In The Winter Woods || Christmas ARC Review

Title: In The Winter Woods
Author: Isabelle Adler
Series/Number: N/A
Genre: Holiday, Mystery, Contemporary, LGBTQ+
Age: Adult
Publication Date: December 14, 2020 
Publisher: NineStar Press
Themes: Murder, Parental death, grief, small town, M/M Romance


Declan Kensington isn’t really in the mood for Christmas. His latest mystery book sales are tanking, his finances are in a dismal state, and his spirits are anything but festive. Perhaps spending the holidays alone at his family lakeside cabin in the small village of Maplewood, Vermont, will provide him much-needed peace and quiet. Then he might finally get to work on a new book and (hopefully) jumpstart his stalling writing career.

When he starts receiving anonymous letters threatening him to leave, Declan realizes his solitary writer’s retreat isn’t at all what he bargained for. And if the threats aren’t enough, a killer strikes, casting Declan in the role of the most likely suspect. Now it’s up to him and the handsome local Public Safety Commissioner Curtis Monroe to find out the truth before Declan spends Christmas (and the rest of his life) in jail. But as dead bodies pile up and dark secrets are revealed beneath Maplewood’s picture-perfect facade, Declan’s heart may yet be in more danger than his life…

Thank you to NetGalley and NineStar Press for an eARC of this title.

I have never read a cozy mystery before. I have, however, watched a number of cozy mystery movies. I didn’t know what to expect from this book and though the plot was very similar to the movies I had seen, in terms of format and themes, it was incredibly interesting and gripping.

I honestly loved the main character, Declan. The whole idea of a mystery writer getting stuck in the middle of a murder case just screams some great moments. I mean, I loved how he was so into it and interested. I also really loved that this was a queer mystery. It was incredibly lovely to see. I really enjoyed the relationship development between Declan and Curtis.

This story was great and honestly I can see myself looking into some more cozy mysteries. I would absolutely love to read more from Declan and Curtis if that was ever an option.

Rating: 3.5/5

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