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A Killer Plot

A Killer Plot

Written by Ellery Adams

Narrated by Karen White


A Killer Plot

Written by Ellery Adams

Narrated by Karen White

ratings:
3.5/5 (19 ratings)
Length:
11 hours
Publisher:
Released:
Aug 11, 2015
ISBN:
9781494586225
Format:
Audiobook

Description

Olivia Limoges is the subject of constant gossip. Ever since her mysterious return to the small coastal town of Oyster Bay, North Carolina, Olivia has kept to herself, her dog, and her unfinished novel. With a little cajoling from charming writer Camden Ford, she agrees to join the Bayside Book Writers to break her writer's block and even make a few friends. But when townspeople start turning up dead with haiku poems left by the bodies, anyone with a flair for language is suddenly suspect. And it's up to Olivia to catch the killer before she meets her own surprise ending.
Publisher:
Released:
Aug 11, 2015
ISBN:
9781494586225
Format:
Audiobook

About the author

Ellery Adams has written over thirty mystery novels and can’t imagine spending a day away from the keyboard. Ms. Adams, a native New Yorker, has had a lifelong love affair with stories, food, rescue animals, and large bodies of water. When not working on her next novel, she reads, bakes, gardens, spoils her three cats, and rearranges her bookshelves. She lives with her husband and two children (aka the Trolls) in Chapel Hill, NC. For more information, please visit www.elleryadamsmysteries.com.


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What people think about A Killer Plot

3.7
19 ratings / 28 Reviews
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Reader reviews

  • (3/5)
    I picked this book because it contained a writing group and I thought it would be interesting to see how writers would tackle an investigation. It seems an eclectic group with each person writing in a different genre. I liked that we got some excerpts from the writers as well as some critique/feedback on the passages we saw.

