Nov 152018
 

A Vintage Death (A Keepsake Cove Mystery)
by Mary Ellen Hughes

About the Book


A Vintage Death (A Keepsake Cove Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Maryland
Midnight Ink (November 8, 2018)
Paperback: 264 pages
ISBN-10: 0738752274
ISBN-13: 978-0738752273
Digital
ASIN: B0795RTP2B

As the new music box store owner and resident of Keepsake Cove, a quaint town full of collectible shops on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, Callie Reed is eager to get more involved in her community. She volunteers to plan the Fall street decorations and welcome a visiting author who’s come for a special book signing. But the celebratory mood is cut short when the local B&B owner is found dead, killed by a pair of vintage scissors.

Suspicion is cast on the victim’s estranged wife, Dorothy, who owns Keepsake Cove’s vintage sewing shop. Callie is sure Dorothy is innocent, and the visiting author agrees. Together, they begin their own investigation, only to discover that many people in Keepsake Cove have secrets. Secrets that are worth killing to keep quiet.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I am so happy to return to Keepsake Cove and just in time for a big event too. Callie is starting to feel at home and is getting involved. She has volunteered to head up the committee decorating the town for Fall and helping with a big book signing for author Lyssa Hammond. Lyssa and Callie become fast friends after Callie delivers a welcome basket to the B&B where the author is staying. She also meets the owner of the B&B, Clifford Ashby. He is a strange individual who makes both Callie and Lyssa uncomfortable so Lyssa is happy to spend time away from the place with Callie. They can both understand why he and his wife, Dorothy, are living apart.

But when the creepy man is found dead the focus turns directly to his wife. She owns the vintage sewing shop and the murder weapon was a pair of vintage sheers.  Callie knows Dorothy couldn’t kill anyone and decides to prove it. Lyssa is by her side as they start to uncover secrets that may have sealed Clifford’s fate. When another person is killed, the choice of weapon connects the cases and also proves even more clearly Dorothy is not the murderer. Now they just need to find the real killer and get them to sing a melody that lands them in the slammer.

Keepsake Cove is my kind of place, a collector shopper’s dream come true. Ms. Hughes brings the place to life with her words. All the unique shops, the town square, the music boxes that fill the shelves of Callie’s shop and more. The set up for the author signing was fun and Halloween themed right down to the author’s arrival. I loved it!

The characters were already well developed in the first book, A Fatal Collection, but they continue to grow and evolve through this story. I really like Tabitha, Callie’s assistant at the shop. Each day is a surprise because the way she dresses always has a theme. She and Callie work so well together, but the woman is more than capable at running the place while Callie is off solving crimes. I also enjoy that her new relationship with cafe owner Brian Greer is moving at a slow comfortable pace. There is also a special character that is quiet most of the time, a little supernatural element, a beloved music box that only plays to help Callie stay on track.

Secrets are the keys to this mystery and the author draws readers in with an expert hand. She opens the door to a much longer suspect list than I had imagined and she twists things up in a way that I was just following along without doing my normal thing of trying to solve the mystery before the protagonist. The ending was suspenseful and surprised me. I really enjoyed the way this story was written and played out. I would have finished the book all in one sitting but my eyes just would not cooperate.

Another wonderful read from this author for this series. I truly can’t wait for the next installment, my fingers and toes are crossed hoping for another visit to Keepsake Cove.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

You can read my review of Book 1, A Fatal Collection here.

About the Author

Mary Ellen Hughes is the bestselling author of the Pickled and Preserved Mysteries (Penguin), the Craft Corner Mysteries, and the Maggie Olenski Mysteries, along with several short stories. A Fatal Collection is her debut with Midnight Ink. A Wisconsin native, she has lived most of her adult life in Maryland, where she’s set many of her stories. Visit her at www.MaryEllenHughes.com.

Author Links – Facebook – Pinterest – Twitter  GoodReads

Purchase Links 

As the new music box store owner and resident of Keepsake Cove, a quaint town full of collectible shops on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, Callie Reed is eager to get more involved in her community.Amazon    B&N  Midnight Ink

Also by Mary Ellen Hughes



Praise for A Vintage Death (A Keepsake Cove Mystery)
by Mary Ellen Hughes

A Vintage death a pleasing cozy mystery that with its quaint town, charming shops and friendly characters.
~The Avid Reader

The mix of town life, the shops, and murder flows smoothly making for an enjoyable story with a touch of charm. Great for fans of cozies.
~Books a Plenty Book Reviews

Like knotted thread, unraveling the true truth wasn’t an easy task. But author Hughes expertly ties everything together in a reveal that had me riveted to my seat . . . I give A VINTAGE DEATH 5 out of 5 stars. Heck, I give it 10 out of 5 stars!
~Lisa Ks Book Reviews

History, deceit and betrayal all are behind the scenes as Callie attempts to solve one murder while trying to become more involved in community activities. A second murder is so not what this town needs!
~Laura’s Interests

A Vintage Death was a delightfully entertaining mystery and I wanted to visit Callie’s shop so I could pick out my own music box. Callie is a fun, smart heroine and I absolutely loved her amazing personality.
~Moonlight Rendezvous

The mystery had a lot of characters – and potential suspects. I am an avid mystery reader but did not solve this one before Callie did! I enjoyed the twists and turns of the plot.
~View from the Birdhouse

The descriptive writing of the author pulled me into the story from the very beginning and pulled me along for a great read.
~MJB Reviewers

If you’d like to relax with a heartwarming traditional cozy mystery, A Vintage Death is a great choice. It has that perfect blend of enchanting setting, characters that you enjoy spending time with, and a well-crafted mystery.
~The Power of Words

Even in a delightful and scenic location like Keepsake Cove, Maryland, human greed, cupidity, and anger still flourish.
~Mallory Heart’s Cozies

A fun and cozy read that will draw you in making you wish you were there.
~My Reading Journeys

