Posted in 2022 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies Flashback Friday Giveaways Literary Escapes TBR Pile Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Deserts, Driving, and Derelicts (A Camper & Criminals Cozy Mystery Series) by Tonya Kappes #Review / #Giveaway

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.


Deserts, Driving, and Derelicts (A Camper & Criminals Cozy Mystery Series)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Kentucky
Independently published (June 26, 2018)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 192 pages
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 979-8746786456
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 196 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1723010863
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1723010866
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B07CJK17LS

SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY WITH A SMIDGEN OF HOMICIDE

USA Today Bestselling author Tonya Kappes brings you southern and quirky characters in her mystery series. Her stories are charged with humor, friendship, family, and life in small southern towns.

Welcome to Normal, Kentucky where NOTHING is normal.

Mae West is getting settled into the RV lifestyle as the owner of a campground in Normal, Kentucky.

Happy Trails Campground, located in Daniel Boone National Park, has started to attract late summer vacationing families who love to hike, swim, fish, and enjoy being outdoors.

Betts Hager, owner of several small businesses, is swamped with work and desperate for help with her cleaning business. Mae offers her services, happy about the prospect of a little extra cash. Heiress Tammy Jo Bentley’s mansion is the first one on her schedule.

Mae makes sure Tammy Jo’s house is spotless because the Kentucky Kennel Association’s annual meeting is going to be held at the mansion. Fifi, Tammy Jo’s high pedigree, insured poodle, is going to be on display and Tammy Jo will be evaluating potential suitors to sire Fifi’s offspring.

Before the annual meeting, Camille Braun, Fifi’s nanny, is stabbed to death.

Everyone knows that Camille would put her life on the line *or* lay down her life for Fifi and, apparently, she did.

Mae tries her best to stay out of it. Tammy Jo begs Mae to help her; after all, she did find the last killer in Normal. Plus, it’s not good for business – or Normal’s revived economy – when a murderer is on the loose.

Mae has grown to love her RV community and now that she’s found a place to call home, she’s not going to let anybody ruin it. Mae throws all of her heart and amateur sleuthing skills into bringing the real killer to justice.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

We are back in Normal, Kentucky. Mae West has done a lot to get the Happy Trails Campground back on track while repaying those her ex-husband scammed. She gets a little blast from the past when Bobby Ray Bond shows up at the campground. He is her foster brother that helped her move to New York for a fresh start 12 years ago. Now it may be her turn to help him out.

Mae is also helping Betts Hager with her cleaning business. The extra cash she will earn always comes in handy. Her first assignment takes her to Tammy Jo Bentley’s mansion to make sure the place is immaculate for the annual meeting of the Kentucky Kennel Association. Tammy Jo dotes on her prize pup and is hoping to find a perfect sire for the poodle.

Realizing she forgot to get payment for her services, Mae returns to the mansion for the check. Instead, she makes a ghastly discovery. She finds the pampered pooch’s nanny has been stabbed to death. Tammy Jo is taken into custody and she is reminded that Mae caught the town’s last killer. She begs Mae to do the same for her. Mae agrees because a murderer on the loose isn’t good for business and she isn’t going to let a pesky killer ruin all the progress she has made.


The characters in this series are so much fun. They are quirky and genuine and full of charm. Mae has been accepted now as everyone sees she is trying hard to right the wrongs done by her ex. She has also grown so much as a person in just two books. She seems always ready to help anyone she can whether it be helping them find a job, lend a sympathetic ear, or sleuth out a killer.

The mystery this time had me stumped the entire way. Ms. Kappes entangled some nice red herrings to misdirect and I think I fell for all of them. I really enjoy the humor she includes heavily within her stories. It makes the characters and their situations feel more real. At under 200 pages, the pace is quick but everything is well detailed.

I really enjoy the way Mae pursues the truth while juggling everything else going on in her life. She has two romantic interests, a campground to run, odd jobs here and there, a foster brother showing up out of blue, and a new house guest, all as she tries to solve a murder case. I envy all of her energy.

Deserts, Driving, and Derelicts is a wonderful cozy mystery filled with fantastic characters and Southern charm. The Laundry Club ladies always crack me up. The gossip runs wild and I love it!

I know I am way behind on this series so I hope to visit again soon.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author Tonya Kappes has published numerous mystery and romance titles. Known for her hilarious plot lines and quirky characters, she has earned thousands of followers and a devoted street team of fans.


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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 2022 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies Flashback Friday Giveaways Literary Escapes TBR Pile Challenge Wisconsin Author Wisconsin Setting You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Murder at the Mena House (A Jane Wunderly Mystery) by Erica Ruth Neubauer #Review / #Giveaway

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.


Murder at the Mena House (A Jane Wunderly Mystery)
Historical Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Egypt
Kensington (March 31, 2020)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 288 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496725859
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496725851
Paperback (February 23, 2021): ‎ 304 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496725867
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496725868
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B07R7S1D4F

 

WINNER OF THE 2021 AGATHA AWARD

Well-heeled travelers from around the world flock to the Mena House Hotel—an exotic gem in the heart of Cairo where cocktails flow, adventure dispels the aftershocks of World War I, and deadly dangers wait in the shadows . . .

Egypt, 1926.

Fiercely independent American Jane Wunderly has made up her mind: she won’t be swept off her feet on a trip abroad. Despite her Aunt Millie’s best efforts, the young widow would rather gaze at the Great Pyramids of Giza than into the eyes of a dashing stranger. Yet Jane’s plans to remain cool and indifferent become ancient history in the company of Mr. Redvers, a roguish banker she can’t quite figure out . . .

