Apr 212017
 


On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.

I did it again, I overbooked my reading schedule for this week
so the Friday book for this week will be pushed to next week.

But I still wanted to have a giveaway.
I reviewed this book on June 11, 2016 and
due to a mix up by the publisher I have an extra copy.
So I am doing a Review Replay with a giveaway!

A GOLDEN CAGE

A Golden Cage: A Newport Gilded Age Mystery
2nd in Series
Cozy Mystery
Setting – Rhode Island
Cover Illustration by Aleta Rafton
Cover Design by Lesley Worrell
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery (June 7, 2016)
An Imprint of Penguin Random House LLC
Paperback: 368 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425275856
E-Book ASIN: B016JPTFEQ
goodreads-badge-add-plusShop Indie Bookstores

The author of A Gilded Grave returns to Newport, Rhode Island, at the close of the nineteenth century, where headstrong heiress Deanna Randolph must solve another murder among the social elite.

With her mother in Europe, Deanna is staying with the Ballard family, who agree to chaperone her through the summer season and guide her toward an advantageous marriage proposal—or so her mother hopes. Relishing her new freedom, Deanna is more interested in buying one of the fashionable new bathing costumes, joining a ladies’ bicycling club, and befriending an actress named Amabelle Deeks, all of which would scandalize her mother.

Far more scandalous is the discovery of a young man bludgeoned to death on the conservatory floor at Bonheur, the Ballards’ sumptuous “cottage.” Deanna recognizes him as an actor who performed at the birthday fete for a prominent judge the night before. But why was he at Bonheur? And where is Amabelle?

Concerned her new friend may be in danger—or worse—Deanna enlists the help of her intrepid maid, Elspeth, and her former beau, Joe Ballard, to find Amabelle before the villain of this drama demands an encore.

Dollycas’s Thoughts
I want to escape right into that picture on the cover.

This second book in the series picks up almost where book one left off. Deanna’s mother and sister are still abroad and her father is busy working so Deanna continues her stay with the Ballards. She goes on calls with “Gran Gwen” and they attend a few parties, keeping her in the eye of eligible bachelors that she really has no interest in. She wants a career as a detective and not many suitors would be happy to have their wives chasing down criminals. They attend a birthday party at the Grantham Estate where Maude Grantham has brought in a entire theatre company to perform. It was quite a night, Deanne even meets one of the actresses, Amabelle Deeks.  Deanna is surprised when Amabelle shows up at the Ballard’s door in the middle of the night scared about something and needing a place to stay. Even more surprising is finding a body the next morning in the conservatory. A young actor from the play. When Deanna goes to tell Amabelle she is nowhere to be found. Dee thinks her new friend my have something to do with the murder especially because she ran away. Quickly Deanna, her wonderful maid Elspeth, and Joe Ballard are trying to help their friend Will, a sergeant with the Newport Police solve the case. But just because they are “working with” Will doesn’t mean that aren’t going to do some investigating and get into some trouble on their own.

I really like the characters and their development. We see Gran Gwen and Laurette are more liberal thinkers like Deanna while the Granthams are more conservative. All our very opinionated. Dee was growing more comfortable and trying things like riding a bicycle and joining a bicycle club. Her mother would definitely not approve. She is a strong willed young woman. A subplot dealt with her feelings for Joe and his feelings for her. They do make a good team but can they ever be more than friends. There are also several interesting characters connected to Amabelle and they play.

The story takes come great twists as our protagonist hones in on the guilty party. Secrets come to light and the reveal is filled with action.

Shelley Freydont’s descriptive way of writing brings all the characters to life right along with the “cottages” of Newport and the Fifth Ward. As a reader I felt like I traveling right along with Deanna as she followed all the clues and all the place she would sneak into to get the answers. It was really thrilling and fun.

An excellent addition to this series!

perfect 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

ShelleyNoble FinalV3 copy

About The Author –

Shelley Freydont is the author of the Liv Montgomery, Celebration Bay Festival Mysteries, (Silent Knife, Trick or Deceit),the Katie McDonald Sudoku Mysteries and the Lindy Haggerty dance company mystery series. Her Newport Gilded Age Mystery seires began in June 2015 with A Gilded Grave, followed in June 2016 with A Golden Cage.

