Simple Loose Leaf| January 2019

The Simple Loose Leaf Tea Company is one of the best and affordable tea subscription boxes! They normally send you 4 different teas, 2 with caffeine, and 2 without. This is perfect for the next cold night that you want tea but you’re close to your bedtime and you are wanting something that wont keep you up too long. Another aspect of this Classic Tea Box is the fact that they send you 4 reusable linen tea bags every month!

From Simple Loose Leaf Company:

“Each month you’ll get a box filled with teas ranging from classically savory to enjoyably trendy, you’ll get terrific, members’ only discounts for our tea shop, and you’ll get everything you need to make that perfect cup of tea.”

What You’ll Get:

  • Four hand packaged loose leaf teas
  • 40g of tea in resealable pouches
  • A black tea, a green tea, an herbal tea and more
  • Reusable organic linen tea filters

For only $9 a month! That is a steal!

So without further ado, let’s get into January’s Tea Box!

1

Ebony Osmanthus
Retail $13.00

There is nothing better than an amazing black tea. This one is clean and dark and there is a subtle sweetness to it as well. Something that hits the right spot when you need it! They talked about the note of apricot and peach as well. It made me think of the coming months of Spring and Summer time!

2

Cranberry Orange Herbal
Retail $8.00

This was probably my absolute FAVORITE tea in this month’s box. I love the color of it. The aroma was perfectly citric and sweet. I can see this as a perfect tea for a cool night or made as a cold brew as well! I love this so much and can see myself getting it more and more!

3

Purple Jasmine
Retail: $12.00

Jasmine tea is one of my hands down favorite types of tea that I drink throughout the year. I love the calming effect of it. There is just something about jasmine that brings a relaxing and calming mood on my tense shoulders and clinching jaw. This tea is primarily grown between 4,500 and 7,500 feet. It has 15X the natural antioxidants that blueberries have! This is great for this time of year when noses start running!

4

Bitaco Green
Retail $10.00

This is a new green tea out of Columbia. It has a sweet and nutty flavor! The liquid is beautifully bright yellow and brings a smile onto your face when you look at it. I love that since this tea was new to the wonderful people at Simple Loose Leaf they suggested to steep it at different levels of heat and it various ways. I love that!

This has been another lovely tea box! I love the new design to the box as well. It made me smile the moment I retrieved it from my mailbox. You really couldn’t get a better tea box for the price of $9.00 a month. I high recommend you try it out!

Happy drinking!

Courtny

Out of the Box Sleuths

Want to know what I think even more about these Out of the Box cozies?! Watch my video!

51udlyb7wpl._sx308_bo1,204,203,200_Fatal Fixer-Upper (A Do-It-Yourself Mystery) Mass Market Paperback – November 4, 2008
https://amzn.to/2W9jzbr

by Jennie Bentley  (Author)

First in a series about a designer—and a handsome handyman–tackling fixer upper homes and mysterious murders. A must-read for lovers of HGTV’s home renovation shows.

To Avery Baker, the idea of preparing her aunt’s crumbling and cluttered home for sale is overwhelming. So when someone offers to buy the place as is, Avery’s relieved. Until she learns it’s worth more than she thought–that is, with a few repairs here and there…

With help from hunky handyman Derek Ellis, Avery starts learning the ABC’s of DIY. But when a designer-turned-renovator finds clues that lead to a missing local professor and then her own life is threatened, Avery wonders if she can finish the house—without getting finished off in the process.

 

51-myih2val._sx322_bo1,204,203,200_Hazardous Duty (Squeaky Clean Mysteries) Paperback – February 11, 2011
https://amzn.to/2WbYAog

by Christy Barritt  (Author)

Gabby St. Claire dropped out of school on her way to completing a degree in forensic science. Instead, she did the next best thing: she started her own crime scene cleaning business. When a routine cleaning job uncovers a murder weapon the police overlooked, she realizes that the wrong person is in jail. But the owner of the weapon is willing to do anything to keep Gabby quiet. With the help of her neighbor, Riley Thomas, Gabby plays detective. But can Riley help her before another murder occurs?

