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Unlucky Charms
     

Unlucky Charms

3.5 6
by Linda O. Johnston
 

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Rory Chasen, manager of the Lucky Dog Boutique in Destiny, California, hopes her new line of good-luck doggy toys will be a hit, especially the stuffed rabbits with extra-large feet. The timing of the line’s debut proves ill-fated, though, as several local shops—including Rory’s—are ransacked and vandalized with spilled salt and other unlucky

Overview

Rory Chasen, manager of the Lucky Dog Boutique in Destiny, California, hopes her new line of good-luck doggy toys will be a hit, especially the stuffed rabbits with extra-large feet. The timing of the line’s debut proves ill-fated, though, as several local shops—including Rory’s—are ransacked and vandalized with spilled salt and other unlucky charms.

The most likely culprit is disgruntled real estate agent Flora Curtival, whose issues with the town give her a motive. But after Flora is murdered and one of Rory’s toy rabbits is found with the body, Rory needs all the luck she can get while trying to determine just who killed the superstitious vandal.

Praise:

"This is one author who has a great gift for telling a great tale that both humans and animals can enjoy."—Suspense Magazine

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
08/29/2016
In Johnston’s so-so third Superstition mystery (after 2015’s Knock on Wood), the town of Destiny, Calif., where superstition generally keeps the residents safe, is hit by a rash of very bad luck, including vandalism, theft, and the murder of real estate agent Flora Curtival, whose death is foretold by a dog howling in the middle of the night. Rory Chasen, the manager of Lucky Dog Boutique, and her fellow business people decide that they have to help find a solution before the tourists leave for a more fortunate venue. Police chief Justin Halbertson, Rory’s sometime boyfriend, moves fast to keep ahead of his amateur helpers, including Rory’s spaniel-terrier mix, Pluckie, but it takes all of them to identify the killer. Johnston’s loyal readers will probably enjoy this installment, but this book reads more like an overview than a complete story, with insufficient attention devoted to motivation and character development. (Oct.)
Kirkus Review
2016-08-03
A murder in a town obsessed with luck leaves residents unsure what they can do to protect themselves while the prime suspect tries to clear her name.As she concludes her public talk in Destiny, California, about animals and superstitions, Rory Chasen’s excited to share her newest products with her neighbors in her adopted home. The manager at the Lucky Dog Boutique, a store that specializes in the luckiest of accessories and food (yes, lucky food) for pets, Rory’s come up with a line of pet toys infused with luck, like a stuffed rabbit with an oversized foot. Though it may be corny, the town’s residents and visitors have all come to Destiny to share in the luck, and every interaction is sanctified by knocking on wood or crossing fingers. Rory (Knock on Wood, 2015, etc.) feels pretty lucky herself. Having come to Destiny to investigate the death of her fiance, she’s thinking of staying indefinitely, even shopping for an apartment or house to share with her best friend, Gemma, an even more recent transplant. Learning of their plans, pushy real estate agent Flora Curtival forces her services on Rory and Gemma even though the two aren’t sure they’re ready to commit. Nor is Rory the only person Flora is antagonizing. Rumors link her to a series of break-ins evidently intent on bringing storekeepers bad luck. Rory hears about the rumors from her boyfriend, policeman Justin Halbertson, though she’s also informed that it’s bad luck to talk about the crimes. Guilty or innocent, Flora is soon found murdered with one of Rory’s lucky rabbit’s feet stuffed in her mouth. Now Rory will need all the luck she can find to maintain her innocence. Johnston’s gentle but bland heroine, now making her third appearance, and her lack of subtlety in handling the theme of luck will either amuse or repel readers.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780738745558
Publisher:
Llewellyn Worldwide, LTD.
Publication date:
10/08/2016
Series:
A Superstition Mystery , #3
Pages:
288
Sales rank:
197,116
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.80(d)

