Left Fur Dead
By J. M. Griffin
A Jules & Bun Mystery #1
On Fur Bridge Farm, Jules cares for rescued rabbits. But when a killer strikes, she’ll need a rabbit to rescue her . . .
Juliette “Jules” Bridge prides herself on the tender rehabilitation she provides for injured or abused rabbits on her New Hampshire rescue farm, but she has a very special relationship with one bunny in particular. Bun is a black-and-white rabbit who happens to have the ability to communicate through mental telepathy. Once she got over the shock, Jules found her furry friend had a lot to say.
One frigid March morning on their walk together, Bun spots a body. The police identify the frozen stiff as Arthur Freeman, aka Arty the Mime. Jules and Arty knew each other on the children’s party circuit, where he’d perform magic tricks and she had an educational rabbit petting pen. With Bun egging her on, Jules decides it’s time they hop to it and put their heads together to discover who silenced the mime. But their investigation leads them down a rabbit hole of more suspects and lies, while a killer sets a trap for them . . .
A protagonist duo, one of which is a talking rabbit named … Bun. Okay, you have to suspend belief a little bit here, but this is fiction after all. I normally steer clear of fantasy or supernatural elements in my reading, especially talking animals, but it works well in J. M. Griffin’s new cozy mystery, Left Fur Dead. I couldn’t resist trying this story and I’m so glad I did. This is a fun story, tender and emotional, with lots of light-hearted moments; impossible to read without smiling much of the time.
Left Fur Dead is a fresh and different – dare I say, unique – novel in a cozy mystery field highly populated with cooking themes. I loved New Hampshire rescue farm owner Jules Bridge, and I adored her telepathic bunny. Meet Bun, who, according to Jules, is…
Not your average rabbit, Bun’s smart, sociable, talkative, and very talented. His specialty is pure nosiness. He communicates with me by way of mental telepathy … when Bun talks, I’ve learned to listen.
When Jules and Bun go for walks in the New Hampshire countryside, with Bun happily snuggled in a sling pouch, I am completely engaged in their conversations. I’m a big fan of animal rescue shelters, so this story was easy to connect with. I loved the farm and the rescue work of Jules, also with the potential future of a veterinary clinic on site, and I enjoyed learning about the care of these rabbits.
Jules also reached out to the community with educational events and working with children at birthday parties, etc. It was through these parties that she met the murder victim, a fellow entertainer (mime) named Arty. Guilty party and solution weren’t easy to figure out and I enjoyed following along in the adventure with Jules and Bun.
My favorite part of the story was the rescue farm and getting to know main characters of the series. The writing is strong and clean; I loved that there wasn’t a lot of unnecessary descriptive fillers to slow the action down. I didn’t fully understand why Jules wanted to investigate, but that’s okay. In future stories, I’d like to see a toning down of attacks on Jules and more logical, step-by-step investigation of the crime.
Left Fur Dead begins what promises to be a truly engaging mystery series and I will be following the adventures of Jules and Bun.
I received a copy of this book through Great Escapes Tours. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.
J. M. Griffin is the bestselling cozy mystery author of sixteen novels, including the Vinnie Esposito series. She lives in rural Rhode Island with her husband and two very mysterious cats. Visit her at jm-griffin.com.