This book is such a great add on to the series.
~Community Bookstop

These characters are strongly visualized and each unique. As I’ve always found with a cozy mystery, the well-plotted storyline engages the reader with red herrings and plot twists.
~Rosepoint Publishing

 

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS
November 7 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW
November 7 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW
November 7 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
November 7 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – GUEST POST
November 8 – The Book Diva’s Reads – GUEST POST
November 8 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, Sissy, & Too!  – SPOTLIGHT
November 8 – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW
November 9 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST
November 9 – View from the Birdhouse – REVIEW
November 9 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT
November 9 – fundinmental – SPOTLIGHT
November 10 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
November 10 – MJB Reviewers – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
November 10 – The Power of Words – REVIEW
November 10 – Devilishly Delicious Book Reviews – CHARACTER GUEST POST
November 11 – Mallory Heart’s Cozies – REVIEW
November 11 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
November 11 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT*
November 12 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
November 12 – Community Bookstop – REVIEW
November 12 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT
November 13 – Valerie’s Musings – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
November 13 – Rosepoint Publishing – REVIEW
November 13 – The Montana Bookaholic – REVIEW
November 14 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT
November 14 – Jane Reads – REVIEW, GUEST POST
November 14 – Readeropolis – SPOTLIGHT
November 15 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
November 15 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW
November 15 – Brooke Blogs – REVIEW
November 16 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW
November 16 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW
November 16 – Here’s How It Happened – 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.”

Nov 112018
 

2019 LITERARY ESCAPES CHALLENGE

I did better this year on this challenge,
I still have some states to add before December 31 for books on my schedule.
My Map 

Challenge – Try to read 1 book set in each of the 50 states + the District of Columbia. (51 Points). If you complete the challenge you earn 50 Bonus Points. You also can earn Bonus Points for books set in Counties around the world. 1 Bonus Point for each country. (No repeats – only 1 point can be earned for each country.)

Your books can be fiction or non-fiction and can be in any format, print, digital, audio. 

So how do you decide what state a book is categorized under?

1.  In a fiction read it would be the State or Country that the book spends the most time in.  (Ie. If your main character is from Wisconsin but the book is all about his/her time in college in California – the books should categorize under California….)

2.  Non fiction reads categorize  in whatever State or Country it is about (Ie…. a book about fly fishing in Colorado is a Colorado point, and a book about women in Afghanistan is an Afghanistan point.

3.  If the book goes from one state to another… go with the state that most of the time is spent.

The way you keep track is up to you. I like making the map to visualize where I have been and where I need to go but I also keep a list on Reading Challenges Page. Here is directions on how to create a map. – http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Google-Map. You do not have to just use Google Maps, you can use a map program you choose.

or just use this list

Alabama

Alaska

Arizona

Arkansas

California

Colorado

Connecticut

Delaware

District of Columbia

Florida

Georgia

Hawaii

Idaho

Illinois

Indiana

Iowa

Kansas

Kentucky

Louisiana

Maine

Maryland

Massachusetts

Michigan

Minnesota

Mississippi

Missouri

Montana

Nebraska

Nevada

New Hampshire

New Jersey

New Mexico

New York

North Carolina

North Dakota

Ohio

Oklahoma

Oregon

Pennsylvania

Rhode Island

South Carolina

South Dakota

Tennessee

Texas

Utah

Vermont

Virginia

Washington

West Virginia

Wisconsin

Wyoming

On my list, I link to the review posted on my blog, but this is not a requirement. In fact, you do not need to be a blogger to participate. You can keep your list anywhere. 

Bloggers please grab the graphic above and post about this challenge on your blog.

To sign up just fill out this form.

I have found people like to share and communicate about the challenge and their progress, so I have set up a Facebook Group for that purpose.

Literary Escapes Facebook Group

Everyone, please share this post with your friends, so they can join too!

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Nov 082018
 

A Different Kind of Reunion (A Gilda Greco Mystery)
by Joanne Guidoccio

 

About the Book

A Different Kind of Reunion (A Gilda Greco Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Setting – Ontario, Canada
The Wild Rose Press, Inc (April 23, 2018)
Paperback: 236 pages
ISBN-10: 1509220380
ISBN-13: 978-1509220380
Digital ASIN: B07BSTTNS2

While not usually a big deal, one overlooked email would haunt teacher Gilda Greco. Had she read it, former student Sarah McHenry might still be alive.

Suspecting foul play, Constable Leo Mulligan plays on Gilda’s guilt and persuades her to participate in a séance facilitated by one of Canada’s best-known psychics. Six former students also agree to participate. At first cooperative and willing, their camaraderie is short-lived as old grudges and rivalries emerge. The séance is a bust.

Determined to solve Sarah’s murder, Gilda launches her own investigation and uncovers shocking revelations that could put several lives—including her own—in danger. Can Gilda and the psychic solve this case before the killer strikes again?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Former teacher Gilda Greco is drawn back into the past when one of her former students dies. Was it an accident or was it murder?

Constable Leo Mulligan has persuaded Gilda to return to Parry Sound and reunite with some of her former students and participate in a séance to try to get clarity about the young woman’s death. The first séance ends abruptly and they try again and again. Each time the level of true cooperation diminishes but Gilda gets to see the truth about who her grade eight students have turned out to be.

The author took me back to junior high, you know the cliques of girls and boys, the Barbie’s, the Ken’s, the popular kids, the nerds. How much everything changes though when you are adults and out in the real world. It took me a little bit of time sort out these characters and their relationships but it became clearer the deeper I got into the story. They all felt very authentic, all dealing with different issues in their lives and trying to get to the truth of how their fellow student Sarah McHenry died.

