Posted in 2021 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways Literary Escapes TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Antiques Roadkill: A Trash ‘n’ Treasures Mystery by Barbara Allan #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.


Antiques Roadkill: A Trash ‘n’ Treasures Mystery
Cozy Mystery (some explicit language)
1st in Series
Setting – Iowa
Kensington Books (August 1, 2006)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 232 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0758211910
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0758211910
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 287 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0758211929
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0758211927
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B004NNUZ3W

Determined to make a new start in her quaint hometown on the banks of the Mississippi, Brandy Borne never dreams she’ll become the prime suspect in a murder case. . .

Moving back in with her eccentric, larger-than-life mother, Brandy Borne finds small-town Serenity anything but serene. It seems an unscrupulous antiques dealer has swindled Vivian out of the family’s heirlooms. But when he is found run over in a country lane, Brandy becomes Murder Suspect Number One–with her mother coming in a very close second. . .

The list of other suspects is impressive–the victim’s business seems to have been based on bilking seniors out of their possessions. And when the Borne “girls” uncover a few very unsavory Serenity secrets, they become targets for a murderer whose favorite hobby seems to be collecting victims.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I have wanted to start this series for some time and put it on my calendar now to help me hopefully finish my Literary Escapes Reading Challenge this year. I am a stickler for reading books in order I had to start from the beginning.

Brandy Borne has left her son and ex-husband behind and returned to Serenity, Iowa with her blind dog to start over and to her sister, Peggy Sue’s delight for help to keep a handle on their outgoing mother who clearly has mental issues. Issues that have allowed her to be taken advantage of by a shady antique dealer. Shocked to find many of her family’s heirlooms gone Brandy vows to get them back. Before she can do that though, the man is killed and both Brandy and her mother separately were on the scene before the police. That lands them the prime two spots on the suspect list. Heck, at first they thought the other one had done the deed. But it seems Vivian Borne wasn’t the only senior citizen the victim scammed out of their antiques. In fact, there is a pretty nice list and Brandy and her mom put their own lives on the line to solve the case.


I need to first say the authors have a unique writing style that takes a few chapters to get used to. The asides really messed with the flow and for me, the foul language has no place in a cozy mystery. I was shocked when a certain word lit up the page.

I really had a hard time with the main character of Brandy. She seemed to care more about her vintage wardrobe and her blind dog than the son she left behind. That really hurt my heart. I realize this book was written back in the early 2000s but Vivian’s mental illness was jabbed at in humourous ways too many times. She was active in the community, a voice to be previously reckoned with but no one seemed concerned when the woman went off her meds. With Brandy not on the scene, I blame her sister while understanding that taking care of a bi-polar parent can be a handful.

The mystery itself was very interesting but more meandering than a typical cozy mystery with many inconsistencies. It did come to a satisfactory conclusion but the exciting chase to the big reveal just escaped me this time.

I do love the antique theme and the publisher stuck by this series for 14 installments. (The 15th book was published by another publisher this past June.) I am hoping that the downfalls were just growing pains as the husband and wife team of writers were learning to write as a duo. So I am not writing this series off, it wasn’t totally “roadkill”.  I plan to read Antiques Maul next year for my Literary Escapes Challenge. with high hopes.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

Barbara Allan is the joint pseudonym of acclaimed short story writer Barbara Collins (Too Many Tomcats) and New York Times bestselling mystery novelist Max Allan Collins (ROAD TO PERDITION). Their previous collaborations have included one son, a short story collection, and five novels, including the 2008 winner of the Romantic Times Toby Bromberg Award for Most Humorous Mystery, ANTIQUES FLEE MARKET. They live in Iowa in a house filled with trash and treasures. Website

I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy!

The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

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

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 December 17, 2021, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
The Winner Will Be Notified By Email and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

*This book is part of my personal collection. 

Posted in 2021 Reviews Cloak and Dagger Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways Literary Escapes Read The Printed Word Challenge TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Hope Never Dies: An Obama Biden Mystery by Andrew Shaffer #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.


Hope Never Dies: An Obama Biden Mystery
Mystery/Humorous
1st in Series
Setting – Delaware
Quirk Books; First Edition (July 10, 2018)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 304 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1683690397
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1683690399
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B075HY5NPF

Vice President Joe Biden and President Barack Obama team up in this high-stakes thriller that combines a mystery worthy of Watson and Holmes with the laugh-out-loud bromantic chemistry of Lethal Weapon’s Murtaugh and Riggs.
 
Vice President Joe Biden is fresh out of the Obama White House and feeling adrift when his favorite railroad conductor dies in a suspicious accident, leaving behind an ailing wife and a trail of clues. To unravel the mystery, “Amtrak Joe” re-teams with the only man he’s ever fully trusted: the 44th president of the United States. Together they’ll plumb the darkest corners of Delaware, traveling from cheap motels to biker bars and beyond, as they uncover the sinister forces advancing America’s opioid epidemic.

