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Christmas Cow Bells

(A Buttermilk Creek Mystery #1)

4.43  ·  Rating details ·  111 ratings  ·  83 reviews
The first novel in Mollie Cox Bryan’s brand new mystery series, set in the Blue Ridge Mountains, will keep you guessing until the cows come home . . .
Christmas is a time for new beginnings, so after her big breakup, Brynn MacAlister takes the gouda with the bad. With her three Red Devon cows, she settles in bucolic Shenandoah Springs, eager for a new life as an
Kindle Edition, 320 pages
Published September 24th 2019 by Kensington
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Average rating 4.43  · 
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 ·  111 ratings  ·  83 reviews

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Christmas Cow Bells is the first book in a new cozy series, A Buttermilk Creek Mystery, published in 2019 by Mollie Cox Bryan. I belong to a cozy mystery group where the book was mentioned, and since I was looking to start a new series and had heard of the author, I took a chance. I'm glad I did, so let's get into the review.

Brynn returned home to Virginia earlier this year to open a cheese shop after her beloved grandmother passed away. Unfortunately, after the move, she learned her
Natalia  Ramlal
Our main protagonist, Brynn moves to a farm in the Blue Ridge Mountains. She's recovering from a bad break up and wants a fresh start as a cheesemaker. Brynn has her hands full taking care of the farm, her three cows, one of whom is grieving the loss of her stillborn calf and making her new business successful. Then her neighbor, Nancy dies in a suspicious fire, and soon after, someone starts harassing her. Brynn is convinced that there is a connection between the two, and she hopes to get to th ...more
Oct 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Review coming soon.
Sep 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Brynn MacAlister moved to Shenandoah Springs, VA to start her dream business....a micro dairy farm. The old rectory building and its surrounding land is perfect for her and her 3 Red Devon cows, Petunia, Buttercup and Marigold. The locals are a bit standoffish. Most of then don't like change. Brynn is seen as a newcomer, along with her next door neighbor, Nancy. Nancy wants to remodel the Old Glebe Church into a farmers market. Local pushback turns to murder when the old church burns to the grou ...more
Peggy R
What a delightful start to a brand new series for author Mollie Cox Bryan. I was completely engaged in the story from the very first pages and just wanted to keep reading to find out how the story would end. The author has set this series in a charming location. I have visited the Shenandoah Valley and her wonderfully descriptive writing style allowed me to picture it once again. The character of Brynn is easy to like. She is starting out on her own after calling off her engagement and has somet ...more
Christmas Cows Bells by Mollie Cox Bryan is the debut of A Buttermilk Creek Mystery series. I like the author’s conversational writing style (like chatting with a friend) which makes for a pleasing reading experience. Brynn MacAlister got her love of Red Devon cows from her grandmother and fell into cheesemaking after taking a course in college. Her degree in chemistry came in handy when she attended cheese school. I like that the author took the time to establish our main character. We get to l ...more
Aug 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for the chance to read this book!

Oh how I loved this one! It had absolutely everything that I want to see in a first cozy book; great, memorable characters, unique setting/theme, an interesting crime and a great mystery! It was well written with just enough twists and turns to keep you wondering who the murderer actually was. I learned a little about the book's theme too (cheese making) and it's definitely something I've never thought about be
Sep 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
Okay, so maybe a cozy series about a small cheese making operation wasn't the best idea for a lactose intolerant person who really really misses cheese. But the story is well worth the untreatable cravings! Brynn is getting over heartache, as is one of her adorable cows Petunia. A small little town seemingly focused on small organic farms is the perfect place for her to mend her heart and build her business But, life isn't all butter and cream and she is quickly drawn into the not so nice parts ...more
This is going to be such a fun new series! Even though Brynn hadn't lived in her house for too long, she'd already made some friends in Willow and Schuyler. I liked how those three worked together, sort of a Nancy-Bess-George type of friendship. I enjoyed her neighbor's family especially the college guys and thought it was a great idea to have them stay in her guest cottage, especially with some weird things that had been happening on Brynn's little farm. Someone wanted to drive her away, and so ...more
Sep 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
"Christmas Cow Bells" is the first book in a new series by Mollie Cox Bryan. I had not read any of her prior books and was looking forward to reading this new-to-me author as she starts a new series. Brynn MacAlister has bought some farm land in rural Shenandoah Springs with the dream of having an organic, dairy farm. Brynn and her family are from the Richmond, Virginia area so she transports her three precious "girls", Petunia, Buttercup and Marigold along with her. These wonderful Red Devon co ...more
Jessica Fischer
Oct 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This was my first book by this author and I’ll definitely be looking for more. I thoroughly enjoyed Christmas Cow Bells.

