Liz Konkel at Reader’s Favorite gave this review of A Painting to Die For. You can Preorder your copy here!
A Painting to Die For by Joan C. Curtis is the third book in the Jenna Scali Mystery series. Jenna Scali has always loved a painting of her father’s that was supposed to be hers one day, only it went to her aunt when he died. Imagine her surprise when her cousins randomly show up, claiming the painting has been stolen, and that they found something valuable hidden behind it. When Jenna’s house is broken into and ransacked, she refuses to believe it’s her cousins’ fault. Surely it can’t be connected the painting, can it? After two bodies are found with a connection to her, she knows the situation is more confusing and dangerous than her cousins are willing to admit. What can her cousins be keeping from her? Turning to her best friend, Quentin, for help, Jenna takes on yet another mystery, determined to find answers before anyone else turns up dead.
Tied to the past and Jenna’s family history, the plot revolves around the painting and its true origins in a riveting mystery. Her cousins are a huge focus throughout, making it easy to be as confused as Jenna as to whether or not to trust them. Jenna is a spunky and strong-willed sleuth, making the insanity that her cousins dragged her into a fun romp of an adventure. Quentin is her main ally as she investigates, and their relationship is one of the strongest parts of the story. They’re loving and devoted, with some humorous and zippy banter, making every scene in which they’re together a fun time. The other characters rotate, but each one is perfectly fitted to the world and shows that Jenna has a well-rounded life that just happens to get a bit crazy with mysteries every once and a while. The scene where her friends show up to help her get her house back in order after it was ransacked is sweet, and reveals how dedicated and close their relationships are. Joan C. Curtis delivers an interesting twist at the end that’s gusty, emotional, and gives a satisfying conclusion. A Painting to Die For is funny and delightful, with a charming connection to history and full of family drama. A must-read for any cozy mystery lover!
Kris Moger of Reader’s Favorite gave this 5-Star review.
A Painting to Die For by Joan C. Curtis is a mystery novel about a young woman caught up in the mess of a cryptic family secret. Jenna’s father had promised to leave her a special painting after he died but, for some reason, he left it to her aunt instead. Then, in the middle of the night, Jenna receives a frantic phone call from her cousin, informing her that the painting had been stolen. Confusion mounts as her cousins’ visit raises more questions than answers. After a break-in, strange phone calls, a dead body with a note, and an unexpected discovery, Jenna starts to have serious doubts about her father and her family. However, this was all just the beginning of the deception and secrets in her family’s past. As she uncovers layer after layer of deceit, will Jenna survive the truth?
I love mysteries. They are my favourite genre, especially on a stormy night when I curl up in a blanket with a great story and a good cup of tea. A Painting to Die For turned out to be perfect for a chilly fall weekend, especially since the main character loves cats and Agatha Christie. In this novel, Joan C. Curtis sets up a mystery filled with danger and more questions than answers. The well-rounded and diverse characters are fantastic as well. Jenna drives the story forward with her honest portrayal of a person whose whole image of her family is torn apart by what seems to be a devastating past. I would recommend A Painting to Die For to anyone who loves a well-paced mystery that keeps you guessing.
You can preorder A Painting to Die For today for just $2.99.