I liked this paranormal cozy mystery series. I found Cassia’s relationship with her grandma, Esther, very heart touching. I shared a similar bond with my adorable grandma who is unfortunately no more. Her familiar, a cat, Stanley is always worried about her well being. I wish I had such a lovable companion as a familiar if I was a witch. Grandma’s familiar Oliver is Stanley’s brother. I find the situation where Oliver starts speaking to Cassia quite funny. Stanley starts speaking to her as well.
Murder of a werewolf.
Cassia Winter is stressed out because of her job pressure and lack of proper sleep. She is at her Gran’s house when she learns that she is a witch. Her grandma takes her hand and leads her towards a door in her cellar which Cassia hates because her mother left her waiting at the cellar after going through the door to the magical place, Brimstone. She finds herself appreciating the butterflies on the trees and meets her childhood friend, Luca. Grandma takes her visit Blythe, a 300-year-old witch. Blythe wants Cassia’s help to assist Esther, her grandma, to deal with the law and order situation for the magical creatures. The Winters are supposed to be justice witches. They investigate a crime and bring the culprit to justice. Esther drinks a potion given by Brin, the brownie, to restore her energy. Suddenly, she changes her mind and drags Cassia back to the human world and asks her to get on with her career and life and forget about being a witch.
Her pet cat, Stanley, has developed a weird habit of attending funerals, and comforting the family of the deceased and occasionally exhibits suicidal tendencies. Cassia receives a phone call from Dr. Gilbert that her grandma had an accident. She immediately rushes to her side and learns that she was attacked while investigating the suicide/ murder case of Jonathan Tidewell, a werewolf. Cassia is furious. She wants to catch the assailant to teach him a lesson and gets involved into the investigation of the mystery behind Jonathan’s death. She visits her grandma’s friend Blythe who tells her about Strom, the leader of the werewolves, who voiced his opinion that Jonathan was killed and his death made to look like suicide.
She meets Strom who tells her that Jonathan was a human turned into a werewolf because of a rogue werewolf that went berserk and killed Jonathan’s wife and son. He also adds that Flint, an angry werewolf was upset with him for his breakup with Anju, Strom’s daughter. Jonathan Tidewell was engaged to Anju. Flint appears to be the prime suspect but Cassia along with her familiar Stanley has startling revelations that puts her life in danger. The climax is absolutely thrilling with an unexpected turn. Wonderful story.
As dead as a vampire.
The Grandma- granddaughter duo of Esther and Cassia is gaining quite a reputation for their crime solving talent. The crime rate in Brimstone is slowly increasing under the influence of black magic slowly entering the beautiful town and corrupting the minds of the citizens.
Esther forces Cassia and Stanley to spend some time in Brimstone where she has an apartment near Mooncrest Cafe, a cafe owned by her friend, Gilda. She observes Basil, the bookworm, whose bookshop has been vandalised and she and granny had investigated into it without any success. He is arguing with someone and his attitude has completely changed. She decides to help him by bringing over the damaged books and check for a possible clue. All the books on every magical creature except for the vampires has been tampered with ‘lies’ written on them. She suspects that it might be the handiwork of a vampire.
Luca takes her to the Razzle Dazzle Club where she meets Gisela, Gilda’s sister and watches the performance of the Trinity Twins, Zeke and Zuleika, who are vampires. Cassia finds their beheading act quite gruesome and scary. She witnesses an ugly incident involving Uriah Firenze who mocks her and the vampire artists. She is also shocked to learn about Luca’s girlfriend Astrid, who hates her.
She discovers his dead body with a wooden stake across his chest while taking her flying lessons with Blythe. He hated everyone. She learns that Zeke, Zuleika, and Zarrina, the third sibling of the Trinity Twins were his cousins. The story is so thrilling that I won’t reveal what happens with Cassia’s investigation. There are plenty of suspects but who is the killer? Amazing story.
The Centaur’s last breath.
Blythe asks Cassia to investigate the death of Selo Cezerus, the Centaur, whose body was discovered by his father Nilah, one mile from the ranch. It appears that he died of a heart attack but Nilah is convinced of a foul play.
Cassia visits Nilah’s ranch to speak to him but the latter gets an emotional outburst and his younger son, Lifin, takes care of the situation. She discovers that Treto Oravatus was Selo’s main competitor for the Annual 1,000 Acre Forest racing contest.
Apart from the murder case, Cassia has to deal with a hostile environment where gnomes complain about their gardens being trampled upon and destroyed by Ivan Snapnert, a gnome. She happens to rescue a kitten who clings to her broomstick during one of her visits to Nilah’s ranch. The kitten happens to be Aitvaras, a baby dragon that can assume the shape of a cat. It brings good luck to the owner and bad luck to others when it is in the cat form. Someone had stolen the kitten from its mom and deliberately planted it on Cassia so that she could be blamed for all the mishaps.
She discovers a piece of fabric from the spot where Selo’s body was discovered. Does it belong to the killer? Who is causing chaos in Brimstone and destroying the gardens of the gnomes? Wow! This story kept me glued to my seat.
The Sleeping Goblin.
Granny prevents Cassia from visiting Brimstone because it has been polluted by Black Magic. Cassia receives a message from Blythe through a butterfly, that acts as the messenger, to meet her immediately without Gran and her cat Oliver. Esther is a bit hurt by her friend’s odd request but allows her to go.
Cassia is shocked to see a weak Blythe lying in her bed. Brin, the brownie, tells her that she absorbed the dark clouds of black magic within her to protect Brimstone. She reassures Cassia that Blythe will recover from her illness. She has been summoned to investigate the death of a goblin, Augustus Stez, by Jeff Collins, a zombie and the owner of the Brimstone Hotel.
The case becomes complicated after the goblin’s dead body vanishes. Someone has impersonated her and Stanley to malign her reputation. Who killed him and why?
I highly recommend this book for all the paranormal cozy mystery lovers. Do read this series to find out whether Cassia can rekindle her romance with Luca or his girlfriend Astrid destroy her completely with her evil scheming