Book Review: Sister Eve and the Blue Nun by Lynne Hinton

June 4, 2016 cozy mystery, Lynne Hinton, mystery/suspense 3

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about the book

After a murder at the monastery, Sister Eve may need a miracle if she is to prove a dear friend isn’t a cold-blooded killer.

Sister Eve, a motorcycle-riding nun with a natural (or is it supernatural?) gift for solving murders returns to the enclave she once called home and quickly finds herself confronting yet another mysterious death.

Someone has poisoned Dr. Kelly Middlesworth—a researcher on the life and ministry of 17th-century’s revered “Blue Nun”—and a set of irreplaceable historic documents have disappeared before they could even be examined.

When all evidence seems to point to the victim’s brother, Sister Eve sets out to expose the killer and learn the explosive truth those missing manuscripts might contain.

Chasing a killer is dangerous work, and as her two worlds collide, Sister Eve may need some heavenly help simply to survive.

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SERIES: Divine Private Detective Agency Mystery #3
GENRE: Mystery
PUBLISHER: Thomas Nelson
RELEASE DATE: May 17, 2016
PAGES: 336

“You know that you don’t have to be a nun, wear the habit, live in community, take all the vows to be devoted to our Lord.”

Sister Eve, the motorcyle-riding, jeans-wearing nun who moonlights as a private detective for her dad’s agency, has stumbled on another case. This one involves her close friend, Brother Anthony, whose actual sister (a “civilian”, so to speak, not a nun) is murdered at the Benedictine abbey Eve once called home. Murdered, of course, after she and Anthony had been seen/heard arguing.

I liked that Eve – still fairly new at this private detecting business – isn’t suddenly an expert amateur sleuth. She compromises the crime scene almost immediately, isn’t careful about who overhears her phone conversations, and isn’t the world’s greatest liar when it comes to a cover story. This makes her character more believable than some others I’ve read in similar scenarios and added some realism into a book that does deal very much with the spiritual and even the mystical.

I also liked the internal struggle that Sister Eve is facing – displaced by a denomination that doesn’t seem to acknowledge her worth as a woman (even as her investigation revolves around another nun on the path to beatification) and confused by new & unfamiliar feelings stirred up by one of the police detectives assigned to the murder case.  It will be interesting to see how this plays out in future books, I think, and what will be the tipping factor in whatever decision she ultimately makes.

Bottom Line: Sister Eve and the Blue Nun falls into what I consider a cozy mystery, complete with an unconventional amateur sleuth. It’s a light read, and honestly one I had trouble staying engaged with in parts.  I enjoyed the first few chapters, and it picked back up for me again toward the end but I felt the middle lagged a bit. I have not read the first two books in the series and was still able to follow along fairly well, with the exception of a couple of references. Otherwise, I think this would do just fine as a standalone.  Lynne Hinton has produced a well-written novel with dimensional characters, and all the elements of a good read are there … but for me my heart just couldn’t quite connect with the story. Perhaps in a different mood or if I’d read the series from the beginning, I would feel differently – so I still encourage you to give the Sister Eve books a try.  You may find them to be right up your alley!

(I received a copy of this book in exchange for only my honest review.)

My Rating: 3 stars / Not my fave but you might love it!

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/1OJcymF

See what others are saying: Litfuse tour

about the author

Lynne Hinton

Lynne Hinton is the New York Times bestselling author of Friendship Cake and Pie Town. A native of North Carolina, she received her undergraduate degree from the U.N.C. at Greensboro and her Masters of Divinity degree from Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California. She also studied at Wake Forest University and the NC School of the Arts, School of Filmmaking. She has served as a chaplain with hospice and as the pastor of Mount Hope United Church of Christ and First Congregational United Church of Christ, both in North Carolina. Lynne is a regular columnist with The Charlotte Observer. She lives with her husband, Bob Branard, in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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Other Books by Lynne Hinton

What about you? Have you read any of the Sister Eve books yet?

Carrie

3 Responses to “Book Review: Sister Eve and the Blue Nun by Lynne Hinton”

  1. JJ

    I haven’t read any of this author’s books yet, but I’m going to ck out the food related titles on goodreads. I like to read books like that usually.

  2. Beckie B.

    My book club read book 1 in this series. I was so excited because I have loved others of Hinton’s books. But it was not a hit. Couldn’t connect with the character, dragged, etc. thanks for your honest review. I had wondered if the series got better or if I was missing something.

    • Carrie

      I will have to check out her other books – maybe it is just this particular series that I don’t connect with. Interesting that you & your book club had the same reaction