Since my son’s death, I have thought several times about contacting a physic or a medium so I found the séance that took place within the story to be quite interesting. There are always skeptics – but when you lose a loved one and you miss them so much you are willing to try anything to reconnect with them. Especially if your loved one took their own life like my son leaving so many unanswered questions. I think that is part of the reason I was so enthralled with those parts of the story. It was also because the author wrote it so well that you feel you were right in the room watching it all take place.

The reunion to solve the mystery was a unique concept. We quickly saw the constables train of thought in bringing Gilda into the group. Sarah has reached out to her teacher in an email Gilda thought was spam and hadn’t read. If Sarah thought Gilda could help her then he knew Gilda could help him solve his case. Very much a closed room mystery we knew the people around that table were his suspects. Gilda even thought he could be involved in Sarah’s death. It was very enlightening to watch Gilda take her time meeting with each of the students trying to figure out if one of the was actually a killer.

The subject matter took me personally into this story so I think I may have “a different” point of view that most cozy mystery readers who read this story. It was very well plotted and written and had strong characters. One character really pulled at my heartstrings because in some ways he reminded me of my son. So for that, this wasn’t a “fun” or “entertaining” read for me. It was a novel that made me think. Think of so many things outside of the mystery to be solved. Circumstances hit me at a different level. I am sure more deeply than the author ever intended. I did enjoy the story but in a way I never expected.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

About the Author

In 2008, Joanne Guidoccio took advantage of early retirement and decided to launch a second career that would tap into her creative side and utilize her well-honed organizational skills. Slowly, a writing practice emerged. Her articles and book reviews have been published in newspapers, magazines, and online. When she tried her hand at fiction, she made reinvention a recurring theme in her novels and short stories. A member of Crime Writers of Canada, Sisters in Crime, and Romance Writers of America, Joanne writes cozy mysteries, paranormal romance, and inspirational literature from her home base of Guelph, Ontario.

Where to find Joanne…

Website     Twitter     Facebook     LinkedIn     Pinterest    Goodreads

Praise for A Different Kind of Reunion (A Gilda Greco Mystery)
by Joanne Guidoccio

Here’s a “different kind” of cozy mystery. With a lot of suspense and tension, a lot of memory strolls, and the addition of an intriguing paranormal element, this mystery stands out.
~Mallory Heart’s Cozies

This was a fun, delightful mystery and I enjoyed every minute of it.
~Moonlight Rendezvous

This had been an interesting read, while we discover Gilda’s past, we will be involved in a quite twisted mystery; lies, jealousyandsecrets…
~Varietats

Buy links:

Amazon (Canada)  Amazon (United States)    Kobo   Indigo   Barnes & Noble    iTunes   The Wild Rose Press

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS
October 29 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
October 29 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT
October 30 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy, Too! – SPOTLIGHT
October 31 – A Holland Reads – CHARACTER GUEST POST
November 1 – Mallory Heart’s Cozies – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST
November 1 – My Reading Journeys – SPOTLIGHT
November 2 – Readeropolis – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
November 2 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW
November 2 – Rosepoint Publishing – SPOTLIGHT
November 3 – Brooke Blogs – GUEST POST
November 3 – Varietats – REVIEW  
November 4 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
November 5 – Island Confidential – GUEST POST
November 5 – A Chick Who Reads – SPOTLIGHT 
November 6 – Jane Reads – GUEST POST
November 7 – MJB Reviewers – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
November 8 – Laura’s Interests – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
November 8 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
November 9 – A Blue Million Books – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
November 10 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
November 11 – Cozy Up With Kathy – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
November 11 – Christa Reads and Writes – 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.”

Oct 252018
 

Mardi Gras Murder: A Cajun Country Mystery
by Ellen Byron

About the Book


Mardi Gras Murder: A Cajun Country Mystery
Cozy Mystery
4th in Series
Setting – Louisiana
Crooked Lane Books (October 9, 2018)
Hardcover: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 168331705X
ISBN-13: 978-1683317050
Digital ASIN: B078LZ5W3H

Southern charm meets the dark mystery of the bayou as a hundred-year flood, a malicious murder, and a most unusual Mardi Gras converge at the Crozat Plantation B&B.

It’s Mardi Gras season on the bayou, which means parades, pageantry, and gumbo galore. But when a flood upends life in the tiny town of Pelican, Louisiana—and deposits a body of a stranger behind the Crozat Plantation B&B—the celebration takes a decidedly dark turn. The citizens of Pelican are ready to Laissez les bon temps rouler—but there’s beaucoup bad blood on hand this Mardi Gras.

Maggie Crozat is determined to give the stranger a name and find out why he was murdered. The post-flood recovery has delayed the opening of a controversial exhibit about the little-known Louisiana Orphan Train. And when a judge for the Miss Pelican Mardi Gras Gumbo Queen pageant is shot, Maggie’s convinced the murder is connected to the body on the bayou. Does someone covet the pageant queen crown enough to kill for it? Could the deaths be related to the Orphan Train, which delivered its last charges to Louisiana in 1929? The leads are thin on this Fat Tuesday—and until the killer is unmasked, no one in Pelican is safe.

A simmering gumbo of a humorous whodunit, Mardi Gras Murder is the fourth piquant installment in USA Today bestselling author Ellen Byron’s award-winning Cajun Country mysteries.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Pelican, Louisiana is underwater, floods have ravaged the area. The clean up continues as the residents prepare for their Mardi Gras celebration complete with a parade, contest to crown a gumbo queen and a gumbo cook-off. Then a body is found in the water behind the Crozat Plantation B&B. No one recognizes the man so its going to be a tough case to solve but Maggie is going to do her best to find out who he is and who killed him.

Maggie also gets roped into the queen contest as a judge where she learns about the Louisiana Orphan Train and that the exhibit set to open has been postponed. She also comes upon another dead body, one of her fellow judges. She is starting the think the deaths have to be connected and may even have something to do with the Orphan Train exhibit. She also makes an interesting discovery at Doucet and another at Grove Hall.