    I'm not sure if it was just because it is the first book in the series, but there seemed to be quite a few extraneous characters that didn't really need to be involved in this plot.
  • (5/5)
    I just got done reading one of the best books. I love how strong Oiliva comes across and of course who can not love her wonderful dog Haviland? The characters in this book are believable and draw you in from the start. I am anxious to see how the book club comes along with the growth of the characters. I look forward to reading the next book in the Bay Mystery series.
  • (4/5)
    Olivia has always been a loner, even after returning to her hometown on the coast of North Carolina. But joining a writers club is starting to bring her out of her shell. When one of her fellow authors is killed, she and her fellow writers join forces to help solve the crime. This is a very well written mystery. I found Olivia a bit hard to warm up to. But then that is her character in the book so is just another testament to the writing. But she really is a nice person under that hard shell. All the characters are well defined and I found the town and town folk quite charming. Her dog, Haviland, is irresistable.
  • (5/5)
    North Carolina fiction; Detectives; Murder mysteries
  • (3/5)
    Well, I had to go back to read the first of these fluffy mysteries, having started by mistake with the second. Ms. Adams (a cheesy pseudonym, don't you think?) could use a copy editor from time to time, but it was an entertaining read on a rainy day.
  • (5/5)
    Great plot, just enough twists to keep me off track but not for me to lose interest. Olivia is interesting as is the rest of the Bayside Book Writers. Can't wait to see further character development. Love the town & quirky supporting cast, they add wonderful seasonin...g. Last, but definitely not least, Captain Haviland (blk, std poodle) made a delightful sidekick.
  • (5/5)
    What a combo! Take an elegant but mysterious single wealthy female Olivia Limoges owner of an adorable intelligent well mannered dog named Havilland, living on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Add an intelligent, sympatico, charming eligible police chief. Mix in small town atmosphere, great food served in several locations, a group of would be writers, and a murderer who writes Haiku! This one is delightful. Billed as the beginning of a new series (Books by the Bay Mysteries) written by the popular J.B. Stanley under the pseudonym Ellery Adams, the reader is instantly in love with the characters and the setting, and becomes wrapped up in the town's dilemma: should they approve the sale of a popular but run down park to a conglomerate owned by a native son who made big bucks and moved away, even though it means moving several old graves to a non-descript setting across town?When a visiting journalist, intent on digging up dirt on the would be owners is found murdered in a dark alley, and the only clue is a strange Haiku spray painted at the site, the local writers group (which the victim belonged to) led by Olivia, sets out to help the chief interpret the Haiku and find the murderer. The reader will have to read the rest of the story.There are several other delightful characters who- in this first volume-are given just enough personality for us to want to get to know more. And in addition to the chief, the new book store owner also appears to offer possibilities for some romance in addition to the mysteries to come.
  • (5/5)
    Oyster Bay, North Carolina better be careful, or it's going to fall off of Time's "Top Ten Best Kept Vacation Secrets" list! Wealthy Olivia Limoges has returned to the town and is part of the re-vitalization of town by being a restaurant owner and a landlord to many of the new businesses in town. Olivia's poodle, Captain Haviland, seems to be her best friend in life until the Bayside Book Writers group invite her to join them. A murder in town, coupled with haiku clue, get the writers group involved in some detecting. Adams secondary characters, like rollerskating Dixie, gentle, yet deep police chief Rawlings and all of the Bayside writers shine in this debut novel. I definitely look forward to their next mystery.
  • (4/5)
    First Line: Two of Oyster bay's lifelong citizens were in line at the Stop 'n' Shop, gossiping over carts stuffed with frozen entrees, potato chips, boxes of Krispy Kremes, and liters of soda when Olivia Limoges breezed through the market's automatic doors.Olivia is no stranger to gossip-- she's been its regular subject ever since she came back to town. Preferring her own company and that of her dog, Captain Haviland, to most townspeople, she works on her novel in solitude. Writer Camden Ford has to turn on all his charm, but he finally gets Olivia to agree to join the Bayside Book Writers group. Just when she seems on the verge of making new friends, people begin turning up dead with poems left by the bodies. Anyone with the gift of language becomes suspect, and it's up to Olivia to catch the killer before she meets a poem with her name on it.There seems to be more and more cozy mystery series using the North Carolina coast as a setting, and I don't mind a bit. This first entry in the Books By the Bay series has so much to recommend it.I loved Captain Haviland, the black standard poodle. So many people only know poodles from seeing them in the show ring, and I for one can testify that you don't have to keep them groomed in those ridiculous styles-- plus they're some of the most intelligent dogs on the planet. (Yes, I'm a former poodle owner!)I also loved the new bookstore in town, Through the Wardrobe, and really enjoyed the secondary characters. Olivia proved to be a fascinating main character. She's used to having money and spending it, so it was interesting to see how she used it in her own small hometown which relies so heavily upon tourism. So much of the time she was very prickly and aloof which made it difficult to warm up to her, but she's an onion that has to be peeled back a layer at a time. The more she interacts with the other characters, the more approachable she's going to get.I'm going to enjoy peeling back those layers as this series progresses!