While the Mena House has its share of charming guests, Anna Stainton isn’t one of them. The beautiful socialite makes it clear that she won’t share the spotlight with anyone—especially Jane. But Jane soon becomes the center of attention when she’s the one standing over her unintentional rival’s dead body. Now, with her innocence at stake in a foreign country, Jane must excavate an elusive killer before her future falls to ruin in Cairo, and the body count rises like the desert heat . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Americans Jane Wunderly and her Aunt Mille arrive at The Mena House in the heart of Cairo with different agendas. Jane wants to take in the history of the place and visit the Great Pyramids. Her aunt plans to find young widow Jane a man. At least that is how the trip begins. Instead, Millie becomes close with two young women, one a dedicated tennis player, and Jane meets the mysterious Mr. Redvers. He and Jane spend quite a bit of time together as she tries to get to the heart of his true story.  Both women also meet a variety of guests at The Mena House including Anna Stainton and her father. Anna clearly has a problem with Jane and every other young woman in the place. But it is Jane who finds herself in the hot seat after she finds the young socialite’s dead body. Prison was not on the itinerary for Jane’s Egyptian vacation so with a little help from her new friend Mr. Redvers she intends to find the real killer and ruin their vacation, not hers!


I have wanted to read this book for quite a while and I am so glad I finally did. Egypt, 1926, a luxury hotel with a view of The Great Pyramids. Yes! Please!

Ms. Neubauer takes her readers on a wonderful virtual vacation as her words bring Cairo to life. Like Jane, I would probably need time to adjust to the heat but it was fun to tag along on her adventures to the market, the museum, the camel races, and the pyramids. Either I have forgotten what I learned about the pyramids or I never knew the structure inside them. The way the author described them was so interesting and vivid. I know I will never see them with my own eyes so I really appreciated her take on the historic site.

Jane lost her husband in the great war and because of the life she had with him, she is in no hurry to get entangled with another one. She enjoys her independence and is determined not to lose it to any man. I liked her from the start and as her story unfolded I liked her even more. Her Aunt Millie appreciates leaving prohibition back in the states and is rarely seen without a cocktail in her hand. She is a feisty woman, set in her ways, and sometimes hard to deal with. We learn this trip is more than what she presented to Jane. Millie has a mystery all her own. Mr. Redvers is an interesting man and clearly hiding something. So in addition to trying to find a killer, Jane tries really hard to draw him out. All these characters continue to develop over the course of this story but I truly feel we have just scratched the surface.

The death of Anna Stainton was not an easy solve. There were several suspects and Jane really had her work cut out for her. Different people had different motives and she came up with several theories. She did make some risky moves. I liked how she tried to talk herself out of them but then pushed full speed ahead. I was shocked when the killer was revealed.

As for Millie’s mystery, I had an inkling early as to what was happening but it turned out to be much more than I even imagined.

I really enjoyed reading Murder at the Mena House. It was a great introduction for this series and Jane and Millie. I really liked Mr. Redvers and hope that he turns up in the next book Murder at Wedgefield Manor. I am looking forward to tagging along with Jane again soon.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

from amazon About Erica Ruth Neubauer

Erica Ruth Neubauer spent eleven years in the military, nearly two as a Maryland police officer and one as a high school English teacher before finding her way as a writer. She has been a reviewer of mysteries and crime fiction for Publishers Weekly and Mystery Scene Magazine for several years, and she is a member of Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime. When she’s not writing, Erica Ruth enjoys traveling, yoga, and craft beer. She lives in Milwaukee, WI.

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I am giving 1 Kindle Copy!
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 Following My Facebook Fan Page.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads
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Follow Kensington Books on Twitter for 2 Bonus Entries!

Follow Kensington Publishing on Facebook for 2 Bonus Entries

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

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

Contest Will End on May 13, 2022, at 11:59 PM CST
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The Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For The 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.”

Posted in 2022 Reviews Alphabet Soup A -Z Author Edition Challenge Cloak and Dagger Challenge E-Book Challenge Literary Escapes New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Family Money by Chad Zunker #Review @chadzunker


Family Money
Suspense/Thriller
Setting – Texas/Mexico
Thomas & Mercer (March 1, 2022)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 239 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1542026164
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1542026161
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08SLW9ZL1

A dead man’s secrets put a family in peril in a twisting novel of suspense by the Amazon Charts bestselling author of the David Adams series.

Alex Mahan is married to his high school sweetheart, Taylor. They have two daughters and a beautiful home, and Alex’s startup business is about to explode thanks to massive private funding from his compassionate and supportive father-in-law, Joe. With millions more to come, all is perfect—until Joe is abducted and murdered during a family trip in Mexico.

Alex’s world is about to be turned upside down. He can’t bear to tell his grieving wife why. The man they’ve both idolized has been keeping secrets. The pledged millions are nowhere to be found. The source of the original investment is a mystery, even to Joe’s financial adviser. No one, it seems, has any idea who the man they knew, loved, and trusted really was.

As Alex digs deeper into Joe’s shadowy life, the most shocking surprises are yet to come. Deadly ones, too, because every lie that Alex uncovers in Joe’s dark past puts his family in more danger.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Alex Mahan and his wife and two daughters along with his in-laws are on a charity trip to Mexico when his father Joe is abducted and killed. Beyond heartbroken Alex has to find out why? The man was a true father to him after his own father passed away and it was because of him that he was able to open his own very successful business. The more Alex digs the more confused he gets about his father-in-law’s life and the more dangerous for him and his family.


Chad Zunker is a new author for me and I really liked this story. He created very likable characters. It was easy to get invested in their lives. Joe was a dynamic character with a huge heart. He welcomed Alex into their family long before he married Taylor. Because of Joe’s large investment in Alex’s company after just 3 years, it is extremely successful and still growing. It also enables Alex to step away and go on a humanitarian mission to Mexico with his family. Joe almost backed out but Alex convinced him to come. The entire family is close-knit, doing almost everything together. I do wish Alex’s wife Taylor was a little more fleshed out but you could never doubt her love for her father.

