Sunday 30 May 2021

Peaches and Schemes (Georgia B&B #3) by Anna Gerard

 In Anna Gerard's third delightful Georgia B&B mystery, Nina Fleet learns that despite the satin, lace, and buttercream trappings, weddings often prove to be anything but sweet...

Nina Fleet might be new to the innkeeping business, but she's savvy enough to know that Cymbeline's tourists aren't enough to keep her fledgling bed and breakfast going. And so, Nina decides to tap into the destination wedding market by taking a booth at the Veils and Vanities Bridal Expo. The twice-yearly event is sponsored by the town's two wedding pros: Virgie Hamilton, the sixtysomething owner of Virgie's Formals, and Roxanna Quarry, a Gen X event planner and Nina's new friend. But everything goes wrong during the expo's fashion show, when Roxanna comes tumbling out of an oversized prop wedding cake, strangled to death by her own scarf.

Virgie is arrested for the crime, thanks to Nina's statement to the police about having overheard the woman accusing her partner of embezzlement. Meanwhile, the situation grows tense with her sometimes nemesis and current tenant, the dashing out-of-work actor Harry Westcott. Harry is concentrating on plugging his most recent side hustle ...but he's not too busy to break the news to Nina that her ex-husband is engaged to be married again.

Certain that Virgie's only offense is a bad temper, Nina decides to do her own investigating. First, however, she and Harry retrieve Roxanna's now ownerless dog, planning to foster him until a new home can be found. But local gossip soon convinces Nina that others beside Virgie might have had reason to murder Roxanna. As Nina gets close to the truth, she's putting her own life at danger. And when Virgie vanishes after being bailed out of jail by an unknown benefactor, Nina fears that if she can't find the dress shop owner in time, tying the knot will take on a whole new meaning for them both.  (Summary via Goodreads)

Readers will instantly fall in love with the Georgia B & B Mystery series by Anna Gerard.  There are so many things to love thoroughout this series that it will be a no brainer !!   Peaches and Schemes is the third book in this amazing series and readers will be swept into the story immediately.  

In Peaches and Schemes main character Nina Fleet, owner of The Fleet House, is attending the annual Veils and Vanities Bridal Expo to promote her bed and breakfast in hopes of  having wedding at the inn.....but the last thing she expects is to have one of her friends who is one of the organizers of the event fall out of the huge wedding cake at the end of the show.....DEAD !  And to make matters worse it appears that Roxanna was murdered and Nina quickly learns that she didn't know her friend at all.  The list of suspects grows quicker than a weed when Nina learns of all the bad things she did to a lot of people.  

When Virgie, who is the other organizer of the event and past business partner of the deceased, is arrested for Roxanna's murder, Nina knows that she is not the killer.  With the help of her temporary, non-paying tenant and friend Harry, they put their heads together to try to uncover the real killer......little do they know how close they are to that person until it's almost too late.....

The Georgia B & B Mystery series is so much fun to read !!  Readers will love Nina and her bed and breakfast.  You cannot help but fall in love with the relationship she has with Harry and in this third book, readers will love the direction it looks like Gerard is taking them (but we have to wait until book four to confirm that fact....).  The town, Cymbeline, is somewhere you can easily picture in your head and want to visit in real life, if only it truly existed.  You will love the people and little shops that are there and you know that you would totally be a returning visitor to the Fleet House to see Nina and her adorable dog Mattie as often as you can !!

Review by Missi M.

Wednesday 26 May 2021

High Heels Are Murder (Josie Marcus, Mystery Shopper #2) by Elaine Viets

Mystery shopper Josie Marcus stumbles onto another murder when a sleazy shoe salesman is killed right after she gets him canned…

Josie finally has her life back on track. Not only is the single mom dating the best (and hottest) barista in the St. Louis suburb of Maplewood, but also her boss just assigned her a coveted gig—mystery shopping the Soft Shoe. The exclusive store is a shoe lover’s dream, but its top seller, Mel Poulaine, is a waking nightmare. His hands-on fascination with feet goes far beyond professional interest. Josie’s scathing report kills Mel’s career…but later that night, someone kills Mel himself.

