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December Dread (The Murder-By-Month Mysteries) Paperback – October 8, 2012
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Intrusion: A Novel
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About the Author
Jessica (Jess) Lourey is best known for her critically-acclaimed Murder-by-Month mysteries, which have earned multiple starred reviews from Library Journal and Booklist, the latter calling her writing "a splendid mix of humor and suspense." A tenured professor of creative writing and sociology, Jess lives in Minneapolis with her family. Salem's Cipher, the first book in her thrilling Witch Hunt series, hits stores September 2016. You can find out more at www.JessicaLourey.com.
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Top Customer Reviews
Mira James works at the local library in her town in Minnesota, and it's December with below zero temps in the frozen north. The library is shutting down for two weeks, so Mira decides that it's time she gets a break from her newspaper job too, and visits her mother while she takes a P.I. course that she needs for her certification. Mira hasn't been close to her mother in recent years and her father died an alcoholic. It's time she faces her feelings about her parents. Mira's sidekick, Mrs. Berns, goes with her and the two of them take a self-defense course. Mrs. Berns provides comic relief throughout the book and she's one of my favorite characters. What's in her head usually comes out of her mouth, and it's nearly always funny.
Mira discovers that one of her old high school friends has been murdered by a serial killer who the police are calling the Candy Cane Killer. He has killed before and the women he kills are in their thirties with brown hair and they all resemble Mira. The killer leaves a candy cane at the crime scene. Not able to leave things to the police, Mira decides to take on the investigation herself, and not with the blessing of the police or FBI. Before she knows it, Mira herself might be the next victim.
This is a fun mystery to read. I love mysteries and this one provides some very nice family scenes with Mira, her mother, Mrs. Berns, the dog Luna and cat, Tiger Pop.Read more ›
This was a very good read and of course, I read it in one sitting. I can't seem to put the books down.
Due to budget constraints, Mira James, librarian and lead character, has been ordered to close the library for two weeks. With Christmas just around the corner, Mira decides to use this time to visit her mother and enroll in a required PI course needed for certification. What should be a fun holiday visit with her mom turns into so much more. Two years ago, during the month of December, four Chicago women were brutally murdered. Last December, four women from Wisconsin were killed. All of these women resembled Mira--same hair color, height, weight, approximate age, etc. The press has dubbed the murderer the Candy Cane Killer, and he/she has now struck close to home. With the help of her friend Mrs. Berns, Mira sets out to trap the killer.
Mira is an interesting character. She has grown a great deal since the first book (May Day) but is still having trouble getting past the terrible hurt she experienced after her dad died. She knows that what we experience in life shapes us and makes us who we are, but as the book progresses, she learns that time can heal many wounds, and it is okay to let go of the pain and move on. Mrs. Berns, her elderly sidekick, is one of my favorite characters. She fully embraces life, loves Mira, and is frequently the voice of reason--and hers is a very funny voice!!
Ms. Lourey has written an intriguing mystery. Chapter One is only two pages long, yet those two pages quickly grabbed my attention and didn't let go until the last page. I'm looking forward to the next book in this enjoyable series.
Mira James, who has been given two weeks off from her position at the library in Battle Lake, and time off from her newspaper job, decides to go back to her childhood home, spend time with her mother and face some of her demons. She also enlists in a PI class and in a Twae Kon Do class in self-defense, which serves her well in one scene.
The mood throughout this book is somber because there is a threat of a serial killer dubbed the Candy Cane Killer, who leaves a candy cane at each victim's house. This killer strikes only during the month of December. One of the victims is Mira's high school friend, and Mira is determined to find out who murdered her. Her dear friend Mrs. Berns, who provides comic relief in this otherwise sober work, joins her at her mother's house. Not only do these two uncover some important clues, but they annoy the FBI Agent Briggs working on the case who tells Mira to stop interfering in the investigation, or he will arrest her.
In this novel, we see Mira finally coming to terms with many of her past, personal conflicts within herself, and meliorating tensions between her and her mother whom she truly loves.
Mira finally figures out who the serial killer is; Agent Briggs does so, too, not long after Mira's revelation. Amazon Verified Purchase.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I found Ms. Lourey's book to be very hard to put down. I am familiar with both Battle Lake and Paynesville which made it very special. The mystery kept me guessing .... Read morePublished 9 days ago by Rick
This one is well written and interesting ending. Likable characters and believable scenarios. I enjoyed this author's voice good editingPublished 7 months ago by Irish3
I have really been enjoying this cozy mystery series about Mira James, the 30-something woman who is "getting her life in order" while house-sitting for a friend in the... Read morePublished 20 months ago by J Davis
The only reason I say I hate it is because I was never able to open it and read it. I think it was free so I never bothered to report it. I like Christmas mysteries but.....Published 22 months ago by Barbara F. Greer
Arrived in good time but am reading knee high by the Fourth of July now.Published 24 months ago by Janet L. Hamilton
I thought this was the best one yet of this series, as far as the mystery goes. I was a nice change to get out of the usual small town and into another one. Read morePublished on July 25, 2014 by Shopper_14
This series just keeps getting better.
This book was a little darker than the previous books of this series, but I loved seeing the killer's POV. Read more
This is a very good series of books. They are easy reads and have interesting characters. I want to get the entire series.Published on June 6, 2014 by EasyReader