The Quick and the Thread by Amanda Lee is the first book in the new “Embroidery” mystery series. Publisher: Obsidian (Penguin), August 2010

Opening an embroidery specialty shop in quaint Tallulah Falls, Oregon, was a big deal for Marcy Singer. But it was nothing compared to finding a dead body in her store.

For the grand opening of her shop, the Seven Year Stitch, Marcy throws a soiree. Her friend Sadie, who owns the coffee shop down the street, provides the delicious refreshments and the party goes swimmingly. Marcy’s registration sheet for embroidery classes fills up, and everyone in town seems willing to raise a glass—or a needle—to support the shop.

But the morning after the party, Marcy and Angus, her pooch find a nasty surprise: The man who leased the shop before Marcy is lying dead in the storeroom, with a message scratched by a tapestry needle on the wall beside him. Now Marcy’s shop has become a crime scene, and she’s a suspect in the murder. But Marcy will be darned if she doesn’t get to the bottom of this mystery, because it’s starting to look as if someone’s intent on putting the final stitch in her.

What a great debut series featuring Marcella (Marcy) Singer. Marcy was looking forward to a great grand-opening of her embroidery shop. She had customers, food, beverage and good chatter but the one thing she didn’t count on, was a dead body who left a cryptic message scrawled on the wall. Sparking Marcy’s curiosity and the fact that she is a suspect, Marcy with help from her friends start asking questions and someone in this small town does not like where the answers may lead. I love the town, the friendly characters (except the killer) as well as the dialogue which felt very comfortable. The prospect of a romantic triangle and knotting the thread on the killer will keep your eyes glued to the pages until the final the end. At one point, I thought I had the killer pegged, but the author had other ideas and it worked as well. This was a delightful and crafty tale. My rating: 5 stars

*new-to-me author
Amanda Lee is the pseudonym of Gayle Trent

previously posted on the Cozy Chicks blog

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