A Call For Kelp By Bree Baker (Julie Anne Lindsey writing as…)

Book 4 of The Seaside Cafe Mysteries

A Call for Kelp 5 STARS

Southern Charm on the Carolina Beach, sweet tea, boardwalks, tourist shops, and murder, what’s not to love???

In A Seaside Cafe Mystery Series, Everly Swan moves home to small town Charm, North Carolina where she opens her dream tea shop, Sun, Sand, and Tea.

She has been under the microscope since moving back to Charm. The Swan women of the island are said to be cursed in love; falling in love and losing their mate at a young age. Swan women don’t leave the island either. Well, Everly did and returned after suffering at love but since she has been back, death has followed in her wake. Since her return, the easy life of Charm has seen one too many murders, and the town is starting to think there is something to this curse of the Swans.

With an amazing core cast (the eccentric aunts, handsome detective Grady, the best bestie Amelia, Denise, and Wyatt), Everly has the support team she needs to run her dream business and solve murders.

In this installment, A celebrity visitor meets an unfortunate demise. Knowing that the deceased had a past with her grandmother, Everly decides to put on her sleuthing hat. However, someone has it out for Everly before she even starts digging. Can Everly get to the bottom of this mystery BEEfore its too late??

I received an advanced digital copy of this book from NetGalley. I cannot wait for book 5, Closely Harbored Secrets to release December 29, 2020.

The Paper Girl of Paris by Jordyn Taylor

The Paper Girl of Paris 5 STARS

I came across this book on a New Releases’ Post for May 26, 2020. I adore novels with dual timelines and I enjoy Historical Fiction, so I was immediately intrigued. This has the typical plot; person of today finds letter or photograph leading to some past unknown. This story sucked me in from the beginning.

A good portion of Historical Fiction novels center around WW II. While I understand the importance and interest, I prefer the stories to be more about the people than the war itself. I found this novel to be more of a “behind the scenes” story. This was more of a coming of age story with a historical past and a dash of mystery. Maybe because it is in the Young Adult genre, I just found it to be refreshing.

Sixteen year old Alice and her parents travel to Paris after finding out her deceased grandmother left her an apartment, an apartment that has been locked for more than seventy years. When she unlocks the apartment, she also unlocks secrets about her family’s past. Alice, along with her new “friend” Paul, set out on a journey to find the missing pieces of her grandmother’s past. Alice finds out a lot about history, her broken family, herself, and a little bit about love.

I would recommend this book to Historical Fiction lovers of all ages or anyone interested in a Coming of Age story with a historical past.

I had the audio version of this book narrated by Liza Seneca. She was a great narrator and did a fantastic job with all the accents.

Murder in the Wine Country by Janet Finsilver

Book 6 of the Kelly Jackson Mysteries

Murder in the Wine Country (A Kelly Jackson Mystery #6) 4STARS

I feel like this series is one of those extremely well kept secrets and we need to get the secret out!!

I love everything about the Kelly Jackson Mysteries… the plot, the setting, the characters, and the mysteries. This series has something for everyone. The setting of Redwood Cove is to die for, no pun intended. The characters are all very well developed, likable, and they all play their part in the stories. From Tommy, the child with Asperger Syndrome, and his dog Fred to all the Silver Sentinels, there is definitely a character for you. There is always a new hobby or event to explore in town and Janet Finsilver has a way of making you feel like you are experiencing it with the cast.

In this installment, its a wine tasting event. When an accident and burglary turn out to be more sinister than originally suspected, Kelly and the Silver Sentinels are on the case.

One other thing that really sticks out in the later novels, the charity developed for the aid and care of Veterans. This is a subject near and dear to my heart and the author does a great job bringing awareness.

This series is one of my favorite Cozy Mystery Series, it is carefree and entertaining. I love a series with senior sleuths. These books are easily one sitting reads and I highly recommending binging this series.

I had an advanced digital copy from NetGalley and Kensington Publishing Corporation. I also had this book in audio format. The narrator, Reba Buhr, did a fabulous job.

I am looking forward to a book 7 and more adventures at Redwood Cove.

The Book of Candlelight by Ellery Adams

Book 3 of The Secret, Book and Scone Society

The Book of Candlelight (Secret, Book, & Scone Society, #3) 4STARS

I love this series and I just love Nora so much. Although I do not have a tragic past, I somehow seem to identify with her. I love her character and how she is always there for her friends and towns folk.

