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Monday, June 20th 2005

11:27 AM

MARSH MADNESS by Caroline Cousins "Witty storytelling ....southern atmosphere."

 

Reviewer Lesa Holstine

If you like small Southern communities where everyone is either related or knows each other, historic plantations, gossipy characters and mystery, Caroline Cousins is the author for you. Or I should say authors. Caroline Cousins is actually three women, Nancy Pate, and her "one-and-a-half times" cousins-sisters Meg Herndon and Gail Greer. (Their mothers are sisters, and their fathers are full cousins.) They use the same cousin-sisters situation for their book's main characters.

In Marsh Madness Lindsey, who is temporarily living on Indigo Island in the South Carolina Low Country, acts as manager of Pinckney Plantation. Lindsey's cousin, Margaret Ann, is coordinating a large wedding at Pinckney, with the help of her sister, Bonnie, and Lindsey. None of them need a murder before the wedding, a bridesmaid diva hiding from a stalker, and meth problems on the island.

Marsh Madness has two strengths. The setting is beautifully done. The reader can easily fit themselves into the southern atmosphere and lifestyle of Indigo Island. Plantations and weddings, storms and alligators bring the island to life.

Cousins also does a wonderful job with humor. Marsh Madness is a fast-paced funny story, which will keep the reader racing toward the end. The cousins continue to find themselves in situations which lend to the humor in the story. The wedding preparation itself adds to the humor. There's everything from "Pinckney purple" dresses to goldfish to be carried by the attendants. Cousins places the characters in situations which become funny. If you're looking for enjoyable characters, and a great deal of humor, try the mysteries by Caroline Cousins. Witty storytelling definitely fits with the southern atmosphere.

Marsh Madness can be a confusing story, if you have a hard time keeping all the characters straight. There are a large number of people to remember because the three cousins know everyone on the island, and there are multiple crimes. It's an inviting atmospheric mystery, though, so it's worth sticking with the characters. Marsh Madness is the second mystery by Cousins. It's as fun and frantic as three whirlwind cousins hurling towards a wedding and disaster.

Author's web site: www.carolinecousins.net

Previous book: Fiddle Dee Death

Christine's Note-The author's web site is worth checking out. Find out who the three Cousins of Caroline Cousins really are! Also check out Lesa Holestine's Blog www.nikkishome.blogspot.com

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