Posted in Thoughts

Just Checking In

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

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

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

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

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

Best,

Lori

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

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

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

REVIEW NOW ADDED

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

About Larceny at the Library 


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

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

Dollycas’s Thoughts 

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


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

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

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

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

 

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

About Colleen J. Shogan

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

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

Author Links – Webpage – Facebook – Twitter –  GoodReads 

Purchase Links – AmazonB&N

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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

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

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

TOUR PARTICIPANTS
July 15 – The Book Decoder – REVIEW  
July 15 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT
July 16 – The Book Diva’s Reads – SPOTLIGHT
July 16 – Christa Reads and Writes – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
July 17 – Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic – SPOTLIGHT
July 17 – Hearts & Scribbles – SPOTLIGHT
July 18 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT
July 18 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW
July 19 – Brooke Blogs – GUEST POST
July 20 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
July 20 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT
July 21 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
July 21 – Ruff Drafts – REVIEW
July 22 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
July 22 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW  
July 23 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
July 23 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT
July 24 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
July 24 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW
July 25 – Here’s How It Happened – SPOTLIGHT
July 26 – Diane Reviews Books – GUEST POST
July 26 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
July 27 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT
July 28 – Jane Reads – GUEST POST

 

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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

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

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

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

About Death by Windmill


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

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

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

Dollycas’s Thoughts

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

_____

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

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

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

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

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About Jennifer S. Alderson

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

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

Author Links

Website – Goodreads  –Facebook – Twitter  –LinkedIn – BookBub


Coming September 18

Coming December 18

Purchase Links – Amazon 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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

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

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

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

July 13 – The Book Decoder – REVIEW  

July 13 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – SPOTLIGHT

July 14 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT

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

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

July 15 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 16 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 16 – Hearts & Scribbles – SPOTLIGHT

July 17 – Here’s How It Happened – REVIEW

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

July 18 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

July 18 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

July 19 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 19 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

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

July 20 – My Reading Journeys – SPOTLIGHT

July 21 – Book Club Librarian – REVIEW  

July 21 – Ascroft, eh? – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

July 22 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT

July 22 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW

July 23 – eBook Addicts – REVIEW

July 23 – Diane Reviews Books – SPOTLIGHT

July 24 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW

July 25 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT

July 25 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT

July 26 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted in Thoughts

UPDATE

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

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

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

~Lori

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Posted in Thoughts

Taking A Little Break from Posts and Reviews

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

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

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

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

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

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

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

 

About The Corpse With The Crystal Skull


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

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

Dollycas’s Thoughts

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


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

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

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

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

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

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

PRAISE FOR THE CAIT MORGAN MYSTERIES

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

 

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

 

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

 

About Cathy Ace 

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

Author Links:    Website    Facebook     Twitter: @AceCathy    GoodReads

Purchase Links – AmazonKobo 

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

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Posted in Sunday Salon / Sunday Post

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

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

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

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

HAPPY SUNDAY EVERYONE!

Happy Father’s Day!

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

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

~Lori


Weekly Rewind – June 15 – 20, 2020

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

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

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

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

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

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

From Paperback Swap

Have a wonderful week!

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

Posted in Giveaways Spotlights

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

Maddie Day’s Country Store Mysteries are going strong
with Book #7 – Nacho Average Murder being released June 30 and Book #8 –
Candy Slain Murder on September 29. 

Today I am shining my spotlight on the 1st book in the series which I reviewed back in 2015 and giving a copy away!

1st in Series
Cozy Mystery
Setting – Indiana
Kensington (October 27, 2015)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1617739255
E-Book ASIN: B00TE7O9HK
goodreads-badge-add-plus

 

 

 

In this freshly baked series, author Maddie Day lifts the lid on a small town in southern Indiana, where a newcomer is cooking up a new start–until a murderer muddles the recipe…

 

Nursing a broken heart, Robbie Jordan is trading in her life on the West Coast for the rolling hills of southern Indiana. After paying a visit to her Aunt Adele, she fell in love with the tiny town of South Lick. And when she spots a For Sale sign on a rundown country store, she decides to snap it up and put her skills as a cook and a carpenter to use. Everyone in town shows up for the grand re-opening of Pans ‘n Pancakes, but when the mayor’s disagreeable assistant is found dead, Robbie realizes that not all press is good press. With all eyes on her, she’ll have to summon her puzzle-solving skills to clear her name, unscramble the town’s darkest secrets, and track down a cold-blooded killer–before she’s the next to die…

 

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Maddie Day has given this series a fine start.

