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Posted in 2020 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours You Read How Many Books Challenge

Quiche of Death (A Sugar & Spice Mystery) by Mary Lee Ashford #Review / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour

REVIEW NOW ADDED

Quiche of Death (A Sugar & Spice Mystery)
by Mary Lee Ashford

About Quiche of Death


Quiche of Death (A Sugar & Spice Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Setting – Iowa
Publisher: Lyrical Press (July 21, 2020)
Print Length: ~254 pages
ASIN: B0855Q9JFW

When editor Sugar Calloway and baker Dixie Spicer went into business creating cookbooks, they found a sideline as amateur sleuths. Now a bitter family grudge could leave a fatal aftertaste…

 

At Sugar & Spice Community Cookbooks, the friends and business partners have secured a tasty new commission: producing a cookbook for the Arbor family. The Arbors have made their fortune in quiches, and Sugar and Spice have been invited to a weekend gathering where all the siblings, along with crusty matriarch Marta, will be in attendance. But it’s soon clear that this trip will come with a hefty slice of drama.

 

Theo, the only grandson, arrives with his flaky fiancée, Collette, who quickly stirs up trouble . . . and is found dead the next day. As the investigation unfolds, secrets—and recipes—are shared, and Sugar and Spice realize just how messy and murderous the situation may be. As another family member falls ill, can they solve the case without getting egg on their faces . . .and a target on their backs?

* Includes delicious recipes! *

Excerpt 

 “Quiche me, you fool.”

The demand was followed by hoots of laughter as the sister—Jezzie, I think her name was—leaned into her spouse for a smooch. He hesitated but obliged.

I smiled at the boisterous group who clearly shared some inside joke about quiche and kissing. The warmth of the table and the sibling love melted my heart like butter on a biscuit. Taking a sip of water, I glanced over at Dixie, who sat across from me at the huge oak table.

She rolled her eyes.

“What?” I mouthed.

Dixie shrugged. Jezzie had perhaps a teensy bit too much wine, but still: When did my best friend and business partner get so darn stuffy? Maybe it was the inside-joke part that she found off-putting.

But we did know quiche was the family’s stock-in-trade, so it wasn’t that much of a stretch to figure out the expression had something to do with the Arbor family’s food business. After all, that was why we were here.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Sugar and Spice Publishing usually compiles fundraiser cookbooks but when the well to do Arbor family, who made their money with their quiche recipe, ask them to create a family cookbook they just can’t refuse. The family is all getting together for the weekend and has invited Sugar and Dixie to join them to meet the family, go over recipes and get some background stories to use alongside the recipes in the cookbook.

Instead, they see the family is pretty high maintenance and that was before the grandson arrives with his new fiancée. A fiancée who is killed her first night with the family. Accident or murder?? Amateur sleuths Sugar Calloway and baker Dixie Spicer can’t help themselves; they start doing their own investigation which could end up being a recipe for disaster.

____

Again, we are introduced to a large cast of characters, the Arbor family. The author does a great job of giving the reader time to learn the family dynamics before we got too deep into the mystery while leaving much to be revealed over the course of the story.

The core characters continue to grow. Sugar is obsessed with getting in her steps every day and enjoying her new relationship with photographer Max. Dixie is still baking up a storm and a certain sheriff stops by often to do a little tasting.

The mystery is well done with Sugar taking the lead trying to get information out of the family. Everyone seems to have a secret but she is a smart woman and even when things get dicey she doesn’t give up. I was totally caught up in the story and pegged almost every family member to be the guilty party at one time or another. After more than a few twists and a fair share of humor, I was pleased with the way things wrapped up.

As someone who has taken part in making fundraising cookbooks in the past, this theme always brings back memories, some good, some frustrating. I would have loved working Sugar and Dixie to keep our committees on track and make key decisions. I have always wanted to make a family cookbook too, so I found the Arbor family ideas pretty appealing, sans all the drama and dead body.

Of course, the food descriptions had my mouth drooling. The Arbor family did have quite a few delectable recipes and some are included in the back of the book.

Quiche of Death is an entertaining addition to this series. I am looking forward to their next cookbook adventure.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

 

About Mary Lee Ashford 

Mary Lee Ashford is a lifelong bibliophile, and avid reader, and supporter of public libraries.

