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Sunday, June 21, 2020

Booked For Murder


Booked for Death: A Book Lover's B&B Mystery
by Victoria Gilbert

About Booked for Death


Booked for Death: A Book Lover's B&B Mystery
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books (August 11, 2020)
Hardcover: 320 pages
ISBN-10: 1643853074
ISBN-13: 978-1643853079
Digital ASIN: B07XX7PHTV

From the critically acclaimed author of SIBA Okra Pick A Murder for the Books, Victoria Gilbert embarks with a new series for perfect for fans of Kate Carlisle and Juliet Blackwell.

A book lover's B&B in an idyllic waterfront village becomes the scene of a grisly murder--and a ruthless battle between treachery and the truth.

Nestled in the historic waterfront town of Beaufort, North Carolina, Chapters Bed-and-Breakfast is a reader's paradise. Built in 1770, the newly renovated inn hosts a roster of special events celebrating books, genres, and authors. It's the perfect literary retreat--until a rare book dealer turns up dead in the carriage house during a celebration of Golden Age mystery author Josephine Tey.

The victim's daughter points the finger at forty-two-year-old widow and former schoolteacher Charlotte Reed, who inherited the B&B from her great-aunt Isabella. Charlotte is shocked to discover that the book dealer suspected Isabella of being a thief who founded Chapters on her ill-gotten gains. Charlotte has successfully learned the B&B business in a year, but nothing has prepared her to handle a death on the premises.

Armed with intelligence and courage and assisted by her vibrant older neighbor, a visiting author, and members of a local book club, Charlotte is determined to prove her innocence and to clear her great-aunt's name. But the murderer is still at large, and equally determined to silence anyone who might discover the truth behind the book dealer's death. Now, Charlotte must outwit an unknown killer--or end up writing her own final chapter.

What I Thought:

I thought this book was going to start out slowly, but it really did not, once I got started reading it, it flowed really well and kept my interest. I thought the writing was superb and the setting and plot were great. Who would not want to stay at a bed and breakfast that has literary themes and is a book lovers dream. Charlotte has come to Beaufort, NC to keep her aunt Isabella bed-and-breakfast running. When a guest at a weekend retreat accuses Isabella of stealing artifacts from previous employers, Charlotte begins to wonder just what her aunt Isabella had done with her life. When the man who accused Isabella is murdered, Charlotte has to clear her name. While she is investigating the murder, she also delves into her aunt Isabella past and is surprised by what all she learns. As I said, I thought this one was going to be iffy, but it took off and kept me turning pages. There were lots of suspects with many different motives. I was surprised by the reveal of the killer and the reason why the murder took place. This was a very well written book and the plot was great, I enjoy a cozy that keeps me guessing and this one certainly did that.
I received a complimentary copy of this book.

About Virginia Gilbert


Victoria Gilbert, raised in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains, turned her early obsession with reading into a dual career as an author and librarian. Victoria has worked as a reference librarian, research librarian, and library director. When not writing or reading, she likes to spend her time watching films, gardening, or traveling. She is a member of Sisters in Crime and International Thriller Writers and lives in North Carolina. This is her fourth Blue Ridge Library mystery.
Author Links:

Website/blog: http://victoriagilbertmysteries.com/

Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/VictoriaGilbertMysteryAuthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/VGilbertauthor

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/VictoriaGilbert

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/victoriagilbertauthor/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4J0jvZ-D0NVF9Qv7H2ua8Q

Purchase Links:

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Tuesday, June 2, 2020

No Filter


No Filter (Barks & Beans Cafe Cozy Mystery)
by Heather Day Gilbert

About No Filter


No Filter (Barks & Beans Cafe Cozy Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Publisher: WoodHaven Press (May 26, 2020)
Number of Pages: ~280 Pages
Digital ASIN: B085BX4N96

Welcome to the Barks & Beans Cafe, a quaint place where folks pet shelter dogs while enjoying a cup of java...and where murder sometimes pays a visit.

Fed up with her go-nowhere job, newly single Macy Hatfield moves back to her small hometown in West Virginia. She joins forces with her brother Bo in his crazy new venture—the Barks & Beans Cafe, which caters to dog lovers and coffee drinkers alike.

When a golf instructor is murdered at the nearby spiritual center, Macy winds up adopting his Great Dane. Just after Macy finds a mysterious message sewn under the dog's collar, her Dane is dognapped. She launches into a relentless search for her newfound canine friend, but along the way, she digs up a cruel and confident killer.

