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.
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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 052018
 

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.

Don’t panic, it is still me and I haven’t given up cozies. Before starting this blog I used to read quite a few Harlequin Romance novels even the Blaze titles like this one. To Complete my Alphabet Soup Challenge and the What’s in A Name Challenge I needed a title that began with “Z”. While searching I found I already had this book downloaded on my Kindle, so I went for the Contemporary Steamy Romance to complete both challenges. A little spice was a nice change. 

Zero Control
Contemporary Romance
Setting – Great Britain
Harlequin Blaze; (October 15, 2009)
Mass Market Paperback: 224 pages
ISBN-10: 0373795106
ISBN-13: 978-0373795109
Kindle ASIN: B002SVQDXM

Eros Vacations presents castles, Shakespeare…and sizzlin’ sex!

Live it up—literary style! Guests are whisked away to Great Britain for two weeks of luxury adventure, history and plenty of naughty possibilities! Whether it’s an illicit tower tryst, a romantic boat ride or even some hot dungeon action, your pleasure is our concern….

But both executive assistant Roxie Stanley and undercover security agent Dougal Lockhart have their own motives for this vacation. Except that sex—mind-meltingly great sex—is the only thing either can think about. It’s forbidden. It’s tantalizingly irresistible. And they’re losing control…over and over and over!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Undercover security agent Dougal Lockhart has been hired by Euros Vacations to find out who is sabotaging their resorts and tours. Roxie Stanley is on the tour as a mole for one of Eros competitors. They meet on the plane from the U.S. to Great Britain and they are immediately attracted to each other. He has signed a morality clause and is not supposed to fraternize with guests. She needs to complete her mission or she won’t get a promotion. A promotion she needs to pay for her sister’s college tuition. Both of them are keeping secrets but it isn’t long before they can deny their passion. What will happen at the end of this fantasy vacation? Will they tell each other the truth? Can they really build a relationship after just knowing each other for two weeks?

So this story does have a mystery, who is sabotaging Eros Vacations. Are they just pranks or is someone trying to take the company down?

After that, it is a hot, steamy, close to an erotic story that will have you needing a cold beverage and maybe cranking up the air conditioner. I was surprised by the daring sex scenes. A little bondage in a dungeon, quite a bit a role-playing, I mean the guy was dressed as Shakespeare, ala Shakespeare in Love complete with tight leather pants, a couple of encounters in public places, and some sizzling hot romance in her cottage.

I did enjoy that there was a story between all the sex. Dougal seemed always to be one step behind the saboteur, even thinking Roxie could be the one causing trouble. They also step in to help to help with a fencing demonstration when the people hired were unable to perform.

As expected from Harlequin Blaze, this story brought the heat. A spicy read for a cold autumn night. My only complaint, the mystery was not solved by the end of the book.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author (from Amazon)

Lori Wilde is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over 80 romance novels. She is a three-time RITA award nominee, a four time Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice nominee and has won numerous other awards. She earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Texas Christian University and holds a certificate in forensics. She is also a certified yoga instructor.

Her books have been translated into 27 languages and featured in Cosmopolitan, Redbook, Complete Woman, All You, Time and Quick and Simple magazines. She lives in Texas with her husband, Bill.

Find out more about Lori and her books on her website here.


I am giving 1 Kindle Copy sent directly from Amazon away.
The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
that can receive books from Amazon US.

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 19, 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 142018
 

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.

As a huge fan of Anna Lee Huber’s Lady Darby Mystery Series, I was thrilled when asked to review this book and the new book Treacherous Is the Night that is being released September 25. I will be posting my review on the 26th. So technically this book has not been screaming at me from the bookshelf, but from my wish list on Amazon. Thank you to the publicist at Kensington for granting my wish! 


This Side of Murder (A Verity Kent Mystery)
Historical Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – England
Kensington (September 26, 2017)
Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 149671315X
ISBN-13: 978-1496713155
Kindle ASIN: B01N4JS4N4

The Great War is over, but in this captivating new mystery from award-winning author Anna Lee Huber, one young widow discovers the real intrigue has only just begun . . .

