Book Review: Lisa Bork’s To Love and to Perish

Posted January 15, 2013 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Lisa Bork’s To Love and to Perish

To Love and to Perish


Lisa Bork

cozy mystery that was published by Midnight Ink on December 8, 2012 and has 288 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.

Other books by this author which I have reviewed include For Better, For Murder, For Richer, For Danger, In Sickness and in Death

Fourth in the Broken Vows mystery series based in Wachobe, New York.

It’s really more of a “3.5”, but I had to up it to a “4” if only because Jo isn’t being so dang stupid this time around!

My Take

Just another day in Jolene Parker’s life. Murder, mayhem, and no longer surprising her husband with what she’s up to. I do enjoy the homey warmth of this series. And it’s always fun to imagine racing about in the vintage cars Bork includes!

Cory will do anything to help Brennnan. ANYthing. He doesn’t care if it will turn Brennan against him forever, as long as he’s safe.

What is with James?? He goes to all this trouble and pulls this at his own anniversary party??? WTF?? Way to go Bork, pulling the rug out from under us. Again.

I agree completely with Bork’s take on the news today. Vultures with no care for truth. Just whatever will crank up their ratings and screw the people involved.

Too, too true. Erica hands Jo a pillow she made for her:

“I smile because you’re my sister

I laugh because there is nothing you can do about it.”

Erica is true to form. She’s making promises she has no intention of keeping, and Jo lets her know there is only one way to make up for it. Canoeing. Oh, yeah, this is good. Although it doesn’t end too well.

Then there’s Ray’s conscience. He’s just a little too law-abiding and not thinking it through. A fact that shows in events that follow. I agree with Bork, Ray should have put Danny first and he didn’t. Although, in many respects, Ray is a really great guy. He knows what his wife is like and doesn’t get all up in her face about her actions. Even when they are incredibly stupid.

The Story

It’s the Vintage Grand Prix Festival and the Parkers have been looking forward to a three-day weekend of festivities and classic cars. Only the fun-and-games are cut short when it appears as though Brennan has pushed a man to his death.

Brennan refuses to talk to Cory, wants him to do nothing. Not that this will have any effect. Cory loves him too much and soon inveigles Jo into helping him investigate Brennan’s past.

An exploration that creates further problems and some resolutions.

Then there’s Isabelle with her fears. Seems there are all sorts of affairs happening in this installment.

The Characters

Jolene Parker has an exotic cars showroom, Ansdale Auto Imports, in Wachobe, New York. Ray Parker is a cop with the Wachobe PD. He and Jo decided to make another go of their marriage in For Richer, For Danger. In In Sickness and in Death, they took in twelve-year-old Danny, Phillips’ son.

Erica is Jo’s bipolar sister, now married for almost a year to Maury, the rose deliveryman (see In Sickness and in Death).

Cory is Jo’s mechanic. He’s gay, loves to act in theatricals, and is in a relationship with Brennan Rowe, a building contractor. Brennan’s jerk of a dad is ill, dying. And he has one last jerk of the chain he just has to pull. Beth Smith is the witness who claims Brennan pushed James. She also works for Wayne Engle.

Ken Sampson is with the Sheriff’s Department investigating this first death. Catherine Thomas is a HOT and excellent defense attorney whom Ray used to date. Celeste Martin operates the Talbots store across the street from Ansdale Auto Imports. She’s the town gossip and used to date Jo’s dad.

James Gleason was Monica’s brother. He’s now divorced and not being mourned by anyone. Monica died in a car accident thirteen years ago. She, Brennan, Wayne Engle, and Elizabeth Potter were the “Four Musketeers” in high school. Suzanne Gleason is James’ ex-wife; Matthew is the son. Neither are choked up about James’ death. Heck, Matthew thinks Brennan is a nice guy.

Isabelle Branch is Jo’s best friend, and she operates an advertising agency. Her husband Jack owns a jewelry store. Cassidy is their daughter, and Jo’s godchild. Phillips is a car thief who stole Jo’s vintage Ferrari. A fact for which she is intensely grateful.

The Cover and Title

The cover is a green and black plaid with a cute, sporty silver convertible straddling a man’s legs and arm. That’ll teach ‘im to get anywhere near Jo Parker!

The title is a throwback to Brennan’s history, the accident that had such an impact on his life, knowing and unknowing, To Love and to Perish.