Monday, February 12, 2024

Review: Muddled Through by: Barbara Ross

Title: Muddled Through
Author: Barbara Ross
Publisher: Kensington
Series: Maine Clambake Mystery #10
Format: e-book ( 265 p.) NetGalley


Mud season takes on a whole new meaning in the coastal town of Busman's Harbor, Maine, when local business owners sling dirt at one another in a heated feud over a proposed pedestrian mall. Vandalism is one thing, but murder means Julia Snowden of the Snowden Family Clambake steps in to clean up the case . . .

When Julia spots police cars in front of Lupine Design, she races over. Her sister Livvie works there as a potter. Livvie is unharmed but surrounded by smashed up pottery. The police find the owner Zoey Butterfield digging clay by a nearby bay, but she has no idea who would target her store. Zoey is a vocal advocate for turning four blocks of Main Street into a pedestrian mall on summer weekends. Other shop owners, including her next-door neighbor, are vehemently opposed. Could a small-town fight provoke such destruction? When a murder follows the break-in, it's up to Julia to dig through the secrets and lies to uncover the truth . . .

My Thoughts:

This book focus's on Julia's sister's Livvie's boss Zoey Butterfield who is being targeted by someone and finds her shop busted up and Julia is determined to find out what is happening. Zoey is also trying to help advocate to help make a pedestrian mall on summer weekends to bring more business to town, but some locals aren't keen on this and are making it happen. When one of the locals is dead the heat is on Zoey for having committed murder, but did she really kill Phinney a local who didn't want all the changes that Zoey was trying to make?  Who had it in for him and why?

I really enjoyed this book and I have enjoyed this series as it has progressed and have enjoyed watching as Julia has moved on from Chris and made it clear she can't go back to him even if she does love him.  She ends up going out with a few guys which she knows don't pan out as she's not completely ready for or interested in the guys she goes out with.  Which I think sets up for when she will be ready for the right guy when she is ready!

Sunday, February 11, 2024

Review: Schucked Apart by: Barbara Ross

Title: Schucked Apart
Author: Barbara Ross
Series: A Maine Clambake Mystery #9
Format: Paperback (228 p.) NetGalley


The Snowden Family Clambake Company has a beloved reputation in Busman’s Harbor, Maine. Almost as famous is the sleuthing ability of proprietor Julia Snowden, which is why an oyster farmer seeks her out when she’s in trouble.   

When Andie Greatorex is robbed of two buckets of oyster seed worth $35,000, she wonders if somebody’s trying to mussel her out of business. Could it be a rival oyster farmer, a steamed former employee, or a snooty summer resident who objects to her unsightly oyster cages floating on the beautiful Damariscotta River? There’s also a lobsterman who’s worried the farm’s expanding lease will encroach on his territory and Andie’s ex-partner, who may come to regret their split. Before Julia can make much headway in the investigation, Andie turns up dead, stabbed by a shucking knife. Now it’s up to Julia to set a trap for a cold and clammy killer . . .  

My Thoughts: 

Julia Snowden's boyfriend Chris asks Julia to investigate when his poker partner Andie is having trouble with people in her business so she goes to find out what she can do.  Andie is being robbed of oyster seed worth 35 thousand dollars who would want to hurt her that much and why?   Could it be an ex partner or someone she has annoyed?  What makes it worse when Andie winds up dead and the pressure is on when Julia is determined to find out who killed her.

This book was full of so much secrets and mysteries going on and a turning point in Julia's relationship with Chris.  Julia has to come to terms with so much happening about why he wouldn't show Julia every aspect of his life and why he felt the need to hide his poker friends and his family from her.  Julia also learns who had killed Andie and why.  It was definitely a great page turner and showed how Julia had to make some hard decisions in life.

Saturday, February 3, 2024

Review: One Book in The Grave by: Kate Carlisle

Title: One Book in the Grave
Author: Kate Carlisle
Publisher: Berkley 
Series: Bibliophile Mystery #5
Format: Paperback (280 p.) Personal Purchase


There may be grave consequences for bookbinder Brooklyn Wainwright as she attempts to solve two murders tied to one book...

Brooklyn's chance to restore a rare first edition of Beauty and the Beast seems a fairy tale come true—until she realizes the book belonged to an old friend of hers. Ten years ago, Max Adams, a brawny renowned papermaker, fell in love with a stunning beauty, Emily, and gave her the copy of Beauty and the Beast as a symbol of their love. Soon afterward, he died in a car crash, and Brooklyn has always suspected his possessive ex-girlfriend and her jealous beau.

Now she decides to find out who sold the book and return it to its rightful owner—Emily. She believes a rare book dealer can assist her, but when she arrives at his shop, she finds him murdered. Is it possible that the same couple who may have killed Max are now after his edition of Beauty and the Beast? With the help of her handsome boyfriend, Derek Stone, Brooklyn must unravel the murder plot—before she ends up in a plot herself....

My Thoughts:

When Broolyn gets a copy of Beauty and The Beast to restore she is stunned to find it's a copy of the book she gave to her friend Max Adams and his fiancĂ© Emily.  Max Adams has been dead for three years so why is Brooklyn wondering what is going on?  Is there something sinister going on?  The more she digs the more questions she has who found the book that Brooklyn has and what does this have to do with Max when he's been dead for 3 years?

I love this series and the writing style really pulls you and takes you from Brooklyn's apartment to her parent's house and Guru Bob to get to the bottom of everything!  Definitely a great adventure in California with everyone!