Monday, April 15, 2019

Review: Sifting Through Clues by: Daryl Wood Gerber

Title: Sifting Through Clues
Author: Daryl Wood Gerber
Publisher: Beyond The Page
Series: A Cookbook Nook Mystery #8
Pages: 235
Format: e-book arc
Source: NetGalley & GEBT


The Agatha Award–winning author of Wreath Between the Lines returns to the Cookbook Nook, where culinary mysteries are giving everyone food for thought . . . 

Book clubs from all over have descended on Crystal Cove to celebrate the library’s Book Club Bonanza week, and Jenna Hart has packed the Cookbook Nook with juicy reads and tasty cookbooks. But she’s most excited about spending an evening with the Mystery Mavens and their moveable feast, when they will go from house to house to share different culinary treats and discuss the whodunit they’re all reading. It’s all good food and fun for the savvy armchair detectives, until one of the members of the group is found murdered at the last stop on the tour. 

As if that weren’t enough to spoil her appetite, Jenna discovers that all the evidence points to her friend Pepper as being the guilty party. And with Pepper’s chief-of-police daughter too close to the case to be impartial, Jenna knows she’ll have to step in to help clear her friend’s name before a bitter injustice sends her to jail. Sifting through the clues, Jenna unearths any number of possible culprits, but she’ll have to cook up a new way to catch the killer before Pepper’s goose is cooked . . . 

Includes tasty sweet and savory recipes! 

My Thoughts:

Jenna and her friends and co-workers are getting ready for Book Clubs that have arrived at Crystal Cove.  Jenna and her book club are house hopping and having a meal at each house while discussing a Krista Davis book.  When at the last stop they find Ivy Beale dead.  Who killed Ivy and why?  All signs point to Pepper being the guilt party but there is no way Jenna will believe that.  What makes it harder is that Cinnamon her daughter is the chief of police.  Who specifically told Jenna to stay out of it.

Also Rhett Jackson Jenna's fiance is working with Jenna to try to narrow down a location and date for their wedding.  Of course with everything going on a wedding is the last thing on Jenna's mind.  Will she sniff out the clues in time?

I love this series it's fun to watch as Jenna fumbles around trying to figure out what really happened and why?  I also loved how they included a recent cozy mystery into their book club that definitely makes it all the better.  Makes me wish I was part of their book club!  I can't wait to see what is next for this author.  If you have read this book feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section!

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Review: Kernel of Truth by: Kristi Abbott

Title: Kernel of Truth
Author: Kristi Abbott
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Series: Popcorn Shop Mystery #1
Pages: 294
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchase


An all-new Popcorn Shop Mystery bursts on the scene, featuring gourmet popcorn entrepreneur Rebecca Anderson and her poodle Sprocket.

Opening a gourmet popcorn shop was never on Rebecca Anderson’s bucket list. But after a failed marriage to a celebrity chef, she’s ready for her life to open up and expand. She has returned to her hometown of Grand Lake, Ohio, with her popcorn-loving poodle Sprocket to start a new business—naturally called POPS. As a delicious bonus, Cordelia “Coco” Bittles, a close family friend who has always been like a grandmother to Rebecca, owns the chocolate shop next door, and the two are thinking of combining their businesses.

But when Coco’s niece, Alice, discovers her on the floor of her chocolate shop, those dreams go up in smoke. The local sheriff thinks Coco was the victim of a robbery gone wrong, but Rebecca isn’t so sure. As suspects start popping up all over, Rebecca is determined to turn up the heat and bring the killer to justice in a jiffy!


My Thoughts:

This book follows Rebecca who owns a Popcorn Shop and is working with another shop owner to expand the business.  When her fellow business owner is found dead it's up to Rebecca find out what is going on.  Of course things don't go according to plan when Rebecca keeps trying to get to the bottom of what happened to Coco.  As she tries to figure it she finds herself inside the police station more times than she wants to count!  So who killed Coco and why?

I loved this story Rebecca is great she's not perfect and not always making the best choices and I think it works for this series to have a girl who plays a not good girl but not quite bad either is definitely a nice change to the cozy genre. 

I also loved meeting all the people that live with Rebecca in her hometown and how she deals with moving back after a marriage that fell apart even though her ex-husband can't figure that out yet.  Definitely a great addition to the cozy mysteries out there and one I wouldn't mind reading again and again!  Rebecca has just the right amount of sass!

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Review: Murder at the Marina by: Janet Finsilver

Title: Murder at the Marina
Author: Janet Finsilver
Publisher: Lyrical Underground
Series: A Kelly Jackson Mystery #5
Pages: 200
Format: e-book ARC
Source: NetGalley & GEBT


She’s got to solve this—or her friends are sunk . . .

Kelly Jackson, manager of the Redwood Cove Bed and Breakfast, is fond of the Doblinsky brothers, Ivan and Rudy, members of the Silver Sentinels, a crew of crime-solving senior citizens in their Northern California seaside hamlet. 

After she discovers a jewel-encrusted dagger—with what appears to be dried blood on the blade—on their fishing boat, they share their family history with Kelly, and she learns that the knife may be part of a set from their long-ago childhood in Russia. Its sudden reappearance is eerie, but the mystery grows much more serious when a body is found on the boat. 

The victim was staying at Kelly’s inn, in town for a Russian Heritage Festival, and some of the organizers were clearly harboring some bitterness. But the story behind this murder seems as layered as a nesting doll—and Kelly’s feeling completely at sea . . .

My Thoughts:

Kelly is adjusting to life in Redwood Cove and spending time with the Doblinsky brothers getting to visit them on their boat the Nadia.  While waiting for them Kelly finds a dagger with something on it.  Obviously someone is out to cause trouble from Ivan and Rudy.

As the Russian Heritage Festival preparations get underway another mishap happens when a body is found on the Nadia.  It turns out to be a local store owner Alexander Koskov who also helps Russians get money for rare valuables.  Who killed Alexander and why?

Kelly decides it's time to rally The Professor, Rudy, Ivan, Gertie, Mary the notorious Silver Sentinels.  The group has solved a slew of murders up to this point so why not help out on of their own?  They jump right in to help one of their own!

