The Proof Is in the Poison review

This is the second book in the Southern Homebrew Mysteries by Diane Kelly who’s written several other cozy series as well. I recently read the first book and was very eager to get my hands on the second book and definitely wasn’t disappointed. I can’t say I’m a model railroad fan, but I can appreciate the level of enthusiasm people have for that particular hobby since I’ve always been some sort of collector. I can’t say I was ever as diehard a fan of my hobby as ole Bert was though! Find out what happens in this fun installment available on June 7, 2022.

#BerkleyPublishing #DianeKelly

My Goodreads review:

The Proof Is in the Poison (Southern Homebrew Mystery, #2)The Proof Is in the Poison by Diane Kelly
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Another fun adventure with Hattie and Granddaddy! I recently read the first book and enjoyed it so much, I was happy to be able to get hold of this ARC for this book releasing next Tuesday. I get such a kick out of Granddaddy and his enthusiasm for pretty much everything. I could just picture him zipping around that model train show on his scooter. And the whole idea of a model train convention, let’s just say Sheldon would be in paradise. (actually so would my husband lol).

I was definitely wrong in my guessing whodunit and didn’t really think about this person much until Hattie started suspecting them. I love how ideas just come to her no matter where she’s at, even on horseback with her boyfriend Marlon. Although what a great guy to have around when she got a case idea, right? I really like Det. Ace now and how she included Hattie in the investigation–although her reasoning for letting Hattie help was totally spot-on, I still had to giggle at it and thinking yep, perfect reason for strong-willed Hattie.

When the three besties got together, we met little Colton who was probably cutting his teeth on solving a mystery with his auntie Hattie. I like that Kate didn’t let being a mom slow her down in wanting to be with her buddies and sleuth a little. It was just pack the kiddo and take off. And I just thought, a baby in a stroller makes a great cover. Who’d suspect a baby of being a little sleuth?

There was a pretty exciting chase before the actual showdown which was pretty peaceful, the showdown not the chase, lol. Hattie and Marlon’s date at the end took them past some posters that highlighted the next event that I look forward to reading about in the next book!

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

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The Diva Says Cheesecake! review

This is the fifteenth book in the Domestic Diva Mysteries, a long-running series by one of my fave cozy authors, Krista Davis. It’s always great to visit Old Town Alexandria and hang out with Sophie and her crew of assorted faithful friends and all their pets. She’s got the best network of friends and it seems like there’s someone for any job that needs done or any problem that needs solved by talking to one (or all) of said friends. I love when they all convene at Sophie’s house and talk about the case. It’s always fun to hear their opinions and theories as to whodunit.

As always, I can’t wait till the next book and wish it was sooner than a year. But if I need my fix from this author, she’s still got two more new releases for this year with her other cozy series.

#KensingtonCozies #KristaDavis

My Goodreads review:

The Diva Says Cheesecake! (A Domestic Diva Mystery, #15)The Diva Says Cheesecake! by Krista Davis
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

It was great visiting with Sophie and her crew of friends again. I loved how she and Nina did a lot of the sleuthing together that involved dog walking, but Soph still went out on her own enough to keep her friends worried about her. Sophie’s got an amazing network of awesome friends and I love that she’s got a good relationship with her ex as well.

Sophie’s also a smart lady who only ends up in weird situations because she’s so driven to get to the truth. She’s actually the only main character in a cozy that I haven’t wanted to fix up with one of the guys because Mars, Bernie and Wolf already are there for her. She had her dating spree with Wolf and stayed friends with him too which turned out great for her.

I had my eye on someone I thought whodunit from fairly early and just kinda watched it play out trying to stick to my choice, and it ended up being right! This mystery was so good and full of twists that I could picture it as a light-hearted mystery movie. I’ve really come to like Natasha’s mom, Wanda, Charlene and Griselda who’s Wanda’s business partner. Poor ole Natasha just can’t win though, lol and she honestly without trying does provide a lot of the comedy relief. Don’t miss this fun and sometimes funny fifteenth installment of the Domestic Diva series for sale this coming Tuesday, May 31, 2022.

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

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Fatal Flowers review

This is the third book in the Flower House Mysteries by Jess Dylan who cozy readers might know better as Jennifer David Hesse. As Jess, she’s been writing this series, and I gotta say, it’s just getting better. Maybe it helped me to read book 2 with this book immediately after. That way, the characters were fresh in my mind, and I had more of a vested interest in seeing what their next adventure was. The books can easily be read alone, but for complete enjoyment and character/relationship development, definitely start with the first book. You’ll see what I mean about it just getting better.

