Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Bad Housekeeping (An Agnes and Effie Mystery #1) by Maia Chance

Bad Housekeeping (An Agnes and Effie Mystery #1)

When 28-year-old Agnes Blythe, the contented bifocals-wearing half of an academic power couple, is jilted by her professor boyfriend for the town Pilates instructor, her future is suddenly less than certain. So when her glamorous, eccentric Great Aunt Effie arrives in town and offers a job helping to salvage the condemned Stagecoach Inn, what does Agnes have to lose? But work at the inn has barely begun when the unlikely duo find the body of manipulative Kathleen Todd, with whom Agnes and Effie both have recently had words. Words strong enough to land them at the top of the suspect list.

The pair have clearly been framed, but no one else seems interested in finding the real murderer and Agnes and Effie's sleuthing expertise is not exactly slick. Nevertheless, they're soon investigating a suspect list with laundry dirtier than a middle school soccer team's and navigating threats, car chases, shotgun blasts, and awkward strolls down memory lane.

In Bad Housekeeping, the first novel in the Agnes & Effie cozy mystery series by Maia Chance, danger mounts, deadlines loom, ancient knob-and-tube wiring is explored, and the ladies learn a thing or two about the awful, wonderful mistake that is going back home.  (Summary via Goodreads)

You know it's a good book when 41 pages into it you are already writing the review in your head.  Bad Housekeeping takes no time if sucking you in.  From the moment you open the book, you are best friends with Agnes and totally in love with great-aunt Effie.  

Maia Chance writes in such a way that as your reading the story your imagination runs wild.....you are so engrossed in Agnes and what she is doing, you can picture it so clearly.  And great-aunt Effie is that crazy relative that everyone has in their family....crazy but also so fun to hang around with.  

Naneda is a town that anyone would want to live in, especially with the assortment of characters living there.  Not to mention that it is where Agnes grew up and her father is the Mayor.  So when Agnes is dumped by her smart, professor boyfriend, Roger she has no where else to go other than back to dad's house.  And because she left the apartment that she lived with Roger so quickly, all she had were her old high school clothes still in the closet at her dads. You won't be able to hold the laughter in when you read the discriptions of her outfits.

Great-aunt Effie shows up in town right after the break-up with big news of her own.  She has been left the Stagecoach Inn by a cousin.  She is in town to salvage and renovate the Inn.  She enlists the jelp of Agnes and cousin Chester but before they start any work, Kathleen Todd, a bigwig in town, is found murdered at the Inn.  And because both Agnes and Effie had words with her the day before, they are top on the list of suspects.

Effie sets her sights on solving the murder and clearing their names.  But as they begin their own investigation, they find themselves in compromising situations.  And then when another person is found dead, they have to work even faster to solve the case so no one else ends up dead....especially Agnes and Effie.

I cannot wait for the next adventure of Agnes and Effie.  I know it is going to be a hoot !!!

Review by Missi S. 

Monday, 19 June 2017

No Turning Back by Tracy Buchanan

No Turning Back

Anna Graves’s whole life has recently been turned upside down. A new mother, she’s just gone back to her job as a radio presenter and is busy navigating a new schedule of late night feeding and early morning wake ups while also dealing with her newly separated husband. Then the worst happens. While Anna is walking on the beach with her daughter, she’s attacked by a crazed teenager. Terrified, Anna reacts instinctively to protect her baby.

But her life falls apart when the schoolboy dies from his injuries. The police believe Anna’s story, until the autopsy results reveal something more sinister. A frenzied media attack sends Anna into a spiral of self-doubt. Her precarious mental state is further threatened when she receives a chilling message from someone claiming to be the “Ophelia Killer,” a serial killer who preyed on the town twenty years ago—and who abruptly stopped when Anna’s father committed suicide.
Is Anna as innocent as she claims? And is murder forgivable, if committed to save your child’s life? Internationally bestselling author Tracy Buchanan takes readers on an emotional roller coaster ride filled with heart-stopping secrets and hairpin turns in No Turning Back, her US debut.   (Summary via Goodreads)

No Turning Back by Tracy Buchanan......WOW !!!  I was composing my review while I was reading this book.  The title for one thing is spot on !!!  Once you start reading it, there is no turning back.... and you won't want to.  

Buchanan introduces you to Anna Graves who is a recently single radio presenter who defends herself and protects her newborn daughter from a knife swinging boy.  Although this seems like an open and shut case, it actually starts a downward spiral of events.  Events that are out of Anna's control no matter what she does to prevent them.  As she struggles with her actions of killing Elliott, a young boy, the only person she can rely on is Jamie, the older brother of the boy she killed.  

When she starts to receive emails from the Ophelia Killer, she teams up with Jamie in search of answers.  Could it be the Ophelia Killer after 20 years of silence ?  Why was Elliott acting so strangely when he came into contact with Anna ?  

