Loveda Brown thinks she’s running from her hot-tempered husband, but a hidden killer in the tiny town of Idyllwild has other plans for her.
When Loveda Brown arrives in the tiny mountainside town of Idyllwild, California, as yet the Wild West of 1912, she is running from her husband. But when a body turns up the next day, she realizes she might have worse things following her… That cold, clenched fist holds something that forces Loveda to stay in Idyllwild and use all of her wits to stop another murder from happening. Probably her own.
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NEW INSIDE: Fresh formatting, a “History, Mystery, or Poppycock?” section, first chapter of the next book in every book… and a MAP in the paperbacks!
A great read — Bonnie Hardy, author ★★★★★
If you’re a fan of Phrynie Fischer and Miss Scarlett, you will adore Loveda Brown. When Loveda Brown arrives on a stagecoach she only has one goal, to escape Billy Dunn, her ne’re-do-well ex-husband. With one shoe missing she runs into trouble right away and things only get worse. With the help of a few locals and a hunky mountain man Loveda befriends the town outcast, thwarts a local occultist, and unveils the killers. Our gun-toting, horse riding heroine does it all with her unbeatable spirit and sheer determination. This is a great read for those interested in feisty female sleuths making their way at the turn of the 20th century in a small California mountain town.
The BEST cozy murder mystery book! — Chloe L. ★★★★★
As a frequent traveler to Idyllwild, I was so excited to learn of this book. This book is wonderful! Each twist had me guessing till the very end. Cannot wait to begin book two. Stop what you are doing and start reading Loveda Brown!
So much fun – Dok ★★★★★
Very much enjoyed the first book. Delighted to learn that the author has been busy cooking up more four more in this fun series!
Could not put it down — Amy Renshaw, author ★★★★★
Spunky 1912 heroine Loveda Brown arrives in Idyllwild, California, just a step ahead of her volatile ex-husband and takes refuge at the local inn. She barely has time to collect her steamer trunk before the sheriff is knocking on the door and demanding answers about a murdered stranger. With her escape from Idyllwild hampered by the leisurely legal process of the Old West, it’s up to Loveda to dig for clues and uncover secrets that the quaint little town has long kept under wraps. With endearing characters, newfound friendships, and plenty of plot twists, Jolie Tunnell creates a charming and quirky world you’ll want to visit again and again. Luckily, there are five books in the series giving you the opportunity to do just that. I’m looking forward to reading more from this engaging and clever sleuth!
A super fun read! — Levi Gelineau ★★★★★
Such a FUN read! Loved the escapism, but with a complexity and emotion level that kept me engaged! Will recommend to every reading fan in my life!
Marvelous mystery in 1912 California — John Spearman, author ★★★★★
An artfully crafted mystery set in the not-quite-so-old west. The author does well in casting suspicion on a number of characters before finally revealing the culprit. The confrontation with the protagonist is thrilling. I am looking forward to reading the next in the series!
Loved every minute — Stephen W Sutton ★★★★★
Fascinating. Loved every minute.
Brilliant Mystery in the Not-So-Old West! — Bob Mayberry, author ★★★★★
Loveda Brown is smart, cunning, ruthless, inquisitive and completely flummoxed by her new career owning a hotel in 1912 Idyllwild, California. Yet she manages to tame her fears, avoid her ex, entice two men to court her and solve a mystery. What a woman!
Loveda Brown is a fascinating character with chutzpah! — Terrie L. Relf ★★★★★
This novel starts off the series with quite a few adventures that show Loveda’s determination to live life on her own terms. I love historical fiction and have visited Idyllwild, so it was aslo intriguing for those reasons. Fortunately, I had the next three books in the series and began those after finishing this one! A definite page-turner.
Bold leading lady + wild west + murder = a great read! — Mary Knight, author ★★★★★
Tunnell knows how to weave a story about a waylaid woman, the wild west, and murder into one page-turning mystery. The characters spring from the book and become engaging friends. Loveda has gumption and a zest for life, as long as she can hold onto her own. The Great Loveda Brown is a fun read with lots of twists and turns. You won’t be disappointed! P.S. I can’t wait for the sequel!!
