Friday, April 28, 2017

Book Blast: York The Shadow Cipher by: Laura Ruby



Synopsis 



It was 1798 when the Morningstarr twins arrived in New York with a vision for a magnificent city: towering skyscrapers, dazzling machines, and winding train lines, all running on technology no one had ever seen before. Fifty-seven years later, the enigmatic architects disappeared, leaving behind for the people of New York the Old York Cipher—a puzzle laid into the shining city they constructed, at the end of which was promised a treasure beyond all imagining. By the present day, however, the puzzle has never been solved, and the greatest mystery of the modern world is little more than a tourist attraction.

Tess and Theo Biedermann and their friend Jaime Cruz live in a Morningstarr apartment house—until a real estate developer announces that the city has agreed to sell him the five remaining Morningstarr buildings. Their likely destruction means the end of a dream long-held by the people of New York. And if Tess, Theo and Jaime want to save their home, they have to prove that the Old York Cipher is real. Which means they have to solve it.

From National Book Award Finalist Laura Ruby comes a visionary epic set in a New York City at once familiar and wholly unexpected.






ABOUT THE AUTHOR




Laura Ruby writes fiction for adults, teens and children. She is the author of the newly-released YA novel BONE GAP, as well as the Edgar-nominated children's mystery LILY'S GHOSTS, the ALA Quick Pick for teens GOOD GIRLS (2006), a collection of interconnected short stories about blended families for adults, I'M NOT JULIA ROBERTS (2007), and the forthcoming middle-grade trilogy YORK. She is on the faculty of Hamline University's Masters in Writing for Children Program. She makes her home in the Chicago area.








Thursday, April 27, 2017

Spotlight: Two Heads are Deader Than One by: Elena Hartwell


Two Heads Are Deader Than One by Elena Hartwell

Two Heads are Deader Than One (Eddie Shoes Mystery) Cozy Mystery 2nd in Series Camel Press (April 15, 2017) Paperback: 286 pages ISBN-13: 978-1603813136
Private Investigator Eddie Shoes is enjoying a rare period of calm. She's less lonely now that Chava, her card-counting mom from Vegas, is sharing her home. She also has a new companion, Franklin, a giant dog of curious ancestry.
Hoping for a lucrative new case, Eddie instead finds herself taking on a less promising client: her best friend from her childhood in Spokane. Dakota has turned up in Bellingham in jail, where she is being held on a weapons charge. Eddie reluctantly agrees not only to lend her friend money for bail but to also investigate who is stalking her. Soon after Dakota is freed, she disappears again, leaving Eddie to answer to the local cops, including her ex-boyfriend Chance Parker. Has Dakota been kidnapped? If not, why did she jump bail? What are Eddie's business cards doing on the bodies of two murder victims?

elenahartwellheadshotbAbout The Author

After twenty years in the theater, Elena Hartwell turned her dramatic skills to fiction. Her first novel, One Dead, Two to Go introduces Eddie Shoes, private eye. Called “the most fun detective since Richard Castle stumbled into the 12th precinct,” by author Peter Clines, I’DTale Magazine stated, “this quirky combination of a mother-daughter reunion turned crime-fighting duo will captivate readers.”
In addition to her work as a novelist, Elena teaches playwriting at Bellevue College and tours the country to lead writing workshops. When she’s not writing or teaching, her favorite place to be is at the farm with her horses, Jasper and Radar, or at her home, on the middle fork of the Snoqualmie River in North Bend, Washington, with her husband, their dog, Polar, and their trio of cats, Jackson, Coal Train, and Luna, aka, “the other cat upstairs.” Elena holds a B.A. from the University of San Diego, a M.Ed. from the University of Washington, Tacoma, and a Ph.D. from the University of Georgia.

