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.

View all my reviews

Deadly Delights review

This is the second in the Bookish Baker series by Laura Jensen Walker and it definitely didn’t disappoint. Lots of mystery, cute dogs, quirky/likable characters and yummy desserts to be had when you visit Lake Potawatomi. I love Teddie and her little trio of besties investigating. One scene with Teddie and Char was pretty hilarious, but someone didn’t end up thinking so! Not gonna spoil it, have yourself a fun read and good cozy time in Lake Potawatomi!

My Goodreads review:

Deadly Delights (A Bookish Baker Mystery #2)Deadly Delights by Laura Jensen Walker
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed visitng Lake Potawatomi again. The timeline of the story was the same summer as the first book. Teddie’s a great main character and so open about having had breast cancer along with all the decisions she made with it. I love that she’s got a sassy or funny comeback for pretty much everything and won’t take lip from anyone. Her dog is a total sweetheart too. I really like her two besties, Char and Sharon. Char is such a hoot, and it doesn’t hurt matters that she dates the chief of police. Sharon tends to take on the mom role of the trio, since she’s the only one with kids. Another character Astrid, the older artist friend of Teddie’s cracks me up too!

There were some good side stories going on, one which involved Teddie’s mom. I think it might have helped bring them a bit closer. After the murder at the baking contest, Teddie and her friends set out to investigate, mainly to clear Teddie and Sophie’s names and give blabbermouth Wilma something else to talk about. There was a twist I sure never saw coming, very clever though. The showdown was quick but awesome. A couple more sweet things happened once everything was cleared up. What a great ending!

I voluntarily read and reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher via NetGalley, and my opinions are my own. This book publishes tomorrow, June 8, 2021.

View all my reviews

Beyond a Reasonable Donut review

This is the fifth book in the Deputy Donut series by Ginger Bolton who’s also known as Janet Bolin, author of the older discontinued Threadville cozy series. The Deputy Donut crew has become like old friends to me, and I love that we’re getting another book that’s Christmas-themed later this year on October 26. You can bet I’ll be reading and reviewing that one too!

My Goodreads review:

Beyond a Reasonable Donut (A Deputy Donut Mystery Book 5)Beyond a Reasonable Donut by Ginger Bolton
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Just as I was craving a good donut mystery from Deputy Donut (and reading about their yummy food), this book was about to make its debut (actually tomorrow). Wow what a lot of little things that added up to be part of the murder. When Emily’s assistant Nina was arrested for murder, Emily never once thought she could kill someone, but when some things came to light in the case, Emily wondered how much she really knew about her friend and employee. As a side story, Samantha and Hooligan’s wedding was coming up, and everyone was just holding their breath as to whether the world would finally get to know Hooligan’s real name. It was a lot of fun having that as a little comic relief.

And who knew a bachelorette dinner would ultimately turn into a showdown with the killer? I’d sort of suspected this person of something when they first came on the scene, but I wasn’t sure what. I just knew I didn’t trust them. I didn’t really trust anyone except the key players. After the murder was solved, everyone got to attend their friends’ wedding. But I promised Samantha and Hooligan I wouldn’t spill another word about it. 😉

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

View all my reviews

Murder Most Sweet review

This is the first book in a brand new series that just came out several days ago. It’s called the Bookish Baker and is authored by Laura Jensen Walker who has quite a bit in common with Teddie St. John, the main character in this book. I absolutely love Teddie and her friends…and her sweet little dog Gracie. When Teddie retired from her government job after her cancer diagnosis and treatment, she only thought she’d be involved in the kinds of murder mysteries that lived in her books. I’m so anxious now for the next book!

My Goodreads review:

Murder Most Sweet: A Bookish Baker MysteryMurder Most Sweet: A Bookish Baker Mystery by Laura Jensen Walker
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I really loved this book and the unique main character! Teddie’s sense of humor was so awesome in light of her being a breast cancer survivor and making little jokes about herself. She was a strong lady who knew what she wanted and didn’t want. The cozy mysteries she wrote sounded really good, maybe a little like this series 😉 From reading the author’s bio, I feel like she’s adding some of her own experiences to Teddie’s life, and it was all so interesting. I enjoyed the characters of Char and Sharon a lot too! The three of them really were like the 3 Musketeers. I couldn’t put the book down at all during the time Char and Teddie went on a road trip to sleuth. Gracie was just the sweetest dog ever and definitely played a good part during the showdown with the killer.