The floodwaters are receding but the bodies are starting to pile up.  It’s time to catch this killer before they strike again!

Oh my goodness, the author has filled this book with so much Mardi Gras goodness! Maggie is involved in everything, I was tired out she reading about all the things she did. In addition to all her duties and murder queries she and Bo are having trouble connecting. With his job, the flood damage, and his son he doesn’t have much free time. But there are some issues below the surface too. I was rooting for this couple through the entire story, worried and concerned but so happy with the ending.

There are a lot of characters within these pages. Study the wonderful cast of characters list the author provides at the beginning of the book before you start reading. Each character is unique so you shouldn’t have too much trouble keeping everyone straight. The core characters all shine and the supporting cast is excellent. The character development over the series and within this story is exceptional.

The story is very well plotted with some fabulous twists. I love the way Ms. Byron entangles the story-lines all together and blends in history and humor that hooks the reader from the first page to the last. Filled with Southern charm and a Cajun’ theme this story was so much fun to read.

Each story in this series has been a perfect escape. I always recommend starting a series from the beginning for maximum enjoyment but this story would read well all on its own.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Read my review of Plantation Shudders here.

Read my review of Body on the Bayou here.

Read my review of A Cajun’ Christmas Killing here.

About the Author

Ellen Byron authors the Cajun Country Mystery series. A Cajun Christmas Killing and Body on the Bayou both won the Lefty Award for Best Humorous Mystery and were nominated for Agatha awards in the category of Best Contemporary Novel. Plantation Shudders was nominated for Agatha, Lefty, and Daphne awards. Mardi Gras Murder launches October 9th. Ellen’s TV credits include Wings, Just Shoot Me, and Fairly OddParents. She’s written over 200 national magazine articles, and her published plays include the award-winning Graceland. She also worked as a cater-waiter for the legendary Martha Stewart, a credit she never tires of sharing.

 

Author Links – WebpageFacebookTwitterGoodReads – InstagramBookBub

Purchase Links – AmazonB&N  –  Crooked LaneBookBub  – Kobo

Praise for Mardi Gras Murder: A Cajun Country Mystery
by Ellen Byron

The book is well-written with a steady pace and humor scattered throughout . . . Ellen Byron combines Southern charm, Mardi Gras, humor, a cast of quirky characters and a beguiling mystery into one rousing cozy mystery.
~The Avid Reader

Mardi Gras Murders by Ellen Byron is simply outstanding, all that a great cozy mystery should be and more.
~The Power of Words

Absolutely fantastic cozy mystery!! This new addition to this incredible series is even better than the last book and had me hooked from the very first page due to the amazing storytelling.
~Books a Plenty Book Reviews

 

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS
October 20 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW, RECIPE  
October 20 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy, Too! – SPOTLIGHT
October 21 – The Power of Words – REVIEW
October 21 – Paranormal and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
October 22 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW
October 22 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – GUEST POST
October 23 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT  
October 23 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
October 24 – Lisa KS Book Reviews – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST
October 24 – cherylbbookblog – SPOTLIGHT
October 25 – I Wish I Lived in a Library – REVIEW
October 25 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
October 26 – Jane Reads – GUEST POST
October 26 – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW
October 27 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW
October 27 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT
October 28 – The Montana Bookaholic – CHARACTER GUEST POST
October 29 – Mallory Heart’s Cozies – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST
October 29 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT
October 30 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
October 30 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
October 31 – A Blue Million Books – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
October 31 –Varietats – SPOTLIGHT
November 1 – Island Confidential – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW
November 1 – Ruff Drafts – GUEST POST
November 2 – MJB Reviewers – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
November 2 – Handcrafted Reviews – 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.”

Oct 122018
 

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 must have really wanted to read this story.
I had an old print omnibus of the first three books in this series on my TBR shelf,
and a digital copy on my Kindle.  🙂 


In the Dead of Winter (An Ivy Towers Mystery)
Christian Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Kansas
Champ Publishing (August 7, 2017)
Print Length: 205 pages
Kindle ASIN: B074MPKJ6R

Samantha “Ivy” Towers returns to Winter Break, Kansas, where she spent her summers as a child, to make funeral arrangements for her Aunt Bitty. While there, she begins to suspect her aunt’s death, which resulted from a fall in her bookshop, wasn’t an accident after all. Childhood friend Amos Parker, now sheriff of Winter Break, seems anxious to get Ivy out of town. A missing book, a message scrawled by an unknown person, and an extra coffee cup leave Ivy with more questions than answers.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

A quick trip to Winter Break turns out to be more complicated than Samantha “Ivy” Towers ever imagined. With her parents overseas she is responsible for planning her Aunt Bitty’s funeral and tying up her legal affairs that may include selling her bookstore. Soon after she arrives she finds out that her aunt left everything to her with the exception of a few special gifts. But Aunt Bitty’s death is troubling and not just for Ivy. The investigation was quickly wrapped up and the body cremated a little too fast. She even finds an unsigned note that tells her it was not an accident. She knows most of the residents of Winter Break but someone is lying. She only has a few weeks off from college but she is not leaving until she finds out what really happened to her Aunt Bitty.

Winter in Winter Break sounds similar to winter in Wisconsin so I felt right at home. Like most small towns it is full of its share of quirky residents, but one thing is for sure everyone loved Aunt Bitty. She was a special lady and she will be missed. The author has created such wonderful characters. Hearing the people talk about Aunt Biddy made me really sad she was the victim of the horrible murder. Ivy though has a lot of the same qualities as her aunt, she just doesn’t realize it yet. Her upbringing was a bit unusual so there is a sense of insecurity. She evolved in this story but the author has left her plenty of room to grow.

We meet several of Winter Break’s finest including Amos, a deputy sheriff and old friend of Ivy’s and Ruby that owns the local diner with her signature burgers. A visitor in town lands squarely on Ivy’s suspect list, his arrival is just too suspicious and he is clearly hiding something.

