“Death by Cashmere” Finds a Woman Dead in a Lobster Trap


Death by CashmereIn Death by Cashmere by Sally Goldenbaum, Izzy Chambers has given up her career as a lawyer in order to move back to Sea Harbor, Massachusetts, a fishing town where nothing much happens and where her Aunt Nell lives. There she opens the Seaside Knitting Studio, where a group of women have formed the Seaside Knitters, who congregate regularly to knit together, eat good food, and support each other in their lives. Despite the misgivings of some of her friends, Izzy has rented out the apartment above the store to Angie Archer, who is sometimes very loud and has a wild reputation. The Seaside Knitters are happy to learn that Angie has a date with Pete, known for being a really good man, but Izzy is surprised to notice Angie at a bar later that night without Pete. Then the next morning, Cass, a lobster trapper, rushes into the Seaside Knitting Studio in horror because she and the police who are trying to help her look into the poachers who have been stealing her lobsters have found the body of Angie with her long red hair tangled up in a trap, holding her under the water.

People seem eager to blame Angie for carelessness in going out to the jetty in the middle of the night in the wind, so they can forget about the incident and move on with their lives. But the Seaside Knitters refuse to ignore this tragedy and work together to find the truth and locate the killer.

I found a few concerns with this book. The use of Trazepam as a date-rape drug used to paralyze Angie to assure she will drown does not seem credible. I looked up Trazepam online and learned that it is another name for Valium. In the book, the drug is powerful enough to paralyze Angie sufficiently that this top-notch swimmer cannot move while in the water, but was able to approach the jetty and get thrown from it on her own steam. As someone who has been prescribed Valium in the past, I can testify that it is more likely to put someone to sleep than leave her awake and paralyzed, and I can’t imagine this being a very effective date-rape drug, as it is portrayed in the book.

Another thing that annoyed me came In scenes with dialogue, which get tedious with a constant, “He said, she said.” Rather, Goldenbaum should have varied the wording to keep things mixed up. The rapid-fire conversations fail to mix up the wording when crediting the speakers, which I found annoying. I suspect this issue is much more obvious in the audio format than in print.

Speaking of the audio, this book is narrated by  Julie McKay, who does a good job of covering up those issues that annoyed me.  She uses reasonable voices and helped me focus less on the less admirable portions of the book and more on the strengths, in particular the characters of  Izzy and Aunt Nell, who becomes more involved in the sleuthing as the book passes.

The book had some nice ones but none that stood out as excellent. It got me interested without making me have desire to be there in order to avoid missing any second. This I give the book three stars.

To purchase this book for yourself, click here on Amazon.

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