I have no idea why it took me so long to start this series but I am so thrilled that I did. I am behind on posting my reviews so to give you perspective on how much I love it, I finished this book, book 1 on 9/13 and I am on book 4 today on 9/25, plus everything else that I have read along with this series.
Sarah Winston is a New England transplant from California. She moved with her now ex-husband, CJ, and his military career. Having a hard time in her newly single and lonely life, Sarah takes to hitting up garage sales again. Content, well as content as she can be, Sarah seems to be finding some stability in her life…. that is until she finds a bloody shirt and uniform in one of the bags from a garage sale. Not only is this a disturbing find, the bloody shirt seems to implicate her ex-husband. Putting her feelings on the side, Sarah sets out to solve the case and prove CJ’s innocence.
This book has everything; heartache, laughter, and murder. Many times in the story, I stopped and reflected on my past. I love mid-aged protagonists that have real life, daily problems that I can relate to. This series is up in my top overall favorites. And again, as much as I can kick myself for waiting so long to read it, I am loving being able to binge read it.
I have both the digital and audio versions of this book. Hillary Huber, who is one of my most favorite narrators, does and phenomenal job with this series.
This week, Krista Davis released The Diva Sweetens the Pie, book 12 of The Domestic Diva Mystery Series. I cannot sing the praises of this series loud enough. Book 1, The Diva Runs Out of Thyme, released in 2008. For whatever reason, I did not start reading this series until last year. If you still have not read this series, I am urging you to stop what you are doing and read it now!
The core characters of the series, Sophie, Nina, Bernie, Mars, and more, even Natasha, are so well developed that you will forget you are reading a book. You immediately become invested in this cast, you feel like you are a part of the gang. I can also add, the animals’ personalities even shine through. Every book in the series introduces several new characters but its never too much. You never lose focus or become overwhelmed. I have no idea how she does it. Every book is amazing. You would think maybe at least 1 out 12 may have just been okay, but that is not the case. I have never enjoyed a series as much as I enjoy this one. You will laugh out loud, you will be angered and disappointed, you will be surprised and you will long for the next book.
A little about the books…
The books are set in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia. Sophie and her semi nemesis Natasha are dueling divas with advice columns; think Ann Landers, Dear Abby, and Hints from Heloise all wrapped into one. Sophie and Natasha have been competing against each other since childhood. I would give their relationship the title of Frenemies.
In each book, Old Town Alexandria starts off just like any small southern town. There is usually a competition, festival, or holiday around the corner that everyone is gearing up and coming to town for. Coincidentally, there is always a murder to investigate as well. Sophie, along with her best friend Nina and the rest of the gang, are the sleuths that get to the bottom of it all. I like to think of them as an adult, southern Scooby Gang, yes they even have a dog!
My description of the series does not do it justice. Anyone that follows my reviews on Goodreads, knows that I am a harsh critic. So if I am telling you to read this series, read this series LOL. I give this series overall 5 Stars!!
If you have never read a Cozy Mystery, this is the series for you. If you have never tried an audio book, this is the series for you. The narrator, Hillary Huber, is phenomenal. If you are skeptical about listening to books on audio, this will change your mind.
4.5 Stars(almost 5 except the protagonist was a tad bit “too” much at times and worked my nerves) **Spoiler Free Review**
This is not a book that I would normally read, as I would have considered it “too realistic” for me. However, it was selected for our book club and I stepped out of my comfort zone. I normally don’t read books about real life problems because I have my own, I read to escape reality. After reading this book, I have a better understanding of what I already knew. You can never possibly know everything that is going on in people’s lives and minds. If you didn’t already know there were problems in your relationships, reading this book will surely tell you there are many. I actually realized I do some of the same things as Penny and sabotage things because I think are going too well. Or, I accept things the way they are because I am afraid of conflict or hurting someone. The core characters of this story experience the same things most of us have and it helps to see others struggle through it. I am not saying its good to see others struggle, it just shows you that you are not alone in the struggle.
This is a work of fiction but could easily be an
entertaining self help book. I highly recommend this to anyone (male or
female) that has ever been in a relationship (not just a romantic one),
had a stressful job, experiences the struggle with the balance of life,
experienced the loss of a loved one, or an absentee parent.
I had a digital copy as well as the audio version. The Audible narrator, Amy McFadden, was great!