Shelley loves puzzles of all kinds and when not writing or reading mysteries, she’s most likely working on a jigsaw, Sudoku, or crossword.

As Shelley Noble, she’s the author of the women’s fiction novels, Beach ColorsStargazey Point, and Breakwater Bay as well as several novellas.

She lives at New Jersey Shore and loves to hear from readers.

* Author Links

Website  – Facebook  Amazon  Twitter 


Find more books by Shelley Freydont Here.
Writing as Shelley Noble

GIVEAWAY
Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End  May 5, 2017 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Apr 142017
 


On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.

I Spotlighted this book back in February.
It finally reached the top of my To-Be-Read stack.

Up North Murder: Up North Michigan Mystery
1st in Series
Cozy Mystery
Setting – Michigan
CT Communications (October 2, 2016)
Paperback: 226 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0998212203
Kindle ASIN: B01LY1XJ42

 
 
 
 
 

A phone call can change your life forever…

Abigail Williams gets that phone call. Gordon Dorsey, Abby’s uncle and last living relative has drowned in the lake on his property, and Abby is his sole heir.

There are a few complications, however.

Abby’s inheritance is a trout farm in Michigan, but she’s a city girl from Phoenix, Arizona. In addition, Abby doesn’t believe the official story of her uncle’s death.

And the biggest complication… the four-legged furry owner of the farm who seems to have her own ideas about how things should be run.

Culture shock is the least of her worries.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Abigail Williams leaves Arizona for Upper Michigan after she receives word that her uncle, Gordon Dorsey, has passed away. She doesn’t get many details, just that her last living relative has drowned. A terrible accident. They had mainly remained in contact by cards and letters and she knows he retired to a farm but she didn’t realize it was a TROUT FARM complete with a young caretaker and a very special canine. Not long after she arrives she starts to think her uncle’s death may not have been an accident. Now she just has to prove it!

I was drawn in by Abigail Williams immediately. She jumped right into her inheritance with both feet, willing to learn everything she could about the farm and the business her uncle had created. Her uncle left her the place not just because she was his only surviving relative but because he believed she was a country girl at heart. Could he be right? Could she be happy in a place with spotty cell service, no Starbucks, miles to a store of any kind? She had time to figure that out but first she needs to know if her uncle really was murdered and who would have killed him. I enjoyed the way she did her investigation. She jumped right into that as well.

The author does an excellent job of setting the scene. It was super easy to picture the lake, the house, the barn, and the land in my mind. I was traipsing right along with Abigail for every step. I learned a bit about trout farming too.

The story was very well written, the characters well drawn and authentic. The dialogue was genuine. The story had a slow build as Abby came up with several suspects and motives. As she worked to eliminate them the pace picked up. While the actual killer was one of my top suspects the climatic ending was surprising and scary.

I am so excited to know this is going to be a series. I just wish the next story was already available because the ending of this book had me rushing to Amazon to see if it was available. I would have purchased it right away.

This is a great start for this series.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 About The Author

Cheryl Taylor was raised in northeastern Michigan and pursued a degree in agriculture communications from Michigan State University. In 1986, Taylor moved to Arizona where she worked in publishing and advertising in the livestock industry, then eventually moving into teaching in 1998 after receiving a masters in education from Northern Arizona University.

Gone to Ground” is Taylor’s first book and explores how an apocalyptic event might look in the Arizona ranch land. “Breaking Free,” a sequel to “Gone to Ground” is currently in the works.

In addition, Taylor is working on several cozy mystery series, including the Up North Michigan series, which takes place on a trout farm in the northeastern part of the state where she was raised, and the Rock Shop mystery series, which takes place in northern Arizona.

Taylor currently resides in northern Arizona with her family of horses, cattle, dogs and birds.


I am giving away 1 e-copy that will be gifted from Amazon!

Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Click the Like Button at the top of this post for a Bonus Entry.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End April 28, 2017 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

 

Mar 312017
 


On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.

I have to admit I put off reading this one because I knew it was the last book in the series and I just wasn’t ready to say goodbye to these characters.
Have you ever done that?


