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What Are You Reading / Reviews > What Are You Reading? Reviews: April - June 2018

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Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
As many of us are running out of things to read: Voracious Readers want to know.....

Title & Author

Star Rating: (without spaces) & # 9 7 3 3 gives you ★

Did you like it? Why/why not?

Synopsis


message 2: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Death Sits Down to Dinner (Lady Montfort Mystery, #2) by Tessa Arlen

Death Sits Down to Dinner, Tessa Arlen

★ ★ ★

Set in the Downton Abbey era:

Lady Monfort & her husband are invited to the 39th birthday dinner for Sir Winston Churchill at the home of her friend Hermione Kingsley. Much to everyone's dismay one of the guests is found stabbed dead in the dining room during the evening's music recital.

Lady Monfort & her Country-House Housekeeper, Mrs. Jackson work together to find out who killed the man, with little or no cooperation from Hermione's household, as Hermione has forbidden everyone in the house from discussing the murder.

It is discovered that he was the chair of Hermione's Chimney Sweep Boy's Charity and upon further investigation that he was skimming from the charity while being blackmailed by the Matron, which points a finger at Hermione.

I liked the plot/story and I liked most of the characters.

What I found tedious was all the supposition, self-talk, and the over-abundant repetitiveness of the Red Herrings, which means I skimmed much of Lady Monfort's & Mrs. Jackson's personal thoughts.


message 3: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
A Death by Any Other Name (Lady Montfort Mystery #3) by Tessa Arlen

A Death by Any Other Name, Tessa Arlen




Set in 1914 upon the declaration of WW I:

When Mrs. Jackson is approached by by the newly fired cook from a neighboring estate for poisoning the kedgeree a gluttonous guest during a gathering of amateur rose cultivators, she takes the request for help to Lady Monfort.

Lady Monfort is in the midst of working on her roses w/ (real life) Gertrude Jekyll and with the consent of Miss Jekyll wrangle an invitation to the gathering on the premise that Miss Jekyll will select the winner of the Rosarians' annual competition.

Miss Jekyll, Lady Monfort, & Mrs. Jackson all head out for a short stay at the neighboring estate, Hyde Place, in order to figure out who actually poisoned the man, who, although married, turned out to be quite the Ladies' Man.

The story had great potential, but I felt much of it was incomplete. I loathed most all of the characters and I was able to get past all the speculation & Red Herrings to figure out "who done it".

There was quite a bit of distraction from the basic story by the insertion of the Historical facts of the approaching war. Again there was quite a bit of self-talk & war information that I skimmed over.

I also found Mrs. Jackson to be wishy-washy when it came to her progressing relationship.


message 4: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Death of an Unsung Hero (Lady Montfort Mystery #4) by Tessa Arlen

Death of an Unsung Hero, Tessa Arlen

★ ★ ★ ★

Shades of Downton Abbey meets WW I:

As was the trend in England; Lady & Earl of Monfort have turned the recently emptied Dower House, Haversham Hall, into an auxiliary hospital for English WW I officers suffering from what was then known as "shell-shock" & "neurasthenia".

Mrs. Jackson, former Housekeeper for Lady Monfort is now the Quartermaster (administrator) of the hospital, working closely w/ the patients & scheduling the various staff.

One of the quieter patients, Captain Sir Evelyn Bray, is found in the kitchen garden with is head bashed in, both Lady Monfort & Mrs. Jackson work to find his killer... However accounting for all of the staffs', volunteers' & the other patients' whereabouts within the 2 hour span of his death is quite a grueling task.

To make matters worse, Captain Bray's younger brother has come up to visit and must be told of the murder.

I found this book to be much better than the previous two that I read.

The information on WW I English auxiliary hospitals & the new manner of treating shell-shock was very interesting, as therapy consisted of working on the land, gardening, painting, talking things out, & writing; all these were incorporated into the story and had a major part of solving the murder.

Amazingly there were many in England who were opposed to the auxiliary hospitals and kinder more intelligent type of treatment given to officers and they considered these traumatized men slackers, accusing them of cowardice and merely on an unnecessary vacation leave.

The work that continued throughout most of the English countryside estates by those residents who did not go to fight along with that of the volunteers and how families coped was interesting as well.

There was not as much boring supposition nor Red Herrings to confuse the story line, and I was able to guess out the murderer & motive early on but not the how or the necessary accomplice.


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Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 1141 comments Mod
Missoula Rape and the Justice System in a College Town by Jon Krakauer
Missoula – Jon Krakauer – 4****
Subtitle: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town. Krakauer explores the issue of acquaintance rape, and particularly, the ways in which universities dismiss victim complaints in favor of all-star athletes. Disturbing and distressing, but important enough to read. Most rapists are NOT strangers in ski masks hiding in dark alleys; rather, they are the boys next door or men in the office.
LINK to my review


message 6: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
In Such Good Company Eleven Years of Laughter, Mayhem, and Fun in the Sandbox by Carol Burnett

In Such Good Company..., Carol Burnett

★ ★

Did you know that Carol Burnett's show was originally one full hour? That she originally worked w/ Garry Moore? She once fired Harvey Korman? Vikki Lawrence was only 18 when Carol Burnett hired her on the basis of a fan letter?

This book is not a biography, rather the history of the 11 years the Carol Burnett Show. In it she talks about working with her regular cast; Harvey Korman, Vikki Lawrence, Lyle Waggoner, & Tim Conway as well as her numerous guests.

I'm adding this to "Strong Women" on PBT simply because Carol Burnett was raised by her grandmother (whom the ear tug was for) & took care of her daughters in between rehearsing... It was stated in one small part how she'd take her daughters to school, take a break to pick them up & take them home. Also at the time, there were no women in comedy who had their own shows, so for Carol Burnett to make it in the same realm as Sid Caesar, Garry Moore, Red Skelton, Jack Benny, & Jackie Gleason she would have to have been very strong.

There was only one guest star she didn't get along with who was rude, nasty & walked out before taping. I've researched & can not find out who this was; all that was said he was considered the "One & Only", he was short, & "on something".....

I found the included script outtakes boring, and after awhile the book became repetitive and anecdotal, which was why I rated it as low as I did.


