Thursday, December 28, 2006

Saddled With Trouble - Michele Scott

Saddled With Trouble
The First Horse Lover’s Mystery
Michele Scott
Berkley Prime Crime


Michaela (Mick) Bancroft, a horse trainer in northern California, is going through an ugly divorce. Brad, her husband of nine years cheated on her with a woman a decade younger than both of them. Mick’s rock in life, aside from her parents, is her Uncle Lou, another trainer in the area. When he calls to ask her to meet for breakfast, she naturally agrees. He says he needs to discuss something with her, and he sounds worried. When Lou doesn’t show up for breakfast, Mick goes looking for him. She finds him in the stall of his prize stallion; dead on the floor, impaled by a pitchfork.

At the outset, she can’t think of anyone who would want to hurt Lou. But, as the shock wears off, recent events look more suspicious. For instance, it was Lou who hired the investigator who caught Brad cheating and ended the marriage. Mick’s vet and best friend from childhood, Ethan, had recently had some argument with Lou, but won’t give details. The small world of area horse people is about to get even smaller as Mick finds her own life in danger.

The first in what promises to be a winning series, SADDLED WITH TROUBLE is a very entertaining cozy mystery. Mick is a great character who reacts very realistically to everything that happens. She’s been around enough to know a bit about life, and intelligent enough not to make rash decisions. The cast of characters is interesting, and the pacing keeps the narrative moving along at a brisk pace. I’m looking forward to seeing more of Mick and friends.

Rating: 8
December 2006
ISBN# 0-425-21290-4 (paperback)


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