Sunday, June 1, 2008

Murder By Mushroom Doesn't Fit

This morning when I awoke, my first thought was my book review for Murder by Mushroom and the ‘Okay - 2 stars (a so-so read for me)' rating I'd assigned it.

Interpretation: I felt guilty.

You see, my rating list goes like this:


Excellent - 5 stars (one to re-read; definitely a keeper)
Great - 4 ½ stars (a keeper)
Very Good - 4 stars (excellent one time read)
Pretty Good - 3 stars (I enjoyed this story, but was not blown away by it)
Okay - 2 stars (a so-so read for me)
Poor - 1 star (not worth the bother!)


Well, that's fine for most books, but Virginia Smith's Murder By Mushroom didn't fit. Why? Because like I said in my review, it was well-written, but not near enough romance for me. Yet it is a book worth reading because of the way it covers gossip and everything that it entails, like hurt, betrayal, and repercussions.

So, when I got back from church today, I had decided to up the rating a notch. So I sat at my computer and pasted in the next higher rating:

Pretty Good - 3 stars (I enjoyed this story, but was not blown away by it)

But you know, that's not right. I didn't enjoy the story. I kept waiting for the romance... the hugs and kisses and handholding of 2 people getting to know each other. Of course I can't give you details because that would spoil it for those of you who haven't read the book. Suffice to say that I wanted more and did not enjoy what I received.

So, I asked my teen daughter who is an avid Love Inspired Suspense fan what she would do and she said, ‘Why not 2 ½ stars?'

Why not, indeed. I checked my rating list and realized that it goes from an Okay book to a Pretty Good one - no mention of a Good one.

So, I've added a new rating:

Good - 2½ stars (Good writing and story line but not my cup of tea)

I feel much better with this rating.


  1. Thanks for the additional 1/2 star. I'm sorry you didn't enjoy the book. It was my very first mystery, and here's an interesting tidbit: when I first proposed the story to my editor, it didn't have any romance at all. But the publisher requires a romantic element, so I was asked to add a subtle one. That's where the attraction between Jackie and Dennis came from. It wasn't ever supposed to be a driving force in the plot -- the main story is supposed to be the mystery element. I guess not every book will appeal to every reader, huh? Vive le difference!

  2. Hey Virginia, now I'm really glad I added the extra 1/2 star. (Anita slides the back of her hand across her brow.)

    As one writer to another though, I'm curious why you targeted a romance line like Love Inspired if the book didn't have a romantic element.

    Seems to me that if it were under another imprint - like Steeple Hill women's fiction - it wouldn't be pegged as a romance at all.


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