In this installment, Nora and the gang are dealing with a multitude of crimes. Not only is someone defacing the groups’ property, its very personal. Add to that, a murder or two, and Nora has her hands full.

There are a few new characters that I hope will be around for the next book. There are also a few relationships developing.

Although the personal connection with this novel was not there like the one I had with Secret, Book and Scone Society, the story was still deep and moving. This is NOT a traditional COZY Mystery Series. Although there is nothing graphic, there are romantic scenes and some of the things discussed in the group are very deep and dark. I only say that because there are a some cozy readers that take offense to anything more than a kiss or a cuss stronger than darn.

I look forward to future journeys with Nora.

I received and read this digital copy of the novel from NetGalley.

Hems and Homicide by Elizabeth Penney

First in a new series

Hems and Homicide (Apron Shop #1) 4STARS

Iris Buckley decides to return to her hometown, Blueberry Cove, Maine, to help out her grandmother after her grandfather’s death. She is ready to bring her online hand-made apron designs to a real store, Ruffles & Bows. Finding a store front was difficult so there was no shock in finding the space in poor condition with a lot of work to do. What was shocking, finding a skeleton in the basement.

With help of her best friend and her granny, Iris wants to find out what happened to the person and lay these old bones to rest. Iris finds out that digging up the past can bring plenty of problems to the future.

This book has many twists, all the way to the end. I enjoyed the author’s character development. The relationship between Iris and her granny felt real. I also enjoyed the budding romances.

I am looking forward to continuing on with the series and learning more about all the characters.

I had this book in both digital format from NetGalley and audio format from Audible. The narrator, Kim Niemi, did a great job.

Staging is Murder by Grace Topping

A debut novel and first in series

Staging is Murder (A Laura Bishop Mystery #1) 4STARS

Laura Bishop is a home stager. She is currently staging a 19th century mansion with the help of her assistant, Tyrone. The one thing Laura could not have dreamed of, a murder of the home owner, and no, it was not staged. Due to an accident, Tyrone becomes suspect number one and is locked in jail. With the help of her best friend and Tyrone’s grandmother, Laura sets out to solve the crime and clear Tyrone’s name. However, the murderer is on to Laura. Can she solve this crime before she becomes a victim.

This was a great debut novel and start to a new series. I am looking forward to seeing what Laura gets into next along with the help of her new employee. I am also hoping for a romantic relationship for Laura and Doug.

I listened to the audible version of this novel narrated by Emily Durante. She did a fantastic job.

Silenced in Sequins by Debra Sennefelder

Book Two of A Resale Boutique Mystery Series

Silenced in Sequins 4 STARS

Another great novel by Debra Sennefelder!! Her stories have very likable characters in well developed plots and settings. Even while being haunted with murder, the story is very light and fun with moving and emotional aspects.

Kelly Quinn was a fashion buyer in Manhattan before inheriting her grandmother’s outdated consignment shop. Giving up her high fashion life, Kelly returns to her home town of Lucky Cove to turn the consignment shop into an up scale resale boutique. What Kelly didn’t expect was an uncle trying to shut her business down, the sheriff not being her number one fan, and solving murders.

In this installment of the series, Kelly is commissioned to sell some clothing from a reality series celebrity. When one of the reality stars turns up dead, Kelly is pulled in to the case by several different hands but one hand seems to want to cause trouble for Kelly. On top of that, she finds information that may put her business in jeopardy. Can Kelly find out what is really going on with the Long Island Ladies and can she find a way to save her lively hood and keep her grandmother’s legacy afloat before its too late?

I cannot wait to for the next installment of this series.

I received an advanced digital copy of this book from NetGalley and Lyrical Press, a division of Kensington Publishing.

Also by Debra Sennefelder…. The Uninvited Corpse (Food Blogger Mysteries #1)

Psychological Thrillers and Its Okay To Love Them…

Have you ever read a book that is so disturbing that you felt wrong for enjoying it? Do you watch Investigative Discovery and wonder, why am I so interested in watching stories about killers and psychopaths?

You are not alone.

This past Saturday afternoon, I got sucked into the ID Channel for a few hours. I had to consciously tell myself to get up, get dressed, and get out of the house. Where did I go, Barnes and Noble of course.

