Posted in Guest Posts

Guilty as Framed (An Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery) by Lois Winston #GuestPost

Due to my hospitalization last month I was unable to post this guest post during Lois’s Great Escapes Tour.
I didn’t want you to miss out on it so I am posting today.


Eight Paws and a Beak
By Lois Winston

When I was asked to write a cozy mystery series, I knew I should include a pet. Cozy readers love books with pets, especially dogs or cats. Sometimes the pet is even an integral part of helping to solve the mystery. I also have many friends who write cozy mysteries, and most of them are pet owners.

I’m the outlier. I don’t have a fur baby. Instead, I have allergies. Allergies to just about all pets. At least the kind you can pet, cuddle, and play with. Tropical fish would probably be safe, but I consider those pretty things to watch swimming around rather than pets. If it has fur or feathers, I need to steer clear, and chances are, I’d probably also have issues with amphibians and reptiles. I’m even allergic to certain people—or at least to some of the grooming products they use.

I used to have pets. When I was a teenager, we had a dog. I walked around sneezing and coughing and suffering with horrible sinus headaches for several years until I left for college. Once I had my own apartment, I tried kittens. What was I thinking? The headaches, sneezing, and coughing returned with a vengeance.

When my kids were young, we got them a pair of gerbils. Even though I stayed far away from the cage, I still suffered.

So, unfortunately, I remain petless. My protagonist in the Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mysteries is far from petless, though. Not only does Anastasia’s household include her mother-in-law’s French bulldog Mephisto and occasionally Catherine the Great, her mother’s Persian cat, but Anastasia has also inherited her great-aunt Penelope Periwinkle’s African Grey parrot.

However, Ralph is no ordinary parrot. Having spent most of his life in Great-aunt Penelope’s classroom, listening to lectures on the works of William Shakespeare, Ralph possesses a unique talent. He has the uncanny ability to squawk situation-appropriate quotes from the Bard of Avon.

Is this even possible? Some African Grey’s do have huge vocabularies, but even though I’ve read up on the species, I’m no parrot expert. It doesn’t matter, though. I write fiction, humorous fiction. If readers can suspend their disbelief enough to accept a protagonist who stumbles across more murders than the average cop in an entire law enforcement career, why not a Shakespeare quoting parrot?

Ralph is also very protective of his adoptive family. I hope you’ll check out how he proves his worth in Guilty as Framed.

About Guilty as Framed


Guilty as Framed (An Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
11th in Series
Setting – New Jersey
Independently Published (September 6, 2022)
Print length ‏ : ‎ 263 pages
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B0B1XHPLBC

When an elderly man shows up at the home of reluctant amateur sleuth Anastasia Pollack, she’s drawn into the unsolved mystery of the greatest art heist in history.

Boston mob boss Cormac Murphy has recently been released from prison. He refuses to believe Anastasia’s assertion that the man he’s looking for doesn’t live at her address and attempts to muscle his way into her home. His efforts are thwarted by Anastasia’s fiancé Zack Barnes.

A week later, a stolen SUV containing a dead body appears in Anastasia’s driveway. Anastasia believes Murphy is sending her a message. It’s only the first in a series of alarming incidents, including a mugging, a break-in, another murder, and the discovery of a cache of jewelry and an etching from the largest museum burglary in history.

But will Anastasia solve the mystery behind these shocking events before she falls victim to a couple of desperate thugs who will stop at nothing to get what they want?

Crafts projects included.

About Lois Winston

USA Today and Amazon bestselling author Lois Winston began her award-winning writing career with Talk Gertie to Me, a humorous fish-out-of-water novel about a small-town girl going off to the big city and the mother who had other ideas. That was followed by the romantic suspense Love, Lies and a Double Shot of Deception.

Then Lois’s writing segued unexpectantly into the world of humorous amateur sleuth mysteries, thanks to a conversation her agent had with an editor looking for craft-themed mysteries. In her day job Lois was an award-winning craft and needlework designer, and although she’d never written a mystery—or had even thought about writing a mystery—her agent decided she was the perfect person to pen a series for this editor. Thus, was born the Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mysteries, which Kirkus Reviews dubbed “North Jersey’s more mature answer to Stephanie Plum.” The series now includes eleven novels and three novellas. Lois also writes the Empty Nest Mysteries, currently at two novels, and one book so far in her Mom Squad Capers series.

To date, Lois has published twenty novels, five novellas, several short stories, one children’s chapter book, and one nonfiction book on writing, inspired by her twelve years working as an associate at a literary agency.

Author Links

Website    Newsletter sign-up     Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers blog  Pinterest    Twitter   Goodreads   Bookbub

Purchase Links 

Purchase Links – AmazonNookKoboiBookstore 

Be sure to sign up for Lois’s Newsletter so you will know what she is up to and when the next Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery will be released.

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

The Match by Harlan Coben #Review


The Match
Domestic Crime Thriller
2nd in Wilde Series
Setting – New Jersey
Grand Central Publishing (March 15, 2022)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 352 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1538748282
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1538748282
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B096RVLPV8

From the creator of the #1 hit Netflix series Stay Close comes a gripping new thriller in which Wilde follows a tip that may finally reveal the truth behind his abandonment—only to end up in the sights of a ruthless killer.

After months away, Wilde has returned to the Ramapo Mountains in the wake of a failed bid at domesticity that confirms what he’s known all along: He belongs on his own, free from the comforts and constraints of modern life.

Suddenly, a DNA match on an online ancestry database brings Wilde closer to his past than he’s ever dreamed, and finally gives Wilde the opening he needs to track down his father. But meeting the man brings up more questions than answers. So Wilde reaches out to his last, most desperate lead, a second cousin who disappears as quickly as he resurfaces, having experienced an epic fall from grace that can only be described as a waking nightmare.