  Webpage - http://www.elenahartwell.com
  Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/ElenaHartwellAuthor/
  Twitter -  https://twitter.com/Elena_Hartwell
  Blog - http://www.arcofawriter.com
  GoodReads - https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3975429.Elena_Hartwell,
  Pinterest - https://www.pinterest.com/emhartwell/

  Purchase Links:
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  Tour Participants 
  April 14 – My Journey Back and My Reading Journeys - REVIEW, GUEST POST, GIVEAWAY 
  April 15 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – INTERVIEW, GIVEAWAY 
  April 16 – Books,Dreams,Life - SPOTLIGHT 
  April 17 – Readeropolis – REVIEW 
  April 18 – Dee-Scoveries - SPOTLIGHT, GIVEAWAY 
  April 19 – Books Direct - GUEST POST, GIVEAWAY 
  April 20 – Omnimystery News – INTERVIEW   
  April 21- Texas Book-aholic - REVIEW 
  April 22 – Lori's Reading Corner – GUEST POST, GIVEAWAY 
  April 23 – I Read What You Write – REVIEW 
  April 24 – FUONLYKNEW – REVIEW, GIVEAWAY 
  April 25 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – CHARACTER INTERVIEW 
  April 26 – Brooke Blogs - REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST, GIVEAWAY 
  April 27 – Community Bookstop -  SPOTLIGHT, GIVEAWAY 

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Review: Cat Got Your Cash by: Juliet Chase


Title: Cat Got Your Cash
Author: Juliet Chase
Publisher: Crocked Lane Books
Series: Kitty Courture Mystery #2
Pages: 336
Format: e-book ARC
Source: NetGalley & GEBT

Description:

Lacy Marie Crocker’s whimsical pet couture has gained a following in New Orleans’s cozy Garden District, and word of mouth has traveled all the way to her favorite fashion designer, Annie Lane. Lacy’s thrilled when Annie schedules a private session at her home to discuss a companion line for her evening wear, but when Lacy arrives for the appointment, she enters the kitchen to two mewling Siamese cats--and one very dead Annie.

Lacy takes the kittens home to care for them until they can be properly claimed by Annie's family or friends, but after a busy day of work, she returns home to find them missing. And when Lacy learns the cats are set to inherit Annie's fortune, she begins to wonder if the killer was after the kittens all along. Now Lacy will stop at nothing to save the Siamese and find justice for Annie--if the killer doesn’t sink his claws into her first.

Luckily, Lacy has the help of handsome NOLA PD homicide detective Jack Oliver to help her catch the cat-napper before its too late in Cat Got Your Cash, the endearing second Kitty Couture mystery from Julie Chase.

My Thoughts:

This book follows Lacy Marie Crocker whose getting her clothing line ready to show the popular fashion designer Annie Lane.  When she arrives she's afraid Annie won't see because she's late but what Annie stumbles on is much worse.  A dead Annie Lane and mewing twin Siamese cats.  Annie is adament on taking care of the twins until they go to their family.  After she returns from work to put the cats in carriers to bring them back to work she finds the twins missing.  In a frantic and with the help of Jack Oliver homicide detective and Annie's lawyer they quickly locate the twins and return them to Lacy.  Annie also learns of the wealth associate with the twins.  Which makes the crime more curious.  Was it money related the kidnapping?  Or is it related to something Annie did?  Finally they are able to return the twins to Annie in tact.  Who killed Annie and why could be anyone's guess.  There are bloggers Annie upset along with a slew of other people!  You don't get to be a great fashion designer without breaking some catnip!

This book is a enjoyable story as Lacy figures out who killed Annie and why?  It leads from a blogger who hated her someone wearing a Cat mask scaring Lacy to a ex-husband demanding his kittens.  So many viable suspects so little time for Lacy to figure it out and get back her life some how!  I really enjoyed this story so much.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Review:The Last Chance Matinee by: Mariah Stewart

Title: The Last Chance Matinee
Author: Mariah Stewart
Publisher: Gallery Books
Series: The Hudson Sisters #1
Pages: 432
Format: e-book ARC
Source: NetGalley

Description:

From New York Times bestselling author Mariah Stewart comes the first novel in her all-new series, The Hudson Sisters, following a trio of reluctant sisters as they set out to fulfill their father’s dying wish. In the process, they find not only themselves, but the father they only thought they knew.

