San Francisco astrologer Julia Bonatti’s life is turned upside down when she becomes the target of the city’s newest cult leader, Reverend Roy of the Prophet’s Tabernacle. Driven out of her apartment in the midst of a disastrous Mercury retrograde period, she takes shelter with a client who’s caring for two elderly aunts. One aunt appears stricken with dementia and the other has fallen under the spell of the Reverend Roy. To add to the confusion, a young man claiming to be a long lost nephew arrives. The longer he stays, the more dangerous things become. Is the young man truly a member of the family? Can astrology confirm that? Julia’s not sure, but one thing she does know is that Mercury wasn’t merely the messenger of the gods—he was a trickster and a liar as well.
This was a first for me – a cozy with an astrologer as the sleuth. While I myself am not into astrology, that didn’t make the story any less enjoyable. There were times when Julia was doing a reading for someone that I didn’t really understand what she was talking about, but they were brief, and she always explained in layman’s terms what it all meant for the individual right afterwards. So why did I choose to read this one if I’m not “into” astrology? The cat and the purple couch! I couldn’t resist that cover, and I’m glad I didn’t try. This mystery is well-written, the characters likable and realistic, and I ended up reading it in a single sitting!
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About the Author
Connie di Marco is the author of the Zodiac Mysteries from Midnight Ink. She was fascinated by astrology at an early age and this was the inspiration that gave birth to Julia Bonatti, San Francisco astrologer and her newspaper column Ask Zodia. Writing as Connie Archer, she is also the author of the Soup Lover’s Mystery series from Berkley Prime Crime. Connie lives in Los Angeles with her family and a constantly talking cat.
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NOTE: I was provided with a free copy of the book in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.