Wednesday 31 August 2016

Murder at Rough Point (Gilded Newport Mysteries #4) by Alyssa Maxwell

Murder at Rough Point (Gilded Newport Mysteries, #4)

In glittering Newport, Rhode Island, at the close of the nineteenth century, status is everything. But despite being a poorer relation to the venerable Vanderbilts, Emma Cross has shaped her own identity—as a reporter and a sleuth.Fancies and Fashion reporter Emma Cross is sent by the Newport Observer to cover an elite house party at Rough Point, the “cottage” owned by her distant cousin Frederick Vanderbilt, which has been rented as a retreat for artists. To her surprise, the illustrious guests include her estranged Bohemian parents—recently returned from Europe—as well as a variety of notable artists, including author Edith Wharton.

But when one of the artists—an English baronet—is discovered dead at the bottom of a cliff, Rough Point becomes anything but a house of mirth. After a second guest is found murdered, no one is above suspicion—including Emma’s parents.

Even as Newport police detective Jesse Whyte searches for a killer in their midst, Emma tries to draw her own conclusions—with the help of Mrs. Wharton. But with so many sketchy suspects, she’ll need to canvas the crime scenes carefully, before the cunning culprit takes her out of the picture next… (Summary via Goodreads)

I LOVE the Guilded Newport Mystery series by Alyssa Maxwell and Murder at Rough Point is NO exception !!  Maxwell has such a way in taking you back to the end of the 19th century and making you feel like you are actually there !!

Emma Cross is asked to attend a gathering of artists at her cousin's Newport home that he has rented out.  She is asked to stay on with the other guests and interview the artists for an article for the paper.  Unknowingly to Emma, however, is that her parents are in attendance as well.  Emma has not seen her parents in four years, ever since they left Newport for Paris so that her father could pursue his painting.

As Emma becomes re-acquainted with her parents it becomes clear that her parents are holding back and keeping secrets.  As she trys to unravel that mystery one of the houseguest goes missing and is found at the bottom of the cliffs in the water.  Did he jump ? Was he pushed ?   

While Emma and Detective Jesse Whyte begin to investigate another member of the group is found dead in his bathtub.  Was it an accident or is someone killing members of the group ?  And why ??

The assortment of artists as well as the limited service staff on hand are an interesting bunch of characters.  As you read and get to know them, you will find yourself liking them and wondering who, if any, could hvae done these horrific acts and why ??

The ending is a complete shocker that you will NOT see coming but it will all make sense in the end......

Reveiw by Missi S. 

Friday 19 August 2016

Bacon, Eggs, and Boogeymen: Book 3 in The Bandit Hills Series by Blair Merrin

Bacon, Eggs, and Boogeymen: Book 3 in The Bandit Hills Series

SUMMER PRESCOTT BOOKS is thrilled to present:
Bacon, Eggs, and Boogeymen - Book 3 in The Bandit Hills Series!!!
When a sweet elderly woman’s husband goes missing, Dash and Cassie step in to try to figure out whodunit. Dash goes camping with Cassie on a dare, and they discover more than they bargained for at an abandoned campsite. The adventures continue, served with a heaping helping of breakfast from Tank’s diner, in this latest installment of The Bandit Hills Series.
  (Summary via Goodreads)

Bacon, Eggs, and Boogeyman is book three in the Bandit Hills series. This is a series not to be missed. It is jammed packed full of adventure and mystery. Bandit Hills is a quirky little town where you never know what will happen next. Ghosts, paranormal, mystery, that's just Bandit Hills. 

Cass and Dash are a great couple. They definitely have fun with each other. Especially when Cass gets Dash going about the paranormal. Even though he grew up in Bandit Hills he has a hard time with things that go bump in the night. He is what some may call a chicken and Cass knows just how to play on this emotion to get him to do what she wants like going to spend the night in a creepy sanitarium! Triple dog dare you works every time. Someone goes missing and Cass and a reluctant Dash get their snoop on trying to find out what happened.

 Will they be able to solve this case before an innocent gets hurt??? Love Cass's saying, "The dead aren't scary. The living are." So true!

Review by Penny M.

Murder at Sunrise (A Sand and Sea Hawaiian Mystery Book 2) by Kathi Daley

Murder at Sunrise (A Sand and Sea Hawaiian Mystery Book 2)

When one of the seniors in Lani's senior bingo group ends up dead during a sunrise ceremony to welcome the summer solstice, Lani sets out to find a killer with the help of Luke and her senior friends.  (Summary via Goodreads)

Kathi Daley has done it again with another amazing must read series. 

Murder at Sunrise is book two in A Sand and Sea Hawaiian Mystery. Set in the most beautiful place on earth with gorgeous beaches, great surfing, friendly people and MURDER???

