Author: Mary Moody
Publisher: Signet, 2011
Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Genre: Cozy, Amateur Sleuth, #1 Lucy St. Elmo Antiques mystery
Source: Paperback Swap
First Line: Most treasure hunts are fantasies.
Lucy St. Elmo, the owner of St. Elmo's Fine Antiques, looks forward to the annual Brimfield Antiques Show; it's a major source of the stock for her shop. When a friend and mentor is killed at the Brimfield show, Lucy has to stop looking for merchandise and start looking for a killer-- because she knows that the police have the wrong man in jail.
There is a lot to like in this book. Moody has a lot of information about the antiques trade to share. I loved Lucy's plan for working this huge antiques show, how she gathered her purchases, and how she stored them. All that was so interesting that I wanted to call her and ask if I could tag along next year.
The book has plenty of humor, most of it from Lucy's point of view. She seems to have a never-ending stream of children returning to the nest. Children who keep insisting that she carry a cell phone "in case of emergency." She stopped carrying one when she learned that the emergency usually consisted of an errand one of her children wanted her to perform.
Humor wasn't the only part of Moody's characterizations that had me enjoying this book. Lucy herself is someone I'd invite over for coffee (when I wasn't tagging along on her search for antiques). She has a brand-new daughter-in-law who turns out to be a welcome surprise, and although not that much is said about Lucy's husband, there are hints that their marriage might be undergoing some sort of change, which definitely keeps me interested in future books. Living and having a business on Cape Cod and working a show inland made for a lively setting.... Even the mystery kept me well occupied!
Information, setting, plot, characters-- I want more of what Lucy St. Elmo's got!