England, 1919. Verity Kent’s grief over the loss of her husband pierces anew when she receives a cryptic letter, suggesting her beloved Sidney may have committed treason before his untimely death. Determined to dull her pain with revelry, Verity’s first impulse is to dismiss the derogatory claim. But the mystery sender knows too much—including the fact that during the war, Verity worked for the Secret Service, something not even Sidney knew.

Lured to Umbersea Island to attend the engagement party of one of Sidney’s fellow officers, Verity mingles among the men her husband once fought beside, and discovers dark secrets—along with a murder clearly meant to conceal them. Relying on little more than a coded letter, the help of a dashing stranger, and her own sharp instincts, Verity is forced down a path she never imagined—and comes face to face with the shattering possibility that her husband may not have been the man she thought he was. It’s a truth that could set her free—or draw her ever deeper into his deception . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Verity Kent lost her husband, Sidney, in The Great War. She has been trying to move on, probably not in the best ways, but then she receives a letter saying he may have committed treason before he was killed. The letter invites her to an engagement party for one of his fellow officers on Umbersea Island. At first, she doesn’t plan to go, but she needs to find out what proof the letter sender has. The group attending the party boards the ship to the island. Verity knows some of the attendees but realizes the mystery letter writer could be someone she knows or someone she will meet at the party. As the weekend progresses one guest is found dead and then another. She starts to believe her husband may be guilty and people are dying because of it. She is going to use everything she learned as part of the Secret Service to try to find out the truth. Hopefully, hers won’t be the next body found.

Verity Kent is a strong, smart, feisty and independent protagonist. Not even her husband knew she was working for the Secret Service during the war. She also has a really cool car! Meeting her husband’s fellow officers she finds that his battalion suffered a large number of casualties. She just can’t imagine her husband was a traitor, everything in her being tells her that is a lie. She meets Max Westfield, the Earl of Ryde, on her way to the ship, she is wary of him but as things start to spin out of control they start to work together to not only find the letter writer but a killer.

When the secondary characters are introduced we find it is a unique group. The soldiers are clearly suffering a malady of injuries, mentally and physically, setting a somber tone, but the fiancee goes over the top to create a party atmosphere. Some of the other ladies go along at first but one game idea turns the tables and fractures the group.

Ms. Huber captures the time period expertly, from the ship to the cars, the house, and the island. The imagery she creates with her words brings everything crystal clear in my mind. While reading the scenes in the pouring rain I found myself all crouched up in a blanket, like I was right there.

Basically a closed room mystery with a set number of suspects, everyone except Verity, it was not easy to solve. Everyone is hiding something. When the guests start dying, and a storm takes over the island the tension starts to rise and a surprising moment twists the story all around. This all sets up a very exciting finish.

This series is off to a marvelous start. I can wait to read Treacherous Is the Night, coming out September 25. 

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

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.

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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 September 28, 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 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.”

Aug 312018
 

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.

Passport to Murder (A Professor Prather Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – South Dakota/Minneapolis
Camel Press (September 15, 2017)
Paperback: 272 pages
ISBN-10: 1603816534
ISBN-13: 978-1603816533
Kindle – ASIN: B0746QGX9R

Start with an unlucky number. Throw in a romantic location. Include a dashing Frenchman and an uncompromising professor. And you have all the ingredients for a passport to murder. This semester, it seems that Professor Prather’s dreams are about to come true. Ever since she was a young girl, she’s imagined going to France, and her French colleague, André Duman, has finally made that trip possible. Over spring break, she and André are to lead a group of students and faculty to Paris to explore the City of Light. But before she can utter her first bonjour, a professor dies, and they are stuck is Minneapolis until they police allow them to go home. She returns to Copper Bluff with an unstamped passport and a mystery to solve. When André becomes the prime suspect, Emmeline puts her research skills to good use, determined to find out who really killed the professor and spoiled their spring break plans. With thirteen travelers assembled, the possibilities are varied and villainous. Luckily, her dear friend and sidekick, Lenny Jenkins, is close by. Together, they will sort through the conflicting clues even if it costs them time, trouble, or tenure.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

A trip to Paris sounds delightful. Professor Emmeline Prather is chaperoning the trip with her French colleague, André Duman, for students and other faculty members to the City of Light over Spring Break. After the 13 travelers bus trip to Minnesota, they board the plan for Paris. But they don’t get far before one of the other professors dies and the plane turns around. They have to stay in Minneapolis until the police can rule on the cause of death. Soon, it is declared murder and  André Duman is on the top of the suspect list. Emmeline returns to Copper Bluff determined to do everything she can to find the real killer. She may never get to Paris but she can save her friend.

