Here we are into the third entry into the Bewitching Mystery series. So what's Maggie into this time? The murder of an Amish ladies' man, one who's maHere we are into the third entry into the Bewitching Mystery series. So what's Maggie into this time? The murder of an Amish ladies' man, one who's married and has young kids, at that. She also has struggles with her love life and is overcoming her fear of the "unknown" and becoming more adept at using her gift.
May contain minor spoilers of previous books.
A few times throughout this short book (246 pages), I felt like throwing in the towel. After reading the first book, I really felt this was a series for me. One that I connected with and would be able to read book after book. Sadly it has not panned out this way. Mostly because of the main character, Maggie O'Neill, who I really liked in the first book. While there's nothing inherently wrong with her, I cannot relate to her and I don't like her too much either. She's rather a dull fish. Also, some of her thoughts feel forced, especially the "humorous" kind, which might be a big part of why I'm not liking her anymore. Well, whatever it is exactly, she's just not quite working for me. Though now that she's using her gift more, this may liven her up in the future, I don't know. The other thing is her presumptions, or rather the one presumption about the "relationship" between Marcus and Liss she's had since the first book. Where she ever got that idea in her head, I haven't a clue, but at least it was resolved by the end of this book. On the up side, she wasn't as dumb as in the previous book, A Charmed Death. All the other characters in the series I like and feel really add to the series, with maybe the exception of Tom, who is very closed-minded and basically just irritates me as a modern woman. I suppose a character who is that way is needed, and he is making some strides in opening his mind to new and frightening (to him) things, but I don't get Maggie's attraction to him; it just has not come across in the three books I've read. As for Maggie's other love interest, Marcus, while he's definitely way (way, way, way, way, way) more interesting than Tom, and I'm going to flip this, but I totally don't understand Marcus's interest in Maggie. I cannot think of anything that would intrigue him about her. I honestly can't, other than she's nice. A nice, boring, girl-next-door-type. Well, I guess that's something. So, the mystery.... Surprisingly, it seemed very minimal in this installment and the baddie very easy to figure out since there wasn't many, or any, other suspects. Still, it was tied up pretty neatly and made some sort of sense.
At the beginning of every book there is enough of a recap of characters and what's been going on so each book in the series can easily be read by itself, and not necessarily in order. While that is nice for a new reader or one who has gone a long time inbetween books, it makes for a repetitive nature if read too closely together, so I think it'll be a while before I pick up the next entry....more
This second installment of the Bewitching Mystery series focuses on the murder of a popular teenage girl who may have been hiding a seedy secret or twThis second installment of the Bewitching Mystery series focuses on the murder of a popular teenage girl who may have been hiding a seedy secret or two. Maggie delves into the case, while also developing her newfound powers and going on her first N.I.G.H.T.S. investigation.
After the slow-moving first seventy to eighty pages that was mostly background information on the town, the shop, characters and a recap of the last book, the story actually moved onto the main mystery in this book. I found the mystery very intriguing and well-done (I could easily envision it on TV, heck, I wouldn't be surprised if I had seen a similar story-line), and the author shed more light on Marcus, which was nice, but was also detrimental to other secondary characters, namely Felicity (a.k.a. Liss, which the first time Maggie mentioned that nickname I forgot for a minute who she was referring too. That probably should have been clarified more, I may have read the first book less than a month ago, but I can't remember everything and it's not like it's Melissa/Liss which I would have picked up on immediately. :P). So less Felicity, and also Steff and Tom, surprisingly enough. Any interaction Maggie had with Tom was strained, sometimes strange, and there was a bit at the end I didn't buy in regards to the two of them. Maggie herself was exactly the same as in the first book, except a bit dumber but I'll come to that a moment, so that disappointed me. It's not as if I expect her to grow every book, but a little development here and there or something new we didn't know about her wouldn't hurt. Although her development of her 'powers' has been nicely and realistically done, and the only problem I had was a scene at the end that seemed more magic than magick. Now we come to Maggie doing a couple of stupid things I never thought she'd be dumb enough to do, one of which led to her 'showdown' with the murderer. In that instance, she really had no need to do what she did to get him/her arrested or for any reason. It just seemed a contrivance to put her in the murderer's path. Overall, after the first fourth or so of the book, it was a decent yet flawed read, and I am going to pick up the next in the series with the hope that any minor problems I had will have been just a fluke....more
A well-written, engaging mystery with a protagonist, Maggie O'Neill, I (mostly) connected with and a plot nicely developed. The author did a good jobA well-written, engaging mystery with a protagonist, Maggie O'Neill, I (mostly) connected with and a plot nicely developed. The author did a good job setting up the series while maintaining the mystery within and developing Maggie and her quirks. Easy to read and smartly paced, with an engaging writing style, I'll definitely be picking up the next book in the series, if not all of them....more
In this third entry into the Where Are They Now? series, Tilda Harper finds herself doubting her abilities as a journalist after two unfortunate incidIn this third entry into the Where Are They Now? series, Tilda Harper finds herself doubting her abilities as a journalist after two unfortunate incidents go awry. Invited to meet and interview the star of the movie, which itself is based on a comic from the eighties that is now a cult classic, Tilda sets off. As she interviews the star, John Laryea, who was also in a musical-adventure television show as a teen, and various others involved with the film project, she witnesses the hit-and-run of Laryea and his assistant. While she discovers who was behind that "accident" and works to clear the main suspect's name, she also is hired to find out who Leviathan, the mysterious creator of the classic comic book series, Pharos, actually is.