Lani has her senior bingo group at the beach for a sunrise ceremony to welcome the summer solstice. But sadly the ceremony ends with the death of one of the seniors. Is there a killer in the bingo group or something entirely different? Lani has her hands full between her job, family, Luke and now murder. Lani is determined to get to the bottom of why someone would want to kill one of the seniors. 

With the help of handsome cowboy Luke and a quirky set of seniors they begin an investigation that is full of excitement and maybe romance? 

This is a fast paced, full of intrigue mystery series that Cozy fans will not be able to put down.

Review by Penny M.

Wednesday 17 August 2016

Dying to Vote: A Clara Callaway Mystery by Lillian Dore

Dying to Vote: A Clara Callaway Mystery by [Dore, Lillian]

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 Right to Vote rally turns into a mysterious murder, Lady Clara Callaway once again finds herself in the thick of things. Penelope Newton, spokeswomen for the Women’s Furtherance League, has been killed at the rally, her body found in a locked room. And once again, the suspects are outnumbering the clues.

As Clara, Alice and their chum Giles Fairweather seek out the murderer, they begin to unravel a tangle of ambitions and jealousies. A spurned lover, a political rival, and a would-be Woman’s League leader all have reason to commit such a terrible crime, but which one did the deed?

And so, with the help of the clever Alice and sturdy Giles, Clara begins to uncover the truth. But when she comes closer to the answer than she expected, Clara soon finds her own life in danger. Will she be the next victim? 
 (Summary via Amazon)

This is the second book in the Clara Callaway Mystery collection. Be sure to watch for the next book, due out soon!
Book One - Dead by Dinner
Book Two - Dying to Vote  

Along with Dead by Dinner, the first Clara Callaway Mystery by Lillian Dore, Dying to Vote is very captivating and fun to read.  You cannot help but love Lady Clara and the ease in while she can somehow get people to talk to her.  

In Dying to Vote Lady Clara, her lady's maid and friend Alice, and "friend" Giles attend a rally on the Right to Vote for women.  Even though neither of the woman are eligible to vote, they are very much interested in hearing the debate.  

But before the debate concludes chaos erupts and fighting in the audience leads Lady Clara and friends to hide in an office until the police arrive.  Once the police arrive and it is safe to leave their hiding place, Lady Clara enters a doorway leading to a hallway where she hears a scream.  Giles has to knock down a door to get into the room and they find Penelope Newton, the spokeswoman for the Woman's Furtherance League and one of the debaters lying on the floor dead !!

Who would want to kill Penelope ?  Could it be as easy as the killer being the opponent in the debate ?  Or someone from the audience that started the fighting as a distraction ?

Alice and Giles are well aware of how Lady Clara loves to investigate so they are not surprised when she says she wants to visit some of the people in attendance that dreadful evening.  No one will refuse a visit from Lady Clara, granddaughter of the Earl, however, is that such a good thing when there is a killer out there ?  Can she ask her questions safely ?  Will she ask the wrong person the wrong question ??

Travel back to England in the 1920's for an afternoon or evening..... Ride along with Giles and Lady Clara as they visit and have tea with possible suspects and witness a time where things were changing for the better and life seemed much simpler......or was it ??

Review by Missi S.

Wednesday 10 August 2016

Beef Brisket Murder: Book 11 in The Darling Deli Series by Patti Benning

Beef Brisket Murder: Book 11 in The Darling Deli Series

SUMMER PRESCOTT BOOKS is thrilled to present: 
Beef Brisket Murder - Book 11 in The Darling Deli Series!!! 
Moira discovers something rather disturbing in her basement while she’s cleaning it out. Intrigued, she begins her own investigation and enlists David to help her find out what could possibly have happened in the house before she bought it. When the trail leads to the retirement home in Lake Marion, she realizes that it might not be too late for a decades-old crime to be solved. Meanwhile, Candice hires her first employee at the candy shop, and Moira’s employees at the deli plan a surprise birthday party for her in this fast-paced 11th installment of the Darling Deli Series.  (Summary via Goodreads)

Beef Brisket Murder is book eleven in the Darling Deli Series and is another WINNER! This series goes from great to amazing in 11 seconds flat. I love this series and all the characters. They have progressed throughout the series and feel like family. I also can't resist the Darling Deli's culinary perfection.