Told from Alex’s point of view and through a series of flashbacks the story unfolds. With Alex as the executor of Joe’s will, he finds some inconsistencies, specifically where Joe got the money to invest in his business. The more he digs the crazier and more dangerous things become. Truthfully in some parts here and through the rest of the story, you have to suspend reality a bit but that is why I read books like this. A basically normal guy caught up in a kidnapping linked to drug cartels and hidden bank accounts, it sure did keep my attention. I really enjoyed the action scenes and the way the pace picked up about 2/3 of the way through the book. My one drawback is that one major part of the plot was very predictable but that didn’t hinder my enjoyment too much.

Family Money was a quick entertaining story that held my interest from beginning to end. I am open to reading more by this author.

 

About the Author

CHAD ZUNKER is the author of the David Adams legal thriller, An Equal Justice, as well as The Tracker, Shadow Shepherd, and Hunt the Lion in his Sam Callahan series. Chad has worked for some of the country’s most powerful law firms and serves at Community First! Village, a 51-acre master planned community that provides affordable, permanent housing and a supportive community for men and women coming out of chronic homelessness. He lives in Austin with his wife, Katie, and their three daughters, and is hard at work on his next novel. For more information visit www.chadzunker.com.

Follow Chad on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and GoodReads.

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.”

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Posted in 2022 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours Literary Escapes New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

The Yarn That Binds (Clear Creek Mysteries) by Rebecca McKinnon #Review / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour


The Yarn That Binds (Clear Creek Mysteries)
by Rebecca McKinnon

About The Yarn That Binds 


The Yarn That Binds (Clear Creek Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – A small town in the Rocky Mountains
Independently Published (April 14, 2022)
Number of Pages: 258
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09PLLK412

A Rocky Mountain Yarn with Small Town Charm

Jemma hasn’t been to the tiny Rocky Mountain town of Clear Creek in years, but when her grandmother tells her something strange is going on, Jemma drops everything to return and help untangle the clues.

She arrives to flashing lights, a house full of police, and the news that her grandmother has been killed with her own yarn. After learning she inherits everything, Jemma is faced with the choice of casting on a new life by reopening her grandmother’s yarn shop, or returning to her live-out-of-a-suitcase life as a travel vlogger.

One thing’s for sure — she’s not leaving town until the mystery of her grandmother’s death has unraveled. But when the deputy in charge of the investigation ignores clues Jemma stumbles upon, she decides to do her own poking around. Because her grandmother was right — there is something strange happening in Clear Creek.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Travel vlogger Jemma Whitlock returns to Clear Creek after being gone for several years in response to her grandmother’s plea for help. All she knows is that “something strange” is happening in her grandmother’s life and it must be something major for her to call her home. But Jemma arrives too late. She arrives in town to find police everywhere and is told her grandmother is dead and the killer used yarn from her grandmother’s own shop to do the deed.

Still in shock, she learns she is the beneficiary of all her grandmother’s things so she has some major decisions to make. She has some time because she isn’t going anywhere until the killer is found and behind bars. Especially because the local police seem to be oblivious to some clear clues and suspects. Realizing there truly is “something strange” afoot in Clear Creek she decides to do a little snooping on her own never realizing she may find herself entangled in the killer’s web and that she may not be able to knit, crochet, or vlog herself out of the danger she finds herself in.


The author has created some great characters for this new cozy mystery series. First, Jemma’s grandmother Mary sounds like she was an amazing woman. She listened and helped everyone she could, really putting the small town of Clear Creek first even though not everyone appreciated her efforts. Jemma is well-traveled and very independent. It is hard for her to accept help but is a coffee addict and her old friend Brandon is her hookup for the best beans. He also cares about his friend Jemma and will do anything to protect her. Emmiline hales from the South and is new to Clear Creek. She and Jemma meet when both are traveling to the cozy little town. They become fast friends. Charlotte was her grandmother’s employee. She is clearly enamored with Brandon who clearly isn’t interested. She doesn’t like that Jemma and Brandon immediately step right back into their old friendship. We meet Kitty who was Jemma’s BFF but they lost touch over the years. She is excited to rekindle that friendship. Then you have Granny who knows everything about everybody and demands to be involved in everything. She is positively hilarious. Deputy Chase can be frustrating but he really tries hard to do his job even though it seems to take forever. All these characters are interesting and feel genuine for the time and place. Their interactions and dialogues all ring true. Oh! Mary had a cat too! A Selkirk Rex cat who is quite the kitty.

Ms. McKinnon has set this series in an interesting small town that is in the midst of reinventing itself into a shopping destination now that it is in the shadows of a new resort just a few miles away. Not everyone is happy about the changes which is typical of any small town. I loved the way the town rallies around Jemma making her feel at home and helping her through her grief. Her grandmother’s yarn shop sounds like a wonderful place. From all the yarns in baskets and cubbies to the table where people could meet to work on their projects, pick out new patterns, and met with friends to talk crafts or talk about events of the day and maybe even gossip a little. Every successful craft shop has to have a table like that.

The mystery was well-plotted with two people landing at the top of my personal suspect list pretty early. I was delighted by the way the mystery unfolded with clues that had me rethinking my theories quite a few times especially when another body is found. I did keep coming back to both characters even though my motives for them were a little muddy. I loved the way the final clue was glaring and surprising to Jemma. The reveal became very exciting! The motive turned out to be pretty complicated and not at all what I had imagined at all which I should have known was too basic.

Ms. McKinnon has set her series about to a spectacular start. The mystery was complex and the characters were engaging. Plus I am a sucker for a yarn shop theme. That theme and the series location remind me of Maggie Sefton’s Knitting Series that ended in 2018. Like that series, this author has a fantastic cast of characters and I am excited to visit them again and again. I also need to see if Jemma’s and Brandon’s relationship goes where I hope it does.

Fun and entertaining! A Perfect Escape!

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About Rebecca McKinnon

Rebecca McKinnon enjoys playing with her imaginary friends and introducing them to others through her writing. She dreams of living in the middle of nowhere but has been unable to find an acceptable location that wouldn’t require crossing an ocean.