A smart main character, Tilda may make some mistakes but she's never dumb and never annoying. She goes about her work in a very professional way even if she may have some sarcastic thoughts about someone or something. I really do like her, she's not a silly nitwit who gets by on luck or relies on a guy. The cast of characters are, as usual, interesting and incorporated very well into the plot. Along with the new faces, some familiar ones are here as well. Cooper, Tilda's best friend who always brings some lightheartedness, isn't as prominent in this book as he has been in the others, I believe it's only through phone conversations, but luckily the book doesn't suffer because of this. Tilda's sister, June is in it for a short amount of time that doesn't diminish her repartee with Tilda. Nick (Tilda's former and maybe future love interest) and his dad, Dom, are the two who feature predominantly since Dom's company is in charge of the film's security. Following the pattern of each book, a new roommate is introduced, though I'm sure she'll be gone by the next outing, this time the roommate is an animal collector, the latest being a snake Tilda's not too fond of.
The two plots are well-paced and complement each other nicely. Pretty much every page of the book was interesting, with clues so subtly embedded I didn't always pick up on them, that it held my attention to the very end. I love the concept of this series and while I liked the previous books, I believe this may just be the best one to date and hope there are many more to come.
Originally titled WITHOUT MERCY, CURSE OF THE KISSING COUSINS is a good start to the series, even with some flaws. The main character/sleuth/nostalgicOriginally titled WITHOUT MERCY, CURSE OF THE KISSING COUSINS is a good start to the series, even with some flaws. The main character/sleuth/nostalgic reporter, Tilda, is smart and likable, funny and realistic - basically, a solid lead (no pun intended, originally :P). The plot is interesting and for the most part, flowed smoothly; the same could be said about the additional characters. My favorites were fanboy Vincent and the kinda-sorta-cliche gay friend/co-worker, Cooper, who both added a lot to the book. Actually, none of the characters were unnecessary or overdone, from the less-than-perfect roommate to the back-stabber at Entertain Me! to the the lecherous computer geek, all contributed to the book as a whole. However, with all the good the book had, there was just something missing, besides Mercy. I can't quite put my finger on it, but even though I really did enjoy the book, there was just something off. The idea behind this series is really cool and I hope it gets better as it goes along. I look forward to WHO KILLED THE PIN-UP QUEEN? 3.5 stars...more
TRULY, MADLY is mystery, romance, chick-lit and a bit of paranormal all wrapped up in one delightful little package. Lucy Valentine is a nice, normal,TRULY, MADLY is mystery, romance, chick-lit and a bit of paranormal all wrapped up in one delightful little package. Lucy Valentine is a nice, normal, and a little bit quirky protagonist who never got on my nerves. It's nice to have a main character who isn't totally self-absorbed, ditzy, neurotic, clumsy and just plain irritating, basically just about every female you run across in lighter fiction books these days. All the other characters added to the story seamlessly and there wasn't one who was unnecessary. I enjoyed the psychic angle and thought that it was used in a fresh and interesting way. The plot was engaging and moved swiftly, and everything was well-written in an easy and smooth manner. I don't really have any major complaints and look forward to the next in the series.
The best word to use in describing this book is cute. So if you like cute, check it out, it's a nice piece of brain candy that won't offend your intelligence....more
I was really excited to read this book because I love the Psychic Eye Mysteries Victoria Laurie also writes. I'm not a picky reader, but I'm sorry, thI was really excited to read this book because I love the Psychic Eye Mysteries Victoria Laurie also writes. I'm not a picky reader, but I'm sorry, this didn't quite do it for me and I ended up very disappointed.
I was hoping they'd be different from the P. E. Mysteries, but still have similar elements of style. Even though I like romance, this book was supposed to be a mystery, hence A Ghost Hunter Mystery on the cover, but the mystery is thrown in around the rather awkwardly written romance between M. J. and Steven. I did think the first chapter was good because I thought M. J. would be different than Abby and more antisocial and a bit cranky (at least that's what I got from the first chapter), but then she ended up giggling throughout the whole book (seriously). What I like about the P. E. Mysteries are that they are fresh, fun, very well written, and the characters are (for the most part) believable. Not to mention, I got extremely tired of reading Steven's choppy English ('what do you say...?', 'Yes, that too', etc.), which made the dialogue even choppier and flatter than it already was, not to mention irritating as all get out. I don't know why V. L. couldn't have made him more fluent in English, especially since he was so well educated, it would only have been a small tweak in the plot. But I've noticed Ms. Laurie has a bit of a redundancy problem in her books, even if I do love Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye, which has the 'liar, liar, pants on fire' repetition, where when someone lies, Abby's 'inborn lie detector' goes off with that chant.
Overall, the dialogue was choppy, the plot and mystery were subpar, the characters were clichés and unbelievable (Doc was a nice addition though), and the whole book badly needed editing. I would not recommend this, although I'm sure many (as seen in the numerous four and five star ratings) would like this as it's not completely horrible; it's just not very fresh even if the subject is interesting. I haven't quite made up my mind if I'll pick up the next in the series....more