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Buzz Off (Queen Bee Mystery #1)

3.71  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,079 Ratings  ·  146 Reviews
After her mentor in the honey business is found suspiciously stung to death in his apiary, beekeeper Story Fischer must sort through a swarm of suspects, including her ex-husband.
Paperback, 336 pages
Published September 7th 2010 by Berkley (first published July 29th 2010)
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Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder by Joanne FlukeAbby Cooper, Psychic Eye by Victoria LaurieMurder at the Vicarage by Agatha ChristieThe No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall SmithThe Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie
Best Cozy Mystery Series
395th out of 1,353 books — 1,470 voters
The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexander McCall SmithCrocodile on the Sandbank by Elizabeth PetersThe Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha ChristieChocolate Chip Cookie Murder by Joanne FlukeA is for Alibi by Sue Grafton
Cozy Mystery Series
340th out of 677 books — 1,808 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,734)
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❂ Jennifer
Oct 04, 2010 ❂ Jennifer rated it liked it
Shelves: cozy-mystery
I'd actually give this book 3.5 stars if I could. I liked the story, and the characters and the author did a very good job describing the setting. But what almost killed this book for me were the bullet points the author used throughout the story and the protagonists mother. Every heroine needs a nemesis, but it shouldn't be her mother. This mother was just nasty and her part in the book only made me angry. The bullet points were almost always annoying and I skipped over them completely.

I might
Sep 20, 2010 Karol rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned, read-in-2010
Just when I thought I had more than enough cozy mystery series I was interested in reading, along comes a brand new one that I just love. Story Fischer is a character with lovable quirks - like a foot fetish and a passion for bullet points. She seems to have been somewhat of a princess in high school, and in her small town that is still bearing some consequences and hard feelings. There's not much maliciousness in Story, but some youthful decisions and unintended slights have given her a couple ...more
Book Concierge
From the back cover - It’s September – national Honey Month – in Moraine, Wisconsin, and things are looking up for Story Fischer. Her messy divorce is final, the honey from her beekeeping business has been harvested and the market she owns is thriving. Life seems pretty sweet … until Manny, her mentor in the honey business, is found stung to death in his apiary. Story is still trying to explain to the panicked locals that her honeybees had nothing to do with Manny’s death, when another body is f ...more
May 09, 2011 Nancy rated it it was ok
I wasn't fully engaged by this novel. While the concept of the bee farmer was a bit different from others I've read, the characters seemed shallow and the story never developed any momentum. One of my biggest complaints against the writing was the authors insistence on having her main character occasionally break out into 'bullet point' speech. It's one thing to say that the character is known for laying out her plans/ideas/arguments in bullet point fashion, to actually WRITE them out in this st ...more
Lorna Barrett
Jun 18, 2010 Lorna Barrett rated it it was amazing
Story Fischer is just as industrious as her colony of bees when it comes to investigating the death of her mentor and the theft of his beekeeping manual. Action, adventure, a touch of romance, and a cast of delightful characters fill Hannah Reed’s debut novel. BUZZ OFF is one honey of a tale
Jan 23, 2011 Kristi rated it really liked it
3.5 stars. A decent read as cozies go. This one features a small-town small business owner who is newly divorced. She runs a grocery store and was apprenticing in bee keeping. During her divorce celebration she gets dragged out to her mentor's bee yard where he is lying dead, seemingly killed to death by his bees. She knows it wasn't the bees and sets out to prove it before the town attacks the two hives in her yard. Danger and more mysteries ensue.

I will definitely read a couple more titles in
May 17, 2011 Jessica rated it liked it
Shelves: cozy
My four-sentence or less take on the plot: Story Fischer is shopowner who is also dabbling in beekeeping. Her beekeeping mentor is murdered, honeybees are implicated, and Story and her ex-husband are both potential suspects.

Rating: 6

What worked: I liked the beekeeping concept--it was different, which is saying quite a bit in the cozy mystery world.