Then when another boy is found dead in the same fashion as the Ophelia Killer's previous victims, Anna is certain that it is happening all over again.  But will she be able to get to the bottom of things unlike her father who took his own life back when he was investigating the killings 20 years ago ?  

As Anna and Jamie get drawn deeper and deeper into their search for answers, will it destroy them or calm them ?  

It is so hard for me to refrain from going into more details within this story.  I don't want to say too much and give all the juicy, nail biting, coffee getting cold next to you, rapid page turning answers.  I cannot stress enough how awesome No Turning Back is.  If there is a book that will stay with you, that you remember for a long time this is it !!!  No Turning Back is definitely a book club reader for sure !!  There is so much to talk about.....so much that it is killing me not to say more !!!!

Please if there is any doubt in your mind about reading No Turning Back, let me assure you that you will love it and it will leave a huge impact on you.  I am already reaching out for any more books written by Tracy Buchanan.....

Review by Missi S.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Love & Death in Burgundy by Susan C. Shea

Love & Death in Burgundy

From critically acclaimed author, Susan C. Shea, comes Love & Death in Burgundy, an atmospheric mystery novel filled with good Chablis, french cheese, and, of course, murder.

After three years of living in the small town of Reigny-sur-Canne, all Katherine Goff really wants is to be accepted by her neighbors into their little community. But as an American expat living in the proud region of Burgundy, that's no easy task.

When the elderly Frenchman who lives in the village chateau is found dead at the bottom of a staircase, the town is turned into a hot bed of gossip and suspicion, and Katherine suddenly finds herself drawn deeper and deeper into the small town's secrets. A motherless teenager, a malicious French widow, a brash music producer, and a would-be Agatha Christie are among those caught up in a storm that threatens to turn Katherine's quiet life upside down. As more and more of the villagers' secrets are brought to light, Katherine must try to figure out who, if anyone, in the town she can trust, and which one of her neighbors just might be a killer.  (Summary via Goodreads)

Katherine is an artist and her husband, Michael, is a musician and they live in a small quiet French village.  All Katherine wants to do is fit in with the people of this little village.  They have been living there for 3 years and she is still struggling.  Michael, on the other hand, just wants to play music.  Fortunately for Michael semi-famous country singer Betty Lou Holliday and her producer husband, J.B. move into town for the summer.  Michael spends a lot of time working with them in hopes of making an album and possibly go out on tour.

Things in this quiet town change when elderly village chateau owner Albert is found dead at the bottom of an old steep outside staircase.  Albert and his wife Adele live in the chateau and provide tours of the grand property.  Everyone is shocked to hear of his death especially when it looks like it might have been murder.  But who would want to hurt an elderly man ?  And why ?

While Katherine does her best to support Michael and his musical dreams she is busy getting paintings ready for her gallery show as well as entertain the residents of the village in hopes of shedding some light on Albert's dead.  

Love and Death in Burgundy by Susan C. Shea takes you to a far away place and you don't even leave your couch.  As she describes the quaint little village, it's people and their lives, you immediately feel like you have known them forever.  Let Shea open up your imagination......

Review by Missi S.

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Beware the Orchids (A Shady Acres Mystery Book 1) by Cynthia Hickey

Beware the Orchids (A Shady Acres Mystery Book 1)

New mystery from Amazon best-selling author! 

Ditched at the altar, ShelbyJenkins tosses down her bouquet, quits her job, and accepts a position as gardener and event coordinator at an upscale retirement community. Her first day on the job results with a dead body in the greenhouse under the orchids and with her as the prime suspect! 

Toss in a handsome handyman, quirky characters, and a flirtatious grandma and the fun never stops.   (Summary via Goodreads)

Such a fun cozy mystery. Loved all the characters. Easy read from start to finish. Love the retirement aspect, normally cozies are bakeries or bookstores this was refreshing. I read a lot of cozies and this is going on my top list.

Shaddy Acres is a quaint retirement village that has a new gardener, Shelby Jenkins. She was left at the alter, left her job as a teacher and has started over. Well sorta, her grandmother has decided to move to Shaddy Acres too. She is a hoot! Love how frisky of a character she is and how dynamic of a part of the story line. Of course in the first day of working Shelby is not only in the middle of one murder but two and she has caught the eye of the hunky handyman. 

All of these characters are fun and full of energy. Look forward to book two in the series.

Review by Penny M.

Friday, 9 June 2017

Boston Cream Killer: Book 8 in The INNcredibly Sweet Series by Summer Prescott

Boston Cream Killer: Book 8 in The INNcredibly Sweet Series

If you enjoyed the Frosted Love series, you'll love the continuing adventures of Missy, Chas and the gang in The INNcredibly Sweet Series!!! 