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Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 1141 comments Mod
With Hemingway A Year in Key West and Cuba by Arnold Samuelson
With Hemingway – Arnold Samuelson – 4****
Subtitle: A Year in Key West and Cuba. This is Samuelson’s memoir of a year spent with Ernest Hemingway, learning from the master about writing and living. I can definitely see the influence of Hemingway’s style, and yet Samuelson’s writing is all his own.
LINK to my review


message 8: by Laurie (new)

Laurie  (laugal) | 132 comments Currently reading AUNTIE POLDI AND THE SICILIAN LIONS by Mario Giordano. Auntie Poldi and the Sicilian Lions by Mario Giordano I am loving htis book so far. Auntie Poldi wants to leave Germany and retire to Sicily with a view of the sea and where she can drink herself to death. Auntie is quite a colorful character, love all the characters.As soon as she is in Sicily she is investigating murder. I can't wait to go into her world everyday.I should finish tonight and that is sad.I hope there will be more Auntie Poldi in the future.A review to follow.......................


message 9: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Death & the Viking's Daughter (An Auction Block Mystery #4) by Loretta Ross

Death & the Viking's Daughter, Loretta Ross

★ ★ ★ ★

I saw that someone else had read this & given it a good review so I thought I'd try it. What I didn't know was it is # 4 or #5 in a series that begins with the name Death (pronounced Deeth), so once again I'm ROOing.

What I also realized when I put the other books in the series on hold, is each book's title begins with "Death", and then I had an "Ah...." moment, because I would have sworn that Death's fiancée, Wren, was the main character.

Death & Wren are looking for a new home together as they are planning on getting married. Both like the home Sandburg, which is infamous for the body "Bob" buried in the rose garden. When the Sandburg home was slated to be destroyed by rising waters of a proposed dam, the only way to save it, was for the land to have a graveyard on it.... The County Sheriff had a cold case & unidentified bones, so Myrna Sandburg gave the bones a burial & a stone in her rose garden, thus a "graveyard".

Wren is also working on auctioning off the land, building & contents of the defunct Ozark Hills Supper Club, which was the exact copy of another famous supper club in Kentucky that burned to the ground, when a member of the Viking reenactment group falls off a bridge after seeing what he believes is the ghost of his long lost daughter. The ghost turns out to be two children dressed up in a costume they found above the also defunct yacht club, which belonged to the missing young woman, but is now covered in dried blood.

Adding to the excitement is Death's investigation into a forgery of a painting, which expands to a forged piece of pottery & forged gold coins... all related to the local Viking families & the former owner of the supper club.

The book was light reading and it held my interest. The characters were mostly believable & fun. The manner in which the author connected the dots & tied everything together was neatly written and not wildly unbelievable....

Needless to say, I ordered the others in the series & will begin at the beginning.


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Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 1141 comments Mod
Kissing in America by Margo Rabb
Kissing in America – Margo Rabb – 2.5**
This is a young-adult “romance” with very little romance. Instead, it is more of a coming-of-age story. Eva learns some important life lessons – about grief, friendship, and forgiveness. Final verdict: it’s a decent YA novel. But not really my cup of tea.
LINK to my review


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Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 1141 comments Mod
The Radium Girls The Dark Story of America's Shining Women by Kate Moore
The Radium Girls – Kate Moore – 5*****
Moore brings to life the stories of the brave women who painted luminous watch dials in the early 20th century, using radium-infused paint, which ultimately became their death sentence. The reader is in turns incensed and outraged, surprised by the ignorance and cavalier attitudes, and heartbroken by the pain and suffering these women endured.
LINK to my review


message 12: by Book Concierge (new)

Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 1141 comments Mod
One Of Us Is Wrong (Sam Holt, #1) by Donald E. Westlake
One of Us Is Wrong – Donald Westlake (writing as Samuel Holt – 3***
Westlake/Holt’s crime capers are not great literature, but they are loads of fun to read. Fast-paced, likeable characters, some funny dialogue, a great sidekick (I need a “Robinson” in my life!), leggy ladies, handsome leading man, car chases, guns, and crazy coincidences.
LINK to my review


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Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 1141 comments Mod
The Nest by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney
The Nest – Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney – 3.5***
This is a wonderful debut novel, a character-driven tale that explores sibling relations, family dynamics, and a host of other issues that require open communication … something the Plumb siblings have never learned to do. I got drawn into their dynamic fairly quickly, but I think Sweeney was a bit too ambitious, covering many more issues and including many different points of view. I’ll be interested to see what Sweeney’s next novel is about.
LINK to my review


message 14: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
A Different Kind of Evil (Agatha Christie #2) by Andrew Wilson

A Different Kind of Evil, Andrew Wilson

MINUS ★

KIRKUS REVIEW:

"Free at last of the scandal of her notorious 1926 disappearance—though not quite yet of her adulterous spouse—Agatha Christie sails for the Canary Islands at the behest of the secret agent who helped rescue her from those complications (A Talent for Murder, 2017).

The first death, that of Secret Intelligence Service agent Douglas Greene, precedes Christie’s passage. In fact, it’s what makes John Davison press her to go to Tenerife in the first place. Nor does the second wait for her arrival. As Christie looks on in horror, Gina Trevelyan, a wronged wife who’s stowed away aboard the Gelria, launches herself over the side of the ship in a frenzy of grief, her body lost forever. Sculptor Helen Hart, the other woman whose affair with Guy Trevelyan has brought her to the ship as well, baffles Christie by taking moral responsibility for Gina’s death shortly after announcing, “I’m pleased the bitch is dead.” The Canaries themselves, home to sinister occultist Gerard Grenville, are equally dangerous for two of Christie’s fellow passengers from the Gelria and indeed for the celebrated novelist herself, who ends up hiding in a closet from which she watches as another passenger’s pearls are stolen by someone she can readily identify but declines to do so, even when Inspector Artemi Narciso Núñez arrests Christie herself for the theft and throws her in jail. The only way she’ll be able to help in solving Douglas Greene’s murder, it seems, will be if Wilson abates his fondness for local color long enough to allow His Majesty’s most unlikely secret agent to decide that it’s high time to link all the felonies that clutter this tangled tale.

The problem with casting a famous real-life mystery writer as your detective is that you can’t help inviting comparisons between your work and hers. It’s no shame to say that Wilson can’t stand up to such a comparison, but it’s no recommendation either."

This book was gawd-awful....

