One of my favorite mystery series is Earlene Fowler’s Benni Harper. Each book is named for a quilt pattern.
I just finished the most recent.
If you’re unfamiliar with Earlene and Benni, allow me to introduce you.
Benni Harper Ortiz lives in a fictional San Luis Obispo, California called San Celina. If you know the central coast, you know the setting.
Benni is the curator for the local art museum.
In book one, she’s a still grieving widow who gets drawn into a mystery. Gabe Ortiz, the new police chief in town, doesn’t like her poking in her nose . At the end of book two, she marries him.
There are wonderful secondary characters such as Benni’s father, her grandmother Dove, and Dove’s husband. Benni has a best friend, Elvia, who’s married to Benni’s cousin.
In Spider Web a few years have gone by since the beginning of the series. Benni now goes by Benni Ortiz. A sniper is taking potshots at local policemen. Gabe’s PTSD is triggered by the shootings. A stranger is town is asking Benni a lot of personal questions about her life and her marriage.
It all adds up to another great Benni Harper Ortiz book.
Earlene has also written two stand alone books. The Saddlemaker’s Wife and Love Mercy.
A new Earlene Fowler book typically comes out each spring. Spider Web was 2011’s offering. I can’t see a release date for Earlene’s next book, but on Facebook she mentioned researching her next book, a sequel to The Saddlemaker’s Wife which was set in Bishop, California.
I enjoyed both the stand alones, but I really love Benni Harper Ortiz and her adventures.
If you’re new to Earlene’s books, the Benni Harper series is best read in order, starting with Fool’s Puzzle.