I love that little Corgi Gus and how he seems to have a sense of when his momma’s in danger or needs him. Maybe he’s like Granny Mae!

#St.MartinsPaperbacks #JessDylan

My Goodreads review:

Fatal Flowers: A Flower House MysteryFatal Flowers: A Flower House Mystery by Jess Dylan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I literally just finished this book on the heels of reading book 2 in the series, and I’m really in love with the characters at this point. Book three was just the sweet spot that had Sierra, Deena and Calvin all working together along with Sierra’s brother Rocky who likes Deena and seems like he’d do anything for her, lol.

This was a crazy case with all sorts of things going wrong. Basically, if it could go wrong for planning a wedding, it did. Someone with a side hustle of something illegal was lurking around and Sierra wondered which one of the wedding vendors it was. She was tired of being terrorized by a guy on a motor scooter and just kept on sleuthing no matter what. I love Calvin for how he’s pretty much game for anything she wants to do–and I’m always proud of her when she takes someone along with her whether it’s Cal, Deena or her dog Gus. Sierra tries very hard not to do stupid things, but sometimes she’s still pretty impulsive, and that’s enough to get a person killed!

I had two people in mind for whodunit, but as the book progressed and hidden clues showed up, I settled on one and was right. It was pretty exciting to see how the perp was caught too, then the ending was everyone gathered for Sierra’s birthday. I’m super eager now to read the next book! It was a lot of fun going directly from book 2 to this one and made me get to know the characters a lot better.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by St. Martin’s Press via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own.

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Buried in a Good Book review

This is the first book in a new series, By the Book Mysteries by Tamara Berry, and I really enjoyed it so much! The author did a great job of combining humor and a little cozy suspense into the story. I could tell Tess really liked the sheriff, so I hope there’s some sort of future in store for them even if it starts out slowly and builds. Tess’s daughter Gertie was such a great character! I really liked her a lot more than I thought I would when the book started. I’m eager to see what kinds of adventures they get into next.

Hey look what I found when I went to the series page, the next book’s coming in November! It’s called On Spine of Death.

#PoisonedPenPress #TamaraBerry

My Goodreads review:

Buried in a Good Book (By the Book #1)Buried in a Good Book by Tamara Berry
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I really liked Tess and Gertie’s characters, well at first I wasn’t so sure about Gertie, but she sure made one heck of a good sleuth and surprisingly enough, she took to the remote life better than I ever thought a teen her age would. Nicki was a pretty awesome character too, and later on that was even truer! Tess met a wannabe author in Deputy Ivy from the sheriff’s department and was surprised to find out that the lady was really a good author.

There were some fun cozy mystery creepy parts but not super creepy, and I wasn’t sure who all could be trusted, but once I was pretty sure of it, I just followed as Tess and Gertie with the help of their new friends solved the case. I hadn’t quite guessed the killer until Tess did. She cracked me up with how she compared the real life sheriff to the detective character she wrote in her books. And it was even funnier that he was a fan of the books as were some of the people in town who also thought he reminded them of the fictional Detective Gonzales.

After an exciting, planned showdown, all was explained and wrapped up. There’d been some other hinky stuff going on as a side mystery, so that was looking like it’d be an ongoing mystery or investigation. Now I’m really eager to read the next book!

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

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A Sprinkle in Time review

This is the second book in the Shake Shop Mysteries series by Dana Mentink, and I’m really liking these characters the more I get to know them. I always get a kick out of Trinidad’s grandpa, Papa. Poor guy found a dead body in his beloved car’s trunk this time! Pick up a copy this week and see how this unfolds! 

My Goodreads review:

A Sprinkle in Time  (Shake Shop Mystery, #2)A Sprinkle in Time by Dana Mentink
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I had a nice review written the day I finished this, but apparently Goodreads cyber gremlins ate it. Hopefully I can recreate it here. And no, I didn’t read this twice as GR seems to want to think I did, but I can’t figure out how to fix that.

This was a fun fall festival until a body was dumped in Papa’s car. Trinidad went into full-on sleuth mode without trying to be too conspicuous about it. I loved that her new unlikely friends or sisters as she calls them are none other than her ex’s other exes. But that’s better than feeling like scratching out their eyes, right? Trini even loves Bonnie’s sweet little daughter Felice aka Fee like she’s her own niece.

Quinn had a side mystery going on but eventually came clean on it with Trinidad having not even told his brother Doug this particular secret. I like that they’re growing closer and realizing they shouldn’t have secrets from each other.

