Read Plaster and Poison by Jennie Bentley Jenna Bennett Online


Home renovation and design tips included! Ex-New York designer Avery Baker left the bustle of the big city to start her own home renovation business in Maine. But as she renovates an old carriage house on behalf of a soon-to-be wed friend, she stumbles across a lifeless body-a person known all too well by the blushing bride. The small town is abuzz with big suspicions, andHome renovation and design tips included! Ex-New York designer Avery Baker left the bustle of the big city to start her own home renovation business in Maine. But as she renovates an old carriage house on behalf of a soon-to-be wed friend, she stumbles across a lifeless body-a person known all too well by the blushing bride. The small town is abuzz with big suspicions, and Avery realizes she must unravel a matrimonial murder....

Title : Plaster and Poison
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780425233450
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 304 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Plaster and Poison Reviews

  • Linda
    2019-06-22 11:18

    Good entry in the series. I enjoyed that there was a storyline involving a mystery from the WWI era as well as a current one. While I saw some big neon signs announcing what was going to happen in the older mystery, even with the lack of suspects I still wasn't expecting the outcome to the modern mystery. Good story.

  • Susan
    2019-06-08 07:09

    Avery and her partner Derek are redoing a carriage house as a getaway for Kate, who runs the local bed and breakfast, and who is about to marry police chief Wayne. When Avery and Derek find a dead body in the house, and the corpse turns out to be the father of Kate's college age daughter, the job hits a snag. Wayne can't investigate, so the state troopers are called in. Avery's mother and stepfather are visiting from California, and Derek's stepsister Beatrice leaves her husband in Boston and moves in with his folks, so the duo have plenty to keep them busy. Then Beatrice disappears, and their sleuthing moves into high gear.

  • Heather Adkins
    2019-06-11 14:12

    Another great cozy from Jennie. I think what I really enjoy about this series is that Avery, the heroine, remains the same but the books don't seem to echo one another. Each is a new adventure, no repetitive cliches or phrases, no feeling like the heroine isn't naturally maturing and progressing. I hope that Jennie is planning on a fourth because I'm looking forward to Avery's next adventure.

  • Holly
    2019-06-19 09:15

    I LOVE this series and this is my favorite so far! The mystery is more intriguing and there are more twists and surprises. There is an old mystery which adds to the current one they are trying to solve. I really enjoyed the double mystery and it is well done. Avery's Mom and Step-dad are visiting from CA. Avery & Derek are asked to renovate Kate's carriage house into a house for Kate & her fiance Chief of Police Wayne to live in after their wedding New Years Eve. Kate's ex boyfriend and her daughter's dad is found dead. Then Derek's stepsister is missing. Plus they find lovers initials while they are renovating the carriage house which leads them to learn more about some ancesters. Avery & Derrick work together to solve the mysteries and renovate the carriage house. Avery & Derek's relationship is more romantic. This is an awesome cozy mystery- an awesome intriguing mystery (or 2), interesting and likeable characters, romance, friendship & humor. This one has even more of everything! Loved it!

