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Pumpkins in Paradise

(The TJ Jensen Paradise Lake Mysteries #1)

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  1,235 ratings  ·  233 reviews
Between volunteering for the annual pumpkin festival and coaching her girls to the state soccer finals, high school teacher Tj Jensen finds her good friend Zachary Collins dead in his favorite chair. When the handsome new deputy closes the case without so much as a “why” or “how,” Tj turns her attention from chili cook-offs and pumpkin carving to complex puzzles, prophetic ...more
Kindle Edition, 286 pages
Published September 6th 2016 by Henery Press (first published September 25th 2013)
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Average rating 4.05  · 
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 ·  1,235 ratings  ·  233 reviews

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Dollycas’s Thoughts

I must start out this review by saying Kathi Daley is an amazing writer. She has such an imagination. My only question is when does this woman sleep. She has several series all going at the same time so she also has to extremely organized and must write at warp speed. I am absolutely thrilled that Henery Press is re-releasing the previous books in this series so we can get all caught up for the new story coming our way in April 2017.

Now let me tell you about this first story P
Dec 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Welcome to Maggie's Hideaway, a family mountain resort in Serenity, Nevada and meet TJ Jensen a high school coach and just lately guardian of her 2 little half-sisters.
TJ doesn't believe that the death of her elderly, reclusive friend Zachary was due to natural causes. He used to create puzzles for TJ to solve and now searching for clues on how Zachary died she finds he left one last puzzle for her to solve that slowly reveals the events which lead him to living a reclusive life and ultimately
Deanie Nelder
Oct 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
Months ago, teacher TJ Jensen's life got a lot more complicated, when her estranged mother died, leaving her with custody of her two elementary-aged sisters. She moved back into the family's lakeside resort with her father and grandfather while otherwise trying to move forward.

While Zachary Collins was closer to her grandfather's age than TJ's, she'd been friends with their reclusive neighbor since childhood, and when he dies, things don't add up for TJ. When the police rule it a natural death,
Sep 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing
In Pumpkins In Paradise, the first book in the Tj Jensen Mystery series, author Kathi Daley weaves an intriguing cozy mystery tale that follows the amateur sleuth adventures of high school teacher Tj Jensen, as she tries to solve the murder of her friend Zachary Collins.

Set in the lakefront resort town of Serenity, Nevada, Tj utilizes logical puzzle clues that her elderly reclusive friend Zachary had taught her in order to search for the identity of his murderer and solve the mystery behind his
Chatting About
A cozy mystery that touched my heart as well as entertained me. At Maggie's Hideaway, a mountain lodge in a lakefront community in Serenity, Nevada; T.J. Jensen lives with her half-sisters Ashley & Gracie, her Dad, her Grandpa Ben, and her dog and cat. For years, she's been friends with an elderly recluse, Zachary Collins; who was in a terrible car accident when he young that left his face scarred, and his heart scarred, too. Time has moved forward, and Zachary has mastered a heartfelt plan to m ...more
Sep 01, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
It's been a long time since I read a good cozy mystery (weeks which is a long time for me) and I honestly can say this one wasn't one of them. I either got this for free or for 99 cents. It just wasn't that good. To begin with, there were several typos and issues with continuing the story. The book felt really disjointed in places. In addition, there were several times where a secondary character would tell the main character something and as the reader, we weren't told what it was. The characte ...more
Oct 27, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy-mystery
I love Kathi Daley but this one was just ok for me. It just didn't hold my interest as her other books do. There were puzzles the main character had to solve while trying to solve the murder. I did think that was neat and different.
Doward Wilson
May 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Meet Tj Jensen, high school coach and now guardian of two young half-sisters after the death of her Mother and her third husband. Tj and the girls live at Maggie's Hideaway, the family resort owned by her grandfather and father, on the lakeside of Serenity, Nevada. Tj has her hands full with her coaching duties for the girl's soccer team and volunteering for the annual Halloween festivities. Then when she goes to visit her reclusive friend Zachary Collins, she finds him dead in his armchair. Ini ...more
“Daley’s characters come to life on the page. Her novels are filled with a little mystery and a little romance which makes for a murderous adventure.” – Tonya Kappes, USA Today Bestselling Author of Fixin’ To Die
Carla Johnson-Hicks
3.5 Stars rounded up. This is the first book in the TJ Jensen Mystery series and it was enjoyable. We meet TJ, her family and her friends. When TJ's friend Zachary Collins is found dead in his house, it is initially ruled a natural death. When TJ finds an open bottle of scotch, she has questions. Zachary has not had a drink in years, and then finding out that he has changed his will and sold his house to developers, she knows something is not right. It takes TJ some hustling and convincing to ge ...more
Mummy's Naughty Corner
Well this was okay. I didn't really feel the characters or the story. It didn't really grab me. I liked the family life that was portrayed and the town vibe was cool. I liked the humor throughout. Not really a series for me to continue at the moment.
Jan 21, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
I enjoyed this mystery/scavenger hunt cozy. It was light, and the main character wasn't constantly worrying over her appearance or snagging a man. I also think that I could grow attached to the main character's father and sisters; the characters are usually what keep me coming back to a cozy series.
RO G'ma
Oct 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Pumpkins in Paradise is the first book in Kathi Daley’s Tj Jensen Mystery series. This book is a re-release of the original book that was published in September of 2013. The storyline and characters are well developed and the story flows along at a steady pace. The characters are likeable and relatable. This book sends strong messages of family, friendship, and loyalty. I highly recommend this book and look forward to reading the next adventure of Tj and her friends.

