Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Book review of Haircuts, Hens and Homicide by Stephanie Dagg

French Village Diaries book review Haircuts, Hens and Homicide Stephanie Dagg
Haircuts, Hens and Homicide by Stephanie Dagg

Haircuts, Hens and Homicide

Megan finds mayhem when she arrives in France to bury her Gran and sort out her affairs. She expected difficult encounters with civil servants and red tape but not with wandering chickens, an imperious policeman and a dead body. Together with her unlikely new friend, the elderly and grumpy Alphonse and his canine equivalent, Monsieur Moustache, Megan becomes involved in investigating the fowl-related foul play that’s at work in this sleepy part of rural France. 
She’s helped but mainly hindered by the people she comes across. These include the local mayor, who wants Megan to stay and set up a hair salon in his village to help keep it alive. There are the cousins Romain, the gendarme, and Nico, the clumsy but hunky farmer. They have always clashed, but do so constantly now that Megan is on the scene. Michelle, Romain’s terrifying ex who wants him back, appears along the way, as does Claudette, a wheelchair-bound old lady, and Kayla, Megan’s best friend, who is hugely pregnant but not above taking on the forces of French law and order when Megan finds herself the prime suspect after Alphonse is stabbed.
There’s excitement, humour and lots of ruffled feathers in this rom-com slash cosy mystery, the first in a projected series.

My review

I have been following Stephanie for many years and have always enjoyed her writing style, and this book was no exception.

Megan isn’t in a great place. With her mum no longer on the scene, burying her Gran (who brought her up) and sorting out her house and belongings is something she has  to go through alone, and in France. From her arrival, things start to veer off plan, mainly thanks to strange goings on that seem to involve foul play with chickens. She soon makes an impression on the local gendarme, as she always seems to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, and life is certainly not as calm as she was expecting it to be, especially with the queue of ladies (of a certain age) wanting a new look hairstyle from her. It is when she becomes involved in investigating the mysterious happenings in the village, and then finds herself the main suspect, that things start getting serious.

This is a fun read with a great story line that perfectly captures life and the quirky characters you meet in rural France and I often found myself laughing at the characters as I read it. With the added bonus of a mystery to be solved, a hint of romance, some unexpected twists and a real baddie intent on causing as much trouble as possible; I loved it from beginning to end and couldn’t put it down.

I’m so pleased to read that there will be more books in this series from Stephanie as I’m hooked and can’t wait to find out what happens next for Megan.

French Village Diaries book review Haircuts, Hens and Homicide Stephanie Dagg
Stephanie Dagg

French Village Diaries book review Haircuts, Hens and Homicide Stephanie Dagg

Author Bio


I'm an English expat living in France, having moved here with my family in 2006 after fourteen years as an expat in Ireland. I now consider myself a European rather than 'belonging' to any particular country. The last ten years have been interesting, to put it mildly. Taking on seventy-five acres with three lakes, two hovels and one cathedral-sized barn, not to mention an ever increasing menagerie, makes for exciting times. The current array of animals includes alpacas, llamas, huarizos (alpaca-llama crossbreds, unintended in our case and all of them thanks to one very determined alpaca male), sheep, goats, pigs, ducks, geese, chickens and turkeys, not forgetting our pets of dogs, cats, zebra finches, budgies , canaries, lovebirds and Chinese quail. Before we came to France all we had was a dog and two chickens, so it's been a steep learning curve. I recount these experiences in my book Heads Above Water: Staying Afloat in France and the sequel to that, Total Immersion: Ten Years in France. I also blog regularly at www.bloginfrance.com.
I'm married to Chris and we have three bilingual TCKs (third culture kids) who are resilient and resourceful and generally wonderful.     
I'm a traditionally-published author of many children's books, and am now self-publishing too. I have worked part-time as a freelance editor for thirty years after starting out as a desk editor for Hodder & Stoughton. Find me at www.editing.zone. The rest of the time I'm running carp fishing lakes with Chris and inevitably cleaning up some or other animal's poop.