In addition to writing the Sugar and Spice series for Kensington Books, she also writes as half of the writing team of Sparkle Abbey, author of the national bestselling Pampered Pets mystery series from Bell Bridge Books.

Prior to publishing Mary Lee won first place in the Daphne du Maurier contest, sponsored by the Kiss of Death chapter of RWA, and was a finalist in Murder in the Grove’s mystery contest, as well as Killer Nashville’s Claymore Dagger contest.

She is the founding president of Sisters in Crime – Iowa and a past board member of the Mystery Writers of America Midwest chapter, as well as a member of Novelists, Inc., Romance Writers of AmericaKiss of Death the RWA Mystery Suspense chapter, Sisters in Crime, and the SinC internet group Guppies. She loves encouraging other writers and is a frequent presenter for writers’ groups.

Mary Lee has a passionate interest in creativity and teaches a university-level course in Creative Management to MPA candidates, as well as presenting workshops and blogging about creativity.

She currently resides in the midwest with her husband, Tim, and cat, Zoey. Her delights are reading and enjoying her two sons and daughters-in-law, and six grandchildren.

For more information, visit her website at www.MaryLeeAshford.com

Find her on  –  Facebook – Twitter – Instagram – Pinterest – GoodReads 

Purchase Links – AmazonBarnes & NobleKoboGoogle BooksApple Books 

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July 21 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – GUEST POST
July 21 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW
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July 23 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT
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July 24 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
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July 28 – Dee-Scoveries – SPOTLIGHT
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July 29 – Here’s How It Happened – SPOTLIGHT
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July 30 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT
July 31 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
August 1 – Literary Gold – CHARACTER GUEST POST
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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.”

Posted in 2020 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Great Escapes Book Tours New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

From Beer to Eternity (A Chloe Jackson, Sea Glass Saloon Mystery) by Sherry Harris – #Review / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour

REVIEW HAS BEEN ADDED!

From Beer to Eternity (A Chloe Jackson, Sea Glass Saloon Mystery)
by Sherry Harris

About from Beer to Eternity 

From Beer to Eternity (A Chloe Jackson, Sea Glass Saloon Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
New Series
Publisher: Kensington (July 28, 2020)
Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
ISBN-10: 1496723031
ISBN-13: 978-1496723031
Digital ASIN: B07ZPKTWCZ

A whip smart librarian’s fresh start comes with a tart twist in this perfect cocktail of murder and mystery—with a romance chaser.

 

MURDER ON TAP

 

With Chicago winters in the rearview mirror, Chloe Jackson is making good on a promise: help her late friend’s grandmother run the Sea Glass Saloon in the Florida Panhandle. To Chloe’s surprise, feisty Vivi Slidell isn’t the frail retiree Chloe expects. Nor is Emerald Cove. It’s less a sleepy fishing village than a panhandle hotspot overrun with land developers and tourists. But it’s a Sea Glass regular who’s mysteriously crossed the cranky Vivi. When their bitter argument comes to a head and he’s found dead behind the bar, guess who’s the number one suspect?

 

In trying to clear Vivi’s name, Chloe discovers the old woman isn’t the only one in Emerald Cove with secrets. Under the laidback attitude, sparkling white beaches, and small town ways something terrible is brewing. And the sure way a killer can keep those secrets bottled up is to finish off one murder with a double shot: aimed at Chloe and Vivi.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I am so excited about Sherry Harris’s new series. Don’t worry, there is a new Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery coming in December.

In From Beer to Eternity, we meet Chloe Jackson, a children’s librarian in Chicago who has taken a leave of absence to fulfill a promise she made to her best friend Boone who was killed in Afghanistan. She promised that if anything happened to him to go help his grandmother in the Florida Panhandle with her business, the Sea Glass Saloon. Short on details, Chloe uses a few white lies to get Vivi Slidell to hire her as a cocktail waitress so she can find out just what help this seemingly very competent woman may need. Chloe never expected she would be working to keep the woman out of jail after one of her regulars is found dead behind the bar. Chloe soon finds that something is clearly brewing in the town of Emerald Cove and her questions could land both her and Vivi in the line of fire.


