May 062016
 

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On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I missed when they were first
released that have been screaming at me from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.

My reading schedule was all messed up last year
and I was unable to read and review this book then.

played by the book
Played by the Book (A Novel Idea Mystery)
4th in Series
Cozy Mystery
Setting – North Carolina
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery (February 3, 2015)
The Berkley Publishing Group
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Art by Julia Green
Cover Design by Lesley Worrell
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425276631
E-Book ASIN: B00LMGK52O
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The owner of the Novel Idea Literary Agency is thrilled when former local boy and popular television show host Damian York returns to Inspiration Valley, North Carolina, to launch his new gardening book. But Lila is less than excited about the hubbub when she sees her mounting to-do list. Between planning York’s gala and sprucing up her yard for another event, she’s spread too thin—especially after she finds a skull buried in her flowerbeds.

As Lila’s macabre discovery leads to other secrets hidden in Inspiration Valley’s past, a member of the local garden club is found slumped over her prize roses—murdered. Now it’s up to Lila to dig through old mysteries and new clues to unearth a murderer before someone else is found pushing up daisies…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Lila Wilkens has my dream job.  I would even love to do a bit of sleuthing.

We return to Inspiration Valley for the 4th time and Lila is helping to organize a grand affair to help launch Damian York’s new gardening book. As part of the event Lila’s own garden is to be featured but when she is pulling out some old shrubs she makes a terrible discovery. A human skull, thought to be a young woman. As if that isn’t enough across town another woman is found dead/murdered in her garden. So in addition to her workload Lila now needs to get down and dirty to solve an old mystery and a new one.

The first three books in this series were written by a writing team of Ellery Adams and Sylvia May. Susan Furlong becomes Lucy Arlington for this story and I truthfully didn’t notice much of a change in writing style, which is good, but not an easy feat, so kudos to Ms. Furlong.

I really enjoyed the behind the scenes look at an book agent’s job and the joy Lily has when she can tell an author she has sold their book to a publisher. Then the way she helps their stories shine with some really good advice and nurturing. In a time when big publishers are cutting back on their cozy mystery contacts Lila gives us insight to the publishing process. I just hope this series continues to survive the cuts.

I really treasure the relationship Lila has with her son Trey. I will not lie, it made me miss my son Kris a lot.

In addition to the mysteries there is some romance with Sean and Lila and Makayla and Jay. Sean may not be moving fast enough in the direction Lila would like but Jay has pulled out all the stops to move his relationship with Makayla forward.

The mysteries themselves are very interesting. Are the connected in some way? or is it just a coincidence that the skull/skeleton was found as another murder happened. Lila wants to get justice for the young girl buried on her property but she is also invested in finding the killer that left a garden club member smelling her roses for the last time.

I was completely captivated by this cozy. We are given just a little tease for the next what to expect for Lila in the next installment. The good thing about reviewing this book right now is that Off the Books was released this past February and it on my shelf calling me. I see some juggling in my reading schedule happening soon. 

perfect 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About This Author

Lucy Arlington is the pen name of Susan Furlong. The concept for the Novel Idea Mysteries was originated by the New York Times bestselling author Ellery Adams and Sylvia May. Together, they penned the first three novels of the series. Susan continues their legacy with the new books in the series. Susan also writes the Georgia Peach Mysteries.


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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.”

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Feb 122013
 

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Every Trick in the Book
(A Novel Idea Mystery)

2nd In Series
Cozy Mystery
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
The Berkley Publishing Group (February 5, 2013)
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Julia Green
Cover Design by Lesley Worrell
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425251676
E-Book File Size: 680 KB
ASIN: B0095ZMFW2

Every Trick in the Book (A Novel Idea Mystery, #2)

You have heard it said that all of us has a twin somewhere out there. What would you do if you came face to face with yours? and then they end up murdered! at an event you have helped organize!!

That’s what happens to Lila Wilkens in this second installment of the Novel Idea Mysteries. She has helped organize the Book and Author Festival and she was hoping to discover some talented new authors but she never imagined there would be one dead body and then another. Lila finds herself hunting down another killer and the clues that bring everything together are found in a very familiar place for this new literary agent. Can she catch the culprit before she is written out of the story?

