Monday, September 26, 2022

"Scones & Tombstones" by Trixie Silvertale

Halloween in Pin Cherry Harbor this year is sure to be amazing. Mitzy Moon has arranged for a very impressive haunted house event  in order to raise funds for the local animal shelter & pet cemetery. And just before the soft opening of the haunted house, a famous cookbook author is scheduled to debut her newest book at Mitzy's bookshop. 

But things rarely go as planned, and in this case that means the author winding up dead with her body hidden in one of the haunted house exhibits. Unsurprisingly, it's Mitzy who first notices the very real corpse on display, and thus winding up involved in trying to solve another murder.

As with the other books in this series that I've had the pleasure to read, I really enjoyed this one. The various twists and turns in the story kept me guessing throughout and I can honestly say that there's a spot in this book where I was tearing up more than just a little. (I'd tell you about it, but that would be a huge spoiler. But trust me, you’ll know it when you read it.)

So if you've enjoyed any of the other books in this series, be sure to grab a copy of this one. I don't think you'll be disappointed. And while you'd also likely enjoy it even if you haven't read any of the previous books in the series, I can honestly say that I think you'll enjoy it even more if you read at least a few of the earlier books first. (Mainly so that you can understand some of the background information as well as learning more about the characters in this series.)

Monday, September 19, 2022

"Heartless" written by Gail carriger,
read by Emily Gray

It appears that the only solution to keep the vampires from killing Alexia, was to allow the vampire, Lord Akeldama, to adopt her baby after it was born. This was not a solution that Alexia particularly liked, but it was the only thing that would keep them all safe and alive. So Alexia & her husband bought the house next door to Lord Akeldama so that she could always be near her child. They also made arrangements with him whereby she & Connell would turn one of Lord Akeldama's closets into a room where they would secretly live so that she could have some say in the raising of her baby.

Add to all of that a ghostly warning about a threat to the queen & you have a very busy and chaotic remainder of Alexia’s pregnancy.

I listened to this as an audiobook rather than read it. The narrator once again did an excellent job of differentiating the voices and manner of speaking so that there was never any confusion about which character was talking. I enjoyed listening to this book a great deal and would assume that as a book to read it would be just as enjoyable. Anyone who has read (or listened to) the previous books in this series will want to continue on and read this one as well. I know that I enjoyed it.

Monday, September 12, 2022

“Spinster Bride for the Gold Miner”
by Florence Linnington

Blue, the woman who owns and runs the town saloon in Clear Hollow, has just lost her mother and is now on her own. She’s been essentially on her own for most of her life, but the death of her mother has really hit her hard. Add to that how busy things have gotten in town lately with all the new prospectors trying to find gold and strike it rich, and she almost has more than she can handle to deal with at the moment. Business has certainly picked up at the Saloon lately, and besides being the owner, she is the only employee, making it very difficult to keep up with all the new customers.

Thomas is a new arrival in town, seeking to strike it rich, just like so many others. He soon seems to become infatuated with the slightly older than himself woman who dresses in men’s clothing and runs the saloon. Being a friendly and talkative sort, he soon makes himself useful at the saloon as well as befriending a pair of prospectors panning for gold in the river.

I enjoyed this story. It, like the most recent books by Ms. Linnington, has broken slightly from the standard format of many mail order bride books. Yes, it follows the usual storyline involving two strangers meeting and developing a relationship while learning to trust each other. In this case, it does not begin with a marriage between strangers, but allows them to develop and grow towards each other. I find that I like this change as it allows for more character and story development throughout the book. And like her previous books, I can count on this one to continue to offer me a happy and “feelgood” ending to the story. 

I believe that anyone who has enjoyed any of Ms. Linnington’s previous books will also enjoy this one. Also anyone who enjoys mail order (or not quite mail order) bride stories or who is simply looking for a book with a happy ending that will make them smile should give this one a try. I believe it to be one of Ms. Linnington’s best books so far.

Monday, September 5, 2022

"The taming of the broom" by Erin Johnson

Laidey is a relatively new witch who works in the Swept Away broom shop and who isn't willing to try casting spells herself. She's got a crush on the Pirate Captain Bruce, whom she's become good friends with. So when after a public fight with the pirate Lysander lands Bruce in the sheriff's prison on the same day that someone murders Bruce's friend Freddy, Laidey needs to help find the murderer before the lazy sheriff decides to lay the blame on Bruce instead of bothering to find the real killer.

This was a nice little cozy mystery involving pirates, magic, a cursed renaissance faire, and enough fun to keep me entertained throughout the story. The author did an excellent job writing this one. I found the reasons why Laidey refuses to learn how to use magic both very understandable as well as amusing. (You'll have to read the book yourself if you want to know why.)

Anyone who enjoys cozy mysteries with Shakespeare references, renaissance faires, magic, and even a vampire should enjoy this book. And if you've read the previous books in this series, you won't want to skip this one either. It’s a quick read but a lot of fun and very enjoyable. (And I’m highly amused by the Shakespeare pun in the book’s title of not only this one, but each of the previous books.)

Wings of Ink by Angelina Steffort

Anya, after spending years in a Tavrasian Prison expecting to be killed, is instead given to the Crow Fairies. She is now to become the brid...