Murder in a Teacup review

This is the second in the Tea by the Sea series, the newest by Vicki Delany who’s also known as Eva Gates, author of the Lighthouse Library series. Under Vicki Delany, she also has Year-Round Christmas and The Sherlock Holmes Bookshop cozy mystery series. I’ve found in any of these series I’ve read (I’m up to date in Tea, Sherlock and Lighthouse) that you get lots of great characters, most being very endearing that you’d like to meet in real life. Then some are like Rose, not a huggy person but still a pretty awesome lady.

My Goodreads review:

Murder in a Teacup (Tea by the Sea Mysteries Book 2)Murder in a Teacup by Vicki Delany
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Never underestimate the power of an eighty-year old, lol! At least Rose Campbell proved it over and over so far in this series, and this book was definitely not a disappointment. I just love Rose’s character and how she’s always getting out of working the breakfast at the tearoom. She loves Lily fiercely, but she just not the soft and cuddly granny we sometimes see in these books. Rose and Bernie always make for a great sleuthing team, but sometimes I feel bad for Lily who usually gets left out due to having to work the tearoom.

The families staying at the B&B this time for a so-called reunion would give the Ewings of Dallas and the Channings of Napa Valley a real run for their money in the drama department, lol. I guess I basically pictured the Ewing clan only upgraded with phones and tablets. I’m glad that Det. Redmond got to play an important part eventually. That Williams, well let’s just say the author’s done a great job creating a character no one likes! On the other hand, Simon’s such a sweetheart that I really hope Lily lets him closer into her life sometime in the future. Matt turned out to be a good person for Bernie to hang with-maybe being a writer, he’ll help her overcome some of her writing issues she always has.

That was some awesome showdown! At least part of Lily’s plan worked out. And they finally got peace from this crazy bickering family when they left. I can’t wait to see what Lily, Rose and Bernie get into in the next book!

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own.



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Fatal Family Ties review

This is the third book in the Ancestry Detective series by S.C. Perkins that I was fortunate enough to start from the beginning of the series. Each book just seems to get better, and I love how the characters have developed. Lucy and her two besties always crack me up when they get together, and I think it’s great that Lucy and Ben are officially a couple. I enjoyed meeting Lucy’s parents in this book and think it’s awesome that she has such a good relationship with them as opposed to sometimes a main character having both parents but maybe not such a great rapport with one or the other.

My Goodreads review:

Fatal Family Ties (Ancestry Detective #3)Fatal Family Ties by S.C. Perkins
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This series just keeps getting better! I love the camaraderie of Lucy and her besties, her great relationship with her own parents, the way she keeps in touch with Grandpa George via FaceTime, and last but definitely not least, her growing relationship with Ben Turner. I was drawn in and could hardly put the book down when the action fired up.

I had my susupicions about whodunit but not the twist. There was an interesting side story that appeared to be connected to the murder, so it was fun to watch that play out as well. The showdown was pretty epic, and Lucy’s friend Helen got to play a part in it. Camilla was very surprising at the end too! I liked the theme of various people getting second chances even regarding the historical end of it.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book that publishes tomorrow, July 20, 2021, and my opinions are my own.

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A Spirit Seeks Asylum review

This is the sixth book in the Bay Island Psychic series by Lena Gregory who writes another of my favorite series, The All-Day Breakfast Cafe. It’s awesome to have read this series from the very beginning and see how Cass has grown and developed some latent abilities. I just love her relationship with Bee and Stephanie, most especially Bee. He’s one of my most favorite book characters ever. He’s just the type of person I’d like for a friend meaning he’s loyal and protective, but he tells it like it is and doesn’t even hide it when he’s scared himself. I love sweet Beast pup more every time I read about him. He might not have been shaking water all over the tub and Bee this time, but he’s sure learned that Uncle Bee is a pushover when it comes to giving him treats and food, lol.