When celebrated and respected agent Fritz Hudson passes away, he leaves a trail of Hollywood glory in his wake—and two separate families who never knew the other existed. Allie and Des Hudson are products of Fritz’s first marriage to Honora, a beautiful but troubled starlet whose life ended in a tragic overdose. Meanwhile, Fritz was falling in love on the Delaware Bay with New Age hippie Susa Pratt—they had a daughter together, Cara, and while Fritz loved Susa with everything he had, he never quite managed to tell her or Cara about his West Coast family.

Now Fritz is gone, and the three sisters are brought together under strange circumstances: there’s a large inheritance to be had that could save Allie from her ever-deepening debt following a disastrous divorce, allow Des to open a rescue shelter for abused and wounded animals, and give Cara a fresh start after her husband left her for her best friend—but only if the sisters upend their lives and work together to restore an old, decrepit theater that was Fritz’s obsession growing up in his small hometown in Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains. Guided by Fritz’s closest friend and longtime attorney, Pete Wheeler, the sisters come together—whether they like it or not—to turn their father’s dream into a reality, and might just come away with far more than they bargained for.

My Thoughts:

This book follows three sisters who are very different but have one thing in common their father Allie and Des Hudson who are from their father's first marriage who lived in California, and then there is Cara who is part of his second marriage in New Jersey.  The girls no nothing about their step sister and she knows nothing about them. When their father Fritz dies he leaves a will that explains to the girls the truth which lead them all to wonder how much they really knew their father.  In order to inherit from the will the girls have to rebuild a theater in the town Fritz grew up in.  If they don't succeed or walk out then no one inherits from the ironclad will.  As Allie needs the inheritance to help her after her career has come to a halt.  With Allie's life falling apart she seems at odds with her sister and step-sister.  Cara is need of a break to hide out while her ex-husband has left her for her friend and everyone seems to have known except for Cara.

As the girls settle into Fritz's family hometown getting to know the locals and learning more about their father and his sister and his family.  Wondering why Fritz made his home life horrible just to learn the opposite was true.  Will the girls be able to form a relationship of sorts or is there too much damage inflicted by Fitz?  Allie seems to be the worst off she comes off like a spoiled brat whose itching to ditch this will idea and run out on the other two the only thing keeping her there is the iron clad will.  Slowly, Allie comes around not all at once but slow bits at a time and the others learn the thing hurting her the most is not being with her daughter Nikki.  Cara seems to get along with Des even though Cara grew up poor and Des grew up in California with a father who did extravagant things while Cara's mother wouldn't allow Cara to be spoiled.  Des has her own demons in the lieu of being a normal kid Des's mother Nora shoved Des infront of a camera until Des finally got away from it all.  She suffers from her own parental issues.  Allie seems to be jealous of the life Des led and can't believe her sister never wanted it.

I love watching the girls learn about their aunt and their father's family and the memories of the house and theater.  Definitely great book for people looking for history, and women's fiction.  You feel like you are following along with the girls and learning more about the 3 Hudson girls and the life they led.  They also learn about the Hudson family, and  learning about Hidden Falls The girls are so vastly different from one another which is great and helps you appreciate each one in their own way. The author really hit on something here which is a great story of women and families and how you can't always leave home even when you do home is still there to remind you of your roots.  Can't wait to see what is next for this author definitely a huge fan of this story!

About Mariah Stewart:
Mariah Stewart is an award-winning New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of numerous novels as well as several novellas and short stories. She lives with her husband and two rambunctious rescue dogs amid the rolling hills of Chester County, Pennsylvania, where she savors county life and tends her gardens while she works on her next novel. Visit her at mariahstewart.com and follow her on Facebook.com/AuthorMariahStewart and on Instagram @mariah_stewart_books.


Sunday, April 16, 2017

Review: When The Grits Hits The Fan by: Maddie Day


Title: When The Grit Hits The Fan
Author: Maddie Day
Publisher: Kensington Publishing
Series: A Country Store Mystery #3
Pages: 304
Format: e-book ARC
Source: NetGalley & GEBT

Description:


Despite the bitter winter in South Lick, Indiana, business is still hot at Robbie Jordan’s restaurant. But when another murder rattles the small town, can Robbie defrost the motives of a cold-blooded killer?