Long Upon the Land (A Deborah Knott Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
20th in Series
Setting – North Carolina
Grand Central Publishing (August 11, 2015)
Hardcover: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1455545322
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1455545315
Kindle ASIN: B00WF8IJVC

 

 

LONG UPON THE LAND

On a quiet August morning, Judge Deborah Knott’s father Kezzie makes a shocking discovery on a remote corner of his farm: the body of a man bludgeoned to death. Investigating this crime, Deborah’s husband, Sheriff’s Deputy Dwight Bryant, soon uncovers a long-simmering hostility between Kezzie and the slain man over a land dispute. The local newspaper implies that Deborah’s family may have had something to do with the murder-and that Dwight is dragging his feet on the case.

Meanwhile, Deborah is given a cigarette lighter that once belonged to her mother. The cryptic inscription inside rekindles Deborah’s curiosity about her parents’ past, and how they met. For years she has wondered how the daughter of a wealthy attorney could have married a widowed, semi-illiterate bootlegger, and this time she’s determined to find the answer.

But why are Deborah’s brothers so reluctant to talk about the dead man? Is the murder linked to Kezzie’s illegal whiskey business? And could his courtship of Deborah’s mother have something to do with the bad blood between the two families? Despite Deborah’s promise not to interfere in Dwight’s work, she cannot stop herself from doing everything she can to help clear her brothers and her father from suspicion . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

A current mystery and a very old mystery come together in the final installment to this long running series.

A dead man is found on the Knott property by Judge Deborah Knott’s father Kezzie. The man’s family and Kezzie have had a feud over the that part of the land for years. Many people including the local paper think one of that Knotts, most likely Kezzie, is the one responsible for the man’s death. Deorah and her husband, Sheriff’s Deputy Dwight Bryant, are working hard to find the real killer and claim the family of any wrong doing.

The old mystery started way back, even before the first book of the series, Bootlegger’s Daughter. How did a daughter of a wealthy attorney end of married to Kezzie Knott, a widowed bootlegger? This time Deborah is going to get to the bottom of her family’s history. 

Both mysteries are excellently written and draw you into the story, but for me and most likely other fans of this series, it was the part about Deborah’s parents that I truly latched onto. The author rotates between each story separately the chapters with the present and the past. We see through the flashbacks Susan entered Kezzie’s life just when he needed her most although he needed to be convinced of that. I am so happy we were able to tie this all together.

As for the new mystery, it ties into the old one as one family benefited from another’s downfall. A long time grudge has been carried and the entire Knott family could be on the suspect list but Dwight knows they are innocent. Small town life and family relationships come into play as the real killer is sought.

I am sorry that this series has ended but Ms. Maron has ended it in a way that pleased me. She is continuing her other series and there is a tie in to this one so maybe Deborah and Dwight will have some cameo appearances there. Either way I have enjoyed this entire series and recommend them all.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Find out more about Margaret Maron and her books on her webpage here.

I am giving away a hardcover copy!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Click the Like Button at the top of this post for a Bonus Entry.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End April 14, 2017 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Mar 172017
 


On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.


Grilled For Murder (A Country Store Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Indiana
Kensington (May 31, 2016)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1617739279
Kindle ASIN: B01501H4MK

 

 

Robbie Jordan may have had reservations about the murder victim, but she still needs to turn up the heat on a killer if she wants to keep her new restaurant open for business…

In the charming small town of , Robbie has transformed a rundown country store into the runaway hit Pans ‘N Pancakes. But the most popular destination for miles around can also invite trouble. Erica Shermer may be the widow of handsome local lawyer Jim Shermer’s brother, but she doesn’t appear to be in mourning. At a homecoming party held in Robbie’s store, Erica is alternately obnoxious and flirtatious–even batting her eyelashes at Jim. When Erica turns up dead in the store the next morning, apparently clobbered with cookware, the police suspect Robbie’s friend Phil, who closed up after the party. To clear Phil and calm her customers, Robbie needs to step out from behind the counter and find the real killer in short order…

Includes Recipes for You to Try!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

It is getting close to Christmastime in South Lick, Indiana. Robbie Jordan has a welcome home party booked at Pans ‘N Pancakes before she can start decorating.  Erica Shermer is back in South Lick after the death of her husband, but she sure doesn’t seem to be grieving. I completely understand we all grieve in our own way but flirting with her departed husband’s brother and every other man in the room seems just a bit off. When Robbie finds Erica’s very dead body spread out on the floor next to the pickle barrel the next morning she knows right away there could be plenty of suspects. She just never imagined the police would hone in on her friend Phil. It is up to her to find the clues that will send them in another direction or Christmas in South Lick will be far from Merry.