Was his cousin’s downfall a long time coming? Or was he the victim of a conspiracy as cunning as it is complex? And how does it all connect to the man once known as The Stranger, a treacherous fugitive with a growing following whose mission and methods have only turned more dangerous with time?

Dollycas’s Thoughts 

We first met Wilde in The Boy From The Woods. He has tried the domestic life and failed. He now returns from Costa Rica to the Ramapo Mountains to his mainly solitary life in the woods. Then he receives news of a DNA match at one of the many ancestry sites. Will this match be what he needs to find the answers he has been searching for? Will he finally find out how he ended up in the woods alone? or will his search be thwarted by uncooperative relatives? or sources outside his control? And how will his connections affect others?


I am so happy Mr. Coben has returned to add to Wilde’s story. Hester Crimstein, Laila, Matthew, Sutton, and Oren have all returned as well. But we are introduced to a group of new characters as well that all connect with Wilde’s life in some way. A character from one of Coben’s other books makes an appearance too. All the characters develop nicely over the course of the story in good ways and bad. It was intriguing to see the relationships evolve, expand and play out.

While Wilde searches for his biological connections he comes up against cyberbullying, internet bots and trolls, vigilantes, a reality show and its fallout, a missing person or two, murders, and a search for a serial killer. Wilde also reconnects with people very important in his life. The pace isn’t fast as much as it is constant, there is always something happening, drama somewhere. Coben plotted this story out precisely. His descriptions of time and place allowed the reader to be right in the middle of every scene.  I did find the DNA information and explanations very interesting.

As a mom, I did have issues with the way a key event played out and was explained. The character’s actions just didn’t feel right and were accepted too easily. Maybe this will be addressed if there is a third book in this series. I hope so. I was loving the book until this point and it really stopped me in my tracks. This is the first time I will be giving this author who is one of my favorite authors less than 5 stars.

The Match was an enjoyable read with plenty of twists and a huge surprise of a reveal. The author does give enough information about Wilde for this book to be read on its own but I feel you should really read The Boy From The Woods first because you will meet Wilde and know his story from the start but it is also an excellent and compelling read. One of my Best Reads of 2020.

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About the Author

Harlan Coben is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and one of the world’s leading storytellers. His suspense novels are published in forty-five languages and have been number one bestsellers in more than a dozen countries, with seventy-five million books in print worldwide. His Myron Bolitar series has earned the Edgar, Shamus, and Anthony Awards, and five of his books have been developed into Netflix original series, including his adaptation of The StrangerThe InnocentGone for GoodThe Woods, and Stay Close, which was released on December 31, 2021. He lives in New Jersey.

Find out more about Harlan Coben and his books on his webpage here.




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

Posted in Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours Spotlights

Scones and Scofflaws: Cape May Cozy Mysteries with a Twist by Jane Gorman #Spotlight / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour


I am pleased to shine my spotlights on Scones and Scofflaws: Cape May Cozy Mysteries with a Twist
by Jane Gorman along with the other 2 books in the series!

About Scones and Scofflaws

Scones and Scofflaws: Cape May Cozy Mysteries with a Twist
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Cape May, New Jersey
Blue Eagle Press (December 19, 2020)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 278 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0999110047
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0999110041
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08PW7M9JC

When a gorgeous man dressed as Bridgette Bardot buys her a Scofflaw and asks her out on a date, Anna McGregor begins to suspect her murder investigation has taken a wrong turn. Her previous work as a medical anthropologist exposed her to a variety of unexpected situations, but none quite like this.

It all seemed so simple: fix up the Cape May Victorian mansion she’d inherited from Great Aunt Louise and re-open it as the exceptional B&B it used to be. Everything’s going great, until her very first guest turns up dead at the breakfast table, crumbs from Anna’s blueberry scones scattered on the lace tablecloth.

As the town’s gossip mill goes into overdrive, Anna leaps into the fray to save her reputation, her business and Great Aunt Louise’s legacy.

With help from a handsome handyman eager to solve all of Anna’s problems and a young police officer new to murder investigations, Anna does her best to convince the town — and her future guests — that while her scones may be killer, someone else was responsible for this murder.

Purchase Links – AmazonB&NAlibrisIndieBound Kobo –  Books2Read

About Jane Gorman

Formerly an anthropologist, then a diplomat, then a park ranger, Jane Gorman now writes murder mysteries. Building on her knowledge of Philadelphia (her home for many years) and her varied experiences, her Adam Kaminski mystery series features a Philly cop who manages to solve complicated murders in far-flung locales, both in the U.S. and overseas. Her Cape May cozy mysteries paint a light-hearted, fun picture of the Cape May life of a former anthropologist who just happens to be good at solving murders – and trying out new cocktails!

Author Links

Website – Facebook – Twitter – BookBub – GoodReads

The Rest of the Series

Boats, Bodies and the Bee’s Knees: Cape May Cozy Mysteries with a Twist
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Blue Eagle Press (April 9, 2021)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 270 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0999110063
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0999110065
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08TV5Y2Y9

When her friend’s uncle is accused of murder, Anna McGregor dives into the boating life to prove his innocence. She soon learns that while lounging on a luxury yacht might be fun, matching wits with a killer can be deadly.

Life has finally settled down for Anna. The Cape May B & B she inherited from her Great Aunt Louise is fully booked and Anna is looking forward to a successful summer. Her peace is shattered when a body washes up in Spicer Creek and the police focus their investigation on her friend’s uncle. Determined to find the truth, Anna turns to skills she developed in her previous career in medical anthropology.

Once again, Anna teams up with her best friend Sammy, her young cousin Eoin and the local librarian to use their knowledge of the town and its people to solve this crime. But the disappearance of two local teenagers reminds Anna this is the wrong time for free fishing trips or relaxing on a yacht enjoying a Bee’s Knees cocktail. She needs to find the missing teenagers and identify the killer before anyone else gets hurt.

