book cover of Smile Beach Murder
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Smile Beach Murder

(2022)
(The first book in the Outer Banks Bookshop Mystery series)
A novel by

 
 
From author Alicia Bessette comes an all-new mystery series featuring Callie Padget, a former reporter turned bookshop clerk in the Outer Banks who is pulled into a deadly web of secrets when a mysterious fall at a lighthouse echoes a tragedy from her past.

When Callie is laid off from her reporting job, she returns to her hometown of Cattail Island and lands a gig at the local bookstore—the same one where she found comfort after her mother died. 

In fact, the anniversary of her mother’s infamous death is approaching. Years ago, Teri Padget tumbled from the top of the lighthouse. As islanders are once again gossiping about the tragedy, devastating news strikes: the lighthouse has claimed another victim. Eva Meeks, of Meeks Hardware. 

The police are calling it suicide, but Callie does not believe Eva jumped any more than she believes her mother did—especially because Callie knows that before her death, Eva had dug up a long-forgotten treasure hunt that could have put a target on Eva’s back. 

In Callie’s search for answers, she enlists the help of some beloved books and several new friends, including the handsome local martial arts instructor, Toby Dodge. But when another death rocks Cattail Island, Callie must face her fears alone. As she earns enemies in pursuit of the truth, Callie knows she will either uncover the killer or become a victim herself.



Genre: Cozy Mystery

Praise for this book

"Eva Meeks did not commit suicide--of that Callie Padget is sure. Her own mother was thought to die that way. But Callie knew Eva too well to believe that. Now it's up to her to figure out just what happene--despite the danger. Alicia Bessette's gift for description will transport you to Cattail Island and the salty air of coastal North Carolina. [A] must read!" - Lorna Barrett

"A whirlwind of a story that delights with sand, spindrift, and Blackbeard's treasure. This book is, literally, a beach read! Bessette's stunning new cozy swept me off to the Outer Banks and had me turning pages right up to the twisty (and thrilling!) conclusion. Upbeat prose, likable characters, and a strong sense of place. Best of all, the stealthy scatter of clues leads to a whopping good payoff. This delightful new mystery oozes with tension, eccentric characters, and bursts of slick prose. It definitely got my blood fizzing." - Laura Childs

"A perfectly plotted mystery from a wonderful writer, Smile Beach Murder is everything I want from a cozy--barrier-island beaches, a welcoming bookshop, a quaint small town--all balanced against deep secrets and complicated deaths. Callie Padget is a sharp and compassionate amateur sleuth with a compelling backstory, and a quirky cast of characters, family and townspeople alike, round out the story. I can't wait to see what washes up next on the shores of Cattail Island!" - J T Ellison

"Smile Beach Murder is a must read for all mystery lovers. Bessette has taken all of the best components of a cozy mystery and layered the story with complicated characters, a compelling plot, a fabulous setting, and a very relatable amateur sleuth. This mystery was so engaging and engrossing, I couldn't put it down! I hope there are many more mysteries to come with Callie Padget and Cattail Island." - Jenn McKinlay

"I love every wise, graceful word Alicia Bessette writes, and Smile Beach Murder is a perfect example of why: Her descriptions are so vivid you can feel salty tang of the ocean breeze, and her pages are populated by quirky, unique characters. Throw in a murder with eerie echos of the past, and you've got a recipe for an absolutely terrific summer read." - Sarah Pekkanen

"Smile Beach Murder had me on the edge of my seat! When Callie returns to Cattail Island, the last thing she wants to do is dig into the past, but a present-day murder forces long-buried secrets to the surface. Cozy fans will love how mystery novels are a touchstone in this wonderful series debut by Alicia Bessette." - Peggy Rothschild

"Alicia Bessette's vibrant descriptions and multifaceted characters paint such a vivid picture of the Outer Banks of North Carolina and the often eccentric, laid-back lifestyle that is island life, reading Smile Beach Murder is like taking a relaxing beach vacation...with a little dose of murder thrown in. You will smell the sea air, hear waves crash against the shore, and feel the warm sand between your toes as you join booklover Callie Padget on her quest to come to terms with her past and catch a modern-day murderer." - Annelise Ryan


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Used availability for Alicia Bessette's Smile Beach Murder

Hardback Editions

August 2022 : Library Binding
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Title: Smile Beach Murder
Author(s): Alicia Bessette
Publisher: Thorndike Press Large Print
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


May 2022 : USA Hardback
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Title: Smile Beach Murder (Outer Banks Bookshop Mystery)
Author(s): Alicia Bessette
ISBN: 0-593-33688-7 / 978-0-593-33688-5 (USA edition)
Publisher: Berkley
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Audio Editions

May 2022 : USA Audio edition
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Title: Smile Beach Murder
Author(s): Alicia Bessette
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Availability: Amazon   


May 2022 : Australia Audio edition
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Title: Smile Beach Murder
Author(s): Alicia Bessette
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Availability: Amazon AU   


May 2022 : Canada Audio edition
thumb

Title: Smile Beach Murder
Author(s): Alicia Bessette
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Availability: Amazon CA   


May 2022 : UK Audio edition
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Title: Smile Beach Murder
Author(s): Alicia Bessette
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Availability: Amazon UK   


Kindle Editions

May 2022 : USA, Australia, Canada, UK Kindle edition
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Title: Smile Beach Murder (Outer Banks Bookshop Mystery Book 1)
Author(s): Alicia Bessette
Publisher: Berkley
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU