Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Ukulele Deadly (Aloha Lagoon Mysteries #7) by Leslie Langtry

Ukulele Deadly (Aloha Lagoon Mysteries #7)

From USA Today bestselling author Leslie Langtry comes the next Nani Johnson adventure in paradise...

Ukulele player Nani Johnson is just starting to put the past behind her and settle in on Kauai with her loveable but crazy Mom, her hot new boyfriend, and regular gigs at both the Blue Hawaii Wedding Chapel and the Aloha Lagoon Resort. But unfortunately her island life proves anything but relaxing when a man carrying ID that says he's from Nani's hometown dies in front of her. Now it looks like Nani and her mother are the main suspects.

Things go from bad to bleak in paradise as Nani’s mom starts acting even odder than usual, there’s a mutiny involving snakes at the Blue Hawaii Wedding Chapel, and more bodies inconveniently pop up near Nani. Can Nani stay out of jail long enough to unmask the real killer…or will the police pin it all on her?

The Aloha Lagoon Mysteries:
Ukulele Murder (book #1)
Murder on the Aloha Express (book #2)
Deadly Wipeout (book #3)
Deadly Bubbles in the Wine (book #4)
Mele Kalikimaka Murder (book #5)
Death of the Big Kahuna (book #6)
Ukulele Deadly (book #7)
Bikinis and Bloodshed (book #8)
Death of the Kona Man (book #9)
Lethal Tide (book #10)

About Aloha Lagoon:
There's trouble in paradise...
Welcome to Aloha Lagoon, one of Hawaii's hidden treasures. A little bit of tropical paradise nestled along the coast of Kauai, this resort town boasts luxurious accommodation, friendly island atmosphere...and only a slightly higher than normal murder rate. While mysterious circumstances may be the norm on our corner of the island, we're certain that our staff and Lagoon natives will make your stay in Aloha Lagoon one you will never forget!  (Summary via Goodreads)

Not one ....or even two murders but three !!!  And Nani Johnson is found standing over ALL three of them !!!  Wow Leslie Langtry sure knows how to bring the heat to the Aloha Lagoon Mystery series !!  

Ukulele Deadly by Leslie Langtry is the seventh book in this series and even though I am not reading them in order, I am not missing a thing !!  

In Ukulele Deadly you are hanging around with Nani Johnson.  She plays the ukulele, teaches lessons, plays at the Aloha Lagoon Resort and the Blue Hawaii Wedding Chapel, hangs out with her boyfriend Nick and trys to keep tabs on her somewhat crazy mother.  Her life on the island is not paradise but to her it is pretty nice !!  That is until one night she is walking back to her car after picking up dinner from the Loco Moco Cafe and comes across a man lying on the ground behind her car.  Within seconds the man dies and Nani seems to be the main suspect.  And when they find out the deceased is from her hometown in Kansas, it's almost an open and shut case.  

Lucky for Nani she calls her cousin Andy who still lives in Kansas to see if he may know the deceased man whose ID says he is Ed Hopper.  Fortunately Andy does know him and he is still alive and is the new police office in town.   

Andy and Ed hop on a plane see what is going on and try to find out who the deceased "Ed Hopper" really is.  When a singer who works with Nani is the second person killed and again Nani is standing over the body, she decides to look into these deaths.  So along with Nick, her friend Binny and her cousin, Nani tries to solve the murders and clear her name.....which isn't easy considering everyone on the island seem to think its cool and she's even been given nicknames and someone is selling t-shirts.....

You cannot help but continue to fall in love with Aloha Lagoon, the island and the residents and workers even if people are dying.... because you know that when you get to the end of one of these books, the murders will be solved and you will have made new friends and your stay at Aloha Lagoon Resort will be extended when you pick up another in this series...... 

Review by Missi S.

