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review 2017-05-15 23:26
I like antiques...
The Mystery of Nevermore - C.S. Poe

I really enjoyed 'The Mystery of Nevermore' it's C. S. Poe's first book in her 'Snow and Winter' series and I enjoyed this first time offering from a new author, so needless to say when the audio book was made available for review I was more than willing to take revisit the world of Sebastian Snow and Calvin Winter. 

 

As tends to be the case with me, because I really enjoyed the book my original review is a bit on the longer side so here's the link for anyone who's curious...

The Mystery of Nevermore - original review

 

Derrick McClain is the narrator for this audiobook and over all he did a solid job with this one. His voices ticked all of my basic requirements they were consistent, unique for each individual and expressive with the added bonus that while in general Mr. McClain's voices worked for me, I really liked the voice that he put to Calvin Winter. Calvin's voice in the audiobook was a very close match to the Calvin who occupied my head when I first read this one.

 

So over all my rating for this one hasn't changed it's still a 4.5 star experience that I very much enjoyed and look forward to seeing where things go in future with this series.

 

********************

An audiobook of 'The Mystery of Nevermore' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2017-01-05 16:30
Nope. Nopety Nope.
The Mystery of Nevermore - C.S. Poe

The protag was one of the worst I ever met while reading.

 

He was selfish, whiny, stubborn, TSTL, needy, and extremely stupid.

I hated his guts.

 

The totally unrealistic and boring insta-love-fest with the tough cop was only icing on the cake.

 

This felt like a bad fan-fic version of the Adrien-English-series. 

 

antiques-dealer/book shop owner

color blind/heart condition

love interest is strong, tough cop

falls for cop

cliche-ridden Edgar Allen Poe Murder Mystery (Please for the love of all things written stop writing mysteries about Poe stories!!!)

cop in the closet

amateur sleuthing

 

What was definitely not Adrien English: mediocre writing, boring/unrealistic/stupid MCs, Insta-love-fest, unnecessary drama, totally unsexy dirty talk (ewwwwwe), total lack of fun or wit...

 

Nope.

 

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2016-09-17 03:06
Started okay went downhill fast.
The Mystery of Nevermore - C.S. Poe

Snow & Winter: Book One

It’s Christmas, and all antique dealer Sebastian Snow wants is for his business to make money and to save his floundering relationship with closeted CSU detective, Neil Millett. When Snow’s Antique Emporium is broken into and a heart is found under the floorboards, Sebastian can’t let the mystery rest. 

 

He soon finds himself caught up in murder investigations that echo the macabre stories of Edgar Allan Poe. To make matters worse, Sebastian’s sleuthing is causing his relationship with Neil to crumble, while at the same time he’s falling hard for the lead detective on the case, Calvin Winter. Sebastian and Calvin must work together to unravel the mystery behind the killings, despite the mounting danger and sexual tension, before Sebastian becomes the next victim.

 

In the end, Sebastian only wants to get out of this mess alive and live happily ever after with Calvin.

 

Review:

Dear C.S.Poe,

I really enjoyed probably the first quarter of this book. I mean, I liked Sebastian’s voice throughout the story, I just started rolling my eyes at the characters’ actions and it significantly lessened my enjoinment of the later parts. So, the blurb correctly describes the set up – for the most part anyway, because not once did I feel that Sebastian actually *wanted* to save his relationship with Neal, but everything else seems to be accurate. We have um, bookseller (sorry – antique dealer) with um, heart’s condition (sorry – eyes’ condition) who lives with closeted detective. Seriously, I am guessing the writer quite deliberately made a choice to invoke memories of Adrien English and Jake from Josh Lanyon’s series considering that the book has a dedication to “Josh, master of mystery who helped me find my own voice again”. If the choice to invoke those associations was not deliberate, well, it happened to me anyway.

So, Neil comes to his store and together with his assistant they find a heart there. They call detectives of course and Sebastian sees Calvin and really likes what he sees. But Sebastian has Neil at home and Neil comes to the store as well, when Sebastian calls him, but does not want anybody to know that they are together and says that they are friends.

It looks like that the main reason why Sebastian and Neil are fighting is because Sebastian does not want to be Neil’s secret anymore. Now, when I see this conflict in the book I always say the same thing – I am a straight woman, I cannot judge it. I can say that I always felt that it is nobody’s business but this character whether to come out of closet or not, and on his own terms. Having said that, I respect that Sebastian wanted the relationship out in the open - I just could not help but feel that he was being a bit of an ass towards Neil and author wanted me to feel bad for poor Sebastian. Walk away Sebastian if you feel that strongly no? But once again besides connecting or not connecting with the characters emotionally, I do not feel like I could not agree or disagree with their choices.