What I love about this series is there really isn't a thing wrong with the series.  It pulls you in and has you gripping until the story is over.  The group works fabulous and they get things done in their own way!

This book also was great for those who love Russian History especially those of royal stature.  It had you pulled hearing Ivan and Rudy's story.  There was so much to enjoy with it.  Another fabulous adventure for anyone who loves this series and cozies in general!

Friday, April 5, 2019

Review: Chutes and Ladder by: Marc Jedel

Title: Chutes and Ladder
Author: Marc Jedel
Publisher: BGM Press
Series: Silicon Valley Mystery #2
Pages: 195
Format: e-book
Source: GEBT


When a camping trip uncovers a murder, this amateur sleuth is stuck putting out the fire …
Marty Golden enjoys time with his nieces, but he wanted to spend the weekend with his new girlfriend — not chaperone a Girl Scout camping trip. Once he stumbles upon the corpse of a friend in the woods, the outdoors adventure becomes an open-air disaster. When the police label it an accidental death, the meticulous Marty vows to investigate the murder. After all, it’s poor manners to let your friend’s death go unsolved.
On the hunt for clues the cops ignored, Marty uncovers a disturbing connection to himself. And as he digs deeper, a misbehaving pup, a kooky cousin, and a maniacal ninja put his survival skills to the test.
Will Marty unravel the mystery before the killer, or his imagination, gets to him?
Chutes and Ladder is the side-splitting second novel in the Silicon Valley cozy mystery series. If you like quirky sleuths, wacky side characters, and laugh-out-loud moments, you’ll love this offbeat whodunit.
Buy Chutes and Ladder to decode a great mystery today!

My Thoughts:

Marty Golden was all set to spend the weekend with his girlfriend when his sister injures her foot and can't accompany her daughter on a Girl Scout camping trip.  Instead she volunteers her brother Marty to be a chaperone.  Which of course upsets the other mothers.  What no one counted on was finding a dead body.  What makes it worse is the dead guy is a poker buddy of Marty's. 

Marty is a funny character who really makes you laugh while reading and seeing how Marty solves the murder.  The book was a quick and enjoyable read that pulls you in to see what Marty is going to do next!  Can't wait to see what the author has next in store for Marty!

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

News: Another Day Another Clue

It’s now another day and time for some more clues.  When we find an author we love we jump into
the series they promoted and sink our teeth into all of them.  Some write as many as 3-4 some are
up to book 8-9 the numbers change depending on the series sometimes those book list can be really
huge to get through because they are vast or they have multiple aliases or series to read.

And of course we love friending authors on Facebook, instagram, twitter, pinterest the list seems
to go on.  It feels like a way to connect with them if you live far away or are to shy to walk up to them
and say hi. I have a couple near me and one of them went out of their way a while
back two something years ago when I was in the hospital having surgery.  It makes author
seem more human which you are but it’s like a Hollywood mentality type thing.

This is what I could think of to honor all the authors I have come to love and read.  
Their talent for storytelling gets better each time they start a story and I feel honored
when I can share a book with my bloggers.  Heck I get shocked when I think I’ve been doing this
for 10 years now.

So I hope you enjoy the SURPRISE when it comes and it is coming…

Good things come to those who wait :)

Monday, April 1, 2019

News: Surprise Is Coming

As a book reviewer we see the countless work authors do, with their deadlines, coming up with new material dealing with fans who are eager to read the next book, once the current one has been devoured.  Let's face it fans can be greedy (not in a bad way) looking for the favorite authors to release a new book.  I'm working on something which is in multiple parts for authors.  It's my way of saying Thank you.  They do what they love and love their fans.  Someone is helping with me with one stage of the SURPRISE while I am working on part two of the SURPRISE and authors can receive it without even leaving their bedroom, unless of course their computer is in another room that is.

To do the 2nd part it's all on me to get to work on it.  That I think is the best part a way to appreciate them without them lifting a finger!  Who doesn't love something that easy and simple.  These are all clues to the big SURPRISE.  They always surprise us with new books or new news they can sit back and try to figure this one out all on their own, unless they talk to each other and try to figure it out!

Keep watching to find out more...

Review: Caught Dead Handed by: Carol J. Perry

Title: Caught Dead Handed
Author: Carol J. Perry
Publisher: Kensington
Series: Witch City Mystery #1
Pages: 393
Format: Paperback
Source: Library


She's not a psychic--she just plays one on TV.

Most folks associate the city of Salem, Massachusetts with witches, but for Lee Barrett, it's home. This October she's returned to her hometown--where her beloved Aunt Ibby still lives--to interview for a job as a reporter at WICH-TV. But the only opening is for a call-in psychic to host the late night horror movies. It seems the previous host, Ariel Constellation, never saw her own murder coming. 

Lee reluctantly takes the job, but when she starts seeing real events in the obsidian ball she's using as a prop, she wonders if she might really have psychic abilities. To make things even spookier, it's starting to look like Ariel may have been an actual practicing witch--especially when O'Ryan, the cat Lee and Aunt Ibby inherited from her, exhibits some strange powers of his own. With Halloween fast approaching, Lee must focus on unmasking a killer--or her career as a psychic may be very short lived. . . 

My Thoughts: 

In this book Lee Barrett has returned home where her Aunt Ibby lives and where Lee grew up after her parents died.  Salem Massachusetts has lots of magical history.  Lee is about to interview for a new job when she finds out someone else has been hired.  Irate Lee leaves and finds a dead body in the water.  They learn that the body is none other than a late night show host and psychic Ariel Constellation.  Pretty quickly Lee is hired to run the show Nightshades.  While connected to the radio station Lee decides to poke around and find out what is going on?

The big question is who killed Ariel and why?  Could it be the boss's wife who recently had a falling out with Ariel assuming she was messing around with the Boss?  Or was it one of the people who called in looking for advice on Nightshades?  As Lee tries to figure it out she is left with more questions than answers!

I loved going to Salem as I have been there being raised in NH puts you close to visiting Salem.  It was great to see a cozy mystery series take place in Salem. The story really pulls you in to learn more about Lee and her Aunt Ibby, and what brought the two of them together.  Of course I felt bad for Lee who has had her share of sadness with the death of her parents and her husband Johnny Barrett.  She is definitely a remarkable person to keep moving forward regardless of the tragedy she has been through.  