The story had a couple of hitches for me, medical things mostly, but the mystery was well-plotted. It had plenty of twists but I picked out the murderer early on. It was interesting to read to the end to be sure I was right and the true motive for the crime.

The story does have a Christian theme and a clear message that blends with the mystery very nicely and does overpower it.

I found this to be a fine start for this series and am looking forward to reading the next book in the series, Bye, Bye, Bertie.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

 

About the Author (from Amazon)

Nancy Mehl lives in Missouri, with her husband Norman, and her very active puggle, Watson. She’s authored thirty books and is currently at work on a new FBI suspense series for Bethany House Publishing.

All of Nancy’s novels have an added touch – something for your spirit as well as your soul. “I welcome the opportunity to share my faith through my writing,” Nancy says. “It’s a part of me and of everything I think or do. God is number one in my life. I wouldn’t be writing at all if I didn’t believe that this is what He’s called me to do. I hope everyone who reads my books will walk away with the most important message I can give them: God is good, and He loves you more than you can imagine. He has a good plan especially for your life, and there is nothing you can’t overcome with His help.”

You can find out more about Nancy by visiting her Web site at: www.nancymehl.com. She also is active on the Suspense Sisters: www.suspensesisters.blogspot.com and on FaceBook!

 

Find more books by Nancy Mehl here.

I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy sent directly from Amazon!
The 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.

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

Contest Will End October 26, 2018, 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.

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.”

Oct 102018
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!
I am always thrilled to have Kathleen Ernst drop by for a visit.

Immigrant Stories
by Kathleen Ernst

People sometimes ask why I so often write about 19th-century immigrants.  My fascination began in the 1980s when I worked at an outdoor ethnic museum called Old World Wisconsin. The museum features over 50 historic structures which have been moved to the site and restored.  Working as an interpreter and curator there provided tantalizing glimpses into the lives of some of the state’s first Yankee and European immigrants.

An even stronger motivation is simply my ever-growing admiration for the everyday people who made the monumental decision to leave everything familiar and gamble on a new life in Wisconsin.  I created the Chloe Ellefson Mysteries to give myself the opportunity to share some of what I’ve discovered.  Chloe is a curator at Old World Wisconsin, and as the series progresses, she visits other special historic sites and museums.  Different books have featured different ethnic groups.

In the ninth book, The Lacemaker’s Secret, Chloe travels to northeast Wisconsin. She’s been hired to create a furnishings plan for a Belgian-American farm being restored at Heritage Hill State Historical Park in Green Bay.  She’s on the hunt for insight into the lives of Belgian immigrants (and after discovering a body in an old brick bake oven, she’s soon on the hunt for a killer as well).

I knew little about the Belgians’ experience before beginning research for this book.  The immigrants, most of whom arrived in the 1850s, faced a brutal struggle to turn old-growth forest into farmland.  A devastating cholera epidemic swept through the settlements.  And in 1871, what is remembered locally as The Great Fire (which burned simultaneously with the Peshtigo Fire across the bay) blazed through many of the Belgian communities.  Over two hundred people died; over five thousand lost everything they owned.

But the Belgian immigrants’ story is not defined by tragedy.  It’s defined by strength and persistence, by faith and courage.  Today many of their descendants still live in northeast Wisconsin because their ancestors did not give up or give in.  I find that inspiring.

So does Chloe Ellefson in The Lacemaker’s Secret.  I hope that readers do as well.

~Kathleen

Thank you, Kathleen, for being my guest today! 

Now let me give you my thoughts on The Lace Maker’s Secret.

The Lace Maker’s Secret (A Chloe Ellefson Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
9th in Series
Setting – Wisconsin/Belguim
Midnight Ink (October 8, 2018)
Paperback: 408 pages
ISBN-10: 0738753548
ISBN-13: 978-0738753546
Kindle ASIN: B0795R5H4C

Greed, Uncertainty, and Death Get Tangled in the Mystery of a Rare Piece of Belgian Lace

Curator Chloe Ellefson needs distraction from the unsettling family secret she’s just learned. It doesn’t help that her boyfriend, Roelke McKenna, has been troubled for weeks and won’t say why. Chloe hopes a consulting job at Green Bay’s Heritage Hill Historical Park, where an old Belgian-American farmhouse is being restored, will be a relaxing escape.

Instead she discovers a body in a century-old bake oven.

Chloe’s research suggests that a rare and valuable piece of lace made its way to nearby Door County, Wisconsin, with the earliest Belgian settlers. More importantly, someone is desperate to find it. Inspired by a courageous Belgian woman who survived cholera, famine, and the Great Fire, Chloe must untangle clues to reveal secrets old and new . . . before the killer strikes again.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

This installment of this wonderful series takes Chloe Ellefson on the road to Green Bay’s Heritage Hill Historical Park. They are restoring a historic Belgian-American farmhouse and have asked her to consult on its furnishings. She recently learned some upsetting news about her family and something is definitely bothering her boyfriend. Roelke McKenna, so maybe a week away, doing the thing she loves will do them both some good. She is meeting a woman there who she has worked with in the past. The woman is a lace expert and she has been told a valuable piece of lace is part of Heritage Hill’s collection. Both women are excited to learn about the lace and its origins.

It is winter in Wisconsin and driving north Chloe encounters some slippery conditions. Just before she reaches the B&B where she will be staying she notices a summer kitchen building right off the road.  She pulls over quickly to check the place out, but she makes a grisly discovery. A dead body has been stuffed into the old bake oven. This is not the way she planned to start her week. The death has nothing to do with her. Maybe she can leave everything to the police and just do what she came to Green Bay to do. But she knows that is not going to happen, she is going to find herself right in the middle of another investigation and her favorite police officer is many miles away.