Ms. Harris has introduced some very strong characters in this story and fleshed them out nicely in this first book while leaving them plenty of room to grow in future installments. I loved that Chloe found common ground with the sometimes cranky young children she usually works with and the overindulging patrons at the Sea Glass Saloon. Handling both in the same way successfully. She is smart and can think on her feet. Dealing with Boone’s death is hard especially when she finds out his true feelings. Vivi is a strong, independent woman, and nothing like Chloe expected. She has run her business successfully for years. Bartender Joaquin befriends Chloe quickly and is a great buffer between Chloe and Vivi. These main characters are surrounded by a great supporting cast.

The setting for this series is positively divine. A place I would go to and probably never leave. As in her other series it is set near military bases, Elgin Air Force Base and the nearby Hurlburt Field and there are Navy bases nearby too. Her descriptions of the area were fantastic and created wonderful imagery. She took us to several places and I really felt like I was right there with her.

The mystery was well done, complex, and intriguing with plenty of suspects. I couldn’t really hone in on any person fully because they all seemed a bit shady with secrets or hiding something.    The mystery reveal was a bit rushed for me although very exciting. I was on the edge of my seat.

As the book came to a close the ending wasn’t much of a surprise but this series is off to a fine start.

From Brew to Eternity feels like more than a cozy mystery. While it has all the cozy elements, amateur sleuth, small-town setting, humor in all the right places, etc. Chloe deals with the loss of Boone and that adds an extra serious element. I am eager to see where the author takes this series.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About Sherry Harris

Sherry Harris is the Agatha Award-nominated author of the Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery series and the upcoming Chloe Jackson Sea Glass Saloon mysteries. She is a past president of Sisters in Crime, and a member of the Chesapeake Chapter of Sisters in Crime, the New England Chapter of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, and International Thriller Writers.

In her spare time, Sherry loves reading and is a patent-holding inventor. Sherry, her husband, and guard dog Lily are living in northern Virginia until they figure out where they want to move to next.

Author Links – Kensington –  Website  – Facebook 

Purchase Links – AmazonB&NKoboGoogle BooksIndieBound 

Also by Sherry Harris

Coming December 2020

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS
July 27 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW
July 27 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT
July 28 – Escape With Dollycas Into Good Book – REVIEW  
July 28 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – SPOTLIGHT
July 28 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
July 29 – Brooke Blogs – CHARACTER GUEST POST
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August 1 – The Book Decoder – REVIEW  
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August 2 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
August 2 – eBook addicts – REVIEW
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August 4 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
August 4 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT
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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.”

Posted in 2020 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies Literary Escapes New Release Challenge Read The Printed Word Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Game of Dog Bones (A Melanie Travis Mystery) by Laurien Berenson #Review


Game of Dog Bones (A Melanie Travis Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
25th in Series
Setting – Connecticut/New York
Publisher: Kensington (June 30, 2020)
Hardcover: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 1496718372
ISBN-13: 978-1496718372
Kindle – ASIN: B07W4MRR69

Standard Poodle owner Melanie Travis is an excellent judge of dogs—and people. But what happens when an unnamed killer emerges at one of the fiercest all-breed competitions ever?

 

As Greenwich, Connecticut, slows down during a bitterly cold February, Melanie and her spunky Aunt Peg head to the city that never sleeps for the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show at Madison Square Garden. Aunt Peg can’t wait to demonstrate her judging chops on national TV, even after being hounded by frustrating mishaps—all seemingly orchestrated by Victor Durbin, an ousted Paugussett Poodle Club member with a bone to pick. But the bright lights of the show ring grow dim when Victor is found murdered, and she’s the one topping the suspect list . . .

 

Driven to solve the crime on her aunt’s behalf, Melanie fetches hair-raising clues about the victim. Victor didn’t score many friends with his unethical breeding practices, sketchy puppy café, and penchant for mercilessly scamming others to get ahead. He burned so many bridges that his own business partner admits to being delighted by news of his death. It appears Victor finally toyed with the wrong person, and as Melanie digs up more chilling evidence, she realizes that exonerating Aunt Peg means confronting a murderer who’s in it to win it . . .

 

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Aunt Peg gets to fulfill her dream when she is asked to judge for the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show at Madison Square Garden and be on television. She is even hosting a seminar before her judging. But a former member of her poodle club, Victor Durbin is doing his best to ruin her day by planning his own event at the same time as Peg’s. When the man is later found dead Peg finds herself on the shortlist of suspects. New York is taking its own sweet time with their investigation so Melanie dives into her investigation to clear her Aunt Peg’s name while putting herself in jeopardy.


