I do not receive compensation for my reviews. In the interest of full disclosure I should note that Molly MacRae did write a blurb for Cocaine Zombies.
The story begins with Kath Rutledge traveling to Blue Plum, Tennessee for her grandmother’s funeral. When she arrives in town she is pulled over by Deputy Dunbar. I half expected her to be tossed in the poky like in a scene from Easy Rider. This did not happen and she didn’t go to jail. She didn’t exactly hit it off with the deputy either. Kath is smart, sassy and at times a bit obnoxious. Traits that are to her benefit along with her persistence.
Blue Plum is more akin to Mayberry than some backwoods Southern town. It is more quirky than xenophobic. I believe she even mentioned Opie Taylor at one point in passing. Rodney Dangerfield might refer to Blue Plum as “a nice place to fly over”. Yet, he would miss out on a lot of fun if he did.
Last Wool and Testament is a true mystery and as such I can’t say much without giving too much away. I will say many of the characters are not what they seem. For such a small town it has a lot of secrets. Ivy owns a fabric shop and despite sounding like a generic little old lady she has her own secrets to hide. She is dead when the book begins but through her note and the other observations about her I feel as though I know her. She is not alone in this small town as far as hiding secrets.
Despite the small town setting a lot happens in Blue Plum. There are murders, snakes and even a ghost. The citizens tend to be quirky and a bit odd. These traits keep them from being boring or stereotypical.
The people who spend time at her grandmother’s store the Weaver’s Cat are helpful and interesting. Mel the owner of the local eatery (I am unsure if this is a nod to the Mel’s Diner in the old television show Alice) and Geneva (despite being dead) all lend a hand in helping to get to the bottom of the mystery.
Molly MacRae weaves an interesting tapestry (pun intended). She brings small town Tennessee to life. The characters come to life and ring true.
All and all my trip to Blue Plum was a good one. I suspect I will visit again when the next book in the series comes out. So light a fire, put on a wool shawl, let the cat sit on your lap and dig in. It might be good with rosemary olive oil cake with dark chocolate.