This mystery starts out at a good clip and doesn’t let up. I read the whole thing in one evening. The mystery is like a closed room mystery a la Agatha Christie. Someone on that plane is the killer. Some of the suspects can be eliminated quickly, but others are hiding things and were sitting close enough to do the deed. The police and FBI zeroed in on one person and tried to make the evidence fit. Emmeline took the correct approach or following the evidence. When a second person dies the case really gets interesting.

Professor Emmeline Prather has a good level head on her shoulders. When she teams up with her friend Lenny, they are unstoppable. She follows the clues, does a little research and presents what she finds to Lenny and they talk it through. He is also around to ask questions she can’t. I enjoy how they work together and that they seem to be getting closer.

I liked the supporting cast, students, and faculty. They are a diverse group in age and backgrounds. They were believable and relatable.

I have read several cozy series set at a college and the author finds a way to make her setting unique. South Dakota is not a typical locale for a cozy mystery and having to travel to nearby Minneapolis opens up a bunch of new places to discover.

The author has given readers a well plotted and well-written story. She has created engaging characters that we can become invested in. I hope to visit Copper Bluff again soon!

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

© Julie Prairie Photography 2016

 

About The Author

Like her protagonist in the Professor Prather mystery series, Mary Angela lives on the Great Plains and teaches college writing and literature. When she’s not grading papers (when is she not grading papers?), she enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with her family. She and her husband have two amazing daughters, one adorable dog, and a cat who would rather not be limited by an adjective. For more information, go to www.maryangelabooks.com.

Author Links

Webpage     Blog     GoodReads      Facebook     Twitter

You can find my review of Book #1 – An Act of Murder here.

I am giving 1 Kindle Copy away!
Book will be sent directly from Amazon.

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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.”

 

Aug 242018
 

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 don’t know how I did it but when this book was up on NetGalley I requested it and when it came time to read and review it, I couldn’t find it on my Kindle or in my Amazon account. Then last week when I was there looking for another book it popped right up on the screen. I knew it was going to be this week’s Flashback Friday read immediately.


Body on Baker Street: A Sherlock Holmes Bookshop Mystery
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Massachusetts
Crooked Lane Books (September 12, 2017)
Hardcover: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 1683312996
ISBN-13: 978-1683312994
Paperback: 320 pages
ISBN-10: 1683314611
ISBN-13: 978-1683314615
Kindle ASIN: B06XW3K7F5

Gemma Doyle and Jayne Wilson are busy managing the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop and Emporium on Baker Street and adjoining Mrs. Hudson’s Tea Room in anticipation of the store’s upcoming book signing with the illustrious Renalta Van Markoff, author of the controversial Hudson and Holmes mystery series. But during the author Q&A session, dedicated Sherlockian Donald Morris verbally attacks Renalta and her series for disgracing Sherlock’s legacy, only to be publicly humiliated when the author triumphantly lashes back and gains the upper hand. That is until Renalta collapses on the table—dead.

Donald insists he didn’t do it and pleads to his friends to clear his name. Fortunately, Gemma and Jayne have no shortage of suspects between author’s bullied personal assistant, her frustrated publicist, the hapless publisher, a handsome rare book dealer, an obsessively rabid fan, and a world of other Sherlock enthusiasts with strong objections to Renalta’s depiction of the Great Detective. It’s up to the shrewd sleuthing duo to eliminate the impossible and deduce the truth before the West London police arrest an innocent man.

Dollycas’s Thoughts 

Gemma Doyle and Jayne Wilson are back and again find themselves in the middle of another murder investigation. This time an author, Renalta Van Markoff, comes to the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop and Emporium for a book signing and dies while signing a book. All eyes fall on the man, Donald Morris, that questioned her about her content during the Q & A Session. He is a huge fan of the original Sherlock Holmes and cannot abide by what she has done with the characters. Gemma knows he has strong beliefs about Holmes but she knows he wouldn’t kill anyone. She again teams up with her friend Jayne for a little sleuthing of their own.

