Thursday 14 March 2019

Book ~ "The Corpse with the Emerald Thumb" (2014) Cathy Ace

From Goodreads ~ A dream vacation at a Mexican beach resort swiftly dissolves into a nightmare for criminologist and foodie Cait Morgan when her significant other, Bud Anderson, is wrongly arrested for the murder of the local florist, a gifted plantswoman.

With Bud’s freedom, and maybe even his life, at stake, Cait has to fight the clock to work out which member of the small Mexican community might have killed the respected florist and why. Investigating under the watchful gaze of the local police, Cait has to keep her relationship with Bud a secret and she soon discovers she’s not the only one with something to hide. Peeling back layers of deceit to reveal even more puzzles, Cait struggles with a creeping sense of unreality as she desperately tries to save Bud ... and ultimately, herself.

Cait is a middle-aged criminologist in Vancouver, BC, and has been dating Bud, a retired police officer, for almost a year.  They head off to Puerta Vallarta, Mexico, for their first ever vacation.  When they arrive at the resort, Bud heads out for supplies.  As Cait watches out the window, someone screams that the owner of the flower shop across the street has been murdered and Bud is found with his hands around the victim's slashed neck.

Bud is immediately arrested and put in jail.  Cait pretends that she doesn't know him and because of her background, is asked to help the local police prove that he did it.  This way she can prove that he didn't.  In addition, there is a serial killer on the loose and the local police chief suspects that it's Bud.  So much for their tropical vacation!

It is written in first person perspective in Cait's voice.  I liked that Cait wasn't perfect ... she was 48-years-old, shorter than average, overweight and smokes.

I thought it was unbelievable that Bud was arrested for the murder in the first place.  He was found with his hands around the victim's throat that had been slashed.  Everyone assumed that he had just slashed her throat and was now strangling her?!  My assumption would have been that he was trying to stop the bleeding but he didn't even try to explain.  Cait has an eidetic memory, which serves her well.  I found it odd when she went into a weird dream-like state to try to solve the murder.  The ending ("whodunnit") was a bit convoluted but entertaining.

This book is the third in the Cait Morgan mystery series (I've read and liked the first two) and I liked it.  Though part of a series, it works as a stand alone as there is enough background provided.  I look forward to reading the others in this series.

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