A great book for those who love cats, magic, and things that go bump in the night!  If you've read this book let us know in the comments what you thought of it!

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Review: Homicide In Hardcover by: Kate Carlisle

Title: Homicide in Hardcover
Author: Kate Carlisle
Publisher: Obsidin
Series: Biblophile Mystery #1
Pages: 289
Format: Paperback
Source: Library


The streets of San Francisco would be lined with hardcovers if rare book expert Brooklyn Wainwright had her way. And her mentor wouldn't be lying in a pool of his own blood on the eve of a celebration for his latest book restoration.

With his final breath he leaves Brooklyn a cryptic message, and gives her a priceless and supposedly cursed copy of Goethe's Faust for safekeeping.

Brooklyn suddenly finds herself accused of murder and theft, thanks to the humorless, but attractive, British security officer who finds her kneeling over the body. Now she has to read the clues left behind by her mentor if she is going to restore justice.

My Thoughts: 

I figured since I started out this series with Books of a Feather I would go back to the beginning.  In this new series Brooklyn is a book binder and she is off to see her mentor who she had a falling out with when she decided to go out on her own.  Hoping to repair their relationship she is pleasantly suprised to see that Abraham is willing to bury the hatchet and move on with his protege. When later on she finds him dead she can't understand who would kill him and why?

This book introduces us to Derek right away and how he always following Brooklyn after the murder which seems to be centered on a book called Faust.  Some claim the book is cursed, but Brooklyn won't be deterred from working on the book.

I loved watching these two stumble around with the mystery especially as another body turns up.  Now someone has there sets sight on Brooklyn and Derek has to do everything he can to help her and make sense of what is going on.  Such an incredible mystery that had me guessing til the very end.

Review: The Hidden Corpse by: Debra Sennefelder

Title: The Hidden Corpse
Author: Debra Sennefelder
Publisher: Kensington
Series: Food Blogger Mysteries #2
Pages: 310
Format: Paperback
Source: GEBT


Former reality TV baking show contestant and recent divorcée Hope Early is trying to find her recipe for success as a food blogger—but murder keeps getting in the mix . . .

When Hope’s elderly neighbor perishes in a home fire, she can't help but feel somewhat responsible. Only the day before, Peggy Olson had called her over, having burned a pot on the stove while she was sleeping and filling the house with smoke. In fact, she couldn't even remember cooking. Clearly, it was dangerous for the woman to live alone.

But it turns out she wasn't alone. When a second body is discovered in the basement of the burned house, suddenly what appeared to be a tragic accident is beginning to look like premeditated murder. As rumors spread like wildfire, Hope is determined to sort out the facts and smoke out a killer, but she might be jumping from the frying pan straight into the fire . . . 

Includes Recipes from Hope’s Kitchen!

My Thoughts:

This book follows Hope Early who is working as a book blogger and taking a workshop to help her photos on her blog look better.  Hope's neighbor has returned home after being in rehab and is desperate to stay home and not end up in a nursing home.  When a fire burns the house and another person is found dead.  Hope finds herself investigating and wondering who started the fire and why?

This book reminds me alot of The Domestic Diva series and other foodie mysteries.  It was fun to read as Hope cooked up possibilities to what happened.  Hope has her work cut out for her in this book as she is doing multiple things at once and you find yourself pulled into her town and figuring out who the bad guy was and why!  Can't wait to see what is next for this local author!

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Review: A Cooking Conspiracy by: Kate Carlisle

Title: A Cooking Conspiracy
Author: Kate Carlisle
Publisher: NAL
Series: Bibliophile Mystery #7
Pages: 305
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library


It’s a recipe for disaster when bookbinder Brooklyn Wainwright is asked to restore an antique cookbook….

Brooklyn has always been a little obsessed with food, but it was her sister Savannah who became a chef, graduating from the prestigious Cordon Bleu culinary school in Paris. She and her classmates all went on to successful careers, but none of them achieved culinary superstardom, like Savannah’s ex-boyfriend Baxter Cromwell.

When Baxter invites the old gang to participate in his new restaurant’s gala opening in San Francisco, Savannah looks forward to seeing her friends, and even asks Brooklyn to restore a tattered cookbook—an old gift from Baxter—as a present for him. But Brooklyn immediately recognizes that the book, which has strange notes and symbols scrawled in the margins, is at least two hundred years old. She thinks that it probably belongs in a museum, but Savannah insists on returning it to Baxter.

Shortly after receiving the gift, Baxter is found dead, with Savannah kneeling over him, bloody knife in hand, and the rare cookbook has disappeared. Brooklyn knows her sister didn’t kill him, and she suspects the missing cookbook might lead to the real villain. Now Brooklyn will have to turn up the heat on the investigation before Chef Savannah finds herself slinging hash in a prison cafeteria. 

My Thoughts: 

This book follows Brooklyn local book binder and her spy boyfriend Derek Stone as they are involved in the world of cooking and cuisine.  In this one Savannah, Brooklyn's sister and her cooking friends are helping one of their own with his grand opening.  Baxter Cromwell has arrived in San Francisco and opening his new restaurant with the help of his friends from college.  

Brooklyn finds herself restoring a book for Baxter that Savannah wants to give back as she is sick of holding on to the book.  On the opening night he's stunned and not in a good way when Savannah gives him the book back all restored.  Later on Baxter is found dead with Savannah standing over him with the bloodied knife in her hands.  Who killed Baxter and why?

This book was definitely a continued wonderful addition to the series.  In this one Brooklyn really has her work cut out for her as she keeps having to remind her sister that someone among them may be a killer.  Which is a job in itself.  

I really enjoyed this the writer pulls you in and won't let go until the story is over.  Totally worth the mystery and unraveling the clues.

Monday, March 25, 2019

Review: Books of A Feather by: Kate Carlisle

Title: Books of a Feather
Author: Kate Carlisle
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Series: Bibliophile Mystery #10
Pages: 309
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library


Brooklyn’s friend Ian runs the Covington Library, which is hosting an exhibit featuring John James Audubon’s massive masterpiece, Birds of America, currently on loan from an Arab sheik. During the gala celebrating the book, she is approached by Jared Mulrooney, the president of the National Birdwatchers Society, who urgently needs Brooklyn’s skilled hands to repair a less high-profile book of Audubon drawings that’s fallen victim to spilled wine.