Josie’s determined to stay out of it. But when Cheryl Malmy, daughter of Josie’s nosiest neighbor, becomes a suspect, Josie’s mom begs her to investigate. She’s shocked by what she uncovers. It turns out “Perfect Cheryl” has more than a few dirty secrets in her closet, drawing Josie deeper into the seedy suburban underbelly. But can she trip up a killer who always seems to be one step ahead?  (Summary via Goodreads)

High Heels Are Murder is the second book in the Josie Marcus, Mystery Shopper series by Elaine Viets and boy is it explosive !!!  How do authors come up with such crazy ideas ??

Josie Marcus loves her job as a mystery shopper, mainly for the flexibility it allows her so that she can spend time with her daughter.  Josie is able to drop her daughter Amelia off at school, go to whatever store she is assigned and then get back to pick up Amelia at school.  Josie is able to have dinner with Amelia and help her with homework.  Josie's mom, Jane, lives above them and there for them if Josie needs help.

In High Heels Are Murder Josie gets to mystery shop at Soft Shoe and try on expensive high heel shoes.  She is assigned to get the top salesman, Mel, to wait on her and see how he treats her.  There are complaints that Mel is a little off and more interested in the women's shoes and feet.  Unfortunately Josie does catch Mel in the "act" and her report ends up getting the top salesman fired.  And things go downhill rapidly when Josie finds out that he was murdered that same night and her neighbor's daughter is on the police's radar.

Josie and her neighbor, Mrs. Mueller, do not get along and it has been like that since Josie was a teenager.  And Mrs. Mueller's daughter, Cheryl, can do no wrong and Josie has had to listen to her mother talk about Cheryl like she was a goddess.  But everything changes when Mrs. Mueller asks Josie for her help proving her precious daughter is innocent.

So Josie and her best friend, Alyce, decide to follow Cheryl around to see what she is up to.  They know that she is hiding something but they cannot figure out what.....and when they do, they have no idea what to do with the information they uncover......

Reader's will learn more than they ever wanted to learn about feet and the things men like about women's feet.  The story will be crazy that you will not want to stop until Josie gets to the bottom of things.  Viets ability to grab readers attention always amazes me and I cannot get enough of Josie !!!

I highly recommend the Josie Marcus, Mystery Shopper series and know that readers will enjoy it as much, if not more, than I am.  I cannot wait to see what Josie gets herself in the middle of next.....

Review by Missi M.

Friday 21 May 2021

Match: A Medical Murder Mystery by Amy S. Peele

What do politics, living donor kidney transplants, and the current opioid crisis all have in common? Sarah Golden and Jackie Larsen, best friends since nursing school, could never have imagined that they'd end up as amateur sleuths searching to find a killer--for the second time! Jackie, a stay-at-home mom with marriage troubles, is racing the clock to get her young son, Wyatt, a living kidney donor to avoid the ravages of dialysis. Sarah, who has been living her career in the fast-paced world of organ transplantation, is helping expedite Wyatt's kidney transplant. Then a much-despised hospital colleague turns up dead of an opiate overdose--despite the fact that she'd never used drugs--and Sarah smells foul play. Her curiosity and tenacity pull Jackie, once again, into a life-and-death adventure that neither woman could have expected. Armed with smarts, tenacity, big hearts, and their raucous senses of humor, the pair gets the help of a few colorful friends to pursue the killer and take on the mission in the only style they both know how: straight on and arm-in-arm as the friends they've always been.  (Summary via Goodreads)

If you read Cut, the first book in the Medical Murder Mystery series by Amy S, Peele you know that you will be on the edge of your seat reading any book by Peele.....and Match measures up to that nicely !  But if you didn't read Cut, that is fine, you will have no problem getting engrossed in the story and falling in love with it all !!

In Match the story follows two main characters...  Sarah Golden has a busy, stressful and rewarding job at the San Francisco Global Transplant Institution as a manager and her best friend, Jackie Larsen, is a nurse but is currently a stay-at-home mom taking care of her young son.  Sarah is single while Jackie is married.  Jackie and her wife, Laura, are having a rough time with their son Wyatt as he is in need of a kidney transplant and Sarah is doing everything that she can to help that happen.  Unfortunately Kayla, one of Sarah's co-workers, is found dead in Miami of a drug overdose which puts the Institution in the hot seat.  