  • (3/5)
    It took me a much longer time than expected to work myself through this cozy mystery set in a small coastal town in North Carolina called Oyster Bay. The main character, Olivia Limoges, is a wealthy woman in her 40's who has returned to live in her childhood town, buying up many of the buildings and becoming the landlord to what seemed like half the town. She is reserved and miserly in the beginning of the book, living quietly with her standard poodle, Captain Haviland, and working on her historical novel. When she joins a local writer's group, she abruptly changes and becomes overtly friendly, generous and civic-minded. She is befriended by a gay author who is in town researching a famous, wealthy family for a tell-all type book. When this man is found murdered at a local park that has created a development controversy due to a small Confederate cemetery on its grounds, Olivia can't help but become involved in investigating what happened. Somehow, I just could not connect with Olivia Limoges. I think she was just too perfect...beautiful, rich, smart, well-educated, well-mannered, witty, generous and perfectly politically correct in everything she said or did. She has even taken "several courses on administering canine first aid." Oh, and the dog was perfect too. At one point Olivia tells the Chief of Police that, "Haviland has the killer's scent down now and he can identify him! Trust me, the Captain earned perfect scores in all his tracking courses. He has more training than your combined K-9 unit." The murder mystery itself was well-constructed and nicely plotted, I just had a difficult time sympathizing, or even liking, the main character.
  • (3/5)
    Since she moved back to her home town of Oyster Bay, North Carolina, Olivia Limoges has pretty much kept to herself. She is still sensitive about the childhood tragedy that caused her abrupt departure from the town. A new writer's group breaks through her barrier of reserve, but just as she begins to feel comfortable with the group, its leader is murdered. Police Chief Rawlings and his staff are very capable of investigating the murder on their own, but the Chief welcomes the help of the writer's group in deciphering the meaning behind a haiku left with the body. More murders and mysterious haikus ratchet up the stakes, and the group feels pressure to identify the unknown killer before he or she claims another victim.It took a while for me to warm up to Olivia. She comes across as snobbish and rude early in the book, but her growing friendship with the writer's group reveals a caring personality underneath her reserve. I love dogs, but her perfectly trained poodle who accompanied her everywhere is a bit too much. He'd be more realistic if he misbehaved every once in a while. Olivia has what seems to be the required two potential suitors to choose between in the owner of the town's new bookstore and the widowed police chief. I liked most of the secondary characters from the beginning, and I'll give the series another chance to see if it develops into one that will have me eagerly anticipating the next book.
  • (4/5)
    I really enjoyed this book, much more than I thought I would. Ellery Adams writes with a clean, logical style that has enough character description to keep you reading. She excels with her descriptions about the location. I pictured myself in Oyster Bay standing on the beach, tasting the salt air or feeling the pressure of the humidity while I walked the shops of downtown. Olivia Limoges was an interesting character who I want to know more about, and while I'm not overly fond of the romantic triangles believing they are over-done in the cozy mystery genre that storyline didn't overshadow the main story. I was surprised almost to the end about who did which for me is very satisfying. Can't wait to read more.
  • (4/5)
    I got the second book of this cozy mystery series as a gift, so I bought the first book. I honestly wanted to love A Killer Plot. It has a would-be writer as the lead. She has a poodle (what is not to like?). It is set on the coast of North Carolina in the fictitious town of Oyster Bay, near New Bern. The mystery is just difficult enough to solve that it kept my interest. That written, there were some missteps. Olivia Limoges, the lead character, has some serious personality flaws. She throws money around to get rules bent. She parks illegally in handicapped spots, saying she can afford the fines. No matter how nice she is to others, there is a hint of calculation behind her actions. I hope that some of this is smoothed out in the next book as I don't really like her.There are two gay men in the book. Both of them are close to being stereotypical in their language and clothes. Did I like those characters? Absolutely. But still I wish there were some level of balance.I will read the next book and hope for the best. After all, this is just the start of the series and the premiere may have some rough spots.
  • (5/5)
    This is a great first book in a series. I love JB Stanley's books so having her write another series under Ellery Adams is a bonus.

