Honey Roasted review

This is the nineteenth book in the long-running Coffeehouse Mysteries by author Cleo Coyle who’s actually married writing couple Alice Alfonsi and Marc Cerasini. I also love their other series, The Haunted Bookshop Mysteries.

The Coffeehouse Mysteries have been around since 2003 and are still going strong! I always enjoy the author acknowledgements that include something about buildings in New York or something else fun. It’s especially an interesting read for this book where it explains about the rooftop beekeeping aspect of the book as well as talking about the small neighborhood in New York known as The Hole.

#berkleypublishing

My Goodreads review:

Honey Roasted (Coffeehouse Mystery, #19)

Honey Roasted by Cleo Coyle My rating: 5 of 5 stars There wasn’t a current murder going on in this book, but there was definitely an almost-murder with a woman now in a coma, and since the woman was a friend of Madame’s, Clare made it her priority to get to the bottom of this. Meanwhile, Mike was very involved in a case of a string of dead OD/homeless bodies showing up in New York’s The Hole neighborhood. Side note: Every time I read one of this series, I learn a little more about something interesting in New York. Not that The Hole is now on my bucket list or anything, but I did Google it just to get a feel for the type of area Mike was having to deal with. Yep, saw some pics of the perfect body-dumping spots, and it’d definitely be extra creepy at night, but on the other side just bording it, things looked very normal.

Anywho, I hadn’t guessed who the main perp in all of this was at all! I was surprised at who it was when Clare confronted them in a pretty awesome showdown. For a while there, the side story of Mike getting so involved in his case and the extra animosity he was showing toward Franco (young undercover cop who’s dating Clare’s daughter), that I was a little worried about the engagement. But I trusted the authors, and they came through in a really nice way. And…I had to giggle at all the bee puns well-sprinkled through the book in the dialogue! Loved it! I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by Berkley Publishing via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own. View all my reviews

Tailing Trouble review

This is the second book in the Furry Friends Mysteries by Laura Scott. I noticed some of the books showing up on the page listed for her name in GR aren’t her titles, so I’ve linked her name to her Amazon profile where you’ll see a nice picture of her and the two cozies along with the romance books she’s actually written.

I loved this book as much as the first one and hope the author and publisher have more in store for us! Gramps cracks me up and needless to say, he’s my favorite character. Roxy the Boxer took a bit of a back seat to boarding guest Standard Poodle Domino, but she should be happy Domino was there at a crucial time or her mommy might not be!

My Goodreads review:

Tailing TroubleTailing Trouble by Laura Scott
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

When I get to the end of a book and tell myself, “Oh wow, that was so good!” I know I’ve found a winner. I remember doing that same thing at the end of the first book in this series when I read it too. I absolutely just love Gramps’ character! Maybe it’s because I’ve been without my own grandpa for so long that I just devour anything that has to do with an awesome grandpa/granddaughter duo. I had to laugh at different parts when he’d make Ally pick him up, or she’d give in going somewhere knowing he’d find a way to get to wherever it was he wanted to investigate anyway. The running joke of him shouting into his cell phone might seem corny, but it makes me giggle! He should probably just get a bullhorn and stand outside to call to Ally, lol.

I get such a kick out of the widows fawning all over Gramps in a friendly competition for his attention. It’s cute how he’s got a different way he interacts with each of the ladies living at Legacy House, like playing cards with Tillie. I think if I was Ally, I’d be eating every meal I posssibly could there, lol. Harriet definitely knows how to feed her guests and seems to thrive on doing that. And Lydia’s a whiz with her knitting.

The stories about Ally’s clients and their pets are always entertaining, and I found out it pays to read carefully and not just skim these as not being related to the mystery. Sometimes someone who’s a client might end up being someone to pay attention to in the mystery–or a client knows a key player in the mystery. Now Gramps, he just seems to know everyone! 😉

The showdown was really exciting and I loved how Ally got the upperhand, and sweet Domino ended up being a hero. I nearly expected Ally to end up with three dogs by the time this was over, but everything worked out great. As to whether she’ll get to enjoy a nice date with “her detective” as Gramps was so fond of calling him, well I’m just hoping the next book will address all that and he doesn’t get called away!