Before she started hosting dinners for Indiana University’s Sociology Department at Pans ‘N Pancakes, Robbie never imagined scholarly meetings could be so hostile. It’s all due to Professor Charles Stilton, who seems to thrive on heated exchanges with his peers and underlings, and tensions flare one night after he disrespects Robbie’s friend, graduate student Lou. So when Robbie and Lou go snowshoeing the next morning and find the contentious academic frozen under ice, police suspect Lou might have killed him after their public tiff. To prove her friend’s innocence, Robbie is absorbing local gossip about Professor Stilton’s past and developing her own thesis on the homicide—even if that means stirring up terrible danger for herself along the way . . .

My Thoughts:

This book follows Robbie Jordan as she is running her restaurant and hosting meetings this one is with Indiana Universities Sociology Department and it seems people are getting very hostile with one another who knew Universities can fight so publicly! When Robbie and her friend Lou go snowshoeing they find the body of Charles Stilton frozen and very dead in the water under the ice.  Who killed the professor and why?  As the police investigate they seem to be drawn to Lou a friend of Robbie's as the murderer but in this story there seem to be no shortage of people who wanted Charles dead. Why the police are fixated on Lou is beyond me!

I love this book and these characters going back and visiting Robbie and her friends, coworkers and customers are great you get to see what everyone is up to.  Such a great adventure and I love watching Robbie as she tries to get to the bottom of it.  Can't wait to see what Maddie Day comes up with next for Robbie and company!!

Friday, April 14, 2017

Review: Southern Fried by: Tonya Kappes


Title: Southern Fried
Author: Tonya Kappes
Publisher: Henery Press
Series: Kenni Lowry Mystery #2
Pages: 300
Format: e-book ARC
Source: Author Requested

Description:

In the South, it’s better when the food is fried and the secrets kept buried… 

After the dead body of a beloved Cottonwood resident is found tangled up in an electric fence, Sheriff Kenni Lowry has a hunch that somethin’ ain’t right. Her investigation heats up with a fierce cook-off competition, a euchre game where the intel is sweeter than the brownies, and a decades old family recipe that may just be the proof in the pudding. 

The icing on the cake: Kenni is fighting an attraction to her recently sworn-in deputy sheriff, and election season is hot on her tail. When the killer comes after who she holds most dear, even her poppa’s ghostly guidance might not be enough to keep her and her own out of the frying pan.

My Thoughts:

This book follows Sheriff Kenni Lowry who is investigating the death of Owen Godbey who is found in Myrna's tomato patch. Who killed Own and why?  Kenni notifies the family and finds herself with more questions than answers as to what was up with Owen and who had a issue with him.  The investigation leads to a mysterious cookbook Owen inherited and a cook off competition that was getting heated.  Did it cause his death and if so why in the world would a cooking competition lead to death?

I love this mystery going back to Cottonwood and seeing what people are up to now, and reading the adventure and mystery that follows Kenni as she investigates this murder and where it leads.  Ms. Kappes is an incredible author who weaves fabulous stories through her eyes.  I feel honored to be part of her fans reading her stories and can't wait to see what she comes up next in this series!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Review: Dial P for Poison by: Zara Keane


Title: Dial P for Poison
Author: Zara Keane
Publisher: Beaverstone Publishing
Series: Movie Club Mysteries #1
Pages: 352
Format: e-book ARC
Source: GEBT

Description:

Movies. Muffins. Murder.

Maggie Doyle moved to Ireland to escape her cheating ex and crumbling career in the San Francisco PD. When the most hated woman on Whisper Island is poisoned at her aunt’s Movie Theater Café, Maggie and her rock-hard muffins are hurled into the investigation.

With the help of her UFO-enthusiast friend, a nun, and a feral puppy, Maggie is determined to clear her aunt’s name. Can she catch the murderer before they strike again? Or will her terrible baking skills burn down the café first?

My Thoughts:

This book follows Maggie Doyle who recently moved to Whisper Island after a failed career and divorce and is staying with her aunt as she recovers from surgery.  Maggie is trying to figure out where to go in her future.  During movie night the most hated woman on the island winds up dead and the police don't believe Maggie when she is adamant that the victim was killed.