Robbie Jordan is a woman of many talents, business owner, cook, carpenter, and now amateur sleuth. She opens her country store/restaurant with a fabulous turnout only the whole thing put into jeopardy when someone kills the witchy assistant to the mayor and sets up Robbie to take the fall. She doesn’t “flip” out but she does her best to flatten the killer and ride her bike off into the sunset. Not quite how it happens though 🙂

I liked Robbie a lot. She is fair and hardworking and smart. She really is determined to make her business a success. One thing she is going to have to do is hire more help especially if sleuthing is added to the menu.

The other characters we meet in South Lick are very engaging as well. Next to Robbie I would say her employee, Danna would be my favorite character. I think we have just scratched the surface on all of the characters but Danna is the one I am excited to see more of. She gets her nerve up to put someone in their place in this story and I wanted to jump right into the pages to give her a “high five”. The mayor is a bit over the top but I think Robbie will learn how to handle her.

Day gives us a compelling mystery and an intriguing subplot too. The victim wasn’t like by many so there were plenty of suspects. Robbie did find herself in some hair-raising situations that were pretty intense and made the paging fly. There was just a touch of romance that I anxious to see what develops.

There are recipes in the back of the book and a sneak peak of the next book in the series Grilled For Murder out May 31, 2016. Can’t wait to return to South Lick, Indiana!

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

The first 6 books are on SALE for $1.99 as I set this post up on Amazon.

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

The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

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

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 July 4, 2020, 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.”

Posted in 2020 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 – Grounds for Remorse (A Tallie Graver Mystery) by Misty Simon #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.


Grounds for Remorse (A Tallie Graver Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Publisher: Kensington (May 29, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
ISBN-10: 1496712234
ISBN-13: 978-1496712233
Kindle ASIN: B075C7ML55

No more cheating . . .

 

Best friends Tallie Graver and Gina Laudermilch both seem to spend a lot of time around urns. For Tallie, they’re part and parcel of the family business, Graver’s Funeral Home. Even though she’s traded ashes for dusting with her own cleaning business, she still works part-time for her folks and lives above the funeral parlor. For Gina, they’re the vessels that contain her heavenly brew at her coffee shop, Bean There, Done That. And both women are learning that owning a business can make finding time for romance challenging.

 

But when Gina’s new beau turns out to have a wife, who barges into the coffee shop to take him home, she can’t contain her bitterness and loudly threatens to poison his cup or boil him in a vat of coffee. So when Mr. Wrong turns up dead at the bottom of a staircase inside Gina’s locked home, she finds herself at the top of the police’s suspect list. Tallie needs to sweep in to save her friend. But she’ll need to watch her step, or she may go from being a funeral home employee to becoming their next client . . .

 

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Gina Laudermilch is head over heels about her new boyfriend, sharing with best friend, Tallie Graver, he may be the one. Then the man’s wife shows up at her coffee shop to stake her claim and take the man home. But Mr. So Wrong doesn’t back down and still tries to see Gina even though she has threatened to “boil him in a vat of coffee”,  he actually shows up at her door with flowers Max gets caught in the crossfire. Then the next day Gina finds the man at the bottom of her staircase dead behind a locked door she also finds herself the prime suspect. Tallie is ready to do anything to clear her friend’s name even going toe to toe with those high on her suspect list and against the police’s warnings to leave the case to them.


I really enjoyed this 2nd installment to this series because there was always something happening and the book had an excellent flow. Tallie’s boyfriend has come for a visit and gets totally involved in everything Tallie does from going to help her clean houses, helping out at the family funeral home, to investigating the murder of Casanova Craig. He truly is a special man and they make a great couple.

Tallie’s family continues to make me laugh. All the recurring characters continue to develop in meaningful ways. Tallie’s father is very serious about his business and its image and her mother butts into Tallie’s life as any normal mother would, okay she does get a little much at times but you have to love her for it. I just wish they would give Tallie a little more leeway and let her come into her own. Hopefully, that will happen soon. A new relationship is blooming between two characters as well that I find delightful even though it was also a complete surprise.

Ms. Simon also introduces some interesting characters for this story and puts them into some unique situations. Turns out Craig is a chronic cheater that opened the door to a vast number of suspects. There were plenty of twists and turns and while I thought I had everything all figured out before the big reveal I was only partially right. There was one last twist I didn’t see coming.

Grounds For Remorse is a well-crafted mystery with characters that are becoming more engaging as the series continues. I am looking forward to the next book in this series, Deceased and Desist is waiting on my To-Be-Read stack.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

Laughter and Love are two main components of any story I write. Laughter really is the best medicine and my heroines always figure that out at some point, though perhaps some later than others. I live in Central Pennsylvania with my family and two rambunctious dogs in a house that is about to celebrate its two hundredth birthday. You can find Misty Simon on Facebook here.