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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How to Book a Murder review

This is the first book in a new series by well-established cozy author Cynthia Kuhn. It’s called Starlit Bookshop Mysteries and I gotta say I love the play on the family name Starrs + Lit = Starlit, pretty clever name. And it was a bookshop that was well-known and loved around the town, so it was natural for the daughters Laura and Emma to run it. I really liked their aunt Nora. She was gutsy and wouldn’t let herself get walked on, but she had the biggest heart when it came to her family. No wonder she’d stayed in the family home, and the three of them were now a family.

My Goodreads review:

How to Book a Murder (Starlit Bookshop Mystery #1)How to Book a Murder by Cynthia Kuhn
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Wow I really enjoyed this author’s writing! I know she’s pretty well-known in the cozy world, but I just hadn’t had the pleasure of reading any of her works until I found this on NetGalley. I’m so glad I did, because I got right into the story from the start. I really liked Emma and Laura, the two sisters who ran their family’s bookstore. I enjoyed the interaction of Emma with a guy she went to school with who was now a detective along with the leader of a writers’ critique group she’d joined. The author did an amazing job of creating a character I absolutely loathed! I think you’ll know who I mean once you read the book and probably agree.

Aunt Nora was having some internal issues at the college where she taught, so that was an interesting side story that was wrapped up well but still showed that college professors weren’t exempt from workplace drama.

I was completely surprised by the whodunit, and the showdown was pretty epic. I was proud of Emma for thinking to do something she did. I think she and Jake might just have a future friendship and maybe beyond now that they were getting along. I can’t wait to see what the girls come up with next for their bookstore that thanks to a successful author event seemed to be doing well now.

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

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Cold Brew Corpse review

This is the second book in the newer series called Coffee Lovers Mysteries by Tara Lush, and I’m really enjoying getting to know these characters. I found myself giggling at what was going on more than once! Great humor and dialogue among the characters is what I really appreciate about a good cozy. I can’t wait to read the next one!

My Goodreads review:

Cold Brew Corpse (A Coffee Lover's Mystery #2)Cold Brew Corpse by Tara Lush
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I liked this book even better than the first one! It just had more of a regular cozy vibe which I remember not getting as much with the first book. I can’t really explain it, but I just liked this book so much better. The two main characters of Lana and Noah seemed a little more mature and comfortable together. I loved that they were at least on a “we need to date” basis, but it was mainly his crazy hours that kept them from it. That and another case. Lana was awesome as a first person narrator, and I enjoyed the author’s sense of humor coming out in her–and some of the other characters. The dialogue was just so good, and I love how natural-sounding it is!

I’m pretty sure Peter Lewis aka Dad was my fave character in the first book, and that’s definitely not changed. And Erica’s the best bestie a girl could ask for. There was a little side mystery of the cold brew batch going wonky on them. I had my suspicions, and you might too once you read the book!

I was completely surprised by the whodunit, and the showdown was a good one. Lana didn’t get by unscathed though, but by the time she was okay, she was ready to hit the workplace once more. I’m eager to read more in this fun series! That little Stanley pup has stolen my heart!

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

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Beauty and the Deceased review

This is the fourth book in the Resale Boutique Mysteries by Debra Sennefelder who also writes the Food Blogger Mysteries. I really enjoy both these series with two differently-aged main characters but each having her own lovable charms. I’m especially eager for the next Resale Boutique to come out due to an ongoing storyline that got ramped up in this book.

The cat photo made me think of what Howard might look like if his nap was interrupted.

My Goodreads review:

Beauty and the Deceased  (A Resale Boutique Mystery, #4)Beauty and the Deceased by Debra Sennefelder
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Murder hit a little closer to home this time for Kelly, so she was beyond determined to figure out whodunit even despite a couple of threats. If that wasn’t enough, a secret that was eating at Kelly came to light, and she had to deal with those repercussions. On a bright note, she met a couple of cute guys she didn’t appear opposed to getting to know better. (Keeping fingers crossed this won’t be a triangle, lol).

