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2012.29 REVIEW – Death by Bourbon by Abigail Keam

Death by Bourbon
by Abigail Keam

Copyright: 2012
Pages: 128
Read: Nov. 6-9, 2012
Challenge: Mystery & Suspense Challenge
Yearly count: 29
Format: E-Book
Source: Review copy from First Rule PR


Blurb: Life takes a dramatic turn for Josiah when she witnesses a death at an engagement party for guess who . . . Matt.  Matt?  Yes Matt.

Charming socialite Addison DeWitt falls into a fit after taking a sip of bourbon.  That would be upsetting enough but Josiah is sure it is murder. However, no one will believe her except for Lady Elsmere and Meriah Caldwell, the famous mystery writer.  The three of them conspire to bring the
murderer to justice.  It turns out that the suspect is always three steps ahead of them.

To make matters worse, Josiah’s daughter, Asa, decides to move to London, Franklin leaves town and Jake starts singing a different tune.  Josiah doubts her ability to meet the future alone.  Maybe it’s time to sell the Butterfly and move to Florida with the rest of the old folks.

Review: I don’t normally read cozy mysteries, I tend to prefer the grittier books. However, when I was pitched this book and did a little bit of research on it, I was intrigued and decided to get it a go. Part of me really wanted to read this book when I realized that Ms. Keam resided in Kentucky (I live in Paducah).

Going into this book, I knew it was in the middle of a series. Something that I’m not a huge fan of doing, but I was willing to take the risk on it. But I must forewarn you – I highly recommend reading the first books in this series before reading this book. In my opinion, it does not stand well by itself. You really need the background to have a full understanding of what is going on. It took me almost 20 pages in the beginning to really have a decent grasp on what was going on. Had this been a personal read, I would have stopped right then and there and read the books before it.

Some of the language used sounded a bit more traditional English than what us Americans are used to now. It doesn’t make it too confusing, but it did make me have to pay a little bit more attention to what was going on in the book.

Overall this was a quick and fun read. If you’re a cozy reader I would highly recommend this book. If you’re just dipping your feet into the cozies, I would definitely recommend starting from the beginning. But in general, this is a book that I would recommend to my readers.


Abigail Keam is an award-winning author who writes the Josiah Reynolds mystery series about a beekeeper turned sleuth.

Death By A HoneyBee won the 2010 Gold Medal Award for Women’s Lit from Reader’s Favorite and was a Finalist of the USA BOOK NEWS-Best Books of 2011. Death By Drowning won the 2011 Gold Medal Award for Best Mystery Sleuth and also was placed on the USA BOOK NEWS-Best Books of 2011.

Ms. Keam is also an award-winning beekeeper who lives on the Kentucky River in a metal house with her husband and various critters.


Praise for previous books by Ms. Keam:
Ms. Keam’s writing is more like lyrical prose, leaving the readers wanting to know more of Josiah’s life and clamoring for the next book. This can be read as a stand-alone book, but I highly recommend reading the first book – DEATH OF A HONEYBEE.
Bobbi’s Book Nook, July 30th, 2011
Abigail Keam writes with vision and understanding. Her tale is fresh and original … after all … what could beekeeping and murder have in common? Readers will have no trouble being drawn into this charming mystery. Keam leaves the reader yearning for more. DEATH BY DROWNING is an excellent second effort by Ms. Keam. Characters and action are well wrought, and the plot sizzles.
Midwest Book Review, Shelley Glodowski, Senior Reviewer, July 8th, 2011

 Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book for review from First Rule Publicity from the author as part of a virtual book tour. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”