    My favorite character in this book is Captain Haviland -- the black standard poodle, he is smart, funny, protective and did I mention smart? All the things that poodles are and do are evident here. Owner Olivia has trained him well and he plays a part in the mystery without being the center of attention.

    There is plenty of character development here and with a sub-plot of a writers group you get to know not only the characters as they relate to other people but also how they relate to the world through their writing.

    The mystery was a good one and had me fooled completely -- there is a red herring that I just had to snap at so I was totally going the wrong direction. I love it when that happens.

    I already have the next in the series, so I can't wait to get started. Have a library book to finish first but I believe that #2 in the Books By The Bay series will be on deck sometime this weekend.
  • (4/5)
    Olivia Limoges has returned to the town of Oyster Bay, North Carolina. She's wealthy and owns quite a bit of the town's real estate. She becomes involved with a local writers group. It's not long until the group's organizer turns up dead with a haiku nearby. The authorities enlist the help of the writers group to help unpuzzle the haiku clue. I found myself enjoying this mystery. The characters are interesting, and the chief of police is not depicted as incompetent, which is a refreshing change. I must confess that I pictured him as being very similar to Sheriff Tupper as depicted by Tom Bosley in the Murder, She Wrote television series. It's not often that a poodle is featured as an intellectual dog, but Captain Haviland is depicted as such in this book. I'm definitely looking forward to the second in this recent series.
  • (4/5)
    Olivia Limoges is as special as her last name suggests. Living on the Outer Banks, Olivia owns a 5* restaurant and is working on writing a book. Her constant companion Captain Haviland, a well-trained Poodle, seems almost human when the "conversations" between the two come to the fore front.This first book in the Books by the Bay Mysteries has wonderful characters, numerous villains (non terribly bad except the murderer, of course)and with the small town feel that the secondary characters exude, it's a place you want to visit, so make your reservation at the Yellow Lady.Well, maybe you need to be a bit careful because there's a murderer running around and he's a cut above the norm leaving HAIKUs at the scene of the crime. Could the murderer be part of Olivia's writers group? Well, the Chief of Police is a writer so maybe you'll be safe there. There are all different angles in this murder mystery and the Olivia is so multi-dimensional, I was enthralled through the entire book. Even at the end, there were still areas of Olivia that were left unexplored, so I am definitely looking forward to the next one. Too bad I have to give it back, it's a keeper!
  • (3/5)
    I enjoyed the characters in this one, as well as the North Carolina coastal setting. It took me a little while to get sucked into the story, but once I got on a roll with it, I enjoyed the book.
  • (3/5)
    Olivia Limoges has moved back to the town where she was born, Oyster Bay in North Carolina. Having experienced some personal tragedies in her life she is something of a loner, preferring the company of Captain Haviland, her highly trained standard poodle, than other people. Almost against her will though she is drawn into friendship with a group of local writers who meet regularly to discuss and critique each other's work. When one of the group is killed and a haiku left next to the body Olivia and the other members of the writer's group all feel a particular interest in investigating the murder.

    I really enjoyed this introduction to a new series with its great location and interesting characters. Olivia is working on a novel set in ancient Egypt in between her business interests which include owning the town's only 5-star restaurant and being a member of the town's Planning Committee. She is aloof and a bit prickly but she has a practical approach to helping people when they're in need and I liked her. It probably helped that she treated her dog with the deference and adoration that all dogs deserve. There are loads of great minor characters too who I will enjoy getting to know in future installments of this series.