Friday, 5 January 2018

A Devious Death (A Lady & Lady's Maid Mystery #3) by Alyssa Maxwell

A Devious Death (A Lady & Lady's Maid Mystery, #3)
In the sobering yet hopeful years following the First World War, Lady Phoebe Renshaw and her lady’s maid, Eva Huntford, find their summer plans marred by an instance of murder . . .
Phoebe and her sister Julia are eager for a summer getaway at High Head Lodge, the newly purchased estate of their cousin Regina. But they are not the only houseguests. Regina's odd friend, Olive, is far from friendly, and Regina's mother and brother—bitter over the unequal distribution of her father's inheritance—have descended on the house to confront Regina.
In addition to the family tension, Eva is increasingly suspicious of Lady Julia's new maid. She questions Miss Stanley's loyalty and integrity, wondering why she left her former employer so suddenly. And why does Regina seem ill at ease around the maid, as if they were previously acquainted? Everyone, it appears, is on edge.
But things go from tense to tragic when their hostess meets an untimely end—mysteriously murdered in her bed with no signs of struggle. Now, with suspects in every room, Lady Phoebe and Eva must uncover secrets hidden behind closed doors—before a killer ensures they never leave High Head Lodge . . . alive.  (Summary via Goodreads)

It always amazes me how much research goes into a fictional story.  I use to just read a book, enjoy the story and leave it at that.  But now when I read a book, I not only enjoy the story but appreciate the hard work that the author put into the story to ensure that it captures the reader's attention.  After all an author's goal is to tell an interesting story, one that will mesmerize the reader and if the author is lucky the story will stay with the reader even after the last word is read and the book is closed.

And Alyssa Maxwell had mastered that !!!  A Devious Death is the third book in her Lady and Lady's Maid Mystery series and with each book, I grow to love Lady Phoebe and her Lady's Maid Eva more and more !!  

There is so much to love with these stories....the relationships among the main characters Lady Phoebe, her Lady's Maid Eva, Miles who is the Constable always on the job, and Lady Phoebe's older sister Julia.  Of course other people are always introduced in the books as with A Devious Death.....Lady Phoebe and Lady Julia go to their cousin Regina's new home to help her with ideas for redecorating the huge estate.  Only to have the rest of Regina's family show up unannounced claiming that Regina owes them money because she was named the only heir to her father's estate.

There ends up more questions than answers when Regina is found murdered and her "friend" Olive is the one to find her.  Everyone is under suspicion, even Regina's mother and brother, and then when another person is murdered and a couple show up who aren't who they claim to be no one is safe....but no one can leave either.....per the Constable's orders.

Every time I read an Alyssa Maxwell novel I end up reading a remarkable story as well as learning a thing or two.....  There within again I must applaud Maxwell and all other authors for all the work that they put into a story just so that I, a reader, can get lost for a while.....

Review by Missi S.

Thursday, 4 January 2018

Death of the Kona Man (Aloha Lagoon Mysteries #9) by Catherine Bruns

Death of the Kona Man (Aloha Lagoon Mysteries #9)
There's trouble in paradise...the multi-author Aloha Lagoon Mysteries series dishes the dirt on all the murder, mystery, and madcap mayhem in Aloha Lagoon. Told from the points of view of several different women who live and work in Aloha Lagoon, there is never a dull moment. Enjoy their laughter, love, and intriguing investigations—island style!

From USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bruns comes the next deadly delicious Carrie Jorgenson adventure in paradise... 

Carrie Jorgenson is living the dream in Hawaii. She has a steady job as a waitress at the Loco Moco Café, a hot new love interest in her manager, and the curtain’s about to rise on her role in a local theater production. But when she's asked to deliver food to a guest at the Aloha Lagoon resort—who then drops dead!—her dreams quickly become the stuff of nightmares. 

World renowned food critic Randolph Cremshaw has no shortage of enemies. He's rude, patronizing, and famous for his one-star reviews. After the coffee Carrie delivers is discovered to have been poisoned, she and the café quickly rise to the top of the suspects list. A jealous co-worker, thefts at the restaurant, and a performance that threatens to blow up in Carrie's face only make things worse. With an already full plate, Carrie is also forced into making a decision that may change everything for her. But this all pales in comparison when she comes face to face with Randolph's killer and what might be the final curtain call…of her life.   (Summary via Goodreads)

Death of the Kona Man by Catherine Bruns is the 9th book in the Aloha Lagoon Mystery series.  Each book in this series is written by a different author.  You can pick up any of these books and get to know all about the island and the people who live, work, play .....and maybe die there !!