Dollycas Thoughts

Joe Biden is trying to adjust to life after his term as Vice President and his life seems quite boring when compared to his best friend who seems to be jet-setting around the world and living the high life.  But when Amtrack Joe learns from the former President that one of his favorite railroad conductors has died a gruesome suspicious death they decide to work together to get justice for a man Joe thought he knew pretty darn well. What they are saying about him just doesn’t add up and Joe is determined to prove it.


Oh, my stars! Why did I wait so long to read this book? I had snapped it up soon after it came out and it had been languishing on my To-Be-Read shelf ever since. Seeing it was set in Delaware instead of Washington like I first thought I moved it up the stack to help me hopefully complete my Literary Escapes Challenge this year.

Told from the former VP’s viewpoint we are taken on a fabulous journey involving serious topics but in a way that will have you laughing out loud.

The world-famous bromance had hit a bit of a bump in the road until tragedy strikes and brings the dynamic duo back together in an adventure that takes them to the deep dark underbelly of the state Joe calls home. Filled with edge of your seat moments and hilarious interludes this book was very hard to put down.

I am amazed to learn that Hope Never Dies is Andrew Shaffer’s first mystery although not his first humorous work. He has blended both together in this novel masterfully. He has really caught his character’s essence. Biden’s stories and one-liners which we now know even better now that he is President, and Obama’s wit and style clearly shine within these pages. I also love the few cameo appearances of Jill Biden. She knows Joe and seems totally unphased by whatever he has gotten himself into.

The one word that comes to mind about the author’s treatment of the characters and the situations is clever. While the death and the crimes that take place could be very real he has cleverly put two of the most well-known people in the world into the position of detectives but I use the term of detectives very loosely.

If you are looking for a fantastic escape, look no further than Hope Never Dies because readers are truly taken on an escapade. 5 Stars! A Perfect Escape!!!

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

Andrew Shaffer is the New York Times bestselling author of more than a dozen books. He lives with his wife, novelist Tiffany Reisz, in Lexington, Kentucky, where he teaches at the non-profit Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning. This is his debut mystery.

 

I am giving one Kindle Copy!
The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old.

(I had intended to giveaway by paperback copy but my laughter piqued another resident in this household’s interest
and he doesn’t read as fast as I do.)

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
for 3 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 December 10, 2021, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
The Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

*This book was from my private collection.

Posted in 2021 Reviews Alphabet Soup - A - Z Reading Challenge Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Killer Comfort Food (A Farm-to-Fork Mystery) by Lynn Cahoon #Review / #Giveaway @LynnCahoon @dollycas

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.


Killer Comfort Food (A Farm-to-Fork Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Setting – Idaho
Lyrical Underground (January 5, 2021)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 186 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1516109929
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1516109920
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B086Z7KRFC

Angie Turner’s Idaho restaurant, the County Seat, is known and loved for its fresh food. For Angie, it’s also meant a fresh start. But when big agriculture comes to town—along with whispers of foul play—Angie could lose more than the farm . . .

A soybean processing plant is trying to buy up the land around the small farm Angie’s beloved Nona left her. If Angie doesn’t sell, she’ll be surrounded by the plant and the congestion that comes with it. On the other hand, it’s Nona’s farmhouse. What is Angie supposed to do without it?  Move into a condo in town with Precious, Mabel, and Dom—respectively, a goat, chicken, and dog. Worse, a troubling rumor is circulating about the lawyer who’s heading up the development: His socialite wife seems to be missing. When Barb, owner of the local bar, asks Angie to look into the woman’s disappearance, she’s hesitant—until Barb reveals her surprising connection. Now it’s up to Angie to find the woman, uncover a shady plot, and hang onto her home—before she becomes a criminal’s final course . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Angie Turner’s main focus should be her farm-to-table restaurant, The County Seat, but the impending chance of losing her home has grasped almost all of her attention. A company is trying to bring a soybean processing plant to the area and they are buying up all the land around her farm but she is holding out. It was her Nona’s farm and she is determined to keep what she has inherited. Adding to her full plate is the death of a young woman and a missing woman who may be connected to the soybean development through her lawyer husband. She knows there is some shady business going on and finding the missing woman may be the key.


I have to start this review by saying I love the book cover. Nothing better than a St. Bernard getting into a bit of mischief.

Ms. Cahoon has her main character juggling a lot of balls in the air in this 5th Farm to Fork Mystery. Thankfully she receives some help from the supporting cast. What I love about these characters is that they are so true to life. People you would meet in any small town. Most with generous hearts and a willingness to help anyone they possibly can. Of course, you have a few bad apples out to line their own pockets and at least one that has resorted to murder but you need those dastardly characters to round out a killer cozy mystery. I really enjoyed how more of that supporting cast played larger roles in this story. It really adds to the development of the series as a whole. Nancy was one of those people and the way the people rallied to help her especially warmed my heart.

