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Book Review: Murder at the PTA by Laura Alden

Updated on November 7, 2014
Even elementary school isn't as boring as this
Even elementary school isn't as boring as this

This "Elementary" Killing Doesn't get a Passing Grade

With school now in session (I hear a lot of collective sighs from parents everywhere) and regular routine's established once more I thought I'd take a chance and read Murder at the PTA by Laura Alden.

One of the reasons I chose this novel was it invoked my elementary school days and whenever I hear PTA I'm always taken back to a much simpler time. However, this mystery doesn't even get a passing grade.

The school year has just started and Beth Kennedy (a recently divorced mother of two) is prodded into running for the open Secretary position at her children's elementary school. Of course the children's bookstore owner is a shoe in for the position. During the first meeting the school's principal, Agnes Mephisto, waltzes in to declare that there will be construction of a new wing to arver Elementary School.

The town goes crazy over this news and soon Agnes is found murdered in her home which is across the street from Beth's friend, Marina.

Marina starts to get threatening emails and between her and Beth they try to solve the crime. And let me tell you there's just toooooo many characters in this book to keep up with.

In fact, I think when Beth has a Halloween party at the bookstore it's mentioned later on that she's still preparing for it.

It's a long and drawn out story and all of the characters are rather boring. By the time the entire town was introduced (along with Agnes' sister) I could have cared less who killed her. The pace is very slow and in order to have a successful mystery you have to have something exciting happen within the first 10 pages.

Over the course of reviewing many mysteries the formula here does not work (nor does the ending for that matter) and this is supposed to be the first in a new mystery line.

I'm hoping that Alden's next book is more exciting and entertaining.

As I read each page I turned it into a game thinking how many more days were left in this bad school year.

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