In Death of the Kona Man you hang around with Carrie Jorgenson.  Carrie is someone that you will instantly like.  She followed her boyfriend to Hawaii from Vermont but ended up single when she caught him cheating.  That's okay.....she's in HAWAII !!!  She works at the Loco Moco Cafe, which is an ocean front cafe in the Aloha Lagoon resort, she also has a role in the local theater production of Little Women and she has a new boyfriend.  

The Loco Moco is visited by a famous food critic, Randolph Cremshaw, who sits in Carrie's section.  Unfortunately someone put hot sauce in the ketchup containers and the food critic ends up with his mouth on fired and storms out.  The critic trashes the cafe on his blog so the owners agree to provide free food for him in order to save the cafe's reputation.  Unfortunately (again) when Carrie delivers his breakfast the coffee is cold so he sends her back to get fresh hot coffee.  When she returns with the hot coffee, the critic is on the floor foaming at the mouth....and not in a good way !!!

 Even though there are a lot of people who disliked Randolph and probably wanted him dead, the Loco Moco and Carrie are on the top of the suspect list.  The owners don't care much for Carrie already because she is dating their son, Keanu, and this new development does not help matters any.

While continuing to work at the cafe, go to rehearsals and performance at the theater Carrie does some investigating of her own.  She knows that she did not kill Randolph and no one in the cafe would either but who on the island would ?  

As she investigates she finds out Randolph and his brother Richard went to college with Jeff who owns and is the director at the theater as well as Howie who is a Hollywood producer who is on the island.  Randolph also has a daughter on the island that he wanted nothing with as well has his wife who was having an affair with his brother.  

There are so many people that could have killed Randolph but when Carrie uncovers some things from his college days ......

Oh I can't tell you any more.... I mean I could but I really think you should read for yourself.  
Gemma Halliday Publishing has done an AMAZING job putting together this series and the authors writing it.  There is also a website that you can visit to better aquaint yourself with the people and places as you read the series.  

Death of the Kona Man was the first book in the series that I have read but I guarantee that I will be going back and reading the rest of them.  I didn't want to leave Aloha Lagoon.  In her writing Catherine Bruns takes you away.... not only does she take you to paradise where there is a murder but she takes you down lovers' lane also........

Get to know Aloha Lagoon :   http://www.gemmahalliday.com/Aloha_Lagoon/books.html

Review by Missi S.

Friday, 29 December 2017

Wild Pursuit (Rosetta Wild Series Book 1) by Annabeth Nash

Wild Pursuit (Rosetta Wild Series Book 1)

Being a university librarian can be a dangerous job. That’s what Rosa Wild found out when she went to a meeting, but walked in on a murder. Escaping with her life and being forced into hiding, a bruised and beaten Rosa decides to take matters into her own hands and find the killer before they find her. 
Aided by her Charlie’s Angels wannabe best friend, fortune telling old Aunt, and her sexy on/off boyfriend, a whole lot of crazy is unleashed. And when gorgeous Detective Chief Inspector Dexter enters the picture sparks really start to fly.  (Summary via Goodreads)

I loved Wild Pursuit by Annabeth Nash !!!  There is so much to love....the only thing that I didn't like is having to wait for the next book in the Rosetta Wild Mysterty series ....but I know the wait will be worth it !!

The first thing I loved about Wild Pursuit is that each chapter is focused on one day....so Chapter One is Day One when the murder occured.  So there was no time lost in getting right to it !!

And the story and the characters are GREAT !!  You cannot help but fall in love with Rosa and feel badly that she got caught in the middle of the drama of the murder but when she decides to take matters into her owns hands and do some sleuthing of her own you know it's going to be a hoot !!!  

So Rosa has a meeting with a Professor but when she gets to his office she gets attacked by the killer fleeing the scene.  Then the house is set on fire so she moves in with her friend Shirley who has a panic room and a great alarm system.  While staying with Shirley, they decide to team up and try to solve the case.  This leads them down some funny roads and some scary paths.....

All of this provides the reader with a great story  !!  Nash has a knack with her writing that allows you to escape into Rosa's world for a while.  You will love Shirley's house, you will be able to imagine how sexy Quinn and the Detective Chief Inspector are and you will truly love Shirley and her quirky way about her.   Not to mention the friendship that Rosa and Shirley have !!  The only thing you will dislike is that the book had to end but the way that Nash left it will have you counting down the days until the next installment in this amazing series !!!