 

 

51fqgfkfqzl._sx322_bo1,204,203,200_Pounced (The Sierra Files) (Volume 1) Paperback – January 30, 2014
https://amzn.to/2T3qcdf

by Christy Barritt

Sierra is used to fighting for the lives of innocent creatures. But when a killer puts the lives of her own cats on the line, her crusade becomes personal.

Animal rights activist Sierra Nakamura never expected to stumble upon the dead body of a coworker while out filming a project. She definitely never expected to get involved in the investigation. But when someone threatens to kill her cats unless she hands over the “information,” she becomes more bristly than an angry feline. Making matters worse is the fact that her cats–and the investigation–are driving a wedge between her and her boyfriend Chad.

With every answer she uncovers, old hurts rise to the surface and test her beliefs. Saving her cats just might mean ruining everything else in her life. In the fight for survival, one thing is certain: It’s either pounce or be pounced.

 

51ybn1srz7lThe Missing Ink: A Tattoo Shop Mystery Kindle Edition
https://amzn.to/2T9KHp0

by Karen E. Olson  (Author)

Murder leaves a mark

Brett Kavanaugh is a tattoo artist and owner of an elite tattoo parlor in Las Vegas. When a girl makes an appointment for a tattoo of the name of her fiancé embedded in a heart, Brett takes the job but the girl never shows. The next thing Brett knows, the police are looking for her client, and the name she wanted on the tattoo isn’t her fiancé’s…

 

 

 

51x59u43l1l._sy346_Shop Till You Drop (A Dead-End Job Mystery Book 1) Kindle Edition
https://amzn.to/2Widg5A

by Elaine Viets  (Author)

From Anthony and Agatha Award-winning author Elaine Viets—the thrilling mystery series about one woman trying to make a living… while other people are making a killing.

Helen Hawthorne had a high-finance job, a beautiful home—and a good-for-nothing husband she caught in the act with their neighbor. But when she tried to divorce the bum, the judge decided that Helen had to pay—and Helen decided the only way to keep her dignity would be to defy the courts, refuse to pay, and run for it.

Now hiding out in Fort Lauderdale, Helen is working as a lowly sales clerk at a high-fashion boutique. But keeping out of trouble proves difficult when she discovers the manager is running her own side business stealing from the store and selling drugs to customers.

Helen’s discomfort is short lived when the felonious fashionista suddenly goes on vacation—and turns up dead in the water. In desperate need of cash, Helen decides to try and find out who killed the woman for an offered reward.

But she soon uncovers even more nefarious goings-on that put her new career—and her new life—in mortal danger…

Wrap Up!| January 2019

Video!

 

1A Murder for the Books
A Blue Ridge Library Mystery
Book 1
By: Victoria Gilbert

https://amzn.to/2TjFg6M

*****

This was the book for the Cozy Mystery Bookclub for the month of January! It is the first in the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series by Victoria Gilbert.

This was such a fun book and I have FALLEN in love with the series. I might have read the second book and already pre-ordered the third book in the series! Ha!

Here we follow Amy the Director of the Library in Taylorford. After a pretty nasty breakup she is forced to move from one job into another and to head to her family’s homestead to help her Aunt Lydia recover from a nasty fall.

She is bound and determined to make her life in Taylorford something to be proud of while mending her broken heart. She has vowed to herself to not date men for the time being.

This is new Amy is thrown off course when a handsome new neighbor, Richard, shows up at the library wanting to do some research on an old murder case. However this is sort of paused as they stumble onto a body of an elderly woman in the archives building.

Somehow the Past and Present intermingle in this cozy and I am living for it. There were so many different mysteries within this book that the author successfully combined into the main mystery of the murder.

I loved the heat between Amy and Richard. I love the relationship between Amy and her Aunt Lydia. I loved learning about the history of the family, the town, and the mysterious deaths that happened throughout the book and time.

This is a newer Cozy Mystery series started in 2017 and I have already purchased book two that was released last summer. I am eager to dive into this series and follow it as it goes.

 

2Shelved Under Murder
A Blue Ridge Library Mystery
Book 2
By: Victoria Gilbert

https://amzn.to/2RUzNXo

****

Alright, so I threw my TBR into the wind when I read the first book for the bookclub and decided that since I was already in the world of Amy that I needed to continue. I mean it is only right, right?!

