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ScotShop Mystery Books In Order

Publication Order of ScotShop Mystery Books

A Wee Murder in My Shop (2015) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Wee Dose of Death (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Wee Homicide in the Hotel (2017) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Scotshop Mystery is a series of novels written by Fran Stewart. Stewart specializes in cozy mysteries, and the Scotshop Mystery series falls squarely within that genre.

+The Story

The Scotshop Mystery series is a curious collection of novels. The series revolves around Peggy Winn. Peggy is the proprietor of the Scotshop, a store in Hamelin, Vermont. And while Vermont doesn’t sound like the likeliest place for tartans and bagpipes, business is booming for Peggy.

Things change when an encounter with a shawl brings a ghost into Peggy’s life. Dirk died several hundred years ago. And as such, the 14th century Scotsman is confounded by the modern world and all its trappings.

It falls upon the shoulders of Peggy to guide him in the new world. Stewart’s approach to the cozy mystery genre here tends to draw curiosity because the presence of a ghost changes things in some sense.

While there are no overtly supernatural elements and this is still a cozy mystery novel, the presence of Dirk somehow seems to elevate Stewart’s work. Because of the presence of Dirk, there is far more humor in the Scotshop Mystery series than some people might expect.

Dirk has a difficult time adapting to the modern world, as one might expect from a 14th-century ghost and his encounter with life in the present keeps things lively and interestingly.

Dirk’s way of speaking tends to divide fans; some like it while others find it confusing and a little irritating. Everyone agrees that Stewart does a good job of crafting interesting mysteries.

The level of intrigue coupled with the presence of a ghost adds a spark to what should have been another generic cozy mystery series of novels.

+The Author

Fran Stewart was a late bloomer. She began writing much later in life than most authors and her first book Orange as Marmalade’ was published when she was already 55 years old.

Fran likes to tell the story of an astrologer who, in her twenties, told her that Capricorn women didn’t come into their own power until they were in their mid-fifties; and it seems like that particular prophecy was fulfilled.

Fran spent a long time fighting the urge to write mystery novels; eventually, she realized that contesting her passions that way wasn’t healthy for her body. And in finally giving into her desires to write, she began to heal.

Fran is an advocate of the gentle treatment and understanding of animals, and she regularly donates money to organizations that fight for the rights of animals.

+A Wee Murder in My Shop

Business is good for Peggy, but she still has to keep her shop brimming with interesting wares. It is while she is on a transatlantic hunt for some authentic wares for her shop that her life takes a unique turn.

Peggy sets her sights on the Scottish Highlands, digging through its hidden treasures in an attempt to forget her troubles. She is bombarded by the sheer number of enchanting items on sale.

And she cannot resist buying a beautiful old tartan shawl. However, it isn’t until she throws it around her shoulders that Peggy realizes that, attached to her new purchase is the specter of a 14th century Scotsman.

Peggy is perturbed, and she returns home still unsure as to whether what she encountered in the Scottish Highlands was real or merely a figment of her overactive imagination.

Peggy has no time to ponder her adventure when the body of her ex-boyfriend is found on the floor of her shop. Overwhelming evidence points to Peggy’s cousin who the police chief summarily arrests.

And in an attempt to unveil the true killer, Peggy turns to her haunting Scottish companion for help.

This book is a very pleasant read; the emergence of a 14th-century ghost tends to catch many readers off guard, fooling them into thinking that they might be in for so much more than just a cozy mystery.

However, the first book in the Scotshop Mystery series is definitely a mystery, and Fran definitely deserves some appreciation for giving readers a good mystery to unravel. The mystery isn’t so complex as to confound the mind, and attentive readers won’t have much of a problem figuring things out.

However, Fran primarily works to entertain rather than merely confounding the mind, and the surprise at the end definitely works as the book’s apex. The characters in the book are all well-rounded.

No one is wasted, and it is easy to see where some of them might eventually grow as the Scotshop Mystery series progresses. There are some common cozy mystery clichés, but nothing that will have you rolling your eyes.

+A Wee Dose of Death

Business is booming for Peggy Winn at the Scotshop in Vermont. However, Dirk, Peggy’s 14th-century ghost doesn’t give her many opportunities to toast her fortunes. Dirk continues to struggle to adjust to the modern world, and Peggy can barely keep him in line.

Complications arise when Peggy’s friend Karaline’s college professor is found dead in a deserted mountain cabin. No one knows what to make of the situation, and it looks like the professor might have been killed over his ecological work.

Karaline herself is eventually shot, and it raises everyone’s suspicions. Peggy and Dirk must set their differences aside if they are to find the killer.

While cozy mystery sequels rarely add anything to the first book, this, the second book in the Scotshop Mystery series, definitely brings more to the table than its predecessor.

If you like cozy mysteries, then you will thoroughly enjoy this novel. Peggy and Dirk are back as they try to use their unique skills to put another mystery to rest. There is an even bigger dose of intrigue here, and the mystery will keep you glued to the novel till the very last page.

Fran surprises readers by leaving them breathless with her finale; looking at the first book, you wouldn’t think that she was capable of grabbing you and refusing to let you go, but her ability to write mystery novels seems to have grown since the first book.

It is in this book, though, that complaints about Dirk’s way of speaking arise; while no reader has suggested that Dirk’s words are wholly disruptive, the issue is definitely noticeable.

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