Author Links

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Purchase Link:

Amazon 

Great Escapes Praise for The Yarn That Binds (Clear Creek Mysteries)
by Rebecca McKinnon

This new series will have you reaching for knitting needles and some new fun yarn. I think this is going to be a good new cozy series and we give it 5 paws up.
~Storeybook Reviews

The Yarn the Binds is one I will pass on to friends!
~Nellie’s Book Nook

A touch of humor, a dash of romance, and an intriguing mystery make THE YARN THAT BINDS a solid start to a charming new series.
~Cozy Up With Kathy

A must-read for cozy fans and those that just love yarn. I totally loved it so I give it 5/5 stars.
~Books a Plenty Book Reviews

TOUR PARTICIPANTS – Please visit all the stops.
April 6 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW
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Four Aunties and a Wedding by Jesse Q. Sutanto #Review

Four Aunties and a Wedding
Humorous American Literature
Asian American Literature & Fiction
2nd in Series
Setting – Oxford, England
Berkley (March 29, 2022)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 304 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0593440765
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0593440766
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B0989C66SZ

Meddy Chan has been to countless weddings, but she never imagined how her own would turn out. Now the day has arrived, and she can’t wait to marry her college sweetheart, Nathan. Instead of having Ma and the aunts cater to her wedding, Meddy wants them to enjoy the day as guests. As a compromise, they find the perfect wedding vendors: a Chinese-Indonesian family-run company just like theirs. Meddy is hesitant at first, but she hits it off right away with the wedding photographer, Staphanie, who reminds Meddy of herself, down to the unfortunately misspelled name.

Meddy realizes that is where their similarities end, however, when she overhears Staphanie talking about taking out a target. Horrified, Meddy can’t believe Staphanie and her family aren’t just like her own, they are The Family—actual mafia, and they’re using Meddy’s wedding as a chance to conduct shady business. Her aunties and mother won’t let Meddy’s wedding ceremony become a murder scene—over their dead bodies—and will do whatever it takes to save her special day, even if it means taking on the mafia.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Oh, my stars! The Aunties are back and have been let loose in England. Meddy and Nathan are getting married and to be sure they all can enjoy the wedding to the fullest they are hiring another family of wedding vendors. Except that other family is really connected if you get my drift . . . The Family . . . as in MAFIA!! And they are using Meddy’s wedding to pull off a hit! Meddy doesn’t find out that bit of information though until they have arrived in Oxford and she overhears her new friend, Staphanie on the phone planning the hit. As soon as the Aunties find out they are on high alert and ready to do anything to stop the dreaded plan and I mean anything.


Again, you need to suspend reality and escape totally into this book. It is so worth it. I laughed so hard in places I had tears rolling down my face.

Meddy is the perfect daughter. Brought up to respect her elders above all else even if her elders are certifiably crazy. The Aunties antics are above and beyond and positively delightful. They all mean well but between using British idioms and accents to their outlandish wedding attire that includes komodo dragons to contemplating bodily harm and murder to cover their tracks Meddy gets pushed to the edge and those are just my top three memories of craziness and there are so many more.

Ms. Sutanto has created such fantastic characters and not just Meddy and the Aunties. The supporting cast of Nathan and his family and Staphanie and her “mafia” family including three Uncles are superb as well. Nathan and his family are more toned down and buttoned up but Staphanie’s family is almost as nuts as Meddy’s.

The setting for the wedding sounds like such a beautiful place but also the perfect place for all the hi-jinks that occur, including another Weekend At Bernie’s scenario. I did enjoy the author’s descriptions as the characters traveled around the church grounds and back and forth to their hotel. I had no problem at all envisioning every place including the rooms where some really wacky things played out.

I did feel bad for Meddy and Nathan. Nathan was completely out of the loop but knew there was something going on. Meddy only got to enjoy a few minutes of her big day because she was rushing around trying to save someone’s life and trying to control uncontrollable situations set up by the Aunties. It was nice that the author did bring in some family cultural traditions even if they didn’t go as planned.

Wow, this was such a marvelous read! I have been talking about it for days to anyone who would listen. Funny, entertaining, mayhem times 10. I loved it!! Think My Big Fat Greek Wedding crossed with Crazy Rich Asians! And I want more. I hope there is a book three. Like Dial A For Aunties, this is a Must Read! You should read both in order for double the fun. I am giving this book my Paradise Rating. It will be on my Best Reads List for 2022. Run don’t walk to your nearest bookstore and get a copy today.

*Note: The book does include explicit language.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

Photo Credit Michael Hart

About the Author

Jesse Q. Sutanto is the author of adult, YA, and children’s middle-grade books. She has a master’s degree in creative writing from Oxford University, though she hasn’t found a way of saying that without sounding obnoxious. The film rights to her women’s fiction, Dial A for Aunties, was bought by Netflix in a competitive bidding war. Her adult books include Dial A for Aunties and its sequel, Four Aunties and a Wedding. Her YA books include The Obsession, The New Girl, and her upcoming rom-com, Well, That Was Unexpected. Her MG books include Theo Tan and the Fox Spirit and an untitled sequel.

Jesse has forty-two first cousins and thirty aunties and uncles, many of whom live just down the road. When she’s not writing, she’s gaming with her husband (mostly FPS), or making a mess in the kitchen with her two daughters.

Website     Facebook      Twitter    Instagram   

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 2022 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours Literary Escapes New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Fake Death (A Dotty Sayers Antique Mystery) by Victoria Tait #Review / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour

Fake Death (A Dotty Sayers Antique Mystery)
by Victoria Tait

About Fake Death


Fake Death (A Dotty Sayers Antique Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Cotswold, England
Kanga Press (April 8, 2022)
Number of Pages c. 240
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09TLDS3G1

A dead body. Multiple disguises. Can an amateur sleuth see through the charade – or become a tragic victim?