Even though Sarah and Jackie have more than enough things to keep them busy and out of trouble, they cannot help but talk about Kayla and try to figure out her murder....especially when it looks like Sarah is on the suspect list.  And things get worse when the detective that comes to San Francisco to interview the suspects is the partner of Sarah's ex-boyfriend, Officer Handsome (Rodney Strong).  

Things get crazy also for Jackie when they are close to getting Wyatt's transplant done when the living kidney donor program gets shut down due to a case that turned complicated.  They were all set to have Sarah provide a kidney for someone else in exchange for Wyatt getting a kidney.  Luckily they are all able to go to Miami and do the surgeries.......but things go terribly wrong in Miami.......

The Medical Murder Mystery series by Peele is a very interesting and intense series.  The story will grab hold of you and you will be unable to stop reading.  You will feel like you are right there along side Sarah and Jackie....and you will love and hate everything going on.  Yes....there will be things you will totally love, things you will be mad about, things that will frustrate you but then when you get to the end you will have a very satisfying smile on your face !!!

Review by Missi M.

Friday 14 May 2021

Lemon Drop Dead (Amish Candy Shop Mystery #6) by Amanda Flower

Murder always leaves a sour taste . . .

Although baby showers aren’t an Amish tradition, Bailey King wants to celebrate Emily Keim’s forthcoming bundle of joy. It’s the least she can do for her hardworking assistant at Swissmen Sweets, especially with Emily being estranged from her siblings. Everyone in Harvest, Ohio has gathered at the town gazebo—decked out in lemon-themed décor to add some of Emily’s favorite flavor to the festivities—including Juliet Brook, Jethro the Pig, and in a last-minute invite, Emily’s sister Esther Esh.

But Esther isn’t the only surprise guest. A mysterious Amish woman confronts Emily claiming to know about her secret shame—the child she had as a teenager who was given up for adoption. The stranger vanishes before Bailey could find out who she was and if she knew what happened to Emily’s first baby. Later that evening, the woman reappears—dead in Esh Family Pretzels, with a threatening letter written by Esther found on her body.

Emily knows her sister is not a murderer and convinces Bailey to help clear Esther’s name and put the squeeze on the real killer... (Summary via Goodreads)

Living the Amish lifestyle is suppose to be easier and less stressful in a way but that is far from the truth when it comes to the Amish Candy Shop Mystery series by Amanda Flower.  Bailey King is the main character and even though she is English, a lot of her upbringing was by her Amish grandparents.  In the town of Harvest, Ohio there is a very big Amish presence.  Bailey and her grandmother own and run Swissmen Sweets and right next door is the Esh Pretzel Shop....the Pretzel shop is run by an Amish family, brother and sister Abel and Esther, who do not like Bailey because they feel that she stole their sister, Emily, to work in the candy shop.  However in Lemon Drop Dead, the sixth book in the Amish Candy Shop Mystery series, the Esh's will need Bailey's help.....

The town of Harvest is a small, close community where everyone, English or Amish, helps each other and the ladies of town want to hold a baby shower for Emily who is recently married and expecting.  Emily is very hesitant to attend the shower because she is Amish and that is not the way they do things but also because this is not her first baby.  When Emily was a teenager she got pregnant, was sent away to have the baby and then the baby was given to another Amish family to raise.  Emily has never gotten over that and thinks of the daughter that was taken from her.

Emily does give in to the shower but is approach by a stranger and a few hours later this stranger is found murdered in the pretzel shop.  Bailey finds out that the murdered woman, Rosemary, is actually the adoptive mother of Emily's daughter and she wants Emily to meet her daughter Hannah. Unfortunately this doesn't happen and Bailey sets out on a course to solve Rosemary's murder, prove Esther is innocent and maybe get Emily and Hannah together as a family.

Solving Rosemary's murder isn't going to be easy seeing as when Bailey goes around questioning people she is told lies or can tell the person isn't telling her everything that they know.  Even though Bailey's boyfriend, Sheriff Deputy Aiden Brody, is quite capable of doing his job and solving murders, it seems Bailey is always one step in front on him.....