This second installment to this series was a very fast read for me. Ms. Day’s well crafted mystery drew me right in and didn’t let go.

I really like Robbie Jordan and the place she has created with Pans ‘N Pancakes. A gathering place for the community and great comfort cooking too. Robbie is quick and smart and so friendly. She can easily question several people with simple conversation over breakfast. She also passes along what she knows to the police, although she is putting herself in the line of fire when the real murderer sees she is getting to close to the truth. I enjoyed the dialogue between the characters and the bit Indiana – ish way of speaking added a true local feeling.

This mystery moves along at a good clip. Several twists had me truly wondering if the person I wanted to be the guilty party would actually be the guilty party. You will have to read the story to see if I was right.

There was some unexpected drama on the romantic front too. I am anxious to see how it continues to play out in future stories, regarding both parties.

Grilled For Murder is a down home kind of cozy with colorful characters, a comfortable setting and a fun mystery.

I do suggest starting with Flipped for Murder, but the author gives plenty of detail if you start with this one. The 3rd book in the series When the Grits Hit the Fan will be released March 28. I have added it to my reading schedule. 

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About The Author

Maddie Day is a talented amateur chef and holds a PhD in linguistics from Indiana University. An Agatha Award-nominated author, she is a member of Sisters in Crime and Mystery Writers of America and also writes award-winning short crime fiction. She lives with her beau and three cats in Massachusetts.

As Edith Maxwell, she write the Local Foods Mysteries (Kensington Publishing) and the Quaker Midwife Mysteries (Midnight Ink).

You can find all Maddie’s/Edith’s identities at www.edithmaxwell.com. She blogs every week day with the other Wicked Cozy Authors at wickedcozyauthors.com. Look for her as Edith M. Maxwell and Maddie Day on Facebook and @edithmaxwell and @maddiedayauthor on Twitter.


I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy of this book.
Book will be sent directly from Amazon.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Click the Like Button at the top of this post for a Bonus Entry.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End March 31, 2017 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Mar 102017
 


On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.


Be Still My Beading Heart: A Glass Bead Mini-Mystery
Cozy Mystery
Vetrai Press (December 9, 2016)
Print Length: 65 pages
ASIN: B01N7GK6JL

 

 

It’s Valentine’s Day and Jax O’Connell’s red VW bug is missing. Did she forget where she parked the Ladybug as she rushed to deliver her handmade glass beads, or has the beloved car been stolen? Searching the streets of Seattle, Jax and her best friend, Tessa, face some unsavory characters. Jax regrets not having a date on the most romantic day of the year after spotting Ryan, Seattle’s newest–and hottest–cop and running into Zachary, the stern yet sexy detective. She must take matters into her own hands to find the Ladybug and salvage her love life, and do it before the day is over.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

When I looked at my calendar for this week I knew I overbooked my reading schedule. That meant my Flashback Friday book had to be a quick read. So I pulled up my TBR list and chose this book. The read was even quicker than I imagined. The first 36% of the book is the short story – Be Still My Beading Heart, the remainder of the 65 pages is Sample Chapters from the first two books in the series. The great news is that the book is FREE an Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and kobo.

I have read this whole series the last few weeks and am waiting for Off the Beadin’ Path to be released tomorrow. This was a special little treat to enjoy in the meanwhile.

Jax has 2 men in life but she doesn’t have a date for Valentine’s Day. Instead she is spending the day trying to find her beloved Ladybug, her red VW bug. Was it towed? Was it stolen? Getting no help from the police she and her friend Tessa are off to search for the car themselves.

This time Jax felt very Stephanie Plum like to me with Tessa as her Lula. They were on a mission and nothing was stopping Jax, at least, from finding her vehicle.

A fun, fast, read. A sweet mini diversion for a nice mini escape. I am really enjoying this series.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About The Author

Janice Peacock decided to write her first mystery novel after working in a glass studio full of colorful artists who didn’t always get along. They reminded her of the odd, and often humorous, characters in the murder mystery books she loved to read. Inspired by that experience, she combined her two passions and wrote High Strung: A Glass Bead Mystery, launching a new cozy mystery series featuring glass beadmaker Jax O’Connell.