Review by Missi S.  

Sunday, 24 December 2017

Carnage at the Christmas Party: A Mystery Novella (A Windy Pines Mystery Book 2) by Holly Tierney-Bedord (

Carnage at the Christmas Party: A Mystery Novella (A Windy Pines Mystery Book 2)

This is book two in the Windy Pines mystery series. It can be read as a stand-alone novella. 

Windy Pines, Idaho, is known for three things: Beautiful mountain views, the world’s most incompetent police force, and, lately, murder. 

Charlotte Smyth’s new job as the O’Leery Snowboarding Inc.’s Spreader of Cheer is anything but a perfect fit. She hates sports, cold weather, and anything bordering on ‘extreme’. Within days of starting her new job, she finds herself in a sea of political incorrectness, verbal abuse, and long hours, with little relief in sight. In a small town like Windy Pines, where a person’s lucky to find a job at all, her only choice is to make it work. Her boss Shane Letcher is just as disappointed with Charlotte, whom he’s decided isn’t cool enough to understand the company culture or raise the spirits of the staff. 

Giving her one last chance to prove herself, Shane decides the O’Leery Christmas party is Charlotte’s make-it or break-it opportunity. She needs to deliver a fun, fabulous time, or find a new place to work. What Charlotte doesn’t know is that even if she can throw together a spectacular soiree, there are schemes happening behind the scenes that could foil her party plans. 

Charlotte and her new love interest had better unravel this who-done-it before the Windy Pines police decide to arrest someone, or they may find themselves spending Christmas in jail!   (Summary via Goodreads)

Got a few hours to kill ? Want to read something that will grab you instantly and won't take long to read but will hold your attention from the first word till the last sentence ?  Carnage at the Christmas Party: A Mystery Novella by Holly Tierney-Bedord is what you are looking for.

Hang around with Charlotte for a few hours and feel her frustration and annoyance with her job, boss, and co-workers.  You would think that her job would be a fun job....after all she is the "Spreader of Cheer" for a company that make snowboards.  But her boss, Shane, is a real piece of work and no matter what she does, she can't seem to do anything right.

Planning the company Christmas party is her last chance.  This party has to be out of this world and impress everyone or she will be out of a job....which wouldn't be such a bad thing if she didn't live in Windy Pines where there were no jobs....good or bad. 

To ensure that the party is a success Charlotte goes all out when her boss says money is no object.  She organizes a fashion show with models flown in from New York City to model her best friend Alfredo's spring collection.  Unfortunately in the middle of the show while the lights are dim, someone takes an ax and kills one of her co-workers and a few models.  And Charlotte doesn't realize until later than evening that the clue to crack the case is her her pocket !!!

Carnage at the Christmas Party can be read in one sitting and once you start reading it you won't want to put it down until you are finished !!  It is the perfect read for a quiet afternoon....grab a cup of coffee and a comfy blanket and you'll finish your beverage around the same time as the book....unless you get caught up in the story then your coffee may need reheating.

Review by Missi S.

Saturday, 23 December 2017

A Play on Murder: A Clara Callaway Mystery by Lillian Dore

A Play on Murder: A Clara Callaway Mystery
Journey back to 1920s England, and join young Lady Clara Callaway and her lady’s maid, Alice Hart, as they go detecting together! 

When a night at the theater turns into a death onstage, Clara Callaway and her friends once again find themselves playing the role of detective. Poor Daniel Holloway has been killed during the holiday performance, in front of a live audience! 

Who would want to take a life in such a public way? With the help of Giles and the ever clever Alice Hart, Clara is determined to bring the killer to justice. Because when jealousy and greed mix, the combination can be deadly.   (Summary via Goodreads)

Even though the Clara Callaway Mystery series are novellas, every page is full of exciting words and sentences that describe an entertaining story !!  And the best part is that with them being short, you can read one of them in one sitting and have time to read it again !!!

With A Play on Murder I am going to have to go ahead and say that it is my FAVORITE Clara Mystery so far.  Maybe it is because after reading the other 6 I have grown to know Lady Clara, Giles, Alice and everyone else and I have grown to love them all.  Or maybe it is because it is set around Christmas and I just read it 3 days before Christmas.  Or maybe it is because of the way author Lillian Dore ended A Play on Murder which has me already looking forward to the next installment in Lady Clara's life......  Or maybe it is all of that and more !!!  For whatever reason I have given that helps you decide to read it, that will be the best reason !!