It takes some friends of Maggies from when she use to spend summers on the island to prove that Sandra was murdered.  There are about 28 witnesses but whether or not they saw anything is another story.  Who killed Sandra and why?

This book was a great mixture of friends and past that brought Maggie to the island.  I also loved learning about the new people in this series.  We also get taken for a ride figuring out who killed Sandra and why?  Can't wait to see what is next in this great new series!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Review: Silence of The Jams by: Gayle Leeson


Title: Silence of The Jams
Author: Gayle Leeson
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Series: A Down South Cafe Mystery #2
Pages: 304
Format: e-book ARC
Source: NetGalley & GEBT

Description:

The new cozy mystery featuring Southern cooking from the author of "The Calamity Cafe." 
It's Independence Day in Winter Garden, Virginia, and the residents are gearing up for their annual celebration. The Down South Cafe is open and flourishing, and Amy Flowers is busy making pies and cakes for the holiday. The only thorn in her side is Chamber of Commerce director George Lincoln, who is trying to buy the cafe so he can tear it down and build a B&B on the site. 

When George collapses while eating at the Down South, everybody assumes it's a heart attack until the autopsy declares it to be poisoning. Now it s up to Amy to prove her innocence before her liberty is lost. 

Includes delicious Southern recipes!

My Thoughts:

This book is the second series in the Calamity Café in this one Amy is getting ready for Independence Day in her town of Winter Garden and making jams and pies and cakes.  When George keeps trying to buy the Down South Café from Amy to turn it into a Bed and Breakfast but Amy won't sell to him.  When George winds up collapsing in her café everyone involved thinks George had a heart attack.  That is except for Homer who starts digging around to see what is really going on. While all this is going on her mother's cousin has come back into town, and Amy can't help but wonder why she came back?  In previous times it's always she shows up stays then disappears again, in the past  she left her daughter with her mother.   Was George murdered or did he die of natural causes?

I love going back to Winter Garden and I especially am fond of Homer and how Amy interacts with him.  I love watching Amy get to the bottom of things to protect the wrongly accused.  It's a great fun series with great food and great friends.  Along the way a murder gets solved hopefully before someone gets the best of Amy.  This book also shows more of the family dynamic with Amy her mother, her aunts and her cousin Jackie.  Jackie's mother shows up and causes all sorts of issues for Jackie and her grandmother.  Such a great page turner with so many possible suspects.  Can't wait to see what is next in this series!



Friday, April 7, 2017

Review: Southern Fried by: Tonya Kappes


Title: Southern Fried
Author: Tonya Kappes
Publisher: Henery Press
Series: Kenni Lowry Mystery #2
Pages: 300
Format: e-book ARC
Source: Author Requested

Description:

In the South, it’s better when the food is fried and the secrets kept buried… 

After the dead body of a beloved Cottonwood resident is found tangled up in an electric fence, Sheriff Kenni Lowry has a hunch that somethin’ ain’t right. Her investigation heats up with a fierce cook-off competition, a euchre game where the intel is sweeter than the brownies, and a decades old family recipe that may just be the proof in the pudding. 

The icing on the cake: Kenni is fighting an attraction to her recently sworn-in deputy sheriff, and election season is hot on her tail. When the killer comes after who she holds most dear, even her poppa’s ghostly guidance might not be enough to keep her and her own out of the frying pan.

My Thoughts:

This book follows Sheriff Kenni Lowry who is investigating the death of Owen Godbey who is found in Myrna's tomato patch. Who killed Own and why?  Kenni notifies the family and finds herself with more questions than answers as to what was up with Owen and who had a issue with him.  The investigation leads to a mysterious cookbook Owen inherited and a cook off competition that was getting heated.  Did it cause his death and if so why in the world would a cooking competition lead to death?

I love this mystery going back to Cottonwood and seeing what people are up to now, and reading the adventure and mystery that follows Kenni as she investigates this murder and where it leads.  Ms. Kappes is an incredible author who weaves fabulous stories through her eyes.  I feel honored to be part of her fans reading her stories and can't wait to see what she comes up next in this series!

