Death Will Extend Your Vacation by Elizabeth Zelvin
Take a bunch of recovering alcoholics, stick them in a clean and sober house in the Hamptons, and murder will occur. At least that's what happens in Elizabeth Zelvin's Death Will Extend Your Vacation, the third book in her series. Zelvin brings back recovering Bruce Kohler, his best friend, Jimmy, and Jimmy's girlfriend, Barbara, in this latest mystery.
The trio had just arrived the previous day, so they really didn't know their housemate, Clea, when they found her dead on the beach. No one had anything actually bad to say about Clea after her death. However, Oscar, the wealthy entrepreneur who owned a second clean and sober house, said, "People had strong feelings about Clea." Well, it seems as if someone had strong feelings about Oscar as well. The real estate developer ruffled feathers of a few people, but it was still a surprise when he ended up dead. And, Oscar's murder just reinforced Barbara's determination to look for a killer. She just couldn't accept the verdict that Clea's death was accidental.
It was a pleasure to run into Bruce Kohler again in this book. He's showing a great deal of emotional growth since he first came to readers attention when he hit bottom and began his recovery. For one thing, he's looking at relationships in a whole new way. And, he's certainly attracted to one of his housemates. She just seems to have a secret or two.
Jimmy, the computer genius, is just as loveable as ever. I have to say, though, that Barbara got on my nerves. She's a co-dependent, and a therapist. She's also controlling, a snoop, and has to know everyone's business. She's actually the amateur sleuth who pushes the investigation. This is one amateur sleuth who isn't subtle. I just can't stand her anymore.
Zelvin neatly ties up all the loose ends at the end, the relationships, the environmental aspect, the history of the island. Death Will Extend Your Vacation is summer reading for those who don't mind a few bodies on the beach.
I have been a library manager/administrator for over 30 years, in Ohio, Florida, Arizona, and, now, Indiana. Winner of the 2011 Arizona Library Association Outstanding Library Service Award. I am a contributing Book Reviewer for Library Journal, Mystery Readers Journal, ReadertoReader.com and VibrantNation.com. Winner of the 2009 and 2010 Spinetingler Awards for Best Reviewer. First Fan Guest of Honor for Desert Sleuths Chapter of Sisters in Crime, Write Now! Conference.
It's an honor to be asked to review books, and I'm grateful to all the publishers, publicists, and authors who send me books. Thank you. Reviews will appear on my blog if I've had a chance to read, and finish, the book. If I do not finish a book, I won't review it, and I will not respond to emails asking when, or if, I'll be reviewing a book.
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