Visiting the Travis family is always a good time. With a husband, 2 sons, 5 Standard Poodles, 1 spotted mutt, and Aunt Peg, there is never a dull moment. Going with them to the biggest dog show was a real treat. We get a behind the scenes look and see Aunt Peg’s judging techniques in full force. All the human and canine characters really shine within this story. This is the 25th book in this series and the characters all continue to evolve and remain fresh. The dialogues and all interactions are believable and ring true.

In addition to some awesome subplots, the mystery was very well written. The victim truly had his share of enemies and I really enjoyed tailing along with Melanie as she worked her way through all of them. The author’s descriptive writing style takes her readers right into the moments of her characters in a way that keeps the pages rapidly turning. A major event takes place and that was truly my favorite part of the story.

Game of Dog Bones is an excellent addition to this long-running series. Each story reads well as a stand-alone too. It is fun and entertaining and leaves readers panting for the next book.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About This Author

Laurien Berenson is an Agatha and Macavity Nominee, winner of the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award, and four-time winner of the Maxwell Award, presented by the Dog Writers Association of America. She and her husband live on a farm in Kentucky surrounded by dogs and horses.

Find out more about her and her books on her webpage here. Find her on Facebook here and on Twitter here.

THE REST OF THE SERIES

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.”

Posted in Thoughts

Just Checking In

I had a good week this week. I think the best week since I started chemo. Knock on wood that it continues. I have chemo treatments scheduled for the next four weeks and then I meet with the surgeon to discuss what happens next.

The last two treatments my potassium levels have been very low so I received an IV to treat that along with taking some huge capsules. One of the steroids I was taking was removed from my treatment as well and the chemo dosage was cut back a bit.  I am not sure which of these cut the major side effects I was having but am thankful they subsided at least for this past week.

My main side effect now is fatigue. I try to work at the computer each day on the book tours and even have written a few reviews, but as soon as I move to the recliner my eyes slam shut. My family wakes me up for supper most of the time. Sometimes I wake up later and the house is quiet so I read for a while before I actually go to bed for the night. Sleep is my friend now, it rejuvenates me for the day and week ahead.

My oncologist is very optimistic about my outcome and that excites me. Don’t get me wrong, I am also fearful for what’s ahead, it always seems I end up doing things the hard way, but I have a great support crew that includes you, my family and friends that I draw strength from every minute. Thank you for your continued thoughts and prayers. I appreciate them so much!

I will continue to add reviews as I can and post some spotlights too and update you again soon.

Best,

Lori

P.S. The grand are all doing great. In fact, Charlotte is 11 months old today and is walking all over the place. Kaden is here helping Papa, and Remi, Natalie and Thomas are always up to something fun 🙂

Posted in 2020 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours Literary Escapes You Read How Many Books Challenge

Larceny at the Library (A Washington Whodunit) by Colleen Shogan #Review / #Giveaway

REVIEW NOW ADDED

Larceny at the Library (A Washington Whodunit)
by Colleen Shogan

About Larceny at the Library 


Larceny at the Library (A Washington Whodunit)
Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
Publisher: Epicenter Press (July 14, 2020)
Print Length: 202 pages
ISBN-13: 9781603818353
ASIN: B0863MN6TP

Congressional staffer Kit Marshall is excited to attend a historic event displaying the contents of Abraham Lincoln’s pockets the night he was assassinated at the Library of Congress. The next day, a senior librarian is dead and several invaluable artifacts are missing. Kit’s husband Doug discovers the body and immediately becomes a suspect in the death and theft. Kit springs into action once again to figure out who is responsible for the crimes. Her sleuthing takes her to the DC Public Library, the National Portrait Gallery, Ford’s Theatre, and the most ornate, beautiful rooms at the Library of Congress. At the end, Kit must put her own life on the line to retrieve her most valuable possession, which goes unexpectedly missing as she hunts down the killer.

Dollycas’s Thoughts 

The thing I like best about this series is the author grabs from true events and her government experience as the basis of her stories. She worked as a Senior Executive at the Library of Congress and the contents of Abraham Lincoln’s pockets when he was killed were donated to the Library of Congress in 1937 where the box remained unopened until 1976. So an event like the one described in this book is very believable. An event that leads to a murder and a theft and puts Kit’s new husband Doug at the top of the suspect list. He was a recent hire and had knowledge that few had, he attended the event and then stayed late to catch up on some work, and he found the body the next morning. Kit would have jumped into the investigation no matter what but the Librarian of Congress and her boss who is the chair of the oversight of the Library give her the power she needs when they formally ask her to work with the police and keep them up to date on any developments. Little did she know her own life and that of her furbaby would be in danger as she hunts down the killer.


