CLOCKED OUT by Anna St. John
SERIES: Josie Posey Mysteries #2
GENRE: Cozy Mystery (Clean)
PUBLISHER: Level Best Books
RELEASE DATE: February 6, 2024
Josie Posey and her posse of Mahjong Mavens are at it again, in this cozy mystery where the retired big city crime reporter turned small town crime solver uncovers another murder in picturesque English Village.
When the clockmaker’s daughter returns home for a visit, reporter Josie Posey is assigned the task of interviewing the talented watch designer. That very afternoon the young woman falls from a ladder while inventorying antique clocks.
At first, Josie is certain the fall was an accident. Everyone loved Ella McGregor Benjamin. But Ella’s deathbed statement is a mysterious riddle that can’t be ignored. With her Old English Sheepdog Moe by her side, and an ever-growing list of suspects, Josie scrambles to identify the killer before anyone else gets hurt.
Other Books In This Series
I confess… I decided to read/review Clocked Out by Anna St. John strictly because of the cover. It’s absolutely adorable and I absolutely needed to meet that dog! I had a feeling I would love Moe, just from the cover, and I was right – Josie’s Old English sheepdog is everything endearing with a fun personality and ‘expressions’ I could easily picture as I read. And Josie herself looked like we would get along too… and we would if she were real or I were fictional. But what I didn’t expect was to be so charmed by English Village, the quaint small town that doesn’t let the fact that it’s located in the Midwest stop it from replicating all the cozy British vibes. I would love to visit a place like this – shoot, I’d love to LIVE in a place like this – so I really enjoyed touring the town on these pages, murder notwithstanding. The author does a good job of setting the scene without over-explaining, painting a lovely picture into which readers will gladly immerse themselves.
The murder mystery has several intriguing layers, mainly revolving around the world of clocks and watches (which turns out to be way more intricate and fascinating than I imagined). This was a unique premise for a cozy mystery, and I enjoyed the nice change-of-pace from the typical. Several surprises awaited me as I investigated along with Josie – from the comfort of my fave reading space, of course – and just about the time I thought I had things figured out the author’s clever plot threw me for a loop once more. It’s a laid-back narrative without a lot of unnecessary drama, and the fact that the police chief appreciates Josie’s investigative journalist mind makes her sleuthing go much more calmly than in some cozies. (She’s also pretty good at staying within the boundaries he gives her… mostly lol.)
Bottom Line: Clocked Out by Anna St. John was my first introduction to Josie Posey and her lovable dog Moe but I quickly felt at home with them and their charming English Village. The plot is creative and original, and the story flows smoothly at an easygoing pace. Combine all of the above with several unpredictable twists, a dash of sweet romance (with a handsome blacksmith – hello, swoon!), and a close knit group of vibrant friends and you’ve got an entertaining story that keeps you invested to the end. Grab your fave hot beverage, find a comfy reading space, and curl up with this fun mystery!
(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)
My Rating: 4 stars / enjoyed it!
Anna St. John writes cozy mysteries featuring a mature, yet feisty, former crime reporter, Josie Posey, as the amateur sleuth.
Her debut novel, DOOMED BY BLOOMS, was released by Level Best Books in February 2023. CLOCKED OUT is the second book in her Josie Posey Mystery Series. It is scheduled to release Feb. 6, 2024.
A former journalist, award-winning advertising copywriter, and ad agency owner, Anna is married to her high school sweetheart. She writes from her home office in Kansas, with her Old English Sheepdog by her side.
Anna is represented by Cindy Bullard, of Birch Literary Agency. She is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and the Kansas Authors Club. Connect with Anna at her website or Facebook.
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