Tj Jensen is a high school te
May 03, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this first of a series book. Tj is a strong intelligent woman who follows her gut when she believes her friend has been murdered. I love the rest of the cast of characters. Her father and grandfather who you don't hear much about but give the feeling of a strong backbone in the family. Her younger sisters that she is raising, seem to be actual feelings a child would have at that age. The possible romance to come with Dylan, I love the fact when Tj would find something, he already knew ...more
Apr 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my favorite books by Kathi. I truly enjoyed all the riddles and puzzles that TJ had to figure out in order to know what her friend Zachary wanted her to find out. Kathi is the next Dan Brown. I felt like I was in one of Dan Brown's novel DaVinci Code in which Robert Langdon is deciphering symbols in order for him to save someone's life. Kathi did a very nice job of creating riddles which aren't easy to write that went well with her story. It was great to be in total suspense while ...more
Aug 14, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 Stars

This is the first book in the Tj Jensen Paradise Lake mystery series.

The first half of this book was not my favorite. I was screaming in my head to show not tell us what is going on. There were a lot of places where characters said what happened instead of seeing the action unfold. They were relating the past of Deputy Dylan Caine at one point and I found myself wishing for a flashback instead of what was presented to us.

I wish the characterization had been a bit more developed as well.
Mar 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
TJ Jensen lives a busy life, working as teacher and coach at the high school in Serenity, Nevada, and has been guardian of her 5- and 8-year-old half-sisters since her mother died three months earlier in Pumpkins in Paradise by Kathi Daley. In addition, she helps to manage her family's resort in this mountain glory, along with her father and grandfather. TJ is also unique in her friendship with the local elderly recluse, Zachary Collins, whom she first met on Halloween at the age of 12 when, on ...more
Millie Taylor
Jan 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audiobook
Yay, fluff! I blame my friends for turning me on to cozy mysteries. Yep, they're horrible influences, I swear.

TJ Jensen is a high school coach who lives in a small town. When she finds her recluse friend dead, she's sure it's murder, even though he was very old and in ill health.

This is a fun book to listen to. TJ is easygoing, smart, and caring. The only beef I had was that the author tended to spend a bit too much time describing her looks when it wasn't terribly necessary. Still, the other ch
Nov 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2019
Super cute mystery book and i really love that its not *divorced woman has to move back home bc horrible divorce* like so, so many books in this category are (not that i mind that but a change is nice). The only thing i didnt like was the offhand fatphobic- it was only once tho so not as bad as many books.
DNF ~13%.

I really wanted to like this. it seemed right up my ally as a Cozy and I especially liked the autumn setting. But unfortunately, it just couldn’t keep my interest. Nothing particularly wrong or bad about it, just didn’t hook me soon enough.
Rita Pierrottie
Feb 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Good Read

Good storyline, believable likeable characters, plenty of suspects and good writing overall. I definitely recommend not only this book, but the whole series.
Aug 25, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The audio was very well done and this was great introduction into TJ Jensen's life!
Sep 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing

Pumpkins in Paradise (A Tj Jensen Mystery Book 1) by [Daley, Kathi]

What a delightful, fun and great mystery is found in Pumpkins in Paradise A TJ Jensen Mystery by Kathi Daley. It is a great cozy mystery with fun believable characters and the best setting in a small town and lake resort in the mountains.

