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Mary Ann Cherry Books In Order

Publication Order of The Jessie and Jack Art Mystery Books

Death on Canvas (2016)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Death at Crooked Creek (2018)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Mary Ann Cherry
Marry-Ann Cherry is a mystery writer and an accomplished artist. Cherry finds painting with words just as intriguing as using her paint and brush, and her debut series more than shows it. According to Cherry, she does everything her female protagonist, Jesse, does, aside from solving murders. Cherry exhibits her work in national art shows and similar platforms. When she is not writing or painting, Cherry enjoys teaching paints to upcoming artists. The Montana born author takes pride in incorporating the beauty of her rural home and culture in both her paintings and novels.

Death on Canvas
Death on Canvas is the first book in The Jessie O’Bourne Art Mysteries. The book stars Jesse O’Bourne, a talented artist who finds herself at the center of a century-old mystery. Jesse is home in Sage Bluff to house sit as her dad goes off to his honeymoon. During her stay, Jesse will also be judging in a local art competition. Jesse is paining in the morning light when a hint of turquoise catches her eye. Curious about the blue spot, Jesse leaves her canvas and walks over there only to find a shoe. A little ahead is a dying Native American girl hidden between hay bales. Before she can recover from this sight, Jesse sees the girl breathe her last but not before she can reveal that her killer is a cop.

An investigation is launched, and when Sheriff Russell Bonham reveals that the girl wanted to see Jessie’sJessie’s family about two masterpieces that disappeared close to a hundred years ago, the case turns personal. Jesse is determined to find the person behind this killing. However, since she doesn’t know who to trust in Sage Bluff, Jessie team up with Arvid Abrahmsen, a Norwegian cop and Grant Kennedy, an FBI agent specializing in art theft. Together, the trio embarked on a journey that takes them back to St. Benedict’s Mission School where the Thomas Moran masterpieces were stolen nearly a hundred years ago. The paintings disappeared after Jesse’sJesse’s great aunt Kate was brutally murdered, and this case remained unresolved.

This is not those clichés who-di- it, easy-to-solve mysteries. The plot is quite complex, and with decades worth of history, the investigators have a complex puzzle on their hands. However, the author cleverly navigates through different timelines, and it is easy to tell whether you are in the past or present. Jesse is a wonderful character who not only knows a lot about art but also cares for others. The author allows the reader into Jesse’sJesse’s past, her family, and the events that have shaped the woman she has become. Arvid and Grant are also quite a joy, and it is fun following them as they work to resolve this old mystery. So, what is the connection between the murdered girl, and Jesse’sJesse’s family? Is there something she knew about aunt Kate’sKate’s killing?

This story comes with glorious descriptions of the present and the past in addition to the numerous twists and turns. The author also gives some invaluable art tips in between the captivating narration. All the characters are wonderful, and the mystery is quite convoluted with its multiple possible culprits. The story is fun, and the setting is perfect. If you enjoy mystery stories with great characters and just the right dose of art, Death on Canvas is a perfect choice.

Death at Crooked Creek
Death at Crooked Creek is the second book in The Jessie O’BourneO’Bourne Art Mysteries series. Once again, Jessie is thrown into a murder mystery that becomes creepier the more she delves into it. At the last minute, Jessie is asked to stand in for an indisposed friend as a guest artist at the Montana’sMontana’s Crooked Creek Art Expo. Jessie is all too happy to do so, and all she can think about as she drives down her RV is how much fun she is going to have in the next few days. After all, Montana is her home. Also, this is a perfect opportunity to get together with some old friends, and a great platform to sell her art.

All is going well until Jessie notices some bullet holes in the massive tractor covered in advertising banner. A while later, Jessie hears about the tragic shooting of a local teen. Could there be a connection between the truck and this shooting? Once again, Jessie’sJessie’s eye for detail threaten to land her in trouble. When Jack, Jessie’sJessie’s tomcat, finds a dead man in her motorhome, it becomes clear that things have gone from bad to worse. Jessie is now a murder suspect, and it isn’t long before she starts getting threatening notes.

A lot is also happening in Jessie’sJessie’s personal life. After breaking up with her childhood love Russell Bonham and the messy encounter with Grant, the FBI agent, Jessie, has sworn off men for now, and she wants to focus more on her art. Things do not go according to plan, and now Jessie has to work hard to find out who killed a man, hid his body in her RV, and try to piece the details of the teen’s murder. Meeting Jesse again is lovely, and the author allows the reader to even know her better. It is amazing how she uses her artistic skills to spot evidence to would otherwise escape the normal eye. There are also unique chapters some set in the past while others are in animals’animals’ point of view.

Death at Crooked Creek is a cleverly crafted story characterized by many red-herrings, a solid plot, and a unique storyline. There are also friends reuniting, an art expo, and several murders that the characters are forced to solve. The story flows well, and it is clear that the author is highly knowledgeable in the arts. While there are many twists and turns, the book is easy to read. If you are looking for a cozy mystery story that will hold your attention from the first page to the last one, this book is ideal.

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