Join siblings Macy and Bo Hatfield as they sniff out crimes in their hometown...with plenty of dogs along for the ride! The Barks & Beans Cafe cozy mystery series features a small town, an amateur sleuth, and no swearing or graphic scenes.
The Barks & Beans Cafe cozy mystery series in order:
Book 1: No Filter
Book 2: Iced Over

What I Thought:

Well, since I am from West Virginia, I am always partial to books set in my great state. But, honestly, this one was really good. I enjoyed the plot very much and the setting, a coffee shot that also features shelter dogs was really interesting. I enjoyed the story line and the mystery was gripping. Macy and her brother Bo were both great characters. Macy and Bo have both just moved back to Lewisburg, so neither sibling really knows the murder victim. Macy makes a visit to the neighboring town where the victim lived and ends up falling in love with his Great Dane and ends up adopting him. When Coal is dogknapped, Macy goes on a spree to find him. This takes her to Ivy Hill, the local spa and she gets immersed in all the shady doings going on there. I found this a fast paced book that kept my attention from the very beginning. I did not suspect who the killer was at all and was totally surprised by the ending. I definitely look forward to more in this great series.

I received a complimentary copy of this book.

About Heather Day Gilbert



HEATHER DAY GILBERT, an ECPA Christy award finalist and Grace award winner, writes contemporary mysteries and Viking historicals. Her novels feature small towns, family relationships, and women who aren't afraid to protect those they love. Like her amateur sleuth heroines, she enjoys reading Agatha Christie, playing video games, dogs, and coffee.

Author Links

Website: http://heatherdaygilbert.com

Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/heatherdaygilbert

Twitter: @heatherdgilbert

Instagram: @heatherdaygilbert

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/heather-day-gilbert

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7232683.Heather_Day_Gilbert

Purchase - Amazon

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Monday, June 1, 2020

Southern Sass and the Crispy Corpse


Southern Sass and a Crispy Corpse (A Marygene Brown Mystery)
by Kate Young

About Southern Sass and
a Crispy Corpse


Southern Sass and a Crispy Corpse (A Marygene Brown Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Publisher: Kensington (May 26, 2020)
Mass Market Paperback: 336 pages
ISBN-10: 1496721470
ISBN-13: 978-1496721471
Digital ASIN: B07W4MRDKR

On Georgia’s picturesque Peach Cove Island, a killer is serving up a two-for-one special . . .

After their mama's passing, Marygene Brown returned to Peach Cove Island to help her sister Jena Lynn run the family diner, renowned for its homemade peach desserts. But Mama is never too far away—her sassy spirit haunts the island, and more specifically Marygene. Lately Mama has been warning her that the dead will seek her out to solve their murders, an idea Marygene is far from peachy keen on.

But that prophecy appears to be coming true when she goes skinny-dipping off the island and swims right into a woman's charred corpse floating in the waves. And when Marygene and her brother Sam come upon a second burned body in a wine cellar at an event they're catering, it appears they have a double homicide on their hands. It soon turns out the victims have more in common than their charred remains, and Marygene will need to double down to find a killer who has no aversion to playing with fire. Good thing Mama has her back . . .

Includes Seven Recipes from Marygene’s Kitchen!

What I Thought:

This is the Second Installment in the Marygene Brown Mystery Series about a southern girl who moves back home to help her sister run the family diner, oh did I mention her dead mother visits her often. I have read both books in this series, and I am glad I did because the first book in the series lays the background for the series. I think though, you could read this one and not be lost as to who is who and why the characters are where they are. In this book, Marygene is "swimming" one early morning when something brushes up against her. It happens to be a burned up corpse. When she is catering her best friends open house, Marygene and her brother Sam find another "cripsy" corpse in the cellar of the home. Of course, since Marygene gets visits from her dead mama, she is prone to find dead bodies, and she has to help figure out the demise of the dead bodies. Once Marygene starts investigating, she digs up a lot of old memories some would rather keep buried. I really enjoyed this book and once I got started, I did not hardly want to put it down. This was a great cozy in a great setting with a great cast of characters. The plot line was well thought out, and I was left guessing till the very end. I thought I knew who was responsible, but the author threw in enough twists and turns that I was surprised by the ending. I look forward to more in this series.

I received a complimentary copy of this book.

About Kate Young



Kate Young writes Southern mystery novels. She is a member of Sisters in Crime and the Guppy Chapter. Kate lives in a small town in Georgia with her husband, three kids, and Shih Tzu. When she is not writing her own books, she’s reading or cooking.

