A Fatal Booking review

This is the third book in the A Book Lover’s Mysteries series by Victoria Gilbert, who also writes another fave series, The Blue Ridge Library Mysteries. I love how her characters are smart and likable yet realistic. She’s great making you love the good guys and very good at hiding who the baddies are! In either series, I feel like I’m visiting old friends, and I can’t wait for the Book Lover’s series to continue!

#CrookedLaneBooks #VictoriaGilbert

My Goodreads review:

A Fatal Booking (Booklover's B&B Mystery #3)A Fatal Booking by Victoria Gilbert
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

It seems like the third book of any newer series, at least to me, is the magical number of after having read the first two books, you really feel a strong connection to the characters because their roles and sometimes secrets are already established. I just felt like this was the book where I was going back to visit some old friends. I absolutely love Ellen’s character and now with Gavin as a possible dating interest for Charlotte, the three seemed unstoppable as far as murder investigations. I really like Amber Johnson too, the detective who’s learned to take things that Charlotte and Ellen tell her very seriously. She’s respectful of them, has a decent appreciation of joking and is never purposely mean. Bookstore owner Julie makes a great bestie for Charlotte since she hears all the good gossip when there’s a case.

With a houseful of suspects and no clear leads, Charlotte was getting as tired as the police were of nothing turning up. Gavin did help a lot once he was back since he had resources he could tap into from his agent’s job. I hadn’t actually suspected the one whodunit, and the showdown was a real nail biter especially for Charlotte and Ellen!

The ending party as they’d done in previous books was fun and wrapped up the case along with a few cool announcements. I can’t wait to read the next book!

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

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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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Jane Darrowfield and the Madwoman Next Door review

This is the second book in the Jane Darrowfield Mysteries series by Maine Clambake author Barbara Ross. I haven’t heard any additional plans for Jane Darrowfield and really hope there’s going to be more. This particular book came out previously as paperback only and exclusive to Barnes & Noble, but now that it’s past that contract, it’s available December 28, 2021 as a Kindle book and paperback on Amazon as well.

Jane Darrowfield and the Madwoman Next DoorJane Darrowfield and the Madwoman Next Door by Barbara Ross
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Jane Darrowfield was on a strange case where her neighbor thought she was going crazy, but Jane’s research showed otherwise. I loved how she went about her research doing both online and some old-fashioned legwork. Jane still reminds me of a twenty-first Jessica Fletcher who I’m pretty sure would’ve embraced all the technology available to her right now. Although I’m not sure being compared to her would make Jane all that happy, lol. I loved it when Jane and Harry got together. They were just so cute!

There were enough suspects that I didn’t really trust anyone except Jane herself and Det. Alvarez. I was suspicious of someone early on, and while my attention was caught by all the other distractions, I was right to be suspicious of the person. The question eventually was whether there was a murder now or not? What happened to this neighbor who thought she was going nuts?

Jane’s discovery led to a good ending as well as a nice little ending for her and Harry. I hope there’re going to be more books in the series, but if not, I feel like this did end in a place I can live with. 🙂 Don’t miss it–the book comes out Tuesday December 28th.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by Kensington 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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Murder, She Edited review

This is the fourth book in the Deadly Edits series by Kaitlyn Dunnett who also writes the Liss MacCrimmon series. I haven’t read any of that series, but I’ve been following this one from the beginning reading the ARCs. I really like Mikki Lincoln’s character. She can be a tough softie, lol. At one point in this book she said she didn’t know if she should be flattered or insulted by the Jessica Fletcher comment Luke made. But I always tend to think of her in the persona of Jess who was a real fave with how tough but sweet she could be, kinda like Mikki! 😉 I’m always eager for the next book to see what Mikki gets herself into.

My Goodreads review:

Murder, She Edited (Deadly Edits, #4)Murder, She Edited by Kaitlyn Dunnett
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Mikki’s always getting into the most interesting predicaments or jobs. When she was told she’d have to find and publish some diaries as specified, it did look like she wasn’t going to have any luck finding them. Fortunately, Mikki has never been anyone’s victim or patsy if she has anything to say about it. I love how her relationship with her cousin Luke has grown, and Luke’s own relationship with Officer Ellen has really been coming along.

The murder in the book was an old one that was unsolved, but leave it to Mikki to dig around until she found out the truth. I was a little surprised to even get that killer fingered after all this time. There was also the problem with her new property being used to store stolen goods and recently burned down. She sniffed out the arsonist as well then celebrated with Luke and Ellen. There’d been a side story of a very annoying woman who kept bugging Mikki after she admitted she was friends with the woman’s favorite author who in reality was Mikki’s friend Lenora. Her crazy stalker problem was taken care of at the end as well. Life with Mikki Lincoln is, well definitely never dull!

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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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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