THE HUMMINGBIRD WIZARD (Amateur Sleuth-CA Bay Area-Cont) – G+
Blevins, Meredith – 1st in series
Forge, 2003 – Hardcover

Annie Szabo believes her life is back on track after the accidental death of her husband. But when her best friend dies, Annie suspects murder. Finding out what happened means being involved with her husband's family of Gypsies, particularly her very unusual mother-in-law, Madame Mina.

Strengths: a wonderful protagonist who serves as the eye in the middle of a tornado of delightful, quirky characters who are wonderfully drawn by the author; and a wonderful style of writing with some funny lines and lyric phrases. Weaknesses: The relationships are so complex I had trouble keeping track; and although you are told Annie has three daughters, you only meet and told the name of one of them. But the strengths definitely overcome the weaknesses and combine to make for a delightful debut. The next book is already on my shelf.

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