This male author used the voice of a happy-go-lucky younger woman of a much later era. There is Not-One-Iota of any similarity between the writing of Agatha Christie and this author, nor does his character resemble in any-way-shape-or-form the real Dame Agatha....

I couldn't stand this book, it was weak and over-the-top unrealistic...

I give it a pass..... as in Pass This One By


message 15: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Death in the Stars (Kate Shackleton, #9) by Frances Brody

Death in the Stars, Frances Brody



This is the last of this series that I'll be reading...

Kate Shackleton receives a letter from someone she once helped alluding to a reference he gave a famous personage. When the diva contacts Kate and asks for Kate's help at an eclipse viewing party, she tells Kate she has a foreboding of something bad to take place.

When during the event the company's comedian disappears & is then found dead it is up to Kate to solve who-done-it.

As it turns out many of the male co-stars of the Diva have also died of mysterious circumstances.

There was too much supposition for me & internal chatter. Kate's usual helpers were not really in the book that much and the other characters left me bored & uninterested....


message 16: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Death of a Dishonorable Gentleman (Lady Montfort Mystery, #1) by Tessa Arlen

Death of a Dishonorable Gentleman, Tessa Arlen

★ ★ ★ ★

This is the first in the Lady Monfort/Mrs. Jackson series and I really liked it, even if I did figure a part of it out!

While taking a break from the preparations for the Costume Ball of the Season, Lady Monfort witnesses her son, Lord Haversham, beating his cousin, Teddy, and overhears her son threatening to wring Teddy's neck....

The morning after the ball, Lord & Lady Monfort's disreputable nephew, Teddy Mallory, is found battered & hung from a secluded gibbet... and it is discovered that both an upstairs maid & a young society woman are missing

Fearing for her son, Lady Monfort confronts her son; as it turns out the beating was well deserved for Teddy had attempted to kill his cousin's dog by self-drowning due to over-exertion in the lake. After Lord Haversham rescued the dog, Teddy, made a hateful comment regarding the dog's age & physical being, thus receiving a beating in response.

In an attempt to protect her son from an over-zealous, rude & graceless London Inspector, Lady Monfort requests the help of her housekeeper Mrs. Jackson in looking into Teddy's murder as well as the disappearance of the two young women.

There is no lack of suspects, as it turns out that Teddy was a blackmailer, card cheat, as well as an odious reprobate and got his just desserts.

Although the alliance between Lady Monfort & Mrs. Jackson is an uneasy one as there is a crossing of the usual boundaries between Employer & Employee, which during the Edwardian era, would have been unthinkable; in this book & the rest of the series that strained alliance works and the two women eventually overcome their mutual uneasiness and settle into a formidable investigating pair.


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Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 1141 comments Mod
Murder at the Bad Girl's Bar and Grill by N.M. Kelby
Murder At the Bad Girl’s Bar and Grill – N.M.Kelby – 3***
Reminds me of Carl Hiassen, but not quite so well written. Still it’s a fun, ridiculous romp of a tale that kept me entertained and engaged despite its total outlandishness. Frankly, none of these characters made sense to me, and the plot was completely unbelievable. But I did laugh out loud a few times and it was a fast read.
LINK to my review


message 18: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
The Darkling Bride by Laura Andersen

The Darkling Bride, Laura Anderson

★ ★ ★ ★ 1/2

"ABOUT THE DARKLING BRIDE
Three generations of Irish nobles face their family secrets in this spellbinding novel from the award-winning author of the Boleyn King trilogy.

The Gallagher family has called Deeprath Castle home for seven hundred years. Nestled in the Wicklow Mountains of Ireland, the estate is now slated to become a public trust, and book lover and scholar Carragh Ryan is hired to take inventory of its historic library. But after meeting Aidan, the current Viscount Gallagher, and his enigmatic family, Carragh knows that her task will be more challenging than she’d thought.

Two decades before, Aidan’s parents died violently at Deeprath. The case, which was never closed, has recently been taken up by a new detective determined to find the truth. The couple’s unusual deaths harken back a century, when twenty-three-year-old Lady Jenny Gallagher also died at Deeprath under mysterious circumstances, leaving behind an infant son and her husband, a renowned writer who never published again. These incidents only fueled fantastical theories about the Darkling Bride, a local legend of a sultry and dangerous woman from long ago whose wrath continues to haunt the castle.

The past catches up to the present, and odd clues in the house soon have Carragh wondering if there are unseen forces stalking the Gallagher family. As secrets emerge from the shadows and Carragh gets closer to answers—and to Aidan—could she be the Darkling Bride’s next victim?"

https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/bo...

Wow, what a spellbinding book.... Mysterious, lyrical, interesting characters w/ tragic back-stories

I did figure out who-done-it.... but that didn't prevent me from enjoying the outcome of the mystery.

Strong women? Definitely: the ghosts of Jenny & Lily; Great-aunt Nessa; Carragh; and Detective Sibeal McKenna.


message 19: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
The Doldrums and the Helmsley Curse (The Doldrums #2) by Nicholas Gannon

The Doldrums and the Hemsley Curse Nicholas Gannon

★ ★ 1/2

Arthur Hemsley, stuck in a boarding school due to a fiasco w/ tigers & a polar bear (that must have been book 1) is about to return home for the holidays....

His grandparents who are members of an Exploration Society are also on their way home after being lost on an iceberg for the past 10 +/- years; but there are some people who do not want to see elder Hemsleys returning and will do all they can to discredit them.

Arthur's friends Adelaide & Oscar are more than happy to spend time w/ Arthur again & help clear the names of his grandparents.

Adventure, mystery, intrigue, mayhem, good guys vs. bad guys, & excitement....

I found the book to be a bit long and the dialog a bit draggy, which is why I took off 1 ★.

I was impressed by the physical quality of the book, it was sturdy & had heavy paper pages.


message 20: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Death & the Redheaded Woman (An Auction Block Mystery #1) by Loretta Ross

Death and the Redheaded Woman, Loretta Ross

★ ★ ★ ★

From Goodreads:

"As someone who appraises and prepares houses for auction, Wren Morgan has seen her share of fixer-uppers. But when she arrives at her newest project, Wren is unprepared to find something she can't easily fix--a naked, dead man.