What didn't: I hated (HATED) the bulleted points that are sprinkled throughout the book. It also felt like I was reading a guidebook about Wisconsin
Feb 22, 2013 Kathleen rated it liked it
Shelves: real-book
Really enjoyable cozy mystery! Loved the characters. The main sleuth character in cozy mysteries can sometimes be way too pushy and nosy. This one was definitely nosy, but not so pushy. The plot was really good. I had an idea of who the bad guys were but didn't figure out why, with all the details, until right at the end. I would have given it four stars but I felt like it was a little long. I like my cozy mysteries to be a little quicker reads, but I will definitely put the rest of series on my ...more
Bonnie Drummond
Oct 24, 2012 Bonnie Drummond rated it it was amazing
The Book Buzz Off is really a great book to read. Put you're self into the book as the characters them selves and you get a feeling of who they are. I find myself being Story, the way she feels and what she has to go through all the time. I rated this book with 5 GOLD STARS because the plot holds you until the very end as to the KILLER is revealed. It also gives good insight into how bees live and behave. I have a little about bees, my Uncle Harry is a Bee Keeper in Texas. He give me some books ...more
Aug 10, 2011 Cataluna6 rated it liked it
I picked this up at work, first because I liked the cover, then the blurb got me. This sounded like a fun read and it was to a certain extent. I loved the beekeeping side of things and enjoyed the tourist side of Wisconsin. What I didn't really like the bullet points, I understand this is how story thinks, but it got old fast. I liked even less how her sister talks in abbreviated speech, BRB, OMG, TTYL - ugh! Annoying. I did love the relationship between Story and her beau, they were high school ...more
A fun read for the holidays--beekeeping mystery, late summer, set in rural Wisconsin. Story's a local girl who owns the grocery store and is a dedicated beekeeper. When her mentor dies under suspicious circumstances and then her ex-husband's girlfriend shows up dead in Story's kayak. . . well, it doesn't look good. Reed is setting up her series (we meet the meddling mother, quirky grandmother, hunky K9 sheriff, etc.) with this promising debut and I would recommend for those who like Midnight Ink ...more
Mar 23, 2013 Spuddie rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
Ended up DNF'ing after 3 or 4 chapters...was looking for something light and quick to read before bed, but this was your typical formulaic cozy mystery...main character has a small crafty business, is single and available, there's a hunky cop that she's already making eyes at by the time we barely learn her name, and someone close to her ends up dead...and of course she has to prove that either she didn't do it or someone close to her didn't. (In this case, that the honeybees are innocent.) The ...more
Jun 20, 2016 Sunsettowers rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, cozy

This was a really fun cozy mystery, and that's coming from someone who is petrified of bees.

The main character, Story Fischer, absolutely loves bees. She is an apprentice beekeeper, a very recent divorcee, and the owner of the local grocery store in her small town. Things seem to be looking up--until her beekeeper mentor is found dead and everyone in town begins to panic and blame his bees.

What I especially liked about this book was that the mystery stayed front and center. The beekeeping and ho
Feb 06, 2015 Megan rated it liked it
Here's the thing about this book: I really liked the plot. It was a great change to have the main character invested not because She Was Framed or because A Murder Happened Where She Happened To Be or any of the usual reasons, but because she was worried about her bees. I mean, obviously there was a murder and obviously her motive changed when she realized this, but it was a refreshing reason to become an amateur detective. The mystery itself progressed nicely, with clues coming up logically and ...more
Doward Wilson
Jul 26, 2015 Doward Wilson rated it it was amazing
Story owns the local market in small town, Moraine, Wisconsin and is learning the bee keeping business from her friend and mentor, Manny. Manny dies in an accident involving his bees and Story sets out to prove the bees innocent and the accident a murder. Her womanizing ex-husband lives next door and his latest fling is murdered and Story is sucked in to find the killer. The bees, Manny's accident and now the murder keep things rolling while you keep turning the pages. The murder plot is well do ...more
Dec 17, 2013 Suzanne rated it really liked it
Shelves: cozy-mysteries
I have to admit the book started off a little slow and I thought I'd have a hard time finishing. But the story definitely picked up and went to a satisfying solution. For the most part, I liked Story Fischer, although her behavior at the town hall meeting was pretty immature. I liked all the bee and honey tidbits. I'm always fascinated with the 'background theme' of cozy mysteries - I always learn something!

I'll definitely check out the next book in this series.
Sep 11, 2010 Julia rated it really liked it
This was a great beginning to a new mystery series. When a couple of townspeople wind up deceased, Story Fischer, local business owner and beekeeper, sets out to learn the truth about what is happening in Moraine, Wisconsin. All of the hallmarks of a good cozy are here--quirky townspeople, relatives (love them or hate them), reticent/angry law enforcement and a lot of interesting facts about honeybees! I look forward to reading more about Story and her friends.
Dharia Scarab
Aug 05, 2014 Dharia Scarab rated it liked it
Since I don't normally write reviews unless I have something specific to say, here's the break down of how I rate my books...

1 star... This book was bad, so bad I may have given up and skipped to the end. I will avoid this author like the plague in the future.

2 stars... This book was not very good, and I won't be reading any more from the author.

