Granny Hooks a Crook: A Fuschia Minnesota Mystery (Book 1) Paperback – July 18, 2013
The Amazon Book Review
Book recommendations, author interviews, editors' picks, and more. Read it now.
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
She’s also got a cat named Fish, who starts bringing along friends to the house: a little white poodle, and the cat and dog of her new neighbour Franklin, a retired detective from New York, whom she finds quite attractive. Then, a series of burglaries begins in town; all the shops are robbed in turn with exactly the same method, a shop assistant is missing every time, and the loot starts turning up at Granny’s house! And the ‘shysters’, Granny’s and Franklin’s cats and dogs, seem to know what’s going on…
Prime suspect Granny, who in the meantime has also been stalked by a strange woman who resembles her and a handsome young man who keeps disappearing, decides to investigate on her own and find the burglar and the missing girls – and discovers an intricate tunnel system underneath the town! Despite the warnings from Franklin, her three children and the local cop, she ventures down into the hidden labyrinth…
The story and all its protagonists are just so hilariously funny, I laughed more than I’d ever done with any other cosy crime mystery! The names alone are wonderful (everything from Delight Delure to Cornelius Ephram Stricknine), Granny’s behaviour and that of most other people in Fuchsia beggars description; and as for her rocky romance with the serious gentleman Franklin… This seriously is the ultimate fun read for all fans of cosy mystery with a good sense of humour!
She notices a woman who looks familiar to her, a young man who keeps appearing and disappearing quicker than she can move.
She also has a cat that likes to bring her presents. Including other peoples pets, and clues to thefts happening around town.
This was a slow-paced story that has an elderly MC in the possible early stages of Alzheimer's.
Pro's: There's a decent amount of humor, and a decent plot to the story with solid characters.
She has two daughters, and a son that check up on her on a regular basis, and you can tell that they care about the older woman's welfare. The son seems to be in on some of the tricks that Granny gets up to.
Con's: I was a little disappointed in the way several chapters started off in the exact same way.
Although the main character has symptoms of Alzheimer's, the story is written respectfully and it is an entertaining read.
The cover gives the first sloppy impression because it reads "Fuschia" instead of "Fuchsia".
The plot ... what plot? Did the author save it up for the last chapter? So far there are only silly ramblings about practically nothing.
The names ... Hermiony Criony, which would be acceptable as it is explained by the main character's mother's penchant for rhyming. But there is also a Ferdinand Fiddlestadt, Delight Delure, Gram Gramstead, to name just a few. Not original, especially not in this number.
The main character, Hermiony Criony Fiddlestadt, is not only unbelievable but silly. Why would wearing flip-flops make her original? The same goes for the other characters. They are not worked out and barely described. Just shallow. They appear and disappear and when they reappear you wonder who they are and what they want.
Let's take Granny's neighbors, just for an instance. There is George, and elderly gentleman, who hangs his boxers out on his flagpole. But that's all one gets to know. Why would he do that? Then there is Mavis, who allegedly hangs one-armed from the chandelier. We get a little morsel of backdrop information about Mavis, namely that she's into TV-shows. And that's it.
Then there is this Mrs. Shrill and her dog, Baskerville. Yeah, that rhymes ... yawn.
Allegedly, Granny wears purple leather pajamas. Turn the entire internet upside down and you won't find leather pjs.There are leather coats, pants, belts, jackets, vests, of course lingerie, but there are NO leather pajamas. Oh, and of course a senior sleuth character (or what is supposed to be one) needs some erotic traits. *Yawns.* Like secretly reading 'Fifty Shades of Grey'. Just ridiculous and at the wrong place. It does not contribute to any of the other fragments.
Granny has a sleuth job, definitely a good idea, but there's nothing that can't be spoiled, huh? So she performs in all the different stores downtown ... and whenever she succeeds she hits a button on a remote control and The Big Boy appears and arrests the criminal. Now think about it, there are maybe six or seven stores downtown. How could that Big Boy know where exactly she is at any given moment? How would he find her in the department store? That's ridiculous.
Unfortunately, in this book even the animals are ridiculous. One day Granny's cat, Fish, brings home a white pygmy poodle. Do you think the old lady would do anything about it, like bringing the poodle to an animal shelter? No, she just doesn't care. Then Fish brings another cat, which is basically more believable, but still ...
If Granny were a real person she should be locked away in a mental institution. There is one flashback about her husband, Ferdinand Fiddlestadt, passing away. And what does she do? Crack up a floorboard under which she has hidden a pink mini-skirt! In the same room with a corpse that has just taken his last breath she can't think of anything but a pink mini-skirt? Come on.
Now the style. Can and should an adult, not mentally disabled reader really have to endure passages like these two successive sentences: "We Save You Christian Church was across town. We Save You Christian Church was the only church in town."?
The sentence structure is as just as bad as the plot and characterization, that is, way below publishing standards and very inadequate.
Maybe a part of the dedication explains the extremely low standard of this book: "... (her grandchildren,) who helped me find the forgotten child hidden inside of me and taught me how to play and dream again. Seeing the world anew through a child's eyes is the best inspiration of all."
With all due respect for the author's psychological aberrations and tribulations, I'd prefer a book that has been written by an adult with the corresponding skills and quality standards. Or she should have deleted the superfluous, worn out erotic suggestions and labeled this as a children's fantasy book.
Now, one can say, what do you expect for lousy 99 cents, and of course that's a point. Maybe Cozy Mystery is a new kind of dime novels, consisting mainly of cheap botch, jotted down by individuals who should find another outlet for their distorted self-overestimation. The best of this basically sad development of contemporary Mystery stories is that it drives one back to the classics. Disgusted by all those wannabe-authors you start appreciating books written in the long past time when editors kept their readers from the worst discharges of incapable authors.
UPDATE. This morning I finished the book and gladly admit that the end was great and compensated for a lot. I don't want to spoil it for other readers by revealing too much, only that it was perfectly logical (and therefore satisfying) in the context of the story.
Conclusion: An interesting and unexpected end with a twist as one would expect from a mystery novel. However, a bumpy way to get there.
I still believe that the author would greatly benefit from an editor or at least a beta reader. The sentence structure is devastating and full of unnecessary and unpleasant to read repetitions, basically what one would expect from a children's book. The other characters are barely described , thus hard to imagine.
There is one example of well written dialogue toward the end where Franklin Gatsby tells Granny about the results of his research. This is how dialogue is meant to be -- as a means to convey information the reader would otherwise not have or can't be expected to conclude from hints. During the previous chapters the dialogues were mostly nonsensical as they did not serve the purpose of either conveying information, providing backdrop information, or characterizing.
Some aspects of the story would qualify it as fantasy rather than mystery, like the wood that disappears and then reappears in Granny's backyard. Then the disappearing and reappearing corvette; yes, in the end there is an explanation, and it is a believable and unexpected one! Still, I wonder if, since Fuchsia is described as a small town, nobody would ever notice what's going on with respect to the vehicle.
Maybe my expectations are coined by the kind of Cozy Mystery that takes place in a more realistic context and where the sleuth applies mainly logic to solve a crime, like 'Murder, She Wrote'. Consequently, I don't like witches and any other supernatural beings in a mystery novel, but that's a matter of personal taste. It is the author's choice and as a reader I have to respect it. However, it would be nice if Amazon could install some kind of tagging system. Cozy Mystery appears to have become too much of a blanket term. If I had known that this book contains a lot of fantasy I hadn't purchased it. Logically.