The showdown was peaceful yet a nail biter if that makes sense since it was kinda planned. With another successful case solved, everyone gathered at the end for explanations, food and fellowship. Finally Trinidad felt at home!

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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A Midsummer Night’s Fudge review

This is the tenth book in the Candy-Coated Mysteries by Nancy Coco and one of the series I always make sure I’m up to date on. If I had time to reread, this series would definitely be one of those I’d read again. It’s just so much fun reading about the real places my family and I visited on Mackinac–and it’s awesome to read the author’s notes about the real places or names she sometimes uses.

My Goodreads review:

A Midsummer Night's Fudge (A Candy-Coated Mystery Book 10)A Midsummer Night’s Fudge by Nancy CoCo
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Allie and her senior friends (yep, she’s got her own posse much to Rex’s dismay lol) had a tough case and as the bodies started piling up with no answers in sight, even Rex and crew might’ve been willing to admit they needed help. Well, never out loud. 😉 I loved how Allie had to ride herd on Carol and Irma, her senior center friends, and it was so funny to hear her telling them the exact same things Rex was always trying to drill into her brain: don’t go out alone when there’s a killer loose! I’ve always liked Carol’s character ever since she became more of a constant in the story line and sleuthing helper along with Irma, her power walking buddy. Allie figured by keeping an eye on the seniors, it was the perfect excuse to go snooping!

I actually had the killer picked out pretty early, stuck with my choice, and I was happy to find out I was right for once! There wasn’t anything in particular early on that made me choose this person, kinda a sheer dumb luck thing, lol.

At least Rex and Allie were at a stage now where he wasn’t always getting on her case, and when he did he was gentler about it–and she didn’t get all defensive like she did in the past. She’s always gonna be Allie and do impulsive and uh yeah sometimes stupid things, but she seems to have more lives than a cat right now since this is the tenth book. Gotta love her for who she is and how much she loves her friends that’re really her adopted island family.

Being the tenth book, there’s been an ongoing theme about where Allie usually ends up tossed by the killer, and I had to giggle when she commented on it in the narrative because I’d just had that same idea!

I haven’t read the teaser chapter at the end, but I’m always eager to do that and keep it as a little treat for when I’m completely done. Even sight unseen, I’m always ready for the next book! Mackinac Island is one of my fave places to visit and I can’t wait to go back both physically and via this series!

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by Kensington Cozies via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own. Don’t miss this book when it releases next Tuesday, May 24, 2022!

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Bear Witness review

This is the first in a brand new series called Alaska Untamed Mysteries by Lark O. Jensen, a pen name for someone cozy authors know better as Linda O. Johnson, author of the Barkery & Biscuits Mysteries as well as the cozy series Kendra Ballantyne, Pet Sitter Mysteries and Pet Rescue Mysteries.

I love armchair traveling and how I could go on an Alaska tour boat , get the scenery described to me, and I never had to leave home just by reading this mystery. This was a fun and different job for a cozy main character, and I’m looking forward to more adventures on the ClemElk!

My Goodreads review:

Bear Witness (Alaska Untamed Mystery #1)Bear Witness by Lark O. Jensen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This seemed like a fun and different job for a cozy mystery main character, and the author definitely captured the cozy mystery aspect well. Everything was nicely described and since I probably won’t ever make it to Alaska, it was fairly easy to picture this scenery instead. I have to agree with the reviewer who thought there wasn’t a whole lot to Stacie besides wildlife and her job. I just didn’t feel quite like I knew her that well by the end of the book. I also agree it was a little soon to start a physical relationship especially in the middle of a murder investigation. Afterward, be my guest, lol.

The killer seemed as elusive as the guy they’d been trying to track down before finding him dead, and at times the story seemed a little like it was dragging along when I was just eager to find out whodunit. By the time the showdown came, I was pretty sure I knew who the culprit was, and I was right.

I loved that a Husky dog was in the story, but that’s basically all she was, a companion. I’d hoped she’d have a little more personality, although I realize they’re super smart and have to be on their best behavior if these dogs want to go on tour boats. Since this was the intro to all the characters and surroundings though, I’m definitely willing to read the next in the hopes it’ll be even better.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by Crooked Lane via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own. The book releases Tuesday, May 10, 2022.

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Simmering with Resentment review

This is the eleventh book in the Cookbook Nook Mysteries by Daryl Wood Gerber. I’ve enjoyed all the series I’ve read by her and her pen name of Avery Aames (The Cheese Shop Mysteries). This series is probably my favorite since it’s such a long-running one and has the most books meaning the most opportunity to spend time with some favorite characters.

