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Reviewed by Susan Sewell for Readers' Favorite
There are no leads in the murder of a well-liked Santa Fe school teacher and the killer still roams free to kill again in the suspenseful murder mystery, A Pilgrimage to Death (A Reverend Cici Gurule Mystery Book 1) by Alexa Padgett. Since Reverend Cici Gurule's identical twin sister, Anna Carmen, was murdered a little over a year ago, Cici left her position in a Boston church and took charge of a parish in her hometown of Santa Fe. Attempting to move past Anna Carmen's death, Cici has been trying to lead a normal life by living one day at a time. Hiking in the nearby forest is one of the ways she uses to cope with her pain. While climbing the trail, Cici is surprised to feel Anna Carmen's presence. The surprise immediately turns to shock with the subsequent discovery of a corpse. The condition of the man's body is reminiscent of Anna Carmen's untimely demise. With the occurrence of this new homicide, Cici now finds herself in the middle of a dangerous conspiracy that has ties to her twin. Without any clues as to why Anna Carmen was killed, the reason for her death remains a mystery. What had Anna Carmen been doing that reaches beyond the grave and endangers those she left behind?
The "voice" of the dead, guiding the heroine in her search for the truth, is an intriguing paranormal aspect of the brilliant sleuth murder mystery, A Pilgrimage to Death by Alexa Padgett. I love a good murder mystery, especially if the protagonist is a little bit different. With Cici being a motorcycle-riding, beer-drinking reverend who has medium-like connections with her twin, this whodunit definitely fits the criteria for being unique. It is a thrilling cozy mystery filled with drama, suspense, and murder; all of which held me spellbound until the exciting finale. There is enough action, blood, and death in this "unputdownable" book to satisfy die-hard mystery fans without being offensive to those of a more sensitive nature. A Pilgrimage to Death is an enticing springboard for a spectacular sleuth series. I highly recommend it to those who love unusual amateur detectives with a "never-give-up" attitude and a little far-fetched help from the Otherside.