"The Twain Does Meet" is a between-the-numbers book in the Jolie Gentil series, and while there are joys and problems to discover it's not a traditional cozy mystery. In book 10 (The Unexpected Resolution) Jolie solves a murder, she and Scoobie get married, and they gain a new family member--Scoobie's much-younger half-brother. Book 11 (Underground in Ocean Alley) takes place a few years later, and mystery solving is accompanied by their three-year old twins.
I promised readers they would have the story of the twins' birth an anything-but-calm event -- but it didn't seem right to mix it with a murder. So, we have a nearly 33,000 word novella that features laughs and angst with the Ocean Alley crew and more than a few surprises. A fun read with familiar characters.
Jolie and Scoobie have added 11-year-old Terry to the family mix. A pregnant Jolie is appraising houses preceded by what she calls her beach ball, and Scoobie's learned the hospital where he works may be cutting staff. Just as they are about to buy a bigger house.
But something's off at Ocean Alley Middle School. Terry's classmate, Eddie, accuses him of taking some cash from their shared locker, and Jolie tries to heed Scoobie's advice that Terry be allowed to handle some things himself. For Ms. "I need to solve that," it's a challenge. Plus, she's picking up signals that there might be problems in Eddie's home. Can she wlak the difficult path between helping and meddling?
Jolie tries to balance running the Harvest for All Food Pantry, her work, helping Terry feel at home in Ocean Alley, worrying about Scoobie losing his job, and planning to be a mom. That's supposed to be a fun time, right? And lots of people have advice. Oh, joy.
Join Jolie, Scoobie, and their extended family and friends for a heartwarming time.