Purchase Link – AmazonB&NAlibrisIndieBoundKoboBooks2Read – 


Killers and Kir Royale: Cape May Cozy Mysteries with a Twist
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Blue Eagle Press (December 17, 2021)
Print Length 241 Pages
ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09MV26RSS

When a love of wine becomes lethal, local B&B owner Anna McGregor discovers she’s the town’s connoisseur at defending the innocent and unmasking murderers. But if she goes after the killer, will the people she cares about most get crushed in the process?

Anna loves the new life she’s built for herself in Cape May, a town known for its historic beauty, picturesque beaches, developing wine culture and … murder? Thanks to some previous successes – and a close relationship with a local patrolman – Anna finds herself pressured into accepting the task of proving a new friend’s innocence in a tragic death at a local winery.

Her investigation reveals an embarrassment of suspects, not to mention one too many potential victims. As always, Anna relies on help from her friends to find the truth. This time, though, offering help means breaking the rules.

Now she must not only catch a killer but also save the reputation of one of her closest friends, all while getting ready to send her young cousin, Eoin, back to Ireland, trying to solve the riddle of her love life, and figuring out her future as a medical anthropologist.

Purchase Link – AmazonB&NAlibris  – KoboBooks2Read – 

TOUR PARTICIPANTS – Please visit all the stops. 
February 7 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT
February 7 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT
February 7 – Novels Alive – REVIEW
February 8 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
February 8 – Cozy Up With Kathy – GUEST POST
February 8 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT
February 9 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
February 9 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – CHARACTER GUEST POST
February 10 – My Journey Back – SPOTLIGHT WITH RECIPE  
February 10 – I Read What You Write – GUEST POST
February 11 – Literary Gold – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
February 11 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT
February 12 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT
February 12 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
February 12 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW
February 13 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT
February 13 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
February 14 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT  
February 14 – Girl with Pen – SPOTLIGHT

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Posted in Great Escapes Book Tours

The Wedding Soup Murder (An Italian Kitchen Mystery) by Rosie Genova #ReviewRewind / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour

The Wedding Soup Murder
by Rosie Genova

About The Wedding Soup Murder

The Wedding Soup Murder (An Italian Kitchen Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
Reissue 2nd in the Series
 Two Roses Books; 2nd edition (October 3, 2021)
Print length ‏ : ‎ 275 pages
ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09HRFTX69
Setting: A seaside town at the New Jersey shore

 

A wedding with all the trimmings—and death as an unexpected guest…

Victoria Rienzi came home to the Jersey shore to research a new book and perfect her cooking skills at her family’s seaside restaurant, the Casa Lido. But when Vic’s exacting nonna puts her in charge of catering the soup course for a wedding at the exclusive Belmont Country Club, it’s not long before trouble is simmering in the kitchen. Three temperamental chefs are butting heads, their sous chefs are throwing punches, and the formidable club president, Elizabeth Merriman, antagonizes everyone around her.

Elizabeth, aka “The Iron Lady,” has made her share of enemies, including the father of the bride, who was caught embezzling from the country club. She threatens to fire the famous pastry chef in charge of the wedding cake, who doesn’t bother to hide her hatred of Elizabeth. And who is the mystery man in dark glasses, who never leaves the older woman’s side?

Though the wedding goes off without a hitch, by the time the happy couple and their guests depart, Elizabeth Merriman is missing. When her body is found on the beach the next morning, it appears that the country club president slipped from the top of the seawall, but Vic isn’t convinced. Did The Iron Lady finally push someone too far? And did that someone push her back—into the arms of death?


Rosie Genova is re-releasing her Italian Kitchen Mysteries.
This review was posted for the original release back in
September of 2014.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Another winner from this author.  I was spoiled by being to read both books in this series back to back.

I have fallen hard for the whole Rienzi family.  They are all back.  The romantic triangle/tension continues to evolve between Vic, her old boyfriend Tim, and carpenter Cal. Nonna is still keeping her family in check and strongly guiding them to her way of thinking. All the characters are growing as we get to know them better.

In this installment, we meet the chefs at the Belmont Country Club, and let’s just say I would rather spend time with chef Gordon Ramsey:) These chefs are extremely temperamental and are not happy having outsiders in their kitchen.  When the Club President is found dead there are plenty of suspects including the chefs and the father of the bride.

I was very impressed with the way Genova weaves the mystery into the Rienzi family subplots. It is seamless. Having a mystery writer as the protagonist just blends everything together deliciously, like a masterful piece of Italian lasagna, with plenty of layers. This breathes life into the characters and makes them jump off the pages.

As with the first story the descriptions and talk of the food made me so hungry. Again I appreciate the recipes included in the back of the book.

The only part I don’t like is that now I have to wait for a whole year to visit this wonderful Italian family. Ciao Rienzi Family! I can’t wait until we meet again!!

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About Rosie Genova

Bestselling and award-winning author Rosie Genova left her heart at the shore, which serves as the setting for much of her work. The inspiration for her cozy series, the Italian Kitchen Mysteries, comes from her deep appreciation for Italian food, her affinity for the New Jersey seaside, and her love of classic mysteries from Nancy Drew to Miss Marple. A former journalist and teacher, Rosie also writes women’s fiction and suspense. The proud mama of three grown sons, she still lives in her favorite state with her husband and a charming mutt named Lucy.