I know when I pick up a book by Kathleen Ernst I am in for a delightful read. This book was no exception. I have spent my whole life in Wisconsin and every time I read a book by this wonderful author I still learn something new. I knew the basics of the historical events that take place in this story but her fictional telling of the time period resonates and makes the time, place, and people come alive.

The historical part of the story begins in Belguim in 1848 when 12-year-old Seraphine Moreau’s father dies and she and her twin sister, Octavie are taken by their uncle to a convent school in Bruges.  She leaves her friend Jean-Paul Lejeune behind but he doesn’t forget her, he visits her and the convent often and they pledge their love to each other. While at the convent both Seraphine and Octavie learn to make the beautiful bobbin Belgian lace. In 1854, Jean-Paul returns to ask Seraphine to be his wife and travel with him to America where there are new opportunities for farmers. The story then follows their lives in Wisconsin and joins together with the current story which is set in the 1980’s.

Again, Ernst really shows her storytelling chops by marrying these two time periods together seamlessly. Both time periods feature strong women in Chloe and Seraphine and even Octavie who remains in Belguim. We see through the letters to her sister what is happening across the Atlantic. Seraphine and the immigrants struggle to just survive at times was both heartbreaking and inspirational, the perseverance shown throughout their lives was remarkable. Chloe shows her strength time and time again and she strives the find the truth even while putting herself in danger.

In Chloe’s timeframe, I always need to remind myself, 1980’s, no cell phones, no easy access to the internet, no text messages. I love the nightly phone calls between Chloe and Roelke, the calling collect, and reversing the charges. Something the current generation of kids and young adults will never know. For them, both parts of this story would be historical. I know Ms. Ernst’s books would be a great way for them to learn about history. She makes it personal and her stories stick with her readers. Her stories are well-researched but fictional so she does juggle the dates sometimes to fit her narrative while still giving an accurate picture of the things her characters endure.

I do love that the stories in this series take place in actual destinations near where I live. As my grandchildren get older these are places I would love to take them. According to their website, “Heritage Hill has earned a reputation as a jewel of the Midwest for guests from within the area and those visiting the community.” I really thank the author for bringing this treasure to my attention.

The Lacemaker’s Secret is a fantastic story filled with characters that are truly believable. They will draw readers deep into their lives. The theme of Belgian lace and the setting in Wisconsin really shows the author’s love of the history of our state. This was an amazing read!

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

The last book in this series also received a Paradise Rating.
Check out my review of Mining for Justice here.

About the Author

Kathleen Ernst is a social historian, educator, and author. Her Chloe Ellefson mysteries reflect the decade she spent as a curator at a large outdoor museum, and feature historic sites in the Upper Midwest.  Library Journal says, “Ernst keeps getting better with each entry in this fascinating series.” Kathleen has also written many mysteries for young readers.  Honors for her work include a LOVEY Award and Agatha and Edgar nominations.  Kathleen lives and writes in Wisconsin.
Webpage Facebook – Blog 

Thanks to the author I have 1 copy to give away!
The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US 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.

Leave a comment for the author for 5 Bonus Entries.

Sign up for Kathleen’s Mailing List for 5 Bonus Entries.

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 October 24, 2018, 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.”

Sep 262018
 


Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!
I am so happy to share with you my thoughts on this new book from Anna Lee Huber!

Treacherous Is the Night (A Verity Kent Mystery)
Historical Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – England but Verity travels to Belgium. 
Kensington (September 25, 2018)
Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 1496713176
ISBN-13: 978-1496713179
Kindle ASIN: B078QSYZ3H

In 1919 England, in the shadow of The Great War, many look to the spirit world for answers. But it will take an all too earthbound intrigue to draw in the discerning heroine of Anna Lee Huber’s latest mystery . . .

It’s not that Verity Kent doesn’t sympathize with those eager to make contact with lost loved ones. After all, she once believed herself a war widow. But now that she’s discovered Sidney is very much alive, Verity is having enough trouble connecting with her estranged husband, never mind the dead. Still, at a friend’s behest, Verity attends a séance, where she encounters the man who still looms between her and Sidney—and a medium who channels a woman Verity once worked with in the Secret Service. Refusing to believe her former fellow spy is dead, Verity is determined to uncover the source of the spiritualist’s top secret revelation.

Then the medium is murdered—and Verity’s investigation is suddenly thwarted. Even Secret Service agents she once trusted turn their backs on her. Undaunted, Verity heads to war-torn Belgium, with Sidney by her side. But as they draw ever closer to the danger, Verity wonders if she’s about to learn the true meaning of till death do us part . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

In this follow up to This Side of Murder, Ex-Secret Service Agent Verity Kent is doing her best to reconnect with the husband she believed was killed in the war. His surprising return happened in the last book just as she started to have feelings for another man. It is difficult to curb those new feelings when the man seems to pop up everywhere as he did to a séance her friend had dragged her too.

In This Side of Murder a Quija board upset Verity greatly and this time a séance sends her into a tizzy when the medium singles her out and reveals secret information about one of the other agents Verity has worked with. Before Verity has a chance to question the medium is suspiciously killed. Unsure who she can trust Verity starts her own investigation and she and her husband Sidney travel to Belgium. They know they have been followed but she needs to find the truth no matter how dangerous her mission seems.

Verity Kent is a complex woman who has had quite a life for her young years. Working as a Secret Service Agent during the war took her to dangerous places and put her in dangerous situations. Her husband quickly sees this is not the same woman he left behind when he went into battle. She has become confident and almost fearless. It makes him see his own service in a different light too. Their relationship had become stunted because they both held everything in. While he wants to escape to the country she can’t back away from the search for her compatriot. This could be the final straw that breaks their marriage.

