Librarians make the best detectives ★★★★
The Aurora Teagarden mysteries compose of eight seperate stories all of which occur in the town of Lawrenceton, Georgia, and are solved by the local librarian Aurora Teagarden.
Harris wrote these before her sojourn into fantasy crime fiction with the Sookie Stackhouse books, and she really excels at writing standard crime fiction, the writing doesn't feel awkward like it sometimes can in her other work, an although not entirely realistic all the time, it doesn't feel too contrived either. Auroras character has a good balance between firm strengths and realistic weaknesses and as the stories progress she grows as a character demonstrating plenty of gumption, I suspect she also grows as Harris grew into being an author.
So how does a librarian get mixed up in solving crimes? By being a font of knowledge of course. In Real Murders, the first of eight novels, Aurora is a member of a true crime fan club where they discuss real life criminals like detectives would, examining evidence. At one of the meetings a murder occurs and Aurora finds the body, being a potential suspect and being a professional know it all (im allowed to say that when I am one) she begins to investigate to help clear herself of suspicion.
This was the first book I finished on my Kobo, it got me really excited to read on it, I bought the whole collection in two omnibuses and read about one per day. They are incredibly quick reads but also addictive, I was sad when the last one was finished because I simply wanted more!
The only real disappointments I felt we're Harris's need to create drama in Roe's love life mid way through the series (she is known for not allowing her characters to be happy for too long), and that the importance of the crime to the plot varies between stories. As mysteries go these we're light and fluffy while still having some integrity and I often didn't guess the criminal, either through cleverness or being content to float along with the story.
If you are looking to read a new series I recommend you give this one a try.
I give the series as a whole ★★★★