Author Links  – Webpage    Amazon Author Page     Facebook    GoodReads    BookBub

Purchase Links – Amazon

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS
October 11 – Read Your Writes Book Reviews – REVIEW*, INDIVIDUAL GIVEAWAY
October 11 – I’m Into Books – SPOTLIGHT
October 12 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, RECIPE
October 12 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW*
October 13 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT
October 13 – Christa Reads and Writes – SPOTLIGHT
October 13 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
October 14 – Literary Gold – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
October 14 – Celticlady’s Reviews – RECIPE, INDIVIDUAL GIVEAWAY
October 15 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT
October 15 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT
October 16 – I Read What You Write – GUEST POST
October 16 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

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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 2021 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Literary Escapes New Release Challenge Purrfect Reading Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Beauty Expos Are Murder (A Poppy McAllister Mystery) by Libby Klein #Review


Beauty Expos Are Murder (A Poppy McAllister Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
Setting – New Jersey
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Kensington (June 29, 2021)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 464 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496733134
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496733139
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08KKW5HS3

Gluten-free baker Poppy McAllister is about to see the ugly side of beauty expos . . .

Easter weekend on the Jersey Shore is hopping. Poppy’s Bed and Breakfast is busier than ever, but she needs to leave things in the hopefully capable hands of Aunt Ginny—and paws of Figaro the black smoke Persian. She’s selling her paleo muffins and keto cookies at the Health and Beauty Expo in Cape May’s Convention Hall. Normally sharing a booth with the love of her life would be a treat, but she’s recently discovered secrets that throw her new romance into chaos.

But more secrets are about to be exposed at the expo. In his keynote address, prominent cosmetic surgeon Dr. Lance Rubin reveals his breakthrough anti-aging technology. Unfortunately, someone has one-upped him with a truly foolproof anti-aging formula: murder. With the plastic surgeon dead under his own UV mask, and bedlam reigning in the hall and back at the B&B, Poppy needs to follow a twisted trail marked by glowing footprints to unmask a killer . . .

Includes Seven Recipes from Poppy’s Kitchen!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Poppy McAllister is juggling several plates in the air as a Health and Beauty Expo comes to town. Dr. Lance Rubin and his Rubinesque Cosmetic Surgery are the big draws but Gia and Poppy will have a booth featuring her gluten-free desserts. Her Bed & Breakfast is also fully booked and she wants to host a tea on Easter Sunday, plus Aunt Ginny’s birthday is coming up and Poppy hopes to surprise her with a party. She is also going to need to bake goodies to keep the shelves filled at La Dolce Vita which will still be open during the expo. Normally she could handle this all but with her love life in flux, it is hard to work side-by-side with Gia. A recently revealed secret and the arrival of someone from his past has turned her world upside down.

All of Poppy’s concerns fly out the window when Dr. Rubin is murdered at the expo. His death opens up a large group of suspects. Who had the most to gain with the good doctor 6 feet under? Who had the most to lose? Poppy just needs to unmask the real killer without dropping any of those other plates she is juggling.


Beauty Expos are Murder picks up right where Wine Tastings are Murder left off and my heart was breaking for Poppy. She has immerged as a much stronger woman over the course of this series but Gia’s secret sets her back greatly. This story is packed with so many tense moments, I really was amazed how Poppy soldiered on and through them all. Aunt Ginny does play a huge part and that woman is such a hoot. Thanks to her and the new maid at the B&B humor is infused in all the right places. Ms. Klein’s core characters continue to evolve. The new characters she introduces in this story are excellent as well.

The murder mystery is expertly plotted. Poppy gets help from an unlikely source and those escapades never seem to go as planned and delivered a few laughs along the way. The author blends the many subplots in nicely. Sawyer is dealing with something but just won’t open up to her BFF Poppy. There is an unexpected love match at the B&B that was both cute and funny. And Aunt Ginny has hired a new employee at the B&B knowing Poppy would never approve but that just scratches the surface of the antics of Ginny and her friends in this story. One subplot was definitely not funny and I am holding back comments to avoid spoilers but I was very happy with the way that part of the story concluded.

I just love the way Libby Klein writes a story. I know when I open each book there will be a great mystery and captivating drama but that I am going to be laughing out loud more times than I will be able to count. Her sense of comedy is top-notch and she delivers it in spades.

To truly enjoy this series the books should be read from the beginning, in order, because they truly do build from each other. Each story is wonderful in its own right. I do declare every one of them special and a must-read! Beauty Expos Are Murder is a Perfect Escape. It was fun and entertaining and I enjoyed every minute of it.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

You can read my review of Midnight Snacks Are Murder here. 

You can read my review of Restaurant Weeks Are Murder here

You can read my review of Theater Nights Are Murder here.

You can read my review of Wine Tastings Are Murder here.

Libby Klein dabbles in the position of Vice President of a technology company which mostly involves bossing other people around, making spreadsheets, and taking out the trash. She writes culinary cozy mysteries from her Northern Virginia office while trying to keep her cat Figaro off her keyboard.
Author Links – Webpage – Facebook – Twitter – Pinterest  – Cozy Mystery Crew  – GoodReads –  BookBub – Instagram –  Amazon 

 

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 New Release Challenge Purrfect Reading Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Wine Tastings Are Murder (A Poppy McAllister Mystery) by Libby Klein #Review @KensingtonBooks @LibbyKleinBooks


Wine Tastings Are Murder (A Poppy McAllister Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Setting – New Jersey
Publisher: Kensington (December 1, 2020)
Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
ISBN-10: 1496723392
ISBN-13: 978-1496723390
Kindle ASIN: B085LTRQ3P

It’s vintage Poppy McAllister when the gluten-free baker and B&B owner tries to solve a murder at a Cape May winery . . .

 

When Poppy and Aunt Ginny agreed to host a Wine and Cheese Happy Hour for a tour group at their Butterfly House Bed and Breakfast on the Jersey Shore, they never anticipated such a sour bunch. Grumpy guest Vince Baker should be in a better mood—he’s filthy rich and on his honeymoon with his much younger wife Sunny, who seems to dote on him almost as much as her high-spirited teacup Pomeranian, Tammy Faye Baker.