The sleepy beach town of Calgon is rocked by scandal in this latest thrilling installment in The INNcredibly Sweet Series. Mysterious things are happening that will affect Missy and Chas in ways that they never imagined. Why has a mysterious woman suddenly appeared in Chas’s life, and who is she? Who is behind the strange and dangerous circumstances surrounding Chas’s family business? There are difficult decisions to be made, that may change the course of Missy and Chas's lives forever. When events and circumstances threaten to divide them, will they stand together, or will they face their challenges alone? How well do they know Spencer, and how far will he go to protect those whom he loves? Find the answers to these tough questions and more in this gripping tale.  (Summary via Goodreads)

WOW!!! I love this series. Missy, Chas and the rest of the gang are in up to their cupcakes full of adventure in this book. I was on the edge of my seat the whole time. So much adventure, mystery, and surprises abound in this installment of The INNcredibly Sweet series. Tons of life choices, new beginnings, as well as old and new enemies. 

I look forward to book 9 and all the excitement that awaits everyone in the small town of Calgon.

Review by Penny M.

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

River City Dead (Aggie Mundeen Mystery #4) by Nancy G. West

River City Dead (Aggie Mundeen Mystery #4)

Advice columnist Aggie Mundeen and SAPD Detective Sam Vanderhoven plan their first rendezvous at a San Antonio River Walk hotel during Fiesta Week—sumptuous sights, sounds, and festivities in the middle of America’s Venice. A vacation from crime and a reset for their tumultuous relationship.

But murder descends on the Casa Prima Hotel. Disturbing revelations surface about the Fabulous Femmes, Aggie’s new friends holding a convention. Evil emerges at parties in La Villita. Calamity plagues Aggie’s debut dance performance at the Arneson River Theater, the celebration skewed by carousing, crazies, and corpses. Even in idyllic River City, crime complicates relationships.

Books in the Aggie Mundeen Humorous Mystery Series:


Part of the Henery Press Mystery Series Collection, if you like one, you'll probably like them all...
   (Summary via Goodreads)

River City Dead by Nancy G. West is the fourth book in her Aggie Mundeen Mystery series.... It is the first book in this series that I have read.  Fortunately I wasn't lost reading it.  I know in a perfect world we want to read a series from the beginning. however, as a book reviewer / blogger that seldom happens.  It is always a concern when reading a book well into the series that you will be lost or fear that you won't be able to enjoy the story.  HAVE NO FEAR because River City Dead is not like that.

As soon as I started reading River City Dead I was engrossed in the story and felt like I was a long time friend of Aggies.  And the setting....smack dab in the middle of Fiesta Week !!  Oh what a thrill !!  

Aggie and her Detective boyfriend are meeting at a hotel where the festivities are taking place.  Aggie of course is very excited until she gets there and finds out someone has died....in the penthouse suite that Sam had reserved.  As if that isn't bad enough when Sam lets her look in at the crime scene Aggie recognizes the deceased.  It is her neighbor and friends daughter in-law and they all had lunch recently.  

Sam has to be there to help in the investigation when it is ruled a homicide.  Aggie refused to leave and go home when she knows she can help with the investigation.  And she has a strong desire to have the case solved and give the girl and her family peace.

While Sam is doing his part, Aggie is investigating some of the other guests at the hotel who also knew the deceased.  

Who will solve the case ?  Will Aggie get herself in trouble ?  Can Aggie and Sam trust each other and strengthen their relationship ?

Even though this is the first book that I have read in this series, I can assure you that it is not my last !!  I need to know more about Aggie and where things are heading with Sam.....

Review by Missi S.

Monday, 5 June 2017

An Eye for a Spy: A Clara Callaway Mystery by Lillian Dore

An Eye for a Spy: A Clara Callaway Mystery

Journey back to 1920s England, and join young Lady Clara Callaway and her lady’s maid, Alice Hart, as they go detecting together! 

When Alice Hart finds third footman Eddie Arnott poisoned in the downstairs storeroom, the discovery shocks the household. Who would kill such a kind young man? However, Eddie’s death leads to an even more disturbing discovery—there is a spy in the house, and it could be any member of the staff. 

Now, Alice has been tasked by the mysterious Mr Black to help find the killer by detecting in the one place Lady Clara cannot—belowstairs. And as Alice is forced to confront the idea that any one of her friends could be a murderer, she learns the hard way that sometimes, the truth comes at a cost.   (Summary via Goodreads)

Even though the Clara Callaway Mystery series by Lillian Dore are short stories, they are packed with excitement !!  

In An Eye for a Spy you are taken back to the 1920's to Innestead Abbey.  This is the home of Lord and Lady Burnham and their daughter Lady Clara who is the main character in these books.  Lady Clara along with her personal maid, Alice, seem to get caught up in trouble....like murder.  

