Horses and Corpses

Fiction - Mystery - Sleuth
223 Pages
Reviewed on 09/10/2022
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Susan Sewell for Readers' Favorite

A young woman searches for a killer to prove her and her best friend's innocence in the fascinating amateur sleuth mystery, Horses and Corpses (Cody Costin Cozy Mystery: Book 3) by Sharyn Bradford Lunn. After returning from a day of riding with her new BFF, Carla, Cody can't find Dan, the Hale Ranch's stable hand. While caring for the horses themselves, Cody and Carla are shocked to discover Dan's body in one of the horse's stalls, with a pitchfork protruding from his chest. When the detective assigned to the case starts questioning them, Cody and Carla realize they are suspects. Already nosy by nature, Cody isn't going to let the mystery behind Dan's death lie dormant. Despite her parents' and the detective's caution to leave the case alone, Cody starts investigating everyone who had contact with Dan. As Cody delves into the backgrounds of those relevant to Dan, she uncovers some shocking secrets. Can Cody relay them to the police before the killer stops her? Or is she already too late?

Horses and Corpses by Sharyn Bradford Lunn is a sensational murder mystery. Set against the mountains of Colorado, the charming and intimate backdrop is the ideal foil for a gruesome murder. Laced with intrigue, a little misdirection, and a hint of suspense, the story captures the reader's imagination. With her attitude, Cody's character is engaging and likable. I appreciated her concern for her friends, family members, and those in need. These aspects are commendable and only made me like her more. Although the third in the series, this book does very well as a standalone. Light and entertaining, this enchanting novel will charm and delight those who enjoy cozy mysteries.

Emily-Jane Hills Orford

Cody has an unnatural ability to stumble upon dead bodies, although she tries not to. In fact, she’s busy trying to enjoy her summer break, riding the range in Colorado with her new friend, Carla. The recent hack was an adventure of its own, but when they return to the stable and can’t find the trusty stable hand, Dan, she and Carla care for the horses, only to find Dan's missing body in one of the stalls; not a great end to an exhausting day of riding. And, to make matters worse, this mysterious death is complex, one with a history of its own. With multiple suspects, the web tightens and the plot thickens, but not without a bit of romance thrown in for good measure and a lot of horses and dogs.

Sharyn Bradford Lunn’s novel, Horses and Corpses, is a cozy mystery set on a Colorado ranch. This is book 3 in A Cody Costin Cozy Mystery trilogy, and like the other books in the series, this one doesn’t disappoint. Told in the first person from Cody’s perspective, the plot evolves with ease beginning with a relaxing trail ride with Carla. Some backstory is shared in the friends' camaraderie and lighthearted conversation. Dialogue is believable and well developed to help move the story along, and each character is adequately described through various conversations. As expected, the two friends, the first to discover the body, are initially the prime suspects in the murder, so it’s up to Cody to fine-tune more of her sleuthing skills to set things straight and find the real murderer. There is lots of adventure in this fast-paced mystery, and the reader won’t be able to put the book down until the mystery is solved—a comfortable read.

K.C. Finn

Horses and Corpses is a work of fiction in the mystery genre and is the third and final instalment in the trilogy. It is suitable for the general reading audience and was penned by author Sharyn Bradford Lunn. The book follows Cody Costin who is trying very hard not to get involved with dead people and the investigation of dead people. But when a stablehand is murdered whilst she and her friend are out on a horseback ride, she finds herself the prime suspect in the killing. Calling upon her detective skills one last time, Cody must clear her name and root out the real culprit.

This was a very accessible and enjoyable mystery story that stands up well without reading the others in the series. Cody is a lovable character to feature as the lead detective, a young woman trying to enjoy her summer without any drama when intrigue and sleuthing call her back in. Author Sharyn Bradford Lunn has created a wonderful leading lady in Cody and it’s a shame that the intention is for the series to end here as she is a detective I found myself investing in quite heavily. The prose of Horses and Corpses is wonderful and does a great service to the twists and turns of the mystery story at the centre of the plot. The descriptive writing of the Colorado backdrop was particularly praiseworthy as it sounded so inviting I almost booked a holiday there! This is a brilliant mystery story with a gorgeous setting and a compelling lead character. I’d recommend this to any fans of the genre.

Renee Guill

Horses and Corpses by Sharyn Bradford Lunn is a cozy mystery novel that takes place in Colorado. It is the third installment of a trilogy. Cody Costin and her friend Carla McCooley find a dead body at the horse stables after horseback riding. Thanks to police procedures, they are considered suspects and are told not to get involved with the case. Of course, they do not listen. After some twists and dangers, Cody is able to figure out who the killer is.

I thought Horses and Corpses by Sharyn Bradford Lunn was a fun read. I love how the title rhymes; I thought it was cute. I loved how you do not have to read the previous books to understand what is happening, but you will want to read the other two books after you finish this one. I loved that it was a fast-paced read and hated when it ended; I wanted to read more. I am hoping the author will consider turning it into a series instead of just a trilogy. Sharyn Bradford Lunn did an amazing job with the world-building; it sounded so beautiful there. My favorite character was Cody’s Gran; she had a lot of spunk. I usually am good at guessing who did it. I guessed right, but not the why part. I love it when that happens. I especially loved the twist at the end. If you love cozy mysteries, then I highly recommend reading this one.