Both spicy and charming, a real Whodunnit!
TROUBLES IN BELLMOUNT by Nicki Pascarella is a charming murder mystery with an endearing female protagonist, who much like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, realizes that what is most important to her was right in front of her all along. Miranda Albright, PhD is brought to life through solid first-person narration, well-crafted dialogue, and detailed description.
The story’s small-town setting, Bellmont, Pennsylvania could compare to small-town Kansas and when twenty-five-year-old Miranda returns home from years of university study, her feeling that there’s no place like home, goes awry when she stumbles onto a crime scene, that hooks the reader right then and there.
With a solid plot, satisfying resolution, and all the suspense elements, including a few red herrings, and wrong doers who get what’s coming to them, this book kept me turning pages. The quirky and lovable supporting characters like a fire and damnation preacher, fortune teller, park ranger, sleezy cop, handsome doctor, lawyer, marine, criminals, bartender, local politicians, and psychologist, truly bring the community of small-town politics to life.
The story explores the topics of political corruption, mental telepathy, the afterlife, ancestral burdens, and the quest for love. I enjoyed the music references, and cruising in Miranda’s old car, the Tank while her and her friends sang along to the radio and plotted a crime investigation. If this were a movie, I’d say its rating would be PG-13. Lovers of cozy mysteries with a little spicy romance, the paranormal, and who-dunnit stories, will love Troubles in Bellmount!
Nicki Pascarella is also the author of Stump Strong, Bookcasters, and Steamy Cairo Nights. All her books can be found on Amazon.