At the same party, Brooklyn is flying high after she’s asked to refurbish and appraise a rare copy of Poor Richard’s Almanac. But everything runs afoul later that evening when Mulrooney’s body is discovered in the library. Rumors fly about a motive for murder. Perhaps Mulrooney wanted to sink his claws into the pricey Audubon book, but Brooklyn believes the man died fighting off a daring thief.
Soon more troubles ruffle Brooklyn’s feathers. Her parents pop in for a visit with an unsavory friend in tow, and there’s a strange man on her tail. With danger beginning to circle Brooklyn’s every move, it’s clear she must find answers before things really go south . . .

My Thoughts: 

This book follows Brooklyn Wainwright whose helping her friend Genevieve Taylor work through her father's collection of books and make sense of it.  She takes home some books that Genevieve wants to have fixed up.  When she gets home she meets Crane a friend of her fiancee Derek.

When they go to the Covington Library for a bird exhibit Brooklyn meets Jared Mulrooney who need Brooklyn to fix his book next thing Brooklyn knows is he is dead.  After several attempted break ins at her apartment her parents arrive and have a friend of theirs spend the night with them only to wind up dead the next day.  Who is going around killing people and why?  What is the fascination with Brooklyn's apartment?  What book are they after?

This is a cute little series about book binder extraordinaire Brooklyn as she solves mysteries along with repairing books.  She has dealt with her share of mysteries having to do with books everytime and the length people go to swipe a book.  Even so far as to murder for a book!

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Review: Tsarina by: J. Nelle Patrick

Title: Tsarina
Author: J. Nelle Patrick
Publisher: Razorbill
Pages: 328
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library


Natalya knows a secret. 

A magical Faberge egg glows within the walls of Russia's Winter Palace.
It holds a power rooted in the land and stolen from the mystics.
A power that promises a life of love for her and Alexei Romanov.
Power, that, in the right hands, can save her way of life.

But it's in the wrong hands.

My Thoughts: 

This book follows what happened in Russia with the fall of the Romanov's.  Early in it we see Alexei and the Faberge egg.  The egg was imbued with all Rasputin's powers and fellow mystics alive.  

When Bolshevik revolution happens Natalya and her friend end up running and wind up kidnapped and made to do things they would rather not do.  Natalya travels all over to get the egg back as she is now protected by the powers of the egg.

This book was all over it was a great re-telling of the story and a spin on what happened during that time frame and added mystical aspects add to it.  Once I began I found I couldn't put it down and was eager to see how they would end the story.  Definitely worth checking out to see how it all played out!

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Review: The Goddess Inheritance by: Aimee Carter

Title: The Goddess Inheritance
Author: Aimee Carter
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Series: Goddess Test #3
Pages: 303
Format: Paperback
Source: Library


Love or life.
Henry or their child.
The end of her family or the end of the world.
Kate must choose.

During nine months of captivity, Kate Winters has survived a jealous goddess, a vengeful Titan and a pregnancy she never asked for. Now the Queen of the Gods wants her unborn child, and Kate can't stop her--until Cronus offers a deal.

In exchange for her loyalty and devotion, the King of the Titans will spare humanity and let Kate keep her child. Yet even if Kate agrees, he'll destroy Henry, her mother and the rest of the council. And if she refuses, Cronus will tear the world apart until every last god and mortal is dead.

With the fate of everyone she loves resting on her shoulders, Kate must do the impossible: find a way to defeat the most powerful being in existence, even if it costs her everything.

Even if it costs her eternity. 

My Thoughts: 

Kate has spent nine months being kidnapped by Queen of the Gods and a very vengeful Titan.  Finally she gives birth and has her baby taken away be Calliope.  In a desperate move she begs Cornus to help her and strikes a deal with him.  

Henry searches and finds Kate and war becomes a thing coming quicker than later.  Henry ends up injured and Kate and James go another search to get Cornus's wife to assist them with Cornus even if she won't help there aren't many options left.  Kate is desperate to get her baby back at any cost.

This book had so much going on you can see Kate grow as she does what she needs to protect her family even calling on previous girls who attempted the Goddess Test. That along with an old family member helps to assist Kate to end the war!

Friday, March 22, 2019

Review: Goddess Interrupted by: Aimee Carter

Title: Goddess Interrupted
Author: Aimee Carter
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Series: Goddess Test #2
Pages: 305
Format: Paperback
Source: Library


Kate Winters has won immortality. But if she wants a life with Henry in the Underworld, she'll have to fight for it.

Becoming immortal wasn't supposed to be the easy part. Though Kate is about to be crowned Queen of the Underworld, she's as isolated as ever. And despite her growing love for Henry, ruler of the Underworld, he's becoming ever more distant and secretive. Then, in the midst of Kate's coronation, Henry is abducted by the only being powerful enough to kill him: the King of the Titans.
As the other gods prepare for a war that could end them all, it is up to Kate to save Henry from the depths of Tartarus. But in order to navigate the endless caverns of the Underworld, Kate must enlist the help of the one person who is the greatest threat to her future.

Henry's first wife, Persephone.

My Thoughts: 

Before Kate Winters can enjoy her time in the Underworld someone interrupts her coronation ceremony.  When Calliope interrupts with the help of her father Cronus Henry finds himself kidnapped along with other Gods to the Underworld.  Will Kate be able to save them in time?  Kate, James and Eva travel through the land to find Cronus and retrieve those they love.  One ally they aren't sure of but they definitely need is Henry's first wife Persephone.  Will she help her family or walk away again?

This book was jammed pack full of action and definitely huge relationship problems as Henry and Kate try to figure out their relationship and what will come of their future.  Kate wanting to be nothing like Henry's first wife can't help but feel like she's living up to a idol to Henry she can't compete with.  

Then there is Cronus and Calliope who are determined to cause the Gods nothing but pain and death.  I love Kate and how she deals with things with new eyes and prospective!  Can't wait to see what happens next especially with the serious cliff hanger in the story!

