alley to see the spot where Ezra Hilton had been bludgeoned to death. It was a good thing that Mary Elliot had found the old coot because frankly, she didn't have the stomach for that sort of thing even though "Artisans Alley--and Ezra--had ruined her marriage." Her dearly departed hubby, Chad, had invested in this "decaying money pit," and after his death she became Ezra's partner. Every last one of the vendors in Artisans considered themselves to be an undiscovered artist, including Peter Ashby in number sixty-four who dealt in "garden statuary," a quaint euphemism for cemetery statues. The ghouls would love his stuff and that X marks the spot hunk of carpet Detective Davenport, the `thank you, ma'am man,' had ripped up at the bottom of the stairs.

After the "Did Mr. Hilton have any enemies?" bit was over Katie had to calm down, pop a peppermint, and get down to business. Things quickly started to hop and bop, including Ida Mitchell's UGH-ly facial wart, one other thing Katie didn't have the stomach for. Ida, who hadn't paid her rent in months, was going to be the first one out the door of Artisans just as soon as she told her boss at Kimper Insurance where to get off. This was business and the very future of Artisans Alley and Victoria Square depended on her. Katie had her eye on a "sumptuous bed-and-breakfast," but a dump that sold objects d'art would have to do. Vance Ingram, Ezra's backup, began to squawk, "You've never shown any interest in this place. What makes you think you can just waltz in her and change everything now?" Try me.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By SuzieQ on February 10, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Katie Bonner is a great new heroine in the cozy mystery genre. The supporting characters are also believable and interact with Katie and each other in a realistic manner. (In some cozies the interaction between characters is a bit off!) It is also refreshing that Katie's romantic interest isn't a policeman, PI, lawyer, etc. Another enjoyable element is the entire setting of the book, the craft cooperative. What a neat idea! I was also totally surprised at the outcome and can't wait until book two. Lorraine Barrett's books never disappoint!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By S. Collier on February 11, 2012
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Kate Bonner is still grieving for her late husband Chad, when his business partner, Ezra Hilton, the owner of Artisan's Alley, an art boutique in upstate New York is suddenly killed. Up until that time, Kate had a 10% financial interest in the business, but virtually no personal interest in its success or failure. While her husband was still alive, Kate had hopes of purchasing an old Victorian Home, just steps from Artisan's Alley, and turning it into a Bed & Breakfast. Those hopes were dashed when her now deceased husband put all of their life savings into Artisan's Alley. After Ezra dies, his lawyer informs Kate that Ezra had recently changed his will, making her the largest stakeholder in the company, and he also made her executor of the will, effectively cutting out his nephew, Gerald Hilton from having a voice in the future of the business.

Kate ends up quitting her dead-end job with an overbearing insurance broker she had worked for over the past six years to run Artisan's Alley. Whether she is doing it for Chad's legacy, or because she sees a future in the business, Kate is committed to saving it from financial ruin. As she starts to get to know the other tenants and business owners, her commitment to Artisan's Alley grows, and she knows that even though her dreams of owning a B&B have been dashed, this is her opportunity to make a fresh start. However, there are plenty of people who want to stand in her way, and as Kate starts to dig in to try to uncover what may have happened to Ezra, she discovers that several of the people she has grown close to, may have had a motive to kill him. Soon Kate has another death on her hands, and she must find the killer before it is too late.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Cindy Chow on February 1, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When Katie Bonner and her husband invested in Artisans Alley it was with the hope of eventually being able to realize her dream of owning a bed-and-breakfast. However, Chad's death by a car accident put an end to that, and now Katie is left juggling a partnership in the warehouse of craft booths with a depressing job and an even more horrific boss. The murder of her inherited partner, Ezra Hilton, places even more responsibility on her, as she now has to deal with territorial crafters, Ezra's jealous ladyfriends, suspicious police, and two handsome men.

Yes, there are A LOT of craft-based mysteries, and yes, there are A LOT of mysteries with recipes. And although crafts are vital to the plot, the quirky characters are what make this novel so unique and entertaining. A complex character, Katie must work through her guilt and mourning for a husband she had separated from while also developing the confidence to take over the Artisans Alley and pursue a new career. In her personal life she must also decide if she's ready to open herself to a new relationship with either the attractive attorney or the tempermental pizza shop owner. The tone of this new series is definitely not fluffy and light, but it is very entertaining and enjoyable. The author of the Booktown Mystery series and the Jeff Resnick series provides another successful series for readers to enjoy.
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