“Death by Beach Read” is Lucy Richardson’s story, her first person narrative. Until recently she lived in a cozy home on the fourth floor of the lighthouse where she is the Assistant Director of the library housed there. She has always loved books, and as a child she imagined that the characters in books came out at night to chat with each other. She was destined to be a librarian.
Lucy is soon to be married to Connor McNeal, and the couple has just moved into their “dream” house. At least it will be their dream house when Conner and his dad finish the remodeling. It is a classic old beach house built partially on stilts, and even has sliding boards to allow them a view of the water at high tide. They both love that old house; they just hope that the house will love them back since rumor has it that the house is haunted. Lucy was even warned that she should not marry Connor and should not move into that house. She thinks all that “stuff” is just nonsense and that the house is just an old house. That is, until she finds a dead body on her new kitchen floor.
“Death by Beach Read” is book nine in the “Lighthouse Library Mystery” series, but as a first time reader, I had no trouble following along. There are a few references to past events, but needed information is seamlessly included as part of the current narrative. The characters are genuine and likable. Their words and deeds smoothly move the story along; they make things happen.
I also listened to the audio version of “Death by Beach Read” narrated by Elise Arsenault who has a multi-dimensional voice that creates an atmosphere that is at various times is melodic, reassuring, and matter of fact. At other times there is urgency in the narration, a tone of anticipation and yet dread of what is to come. Voices of the characters are distinct with the appropriate emotion and accent, although male voices are somewhat of a challenge. The narrative flows nicely with fluid dialogue transitions.
I received print and audio review copies of “Death by Beach Read” from Eva Gates, Crooked Lane Books, and Dreamscape Media. The book is quick to read with a little mystery, a little suspense, and a lot of fun. It is a simple story told simply well. The audio version provides a different experience, with the narrator perhaps supplying a little more absorbing involvement for the reader. Both versions are filled with compelling personalities as well as some mystery and suspense.
“Death by Beach Read” is now available in print, as an eBook, and as an audiobook from independent bookstores, online booksellers, retail stores, public libraries and anywhere you get your books.