Young military widow, Dotty Sayers, is delighted with her new job at an auction house in Britain’s picturesque Cotswolds. She agrees to take part in a Remembrance parade to commemorate her husband and his fallen comrades. But drama ensues when an unknown soldier is found dead.

Dotty assists the police and appraises objects found at the victim’s house, but rather than identifying the deceased, she discovers numerous personas. When a suspect is arrested, and Dotty is asked to look after Earl Grey, a British Blue cat, she realizes appearances can be deceiving. Can she track down the real culprit and prevent an innocent man from being imprisoned?

Can Dotty unmask the killer without putting her own life at risk?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

In this new series from Victoria Tait, we meet Dotty Sayers. A young military widow now under the care of her husband’s regiment she is excited about her new job at Akemans Auction House. She still has duties to honor her husband like the Remembrance parade for him and his fallen comrades. She is nervous about being on public display and happy when her duty is complete. Then she learns a soldier was found dead after the event. The man has no identification on his person and Dotty agrees to help the police by checking out his home. She finds some very surprising things. She soon starts to put the clues together but can she reveal the killer before she becomes their next victim?


Dotty Sayers is a very interesting protagonist. Her life has changed since the death of her husband and she is just finding her way and handling her independence. In addition to starting a new job and helping to solve a murder, she has a very big decision to make. This character grew a lot over the course of this story and it will be fun to see her continue to evolve as the series continues.

Ms. Tait has surrounded Dotty with a strong cast of supporting characters Including the very entertaining Aunt Beanie and her niece, Gilly, as well as her other workmates, Marion, George, and David. She also has to deal with men from her husband’s regiment and the authorities. Constable Varma is quite a character. A bit of a clutz but she and Dotty form a quick friendship. All these characters are cleverly crafted.

The mystery was complicated and very well-plotted. I really enjoyed the antique theme and all the background provided about the work entailed to pull off a successful auction. David and Dotty’s travels to view and photograph items were very interesting and set up the mystery part of the story so well. It puts Dotty in fantastic places to find clues and follow where they led. The author provided wonderful detail to easily see everything clearly in my mind. From Dotty’s little cottage to the many rooms at the auction house to her trips to the Colonel’s office and more, she puts us right there on the scene. A second murder late in the book was surprising and emotional for all involved. I was definitely sad to see the character removed from the story but it was key to moving the story in the right direction.

I really enjoyed Ms. Tait’s Kenya Kanga Mystery Series so I knew I would enjoy this series as well. There couldn’t be two more different leading characters than Mama Rose and Dotty and they both have found a place in my heart. I am very excited to see what mystery Dotty gets caught up in next.

An excellent mystery with engaging characters in a wonderful setting. Fake Death has set this series off to a wonderful start. The second book in the series, Valued for Murder, is set to be released on June 10. My bags are already packed for my next virtual return trip to the Cotswolds.

*There is a prequel to Fake Death available on the author’s website. 

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About Victoria Tait

I was born and raised in Yorkshire, UK, and never expected to travel the world.  But I fell for an Army Officer, and I’ve followed him from Northern Ireland, up to the Scottish Highlands, across to Africa and the Kenyan Savannah, back to the British Cotswolds, and we are now living in Sarajevo, in Bosnia and Herzegovina, in Southern Europe.

I never expected to be an author, but all this moving is not ideal for holding down a job.  Instead, I’ve taken the experiences of the places I’ve lived to write vivid and evocative cozy mystery books with determined female sleuths.

I have two fast-growing teenage boys, and together we’ve learnt to ski on the Bosnian mountains.  I also enjoy horse riding, mountain biking and I’ve started running as a way to improve my physical fitness, mental well-being and shed some excess pounds.

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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 2022 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Literary Escapes New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

The Burning Pages: A Scottish Bookshop Mystery by Paige Shelton #Review @MinotaurBooks @AuthorPaige

Available Today!


The Burning Pages: A Scottish Bookshop Mystery
Cozy Mystery
7th in Series
Setting – Edinburgh, Scotland
Minotaur Books (April 5, 2022)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 304 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1250789486
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1250789488
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B092T9PSLR

Delaney Nichols faces off against an elusive arsonist in the seventh Scottish Bookshop Mystery, The Burning Pages, from beloved author Paige Shelton…

One winter’s night, bookseller Delaney Nichols and her coworker Hamlet are invited to a Burns Night dinner, a traditional Scottish celebration of the poet Robert Burns. She’s perplexed by the invitation but intrigued. The dinner takes place at Burns House itself, a tiny cottage not far from the Cracked Spine bookshop but well hidden. There, it becomes clear that Delaney and Hamlet were summoned in an attempt to make amends between Edwin, Delaney’s boss, and one of the other invitees, who suspected Edwin for burning down his own bookshop twenty years ago after a professional disagreement.

But after the dinner, there’s another fire. The Burns House itself is burned to the ground, and this time there’s a body among the ruins. When Hamlet is accused of the crime, Delaney rushes to prove his innocence, only to discover that he might actually have a plausible motive…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Robert Burns is known as the national poet of Scotland. Burns Night is celebrated around the world with Burns Suppers on the poet’s birthday. This year Delaney Nichols is invited to a local Burns Night Supper being held at the Burns House and she takes her friend and coworker Hamlet along as her guest. Unsure why this small group offered her the invitation she and Hamlet arrive cautiously at the event with Elias waiting outside in the car in case they wish to make a hasty exit. This is exactly what happens when they learn their invitation was only extended to make an effort to get their boss and another member of the group to reconcile a long-running feud. The member thought Edwin was the person responsible for burning down his bookshop twenty years ago and still believes so today.

Later that night a dead body is found when a fire burns the Burns House to the ground. Hamlet was seen back at the house shortly before the fire and becomes the prime suspect in the blaze and the murder. Delaney soon is on the case to prove his innocence but when some secrets are revealed she sees that is not going to be an easy task and she may need some extra help.