Gemma is a unique character, very independent, strong, and super observant. She notices things everyone else seems to miss and she has no trouble at all speaking her mind, not only giving her opinions but pointing out the facts as she sees them. She can be a little much at first but readers quickly realize how much like Sherlock Holmes she really is. Jayne is the perfect Watson to her Sherlock and together they make a wonderful team.

The new cast for this story was very well fleshed out. The larger than life Renalta Van Markoff, her mousey personal assistant, Linda, and her protective publicist all come to life quickly in these pages.

The bookshop the author has created for Gemma is fantastic and it is described in great detail making it very easy to imagine in my mind. I love that is has a tea room connected. It is the perfect place to pick up a book and venture next door to read while enjoying a pot of tea.

The mystery was very well plotted and written but I had an alternate theory pop into my head almost immediately after the victim died and that theory was never realized in the story which surprised me. Instead, there was a clear set of suspects that emerged and there were several twists and turns before the actual killer was revealed. Once I let my theory go I narrowed down my suspects and figured out whodunit right before Gemma. But I was wrong about the motive 🙂 It was a fun mystery to read and follow along with Gemma. I will say Gemma is like a dog with a bone when she sets her mind on something. She puts herself into dicey situations because of that.

I love Gemma and Jayne and am Sherlock Holmes fan so this story/series really shines for me. I don’t think you can go wrong with any book by this author. She is a great storyteller who does her research to bring her readers fabulous stories. This one is no exception.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Vicki Delany is one of Canada’s most varied and prolific crime writers. Most recently, she is the author of the Year Round Christmas cozy mysteries from Berkley Prime Crime and (writing under the pen name of Eva Gates) the Lighthouse Library mysteries also from Berkley and the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop Mysteries for Crooked Lane Books. Find out more about Vicki Delany on her webpage here.

Coming November 13, 2018

Written as Eva Gates

GIVEAWAYI am giving away 1 Kindle Copy – Sent Direct from Amazon.

Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old who can receive a
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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.”

Aug 172018
 

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.

Dead Spider (A Loon Lake Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
17th in Series
Setting – Wisconsin
Gallery Books (May 23, 2017)
Hardcover: 208 pages
ISBN-10: 1440598800
ISBN-13: 978-1440598807
Paperback: 208 pages
ISBN-10: 1507204566
ISBN-13: 978-1507204566
Kindle ASIN: B01MYCJ8LL

In the next installment of the Loon Lake Mystery series, Lewellyn Ferris and Doc Osborne must solve a murder that shatters the picturesque Wisconsin lake town community at the height of summer.

On a lovely Sunday afternoon in late June, the annual Loon Lake Youth Fishing Tournament is coming to a close. People are happy, kids are full of ice cream, and teenagers are setting off firecrackers so loud that no one hears the gunshot.

But when the crowd thins out, an attractive young wife makes a grisly discovery: A single bullet to the head has killed her much older husband—the richest man in Wisconsin.

Meanwhile, as the murder investigation gets underway, Police Chief Lewellyn Ferris’s good friend and deputy coroner, “Doc” Osborne, is alarmed to hear that his oldest grandchild, fifteen-year-old Beth, has been caught in a drug sting.

And Loon Lake’s idyllic summer is further shattered when numerous elderly patients in the local nursing home discover they have been robbed.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Chuck Pfeiffer owns Pfeiffer’s Fishing, Golf, and Shooting Sports and is said to be the richest man in Wisconsin. He is the primary sponsor of the Loon Lake Youth Fishing Tournament. The final judging is underway and some fool is lighting off fireworks. As Doc Osbourne, his daughter and granddaughter are leaving they hear screams and rush back to find a man dead. Doc places a call to Police Chief Lewellyn Ferris, “Lewellyn, the richest man in Wisconsin just took a bullet to the brain.”