Soon after her disturbing discovery, Wren meets Death Bogart, a private investigator and surety recovery agent who's looking for the famous missing jewels of the Campbell family. When it becomes clear that there are actually two sets of lost family jewels, Wren and Death team up to solve not only the mystery of the jewels, but also the naked man's murder. With their case growing more and more complex, though, will they be able to catch the killer and bring home the loot?"

The dialogue had me laughing out loud... there is quite a bit of humor, mystery , suspense & romance.

The book held my interest and I found the main characters to be quite enjoyable.


message 21: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Death & The Brewmaster’s Widow (An Auction Block Mysteries, #2) by Loretta Ross

Death and the Brewmaster's Widow, Loretta Ross

★ ★

Randy , Deaths' younger brother, was a firefighter and allegedly died in a fire at a local brewery.

Death (pronounced "deeth") & Wren are going back to close his brother Randy's house & put the contents up for auction. When Randy's Capitan gives Death Randy's badge, which had fallen off before being called to the fatal fire, Death notices that the number on the badge that the Capitan has given him does not match the numbers on the badge & helmet that are among Randy's belongings.

Then there are are the photos of Randy in the local paper during a school visit & again the badge shows a different number than that of the badge Death has been given.

The man who owns the empty brewery where the fire was that claimed Randy turns out to be arson... he has become seriously ill and is kept secured & sedated in his bedroom by his current wife, who it turns out will inherit nothing if she is not married to him longer than any of his previous wives...

Oddly enough, he is a distant cousin of Death & Randy and has an uncanny resemblance to Randy

I found the premise of this book so off-the-wall & unbelievable that I had to mark it down 2 ★. Nothing about it rang true and I would have liked a different explanation for the discrepancy of the two badges.


message 22: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Death & the Gravedigger's Angel (An Auction Block Mystery #3) by Loretta Ross

Death & the Gravedigger's Angel, Loretta Ross

★ ★ ★

Former Army Medic, Tony Dozier, is accused of killing a member of the hate group that disrupted his (Muslim) wife's funeral. Tony says he saw his wife's ghost beckoning to him and came across the bleeding man & tried to save him. Tony's defense hires Death (deeth), to prove Tony insane.

Meanwhile, Death's fiancée, Wren, is cataloging the contents of the neighboring Hadleigh House and comes across detailed drawings from WW I depicting a soldier & his Angel of mercy, which turns out to be of the local Gravedigger's monument stone, which is what Tony saw the night of funeral.

Adding to the mystery is the newly dead man in a Confederate Uniform found on the Vengeance Trail: where legend tells of a Confederate Soldier that lost his life after robbing & killing the occupants of the house, then stealing a horse & riding to escape; only to have the horse run under a low branched tree, breaking the soldier's neck, knocking the soldier off, & leaving behind the body.

I liked the combined stories they held my interest. I liked most of the characters, however, I found Death's brother Randy was a constant source of irritation. His mouth was always sarcastic, putting Death down, and he little to do with anything other than being an irritating leftover from the previous book, which kept this from a 4th ★. The Keystone auctioneering family was funny as always.


message 23: by Book Concierge (new)

Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 1141 comments Mod
Old Heart by Peter Ferry
Old Heart – Peter Ferry – 3.5***
85-year-old Tom decides to “run away” after his adult children make plans to forcibly move him to a retirement community. If it hadn’t been for an F2F book club I probably would never have come across this little gem of a novel. I loved these characters (or loved to hate … in a couple of cases). In a short work the author addresses issues of aging, marriage (good and bad), lost opportunities, holding on to one’s dreams, taking chances, being responsible, and the meaning of love.
LINK to my review

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Birds of a Feather (Maisie Dobbs, #2) by Jacqueline Winspear
Birds Of a Feather – Jacqueline Winspear – 3***
The second book in the Maisie Dobbs series. She is a resourceful, intelligent, assertive young woman, who listens carefully and shows compassion when helping others confront their demons. Billy Beale is a wonderful sidekick and I like the relationship between Maisie and Inspector Stratton of Scotland Yard.
LINK to my review


message 24: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Our Lady of Immaculate Deception (Roxy Abruzzo Mystery, #1) by Nancy Martin

Our Lady of Immaculate Deception, Nancy Martin

★ ★ ★ ★

Roxy Abruzzo, tough & feisty, runs an architectural reclamation business, not always on the up & up, but hey, it makes her a living.

Her current client, Julius Hyde, is dead as. His wife, Monica, has been looting her mother-in-law's house of high-end artwork for years and has torched it, which is where Roxy comes in...

While salvaging the remains of the once great house Roxy stumbles upon a Greek antiquity of Achilles hidden in the garden and with the help of her loyal but not-so-bright muscle, Nooch, Roxy adds the statue to her cache of salvage items.

Then there is Dorothy (Dodo) Hyde, matriarch, Julius' mother; living in a residential home and going in and out of a coma as desired... She's willing to write off her losses, after all these are her progeny, but not Achilles. Dodo sends her attorney, Henry, to get back her treasure or else.

Also in the mix: Sage, Roxy's daughter who is living with Loretta, widowed aunt & tough-as-nails attorney; Flynn, Sage's father, ex-marine, & chef; and Roxy's Uncle Carmine, who is ill & would like Roxy to take over his business for him.

I liked Roxy, her crazy family, & friends and I didn't figure out who-done-it, but I really didn't try as I was swept away with the story.

There is no end to the action and on-the-edge humor, which can be compared to Carl Hiaasen, although not as finely crafted. But the book held my interest, I was up until 4:00 am in order to finish it.

The book seemed very familiar to me, the name Abruzzo rang a bell. Then I remembered that I had begun another series, The Blackbird Sisters (which I dropped) had a character named Nick Abruzzo in it. Turns out to be by the same author. I know I'll not be returning to complete The Blackbird Sisters but I'll give Roxy a second go around.


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Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 1141 comments Mod
So Brave, Young and Handsome by Leif Enger
So Brave, Young and Handsome – Leif Enger – 3***
I was caught up in the road trip. The story takes place in 1915, when automobiles were scarce, and more people lived in the rural area of America. As Monte and Glendon head West and South, the landscape virtually becomes a character in the novel.
LINK to my review

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Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis
Lucky Jim – Kingsley Amis – 1*
Maybe I’m too far past my college years. Perhaps it’s the dry British humor. Or the 1950s setting and writing style (first published in 1954). But I just don’t see the humor in this. I struggled to finish and did so only because I had committed to a buddy read.
LINK to my review


message 26: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Sticky Fingers (A Roxy Abruzzo Mystery #2) by Nancy Martin

Sticky Fingers, Nancy Martin

★ ★ ★ ★ 1/2

Roxy Abruzzo's architectural salvage business isn't doing so well; not only does she have a cash-flow problem, she is lacking the money that her daughter Sage needs for her tuition.

