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Death Comes to Happy Acres

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  73 ratings  ·  37 reviews
At sixty-three, former jazz musician Wade Lovett finds himself something of a trailer park Lothario carrying on affairs with three different women. But when circumstances prompt Carol Smitzky to make a compelling case for a marriage arrangement, he agrees. The next morning he visits girlfriend number two, Peggy MacCallister, to tell her the news—and finds her lying dead on ...more
Kindle Edition, 218 pages
Published September 10th 2015 by Kenmore Books
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Average rating 4.05  · 
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4,5 stars

Every reader has his/her Buy-Automatically-Authors, BAA. I'm no exception to that. I wish only that my BAA-list would be much longer, and I could spend less hours looking for the next read.
JT Moss is a new pen name of one of my BAA. I shouldn't probably mention it in my review, out of respect for the author's decision, BUT

it was the reason WHY I asked JT Moss for an ARC when I found out WHO was behind this name;

I don't think that it'll be possible to keep this fact secret in the ag
JT Moss = Marshall Thornton

Definitely gave me the impression that Thornton could make it in mainstream fiction if he chose to try. Of course, luck plays a huge role in whether a mystery author -- or any author -- breaks out of the pack and gets the recognition they deserve.
Review written May 25, 2017

3.8 Stars - A cozy mystery set in a trailer park with just senior characters. I enjoyed a lot

Some weeks ago I got a message from an author (view spoiler) I usually very much like reading M/M novels: "I occasionally write mainstream mysteries under the name JT Moss... if you enjoy cozies, Death Comes to Happy Acres is currently on sale for 99¢." I went for it an added the WSfV $2 audiobook. — 6:52 narrated by Peter Husmann.

Ivonne Rovira
Nov 29, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ivonne by: NetGalley
Pity poor Wade Lovett, an unemployable 62-year-old jazz saxophonist juggling three women! His life is pretty complicated — and about to get more so.

Lovett, a widower who hasn’t worked since the California real-estate market imploded in 2008 (the book is set three years later), had been sleeping with (1) Carol Smitsky, an über-efficient secretary/receptionist at a car dealership, described as pretty and “whippet-thin,” and who shaves years off her age; (2) Peggy MacCallister, a flighty 66-year-ol
Ije the Devourer of Books

Four stars for the story. Five stars for the audio.

This is a thoroughly enjoyable and refreshing murder mystery. It is very different to the kinds of stories I usually read but I enjoyed it immensely.

I was fortunate to have an advanced copy from NetGalley and an audio version from Audiobook Blast and having both these versions truly enhanced my reading experience.

Wade Lovett is an ageing lothario. He doesn't see himself that way though. He is in his early sixties, lives in a nice enough trailer
Sep 05, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks
First things first: I received this book through NetGalley.
It's out since last year, so if it's something that you would enjoy, check it out.

This is actually tough for me to review cause for the most part I enjoyed it.
It was a fast paced mystery story that held my attention to the end. I really liked the twists and turns that it had. Some I saw coming, some I didn't.

But the main thing that didn't work for me in this story and something that will keep me from rereading the book, were the characte
My original Death Comes to Happy Acres audiobook review and many others can be found at Audiobook Reviewer.

63-year-old Wade has been a bit of a lady’s man. But when Carol proposes marriage, he accepts. After all, there’s the benefit of health insurance, and it seems a good deal all around. Trying to do the right thing, Wade intends to notify one of his other hook-ups, Peggy, that their get-togethers will have to stop, but he discovers Peggy is dead. Soon, Wade finds himself a suspect in the poli
Jan 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
J.T. Moss is Marshall Thornton of Boys Town Mysteries and Pinx Video fame, so this is a bit of a departure from those exceptional series.

