Posted in Cozy, Fashion, Vintage on June 25, 2012

This week’s book is a little older, A Veiled Deception by Annette Blair.  It was released in January 2009, but a series I had never heard of or picked up to read until now.  There are currently 5 books in the series and if you want to check out an except from this first book, you can read it here

Synopsis:

New York designer Madeira Cutler returns to Connecticut for the wedding of her younger sister Sherry, who she virtually raised when their mother died Their father can’t deal with the details of the wedding and the hostility of the groom’s wealthy mother. Then the groom’s former flame shows up, obviously planning to replace Sherry as bride.

When she’s strangled at the shower with the antique bridal veil, Maddie has to not only redesign the dress but also make sure neither bride nor groom is jailed for the murder. Helping her — and vying for her affections — are her hot FBI sometimes-boyfriend and a local police detective she’s fought with since high school.

Thoughts:

I enjoyed this book quite a bit.  I found the world of fashion and vintage clothing interesting and the fact that Maddie is able to see ghosts or experience some history when she touches a piece of vintage clothing with some history.  While I’m not into the supernatural and paranormal, I consider this paranormal light.  It touches on it but isn’t the main focus of the book.  I liked the book enough that I have sought out the remaining books in the series (as of now) and can’t wait to see where the story takes us and Maddie.

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Posted in Cozy, Monday, mystery on May 14, 2012

Today’s Mystery is Little Shop of Homicide by Denise Swanson.  Denise also writes the Scumble River series, which is also a great series to pick up if you haven’t tried them yet.

Synopsis:

Devereaux Sinclair is the happy new owner of the adorable old-fashioned shop in her small Missouri town. But when a revenge-crazed cop accuses Dev of murdering her ex’s fiancée — and the murder weapon is found with her fingerprints all over it — Dev’s store, and her life, quickly turn from charmed to troubled. If she doesn’t find the real killer soon, this five-and-dime owner will be serving twenty-five to life…

Review:

I was surprised when the murder happened right off the bat in this story.  Usually there is a set up of the main character and then the murder happens in the 2nd or maybe 3rd chapter.  But that doesn’t make this a bad book, in fact it was quite good and I really enjoyed the interplay between Devereaux and the cop that couldn’t see past his own revenge to actually look for the killer.  I also liked the love triangle…well sort of triangle.  There is her ex-fiance and then the hunky neighbor’s grandson. 

I think this is going to be another winner of a series for Denise Swanson and look forward to the second book and see if she creates another winning series like the Scumble River series!

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Posted in California, Cozy, Monday, mystery, Review on April 30, 2012

This week’s feature is an older book…circa 1997.  Ok, so older but not that old!  And doing research on the author realized she died in 2006.  Guess that means no more books in this series, but there are 6 to enjoy.

Anywho…the book is Delilah Doolittle and the Purloined Pooch and the author is Patricia Guiver.

Synopsis:
 
Sunny Southern California seems an unlikely place for a British widow to call home. But pet detective Delilah Doolittle is probably the least eccentric–if not the most civilized–of Surf City’s resident population. With the astute Doberman pinscher Watson sniffing out clues, Delilah follows the trails of missing animals, which often lead to the worst of human nature. The first thrilling pet detective mystery has Delilah Doolittle searching for a champion German shepherd. But when she finds a murdered man instead, it’s up to Delilah to collar a killer!
 
Review:
 
I love dogs, so any book with a dog in it is usually a winner with me.  The book started off a bit slow for me but once I got into the story I really enjoyed the story.  I didn’t figure out the killer and was suprised when this person was revealed.  Definitely not who I was expecting!  I’m not sure if I will continue with this series since there are so many books to read, but it is worth a read.

 

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Posted in Cozy, Monday, mystery on April 16, 2012

Today’s Mystery Monday book is another cozy…what can I say, I love cozy books!

Clobbered in Camembert is the 3rd in the Cheese Shop Mysteries by Avery Aames.

 

Synopsis:

When Kaitlyn is found dead in the cottage of Charlotte’s assistant Rebecca, suspicion falls on Rebecca’s boyfriend, a honeybee farmer himself. Charlotte knows this beekeeper wouldn’t hurt a fly, so she decides to find the real killer. While the town buzzes with gossip, can Charlotte catch the culprit without getting stung herself?