 

But the honeymoon is over when Vince drops dead the next day touring the Laughing Gull Winery. Turns out he’s been poisoned, and it seems like everybody on the tour is hiding something. Now Poppy has to put her gluten-free baking on the back burner and bottle up her feelings for the two men in her life while she charges after a bitter killer with a lethal case of sour grapes . . .

 

Includes Seven Recipes from Poppy’s Kitchen!

 

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Poppy McAllister is back along with her Aunt Ginny. Their B&B is open and they are hosting a Wine and Cheese Happy Hour for a tour group. The members of the group are staying at various B&B’s, one couple is even staying at a campground in their RV. Vince and Sunny Baker along with her Pomeranian, Tammy Faye are staying at Poppy’s Butterfly House Bed and Breakfast. They are later joined by Vince’s daughter and her husband when they unexpectedly crash the party and join the tour. They are not happy with Vince’s new wife and make their displeasure clearly known.

The next day the tour group travels to the Laughing Gull Winery. In the middle of the tasting, Vince keels over dead. At first, everyone thinks he had a heart attack but the man was definitely poisoned and everyone in the room becomes a suspect. With one of her guests dead, Poppy adds catch a killer to her long to-do list. Wait! Could the killer be under her roof as well?


OMG! I laughed so hard several times while reading this book, One time I laughed so hard I had tears in my eyes. My funny bone was thoroughly tickled time and again.

Victory emerged from Aunt Ginny’s bedroom at the back of the kitchen wearing a low-cut French maid costume with thigh-high stockings. 

Sawyer came in just in time to see me choke on my coffee. “Whoa!” Sawyer giggled and had to cover her mouth. “Oh, Poppy. That is so much better than I imagined.”

Aunt Ginny emerged behind Victory with a genuine feather duster in her hand. “Look it fits her. What? Why are you making that face?”

and

“The Bible says: “With great power comes great responsibility.” Aunt Ginny folded her arms across her chest and tried to stare me down. 

“That’s not the Bible. That’s Spider-Man.”

Aunt Ginny narrowed her eyes. “Are you sure? I think it’s in the Bible.”

“Not unless there’s a chapter written by Stan Lee.” 

Those are just two of my favorite scenes. There are many more.

Beyond the humor, Ms. Klein serves us such wonderful characters. Libby and her Aunt Ginny are two of my favorite cozy personalities. You never know what is going to come out of Ginny’s mouth or the antics she and her friends are going to get into. Think Golden Girls on steroids!

Poppy is still trying to decide between Gia and Tim while baking for each of their restaurants, running the B&B, trying to keep Ginny in line, and now investigating another murder. She gets stronger in each story. Her sleuthing is improving too.

All the supporting characters are developing nicely. The new characters that are introduced are quite a crew. All seem to be hiding something. They were all very well-crafted. The pet characters are great too! Figuro may have met his match!

The mystery to solve was so much fun with a plethora of twists and turns. To avoid spoilers I won’t say more but the big reveal was epic and a total surprise. I loved it!!

This entire series is fantastic. I anxiously await each new book. Wine Tastings Are Murder is stellar, captivating, hilarious, and a must-read. The ending also sets up a huge cliffhanger! So now I am counting down the days until June 29, 2021. The day Beauty Expos Are Murder hits store shelves! 203 days! 

Wine Tastings Are Murder is definitely one of the best books I have read this year and receives my Paradise Rating!

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

You can read my review of Midnight Snacks Are Murder here. 

You can read my review of Restaurant Weeks Are Murder here

You can read my review of Theater Nights Are Murder here.

Libby Klein dabbles in the position of Vice President of a technology company which mostly involves bossing other people around, making spreadsheets, and taking out the trash. She writes culinary cozy mysteries from her Northern Virginia office while trying to keep her cat Figaro off her keyboard.
Author Links – Webpage – Facebook – Twitter – Pinterest  – Cozy Mystery Crew  – GoodReads –  BookBub – Instagram –  Amazon 

 


Coming June 29, 2021

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 Great Escapes Book Tours New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Mistletoe, Moussaka, and Murder (A Kebab Kitchen Mystery) by Tina Kashian – #Review / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour @KensingtonBooks

Mistletoe, Moussaka, and Murder (A Kebab Kitchen Mystery)
by Tina Kashian

About Mistletoe, Moussaka, and Murder
(A Kebab Kitchen Mystery)


Mistletoe, Moussaka, and Murder (A Kebab Kitchen Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Setting – New Jersey
Publisher: Kensington (September 29, 2020)
Mass Market Paperback: 336 pages
ISBN-10: 1496726073
ISBN-13: 978-1496726070
Digital ASIN: B082WR6DMT

Not even her impending nuptials can keep Lucy Berberian, manager of her family-owned Kebab Kitchen, from the Jersey Shore’s annual Polar Bear Plunge. But her dive into the icy ocean is especially chilling when she finds a fellow swimmer doing the dead man’s float—for real . . .

 

Who would kill a man in cold blood during Ocean Crest, New Jersey’s most popular winter event? When Lucy learns the victim is Deacon Spooner, the reception hall owner who turned up his nose—and his price—at her wedding plans, she can’t help wondering who wouldn’t kill the pompous caterer . . .

 

Perhaps the culprit is the wedding cake baker whose career Deacon nearly destroyed? Or the angry bride whose reception he ruined? With her maid of honor, Katie, busily planning Lucy’s wedding without her, Lucy will have to get to the bottom of this cold-hearted business in time for Kebab Kitchen’s mouthwatering Christmas celebration—and before her hometown’s holiday spirit washes out to sea . . .

