|Maggy Thorsen Mysteries|
Number of Books in this Series: 8
|Maggy Thorsen, a 40-something divorcée running a coffee shop, Uncommon Grounds, in the small fictional town of Brookhills, Wisconsin.|
“In her delightful debut, Balzo puts a 21st-century spin on the traditional cozy, replacing tea with coffee as the comfort beverage of choice. Readers will want to curl up with this winner with a cappuccino or maybe even a Viennese cinnamon latte.” - Publishers Weekly
“…as wonderfully rich and sharply written as anything going. What moves Balzo’s book high above other writers who try to cover the same territory is a sharp and often amusing skill that convinces us that this is real life, and that it matters.” - Chicago Tribune
“All the right ingredients…Balzo’s keep-em-guessing plot and fresh, breezy prose are more than enough to ensure that this series will continue to delight.” - Booklist (starred review)
“Bright and breezy Maggy makes a charmingly down-to-earth sleuth. A bit of romance and coffee lore provide the froth on top.” - Kirkus Reviews
“Balzo gives an old formula new life with crisp dialogue, complex characters and a puzzle that can’t be beat.” - Kirkus (starred review)
“An engaging sleuth, Maggy puts her own humorous, breezy spin on everything, from coffee lore to the colorful locals, in a cozy that will leave readers guessing until the end.” - Publishers Weekly
“Near the start of Balzo’s lively fourth Maggy Thorsen mystery, a sudden spring “thundersnow” traps Maggy and friends in Benson Plaza, the Brookhills, Wis, strip mall where Maggy rents space for her coffee shop, Uncommon Grounds.. . . Credible characters and a well-constructed plot.” - Publishers Weekly
“A freak May snowstorm provides the perfect cover for murder in a suburban strip mall [and,] armed with flashlights from Goddard’s Pharmacy, Maggy leads her mighty band of retailers on a quest to capture the killer.” - Kirkus Reviews
“Maggy Thorsen, the proprietor of Uncommon Grounds, finds that rebuilding her coffee shop in the “Old Brookhills” section of Brookhills, Wis., can be murder in Balzo’s witty, smoothly plotted fifth caffeine cozy…sassy, lighthearted whodunit…” - Publishers Weekly
“A witty cozy with eccentric characters and a fast-moving plot.” - Booklist
"In Balzo's delightful sixth Maggy Thorsen mystery, Maggy is planning to celebrate the opening of her rebuilt shop [until] the giant inflatable coffee cup she hired for the occasion accidentally deflates and reveals the body of missing Brookhills event manager JoLynne Penn-Williams sprawled at the bottom. When amateur sleuth Maggy begins to investigate, she's dismayed that clues point to her boyfriend, county sheriff Jake Pavlik, as the killer. Devastating innuendos that Jake has been unfaithful shatter Maggy, but don't prevent her from seeking the truth. As ever, Maggy's wit and wisdom help keep the pages turning through this lighthearted cozy." -Publishers Weekly
"In Balzo's stimulating seventh Maggie Thorsen mystery, over-the-hill TV star Ward Chitown plans to do a show about a shootout in Brookhills, Wis., in 1974 between the FBI and the Mafia that left six dead and a fortune missing. This amusing, well-written entry should win Balzo more fans.
"How the hell did I get myself involved with this broad? It’s like I’m Lassie, she’s Timmy, and every day is a new well."
--Jake Pavlik in Triple Shot
VERDICT: A nicely hewn homage to Agatha Christie’s iconic mystery gives Balzo’s seventh caffeinated series entry (after Triple Shot) a light and breezy boost. The Florida setting jazzes up the plot, and attentive readers will delight in Balzo’s plentiful book and movie references.
"Readers will be happy to jump on board.
. . . a hit with series fans, but readers of similarly themed novels from writers such as Mary Daheim (the Bed-and-Breakfast mysteries) or Kerry Greenwood (the Corinna Chapman series) should also be steered in Maggy’s direction.