Charming – Amazon Customer ★★★★★
A fun romp in the San Bernardino mountains in 1912. The characters are well developed and sympathetic. Plot lines are intricate enough to keep you from putting the book down until you are done.
This up and coming author is one to watch! — Penelope ★★★★★
I LOVED the Great Loveda Brown! Sat down to read for a short time when I got the book and found I didn’t want to put it down. I needed to finish it in the same day. I was too excited to see what the next chapters held. I can’t wait for the next book to see what trouble Loveda might get herself into… A fun and exciting read that does a great job at connecting you to its characters and helps you to feel/experience the beauty of Idyllwild within the dark shadows of the wild west.
Great Series Start — Jill G Hall, author ★★★★★
This introductory novel to the Idyllwild Mystery Series is intriguing, suspenseful and quick-paced. It is filled with an assortment of interesting characters as well as beautiful settings. As courageous Loveda flees from Texas to California, she thinks she’s escaping trouble. Instead, she encounters more peril than she ever could have imagined. I look forward to reading what happens to her next in Book 2 of the series.
Engaging mystery novel with thoughtful writing style — Cameron W Beeler ★★★★★
(This review was written by my daughter, as the book was bought for her as a Christmas present) I loved this book! I was quickly engrossed, and the little town of Idyllwild was immediately brought to life for me. The characters were well developed, and the plot moved rapidly along, with no room for inattentive reading. A lovely read in every way! 🙂
The Great Historical Mystery — Penn Wallace, author ★★★★★
I love historical novels and The Great Loveda Brown didn’t disappoint. The author has a good grasp of life in rural California in 1912. The characters are rich and fully drawn. The place descriptions are rich. I feel like I know Idyllwild now. Highly recommended. Get your copy today.
Wild West Meets the Roaring Twenties – Designer Donna ★★★★★
Multiple murders perpetrated (spoilers removed!) are finally solved in the end, but Loveda barely makes it out alive. Definitely finishes as a page-turner.
Could not put it down — HILCooks ★★★★★
I started the book after dinner and the next thing I knew it was 1 AM. Interesting believable characters. Lots of plot twists. Can’t wait to read next book.
Spunky heroine — Linda Ulleseit, author ★★★★★
I enjoyed this story of a spunky woman running from her husband. Her trip gets derailed when his body is found near the town where she is hiding. Loveda Brown sets out to solve her husband’s murder and ends up discovering a town secret. The main character is very well written, and the setting is well detailed. I really like this character, and I can hardly wait for the next book in the series!
Loveda Brown… I want more! — Maritta Terrell ★★★★★
What a marvelous mystery, full of emotions and intrigue, history and romance, beauty and sadness, all rolled into one exciting tale. I had a hard time puttin it down and in fact got up at 1 am to finish it
I couldn’t put Loveda Brown down! — Nancy “Pants” Johnson, author ★★★★★
I loved Loveda and the mysteries she tried to solve. It was a page turner and I haven’t taken a break all afternoon. What a lovely way to spend the day! Can’t wait for the next one! Thank you, Jolie Tunnell!
Treat to read — Sharon ★★★★★
This murder mystery book was a real treat to read. It’s the perfect length to easily read in one sitting. The plot easily held my attention and has the right number of twists and turns in it to go along with the mystery and drama. The author has a wonderful command of descriptive writing that really enhanced the reading and made the scenes and characters jump from the page. This is my first time reading this author and I’m delighted that I chose to read the book after being drawn in via the blurb.
Shoes, Gunshots, and Confusion – Kindle Customer ★★★★★
I was amazed as I started to get into this story. There’s nothing but excitement and unexpected turns. There’s A hint of the West, but definitely not a western. On to the next book.
Good book – cmalasan ★★★★★
I liked the story in this book. At first I was unsure about it. But after I read some more I started to like the main character. I felt like this book would make a good old fashioned Western movie.
Loved it! – Sharniie ★★★★★
I love a good mystery, especially a fast paced easy to read one, and this was just that! I love Loveda and her strong, determined spirit! The plot was well written and the scenes very real. Can’t wait to read about Loveda’s next adventure!