 

Recipes included!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Bundle up for this one. Lucy Berberian and her BFF Katie are taking part in the Polar Bear Plunge to raise money for the renovation of the Senior Center. They plunged into the frigid ocean waves along with about 40 other Ocean Crest residents and business owners and it did not go swimmingly. One plunger didn’t make it out alive. Reception hall co-owner Deacon Spooner’s dead body washed up on the beach from an apparent drowning. It wasn’t the chill in the air and water that took the man down, no, it was MURDER and one of Lucy’s friends is the prime suspect. Wedding cake baker Susie Cutie had a beef with the man but would she murder him? Lucy doesn’t think so. She met the man once and while not wishing him dead, she couldn’t stand him. He must have pushed someone else over the edge. She just needs to find out who . . .


Mistletoe, Moussaka, and Murder is the 5th book in the series and the characters feel like old friends. Lucy and Asad are now engaged to be married and Kate is trying her best to get Lucy’s wedding planning on track like any good Matron of Honor would do. Her parents, Angela and Raffi, now retired still help out at the restaurant when needed and Lucy’s cooking lessons with her mom continue. It’s the holiday season so all of them are making plans for the Christmas party at the Kebab Kitchen for all the Ocean Crest merchants. These characters are so genuine and engaging, people I would like to meet and spend more time with. I grew up in a family-run restaurant business and everything sans the murders rings true to life. I am also loving the relationship between Lucy and her landlord Eloisa, her infatuation with Azad, and the way he handles it is so funny.

Ms. Kashian has a great descriptive writing style. She takes us to the Jersey Shore with its snow-covered sand, the frigid temperatures of the ocean, the sound of a band playing under the boardwalk, the food at the Kabab Kitchen, a lovely Victorian B&B, and more. The food, moussaka to cupcakes and pies, the party attire, and a certain wedding dress are so easy to visualize.

The murder mystery was very well-plotted. Deacon Spooner was not a nice man so there were several viable suspects. I had pared down my guesses to two when the tension really picks up. The big reveal was very exciting and Yes! one of my guesses turned out to be right!

I look forward to each and every visit to Ocean Crest, New Jersey. Lucy and her family never fail to keep me totally entertained. Mistletoe, Moussaka, and Murder sure didn’t disappoint. I enjoyed every bit of this story. Will the next book include a wedding? I can’t wait to find out!



Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About Tina Kashian

Tina Kashian is an attorney and mechanical engineer whose love of reading for pleasure helped her get through years of academia. She is the author of the popular Kebab Kitchen Mediterranean cozy mystery series for Kensington Publishing. Tina spent her childhood summers at the Jersey shore building sandcastles, boogie boarding, and riding the boardwalk Ferris wheel. She also grew up in the restaurant business, as her Armenian parents owned a restaurant for thirty years. Tina still lives in New Jersey with her supportive husband and two daughters. Please visit her website at www.tinakashian.com to join her newsletter, receive delicious recipes, enter contests, and more!

Author Links

Purchase Links:


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Great Escapes Praise for Mistletoe, Moussaka, and Murder (A Kebab Kitchen Mystery)
by Tina Kashian

Mistletoe, Moussaka, and Murder is a feast for the senses – yummy food to make your mouth water, sea breezes to appease the beach lovers among us, the sights & sounds & aromas of a bustling boardwalk, family, friends, humor, heart, and a puzzling mystery to unravel.
~Reading Is My SuperPower

Mistletoe Moussaka and Murder, with its spot-on plotting and developed characters, is ideal for any cozy mystery book lover, especially for those who enjoy a bit of the foodie element!
~The Cozy Pages

Mistletoe, Moussaka, and Murder is a cheery cozy mystery with holiday house hop, matrimonial machinations, Christmas cheer, a polar plunge, seashells, seagulls, and snow.
~The Avid Reader

The author is very talented in her descriptive writing, and through most of the book, I felt like I was right there, watching all the action taking place, whether it was plunging into the ocean or checking out wedding venues.
~MJB Reviewers

Mistletoe, Moussaka, and Murder by Tina Kashian is an excellent book. It seems as I can never figure out the motive for these books. I have to say that it is good for Ms. Kashian.
~Baroness’ Book Trove

A big BRAVA to Tina Kashian for another well plotted, believable mystery filled cover to cover with twists and turns, false leads, and an all-around entertaining storyline that got better with every turn of the page.
~Lisa Ks Book Reviews

 

TOUR PARTICIPANTS – Please visit all the stops. 
October 1 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT
October 1 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW
October 1 – The Cozy Pages – REVIEW
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October 6 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW
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October 9 – Author Elena Taylor’s Blog – SPOTLIGHT
October 10 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW
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October 10 – eBook Addicts – SPOTLIGHT

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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 Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours Spotlights

Killing Time (A Dodie O’Dell Mystery) by Suzanne Trauth #Spotlight / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour

Killing Time (A Dodie O’Dell Mystery)
by Suzanne Trauth

About Killing Time 


Killing Time (A Dodie O’Dell Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
Publisher: Lyrical Press (June 2, 2020)
Number of Pages: 215
Digital ASIN: B07W8ZX8JV

With Halloween just around the corner, Dodie O’Dell is making preparations to transform the Windjammer Restaurant on the Jersey Shore into a haunted house, while the Etonville Little Theatre is staging Dracula. But casting the titular Transylvanian is proving challenging. The amateur actors in the company are not shy about chewing the scenery, but who among them can convincingly sink their fangs into a victim’s neck? When a mysterious newcomer with a transfixing Eastern European accent lands the part, rumors that he might be an actual vampire start to take flight—not unlike the bat who’s recently been spotted in the town park.

 

But everyone’s blood really runs cold when a stranger is found in the cemetery with a real stake in his heart. Dodie decides to put her Halloween theme menu on the back burner and stick her neck out to bring the killer into the light of day. She’d better keep her wits about her, though—or Dodie may be the next one to go down for the Count . . .