Wade is living in a Florida trailer park, barely managing with his social security check and enjoying the company of several women of a certain age at the trailer park. When he decides to accept Carol's offer of marriage (not so much for love, but because he can get on her insurance), he goes over to Peggy's to break the news to her ... only to find her dead o
Aug 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime, netgalley, cozy
Happy Acres is an innocuous sounding trailer park in California, inhabited by our protagonist, sixty three year old washed-out jazz musician called Wade Lovett. Despite his age, and his recent health problems, he's managed to accrue not one girlfriend - but three! He's not in love with any of them, but values the companionship of the opposite sex. Truth is, he's still hung up on his departed wife. Upon accepting a practical wedding proposal from Carol, he has to tell the other two ladies he won' ...more
Oct 29, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy, arc, e-books, cats
I am reading books that have been on my NetGalley site so a long time. The books were not read for various reason. I found light and enjoyable mystery. Happy Acres is a trailer park that has been around a long time. New owners have been updating the park. The main character is Wade Lovett who has been seeing three different women. One of them, Carol convinced him that marrying her would be better for both of them. Wade, an honorable man goes to tell Peggy he is marrying. He finds Peggy dead on h ...more
Jul 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: not-mm, 4-star
This is a pretty low-key mystery, maybe because it involves seniors living in a trailer park (or manufactured home community, as my parents prefer to call it). Wade turns amateur sleuth in order to clear himself, but the stakes never really felt too high. That’s not to say I had it figured out. Moss does a good job moving suspicion around among the suspects. But the interesting thing here is the portrayal of the residents and life in a trailer park, which rang very true from my own experience. I ...more
The cozy mystery comes to the trailer park. I was so excited because I thought I figured it out, and for about 5 pages I was running a victory lap because I never figure these things out. I was wrong and my track record remains intact.

2017 reading challenge checks the box for 10. A book with a cat on the cover. Death Comes to Happy Acres by J.T. Moss
Aug 06, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017, netgalley
Death Comes to Happy Acres is an interesting mellow criminal mystery. The main characters are elderly trailer park dwellers, who are all alone for one or other reason, and so they are each others companions and friends. Wade, the former musician has lived decades in the park, first with his wife and last five years alone. But never really alone, he always has some lady-friends whom he seeing and he never makes secret of them, they all know about each other. Now he has a problem - one of the lady ...more
Sep 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
Surprisingly nice little mystery.

Different and interesting. Most cozy mysteries I read are about women, but this was from a male perspective. Satisfying conclusion.
Aug 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley, cozies
I received a proof copy of this book through NetGalley.

I would call this a cozy mystery, because it lacks unnecessary blood and guts, but still had the appropriate amount of 'guess who'in it. More than once, I thought I had figured out who the culprit was, and more than once, I was wrong.

It wasn't too long, it wasn't too short, but it was a nice, easy read. I'd actually like to see Wade continue in another story or few. He was an older man, but definitely relatable and likeable. Moss did a great
Aug 29, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a nice little cozy mystery that is set in a trailer park. Wade finds the body of a neighbor and is the manor suspect in her murder when he is named beneficiary of her will. He starts investigating and finds lots of suspects. As her sorts through the residents and workers with the police detective watching his every move there are attempts against him and his wife. Not too long but lots of excitement and clues. A good read for an afternoon of entertainment.
Julie Howard
Oct 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-book
I enjoyed this book, it is the first book by this author I have listened to or read and I hope it won't be the last as I enjoyed the plot and setting and hope for more. I like the fact the main character was a man which is unusual for a cozy mystery but thought all the characters were fun and interesting. It kept me guessing as to who the killer was, every time I thought I had it worked out it twisted on me, keeping me hooked.
After Wade 's wife of many years dies he struggles to come to terms wi
Sep 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, audiobook
First, the characters! They are all so complex, but their motivations so human and real that you can easily find equivalents of them on your life. And they aren't your usual protagonists, either. They are people in their sixties, and even the youngers are what? forty-ish? And living in a trailer park :)

The mystery was so well-plotted that I fell for every single red herring thrown on my way and was truly surprised by the solution.