The author has written a complicated story with several mysteries to solve within these pages. She intertwines all of them together with a measured hand allowing each the time necessary to evolve and solve. A variety of suspects, drama, and suspense all draw the reader deeper into the story.  I was entertained by the wonderful twists and surprised by some of the outcomes too.

Killer Comfort Food takes readers on quite a journey. I was kept engaged from the first page to the last. Family is the strong theme that prevailed throughout the book and I love reading books like this. In addition to a great mystery, there is a positive affirmation. I can’t wait to visit these characters again to see what happens next in A Fatal Family Feast.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

ABOUT LYNN CAHOON:

New York Times and USA Today best-selling author, Lynn Cahoon is an Idaho native. If you’d visit the town where she grew up, you’d understand why her mysteries and romance novels focus around the depth and experience of small-town life. Currently, she’s living in a small historic town on the banks of the Mississippi river where her imagination tends to wander. She lives with her husband and two fur babies.

Author Links

Goodreads – Twitter –Facebook Website –Amazon Author Page

 



Coming January 4, 2022

I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy!

The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

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

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 December 3, 2021, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
The 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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Crafty Cozy Challenge Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Finish The Series Challenge Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

A Murder Between the Pages: A Book Shop Cozy Mystery (Main Street Book Club Mysteries) by Amy Lillard #Review @PPPress @AmyWritesRomance

I apologize for my delay in posting this review.

A Murder Between the Pages: A Book Shop Cozy Mystery
(Main Street Book Club Mysteries)

Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Mississippi
Poisoned Pen Press (November 24, 2020)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 320 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1492687804
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1492687801
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B0861BGZGR

This murder will have to be solved by the book…

It was only a few months ago that the ladies of Arlo’s Friday Night Book Club—Fern, Camille, and Helen—solved the murder of the renowned author, Wally Harrison. So when they select Wally’s bestseller, Missing Girl, for their next discussion, Arlo is hopeful it will be the end of their mystery hunt.

But since their recent success as sleuths the crew officially see themselves as a women’s mystery club, and they’re convinced Missing Girl was inspired by a 50-year-old cold case. It’s a case from their own Sugar Springs, Mississippi—the disappearance of Mary Kennedy—and Arlo can do little to stop the book club ladies from investigating.

But what starts out as a fun hunch quickly turns into a very real cold case murder mystery when a young girl is murdered in the exact place the women believe Mary went missing all those years ago. It’s clear the two cases are connected—and the mystery book club is determined to find answers. With Arlo’s help, they may just be able to crack the case.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

We return to Arlo and Chloe’s Books & More in this second book in the Main Street Book Club Mysteries where the Friday Night Book Club, which meets each day at noon are discussing Missing Girl by the now-deceased Wally Harrison. (Can’t Judge A Book by Its Murder) The elderly members of the group, Fern, Camille, and Helen, are sure the book was derived from a 50-year-old-case when piano teacher Mary Kennedy went missing after giving a lesson to the son of a wealthy family.

When the ladies travel to the very manor where the disappearance occurred to pick up a book donation they witness another murder. They are convinced the two murders are connected and no matter how hard Arlo tries to direct their attention elsewhere they are intent on investigating both murders come hill or high water.


I will confess when I started this book I stopped to be sure I hadn’t already read it because the young woman’s death was very similar to something I had remembered reading before. I had not read this book and as I got further into it the similarity faded away.

Arlo is a terrific character. Her book club plan did not come together as planned but she rolled with it and accepted that she ended up with Fern, Camille, and Helen. It sure turned out to be a lot more work especially now that the ladies see themselves as amateur sleuths instead of book club members. It tests Arlo’s patience but I enjoyed tagging along to see what kind of mischief they were going to get into much to Arlo’s dismay. Arlo also has man trouble, personally and tangentially. With both Sam and Mads back in her life, she is dealing with old feelings and new. Plus Camille is dating a very interesting man that no one knows anything about. Ms. Lillard has created a wonderful group of characters. They make me laugh and a bit nervous at times but all are characters I want to follow through their adventures.

As I said the new mystery felt familiar but the way the author twisted it to encompass the old cold case caught my interest. While nosing around a certain event got the ladies all twitterpated. They were all in on solving both mysteries. I was nicely entertained by the way the drama all played out. Ms. Lillard threw in some wonderful twists and turns that really muddied my thinking. I really enjoyed the subplot about Chole and her son too.

There is plenty of humor sprinkled through this story including the antics of some spry octogenarians but also from a certain parrot named Faulkner. His quips and one-liners had me in stitches.

A Murder Between the Pages was a delightful trip back to Sugar Springs, Mississippi. I am excited to know I will be returning in just a couple of weeks when I read and review A Murder Like No Author.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

About Amy Lillard

Amy Lillard is the award-winning author of more than twenty novels, including the Wells Landing series, The Quilting Circle novels, the Sugarcreek Amish Mysteries and the Kappy King Mysteries. Born and raised in Mississippi, she now lives with her husband and son in Oklahoma. Please visit her online at www.AmyWritesRomance.com.