Luke and Cass are at a comfortable place in their relationship, and I’m always glad when there’s no conflict there. Luke’s most helpful having finally accepted Cass’s abilities even if he doesn’t quite understand them. I’m always eager for the next book in this series!

My Goodreads review:

A Spirit Seeks Asylum (Bay Island Psychic Mystery, #6)A Spirit Seeks Asylum by Lena Gregory
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’d been needing a Bee/Cass/Beast fix for a long time, and this was better than I could have even imagined. This book was a special treat since it was set in the winter when Bee doesn’t get as much design business and actually had the time to hang out and sleuth with Cass. Stephanie was being kept busy with her little adopted boy, so there wasn’t a whole lot with her, but she was in all the parts she usually was especially the group readings.

This was so well-plotted and hard to figure out that I just eventually sat back and enjoyed the ride. Bee was definitely at his shining best being first and foremost awesomest friend and protector in the universe and there’s always his so-scared-of-ghosts-he-passes-out thing which is always hilarious! He’s kinda like a human version of Scooby Doo when he does that.

There were a lot of secrets held and layers to the people involved in the mystery. I was glad to see Simone being the voice of reason and pretty much making Cass have a police presence there for what ended up being the showdown. I always hate for these books to end, but they always end in such a way that you do get a happy family feeling and definitely a good book hangover!

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own.

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Midnight Spells Murder review

This is the second book in the Happy Camper series by Mary Angela, who also writes the Professor Prather series (one I’ve been meaning to get to). I had and read the first book in this new series, so when I had the chance to get the second one a little early from NetGalley, I jumped on it. I really love this setting and wouldn’t mind taking a road trip to South Dakota sometime. The scenery just sounds awesome. Eagerly waiting on the third book now!

When I first found the Happy Camper series, I thought it was another series about camping, but it’s just the name of Zo Jones’s store. She sells things that turn customers into (wait for it)…happy campers. Whether it’s seasonal decor or hosting a book signing for a popular book, Zo is all about bringing happiness into her customers’ lives. She does host nature walks followed by a scrapbooking session and probably sells some outdoorsy type things for that. The second book goes a little more into her off-and-on search for her birth mom, since she was left at the police station thirty-odd years ago.

My Goodreads review:

Midnight Spells Murder (A Happy Camper Mystery Book 2)Midnight Spells Murder by Mary Angela
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I loved how they celebrated Halloween in Spirit Canyon with everyone decorating and all the costumes and the parade. Last time, the book was mostly focused on Zo’s friend Beth. This time we got to meet Jules another fun and crazy friend of Zo’s. I loved how she and Duncan bantered back and forth about her being close to firing him. Personally, I think she’s falling for him. And speaking of that, I was happy to see Zo and Max getting closer. She might be developing a little more patience for his by-the-book ranger rules, or maybe he’s lightening up a bit. Whichever it is, I like them together and getting along, lol.

Justin the news guy was his annoying self again, but he sure had a surprise coming to him. I hadn’t completely guessed the killer, but about the time Zo was realizing who it was, that was when I was getting to it. The showdown was great, and there might have been a little otherworldly help from a recently deceased friend helping them get her some justice. I love the little addition to Max’s family too. George cat isn’t a fan though lol.

I’m really enjoying this series for the mystery, a little bit of romance, and I actually like hearing about the people in the town and the little side stories like Max helping remove a tick from George or going on one of Zo’s hikes. It’s just those little things that endear the characters to readers even more. I’m really looking forward to the next book!

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own.

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A Hex for Danger review

This is the second book in the Enchanted Bay series, one of my personal fave new series out there, and it’s by Esme Addison. I loved this series when I first read it last year, and now I can’t wait for the third book. As you’ll see in my review, I highly recommend that if you haven’t read the first book, it’s best to start with that book before moving to this book. I just love Alex’s sweet German Shepherd, Athena and wish she was in the book just a little more. What a cutie, as you can see from both this book cover and the first.