The characters in this story are so strong and well-developed. Kit and Doug are still working things out in their personal life. Doug is ready for a house in the burbs, Kit not so much. Kit’s brother is settling into his life in D.C. and we meet the reason why. There may be some changes for other characters as well both in jobs and romance. Ms. Shogan keeps all her characters fresh and evolving.

The book has a great flow and the dialogue is crisp. The mystery is full of twists and turns and kept me captivated from beginning to end. The real culprit was on my radar but I eliminated them early on so I was totally taken by surprise at the way things played out and I love when that happens.

I also enjoy all the places we travel around Washington D.C. throughout the story, places the public never see like the underground tunnels connecting so many of the buildings and the beautiful rooms like those in the Library of Congress.

Great characters, a wonderful setting, and an exciting mystery make Larceny at the Library another Perfect Escape from Colleen J. Shogan. I anxiously await the next installment of this series.

 

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

About Colleen J. Shogan

Colleen J. Shogan has been reading mysteries since the age of six. A political scientist by training, Colleen has taught American politics at several universities and previously worked on Capitol Hill as a legislative staffer in the United States Senate and as a senior executive at the Library of Congress. She is currently the Senior Vice President of the White House Historical Association.

Colleen is a member of Sisters in Crime. “Stabbing in the Senate” was awarded the Next Generation Indie prize for Best Mystery in 2016. “Homicide in the House” was a 2017 finalist for the RONE Award for Best Mystery. “Calamity at the Continental Club” was a 2018 finalist in the “best cozy mystery” at Killer Nashville. She lives in Arlington, Virginia with her husband Rob and their beagle mutt Conan.

Author Links – Webpage – Facebook – Twitter –  GoodReads 

Purchase Links – AmazonB&N

 

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Great Escapes Praise  for Larceny at the Library (A Washington Whodunit)
by Colleen Shogan

Excellent character portrayal, a mystery that keeps one guessing until the end, and a story that takes you on a virtual trip to the landmarks in Washington, Larceny in the Library is an engrossing and must-read cozy mystery.
~The Book Decoder

The plot is full of some twists you may not see coming & cozy mystery fans will find a lot to love in this latest Washington whodunnit!
~Reading Is My SuperPower

TOUR PARTICIPANTS
July 15 – The Book Decoder – REVIEW  
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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.”

Posted in 2020 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Literary Escapes You Read How Many Books Challenge

Death by Windmill: A Mother’s Day Murder in Amsterdam (Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery Series) by Jennifer S. Alderson #Review / #Giveaway

Dropping in today to post a review.
Still, many to write, but will post as I get them done 🙂

Death by Windmill: A Mother’s Day Murder in Amsterdam
(Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery Series)
by Jennifer S. Alderson

About Death by Windmill


Death by Windmill: A Mother’s Day Murder in Amsterdam
(Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery Series)

Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Publisher: Independently published (May 16, 2020)
Paperback: 218 pages
ISBN-13: 979-8646330070
Digital ASIN: B0843K7HNQ

A Mother’s Day trip to the Netherlands turns deadly when a guest plummets from a windmill. Was it an accident or a murder? For Lana Hansen, the answer will mean freedom or imprisonment for someone close to her…

 

Wanderlust Tours guide Lana Hansen and her mother, Gillian, haven’t seen eye to eye in over a decade, ever since Lana was wrongly fired from her job as an investigative reporter. So when Lana’s boss invites Gillian to join her upcoming Mother’s Day tour to the Netherlands, Lana is less than pleased.

 

What could be worse than spending ten days with her estranged mother? Lana is about to find out…

 

The tour begins on a high note when the majority of guests bond during their visit to the Keukenhof flower gardens and a cruise around the picturesque canals of Amsterdam.

 

Despite her initial reservations, Lana thinks this might be the best group she had ever led. Until she discovers one of her guests—a recent retiree named Priscilla—is the person who destroyed her career in journalism.