This time the murder is too close for comfort when Alice finds fellow employee Eddie Arnott dead.  He was only missing for 40 minutes during breakfast clean-up.  How could he end up dead in a storage cupboard ?  Also Alice could tell by looking at him that not only was he dead but he had been murdered !!

Detective Inspector Thorpe arrives with a member of the British Secret Intelligence Service who informs them that Eddie Arnott was actually undercover looking into the employees of Innestead Abbey for a German spy who has been successful in operating in England for years.  They fear that he was murdered because he uncovered who the spy was.  

When Alice is asked to continue investigating, she is more than happy to assist.  This will be the first time that her and Clara are actually asked to help !!  So a plan is set in motion to insure that Alice will not be the next employee that ends of dead.  She is given 3 names of gentlemen that the BSIS has little background on.  

While going about her normal day, she makes it a point to encounter all 3 gentlemen and engage in casual conversation.  She is able to cross one of the names off of the list but that doesn't get her any closer to solving the case.  Fortunately a midnight snack helps her solve the case.....unfortunately it is someone that no one would even suspect as being a German spy !!

I love the Clara Callaway Mystery series so much !!  You can read them quite quickly.  They take you back in time where you get to hang out in a lovely home with some very interesting characters and you don't have to leave your couch.  

Review by Missi S. 

Designing for Death: A Clara Callaway Mystery by Lillian Dore

Designing for Death: A Clara Callaway Mystery
Journey back to 1920s England, and join young Lady Clara Callaway and her lady’s maid, Alice Hart, as they go detecting together!

When a fashion show turns fatal, it’s once again up to Clara, Alice and Giles to solve the case. The promising young fashion designer Grizelda Marston has died suddenly during the biggest show of the year, and the competition for prime suspect is fierce!

At the request of Inspector Thorpe, Clara and her friends set out to find the killer. But is this a crime of passion, greed—or something else? And as they did deeper into the case, Clara learns just how far a person will go for fame.  (Summary via Goodreads)

Designing for Death by Lillian Dore is my favorite Clara Callaway Mystery series book so far !!  Maybe it is because I am familiar with the characters and love Clara and Alice or it could be that they are set in the 1920's and in England or the storylines of the murders.

In Designing for Death Clara and her personal maid Alice leave Innestead Abbey to go to a fashion show in Oxford.  Family friend Giles goes along as well as Lord Burnham's driver, Sam.

Clara is very excited to attend the fashion show as she recently met one of the designers, Grizelda Marston at a party.  Grizelda and her partner Jeremy Tate have designs in the show along with 3 other designers.

In the middle of the show however Grizelda drops .... dead !!!  Of course Clara and Giles run to her aid only to realize that she is indeed dead.  While trying to preserve the crime scene they try to notice anything they can that will solve the case.  But when the local police arrive on the scene it it quite clear that they have no idea what they are doing.  Clara has Sam contact Detective Inspector Thorpe in hopes that he can take over the case.  Thorpe arrives alone so he asks Clara and friends to help with the investigation.  Obviously they jump at the chance to help !!

After interviewing the other designers it becomes clear that this case is different than the others that Clara has been involved in.  Can she still crack the case ?  

The lengthens that people will go to in order to success is amazing.....but deadly ?  

Lillian Dore is an author to follow !!  You cannot help but fall in love with this series and Clara.  

Review by Missi S.

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Called to Justice (Quaker Midwife Mystery #2) by Edith Maxwell

Called to Justice (Quaker Midwife Mystery #2)

When Hannah Breed confides to midwife Rose Carroll that she’s pregnant out of wedlock, Rose promises to help her through the pregnancy and figure out a way to break the news to her family. But that night, amid the noise and revelry of the Independence Day fireworks, Hannah 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 focusing in on the culprit only to be threatened herself.  (Summary via Goodreads)

"Death.  Betrayal.  Sickness.  Thievery.  Rape." .... In a Quaker Midwife Mystery series ??
Trust.  Love.  Commitment.  Friendship.  Life.  .... In a Quaker Midwife Mystery series ??

Absolutely !!!  Called to Justice by Edith Maxwell has that and a whole lot more. 

The main character, Rose, is a Quaker and a midwife and a friend to everyone.  Rose is a very good listener and will do whatever she can to help someone.....even if it could be dangerous.

While enjoying a day of celebration Rose vows to help Hannah,  a young girl who works at the factory with her niece.  Hannah had informed Rose that she was with child but wouldn't say who the father was.  Before Rose can gather more information from the young girl, Hannah is shot during the firework display.  At the time, no one comes forward to say who shot her.  Rose not only wants to solve Hannah's murder but also find out who the father of the unborn child is.

