REVIEW BY ESTEEMED MEMBER PEGGY VERMEER
"Murder and Marinara" had a pretty good plot idea, an okay storyline base, more or less, but the main character, the narrator, "Victoria", simply wasn't all that interesting, at least not enough so to carry a whole book. Her personality wasn't anywhere near as compelling as, say, "Sherlock Holmes" or "Bruno, Chief of Police" or "Miss Marple". A good murder mystery book needs a main character or a suspect or a villain who is unpredictable, a bit "larger than life".
Most of the details of the book seemed to concentrate on the immediate happenings surrounding the characters at the moment and not the adjoining areas and lacked presenting references to relevant historical time frames to give the story a wide context. In the last book selection we read, the location was set in a small town and you got a real feeling for the place. Not so here. One can imagine how a family-owned Italian restaurant might be without too much effort. Beyond that, a reader couldn't visualize much about the town by the way it was described -- another big mistake for a murder mystery book.
The ending was probably the most interesting part of the book -- sort of a surprising reveal as to who the murderer turned out to be. Overall, the book was what I would call "a little read", a slightly amusing puff piece.
I would not recommend this book. I would give this book a "6" (On a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being "best").