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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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

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


Divide and Concord (The Wine Trail Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Setting – New York
Publisher: Beyond the Page Publishing (April 30, 2020)
Paperback: 254 pages
ISBN-10: 1950461483
ISBN-13: 978-1950461486
Kindle ASIN: B086WPY24R

Norrie Ellington is a sucker for doing good deeds, but when she agrees to let a film crew use her winery as a backdrop and one of them turns up dead, she’ll have to act fast because this crew knows how to put on an act . . .

 

When screenwriter and winery co-owner Norrie Ellington agrees to let her producer film a movie scene at Two Witches Winery, her biggest concerns revolve around the crew trampling her precious vines and starstruck fans crowding the vineyard to spot the famous actors. But nothing had prepared her for the film’s director, an unbearable diva with a growing list of unreasonable demands—along with a growing list of enemies. And when the director turns up dead, apparently the victim of foul play, a very public altercation Norrie had with the victim the day before puts her in the spotlight as the lead suspect.

 

Knowing she’ll have to root out the killer herself to get off the narrow-minded local sheriff’s most-wanted list, Norrie compiles a large selection of potential suspects, including vengeful actors the director had once blacklisted and even the director’s estranged husband, a high-profile candy magnate trying to bring a burgeoning market for concord grapes to the region. Weeding out false leads and planted clues, Norrie knows it’ll take some quick thinking to track down the culprit, before she becomes the murderer’s next target in a deadly harvest . . .

 

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Murder rears its ugly head again near Two Witches Winery and this time it involves a film crew filming a scene from one of Norrie Ellington’s screenplays. When the over-the-top director is found dead the entire cast and crew find themselves in the police spotlight. Surprisingly Norrie finds herself there too due to a public altercation. The victim’s husband, a candy magnate bringing his business to the area also plays a key role. First, bringing excitement to the area with his expected need of concord grape juice but also could he have been in the area and killed his wife?

To help catch the real killer Norrie enlists the help of her friends from the neighboring wineries. They all know their businesses depend on putting the murder behind them as quickly as possible especially when it looks like the killer’s sights are now set on Norrie.


With this installment, the series has moved to a new publisher and I am so happy about that because I was definitely not ready to see these character’s stories end.

All the recurring characters are strong and Norrie is a great protagonist. I really appreciate the relationships she has built with everyone around her especially because her time at the winery is basically limited to the year her sister and brother-in-law are in Costa Rica studying a very special bug. I could see her lengthening her stay though because of these friendships and her new romantic relationship, but we will have to see. I do enjoy the way her personal life story continues to evolve and grow.

The mystery was an entertaining one to follow and solve. The nods to Miss Marple and Nancy Drew were a nice touch. There were plenty of twists and turns. The social media research done to investigate the suspects felt very current. I did enjoy the big reveal and thought it was pretty funny that is didn’t play out as planned. There was also a Wine and Cheese Festival the wineries are hosting and the staff at Two Witches have to deal with all the fans that show up because actors Priscilla McCoy and Gavin Chase are now filming in the vineyards. The authors blend all the drama and day to day activities very well.

Divide and Concord is a delightful addition to this series. Engaging characters and a stirring mystery kept me captivated from the first page to the last. I am hoping for many more books in this series.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

Read my review of A Riesling to Die – just click here.

Read my review of Chardonnayed to Rest – just click here.

Read my review of Pinot Red or Dead? along with an author interview – just click here. 

Read my review of Sauvigone for Good (The Wine Trail Mysteries) just click here

About the Authors

Ann I. Goldfarb

New York native Ann I. Goldfarb spent most of her life in education, first as a classroom teacher and later as a middle school principal and professional staff developer. Writing as J. C. Eaton, along with her husband, James Clapp, she has authored the Sophie Kimball Mysteries. In addition, Ann has nine published YA time travel mysteries under her own name.

Visit the websites at www.jceatonauthor.com and www.timetravelmysteries.com

James E. Clapp

When James E. Clapp retired as the tasting room manager for a large upstate New York winery, he never imagined he’d be co-authoring cozy mysteries with his wife, Ann I. Goldfarb. Non-fiction in the form of informational brochures and workshop materials treating the winery industry were his forte along with an extensive background and experience in construction that started with his service in the U.S. Navy and included vocational school classroom teaching.

 

Also by J.C. Eaton


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

The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

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

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 July 2, 2020, 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.”