Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Review of A Truth for a Truth by Emilie Richards

A Truth for a Truth

Emilie Richards

Penguin

305 pages

A Truth for a Truth is a Ministry is Murder series number five.

Welcome to Emerald Springs, Ohio. Home of the Consolidated Community Church or slanged the Triple C by the current minister’s wife Aggie Sloan-Wilcox who’s not only known by that title, no she has other hobbies that keep her (in)famous, like, having her own opinions and life aside from being married to her husband Ed the minister, like not behaving like a proper minister’s wife should (according to upstanding congretory opinions), or like seemingly always being in the vicinity when a murder just so happens to occur. Yep that’s Aggie, and this episode of the life and times of the Wilcox family is no different, when getting ready for the church’s 150th Anniversary a past pastor just happens to drop dead. From all angles it appears to be natural causes, from all angles that is except one, yup, he was murdered and Aggie is bound and determined to find the culprit. Now if she could only learn to be a proper minster’s wife, she’d be perfect.

Ms. Richards is one of those amazing storytellers that can make her readers visualize the journey that she’s taking them on and that will become obvious as she gives us a view of this small American community that appears without villainy and yet people don’t murder themselves do they. She’ll take us on this trip with dialogue filled with irreverent humor and narrative that will keep her readers glued to the novel to find the culprit and solve the crime. Her characters vary from the mundane to ridiculous and they will in turn charm and alarm you but will all fit nicely in the story and become important to the final The End. Her main protagonist Aggie wears many hats and Ms. Richards shows her confident and doubtful at the same time, yes she makes her very human as she goes through her days as a mother, wife, friend and detective but through it all she always comes through very genuine, someone I would personally love to know and interact with. She also in between solving crimes shows us the day to day problems that we all have and in turn make us laugh at ourselves as we laugh with Aggie.

If you make a list of must reads, this one has to be on it, if you love series put this one on your TBR pile, if you love contemporary mysteries or cozy mysteries this should be top choice. Be prepared to laugh in the next breath after you gasp in the next breath after you wipe your tears in this nail biting one minute, laugh out loud the next minute who-done-it. This novel stands well on it’s own, but the series is chronological and so I would suggest reading them all. If you’re a fan of Hank Phillipi Ryan or Diane Mott-Davidson you will love this series.