Tuesday, January 22, 2008

"Better Off Wed" by Laura Durham

The 2005 Agatha Best First Novel winner is a well-written cozy that is a breeze to read with some off-beat but believable characters, including Annabelle Archer, the troubled wedding planner protagonist who has to suffer with the much hated mother of the bride before she's murdered at the wedding reception by the end of Chapter One. I vow that there is no bloody gore, but the reveal at the end is a bit too pat even though it is pulled off with a classic bit of panache. Good humor rings throughout, and her assistant, Kate, mangles enough phrases to keep the best punsters in snitches. An excellent first wedding of humor and mystery, but it was a bit light and somewhat predictable for my taste. I give it a four; however, cozy lovers will decorate it with fives.

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