Author Links:

Coming November 30, 2021

Cozies also by Amy Lillard

Find more books by Amy Lillard here.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

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 2021 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Finish The Series Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways Literary Escapes TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge Wisconsin Author Wisconsin Setting You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Last Call (Mack’s Bar Mysteries) by Allyson K. Abbott #Review / #Giveaway @KensingtonBooks

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.

Last Call (Mack’s Bar Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
Setting – Wisconsin
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Kensington (July 31, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 368 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496701747
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496701749
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B0776GL23W

A bar owner taps into her special sleuthing talents when a businessman is shot in this top-shelf mystery with drink recipes included.

Fresh off solving a murder that hit too close to home, Mack’s trust is shattered. But when Milwaukee police detective Duncan Albright asks for her help with a shooting, she can’t resist using her extra-perceptive senses to benefit others. It turns out the victim was the ruthless businessman their friend Mal was investigating undercover. And now Mal is missing—and his fingerprints are on the gun. Was his cover blown, forcing him into hiding? Or could he be a straight-up killer on the run? Mack doesn’t know what to believe anymore—except her own gut, which leads her to secret rooms, shocking revelations . . . and the fear that this could be her final round.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Bar owner Mackenzie “Mack” Dalton is brought into her first authorized case as a consultant for the Milwaukee Police. With Detective Duncan Albright by her side, they arrive at the scene of a shooting. The victim is a man undercover cop Mal O’Reilly has been investigating. Now Mal isn’t answering his phone and they have no idea where he is but his fingerprints are on the murder weapon. Mack and Duncan know they need to find their friend fast because his cover could be blown. Also, his family is in town to install an elevator in Mack’s Bar and they are going to want answers. Duncan and Mack can’t believe Mal killed a man and fled the scene.  But then Mack’s special talents lead her to something very surprising in the house where the shooting occurred that could blow the case wide open.


I have really enjoyed this series. Ms. Abbott’s characters are so realistic. Mack’s Synesthesia may be a little bit out there but it is a real condition which she has really fined tuned to give her the ability to help the police. Her romantic relationship with Duncan is heating up, but darn, I was team Mal, especially after we met his family in A Toast to Murder. I loved that their visit continued into this book. The bartenders, servers, and customers are all like Mack’s family and I know that feeling because my parents bought a bar when I was in Junior High and we lived in the apartment upstairs. Like Mack, I spent a lot of time downstairs helping in any way I could and got to know the regulars pretty darn well. We didn’t have a Capone Club but we did have some epic Euchre tournaments. Sadly, Mack had to deal with a lot of tragic events over the course of the series, and each helped to shape her into the fantastic person she is now.

The mystery in this book was marvelous. I am not going into a lot of details because I do not want to spoil anything. I will say Mack uses her gentle soul, her synesthesia, and her own history to get a witness to open up to help solve the case. I really liked that Mack really played a key role in her first case as a consultant and that she changes a lot of minds. I had thought Mack would take an incredible step, but she didn’t. She did take another step that I thought was a bit too soon, but there was a reason for that.

Sadly Last Call is truly the last call. This is the final book in this series that took place over a very traumatic year in Mack’s life.  It was a pleasure to meet her and everyone connected to her life, great people, and even the unsavory ones. I was late to the party on this series but I am so happy I found it and was able to read all six books and was able to share my reviews with you.

The author gave plenty of background in this book so new readers can read this book as a stand-alone, but I really encourage you to read the series from the start so you can get to know the people in Mack’s world from the start.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

 

Allyson K. Abbott is a pseudonym used by suspense writer Beth Amos. Beth has enjoyed a varied writing career that included a stint as a book reviewer and several years of nonfiction freelancing. Now she writes only fiction, and in stark contrast to her “day job” as an ER nurse, where she gets to save lives, the one common factor in her fiction, no matter what name it’s written under, is that someone always dies. Allyson K. Abbott is my little insider joke at having to pick yet another pseudonym. It’s not a coincidence the initials are what they are.  Check out her webpage here and on Facebook here. Allyson also writes as Annelise Ryan.

Kindle copies of these books go on sale quite often.
As I write this the first book is on sale for $1.99. 

I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy!

The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

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

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 November 26, 2021, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
The 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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Finish The Series Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge Wisconsin Author Wisconsin Setting You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – A Toast to Murder (Mack’s Bar Mysteries) by Allyson K. Abbott #Review / #Giveaway @KensingtonBooks

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


A Toast to Murder (Mack’s Bar Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Kensington (July 25, 2017)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 352 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496701720
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496701725
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B01M6AOYKL

As the champagne flows on New Year’s Eve, a bar owner and her buddies try to solve a bouncer’s murder in a sparkling mystery with drink recipes included.

