Skeleton’s Key by Stacy Green

December 13th, 2013 Kimberly Review 45 Comments

13th Dec
Skeleton’s Key by Stacy Green
Skeleton's Key
by Stacy Green
Series: Delta Crossroads #2
Genres: Mystery, Romantic Suspense
Source: Author
Purchase*: Amazon *affiliate
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

Cage Foster can’t catch a break. The discovery of a dusty skeleton in the antebellum home he’s caring for is bad enough. But the unearthing of two fresh bodies, buried during his tenure at Ironwood Plantation, may land Cage on Mississippi’s death row. Even worse, the one person certain of his innocence is a pushy Yankee newcomer, a woman who talks too fast and still believes in the romance of the Old South. A specialist in historical renovation, Dani Evans intends to restore Ironwood to its former glory while she rebuilds her life after the death of her mother. Death, hidden treasure, and falling in love with a murder suspect were not part of the plan. The lure of the infamous Ironwood treasure cache convinces Dani the skeleton is the key to unraveling the legend, and that the treasure itself is the motive for the murders. Cage is certain an old grudge is setting him up for murder, but the evidence against him is mounting and time is running out. Dani believes she can find the truth before Cage is arrested, but her search for answers will uncover a descent into madness that should have stayed buried.

In July, I reviewed, Tin God, the first book in Stacy Green’s Delta Crosswords romantic suspense series and enjoyed it. I was eager to begin Cage’s story in,  Skeleton’s Key. While this is book two, each of the novels work as a standalone. Once again Green delivered a gripping murder mystery in the heart of Mississippi. A historic plantation, secret rooms, murder and a side dish of romance had me flipping the pages to uncover the truth. Mini review: fascinating, suspenseful. Small-town charm and a little romance made this an entertaining read.

Cage Foster, a local police officer and caretaker for the Ironwood Plantation discovers an old skeleton in the dirt floor of the cellar and contacts the new owner Dani Evans. When she arrives, noises in the night and a raccoon uncover fresh bodies. Cage quickly finds himself suspect number one. Imagine his surprise when Dani is one of the few people who believe he is innocent. The tale that unfolds was suspenseful as together they searched for clues and developed their relationship.

We met Cage in the previous novel, and we know the heartache he has suffered. Cage believes in preserving Mississippi’s history and loves taking care of the Ironwood plantation. Its recent sale to a Yankee has him concerned, and he is determined not to like the new owner. I liked Cage, he is a good old boy and easy on the eye. He is a faithful friend, works hard for the community and has that southern charm that makes you swoon. Dani Evans has recently lost her mother and is fulfilling a dream they both shared. She has been working as a restorer and has a fascination with the past. These two are funny together. She talks too fast, and her romantic notations regarding the south make Cage crazy, but her belief in him moves him. I loved watching their relationship move from dislike to attraction to something more. Green did an excellent job of developing the characters and gave us a health list of suspects. From villains to over eager detectives these characters added to the overall suspense.

Skeleton’s Key has elements of a cozy mystery, wrapped in romantic suspense and it kept me engaged. Green brings the town of Roselea, Mississippi to life from the townsfolk to the old plantations. She shares its rich history allowing you to imagine the south in its grandeur. Besides being a pretty intense murder mystery, Skeleton’s Key was also a fascinating look at the Ironwood plantation and its history from slaves to the civil war. Green has an easy flow to her tales, and the details while rich didn’t weigh down the tale, instead they draw you in giving you a panoramic view. I could feel the oppressive, sticky heat and imagine sitting on a rocker sipping overly sweeten tea. While, in the beginning, the romance felt a little rushed, the overall thread felt believable, and I was able to connect with this couple. The murder thread was well done, with twists and believable suspects. I loved how Green tied all of the clues together cementing my faith in her as a mystery writer. I closed the book satisfied and eager to return to this small town.