Pepper’s always been my favorite character, and she came through especially well this time around as a mom figure. Kelly really needs a dedicated snooping partner although she seems to prefer being a loner. Liv’s great as a bestie and support system, but she’s kinda-sorta dating Gabe the police chief, so of course, she’s going to discourage Kelly’s investigating. Kelly just needs a sidekick of some kind, and Howard the cat doesn’t quite fit that bill. He’s great for her as a sounding board when she’s home.

I’m super eager now to read the next book with how an ongoing side story turned out. I’d purposely gotten caught up in the series prior to reading this installment which is out today, so if you’re a fan, don’t miss this one which releases today! The usual advice of reading in order stands with this series. I can’t really think of exact spoilers, but part of the storyline is progressive and some things are mentioned that make me think it’s best to go in order with this series.

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

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Christmas Candy Corpse review

This is the third book in the Courtney Archer series by Rosemarie Ross, and maybe I’m just a Christmas nut, but I think it’s the best book so far. I really enjoyed the side mystery involving a very different version of Shannon than we’ve been used to seeing in this series. She’s usually super sunshiny and sweet, but what’s turned our Southern cook into a Grinch? You’ll just have to read and find out!

My Goodreads review:

Christmas Candy Corpse (A Courtney Archer Mystery #3)Christmas Candy Corpse by Rosemarie Ross
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This series is really getting better. I have to admit I wasn’t sure about it at the beginning or if I even liked Courtney that much. But after three books of seeing how she interacts with her friends/coworkers, she’s really grown on me, and she’s grown as a character as well. I feel she’s gained some maturity (finding dead bodies does that to ya, I guess), and I was happy to see her and Eric in a good place with their relationship.

I had a little sneaky feeling earlier about the killer in the book, and it ended up being the right whodunit and for the reason I thought as well. It was well-plotted and executed though. That was some exciting showdown too! Once again, Courtney’s kitchen set had something handy! The ending was very sweet and Christmasy.

Shannon had her own side mystery going on and I thought I’d guessed what it was. It was interesting to see that play out into the happy ending everyone in the cast had. I can definitely say I’m looking forward to reading the next book!

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

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Big Trouble in Little Greektown review

This is the third book in the Goddess of Greene Street series by Kate Collins who was first known for her Flower Shop series that went on to be the inspiration for a series of Hallmark movies. I’m really enjoying this series featuring Athena and her big Greek family. She even managed to snag a non-Greek boyfriend and still has her mama’s approval. There was a cute side story in this book about Delphi trying to do the very same thing but being afraid to face Mama. Really loving all these characters! Oscar the raccoon sounds pretty adorable, but I know from a relative who owned one once that you really have to be careful, although Niko seemed to have him under control as an outdoor pet.

My Goodreads review:

Big Trouble in Little Greektown (A Goddess of Greene St. Mystery Book 3)Big Trouble in Little Greektown by Kate Collins
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I always love visiting with Athena and her big crazy Greek family (described that way by her and her sisters lol). Case was just about to get his private eye license and open a new office, and I was actually surprised that Lila who I never liked very much at all in the previous book, really came through for them when needed. Lila got a nice surprise toward the end too. She’s actually a good piece of comic relief when they go on an interrogating mission. Athena’s son Nicholas/Niko had a new friend who was part of a side mystery that developed. Niko was quite the sleuth just like his mom!

I hadn’t really figured out whodunit although there was definitely someone I wanted to be the perp, but lots of suspects fit the bill. The showdown was really exciting, and once again the town was rid of a culprit.

I’d only read the first in the Flower Shop series that this author wrote first and really enjoyed it, but I know that series was ended. I was happy to see a little nod to it in this book. I love when authors do that! You’ll have to read it yourself to see just where this little mention is!

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

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A Plus One for Murder review

This is the first book in a brand new series that releases this coming Tuesday, December 7, 2021. The series is called Friend for Hire Mysteries, and the author is longtime cozy mystery writer Laura Bradford. She has two other cozy series she’s written as Laura Bradford, The Emergency Dessert Squad and Amish Mysteries.