My thoughts:

The book was just as good as the first two….other than Rebecca really getting on my last nerve, and she is just a character in the book!  I don’t know if some slack should be given to her because she is formerly Amish but she was a little overboard in trying to clear her “honey”.  Once again I didn’t guess who the guilty party was until he/she was revealed.  That’s the sign of a good book to me!

 

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Posted in Cozy, Monday, mystery, Texas on April 9, 2012

This week it is a new series with a male lead (fairly unusual) and set in the Dallas area (love books set in Texas!).  This series is the Stay at Home Dad series by Jeffrey Allen who is also known as Jeff Shelby, mystery writer.  The first book is called Stay at Home Dead.

Synopsis:

When stay at home dad Deuce Winters finds the dead body of his old high school rival in the back of his mini-van, it quickly throws his quiet life into disarray.  As the number one suspect in the court of public opinion in his small hometown in Texas, Deuce is determined to clear his name, with a little help from his wife, Julianne, a high-powered attorney. His search for the killer leads him to a business plan gone awry, a gaggle of jilted lovers, a group of merciless PTA moms and a diminutive detective with quite the attitude.

My Review:

I can’t remember if I have ever read a cozy series that featured a male lead that did the sleuthing.  Sure there have been supporting men, but not one that is involved this much.  I have to say I really liked the set up of this story…stay at home dad who is ridiculed by the people in his small home town for staying at home (I personally think it is a cool thing for him to do), a kick butt wife and a precocious daughter.   Of course Deuce’s life is also not without the women hitting on him despite no encouragement from him.  So if you are looking for a slight change from your usual cozy, check out this series.  I don’t think you will be disappointed.

I really enjoyed this book and can’t wait for book 2 which is called Popped Off and due out on September 1, 2012.

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Posted in Cozy, Monday, mystery on April 2, 2012

This week’s edition of Mystery Monday brings the second book in the Library Lover’s Mystery series, Due or Die by Jenn McKinlay.  And according to her website this hit #24 on the NYT bestseller’s list for March 25th.  WOW!

 

 

Synopsis:

What is the original meaning of the word clue?* — Answering tricky reference questions like this one is more than enough excitement for library director Lindsey Norris. Until another murder is committed in her cozy hometown of Briar Creek, Connecticut, and the question of who did it must be answered before someone else is checked out — for good.

Carrie Rushton, the president of the Friends of the Library, has been accused of murdering her husband. The evidence is stacking up against Carrie, but neither Lindsey nor the Briar Creek crafternoon club is buying it.

When a nor’easter buries the small coastal town, the police are too busy digging out the locals to investigate the murder.  With the help of her crafternoon friends and an abandoned puppy they name Heathcliff, Lindsey has to solve the question of who murdered Mr. Rushton before the killer closed the book on Carrie….

My thoughts:

Some of my fondest memories are in libraries so any time a book is set in a library or has a librarian I’m all for reading the book.  This book is a great continuation of the series and the book has me guessing who the killer might be amongst all the characters.  I will say that I never guessed who it was and love that the author has added a dog into the mix…yes books and dogs are two of my favorite things!  All of the characters feel like friends (well most of them anyway) and that this cozy little town in Conneticut might be a nice place to visit…if it were real!

If you like cozies then you definitely want to check out this series by Jenn McKinlay.  So far her series have not steered me wrong!  And if you like cupcakes, then check out here Cupcake Mysteries too.

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Posted in Cozy, Monday, mystery on March 19, 2012

I don’t know if any other blog started this but I’m going to have a weekly mystery featured on Monday…hence the title Mystery Monday!

The first book to be features is the first in a new cozy series by Lucy Arlington.  It is called Buried in a Book and is a Novel Idea Mystery.  The second in the series will be called Every Trick in the Book and is due out in February 2013.

Lucy Arlington is the nom de plume for the writing team of Ellery Adams and Sylvia May, two friends who collaborated on an idea that became A Novel Idea Mystery Series. Both are authors in their own right; Ellery writes cozy mysteries and Sylvia women’s fiction.