Fans of romantic suspense, history, cozy mysteries and small towns will enjoy Skeleton’s Key. Stacy Green has become a favorite mystery writer for me, and I am looking forward to visiting the Delta Crossroads series again.

Four and half cups of coffee
One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

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About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. Whovian, Ravenclaw, Howler and proud Nonna. She owns and manages Caffeinated PR. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat. Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

45 Responses to “Skeleton’s Key by Stacy Green”

  1. Stacy Green

    Hi Kimberly! I’m so sorry I’m just now posting. We had a swim meet and a birthday party this weekend. Chaos:)

    Thank you for your wonderful review. I’m so happy you liked the book, especially after you enjoyed Tin God so well.

    Writing Dani and Cage was a lot of fun, and their chemistry sort of dictated the romance. Thanks again!

  2. Lily B

    Interesting. Never heard of this series. Cage sounds like a great character and the storyline is fascinating.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Sweet, I love introduces peeps to indie authors I have discovered.

  3. Pamela D

    This sounds like a lovely book. I just moved to PA from the South, so this sounds like a perfect read. I miss the heat and sweet tea!

  4. Stephanie

    Sounds like a great mystery! I love when books in a series work as stand alones. 🙂 Thanks for sharing! Great review!

  5. Diamond

    So I just started reading your review and skipped the blurb and it took me a paragraph to realize this wasn’t “the” skeleton key. Lol. I just thought of the movie and (wasn’t it based on a book?) it kinda sounds like that. Idk why but I would love to own a skeleton key..
    Oh my look at me blabbing about everything except your review! Lol. Great review, Kim. Although I hate the cover, it sounds like a good story and mystery! 😀

  6. Candace

    This one sounds like it has a lot of elements I like! I’ll have to make sure I look up the first book now. I’m not sure if I remember your review…

  7. Andrea

    Honestly, I never read mystery. The romantic suspense aspect does sound good to me, though. Glad you’re continuing to enjoy the series!

  8. Lauren

    I always find such amazing romantic suspense reads on your blog, and this sounds like another one I definitely need to try. I’m a sucker for Southern charm, so I think I’m going to be a fan of Cage. Glad the mystery was well done too. Lovely review!

  9. Heidi

    Now this is a mystery book that I would totally like. I love anything that pertains to the historic South and the Civil War. Having and old planatation and dipping into that history would totally appeal to me! Have to add this to my list.

  10. Kristin

    You find all the cozy mysteries!! I love that you gave this a 4.5 review – it seems like a while over the summer you were just stuck reading middle of the road 3’s and 3.5’s (I pay attention, I’m weird, I like a happy reviewer!!!). I love the southern settings and thrown in a damn yankee and it DOES sound great!!! Awesome review!!!!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      LOL, I have had some awesome reads this fall, hmm couple of 3’s this week, but still solid reads!

  11. kindlemom1

    This does sound really good! Glad you liked it every bit as much as the first Kim.

    Have a wonderful weekend! Only two more weekends until Christmas!!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      sssh, I haven’t even started my Christmas shopping yet…first time in 25 years of marriage that I wasn’t completely done by the 10th

      • kindlemom1

        I won’t tell! If it makes you feel better this is the first time in a really long time I didn’t start shopping in July! I know that sounds early but I like to pick things up here and there and save them and I didn’t do that at all this year. I waited until after Thanksgiving and was super stressed about it! I am almost done (finally!) just two more things to get and then I am calling it good!!

        • kimbacaffeinate

          Well to be honest, my kids are adults and a trip to Best Buy and Kohls and I will be done..LOL. My new rugs come Monday and Tuesday my new furniture. So I am hoping maybe tomorrow afternoon and next Thursday. That way I can bake next weekend.

  12. Mary

    Ooh, a cozy with romantic suspense? SOunds fabulous. I like the setting (being a Southern transplant myself) and do like a good Good Ole Boy (the non-racist ones. The others are just arses.).

  13. Jenea

    Cage and Dani sounds so different, but so good for each other too. The mystery sounds like a good one too. Great review.