If you love this series like I do, then you won’t be able to resist this latest offering. Are ya ready for a wedding? Let’s go!

#BeyondthePagePublishing #DarylWoodGerber

My Goodreads review:

Simmering with Resentment (A Cookbook Nook Mystery #11)Simmering with Resentment by Daryl Wood Gerber
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I absolutely loved this newest installment in a favorite series! When a beloved restaurant had an explosion, Jenna couldn’t help thinking it was the person who’d blown up the other restaurant where Rhett worked and wondered if they’d been targeting her and him since they were having their private dinner at the time. I just knew Rhett was gonna be okay, but I still worried a little, lol.

There were plenty of suspects to consider, and Jenna had a whole bridal expo to do sleuthing in. Along with being a bride herself and wanting to enjoy part of the expo, Jenna had an agenda despite Cinnamon’s usual warnings. I thought Cinnamon was especially nicer to her in this book. I know they’ve become friends, but probably since things were aimed at Jenna and her sweetie, Cinnamon felt a little more protective/sisterly of her.

It was like I knew but I didn’t know whodunit and that’ll make sense once anyone reads it. The showdown was exciting but not drawn out too long to make readers overly nervous lol. And the ending was just perfect!

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by Beyond the Page Publishing via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own. I usually end up buying the book eventually since I do love this series.

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Poppy Harmon and the Backstabbing Bachelor review

This is the fourth book in the Desert Flower Mysteries by another fave author, Lee Hollis aka brother/sister team of Rick Copp and Holly Simason. I just love Poppy and her investigator friends, and that Wyatt just cracks me up with how smart and helpful he is. He sure doesn’t mind working for his grandma and her friends as their ace information-digger-outer. Matt’s character’s just so awesome and I can tell he loves Poppy like he would his own mother. He’s fiercely protective of all the ladies even though they really don’t need it. I think they let him think they do sometimes. In the first book I remember not liking Matt much, but now I’d be just as upset as Poppy and her friends would if he left Desert Flowers.

#KensingtonCozies #LeeHollis

My Goodreads review:

Poppy Harmon and the Backstabbing Bachelor (A Desert Flowers Mystery #4)Poppy Harmon and the Backstabbing Bachelor by Lee Hollis
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Poppy and her Desert Flowers friends brought down a ring that was scamming seniors, but Poppy was gonna need to watch her back after the perp yelled threats at her. After a couple near misses, Poppy and the police came up wit a pretty awesome scheme.

With Matt out of the country, the ladies were doing pretty well on their own as far as senior citizens wanting to hire them. He might’ve been the handsome face like Charlie being the man behind the Angels, but these ladies didn’t need anyone to take care of them, lol. Although as their friend and coworker, I think they missed him a lot! He was practically like a son to Poppy, but she’d always told him not to let their little acting gig (where he pretends to be the lead investigator) take precedence over a movie if he could get in one. Poppy got to test out her disguise and acting skills while Matt went on a reality show to flush out a killer.

Boy what a showdown with Poppy not having much time to think about whether she was brave or not. She just had to do something quickly for someone she loved. Finally the annoying killer was hauled away, and Poppy could have her stalker-free sanity back while enjoying some time with her sweet guy Sam.

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Double Shot Death review

This is the second book in the Ground Rules Mysteries by Emmaline Duncan, and I’m really liking these characters. The whole food cart thing seems like just too much fun. I even Googled some pictures and was surprised at the huge numbers of carts that lined the Portland streets. I wouldn’t mind going out there sometime to check ’em out! (Especially any coffee ones!)

#KensingtonCozies #EmmalineDuncan

My Goodreads review:

Double Shot Death (A Ground Rules Mystery #2)Double Shot Death by Emmeline Duncan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Sage managed to score a lucrative spot at a music festival and soon found out she had to deal with a murder on the grounds as well as her food cart neighbor staring daggers at her all weekend. That breakfast cart lady had serious issues with fear of competition, so it wasn’t like Sage in particular did anything to deserve the stares. Add a very pesky, intrusive podcaster into that mix, and I don’t think I’d be enjoying myself there very much lol.

Bax and Sage are so cute together, and he’s incredibly helpful when it comes to doing anything she needs. When he started hanging out with one of the women musicians who’d performed the score for a video game he did, Sage got a little jealous but found out later her fears were for nothing.

The showdown was pretty exciting with Sage thinking on her feet as she lured the person into false security. Once the killer was hauled away, the rest of the weekend was peaceful. Podcaster Grace got a surprise scoop, and Bax went home with a new cat. Like Sage, I’m curious as to what her future holds and am eager to read the next in series.

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

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