A bit of a slow start, but I really liked the book. Rookie newspaper reporter Nicole Charles is finding her perfect job to be somewhat boring, for wanA bit of a slow start, but I really liked the book. Rookie newspaper reporter Nicole Charles is finding her perfect job to be somewhat boring, for want of a better word. At least she has a place in the large newspaper she is calling home. Through the unexpected yet unquestioned death of the society reporter, she falls into his job. She trained to be a news reporter, what happened to reporting on crimes? What happened to following up leads? For that matter, what happened to working in her own office? The paper is downsizing, as so much media is, and much of the staff now works online from home. Working from home slightly compensates for lack of office space, but Nicole needs a desk to work at. Her best option appears to be an auction, where she finds the "perfect" desk. As bidding starts she is not the only one who wants this desk. Just as she reaches the final limit to bid, police storm in and arrest the other bidder! An extreme but fascinating interruption but fruitful because the auction must begin again. With the only other bidder gone, she gets the desk for a much lower bid.
Looking it over, she notices someone has tried to get into one of the locked drawers. Is the key lost? What could be so important? Her brother Kyle joins her to bring the desk home, but once it is installed the search for what secrets it may hold begins. At the same time, their parents' home is broken into. Is there a connection? If so, what could it possibly connect to?
This book has a lot of surprises, a story of love and loss, crime and vintage wine, memories and misguided moments. For readers who know Vancouver, it will bring familiarity, well depicted. Activity escalates throughout Nicole's investigations. I enjoyed the book for all these reasons. I look forward to another Nicole Charles Mystery. I'm left wondering, what happened to the wine?...more
A Rapid Reads that delivers a slapstick murder mystery in a condensed but full-blown exciting story. The Goddaughter books by Melodie Campbell are 'deA Rapid Reads that delivers a slapstick murder mystery in a condensed but full-blown exciting story. The Goddaughter books by Melodie Campbell are 'dead' on hilarious. Gina, a reluctant member of The Family, seems to be forever entangled with their 'business' like it or not. Her very large Sicilian family can be overwhelming, but because of that, Gina is always getting caught in the middle. Fortunately for her, her fiance often is available to give some help from various connections he has. I love this series!
Gina is within days of marrying Pete when a body drops by. Literally. Everyone turns to Gina to try to find out who offed Wally the Wanker. Where to hide the body until they can make it disappear? Gina doesn't know it, but she will soon find she is in possession of it. So much for staying out of the 'business.' Meanwhile, she is trying to help her cousin Nico set up his decor business next door to Gina's jewelry shop. Gina is determined to be straight, and keep cousins Nico and his sister Tiff straight. But bodies keep dropping in complete with coffins. Or do they?
A box has been delivered to Gina's store, definitely not a coffin but neither is it something she is expecting. On the other hand, her Uncle Seb has recently passed away and she has inherited everything, so maybe this is related to the inheritance? With coffins stacking up in Nico's building next store when what he is expecting is statues, and her cousin Marco, one of the dimmer family members is responsible for making deliveries, who knows what is within Gina's box...or Nico's coffins for that matter.
After a few calls to the Family, everything should be straightened out. From this point on, the story takes on a slapstick farce as things get out of hand at the Holy Cannoli Retirement Home where many of Gina's aunts live. It is also where the aunts plan to have a bridal shower for Gina and Pete, which Gina dreads. The story takes on a life of its own as it builds to an outrageous fiasco of a finale that is going to take the reader and Gina totally by surprise. I can hardly wait for another Gina Gallo mystery! I received this ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review....more
It is 1929, midway between two world wars as a young woman opens her first investigative office. Maisie Dobbs, working under the name of Maisie BlanchIt is 1929, midway between two world wars as a young woman opens her first investigative office. Maisie Dobbs, working under the name of Maisie Blanche, is a very unique person; educated, immensely knowledgeable, and intuitive; and, I think, a little psychic as well. She has many horrific memories of the Great War WWI, working as a nurse. Thus we begin to know her as an attractive and well-spoken adult who is not quite of the high class nor of the lower class, but somewhere in between. But who is she, exactly?
Jump back to 1910-1917 and we begin the journey with her. Her mother passed on and her father trying to support their young daughter and himself as a costermonger, he is no longer able to manage as bills keep piling up. Love is not enough to feed and clothe. A decision is made that changes everything but the love between father and daughter. I found myself drawn in to their hardship and the changes they deal with when she goes "into service" with Lady Rowan in a household that is not quite what one would expect of a Lord and Lady in this time period. The work ethic and hours spent are there, but Lady Rowan is actually in a period of change among the elite. The brilliance of this young girl is discovered and plans are made to accommodate learning with working within the house. Lady Rowan has determined that Maisie should be university educated.