Roxy's Uncle Carmine, Pittsburgh's mob boss, knows this & sends his attorney, Marvin Weiss, to offer Roxy a job.

Someone has sent Carmine a cryptic contract note requesting a kidnapping. Local museum curator, Clarice Crabtree (Roxy's former high school nemesis) is on someone's short list and that person want Clarice gone.

But Roxy has a heart and goes to warn Clarice. Between Clarice being her same nasty self and Rooney, Roxy's dog, digging through a freezer of old bones; Roxy forgets what she actually came to do and Clarice leaves before Roxy can warn her of the contract.

When Clarice is found dead, floating in the river & trussed up in a rug the problems really begin.

It turns out that Clarice had two husbands and two children that she was supporting, all in a very expensive lifestyle; her daughter Sugar, an Olympian ice skater hopeful and her son Richie, an up & coming avant garde dress designer lacked nothing to aid them making their dreams come true.

Meanwhile Clarice had put her father, a famous paleontologist, in a nursing home for Alzheimer's patients, but he escapes & returns home in an attempt to protect his frozen bones...

Also in the mix are:
Nooch, Roxie's friend & co-worker
Flynn, Roxie's former, Sage's father, & chef extraordinaire whose newest soup (made for a rockstar who collects dinosaur bones) has a secret ingredient that not even Flynn knows about
Aunt Loertta, who raised Roxy
Sister Bob, former nun & Loretta's cousin
Gino Martinelli, who owes Carmine money & receives an unpleasant visit from Roxy
Zack Cleary, Sage's on-off again boyfriend & police academy cadet
Adasha Washington, Roxy's friend, neighbor & ER Doctor who helps abused women find shelter

Add all these people and several others into the mix and you have a zany, rollicking, funny story that rivals Carl Hiaasen.


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The Swans of Fifth Avenue by Melanie Benjamin
The Swans of Fifth Avenue – Melanie Benjamin – 4****
Benjamin turns her attention to New York City’s social elite in the 1950s and 1960s. I was completely entranced and immersed in this deliciously gossipy tale. Benjamin really puts the reader into this glittering celebrity world. I could almost taste the caviar and champagne.
LINK to my review

--------- * * * * * * * * --------

Dispatches from the Edge A Memoir of War, Disasters, and Survival by Anderson Cooper
Dispatches From the Edge – Anderson Cooper – 3***
This is Cooper’s memoir of how he came to be a senior anchor for CNN. The chapters are divided according to various memorable assignments covering war in Bosnia-Herzegovina, famine in Niger, a tsunami in Sri Lanka, and culminating with his coverage of Hurricane Katrina.
LINK to my review


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Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
The Archaeology of Hollywood Traces of the Golden Age by Paul G. Bahn

The Archaeology of Hollywood, Paul G. Bahn

★ ★ 1/2

Traces is correct.... there is very little that remains & today it is just a place to sightsee what one can only imagine Hollywood once was.

I liked the premise of the book, but I seriously wanted more... definitely more photos would have helped to better complete the descriptions of what once was.

The writing was, well, not that good; the basic information & explanations were enough; however, the use of exclamations and phrases such as inferences as to what a future archaeologist or alien might think should they excavate former stages & sets were odd.

The necrology in the back was interesting: which stars died when & where many are interred, in fact there were many stars from the 70's & 80's that I had no idea died...

I'm sure there are better books on this subject, but this one is a good beginning and the necrology really was interesting.


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At the Water's Edge by Sara Gruen
At the Water’s Edge – Sara Gruen – 2**
Historical fiction / romance … or is that “hysterical” fiction. Maddie gives “hysterical women” a bad name. Still there’s some suspense and Gruen keeps the plot moving. Add the Loch Ness monster and a ghost to the mix. Not to mention World War II happening in the background.
LINK to my review


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Death Comes in Through the Kitchen by Teresa Dovalpage

Death Comes in Through the Kitchen, Teresa Dovalpage

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Wow: what a powerful book; although classified as "mystery" it is political as well. It is multi-layered and the characters are as real as one can get without being caricatures.

I was drawn in by the cover, but the title reminded me of a typical cozy, which this thankfully, certainly is not.

Matt, a food journalist from San Diego, returns to Cuba thinking that he is going to marry Yarmila, the editor of a very popular Cuban food blog written in English.

Matt arrives w/ Anne, the American cougar, who is there to hook-up w/ Yony, her Cuban boy-toy. Yony is a brisnero, a seller of hard to come by goods & taxi driver.

When Yarmila, Yarmi, does not meet Matt at the airport as promised, he goes to her apartment and finds her dead floating in her bathtub.

Matt meets & spends times w/ all of Yarmi's friends & acquaintances:
* Isabel (who runs La Calderosa, a restaurant that she partners w/ Yarmi) Isabel's husband & son (Pato Macho, Yarmi's Cuban lover);
*Yony, the purveyor of food & goods for la Caldosa & Yarmi;
*Taty, el mariconcito who works in Isabel's restaurant & a drag club; *Ramon, who runs the guest hostel that both Anne & Matt stay in,
*Carmela & Pablo, "los gusanos" who write about & publish the truth about Fidel's inhumane Cuba
* Policia Marlene, who is investigating Yarmi's murder w/ her former instructor turned Santero:
*Padrino, who both find out that Yarmi wasn't who everyone believed her to be....

This book was not only well written, but it held my interest; I only stopped reading @ 4:00 am because my eyes finally closed & refused to open.

A thick plot, sidewinders, and in the midst of it all one grand deception that blows up the lives of everyone Yarmi knew & feigned to love.

Oh yeah! recipes.... there are fantastic Cubano Recipes!