As Rose continues her midwife responsibilities she is able to do some investigating as well.  When a Friend is accused of Hannah's murder, Rose knows that the authorities have the wrong person.  She also learns that another girl who works at the factory and lives in the boardinghouse where Hannah lived is accusing the deceased as having stolen items from her.

On top of ALL that, David has asked her to marry him and she has accepted. But before they can even celebrate, David's mother expressed her feelings about their engagement and it isn't nice at all !!

With all that information, Rose is more determined to solve Hannah's murder.  Will she be able to free her innocent friend from jail ?  Can she do this without putting her own life in jeopardy ?  

No matter how much stuff gets thrown at Rose, she is always able to handle it.  Pick up your copy of Called to Justice and see how she does it.  

Review by Missi S.  

Monday, 22 May 2017

Death in the Abstract (Katherine Sullivan Mysteries #2) by Emily Barnes

Death in the Abstract: A Katherine Sullivan Mystery

Retired police chief Katherine Sullivan moved away from Edina, Minnesota to feed her artistic soul in New Mexico. But when she receives an urgent call, her serenity is shattered. Nathan Walker, her best friend and former colleague from her days on the police force, is missing and his crew of security experts hasn’t seen him in days. Now it’s up to Katherine to fly home and track him down.

Meanwhile, Edina is reeling from the murder of a local woman, which looks more and more like it could have a connection to Nathan's disappearance. And as Katherine digs deeper into the investigation, locating Nathan’s abandoned car and compiling a list of potential kidnappers, another body is found--and Katherine fears time is running out for her friend.

Finding herself reluctantly pulled into a new case, Katherine must set aside her artistic pursuits and tear herself away from her darling grandchildren in order to save her best friend in Death in the Abstract, the compelling sequel to Emily Barnes' The Fine Art of Murder.  (Summary via Goodreads)

It started with 4, Katherine, Sully, Nathan and Terry.  They were brought together when Sully and Nathan were partners on the force. Sadly Sully was killed while on the job and Terry lost her battle with cancer.  Now it was 2, Katherine and Nathan.  When Katherine retired from the force and moved away, she still kept in touch with Nathan.  So when she received a call and the caller ID said it was Nathan there was no reason to be alarmed.  That is until she answered the call and it wasn't Nathan on the other end.

It was Rosie, one of Nathan's employees, on the other end.  They were calling Katherine to tell her Nathan was missing !!  The last time they spoke to their boss was on Friday.....3 days ago.  They needed help anad they knew Katherine would be there as soon as possible to help find him.

Interesting tidbit of information....Nathan owned a security and survelliance business since leaving the force.

As soon as Katherine got into town, her focus was on finding Nathan.  She even had to play nice with the current Chief of Police who wasn't a fan of her's.  A missing person was not a priority to him when they had a murder and a killer to catch.  Katherine worked with Nathan's crew going through files and re-visiting the appointments he had on Friday.

After meeting with Nathan's appointments, Katherine isn't left with much to go on.  One residence from that day doesn't feel right so she returns with one of the crew.  When they find the door ajar, they venture inside just in time to see someone running out the back door.  They also hear banging coming from upstairs.  When they investigate they find Nathan gagged and tied up !!!

Unfortunately that isn't the end !!  As they continue to investigate why Nathan was kidnapped in the first place, another person is killed.  Does that have anything to do with Nathan's kidnapping  or the other death ?  

Emily Barnes introduces the reader to an assortment of characters and storylines that twist and turn and possibly all end up at the same place.  In Death in the Abstract you will find yourself drawn into the story and your heart rate may speed up at times....but its all good.  Trust me you'll see !!!

Review by Missi S.

Friday, 19 May 2017

Pugs, Thugs, and Murder (Pet Shop Mystery #6) by Susie Gayle

Pugs, Thugs, and Murder (Pet Shop Mysteries #6)

Pet shop owner and hesitant novice investigator Will Sullivan is headed south, for the warm sunny beaches of North Carolina. With his girlfriend Sarah, his dog Rowdy, and their three-pawed kitten Basket, they hope to escape the troubles of Seaview Rock, even if just for a little while, swapping it for the charming shore-side town of Angler Cove. But soon after arriving, Rowdy digs up a human bone from the sand of their private stretch of beach. What was supposed to be a romantic getaway becomes an exploration into a three-year-old cold case involving twin cops, jilted lovers, and one chubby pug.  (Summary via Goodreads)

This is the first book in The Pet Shop mysteries that I have read. It is book six and I plan to go back and read the first five. I loved this book! 

Fast paced read with great characters. Fell head over heels for Rowdy, Will's dog that really really likes to dig. The secondary characters, especially Diego are well written. His restaurant sounds so good! Mexican food rocks.

Unfortunately Will and Sarah, his girlfriend are getting away for a vacation but things don't go as planned. They end up in the middle of another murder mystery. Can they enjoy their time away from Seaview Rock or will Angler Cove bury them in the sand???