3 stars... This book was ok, but I won't go out of my way to read more, But if I find another book by the author for under a dollar I'd pick it up.

4 sta
Alyssa White
Aug 24, 2015 Alyssa White rated it really liked it
Shelves: cozy-mystery
This book is SUPER cute! I love honey and we have honey stores in my area and this mad me want to go out and buy the honey sticks that you can suck on some sweet honey with! This author has an interesting style of writing, not one I was use to reading - but it was well worth it!
Paige Bennett
May 31, 2013 Paige Bennett rated it really liked it
What makes a good cozy?
* A likable and witty main character
* Kooky characters
* An annoying character
* A good looking man
* Twists and turns
* A dead body or two
* A surprise ending
* Bullet points
You find all of this and more in this cozy
Sep 23, 2010 Melodie rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-2010
This story was okay. I've not liked previous Deb Baker projects that I've read all that much. The bullet points thing was beyond annoying for me and really turned me off. I'll pass on this series in the future.
Dawn Frazier
Mar 30, 2014 Dawn Frazier rated it it was amazing
What a fun read! Excellent book!
Heather L
May 18, 2015 Heather L rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, 2010
I loved this book! Great writing, good characters, and the author really seems to know Wisconsin.
Dec 20, 2014 Angela rated it it was amazing
hilarious. favorite skunk scene everrrr
Christine Williams
Apr 16, 2014 Christine Williams rated it did not like it
Took me too long to read - that's usually a bad sign, especially for cozies. Like other reviewers, I didn't like the bullet points or the sister's text speak.

Also, everyone in the small town was kind of an a-hole, including the main characters own mother! There was the bullying police chief, the nosy Gladys Kravtiz neighbor, the evil real estate agent, the victim's widow and sister, the philandering ex AND the mother. Jeez!

I won't continue the series- I have too many other books on my shelf.

Sep 02, 2011 Nancy rated it really liked it

The whole time I was reading this book, my brain kept telling me that the title was Buzz Kill. I am not sure why that was, maybe because the story revolves around beekeeping and a murder was discovered right away and therefore – bees buzz and people die. Really, I have no idea. Sometimes even I wonder what is going on in my brain.

The cozy genre is getting a bit clogged with formulaic books, so when one comes along that stands out from the rest I am impressed. Is this a perfect book – no. But it
Published by Berkley Prime Crime

I love a cozy mystery to relax with, and when it gives me not only an interesting whodunit but something new I can learn about, I always feel like I hit a jackpot. Hannah Reed has done just that with her new series.

Story Fischer is celebrating her divorce from her skirt-chasing now ex-husband, Clay Lane by having a one-day sale on everything in her store, The Wild Clover, and offering champagne. She is also celebrating the kick-off campaign for September National
CJ -Doctor can you help me, 'cause somethin' don't feel right

It's been a long time since I've read this book but from what I remember:

I didn't necessarily like Story at first. She was a bit distant, a bit bitchy and judgemental. After meeting her mother though, I guess I can understand. However, I warmed up to her by the end of the book. She isn't my favorite cozy heroine but the plot and the cozy element was interesting enough that I forgave her for her flaws.

Her husband, or rather ex, is a jackass and I couldn't muster up any sympathy for him whatsoe
Jan 31, 2011 Nora-adrienne rated it really liked it
Shelves: cozies
Buzz Off
By: Hannah Reed
Copyright September 2010

This is the first book in the new Queen Bee Mystery Series by Hannah Reed.

Story Fischer thought things were going alright for her. This story opens with Story having a divorce party celebrating her final separation from her philandering husband. He isn’t gone totally yet since she ended up with him as a neighbor.

Her store The Wild Clover, the only grocery in Moraine, Wisconsin is doing well. She was studying bee keeping with her friend Manny and ho
Oct 11, 2010 Marlyn rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, cozies
Story Fischer is in the middle of celebrating her divorce when Hunter Wallace, a loal law-enforcement officer (and Story's high-school sweetheart) arrives and asks her to come with him. He takes her to the Chapman's, home of Manny and his wife Grace. Manny, a beekeeper (and Story's mentor in the craft) is dead, and it appears that the cause is bee stings. The investigators need Story because she's the only person who lives close enough to get Manny away from the beeyard safely.

Story knows enough
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I created the Queen Bee mystery series and love all things cozily mysterious and deadly.
More about Hannah Reed...

Other Books in the Series

Queen Bee Mystery (5 books)
  • Mind Your Own Beeswax (Queen Bee, #2)
  • Plan Bee (A Queen Bee Mystery, #3)
  • Beeline to Trouble (Queen Bee Mystery, #4)
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