The Fourth of July isn’t going at all as Kim Claypoole expected. It starts with a bang, including a run-in with a dead body, and ends with her juvenile delinquent nephew, Little Bucky, disappearing from her double-wide trailer on a souped up Suzuki.
When Little Bucky fails to return and no one seems concerned but Claypoole, she sets out to find her wayward nephew. Nothing ever goes easy for Claypoole, and her investigation soon involves several trips to Krispy Kreme, a visit to Jesus Our Savior Bible Camp and some nasty encounters with a series of backwoods characters, including hillbilly counterfeiters and a major league Smoky Mountain dope dealer. In the midst of this chaos and while Claypoole is desperately trying to keep a rocky romance on track, her kooky mother and redneck cousin Alonzo show up for a surprise visit. Relatives, murder and love—all ingredients in a recipe for Deep Trouble.
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I loved the first Kim Claypoole mystery, Small Town Trouble, so I was excited to get the opportunity to read this book. Though I found this one to be slightly more predictable than I expected, I still enjoyed reading it, especially when the heroine solves the problems thrown her way with her own uniquely creative style. I loved the voice and the overall story flow. Kim's personal life is still a hot mess and I would have liked to have seen a bit more growth from her in that area. There is plenty of humor along the way as Kim tracks down clues and questions various miscreants.
Kim is openly gay but any there are no explicit sex scenes. Kim's sexuality obviously affects many of her attitudes, but also allows the reader insights into behavior that felt genuine and often enlightening. This is a delightful series and I am looking forward to the next Kim Claypoole mystery.
This book was provided to me in exchange for my honest review.
Reviewed by Laurie-J
I was raised in the small rural town of Amelia, Ohio, about twenty five miles out of Cincinnati. My younger brother and sister and I had a pony, a horse, many great dogs and a couple of motorcycles. We raised a lot of hell. My father served in The Big One at 17 and, after riding a motorcycle around Europe, became a lawyer and later a judge. My mother worked as a homemaker and nurse, a skill she had to use a lot with all of the injuries my siblings and I subjected ourselves and one another to.
I wrote my first mystery story when I was in fourth grade. It was about a kid a lot like me who heard strange noises coming from the attic and became convinced that the attic was haunted. Eventually, the mystery was solved when she investigated and found a squirrel eating nuts in a dark corner. It wasn’t a terribly exciting conclusion, but my teacher gave me an A anyway.
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