As Milwaukee counts down to New Year’s Eve, bar owner Mackenzie “Mack” Dalton has but one resolution—unmask the dangerous mastermind who has been taunting her and killed bouncer Gary Gunderson. Mack and her fellow barflies have fleshed out a suspect and arranged an invite-only party to put a cork in the murderer’s game for good. But when the clock strikes midnight and their suspect is found cold and stiff on the basement stairs, it seems the celebration may have come too soon. Now Mack must rely on her special talents to find the real criminal among the crowd of revelers—or someone won’t survive until last call . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

With New Year’s Day approaching bar owner Mackenzie “Mack” Dalton has decided she has just one New Year’s resolution . . . to get her life back! Two people close to her have been killed and she knows she is next. This dastardly letter writer has threatened her and her friends long enough. She has a plan to nab the killer right after the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s and put an end to the race against time she has been on long enough.

What could possibly go wrong?


Ms. Abbott has created a large dynamic and diverse cast of characters over the course of this series. I find them very easy to keep track of because of the excellent character development that has taken place. The cool thing is there is still room for them to grow. I love the Capone Club and its endeavors to solve mysteries. Mack has kept her personal case from most of them to try to keep them safe. She really does put everyone else first. Still on crutches she and the undercover cop pretending to be her boyfriend Mal work hard to chase down clues before the time runs out staving off another death.

What I really enjoy is virtually traveling with these characters to Milwaukee’s wonderful tourist attractions. In this book, we visit the Mitchell Domes, the Pabst Mansion, and the Milwaukee Museum all decked out in their holiday finery. They are all places I love to take my family. They also have perfect little nooks and crannies and dirt for Mack and Mal to look for clues. It was fun the last few books to go everywhere with them but being tied to a possible murder made things intense.

In past installments, there was always a primary mystery with the letter-writer mystery holding the secondary place. This time it had to be the main mystery to enable it to reach its satisfying conclusion. The author added plenty of twists and turns. Many involved Mack’s special Synaesthesia gift and others good old-fashioned legwork. With a long list of suspects, they had a quagmire of details to work through.

Also wrapped up at the end of this story was the romantic triangle of Mack, Duncan, and Mal, but I was pretty unhappy with the choice she made. I am curious to see how the relationship she has chosen works.

A Toast to Murder is a complex mystery with genuine characters. Having it set close to where I live and have traveled and the fact that I grew up in a bar environment too makes this series extra special for me. It was a Perfect Escape.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

Allyson K. Abbott is a pseudonym used by suspense writer Beth Amos. Beth has enjoyed a varied writing career that included a stint as a book reviewer and several years of nonfiction freelancing. Now she writes only fiction, and in stark contrast to her “day job” as an ER nurse, where she gets to save lives, the one common factor in her fiction, no matter what name it’s written under, is that someone always dies. Allyson K. Abbott is my little insider joke at having to pick yet another pseudonym. It’s not a coincidence the initials are what they are.  Check out her webpage here and on Facebook here. Allyson also writes as Annelise Ryan.

I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy!

The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

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

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 November 19, 2021, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
The 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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Alphabet Soup A -Z Author Edition Challenge Cloak and Dagger Challenge E-Book Challenge Flashback Friday TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Let Her Be (Hush Collection) by Lisa Unger #Review / #PrimeFree

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.


Let Her Be (Hush Collection)
Thriller & Suspense Short Reads
1 of 6 Books in This Series (Book 6 0f 6)
Setting – New York
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Amazon Original Stories (July 30, 2020)
Print length ‏ : ‎ 56 pages
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08BTZT8HS

A writer’s misguided suspicions ruined his life once before. This time he plans to prove he’s right in a New York Times bestselling author’s haunting short story of what happens when seeing is not believing.

Will, an aspiring novelist, can’t stop parsing his ex-girlfriend’s popular social media accounts for clues that her ideal new rural life with the perfect man has a dark side. After all, nobody he knows has actually seen the blissful blogger in the flesh for nearly a year. When Will draws a wary friend into his “investigation,” the real question becomes who’s truly in danger.

Lisa Unger’s Let Her Be is part of Hush, a collection of six stories, ranging from political mysteries to psychological thrillers, in which deception can be a matter of life and death. Each piece can be read or listened to in one truly chilling sitting.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Will is an aspiring author who recently survived a suicide attempt following the breakup with her girlfriend. He just can’t stop checking her social media accounts and blog showing she is living her best life with the perfect man. She not only left him behind but her friends and family behind. He meets up with one of her friends and they decide to try to find her but this investigation doesn’t go the way he thought it would.


I had a book by Lisa Unger a couple of years ago that I really enjoyed so when this book popped up in my Amazon feed as a “book you may like” I added it to my wish list and recently saw I could read it for free with my Amazon Prime I decided to use it for my “U” author for my Alphabet Soup – Author Edition Challenge. Due to the suicide element, I had to prepare myself to read it and was finally able to do the last week. I am so glad I did!

This is a short story of just 56 pages and wow, the author packed a lot into those pages. After getting through the first few pages I was totally engrossed in this story.

Will is a totally flawed individual. He is still extremely upset that he drove his girlfriend away. After the breakup, he moved into a stalker phase so much so that he received a restraining order. He was clearly struggling, hence the suicide attempt but now he is seeing a counselor and trying to get his life in order but that girlfriend is always filling his thoughts.

