Sunday 19 May 2024

A Case for the Ladies (A Dot and Amelia Mystery Book # 1) by Maddie Day

Amid Prohibition, Irish gangs, the KKK, and rampant mistreatment of immigrant women, intrepid private investigator Dorothy Henderson and her pal Amelia Earhart seek justice for several murdered young women in 1926 Boston. As tensions mount, the sleuths, along with their reporter friend Jeanette and Dot’s maiden aunt Etta. experience their own mistreatment at the hand of society and wonder who they can really trust.

This novel brings a pre-fame Amelia Earhart to life in 1926, when she lived in a Boston suburb and worked as a teacher and social worker at a settlement house founded to help immigrant women. After Amelia meets fictional lady PI Dot Henderson, and more than one young immigrant woman is found murdered, the two put their heads together to seek justice for the less powerful. Meanwhile, Etta Rogers, a founder of the settlement house and a Wellesley professor, works with reporter Jeanette Colby to investigate the Irish gangs who are not only running illicit liquor but also seeking to take over the settlement house real estate.

"This book is a triumph on so many levels! From the excitement of our foremothers stepping out of their traditional roles, to the exhilaration of early plane flight, to tackling tough subjects such as immigration, bigotry, and crime gang rivalries in 1920s Boston, Maddie Day paints a stunning portrait of one of America's most dynamic periods."—Alyssa Maxwell, author of the Gilded Newport Mysteries

"The courage of women and the power of friendship are at the heart of this inspiring and beautifully researched mystery set in 1926 Boston. Three intrepid women, investigator Dot Henderson, reporter Jeanette Colby, and a young pilot named Amelia Earhart band together to find out who is killing the immigrant women of the city. A timely and deeply moving page turner."—Mariah Fredericks, author of The Lindbergh Nanny

“Maddie Day brings the light and shadow of prohibition-era Boston to life through the story of three determined young women seeking justice. The crime, historical detail, and engaging characters make for a compelling read.”—Dianne Freeman, author of the award-winning Countess of Harleigh mysteries.

"Maddie Day’s tale — in which she imagines an alternate and crime-solving reality for a pre-fame Amelia Earhart — is as much fun as a ride in one of Earhart's planes! Day's heroine Dot Henderson, visiting from California, detects around a well-drawn 1920s Boston with an appealing circle of friends, including the famous aviatrix. Fans of historical fiction will love this women-focused mystery."—Sarah Stewart Taylor, author of Amelia This Broad Ocean, and the Maggie D'arcy series

“Written with unmistakable affection, A Case for the Ladies warmly envelopes readers in 1920s Boston.”—Jessica Ellicott  (Summary via Goodreads)

A Case for the Ladies is the first book in the Dot and Amelia Mystery series written by Maddie Day.  This is a different kind of story for Maddie to write and she executed it beautifully.

In A Case for the Ladies Dorothy Henderson, also known as Dot is visiting her aunt Etta in Boston.  While there she becomes fast friends with Amelia Earhart who is just beginning her flying experience and Jeanette Colby who is a photographer and jounalist.  The three begin investigating together when there are a number of immigrant young women murdered in the area.  And Dot finds out that one of the murdered girls is the niece of her aunt's housekeeper and the girl was only nineteen years old .... this drives her to use her private investigating skills and jump right into the cases.

Unfortunately before they can get anywhere with the cases, there are more deaths including a close male friend of Jeanette's.  The three women soon learn that there are two main gangs that control the areas and are fighting for territory.  Why they are targeting immigrant young women is a puzzle to them.  Plus trying to get anyone to identify any of the men in the gangs is becoming impossible.

Before they know it they find themselves in way over their heads when Amelia is kidnapped and Dot needs to find her.  Also there is something going on with Jeanette but she is being too secretive about it ....

Fans of Edith Maxwell and Maddie Day will instantly fall in love with this new story.  Just when you think you know an author, they throw a new and different book out there for fans to devour !!  Maddie definitely keeps readers on their toes with this story.  And hopefully future books will be just as entertaining !!!  And knowing Maddie as we do, future books will be just as good, if not better !!!!

Tuesday 14 May 2024

Cornered at the Corral (Ghost Town Mysteries Book # 4) by Jamie L. Adams

From author Jamie L. Adams comes a cozy mystery with a western twist!

Lily Cranston is basking in the fruits of her labor and enjoying the idyllic life of Grady, California. As the hard-working manager of the Calico Rock Mine and Ghost Town attraction, she's found success, and she's even rekindled a romance with her high school crush. However, when a scuffle disrupts the tranquility of the annual town festival, little does she realize that another tragedy looms.