 

Excerpt 

    “It sure looks haunted,” Edna murmured to no one in particular, to the cast of Dracula in general. They were grouped around her on the sidewalk that ran past the old Hanratty place that Carlos and Bella had rented. I’d never been inside though once I’d driven by it when I first moved to Etonville on my way out of town. The house stood on half an acre of scruffy lawn with patches of dried dirt, surrounded by a few straggly trees—minus leaves at this time of the year—and no neighbors. The nearest houses were on a side street some distance away. The three-story building looked as if it might collapse at any moment, its outer walls covered with weathered, gray shakes, the steps to the front door supported by concrete building blocks. There was no handrail. Light leaked out of windows on the first floor. Curtains covering small, circular panes on the third story—an attic room?—quivered. Was someone up there watching us? I shivered. A turret rose upward from the right side of the structure, giving the house a smidge of outdated dignity. A drain pipe dangled loosely from the gutter.

     “Let’s go.” Penny corralled actors and nudged everyone forward to the front door. There were six company members, Renfield saying he’d be along later, plus Penny, Lola, Pauli, and me. Strength in numbers.

     We crept across the porch cautiously, aware of the creaking beneath us as the flooring shifted with each individual’s footsteps. Penny put out a hand to knock on the door. Before she could hit knuckles to wood, it flew open. “Welcome everyone!” Bella stood in the doorway, a silhouette backlit by muted foyer lighting.

     Behind her Carlos stood silently, observing the group huddled in his entryway, like deer caught in headlights.

     Lola took the lead, moving graciously into the house. “Thank you. So nice of you to invite us to your home.”

     I’m not sure what the members of the Etonville Little Theatre were expecting. Given the exterior and location of the Hanratty homestead, I anticipated something out of a late-night classic horror film.

About Suzanne Trauth

Suzanne Trauth, Harvard Studio, Montclair, NJ. 06/27/2014 Photo by Steve Hockstein/HarvardStudio.com

Suzanne Trauth is a novelist, playwright, screenwriter, and former theatre professor at a university. She is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, the Dramatists Guild, and League of Professional Theatre Women. When she is not writing, Suzanne coaches actors and serves as a celebrant performing wedding ceremonies. She lives in Woodland Park, New Jersey.

Author Links 

Webpage – Facebook – Twitter –  GoodReads

Purchase Links
Amazon – B&N – Kobo


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Great Escapes Praise for Killing Time (A Dodie O’Dell Mystery)
by Suzanne Trauth

Full of quirky characters, mystery, and surprise that all combine until you cannot put it down. A must read for fans of cozies. I totally loved it so I give it 5/5.
~Books a Plenty Book Reviews

Killing Time by Suzanne Trauth is an exciting tale with lots of twists and turns, with secret identities and double agents.
~Baroness’ Book Trove

TOUR PARTICIPANTS
May 19 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT
May 19 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW
May 20 – StoreyBook Reviews – CHARACTER GUEST POST
May 20 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW
May 21 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT
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May 22 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
May 23 – Christy’s Cozy Corners– CHARACTER INTERVIEW
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May 24 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW
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May 27 – Ascroft, eh? – GUEST POST
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May 31 – Diane Reviews Books – REVIEW
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June 1 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW

 

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Posted in 2020 Reviews Alphabet Soup A -Z Author Edition Challenge Cozy Wednesday Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Cozy Wednesday – Featuring A Fatal Yarn (A Knit & Nibble Mystery) by Peggy Ehrhart #Review / #Giveaway @KensingtonBooks

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I am happy to feature A Fatal Yarn by Peggy Ehrhart today!


A Fatal Yarn (A Knit & Nibble Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Setting – New Jersey
Publisher: Kensington (March 31, 2020)
Mass Market Paperback: 336 pages
ISBN-10: 1496723643
ISBN-13: 978-1496723642
Kindle ASIN: B07R4Q58WM

Pamela Paterson and her Knit and Nibble club must clear the name of one of their knitters when he’s accused of murdering the mayor . . .

 

The trees in Arborville, New Jersey, have started sporting sweaters. Part of the trend of public knitting art? Not exactly. An anonymous activist has been wrapping trunks in yarn to cover red X’s that mark certain trees for removal by the town so they don’t interfere with power lines. When the town’s mayor—who supports cutting down the trees—is murdered, Pamela wonders if the tree hugger committed homicide to prevent arborcide. A knitter is arrested, but it’s one of Knit and Nibble’s own—the harmless Rolland DeCamp, who was seen arguing with the mayor. Pamela is sure the police are barking up the wrong tree. With the help of her reporter friend Bettina, she branches off on her own investigation to root out the real killer . . .

Knitting tips and delicious recipe included!

Dollycas’s Thoughts 

The Knit and Nibblers are back and trying to figure out who is wrapping tree trunks in knit scarves to cover up the red x’s designated the trees to be destroyed to protect the power lines above. The town’s mayor supports the project and when he is murdered Pamela wonders if the tree hugger is responsible. But the police arrest fellow knitter Rolland DeCamp because he was witnessed arguing with the mayor. Pamela and Bettina cast on a wider net of suspects and do their best to knit together the clues to purl the right culprit behind bars.


We follow Pamela through her daily life as she works from home as an editor for “Fiber Craft Magazine,” and does a little sleuthing on the side with friend, neighbor, and yarn and nibbler Bettina.  Bettina is very pushy trying to get Pamela to date another neighbor but Pamela keeps putting her off. She is just not interested. I am surprised it hasn’t caused more strain in their friendship. It seems that issue has wrapped in this installment and that makes me very happy.