Ms. Unger rachets it up the suspense when Will wonders if Anise is really safe? Is she living her ideal life? Let me just say there should have been steam coming out of my Kindle because of how fast I was reading to get those answers.

Wow, all I can say is the ending was awesome.

Let Her Be is a fast read made faster by the content. It was a Perfect Mini Escape. I need to read the other five short stories in the Hush Collection as well as some longer content by Lisa Unger.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

If you have Amazon Prime you can read or listen to this story and the whole Hush Collection for FREE! If you don’t have Amazon Prime you can buy this book and others in the collection for$1.99 each. 

About the Author

Lisa Unger is the New York Times bestselling author of Confessions on the 7:45 and the Edgar Award–nominated short story The Sleep Tight Motel. Her books have been published in twenty-six languages and her essays have appeared in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal and on NPR.

*This book was from my private collection. Received using Amazon’s Prime Free Program.
Posted in 2021 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Howloween Murder (A Melanie Travis Mystery) by Laurien Berenson #Review / #Giveaway #KensingtonCozies @KensingtonBooks

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.


Howloween Murder (A Melanie Travis Mystery)
Cozy Wednesday
26th in Series
Setting – Connecticut
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Kensington (August 25, 2020)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 208 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496730577
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496730572
Paperback ‏(August 24, 2021) : ‎ 192 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496730585
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496730589
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B082WRWK5X

As the town of Greenwich, Connecticut, counts down to a spooky celebration on October 31st, a horrifying murder leaves Melanie Travis pawing for clues in a hair-raising game of trick-or-treat . . .

With just a few days left before Halloween, everyone at Howard Academy is anticipating the guaranteed sugar high they’ll experience from gorging on Harriet Bloom’s famous marshmallow puffs. The school’s annual costume party revolves around the headmaster’s assistant and her seemingly supernatural batches of gooey goodies. So, it’s a shock when Harriet’s elderly neighbor is suddenly found dead with the beloved dessert in his hand.

Melanie knows her tenured colleague would never intentionally serve cyanide-laced puffs to a defenseless old man. But as explosive neighborhood gossip reveals a potential culprit, it also brings her closer to sealing her own doom. Because on an evening ruled by masked revelers, Halloween might just be the perfect opportunity for a cold-hearted killer to get away with murder once again—this time sending a nosy, unsuspecting sleuth to an early grave!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Howard Academy is getting ready for their annual Halloween costume party complete with the headmaster’s secretary’s marshmallow puffs. Harriet Bloom has been providing the treats for years and she even shares them with her neighbors. Everyone looks forward to these delightful puffs of marshmallows. But this year the treats appear to be the vehicle used to poison her elderly neighbor, Ralph Penders. So while everyone knows Harriet wouldn’t poison anyone the police have confiscated all the puffs made for the party.

Melanie is worried Harriet may be convicted of a crime she didn’t commit so she agrees to collect the marshmallow puffs from Harriet’s neighbors while trying to find out more about Mr. Penders and who may have wanted him dead. But not everyone is anxious to answer her questions. She may have even put herself on the killer’s radar sealing her own howloween fate.


I do love visiting Melanie, Sam, Davey, Kevin, Aunt Peg, and all their dogs. Faith is truly a special poodle, I love her empathic nature and the way she helps with Melanie’s students. I also love the relationship between Sam and Melanie. They truly are a perfect match and their love just shines in every interaction. Aunt Peg played a smaller role in this story but she does play a huge role for a special family. Almost all the characters Ms. Berenson creates are genuine and true to life. Even the dogs each have their own personalities, strengths, and weaknesses. Of course, she has to create a few people as suspects with questionable traits but she gives them layers to work through to reach their motives. I will say my heart was touched by the elderly victim and his circumstances.

I really enjoyed the Halloween theme as a background to the mystery. While Kevin tries to decide on a Halloween costume and she continues to work with her students Melanie divides her time up to include questioning likely suspects. The author blends it all together with a balanced hand. She drops the clues and inserts twists like the pro she is. I found myself leaning toward a certain character but it sure was fun to follow Melanie along step by step as she honed in on the killer and proved me right.

You really can’t go wrong with any book in this series. All are well-plotted and written. The characters are easy to become invested in too. The author does write each book to be read on its own so you can jump in anywhere. Howloween Murder was a fun and entertaining read perfect for this time of year. It was a howling good time.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About This Author

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

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

THE REST OF THE SERIES

I am giving away 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
for 3 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 October 29, 2021, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
The Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

*This was a book I purchased from Amazon / from my private collection.

Posted in 2021 Reviews Alphabet Soup - A - Z Reading Challenge Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Verse and Vengeance: A Magical Bookshop Mystery by Amanda Flower #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.