Friday, March 15, 2019

Review: Broken Bone China by: Laura Childs

Review: Broken Bone China
Author: Laura Childs
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Series: A Tea Shop Mystery #20
Pages: 335
Format: e-book ARC
Source: NetGalle & GEBT


Theodosia Browning serves tea and solves crimes in Charleston, a city steeped in tradition and treachery in the latest Tea Shop Mystery from New York Times bestselling author Laura Childs.

It is Sunday afternoon, and Theodosia and Drayton are catering a formal tea at a hot-air balloon rally. The view aloft is not only stunning, they are also surrounded by a dozen other colorful hot-air balloons. But as the sky turns gray and the clouds start to boil up, a strange object zooms out of nowhere. It is a drone, and it appears to be buzzing around the balloons, checking them out. 

As Theodosia and Drayton watch, the drone, hovering like some angry, mechanized insect, deliberately crashes into the balloon next to them. An enormous, fiery explosion erupts, and everyone watches in horror as the balloon plummets to the earth, killing all three of its passengers.

Sirens scream, first responders arrive, and Theodosia is interviewed by the police. During the interview she learns that one of the downed occupants was Don Kingsley, the CEO of a local software company, SyncSoft. Not only do the police suspect Kingsley as the primary target, they learn that he possessed a rare Revolutionary War Union Jack flag that several people were rabidly bidding on.

Intrigued, Theodosia begins her own investigation. Was it the CEO's soon-to-be ex-wife, who is restoring an enormous mansion at no expense? The CEO's personal assistant, who also functioned as curator of his prized collection of Americana? Two rival antiques' dealers known for dirty dealing? Or was the killer the fiancée of one of Theodosia's dear friends, who turns out to be an employee—and whistle-blower—at SyncSoft?


My Thoughts:

In this book Theo and Drayton are having a hot air balloon ride and find themselves watching a drone fly around the hot air balloons.  When the drone flies into one of the balloons and the balloon crashes to the ground killing Don Kingsley the CEO of SyncSoft.  Of course everyone in town is curious about who had the drone and why kill Don Kingsley.

As Theo and Drayton investigate the situation they find themselves with more questions than answers especially when a rare flag disappears and many people seem to have interest in it.  Could it have been his his soon to be ex-wife who is determined to open a B & B.  Or could it be local antique collectors in the area?  Or could it be a Theo's friend's sweetheart who blew the whistle on SyncSoft? 

This was a great adventure to go on even with  all the rain this book was definitely intriguing to say the least.  We get to see many different people and what had to gain by the death of the CEO along with the rare flag. 

I also enjoyed learning and reading about Drayton's house and seeing how he handled being photographed for a magazine spread.  Can't wait to see what is next.  And I loved the hero of the book Early Grey to the rescue he was wonderful helping out where he can!

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Review: Tandem Demise by: Duffy Brown

Title: Tandem Demise
Author: Duffy Brown
Publisher: Kindle Edition
Series: A Cycle Path Mysteries #3
Pages: 298
Format: e-book ARC
Source: Author Request


Smugglers on the hunt, a police chief on the run, lost loot and a dead wedding planner have the Mackinac Island regulars riding in circles 

After solving two murders, bike shop owner Evie Bloomfield thought life on Mackinac Island would settle into boredom until she finds out Nate Sutter, island police chief and once-upon-a-time under cover cop is on the run. Some badass guys from Nate’s Detroit days think he stole money from them in a champagne smuggling operation and now they’re headed to the island to get their loot. Evie is determined to help Nate because he’s a good cop, Nate is determined to keep interfering Evie and island locals out of harms way, and the crooks are determined to get their money. 

To add to the island’s problems there’s a dead guy on the dock and the new wedding planner is more interested in playing bedroom bingo than ordering bridal bouquets. 

With the help of Fiona, Evie’s BFF and local newspaper editor, Evie is determined to prove Nate innocent, figure out how champagne smuggling, bodies on the dock and a bad wedding planner are tied together and not wind up taking a long walk off a short pier herself. 

My Thoughts: 

In this book a body appears dead on the dock.  True Evie nature she questions the situation and why die on the dock?  Evie finds herself trying to clear Nate the local Police Chief whose badly in trouble of course he warns her away but when a body appears and it appears to be connected to Nate Evie can't help but stumble her way into trying to clear him.  The more she pokes around the more questions pop up about Nate and the dead guy on the dock.

I love this series and it gets better every time.  As you dig in you find you can't put the book down.  It pulls you in and you can't stop until you find out if Nate will be cleared or is he doomed to go to jail.  I can't wait to see where this series goes next!

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Review: A Gift of Bones by: Carolyn Haines

Title: A Gift of Bones
Author: Carolyn Haines
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Series: Sarah Booth Delaney #19
Pages: 272
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library


Christmas comes to Zinnia, Mississippi—Sarah Booth Delaney must solve a case as the holiday approaches, in this new cozy mystery from Carolyn Haines.

Christmas is just around the corner and Sarah Booth and Tinkie are preparing for a festive holiday season. After a turbulent season of solving cases, they’re ready for some holiday cheer. Sarah Booth and Sheriff Coleman Peters have finally gotten together, and this is the first holiday they’re celebrating as a couple. Sarah Booth busies herself with decking the halls and daydreaming about romantic Christmas nights with Coleman.

Then her friend Cece Dee Falcon shows up needing Sarah Booth’s help—right now. She shows Sarah Booth a box that was delivered by courier and left at Cece’s front porch. It contains a lock of hair, a photograph of a pretty young woman, very pregnant, and a note demanding ransom for the return of the teen. Cece reveals that this is her cousin’s daughter, Eve Falcon, and that she’d lost touch with this part of her family years ago. Eve and Cece had been close, until the family had a terrible falling out, and banished Cece from their lives. The countdown begins as the kidnapper pushes for payment—or else, he threatens, Eve will meet her maker. It’s up to Sarah Booth and her friends to find the girl before something terrible happens on what should be the merriest day of the year.

Carolyn Haines’s trademark humor and lovable characters are back, in a heartwarming Christmas story that will enchant and delight readers looking for a suspenseful mystery wrapped in joyful holiday merriment.

