Basket CaseBasket Case by Nancy Haddock is the first book in the NEW “Silver Six” mystery series. Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime, September 2015

There isn’t much crime in Lilyvale, Arkansas, but local authorities have their hands full with Ms. Sherry Mae Stanton Cutler and her housemates—a crafty group of retirees who’ve dubbed themselves the Silver Six. But when Sherry Mae’s niece, Nixy, arrives to keep them in line, Lilyvale also plays host to a killer.

When Leslee Stanton “Nixy” Nix gets the latest call from Lilyvale detective Eric Shoar, she knows it means trouble. There’s been another kitchen explosion at her Aunt Sherry’s farmhouse, and the dreamy-voiced detective has had enough. If Nixy doesn’t check on her aunt in person, the Silver Six could become wards of the court. But the trouble Nixy finds in Lilyvale is not at all what she expects.

The seniors are hosting a folk art festival at the farmhouse, featuring Sherry’s hand-woven baskets, when land developer Jill Elsman arrives to bully Nixy’s aunt into selling the property. When Jill is later found dead in the cemetery, Sherry is suspected of weaving a murder plot, and it’s up to Nixy and the Silver Six to untangle the truth.

I like this fresh new entry in the cozy mystery genre. Nixy’s arrival at her Aunt Sherry’s home is prompted by the local detective and when the cause of the commotion is found murdered on Sherry’s property – it will be up Nixy and the Silver Six to thwart a killer’s further actions to cause more harm.

This was a fast-paced and enjoyable mystery that entertained me from the first page to the delightfully charming conclusion that left me with a smile. The author’s narrative in the telling of this finely tuned drama was spot-on placing me smack dab in the middle of all the action as everyone is suspect. The mystery of who was behind the murderous and harmful threats was well-played and it was fun following along with all the clues that Nixy and the Silver Six stumbled upon, a few with some hilarity. The dialogue was engaging and I love the camaraderie and interaction between the Silver Six, Nixy and the other residents of Lilyvale. Boasting a lovable and offbeat cast of characters and the “feel good atmosphere” of a small town, this was a terrific read and I look forward to the next book in this endearing new series.

previously posted on the Cozy Chicks blog

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