Due for Discard: An Aimee Machado Mystery by Sharon St. George

DUE
Due for Discard: An Aimee Machado Mystery by Sharon St. George
Publisher: Camel Press
Genre: Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (342 Pages)
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Cyclamen

Aimee Machado is thrilled to be starting her first job as a forensic librarian at the medical center in the town of Timbergate, north of Sacramento, California. Her ebullient mood is somewhat dampened by her recent breakup with her former live-in boyfriend, Nick Alexander. And then there’s a little matter of murder: on Aimee’s first day on the job, a body is found in the hospital Dumpster, soon identified as her supervisor’s wife, Bonnie Beardsley. Aimee’s heartbreaker of a brother and best friend, Harry, just happens to be one of the last people to see Bonnie alive, but he is hardly the only suspect. Bonnie was notorious for her wild partying and man-stealing ways, and she has left a trail of broken hearts and bitterness. Aimee is determined to get her brother off the suspect list. Aimee’s snooping quickly makes her a target. Isolated on her grandparents’ llama farm where she fled post-breakup, she realizes exactly how vulnerable she is. Three men have pledged to protect her: her brother Harry, her ex, Nick, and the dashing hospital administrator with a reputation for womanizing, Jared Quinn. But they can’t be on the alert every minute, not when Aimee is so bent on cracking the case with or without their help.

Aimee Machado lands the perfect job, as a forensic librarian at Timbergate Medical Center in Northern California. She is living in a converted bunkhouse above her grandparents’ barn because she’s broken up with her boyfriend and still has graduate school loans to pay off. But this new job is just what she needs. Everything is going well until her boss’ wife is found murdered and her brother, Harry, becomes the prime suspect. Aimee will do anything to save her brother.

Aimee is young and inexperienced, but she is also very determined. Not only does she care about her brother, but also she feels responsible for the fact that he is the main suspect. The police investigator, Marco Bueller, is determined to pin something on Harry because Harry had stopped Marco’s brother, Tango, from raping Aimee, resulting in Tango being sent to prison. While Marco isn’t in charge of the investigation, he is influencing Connie Keefer, the DA. Aimee is sure that no other suspects are even being considered, so she starts investigating.

While this is a fun cozy mystery, I wish that the characters had more depth. It took me quite awhile to get hooked into this story and I’d figured out much of the mystery early on. There were a lot of details that I didn’t know, but it wasn’t hard to figure out the bad guys. In addition, lots of action is just reported after the fact. It would have been nice to experience more of it.

The final capture is dramatic, with good tension and excitement. I also loved all the animals, especially the llamas, the cat, Fanny, and the cockatiel, Bosco. I never realized that llamas were such good watch animals.

Fans of the cozy mystery will enjoy watching Aimee as she hunts for clues and suspects, putting herself in danger, as she works to uncover the truth.

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