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Between a Rock and a Hard Place by Marty…
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Between a Rock and a Hard Place

by Marty Wingate

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Another great escapade with Pru through the gardens of the UK! I did wish there was a bit more of the gardening tidbits in this one, but the botanical research was actually very interesting also. I am definitely in line to read number 4 in the series. ( )
  Kathl33n | Feb 12, 2017 |
This is the first of the Potting Shed Mysteries that I have read. I found the first part to be a bit boring, but I stuck with it and soon was enjoying the book. Some of the references to the previous books were a little confusing but they didn't interfere with the storyline. As far as the story, I can't imagine starting a new job and planning your wedding at the same time, but Pru seemed to be a good delegator and the story was well wtitten. The characters were well developed. I liked the fact that this is about an older couple and shows you're never too old for love. I received this arc free from NetGalley for an honest review. ( )
  BevAsh | Jan 24, 2016 |
This is the first of the Potting Shed Mysteries that I have read. I found the first part to be a bit boring, but I stuck with it and soon was enjoying the book. Some of the references to the previous books were a little confusing but they didn't interfere with the storyline. As far as the story, I can't imagine starting a new job and planning your wedding at the same time, but Pru seemed to be a good delegator and the story was well wtitten. The characters were well developed. I liked the fact that this is about an older couple and shows you're never too old for love. I received this arc free from NetGalley for an honest review. ( )
  BevAsh | Jan 24, 2016 |
Between a Rock and a Hard Place by Marty Wingate is a cute British cozy mystery. It is the third book in the Potting Shed Mystery series. Prunella “Pru” Parke is a gardener who is looking for a new posting. Pru and her boyfriend, Christopher Pearse have been enjoying a six month sabbatical. Christopher is getting ready to go back to work at London’s Metropolitan Police at Detective Chief Inspector. Pru looks over her different offers and decided to accept one with the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh. She will be cataloging and identifying documents (a journal) written by eighteenth century Archibald Menzie (a plant hunter/collector). It is a three month assignment and afterward Pru and Christopher will get married.

Alastair Campbell is Pru’s new boss. He seems to be hiding something about her new job and goes out of his way to avoid her. Ian Blackwell is a historian of the special collections at the RBGE and he very much resents Pru’s presence. When Pru asks him why he resents her getting the job, he gives her cryptic information. Saskia Bennett is a gardener at RBGE and will be Pru’s assistant during her tenure. She is an eager and friendly young woman who has had to take care of her mother for many years. Then after an argument between Iain and Pru, Iain is found dead in Water of Leith under the bridge (I think I got that right). Who wanted Iain dead? Did it have to do with the journal of Archibald Menzie?

Pru starts investigating with the help of her fiancé, Chris. Pru is also working on her wedding which will take place after job ends in Edinburgh. Pru does not have a log of luck with the dress designer and soon leaves the planning of the wedding to her friend, Jo. Pru just wants to show up and get married (I have never heard of a bride that does not want some input into their wedding). Pru needs to solve the murder, find out if the journal is authenticate, and then get married. Nothing to it.

I found Between a Rock and a Hard Place to be an okay cozy mystery. I did not mind it, but then I did not love it. I found Pru to be a strange character and a contradiction. She wants to get married (claims to really love Chris), but she does not want to plan it (pick a location, dress, cake). She also goes to London the night before her wedding (with her fiancé), decides to stay overnight (which might make them late for their own wedding), and leaves her wedding shoes behind in their flat (does this sound like a woman who wants to get married). The mystery was so simple to solve (it was obvious). I give Between a Rock and a Hard Place 3 out of 5 stars. Maybe it is just me. I am told that I do not have a good sense of humor (by my own mother)!

I received a complimentary copy of Between a Rock and a Hard Place from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. The review and opinions expressed are my own. ( )
  Kris_Anderson | Aug 8, 2015 |
What a busy time for Pru Parke. She has just accepted the proposal of Detective Chief Inspector Christopher Pearse and is planning a wedding. She has also taken a short term job at the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh while Christopher remains in London. Pru's job is to authenticate a journal supposedly written by botanist and explorer Archibald Menzies. She is fascinated and has visions of writing a definitive article about the journal and about Menzies. She isn't expecting a boss who seems to be hiding from her, a rival who can't understand how she got the job, and a gardener who doesn't seem to know much about gardening but who shows up everywhere Pru goes.

When the rival is found dead in suspicious circumstances, Pru is a suspect and has to begin investigating a number of suspicious people to clear her name. Of course, she is also planning a wedding and it seems that everyone she interviews also has something to contribute to her wedding plans. Besides the tension of finding out who the murderer was, we have some funny moments regarding the wedding plans. From the fashion designer who is supposed to be creating her wedding gown to the Scottish equivalent of getting married in Vegas by Elvis to the police detective who is planning her own wedding, Pru has her hands full.

This was an excellent cozy mystery with wonderful, engaging characters. I like that Pru and Christopher are older. It was realistic to see them making compromises for their new relationship but it was also nice seeing that they were set enough in their lives that they had more financial freedom to make those choices.

Fans of cozy mysteries and gardening will enjoy this one. ( )
  kmartin802 | Jun 26, 2015 |
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