Instead of feeding her late-night appetite, a midnight food run nearly gets 28-year-old Katherine O’Brian killed. She’s the only person to see the man who brutally murdered a local woman, and the killer is hell-bent on making sure she doesn’t talk.
Scott Mitchell left a broken engagement behind when he moved to Reno, and the last thing he needs is more melodrama. But when he and Katherine are paired for a college project, that’s what he gets. It can be very distracting when someone is out to kill your lab partner. Together, they try to figure out what the police haven’t been able to—the identity of the murderer. Passion flares, but with Katherine’s life in danger, romance seems like more than a bad idea.
Scott and Katherine will face jealousy, misunderstandings, lust, and rivals, not to mention attempted murder—and all before their first real date.
Dear MaryAnn Kempher,
You suck in the best way possible and I would like to thank you for the small amount of sleep I have gotten over the past two nights.
A ridiculously satisfied reader 🙂
Now that we’re all clear on how much I enjoyed this book and how little sleep I got thanks to its awesomeness, let’s get down to the details. Mocha, Moonlight, and Murder has everything (and more!) that the title implies. Katherine O’Brian has moved back to her hometown of Reno, Nevada to mend her broken heart, clean out her parents’ home, finish her college degree, and, start her life again. The broken heart is thanks to a total jerk of an ex-husband, the house is the result of losing both parents within a year of one another, the completion of the degree is a long-time coming and, her new life and fresh start will NOT involve a relationship. I love it when characters plan and their authors just giggle 🙂
While Katharine is looking for a little normalcy and some time to herself, the universe has other much bigger plans for her. A very late night craving for something other than Ramen Noodles finds Katharine standing across the street from an absolutely unbelievable scene. Though it is quite dark and she can make out no details at all, Katharine is sure she is seeing a man place a dead body into the trunk of a car. Fearing he has been caught and can be identified, the man takes off after Katharine but is unable to catch her. Obviously she is completely shaken up by the incident but Katharine still manages to contact the police and tells them everything she can about the incident.
Bound and determined to carry on with her life, Katharine shows up to her business class as planned only to find out she has been paired for a semester-long project with Scott Mitchell, a gorgeous man whom she is pretty sure she saw at Starbucks dressed as a woman only a few days before. What the Hell does a girl have to do to get a little normalcy?? Turns out, Scott is a pretty normal guy as well as a decent guy who is just as shy about a relationship as Katharine is. Though they start out as nothing more than project partners a tight friendship develops quickly and the two begin to spend more and more time together outside of class. Though each is attracted to the other they both make it clear they don’t want a relationship therefore it is totally better to “just be friends”. Yeah, they can pull this off, no problem.
Adding to Katharine’s mixed feelings over Scott are the strange and somewhat painful “accidents” she keeps finding herself a part of. There is the slippery staircase, the near miss with the speeding car, the carbon monoxide leak and the beat down at the mall. There is also the hot new handyman who shamelessly flirts with Katharine, the totally unexpected appearance of Katharine’s estranged sister, Amy and Michael, the former co-worker turned boyfriend. WOW!! Katharine has really redefined normal J Through everything, her “friend” Scott is by her side and as events begin to play out and come full-circle, Katharine has to face the truth about her feelings for Scott and what, exactly she wants her future to hold.
The Bottom Line: It took roughly two pages for Kempher to pull me into this novel and from there, I had to force myself to put the book down. Kempher has a lovely writing style, her characters are real and the plot has just the right level of suspense and mayhem for my taste as a reader. Kempher takes her time building both her characters and the plot but not at the expense of the overall pace of the read. Events unfold both appropriately and interestingly and will keep you turning pages quickly. My only complaint, and this is what kept me from adding the last half star to my rating, is the naughty bits. I won’t spoil it for you here but will say this is a minor complaint and one that doesn’t really take away from my overall enjoyment of this read.
Hello! As you can see, I was born in Milwaukee but I moved to Reno, where MOCHA, MOONLIGHT, AND MURDER is set when I was 15. When I was 21, I joined the Air Force. I was fortunate enough to travel all over the world, finally settling in Florida.
I’m married. I have two children, two dogs, and a tempermental cat named George. This is my first book. I’m hard at work on book two.