A Grand Murder by Stacy Verdick Case

Title:  A Grand Murder

Catherine O’Brien Mystery Series #1

Author:  Stacy Verdick Case

Genre:  Mystery; Crime

Published:  August 2011 – Before The Fall Books

About:  (Goodreads synopsis) When a prominent local businessman and friend of the chief of police is murdered on the front steps of his posh Grand Avenue Hill home Catherine O’Brien a pithy, vertically challenged, St. Paul, Minnesota, homicide detective with a monstrous coffee habit and her partner Louise are given two days to find his killer.

They soon discover their victim had a list of people with motives to murder him, including his fashion designer ex-wife, his mistress’s husband, and the chief of police. The only evidence they have to go on is a missing cell phone, a stolen book, the victim’s letter opener, and an ugly pair of Alpaca wool mittens.

My take:  This post is more my thoughts about the book than a true review. I liked Catherine. She’s very good at her job as a detective but is also quirky enough to be interesting. She loves her job and her husband but struggles to find a balance. She’s not as successful at attaining that balance as she is at catching murderers. Luckily, her husband loves her and understands that she loves her job.

That doesn’t tell you much about the murder mystery, does it? I’m never sure how much to share about a mystery. What I will say is that I was satisfied with how the case was solved. I wasn’t sure who the murderer was so I was kind of surprised – along with the detectives, I might add.

I really hope the personal lives of the main characters (Catherine, Gavin, and Louise) are explored a bit more in the books to follow. I’d like to see if Louise and the guy back at the station get together. And will Catherine survive vacation with her husband :)

Source:  I bought it.

23 thoughts on “A Grand Murder by Stacy Verdick Case

  1. I have just recently gotten into mysteries and this one sounds like one I would enjoy. Thanks for the post, I am going to add it to my TBR list!

  2. I sometimes leave a book only with impressions and not an actual formal review in mind, but that doesn’t bother me. Each book commands a different response, and I am glad to see that you decided to just shoot from the hip here and give us your impressions. Great thoughts on this one!

  3. Hi Mary – Someone tweeted your review of A Grand Murder so I thought I would stop by to read. Thank you for your kind review! I’m glad you liked the book and I will let you in on a little secret (since I know it’s just you and me here) their lives are explored more in coming books. ;-) Thank you again. I would love to send you the next book for review if you’re interested.

    Best wishes,
    Stacy Verdick Case
    (Author)

  4. Ha! This one sounds great and I loved your last line…will she survive vacation with her husband!! New author and series to me…glad to have read about it!

  5. Hi Mary,

    It seems to me that most of the fictional detectives have serious problems with their personal lives and I guess that the same is probably true for real-life detectives if the truth were known.

    There seems to be a whole raft of ‘cozy’ mysteries around right now, so I am just hoping that the whole genre doesn’t deteriorate into something which gets to be very silly and too far-fetched.

    There is a whole heap of difference in the style and narrative of the US ‘cozy’ mystery writer, compared to what we are used to here in the UK. It took me a little time to get used to to variances, before I could really enjoy the US version of the genre, but I am just about there now LOL!

    • Yvonne, I think you’re right about the personal lives of fictional detectives. It’s almost a given. I’m fairly new to the cozy genre. I try to read one/month or so. I’m wondering, do you consider Rhys Bowen a UK author? I think she lives in the US. I’ve read two of Her Royal Spyness series. I listened to one and read the other. Enjoyed both of them.

  6. It’s always tough to review a mystery (and I review a lot of them) — you want to tell enough to get people interested, without giving away all the twists and turns. I’m not a huge cozy mystery fan, I like my mysteries a little darker, but this sounds like it would be a fun read.

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