All my favorite characters return and they are joined by Delaney’s fabulous brother Wyatt in the seventh installment of this wonderful series. These core characters all continue to grow but the focus this time is truly on Hamlet when Delaney finds something surprising on the dark side of The Cracked Spine.

Delaney’s discovery is twisted up with the Robert Burns celebration and Edwin’s past connections to the local group. Readers are introduced to the small group including high-profile defense attorney Clarinda Creston and it is clear the woman is hiding something. To clear Hamlet Delaney must investigate the past and more twists and secrets take the story in several directions. I recall the moment the light bulb when off in my head as to who the real guilty party was but I wasn’t able to nail down everything until the very end. This author does an excellent job of misdirection.

Let’s face it, Delaney has a dream job in a dream location. I was so happy she was able to share it with her brother Wyatt and that he was able to help her in her sleuthing even if it meant just staying at the bookshop and keeping Rosie company. I loved the way they found a fast friendship and the way he found a place quickly within the group. I am so happy he agreed to visit again soon.

The Burning Pages was a sensational read. I love the way Paige Shelton tells a story and I really enjoyed the Robert Burns theme. She penned a complex story with multiple mysteries that kept me totally engaged from beginning to end. Her descriptions took me right in the middle of every scene and into Delaney’s exciting life. Again, the author has given me A Perfect Escape. Until next year, I can hardly wait.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About The Author

PAIGE SHELTON had a nomadic childhood, as her father’s job as a football coach took her family to seven different towns before she was even twelve years old. After college at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, she moved to Salt Lake City. She thought she’d only stay a couple of years, but instead, she fell in love with the mountains and a great guy who became her husband. After many decades in Utah, she and her family moved to Arizona. She writes the Scottish Bookshop Mystery series and the Alaska Wild series. Her other series include the Farmers’ Market, Cooking School, and Dangerous Type mystery 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 2022 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Finish The Series Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways Literary Escapes Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge TBR Pile Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Ink and Shadows (A Secret, Book and Scone Society Novel) by Ellery Adams #Review / #Giveaway @KensingtonBooks @ElleryAdams

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.

Ink and Shadows (A Secret, Book and Scone Society Novel)
Cozy Mystery
4th in Series
Setting – North Carolina
Kensington Cozies (January 26, 2021)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 304 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496726413
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496726414
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 320 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496726421
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496726421
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B087YR9M54

Controversy erupts in Miracle Springs, North Carolina when the owner of the local bookstore tries to play peacekeeper—but winds up playing detective instead . . .

Known for her window displays, Nora Pennington decides to showcase fictional heroines like Roald Dahl’s Matilda and Madeline Miller’s Circe for Halloween. But a family-values group disapproves of the magical themes and wastes no time launching a modern-day witch hunt. Suddenly, former friends and customers are targeting not only Nora and Miracle Books, but a new shopkeeper, Celeste, who’s been selling CBD oil products.

Nora and her friends in the Secret, Book, and Scone Society are doing their best to put an end to the strife—but then someone puts an end to a life. Declared an accident, the ruling can’t explain the old book page covered with strange symbols and disturbing drawings left under Nora’s doormat. It’s up to Nora and the Secret, Book, and Scone Society to sort out the clues before more bodies turn up and the secrets from Celeste’s past come back to haunt them all . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Secret, Book, and Scone Society Members

Nora, the owner of Miracle Books, tries to heal people’s woes with a unique set of books she personally selects for them.

Hester runs the Gingerbread House bakery. Customers tell her a little bit about their lives and what brought them to Miracle Springs. Then she bakes them up a “comfort scone”.

June works at the hot springs spa where people come to rejuvenate themselves.

Estella is a beautician who tries to help her clients find their true selves.

The latest amazing window display at Miracle Books highlights a group of fictional heroines and their stories that are perfect for Halloween. While many find the display fantastic a small group of women taunting family values have found the display offensive and plan to protest and boycott the store and make sure others do the same. It is not just Nora’s shop feeling the group’s ire. They are also targeting Red Bird Gallery and Gifts, and Soothe, a new shop that has just opened selling CBD oil products. Nora is livid and calls for a Secret, Book, and Scone Society meeting to find ways to thwart the “Women of Lasting Values Society”‘s efforts.

Meanwhile, Celeste Leopold and her daughter Bren are busy getting everything in Soothe the way they want it, hoping to draw in plenty of customers that can be helped by their products. Bren does not seem to be happy with their move to Miracle Springs though.

Later at the Farm to Table Festival Nora and her friends notice Bren sitting with a man they don’t recognize. After an altercation, the man takes off. Nora tries to talk to Bren and lets her know that she was there if Bren ever needs to talk. But before Bren can take her up on the offer Nora finds the young woman dead near her home and a very old page from a book filled with strange symbols and drawings under her doormat. The death is ruled accidental but Nora knows there is much more to the story. The Secret, Book, and Scone Society has a new case and they believe their key to finding the killer is in Bren and her mother’s past.


Ellery Adams is a treasure and so are her characters. The women of the Secret, Book, and Scone Society are so cleverly crafted. They all have their strengths and huge hearts supporting each other through thick and thin but also reaching out to help others in need.

In Ink and Shadows, they take Celeste under their wings as she deals with the death of her daughter. Helping out in her shop, bringing her dinner, and staying to share time with her. They also use their sleuthing techniques to try to find out who killed Bren and why. While these women have special “gifts”, they are so real, genuine, compassionate, and empathic even when they are facing their own drama. I quickly became invested in their lives while reading the first book in this series and with each subsequent book they draw me in even more.

I just have to say also that Sheldon is an excellent addition to this series. He is a perfect fit among this strong group of women. He is dealing with his own trials every day but fights to live his life to the fullest.