 

All Lana can see is red. But circumstances dictate that she figure out a way to lead the tour, make peace with her mother, and not murder her guest. She doesn’t know whether she can handle the pressure.

 

Lana needn’t worry. Shortly after their fight, Priscilla falls off the balcony of a historic windmill at Zaanse Schans. Was she pushed or simply careless? The investigating officers suspect murder—and topping their suspect list is Lana’s mom!

 

Can Lana save Gillian? Or will her mother end up spending the rest of her days in a Dutch prison?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Wunderlust Tours is off to the Netherlands for a Mother/Daughter trip over Mother’s Day. Lana is excited that a couple of the Fabulous Five from her first tour will be on the trip with their daughters but is surprised when her boss Dotty joins the trip with her best friend. Before they get on the plane she learns why. Dotty has invited Lana’s mother Gillian to come along in hopes that this mother/daughter combo can heal the rift between them. She has even added Randy as the head tour guide to be sure Lana has whatever time she needs to be with her mother. What Dotty didn’t count on is that one guest could throw the whole trip into a tailspin by her relationship to Lana. When the guest ends up dead, falling off a historic windmill, Lana and her mother both find themselves on the investigator’s suspect list.

_____

I really love this series. A former investigative reporter, Lana Hansen has the skillset and instincts needed to be a great amateur sleuth. This time the victim personally did something to hurt her and she learns other hurtful things as she investigates but she sticks with it all while doing her job as a tour guide too. The woman can think on her feet as she takes on everything thrown at her.

Ms. Alderson’s character development is top-notch. The recurring characters grow book to book and all the characters continue to evolve within the pages of this story. The mystery she has created for them is excellent as well. Her attention to detail shines and kept me guessing right up until the end. I had an idea of where she was going but wasn’t sure until it was spelled out for me.

I really enjoyed the mother/daughter theme, their interactions added so much to the story.  The virtual vacay to Amsterdam was great too. The author continues to take me places I will never actually be able to travel to and her descriptions make every place we go so easy to visualize.

Every book in this series has been a Perfect Escape. I can’t wait for Death by Bagpipes coming September 18 and Death by Fountain coming December 18 for my next virtual vacations with Lana and Dotty. Sans the dead bodies they are so much fun!

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About Jennifer S. Alderson

Jennifer S. Alderson was born in San Francisco, raised in Seattle, and currently lives in Amsterdam. After traveling extensively around Asia, Oceania, and Central America, she moved to Darwin, Australia, before settling in the Netherlands. Her background in journalism, multimedia development, and art history enriches her novels. When not writing, she can be found in a museum, biking around Amsterdam, or enjoying a coffee along the canal while planning her next research trip.

Jennifer’s love of travel, art, and culture inspires her award-winning mystery series—the Zelda Richardson Mysteries and Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mysteries—and standalone stories.

Author Links

Website – Goodreads  –Facebook – Twitter  –LinkedIn – BookBub


Coming September 18

Coming December 18

Purchase Links – Amazon 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Great Escapes Praise for Death by Windmill: A Mother’s Day Murder in Amsterdam
(Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery Series)
by Jennifer S. Alderson

Excellent character development, a murder mystery that keeps one guessing and a free (virtual) trip to Amsterdam make Death by Windmill a must-read book of this year.
~The Book Decoder

Since I love to travel the world, I especially love these tour guide mysteries. Alderson writes the perfect amount of location details that make readers believe he/she is right there, in a museum, having High Tea, or dodging a killer through gigantic turning windmills. I give this book FIVE stars.
~Here’s How It Happened

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

July 13 – The Book Decoder – REVIEW  

July 13 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – SPOTLIGHT

July 14 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT

July 14 – A Wytch’s Book Review Blog – CHARACTER INTERVIEW (unable to post)

July 15 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW 

July 15 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 16 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 16 – Hearts & Scribbles – SPOTLIGHT

July 17 – Here’s How It Happened – REVIEW

July 17 – The Book Diva’s Reads – GUEST POST

July 18 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

July 18 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

July 19 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 19 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

July 20 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – CHARACTER GUEST POST

July 20 – My Reading Journeys – SPOTLIGHT

July 21 – Book Club Librarian – REVIEW  

July 21 – Ascroft, eh? – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

July 22 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT

July 22 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW

July 23 – eBook Addicts – REVIEW

July 23 – Diane Reviews Books – SPOTLIGHT

July 24 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW

July 25 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT

July 25 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT

July 26 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW

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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.”