I’d had some suspicions about the person who ended up being the killer but fell for the red herrings along the way. I was happy to see my suspicions were right though. I’m so anxious to read the next book in this series!

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

View all my reviews

Boston Scream Murder review

I always look forward to the newest book in this series (like I do soooo many others!), and of course, this Halloween-themed addition to the Deputy Donut series definitely didn’t disappoint! It’s the fourth book of what I hope will be a nice long series for author Ginger Bolton who’s also known as Janet Bolin, author of the 5-book cozy series Threadville. I’ve been wanting to get back to that series, because I really enjoyed the first book.

Deputy Donut became one of my favorite series the minute it came out. I really enjoy all the various characters in Fallingbrook, Wisconsin especially that of Tom Westhill, main character Emily’s father-in-law. If anyone is new to the series, I highly recommend reading it from the beginning. The author is good about catching readers up and not giving spoilers, but it would be better to get to know the characters from the ground up. Dep, the little cat that the Deputy Donut shop is named for, is a total sweetheart, well except when she needs to get into her carrier. She got a good part doing something to the killer toward the end, go Dep! (Nope, she’s not the type to tear their head off or chomp their leg, she’s much more clever!)

My Goodreads review:

Boston Scream Murder (A Deputy Donut Mystery Book 4)Boston Scream Murder by Ginger Bolton

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

It had been about a year since I went book tripping to Fallingbrook, Wisconsin during their July Fourth celebration. I loved how the town did up Halloween. It was the perfect Halloween cozy from the decorations and kids’ Halloween parade to the murder case itself set on an eerie-at-night lake.

There was a decent amount of suspects in this case, but I got a weird feeling about someone kind of early although going down all the red herring paths is always fun. My gut feeling came true but the reason was something I couldn’t have known. I always have loved it when Emily’s best friends all got together, and since she’s been hanging out with Brent in a non-dating sort of way, there were three happy couples (when Brent wasn’t working a murder, that is), one of which was super happy due to an announcement.

I think Tom will always be my favorite character. He’s kind of the patriarch figure but only offers his expert protection as an ex-police chief when he feels it’s absolutely necessary. I really liked Nina a lot–she fit right in with the Deputy Donut family which still did have Jocelyn, but she was mainly off at college. She did get a small but important role in the book. We got to see a little more of Cindy, Tom’s wife and who knew, she’s a cat whisperer as well as a talented pottery artist. I’m hoping the next book might be a Christmas themed one, and as always, I can’t wait for it.

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

View all my reviews

The Crafter Quilts a Crime review

This is the third book in the Handcrafted Mystery series by Holly Quinn that takes place in a picturesque little Hallmark-like town called Heartsford, WI. I read in someone’s interview with the author that this book had originally been intended as a Christmas season book and had to have a lot of it rewritten. I was glad to see a few little references to Christmas though, because the way the town was decorated for Fire & Ice day, it sounded magical. But for one crafter in town, it wasn’t so magical…

My Goodreads review:

A Crafter Quilts a Crime  (A Handcrafted Mystery #3)A Crafter Quilts a Crime by Holly Quinn

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was an interesting mystery with a good twist that I never figured out. As much as I really like these characters, Sammy while lovable as a puppy, still kind of bothered me with how she managed to twist someone’s words into something she was afraid was hurtful or what she saw as untrue. It’s not like she was trying to do that for any terrible reason. I think she simply couldn’t help it. Her lips moved faster than her brain sometimes, lol. It just seemed to continually get her in trouble with Liam, the detective she had a crush on. Sometimes they’d be joking like they always had, and other times she’d be reading something else into what he told her.

After a wild ride of investigating, getting into hot water with the police and someone that could be a killer, Sammy eventually helped once again bring another killer to justice. And she got a super sweet ending from it too which I loved!

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

View all my reviews

Jealousy Filled Donuts review

This is the third book in one of my favorite series that I got to start from its beginning. The cover art has always been amazing, and this time was no exception! I’ve always gotten the paperback version of this series because little Dep is such a cutie along with the rest of the scene she’s in. The release date for this book is August 27, but my review was done from an ARC I have. I couldn’t wait to read it ahead and was definitely not disappointed! Now I can’t wait for the next book, but I’m sure it won’t be out for another year if it stays with the schedule it’s had so far.