TJ helps her Dad run the resort while teaching school and being the ski coach as well as raising her two younger half sisters. The setting is perfect with the lake, cabins and resort. It is somew
DelAnne Frazee
Mar 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
Title: Pumpkins In Paradise - TJ Jensen Paradise Lake Mystery Book 1
Author: Kathi Daley
Publisher: Create Space Independent Publishing Platform
Published: 9-28-2013
ISBN: 10: 1492816612
ISBN: 13: 978-1492816614
Pages: 377
Genre: Mystery
Tags: Cozy
Overall Rating: Very Good

This is the type of book cozy lovers look for. It has a warm and likable heroine who steps up to solve the mystery when all are telling her there isn't one. Tj returns to Serenity following the death of her moth
Aug 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
**I received a copy of this book from Henery Press via NetGalley in exhange for a fair, honest review**

High school teacher TJ Jenson is busy. Between volunteering for Serenity, Nevada's annual pumpkin festival, teaching, coaching soccer, and raising her two half-sisters, her schedule is pretty full most of the time. But she always has time for her friend, an elderly recluse named Zachary. The two met on Halloween night years before when she tried to pull a childish prank on him and got caught. A
Jan 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another winner. So much to love about this book.

If you are as much of a Halloween addict as I am, if you enjoy reading about small towns and the true characters who live there, you want to grab Pumpkins in Paradise and find a corner to curl up in. As you read you will find yourself in the middle of the action.

TJ Jensen lives with her Father and Grandfather at a resort owned by the family. Her mother recently died and TJ inherited two young step sisters. Luckily TJ has a best friend with daughter
Aug 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Outgoing and athletic Tj Jensen has spent her life in the idyllic small town of Serenity. She's a high school coach and a volunteer for the many town special events and festivals. Tj also helps out at Maggie's Hideaway - her family's resort - and has recently taken over caring for her two young sisters after their parents were killed in an accident.

As Pumpkins in Paradise begins, everyone in Serenity is getting ready for Halloween. For Tj, the holiday is also the anniversary of when she met one
Sep 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy, netgalley-arc
This is the second time I have read this book, but the first time that I have listened to it. Narrated by Coleen Marlo and just as enjoyable the second time round as it was the first time.

TJ Jensen is juggling her job as a coach at the high school, working at the family lakeside resort and bringing up 2 very young half-sisters. She really could have done without finding her good friend Zackary Collins dead in his favourite chair.

But looking over the scene of where he died, things look out of pla
Stormi (BMReviewsohmy)
Heard a lot about this author but not had a chance to try her books out till now. I am really glad I did because this short cozy was a fun one.

TJ Jensen is still getting used to taking care of her two younger sisters after their mom had died and things are starting to go pretty good, then she went to visit a friend and finds him dead. When the new detective doesn't seem to think there has been any foul play she decides to look into things herself.

Her friend loved puzzles and he gave her bits to
 Reading Reindeer Emigrates To Pluto
Review of PUMPKINS IN PARADISE by Kathi Daley (TJ Jensen Mystery #1

What a winner! I love cozy mysteries, and this start of a new cozy series is just great! I'm reminded of an Agatha Christie village mystery, had Agatha set it in Nevada's mountain beauty, beside a picturesque lake. TJ Jensen is a great lady, a great friend, and a wonderful choice for heroine. In tiny Serenity, Nevada, she is part of a close-knit family which owns and operates "Maggie's Hideaway," a lakeside resort. When a very go
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Kathi lives with her husband, kids, grandkids, and dogs in beautiful Lake Tahoe. When she isn't writing, Kathi likes to read (preferably at the beach or by the fire), cook (preferably something with chocolate or cheese,) and garden (planting and planning not weeding). She also enjoys spending time on the water when she's not hiking, biking, or snowshoeing, the miles of desolate trails surrounding ...more

Other books in the series

The TJ Jensen Paradise Lake Mysteries (10 books)
  • Snowmen in Paradise (Tj Jensen Mystery #2)
  • Bikinis in Paradise (Tj Jensen Mystery #3)
  • Christmas in Paradise (Tj Jensen Mystery #4)
  • Puppies in Paradise (TJ Jensen Paradise Lake Mystery #5)
  • Halloween in Paradise (Tj Jensen Mystery #6)
  • Treasure in Paradise (TJ Jensen Paradise Lake Mystery #7)
  • Fireworks in Paradise (TJ Jensen Paradise Lake Mystery #8)
  • Beaches in Paradise (TJ Jensen Paradise LakeMystery #9)
  • Thanksgiving in Paradise (TJ Jensen Mystery, #10)

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