Friday, December 20, 2019

Mystery Review: Dead in the Dinghy by Ellen Jacobson

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Title: Dead in the Dinghy (Mollie McGhee Sailing Mystery #4)
Author: Ellen Jacobson
Publication Info: Dec. 13, 2019
Source: ARC from the author

Publisher's Blurb:
What would you do if your husband became obsessed with turning your cat into an internet sensation?

Mollie McGhie is excited about the Coconut Cove regatta. She’s looking forward to sailing to Destiny Key, enjoying the Fourth of July festivities, and dressing her cat, Mrs. Moto, up in adorable costumes for her hubby’s crazy new YouTube channel. Instead, they lose the race, get caught in a dangerous storm, and find a dead body in their dinghy.

The local chief of police claims that it was an accidental death, but Mollie is convinced that a murder took place. During her investigation, Mollie gets drawn into the local art community, worries that her cat is going to turn into a diva, learns more about the mysterious Destiny Key, and even does a waitressing gig in exchange for bacon.

Can Mollie prove that someone was murdered in her dinghy or will this heinous crime be covered up?

My Review:  

I have been a beta reader for the author on other books, but this one I read for the first time after publication. The author gifted me with an ARC but the decision to review is my own, as are the opinions offered.

I have found this to be a fun series, and this new book was no exception. Jacobson's humor comes through in a delightful way, so that we get plenty of laughs even as the body count piles up (well, piling up is a bit of an exaggeration. Mollie would understand). The story is fast-paced and the plot intricate enough to maintain interest. Knowing Mollie's propensity for jumping to conclusions I get a kick out of watching her blunder her way to the solution.

I've enjoyed seeing the characters in these books grow and develop and become ever more human, changing from over-the-top caricatures without losing their delightful absurdity. I'm happy to see that Mollie is become more resigned to her sailing life, and doubly happy to learn something of what it's like to live on board (I don't think there's enough room for me!).

My Recommendation:

This is a quick, fun read perfect for mental vacations. In fact, I strongly recommend it as a means of escape if the holiday excesses start to get you down. It's a double bonus if you live in a cold climate, as the book will whisk you off to the warmth of Florida, without the humidity or the bugs. Support authors: buy books this Christmas :)

FTC Disclosure: I was given an electronic ARC of Dead in the Dinghy. The decision to provide an honest review of the book is my own, and I received nothing further from the writer or publisher. The opinions expressed are my own and those of no one else. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."  


  1. Wanted to stop by congratulate you for being selected for the anthology!

    1. Thanks, Sherry! And the same to you. I'm looking forward to reading all the stories :)

  2. It's always good to have a brainless read when you're dealing with stress. This book sounds perfect for that.

    1. Exactly! It doesn’t demand a lot of you, and offers delight.

  3. Nice review. Reminds me I have several of Jinx Schwartz's sailing cosy/thrillers on my kindle which could do with being read in 2020.

    1. Hmm... I'll have to check out Schwartz. Though I'm no sailor--I think the kayak is my boat :)

    2. Rebecca - Thanks so much for taking the time to read and review Dead in the Dinghy! Much appreciated!

      Jemima - I love Jinx's books. They're a lot of fun :)


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