Right from the start I was drawn into Brynn’s story with her cows and Buttermilk Creek Farm. A newcomer to the area who is starting over, Brynn becomes worried after a devastating fire claims the life of her neighbor Nancy (a fellow newcomer). Thinking someone is set to scare her off, Brynn dives into the mystery of Nancy’s murder.

Along the way we meet Brynn’s cows
Sep 29, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Cozy mystery readers
Thanks to the Cozy Mystery Review Crew and publisher Kensington Books for a copy of this book. All comments and opinions are my own.

This was a captivating and quick read - quick because I couldn't put it down. The cozy opens with a suspicious fire which leaves one person dead. Nancy is the neighbor of our heroine, Brynn MacAllister, a micro-farmer and cheese-maker newly arrived in the small town of Shenandoah Springs in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Brynn is compelled to find out why her new fr
Oct 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is the first in the new series, Buttermilk Creek Mystery. Brynn is new to Shenandoah Springs where she has a small diary farm of only three cows and makes her own cheeses. When Brynn's neighbor and friend Nancy dies in a fire, Brynn thinks that there is something suspicious about her death. Brynn has some help investigating from her friends, Willow, who she met through the local co-op, and Schuyler, the local vet/acupuncturist who is helping Brynn's cow, Petunia, get over her depression of ...more
Sep 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the first book in the Buttermilk Creek series. Brynn McAllister is a cheesemaker on a farm in the Blue Ridge Mountains. She is busy with taking care of her farm and running her business. When she friend and neighbors' church burns down killing her in the process Brynn is understandable upset. Brynn and Nancy were the newcomers to town and had bonded and become fast friends. Shortly after mysterious events start to happen to Brynn. A fire is set on her lawn, her dog is taken and a busines ...more
Sep 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cozy
Christmas Cow Bells is the first in a new series by Mollie Cox Bryan. Set in a small town in the Shenandoah, new resident and local cheesemaker Brynn MacAlister’s neighbor, Nancy, is murdered after her house was set on fire, and right before Christmas. While the Fire Inspector is investigating the fire, strange things start to happen around Brynn’s farm – trying to scare her off.

I really enjoyed this book. For a first in the series, there wasn’t an overwhelming amount of world buildi
Micky Cox
Oct 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Brynn has moved to Shenandoah Springs to get a fresh start making fresh cheeses, but someone isn't interested in having Brynn as a neighbor and are doing their best to run her out of town including murdering the only real friend that she has. A great new series is off to ringing great start to the series! The characters were well fleshed out and very relatable which drew you into the story even more quickly. Add to that an extremely well plotted story line that kept you guessing and offered up s ...more
Erin Addington
Sep 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
LOVE! This is my favorite new cozy mystery series. I absolutely LOVED it! There was so much about this book that I thoroughly enjoyed, especially Brynn and her menagerie. The "girls" are amazing, and who wouldn't love a pup like Freckles! I also really enjoyed learning about cheese making. I have a new desire to go out and move to a farm with a few cows and start making cheese. The setting was amazing too. I will admit to being more of a beach girl, but this book made the Blue Ridge Mountains so ...more
Melissa Lowrie
Sep 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Christmas Cow Bells by Mollie Cox Bryan is the delightful first book in a new series (A Buttermilk Creek Mystery). I love this book! The author’s writing style was smooth and easy. The setting for the book, the Shenandoah Valley, was described in such a manner that you could envision it. The characters-especially the main character Brynn-were described and developed beautifully. This was such an easy book to lose yourself in and become a part of the story. However, there were enough twists and t ...more
Sep 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Christmas Cow Bells is the first book in the Buttermilk Creek Mystery series by Mollie Cox Bryan.

This is a great start to a new series.

There is a cast of character and cast of cows listing at the start of the book. It really helps to remind you who is who. It is an interesting group of people.