When Janice isn’t writing about glass artists-turned-amateur-detectives, she makes glass beads using a torch, designs one-of-a-kind jewelry, and makes sculptures using hot glass. An award-winning artist, her work has been exhibited internationally and is in the permanent collections of the Corning Museum of Glass, the Glass Museum of Tacoma, WA, and in private collections worldwide.

Janice lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband, two cats, and twelve chickens. She has a studio full of beads…lots and lots of beads.

Author Links

Webpage – Facebook – GoodReads 

*Free Book from my private collection.

Mar 032017
 


On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.


A Bead in the Hand
(Glass Bead Mystery Series)

Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Oregon
Vetrai Press (June 4, 2016)
Paperback: 234 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0990570561
Kindle ASIN: B01GGV8418

 

 

A bead bazaar turns bizarre when jewelry designer and glass beadmaker Jax O’Connell discovers a dead body beneath her sales table. Suspected of murder, Jax and her friend Tessa scramble to find the killer among the fanatic shoppers and eccentric vendors. They have their hands full dealing with a scumbag show promoter, hipsters in love, and a security guard who wants to do more than protect Jax from harm. Adding to the chaos, Jax’s quirky neighbor Val arrives unexpectedly with trouble in tow. Can Jax untangle the clues before she’s arrested for murder?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Jax and Tessa are off for a weekend of fun. They are excited to be attend a bead filled bazaar in Portland. Jax plans to sell, sell, sell, and Tessa plans to buy, buy, buy. Just after the event starts the room in plunged into darkness and the first night is cancelled. Hoping things are a go the next day Jax hurries to get her booth ready but instead she finds a very famous beader under her table and she has been there a while. Jax’s screams for help are answered by a hunky security guard and both of them know there is no hope, the woman is clearly dead and because she is under Jax’s table she becomes a prime suspect. For the rest of the weekend Tessa spends her time selling beads for Jax while she tries to figure out who really killed the bead diva. Val arrives just in time to “help” and brings her own chaos to the weekend.

I recently read and reviewed the first book in this series, High Strung, and then pushed this one to the top of of my To-Be-Read list and the author sure did not disappoint.

I loved trailing around with Jax, Tessa and Val. Since they were away from home Detective Grant had a much smaller role. Instead we met Ryan, a security guard that really catches Jax’s attention and Detective Tiffany Houston, who methods of investigation are completely different than Detective Grant, and not in a good way. Some of the bead makers from book one return and they are joined by several more. They make a very eclectic group and to Jax every one of them is a suspect.

The pace of this one is pretty brisk from the start. The author has strung together a web that has almost the entire cast connected in some way to the victim, Saundra Jameson. She was a woman very full of herself and treated many people terribly. The plots and subplots blended together naturally and kept my attention to the very last word.

Again the author’s knowledge of bead making and creating jewelry was very evident and with her descriptions I could easily envision each bead, necklace and earring.

I did enjoy the bit of romance that started to bud in the story and am anxious to see how it plays out in future installments.

Jax, Tessa, and Val are treasures and this story was so much fun to read. I need to squeeze in Be Still My Beading Heart: A Glass Bead Mini-Mystery soon because Off the Beadin’ Path (Glass Bead Mystery Series Book 3) will be out March 11 and I want to be ready for it.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About The Author

Janice Peacock decided to write her first mystery novel after working in a glass studio full of colorful artists who didn’t always get along. They reminded her of the odd, and often humorous, characters in the murder mystery books she loved to read. Inspired by that experience, she combined her two passions and wrote High Strung: A Glass Bead Mystery, launching a new cozy mystery series featuring glass beadmaker Jax O’Connell.

When Janice isn’t writing about glass artists-turned-amateur-detectives, she makes glass beads using a torch, designs one-of-a-kind jewelry, and makes sculptures using hot glass. An award-winning artist, her work has been exhibited internationally and is in the permanent collections of the Corning Museum of Glass, the Glass Museum of Tacoma, WA, and in private collections worldwide.

Janice lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband, two cats, and twelve chickens. She has a studio full of beads…lots and lots of beads.

Author Links

Webpage – Facebook – GoodReads 

I am giving away 1 e-copy of A Bead in the Hand.
It will be sent directly to your email from Amazon.

Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Click the Like Button at the top of this post for a Bonus Entry.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End March 17, 2017 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Feb 242017
 


On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.

I messed up my reading schedule last week and wasn’t able to read a Flashback book so this week my loss is your gain. Giving up one from my huge TBR stack.

The Ghosts of Misty Hollow
(Ghost of Granny Apples)

Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery (December 6, 2016)
An Imprint of Penguin Random House
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425282083
E-Book ASIN: B01839Q4RM

The author of Ghost in the Guacamole returns as a spiritual medium and her spectral sidekick encounter murder and mystery in a Massachusetts farmhouse—

Mysterious plots abound when spiritual medium Emma Whitecastle offers aid to a famous novelist, but her spectral sidekick Granny Apples will help her write all the wrongs…

Bestselling crime writer Gino Costello is working on his next book in a historic farmhouse in the heart of Massachusetts. His story features some paranormal elements so he’s invited family friend Emma to provide her input as a medium. But as soon as Emma arrives—with her fiancé, Phil, and Granny Apples in tow—that’s when the real trouble begins.

Emma is immediately contacted by the Browns, a family of ghosts who originally owned the house in the early nineteenth century. They need Emma to help them locate the spirits of their two children who disappeared. Meanwhile, a dead body appears at the house. Now Emma, Granny, and Phil must read between the lines to find answers before a killer books it…

To find out more about Sue Ann Jaffarian and her books visit her webpage here and her blog here.


Find books in Sue Ann’s other series here.


Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Click the Like Button at the top of this post for a Bonus Entry.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End March 10, 2017 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Feb 172017
 


On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.
Clearing a book by Janice Peacock from my Kindle shelf today!

High Strung (Glass Bead Mystery Series)
1st in Series
Cozy Mystery
Setting – Washington
Vetrai Press (June 3, 2016)
Paperback: 222 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0990570547
Kindle ASIN: B01GIBQTFY

 

 

After inheriting a house in Seattle, Jax O’Connell is living the life of her dreams as a glass beadmaker and jewelry designer. When she gets an offer to display her work during a bead shop’s opening festivities, it’s an opportunity Jax can’t resist—even though the store’s owner is the surliest person Jax has ever met.

The weekend’s events become a tangled mess when a young beadmaker is found dead nearby and several oddball bead enthusiasts are suspects. Jax must string together the clues to clear her friend Tessa’s name—and do it before the killer strikes again.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Jax O’Connell gets the chance to follow her dreams when she inherits a house and a bit of money from her aunt. She packs as much as much as her new VW Bug can hold including her cat and leaves Florida behind and heads for Seattle.  The house has been converted into a duplex but needs a little TLC. Jax fixes up a few things so she can work on her beads and jewelry from home and makes some friends in the bead-making world. She is excited when she is invited teach a class and show her work at a bead-making event. The store’s owner is not the nicest person on the planet but Jax knows she can work with her. When the owner is injured during the event and another young beadmaker is found dead in a dumpster the next day things get a little heated. Especially when the police are convinced one of Jax’s friends is the killer. Jax knows she must work fast stringing together the clues to not only clear her friend but catch the killer before anyone else is strung up.

This was a fun read. You know right away that Janice Peacock is a beading enthusiast. She describes that processes of bead making and making jewelry with those beads so well that it is very easy to picture. The beads sound just beautiful and making them sounds so unique. I have heard about glass blowing, but glass bead making is brand new to me. I have seen them everywhere but never thought much about how they were actually made. Her enthusiasm is also apparent in most of the book’s characters.

High Strung is populated with eclectic group of characters you expect to find in a cozy mystery. Jax is a strong woman, on her own after leaving her less than stellar boyfriend in Florida. Her tenant and friend Val is a hairdresser, aspiring baker and quite the spitfire.  Her best friend since kindergarten, Tessa, has her own studio, where she gives classes. Rosie, the owner of Aztec Beads, where the event is taking place, is pretty cantankerous and a little odd. Marta is a fellow beader that Jax met at a beadmakers’ conference. She is staying with Jax so she can take part in the weekend event. She also brought her “animal companion”, Stanley, along without even asking Jax if that was o.k. Gumdrop is Jax’s kitty, addicted to catnip, maybe a little physic, and definitely not a Stanley fan. The are also a couple of young bead makers that sell their wares on the street. We also meet Jax’s other friends and of course the local police, Detective Grant.