Author Links -

Website – https://www.kateyoungbooks.com

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKateYoung/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/KAYoungBooks

GoodReads – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6527572.Kate_Young

BookBub – https://www.bookbub.com/profile/kate-young-b3339e9c-d2e4-482d-a637-5afd7b064d73

Purchase Links - Amazon - B&N - kobo - IndieBound

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Killing Time



Killing Time (A Dodie O'Dell Mystery)

by Suzanne Trauth


About Killing Time




Killing Time (A Dodie O'Dell Mystery)

Cozy Mystery

6th in Series

Publisher: Lyrical Press (June 2, 2020)

Number of Pages: 215

Digital ASIN: B07W8ZX8JV





With Halloween just around the corner, Dodie O’Dell is making preparations to transform the Windjammer Restaurant on the Jersey Shore into a haunted house, while the Etonville Little Theatre is staging Dracula. But casting the titular Transylvanian is proving challenging. The amateur actors in the company are not shy about chewing the scenery, but who among them can convincingly sink their fangs into a victim's neck? When a mysterious newcomer with a transfixing Eastern European accent lands the part, rumors that he might be an actual vampire start to take flight—not unlike the bat who's recently been spotted in the town park.


But everyone’s blood really runs cold when a stranger is found in the cemetery with a real stake in his heart. Dodie decides to put her Halloween theme menu on the back burner and stick her neck out to bring the killer into the light of day. She'd better keep her wits about her, though—or Dodie may be the next one to go down for the Count . . .



Excerpt




“It sure looks haunted,” Edna murmured to no one in particular, to the cast of Dracula in general. They were grouped around her on the sidewalk that ran past the old Hanratty place that Carlos and Bella had rented. I’d never been inside though once I’d driven by it when I first moved to Etonville on my way out of town. The house stood on half an acre of scruffy lawn with patches of dried dirt, surrounded by a few straggly trees—minus leaves at this time of the year—and no neighbors. The nearest houses were on a side street some distance away. The three-story building looked as if it might collapse at any moment, its outer walls covered with weathered, gray shakes, the steps to the front door supported by concrete building blocks. There was no handrail. Light leaked out of windows on the first floor. Curtains covering small, circular panes on the third story—an attic room?—quivered. Was someone up there watching us? I shivered. A turret rose upward from the right side of the structure, giving the house a smidge of outdated dignity. A drain pipe dangled loosely from the gutter.



“Let’s go.” Penny corralled actors and nudged everyone forward to the front door. There were six company members, Renfield saying he’d be along later, plus Penny, Lola, Pauli, and me. Strength in numbers.



We crept across the porch cautiously, aware of the creaking beneath us as the flooring shifted with each individual’s footsteps. Penny put out a hand to knock on the door. Before she could hit knuckles to wood, it flew open. “Welcome everyone!” Bella stood in the doorway, a silhouette backlit by muted foyer lighting.



Behind her Carlos stood silently, observing the group huddled in his entryway, like deer caught in headlights.



Lola took the lead, moving graciously into the house. “Thank you. So nice of you to invite us to your home.”



I’m not sure what the members of the Etonville Little Theatre were expecting. Given the exterior and location of the Hanratty homestead, I anticipated something out of a late-night classic horror film.

What I Thought:

This one started out a little slow for me. There are a lot of characters to try to keep straight, plus the fact that some of the characters are playing characters in the Little Theatre's staging of Dracula. Dodie is busy trying to get the Windjammer ready for Halloween plus having authentic dishes for the opening night of Dracula. Once I got into the story, though, it flowed well and went pretty fast. I enjoyed the setting and reading about the wacky characters of Eatonville. There is also some romantic tension ans Dodie and Bill move forward with plans for their wedding. Since there are so many characters, it was hard to figure out who the killer was and I was left guessing till the very end. All in all this was a good cozy and I hope to revisit Eatonville in the near future.

About Suzanne Trauth


Suzanne Trauth, Harvard Studio, Montclair, NJ. 06/27/2014 Photo by Steve Hockstein/HarvardStudio.com

Suzanne Trauth is a novelist, playwright, screenwriter, and a former theatre professor at a university. She is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, the Dramatists Guild, and League of Professional Theatre Women. When she is not writing, Suzanne coaches actors and serves as a celebrant performing wedding ceremonies. She lives in Woodland Park, New Jersey.

Author Links



Webpage: www.suzannetrauth.com



Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SuzanneTrauth/



Twitter: https://twitter.com/SuzanneMTrauth



GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6187623.Suzanne_M_Trauth



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