My Review:

Sarah Booth is getting ready for Christmas and spending time with Coleman her boyfriend.  When her friend Cece asks for help it seems Cece's neice is missing and very pregnant and Sarah and Tinkie find themselves deep embroiled in investigating what happened to Eve Falcon the pregnant teen.  

As they dig in deeper the questions become greater.  Why kidnap Eve to what purpose and why?  Will Sarah and Tinkie be able to retrieve the girl before she has the baby.  Who kidnapped her any why?

This was a fun adventure back in south.  We see what everyone is up to Christmas.  And watch Sarah and Tinkie try to help their friend Cece to have this resolved before Christmas hits as the baby is due on Christmas Eve.  It was such a blast and I couldn't put the book down it was so good!

Monday, February 4, 2019

Review: Lover Awakened by: J.R. Ward

Title: Lover Awakened
Author: J.R. Ward
Publisher: Signet
Series: Black Dagger Brotherhood #3
Pages: 441
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library


In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there’s a deadly war raging between vampires and their slayers. And there exists a secret band of brothers like no other - six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Of these, Zsadist is the most terrifying member of the Black Dagger Brotherhood.

A former blood slave, the vampire Zsadist still bears the scars from a past filled with suffering and humiliation. Renowned for his unquenchable fury and sinister deeds, he is a savage feared by humans and vampires alike. Anger is his only companion, and terror is his only passion—until he rescues a beautiful aristocrat from the evil Lessening Society.

Bella is instantly entranced by the seething power Zsadist possesses. But even as their desire for one another begins to overtake them both, Zsadist’s thirst for vengeance against Bella’s tormentors drives him to the brink of madness. Now, Bella must help her lover overcome the wounds of his tortured past, and find a future with her… 

My Thoughts: 

This book started out with Zsadist whose having a hell of a time with Bella being kidnapped by the head of the lessers and everyone assuming she was dead which isn't the case.  Zsadist is the only one who believes she is still alive.

Bella is doing everything she can to stay alive getting word out that she is still alive and needs help.  With Z's help they rush to her side and rescue her unfortunately her road to recover is difficult.  The one thing Bella is sure of and that is she wants Z in her life.

This book was such an incredible journey.  They had ups and downs finding their way to each other and figuring out their way to each other.  I really enjoy going on the journey with Z and Bella and seeing where they wound up!  Such an  incredible adventure!

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Book Review: Lover Eternal by: J.R. Ward

Title: Lover Eternal
Author: J.R. Ward
Publisher: Signet
Series: Black Dagger Brotherhood #2
Pages: 441
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library


In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there's a deadly turf war raging between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other-six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Possessed by a deadly beast, Rhage is the most dangerous of the Black Dagger Brotherhood.

Within the brotherhood, Rhage is the vampire with the strongest appetites. He's the best fighter, the quickest to act on his impulses, and the most voracious lover-for inside him burns a ferocious curse cast by the Scribe Virgin. Owned by this dark side, Rhage fears the time when his inner dragon is unleashed, making him a danger to everyone around him.

Mary Luce, a survivor of many hardships is unwittingly thrown into the vampire world and reliant on Rhage's protection. With a life-threatening curse of her own, Mary is not looking for love. She lost her faith in miracles years ago. But when Rhage's intense animal attraction turns into something more emotional, he knows that he must make Mary his alone. And while their enemies close in, Mary fights desperately to gain life eternal with the one she loves... 

My Thoughts: 

This book follows Rhage whose is a vampire unique to himself.  He's also cursed by the Scribe Virgin his punishment was half vampire half beast.  When he meets Mary he finds himself instantly drawn to her.  Unsure of what is causing the growing attraction he keeps putting off wiping her memory.

Mary has had her share of ups and downs and when she meets a mute named John she feels a strong connection to him which lead her to the brotherhood who are interested in John.  When she meets Rhage she feels a strong attraction to him but unsure why.  

Of course they have lots to overcome for their relationship to work especially with those really annoying lessers trying to kill the brotherhood and anyone attached to them.  I love this series it pulls you in and you can't let go.  It really is addicting once you've started you really want to finish the series.  Which is crazy with the amount of books and pages as you begin!

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Review: Murder, She Wrote: Manuscript for Murder by: Jessica Fletcher & Jon Land

Title: Murder She Wrote: Manuscript for Murder
Author: Jessica Fletcher & Jon Land
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Series: Murder She Wrote #48
Pages: 307
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library


Jessica Fletcher investigates a mysterious manuscript with deadly consequences in the latest entry in this USA Today bestselling series...

Jessica Fletcher has had plenty to worry about over her storied career, both as a bestselling novelist and amateur sleuth. But she never had any reason to worry about her longtime publisher, Lane Barfield, who also happens to be a trusted friend. When mounting evidence of financial malfeasance leads to an FBI investigation of Lane, Jessica can't believe what she's reading.

So when Barfield turns up dead, Jessica takes on the task of proving Barfield's innocence--she can't fathom someone she's known and trusted for so long cheating her. Sure enough, Jessica's lone wolf investigation turns up several oddities and inconsistencies in Barfield's murder. Jessica knows something is being covered up, but what exactly? The trail she takes to answer that question reveals something far more nefarious afoot, involving shadowy characters from the heights of power in Washington. At the heart of Jessica's investigation lies a manuscript Barfield had intended to bring out after all other publishers had turned it down. The problem is that manuscript has disappeared, all traces of its submission and very existence having been wiped off the books.

With her own life now in jeopardy, Jessica refuses to back off and sets her sights on learning the contents of that manuscript and what about it may have led to several murders. Every step she takes brings her closer to the truth of what lies in the pages, as well as the person who penned them.

My Thoughts: 

Jessica Fletcher is back at it again this time she gets handed a manuscript of a book called The Affair.  The author being a total unknown.  Jessica decides to give the book a try.  Of course not before a fellow author and her long time publisher wind up dead.  Jessica begins to wonder if it's all connected to the manuscript.  As she digs deeper she travels from Boston, to Cabot Cove to New York along with a trip to D.C.  We also get to see Seth, and Mort and even Harry McGraw.  

