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Her Brother's Keeper: A Joan Spencer Mystery    by Sara Hoskinson Frommer order for
Her Brother's Keeper
by Sara Hoskinson Frommer
Order:  USA  Can
Perseverance Press, 2013 (2013)
* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

With Christmas on the near horizon and her daughter's wedding looming, the last thing Joan Spencer needs is for her brother Dave to RSVP to the wedding invitation that he would attend. In fact, would arrive a week early.

Things are beginning to look better after he arrives. When Dave and Joan were growing up, he got into all kinds of trouble, eventually serving a jail sentence for fraud. Joan worries that he will take advantage of her friends and possibly her family and herself. This seems not to be the case. He proves to be a charming and caring man with everyone who meets him coming away with a good opinion of him.

Then Dave runs into trouble. He is stabbed to death and the police are baffled. It is obviously not a self-inflicted wound. Between her own mother-in-law's muddled brain and her daughter's future mother-in-law's dictatorial manner, Joan is wiped out quickly.

But she rallies and begins her own investigation, ignoring the local police's admonition to leave the murder to them. This is not on Joan's job description and she becomes more and more enmeshed despite everyone's concern for her well being.

I have to admit I did not foresee the murderer. Kind of out of left field, but a good read nevertheless. This cozy, the seventh in the award-winning Joan Spencer series, is a fun read.

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