Dollycas’s Thoughts
There is so much to love about this story!

A behind the scenes glimpse at book publishing from the agents point of view set in an enchanting place. Inspiration Valley, North Carolina –  sounds like a perfect escape for me. I would never want to come back. Lila’s job would delight me as well.

The author has her hands full because she is not only writing the plot and sub-plots, she also has to come up with snippets of manuscripts and proposals for stories so that Lila can do her job. She does this with a precision that makes them all blend together and flow seamlessly for the reader. A lot happens in this story but it happens so naturally that before you know it you are on the last page and sad to have the story end.

The characters are superb and Lila’s new hire could prove to very interesting in the next editions. The rest of the agents at Novel Idea Literary are starting to gel. Lila’s son Trey’s path is changing. Lila is getting settled in her cottage after a little moving day drama and her relationship with Sean, the policeman, is moving forward even as he wishes she would just stay out of his cases.

I am excited for the next story, Books, Cooks and Crooks to be released in December. I am sure Lila will find “in the soup” again and I will devour every word.

a perfect escape
5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About This Author
Lucy Arlington is the nom de plume for the writing team of Ellery Adams and Sylvia May, two friends who collaborated on an idea that became A Novel Idea Mystery Series. Both are authors in their own right; Ellery writes cozy mysteries and Sylvia women’s fiction.

Ellery Adams currently writes the Books by the Bay Mysteries and the Charmed Pie Shoppe Mysteries. To learn more about Ellery and her books, visit her website at www.elleryadamsmysteries.com.

Sylvia May’s first novel, The Unraveling of Abby Settel, received an Honorable Mention in the 2011 Reader Views Literary Awards. To learn more about Sylvia and her novel, visit her website at www.sylviamay.com.

Find out more at http://lucyarlington.com/

I want to thank the authors and the people at Berkley Prime Crime! Escape With Dollycas Into A New Book is quoted on the Praise page for Every Trick In The Book. Thank you so much!!

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.”

readalattechallenge_zps01d248d085941Cruisin 2013

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Feb 022012
 

Buried in a Book (A Novel Idea Mystery)
Brand New Series!!

The Berkley Publishing Group
Publish by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Julia Green
Cover Design by Lesley Worrell
Release Date: February 7, 2012

Meet Lila Wilkens, former newspaper journalist and the newest employee of A Novel Idea. She is a 45 year old intern, but she not only accepts the position because she really needs the job, but also because it is a thriving business in the Utopian town of Inspiration Valley, North Carolina.  Lily is an avid reader and can imagine no job better than getting paid to read.

Her first day is quite eventful as she meets her eccentric coworkers, receives a huge stack of query letters to review, and is assigned an extremely small desk. Of course none of that compares to finding a dead body in the waiting room. Even more amazing is that none of her new coworkers seem the least bit concerned that a man died in their office. Most of them just continue on with their day leaving Lila to handle the aftermath including the police.

The journalist in Lila can’t believe that this man died at A Novel Idea randomly so using skills from her previous job she is determined who killed this man and why.

Dollycas’s Thoughts
First things first, I want Lila’s job, I wouldn’t even mind dealing with the dead body. Being paid to read story ideas and novels would be absolutely awesome. Doing it in a place like Inspiration Valley would be caramel on top of my latte!

Lucy Arlington has a winner with this debut. Readers will love to read about the beginning of the publishing process with a murder or two wrapped in a great mystery. The setting is a place everyone will want to visit, from the coffee cafe to the sandwich shoppe. I want to jump right into the cover of the book and tool around the cobblestone streets on my bright yellow scooter.

Lila is quick to make friends, some friendlier than others, her mother is has a unique gift, her son Trey needs a little redirection that the changes in Lila’s life will help create.  We are just starting to get to know all the characters and I am very anxious to see where the author takes them.

A first-rate whodunit all cozy fans will enjoy!!

Your Escape With 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.”

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