As Elizabeth Lynn Casey, she wrote one of the most beloved and long-running series among cozy readers, the Southern Sewing Circle. I forgot to mention this in my GR review, but I loved, loved loved the nod she gave to that series in this book! She even mentioned a colleague’s series too, since Dottie, the older lady Emma had weekly tea with was a huge cozy mystery fan. I absolutely can’t wait for the next book in this series and want to give a huge shout-out and thanks to @BerkleyPublishing for approving me to read this early copy. I really hope to be able to do the same with the next book.

My Goodreads review:

A Plus One for Murder (A Friend for Hire Mystery #1)A Plus One for Murder by Laura Bradford
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I was excited to see that Laura Bradford was doing another cozy series and even more excited to be approved to read an ARC of it! The book definitely didn’t disappoint. What a cool and different kind of job for main character Emma, being a paid friend to people. I got such a kick out of her clients too especially Big Max, a sweet senior man who was trying to impress a lady by having Emma take him places. I loved how Emma’s friendship with Dottie had grown from what was the start for her new business-except at that time she didn’t realize it. Then eventually, Emma, Stephanie, another client and Dottie made quite the sleuthing trio! And Emma’s sweet dog, Scout always seemed to be pointing out clues to her. I love it when a pet’s just a bit more than a simple pet.

There was a nice assortment of suspects, and I wasn’t expecting the perp to be who it was. The showdown was a good one, and the three sleuths were happy with their work. Deputy Jack, well I don’t think he was too thrilled with their sleuthing, but I could tell he really liked Emma from the beginning especially from his line at the very end. 😉

It was well-written mystery that I’ve always come to expect and know from this author, and now I can’t wait to read more about the characters in the next book! Don’t miss this book which releases Tuesday, December 7, 2021.

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

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A Murder Like No Author review

This is the third book in the Main Street Book Club by Amy Lillard, and each one keeps getting better! Arlo’s senior friends Helen, Fern and Camille always crack me up! I’m sure Arlo feels like their handler at most times, especially when Mads the police chief specifically calls her to come and control them, lol. But the ladies are so full of life and ideas, they just can’t help themselves. I’m always eager to read the newest book and see what they get into next!

My Goodreads review:

A Murder Like No Author (Main Street Book Club Mysteries 3)A Murder Like No Author by Amy Lillard
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

It’s always an interesting trip to Sugar Springs, MS to visit with Arlo and her friends. If you ever wondered what it was like to herd cats or toddlers, follow Arlo around town as she tries to ride herd on her three favorite older ladies. I can tell she loves them all like surrogate grandmas, but sometimes they do try her patience, lol. But always in a good way. They’re sharp as can be and can be quite intimidating with their smartphones, cookies and “the look” that only a grandma-like lady can give! I just love those ladies and as a collective unit, they’re such a hoot, especially that Fern!

This time they were all over the murder that took place at the theater where the movie was premiering. I won’t rehash the plot, since you can read that in the blurb. There was a side mystery along with the murder which became solved in a twist toward the end. I hadn’t guessed the killer, and the showdown was a good one.

You can definitely read this book by itself since the author does a very good job of recapping the previous stories. But you might want to start from the first book because sometimes things are mentioned that might be a little confusing otherwise…and you’ll understand more about why there’s a movie premiere and what that book was all about.

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

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Fatal Solutions review

This is the third book in the Crossword Puzzle Mysteries by Becky Clark. Her writing is so funny and good and sometimes just the way she describes either what a person says or does can literally make you laugh out loud. This book did appear a bit more serious in nature as far as Quinn’s battle with her OCD went and the nature of the old death she was curious about. But the fun moments were all still there including my favorites, the Retireds, those wild and crazy senior men who hung out at the diner most of the day.

My Goodreads review:

Fatal SolutionsFatal Solutions by Becky Clark
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was a little different from the other two books in the series since it dealt with finding bones from a death in the 70s. Poor Quinn seemed to be able to get herself into a mess even if she wasn’t trying. I just love the banter she always enjoyed with the group of older men who hung out in the diner and call themselves the Retireds. They loved teasing her mercilessly but all in good fun.

Oh and that crazy Loma! Although at one point, she did something just typically a Loma thing that really upset Quinn and actually for a good reason, but good friends never stayed mad too long. Quinn always did the right thing when she felt like she’d wronged someone too. She did find out the answer to the long-ago death which was a little surprising but not under the circumstances.

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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