Genre: Detective fiction
Rating: 4.5/5.0 stars
Main Takeaway: A refreshing read reminiscent of classic post-war British detective fiction that kept me glued to the page.
**I received this book from the publisher, Minotaur Books, in exchange for an honest review. I received no compensation for this review, and the opinions expressed are in no way influenced by this transaction.**
Lola and Berta of the Discreet Retrieval Agency in 1920s New York City make their living retrieving stolen items and solving crimes. So when they receive an anonymous letter requesting the retrieval of a stolen ring, Lola and Berta travel to Maple Hill, Vermont and intrude on the Goddard family’s lives to complete the task. However, when Lola and Berta finally retrieve the ring, one of the Goddards is mysteriously murdered, and Lola and Berta placed in suspicion. Stuck in Maple Hill, the women of the Discreet Retrieval Agency have no choice but to try and solve this murder on their own, save their own skins, and make it home on time for Christmas.
This mystery was exactly what I needed to break my reading slump. Maybe slump isn’t the right word… rather, disinterest? Lack of time? Let me preface this all by saying I have not completed a book in over two months. TWO. MONTHS. Life, graduate school, work all got in the way, ate up my time, and when I finally found myself home in the evenings I found myself turning more often to Netflix than to my looming tower of books resting ominously by my bedside table. Naughty On Ice changed that.
Initially, I got pulled in with the Christmas setting (yes, yes, I know its not December. I simply don’t care. I love Christmas, and don’t try to stop me). The prohibition era caught me next. The clear influence of my literary hero and muse Agatha Christie made me obsessed (come on now, you can’t tell me you didn’t love that Poirot-esque reveal at the end?). And finally, the crafting of a good mystery full of twists and a killer reveal that makes you want to go back and look for all the clues.
If you’re looking for a cozy detective mystery to curl up with by the tree this season, make Maia Chance’s Naughty On Ice your choice. Did I mention its a series? I know what I’ll be binge-reading this winter!