Tuesday, 29 August 2017

A Knit before Dying (Tangled Web Mystery #2) by Sadie Hartwell


A Knit before Dying

A new business might add some much-needed charm to downtown Dorset Falls—and draw tourists to Josie’s yarn shop. But when someone gets murdered, a close-knit community could come undone . . .
 
Shop owner Josie Blair is finally settling into the pace of living in Dorset Falls, Connecticut. Between running Miss Marple’s Knits, jumpstarting a blog, and handcrafting items with the help of her knitting pals, Josie’s too preoccupied to worry about her past in New York. And thanks to Lyndon and Harry, the owners of the brand new antique shop across the street, she has another project in her midst—repurposing a box of vintage crocheted doilies adorned with the most curious needlework . . . 
 
But before Josie can formally welcome her neighbors, she discovers Lyndon stabbed to death by a rusty old pair of sheep shears on the floor of his shop. Police have pinned Harry as the killer, but Josie isn’t so sure. Now, she’s lacing up for another homicide investigation—and no eyelet or stitch can go unexamined, lest she herself becomes ensnared in the criminal’s deadly design . . . 
 
INCLUDES ORIGINAL KNITTING PATTERNS!  (Summary via Goodreads)



The Tangled Web Mystery series should come with a warning.... You will NOT be able put the books down.  Before you pick up a book you will need to clear your schedule for the forseeable future.  You will get lost with Josie in Dorset Falls and will not want to leave....even when you finish the book.

Sadie Hartwell is an amazing author and her talent is amazing as well  !!  When you are reading her books, you will be taken away on a journey meeting some awesome people.

Josie Blair is just getting use to living in Dorset Falls with her grouchy Uncle Eb.  She is now the proud owner of her Aunt Cora's yarn store and she is about to be a landlady for an antique store opening up next door.  That is until one of the owners is murdered.  Josie has a way with secretly figuring things out. And she always seems to ask the right questions.  

When she is cleaning a box of doiles, one of the doiles is very different and she starts to wonder about who the owner could have been and what secrets the box holds.  It will amaze you how Hartwell can take a case from years ago and work it into the present time and how she involves Josie will knock your socks off !!!

I love Dorset Falls and everything and everyone there !!  I wish it were an actual place that I could visit.  But I'll take reading about it and enjoying my time between the covers of the book....

Review by Missi S.


Yarned and Dangerous (Tangled Web Mystery #1) by Sadie Hartwell


Yarned and Dangerous (Tangled Web Mystery, #1)
Time has not been kind to sleepy Dorset Falls, Connecticut, where an erstwhile resident is hoping to bring a tattered yarn shop back to life—but with a murderer on the loose, the whole town is in knots…
 
Josie Blair left Dorset Falls twelve years ago in hopes of making it big in New York City. But after earning an overpriced master’s degree and getting fired by a temperamental designer, she finds herself heading back to her hometown. Her great-uncle was injured in a car accident, and newly unemployed Josie is the only person available to take care of him. Uncle Eb’s wife didn’t survive the crash, so Josie is also tasked with selling the contents of her Aunt Cora’s yarn shop. But the needling ladies of the Charity Knitters Association pose a far bigger challenge than a shop full of scattered skeins…
 
Miss Marple Knits is one of the few businesses still open in the dreary downtown. Josie can’t imagine how it stayed open for so long, yet something about the cozy, resilient little shop appeals to her. But when one of the town’s most persnickety knitters turns up dead in a pile of cashmere yarn, Josie realizes there’s something truly twisted lurking beneath the town’s decaying fa├žade…  (Summary via Goodreads)


When you read a book, you want the story to take you away.  Well pack your bags ..... you are going to want to move to Dorset Falls !!

In Yarned and Dangerous, the first Tangled Web Mystery series, Sadie Hartwell takes you to Dorset Falls with Josie Blair.  Josie goes there to take care of her great-uncle Eb and to close Aunt Cora's yarn store.  As Josie tries to help Uncle Eb who has a cast on his leg from the car accident that killed Aunt Cora and before she can take inventory of the contents of the yarn store, she finds a woman dead in the storeroom.  It turns out to be one of the woman she recently met that was a member of the Charity Knitters Association.

With the help of another member of the Association she begins taking inventory of the store however her heart isn't into it.  And then some strange things start happening that make Josie wonder about the people in this small town.

Hartwell has made a great character out of Josie you cannot help but fall in love with her.  And you will even find a place for her grouchy Uncle Eb along with everyone else in town.  You will instantly want to have coffee at the general store and stroll along Main Street even though there aren't a lot of businesses on it.