In addition to the relationship struggles of our protagonist, the author delivers an excellent mystery. Verity’s quest to find her cohort takes us deeply into La Dame Blanche (Belgian underground intelligence). She knows her friend needs her help and the path we follow with her is absolutely captivating and at times scary. Each twist, each turn, a breadcrumb here, a breadcrumb there, she doesn’t give up. As a reader, I enjoyed following this strong, smart. woman wherever she went.

Anna Lee Huber gives us a look at England and beyond after World War I in rich detail. She describes the places and the people so vividly. This author knows how to build a story that is full of intrigue. She has done her research and I always feel like I learn something while reading her books. The detail while great did slow down the pace just a bit in places, but when the pace picked up I was glued to the pages to the very end.

The book leaves me with a bit of a conundrum. I really like Max, the other man in Verity’s life, but I should want her to be with her husband, right. Sidney may have had his reasons for what he did, but it just toasts me that he just thinks Verity should welcome him with open arms. I am very interested to see what the author has planned for Verity.

This book can be read all on its own, but I recommend reading them in order to fully understand Verity and the situations that occur within this story.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

You can read my review for This Side of Murder here.

About the Author

Anna Lee Huber is the author of historical mystery series. She received the Daphne du Maurier Award for her national bestselling Lady Darby Mysteries. She is a summa cum laude graduate from Lipscomb University in Nashville. To find out more about Anna Lee Huber visit her website here.

GIVEAWAY

I am giving away my review copy!
The 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.

Sign up for Anna Lee Huber’s Newsletter for 5 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 October 10, 2018, 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.”

 

 

Sep 252018
 

This book comes out today in the Mass Market Paperback Edition!

X Marks the Scot (A Liss MacCrimmon Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
11th in Series
Setting – Maine
Kensington (September 25, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 1496712609
ISBN-13: 978-1496712608
Kindle ASIN: B06XFHRZXL

The old Chadwick mansion on the edge of Moosetookalook, Maine, has been shrouded in mystery for generations—until Scottish Emporium owner Liss MacCrimmon uncovers a forgotten family secret. But she never imagined that a little curiosity would lead her into such deadly territory . . .

While perusing auction items from the Chadwick estate, Liss purchases a painting of a bagpiper to add to her collection. Her interest shifts from art to sleuthing upon a strange discovery—what appears to be a treasure map tucked behind the canvas. She’s even more intrigued when she links the scroll to an early Chadwick who smuggled goods across the Canadian border.

So during a business trip to Canada, Liss arranges a meeting with an archivist in hopes of pinning down the truth about the map and the Chadwick bloodline. Before her quest moves forward, however, she finds the archivist’s murdered body at a local genealogical society. One thing is certain—Liss isn’t alone on this treasure hunt . . .

Liss returns to Moosetookalook, terrified that the killer may have followed her home. With her life in real peril and the map at risk of being stolen, she launches into full-scale investigation mode. But as she deciphers clues and inches toward the dangerous culprit, Liss quickly realizes she’s only a step away from ending up like the Chadwick clan—permanently wiped out.

Dollycas’s  Thoughts

This was my first trip to Moosetookalook, Maine and I am so upset with myself that it took me this long to find this series.

Liss MacCrimmon owns the Scottish Emporium and while she is at an auction looking for items for her shop she finds a painting of a bagpiper. She bids and wins the picture after outbidding two other people.  While carrying it to the car she drops it and makes a very interesting discovery. It looks like a treasure map was hidden behind the canvas in the frame. The treasure is marked with an “X” but Liss has no idea where to start looking, but she thinks it may be on the old Chadwick property, since that is where the auction is being held. Her aunt does a little research and feels they need to head to Nova Scotia to meet with a man that may have more information. But when they arrive for their meeting, the man is dead, murdered. Liss and her aunt are quickly cleared when their alibi checks out, so they continue will the rest of their visit to meet with vendors for merchandise for their store and to attend the Highland Games in Antigonish. Liss feels as if she is being watched several times, but when their hotel room is trashed and an Ipad and a broach are missing, they report it to the police and head back to Maine. Strange things start to happen at home and Liss is convinced it all has to do with the map she found. Did the killer follow her home? Her life may be in jeopardy, so she has no choice but the find where X marks the spot.

As this was my first adventure with Liss, her family, and friends, I was pleased by how well they were described. I am sure I am missing out on certain nuances of the characters but that did not deter from my enjoyment of the story. I really liked that she is friends with Chief of Police Sherrie Campbell and that she works with her aunt.

Ms. Dunnett has written a well-plotted mystery with plenty of suspects and the exact right amount of suspense. I enjoyed that genealogy was used to lead the way in solving the mystery. A treasure hunt is always fun to follow in a story. I did figure out the culprit a bit before it was revealed. The person just felt shady from the start.

There is a subplot in the story concerning Liss’ parents and that made me wish I had read the previous stories, but it also made me what to jump right into the next new book, Overkilt being released October 30.

I found this to be a very entertaining mystery. My first trip to Moosetookalook was a very enjoyable getaway and am looking forward to visiting again soon.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About Kaitlyn Dunnett


Thanks to the publisher I have 1 paperback copy to give away!
The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US 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 October 9, 2018, 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.”

 

Sep 212018
 

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.

While reorganizing my PaperBackSwap bookshelf I came across this little book and a few others I had entirely forgotten about. This book landed on the top of my Flashback Friday stack because it is set in North Dakota. A state I needed for my Literary Escapes Challenge. While reading it, the characters seemed familiar. When I went to add it to my GoodReads account I realized I had read it before in 2012. I found the rest of the series too. So I have North Dakota covered for my challenge for a few more years, if I can wait that long to read the rest. 

Dakota Dawn: The Dakota Plains Series
1st in Series
Historical Christian Fiction
Setting – North Dakota
Barbour Publishing, Inc (March 1994)
Mass Market Paperback: 186 pages
ISBN-10: 1557484007
ISBN-13: 978-1557484000
Mission Books; Reissue edition (September 1, 2012)
ISBN-10: 1618431781
ISBN-13: 978-1618431783

”Soldahl! Next stop, Soldahl!”