  • Jamie
    2019-06-18 11:24

    Avery and Derek's renovation business has gone quiet for the winter, so they take on a job to rebuild a carriage house for a friend from the ground up. But well into the job they arrive at the site to discover the dead body of the friend's ex-husband.I'd forgotten this was one of the ones pulled from the library shelves during the postal strike and I got myself all excited for nothing. A cozy with a supportive partner acting as both sidekick and love interest? What a concept! What a dynamic! What a- oh, it's the third in the series, never mind. Yeah, I checked Goodreads and the first book sounds pretty par for the course love interest-wise, but everything's settled and established by this book so it's in stark difference from all the 'first in a new series' ones I've been going through. My god, the formula gets repetitive. This was a breath of fresh air.This one has a background mystery with roots in the past, with names carved in the timber of a house being renovated. It's always a treat for me to come across a mystery that references actual history/traditions, as it gives the town and world a sense of grounding, like it didn't just pop into existence with the first novel. In this one we learn a bit about the yeowomen and Richtfest (topping out ceremony). The first were female yeomen, who were admitted to clerical positions in the navy in World War 1. The topping out ceremony is a Scandinavian tradition to appease the tree spirits displaced with the construction of wooden buildings. When the bones of the project are finished (the last beam is secured), a tree decorated with streamers is set up on top and the workers break for a toast and sometimes a meal to celebrate. While still in use, it's been modernized to include having workers sign the topmost spire in skyscrapers and masons celebrate the bedding of the last brick, and its popularity has spread to Canada and the US.Props for considering that the lover's initials might be for a gay couple when the possibility comes up. It would have made an interesting twist, but even if it didn't go that way it was a unique little red herring to throw at us.The main plot was acceptable but while the first book in a cozy mystery certainly tends to read like paint-by-numbers, the sequels blend together too. A main mystery with lower stakes than in the first book, the victim and suspects are all new characters so there's no risk of being betrayed by someone we've already learned to like, an occasional secondary mystery to keep readers occupied (due to the previously mentioned lower stakes), all fluffed up with lead character personal life development/drama. The solution was clever, I didn't see it coming at all, but some of the clues were smacking them in the face and the characters were willfully ignoring them (Person A lives hours away and has a super busy schedule and can't be reached but no one knows if he's away from home or just ignoring calls, while person B is known to be staying somewhere in town but no one knows where. The cops find out someone's been staying in a model home and the characters just assume it was person A?). It got old fast.The love interest isn't as bland as usual and is pretty supportive of his girlfriend's ability to help in his renovation business, but at the same time he doesn't sound like a very good businessman. The odd comments are thrown in about his past work and he seems to have a history of arguing with his customers and refusing to replace things he thinks shouldn't be removed. For example, in the first book he was doing a cosmetic reno of a property Avery inherited and flat out refused to tear out the kitchen cupboards. After some serious design work on her part she likes them well enough now, but she's the homeowner and shouldn't have needed to do that work at all when she'd hired Derek to get rid of them. If they were that nice, he could have taken them home with him instead of throwing them out, but this isn't the only occasion that's mentioned where he refuses on the grounds of preserving the original accents/architecture. He also has the unlikable habit of writing off Avery's dislike of his ex-wife as jealousy.Avery's character was a bland cozy lead without many attributes going for her, so what little personality trait she's given in this book really shines through. She's insecure about her parents liking Derek, on how useful her decorating skills would be in his reno business, and on any other little thing she can find to fret about. Anytime Derek's ex-wife shows up, and she's got a large role in this book, the other woman is dismissive and 'customer service friendly' to Avery and her mother, and flirts and cozies up to Derek and Avery's stepfather. But whenever Avery shows her dislike of Melissa it's dismissed by Derek as insecurity or jealousy, despite her mother having the same reaction (the more I type up this review the less I'm liking the romantic lead of this series). Also, she has habit of sharing other people's personal information. A friend's husband did time and they spent the last 5 years keeping it a secret from the rest of the town? Well, now that Avery knows it's just going to get out anyway so she might as well start spreading by telling this other friend all about it.And like most other modern cozies it ends with craft advice based on the theme of the series. I can take this alright from the sewing/knitting/cooking themed books, but if I need advice on upholstering a wall I won't be getting it from the back of a murder mystery. I'd go to Pinterest. Especially since one of her bright decorating ideas is to add window baskets to the skylights.The verdict? This one's a pass, and according to Goodreads I'd already read the first in the series and wasn't any more impressed with it than I was with this one.

  • Pam
    2019-06-11 10:56

    Annoying or entertaining, that is the question I have even having read it. I like some parts about the series and hate other things. Please stop this endless jealousy by the main character Avery. It gets really tiring. Also the editing is terrible, there are so many tiny details about renovation that are just wrong. Unfortunately they all just add up and you wonder does the author know anything about construction, does she have anyone who does proof read the books? There is enough here that I liked that I will try another but I really urge Jennie Bentley to improve the editing!

