Thursday, January 8, 2015

Book Review: Murder in the Arboretum by Christa Nardi


Another murder in small town Cold Creek has tensions rising. Clive Johnson, the groundskeeper at Cold Creek College, is a convenient scapegoat for a police chief who seeks an easy solution. Convinced Chief Pfeiffe has it all wrong, professor and psychologist Sheridan Hendley sets out to help prove Clive’s innocence. But not everyone is pleased by her enthusiastic search for the truth. Just as her life is looking up personally, it looks like she might be the next victim.



To quote from my review of Murder at Cold Creek College, the first book in this series:

"Let's just get this bit out right up front:  It is never a good sign when you show up for work in the morning and see emergency vehicles at a nearby building.  Agreed?"

Obviously, Sheridan Hensley didn't catch my review, because what does she do at the begining of Murder in the Arboretum?  You guessed it.  Granted, she does get a class in first, but then there are the flashing lights and the milling crowds.  The second murder in less than a year at a small town college.  

This is not good for the reputation of the college or the town, something which concerns the police chief and college administration maybe more than it should.  So they look for the easy target in terms of a suspect.

Thank goodness neither Sheridan and Brett (her state police interesting person), when they're not into each other (*gasp*) are on this case.  They are at least as interested in justice as in the easy close.  (Not that the other folks aren't, but most of us look for the easy way out of our problems, and sometimes that just doesn't happen.)

Of course, when sleuths (amateur or otherwise) go on the prowl, the real bad guys tend not to like it.  (Who knew psychology could be such a dangerous calling?)

If you like writing that is has an intelligent feel to it, while not being overbearing, Murder in the Arboretum should be on your TBR list or shelf for this year.  Ms. Nardi's writing is both educational and entertaining, a difficult duo to master.

As for me?  Murder in the Arboretum is a great continuation of Sheridan Hensley's story and keeps the Cold Creek Series GPA at 4.0!


Christa Nardi is and always has been an avid reader. Her favorite authors have shifted from Carolyn Keene and Earl Stanley Gardner to more contemporary mystery/crime authors over time, but mystery/crime along with romance are her preferred choices for leisure reading. Christa also has been a long time writer from poetry and short stories growing up to technical, research, and nonfiction in her professional life. With Murder at Cold Creek College, Christa is joining many other reader/writers in writing one genre she enjoys reading – the cozy mystery. Christa Nardi is a pen name for a real life professor/psychologist from the Northeast.


Click the link above to follow the tour, including more reviews, interviews and a GIVEAWAY!

(Disclosure:  I received an e-copy of Murder in the Arboretum by Christa Nardi from the author and publisher in exhange for my honest and unbiased review.)


This book also helps me fulfill the following reading challenges for 2015:

105 Challenge (Cat. 8 - cozy mystery)
Around the World Challenge (mini-challenge 2 - US state of Virginia)
Gentle Spectrums Challenge (Cat. 4 - Plants)


  1. Psst - I thought you might want to know that the link above solely leads to an image.

    That aside, I always do like a good intelligent read, and this makes it sound like it will be one! I also like how you drew back onto the first book for the review as well. Someone has been reading a lot of good books lately ^^

  2. Nice review! Sounds like a book I would enjoy. Thanks!

  3. What an interesting book! I haven't read any of Ms. Nardi's works!