Thursday, September 02, 2010

Review: Driven to Ink by Karen E. Olson

When Sylvia and Bernie came back from That's Amore Drive-Through Wedding Chapel with my car, it would've been nice if they'd taken the body out of the trunk. [opening line of Driven to Ink]

Driven to Ink by Karen E. Olson
Obsidian Mystery, September 2010
Crime Fiction; 320 pgs

In this third installment of A Tattoo Shop Mystery, series our meddling tattoo artist and shop owner, Brett Kavanaugh, finds a dead body in the trunk of her car. The body looks an awful lot like Dean Martin. She'd recently loaned her car to friends for their drive-through wedding, and now with the elderly bride and groom missing, all sorts of thoughts--and fears--are running through Brett's mind. Despite her brother's advice that she leave the investigation to the police, Brett, joined by the bride's son, Jeff Coleman, sets out to find her own answers.

Author Karen E. Olson won me over with her Annie Seymour series several years ago and, while I miss Annie's wry humor and grit, I do enjoy spending time with Brett and friends as well. The cast of characters is as funny and charming as ever, and it was great to see Brett and her brother, Tim, a detective with the Las Vegas police department, sharing so many scenes. My favorite part was when Tim was stuck on babysitting duty--having to keep Brett out of trouble, which is not an easy thing to do. He and Brett are a lot alike in more ways than one.

The author keeps the reader guessing at just about every turn. I found myself laughing on occasion and turning pages as quickly as I could to find out what would happen next. Driven to Ink was a fast-paced and entertaining read; a great way to spend a summer day.

Rating: * (Very Good)

You can learn more about Karen E. Olson and her books on the author's website. You can also find Karen on her blog.

Source: My copy of Driven to Ink was provided by the author for review.

© 2010, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved.If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.


  1. Yay! I didn't know that she had a new one out. I love her books!

  2. I need to get around reading this author. Too may books, too less time!

  3. I think mysteries in a tattoo shop sound rather interesting, and will have to check this series out! It sounds like the book was a lot of fun!! Thanks for the great review!

  4. I wouldn't have expected to drawn to a series featuring a tattoo shop, but you've convinced me. I'll look for the first one in the series!

  5. I'm not much of a mystery person, but a mystery involving tattoos might just do it for me. Great cover!

  6. I've heard a lot of good things about this one. It sounds like a fun end of summer read.

  7. I've been buried in my own work, but so glad to see this today! I've missed this blog - and I've missed Karen's books, too. I never thought I'd care much about a tattoo artist, but like Wendy, this series won me over. Just shows what good writing can do!

  8. Great review Wendy! I do miss Annie too but I think this cast of characters is a lot stronger, more memorable you know. I have this on my nightstand and look forward to reading it!

  9. Now that is one heck of an opening line! Loved the first one, can't wait to get caught up and read this one.

  10. These books sound like a lot of fun - I bet my niece would love this series.

  11. I've come across these books in the store several times and they look really fun! I should give one a try.

  12. Ooooh very nice review, Wendy! I'm excited about this. My review's coming out tomorrow. I've already announced the 2 winners to my book giveaway too.

  13. Christine - Me too! They're so much fun.

    Gautami - I know the feeling! There are so many books I want to read and so little time to fit them all in.

    Karen - I enjoyed it so much, Karen. Thank you for giving me the chance to read and review it! Of course, I'll be buying my own copy once it hits stores this next week. :-)

    Heather - It's definitely a different setting than I've come across before. I do enjoy the characters and their adventures.

    Jenclair - It wouldn't be my first choice of setting either, but I think the way the books are written--in a funny, light sort of way--it makes it very entertaining.

    Andi - I love the artwork on the covers of these books.

    Kathleen - It does make for a great end of summer read!

  14. Clea - You haven't missed too much, Clea. I've been in and out all summer and not blogging very much.

    I think Brett is a great character. I enjoy spending time with her. Karen's done such a good job with the series.

    Iliana - Thank you. I agree about this cast of characters being more memorable. They definitely are that. LOL I hope you enjoy this one when you get to it.

    Kris - I haven't been disappointed yet, Kris! Enjoy the rest of the series.

    Kathy - Oh, they are so much fun!

    Lydia - I really enjoy them. They are a nice change of pace when I'm in the mood for something not so serious (which seems to be all the time these days LOL).

    Alice - Thanks, Alice! I look forward to reading your thoughts on it.

  15. I just read Alices review of this as well and looks like I am missing out on a really fun series.

  16. Rhinoa - I enjoy the books quite a bit. They have just the right amount of humor and action.

  17. I have yet to read this series, but my sister LOVES them! I'll have to dig into them one of these days...

  18. Carrie - I am glad your sister likes them so much too! I hope you will too if you try it.

  19. I enjoyed it too. They are a lot of fun to read.


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