A body is found in the river, and Lily is unexpectedly drawn into a web of secrets. An invitation to tea from the town historiaByrden and family friend, Irene Fletcher, presents a secret mission: protect the matriarch's grandson from being blamed for a crime he did not commit. Lily must navigate the conflicts of a century-old family feud, but when she stumbles on a secret meant to stay buried, the real killer has no choice but to try to silence her for good.  (Summary via Goodreads)

Cornered at the Corral is the fourth book in the Ghost Town Mystery series by Jamie L. Adams and boy is this series FUN !!!

In Cornered at the Corral Lily and friends and family are celebrating Homesteader's Day in their town of Grady. Unfortunately after a fight breaks out between two families, it puts a dark cloud over the celebration.  The two people fighting are Chase Fletcher and Jeremy Byrde who are distant cousins and their family feud goes back many years.  Their feud is compared to the Hatfields and the McCoys feud.

Sadly when Lily and her boyfriend Cody are walking the grounds during the clean up after the event, they come across a dead body ... Jeremy Byrde.  And it only gets worse from there when it is determined that he was murdered.

When Lily goes to tea at Irene Fletcher's the next day, she is asked to look into the death because Irene knows that the police are going to look at Chase as the main suspect ... and she knows her grandson wouldn't kill anyone.  Seeing as Mrs. Fletcher is from one of the founding families of Grady and the town historian, Lily agrees to see what she can find out. This will not go well with her brother-in-law Jack who is the county sheriff or her CSI boyfriend, Cody.  And her sister's Ava and Pat probably won't be too happy but Lily can probably convince her sisters to help.

I could read the Ghost Town Mystery series just for the Calico Rock Mine and Ghost Town happenings.  And I would be fine hanging around with Lily as she manages the place or even Ava who portrays a schoolteacher there.  But the murders and Lily's involvement are always fun to read also.  You cannot go wrong when you pick up any of the books in this series !!

Saturday 11 May 2024

Torn Asunder (Clambake Mystery Book # 12) by Barbara Ross

A short boat ride from Busman’s Harbor, Maine, Morrow Island is a perfect spot for a wedding—and a Snowden Family Clambake. Julia Snowden is busy organizing both—until a mysterious wedding crasher drops dead amid the festivities . . .

Julia’s best friend and business partner, Zoey, is about to marry her policeman boyfriend. Of course, a gorgeous white wedding dress shouldn’t be within fifty yards of a plate of buttery lobster—so that treat is reserved for the rehearsal dinner. Julia is a little worried about the timing, though, as she works around a predicted storm.

When a guest falls to the floor dead, it turns out that no one seems to know who he is, despite the fact that he’s been actively mingling and handing out business cards. And when an injection mark is spotted on his neck, it’s clear this wasn’t caused by a shellfish allergy. Now, as the weather deteriorates and a small group is stranded on the island with the body—and the killer—Julia starts interrogating staff, family members, and Zoey’s artist friends to find out who turned the clambake into a crime scene . . .  (Summary via Goodreads)

Wow !!  I cannot tell you how sad I am after reading Torn Asunder, the twelveth and FINAL book in the Clambake Mystery Book series written by Barbara Ross.  This series has been a part of my life for so long, I loved opening up the newest book and spending time with Julia, her family and friends at Busman's Harbor and Morrow Island.  I'm not a fan of lobster or clam chowder but that didn't matter when the book was opened.  These people became my family and I loved them all.  When Julia and Chris broke up, I didn't think I could go on, let alone write a review.  I was actually very upset with Barbara and couldn't understand why she would do that ... I would learn later that she had a different plan all along or maybe she just thought of it quickly while her fingers danced across the keyboard.  It is not for me to question what goes on in an author's mind ... I have quite a few authors I consider friends and well you learn to overlook some things and have patience.

With Torn Asunder Barbara is going to have the series go off with a big bang !!!  The very first wedding will be held at the newly renovated and remodeled Windsholme Mansion and it is Julia's best friend Zoey marrying Julia's longtime childhood friend and cop Jamie.  Everything is going to be perfect !!!  I cannot believe I typed that without laughing ... of course something is going to go wrong !!  And it happens after the wedding reheasal during the cocktail party.  An uninvited gentlemen collapses and dies.  And no one knows who he is but a lot of people are lying !!  Fortunately Zoey and Jamie are safe as neither of them knew him and they are telling the truth.

Luckily Julia's boyfriend Tom is there so he and Jamie take control of the situation and start talking to everyone who is staying overnight at the mansion.  Unfortunately they believe that the deceased was injected in the neck with some kind of poison and that is what killed him and that dear reader is murder !!  