Moira has a lot going on again at the deli. So much for slowing down. She is now delving head first into the catering side of the business. The truck is ready and her manager Darrin has suggested a web designer to have greater exposure for the deli. She is one busy lady but finds herself at home for a few days off with a to do list a mile long. She decides to start in the basement so with Keeva and Maverick she gets to work. Moira is ready to call it a day when Maverick won't go upstairs and keeps going to the crawl space. She decides to take a look and finds that her house may hold a lot of secrets that she doesn't know. She found the skeleton of a young girl and immediately goes into investigation mode. She has already called the police to start their investigation but Moira feels that this is personal and wants Justice for this young girl. So with the help of an unlikely source and David they begin an investigation decades in the making. Will the past stay buried or will the killer strike again???

This is another fast paced, exciting mystery that will have you sleeping with the lights on. I can't wait for book twelve.

Review by Penny M.

Buttered and Scrambled With Murder (A Josie Rizzo Cozy Mystery Book 4) by J R Pearson

Buttered and Scrambled With Murder (A Josie Rizzo Cozy Mystery Book 4)

Murder & Maple syrup... 

Josie and Tony are back for another savory mystery! 

This time, with a stack of pancakes on the side. 

Since having their relationship outed—much to Josie's dislike—the couple has been summoned by Mama Rizzo to the family's breakfast diner for a Sunday morning brunch. 

A mouthwatering spread is expected from Josie's culinary-genius parents, but serve up a rebellious older brother, a furry bacon thief, and a wealthy businessman bludgeoned to death, makes for a very unappetizing event. 

Josie soon learns that before the wealthy stranger's demise, his plans of rebuilding the town into a flashy money-grabbing hotspot would've affected the town's hardworking locals. Which leaves quite the list of suspects of who may have wanted him dead. 

Unfortunately, Josie's parents are on the police's radar for the crime. 

Backed by an army of Rizzo brothers, she, Tony, and best friend Brad set out to uncover the truth in the beachy town of JewelCove, where a killer lurks deeper in the shadows than french toast sticks do in a bowl of maple syrup…   (Summary via Goodreads)

When I start reading this series I just can't stop till I am finished. As a reader you are gripped on the edge of your seat with all the adventure. This book will also have you laughing out loud as well as biting your lip at times with anticipation of what is coming next.

Buttered and Scrambled with Murder is book four in the Josie Rizzo Cozy Mystery series. Josie and her boyfriend Tony and best friend Brad are off to Jewel Cove for brunch at her parents house. Let's just say Josie is a little nervous about what is to come with her family. The unending questions, when are you getting married, when are you having kids...YIKES! But she is in luck when one of her brothers brings home a very unique fiancé??? Josie and Tony think they have dodged a bullet when they leave the house for a walk. No such luck, they hear a scream and go investigate only to find wealthy real estate, money grubbing John Burke dead. They end up finding some interesting things about Burke and their small town.

With a whole town of suspects including Josie's father she and Tony as well as Brad and her brothers have a lot of work ahead of them to find the real killer before an innocent person is jailed.

Review by Penny M.

Thursday 4 August 2016

Homicide in the House (Washington Whodunit #2) by Colleen J. Shogan

Homicide in the House (Washington Whodunit #2)

Kit Marshall has bounced back from her first brush with the law, when she was suspected of murdering her senator boss. Now she is working for a freshman congresswoman, Maeve Dixon, a young Gulf War veteran representing North Carolina. It's February, and Kit is feeling out of sorts. A government shutdown has just been announced, wreaking havoc on the Hill, and Dan, Dixon's chief of staff and Kit's supervisor, is an inexperienced lightweight flying blind. Then there's Kit's distracted live-in boyfriend, Doug, who doesn't seem any closer to popping the question. Kit's best friend Meg is up to her eyeballs with her new beau and oversight committee job, and Clarence the beagle mix will certainly not win Capitol Canine if Meg has to campaign for him all by herself. Bad as things are now, they are about to get much worse. Early one morning Representative Dixon is caught standing over the corpse of Jack Drysdale, the Speaker of the House's top staffer, a man she argued with in front of the press the day before. The murder weapon was the Speaker's gavel. This item was entrusted to Dixon at the time, leading the police to believe they've found their killer. To save her job, Kit must clear her boss's name, and quickly. Dixon's career may be over if the police declare her a suspect or an anonymous blogger known as Hill Rat breaks the story. Solving this murder will test Kit's courage and all her fledgling powers of deduction as she roams a spooky, sparsely populated Capitol Hill looking for clues and sounding out suspects. Book 2 of the Washington Whodunit series, which began with Stabbing in the Senate.   (Summary via Goodreads)

Colleen Shogan has done it again! 5 stars to Homicide in the House. I enjoy this series so much because of the wonderful characters and storyline. I love how the author describes Washington DC and the ins and outs of our government. I have not had the pleasure of visiting DC but really want to after reading this series. The author does a great job making her characters believable.