I liked that everything was well-explained for the mysteries going on in the book too. There may be a character carryover which is always why I recommend reading book one first. Thanks to Kensington Books for providing the ARC to NetGalley!

My Goodreads review:

A Hex for Danger (An Enchanted Bay Mystery #2)A Hex for Danger by Esme Addison
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I was so happy to get to read this second book in the Enchanted Bay series before it comes out next Tuesday. I really enjoyed the first book, and this book was definitely not a disappointment. We got to learn even more about the key characters. I’ll caution anyone who hasn’t read the first book though: do yourself a favor and read it before reading this one, because there are a few mentions of things that happened in the first book that you may not want to know before you read said first book. This is a series that I can see will be building on each book as far as the history of the families involved, so starting from the beginning is a very good thing!

There were a couple of different cases, and it was interesting to see if they’d be related. Without giving too much away, let’s just say I didn’t guess anything all that well. Lots of surprises and secrets were kept and shared. Alex was left with the sense of family though that she’d longed for all the years she was without, and we did get to find out the particulars behind her memory being erased as she was talking about in the first book. I really enjoy Alex’s character and her amazing aunt and cousins too. This book publishes July 13, 2021.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own.

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Dogged by Death review

This is the first cozy mystery I can see in author Laura Scott’s works as well as being the first book I’ve read by her. I’m loving what I read in this new series called Furry Friends Mysteries, named after main character Ally Winter’s veterinary clinic. Ms. Scott’s written mysteries and romance books, and I think she’s done an amazing job of combining those talents and creating this cozy series. It’s got just the right elements a cozy needs along with a little bit of suspense but not the super scary kind. I just love Ally’s Gramps! He’s such a great character, and I can’t wait to read more about all these characters in the next book. Yep, I have the ARC already for the next book and might be tempted to dig in when I get a little bit better caught up on ARCs.

PS: The various little entries about Ally’s clients bringing their pets in were a lot of fun. I was especially happy that the little dachshund named Lola wasn’t one of the dogs who misbehaved, lol.

My Goodreads review:

Dogged by Death (A Furry Friends Mystery #1)Dogged by Death by Laura Scott
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I absolutely loved this book! It pulled me in from the first page and kept my attention until the very end. Gramps is the most awesome character, and I got such a kick out of how he managed to investigate and get information out of people, especially the women in town, since anyone over 60 was usually swept off their feet by him. Gramps wasn’t a player though and said no one would ever replace his Amelia. The three ladies in the assisted living house with him were such a hoot! They always heard the gossip almost before the police knew about it.

I loved how the story was so smooth and easy to read with natural-sounding conversations and very likable characters. That sweet Boxer Roxy had my heart from the first time she was mentioned! And she played a big part in the showdown (I love it when a pet can do that!). I actually enjoyed hearing about some of the cases Ally took care of. There were quite a few of them, and that made the story flow nicely with mixing those along with Gramps and Ally investigating.

I’m sure Noah and Ally will become lots more than friends eventually, but it’s sweet to see them reconnecting, and he only teased her a couple of times about her old high school nickname, lol. I really was happy about how Ally’s vet practice grew just from a few things she did herself like followup calls. It’ll be interesting to see if Lydia ever gets to work as receptionist in the next book. And I can’t wait to see what Gramps gets into with the next case.

The showdown was awesome, short and effective. I enjoy it a lot more when help or reinforcements come quickly! (less nerve-wracking haha) I’d started suspecting whodunit after the clues started falling in place, so it was just a matter of time as to when Ally had the same person in mind.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher, Crooked Lane, and my opinions are my own.