I look at this book as an introduction to a fascinating young lady; one who cares deeply about people, intuits what they need and what she needs. We have followed her through childhood, working as a maid, going to university, leaving and joining the war as a nurse, and after the war, investigating a possible murder, leading to a lingering reminder of the war, the "walking dead" as her partner refers to it, the souls lost though the body lives on with its horrific scars both external and internal. As her investigation reaps the rewards of solving the case, she is about to embark on a career as a "Psychologist and Investigator" at the end of this first novel in the series, a career that gives the reader a taste of what is to come in future books. I really enjoyed getting to know Maisie Dobbs, her father and her "family" and can hardly wait to follow this fascinating person....more
A surprising book, looking at it from the perspective of the usual suspects and heroes. Personally I found the story very descriptive and therefore veA surprising book, looking at it from the perspective of the usual suspects and heroes. Personally I found the story very descriptive and therefore very convincing, a 'Qwickie' book yet fully packed. A murder has been committed, with one very youthful witness who doesn't remember all he saw. Call in Eileen Edwards, ex-cop and exceptionally on point as a private investigator, one who worked with the Gang Task Force unit and is called in to help by the lead cop on the case. What is unique to this mystery and probable gang-hit, is that the witness is a young person in the wrong place at the wrong time. The purpose of the investigation is two-fold: who was the shooter, who was the witness and how can he be protected.
What a combination of characters Cheryl Kaye Tardif has brought together in this book! So many hurting and lost people, will they find closure to their current lives and discover a new future for themselves? From the bottom of the barrel, the very dregs of mankind, can they pick themselves up and live again? That is the root of the question as a backdrop to the crime and the author handles it with realism at the fore.
Eileen Edwards is a total exception to what one might expect of a private investigator. Though she is brilliant at what she does in investigation, she carries a lot of baggage, baggage that needs to be toppled over. The boy she must find to keep him alive is also carrying far more baggage than his slender frame should be made to bear. The past makes for a difficult beginning between these two lost souls. Can they work together or will it all fall apart? There are multiple surprises yet to come in this book, along with the fear of loss once more along the way. There are traitors and heroes and surprises, best of all, this is Book One of the E.Y.E. Looking forward to another, believe me, the ride is worth it, questions remain to pique our interest....more
A "what if" story that spreads its wings and soars. I found this novel to be absolutely fascinating. There is so much history, plausible or not, builtA "what if" story that spreads its wings and soars. I found this novel to be absolutely fascinating. There is so much history, plausible or not, built into this book. So much to ponder. As a child myself during WWII, my interest deepened throughout. Growing up, I learned as others did, that there were many secrets, experiments, agendas, so to me, this book did have an abundance of historic fact, fiction, what-if.... Yes. What if Roger Greene had not crashed in his plane and lived only to be captured? What if German scientists had discovered a way to appease Hitler's plan for the Thousand Year Reich? What if one experiment actually worked? Herein lies the mystery, the complexity of the story.
The author, Rick Barry, has given us a full-blown history of one man's fight to return home to Indiana. This history is decades in the making. In the beginning there were seven, Roger was Number 7. When the lab is demolished by heavy bombardment only Roger remains alive among the seven captives. What does this mean? Will he be rescued? One of his captors, indeed the scientist himself, eventually loosens up enough to provide the airman with reading material which included a Bible. His world opening up and giving him hope through many different writings provides enough to keep him sane, but for how long?
This is an adventure story unlike others. No dashing around, he is in a cage. But he has plans, and God on his side. And he is exactly the same in appearance as he was 70 years ago when he was captured. He is not even aware that the war is long over. On the other hand, is it really over for him? The opportunity he has been waiting for suddenly arises and Yes! he is free, at least he may be free, if he can just get out of Germany and to the US, but will anyone believe his story? This story has everything a person could want. A mix of everything: sci fi, romance, war, history, humanity, inhumanity, christianity, excitement, adventure, a book that will keep you reading as the world takes him through changes, terror, and more. A wonderful, entertaining and thought-provoking book with a surprise ending....more
This delightful love story caused me to end up drinking cold coffee over two days of reading. That's how enchanted and involved I was with the story.This delightful love story caused me to end up drinking cold coffee over two days of reading. That's how enchanted and involved I was with the story. There sat my once hot coffee beside me as I lost myself in the book. An adult romance, an almost historic rock star meets an artist from the hippy days in her studio as he peruses her paintings and purchases one, one that happens to be a happy memory of Claire's. These are two tortured souls who have found their way to each other and a blossoming romance that takes the breath away.