In A Play on Murder all Lady Clara and Giles do is go to see a play with Giles' parents right before Christmas and an actor is shot in the play but the gun was not a prop and the actor ends up dead ..... what a way to end Act One !!  This results in Lady Clara and Giles getting involved and helping Detective Inspector Thorpe find out who killed the actor.  And when the case is solved you will sit back and let out the breath you didn't realized that you were holding !!  

So if you haven't read any of the Clara Callaway Mystery novellas yet, I strongly urge you to start !!!  They are short and full of entertainment !!!

Review by Missi S.

Friday, 22 December 2017

Bed, Breakfast and Murder (Ryli Sinclair Mystery #4) by Jenna St. James

Bed, Breakfast and Murder (Ryli Sinclair Mystery #4)


Gather your party hats and magnifying glasses and help these ladies “get a clue.” Cozy Mystery Author Jenna St. James will tickle your funny-bone with this latest hysterical caper. Ryli Sinclair and her ever-astonishing and outrageous Great Aunt Shirley team up again in this non-traditional Cozy that will amuse and entertain you! 

It's Aunt Shirley's birthday, and the former Private Investigator wants to spend it with her favorite girls on a weekend getaway. Unfortunately, the weekend getaway includes a trip to a WhoDunIt Murder Mystery Bed and Breakfast. The weekend of harmless fun gets a bit too real when an actual body is discovered, and Ryli and the gang try to gather clues to solve the mystery, hoping that it was merely a random act. When a second body is discovered, however, the gals realize that there is a killer is on the loose, and that everyone from the owners, to the workers, to the other theater-going participants, are all suspects. The local Sheriff enlists the help of Ryli and Aunt Shirley and hilarity ensues. Tossing back tequila shots and riding high atop a mechanical bull, Aunt Shirley is determined to discover the secrets everyone is hiding, before another victim is found.   (Summary via Goodreads)

The Ryli Sinclair Mystery series by Jenna St. James are so fun to read and Bed, Breakfast and Murder is no exception !!!   You cannot help but fall in love with Ryli and her family and especially her Aunt Shirley !!!  And in this 4th installment in the series, St. James and Aunt Shirley do not disappoint you !!!

So it's Aunt Shirley's birthday and she wants to go to a bed and breakfast for a Murder Mystery weekend package.  Ryli, Aunt Shirley, Ryli's mom Janine and Ryli's best friend/sister-in-law, Paige load up the Falcon and away they go !!  They are hoping to hit some wineries, take a horse ride, relax, and solve a make believe murder or two.

Everything is running smoothly on the first night when the first murder happens and its Colonel Musgaard (like Mustard  in the Clue game...how clever) and they are having fun trying to figure out who poisoned his drink.  Unfortunately everything changes the next day.....

After breakfast the ladies head over to the barn to go horseback riding and Ryli stumbles across a dead body !!!  Trent Starnes, who takes care of the horses and helps out at the bed and breakfast is dead on the barn floor.

After the sheriff learns of Ryli and Aunt Shirley's history and knack for solving murders he enlists their help.  Of course, Aunt Shirley takes it a few steps further than the intended questioning the guests and owners....but that wouldn't be Aunt Shirley if she didn't.

The inn's owners, staff and guests are in for a wild ride on top of the "planned" murders and Aunt Shirley and Ryli are in the driver's seat.  

I love the way that St. James takes an innocent weekend away for the girls and turns it completely upside down, inside out and backwards.  And the relationship that Ryli and Aunt Shirley have is amazing....they love each other but can't stand each other but end up sharing a room and the queen size bed and it's all in a normal day for them.  I also enjoyed getting to know Ryli's mom more and seeing how she handles Aunt Shirley.  

The Ryli Sinclair Mystery series is a treat to read !!!  With every new book in the series you fall in love with Ryli and Aunt Shirley more as well as get to know the rest of the family and friends.  And boy the way that Bed, Breakfast and Murder ended, you will be waiting and longing to see where the next book takes you.......

Review by Missi S.