Posted in Thoughts

UPDATE

I had my 10th round of chemo last Tuesday which means I have 6 to go. The oncologist and I had a good meeting before my treatment and I even brought up stopping the chemo but he had none of that because my tumor is shrinking. He adjusted my meds in hopes of more good days after treatment. Previously the 3 days right after chemo were really good days because of the steroids I was taking and the next 3 days were down days where I couldn’t work. This week without the extra steroids I had 3 pretty good days, Friday I worked a half-day and was exhausted, Saturday I tried to work from my laptop but it had issues and today (Sunday) I am actually working at the computer. I feel a little lightheaded once and a while but am trying to push through.

I have several reviews to write but my brain has not cooperated in stringing the words together correctly. I have learned that is called Chemo Brain. I apologize for that and will get them written as soon as I can.

Thank you for understanding my absence for now and all your thoughts and prayers. I hope to be back soon!

~Lori

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Posted in Thoughts

Taking A Little Break from Posts and Reviews

This cancer and chemo have been running roughshod over me the past few days. I was unable to have chemo this week because I am severely dehydrated. They gave me two bags of fluids at the clinic and tested me for an infection. I didn’t have the bug they tested for but they can’t test for everything. So I have been pushing fluids and trying to rest and get better so I can get back to chemo next week.

Because I have commitments to authors for book tours, that has to be where I focus my hours at the computer.

So I am going to take a short break from posting reviews and other posts here. I promise I will catch up on them as soon as I can. I appreciate your understanding. I hope I get rehydrated quickly and things get back to normal.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

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Posted in 2020 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Great Escapes Book Tours Literary Escapes

The Corpse with the Crystal Skull (The Cait Morgan Mysteries) by Cathy Ace #Review – Great Escapes Book Tour

The Corpse with the Crystal Skull (The Cait Morgan Mysteries)
by Cathy Ace

 

About The Corpse With The Crystal Skull


The Corpse with the Crystal Skull (The Cait Morgan Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
9th in Series
Setting – Jamaica
Publisher: Four Tails Publishing Ltd. (June 29, 2020)
Print Length: ~300 pages
Digital ASIN: B086FVBTTN

Welsh Canadian globetrotting sleuth, and professor of criminal psychology, Cait Morgan, is supposed to be “celebrating” her fiftieth birthday in Jamaica with her ex-cop husband Bud Anderson. But when the body of the luxury estate’s owner is discovered locked inside an inaccessible tower, Cait and her fellow guests must work out who might have killed him – even if his murder seems impossible. Could the death of the man who hosted parties in the 1960s attended by Ian Fleming and Noël Coward be somehow linked to treasure the legendary Captain Henry Morgan might have buried at the estate? Or to the mission Bud and his secret service colleagues have been sent to the island to undertake?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

A locked room, a dead host, and a crystal skull . . . who knew turning 50 in Jamaica could bring so much drama. Then again drama does follow Cait Morgan and Bud Anderson everywhere they go. Bud inviting his friends Jack and John with their significant others has Cait thinking there is something else going on besides their holiday and celebration. In fact, they could be suspects in the murder of dear Freddie.


After nine stories in this series, you would think I would know Cait Morgan very well but the author continues to find ways to keep her fresh. A professor of criminal psychology, excellent amateur sleuth with a very analytical way of looking at clues and forming theories. My absolute favorite part of the story is near the end when Cait uses her eidetic memory to untangle all her observations and puts them in order and explains what happened and whodunit.

The supporting characters are complex, all dealing with real-life issues. This really adds to the story and gives the characters more depth than expected in one book of a long-running series.

Again, Ms. Ace has written a complicated mystery, so much so that Cait has trouble eliminating suspects especially living in such close quarters with people who all seem to be hiding something. She knows Bud didn’t kill Freddie but she knows he is keeping something from her.  Twists and turns galore set this mystery on a new course more than once keeping the characters and this reader on their toes.

I loved the descriptions of former Lieutenant Sir Henry Morgan’s estate. It is an extraordinary place with quite a history and a perfect place to set a murder mystery. It is very private, not your typical Jamaican beach locale. Full of treasures like the crystal skull, who knows what is truly hidden in this idyllic place. Because of the privacy the guests don’t run into other tourists and we know a pretty penny was paid for this amazing vacay.