I really like how Brynn cares so much for her animals. The cheesemaking process is interesting and I was hungry after reading the book. I’ll be trying out some of the recipes from t
Sep 22, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I fell in love with the cover and then I fell in love with the cows.
I think it's a lovely and cozy novel but unfortunately the mystery took too often the backseat.
It was an enjoyable and entertaining read, I liked the quirky and fleshed out characters and I think that the funniest are the cows.
I look forward to reading the next instalment in this series.
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine.
Sep 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
I've never read a book by Mollie Cox Bryan before, but after this book, I plan to. Christmas Cow Bells is the first book of a cozy mystery series, set in Buttermilk Creek, supposedly a bucolic community. Naturally there's a death, and our main character unwittingly gets involved in sleuthing. While I found the dialogue to be stilted at times, the story was nice, and the characters are sweet. I would happily recommend it.

I received an advanced reader copy of this book for my opinion.
Lisa Morin
What a great first book in a new series!
Brynn is starting out small, a farmette with 3 cows and a big desire to make cheese.
Settling into her new place should be simple, but unfortunately, the death of a new friend has her rethinking her choices.
When she becomes the target of a prankster, Brynn understands that these pranks need to be taken seriously.
Luckily she has made some other friends who are quick to rally around her and help her dig for answers.

I absolu
Oct 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
4.5 Stars

This is the first book in the A Buttermilk Creek Mystery series by Mollie Cox Bryan.

I really felt for Brynn MacAlister. She was living in a town that didn’t want change. And she and her next door neighbor, Nancy, were doing just that. Change in a big way. Brynn through her cheese making and Nancy through renovating the church into a sort of marketplace. They were doing their own thing yet using resources that they changed to make work for them. Really inspiring w
Cozy Cat Reviews
Sep 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book in the author's new "Buttermilk Creek Mystery Series". I have read the author's prior works and always enjoy her writing. This book did not disappoint and is a great start to a fun new cozy mystery series that readers will embrace.
Thank you to the publisher and to Net Galley for the opportunity. .My review opinion is my own..

I loved this first in series ! The setting is charming Shenandoah Springs, in the Blue Ridge Mountains which the author beautifully describes for th
Patricia Romero
Sep 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cozy-mystery
Christmas Cow Bells is the first in a new series called Buttermilk Creek Mystery Series.

Bryan is the author of several Cozy Mystery Series that I grab as soon as I see them!

Set in the Blue Ridge Mountains, in the lovely town of Shenandoah Springs. Brynn MacAlister has heart troubles. Heartbreak troubles that is. A change of scene is just what she needs. Along with her three cows, she settles in and begins the next chapter of her life as an organic small dairy farmer and c
Aug 31, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First in a new series! Brynn MacAlister and her 3 beloved cows are embarking on a cheese-making venture in the Shenandoah Valley. After a fire next door and the death of her new friend, Brynn finds herself the target of harassment and worse. She needs to find out who killed her neighbor and keep herself safe so she can try and have a merry Christmas.

This book was very good. I have zero knowledge of cheese-making and found that interesting. I don't like cheese, however, you might find yourself c
Sep 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What an interesting occupation Brynn has. You would think her life would be calm and peaceful. Just her and her girls. I love the way she treats her animals. But things aren’t always what we think they would be are they? There are some interesting characters in this story. Two of my other favorites are Schuyler and Willow. What great friends they have become for Brynn. This is a great story with folks having to make their own decisions but to also realize that it’s not a bad thing to have some h ...more
Oct 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
What a fun new mystery series! Shenandoah Springs is filled with people I want to meet again and a community I want to watch to see how they grow and develop together over time. The characters in this story draw me to the town and the highlight of all the characters are the cows! I just love the personalities they develop throughout their interactions with everyone (and animal!) they encounter! Brynn is a wonderful protagonist and as she's introduced to her new community and to us as readers, I ...more
Robin Reynolds
*Received through the Cozy Mystery Review Crew and voluntarily reviewed*

This was a slow read for me, though it shouldn't have been. I think I might have enjoyed it more if it hadn't been entirely told from Brynn's point of view. She's likable enough, but I never really connected with her, and didn't really get to know any of the other characters. I had trouble sometimes just keeping up with the other characters. Brynn's friends, Willow and Schuyler, seemed quite similar and I mixed t
Aug 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Christmas Cow Bells by Mollie Cox Bryan is a fabulous first in hopefully a long line of books in the new Buttermilk Creek Mystery series. It takes place in a “quiet” little town in the Shenandoah Valley/Blue Ridge Mountains, VA. The main character, Brynn MacAlister is trying to make her dream come true by running her own small artisan cheese company. She has purchased three beyond adorable cows: Petunia, Marigold, and Buttercup.
Brynn has her work cut out for her trying to take care of the mini
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