So, you could probably guess that discovery of the heart was just the beginning and soon Sebastian stumbles upon a murder and becomes kind of a suspect for a little bit, police is asking him for an alibi and he tells them that he was home with the boyfriend and gives them Neil’s name. Basically he effectively outs Neil at work. Did I feel he was being an ass? Absolutely, but he thought he would be arrested otherwise. Should he get a pass on that? I have no idea. Anyway, Neil is pissed and finally walks out. Sebastian tells him that if he walks out, he would change the locks, but the way I interpreted his mood is that he was relieved whether he would admit it to himself or not.

This is all happens in the first fifteen – twenty percent of the book and then somewhere in the twenty percent range Calvin pays Sebastian a visit again, asks him case related questions, tells him that he could be connected to murders and then… offers to suck him off. No, really he does.

So, I just want to note for the record – since that moment any time Calvin was going on about official police business I pictured him in the clown suit, I could not take him seriously anymore. Look, I figured they were going to get together, blurb was pretty clear on that point, but could have the author create a better timing? Maybe when Sebastian was not officially a suspect anymore?! Even Sebastian himself seemed shocked. He was happy, but shocked too. He was thinking something along the lines – one second I am accused of murder and another I am getting the best blowjob ever. Eh, good for you Sebastian?

Also please note that all of this happens while Ross and Rachel (sorry Sebastian and Neil) were on a break and did not officially break up yet. The cheating aspect did not bother me one bit, I thought the author actually established quite well that Sebastian had enough of his relationship and as much as I thought he was a little bit of an ass about pushing Neil out of closet, Neil did not seem to be very kind to him either. I thought it was clear that those two would be better apart than together, but if any kind of cheating bothers you please beware.

I was pleased that Sebastian admitted to himself very fast that he indeed cheated and he at least did not lie to Neil at all, I was glad when they parted and hope it was permanent.

I thought Calvin’s and Sebastian’s attraction developed very fast. This is book one so I hope they will have time to develop more meaningful relationship and hopefully a little less of “sweetie and baby” – this is just a personal preference of course, but especially “sweetie” grated on me.

I was also pleased to hear that Sebastian was self- aware enough to realize that he substituted one closeted detective for another, so maybe Neil being closeted was not a real issue? Although at the end Calvin makes a step out of the closet, so maybe it was a real issue? I don’t know.

The mystery plot is very much related to Edgar Allan Poe’s books and I will let you find out all about the mystery if you decide to read the book. It was entertaining enough, but I thought suspect was pretty obvious (not because of anything he did plot wise, but because of how he was introduced) and I thought red herring suspect was a little clumsily done.

I also want to share that at the end of mystery investigation Sebastian showed some exceptional stupidity. I was perfectly okay with him getting involved in police investigation simply because when I see that the book contains civilian sleuth, I go into the book with the mindset of suspending disbelief on this issue already. But this also could be done more or less believably and preferably without making sleuth look like a total idiot. So, you decide .

When he has a revelation who the murderer is, he decides to go to the gathering where murderer would be *several hours later* to catch him alone. He cannot call Calvin (despite Calvin asking him several times to come to him with everything new about the case), because he is afraid that murderer (who is not a policeman or a former Marine, recipient of Medal of Honor) will come after Calvin (who is a policeman and a former Marine, recipient of Medal of Honor) and hurt him. I guess the thought of asking other cops to come and check out the gathering did not enter Sebastian’s head. He also has time to go into Calvin’s apartment before gathering and writes his thoughts about who the murderer is so Calvin could catch him if Sebastian ends up dead. The thought of murderer coming after Calvin when Sebastian would be dead is not so worry-some anymore?

Grade: C-

 

 

 

 

 

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review 2016-09-15 23:31
The Mystery of Nevermore
The Mystery of Nevermore - C.S. Poe

Unprofessional professional

Cop sucks main suspects dick five seconds after telling him he's suspected of two murders. Like, at least wait until he's cleared of the charges, jeez! I'm supposed to be rooting for this guy?!

(spoiler show)

and TSTL. Why do authors do this? WHY???

 

 

I was hopeful about this one too. *sigh*

 

And it's pretty much a ripoff of Adrien English. If I want to read Adrien English, I'll read Adrien English, not an "homage" to it.