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Death of an Italian Chef review

Can you believe this is the fourteenth book in the Hayley Powell series? I hope it goes on for a long time because I’m having such a good time reading it. I’m keeping up with new releases via ARCs from NetGalley while still having some of the previous books to read. With this fun series, I’m surprisingly okay with that though. This clever series is the brainchild of brother/sister writing team Lee Hollis aka Rick Copp and Holly Simason. Guys, please keep writing about Hayley!  Just a weird thought I had. I wonder if some of the awesome Hayley/Randy or Gemma/Dustin moments came from things they remembered doing as kids.

This book was just as hilarious as I’ve come to expect from some of my most favorite cozy mystery characters. The guy who died was in the book just long enough that I actually felt bad about someone killing him. I guess I was picturing him as a favorite old Italian comic actor. I’m sure most everyone is too young to remember Dom DeLuise, but Chef Romeo made me think of him which was why I hated to see the chef get murdered. But there were tons of secrets that a lot of people had, including the chef, so you’ll just have to dig into this book when it’s published next week and find out what was up with all those great side stories in the book as well as the main mystery. You won’t be disappointed! And if you like Italian food, you’re going to be hungry for that too.

My Goodreads review:

Death of an Italian Chef (Hayley Powell Mystery Book 14)Death of an Italian Chef by Lee Hollis
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oh boy, the trouble a brother and sister can get into when their loved ones are out of town, lol. Hayley and Randy were on their own, and since crazy stuff always follows our awesome Hayley, she found herself involved in a murder investigation of a chef who she’d been helping with his restaurant while he was in the hospital. The worst part was that Sergio was in Brazil, and a no-nonsense skeptical-of- anything-Hayley-told-her sergeant was in charge.

One hilarious part was Donnie and Earl following her around like lovesick puppies. Bruce was on a story in New York, but he still helped with the investigation by researching for Hayley, while she saw herself coming and going with the restaurant and a very demanding Randy recovering from surgery. That led to another funny scene when Mona babysat him. Mona was also a hoot as a waitress at the Italian restaurant, kind of a similar performance to when she subbed in a play last Christmas.

I love this series so much because we’re always presented with a fun rollercoaster of an investigation with so many madcap situations Hayley and crew find themselves in. From wild side stories about the mob and someone’s affair to the actual heart and reason of the murder, I know I’m always guaranteed a good exciting showdown. And there was a pretty awesome twist to this one which led to a great ending and new adventure coming for Hayley and her friends and family. Don’t miss this when it comes out next Tuesday!

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher, Kensington, and my opinions are my own.

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Draw and Order review

This is the second book in the newer Paint & Shine series by cozy author Cheryl Hollon who also wrote the Webb’s Glass Shop Mysteries. I love the very different idea of a main character artist presenting tours that involve both painting and hiking. I’m neither an artist nor a hiker, but I can pretend through what Miranda’s clients are doing, minus the murder, of course! 😉 Just the descriptions of the Daniel Boone National Forest made me have to see what they looked like, so I researched the Gladie Visitor Center and the Indian Staircase. The staircase looks like a challenging hike, so there’s no danger I’d ever be brave enough, but I sure wouldn’t mind visiting the national forest itself for a short trail.

Be sure and read the author’s extensive and interesting acknowledgements after the story. That’s where she tells about the magic of fiction being able to combine some favorite places of hers. But I really loved finding out that lots of the places were real.

My Goodreads review:

Draw and Order (A Paint & Shine Mystery Book 2)Draw and Order by Cheryl Hollon
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed the latest book in this newer series. I always thought it was a really unique idea for a main character to be both a hiker and an artist combining both those activities into tours of the Daniel Boone National Forest. I’m not sure I’d be much in favor of the hiking/climbing part or even the painting, but the big Southern meal afterward always sounds so yummy!

Miranda’s a great character and such a good daughter and friend too. I could tell having her mom around this time both annoyed yet helped her. I have a feeling in the long run that her mom’s helpfulness with cooking and just taking care of people in general will win out. I hope she moves there for good. I loved Austin and Doris’s characters before too and was glad to see Miranda and Austin getting even closer. Doris Ann was a good friend and a great source of information when Miranda had to sleuth out a case involving her clients, just like the current case where she was trying to find out who killed her cousin.

At one point in the book, I just didn’t know who of the Risky Business Adventurers could be trusted, but I was leaning toward one in particular for the killer and ended up being right. The showdown/rescue was pretty cool, and everything at the end was explained once everyone was checked out and fine. I saved the preview to savor once I was done with this one, so I’m going to enjoy that a little later. There are recipes before you get to the preview for book 3. The book publishes June 29, 2021.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher via NetGalley, an my opinions are my own.

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Beauty Expos Are Murder review

This is the sixth book in the hilarious Poppy McAllister series by Libby Klein, and I’ve laughed through every one of these awesome mysteries. The situations Poppy finds herself in are just too funny but very relatable sometimes. And Aunt Ginny…her escapades alone could fill a book, lol. I especially liked her little side story that had to do with some gummy bears she’d been getting at the health and beauty expo. She really loved those and surprisingly drove better while eating them! You’ll see when you read it.

My Goodreads review:

Beauty Expos Are Murder (A Poppy McAllister Mystery #6)Beauty Expos Are Murder by Libby Klein
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

If you’re reading in order, you’ll recall where book five left off the minute you start reading this book. Poppy had made her decision on guys but as per her usual luck, things went a little sideways, or maybe a lot that way. I don’t want to give away any good surprises, but do yourself a favor and read these books in order if you want the most enjoyment from them.

Poppy found herself baking her usual treats and running Gia’s booth for the coffee shop at the health and beauty expo at the convention center. But her life wouldn’t be complete without a murder or two and a couple of nemeses poking their heads into her business, right? One of the said nemeses needed Poppy’s investigation help. Officer Amber actually asked her to help save her badge, and Joanne Junk made an appearance like she usually does partly to help Amber and partly as hired help.

There were a lot of things going on in the book, but what seemed to be separate murders were actually connected. Fig got his own funny little side story as did Aunt Ginny who was getting somewhat addicted to gummy bears laced with something illegal that miraculously made her drive better lol. Victory surprisingly still had her job there, and even Smitty made an appearance at his Three Stooges best nyuking it up with little Henry. Sawyer had been acting a little mysterious throughout the book, but eventually she revealed a good reason. She did always come through when her bestie needed her though.

As hanging (to me, anyway) as the last book ended, this one actually had a very nice and satisfying end to it. After the murders were figured out, there was one more issue, and it was awesome how it played out. That’s all I’m gonna say and hope I haven’t said too much! This book publishes next Tuesday, June 29, 2021. I already can’t wait for the next one!

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own.

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A Glimmer of a Clue review

This is the second in a fun new magical series by Daryl Wood Gerber, and it’s quickly becoming a favorite series of mine. I loved the idea of real garden fairies from the first book, but now there’re a couple more new fairies…and believers, or at least those wanting to believe. Tink would be so proud! I’m sure Fiona’ll be really happy to have more humans to talk to.

My Goodreads review: A Glimmer of a Clue (A Fairy Garden Mystery Book 2)A Glimmer of a Clue by Daryl Wood Gerber
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’d forgotten just how much I loved those little fairies Fiona and Merryweather especially when they can help with a murder case. Fiona and her fairy pipeline had another little side project going on too that resulted in a happy reunion for a couple of people. The murder of a woman no one liked was a tough case with Summers constantly on Courtney to back off, but Wanda was the accused, and she wasn’t about to let her go down for something she didn’t do. It was cute how Courtney’s dad Kip and Wanda were together now.

I kept going back and forth on whodunit, but I was definitely on the right track! What a great showdown with everyone pitching in to help. I just love this story world. Something magical happened for Meaghan earlier in the book, and it looks like something promising might be hopefully happening for Brady and Courtney. His statement at the end was so darn sweet!

This book releases on June 29, 2021. I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC provided by the publisher via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own.

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