Dorset Falls has something for everyone so find a comfy spot to sit, grab a beverage and a snack and settle in with Yarned and Dangerous.  I was so engrossed in the story that I read it in one day.  That is not required or recommended....take your time and rest assured.....there is a second book in the series, A Knit Before Dying and I am dying to read it !!!

Review by Missi S.



   

Monday, 28 August 2017

Cat Got Your Diamonds (Kitty Couture Mystery #1) by Julie Chase


Cat Got Your Diamonds (Kitty Couture Mystery #1)

Grandeur and opulence are everything in the famed New Orleans Garden District where pets are family and no bling is too big. Opening Furry Godmother, pet boutique and organic treat bakery, is Lacy Marie Crocker’s dream come true--until the glitter gun used to make her Shih Tzu tutus becomes a murder weapon. And Lacy becomes public enemy #1.

Now Detective Jack Oliver is hounding Lacy, and her Furry Godmother investor wants out before his name is tarnished by association. To make matters worse, a string of jewel heists with suspicious ties to the murder case has New Orleans residents on edge. To save her dream, Lacy must take a stand, put her keen eyes to work, and unravel what really happened at her shop that night. But can Lacy sniff out the killer cat burglar in time to get her tail-raising designs on the catwalk?

Witty and whimsical, Cat Got Your Diamonds, the first in a new cozy series by Julie Chase, will be the cat's meow for fans of Rita Mae Brown and Miranda James.  (Sumary via Goodreads)




I actually started this series on Book 2, Cat Got Your Cash, and I loved it so much I just had to read the one that started it all.  

Cat Got Your Diamonds by Julie Chase is the first book in the Kitty Couture Mystery series and this series is such a treat to read !!  It doesn't matter that I read the first two out of order because as soon as you start reading you are completely engrossed in the story.  Chase's writing makes it so easy to become a part of the story.   Your imagination takes off while you read and you can see everything that you are reading !!

You will fall in love with Lacy and want to work in her store.  She owns Furry Godmother which is a store that makes accessories and outfits for pets !!  And Lacy makes they all herself.  Imagine one of your favorite clothing stores and picture all the things in it are for pets to wear.....how fun is that !!!

You can also respect Julie in the way that even though she comes from money, she wants to handle the business without the help of her family money.  She is a very independent and determined woman .... and she can take care of herself.  Even when there is an intruder in her shop, someone is trying to scare her and the sexy Detective that all the women in town are drooling over is trying to protect her, she remains strong.  

You will appreciate the relationship she has with her parents.  And even though her mother comes from old money and has extravagant dinner parties, she is still a down to earth mother....most of the time.  And her father is like most fathers in that he wants his daughter to be happy.  They are there for her no matter what and as you read you can see the love that they all share.

And the ladies in town and the pets that they have that need attention from Lacy's store are a HOOT !!  I know dressing up dogs is no big deal, thats been done for a while.  But chickens and llamas ??  And there are rivals among the ladies and who can outdo who and which pets will have the best outfits !!  The ladies in town, including her own mother, are going to keep Lacy's store a float.

I am in love with this series and am very glad that Book 3, Cat Got Yoru Secrets is in my pile to read.  I cannot wait to see what Furry Godmother has in store next........

Review by Missi S.




Wednesday, 23 August 2017

A Burning Hot Murder (A Sullivan Sisters Mystery Book 2) by Jenna St. James


A Burning Hot Murder (A Sullivan Sisters Mystery Book 2)
With only two weeks before Jax's new bakery is to open, Jaycee and the gang are hard at work finalizing arrangements. Unfortunately, the untimely murder of two Traveler's Bay citizens is putting a damper on the happy occasion. Even worse is the fact that both Jaycee and Jax are once again thrust into the forefront as prime suspects. When Jaycee's boyfriend, Detective Connors, is taken off the case due to a conflict of interest, Gramps gives Jaycee the go-ahead to work her magic and solve the case. Amid the chaos of serving up drinks and gossip at Gone with the Whiskey, cop car chases, motorcycle jumping, gang-initiation rituals, and joyriding in a Miata-smashing truck, Jaycee and the gang must once again traverse their way into clearing the Sullivan name.  (Summary via Goodreads)


Jenna St. James is the author of 2 amazing book series.  In her Ryli Sinclair Mystery Series her main character Ryli is a forensic photographer and with the help of her best friend Paige and her great-aunt Shirley, they "investigate" murders.  In this series you cannot help but fall in love with the characters and want to take a ride with them in Shirley's 1965 Falcon.  We all know that every family has that ONE slightly off the wall aunt, uncle or cousin that makes the family gatherings more enjoyable....just like Aunt Shirley !!