As is the case with most books that are the first of a series the mystery starts to happen several chapters in to give readers time to get to know the players. But when it starts the pace picks right up and continues on to the end. There are really 2 mysteries to solve because we don’t know if the cases are connected. In fact, the police believe one was either self inflicted or just an accident. Jax has other ideas.

At just 222 pages this cozy is a bit shorter than normal but they are jam packed with detail, deception and more than a few twists and surprises. The characters are very believable and their dialogue is very well written. I also enjoyed a few laugh out loud moments.

A fast read for a cozy afternoon. I have moved the next book in this series to the top of my To-Be-Read list on my Kindle.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About The Author

Janice Peacock decided to write her first mystery novel after working in a glass studio full of colorful artists who didn’t always get along. They reminded her of the odd, and often humorous, characters in the murder mystery books she loved to read. Inspired by that experience, she combined her two passions and wrote High Strung: A Glass Bead Mystery, launching a new cozy mystery series featuring glass beadmaker Jax O’Connell.

When Janice isn’t writing about glass artists-turned-amateur-detectives, she makes glass beads using a torch, designs one-of-a-kind jewelry, and makes sculptures using hot glass. An award-winning artist, her work has been exhibited internationally and is in the permanent collections of the Corning Museum of Glass, the Glass Museum of Tacoma, WA, and in private collections worldwide.

Janice lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband, two cats, and twelve chickens. She has a studio full of beads…lots and lots of beads.

Author Links

Webpage – Facebook – GoodReads 

I am giving away 1 e-copy of High Strung.
It will be sent directly to your email from Amazon.

Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Click the Like Button at the top of this post for a Bonus Entry.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End March 3, 2017 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Feb 102017
 


On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I was not able to review when they were first released that have been screaming at me from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.


A Wee Dose of Death (A ScotShop Mystery Book)
Paranormal Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Vermont
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery (January 5, 2016)
An Imprint of Penguin Random House LLC
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425270325
Kindle ASIN: B00W2ZKSLC

While business is booming at the ScotShop in Hamelin, Vermont, proprietor Peggy Winn doesn’t have time to toast her good fortune thanks to her hot-tempered, fourteenth-century Scottish companion. Being thrust into the modern world hasn’t been easy for Dirk, but Peggy is at her wit’s end trying to keep the ghostie galoot in line.

But when the local police chief finds the body of Peggy’s friend Karaline’s college professor in a deserted mountain cabin, everyone is thrown for a loop. It seems the secretive professor may have been killed over his ecological work, an idea that’s only reinforced when Karaline herself is shot. Now Peggy and Dirk must set aside their differences to put the cold-blooded killer under loch and key…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Peggy and Dirk are back and have their hands full, well as much as a ghost can have his hands full.  If you haven’t read the previous story you need to know that Dirk came home to Vermont after a trip Peggy took to England. She purchased a shawl and never knew it came with a ghost as a bonus item.

Cross country skiing is a big thing in Hamelin, Vermont, even the chief of police straps on his skis and grabs his poles every once in a while. His first trip of the season goes horribly wrong when he falls and breaks his leg. With no way to call for help and no one around, he uses his ski to splint his leg and crawls to a nearby cabin. He never expected to find a dead body there. Sadly the guy isn’t missed right away but when he is found he tries to wrap the case before he has all the information. Peggy and her friend Karaline along with a certain cranky 14th century Scotsman try to find out what really happened. When Karaline gets shot things get more than a wee bit serious but Peggy isn’t giving up.

I love that Dirk and Peggy are at odds through most of the story. It has to be hard having him around all the time and answering all his questions. The author keeps the Dirk’s way of speaking genuine to his time period and his reactions to modern day things may me laugh out loud several times.  When he gets on her nerves Peggy just folds up the shawl and he disappears. We don’t know where he goes but he doesn’t appreciate being dismissed in that way at all, but it gives Peggy a bit of a breather.

The rest of the characters are fleshed out well and each holds their own in a twisted mystery that will keep the readers on their toes. We also meet a wonderful Scottish terrier named Scamp who seems to make himself right at home in the ScotShop. We are provided with plenty of suspects and several red herrings. I was kept guessing the whole way and figured it all out right along with Peggy.