The mysteries included in this fourth book of the series were so interesting and intriguing. I really found myself caught up by the book page with the symbols and the mysterious book it came from along with Celeste and Bren’s life before coming to Miracle Springs. The book was very well-plotted with several surprises. I enjoyed the way so many members of the community were involved in the story. I was cheering when Nora got help with the family values group from some unexpected people and the way their ideas changed the landscape of many people’s thoughts.

Ms. Adams continues to feature some hot-button topics in her stories. I loved a scene where bullying was discussed. Nora continues to deal with the aftermath of her fire and that took a big step within these pages too, I hate to mention other topics because I don’t want to give too much of the story away.

The author drops a lot of diverse book titles throughout these books and she thoughtfully includes a full list at the end of the book. I always find myself highlighting several while I am reading to investigate later. The quotes at the beginning of each chapter are often very thought-provoking as well.

There was also one passage voiced by June that I would love to make into a poster:

“To me getting lucky is reading something so magical that I’m put under the book’s spell. That book owns me. I can’t think of anything else until I finish it. And I can’t think about anything else for days afterward. And the next book I read is doomed. It can’t take the place of the magic book. But I keep reading. I keep reading because I know that feeling will come along again.”

I totally agree with June.

Because of the theme of the series and the subjects presented I know a lot of research goes into each book so the length of time between each book release is very understandable. This book originally came out while I was dealing with my cancer treatments and I didn’t get to read it until now. The good thing about that is I only have to wait about a month before The Vanishing Type is released and I am so happy about that. Stay tuned I will be sharing my thoughts about that one soon.

Note – book does include some explicit language.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

Read my review of The Secret, Book & Scone Society here, The Whispered Word here. and The Book of Candlelight here.

About the Author

Posted in 2022 Reviews Cozy Wednesday Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways Literary Escapes New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Cozy Wednesday featuring Knit or Dye Trying (A Riverbank Knitting Mystery) by Allie Pleiter #Review / #Giveaway @BerkleyMystery

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I am excited to share my thoughts with you today about
Knit or Dye Trying!


Knit or Dye Trying (A Riverbank Knitting Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Maryland
Berkley (April 5, 2022)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 304 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0593201809
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0593201800
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B093YRVK42

Business is booming for Libby Beckett and her fabulous Maryland shop, aptly named Y.A.R.N., but when a town festival brings a fatality with it, Libby gets all tangled up in murder.

As spring comes to Collinstown, the village launches a food festival to draw a new group of tourists. Libby, the proud owner of Y.A.R.N., has planned a yarn event to provide an alternative option to a foodie weekend. Artisan fiber dyer Julie Wilson—known for her work with animal-friendly, plant-based knitting fibers such as bamboo and hemp as well as her brilliant use of color—will hopefully draw a crowd with a special dyeing workshop.

The festival begins, but it draws more than crowds. First, a flock of sheep parades down the street, herded by farmers protesting Julie’s antiwool stance. Then Julie’s celebrity chef sister appears, and the siblings resume a long-standing rivalry. Despite all this, Julie’s workshop has sold out. Libby is thrilled, and they’re preparing for a full house. But the night before the event, Julie is found alone in the warehouse event space—dead. The witty “Watch Julie Wilson Dye” workshop title now has a terrible new meaning—and it’s up to Libby to catch a crafty killer.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

As a clever marketing ploy, the village of Collinstown pulls out all the stops for the 1st See More Than Sea Food Festival. Not owning an eatery Y.A.R.N. owner Libby Beckett came up with her own twist, a Wield More Than Wool weekend. She invites Julie Wilson, an outspoken advocate for plant-based knitting fibers to speak at her event and do some demonstrations of her unique yarn dyeing methods. But everyone does not welcome the outspoken advocate with open arms. Local farmers organize a protest march complete with real live sheep baaing their way down the street. Also in attendance for the festival is Julie’s celebrity chef sister and there appears to be no love lost between them. Excited that her workshop is sold out Julie is not going to let her sister’s presence ruin her weekend and Libby is delighted. This could really be a stellar event for Y.A.R.N.

The night before the event Julie has everything she needs at the warehouse where her event will take place and gets to work dyeing the special fibers exclusive for the weekend. But when Libby goes to check on her the door is barred and the ventilation fans are off. Sadly, help arrives too late for Julie and Libby has a murder on her hands. Can she knit the clues together to catch Julie’s killer or will she get tangled up in the skein of their crime?


Having met many of these characters in the first book I was excited to dive right into Knit or Dye Trying. Libby Beckett is such a great protagonist. She is creative, hard-working, and truly loves her craft and sharing it with others. Her weekend would have been fantastic had it been able to take place. I am in awe of the 13-year-old Jillian’s talents. Libby just taught her to knit in the last book and she is excelling at a fantastic pace. Readers get a more in-depth look at all of Libby’s friendships including her relationship with the village Mayor Gavin. All come across as true to real life, especially in a small town like Collinstown. Libby’s bulldog and Y.A.R.N. mascot Hank continues to steal my heart too.

The author does portray small-town life very well. I was happy to see one character get taken to task. The sheep protest parade is something I could see happening. Animal rights vs. a farmer’s livelihood would be a hot-button issue. No sheep were injured by the spray paint and what would be more surprising than a flock of sheep just passing through town. Funny while getting the point across.

The mystery caught my attention from the start. Family tensions between Julie, her chef sister Monica, and Yale her brother-in-law really drive the story. Their competition and contention with each other has been building for a while but could it lead to murder? Or were the farmers so upset one of them went a step too far in the angst? The author does an excellent job twisting up motivations and opportunities. The method of death was scary and unique but not totally unexpected after reading Julie’s requirements a few times I knew they were key. The way the story played out though was surprising and heartbreaking.