Review by Penny M.

Monday, 15 May 2017

The Convenient Cadaver (Grandma Bertha Solving Murders Book 1) by Matt Ferraz

The Convenient Cadaver (Grandma Bertha Solving Murders Book 1)
When Grandma Bertha moved to her son’s place, she brought along three dogs, several cases of beer and many, many horror film DVDs. While her daughter-in-law insists on the idea of sending Grandma Bertha to a retirement home, a dead girl appears near the house, shot three times in the back. Many years ago, Grandma Bertha let a murderer escape for not trusting in her own detective abilities. Now, armed with her wit and wisdom, she decides to solve that crime before the police. Could this crazy dog lady be a threat to a cold-blooded killer? And for how long can the family stand that situation?  (Summary via Goodreads)

Wow !!  What a hoot !!  I don't know about you but I love when a cozy mystery has an older person solving the crime....like a grandmother. 

 Matt Ferraz introduces us to Grandma Bertha in his book The Convenient Cadaver and you cannot help but love her !!  

Grandma Bertha lives in a remodeled garden shed in her son's backyard along with her three dogs.  She has an okay life there.  She has her beer and her collection of horror movies.  She is able to see her grandson Stu often.  The only bad thing is that her daughter-in-law, Lydia, things she belongs in a retirement home.  And Grandma Bertha getting "involved" in a murder that happened right on the other side of the wall in the alley helps strengthens Lydia's case.

Grandma Bertha won't let it go..... The murdered victim is the young daughter of Todd's boss and it looks like the crime scene was staged in the alley on purpose.  Grandma Bertha is very interested in finding the killer.....especially when her family is threatened.   It seems that the police are actually listening to what she has to say....which is very rare.   

Can Grandma Bertha solve the murder ?  Can she show Todd and Lydia that she can take care of herself ?  
Just cause a person is old doesn't mean that they can't do what they want....even if it is solving a murder.....or two.  Grandma Bertha proves that !!!

There is so much to like and love in this story....you can't help but fall in love with Grandma Bertha and want to see her succeed.  And you also cannot help but dislike Lydia throughout most of the book....which is okay.  Every book needs a villian or two.  

I look forward to the next Grandma Bertha adventure.....Ferraz ends the story on a very interesting note and Grandma Bertha is already digging her toes in the crime scene....

Review by Missi S.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Edited Out (Mysterious Detective #2) by E.J. Copperman

Edited Out (Mysterious Detective #2)

Mystery author Rachel Goldman is getting used to the idea that her fictional creation Duffy Madison has somehow taken flesh-and-blood form and is investigating missing person cases not far from where Rachel lives. Wait. No. She’s not getting used to it at all, and the presence of this real-life Duffy is making her current manuscript—what’s the word?—lousy.

So she doesn’t want to see Duffy—the living one—at all. To make matters worse, when he shows up at her door and insists on talking to her, it’s about the one thing she doesn’t want to do: Find a missing person. But the man Duffy seeks this time around might be able to solve Rachel’s problem. He might just be the man Duffy was before he became Duffy five years ago. The only problem is she could be letting Duffy lead her into danger yet again…

Entertaining and witty, the second in E.J. Copperman's Mysterious Detective Mystery series Edited Out will delight his fans, both new and old.  (Summary via Goodreads)

A lot of mystery authors write books in a series using a handful of the same characters.  In Edited Out that is no exception but it is in a unique way.....  In Edited Out the main character, Rachel, is herself a mystery author....cool right ?  But it gets even better !  It seems that the main character in her series, Duffy Madison, exists.  Unfortunately that is not a good thing for Rachel.  For one thing it makes writing about a fictional character hard when they are "alive".  And it gets even better because Duffy only remembers the last five years of his life which just happens to be when Rachel starting writing about him.

When Duffy approaches Rachel and asks for help finding a missing person, Rachel wants to say no.  She is having enough of a hard time meeting her 1,000 words a day quota, let alone help him.  But when he tells her the missing person, Damien Mosley, could actually be him because Damien died 5 years ago, she finds herself driving to the town Damien lived.

As confusing as this all sounds, it is actually easy to follow and you get lost in the story immediately.  E.J. Copperman keeps the reader entertained form the first word to the last, even gets you to chuckle some and holding your breath in parts.....  It is such a FUN read !!  I encourage all readers to hang around with Rachel and Duffy for a bit.....

Review by Missi S.

