Deadly Care (2016, Cozy Cat Press) is book #6 in the Claire Burke Mystery series, penned by Edmonton Alberta writer Emma Pivato. It finds Claire Burke and Tia, her best friend and partner in crime-solving, searching for a killer in the nursing home that Tia’s mother Marisa is residing in after her debilitating stroke.Deadly Care is a “cozy mystery”, a genre that is growing in popularity as an alternative to novels that have become excessively graphic in their depictions of murder, sex, and the overuse of profanity. As such, they are quite suitable for any audience, from young adult on up. Deadly Care is no exception. All the murders in the nursing home are non-violent (i.e. bloodless) and the characters are, well, nice. Even the murderer has a reason for their actions, unacceptable as they are. They remind one of the long-running TV series of the eighties and nineties, “Murder, She Wrote” with amateur sleuth Jessica Fletcher solving murders that seemed to happen wherever she went.
As this is book #6 in the series, I felt like I had walked in in the middle of an intricate story, and I struggled to catch up on what was occurring. Thankfully, Ms Pivato does provide some back story for her diverse characters, so it is not like you must read all five previous books to enjoy this one, but it would definitely be of benefit. I found myself skimming over the pages that delved into the lives of Claire’s numerous friends and mentally challenged charges, desiring to progress to the actual mystery story of Deadly Care. To be sure, there were some tense moments, particularly when Claire, Tia, and Hazel (an accomplice who works in the nursing home) attempt to carry out their after-hours surveillance and capture of the nighttime killer.
If you like cozy mysteries, I definitely recommend the Claire Burke Mystery series by Emma Pivato. All of the storylines of her previous instalments in the series sound quite interesting as well. Her books can be purchased on Amazon.ca; the Kindle versions are a particularly good price, even free if you have a Kindle Unlimited account!