The Corpse with the Crystal Skull was a Perfect Escape for me. I had to force myself to put the book down to go to sleep. Each book in this series can be read on its own but to really get to know Cait and Bud and all their adventures I recommend starting at the beginning.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

PRAISE FOR THE CAIT MORGAN MYSTERIES

“…touches of Christie or Marsh but with a bouquet of Kinsey Millhone.” —The Globe and Mail

 

“A sparkling, well-plotted, and quite devious mystery…” —The Hamilton Spectator

 

“…a sympathetic amateur detective, a locked-room mystery, a small cast of colourful suspects, loving descriptions of food and drink, and a few red herrings thrown our way…with a nod to a fresh literary or filmic artifice in each novel in the series…” – Crime Fiction Lover

 

About Cathy Ace 

Born and raised in Wales, now-Canadian Cathy Ace is the author of the Cait Morgan Mysteries, featuring her Welsh Canadian criminology professor sleuth who travels the world tripping over corpses, and The WISE Enquiries Agency Mysteries, featuring a quartet of female PIs, working from a Welsh stately home. Both series are traditional, entertaining, and have been well reviewed.

Author Links:    Website    Facebook     Twitter: @AceCathy    GoodReads

Purchase Links – AmazonKobo 

TOUR PARTICIPANTS
June 18 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT
June 18 – La libreria di Beppe – SPOTLIGHT
June 19 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT
June 20 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
June 20 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT
June 21 – Cozy Up With Kathy – SPOTLIGHT
June 21 – Here’s How It Happened – REVIEW
June 22 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
June 23 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
June 23 – Author Elena Taylor’s Blog – REVIEW
June 24 – Diane Reviews Books – SPOTLIGHT
June 25 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT
June 26 – Nadaness In Motion – REVIEW
June 27 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT
June 28 – Brooke Blogs – REVIEW
June 29 – I Read What You Write – SPOTLIGHT
June 30 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT
July 1 – The Bookwyrm’s Hoard – REVIEW

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Posted in Sunday Salon / Sunday Post

Sunday Salon / Sunday Post – Happy Father’s Day – Weekly Rewind – New Arrivals

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The Sunday Salon is a Facebook group that has become an
informal week in review gathering place for bloggers.

It is also a place to share our thoughts about things of a bookish nature.
You can also link up weekly on Readerbuzz.

SUNDAY POST The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by
Kimberly @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer
~ It’s a chance to share news~
A post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books and things we have received and share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead.

HAPPY SUNDAY EVERYONE!

Happy Father’s Day!

This year Son #2 celebrates his 1st Father’s Day
after Charlotte’s arrival last August.
She is growing so fast, even making her inaugural swim in Devil’s Lake yesterday.

I have also been going through some grandchild withdrawal since starting my chemo treatments. The grands are all healthy, have no signs or symptoms of the virus and sometimes they can be the best medicine. So, on Thursday Mr. Dollycas went to pick up Kaden and bring him here for a few days. He is a big help when he is here and with my fatigue a younger pair of hands and legs is priceless. Daughter #1 had to work this weekend but the rest of the kids and grands went to the lake yesterday to have some fun, social distancing from others, of course. I wish Nana and Papa could have gone too, but I am not ready to venture out in public until my chemo is done. But Remi and Natalie did come here after and seeing them just made the day. Hopefully, family fun days with the whole family will be happening again soon!

~Lori


Weekly Rewind – June 15 – 20, 2020

Monday – My Reading Itinerary Monday! – Week #25 – 2020

Tuesday – An Exquisite Corpse (Art of Murder Mysteries) by Helen A. Harrison #Review / #Giveaway

Wednesday – Cozy Wednesday featuring A Fatal Fiction (Deadly Edits) by Kaitlyn Dunnett #Review / #Giveaway @KensingtonBooks

Thursday – Divide and Concord (The Wine Trail Mysteries) by J. C. Eaton #Review / #Giveaway

Friday – #FlashbackFriday – Grounds for Remorse (A Tallie Graver Mystery) by Misty Simon #Review / #Giveaway @KensingtonBooks

Saturday – Flipped For Murder (Country Store Mysteries) by Maddie Day #Spotlight / #Giveaway #ReviewRewind

From Paperback Swap

Have a wonderful week!

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent