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High Strung (Glass Bead Mystery Series) (Volume 1) Paperback – June 3, 2016
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"A fun mystery series with wacky characters, sparkly jewelry, a fiery torch and,of course, murders." -Nikki Haverstock, author of the Target Practice Mysteries
"What a fun, quick cozy mystery. This is the first book in the glass bead mystery series and it is a wonderful introduction to this series." -A Chick Who Reads
"The interaction between all the characters is fun to read, and there are plenty of humorous incidents as well. Mojitos will make me smile for the rest of my life!" -Book Babble
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Please note that the edition of the book with the blue cover is the original version of High Strung: A Glass Bead Mystery. For the latest edition, please choose the yellow cover published by Vetrai Press. The updated version is available in print or Kindle editions. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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There is just one big change I would do in this book. The plot is that a woman inherits a house and all that goes with it, with the stipulation that she "find her creative passion." She accepts and all of a sudden she is in Seattle as a professional beadmaker. I kid you not, it wasn't until halfway through the book (50% my kindle said) that the author explains how she left Miami, got into beadmaking and how Tessa became her best friend. The lack of this information left a huge hole at the beginning of the book. I nearly stopped reading due to my unanswered question of "how in the world did she get to this place in her life?" Frankly, I'm still confused why Clorox would be making their own glass tubes and how Jax got her professional training.
But overall, I did enjoy this book. It was a relaxing read with good character development.
However, I found it flawed in several ways. Still, I consume cozies like potato chips, so I don't expect every one will be wonderful. I'm probably going to read the next book.
* The story doesn't hang together very well, and spends too much time on digressions.
* I'm still trying to decide if I like Jax. She seems silly, and careless of friends while being overly generous with near-strangers. When Jax's cat goes missing, she doesn't seem very worried even though it's an indoor cat which she loves dearly.
* There aren't enough clues about the murdered person or the murderer until a sudden reveal at the end.
* SPOILER: There's a plot point that depends on the theory that a green-eyed kid can't come from a brown-eyed family. In fact, since light-colored eyes are recessive, it's perfectly possible for a green-eyed kid to come from brown-eyed parents if they have that as a recessive. In the story, the green-eyed child is the offspring of a green-eyed father and brown-eyed mother - which also will happen only if the mother has a recessive gene for light-colored eyes. (Of course, Jax could be mistaken about this and stumble on the truth anyway - but she doubles down with references to college biology classes.)
Jax is a bead artist who is participating in a juried bead show and demonstration over a weekend. Rosie, the owner of Aztec Beads who is sponsoring the bead show, has anger issues. She is nearly strangled to death by her necklace at the bead show and a young bead artist is found strangled in the dumpster the next day. Jax tries to find who the murderer is and what their motivation is.
I thought that this was a well written mystery. The characters were vivid. The plot made sense and the book was edited well.
If you like cozy mysteries, this is a good one.