When Nora Johanson heard the conductor’s words, her heart began to race. At last she would be in the arms of the man she had promised to marry – Hans Larson. At fifteen she was so sure of their love. Now, three years later and far from the mountains and fjords of her beloved homeland, Norway, she wondered. . . .

She stepped off the train, found her trunk full of quilts, hand-embroidered linens, and household treasures painted with rosemaling designs, and looked anxiously for Hans. The pelting March snow stung her cheeks.”Where is he? Dear God, what will I do?” When Hans failed to arrive at the train station that night, Nora found herself thrown into a life she never expected– Reverend and Mrs. Moen and Carl Detschman, a grieving German immigrant. Was this really what God had planned for her?

Dakota Dawn is the first book of the Dakota Series that features the intertwining lives of five inspiring women, all who live in the early 1900s in the farming community of Soldahl, North Dakota.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

This was a nice escape from the mysteries I usually read.

Nora Johanson has had quite a journey, Norway to Soldahl, North Dakota. She is excited to start her new life in America with Hans Larson. She had pledged to marry him just before he left Norway 3 years ago when she was just 15. After a trip by ship and train, she arrives in Soldahl to find Hans had died just a few days earlier. Worried about where she will live or how she will get back home, Nora turns to God to light her path. The Reverend and Mrs. Moen take Nora into their home and an opportunity presents itself, but is it really what God wants her to do?

I have read other books by this author several years ago and knew I would enjoy this story before I even started reading. She is very talented at bringing this time in North Dakota to life. Her words created full-color images in mind. We get to know Nora and the Moen’s pretty well. It was heartbreaking to read about Carl Detschman’s grief, the death of a loved one can overtake anyone whether it be in 1910 or 2018. Lauraine Snelling captures his life and all he meets perfectly.

I am excited this is part of a series. I look forward to reading the next 3 books.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

About the Author



Unfortunately, my copy is not in giveaway condition and
this book is only available used or as a very pricey paperback at Amazon.
So the giveaway on this #FlashbackFriday will be for a $5 Amazon Gift Card!
Easy Entry too!

Just Click Here to Enter

Winner will be chosen October 5 and notified by email. 

*This book was from my private collection.

 

Sep 072018
 

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.


One Potion in the Grave (A Magic Potion Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Alabama
Berkley – Obsidian (October 7, 2014)
Mass Market Paperback: 336 pages
ISBN-10: 0451416317
ISBN-13: 978-0451416315
Kindle ASIN: B00ISEF62C

Carly Bell Hartwell’s love potions are always in demand in Hitching Post, Alabama, the wedding capital of the South.…

When Katie Sue Perrywinkle walks into the Little Shop of Potions, Carly is surprised and delighted to see her old childhood friend. Katie Sue fled her hometown and a troubled family over a decade ago. But she’s not back for a social visit. She’s come to settle a score with Senator Warren Calhoun, who is in town for his son’s high-profile wedding.

But before Katie Sue has a chance to voice any objections, she’s forced to forever hold her peace. After finding her friend dead, Carly vows to find her murderer. Were the corrupt Calhouns willing to go to any lengths to avoid a scandal? Did Katie Sue’s family take the term “bad blood” to a whole new level? And why did the bride-to-be come to Carly for a love potion? As Carly gets closer to the truth, a killer is planning a very chilly reception.…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Carly’s mom is getting ready for a high society wedding at her chapel. The son of Senator Warren Calhoun and his bride are prepared to tie the knot. But Katie Sue Perrywinkle has come back to town and she has issues with the Senator that need to be addressed. Before she can do anything she is found dead. Could the Calhouns have killed her or could it have been someone in the family she left behind when she moved away? Carly finds a way to get to get close to both families so she can try to figure out who got rid of her friend, Katie Sue. She also puts herself right in the killer’s sights.

This second book is a great addition to this series. Like her Wishcraft Mysteries, the story has a paranormal witchy theme that doesn’t overtake the entire story. We know Carly has ways to make her special potions work, and she has an empathy power so she can feel what people are feeling. The empathy thing can be very helpful not only in her work but in finding the killer. Her special talents and knowledge aside she is pretty normal. She is always at her mother’s beck and call to help with the chapel. She is the go-to person for her Aunts. She is trying to work things out with her ex-fiance while he is helping to renovate her house.

All the recurring characters are wonderfully written, unique, funny and entertaining. The new characters are well fleshed out. The author lets us get to know them throughout the entire book. The jury was out for me on some of them for me until the very end, but there were a couple I knew were bad from the first mention, but by the end, I had attached “downright evil” to these people.

This mystery was very twisted up regarding Katie Sue. Plenty of suspects and plenty of opportunities. While trying to solve this mystery, Carly stumbles into another one. The second one was easy for me to solve, the first one I was stumped until the very end. Then I was mad at myself because I should have figured that one out too or at least had the person on my radar. Great diversion on the author’s part.

Heather Blake is a fantastic storyteller! She has created a story with a terrific mix of mystery, suspense, humor, magic, and romance. Everything in the proper proportions for a great cozy mystery. This was a delightful read!

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author
Heather Blake is a pseudonym of Heather Webber, the bestselling author of more than a dozen novels, including the Nina Quinn Mysteries and the Lucy Valentine books. Blake has been nominated twice for an Agatha Award. She currently lives in the Cincinnati area with her family.

Follow Heather – www.heatherblakebooks.com
On Facebook     On Twitter


I am giving my review copy away!

The 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.

Sign Up for Heather Blake’s newsletter for 5 Bonus Entries.

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 September 21, 2018, 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

You can find my review of Heather Blake’s To Catch A Witch here.

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.”

Mardi Gras Murder: A Cajun Country Mystery by Ellen Byron Order Your Copy Today!
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