In her other series, A Sullivan Sisters Mystery Series, you have sisters, Jaycee and Jax, who live with their mother and their retired Army Colonel grandfather.  Jaycee and Gramps own Gone with the Whiskey which is a bookstore and bar that favors John Wayne.  Gramps lives and breaths all things John Wayne.  Jax is an amazing baker and she makes delicious desserts that are paired up with an adult beverage and sold at the bookstore.  Jaycee is dating a detective on the police force and he can't even keep the sisters out of trouble.  But no matter what mess they get into they ALWAYS have Gramps on their side.  Oh and to add more humor into the story Gramps girlfriend Tillie is a former contortionist and trapeze artist !!

It is obvious in her writing that Jenna St. James gives high regard to family and its dynamics.  In her writing she gives you different insights into two very different families and the ups and downs that can occur.  Hopefully in most families murder is not a continuous occurence and maybe your "crazy" relative is slightly more sane that Gramps or Aunt Shirley.....either way I'm sure you will truly enjoy reading these books.  Not only are they entertaining but they are very easy to read....how fast you get through them is totally in your hands.......


In her Ryli Sinclair Mystery Series she has written 3 books (so far)  They are :
Picture Perfect Murder  (Book 1)
Girl's Night Out Murder (Book 2)
Jus An Old-Fashioned Murder (Book 3)

In The Sullivan Sister Mystery Series she has :
Murder on the Vine (Book 1)
A Burning Hot Murder (Book 2)


Feel free to check her and her books out at : 

https://www.amazon.com/Jenna-St.-James/e/B018MDHY7I

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15186053.Jenna_St_James

https://www.facebook.com/jennastjamesauthor/


Review by Missi S.



Friday, 18 August 2017

Hunting Hour (Timber Creek K-9 Mystery #3) by Margaret Mizushima


Hunting Hour (Timber Creek K-9 Mystery, #3)

Deputy Mattie Cobb is working through issues from her past and has withdrawn from Cole Walker and his family to focus on herself, when she and her K-9 partner Robo get called to track a missing junior high student. Until they find the girl on Smoker's Hill behind the high school, dead. But that's only the start of trouble in Timber Creek, because soon another girl goes missing--and this time it's Sophie Walker. Hard as they search, Cole, Mattie, and Robo can't find her anywhere. Mattie's primary suspect, a strange man who lives near the wilderness area, calls to report he hears deer "screaming" in the woods. Suspecting the man might have lost touch with reality and be referring to something he's done to Sophie, Mattie takes Robo into the dense pine forest, hoping to pick up a trace of her scent. But when Robo does catch Sophie's trail, it leads them to another clue that challenges everything they thought they knew about the case. Now Mattie and Robo must rush to hunt down Sophie's kidnapper before they're too late in Hunting Hour, the third installment in critically acclaimed author Margaret Mizushima's exhilarating mystery series.   (Summary via Goodreads)


Total adrenaline rush !!  

Once you start reading Hunting Hour by Margaret Mizushima you will NOT be able to put the book down.  Mizushima's way of telling a story is so energetic and captivating, it will keep you on the edge of your seat !!  Her writing keeps you guessing until the very end....she makes you believe or think you know where the story is going and who is going to be the bad guy but then she throws some twists and turns that are completely unexpected.

Although this is the third book in the Timber Creek K-9 Mystery series and the first one that I have read, I was not lost or lacking information at all.  

A young girl is found murdered and Deputy Mattie Cobb and her dog Robo are called in to follow scents and try to find the murderer.  While they are following evidence and interviewing suspects, another young girl goes missing...and this one is personally close to Mattie.  As she tries to stay professional and keep her emotions in check, things from the case stir up some family memories that she would like to forget. 

I have never read a book with a dog playing such a huge role in the story before.  It was amazing to read how smart dogs really are and what they are capable of doing if trained in the field.  I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and look forward to reading more in this series!!

Review by Missi S.



Monday, 14 August 2017

The House on Beale Street by Loraine J Hudson


The House on Beale Street
A dream house in a small town. 
A cup of coffee on her porch. 
Her dog at her feet. 
What could possibly go wrong? 
Plenty. 
Bumps in the night, unwelcome visitors, an angry friend, and a lingering threat from a local robbery leave Marianne Reed wondering if her new home might become a nightmare. The question is, is it new house jitters, or is danger just around the corner? 
The House on Beale Street is the debut novel by Loraine J Hudson, who lives and writes in a small town in Michigan. She loves oldies rock music, stained glass, playing in her garden, snuggling with her dogs, riding her off-track thoroughbred horse, and – of course – writing. She has also published a series of middle grades fantasy chapter books under her pen name, Judith Wade.   (Summary via Goodreads)



The House on Beale Street is Loraine J. Hudson's debut novel and I am already looking forward to her next book !!