Reader's will fall in love with everything about this series....the people and the town are loveable and readers will want to pack a bag and visit, they have unique pets like an overweight rabbit and a black and white potbellied pig, the relationships are genuine and the storyline will grab your attention immediately and you will not want to let go.

I highly encourage reader's to grab a copy of Lemon Drop Dead and let Bailey and crew take you away.....

Review by Missi M.

Thursday 13 May 2021

Deadly Ever After (Lighthouse Library Mystery #8) by Eva Gates

Librarian Lucy's wedding is at stake when a murder interrupts her engagement celebrations. To make it down the aisle, she'll have to find the killer to save the date in the 8th book in the Lighthouse Library mysteries.

They're getting married! Lucy Richardson and Connor McNeil have announced their engagement. Their friends throw a party for the couple at Coquina Beach, close to Lucy's beloved Bodie Island Lighthouse Library.

As they're packing up the presents and the (few) leftovers from Josie's Cozy Bakery, who should arrive, but Richard Eric Lewiston III, Lucy's former almost-fiancé and his overbearing mother Evangeline. Push comes to love when Evangeline makes no secret of why she's here: to get Lucy and Ricky back together.

Lucy isn't temped in the least, and Ricky is nothing but embarrassed at his mother's desperate ploy. Before returning to Boston Evangeline throws a dinner party at Jake's Seafood Bar for a reluctant Lucy and her family. Lucy hopes to get the dinner over with and see Evangeline and Ricky returning to Boson. But when a body is found at the restaurant's kitchen door, Lucy is again forced to unwillingly put on her detective's hat and do what she can to save her family and her engagement. Meanwhile, the classic novel reading club is reading The Hound of the Baskervilles, and open war breaks out in the Lighthouse Library when Lucy agrees to temporarily take care of a dog named Fluffy, but Charles the library cat has other ideas.
   (Summary via Goodreads)

Deadly Ever After by Eva Gates is the eighth book in her Lighthouse Library Mystery series and by now I would hope that you are a devoted fan and feel like you are a close friend of main character Lucy Richardson.....I know that is how I choose to look at it, I'm even hoping to be asked to be a member of her and Connor's wedding party.  But I'm getting ahead of myself.....

In the Lighthouse Library Mystery series main character Lucy Richardson is the assistant director of the Bodie Island Lighthouse Library in the Outer Banks of North Carolina, lives on the top floor of the lighthouse that houses the library, is engaged to Mayor Connor McNeil and sometimes gets in the middle of a murder investigation.  And in this eighth book, Deadly Ever After, she cannot help herself when the murdered victim ends up being her father's business partner !

While Lucy and Connor are celebrating their engagement at a party on the beach Lucy's father's business partner's wife and son "crash" the party.  No one is more surprised than Lucy seeing as the son, Ricky, is her ex-fiance.  Ricky's mother, Evangeline, never takes no for an answer so Lucy finds herself with family and friends at her cousin's husband's restaurant, Jake's, the following evening to celebrate some more.  Unforrtunately Evangeline is trying to get her son and Lucy back together even though Lucy has made it clear that that will never happen.  All Lucy wants is for Evangeline and Ricky to go back to Boston and leave her alone but when Evangeline's husband, Rich, is found murdered outside Jake's, no one is going anywhere.

Lucy always has a lot on her plate even when there is no murder involved but especially now with the wedding plans and her and Connor are house hunting, solving a murder is not something to get involved in.  However Lucy has known the Lewiston family all of her life so she feels some what obligated to talk to people and see what she can uncover.  Lucy soon learns that the Lewiston family is full of secrets and she is in way too deep....

Not only are readers involved in the murder investigation but we get to know Lucy, the lighthouse library, the town and all the people living there.  Gates knack for drawing the reader into the fold stregthens with every new book in this series.  She not only provides readers will a great mystery to follow but she gets the readers to fall in love with the town and everything it has to offer.  I, for one, cannot wait until the next book to see how Lucy and Connor are doing with their wedding arrangements and the house they will eventually move into as well as all the changes going on at the library.....I jusy know Gates is going to make it memorable !!

Review by Missi M.

Thursday 6 May 2021

Knee Deep in Dough (Cookies & Chance Mystery #10) by Catherine Bruns

From USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bruns comes a hilariously homicidal Cookies & Chance mystery!

