Saturday, August 18, 2018

Review: Tippy-Toe Murder

Tippy-Toe Murder by Leslie Meier

My rating:  4 Stars

When retired dance instructor Caroline Hutton disappears, the search is intense for just a short period of time. But then the search fizzles and comes to an end as no clues turned up. Her disappearance is especially suspect because her beloved dog was left behind.  With three young children and pregnant with her third, and during an agonizing heat wave, Lucy hardly has time to play amateur sleuth again as she did during the holidays, but, as before, she just cannot help herself.

The scene changes with the cantankerous owner of the local hardware store is found dead in his office. Just as with the missing woman, Lucy becomes embroiled in this case as well. When her friend Franny is arrested as a suspect in the murder, Lucy steps in to save her. Franny became the primary suspect because she was fired by her boss shortly before his murder. Meanwhile, Lucy is as busy as can be between family life and all of its connected activities.

Tippy-toe Murder was a rather intense read as it dealt with more serious topics other than the typical initial murder we see in these cozy mysteries. As with the first book in this series, Mistletoe Murder, it was a quick and engaging read. I am rating this book a four instead of the four and a half I would have liked to give it. I must say that the reason why is that there is a particularly disturbing scene, albeit brief, that I feel could have been left out of the book that I had to gloss over. Other than that, this is a solid read.

In this book we see the Lucy we've already come to love, her growing family, and other characters that we met and more we will no doubt see again in future installment of this series. Although the first few titles in this series may have been written in the early 90s, the stories seen quite relevant to me. The only problem that I have is not with the author, Leslie Meier, but with my busy schedule. I have an overfull review queue and only heard about this series just yesterday. I hope to sneak a book a day until I finish all of the titles.


I started writing in the late ‘80s when I was attending graduate classes at Bridgewater State College. I wanted to become certified to teach high school English and one of the required courses was Writing and the Teaching of Writing. My professor suggested that one of the papers I wrote for that course was good enough to be published and I sent it off to Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine’s Department of First Stories. I got $100 for the story and I’ve been writing ever since. The teaching, however, didn’t work out.

My books draw heavily on my experience as a mother of three and my work as a reporter for various weekly newspapers on Cape Cod. My heroine, Lucy Stone, is a reporter in the fictional town of Tinker’s Cove, Maine, where she lives in an old farmhouse (quite similar to mine on Cape Cod!) with her restoration carpenter husband Bill and four children. As the series has progressed the kids have grown older, roughly paralleling my own family. We seem to have reached a point beyond which Lucy cannot age–my editor seems to want her to remain forty-something forever, though I have to admit I personally am dying to write “Menopause is Murder!”

I usually write one Lucy Stone mystery every year and as you can tell, my editor likes me to feature the holidays in my books. Of course Christmas is one of my favorite times of the year and my newest mystery “Eggnog Murder,” is included in an anthology with two other Christmas novellas by Barbara Ross and Lee Hollis. I’ve long been a fan of the classic English country house mystery, and was a faithful watcher of “Downton Abbey,” so I couldn’t resist trying to write one. I think I succeeded rather well, if I do say so myself, with “British Manor Murder,” which came out in October, 2016.

My books are classified as “cozies” but a good friend insists they are really “comedies of manners” and I do enjoy expressing my view of contemporary American life.

Now that the kids are grown — we have five fabulous grandchildren — my husband and I are enjoying dividing our time between Braintree and Cape Cod, along with our cat, Sylvester.

Find Her:  Goodreads / Twitter / Web 

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