  • Jeanette
    2019-06-13 08:01

    I enjoyed reading this book. I like the characters and story line. Will read more of this series.

  • Karen
    2019-06-19 07:25

    Fun cozy mystery series.

  • Jeanie Harper
    2019-06-11 07:22

    I gotta tell you, Derek sounds like a real hunk of a fellow.Story was great too.

  • Alycia Harris
    2019-06-11 10:56

    I found Bentley's series through Goodreads. It was a recommendation based on my other selections. The series seemed like good clean fun and so far it has not disappointed. Of course, the characters face lots of murder and mayhem, so "fun" might not be how Avery (the lead character) would describe it.I heard someone once joke that Jessica Fletcher from Murder She Wrote must be the one doing all of the killings. No one person comes across that many dead bodies. It seems that Bentley has also had this thought because the fact that Avery seems to have come across a dead body now three separate times (i.e., three separate books) seems a little unlikely for a small town like the one used in Bentley's series. Of course, our girl is not the killer, but she does seem to attract dead bodies. The characters in the books are starting to comment on how their small town seems overcome with murder since Avery's arrival - a kind of recurring dark joke. I've read home improvement/construction oriented mysteries by other authors and frankly this series has not been as intense as I would prefer. However, the "do it yourself" context does turn out to be appropriate and has not felt contrived until this book. In this book the connection is tenuous, but somehow we have to get Avery involved. The nice thing about this story is that it ties back to characters introduced in the first book, providing the reader with a more satisfying conclusion to some issues that first came up in the initial book. Bentley's characters are a bit two-dimensional. However, each book offers opportunity to get to know the key players in greater depth and this book definitely offers some insight into Melissa. Avery remains a bit angst ridden and a little too prissy for my taste. However, she is likeable enough to engage a desire not to see something happen to her.While not necessarily and "edge of your seat" book, there are intense moments that do a good job of keeping the reader engrossed, waiting to see what happens next. Bentley was good about not giving away the ending in this book though perhaps the reader could see that things were not always as they seemed. At one point, I did find myself getting aggravated at the characters for not seeing the obvious when every other time the characters seem almost prescient in putting together pieces in just the right way.Bentley is more careful than most in not giving away earlier books. However, there are some spoilers there and this book, as with the series so far, is best read in order. I am giving it 4/5 stars because it is easy to read and will likely hold the interest of someone who enjoys a bit of a mystery.

  • Drebbles
    2019-05-28 08:18

    Avery Baker and her boyfriend Derek Ellis are more than happy to renovate an old carriage house behind the Bed and Breakfast their friend Kate McGillicutty owns so Kate and police chief Wayne Rasmussen can live there after their marriage. Avery even finds a mini-mystery to solve – someone carved a heart and the initials WE + ER on a wooden post in the carriage house and Avery wants to find out the story behind the carving. Unfortunately, Avery soon has a bigger mystery to solve when she and Derek stumble across a dead body and the murder victim turns out to be someone Kate knew all too well. Avery wants to find the killer before Kate’s wedding plans are ruined.“Plaster and Poison” is another good entry in Jennie Bentley’s do-it-yourself mystery series (the first two books are Fatal Fixer-Upper and Spackled and Spooked). There are a lot of things I like about this series, starting with the characters. The book is written in the first person from Avery’s point of view and she is an especially strong character as she is very talented but insecure at times, especially when it comes to Derek’s ex-wife Melissa. Avery’s worries about Melissa, as well as her interactions with Melissa, are some of the best parts of the book. Derek is another great character who has learned to follow his heart even if it means disappointing his family. The other characters are equally well done and complicated. Bentley does a great job with both mysteries (the initials and the murder), managing to find a common theme between the two (another strong point in this book is the dynamics in relationships in various families). The murder aspects are well written and plotted, with the right amount of tension, and readers will have fun trying to guess who the killer is. Without giving anything away, I will say this is one of the few times I cheered while reading a book when I found out who the killer was.“Plaster and Poison” is another nice cozy mystery by Jennie Bentley and I look forward to reading the next book in the series.

