Digging Up Dirt by Pamela Hart. (2021).
**3 out of 5 stars**
**Thank you to Harlequin Australia for sending me a free advance readers copy of this novel; published 2 June 2021**
TV researcher Poppy has her heritage home renovations halted when bones are found under the floorboards. Her old enemy/archaeologist Julieanne declares the bones evidence of a rare breed of sheep and gets a heritage order. The archaeological dig includes Julieanne’s attractive boyfriend Tol. But then Julieanne is found murdered in the house, and Poppy and Tol are the main suspects. So Poppy does her own investigating, including into the right-wing Australian Family Party, for which Julieanne was seeking preselection, and the affiliated Radiant Joy Church, as well as the Museum Julieanne worked for. Can Poppy save herself, Tol, and get her house back?
I have to say, I’ve read a historical fiction novel by this author and when you read this one you wouldn’t think it was the same person who wrote both. I mean that as a compliment and acknowledgement of the author’s talent, successfully adding another genre to her repertoire. I just want to mention that I’ve only given this book 3 out of 5 stars because cosy mysteries are not really my thing; I absolutely think that those who read and enjoy that genre will love this book. In relation to our main character, Poppy is a likeable enough lead. I found her actual job description quite interesting really, and of course it’s always entertaining when an ‘average’ person just decides to go off on an amateur detective journey. I’m intrigued as to what will happen next for Poppy in future books and what her next adventure will be.
Overall: if you enjoy reading cosy mysteries, definitely pick this one up.