Details: Paperback, 466 pages
Publication: June 9, 2016 by Acorn Book Services
Series: Mac Faraday Mystery, Book Twelve
Goodreads Synopsis: It’s election time in Spencer, Maryland, and the race for mayor is not a pretty one. In recent years, the small resort town has become divided between the year-round residents who enjoy their rural way of life and the city dwellers who are moving into mansions, taking over the town council, and proceeding to turn Deep Creek Lake into a closed-gate community-complete with a host of regulations for everything from speed limits to clotheslines.When the political parties force-feed two unsavory mayoral nominees to the town’s residents, David O’Callaghan, the chief of police, decides to make a statement-by nominating Gnarly, Mac Faraday’s German shepherd, to run for mayor of Spencer! What starts out as a joke turns into a disaster when overnight, Gnarly becomes the front-runner, and his political opponents proceed to dig into the canine’s past. When one of the mayoral candidates ends up dead, it becomes apparent that slinging mud is not enough for someone with a stake in this election.With murder on the ballot, Mac Faraday and the gang-including old friends from past cases-dive in to clear Gnarly’s name, catch a killer, and save Spencer!
My Thoughts: If all of Lauren Carr’s books are even slightly similar to this one (and the previous one I read by her), I’m definitely going to have to read more of her books. Candidate for Murder was the perfect mix of murder mystery and humor. It kept me on the edge of my seat and made me laugh at the same time.
I’m not sure if her other books are the same, but the two I’ve read have both involved a brilliant canine character, which I adore. It adds a fun twist to the mystery aspect, and I just find it fascinating that a dog could solve a murder. When if felt as if something was getting too intense, the dog(s) helped ease the tension and make it a bit more lighthearted.
As for the human characters, they were very well written. The characters you’re meant to dislike have the perfect qualities to keep you rooting against them – with the exception of one. Nancy Braxton was one of my personal favorites in the book. She started out as obnoxious and insufferable, but as I learned more about her character, I started sympathizing with her.
I don’t know much about the group of main protagonists as this was my first Mac Faraday novel, but I still loved them dearly. Some of them could be the slightest bit annoying – particularly Dallas – but I think that added to their charm. The relationships, or in some cases, the developing relationships, between them all were great. I loved every interaction between Archie and Dallas.
The overall plot itself was, to me, brilliant. The book followed a few different storylines, each being entertaining and suspenseful. And I know it’s cheesy, but the idea of a dog running for mayor while simultaneously working on important military assignments was fascinating for me. It did seem a bit far-fetched, but I think that only made it better.
My only problem with the book was the amount of characters that were in it – excluding the main group. There were few times a character would be introduced to a scene and it would take me a moment to remember who they were. I’m not sure if it would have helped if I’d read the rest of the series or not.
If you’re looking for a more lighthearted mystery novel, I’d suggest giving this one a try. I do think I’m going to purchase the rest of the series to give myself a little more insight into some of the characters and relationships. That may make it even more enjoyable, and I’d love to see more of their adventures.
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book via iRead Book Tours and am voluntarily leaving a review.
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*Available for free with Kindle Unlimited