Abby has been dating Marco – ex-cop, bartender, and all-around hunk – for several months when the Pickle Fest starts. But he’s still a mystery to her. And after he disappears for a day, she’s stunned to read in the paper: EX-COP QUESTIONED IN MAN’S DEATH. It seems the authorities have found Snuggles the Clown pushing up water-spurting daisies – and Marco was the last person seen leaving Snuggles’s house. Abby knows in her bones that he’s innocent. But why, when his life is on the line, is Marco being so secretive with her? And who is the attractive woman he escorted to the Pickle Fest? To do the legwork, she’ll have to delve into the eerie clown underworld, where the smiles are fake and everyone has a trick up his sleeve...
Read A Review:

Snuggles the Clown is murdered. Marco, the hunky ex-cop and owner of Down the Hatch Bar and Grill, is their chief suspect because he was the last one seen leaving Snuggles' house.

Marco asks Abby Knight, owner of Bloomers flower shop and his girlfriend, to help find the killer. She's solved some murders in the past, but she's nervous about this one. If she fails, Marco could go to jail.

As a cop, Marco had a run-in with Snuggles (Dennis Ryson) and then Marco left the force soon after. Plus Marco fought with Snuggles shortly before the murder.

Abby finds that Marco seems to have secrets. Who is Trina to Marco? She'd been threatened by Ryson and asked Marco to help her.

Can Abby find the murderer so Marco won't go to jail? And why won't Marco let Abby meet his mother?

Abby and Marco are great together. I liked that he asked Abby to do the investigating in this book. There were plenty of suspects and twists to keep me guessing and turning the pages. This series is a great cozy mystery series that I love reading. I highly recommend this book!

Dawn Dowdle

Abby Knight, owner of Bloomers, New Chapel, Indiana’s flower shop, finds herself in a pickle of a problem when she’s accosted by a raving clown in this new installment of the Flower Shop Mysteries. It’s the annual Pickle Fest Parade where her cute boyfriend Marco, former Army Ranger and ex-cop, comes to her honor by confronting the clown. The clown takes a swing at Marco and is arrested, and that’s just the start of Marco’s troubles.

When the clown is later found dead in his home, Marco is the prime suspect. He calls upon Abby to find evidence of his innocence, which the busty redhead is only too happy to do. Calling upon her inner bimbo as well as her faithful flower shop assistants, Grace the multi-talented Brit with a quote for every occasion and Lottie who willingly goes to bat against any threat to help her boss, they get to work. When Marco tries to direct the investigation from his standpoint, he has cause to worry.

Collins paints a wonderfully homey setting with refreshing and sometimes clichéd characters. Witty puns and groanable wise cracks abound as Abby freely admits she’s less than politic when it comes to using her gift as a marvelous busybody to deal with situations. Her dismay at meeting Marco’s amusing, frenetic Italian mother and soothing the ruffled feathers of her own mother are hilarious sidelights. A few twists in the plot, good clues with intriguing suspects, and Abby’s cool car make this a fun read.

Collins plants appropriate mentions of previous cases to whet the reader’s appetite if you haven’t been following the entire series of Flower Shop Mysteries. A couple of typos early on in my retail copy made me read in editor mode through a few chapters until I could relax and finish the story. Visiting the author’s website will reveal a few secrets that make her world of New Chapel even more fun. I enjoyed this story and plan to catch up on the others, and I hope other readers will, too.

Lisa Lickel