I love reading crafty stories like this one. Before my accident 20+ years ago I enjoyed doing so many crafts including knitting and crochet. A place like Y.A.R.N. would have been a place where I would have spent many hours. All the new fibers in their vivid colors would have had me under their spell. Y.A.R.N.  “You’re Absolutely Ready Now” is the meaning Libby started with when opening her store. Many of her customers have added their own ideas using those letters.  For me, it means “You’re A Reader Now” because while I can no longer do the crafts I love but I can enjoy books about people who can, and when it’s a cozy mystery I can be an armchair amateur sleuth too.

Ms. Pleiter has knit together a fantastic group of genuine characters with a very well-plotted mystery in Knit or Dye Trying. She adds just the right amount of humor and romantic tension to keep cozy lovers blissfully happy.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About Allie Pleiter

An avid knitter, coffee junkie, and firm believer that “pie makes everything better,” Allie Pleiter writes both fiction and non-fiction working on as many as four novels at a time.  The bestselling author of over fifty books, Allie has enjoyed a twenty-year career with over 1.5 million books sold.  In addition to writing, Allie maintains an active writing productivity coaching practice and speaks regularly on the creative process, publishing, and her very favorite topic—The Chunky Method of time management for writers. Visit her website at www.alliepleiter.com to learn more.

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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 2022 Reviews Alphabet Soup - A - Z Reading Challenge Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways Literary Escapes TBR Pile Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Jellies, Jams, and Bodies (The Jelly Shop Mysteries) by Donna Walo Clancy #Review / #Giveaway

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.


Jellies, Jams, and Bodies (The Jelly Shop Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Maine
Independently published (March 15, 2019)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 176 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1798940612
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1798940617
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B07PM95ZJ6

Whipper Will Junction, a small coastal town in Maine, offers beautiful beaches and views of mountains in one destination. Small shops line Main Street, the hub of the town. The residents all know each other and each other’s business. Tourist season brings the place to life when the locals are outnumbered by visitors, fifty to one.

There hasn’t been a murder in Whipper Will Junction for over forty years. It has been a safe, quiet place to live. Now, bodies are popping up everywhere. To make matters worse, Richard Wells, the beloved town elder has disappeared.

While opening her new shop, Jellies, Jams, and Weddings, Tabitha Moon is thrust into her first real-life mystery to solve. Will she be able to find the murderer and rescue Mr. Wells in time?

Teaming up with her best friend, Jen Jones, and her new love interest, Greg Stone, they work together to make their town the safe place that it used to be.

With its cast of lovable locals like Gladys Twittle, Samantha Moon, and Sheriff Puckett, you will fall in love with Whipper Will Junction. Come visit!

WHERE THE GOSSIP IS PLENTIFUL AND SO ARE THE BODIES.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Tabitha Moon is preparing to open her new shop. Jellies, Jams, and Weddings soon in Whipper Will Junction, Maine. She just has to wait a couple of months for the current resident to vacate her shop. While she is waiting she is making plenty of jellies and jams, using her grandmother’s secret recipes,  and getting all of her wedding contacts lined up. There was one thing messing with her bliss, her lazy boyfriend whom she has now kicked to the curb. But then her apartment gets vandalized, her friend, landlord, and beloved community leader Richard Wells goes missing, and after not having a murder in 40 years bodies are piling up in Whipper Will.

Tabby does meet a really nice man though. Greg Stone owes the local flower shop and they seem to have an instant connection. He along with Tabby’s best friend Jen team up with Tabby to try to find Richard and put an end to a killer’s reign. As Greg and Tabby continue to jell she does her best to evade the killer but she may have put herself right in their path.  Is she going to be able to find her friend and survive? or is she going to find herself in a murderous jam?


With the exception of a few, I love the people of Whipper Will. Tabitha Moon is a great protagonist who is well-liked by everyone she meets. She is such a genuine person and I love that she is rekindling her grandmother’s jelly business. She and her friend Jen Jones are always up for an adventure and they love to solve mysteries. “When a mystery presented itself, Jenny was the brains and Tabby was the brawn”. I am sure they never dreamed they would be trying to solve a real-life murder mystery or trying to find a real missing person. Greg Stone is a wonderful man with a huge heart and he falls quickly for Tabby. She’s a little gun-shy due to her past relationships but I am excited about this relationship. Whipper Will is full of people with good hearts as they come together to help Tabby in her time of need but they all support each other so well too. The author has created truly wonderful characters and left them plenty of room to grow.

The mystery really revolves around Richard Wells and his properties. He is a very generous man and that was his downfall. I enjoyed the way the author plotted out the mystery. Tabby just could let anything go. Her observations didn’t always pay off but she did find a big clue that moved her thinking along. I enjoyed following along with her the entire way.

Ms. Clancy captured small-town life so well. From the gossip flowing to the closeness of the residents and the way they cared about each other. I loved Richard Stone, every town needs a man or woman like him. Gladys Twinkle aka The Mouth is hilarious! The little trick Tabby and Greg played on her was incredibly funny and so deserved. I giggled through the whole exchange.

Jellies, Jams, and Bodies is more than a mystery. It is a feel-good story. The small town of Whipper Will sounds pretty idyllic sans the murders and its people are unique in this day and age. Donna Walo Clancy’s first book in the Jelly Shop Mysteries series was a pure delight and I can’t wait to read the next book Jam Up and Jelly Fright to see what Tabby and her friends get into next.

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About the Author

Donna Walo Clancy (Donna Clancy) lives on Cape Cod, Massachusetts in the U.S.A. She is a single mom of three grown children and happily divorced.

Her first passion is writing. She also loves to read and all kinds of crafting. Flea markets and yard sales can hold her attention for hours.

In her down time, she loves to walk the beach with her dog, Zumiez, and her metal detector searching for lost treasures.

Not holding herself to a single genre, she writes whatever story she feels needs to be worked on at the time. Her favorite genre is cozy mysteries and she has several series on Amazon at the present time; The Jelly Shop Mysteries, The Shipwreck Café Mysteries, and Thelma and June’s Great Adventures.


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