  • Susan Ferguson
    2019-06-13 14:11

    Avery and Derek are still waiting on the last house they remodeled to sell when Kate asks them to turn the carriage house behind her bed and breakfast into a place where she and Wayne can live after they're married. Avery envisions the carriage house as a romantic, peaceful retreat away from business. So she and Kate do a lot of planning and picking colors and such while Derek is putting in the insulation, wiring, plumbing, walls, etc. They have put in the loft master bedroom and bath when they come to work one morning and can't find the key - and the door is unlocked. When they enter, they find a body upstairs. It is Kate's ex-boyfriend and her daughter's father. So that quickly makes Kate, Shannon and Wayne suspects. Derek's step-sister Beatrice has left her husband because he's never at home, always working and she wants to see if he'll even notice she's not there. So she takes a temporary job at Clovercroft, the Stenhams' stalled construction project. The day after Gerard's body is found, Beatrice goes missing. And the carriage house is off limits for work until the crime scene is cleared. Also, Avery's mother and stepfather are coming from California to visit. Her stepfather is clearly not thrilled with the December weather and catches a bad cold, but her mother had spent some time there growing up and is delighted with the weather and meeting new and old friends, with Derek and even wants to visit with her cousin, Mary Elizabeth Stenham....Ray and Randy's mother. Mary Elizabeth is strangely reluctant to have visitors.

  • Liz
    2019-06-26 10:22

    Terrible. These characters are little more than caricatures. What little depth they do have is, generally, unappealing. The most noticeable case of this is with the main character, who not only suffers from TSTL syndrome—really, you come up with one wild hypothesis after another and then just run to check them out? No one will look twice at you racing to check someone's medicine cabinet...—but is also incredibly childish. Her treatment of her boyfriend's ex is so petty it becomes revolting. Aforementioned ex highlights a problem that I've noticed in these books. Authors want an antagonist but then they don't use actual behavior to support the main character's dislike of that antagonist. Or if they do have exhibited some behavior, it doesn't make sense or tends to be one specific, cliche action. It's tiring and really shallow characterization. And then on top of all that, the plot was ridiculous. Shamelessly eavesdropping on your friend because you're given the opportunity? Bullying the local police into letting you horn into an interview because you just happened to provide where the interviewee is holed up? Not only is it off-putting, but it's unrealistic. Off to take the rest of this series off my to-read list.

  • Clare O'Beara
    2019-06-12 12:58

    I first read Spackled and Spooked which I found very enjoyable and a cut above the rest. Sadly with this book I felt it slumped in the middle. What slows it down is that the building restorer couple who are the main characters are working on a coach house, and find two carved pairs of initials on a post. They look into the old names associated with the building and start retracing family trees, navy records, newspaper accounts and so on. All this is completely beside the point that somebody has dumped a dead body in their coach house. I know there is a fashion for cold cases and maybe someone more interested in genealogy would have got more out of the book than I did, but I kept picking up the book in the middle, reading half a page and putting it down to do something more interesting.If Avery and Derek stick to the present day, they are a fine, believable couple and work well together whether on solving mysteries or renovations. The other characters in the book were also not so interesting and fun as they had been in the previous book. The location in Maine has been reasonably presented but comes across generally as just cold.

  • Jeanie Jackson
    2019-06-26 13:59

    There are only a handful of authors whose books I am always ready to read because I get the best of the best from them but I know the books will provide a safe haven of friends, humor, a good mystery without terror, elements of the unexpected, and high quality writing; Ms B is one of those authors. While the Avery is not perfect, she has friends who keep her in balance and she is approachable. Derek on the other hand might be too hot to feel approachable if he weren't such a decent guy, one anyone would be proud to know. And did I mention hot. I can't help rooting for these two. As Kate and Wayne's wedding approached the couple asks Avery and Derek to remodel the carriage house behind the B&B. After all what newly wed couple wants strangers in the next room? Since this is a cozy mystery, you know what happens next. As one would expect, things get even more complicated but you won't expect the turn that the story takes next.