I do enjoy Ms. Ehrhart’s descriptive writing style. She tells the story in a way that brings the reader right into each scene, from her home office with her working on such interesting sounding articles, to the items being knit and the food being eaten. I love the camaraderie between the characters and the way they support each other. The conversations are realistic and you can tell they truly care about each other.

The mystery is on the light side and I did figure it out early in the story but all the drama and daily life kept me entertained right up to the final word. These are characters I love visiting and am looking forward to the next book.

A Fatal Yarn is a great addition to this series. Fix yourself something to nibble on and enjoy.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

You can read my review of Murder, She Knit here, Died in the Wool here, Knit One Die Two here, and Silent Knit, Deadly Knit here.

PEGGY

About the Author

Peggy Ehrhart is a former English professor who writes mysteries and plays blues guitar. She holds a doctorate in Medieval Literature, and her publications include a prize-winning book dealing with classical mythology in the Middle Ages. Her Maxx Maxwell mysteries, Sweet Man Is Gone (2008) and Got No Friend Anyhow (2011), feature a blues-singer sleuth.
Peggy is currently writing the Knit and Nibble mystery series for Kensington Books. Set in the charming (fictional) town of Arborville, New Jersey, it features amateur sleuth Pamela Paterson, founder and mainstay of the town’s knitting club. Peggy is a member of Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime. She plays guitar with the Still Standing Band. (From Amazon)

Find out more about Peggy on her website here.


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Click Here For Entry Form

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

Posted in 2020 Reviews Cloak and Dagger Challenge E-Book Challenge New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

The Boy from the Woods by Harlan Coben – Early Review

Release Date – March 17, 2020


The Boy from the Woods
Suspense Thriller
Setting – New Jersey
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing (March 17, 2020)
Hardcover: 384 pages
ISBN-10: 1538748142
ISBN-13: 978-1538748145
Kindle ASIN: B07TYBQJBM

A man with a mysterious past must find a missing teenage girl in this shocking thriller from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Run Away.

 

Thirty years ago, Wilde was found as a boy living feral in the woods, with no memory of his past. Now an adult, he still doesn’t know where he comes from, and another child has gone missing.

 

No one seems to take Naomi Pine’s disappearance seriously, not even her father-with one exception. Hester Crimstein, a television criminal attorney, knows through her grandson that Naomi was relentlessly bullied at school. Hester asks Wilde-with whom she shares a tragic connection-to use his unique skills to help find Naomi.

 

Wilde can’t ignore an outcast in trouble, but in order to find Naomi he must venture back into the community where he has never fit in, a place where the powerful are protected even when they harbor secrets that could destroy the lives of millions . . . secrets that Wilde must uncover before it’s too late.

 

Dollycas’s Thoughts

As soon as I find out the release date for a new Harlan Coben book I rush to my reading calendar and make sure I keep a date open to review it. Then I anxiously wait for the book to pop up for review. Coben is my favorite author when it comes to suspense and he never disappoints.

The story starts out with Naomi Pine being bullied and soon after the teenager disappears. No one seems to care that the girl is missing except a classmate who feels guilty for not stepping up to defend her and even played along with some of the pranks played on her. He is worried so he reaches out to his grandmother, Hester Crimstein, a television criminal attorney. Hester then reaches out to Wilde, a man who was found in the woods near her home 30 years ago and was befriended by her son. Wilde feels he has things in common with Naomi and immediately begins his search. A search that could cost him. A search that could hurt others. A search that will reveal secrets that could destroy lives.


This story is absolutely fabulous!

If you have read other Coben thrillers the name Hester Crimstein may be familiar. She is a woman who is tough as nails but we now see she has a soft spot for her grandson. Until now she has been a supporting character that pops up here and there. Through this story, we finally get to know more about this sassy broad who comes to town to see what her grandson Matthew really knows about a girl he says is missing.

We also meet Wilde, a boy found living in the woods about 30 years ago when he was between 6-8 years old. He spoke English but didn’t know his name or anything about where he came from. He soon became known as Wilde. No family ever claimed him so he was placed in foster care and he excelled in school. Upon graduation, he joined the military excelling there as well.  That led to a post-military career in security and investigation.  But the man is clearly a loner and is happiest living in the woods that will always be his home.

The thing Mr. Coben really does well is create characters with many layers. Some like Hester’s are revealed over time. Other’s like Wilde, Naomi, and Matthew are peeled back over the course of the story but I always feel like he holds just a bit back in case he wants to revisit them again in the future. All the characters are interesting and held my attention and I wanted to know more.

He has wrapped these characters into a story that starts as a missing person case and quickly becomes so much more. Wilde truly was all in when it came to finding Naomi and went to great lengths to get answers. He runs into roadblocks but pushes through, literally at times, to get in people’s faces to find out what the know or what they did. A surprising twist changes the game and ratchets up the suspense and takes us in new directions.

Coben blends social and political themes, really highlighting how far the rich will go to keep their secrets. We are immersed in the dark side seeing people who have created a great public facade but who truly have no morals or ethics. It made my cringe in places.

Mr. Coben also shows us a softer side as characters deal with loss and grief while trying to move forward. Grieving the loss of a loved one is something I am very familiar with and he captured and told this part of the story in a heartwarming and believable way.  It was a nice little subplot alongside all the action and suspense.

As I said, this story is fabulous, it is filled with twists and thrills. I totally escaped into every aspect of the story. Well-plotted and written, with a perfect pace. The ending was a complete surprise, The Boy From The Woods is a complex story that was so compelling.  I loved it! My world completely stopped when I started reading. In fact, Harlan Coben is responsible for my latest book hangover because I stayed up until the early morning hours to finish this book.

The Boy From The Woods deserves more than 5 stars. It earns my Paradise Rating and a place on my Best Reads of 2020.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

Find out more about Harlan Coben and his book on his webpage here.



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