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Thread and Gone (Mainely Needlepoint #3) by Lea Wait

Thread and Gone

When a priceless antique is stolen, murder unravels the peaceful seaside town of Haven Harbor, Maine…
Angie Curtis and her fellow Mainely Needlepointers know how to enjoy their holidays. But nothing grabs their attention like tying up loose threads. So when Mary Clough drops in on the group’s Fourth of July supper with a question about antique needlepoint she’s discovered in her family Colonial-era home, Angie and her ravelers are happy to look into the matter.
Their best guess is that the mystery piece may have been stitched by Mary, Queen of Scots, famous not just for losing her head, but also for her needlepointing. If they’re right, the piece would be extremely valuable. For safekeeping, Angie turns the piece over to her family lawyer, who places it in her office safe. But when the lawyer is found dead with the safe  (Summary via Goodreads)

I really enjoyed book three in the Mainely Needlepoint Mystery series. I have enjoyed the other two in the series and feel that each can be read alone if you haven't read the earlier ones. One of the reasons I love these books is the history and samples at the beginning of each chapter. The author is great about who,where,and when each were done. I used to cross stitch with my mom as a young girl and enjoy it. I am also a huge history nut and loved the Mary,Queen of Scots and Marie Antionette references throughout the book. I could read about them all day.

The story line in this book had me so intrigued. Besides the history in this book I also loved the characters and theme of family and traditions. You can't put a value on family.
You have the needle pointers at the Fourth of July yearly Maine celebration. This is the first one in 10 years that Angie has been too. She has a dinner party with everyone except Gram of course who is on her honeymoon with Tom. Everything is going great until she has a knock at her door. There on her doorstep are Mary Clough and Rob Trask her fiancĂ© asking about a piece of needle point found in the attic of her parents house that she is trying to clean out. This gets the attention of some of her needle point friends who come and look at the amazing piece. Both Sarah and Ruth think this piece could date back hundreds of years and be very valuable. This peaks the interest of Rob who I have to add I don't like. He seems to only be about the money and value of everything instead of the family value and tradition. Mary is wanting to keep a lot because she has lost both of her parents and wants to keep a piece of them. Really don't know how these two are going to make it??? Everyone agrees that they should put the needlepoint in a safe place while they are researching. They decide to put it in Lenora's office safe which happens to be in her house. Lenora is a lawyer that handles wills, estates, and divorces. Meanwhile Rob is blabbing all over Haven Harbor how valuable this needlepoint could be and that he wants to sell it to buy a boat. But wait, isn't it Mary's? YEAH! Rob and a "friend " end up going to see the needlepoint the next day only to find Lenora dead in her office and the safe cleaned out! Angie feels bad not only because Lenora is dead but she promised Mary it would be safe. Angie and her needlepoint friends begin not only doing research on the needlepoint but investigate why someone would kill Lenora??? Will Angie be able to stay out of the investigation or will she become the next victim? 

I loved this book and found it easy to follow especially if you are a history buff. 

Review by Penny M.

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Cut: A Medical Murder Mystery by Amy S. Peele

Cut: A Medical Murder Mystery by [Peele, Amy S.]

While the federal government is launching a national investigation on the -equity- of organ distribution, a female tech CEO flies across the country to get a liver transplant. Soon, well-respected transplant nurse Sarah Golden and her best friend, Jackie, find themselves tangled up in an intense plot to uncover the answer to the question on everyone's mind: Can you buy your way up to the top of the waiting list? Their pursuit of justice brings them to Miami, San Francisco, and Chicago--a sometimes fun, sometimes dangerous roller coaster ride from which they barely escape with their lives.  (Summary via Goodreads)

You couldn't ask for a better debut book by Amy S. Peele.  Her Medical Murder Mystery, Cut, will have you reading well over your bedtime !!

You follow Sarah Golden from Miami to San Francisco and back to Miami but it's no vacation.  While finishing her contract in Miami as a traveling nurse for the organ transplant department one of the patients rubs her the wrong way.  She tries to put it out of her mind so she can concentrate on planning a trup to Cuba with her best friend Jackie.  Unfortunately the patient, Amanda, lives in San Francisco and is best friends with the head of the department that she just took a job with.

Sarah cannot shake the feeling that Amanda didn't receive her liver through the proper channels and she knows that Amanda's boyfriend, Sergio had something to do with it.  But while her and Jackie are "investigating", they are threatened..... 

Sarah has to make a quick decision whether to pursue the case or let it go.  After all is it really worth her and Jackie's lives ??  Is one organ donation case going to change things ?

Amy Peele opens your eyes on the organ distribution field and everything that pertains to it.  It amazes me when authors write a story that has a lot of research and fact finding involved.  The reader doesn't always think about it...we just read and enjoy the story.  But as Peele has been an RN for many years and her field of choice was organ donation and transplantation, you can rest assure that you will walk away with some knowledge as well as a good story !!!

Review by Missi S.