This is not a young couple but certainly a very young-at-heart couple who are both grounded in the past but have both suffered and overcome tragic events in their lives. It is so refreshing to find a story that is fun, sexy, and features a couple who meet as youthful seniors who have thought that part of their lives was in the past. No lack of connection with these two! There is so much of living, of fighting demons and disease, loss and discovery, I couldn't put the book down! Kathleen Duhamel has captured the hidden youth found in older people, so into each other, with so much love to give against all odds.
Rob, lead singer in a rock group "Deep Blue", at the age of 62 has faced the loss of his wife, substance abuse, loneliness but retains the love and respect of his daughter and her family. Claire, a talented artist at 58 has conquered cancer, but is very self-conscious of her scars. She is divorced from her cheating husband who abandoned her while she was recovering, and as I read I discover just how spiteful and self-interested he was.
Claire and her best friend Denise have been friends most of their lives. They have also been huge Deep Blue fans all those years. With free tickets in hand they are off to a concert along with Denise' son Jude, also a fan. It doesn't take long for Denise to notice sparks flying between Claire and Rob.
I loved this story, and can hardly wait to read the next in this trilogy. I relate to it as a senior who doesn't think she is, and who grew up in the rock, soul, and rock & roll era when our parents wouldn't allow us to listen to it (can you believe it?) So much has gone into the basic story, it grabs you and doesn't let you go. Where will the relationship take us? Can the demons of the past be put to rest? I wonder....more
This is the second in the Land's End series. In the first we learned that Rowena, or Row as she is usually referred to, discovered a portal in her claThis is the second in the Land's End series. In the first we learned that Rowena, or Row as she is usually referred to, discovered a portal in her classroom when two men in medieval clothing suddenly appeared through the wall of her classroom, witnessed by both Row and her grad student Kendra. So begins this extraordinary adventure of magic and time travel, because the next time, Rowena is whisked through the wall into a medieval world of lusty men. A witch's curse years before caused no baby girls to be born henceforth. Obviously, with no women in their country, this young, hearty female immediately gets the attention of every male in Land's End. But it turns out that Rowena's mother was originally from Land's End and is in fact, a princess, and she had escaped through a portal, married and gave birth to Rowena. A fact that Rowena never knew.
Now with child, and living in Scottsdale, Arizona with Kendra and two medieval knights she pulled through the time portal, all is not well in paradise. Her partner Thane from Land's End is getting restless. As new King of Sargon, he blames himself for abandoning his troops, he feels a sense of separation from himself, a man out of time. But Kendra has a plan to interest Thane and Richard. A medieval festival has come to town. Is this a good thing or a bad thing? They can join the revelers wearing their own armor and the girls their dresses from Land's End, but can they pull it off? Their men don't even speak English, a fortune teller has given Rowena a special charm, one she has seen before in Land's End and there is magic in the air, sensed by Row. This second book is more magical and possibly even more unique than the first, and that is really saying something! Melodie writes full out imagination, action and humour. I love her method of story-telling.
A new portal opens as Rowena and Kendra are walking down the street. A confused Gareth steps out and takes Rowena back through this portal, leaving the rest behind. But what's this? Gareth is not in Land's End! Rowena is alone and the portal has closed. She has also torn another dress, a very common occurrence in the life of Row. Fortunately, when Thane, Richard and Kendra finally manage to appear, Row will soon meet Kendra's friend, the wizard Val, who is an expert tailor among other magical things and will hopefully be able to keep Rowena dressed!
There is much more magic in this second book as Rowena begins to learn what she is capable of. Her mother had been a witch and, so it appears, is Rowena, though as yet she has a lot to learn. Studying a book of spells, she inadvertently conjures up a complete Roman army in mid-battle. Not only that, but they are from another time again. There is so much new and different in this second book, a shorter read but full from cover to cover. A lot is explained, a lot is unexplained, and I look forward to the next installment! How will she return the Romans? How will she rescue Gareth from the in-between, or can she? How can she avoid the pull of Cedric's magic? Will her unborn baby be safe in this world? So many questions. Melodie Campbell will have her hands full in writing Book 3, but she is definitely up to the job. Such wonderful creativity, humour, and magic has gone into this series, and historically she has obviously done a great deal of research. ...more
Mystery, history, deceit and magic; wonderful blend of suspense
Alfred M. Albers has a unique talent when he tells a story; he puts the reader into tMystery, history, deceit and magic; wonderful blend of suspense
Alfred M. Albers has a unique talent when he tells a story; he puts the reader into the book by detailing so clearly it is as though you are watching a movie...or actually going along with his characters. Where it may seem to some readers that the detail is, well, detailed, I think most will agree it puts a different perspective on everything from history to mystery. The author keeps us grounded in the story in a way I haven't often seen.