Kit Marshall is now working for freshman congresswoman, Maeve Dixon. Dixon is a Gulf War Veteran representing North Carolina. Kit is excited to be back after being the number one suspect in the death of her Senate boss. That brush with the law should have tempered her investigative talents but we all know Kit and she is not about to let anyone innocent go to jail. Just her luck her new boss is found standing over the dead body of Jack Drysdale, the Speaker of the House's top staffer with the murder weapon in hand. And to rub more salt in the wound Dixon was seen arguing with him the day before!!! Kit now has to investigate and find out who really killed Drysdale before she loses another boss. With everything else going on, the government shutdown, her boyfriend no closer to proposing, and best friend sidelined by Clarence and her new beau Kit has an uphill battle to clear Dixon on her own. 

This book is full of twists and turns that will have you on the edge of your seat. It is full of excitement and fast paced action and intrigue. A must read!

Review by Penny M.

Vacations Can Be Murder (Diega DelValle Mystery, #3) by Jane DiLucchio

Vacations Can Be Murder (Diega DelValle Mystery, #3)

When Diega DelValle and three of her friends go on an impromptu vacation in Talkeetna, Alaska, Diega envisions an enjoyable summer break from teaching along with time to heal from a break-up. 

However, even before the friends arrive, this small town on the edge of Denali National Park becomes a less than idyllic vacation spot. Gail, a Talkeetna native, dies on the mountain. Melissa, Gail's cousin and a former student of Diega's, arrives in Talkeetna and raises doubts about the death being accidental. 

Due to Melissa's pleas for help, Diega and her friends are thrust into an investigation of a small town and its inhabitants-an unsavory pastime that turns deadly.  (Summary via Goodreads)

Vacations Can Be Murder is book three in the Diega DelValle mystery series. I had the pleasure of reading book two and loved it. I loved this one even more. The author does a fantastic job of her mysteries with many pieces to solve. I enjoyed how the characters have developed throughout these books. This is not an easy one to solve! I love the bread crumbs to try and solve it. You never know who to trust. 

In this book the friends are on vacation together in Alaska. Diega and her friends run into someone they haven't seen in quite some time. And just so happens mysterious deaths have occurred. Coincidence??? They end up in the middle of another investigation even though they had sworn off any more. See how long that lasted. LOL Everything changes when the person who is trying to prove murder is murdered themselves. YIKES! All bets are off. Everyone pitches in to try and overcome the adversity of the incompetent police force as well as the small town thinking about homophobia. The women are a force to be reckoned with especially when they work together as a team.

One last thing, the author did an amazing job of describing the scenic wilderness and wildlife of Alaska as well as the people.

Review by Penny M.

Monday 1 August 2016

Fat Cat Takes the Cake (A Fat Cat Mystery #3) by Janet Cantrell

Fat Cat Takes the Cake (A Fat Cat Mystery #3)

When former classmate Rich “Dickie” Byrd throws a high school reunion to gather support for his mayoral campaign, it drums up some not so sweet memories for dessert shop proprietor Chase Oliver and her friend Julie Larson. Julie would rather not reconnect with Ron North, the creepy kid who had a crush on her back in the day. His social graces haven’t exactly improved with age, but is he creepy enough to kill?

The next day, Chase is in the park testing a new cat harness for Quincy—who quickly proves he cannot be leashed. But when his escape leads Chase to Ron’s body, the police wonder who else got away. Now, with Julie suspected, Chase must prove her innocence before the real killer plans another fatal reunion.  (Summary via Goodreads)

I am a HUGE fan of Janet Cantrell's Fat Cat series.  It may be because I love cats and have a fat cat of my own or it could be the characters in the books, or it might be the recipes you find in the back of the book, or it could be the murders and the way Chase "helps" the police solve them.  Whatever the reason or reasons, I cannot get enough of this series.

Chase co-owns a dessert bar shop with her best friend Julie's mother.  Anna is like a mom to Chase also.  Chase has an adorable cat Quincy who likes to get into mischief whenever Chase isn't looking.  Chase is seeing the vet, Mike, who takes care of Quincy.  It's almost Christmas the shop is doing great, the employees are working hard, Anna is getting married soon and everything is going smoothly.  

That is until the morning after Chase and Julie attend a High School reunion thrown together by a classmate looking for Mayoral support.  Chase and Mike are teaching Quincy to walk on a leash and harness but, of course, he breaks free and runs under a bush in the park.  When Mike goes in to get Quincy out, they find a dead body.  A classmate that had been pestering a bunch of attendants at the reunion is under the bush and it looks like Julie's scarf is the murder weapon !!!

Chase will do whatever it takes to clear Julie's name.  Unfortunately her time is limited when Julie is arrested for the crime and they have already sent a date for the hearing.

Review by Missi S.