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Linda O. Johnston (Los Angeles, CA) has published over fortyromance and mystery novels, including the Pet Rescue Mystery series and the Pet-Sitter Mystery series for Berkley Prime Crime. She also writes the Barkery & Biscuits Mystery series for Midnight Ink. You can visit Linda atwww.LindaOJohnston.com.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Unlucky Charms 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
LisaKsBooksReviews 8 months ago
This series is a lucky charm to author Linda O. Johnston, and UNLUCKY CHARMS is evidence of why! This third installment in Linda O. Johnston’s Superstition Mysteries is the best of the bunch, which seems to make three a lucky number for the author. In reality, luck has nothing to do with it. Its Johnston’s talent as a writer that makes this series, and UNLUCKY CHARMS the successes they are. The idea of a town that make its tourist trade, and its way of life through superstition is a fresh and fun idea. The names of the shops are adorable, and the cast of quirky characters are a joy to read. I’ve loved watching the characters evolve and grow over three books. And the research author Johnston has done on superstition is amazing! I never knew just how many different ones there are, or the amount of charms that exist. In UNLUCKY CHARMS, the local shops are vandalized and have things considered as unlucky charms left behind. It turns out to be very lucky for the main suspect who ends up dead. This was an excellent story from beginning to end, with a fascinating mystery that had me stumped. It would have taken several good luck charms for me to figure out whodunit and why. Pick up a copy of UNLUCKY CHARMS. It might just be bad luck if you don’t. ;-)
GratefulGrandma 11 months ago
This is the third book in the Superstition Mystery Series, but is the first one I have read. I enjoyed this story and will definitely be checking out the other two in the series. Rory Chasen lives in Destiny, California, a small town that was founded by miners in the 1800s. It is a town where good luck is a way of life, literally. The business owners "salt the sidewalks" with heads-up pennies, everyone knocks on wood, and fingers crossed is as common as buying a cup of coffee. Rory is the manager of The Lucky Dog, a store that specializes in "lucky" items for your pet. Rory has just created her own line of lucky dog toys and hopes they will be a huge success. She has hopes of buying the business down the road and remaining in Destiny. Unfortunately someone is trying to reverse the good luck in Destiny. Businesses are being broken into, things are being stolen and broken mirrors and salt is left on the floor. All of this is supposed to be kept secret because talking about it will bring bad luck. How do you solve a rash of crimes when you cannot talk about it? When a local business woman winds up dead, Rory is the prime suspect and it's going to take a lot of good luck and sleuthing on her part to get her untangled from the giant mess she is in. Throw in a little romance, Rory is dating the sheriff, a best friend and some other interesting characters and you have yourself an entertaining cozy mystery. Definitely worth a read if you are a cozy mystery fan or an animal lover. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book via Netgalley.
CozyMysteryLover1 11 months ago
Rory Chasen lives in Destiny, California a place where good luck is a way of life, literally. Heads-up pennies are scattered on the sidewalks, everyone knocks on wood, and fingers crossed is as common as buying a cup of coffee. Rory is the manager of The Lucky Dog, a store that specializes in "lucky" items for your pet. Rory has just created her own line of lucky dog accessories and she hopes they will be a huge success. Unfortunately someone is trying to reverse the good luck in Destiny by breaking into the local businesses and stealing the good luck items and replacing them with bad luck items instead. When a local business woman winds up dead, her good luck having run out, of course, it seems Rory is the prime suspect and it's going to take a whole lot of good luck to get her untangled from the giant mess she is in. This is the first book in this series that I have read and I think it was really unique. I am very familiar with this authors other works and this book was just as good. It was interesting to read about a town built on superstitions and the characters were very believable. I look forward to reading the other books in this series. I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my fair and honest review.
KrisAnderson_TAR 11 months ago