For once, baker Sally Muccio’s life isn’t a recipe for disaster. She’s happy to be out celebrating her wedding anniversary... that is until she spies her friend Officer Brian Jenkins with a gorgeous blonde who is not his newlywed wife. The woman's name is Kelsey Sherman, and it turns out she once dated Brian. Which doesn't make Sal feel any better about the situation, but she decides to mind her own business and enjoy her evening.

Only before the night is over Kelsey is dead from a gunshot wound, and Brian is found standing over her body. To make matters worse, the bullet is confirmed to have come from his own gun. Brian swears he had nothing to do with the murder, and Sal believes him, even if the rest of the town’s convinced that he’s a total crumb. With nowhere else to turn, Brian asks for help to prove his innocence. But when the tables turn and someone tries to kill Sal as well, she might come out of this mess battered for life.

*Recipes Included!*  (Summary via Goodreads)

I am like a kid on Christmas Eve when it comes to the Cookies & Chance Mystery series by Catherine Bruns.  I just love EVERYTHING about this series and with Knee Deep in Dough being the tenth book in this series, there is a lot to love !!  With every new book readers will want to dive into the book and be a part of the Muccio / Donovan families.....

In Knee Deep in Dough, as in all of the book in this series, there is a lot going on....but no matter how much main character Sally Muccio Donovan can handle it.  

Sally and her husband Mike are celebrating their third wedding anniversary with Josie, her best friend and partner in the bake shop, Sally's Samples, and Josie's husband.  While out at a local bar Ralph's, Sally runs into an old friend Kelsey who is back in town for her sister Felicia's wedding.  Sally also runs into her good friend police officer Brian and learns that Kelsey and Brian have a history.  Unfortunately before she can learn more about this history Kelsey is shot to death behind the bar and Brian's gun is the weapon used.  Brian insists that he left his gun under his seat in his truck but doesn't remember locking the doors.

Everyone wants Sally to stay away from the murder investigation and concentrate on the bakery, her daughter Cookie and Mike.  But with Brian suspended from the force and his partner taken off the case, Brian looks to Sally to just talk to people of interest.  Sally cannot say no because Brian saved her life and she feels she owes it to him and to Kelsey to find the real killer.

Readers cannot help but fall in love with this series !!  You will want to be a part of the family when they all sit around Sally's parents dining room table eating the amazing food that Grandma Rosa has made.  You will love the relationships throughout the story....from Sally and Mike's love story to Sally and Josie's friendship to the way Grandma Rosa always knows what to say even if she messes up a word or two and even the wacky relationships of Sally's crazy parents is something to love.  You will be inspired by Sally's parents for their love for each other and their family as well as their zest for life and you cannot help but chuckle at Domenic's work ethics and Maria's flair for fashion.  You will want Grandma Rosa to be your grandmother as well.  Who am I kidding ? You will want it ALL !!!

The last line in Knee Deep in Dough says it all (and I can say it because it doesn't give anything away).... "I will say this, Sal.  Life is never dull with you and your family."  Life is never dull with Sally especially when you throw a dead body or two in the mix and you will be unable to put any of the books in the Cookies & Chance Mystery series down until you've read the very last word.

Review by Missi M.


To learn more about Catherine and her books, go to her website at : 

If you sign up for her newsletter you will always know what is going on with her and all her books and you will receive the free download of her short story Formals, Fortune Cookies & Fraud.

Sally Muccio's eagerly been awaiting her senior prom, but the fateful evening proves that things don't always turn out the way you planned. An argument with her boyfriend and some stolen money send Sal and her best friend Josie searching for answers, but they come up with danger instead. 

A prequel to Tastes Like Murder!

When you read the books in the Cookies & Chance Mystery series, like a lot of series, things are repeated.  Sally and Mike were high school sweethearts who unfortunately broke up the night of the senior prom due to a misunderstanding.  This misunderstanding led to them going their separate ways for years.  Luckily some years later they were able to discuss their prom night and the things that led to their break up and they got back together.  Lucky for them and for the devoted readers of this series.

I cannot stress it enough that you should read all of the books in the Cookies & Chance Mystery series as well as the other books written by Catherine Bruns.  You will thank me for it !!