First Line: "What's with the garlic and bottle of olive oil?"
Moving from Los Angeles to Mackinac Island to work in a bike shop is the best decision Evie Bloomfield has ever made. The entire island may be tied up in knots over the Lilac Festival, but so far Evie isn't letting it stress her out. That is, until her best buddy Fiona's former boss Peephole Perry walks off the ferry.
No one knows why Perry is there, but it certainly doesn't look good for Fiona when he's found dead. Now Evie has her hands full: she's got to clear her friend's name while not bringing down ruin on the island's popular Lilac Festival.
Duffy Brown just seems to get better with each book she writes. Braking for Bodies is filled with humor and the mystery is laced with first-rate misdirection.
A generous helping of the book's humor centers on the esprit de corps of the inhabitants of Mackinac Island. Tourism is their livelihood, and they go out of their way to hide any sort of bad news from money-wielding visitors. When some of those tourists think Peephole Perry's death is part of a grander scheme for their entertainment, the townfolk use that to their advantage, as they also do their knowledge of the island to help Fiona as much as they can.
Evie Bloomfield is a junk food-eating amateur sleuth who is an artistic genius with paint, brush, and bicycles. (How about renting the "Nancy Drew," the "Downton Abbey," or the "My Little Pony"?) Away from paint and bikes, it does take her a while to figure out to where all her clean clothes are disappearing. I enjoy the entire cast of characters, although I have to be honest and admit that Irish Donna's brogue sounds completely phony. Since she doesn't have a big share of the action, I can deal with it, but I do wish she'd be struck with some strange type of linguistic amnesia and start talking like normal folks.
If you're in the mood for a light-hearted mystery in the near-perfect setting of no-combustion-engines-allowed Mackinac Island in Michigan, I'd suggest you pick up Duffy Brown's Cycle Path mysteries.
Braking for Bodies by Duffy Brown
Berkley Prime Crime © 2016
Mass Market Paperback, 304 pages
Cozy Mystery, #2 Cycle Path mystery
Source: Purchased from The Poisoned Pen.