Title: Death By Cashmere
Author: Sally Goldenbaum
Release Date: April 7, 2009
Publisher: NAL Trade
Rating: 4 out of 5
From the back cover:
Not long after Isabel “Izzy” Chambers opens up a knitting shop in the sleepy fishing town of Sea Harbor, Massachusetts, a diverse group of women begins congregating each week to form the Seaside Knitters.
Izzy raises some eyebrows when she rents the apartment above her shop to Angie Archer, whose reputation for loose behavior and a quick temper has made her unpopular with many locals. But could any of them have wanted her dead? Angie’s body is discovered drowned in the harbor, her long red hair tangled like seaweed in a lobster trap.
An official investigation rules the death an accident. There are speculations of too many whiskey sours, a slippery wharf, a dark night…But Izzy and the Seaside Knitters smell something fishy. When several strange incidents occur above the shop, the women decide to take matters into their own hands. But before long, their small-town sense of security is frayed, and the threat of more violence hangs over this tightly knit community…
Death By Cashmere is the first book in a new mystery series called “Seaside Knitters.” They revolve around a group of women who absolutely adore knitting almost as much as they love each other. This makes Death By Cashmere a perfect gift for anyone who loves reading and knitting. However, if, like me, you aren’t a knitter, you’ll still find plenty of enjoyment in this wonderfully cozy novel.
One thing I loved about Death By Cashmere was the fact that it was so different from my typical summer reads. While I enjoy women’s fiction (which seems to make up the bulk of “beach reading”), it’s really nice to throw something different in every once in awhile. Death By Cashmere is a perfect summer book because it takes place in a seaside town, but is unique in that there’s a mystery to solve. The mystery is also very well done. Goldenbaum definitely kept me guessing until the end, leaving tantalizing clues along the way that made sure to pique my interest.
The characters in Death By Cashmere are wonderfully drawn. The story seems to center around Nell and her niece Izzy, the owner of the knitting shop. Both are endearing characters, and the generational gap ensures that this novel will appeal to a large range of ages. Goldenbaum ensured that each of the women introduced in this novel had their own distinct personalities, something that is difficult to do in a short book. I’m sure they well be explored further in later books, but it is an impressive feat!
Death By Cashmere has some drawbacks, such as some heavy dialogue that doesn’t exactly flow off the tongue naturally, but overall it is a promising start to a new series. The second book in this series, Patterns in the Sand, was released recently in hardcover – I will definitely be checking it out!
Thank you to the publisher for sending me this book to review.