This is a different, refreshing story in which the characters are
Natalie Nicole
Sep 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oh, my goodness gracious! This is the most unusual mystery I have EVER read. And that's saying something..., I'll be 58 years old on my birthday and I've been an avid reader for many decades. Death Comes to Happy Acres is such a refreshingly different mystery. The main character is a 63-year-old trailer park casanova that stumbles upon the body of one of his girlfriends and the remainder of the book is the most incredible ride imaginable. From the atypical main character to the unusual story set ...more
Jun 10, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
audible:I absolutely loved this book!There needs to be a sequel!Narration by Peter Husmann was terrific! So Peggy dies,but was it a heart attack or suspicious circumstances?What to do with her cat is a problem too.In a trailer curt where everyone knows everyone elses business,how can anything this strange even happen? I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.'  ...more
Mar 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
I've read a few of Marshall Thornton's books but this is the first under this pen name. I guess the different name is to distinguish from his gay writing, but this is very much him - an unusual situation, the death of a woman at a trailer park, layered with the mundane details of a normal life. Those details are so well observed. ...more
Jun 05, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: kindle-first
Easy to read novel about an unlikely ladies man and the mystery of the death of one of his lovers.
Feb 24, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
This review originally published in Looking For a Good Book. Rated 3.0 of 5

An aging (retired?) jazz musician, Wade Lovett, who hasn't worked a gig in a long time, is currently living in a trailer park and is dating three different women. When one of the women is discovered dead, Wade is one of the prime suspects.

I am slowly becoming a fan of mysteries and I've noticed that in addition to having strong writing and/or tremendously interesting characters, most mysteries have a unique 'hook' - somet
Carla Johnson-Hicks
Happy Acres is an older trailer park that is undergoing changes and being spiffed up. The main character ins this story is Wade Lovett, a 62-year-old former jazz saxophonist who is also a widower. After going through a period of major alcoholism, he sort of has gotten it together and is juggling three women! (1) Carol Smitsky, a secretary/receptionist at a car dealership, who wants to marry Wade, (2) Peggy MacCallister, a flighty 66-year-old, pretty with a good figure and big silicon-enhanced br ...more
Kate Vane
Jan 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What happens when you’ve followed your passion but never quite made it? Wade Lovett, former jazz musician, is in his sixties and living in a trailer park. He has unexpectedly found, at this late stage in his life, that a number of women find him attractive, though he is self-deprecating enough to acknowledge that this is largely due to outliving the competition.

Now Carol, one of the three women he is seeing, wants to marry him and another, Peggy, is dead. Peggy named him beneficiary of her life
Susan Johnston
Dec 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Princess Fuzzypants here"

We just finished a really entertaining book last night called DEATH COMES TO HAPPY ACRES by JT Moss.

Set in a trailer park, our hero, Wade is a 63 year old unemployed man who has already had a heart attack. The fact that he is juggling three ladies at the same time must add some stress considering they all know about each other.

One of them, Carol, convinces Wade they should get married- not for love but because they would be good together. Wade agrees but being the honest
Jul 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

"An Entertaining and Fun Cozy Mystery"

"Death Comes to Happy Acres" was a great listen. It had me hooked from the beginning to the end. I loved the character of Wade and the setting at Happy Acres. Wade was a bit peculiar which was what made him a fun protagonist. Although he was seeing three women, he did say he wasn't the Don Juan type. When Peggy, one of his lady friends turns up dead, he sort of inherits her cat, Prince Albert plus $2,000.00 to take care of him. He doesn't really want to keep
Feb 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
**May Contain Spoilers**

Wade Lovett, the 63 year old broke Casanova of a trailer park has found himself in the middle of a love triangle. When Wade becomes engaged to one of the women, he visits Peggy MacCallister, his other girlfriend to tell her the news. If Wade thought life was difficult by managing a love triangle, his life was about to get turned upside down when he finds Peggy dead on the floor. Surprisingly, Wade was bequeath her prized cat, Prince Albert along with being the beneficiary
Feb 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Death Comes To Happy Acres by J. T. Moss is a very unique and interesting read, which I enjoyed very much. Once I started reading this book I did not want to stop. The book is fast-paced with a good solid mystery. This book was full of twists and turns that kept me guessing until the end.

Wade is in his 60's living in the mobile home park, Happy Acres. He is also dating 3 ladies at the same time, two of whom live in the park. T
“This audiobook was given by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review via Audiobook Boom.”

I have to name this a cozy mystery. It was a quick listen with plenty of twists and turns to keep you guessing until the very end. I found myself scratching my head trying to guess "who dun it?" The characters weren't terribly likable, but I didn't hate em either. I wouldn't mind seeing a few more "Happy Acre." adventures.

The narration was well done.The characters wer
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