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We Band of Angels The Untold Story of American Nurses Trapped on Bataan by the Japanese by Elizabeth M. Norman
We Band of Angels – Elizabeth M. Norman – 5*****
Subtitle: The Untold Story of American Nurses Trapped on Bataan by the Japanese. The book details the personal stories of the nurses and civilians interred as well as the historical events. Norman did extensive research and was able to interview a number of the surviving nurses as well as the families of others who had passed on. Their story is gripping and inspiring
LINK to my review


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A Whisper of Bones (Jane Lawless #25) by Ellen Hart

A Whisper of Bones, Ellen Hart

1/2

It was ok, which made me decide that I won't be reading another in this series.

Jane Lawless has allowed her previous girlfriend, Julia (who is sick w/ cancer), to move back in making it difficult for Jane to deal with her feelings (so it's a damn good thing she takes a case that has her, Jane, staying elsewhere).

Taking a break from a conference, Britt goes to visit her aunts and asks about her cousin Timmy, whom she had met & spent time with during their Grandfather's funeral. Both women deny that there ever was a Timmy and that Britt is making up stories.

Britt hires Jane to investigate, when Jane goes to question the aunts she finds that the aunts are taking in boarders, so Jane decides to rent a room from the aunts.

Aunt Lena is a mouthy alcoholic confined to a wheelchair and Aunt Eleanor is a nice calm church-going woman, whose problematic son, Frank, lives in the basement.

When the garage burns down, the arson investigator falls through a trap door and discovers the bones of a murdered man....

The other characters:
* Jane's friend & partner Cordelia, who hates Julia, and also rents a room from the aunts
* Butch a neighbor of the aunts
* Pastor Dare who supports Eleanor by keeping her secrets
* Novack another neighbor & neighborhood Watch Block Captain
* Wendy, Frank's wife, who wants a divorce as Frank becomes more violent
* Quentin, another boarder & Paranormal Investigator

This is "popular gay mystery series" -- Entertainment Weekly

But that is not why I didn't like the book: the basic plot, while interesting became convoluted with the addition of the extraneous characters, their issues, and their hidden agendas. There were several loose ends, the conclusion came together all too conveniently, and the additional love story in which Butch was featured was written as a bad sinister stalker Red Herring.

I found this book as a simply awful piece of writing mired in what seemed to be confusion about just what to do with all the characters & their back/side stories.

The plot/premise is what earned this an extra 1/2 star.


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A Gruesome Discovery (Reverend Mother Mystery #4) by Cora Harrison

A Gruesome Discovery, Cora Harrison

★ ★ 1/2

1925, Cork Ireland... Mother Superior receives a trunk from the Local Auctioneer labeled "Old School Books". As she is about to open it a young man rushes in to claim the trunk saying: "I think that may be my trunk, Reverend Mother" (expecting a cache of guns)...

When the unlocked trunk pops open, they find the corpse of the young man's father, clearly not what either of them expected. The young man then pulls out a revolver & fires emptying all the bullets into his father's corpse.

The young man had wanted to go to the university & study mathematics, when his father refused to pay for a university education, the young man instead joined the "Republicans".

His father was a very wealthy "self-made" man, a tanner & purveyor of goods to the government during the war. His father has left behind 12 children (10 boys & twin girls), a wife, a new house that they were all about to move into, the two connected old houses, & a vast fortune which seems to have disappeared.

Oddly the father had signed a will the morning he was murdered, leaving everything to his wife, but in the control of his rival & a shady lawyer....

With the help of the skin merchant's daughter, a determined young republican woman, the local doctor, & a young police; Mother Superior, a young detective inspector, and the local doctor are able to solve the crime, but not before two more people are murdered.

The story was interesting, there was no lack of suspects, the Red Herrings were obvious, and there were two huge loose ends that made me knock off 1/2 ★.


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Every Breath You Take (Second Opportunities #4) by Judith McNaught
Every Breath You Take – Judith McNaught – 2**
A typical romance novel – with stereotypical characters and full of clichés. Still, it was a fast read and I was entertained.
LINK to my review


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The Swans of Fifth Avenue by Melanie Benjamin

The Swans of Fifth Avenue, Melanie Benjamin

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Definitely a compelling read, I couldn't get enough of the story, the women, their lives...

This book is well written and certainly spellbinding, taking a close look at high society life of the 1930's through its decline in the 1970's, and I didn't want to put it down.

This is the fictionalized true story of Barbara "Babe" Paley, Gloria Guinness, Slim Kieth, Marella Agnelli, C.Z. Guest, & Pamela Churchill Harrington and their relationship w/ Truman Capote; as well his relationship with Babe's husband, Bill Paley (CBS), & Jack Dunphy (Truman's long-time companion).

The dialog is fictionalized, but the settings, people, certain events actually happened....

From the high beginnings it was obvious that there would be a crash & burn; that friendships would be betrayed & broken; that Truman Capote was a human disaster in the making...

Capote's downward spiral & his vileness was perfectly portrayed as was the life of Babe Paley. One could not help but admire & care about Babe as a person, fictionalized or not; nor could one help but despise the twisted little Capote.

The last lyrical paragraphs of the book which portray a dream of graceful swans swimming off into the distance radiance, leaving behind the one who could never truly be one, was the perfect ending.

I remember watching Truman Capote on t.v. in the late 70's, I didn't care for him or his vicious nastiness much, I did however like his book: "Music for Chameleons" which I own a copy of.

This book has peaked my curiosity to the point that I have put two other books on hold: "Sisters" by David Grafton; "Slim: Memories of a Rich and Imperfect Life" by Slim Keith & "Party of the Century" by Deborah Davis


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Rainwater by Sandra Brown
Rainwater – Sandra Brown – 3***
In 1934 in central Texas, Ella Barron runs a boardinghouse. A new boarder, Mr Rainwater, quickly becomes a leader in the community, and stirs her feelings as well. This is an interesting look at small town prejudice and bullying in tough times. Brown is best known as a romance writer, but it is more of an historical fiction work than a traditional romance. Brown does a credible job of exploring some important issues, though she does tend to rely on some of the romance tropes and stereotypical characters.
LINK to my review


message 37: by Laurie (last edited May 12, 2018 07:36AM) (new)

Laurie  (laugal) | 132 comments Just abt to finish RED RUBY HEART IN THE COLD BLUE SEA by Morgan Callan Rogers. It is one of those books I bought at a used book sale for 50 cents.Hardcover and autographed by the author. I kept moving it to the bottom of the pile and finally dove in and love it.Seems the books that keep getting pushed to the botto, turn out to be the good books. Red Ruby Heart in a Cold Blue Sea by Morgan Callan Rogers Takes place at the Maine shore in 1963. Coming of age story.


