By Author Connie di Marco
About the Book
San Francisco astrologer Julia Bonatti’s life is turned upside down when she becomes the target of the city’s newest cult leader, Reverend Roy of the Prophet’s Tabernacle. Driven out of her apartment in the midst of a disastrous Mercury retrograde period, she takes shelter with a client who’s caring for two elderly aunts. One aunt appears stricken with dementia and the other has fallen under the spell of the Reverend Roy. To add to the confusion, a young man claiming to be a long lost nephew arrives. The longer he stays, the more dangerous things become. Is the young man truly a member of the family? Can astrology confirm that? Julia’s not sure, but one thing she does know is that Mercury wasn’t merely the messenger of the gods—he was a trickster and a liar as well.
Reviewed by Felita Daniels / 312 Pages
This is the first in a new series that features an astrologer Julia Bonatti. The first thing I would like to share with readers is that it is a great read. The second thing I’d like to discuss is reader expectations. The cover is beautiful, really. However, I feel it could lead some to believe this is a cozy style mystery. It is actually categorized on Amazon as a Mystery/Thriller/Suspense.
You may wonder why that could make any difference in a reader’s enjoyment. In this book you are literally at the 50 percent mark before Julia starts ‘detecting’ anything. So cozy readers that are used to the main character asking about motives or a person’s alibi early on, may think this book has a really slow start. Cozies in general tend to have a wonderful little town with lovely people and one dastardly, bad guy. In the Madness of Mercury, it is a much larger town and there are multiple threats to Julia and her friends. There are some serious themes about how the elderly are treated, how politicians may not be honoring their citizens, a religious figure may not have love in their heart, and a few other heavier themes not usually found in cozies.
I don’t like to give anything away about mystery novels, I did have a beef with the character not calling the police after a particular incident. In general, I felt the interlocking pieces and relationships worked well. There was plenty of action as plots and plans collided into a satisfying ending.
♦ ♦ ♦
Learn more about the book or Connie at the following links…