Love her! – Amazon Customer ★★★★★
My favorite genre is historical fiction, so when I discovered this book based in my hometown I had to read it! Now I’m in Book 3 and enjoying each chapter. The characters are so clear in my mind thanks to the fine but not overdone descriptions; I would recognize Loveda walking down the street! Sweet but definitely not sappy
Delightful read — SM, Reader’s Favorite ★★★★★
The Great Loveda Brown by Jolie Tunnell is a delightful read. Full of quirky characters, strange happenstances, and settings rich in historic detail, The Great Loveda Brown starts off with fantastic pacing and doesn’t let up for a moment. The main character, Loveda Brown, finds herself on the run from an abusive husband and ends up in a town she thought would be a safe stopping place for a night. Unfortunately for her (and fortunately for the reader!) she has to stay a little longer than planned as a series of strange events unfold around her. Through every accusation, mysterious death, and odd occurrence, the great Loveda Brown uses her wits and courage to navigate to the freedom from her past that she seeks. The author delivers a mystery that has hints of romance and lots of surprises.
The Great Loveda Brown by Jolie Tunnell is sure to please lovers of mystery, cozy mystery, and historical fiction. The author paints her main character with such energy and vivacity that the reader feels they know Loveda Brown and simply must find out what happens to her next. I appreciate the skill the author shows in introducing, developing, and, in some cases, eliminating, the characters in her book. Each person has a distinct role to play in the story and adds to the mysteries that permeate the town. Author Jolie Tunnell has created a believable, quirky, and loveable community in her book, The Great Loveda Brown. Once the reader finishes this book, they will want to read the rest of the series.
Thoroughly entertaining — PD, Reader’s Favorite ★★★★★
The Great Loveda Brown is the first installment of The Idyllwild Mystery Series by Jolie Tunnell. Set in the small town of Idyllwild in mountainous southern California, the book follows Loveda Brown, a tenacious young woman fleeing from her estranged husband, Billy Dunn. Loveda is on her way to Los Angeles when circumstances bring her to Idyllwild, wearing one shoe and with Billy on her trail. However, just after her arrival, she finds herself entangled in a murder mystery when the dead body of her ex-husband turns up unexpectedly. While the local sheriff asks her not to leave town, Loveda decides to solve the mystery herself and find the killer. But as the stakes keep getting higher, Loveda delves into a dangerous game where she puts her own life in mortal danger.
Fans of whodunnit murder mysteries will be ecstatic because The Great Loveda Brown contains all the ingredients necessary for a delicious murder mystery. Author Jolie Tunnell’s page-turner of a novel feels like a cross between the hit Hollywood movies The Hateful Eight and Knives Out. Moving at a blistering pace, the plot keeps you hooked with its unexpected twists and turns, and you can’t help but turn the pages in eager anticipation of what’s to come. Loveda is a likable protagonist whose tenacious resolve and grit make you root for her from start to finish. I particularly enjoyed her chemistry with John Wyman. Any reader who enjoys westerns or a well-written murder mystery will find The Great Loveda Brown a thoroughly entertaining reading experience.
Will sweep you off your feet — SC, Reader’s Favorite ★★★★★
Idyllwild; the very name of the village evokes an image of an idyllic, quaint stay. Yet, when Loveda Brown hurried into a coach headed there, her only thought was to escape the clutches of her abusive ex-husband. Her worries came to a jarring halt the next day when she had to identify Billy’s body, shot dead. While this meant she wouldn’t have to keep looking over her shoulder, the mystery remained as to who had shot Billy. Was it the reclusive hermit who seemed to know more than he let on? Or was it the unsettled local woman who kept throwing pine cones at Loveda? Could the doctor with a failed sanatorium business be a suspect? In The Great Loveda Brown by Jolie Tunnell, Loveda’s inner detective is on high alert, especially after the body count keeps rising.
Jolie Tunnell’s book can be best described as a cross between a cozy mystery and a sleuth novel. The author has incorporated local myths and folklore with a classic ‘whodunit’ to create a unique blend. The misty pine forest where the mythical rougarou roams and the fifolets float at night serves as a perfect backdrop for hideous crimes. The forest and its inhabitants hide their secrets too well, and it is up to Loveda to unravel the mysteries. Yet, in a male-dominated world where women are patronized at every step and advised not to concern themselves with worldly matters, how can our heroine save herself, much less save others? I would commend Tunnell for presenting us with such a strong female character as Loveda, whose steady head and courage are as worthy as her pretty face and charming manners. The Great Loveda Brown will sweep you off your feet, readers!
