Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Potting Shed Mysteries Series #3 Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
After her romantic idyll with the debonair Detective Chief Inspector Christopher Pearse culminates in a marriage proposal, Pru Parke sets about arranging their nuptials while diving into a short-term gig at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. At hand is the authentication of a journal purportedly penned by 18th-century botanist and explorer Archibald Menzies. Compared to the chaos of wedding planning, studying the journal is an agreeable task...that is, until a search for a missing cat leads to the discovery of a dead body: One of Pru's colleagues has been conked on the head with a rock and dumped from a bridge into the Water of Leith.
Pru can't help wondering if the murder has something to do with the Menzies diary. Is the killer covering up a forgery? Among the police's many suspects are a fallen aristocrat turned furniture maker, Pru's overly solicitous assistant, even Pru herself. Now, in the midst of sheer torture by the likes of flamboyant wedding dress designers and eccentric church organists, Pru must also uncover the work of a sly murderer - unless this bride wants to walk down the aisle in handcuffs.
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|Listening Length||10 hours and 19 minutes|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||April 19, 2016|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #201,985 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#1,594 in International Mystery & Crime (Audible Books & Originals)
#4,135 in Cozy Mysteries (Audible Books & Originals)
#5,941 in Women Sleuth Mysteries
Reviewed in the United States on February 3, 2021
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Top reviews from the United States
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Pru Parker is a 50-something Texan, drawn back to her mother's birthplace in England. She is a master horticulturist, and looks for work that will allow her to remain in England. She has met and fallen in love with Detective Chief Inspector Christopher Pearse at her first position – and first murder scene. By Book 3, she has completed a 6-month travel time with Christopher which has culminated with his proposal and her acceptance.
Now as they plan their wedding and decide where they will live, Pru takes a 3-month assignment at Royal Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh., researching recovered documents that could prove to be the missing diaries of ‘Archibald Menzies. Menzies had been an 18th-century plant hunter, and part of his diaries had been missing until, possibly, now. She would validate it based on the botanics he wrote of.
Pru is assigned to special collections curator, Iain Blackwell, and is given a part-time assistant, Saskia Bennet. Iain makes it very clear that he is upset that Pru has been hired to research the journal, and not assigned to him. After a particularly heated exchange, overheard by Saskia, Iain is found dead, and Pru becomes the prime suspect. Christopher travels to Scotland to help support Pru and work with her to clear her name. Twists and turns ensue.
With each book, the characters have been become deeper and more interesting people. The books are well-written and provide information about real gardens and true historical horticultural information.
If you enjoy cozy mysteries, this is for you. If you love gardening, this is for you. And while the arch of the story grows over each installment, each book also stands alone. I give this a strong 4 out of 5 Stars!
I am more a a mystery / horror reader, but after reading my first Potting Shed Mystery: "The Garden Plot" I love these 'cozy mysteries.' I initially read "The Garden Plot" as a free Amazon Kindle e-book via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I did the review, purchased the next available books, and recommended this series for our local public library. Our library ordered the series, and the books have been checked out and on hold since they arrived.
These books are smart, mysterious, and include a subplot of historic or geographic importance. Marty Wingate is a Master Gardener, and this comes through on every book. A Texan who transplants to UK, the main protagonist Prue, and her new husband Chris are a delightful crime solving duo.
These books are clean and respectful, although there are a few murders about.
I stuck with it as I have a close friend who is a fuchsia expert and I wanted to know more about the Brazilian fuchsia in the story. I had already seen wild fuchsias in Peru and Bolivia and collected seeds at Machu Picchu.
The possible authenticity of the journal was also interesting, but the mystery was predictable and the characters poorly developed.
Despite the promise of humor, I only found myself amused once, when a church organist gave a preview of an authentic Scots wedding by blaring show tunes from Brigadoon.
I find myself uninterested in trying others books by this author.
However, kudos to the cover artist. Beautiful work.
Things go from bad to worse when Iian is found drown near a footpath tha Pru uses after she has been seen arguing with him.
There are many Swiss and turns to this story and many intersecting plot lines.
I liked the story very well. I found the story of the wedding dress very laugh out loud funny. The characters seemed a little flat to me but over all this book is worth a read.
As much as I enjoyed the book, I knew from the start who was going to get murdered and everyone would have an alibi.
Figuring out the murderer and motive wasn't difficult but the enjoyment of the book for me was the interaction between the characters and the fun of Pru finding out what is involved in planning a wedding.
Top reviews from other countries
It seems that not everyone wants Prue working at the gardens and when one of her colleagues is found dead shortly after a public argument with Prue herself, Prue becomes for a time the prime suspect for the murder. But not everyone is against her and she makes friends at the gardens and outside it.
Conducting a long distance relationship and trying to plan a wedding as well as investigate a murder and find time to work on the journal she has been employed to research all keep Prue busy. I enjoyed this entertaining mystery with it's fascinating historical background and well drawn characters.
If you like cosy mysteries with plenty of interesting background, and likeable characters then try this one. The three books on the series - so far at the time of writing - can be read in any order but if you read them in the order in which they were published you can see Prue and Christopher's relationship develop. There is a fourth book in the series due out in 2016.