Jealousy Filled Donuts (A Deputy Donut Mystery, #3)Jealousy Filled Donuts by Ginger Bolton

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This series is getting better and better! I just couldn’t resist finishing the ARC a week early. I fell in love with these characters in the first book and have been waiting a little impatiently for this book to come out. My own copy will come on release day–the cover is so awesome that I just had to order the paperback of it. I could tell right away that Emily and Brent’s friendship was growing, because I didn’t notice one of my favorite lines that he always kinda mumbled, “Mmph”, when he was deep in thought or didn’t want to talk about a case. He was definitely more willing to share with her and accept her help on this case. It was a crazy and fun one too with a side mystery that involved a stalker of Emily and Tom’s new employee, Jocelyn. I hope we see more of Jocelyn, and that she stays working at Deputy Donut. She was the perfect addition to give Tom and Emily a much-needed break during the week.

I didn’t guess the killer, but I knew who I didn’t want it to be. I loved how the book ended with a complete explanation of everything that had been going on, then Emily’s parents who liked to RV around the country, returned home for a marshmallow roast at their home campground. It’s fun to wind a mystery down with some normal downtime for the characters, and this ending was just right!

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

View all my reviews

The Crafter Knits a Clue–review

This is the first book in the new Handcrafted series by Holly Quinn. I like the idea of the Community Craft store, which is like a craft mall and sells the various handmade items of the town’s people. It sounds like a fun gathering place! The book takes place in early spring in Wisconsin.

My Goodreads review:

A Crafter Knits a Clue (A Handcrafted Mystery #1)A Crafter Knits a Clue by Holly Quinn

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I might sound like a repeat when I say that I really wanted to love this book as much as I do some of the other handcrafted books about knitting or crocheting, but I just can’t truthfully say that. I liked it, but that was all. It was a good mystery, and I was interested in following it through to the end. But I couldn’t get that attached to the characters. They seemed somewhat juvenile, especially the arguments that Sammy and Det. Nash had. I couldn’t really imagine talking to a detective like that and not getting tossed in jail lol.

I did love the idea that Sammy had taken over her best friend Kate’s shop and carried on her idea of selling the town’s handmade goods. I thought a store like that in a town would be really cool, a fun gathering place. The town’s basketball star worked for Sammy, and she thought of him as her little brother since he was Kate’s little brother. When the yarn shop owner was killed and Sammy saw a suspicious man hanging around, she and her cousin Heidi and her sister Ellie decided to make like detectives and investigate.

One line intrigued me and I’m wondering if that was purposely a teaser or just a killer lashing out. I won’t say what the line is, but if you read it, I think you’ll know what I mean!

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

View all my reviews

Goodbye Cruller World–review

This is the second book in the perfectly cozy mystery series Deputy Donuts. It features the sweetest little cat named Deputy Donut, or Dep for short. She seems to have a sixth sense about a lot of things, especially that she likes handsome Brent, Emily’s husband’s police partner. After her husband’s death, she had sort of abandoned Brent, not realizing he needed some closure too. In the first book, it had them reuniting over Alec as friends. But I do hope they’ll at least get to dating status eventually. He sounds so amazing! I love this book just as much, if not more than the first, and I can’t wait for the next one!

My Goodreads review:

Goodbye Cruller World (Deputy Donut Mystery #2)Goodbye Cruller World by Ginger Bolton
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Even though I was pretty sure I knew who the killer was (and for once I was right!) this was still another fun trip to Fallingbrook, Wisconsin and the Deputy Donut shop. I just love that little cat, Dep! She was even more talkative and cute in this book.

When the groom at a wedding that Tom and Emily were providing donuts for collapsed and died of poisoning, Emily was worried that DCI detective Yvonne Passenmath was focusing on her as being at fault. She was since Passenmath had a major grudge against Emily, Tom and their police friends, but she was also looking at Emily’s friend Jenn who was the new bride. There was no shortage of suspects, and there were some interesting and quirky characters tossed into the mix as well.

I knew who was guilty, but it was interesting to see how the showdown went, which was pretty exciting. I kept expecting a last minute twist since I’m rarely right lol. Everything ended well, except I keep wishing that Emily would let Brent get to be a little more than just friends, but I guess since they just came to grips a year ago with how they both felt about her husband’s death 8 years ago (Brent was his partner and had seen him die), maybe they don’t want to rush things.

I just love the regular characters. Tom is such a sweetheart, who wouldn’t love to have a father-in-law like him? Misty and Samantha are awesome friends for Emily. The three of them are like Nancy, George and Bess when they work on a case. Although Misty is always quick to remind them to let the police do the actual investigating. I’m always anxious for the next book in the series! I hope it’s not a long wait.

I voluntarily read and reviewed this book which was provided to me via NetGalley and the publisher.

View all my reviews