Verse and Vengeance: A Magical Bookshop Mystery
Cozy Mystery
4th in Series
Setting – New York
Crooked Lane Books (December 10, 2019)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 320 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1643851519
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1643851518
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 336 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1643856812
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1643856810
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B07NTYQQM4

With the help of Walt Whitman’s works, magical bookshop owner Violet Waverly puts her pedal to the metal to sleuth a bicycle-race murder that tests her mettle.

A bicycle race is not Charming Books proprietor Violet Waverly’s idea of a pleasant pastime. But police chief David Rainwater wheelie wants them to enter the Tour de Cascade as a couple, so she reluctantly consents.

The Tour de Cascade is the brainchild of Violet’s Grandma Daisy. The race is a fundraiser to build the Cascade Springs Underground Railroad Museum. But not everyone in this Niagara Region village supports the race. As if the bike race weren’t tiring enough, pesky private investigator Joel Redding is snooping around Charming Books. It takes all of Violet’s and Grandma Daisy’s ingenuity to keep Redding from discovering the shop’s magical essence–which communicates with Violet through books.

When Redding perishes in an accident during the race, David discovers that the brake line of the private eye’s bike was cut. Worse, Violet tops his list of suspects. As Emerson the tuxedo cat and resident crow Faulkner look on, Charming Books steers Violet to the works of Walt Whitman to solve the crime. But no other names ring a bell as culprits, and as David’s investigation picks up speed, Violet will have to get in gear to clear her name.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

We arrive in Cascade Springs just in time for the Tour de Cascade. The bike race is a fundraiser to raise funds to build an Underground Railroad Museum. It is one of the grand ideas of Mayor Daisy aka Grandma Daisy to Violet Waverly, caretaker of the magical Charming Books. Violet hadn’t planned on participating but her boyfriend police chief David Rainwater wants them to ride the course together. She just hopes she can make it the whole way.

As if keeping up with David wasn’t hard enough Private Investigator Joel Redding is making a nuisance of himself by riding right by her trying to take her picture. He has been outside the bookshop for days spying on her too. He is convinced there is something strange going on in the shop and if he discovers what it is he will have a cash windfall spreading the news. Violet and Grandma Daisy are determined to keep their secret especially from the likes of a man like Joel Redding.

In the last bit of the race a man crashes and dies. That man turns out to be Joel Redding and David notices the brake lines on the bike were cut, Someone wanted this man to get hurt and maybe even die and that person got their wish. Sadly, Violet finds herself on that list of suspects. So she has to do something to clear her name. Hopefully, the Essense will be able to help and point her in the right direction.


I am not a fan of Walt Whitman but I am a huge fan of Amanda Flower so I was happy to finally read this book.

I love everything about Charming Books including the mischievous tuxedo cat Emerson and the staunch crow Faulkner. It is the place where the right book will find you. And when it does there are plenty of places to curl up with it and start reading. The tree growing in the middle of the shop guards over the books and gives Faulkner a great place to perch and invoke his wisdom. I am sure if I was ever blessed to enter the shop I would read book after book and never leave.

Ms. Flower has created characters that have a lot of layers and it is nice to see them revealed slowly over the course of the series. Grandma Daisy is a woman on a mission and she will not stop until she succeeds. She is truly a force to be reckoned with, sometimes a little too bull in the china shop but her heart is always in the right place. With Daisy taking on the responsibility of the mayor’s office, Violet has realized she must take the job of caretaker of the shop on fully and learn truly what that job entails. I was thrilled that we learned more about the bookshop’s history. With the murder to investigate and all the summer tourists coming soon, she brings in college professor Richard to take some hours. He has no idea of the magic within the walls but the Essence sure helps him make some wonderful discoveries. Police Chief David Rainwater and Violet don’t get to spend a lot of time together but he knows she is hiding something so their relationship is not just sailing along.

The mystery was well-crafted. At first, I was a little frustrated that a key individual keep disappearing but then I accepted it and like Violet was worried. Walt Whitman’s connection was interesting but I do not enjoy his poetry. Seeing Violet’s frustrations at trying to figure out the clues took me back to the English classes where we studied his works and my frustration and trying to decipher his words for a grade. I passed that section by the skin of my teeth just like I figured out this mystery. I was totally in the dark and solved it when the reveal hit me in the face. LOL

I do love this series and can’t believe I had not read this book when it was released. I truly thought I had until I checked all my lists and saw it was still on my To-Be-Read list. I am so glad that I have now corrected that oversight.

Verse and Vengeance was a delightful way to spend two evenings. I couldn’t wait to get done with work each day so I could escape into this story. No spoiler but the ending made me smile and really excited for the next book in the series. Due to my delay in reading this one I don’t have as long to wait. Crimes and Covers will be out on January 11, 2022.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

About This Author

Amanda Flower, a two-time Agatha Award-nominated mystery author, started her writing career in elementary school when she read a story she wrote to her sixth-grade class and had the class in stitches with her description of being stuck on the top of a Ferris wheel. She knew at that moment she’d found her calling of making people laugh with her words. She also writes mysteries as national bestselling author Isabella Alan. In addition to being an author, Amanda is an academic librarian for a small college near Cleveland.

