Academic Curveball by James J. Cudney

Academic Curveball

 Title: Academic Curveball

Author: James J. Cudney

Series: Braxton Campus Mysteries #1

Format: ecopy

Source: Provided by author

My Rating: 5 stars


When Kellan Ayrwick, a thirty-two-year-old single father, is forced to return home for his father’s retirement from Braxton College, he finds the dead body of a professor in Diamond Hall’s stairwell. Unfortunately, Kellan has a connection to the victim, and so do several members of his family. Could one of them be guilty of murder? Then he finds a second body after discovering mysterious donations to the college’s athletic program, a nasty blog denouncing his father, and a criminal attempting to change student grades so the star baseball pitcher isn’t expelled.

Someone is playing games on campus, but none of the facts add up. With the help of his eccentric and trouble-making nana weeding through the clues, Kellan tries to stay out of the sheriff’s way. Fate has other plans. Kellan is close to discovering the killer’s identity just as someone he loves is put in grave danger of becoming victim number three. And if that’s not enough to wreak havoc on his family, everything comes crashing to a halt when his own past comes spiraling back to change his life forever.

In this debut novel in the Braxton Campus Mystery Series, readers discover a cozy, secluded Pennsylvania village full of quirky, sarcastic, and nosy residents. Among the daily workings of Braxton College and the charming Ayrwick family, Kellan weighs his investigative talents against an opportunity to achieve a much sought-after dream. When this first book ends, the drama is set for the next adventure in Kellan’s future… and it’s one you won’t want to miss.

My Thoughts

First off I want to thank the author for providing me with a final copy in exchange for my honest review as well as for letting me be a beta reader for him again.

This is Jay’s 3rd book and it’s the first one in a new series called the Braxton Campus Mysteries. When I first found out his new book was going to be a cozy mystery I have to admit I was worried because I have never read a cozy mystery before and honestly as bad as it is to say have always been turned off from them because of their covers.

That being said though I really enjoyed this. Jay has a gift for descriptions that draws you in and makes it feel like you are in the book with the characters. Speaking of characters they are all well done. I especially love Nana D. She tells it like it is but I am curious how she seems to always know everything before anybody else does?

As for the murder mystery, like I mentioned in a previous review I shared everyone is a suspect at first and you narrow it down as you read on but I never guessed who the killer was at all. Not until the end where it is revealed.

I do have to mention this book ends on a massive cliffhanger. This book is wrapped up fully but that cliffhanger leads us into what the next book will be about. As I’m sure y’all know I don’t like cliffhangers. It’s not a bad thing it’s just personal preference. I am impatient so I want all of the answers now. That cliffhanger definitely has me IMPATIENTLY waiting for book 2.

I highly recommend this book. It has twists and turns as well as humor and an ending I dare say you want see coming.



19 thoughts on “Academic Curveball by James J. Cudney

  1. Thank you for such a wonderful review. You’ve been a fantastic supporter and friend the last year (and more!)

    I completely understand the cover and cliffhanger notes. Some covers can be too over the top. I tend not to like cliffhangers either unless the book is coming out relatively soon or doesn’t erase everything we just learned. At least I didn’t do that! 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Of course you know I will always support you!! I love everything you write and I am excited for what’s next.

      I actually really loved your cover. It matches what in the book completely and it didn’t look cheesy and cartoony. Yeah the only time I truest hate cliffhangers and think they are bad is when it doesn’t wrap up that book. You wrapped up everything perfectly and just left us off with what’s to come in the next book like I said isn’t a bad thing at all I’m just impatient lol.

      Liked by 2 people

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