  • Erin
    2019-06-05 09:19

    Avery and Derek have started a new renovation project turning Kate's carriage house into a romantic getaway apartment for Kate and Wayne to live in after their wedding. Everything is going fabulously well until they discover the dead body of Kate's no-good ex (Shannon's father) laid out in the bedroom upstairs. If that weren't bad enough, Derek's stepsister vanishes, leaving her car and her cell phone at the office where she's been doing bookkeeping while she waits for her husband to realize she's left him.The third time really is a charm: I didn't guess the culprit until the very end! I had some suspicions about a few things, but I didn't figure it all out right away like in the first two books in this series. Hooray! This one is definitely my favorite so far. Fantastic cozy mystery.For readers' advisors: story and character doorways. Still no sex or violence and almost no swearing.

  • Patty
    2019-06-05 07:59

    I like this series because it involves so many different things, we have home restorers, cops, B&B owners and all their accompanying families.In this book a body is left in the carriage house of the B&B, which is being restored by Avery and Derek for Kate and soon to be husband Wayne so they can live there instead of inside the B&B.The body turns out to be the father of Kate's daughter Shannon thus making Kate, Shannon and Wayne (a cop) instant suspects, as well as Avery and Derek since they found the body.Wayne is removed from direct involvement in the case so Avery and Derek are snooping around trying to help out their friends.This is one where I actually figured out one of the big twists, something I almost never do! Still, it was a lot of fun and there was a lot of family history thrown in there to make it even more interesting.I'll continue reading this series.

  • Roxann
    2019-06-19 11:19

    From the cover: Ex-New York designer Avery Baker left the bustle of the big city to start her own home renovation business in Maine. But as she renovates an old carriage house on behalf of a soon-to-be wed friend, she stumbles across a lifeless body-a person known all too well by the blushing bride. The small town is abuzz with big suspicions, and Avery realizes she must unravel a matrimonial murder. I enjoyed the first book in this series. This book was ok. I did not like that so much time was spent looking for the people that belonged to the initials the main characters found craved in a beam. This part of the book seemed to slow everything down.

  • Catherine Farmer
    2019-06-15 07:00

    I wanted to like this book; enjoy cozy mysteries. Just couldn't bear to read it. The author either doesn't know much about remodeling buildings, or assumes her readers don't. Derek, working alone, manages to do demolition, replace a roof, wire, plumb and install new framing, in a matter of days. This is very unlikely; I've worked with top contractors for thirty years.The heroine is vapid and shallow, though pretends not to be. The line that got me to put the book down, was, "too much junk in the trunk", to refer to a supposed friend. Gag.Please stop dumbing down your books, refer to plumbing fixtures instead of listing every one, and let your heroine swing a hammer. I do.

  • Shirley Worley
    2019-06-10 08:58

    I really do like this series, although Plaster and Poison was my least favorite. I love the cast of characters and enjoyed meeting Avery and Derek's families. Avery is still quite insecure in her relationship with Derek and it doesn't seem that they have grown much as a couple since the last book. The plot was intriguing, however I got bogged down a bit toward the middle of the book. I think it might have been the sideline story when Avery tried to track the ancestral history of the carriage house carvings. Interesting, but maybe a little distracting. Anyway, great read and good series.

  • Elizabeth
    2019-06-18 07:24

    The 3rd book in the do-it-yourself fixing up series. This time Avery and her boyfriend Derek are remodeling an old carriage house at their friend Kate's B&B Inn. Kate and the chief of police are getting married and rather than live in the B&B they decide living in the carriage house would make more sense since the police chief often has to go out on night calls. There is of course a dead body in the story and his murder must be solved before the wedding on New Year's Eve. Can Avery and Derek, with the help of the police, solve it? As in the previous books people aren't always what they seem.

