Book Review (and a Giveaway!): Knitted & Knifed by Tracey Drew

Posted April 17, 2021 by meezcarrie in contemporary, cozy mystery, giveaway, mystery/suspense, Tracey Drew / 2 Comments

Knitty Kitties Mystery #1

GENRE: Cozy Mystery
RELEASE DATE: February 5, 2021
PAGES: 226

Wanted: Cat mum to manage a yarn store, corral two curious cats, all the while being tangled up in murderous mayhem and mystery.

A smart woman would dump her cheating ex, move from the city, and give herself a chance for a well-deserved do-over. A smarter woman—smarter than me, anyway—wouldn’t jump out of that same frying pan and return to Cape Discovery, a seaside village where her family is the nuttiest of all the nut-ball residents.

I’m a former high school counsellor, middle-child peacemaker, and current curator of lots of squishy/fuzzy goodness at my granddad’s little yarn store. Temporary assistant. Until I decide what to do with the rest my life. There’s only one knotty problem to untangle first. The knife sticking out of the most unpopular man in town, and the police detective trying to pin the murder on the donkey—otherwise known as my younger brother. With a pair mischievous cats determined to be underfoot and a craft group of Serial Knitters and Happy Hookers wanting the inside scoop, a girl could lose her mind. And if the killer has their way, maybe even my life…

Tessa Wakefield has her hands full juggling a cozy craft store, her crazy family, and two men who’d rather poke out their eyes than describe themselves as cute. Which they totally are. Cute, charismatic, and occasionally on her mind when she’s not stumbling over dead bodies and using her newfound sleuthing skills to track down murderers. Lucky she’s an excellent multi-tasker because digging beneath Cape Discovery’s surface can unearth secrets that kill.


Other Books In This Series


Knitted & Knifed is the first book I’ve read by Tracey Drew but this is definitely a series I’m going to follow! There is a lot to enjoy in this first book – quirky characters (including the cats), family ties, a layered mystery, wit, and a dash of romance! Not to mention the unique New Zealand setting. I loved the small, coastal town of Cape Discovery, its quaint shops, its interesting residents, and the simple fact that it is in New Zealand.

Tessa’s first person POV adds a lot of charm to this story, and despite all she’s been through lately, the tone stays mostly lighthearted. There are some tender moments, too, as Tessa, her grandfather, and her grandparents’ cats (Kit & Pearl) work through the loss of Tessa’s beloved Nana Dee-Dee & how to go about life in the new normal. The author does a good job of keeping that process realistic without weighing down the story, and she also skillfully weaves wit & humor into the book in ways that make sense without being disrespectful to her grandmother’s memory.

The mystery is cleverly plotted with plenty of suspects, and Tessa’s inability to stay out of it keeps it entertaining (even if ill-advised lol). Even the cats get in on the action in delightful ways, and I of course also loved the fact that Tessa’s investigating puts her in the continued orbit of two very swoony guys. Detective Eric Mana & pub owner Oliver Kerr are both attracted to Tessa – and some occasional posturing was fun to observe as each made sure the other knew he was staking his claim. I usually have a clear favorite when it comes to love triangles, but I honestly didn’t this time – I love them both, though I think Detective Mana is just a teensy bit swoonier.

Bottom Line: Knitted & Knifed by Tracey Drew is entertaining, witty, and heartfelt. The charming setting on the New Zealand coast, the engaging characters, the moments of humor, the brewing romantical possibilities, and the layered mystery will keep readers eagerly turning the pages – and smiling while they do so. I enjoyed ‘meeting’ Tessa and even her cats (high praise from dog-loving me lol), as well as the little touches that made this book so fun.

(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)

My Rating: 4 stars / enjoyed it!

Reviewer’s Note: Readers may want to be aware that this book contains some innuendo and some cheeky language, but both remain mild.

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Tracey Drew lives Down Under with her husband—who’s given up complaining about her yarn addiction–and two madcap tabby cats called Kevin and Alfie. The feline brothers constantly battle with her while she’s trying to write her books by demanding lap-time, but they also provide constant inspiration for her fun & quirky cozy mysteries.

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