Books, Gardens, Dogs
Death Makes the Cut - Janice Hamrick THOUGHTSABSOLUTELY LOVED ITJocelyn is back in Austin, ready to start the uneventful school year as she has planned, teaching French and History. Well, it doesn't do according to her lesson plan when she finds her mentor and fellow History teacher, Fred, dead in the school's tennis office. Enlisted to take over as tennis coach, she thinks the police aren't doing enough to catch the killer, especially when the police suspect him of selling drugs. Jocelyn thinks those drugs were planted by the killer and wants to clear his name. The detective, Colin, assigned to the case, questions her and some of those questions become personal. As Kyla, Jocelyn's cousin notes, Colin is hunky and hot -- my words not hers, but you get the point. Since Jocelyn is now in a long distance relationship with Alan, Kyla thinks that Jocelyn needs to date someone local and Colin couldn't agree more. Also, a famous director, Michael Dupre, is using the high school as a film site and rings in Jocelyn's tennis team as extra which absolutely fries the drama teacher, Roland, since he would love nothing more than audition for the director to get his big break. While the kids are filming, Jocelyn is attacked and ends up in the hospital and when she is finally released, she finds her home burglarized and trashed. Colin comes to the rescue and puts her on surveillance. As Jocelyn collects more clues to Fred's murder, her best friend and fellow teacher, Laura, finds a few suspicious things about the drama department and the school's finances. Jocelyn warns Laura not to get too nosy because of what happened to her and things don't go well for Laura as she uncovers more dirt about the school accountant, Pat. My favorite line is the story is when Laura, described as tiny, tries to drag Jocelyn to see something in the school's theatre: "She tugged at me, trying to pull me after her. It was a little like a dachshund trying to move a fully loaded Yukon sled." I bet you can guess why this is my favorite! This is a fast paced and easy to read story, just perfect for the hot days of summer. I love that Jocelyn is not perfect and just like a dachshund, she tends to stay on scent, even though her logic knows she should just give up on the hunt for the killer. Everything is believable and right down to the interactions with her cousin Kyla, students and other teachers just rings true. I did have an ARGHHH moment at the end of the story where things are left up in the air with her love life. I really hope there are more books planned for this series since I just adored everything about it.

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