There were a few things in this book that are inaccurate.  Like Jessica's lack of cooking skills.  She's a good cook and it shows up time and again.  In the scheme of things they are miniscule but if you know msw then you know those parts aren't accurate.  The mystery was typical JBL fashion. You find yourself pulled in and the ending was fabulous I couldn't put it down.

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Review: Chocolate Cream Pie Murder by: Joanne Fluke

Title: Chocolate Cream Pie Murder
Author: Joanne Fluke
Publisher: Kensington
Series: Hannah Swenson #24
Pages: 304
Format: e-book ARC
Source: NetGalley


Not even Lake Eden’s nosiest residents suspected Hannah Swensen would go from idealistic newlywed to betrayed wife in a matter of weeks. But as a deadly mystery unfolds in town, the proof is in the pudding . . .

When The Cookie Jar becomes the setting of a star-studded TV special about movies filmed in Minnesota, Hannah hopes to shine the spotlight on her bakery—not the unsavory scandal swirling around her personal life. But that’s practically impossible with a disturbing visit from the shifty character she once believed was her one and only love, a group of bodyguards following her every move, and a murder victim in her bedroom. Now, swapping the crime scene in her condo for her mother Delores’s penthouse, Hannah and an old flame team up to solve a case that’s messier than an upended chocolate cream pie. As suspects emerge and secrets hit close to home, Hannah must serve a hefty helping of justice to an unnamed killer prowling around Lake Eden . . . before someone takes a slice out of her!

My Thoughts: 

After learning about her "husband" Hannah has decided it's time to fill the town on Ross and what he did to Hannah and move on with her life.  As she tries to move on the one thing she didn't count on was Ross to rear his ugly head again.  He's determined to get money he gave to Hannah back but he's turned a nasty streak and playing multiple roles as a bad guy and intimidating Hannah into doing things she doesn't want to do.  Will Hannah ever be free of Ross or will he continue to haunt her forever?

I liked this book as it went back to earlier formats although it took a long time for a crime to be committed.  More than half the book to be precise.  The mystery itself felt very rushed and wasn't with Hannah doing her normal snooping.  Things seem to fall to easily into Hannah's lap and that made it seem too easy.

Can't wait to see what Hannah will do next and of course to see what continues at the end of this story it's enough to make you wonder what Joanne will do with our beloved heroin.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Review: Steamed Open by; Barbara Ross

Title: Steamed Open
Author: Barbara Ross
Publisher: Kensington
Series: A Maine Clambake Mystery #7
Pages: 263
Format: e-book
Source: GEBT & NetGalley


It’s summertime in Busman’s Harbor, Maine, and the clamming is easy—or it was until a mysterious new neighbor blocks access to the beach, cutting off the Snowden Family Clambake’s supply. Julia Snowden is just one of many townspeople angered by Bartholomew Frick’s decision. But which one of them was angry enough to kill?

Beachcombers, lighthouse buffs, and clammers are outraged after Frick puts up a gate in front of his newly inherited mansion. When Julia urges him to reconsider, she’s the last to see him alive—except the person who stabs him in the neck with a clam rake. As she pores through a long list of suspects, Julia meets disgruntled employees, rival heirs, and a pair of tourists determined to visit every lighthouse in America. They all have secrets, and Julia will have to work fast to expose the guilty party—or see this season’s clam harvest dry up for good.

My Thoughts: 

This is the seventh book in the series and it keeps getting better in this one a local woman died and her relative Bartholomew Frick has moved in and closed off the beach and angered alot of people including local clammers who have been clamming in that area for a long time.  When Julia tries to reason with him she finally sees that there is no reasoning with him.  Next thing Julia finds out that someone has killed Bartholomew she is determined to figure out who killed him and why?

This was such a great trip back to Busman's Harbor to see how Julia, Chris and everyone else in town is doing.  We also see Julia struggle with a secret Chris has kept from her and how she decides to handle it.  I loved walking around with Julia has she deals with potential suspects.  And of course the guilty party will keep you guessing until the end.

Monday, December 31, 2018

Review: Dark Lover by: J.R. Ward

Title: Dark Lover
Author: J.R. Ward
Publisher: Penguin Group
Series: Black Dagger Brotherhood #1
Pages: 393
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library


In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there's a deadly turf war going on between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other-six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Yet none of them relishes killing more than Wrath, the leader of The Black Dagger Brotherhood.

The only purebred vampire left on earth, Wrath has a score to settle with the slayers who murdered his parents centuries ago. But, when one of his most trusted fighters is killed-leaving his half-breed daughter unaware of his existence or her fate-Wrath must usher her into the world of the undead-a world of sensuality beyond her wildest dreams.

My Thoughts: 

I was reluctant with all the vampire crazy to read this book and only recently read it.  This one surpassed in my opinion The Vampire Diaries or Sookie Stackhouse.  It paints the story so fast moving that putting it down just isn't an option.  The story is set up with the death of one of the brotherhood Darius who was hoping to have his daughter helped through the transition of being a vampire.  With his death Wrath knows it now falls on him to honor his brother's final request.  The question is will Beth let him?

Beth being human was great then finding out she was half vampire made it all the more intriguing.   Add to that the dark Vampire King Wrath who wants anything but to be King.  He finds protecting Beth comes with all sorts of complications like a cop who becomes a pain in the rear getting in the way.  To vampire slayers that would love nothing more than to take out the brotherhood.

I was totally taken in by this story and had a roller coaster ride with the adventure and couldn't put it down until the cover closed.  I can't wait to see what is next in this crazy adventure!

Friday, December 21, 2018

Review: Private London by: James Patterson

Title: Private London
Author: James Patterson
Publisher: Century
Series: Private #4
Pages: 357
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library



For Hannah Shapiro, a beautiful young American student, this particular nightmare began eight years ago in Los Angeles, when Jack Morgan, owner of Private - the world's most exclusive detective agency - saved her from a horrific death. She has fled her country, but can't flee her past. The terror has followed her to London, and now it is down to former Royal Military Police Sergeant Dan Carter, head of Private London, to save her all over again.

In central London, young women are being abducted off the street. When the bodies are found, some days later, they have been mutilated in a particularly mysterious way. Dan Carter's ex-wife, DI Kirsty Webb, is involved in the investigation and it looks likely that the two cases are gruesomely linked.