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review 2016-08-27 21:18
New to me authors can often be a good thing...
The Mystery of Nevermore - C.S. Poe

Before I get into the details of why I actually loved this book so much let's just take a moment to admire the pretty cover because it's a big chunk of the reason why I decided to check this book out. It's not over the top or incredibly colorful it's just quietly subtle and once you read the book you realize it's very appropriate to the story. So overall it's a cover that does it's job and a little extra. See that guy the one right there on that cover that I'm babbling about he's totally Sebastian Snow...seriously I could maybe google around and find someone other pictures but I'm betting they'll still look like that guy on the cover. Ok, I'm done with my little tribute to good covers.

 

Like others who have reviewed this book I'm going to comment on what we'll call 'The Adrien English' influence. Yes, I noticed fairly early in the book that it was reminiscent of another series that I truly love Josh Lanyon's Adrien English, however, 'The Mystery of Nevermore' was also it's own strongly unique story. I'm not going to bother with a list of what was similar and what was different because I think that's something that each reader needs to decide for themselves. I'll also add here that I tend to read the author's dedication in books to see who maybe influenced or inspired them while they were writing that particular book and I think it removes a lot of doubt as to who C.S. Poe was inspired by...

For Josh, the Master of Mystery.

You gave me the courage to find my voice again.

 

Now let's discuss why I gave this book 4.5 stars because i kid you not the cover had nothing to do with it. I just really liked the cover but that works well because I really, really liked this story. So much so that I am more than anxious to read what comes next and since this is the first book in a new series by a new to me author there is definitely more to come right? 

 

C.S. Poe is a new to me author and from the looks of things a new to publishing author as well, which really excites me because I'm hoping that it means she has a whole bunch of awesome stories to share with readers like me.

 

'The Mystery of Nevermore' starts out with more time invested in the mystery part of the story than the romance which for me was ok, because I love a good mystery and this one definitely was and more importantly this is why Sebastian and Calvin meet. Much of what happens involving the mystery is related to the writings of Edgar Allan Poe one of America's most notable authors and a man whose life seemed to be shrouded in mystery. 

 

Sebastian Winter is the owner of Snow's Antique Emporium and the love interest of one very closeted cop named Neil, with whom his relationship is sinking fast...like the Titanic fast. When strange things start happening to Sebastian and other antique dealers around the city Sebastian suddenly falls under the scrutiny of Detective Calvin Winter. it's amidst the chaos of things falling apart between Neil and Sebastian and Sebastian's growing attraction to Detective Winter and all the general confusion of strange happenings and dead bodies that we see things end between Sebastian and Neil and heat up between Sebastian and Calvin and yes, even Sebastian knows he's jumping from the frying pan possibly into the fire but the heart wants what the heart wants.

 

I was delighted with the characters in this book. There was Sebastian's father a retired professor of literature and his dog Maggie. Max, Sebastian's employee at the antique store. Beth the bookstore owner next door to Snow's Antique Emporium and seriously folks I want to be Beth...I could be Beth we're about the same age and we both love  books what more do you need...oh, I have gray in my hair and I love cats...see I am Beth plus I could totally work a cat skirt. Then there's Neil, who I'm pretty sure was so far in that closet that he had his hand on the door to Narnia. He wasn't a bad person a little self-centered and self-absorbed maybe, no to mention that he just didn't love Sebastian enough to be what he needed and last but not least Calvin Winter. I really liked Calvin. He was brave and honorable and so much more damaged than Sebastian first realized, but most of all he genuinely wanted to be the man that Calvin needed. There were also a few other minor characters who added interest to this story but these are the ones that I feel we are likely to see in future books from this series.

 

While I may have had my suspicions about who the culprit was it wasn't until the author took me on a merry goose chase that had me squirreling from person to person until we got close to the end that I really felt sure. As for Sebastian and Calvin did they get their happily ever after...well, to me it was more like a happy for now with a strong promise of tomorrow and I like that because at the end of the day it's often all any of us truly gets.

 

I'm not sure when book 2 is being released but I do know I'll drop whatever I'm doing to jump into it and go on another adventure with Snow & Winter...oops, I almost forgot for those of you who might be wondering Calvin = hot, sexy, muscular GINGER!!!! with freckles...oh yeah, he's all that (I looked for him in a suit, honest I did!)

 

********************

 

A copy of "The Mystery of Nevermore' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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