Murder By the Spoonful: Vicki Vass

Anne’s visit to her Great Aunt Sybil’s turns tragic when she discovers Sybil, deceased, on the floor of her home. Avid collector Sybil had tons of valuable antiquities as well as Swedish family heirlooms. At first glance, it could be assumed that Sybil’s death was simply a robbery gone wrong.

While dodging greedy relatives, Anne & her best friend, CC, continue their obsessive hobby of attending estate & yard sales. During one such trip, Anne enters an off-limits room & discovers an unusual spoon. Feeling it may be to her benefit, she purchases it. Obviously, it’s not just flatware. Soon, it’s apparent that someone wants it bad & will do anything to get it. Soon, the Antique Hunters uncover conspiracies regarding the spoon as well as trails leading to & around Aunt Sybil.

Where to start- I think the most honest way to explain the novel is that it’s a train wreck. Honestly, I loved the first chapter. I though perhaps it was going to be a great read. Those feelings ended when chapter 2 began. Without any warning or explanation, CC is thrown into the plot. I actually re-read the first chapter, thinking I’d missed something. It’s immediately apparent that CC is a walking encyclopedia. She throws meaningless facts regarding antiquities to any character, in any situation, as if we’re to be thoroughly impressed by her (or the author’s) intelligence.

By the middle of the book, Aunt Sybil is completely forgotten. At times, readers may forget that she died in the opening scene & Anne is supposed to be investigating as to why. We also find out well into the book that Anne is actually a scientist?! Up until this point, I thought she dealt in antiques. Her career revelation felt like it was used to solve a few plot glitches.

Had the author eliminated Aunt Sybil’s connection, CC’s arrogant ramblings, & stuck to the spoon angle- it would’ve been a great book. Unfortunately, it amounts to distracted, irrational fiction that is nothing by disappointing.

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