It's November here in the drizzly northwest, so when I saw what looked like a bit of a cozy mystery at the library and it said "Set against a sparkling Mediterranean backdrop" on the back, I was out the door with it before you could say "I could learn to like ouzo." And it was pretty cozy: Small Greek village where gossip is the main occupation, jilted bride, mysterious revenge crime, and "the mysterious fat man whose tennis shoes are always pristine and whose investigative methods are always unorthodox." There wasn't even a murder. So I was prepared to be lulled and warmed by what sounded essentially like Poirot Does Greece, and I was.
Zouroudi, who was born in England but spent years in the Greek islands, did a great job of transporting me to a culture and lifestyle I haven't experienced and I liked her detective, Hermes Diaktoros of Athens, who reminds me of Peter Falk's Columbo. I wish I'd read the books in order though, because at the end, I still had no idea who Diaktoros works for. He's not a cop, but he never says what he is. My only complaint is that I wasn't prepared for the darkness of the ending. There is so much humor and lightness throughout, I just didn't see it coming and it didn't seem in keeping with the rest of the book. But knowing that going into her other books, I won't be sucker punched, so I don't imagine it'll bother me less.