I have enjoyed all of my virtual trips to Loon Lake and this one was no different. No matter how busy Lew is trying to solve crimes she always finds time to get in the water for a little fly fishing with Doc. Sometimes they are joined by one or more other characters. The solitude she finds there shows the author’s love of fishing and being on the lake. My grandfather loved to fish and took me with him several times and every time I open one of these books memories of him just flood my mind.

The murder this time happened in a crowd of people, but no one seemed to see anything. Thankfully everyone including the people in the Pfeiffer tent were filming the day on cameras or their phones. Of course, no one actually caught the murder while it was happening, or did they? Lew calls in an expert to help them go through the tapes and really tune in to what they are seeing and it started to bring some suspects to light.

Doc also had another crime on his mind and that one takes a scary and horrific turn. It kept me right on the edge of my seat.

Ms. Houston drew me right into this story. After 17 books in the series, I am invested in these characters and care about what happens to them. She gave me a mystery that held my attention. I realized the killer just a little before Lew and Osbourne but the final reveal wasn’t what I hoped or imagined, but it was understandable.

Set in my home state I love reading the descriptions of the area and the mentions of familiar places. I think it is time to take a real live trip to loon lake instead of these virtual ones 🙂

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

To find out more about Victoria Houston visit her webpage here.

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with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

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something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
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Click the Like Button at the top of this post for a Bonus Entry.

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Contest Will End August 31, 2018, at 11:59 PM CST
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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.”

Jul 272018
 

On FlashbackFridays 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 snapped this book up last year when I saw it took place in Oklahoma. A hard state for me to fill on my Literary Escapes Challenge.

Gone with the Wings (Meera Patel Cozy Mystery Series)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting -Oklahoma
Self Published (June 7, 2017)
Paperback: 269 pages
ISBN-10: 1521448981
ISBN-13: 978-1521448984
Kindle ASIN: B071WHNM6K

Murder strikes a sleepy college town!

Meera Patel has not lived up to her potential. She’s back home after dropping out of grad school. She dishes up spicy food at the local diner and picks fights. Then her old nemesis Prudence Walker turns up dead in the school pond. Meera is accused of murder!

Things get worse for Meera when a new student goes missing. Can Meera convince the incompetent local cops that she is innocent?

Fall in Oklahoma has never been so exciting!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

In this story, we meet Meera Patel and her family. They are a very close family of Asian Indian descent and we see quickly how important their culture is to them. The story takes place in a small college town in Oklahoma. Meera works at the college library and her father is a professor there. His assistant is Prudence Walker, also a professor, and she has a huge crush on the man and that makes Meera positively livid. In fact, they have a huge argument in the stairway of her father’s building. So when Prudence ends up dead, Meera becomes the prime suspect. Then a student from India goes missing right after Meera has words with her and the police believe Meera is responsible for that as well. Meera wants to clear her name but her family believes she needs to leave things to the police. Of course, she does do a little investigating on her own, and that’s a good thing.

I like Meera, her family, and her friends and I really want to know more about them. But I think this book is a prime example of the 1st book in the series “itus” where you have to introduce all the characters, try to engage the reader and give us a great mystery too. This story reads more like Woman’s Fiction with a murder happening on the side. We meet the family and how they all connect, but there are a lot of details left for future books. One thing I quickly learned is this family loves to eat. All the food described sounds wonderful and there are recipes in the back of the book. However, the mystery definitely is playing second fiddle to the family part of the story.

As far as the missing person part of the mystery, Meera really does try to find the girl, which was not an easy task, but in the end, I was underwhelmed by this part of the plot. The conclusion, while plausible, doesn’t fit with the student we met in this story.

I didn’t like the way the murder part of the mystery evolved either. The police officer was a family friend, dating the deceased and decided Meera was guilty immediately.  His harassment of Meera was very uncomfortable and he should have been removed from the case. The way it wrapped up just didn’t feel right to me, it was a stretch to believe.

I did enjoy learning more about Indian culture and the food.

The authors writing style is unique, it really needs some editing to tighten it up. I hope I am right and that the mystery will be more primary in book 2 because I would like to visit this family again.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Find out more about Leena Clover and her books 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.

Easy Entry 

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

Contest Will End August 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.”

Just in Time (A Dodie O'Dell Mystery) by Suzanne TrauthOrder Your Copy Today!
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