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One Hoof In The Grave (The Merry Abbott Carriage-Driving Mysteries) by [McSparren, Carolyn]
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One Hoof In The Grave (The Merry Abbott Carriage-Driving Mysteries) Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Length: 256 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Details

  • File Size: 728 KB
  • Print Length: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Bell Bridge Books; large type edition edition (December 15, 2011)
  • Publication Date: December 15, 2011
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006LT7NTU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #440,863 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Things I liked: the world of carriage horse competitions as a background and enough detail about the horses, the competition, and the people involved in the horses and/or competitions to (almost) make it a horse story as much as a murder mystery.

Things I didn't like (but others might): it is a fairly typical murder mystery.

It is a good whodunit in some ways: the characters are somewhat varied, the motives make sense, it is neither too predictable nor too unpredictable. It suffers from some typical weaknesses of the genre: minor but niggling inconsistencies (in plot or characterizations, vs editing), minor characters tend to be flat, recaps of what-we-know-so-far or what-we-don't-know-yet a bit too often.

I didn't notice any spelling or grammar problems or formatting issues. I did find the shifts in viewpoint slightly odd but I had no trouble following them.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I downloaded the first Merry Abbott mystery as a freebe and liked it enough to buy the second in what I hope will be a series. Will Casey get her carriage? Will Don Qui become a respectable member of equine society? Will Geoff and Merry get a chance to spend more romantic time together? Ummm, maybe not. How many times can Merry be a murder suspect?

There's excitement ans suspence at the beginning and end and interesting twists and turns in the middle with a carefully drawn backround. It's a light fun read
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Merry Abbot # 2

Merry once again lands in the role of prime suspect when she finds the body of a much-disliked man at a horse event. Fortunately Geoff volunteers to help the local sheriff investigate, mostly to keep Merry from getting herself killed.

I picked up this book free during an Amazon giveaway. There were some good lines, as when Geoff insists to the local sheriff that Merry would only kill someone who harmed horses and then asks in a panic whether the victim had hurt his horses. I like that the police in this series are reasonable people - the county sheriff admits he is stumped and welcomes Geoff's help. It kept me reading to the end. Spelling, grammar, and Kindle formatting are all fine - the only error I noted was referring to a "breach" birth. Once again, the title was clever but not particularly relevant to the storyline.
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I'm not a horse person, but this is a great series. Merry is a endearing character with flaws but she's working hard to fix them. Her love interest is a good match for her, I just hope they can work out their schedules. Sexual tension abounds. ;) Help Merry solve the crime before the wrong person dies.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've read the first and, now, the second in this series. I enjoyed both books. They are light mysteries but very enjoyable. The characters go well together and the mystery fits in well. I recommend for the light mystery genre.
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I have read several of Carolyn McSparren's books and thoroughly enjoyed all of them. I only wish there were more! I had horses as a kid and I taught my pony to pull a cart. I have many great memories of trotting down the road (and bouncing across a field!) behind my pinto pony, and these books bring back those thoughts. McSparren gives a lot of information about driving "real" horses, but weaves it into the story so the reader never feels condescended to or ignorant. Instead, when you finish one of her books, you are pleased to realize that you have not only finished a delightful book, but you have gained knowledge at the same time, in a most enjoyable way. I am always sorry when one of Carolyn McSparren's books ends.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read the first Merry Abbott mystery by Carolyn McSparren, and enjoyed it. It was a light read, and I really liked the lead character and the setting - how often do you find a mystery set in the world of carriage driving?

I thought this novel had a better plot and faster pacing than the first. Merry is unlucky enough to find the most loathsome person she knows murdered at a horse show. For a brief time she is under suspicion, but the murdered man has a long list of people who may have wanted him dead, and so the investigators have their work cut out for them. Merry again has to deal with her feelings for Agent Wheeler, while an unknown criminal seems to be willing to go to extreme lengths for reasons that do not become apparent until near the end of the book. As with the first book a little closer editing would have been nice, but overall it would have been a pleasant fun mystery if it had not been for my two major reservations outlined below.

Two scenes in this novel drove me crazy. Firstly, a driven pony spooks and attempts to jump out of an arena. The pony gets hung up on a fence, and apparently neither pony, groom or the disabled driver are hurt. However, even if the pony was sound as a bell, and not sprained, cut or bruised (which is pretty unlikely), it would be unthinkable to allow the pony to enter a contest just a few hours later with the same disabled driver. Having driven myself and assisted with disabled drivers, I can't see this as a circumstance that would ever be allowed in the real world. Maybe this would go unnoticed by non-horsey readers, but I could not believe this scene actually made it into a book where normally the horse details are pretty factual.
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