    I thought the resolution to the mystery was a little bit awkward and unnecessarily complicated but overall the plot development was solid and importantly did not involve depicting the official investigators as moronic simpletons. There's lots going on in the novel though as the body count piles up and the alibis are scrutinized and the tension builds nicely. Overall it's a fun, light mystery with a load of engaging characters and if you are a dog lover I think it's one you will particularly enjoy.
  • (4/5)
    The characters are the best part. The mystery itself is convoluted and full of twists and misdirections.The narrator didn't really seem to be engaged with the main character or her very personable dog.
  • (4/5)
    Olivia is a wealthy business woman who is more comfortable with her dog than she is with people, especially on a personal level. She doesn’t mind being alone, and she doesn’t mind breaking rules if the occasion calls for it. When the head of a writers’ group approaches her for a favor, she finds herself intrigued by his request. And when her town is threatened by a murderer in its midst, she becomes personally involved. The first in a series, this mystery has an intricate plot and complex characters. The charm is not only in the small town setting, but also in the imperfect and flawed characters who people it. This audio version is excellently performed by Karen White who adds much to its enjoyment.
  • (4/5)
    (Fiction, Mystery, Cozy, Series)In the small coastal town of Oyster Bay, North Carolina, “Olivia Limoges is the subject of constant gossip. Ever since she came back to town-a return as mysterious as her departure-Olivia has kept to herself, her dog, and her unfinished novel.”But when townspeople start turning up dead with haiku poems on their bodies she, as a writer, becomes suspect and is drawn into solving the crimes. This is the first of the Books by the Bay series and is a solid, although not overly exciting, debut.3½ stars
  • (5/5)
    As a young child Olivia Limoges left the coastal town of Oyster Bay, North Carolina after the mysterious disappearance of her fisherman father. Years later, still haunted by his disappearance, Olivia returns to her hometown. No longer the unhappy child found abandoned in a floating boat, Olivia is now a mysterious, sophisticate and wealthy woman working on her first novel. Olivia is convinced the only companion she needs is her faithful poodle, Captain Haviland. However, after joining the local writer’s group, Olivia begins to make friends only to have one brutally murdered. Devastated, Olivia and her fellow writers take it upon themselves to assist the police chief, Sawyer Rawlings (a potential love interest for Olivia) in solving the murder.I’m a huge mystery fan of all kinds, but I’m particularly fond of cozy mysteries, especially those with a theme. I picked up A Killer Plot because Olivia is a writer. (Something I dream of myself.) It sounded just like the kind of book I would enjoy. I was not disappointed. Adams has created well-developed characters that the reader will enjoy getting to know. Each one is diverse and interesting, from feisty waitress Dixie, who insists on being referred to as “dwarf” rather than “little person” to Millay who changes her color highlights often and feels very protective of the rough and tumble fishermen who hang at Fish Nets, the bar where she works.Often when a series debuts, the main character is not as well developed as Olivia. But Adams has created a character of great depth. There is more to Olivia than just her money, sophistication and aloofness. The fact that she is a woman of mystery is introduced early on and we get to see her grow. She is my favorite character and I’m looking forward to learning more about her.One final reason I found this book so entertaining goes back to the theme: writers. I’ve read other stories where one or more of the characters are writers. Some have even belonged to writer’s groups just like the Oyster Bay Writers. What singles out Adams’ book from the others is that reader gets a glimpse of what it’s like to be a writer. We get to see some of the process and we get to see how a real writing group operates (though granted, most real life groups don’t get involved in solving crimes). I enjoyed reading their works in progress almost as much as the main story. This is a series that has a lot to offer and I can’t wait for the next one.
  • (4/5)
    A Killer Plot is the first in a brand new cozy series by Ellery Adams. Olivia Limoges is the main character with a haunting past. She returns to her hometown a wealthy woman and is often the center of the town’s gossip. She comes across as aloof and uncaring. She’s still wounded from her childhood and is learning how to break down her walls.She’s given the chance to join the Bayside Book Writers, a group of hopeful writers who meet regularly to critique their rough drafts, where she meets new friends. The offer comes from Camden Ford, who is currently writing a book about the high-powered Talbot family. When Camden is killed, Olivia feels a sense of loss for her new friend and takes it upon herself to find his killer.A Killer Plot is a fresh addition to the cozy genre. Olivia is a complex main character, while the secondary characters assist with moving her forward from the isolation she feels as a result of her past. There’s a hint of a love interest for her, but it doesn’t deflect from the mystery. Adams does a fantastic job with character development and description of Oyster Bay, that the reader can easily visualize each scene while reading. Some may question Olivia’s relationship with her poodle Havilland and how she communicates with him. It’s through this relationship that Olivia is the most vulnerable and is seen with emotion.The storyline moves at a steady pace and I never felt it was rushed. I didn’t solve the mystery and was quite surprised at the killer’s identity and the motives for the killings. If you’re a cozy fan and looking for a new series, I highly recommend A Killer Plot. The second book, A Deadly Cliche will be released in March 2011.
  • (3/5)
    In Adams mystery novel, Olivia Limoges has returned to Oyster Bay, North Carolina as quietly and mysteriously as she left. Financially stable, she runs her business, cares for her standard poodle, and struggles with her historical novel. Most of the community gossips about her lack of giving back to the community. When Camden Ford approaches her about a place where his writer’s group can meet, Olivia steps up and arranges for them to use the old lighthouse keeper’s quarters on her property. But when locals start turning up dead with poems written on them, everyone with a flare for words becomes a suspect forcing Olivia to launch her own investigation to find a killer before he strikes again.Strong first installment to A Books by the Bay Mystery series.