Author Links:

Website  Pen Name Website     Facebook    Twitter    Goodreads    Pinterest


Coming January 11, 2022

Also by Amanda Flower




Coming November 30, 2021



Amish Quilt Shop Mystery Series (writing as Isabella Alan)

I am giving away 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
for 3 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 October 22, 2021, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
The 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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – It Cannoli Be Murder: A Culinary Cozy Mystery (Italian Chef Mysteries) by Catherine Bruns #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.


It Cannoli Be Murder: A Culinary Cozy Mystery (Italian Chef Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – New York
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Poisoned Pen Press (July 28, 2020)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 384 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1492684287
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1492684282
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B085F4F4XB

A delicious new title in a new series from USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bruns! Tessa’s biscotti have always been killer, but never as deadly as in this addition to the Italian Chef mystery books!

It’s time to serve some just desserts…

Six months after her husband’s death, Tessa Esposito is hoping to drum up reservations for her restaurant’s grand opening. And since a signing with bestselling author, Preston Rigotta, is sure to draw a crowd, Tessa agrees to cater her cousin’s bookstore event—whipping up some of her famous Italian desserts. But the event soon takes a sour turn when Preston’s publicist, an old high school rival, arrives and begins to whisk up their old grudges.

That night, a fight breaks out in front of the crowd, and it becomes clear there’s bad blood in Harvest Park. And when the publicist is found dead on the bookstore floor the next morning, a stray cannolo at her side, Tessa knows who will be framed as the prime suspect.

To clear both her cousin’s and her own name, Tessa must investigate the murder. But Preston’s publicist has many secrets to hide, and in the end, the truth is bittersweet…

The second book in the Italian Chef Cozy Mystery series! As Italian Chef Tessa plays the role of a female detective in this murder mystery, she’ll have to follow a string of clues before the case boils over.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

It has been a long time coming but Tessa Esposito’s new restaurant, Anything’s Pastable, is almost ready to open.  She just needs to hire a few more staff, the correct menus to arrive, and a few little touchups in the dining room, and she will thrust open the doors for her grand opening. Hoping to drive up the reservations she agrees to whip up some cannoli and biscotti to serve at a book signing at her cousin Gabby’s bookstore Once Upon A Book. Sadly, there is a disturbance when the author’s publicist arrives and it is an old high school rival who does her best to push Gabby’s buttons. The event escalates to a full-blown fight which has the author chewing Gabby out and her worried about the future of Once Upon A Book.

The next morning Tessa discovers the publicist dead on the floor of the bookshop with a cannolo nearby setting up Tessa and Gabby as the prime suspects. Knowing that could put their lives and businesses at risk they are not waiting for the police to complete their investigation, Tessa jumps right in with her own investigation and discovers one secret that could have easily set the murder in motion. She just needs to prove it.


Tessa has been through a lot.  After the death of her husband she finds out he was actually murdered and she goes undercover to try to catch his killer. Now in this story, she is about to open her dream Italian Restaurant when another murder puts not only her dream in jeopardy but her cousin’s bookstore as well. Because they are both involved in the case, Gabby’s brother, Detective Gino Mancusi cannot be the detective in charge of the investigation. These are three strong characters that are really developing nicely. They have each other’s back and while Gino would like Gabby and Tessa to leave the death to the police he understands their frustrations.

We meet author Preston Rigotta, his wife, his daughter, their maid, and his publicist. These characters are also nicely developed even with the publicist dying. We learn a lot about her and the Rigotta family as the mystery unfolds.

The mystery was very well-plotted with some corkscrew twists. The victim was a real piece of work and definitely has not changed from high school, which meant she had made a few enemies. I was a little nervous about the risks Tessa and Gabby took. So much so, I wanted to jump into the book and save them from themselves. I thought I had nailed down whodunit and then Ms. Bruns added another twist that changed everything, I love it when that happens.

It Cannoli Be Murder contains an excellent mystery and characters I have grown to care about. My cancer treatments kept this book on my T-B-R shelf too long. But that means I have less time to wait for book number 3, The Enemy You Gnocchi, is being released on October 26 and it is already on my reading calendar. I am excited because it is a Christmas holiday mystery and I am looking forward to visiting Harvest Park when the snow is flying. 



Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bruns lives in Upstate New York with an all-male household that consists of her very patient husband, three sons, and several spoiled pets. Catherine has a B.A. in both English and Performing Arts and is a former newspaper reporter and press release writer. In her spare time, she loves to bake, read, and attend live theater performances. Over the past five years, she’s written fifteen mystery novels plus several novellas and has many more stories waiting to be told.

Coming October 26, 2021

Also by Catherine Bruns



I am giving away my 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 Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Follow Catherine Bruns on Twitter for 2 Bonus Entries!

Follow Catherine Bruns on Facebook for 2 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 share the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End October 15, 2021, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
The 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.”