Review: Dying on The Vine by: Marla Cooper


Title: Dying on The Vine
Author: Marla Cooper
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Series: Kelsey McKenna Destination Wedding Mysteries #2
Pages: 304
Format: e-book ARC
Source: GEBT

Description:

Spirited wedding planner Kelsey McKenna juggles a sabotaged wedding and a cold-blooded killer in beautiful California wine country in this hilarious follow-up to Terror in Taffeta.

Wedding planner Kelsey McKenna just signed on to a dream gig. She’s going to be the “day-of” coordinator at the beautiful Higgens Estate in California wine country. There’s only one problem: the wedding was originally planned by Babs Norton, the self-proclaimed Queen of Wine Country Weddings, who the father of the bride has fired. 

Kelsey decides to clear the air with Babs and make sure there are no hard feelings, but before she can throw herself into executing the perfect wedding, she discovers Babs dead on the floor of his office. Stefan, Babs’ assistant is quick to point the finger very publicly at Kelsey. Even worse, Kelsey learns that with the big day only weeks away, the bitter little man has sabotaged her new clients’ wedding by canceling all the vendor contracts. 

With the help of her friend Brody and assistant Laurel, Kelsey must scramble to salvage the wedding while dodging gossipy wedding planners, grumpy winemakers, and a cold-blooded killer in this smart, funny cozy perfect for fans of Carolyn Haines.

My Thoughts:

This book follows Kelsey McKenna as she works as a wedding planner, when she finds herself a new client she learns quickly that their previous wedding planner got fired by the brides father and the wedding planner is Babs Norton who has no problem with Kelsey taking over.  Even offering to give Kelsey the file on the couple what Kelsey wasn't counting on was stumbling on a dead Babs.

Kelsey finds herself a suspect in the death of Babs due to Stefan a co-worker of Babs is quick to blame Kelsey for stealing clients and killing Babs.  Kelsey is determined to find out who killed Babs and why?  Was it the Bride Haley's father being upset with Babs or was it a sister who had to share her inheritance with Babs or could it be her co-worker Stefan? 

I enjoyed this story and reading about what wedding planners do to plan weddings along with solving the mystery.  Definitely a great page turning mystery that you won't be able to put down as Kelsey, her assistant Laurel and her friend Brody try to figure out what happened and why Kelsey's wedding is being sabotaged with cancelled vendor contracts!  Can Kelsey fix the wedding in time and solve the mystery really held my interest.  Definitely a great cozy for those who love weddings mixed in with their cozy mysteries.  Can't wait to see what is next in this series!

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Review: Called To Justice by: Edith Maxwell


Title: Called To Justice
Author: Edith Maxwell
Publisher: Midnight Ink
Series: Quaker Midwife Mystery #2
Pages: 312
Format: e-book ARC
Source: NetGalley & GEBT

Description:

Quaker midwife Rose Carroll is enjoying the 1888 Independence Day evening fireworks with her beau when a teenaged Quaker mill girl is found shot dead. After a former slave and fellow Quaker is accused of the murder, Rose delves into the crime, convinced of the man's innocence. An ill-mannered mill manager, an Irish immigrant, and the victim's young boyfriend come under suspicion even as Rose's future with her handsome doctor suitor becomes unsure. Rose continues to deliver babies and listen to secrets, finally figuring out one criminal—only to be threatened by the murderer, with three lives at stake. Can she rescue herself, a baby, and her elderly midwifery teacher in time?

My Thoughts:

This book follows Rose Carroll who is a midwife in 1888 enjoying fireworks on Independence Day when a young woman Hannah approaches her about a difficult situation she is going through during the fireworks Hannah is found dead.  Who would want her dead?  Where did the weapon go?  Did it have something to do with her difficult situation or is it about something else?  This book had no shortage of possibilities but Rose has to dig deep to find out who hurt Hannah.

I loved going to 1888 seeing how the author brought us into Rose's life with her special friend David Dodge, her niece Faith and the various women Rose helped birth their babies from the rich and elite to the poor and ill.  We learn a lot about Hannah and the things she had gone through which led her to her fate that Independence Day.  About the boy who was smitten by Rose and her turning him away.  How police are quick to stick with a possible suspect even when it's not the situation.  There is more to this case then one may think.

I can't wait to see what is next for Rose, David, Faith and their friends and family!