While we see nearly everything going on in the background it does connect us with the main story. Perhaps it is related to the attention to detail a magician must have, and the story after all is featuring world-renowned magician John Michaels as the main character, and his wife, Stella. This is the fourth book in the John Michaels series. This particular magician works with the police in solving not just a probable crime committed on a fellow magician, but similarly in a series of murders that appear to be mob-related. In the first instance, was the death an accident or a murder? In the second instance, were any of the deaths related to the first?
With sleight of pen, the author misdirects the reader as easily as a magician misdirects an audience. Who is killing off local magicians and why? What has started this series of murders? How did it begin? Was it professional jealousy, gambling wars, infighting? There are mysteries and murders galore. Lies and deceit to go with them. The action builds throughout, with twists and turns that take the breath away and pull us along with them. History, mystery, misdirection, magic, lies and secrets, I was not happy to have to put the book down occasionally to attend to my household chores. I wanted to read from start to finish in one go. I love the John Michaels series....more
"In 1915, 2,067 skeletons were stolen from the ghost pueblo of Pecos and transported to Harvard University for medical research...." quote from Belind"In 1915, 2,067 skeletons were stolen from the ghost pueblo of Pecos and transported to Harvard University for medical research...." quote from Belinda Vasquez Garcia's preface About Return of the Bones.
I loved this story, part fiction, part fantasy, but based on truth. It's all about the bones of ancestors, the gradual loss of tribes and nations of North America's indigenous people and the repatriation of the bones. In this mystical and arduous journey an elderly shaman and his granddaughter, last of their once large tribe, are on a quest for the bones of their ancestors. Travelling physically in an old truck, and paranormally via a dreamcatcher, this story is spellbinding.
Belinda Vasquez Garcia has a way of bringing reality to the past and present through images received by the granddaughter, a modern girl who is on this journey of discovery and recovery. Past and present are interwoven in such a way that I truly felt this in my own soul, legend becomes reality as Hollow-Woman begins to open her soul to the past. I found the book memorable and heartwarming as the connection between grandfather and granddaughter, ancient and modern, past and present grew. The author has done a wonderful job of working with history and keeping the truth while writing with a passion for the magical and spiritual feel through the centuries of the indigenous people....more
This novella is an interesting change from the usual heroes. An average working man and his on-site buddy work together to solve a murder. Evan DunstaThis novella is an interesting change from the usual heroes. An average working man and his on-site buddy work together to solve a murder. Evan Dunstan, a campus security guard is finishing an ordinary night shift when he unexpectedly comes across what he thinks is a bag of garbage floating down the river. So begins an intriguing mystery, first in series, that works up a frenzy of fear and regret in Evan's mind. If this is a murder scene will he be suspected? What will happen to him if it goes unreported? After all, it's the end of his shift and he should be leaving, the next guard arriving.
Evan is a new character, one that I think Debra Purdy Kong will have a lot of fun with in this series. I love the ability she has to select the most unusual heroes in her books and this one is no different. He wants to be a police detective, but at the moment this is just a dream. Now he is trying to make amends by solving the case of an unlikeable man in a bag. His overly anxious side-kick adds to both the humour and the fear of the situation. As a novella, this is a fairly quick read, but jam-packed with excitement, twists and turns, fun, desperation and so many thoughts running through Evan's head. I really enjoyed it and look forward to Evan's future escapades....more
Based on e-book This novella starts at the beginning of the end, with nothing given away; then it quickly reverts to the beginning...a unique method thBased on e-book This novella starts at the beginning of the end, with nothing given away; then it quickly reverts to the beginning...a unique method that really pulls the reader into the book. The story takes place in a time I can remember and as such I can honestly say that Libby Fischer Hellman has absolutely captured the feelings and fears of that time of world war, as well as delving into the pressure cooker of the beginnings of the atomic bomb. Nuclear physics was at its highest priority, and Lena, a German Jew living in America, has already suffered the probable loss of her family to the concentration camps, and has just lost her husband, father of her young son. After this loss, and to support her son and herself, she finds herself back in the Physics Dept. of the university where she had worked prior to her son's birth, busily occupied with the humdrum portion, the paperwork. Now she works with famous scientists and government workers, albeit as a secretary. Everything in her life seems to have begun to return to some type of normal...or has it?
At this point, tension in the story takes a full swing into terror and brings the reader with it.Yet, though the tension builds, it all seems plausible. Once again, a time in my memory is relived when the world lived in fear, especially North America. What can one do in the situation Lena finds herself? The story is a classic good versus evil, but will Lena be able to reconcile her thoughts, her shame and the trap she has set herself? This book pulsates with a life of its own, believable, memorable and deadly. The author has an amazing way with words and is exceptional at toying with our minds if we set to wondering "What would we do in Lena's situation?" I read this one straight through at one sitting, with the story still reverberating in my mind....more