Fresh and innovative — PW, Reader’s Favorite ★★★★★
I finished The Great Loveda Brown ready to start another adventure with her. Jolie Tunnell creates an adventurous series of the early 1900s in the tiny mountainside town of Idyllwild, California. Loveda was running from her unfaithful and angry husband when she stumbles into the town of Idyllwild. Hoping to hide from Billy long enough to find an alternate route to her uncle’s place in Los Angeles, Loveda hides in the closest hotel to the stagecoach exchange. The next day Billy’s body is found just miles from where she is staying. She must lodge in town until her name is cleared. Another death keeps her there to hunt for the connection between the two deaths. Loveda draws the killer’s attention as she gets closer to the truth. Can she avoid getting killed long enough to get justice for those murdered?
Jolie Tunnell skillfully draws her readers in as the mystery of the murders reveals a more cynical plot. The Great Loveda Brown is the first in her Idyllwild Mystery series and sets the pace and distinguishes the characters. The novel develops gradually into a fast-paced mystery. You can never be sure which of the locals have an ulterior motive until the killer is revealed and their past displayed. Through an intricate web of characters, history, and suspense, the author constructs a mesmerizing storyline. The characters are engaging while keeping an air of mystique. This novel begins a series that is fresh and innovative. I highly recommend this book to those who enjoy good historical fiction.
Fabulously executed — AS, Reader’s Favorite ★★★★★
Amidst the pine trees and mountains, unsolved murder cases are piling up in the small town of Idyllwild in this historical novel, The Great Loveda Brown by Jolie Tunnell. Chanting “Damn Billy Dunn,” Loveda Brown escapes from her abusive husband, Billy Dunn, with her horse and a trunk. As bizarre as it was for a woman to be traveling alone in that era, Loveda relied on her strong character, wits, and determination to survive. Even though her journey from Texas to Idyllwild was uneventful, her arrival shook this sleepy town awake from its long slumber. In no time, the sheriff of the town began running in circles, finding corpses and investigating their murders. When the body of Billy Dunn was discovered, the sheriff considered Loveda to be the prime suspect. This hiccup meant that her plan to cross this town to reach her uncle had to be indefinitely delayed. Her husband, as it turned out, had a way of disrupting her life even from his grave. In a town full of dubious people, was there a way for Loveda to prove her innocence and find the real culprit?
The Great Loveda Brown is a blockbuster start to The Idyllwild Mystery Series. From the suspicious characters, the life of any good mystery worth its salt, to engaging twists, the backbone of a solid story, Jolie Tunnell has aced it all. Without making it too obvious, the author has instilled the attributes of an independent and feminist woman into the main character, Loveda. Our heroine knows what she wants in life and sets out to achieve it, ignoring the unconstructive opinions of those surrounding her. Like any normal human being, she too goes through periods of self-doubt and fears, but those moments do not define her decisions. The side characters, such as Miss Nelson and Thomas Fuller (the sheriff), are equally crafted. They have strong beliefs and memorable personalities. Moreover, the characters are truly relatable. In Miss Nelson, we find a person who is so much set in her old ways that she considers any change dangerous and absolutely unacceptable. In any town, there are a handful of such people, and that’s what makes her relatable. This careful creation of the characters is one of the most impressive traits of The Great Loveda Brown. Engaging conversations and descriptive scene-setting are other characteristics to watch out for.
In terms of plot, the author has fabulously executed the first book of this mystery series. Jolie Tunnell has left no stone unturned in ensuring that the story remains mysterious and appealing to her audience. Every element of the book is so well placed that readers find themselves drawn in and unable to put down The Great Loveda Brown before solving the mystery. Filled with small-town gossip, a historical setting, beautiful story-telling, and an intriguing mystery, The Great Loveda Brown by Jolie Tunnell is a highly recommended book for fast-paced mystery lovers.