Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Cozy Mystery Blog Tour: Author Guest Post, Review & Giveaway: Off Kilter (Scottish Highlands #1) by Hannah Reed

National bestselling author Hannah Reed brings mystery lovers the first in a brand-new series, in which a young writer finds herself swept up in a murder amidst the glens and lochs of the Scottish Highlands…

After the recent death of her mother and the dissolution of her marriage, thirty-something Eden Elliott is seriously in need of a fresh start. At the urging of her best friend, bestselling author Ami Pederson, Eden decides to embark on an open-ended trip to the picturesque village of Glenkillen in the Scottish Highlands, to do some hands-on research for a book of her own. But almost as soon as Eden arrives in the quaint town, she gets caught up in a very real drama…

The town’s sheep shearer is found murdered—clipped with his own shears—and the locals suspect Vicki MacBride, an outsider whose father’s recent death left her the surprise heir to his lucrative sheep farm. Eden refuses to believe the affable heiress is a murderer, but can she prove that someone is out to frame her new friend before she finds herself on the receiving end of more shear terror?

It began as ideas often do, with a small spark out of the blue. Most flashes of insight (also known as moments of insane thinking) sputter and die a quick death. As they should. But sometimes one will ignite and take off, and there’s nothing you can do but go along for the ride. That’s what happened with my new Scottish Highlands mystery series. Once those thoughts came alive and were in motion, I wouldn’t have been able to douse them even if I had an ocean of water. They had to be written.

Mostly, I credit one of my more colorful ancestors, who managed to get thrown out of Scotland in 1685 after his capture and imprisonment in Dunnottar Castle for taking up arms against the king. These days the castle still exists as a ruin, sitting high on a windswept hill beside the sea. This character survived when many didn’t and was shipped to the new world. A real rabble-rouser, that one. Not an uncommon trait in my family line. I believe his adventure was the inspiration for this new series. It fueled my imagination.

And although the weapons have changed in the time that has elapsed between then and now, motives for murder remain the same.

So back to the present and a wee bit about Off Kilter.

Romance writer Eden Elliott arrives in the Highlands only to discover that the local sheep shearer has been clipped with his own shears. She better figure out the motive for his murder and the person behind the deed before she finds herself on the receiving end of more shear terror!

I hope you enjoy your romp through the 'blades' of the Highland's slippery slopes.  I know I did.  

What a promising start to a brand new series!  Visiting Scotland is always a treat, and it was even more so in Hannah Reed's new Scottish Highland series.  Her descriptive detail is like taking a tour through this amazing country, and the characters are so true to that country's population and culture.  She also goes into great detail how sheep shearing is done, and it adds an educational feel to the story too.  I LOVED this book!

The mystery itself is thrilling, and I enjoyed taking the journey through the clues with Eden and her newly found friends.  I also loved the pacing of the story.  It gradually built up to an unexpected ending that I truly enjoyed!

This delightful new series is definitely on my radar.  I'm looking forward to the next book in the series, and can't wait to visit Eden in her beautiful Scotland again soon!  

Rating: 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.  All conclusions reached are my own.

Thanks to the awesome ladies at Penguin, I have 1 paperback copy of Off Kilter by Hannah Reed to give away to one of my lucky readers!  Just enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win, and be sure to keep checking back for more awesome giveaways!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Anonymous said...

So want to read!

Lark @ The Bookwyrm's Hoard said...

I love Scotland (and I, too have Scots ancestry - though mine left Scotland for Northern Ireland generations before they emigrated to the States.) And if you've rated this a 5... well, I definitely need to read it!

Gram said...

Sounds like a good start to a new series. p.s. I have a Twitter account, but never go there!

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