Dan Carter draws on the whole resources of Private International in a desperate race against the odds. But the clock is ticking... Private may be the largest and most technologically advanced detection agency in the world, but the only thing they don't have is the one thing they need - time.

James Patterson's white-knuckle rollercoaster has just reached London. Buckle up, it's one hell of a ride!

My Thoughts: 

This book is about Hannah Shapiro a young American studying in England and suffered a trauma when she was a young child and her mother was murdered and Jack Morgan came to her rescue now Jack has his London office keeping watch over Hannah who suddenly goes missing and Dan Carter's goddaughter gets injured in the process.  We also learn about Dan and meet his ex-wife.  

This book was all over the place for a roller coaster just when you thought it was winding down you found more action and adventure.  Never a dull moment in the land of Private.  This series is very addicting and quick to read it pulls you in and won't let go until the last page is turned and the mystery is solved!

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Review: Some Girls Bite by: Chloe Neill

Title: Some Girls Bite
Author: Chloe Neill
Publisher:  Berkley Books
Series: Chicagoland Vampires #1
Pages: 341
Format: Paperback
Source: Library


They killed me. They healed me. They changed me.

Sure, the life of a graduate student wasn’t exactly glamorous, but it was Merit’s. She was doing fine until a rogue vampire attacked her. But he only got a sip before he was scared away by another bloodsucker–and this one decided the best way to save her life was to make her the walking undead.

Turns out her savior was the master vampire of Cadogan House. Now she’s traded sweating over her thesis for learning to fit in at a Hyde Park mansion full of vamps loyal to Ethan Sullivan. Of course, as a tall, green-eyed, four-hundred-year-old vampire, he has centuries’ worth of charm, but unfortunately, he expects her gratitude–and servitude.

But an inconvenient sunlight allergy and Ethan’s attitude are the least of her concerns. Someone’s still out to get her. Her initiation into Chicago’s nightlife may be the first skirmish in a war–and there will be blood. 

My Thoughts: 

This book follows Merit who finds herself waking up and not feeling like herself finding out she's been changed after someone tried to kill her.  Now she is a newborn vamp.  She has alot to learn in a short amount of time.  It takes a bumpy ride to find her way.  Meanwhile someone is killing women and trying to pin it on Merit's master Ethan Sullivan and his house Cadogan.  Who is committing these crimes and why?

I enjoyed this different take on vampires and the supernatural world.  Was definitely different then other books on vampires.  Merit is definitely a kick butt character who doesn't take crap from anyone and is very different from the other vamps.  Can't wait to see where her journey leads!

Monday, December 10, 2018

Review: Eggs on Ice by: Laura Childs

Title: Eggs on Ice
Author: Laura Childs
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Series: A Cackleberry Club #8
Format: Hardcover
Source: GEBT


The Christmas season at the Cackleberry Club café is marred by murder in the latest book in the New York Times bestselling series.

Some say that casting crusty attorney Allen Sharpe as Scrooge in the Kindred Players production of "A Christmas Carol" is just playing to type. He's not the most beloved man in town. In fact, you'd have a dickens of a time finding someone who liked him. Still it's a shock when the Ghost of Christmas Past stabs him during the first rehearsal. Suzanne, co-owner of the Cackleberry Club café, Kindred's favorite combination diner, craft store and bookshop, chases the murderer out of the building but loses him in the alley. 

As the days pass the list of suspects grows longer. Is it the disgruntled partner? The former secretary whom Sharpe sexually harrassed? Or is it fellow owner of the Cackleberry Club, Toni's almost ex-husband, Junior? The women of the Cackleberry Club are determined to find the killer before he can add another victim to his Christmas list.

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My Thoughts:

This book follows Suzanne and her friends as they get ready for the upcoming play A Christmas Carol and the holiday season.  What no one counted on was the death of Scrooge for real.  Who would want to kill him and why?

The deeper Suzanne digs the more prospects of murderers are on the horizon.  Then when someone targets Junior's mobile home Suzanne really wonders what is going on in this town she loves so much!  Suzanne has her work cut out for her will she solve it or become scrambled herself?

I love this series it's such fun to go back to Cackleberry Club and see what everyone is up to.  Then you also get to see and watch as Suzanne solves the crime or if the murderer can actually stump her.  Such a fabulous blast to read about!

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Book Blast: Tandem Demise by: Duffy Brown

Tandem Demise: A Cycle Path Mystery by Duffy Brown

About the Book

Cozy Mystery 3rd in Series Independently Published (October 28, 2018) 
Paperback: 298 pages ISBN-10: 1729374786 ISBN-13: 978-1729374788 
Kindle ASIN: B07JRB373X 
Smugglers on the hunt, a police chief on the run, lost loot and a dead wedding planner have the Mackinac Island regulars riding in circles
After solving two murders, bike shop owner Evie Bloomfield thought life on Mackinac Island would settle into boredom until she finds out Nate Sutter, island police chief and once-upon-a-time under cover cop is on the run. Some badass guys from Nate’s Detroit days think he stole money from them in a champagne smuggling operation and now they’re headed to the island to get their loot. Evie is determined to help Nate because he’s a good cop, Nate is determined to keep interfering Evie and island locals out of harms way, and the crooks are determined to get their money.
To add to the island’s problems there’s a dead guy on the dock and the new wedding planner is more interested in playing bedroom bingo than ordering bridal bouquets. With the help of Fiona, Evie’s BFF and local newspaper editor, Evie is determined to prove Nate innocent, figure out how champagne smuggling, bodies on the dock and a bad wedding planner are tied together and not wind up taking a long walk off a short pier herself.

About the Author

Duffy Brown loves anything with a mystery. While others girls dreamed of dating Brad Pitt, Duffy longed to take Sherlock Holmes to the prom. She is a National Bestselling author and now conjures up who-done-it stories of her very own. She has two series the Consignment Shop Mysteries set in Savannah along with rescue pup Bruce Willis and the Cycle Path Mysteries set on Mackinac Island with judgmental cats Cleveland and Bambino.
Author Links: Website - Facebook Purchase Link - Amazon


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