The House on Beale Street is the house that Marianne bought and recently moved into.  It is a nice small house in a quiet neighborhood and she is excited to do renovations to the house, get to know her neighbors and enjoy sitting in her yard with her big teddy bear of a dog Rowdy.

That is until she meets her neighbor, Ashley, and learns of a burglary that happened in the neighborhood just before she moved in and one of the robbers hid out in the cornfield behind her house.  It is also rumored that the robber may have hid in Marianne's basement and left something behind before he took off running ending up hit by a car and killed.

When strange things start to occur Marianne, her friend Louise, and her step-daughter Natalie piece together a timeline and clean out the basement.....but they find nothing of value and end up with more questions than answers.  

Marianne tries to put it aside when Ashley stops over with an off the way story providing more unanswered questions but makes her feel like she misinterpreted everything and maybe there just isn't anything to worry about........until a knock on the door reveals the truth.

The House on Beale Street is a easy to read, hard to put down book and it is a GREAT debut book.  Hudson is definitely an author to follow !!

Review by Missi S.

Friday, 11 August 2017

Murder at Chateau Sur Mer (Gilded Newport Mysteries #5) by Alyssa Maxwell


Murder at Chateau Sur Mer (Gilded Newport Mysteries #5)
In the late nineteenth century, Newport, Rhode Island, is home to some of America s wealthiest citizens. It s also the beat of society reporter Emma Cross, a less well-heeled cousin to the illustrious Vanderbilts, who occasionally moonlights in solving murders . . .

Covering a polo match for the Observer, Emma s job is to take note of the real players off the field Newport s well-bred elite. But the fashionable facade is breached when a woman in gaudy clothing creates a scene demanding to speak to the wife of Senator George Wetmore until she is escorted off the grounds by the police. 
The next morning, police detective Jesse Whyte asks Emma to meet him at the Wetmores Bellevue Avenue home, Chateau sur Mer, where the senator s wife, Edith, has mysteriously asked to see her. Upon entering the mansion, Emma is confronted with a crime scene the intruder from the polo match lies dead at the foot of a grand staircase. 
To avoid scandal, Edith Wetmore implores Emma to use her reporter skills and her discretion to investigate. When Emma learns the victim was a prostitute and pregnant she wonders if the senator was being blackmailed. As Emma peels back layers of deception and family secrets, she may have met her match in a desperate killer who will trample anyone who gets in the way...   (Summary via Goodreads)



I feel like I am going to sound like a broken record when I write a review for one of Alyssa Maxwell's books.  Her books are AWESOME !!  I cannot say it enough.  I don't know that I am giving them justice when I review them.


When you read one of Maxwell's books whether it is A Gilded Newport Mystery or A Lady and Lady's Maid book, you are in for a journey !  


Murder at Chateau sur Mer is her latest book in the A Gilded Newport Mystery series and while you are reading it you will feel like you took a ride in a time machine.   If you have been reading this series, you are very familiar with Emma Cross and her way of life.....her independence and her will to help any one that knocks on her door and even those that don't.  And you also know that she somehow gets involved in murder cases whether the police want her help or not.


Well Murder at Chateau sur Mer is no exception although slightly different.  Although Emma is interested in the murder that occured and, of course, would like to find justice for the deceased, she is taken back when she is asked to look into the death.....by the wife of the husband accused.  Emma does not know the Wetmore's very well but everyone knows them to a point, after all George Wetmore is a Senator.  Mrs. Wetmore does not believe that the police will do a throrough job investigating the case because the woman that was murdered was a lady of the evening.  She knows that Emma is just the right person to ask to look into the woman's death.

Emma will stop at nothing when she is on a case.  She will go above and beyond what others would shy away from to find justice....even if it means going into a Gentlemen's Only establishment to question a person of interest.

As you read you cannot help but fall in love with Emma and you can truly understand how two men could have feelings for her.  You can also understand her dilemma about maintaining her independence and wanting to do more in the world than be someone's wife.  She is someone for all girl's to look up to and to aspire to be like.....even if she is fictional and from a time long ago.

There is so much to say about Murder at Chateau sur Mer, Emma Cross, and Aylssa Maxwell's talent for story telling, but to talk about it and to read it first hand are 2 different things entirely.  I highly recommend picking this book up, adding it to your to read list and taking a journey with Emma.  You will feel like a different person afterwards......

Review by Missi S.