Fran Stewart has given us a captivating cozy, with witty characters and top notch mystery. I look forward to the next installment,  A Wee Homicide in the Hotel was released this month and I will be reading it soon. 

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

To find out more about Fran Stewart and her books on her webpage here

I am giving away my review copy! 
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 24, 2017 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Feb 032017
 


On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I was not able to review when they were first released that have been screaming at me from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.

I am not going to lie, what is happening in our country scares me. I will not get all political but it did cause me to choose a different type of book for this week’s Flashback Friday. A book with no mystery to solve, a book about just every day life that I could comfortably “escape” into for a few hours and forget about what is really happening in the real world. I hope you won’t mind that I slipped away from the mystery genre this week.


Everyone Is Beautiful: A Novel
Domestic Life/Humor/Fiction
Setting – Massachsetts
Ballantine Books (February 17, 2009)
Hardcover: 256 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1400066438
Paperback
ISBN-13: 978-0749909307
Kindle ASIN: B001NLL2TS

 

 

Lanie Coates’s life is spinning out of control. She’s piled everything she owns into a U-Haul and driven with her husband, Peter, and their three little boys from their cozy Texas home to a multiflight walkup in the Northeast. She’s left behind family, friends, and a comfortable life–all so her husband can realize his dream of becoming a professional musician. But somewhere in the eye of her personal hurricane, it hits Lanie that she once had dreams too. If only she could remember what they were.

These days, Lanie always seems to rank herself dead last–and when another mom accidentally criticizes her appearance, it’s the final straw. Fifteen years, three babies, and more pounds than she’s willing to count since the day she said “I do,” Lanie longs desperately to feel like her old self again. It’s time to rise up, fish her moxie out of the diaper pail, and find the woman she was before motherhood capsized her entire existence.

Lanie sets change in motion–joining a gym, signing up for photography classes, and finding a new best friend. But she also creates waves that come to threaten her whole life. In the end, Lanie must figure out once and for all how to find herself without losing everything else in the process.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I needed to read something different and funny and this book fit the bill.

Lanie’s life takes an abrupt turn when her husband’s new job uproots her family from their Texas home and into a 3rd floor 2 bedroom apartment in Massachusetts. She is with her kids, three under the age of 4,  24/7. While visiting a nearby park one day she reconnects with a classmate from high school and this gives her at least one adult to share things with and keep her sane. Her husband is wrapped up in his work and their relationship has reached the phase where you just go through the days without any real firm connection beyond being parents. At the end of her rope she joins a gym and realizes she has dreams as well. She just needs to figure out what they are and then find space to place them in her life. But can her marriage survive her putting herself first even just for part of the day or week without losing everything else so important to her.

As a mother of four I could relate to Lanie’s story quite easily. Mom’s always put themselves last. Those days when the children are small and it is a triumph to just get a shower or go to the bathroom by yourself. Unlike Lanie, I worked full time when my children were growing up, so I was around adults for a least 8 hours of the day. Lanie heads to the gym for her “me time”. I used to escape to my sewing room, where I made the lion’s share of the clothes for my family, and let my creative juices flow.

The author gives us an entertaining and in places really funny look at family life. You know the day to day stuff most of our lives are filled with. It’s not rocket science but sometimes getting through days with toddlers it seems like rocket science would be easier. Three little boys can be tough, especially 3 boys under four years old. I did want to jump in the book a few times to tell her to put the youngest one down. He was almost a year old and not crawling or walking yet and I think that was because she carried him everywhere. He was like her security blanket. Funny, after some lifestyle adjustments near the end of the book the little guy starts walking and crawling all in one day

This was just the book I needed to read at this time. It brought back some fond memories, but even it, a book like this, my new trigger word appeared, “suicide”. It seems I just can’t escape that in anything I read these days. Thankfully it was only a mention and was followed by a moment that made me laugh. This book was recommended to me several years ago, long before my son took his life. It has been buried in my To-Be-Read stacks since then. Waiting for me to find the perfect time to read it. Well last Sunday was the perfect time. If you need a light read, this may be the one.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent


I am giving away my hardcover copy!

Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
3 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 17, 2017 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

*This book was from my personal collection.

No Way Home (A Zoe Chambers Mystery) by Annette Dashofy Order Now
%d bloggers like this: