Sweet Tea and Secrets review

This is the second book in the Book & Tea series by Joy Avon. I read the first one back in January and really enjoyed getting to know Callie and her great-aunt Iphy who runs a book themed tea shop. This installment makes a perfect July 4th book, because Hearts Harbor is getting ready for their big celebration. I liked this book even better than the first one. I wonder what holiday will be in the next story?

My Goodreads review:

Sweet Tea and Secrets (A Tea and Read Mystery #2)Sweet Tea and Secrets by Joy Avon

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I think this book was even better than the first, and I know I really liked that one. This one is nice and seasonal, perfect for reading this time of year, since the town of Heart’s Harbor is planning a big July 4th event. In the meantime, a cold case disappearance/possible murder was reopened when a visitor to town started asking questions about it. Then the newspaper editor who had been the reporter on the case at the time was found dead in his office. Callie and her friend Det. Falk found themselves right in the middle of another baffling case with a really good twist…or two.

I loved the little side story with Mr. Bates painting pictures of little Daisy and a rescue named Biscuit. I had guessed part of the mystery but not the killer. There were some good red herrings and plot twists along the way which made for a super enjoyable read. Callie and Falk seem to be getting to a good place with a possible relationship, and Falk’s widowed sister Peggy may have found someone too. I can safely say that this is one of my favorite new series, and I’m anxious for the next book.

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

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Strangled Eggs and Ham review

This is the sixth book in the Country Store series, another of my favorites by another favorite author, Maddie Day aka Edith Maxwell. I love the down home feeling in this series and how Robbie has taken to small town life in her little country store and restaurant. I may live in Ohio, but I love visiting Indiana and always feel at home there!

My Goodreads review:

Strangled Eggs and Ham (Country Store Mystery #6)Strangled Eggs and Ham by Maddie Day

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

It’s like going home to friends every time I read a book in this series! This latest installment gave aunt Adele and her pal Vera a lot of storyline, and that was fun, since Adele is such a hoot and probably my favorite character. Vera is no slouch either. They both did great holding their own against a killer at the end of the book. I liked how Robbie has become even smarter when it comes to security and reporting everything to the police rather than taking off and winging it alone. Ok, well maybe she did the alone thing which was a bit nerve-wracking to read, but it was all good. I liked that Oscar Thompson and Buck’s cousin Wanda were back.

I was pretty close on who the killer was, but the chase was the best part and nailing this person. Robbie had a close encounter that she escaped from–as I said, she’s getting better at this. Abe was away for this story, but they at least kept in touch. Danna had a little more storyline as well. I love all Robbie’s employees. Each one of them has such an awesome personality and brings different and fun things happening when it’s their turn to work. As always, I’m anxious for the next book in the series!

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Jane Darrowfield, Professional Busybody Review/Release Day

This is the big day for author Barbara Ross and her new Jane Darrowfield series. She’s releasing it exclusively on Barnes & Noble for a year, then like some others that I’ve bought there first, it’ll come to other booksellers.

I had received an advance paperback copy from the publisher, so I read it earlier this month, but I didn’t think I should blog about it that early. Jane Darrowfield has always had a skill of fixing things for people, not the illegal kind of fixing but the friendly and helpful kind. Or as her new friend Harry put it so well, “professional busybody.” I really enjoyed getting to know Jane and her friends. She had quite the adventure living at a retirement village trying to patch things up among some of the residents, and she definitely didn’t expect to find out that one of those residents was murdered. There were more fun twists and turns along the way.

I voluntarily read and reviewed a paperback ARC of this book providing by @Kensington Publishing, and my opinions are my own. Thanks to my contacts there for letting me read this awesome book ahead of time!

My Goodreads review:

Jane Darrowfield, Professional Busybody (Jane Darrowfield #1)Jane Darrowfield, Professional Busybody by Barbara Ross

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Jane is a new 55+ age sleuth and I really like her! She’s a widow, misses her husband a lot but is strong and independent and doesn’t feel like she absolutely needs a guy in her life–although it would be nice. Jane was known as a fixer of lives, or as a new gentleman friend (yes she actually helped her friend with online dating and ended up taking the man for herself lol) called her, a professional busybody. Her reputation was locally known, so it came as no surprise to her when a man named Paul who was in charge of a retirement community called on her to hire her for her services (hence, the professional in professional busybody). The residents acted like they were in high school with their lunch room cliques and gangs. Paul hoped that she could fix that by talking to people which was pretty much her superpower.

Jane didn’t expect to have a murder occur during her stay at the retirement village, but she was determined to figure that one out, which wasn’t easy in a place where nearly every person had secrets, including the employees. There was a good twist in the mystery and eventually when the killer clues started coming, I realized who it was. There were so many different characters that really the only ones I feel like we got to know were Jane, her new friend Harry and Jane’s friend Det. Alavarez. I liked them all and hope that the guys will follow her into another book.

This book releases later in June. I received an advance reader paperback copy from the publisher, but my opinions are my own and have no bearing on receiving the free book.

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A Killer Latte review

This is the sixth book in the Killer Coffee series by Tonya Kappes. It came out this past April, and I was happy to finally get around to reading it. Killer Coffee is another one of my favorite series. Like all Tonya’s books, it takes place in a cute little town in Kentucky. It’s so easy to picture Honey Springs and wish that it was a real place to visit! Minus the murder, of course! 😉

My Goodreads review:

A Killer Latte (Killer Coffee #6)A Killer Latte by Tonya Kappes

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Honey Springs had stars in their eyes with the movie that was being filmed there and just wrapping up. When someone made off with the leading lady, Roxy knew there was another mystery she’d need to solve, much to Spencer’s both dismay and relief. On one hand, he didn’t want her interfering with police business (and he said Patrick would kill him if anything happened to her) but on the other hand, he realized that Roxy was very good at getting people to talk to her. After the abduction turned into a murder case and Aunt Maxi was even involved, Roxy was even more determined to get this thing solved and send the production crew on their merry way.

I loved this mystery! It turned out to be a little different spin on the usual formula but it was awesome! Everything was nicely wrapped up with the case and the newest guest in the coffee house, Callie, a sweet tabby, got her furever home. I’m always anxious for the next book this sweet series!

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Botched 4 Murder review

This is the fourth book in the Sophie Kimball series written by husband and wife team J.C Eaton aka Ann Goldfarb and Jim Clapp. They live in Sun City West, AZ themselves, so I love that the stories they tell are what they picture as far as scenery, weather and people every day. The series has quickly become one of my favorites. I get kick out of little Streetman, Harriet Plunkett’s chiweenie. Harriet conveniently likes to blame him for things that aren’t so convenient for others, like when she shows up early and Phee wasn’t expecting her. I’m really anxious for the next book that comes in September. Then the next one will be in February!

My Goodreads review:

Botched 4 Murder (Sophie Kimball Mystery, #4)Botched 4 Murder by J.C. Eaton

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I absolutely love this series! I have to admit I was drawn in by the cute dachshund on the book covers, but I fell quickly for the characters. And these characters are something else! I like to think of them as old friends I’m going back to visit, yep even Phee’s mom Harriet. She’s such a hoot! Once again, Phee was drawn into the drama that was her mother’s retirement village life and ended up investigating not one but two murders, one of which was a high-profile murder–Phee felt sure there was a connection of some type. After a narrow escape with a killer, Phee was just grateful to be around and attended the meeting of the Sun City West issue that had started all of this. Her boss Nate and gentleman friend Marshall always seem to have the most extreme patience with Phee and her investigating by herself…and they are saints in the making when it comes to putting up with her mom and all her friends lol. I’m just happy that Marshall and Phee found one another.

I can’t wait for the next book coming in September! I saw the cover for another one on the author’s new website too.

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Died in the Wool by Melinda Mullet

This is the fourth book in the Whisky Business series by Melinda Mullet. When I first started reading it, I wasn’t sure if I’d take to it or not. I know nothing about whisky and honestly have no interest in learning. But I soon found out that these books are about a lot more than just the whisky business. The author does an excellent job of not overwhelming readers with details about whisky and all its variations.

The main characters of Abi, Patrick, Grant, Cam, Hunter and Louisa became like old friends that I get to go visit in Scotland whenever a new book comes out. I get a kick out of Abi’s dog Liam. He’s so sweet and takes his job of herding her geriatric sheep very seriously. Liam got to be a support dog for a little girl needing a special friend in this book. I’m really anxious for the next book after reading this one!

My Goodreads review:

Died in the Wool (Whisky Business Mystery #4)Died in the Wool by Melinda Mullet

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was another intriguing visit to Scotland Abi and all her friends, which have become like old friends to me. I just love the older guy Hunter that comes and takes care of the house and kind of acts like a butler sometimes. Abi joined the board of a women’s shelter in Edinburgh and soon found out that all kinds of underhanded things were going on, especially after one of the shelter guests turned up dead and their housekeeper/cook went missing. Abi’s whisky business partner Grant was still recovering from an injury he received in the last book and putting up with his former girlfriend Brenna. It was good to see him break away from that and go sleuthing with Abi and Patrick–and it made him feel useful again. In retrospect, going where they did may not have been the best idea, but at least Abi and Grant might have realized by working together that they’d been missing being together. It seemed like Abi was happy to be able to use her time and some of Ben’s money that he’d left her to help out a good cause like the women’s shelter, and she made some new friends in the process.

I liked how everything wrapped up and was explained as well as telling what some of the women at the shelter were now going to do with their lives. With the rest of the nice ending this book got, I’m very anxious to read the next one!

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Death of a Wedding Cake Baker–review

This is the eleventh book in the long-running series Hayley Powell Food & Spirits by Lee Hollis, the pseudonym for brother/sister writing team Rick Copp and Holly Simason. I know I’ve really enjoyed a book when I finish reading it, think about it some more and keep saying “Wow, that was really good!”

When I went to leave the review at Amazon, I happened to noticed that while still coverless, the twelfth book is called Death of a Blueberry Tart, and it’s up for preorder on Amazon. It releases on March 31, 2020. I’m super anxious for that book too and very happy that it comes out a month sooner than I figured next year’s book would, since Wedding Cake Baker released April 30.

My Goodreads review:

Death of a Wedding Cake Baker (Hayley Powell Food and Cocktails Mystery #11)Death of a Wedding Cake Baker by Lee Hollis

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Even though I haven’t read all of the series yet, I feel like I know Hayley and her friends pretty well and it was fun trip back to Bar Harbor. Her longtime diva friend Liddy was getting married to her on-again, off-again fiance, Sonny Lipton. Liddy was livid when her mom wanted to use her “stupid awful ogre” cousin Lisa as the cake baker. Hey, I did have to giggle a couple of times when she called her that, especially when she added “may she rest in peace” after Lisa was found dead in her bakery.

This was a really awesome mystery with some very clever twists. I had not seen that killer possibility coming–maybe I thought about it but couldn’t think of a reason, so I was back to just reading and enjoying how the story played out. I thought Hayley was a little foolish to confront the killer like she did, but she did use her head when it counted. The side mystery all tied in as well, so I really can’t mention anything about anything for fear of spoiling it. All I can say is, Lee Hollis, please, please, please get that next book published soon!

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