Friday, November 02, 2007

A Vision of Murder by Victoria Laurie

A Vision of Murder by Victoria Laurie
Copyright 2005
Signet Mystery
296 pages

What led you to pick up this book? I discovered it on my shelf and decided to try to squeeze it in before the end of the RIP II. Ooooh, missed it by this much.

Summarize the plot but don't give away the ending. While on vacation from her job as a psychic, Abby Cooper buys a house with her sister and favorite handyman in order to fix it up and sell it at a profit. The house, however, is haunted. Before repairs can be made, Abby must rid the house of its ghosts and solve the the mystery of the previous owners' family history.

What did you like most about the book? Well, hmmm. Love ghosts. Love reading about psychics. Liked the story. The mystery is pretty decent.

What did you think of the main character? Abby tends to get on my nerves. I read the second Psychic Eye mystery just after the first and discovered that her sarcasm and childishness get annoying. Small doses, widely spaced, are good. She's an interesting character, though. I find Abby strangely believable.

Thoughts about the plot: Honestly? I was surprised. The author kept me guessing till the end. The story had enough threads to keep my attention without becoming twisty enough to cause confusion. Certain bits were predictable or obvious, but they weren't enough to detract from the overall effect. I can only take Abby in small doses, but I think Victoria Laurie writes a pretty decent cozy mystery.

Share a favorite scene from the book: The scene in which Abby's sister, Cat, goes off her rocker and runs over Milo's car is pretty funny - particularly Milo's reaction.

In general: A decent mystery with some transparent aspects, but definitely a light, diverting read. There's a lot of se*ual innuendo, but nothing graphic.

4/5 - Above average for the genre, not great writing but a good enough story to make the annoyances and minor flaws worth ignoring


  1. I would like to try this series out. I haven't been much in the mood to dive back into the paranormal mysteries as of late, but I'm sure the time will come. Thank you for the review, Nancy!

  2. Wendy,

    I think you'd like this series, just judging from your reviews. Tell me if there are some other paranormal mysteries you can recommend. I really like the ghost/psychic aspect. :)

  3. Sounds good, Bookfool. Just signed up for the 1st in a series challenge, so I don't know when I'll get to any other new series. If I put it on my TBR list it may show up on 2009's challenge list.

    There's something wrong with having so many books slotted already for 2008.

  4. Oops! Looks like I just lost the comment I made. That's the trouble with clicking buttons too fast.

    This series sounds good. I'm adding it to THE LIST, but I may not get to it for awhile. I already posted my 1st in a series challenge list for 2008.

    Speaking of 2008, are you doing the chunksters challenge again? I have a few chunkies on my shelves.

  5. Annoying fremale main characters seems to be the norm lately. Or maybe I expect a different standard of behavior. I'm trying to 'go with it.' It does sound cute though.

  6. Booklogged,

    Well, it's a double oops, since I approved both of your messages. :)

    I'm avoiding challenges, so I'm not sure if I'll want to host one. I haven't decided. Waffling, here. But, winter is a great time for fat books. I've just grown weary of trying to schedule my reads. I'm spontaneous and I like that, so at least for the moment I'm trying really hard not to schedule anything but ARCs.

  7. Carrie,

    There's some truth to that statement. In Abby's case, she's a little too sarcastic and tends to have temper tantrums, although they do feed well into the concept of getting a heroine into trouble. And, then there are those obsessive female characters with their designer clothing. Yeah, I think you just have to roll with it and try to enjoy the story.

  8. That's so funny! I was tooling around the library a couple of days ago, and I found Book 2 in the Psychic Eye series. I couldn't find book one, so I put it back, but made a note to look for it in the future!!

    Sounds like a fun series!!

  9. Stephanie,

    It's a very fun series - one of the few cozy mystery series that I really like enough to keep returning to. I do recommend that you start at the beginning, though, as Abby explains her psychic abilities pretty well in the first book. Having read them in order, I'm not sure if it would be as clear what she does, otherwise. :)

  10. This is the third series review I've read today. Is there some hidden message out there that I need to start a new series? But no, I have to finish 100's of other books first. Thanks for your review, but I'm going to be disciplined and pass this one up.

  11. Framed,

    No hidden message. I'm not a big series follower and often space out books from a series that I do enjoy (and there aren't many) very widely. No offense taken at your lack of interest! I was thrilled to read this book and send it on to another reader. The joy is in ridding shelves of books that have sat, unread, for too long. I know exactly where you're coming from. :)

  12. That's how I felt about the book I read by her ... the name of which completely escapes me at the moment. It was the one about the ghost hunters. There were flaws but it wasn't a bad read. She needs to learn to tone the cute and sarcastic stuff down just a tad.


  13. CJ,

    I'm glad I'm not the only one who noticed! I've read three of her books, now. The first was pure fun but when I read the second one, her sarcasm started to really annoy me. So, I waited quite a while to read A Vision of Murder. I don't know if I'll continue the series. I'd like it if Abby would grow up a little.


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