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The Rooster Bar by John Grisham
The Rooster Bar – John Grisham – 3***
Three third-year law students are stunned when their friend and fellow student commits suicide. Grisham knows how to write a thrilling adventure tale. Mark, Todd and Zola are reasonably bright, motivated, and quick on their feet. I found their friendship and loyalty to one another and to the memory of Gordy touching and genuine. I did think that Grisham wrote himself into a hole and was struggling to get out. There’s a significant side plot focusing on one student’s parents. For most of the book I thought this was an unnecessary distraction, then Grisham uses it as the key to the resolution. Kind of a cheap trick, in my opinion.
LINK to my review


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Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
A Treacherous Curse (Veronica Speedwell, #3) by Deanna Raybourn

A Treacherous Curse, Deanna Raybourn

1/2

Not even 1 star... how about 1/2 for subject?

Why how verra, verra cleva... Not!

John de Morgan has disappeared; just like in the story "At Bertram's Hotel".. he & his wife checked in to separate rooms, in the morning when they were suppose to leave together, he was gone. When she called the police she found that the entire decor of the room was completely not what it was the night before.

Miss Veronica Speedwell & Mr. Revelstoke "Stoker" Templeton-Vane work together as scientists, adventurers, and Private Detectives.

They are invited by Scotland Yard to investigate the disappearance of John de Morgan and a diadem that was to have been found in the tomb of an Egyptian Princess.

Stoker has a past with the de Morgans; John was his best friend until he abandoned Stoker in the Brazilian jungle & took off w/ Caroline Templeton-Vane, now Mrs. de Morgan.

A wild goose chase the likes of one that surpasses the imagination, except for that of the author, ensues. Missing people, an Egyptian adventure, a mummy's curse... too many unlikeable characters.

I disliked this book, stopped reading & began skimming 2 chapters in because I wanted to know what happened to the missing man.

The characters are nothing more than stilted caricatures, whom I disliked immediately. The dialog is oh so cleverly affected and phony...

I'd say it was a waste of my time, but at least I now know not to read another.


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The Good Nurse A True Story of Medicine, Madness, and Murder by Charles Graeber
The Good Nurse – Charles Graeber – 3***
Charles Cullen was a registered nurse who worked in a number of New Jersey hospitals; when he worked at a hospital the death rates skyrocketed. This true crime nonfiction is interesting, but not as gripping as some others. Still, it’s evident that Graeber did extensive research.
LINK to my review


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Dead Calm (Mattie Winston Mystery, #9) by Annelise Ryan

Dead Calm, Annelise Ryan

★ ★ ★

I liked this, but one part of this was tedious.

Mattie: former RN, divorced from a cheating MD husband, married to Hurley, work for the M.E.'s office, & helps Hurley investigate crimes

Hurley: divorced cop, now married to Mattie, has a teenage daughter, now had 2 yr old son w/ Mattie, & building their dream house.

Together they begin investigating what appears to be an affair gone bad turned homicide/suicide.... Until Mattie the M.E. notices that the suicide allegedly shot himself w/ his right hand, but he was left-handed. She also notices the lack of blood at the crime scene, brain matter yes, blood not enough.

Turns out the couple had been killed earlier and not in the motel where their bodies were found. There are spouses due for insurance settlements, one of whom doesn't need or care about the settlement and an odd familial back story....

In addition, Hurley & Mattie are working on a case of diet pills w/ fatal side-effects and Mattie's long-gone father holds one of the keys. With the big players being a local DA, his father the Judge, & a high ranking politician.... The witness, who is in jail from a frame, won't speak out of fear of retaliation against his family and the other two witnesses are dead, they were shot in cold-blood in front of Mattie & Hurley (in an earlier installment?).

The manner in which Mattie & Hurley tied up this unsolved fatal drug crime, was interesting, but not fully detailed for the reader. It did include Mattie questioning her ex-husband's medical conferences which were paid by the drug company being investigated.

The side plot, which I found tedious, a grossly deformed skeleton is found by the contractors while excavating the land for the foundation of Mattie's & Hurley's new house. A co-worker of Mattie's called newspapers to the scene as he was convinced that the contractors unearthed an alien, which of course caused problems for Mattie until she was able to talk to the family who sold them the land & find out who the skeleton belonged to.

I found the book to be interesting, and happily, the more annoying characters were not overly present...


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Origin (Robert Langdon, #5) by Dan Brown
Origin – Dan Brown – 3***
Brown certainly knows how to keep the reader in suspense and turning pages, guessing right up to the reveal. But … I’m tired of Robert Langdon and his lectures on symbology. I also felt that Brown wrote himself into a corner and took an easy out.
LINK to my review


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Kimberly wrote: "Dead Calm (Mattie Winston Mystery, #9) by Annelise Ryan
★ ★ ★
..."


Sounds like this is a series that should probably be read in order (due to character relationships developing)


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The Cinderella Deal by Jennifer Crusie

The Cinderella Deal Jennifer Crusie

★ ★ ★ ★

First let me say that I have loved most all of Crusie's books and I miss her writing. I wanted something light, funny, & adventurous and this was it.

Daisy left her job as a schoolteacher in order to paint and paint she does, but her work really isn't selling. She's behind in her rent and the owner of the shop where she sells her jewelry refuses to pay her.

Lincoln (Linc for short) is Daisy's neighbor & thinks she's a freak, as she is everything that Linc is not. Linc is up for a professorship but there is one qualification he is lacking, a wife and that is where daisy fits (or doesn't) in.

Linc makes a Cinderella deal w/ Daisy; $1,000 to stand in as his fiancée at the upcoming college soirée & orientation, afterwards she is free to break the engagement and remain behind.

There is only one problem: Everyone Loves Daisy & they insist on coordinating the wedding & helping Linc buy the perfect house...

Quick witted dialog, quirky-likable characters, romance, friendship...


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What the Lady Wants by Jennifer Crusie

What the Lady Wants, Jennifer Crusie

★ ★ ★


I ♥ Jennifer Crusie's writing, it makes me laugh, feel good, & holds my interest.