  • Laura Brown
    2019-06-02 07:08

    This is the first I have read by this author. I liked it, but felt sometimes like the clues planted were too obvious. I would say to myself, "ok, so I'll bet that noise is Beatrice" Well, it took another 1/3 of the book for the characters to have the same realization. But, I enjoyed the small town Maine locale Which it reminds me that all small towns, from Scotland to Georgia, are brimming with character! I'd like to read another book in the series before I decide much else.

  • Lauren
    2019-06-19 08:07

    3.7Derek and Avery have some down time- they need to sell their latest renovation before they can buy another to work on. So when Kate asks them to renovate the carriage house, its the perfect way to keep busy and make a little money. except for the dead body. what i like about this series is that you get a bit of the characters in each one. you need to read them in order, because you are getting to know them as you do. here, we spend time with Avery's mother and step father.

  • Celia
    2019-06-05 15:09

    This is a pretty good book but it's starting to veer into the category of random people investigating murders that they are not involved in. There were several times she was "investigating" that seemed really pushy and/or none of her business. Also, she looks up several people (in her small town) online, finds out their hidden secrets and then broadcasts it all over town! I'll give it one more chance but I may be done with this series.

  • Jane
    2019-05-29 14:15

    Still not as good as 1st. Avery's mom and stepdad come to town. Kate (B&B) and Wayne (police chief) getting married.Avery and Derek renovate the carriage house for the couple-to-be. Kate's ex shows up dead in the carriage house. (Also a set of initials from 1917).Cousins Ray and Randy with help from their indulgent mother are the murderers. Because the ex is jerk who found out about fixing the books and was blackmailing them.

  • Marilyn Slusher
    2019-06-08 11:56

    I do love this series. This is book three and just as the first two - this tale keeps you on your toes. Avery and Derek are renovating Kate's carriage house - a place for Kate and Wayne to live once they are married. This renovation does come with its problems - like the discovery of Kate's ex (boyfriend) body. Tie in mysterious initials carved in to beams plus a missing stepsister - you have a real humdinger of a mystery.

  • Jill
    2019-06-14 09:19

    Add together In-laws, newlyweds to be, gold digging relatives and you get murder.*** Author Jennie Bentley once again mixes home repair and murder in the third book in her the “Home-Renovation and Design Tips” mystery series. Designer Avery Baker and home renovator Derek Ellis find surprises as they work to transform an old carriage house into a romantic home for soon-to-be newlywed friends, that is, if murder doesn’t bring everything to a screeching halt first.

  • Nicky
    2019-06-01 09:05

    Really enjoying this series. But I have one complaint with this book in particular. I feel like subtle hints are presented and then pointed out just in case I wasn't smart enough to catch on. That takes away from the joy of figuring out the mystery. I did like that there were two mystery story lines going on through out the book. And good to see that Avery has a little more common sense this time around. But Avery, stop harping on Derrik about Melissa... you're going to drive him away.

  • Kimberly
    2019-06-17 11:12

    This was a very entertaining addition to this series. It introduced us to Avery's mother and stepfather, and fleshed out Derek's family. It explained Kate and Shannon's history/background and provided a sufficiently mysterious mystery. Up to the actual reveal, I was still thinking it couldn't be that person. Not enough interaction with Inky and Jemmie, but that may just be me, a confirmed cat lady. lol

  • M.E.
    2019-06-04 10:04

    This is the third book in the DIY series, and I have to say - they keep getting better. As a rule of thumb, I'm not a big cozy fan, but Bentley has created some very engaging characters who I enjoy spending time with, which is always a key ingredient in a good series. PLASTER & POISON has more layers and twists that the first two books, making it a more than worthy follow-up to books 1 & 2. And watching the relationship between Avery and Derek develop is fun too!