With the new year starting, one of my goals is be more social. Another one of my goals is to get back to reading other genres of books that I enjoy (as I have become a reader of Cozy Mysteries primarily).

While at Barnes and Noble, I noticed the sign for their monthly book club this upcoming week. The book is a thriller, The Family Upstairs by Lisa Jewell. Although familiar with the author, I have never read any of her work. I thought, “how perfect!! A way to get in 2 of my goals!!”

The Family Upstairs
5 STARS

I downloaded the book on Audible and started to listen. I was hooked by chapter 4! The narrative cast is amazing. They really brought this story to life. The plot and the characters felt so real and gripping. I knew the book was a Thriller/Suspense Novel, but I really didn’t go into it knowing much more than that. I found myself almost becoming obsessed with the need to know what the heck was going to happen and how this would all play out in the end. Just when I thought I would have something figured out, a new plot or character twist would come to light and shock and some horror would overtake me.

I love a novel that has multiple story lines that eventually tie in together. This novel is told from multiple POVs and both past and present time frames. I can remember a few times where I audibly gasped at connections made.

I will not give out any specifics on the plot or characters as I feel reading this book with little knowledge of the plot was better for me, so I am granting you the same courtesy.

I had to sit after finishing it and just stare for a few moments. I honestly feel like need a shower or maybe even go to church, LOL. I haven’t read a psychological thriller in a while and this one has definitely reminded me that I love them.

I am not a fan of graphic and gratuitous violence and/or sex in my books and I am pleased to say that there is not much in this story. There is one semi descriptive scene that is necessary to plot, the rest is just alluded to or implied, thank goodness.

I will tell you that I will definitely pick up another Lisa Jewell book and I am going to research the narrating cast to see what other novels they do.

Theater Nights Are Murder by Libby Klein

Book 4 of the Poppy McAllister Mysteries

Theater Nights Are Murder

If you want a series of shenanigans, this is the series for you. There are several Laugh Out Loud moments. Libby Klein has very detailed plots and characters in her stories. Poppy is a very relatable character for me, as I too have felt her struggles with weight, love, and self esteem issues.

In the start of this series, a widowed Poppy McAllister returns to her home town to attend her high school reunion. While there and staying with her whimsical Aunt Ginny, she learns that social services is investigating Aunt Ginny for more than just being a little whimsical. After reconnecting with her high school best friend and realizing Aunt Ginny really can’t be on her own anymore, Poppy decides to stay.

In this installment of the series, Aunt Ginny’s high school boyfriend has retired from Broadway and is returning home to play the male lead in the senior center’s theater production of Mamma Mia. When one too many accidents start happening in the theater, one has to wonder, is someone trying to put a stop to the play or is someone trying to stop a player. Can Poppy and the Biddies get to the bottom of this case before another accident takes center stage?

It was fun to see the biddies investigate more and to see their romantic troubles too. I am not a huge fan of love triangles, but I understand that it works here. However, I picked my side early on in this series.

I received an advanced digital copy of the book from NetGalley as well as a print copy from the author and Kensington Books in return for my honest review.

I am looking forward to the next … Are Murder shenanigans in the future.

Sell Low, Sweet Harriet By Sherry Harris

Book 8 of the Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mysteries

Sell Low, Sweet Harriet 5 STARS

This was one of my most anticipated new releases for the new year. However, you may read that many times in my reviews, as this list is quite long. Definitely in my top 10 Cozy Mystery Series, Sherry Harris did not miss a beat with the latest installment. The plot, characters, and even the crimes are so relatable. The books in this series fly by, like a visit with old friends.

In this installment, there is more mystery than any other book yet. There are several unrelated crimes in this book but, of course, Sarah has her hand in all of them. Between a murder on base, a garage sale for former CIA members, and her favorite mobster moving in next door again, Sarah is on super sleuth mode. While the authorities have become more accepting of Sarah’s abilities to solve the crimes, people on and around the Air Force Base are not very welcoming. With multiple tasks on her agenda, can Sarah get to the bottom of everything before she becomes the next victim?

Like I said, reading the new installment is like catching up with old friends. I am delighted that the end of this novel has some joyful news (I won’t spoil it). Although I wish Carol and Stella were more involved in the sleuthing this go around, I enjoyed meeting some of the characters introduced in this book.

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. I was awarded the digital ARC via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

Now to impatiently wait for the next book…..