I am taking of 1/2 Star for the over dramatized, over-long sex scene.... It was long & tedious. Usually Crusie's sex scenes are pretty good, but this was over the top & boring.

Mae Belle hires Mitch, whom she mistakenly takes for a dummy to investigate Armand's murder & to find his missing diary. What Mae Belle doesn't tell Mitch is that she overheard a snippet of Armand's phone conversation stating that the diary tells where the money is.

Mae Belle's parents died when she was a child, her three uncles (all crooks) drew straws for her and her Uncle Armand (who didn't like children) won.

When Uncle Armand dies, his will leaves everything with the exception of a stipend for his butler & housekeeper and 1/2 of his stocks to Mae Belle.

But the funeral holds a surprise for everyone; the previous week Armand married a Society Maven who decides that as the widow she is moving into Mae Belle's home. Not only is there a widow to contend with, there is no money, there are no stocks, and valuable antiquities & art have been steadily been disappearing from the house.

When Mitch & Mae Bell visit her two other uncles: Uncle Claud, a silent brooding financial wizard (indicted for financial fraud) and Uncle Gio, a rumored hit-man who is also taking care of his sociopath grandson Carlo (in love w/ Mae Belle) all hell breaks loose... All do their best to get Mae Belle away from Mitch, no matter how she demands that Mitch is who she wants at her side investigating Armand's alleged murder.

Included in Mae Belle's family:
* June, Armand's housekeeper & former mistress, surrogate mother of Mae Bell and wife of Harold
* Harold, Armand's sinister butler and protector of Mae Belle
* Stormy, Armand's mistress, stripper, & good-times girl
* Bob, Mae Belle's mentally challenged dog that keeps hitting his head on the kitchen cupboard

It is a fun fast moving book with a twist of an ending


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Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Sticks and Bones (Sarah Booth Delaney, # 17) by Carolyn Haines

Sticks and Bones, Carolyn Haines



...and now I remember why I had stopped reading this series

Sarah Booth Delaney & her friend Tinky Belcourt are hired by a movie company to investigate the disappearance of Son & the death of his mother Cleo in a car accident that sent their vehicle into a flooded fast-moving river. The movie to be based on the biased book written by Son's sister, Sister McFee.

Neither Sister, her father Colin (who is running for senate on an anti-Putin platform), or Colin's new wife Susan have anything good to say about Son or Cleo. All three claim Son was drugged up when the car went over the embankment, but Son had been in rehab & sober for quite some time.

During all the commotion of filming, the author who had been helping Sister write all of her Bestselling books is murdered & Sister is allegedly kidnapped

Sister McFee is nasty to everyone, especially Tinky, whom Sister calls Stinky, the reason is something that is left unresolved and I found annoying.

Not only did I not like most of the characters, Son's bodily absence from the scene of the accident was harped on over & over & over, so that became annoying as well.

What I found to be most annoying of all is Sarah's "Haint" (spook), Jitty... Haines has Jitty constantly dressed in costumes, taking on the personalities of long dead people, and haranguing Sarah about her lack of sex-life, lack of husband/boy-friend, & lack of children. The Haint does nothing constructive, shows no caring, and talks in riddles. Seriously Jitty needs to be banished.

I didn't think the book was well written (I just wanted it over); there were too many side stories, loose ends, with a very pat & convenient ending and I was able to figure out who one of the murderers was.


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Laurie  (laugal) | 132 comments Now reading the sequel to RED RUBY HEART IN DEEP BLUE SEA. Red Ruby Heart in a Cold Blue Sea by Morgan Callan Rogers .The sequel is WRITTEN ON MY HEART Written on My Heart by Morgan Callan Rogers .I usually do not read sequels one right after the other,but love Red Ruby Heart so much,I just had to.


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A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler
A Spool of Blue Thread – Anne Tyler – 3.5***
A family saga covering three generations of Whitshanks and the familial home that anchors their story. Tyler shines when writing about everyday life and the small dramas that make up American families. I find these characters so believable and relatable, even when their circumstances are very different from anything I’ve experienced personally.
LINK to my review


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Kimberly Ann (auntie-nanuuq) | 1107 comments Mod
Death and the Cyprian Society by Pamela Christie

Death and the Cyprian Society, Pamela Christie

1/2

From the back cover (which made the book sound very interesting):
"Arabella Beaumont is the fortunate possessor of one of England's most celebrated bodies--with a formidable business brain to match. Her latest venture transforming a London hotel into a social club for courtesans. Arabella needs her featherbrained friend, Constance Worthington to repay the fortune she owes her. And now that Constance has a wealthy protector, Pigeon Pollard, she's finally good for the cash.

Alas, the imprudent Constance has also been dallying with Lady Ribbonhat's footman, and a mysterious blackmailer is threatening to tell all. If Constance pays up, there will be no money left for Arabella's renovations. But as the case escalates rapidly from extortion to murder, Arabella's life, as well as her fortune, hangs precariously in the balance...."

So my interest was peaked by the above two paragraphs, unfortunately the inside contents did little (nothing what-so-ever) to hold my interest.

The author tries too hard and comes up with a losing hand... The writing was stilted, affected, trite stiff, & overly clever.... I didn't like the characters, I didn't feel badly for them.

Even more annoying was the habit of the author to add *'d footnotes at the bottom of most pages attempting in a weakly witty manner of explaining previous happenings & past conversations.


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Murder in Bloomsbury (Atlas Catesby #2) by D.M. Quincy

Murder in Bloomsbury, D.M. Quincy

★ ★ ★ 1/2

Actually this book was quite entertaining, it held my interest, & I even liked the characters.... This series is similar to the Charles Lenox series by Charles Finch and since there has yet to be a new installment, this filled in quite well. But unlike the Charles Lenox series, this book has a lighter less formal tone.

Atlas Catesby is a member of the aristocracy and an adventurer. The previous year saw him attempting to clear both his & Lady Lilliana Warwick's names of murder. Now as he has hoped to relieve his memory & heart of lady Lilliana, he finds himself once again in close dealings with her, while attempting to suss out a murderer.

The contemptible brother of Lady Lillliana's maid has been found dead. Authorities are calling his death an accident, but the maid insists it was murder.

The dead man was a charmer of women of all stations of life and more than one person had reason to kill him....

Nicely written, easy & entertaining to read.


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