Unlucky Charms by Linda O. Johnston is the third book in A Superstition Mystery series. Rory Chasen is doing a presentation before the town in Destiny, California. Rory is telling the town about her new line of good luck pet toys (she is going to need some good luck). One of the new toys is Richy the Rabbit. It has an extra-large back foot (for good luck). The next morning, Rory heads to work at the Lucky Dog Boutique and finds it has been ransacked. The robber stole all of her new toys and left behind some bad luck in the form of spilled salt and broken mirrors. It turns out that this is not the first robbery in Destiny. Mayor Bevin Dermot (who dresses like a leprechaun) comes by to visit Rory and Martha. He issues an edict that they cannot talk about the robberies (not among themselves, employees, friends or other shop owners). Mayor Dermot wants to make sure that Destiny’s luck keeps flowing in a positive direction. Rory is unsettled by these thefts and is determined to catch the culprit. She does not like that someone is harming her friends and fellow shop owners. After some investigating, Rory believes she knows who is responsible. Before the person can confronted, she is found dead with Richy the Rabbit shoved in her mouth. It is pushy real estate agent, Flora Curtival, who moved to town about a month ago. Rory ends up being the number one suspect and it puts her boyfriend, Justin Halberton (Chief of Police) in a bit of a bind. Rory sets out to find the real killer to clear her name and restore good luck to the town. I had a hard time finishing Unlucky Charms. The mystery was okay, but the rest of the book was ridiculous. I can understand a town using superstitions to lure in tourists (clever scheme). But I do not see every citizen buying into the superstitions (they knocked wood frequently, avoid black cats, etc.). Rory is a hard character to like. She is very focused on herself. The book is written in the first person and every other sentence started with “I”. The mystery was not the dominant part of the book. Superstitions took precedence and the information was repeated over and over (it is crammed down the reader’s throat). Some of the superstitions are interesting (writer did good research), but there were too many. The romance portion of the book is rushed as is the ending (it was anti-climactic). Then we have Rory trying to decide to stay at the Rainbow B&B or buy a house, apartment, or condo. Rory knows she cannot live there forever, but she has no clue what she wants (as she states frequently). I thought the killer was obvious. I was hoping it was not this person, but I was disappointed again (I wanted to be surprised or shocked). I give Unlucky Charms 2.5 out of 5 stars. This series had potential. It is a unique idea, but I did not like the finished product. I will not be able to continue with this series. Thanks to Midnight Ink and NetGalley for a copy of the book.
CozyUpWithKathy 11 months ago
There's a fine mystery inside UNLUCKY CHARMS. UNLUCKY CHARMS by Linda O. Johnston The Third Superstition Mystery There's a crime spree occurring in Destiny, California. Not only are store being ransacked, but things of an unlucky nature are left behind. While the mayor wants to keep things quiet, saying it'll bring bad luck to talk about it, Rory feels she has no choice but to talk with other shopkeepers once the Lucky Dog Boutique is hit and the prototypes for her new line of good luck doggy toys are stolen. Crime escalates from vandalism to murder, however, when pushy real estate agent Flora Curtival is found dead with one of Rory's special toys by her. With Rory as prime suspect, her budding relationship with Destiny's Chief of Police becomes more complicated. Could Justin really doubt her? Can she prove her innocence? Johnston brings us back to the unique town that prides itself on superstitions in her third entry in the Superstition Mystery series. The mystery itself is nicely complex with lots of suspects, interesting motives, and red herrings to spice things up. I love the idea of superstitions and learning about new ones, however information is reiterated a bit too much for my taste. There's a fine mystery inside UNLUCKY CHARMS and a cute good luck dog in Pluckie. Destiny assists Rory with the loss of Walter by providing her with a new family, relocating a best friend, and perhaps ushering in a new love. Rory needs to concentrate on the good instead of trying to determine if superstitions killed her fiance. FTC Disclosure – The publisher sent me a digital ARC provided through NetGalley, in the hopes I would review it.
In_My_Humble_OpinionDA 12 months ago
Unlucky Charms is a fun cozy mystery. It is the third in the series which I didn’t know when I got it but it can be read stand alone. Destiny, California is a town built on superstitions. It’s their hook. Its what makes them a unique destination. So when local businesses start suffering a string of bad luck the town needs it to stop quickly. The pressure is on police Chief Justin Halbertson to solve it. When his girlfriend Rory Chasen becomes the prime suspect in a murder things get really intense. Who will solve the mystery first? I really enjoyed the interaction between Rory and Justin. I love the supporting cast even the four legged ones. I think I would have enjoyed this more having read the first two but on its own it is still a fun read.