Readers will love the story and Barbara ends the series beautifully by having the last chapter being five years later and you get to know where the characters end up, sadly some have died, but most are still alive and well ... and there are new additions running around Morrow Island !!

I sincerely hope that you have taken this journey with me and love this series as much as I have and if you are just reading about this series, please go and read all of the books so that you can love them as much as I have.  Julia and her family and friends will always have a place in my heart and I know that I can go back and visit them whenever I want.  That is one reason I love books ... even though you close the books, everything stays with you and you can always go back and open them again.

Barbara .... I wish you happiness on your retirement journey and hope you and your family make lots and lots of fun and interesting memories.  THANK YOU for sharing your talent and stories with all us readers.  I, for one, have enjoyed every minute spent in one of your books.  And know that if you ever want to put "pen to paper", your devoted readers would love that as well !!!!!   No, I'm not crying, you are.  Xoxo 

Tuesday 7 May 2024

The Matchmaker Murders: Season One by Catherine Gibson

What would you do if every match you made ended in murder?

Meet your new favorite sleuth investigator, Penny! Middle-aged, married, and quite the matchmaker, Penny has called the cozy town of Walnut Mountain "home" her entire life. But this quiet, Christian corner of Vermont soon gets turned upside down when one of Penny's latest love matches ends in murder!

The Matchmaker Murders, Season One, includes three wonderfully witty cozy mysteries you won't want to put down:

Death at the Double Date

Murder at the Movies

Poisoned at the Picnic

If you enjoy light-hearted cozy mysteries with lovable characters, surprising killers, and clean language, then Catherine Gibson's addictive new series will keep you turning the pages to find out whodunit!  (Summary via Goodreads)

With a last name of Matchmaker how can one NOT try to match their friends with someone to love ??  Well that is what Penny Matchmaker is doing in The Matchmakers Murders : Season One .... along with getting in the middle of her husband's murder investigations ....

The Matchmaker Murders : Season One by Catherine Gibson includes three cozy novellas that readers can take their time reading or rush through them like I am trying not to do.

Death at the Double Date

In the first story in this book Death at the Double Date Penny and her husband Alan are on a double date with Penny's friend Gloria and Edgar the gentlemen that Penny set Gloria up with.  They are at Fancy's celebrating Gloria and Edgar's engagement !!  Unfortunately when Edgar excuses himself to go to the bathroom, he never returns and when Peggy goes searching for him, she finds him dead in the men's room.

With this being the first murder in Walnut Mountain Alan is quickly promoted to detective and placed in charge of the case immediately.  Alan is determined to solve the case and may arrest someone Penny knows is innocent.  Penny is constantly warned off of trying to investigate but she cannot help it ... even though she has more important things in her personal life that need addressing.

Murder at the Movies

Walnut Mountain is getting ready for Christmas and what is a great way to do that than by opening up Christian Cinemas which is set to show Christian related movies.  Unfortunately on opening night while everyone is watching Keep Christ in Christmas and are unsuccessful in staying awake, the owner, Bobby Harder, is stangled in the seat next to Penny Matchmaker !!!

Even though Penny's husband, Alan, is the police detective on the case, she finds herself in the middle of a murder investigation.  And with this case there is a long list of likely candidates for the murder ....

As we know Penny has a lot on her plate.  She is in charge of the children's Christmas pageant, she is a teacher in the middle school, she is always trying to match her friends up with their happily ever after mate and she has to convince her husband that she does not have a drinking problem and he needs to return home so they can continue their live together as a happily married couple.

Poisoned at the Picnic

In Poisoned at the Picnic Penny is finally getting the help she needs according to her husband Alan.  Alan thinks that Penny has a drinking problem and needs to attend meetings.  So that is what she is doing ... for Alan.  Luckily her church Hopeful Heart Ministries has organized Celebrate Recovery which is like Alcoholics Anonymous but helps all addictions.  And Penny also has a sponsor, Jessica Saxon.  Even though Jessica is a handful and doesn't know when to back off, she is helping the members of the group with their addictions.

Unfortunately when they are celebrating Penny's parents 50th wedding anniversary Jessica drops dead after Penny handed her some snacks.  So when it is determined that Jessica was poisoned, Penny is on the top of the suspect list and her husband is conflicted.

Even though Alan is the lead detective on the case, Penny cannot help but do her own investigating.  She soon learns that a lot of people didn't like Jessica and included in that group is Penny's cousin Patrick who just happens to be in town for the party.

Readers will fall in love with the three stories in this book. There is so much to love !!!  Penny and her crew are likable people that you would have fun hanging around with and Walnut Mountain is going to be a destination you will want to visit as much as possible ... even if it is only in a book.