Title: Skating Around the Law
Author: Joelle Charbonneau
Release Date: September 28, 2010
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Source: Personal Copy
Rating: 4 out of 5
Rebecca Robbins has taken a short leave of absence from her job in Chicago to return to her small hometown to deal with her inheritance. Her grandfather has been managing Rebecca’s mother’s roller skating rink since her mother’s death, but now it’s time for the property to be dealt with. Rebecca decides to sell it, but before she can put it on the market, a body is found in the rink’s bathroom. Rebecca takes it upon herself to solve the crime so she can return to her life in Chicago as soon as possible.
Skating Around the Law is a cute, lighthearted mystery centering around Rebecca’s mother’s roller skating rink. This was a great centerpiece for the story; it brought back nostalgic memories of visiting our local skating rink when I was a child. Charbonneau writes the atmosphere and social quirks of the skating rink very well. The setting might seem a bit dated (I admit, I wondered if people still go to skating rinks) but the author does a wonderful job making it seem fresh and new.
Rebecca is an endearing character, and readers can’t help but sympathize with her. All she wants to do is settle her affairs and get back to her life, but Indian Falls doesn’t seem to want to let her go. Indeed, the town is filled with its own unique characters. They are silly and fun, with a lot of personality; Charbonneau has done an excellent job populating Indian Falls with hilarious eccentrics, but not so much that it’s over the top. As a result, readers will enjoy getting to know these townspeople.
The mystery in Skating Around the Law is interesting, but it’s really the characters that keep the story moving forward. Charbonneau has written an engaging cozy mystery with this novel, and I look forward to future books about Rebecca and her skating rink.