“I refuse to fearfully hide from everyone and everything. Not happening.”
Published: June 25, 2019
Pages: 300 (Mass Market Paperback)
Series: Jules & Bun Mystery #1
I know it sounds ludicrous, but when Bun talks, I’ve learned to listen.
On Fur Bridge Farm, Jules cares for rescued rabbits. But when a killer strikes, she’ll need a rabbit to rescue her . . .
Juliette “Jules” Bridge prides herself on the tender rehabilitation she provides for injured or abused rabbits on her New Hampshire rescue farm, but she has a very special relationship with one bunny in particular. Bun is a black-and-white rabbit who happens to have the ability to communicate through mental telepathy. Once she got over the shock, Jules found her furry friend had a lot to say.
One frigid March morning on their walk together, Bun spots a body. The police identify the frozen stiff as Arthur Freeman, aka Arty the Mime. Jules and Arty knew each other on the children’s party circuit, where he’d perform magic tricks and she had an educational rabbit petting pen. With Bun egging her on, Jules decides it’s time they hop to it and put their heads together to discover who silenced the mime. But their investigation leads them down a rabbit hole of more suspects and lies, while a killer sets a trap for them…
Hi friends! Do I have an interesting review for you today.
Kensington Publishing was kind enough to reach out to me with an offer to both receive this upcoming cozy and to host a giveaway on my Bookstagram. I jumped at the chance because I loved the idea of giving back to you all and I adore cozy mysteries, they’re one of the newer genres I discovered since blogging. Also, that cover is ADORABLE. That being said, I did receive a finished copy of this novel to review with you all, and I’m happy to report I’ll be receiving more books from Kensington in the future!
It’s important to remember when reading this review that my two stars meant I thought the book was okay. It’s certainly not a bad book, I just felt it wasn’t carried out well. Let’s jump into it, shall we?
First, I want to mention that I really loved the premise of this novel. I thought the idea of a talking rabbit was so cute and would add an interesting and fun element to the story. The mystery aspect of the novel itself was well-done and I didn’t see the ending coming, it’s just the execution of said plot was what was lacking for me. I can’t deny that this was a fun and interesting read, and it certainly was ‘cozy’ to the point where I was able to unwind and relax when I stepped into this book, but the technical issues I experienced really overwhelmed me when it came to my actual rating.
My first major problem came with the very beginning of this book, and in fact I noticed this theme throughout the novel; it doesn’t fit normal cozy mystery parameters. Usually cozies start out with introducing a few characters, they drop a few suspects in the beginning and show you some turmoil leading up to the murder but this one literally jumps right in. Like, they find the body within the first five pages. And, it didn’t work well. Plus, while at the scene the cop literally tells Jules not to investigate and be nosy like she had done this before, but with no context surrounding why he would assume that. Everyone just assumed she would start sleuthing, it was odd.
The other major problem I had was with the dialogue. The conversations were choppy, strange, and characters would jump from one emotion to the next instantly. Plus, while I was initially excited about Bun being able to talk, his talking moments were always these really self-centered comments or him telling Jules she was rude or pointing out the obvious. It might have been comical, but even Jules wished he would stop talking and sometimes, so did I. Dialogue carries a story, we all know that, and for this novel the dialogue nearly ruined it for me.
What other ways does this not fit a typical cozy, you may ask. Well, there’s also no love interest for our gal Jules. Most cozies include at least one, more often two, love interests for our main protagonist and those love interests pop up in the story and help solve the mystery and romance blooms. It’s one of my favorite aspects of cozies considering I am a ravenous romance reader, but this book lacked any sort of romance; not even a sniff or a set-up for the future. Nothing. It was a let down for me.
Like I said, I enjoyed it to the extent that the mystery was good and I thought the setting was quaint, but the technical side of the novel didn’t do it for me. I feel like this could be one of those series where the first book isn’t great, but the novels get better throughout. We’ll have to see, though. Again, huge thanks to Kensington for my copy!
Other Books by J.M. Griffin