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Easter Escapade (Zoe Donovan Mystery #24) by Kathi Daley

Easter Escapade (Zoe Donovan Mystery #24)

In the first ever crossover episode, Zak and Zoe join forces with Hawaiian visitors Luke and Lani, to find out who killed a historian visiting Ashton Falls in order to find a treasure map left by his grandfather a hundred years earlier. Meanwhile, Ellie and Levi move in with Zak and Zoe while the boathouse is being renovated and Alex helps Ellie prepare the nursery for baby Eli who is due to be born any day. Throw in some humor and Easter fun and you have a Zak and Zoe crossover mystery.   (Summary via Goodreads)

This is the first crossover book by Kathi Daley and it is amazing, full of adventure and a dead body of course. It was so much fun to see the characters from the different series meet up and join forces to solve a mystery. It was great how Kathi Daley put each characters personalities into the story and was able to intertwine them with each other.

First of all I don't know how Luke got Lani on vacation and away from her beloved Hawaii. He did it and thus begins a new friendship with Zak and Zoe. Zoe meets Lani while she is pulling a body out of the water. Dead! They become instant friends and cohorts in crime solving. They along with their other halfs have to solve a mystery about a historian ending up dead while visiting Ashton Falls looking for a 100 year old treasure map??? Throw in Zoe being overwhelmed by Ellie and Levi moving in with them, the baby coming any day, construction on the boathouse, animals galore, and Elli's mood swings not to mention Easter coming and you have fun, adventure, and stress rolled into one.

Review by Penny M. 

Monday, 1 May 2017

Sanctuary by T.M. Brown

Sanctuary by [Brown, T.M.]

Sanctuary introduces newly retired publishing executive, Theo Phillips, and his wife, Liddy, to the time-lost South Georgia town of Shiloh. They leave the shadows of Atlanta and move into a quaint home of notoriety. While making new friends, they discover twenty-first-century challenges threaten the town’s laid-back lifestyle. Theo's interest in a memorial launches him into investigating tragic events that have left Shiloh unsettled. Theo and Liddy’s retirement dreams take a turn that could unravel both them and the idyllic life they and many others look for in Shiloh.  (Summary via Amazon)

This is a story about a husband and wife, Theo and Liddy, who move to a small town and become a part of something greater than they ever could have imagined.  As soon as they arrive they are drawn to a statute of a young man in the Town Square.  Curiousity and Theo's journalistic background draw him to this statute and its background.  As soon as he learns there are unanswered questions regarding the statute, the old City Hall building and a group of kids they've met, Theo digs in to learn what he can.

Shiloh is a town you want to live in, you want to have neighbors like Theo and Liddy and you want to have friends like they have.  In Shiloh everybody knows everything, people help others even if they are strangers, and there's a calm thoughout the town.

Theo and Liddy fit right in immediately.  They are soon involved in the church, Theo is going to write some articles for the local paper, and they even have Thanksgiving with the Mayor.  They are making friends fast and getting involved in everything but is it going to be to much ?  As Theo digs into the fire that burned down the old City Hall building that killed Jesse, will the outcome spark new flames ?  

I LOVED Sanctuary by T, M. Brown and I highly encourage you to read it !!!  I am even going to help you out by providing you with a list of the characters.  As you will see with some of the names, you can become confused very quickly..... AND I don't want that to prevent you from reading the AMAZING story......

Review by Missi S.



Theo and Liddy Phillips

Barb and Bubba Patterson - own and run the Shiloh Motel and BBQ

Nick Arians - Realtor and brother to Joe Arians
Joe Arians - lawyer, wife Melissa, twin 8 year old girls

Betty Priestly - owned house Theo and Liddy bought, husband was Zack, son John (in jail), great aunt of Jessie.

John Priestly - Betty's son, John's cousin, in jail for embezzlement of school fund

Harold Archer - Mayor
Hal Archer - Harold's son, Utilities Department Director
Hank Archer - Harold's son, runs family business, married to Megan
Phillip Archer - Harold's youngest son

Megan Archer - works for Mayor, married to Hank

Jessie Masterson - Marie's son, killed in fire at City Hall while saving the Mayor's sons Hal and Hank, John's cousin

Marie Masterson - Jessie's mother, lives on farm

Larry Scriber - owns newspaper, married to Martha, has daughter, Mary
Martha Scriber - married to Larry, works with Larry 
Mary Scriber- Larry and Martha's daughter, works at newspaper office

Pastor Arnie Wright - Pastor at local church
Judy Wright - Pastor's wife

Tim - paperboy

Sam Simmons - married to Susanna
Susanna Simmons - married to Sam, works for Joe Arians
Jeannie Simmons - Sam and Susanna's daughter, works for Nick Arians
Pete and Andy Slimmons - Sam and Susanna's sons, help out at the farm

Zeb Adams - owns Adams Feed & Hardware
Jay and Jim Abrams - Zeb's sons, help out in family store and at the farm