From the back of the book: 

After receiving her first pink slip at the age of forty-five, former newspaper journalist Lila Wilkins is desperate for work, even if it means taking a pay cut. After combing through the classifieds, Lila accepts an internship at A Novel Idea, a thriving literary agency in the utopian town of Inspiration Valley, North Carolina.

 Lila can’t imagine anything better than being paid to read, but with a crew of quirky co-workers and a sky-high stack of query letters, she doesn’t exactly have time to discover the next great bestseller—especially when a penniless aspiring author drops dead in the agency’s waiting room.

 No one else seems too concerned about the man’s demise, but when Lila uncovers a series of threatening letters, she’s determined to uncover what—or who—killed the man’s dreams of literary stardom…

My thoughts:

I thought this was a great start to a new series.  I love that the main character is in her mid-forties and the book is set in the publishing world.  I love to read (that is why I have a book review blog!) and am always fascinated about the process to become a writer even though I have no aspirations myself.  I’m doing good to write these posts! 

But I think this is a great start to a new series and cannot wait to finish the book (just pages away as I write this!) and having to wait until February 2013 for the 2nd will be tough.  I give it 4 stars and definitely recommend it to any cozy lovers.

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Posted in Cozy, Tuesday on January 17, 2012

Today I’m going to give you two teasers….If you know me, you know I love Cozy mysteries.  They are light and usually a quick read for me.  One of my favorite authors is Elaine Viets who writes two different series.  The one I’m teasing you with today is from the Josie Marcus, Mystery Shopper series.  The latest book is Death on a Platter.

This is from page 131:

She was almost inside her flat when one of the names hit her: Our Lady of the Sheets?  What kind of religious order was that? Was it a charity?  An order of sisters?

 

The second teaser is from a new series, the Cookie Cutter Shop Mysteries, by Virginia Lowell.  The second book in the series is A Cookie Before Dying.

 

This is from page 99:

While Spunky paced between the door and the window, Olivia closed her eyes.  She had done her duty, which ought to help her relax and fall asleep.  She envisioned wading into a chocolate lake dotted with pink and yellow sugar sprinkles.

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Posted in Cozy, mailbox on January 2, 2012

These are the books I received in the mail this past week….lots of good ones on my TBR shelf!

Death by the Dozen by Jenn McKinlay  3rd in the Cupcake Bakery series

Melanie and Angie are determined to win the Challenge to the Chef to promote their Fairy Tale Cupcakes bakery. Mel’s mentor from culinary school, Vic Mazzotta, may be one of the judges, but Mel and Angie will have to win fair and square. But, when Vic’s dead body is found inside a freezer truck, Mel and Angie will need to use their best judgment to find the cold-blooded killer or they may lose more than the contest — they may lose their lives.

 

Death on a Platter by Elaine Viets – 7th in her Mystery Shopper series

Josie Marcus plans to savor sampling the local St. Louis cuisine for a City Eats food tour. But her appetite is ruined at Tillie’s Off the Hill Italian Restaurant when another customer is poisoned. Was the victim the real target-or is someone trying to ruin Tillie’s reputation? It’s up to Josie to find a killer who has no reservations about preparing a dish to die for…

 

Liver Let Die by Liz Lipperman – 1st in the new Clueless Cooks series

Jordan McAllister can’t cook her way out of a macaroni & cheese box, but filling in for the culinary reporter at The Ranchero Globe is better than writing personal ads. Her first assignment to review the new steakhouse in town is a disaster that ends with her waiter murdered outside her door — with her name and number in his pocket. Now Jordan is the prime suspect, as well as the main course on the murder menu

 

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Posted in cooking, Cozy, fiction, mailbox, Uncategorized on November 28, 2011

Last week I received a few books to add to my TBR (to be read) mountain!  I am a sucker for new cozies and these are two that arrived this past week:

Killer Mousse by Melinda Wells (aka Linda Palmer)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quickstep to Murder by Ella Barrick

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cooking and ballroom dancing…what better settings for some new reads?!

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