  • (5/5)
    Welcome to Oyster Bay, North Carolina where the living is easy and murder is on the mind.Olivia Limoges has returned to the hometown she left as a young girl. She is rich, stunning, suffering from a case of writers block and still a mystery to the locals, and often keeping only the company of her loyal poodle Captain Haviland. She also owns the local five star restaurant and has invested a lot in local properties, becoming landlord to many of the businesses around her. While having breakfast at the local diner she overhears some people talking “book stuff.” Dixie, her friend and waitress explains that they are a group called the Bayside Book Writers and encourages her to join. She hesitates until she speaks with Camden Ford, the apparent leader of the group. She finds him witty, charming and impossible to refuse. Olivia decides that she is going to fix up the lighthouse cottage on her property for their meetings. It looks like things are improving for Olivia, particularly in the friend department, until people start showing up dead. When one of her new friends winds up dead, with of all things a Haiku poem left next to the body, Olivia and her writer friends know they will do whatever they can to find out who is responsible for the murder. But can they figure it out before more bodies start to fall? Do the murders have to do with the gossip book one of their group members is writing about a well know family, the desire to push through a new housing development no matter what the cost, or something else no one could have possibly anticipated? A Killer Plot is a fantastic start to a new series. The characters are fun, fresh and a bit on the eccentric side. There is Dixie, the roller skating dwarf waitress, Harris the computer geek who suffers from a serious case of Rosacea, and Millay the bartender, who likes to show up with her hair a different color each time they meet. These are just a few of the fun people you will meet in this charming first book of the Books By The Bay Mystery series. The characters are believable and the author gives the reader great insight into the world of a writer. With new friendships, possible romance(s) and promises of great things to come, A Killer Plot is one book you don’t want to be caught dead missing.
  • (3/5)
    Oyster Bay, North Carolina used to be a well-kept secret, but since a national magazine rated it one of the best places to live / vacation, the population has swelled and economic growth has increased. Olivia Limoges has recently returned to Oyster Bay; wealthy, single and aloof, she owns a number of commercial buildings as well as her family homestead. A chance encounter with a group of writers, draws her out of her shell, but before she had establish herself with the group one of them is murdered. This is a pretty interesting cozy mystery, featuring a group of aspiring authors who together try to solve the murder of one of their group. I like Olivia Limoges, though I was picturing her as much older (and eventually figured out she’s probably in her mid-30s, or perhaps early-40s). I like that her faithful dog – a standard poodle named Captain Haviland – is a DOG, not a character who helps solve the crime (though his ability to track does come into play). I also like that Olivia and her friends do not take unnecessary chances; they are curious and do meddle (wouldn’t be much of a cozy mystery without SOME intervention by the amateur sleuths), but they seem to know when to back away and let Police Chief Sawyer Rawlings step in. I thought Adams did a good job of setting the scene. I really got the sense of a small sea-side community that relies on tourist trade in season, fishing year-round, and is struggling with issues of new-found wealth and investment. As is typical of most cozies, there’s a pretty large cast of supporting players, not a few of whom are pretty colorful (a roller-skating dwarf waitress, for example) I found a few of the relationships stretched credulity, but not enough to mar the fun.Adams includes several interludes where the writers’ group members share chapters from the books they are working on. Well … I could have done without those. The reveal seemed abrupt and it happened a good 50 pages before the book ended, which made me wonder if there wasn’t another twist coming up. That kind of extra padding really isn’t necessary. Still, it held my attention, it had a good pace and I enjoyed trying to figure out who-done-it. I’ll definitely read another in the series.
  • (2/5)
    A reclusive woman who is attempting to write a novel forms an authors’ group and then renovates the a lighthouse cabin on her property for them to meet once a week. The locals start dying and haiku poems are left as clues as they try to figure out who the murdered is. I found, Olivia, the main character not very likeable but her dog, a standard black poodle named Captain Haviland was the perfect pet.
  • (5/5)
    Olivia Limoges happens to meet the members of an aspiring writers’ group in Oyster Bay, North Carolina. And Olivia is in the midst of a bad case of writers’ block with her historical novel. She particularly likes one member of the group – not in a romantic way. Later he’s found dead behind a seedy bar that he normally would not have entered … and the writers’ group wants to know why he was there and what happened to him.As it turns out, Olivia is a wealthy woman and is accustomed to making her own rules and having her own way. So she doesn’t hesitate for a second to intrude on the police investigation when she thinks it’s necessary. Olivia is not your stereotypical cozy heroine. She has a few years on her and doesn’t have the Pollyanna-ish approach to live of many such characters. In fact, her past is murky and a bit dark. One of the characteristics that most endears her to me is that she is not ruled by her hormones. When she’s intrigued by a man, she’s very much in control and definitely not the needy type. Thank goodness there are women who don’t go weak in the knees when a handsome man appears!!!I really like this series and, upon finishing it, made my way to my local bookstore and bought the next two in the series. And there are more!!!