This book starts during my FAVORITE part of the year, October. The leaves are changing colors. The air is becoming more crisp. And it is PERFECT snuggle weather.

However for Amy, she is having to put together a booth for the town’s annual Heritage Festival. This is supposed to celebrate the towns local history and arts and crafts.  Amy isn’t excited about it, she doesn’t want to have to set up the booth or spend two of her days running it with a rather bristley women that her Aunt Lydia seems to hate. But she has to best friend and assistant Amy to help run it, that is until Amy finds a dead body.

The body belonged to a renowned artist who was going to donate some of her paintings to Amy’s booth to sell. However it seems like she was murdered with her own pallet knife. Amy called the police who quickly find forged paintings. The local police ask for Amy’s help in the investigation due to her knowledge in art history.

We dive into more town history, learn more about Amy’s deceased Uncle, and find some hidden skeleton’s in Amy’s prestigious family. I am living for this series and have ALREADY pre-ordered the third book in the series!

 

3Golden Son
Red Rising Saga
Book 2
By: Pierce Brown
https://amzn.to/2MGjJCT
*****

So, like with the last book I kind of threw my TBR for January out of the door when I fell into the Red Rising series by Pierce Brown. I had actually purchased the first book in the series on Cyber Monday for $2.99. It was something that I couldn’t pass up! I knew that this was a really popular series but I knew that it was also a genre that I didn’t normally read so I didn’t want to purchase it at full price.

This series has now become one of MY FAVORITE series that I have ever read. It’s like Game of Thrones in space. Except, I really don’t like Game of Thrones. I don’t like how gory it is or the sexual-ness. But that is just me.

This is the second book in the Red Rising Saga. Darrow has now moved out of the training school and has been taken into the Augustus family. He is a Red turned into a Gold to take down the establishment and create anarchy for society. To figure out how to make it to where Red and other colors aren’t looked down upon, starved, beaten, or worse.

He is trying to rebuild the galaxy into something that his children would be proud of and live in. This book is really intense and something that I don’t want to go into too much detail with. But it kept me at the edge of my seat the whole time and I MIGHT have cried a couple of times. I highly recommend this series!
4
Morning Star
Red Rising Saga
Book 3
By: Pierce Brown
https://amzn.to/2WpyfU5
*****

From what I know this was supposed to be the last book in the Red Rising Saga. And it was a HELL OF A BOOK!

Darrow was happy to live in his Red world of ignorance. Believing that Mars was not yet cultivated for human life. He would have been happy to spend the rest of his live in the tunnels and loving his wife and family. Never striving to much more than the laurel.

However the Gold overlords took the laurel away that was rightfully his, hung his wife Eo, and also enslaved his people below. They knew that Mars was liveable. They had been there for hundreds of years already.

Darrow tries to take his own life but he is given another one. He is given the choice of becoming what he hates in order to get justice for Eo and his people. He is the chosen one to bring justice not just for Reds but for all colors. Taking down the Gold from the inside.

The time has come. This is the final book in the original trilogy and Darrow has to make some really tough decisions. He can’t do it alone but with the help from his friends and by helping other colors break their chains Darrow does what others have never dreamed of doing.

This book was by far the best book in the series. There were so many twists and turns and I couldn’t keep up with all of the back stabbing, friends lost, and relationships gained. I loved this book so much. There are more to the series but it takes place 10 years afterwards, I can’t wait!

5Live and Let Pie
A Bakeshop Mystery
Book 9
By: Ellie Alexander
https://amzn.to/2MI6Yrg
*****

As you all know Ellie Alexander aka Kate Dyer-Seeley is one of my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE authors as well as a friend of mine. Anytime her new books come out I can’t help but snatch them up and devour them!

This is the 9th book in the Bakeshop Mystery series. Torte’s construction is finally ending and Jules’ dream is finally coming to fruition. Business is booming and she couldn’t be happier.

Business is booming so much that she is having to hire more people to help run the shop. Jules is a little hesitant to mess up the wonderful family that her and her mom have created at Torte but in order to keep up with the supply and demand she is going to have to find others to help.

This book immediately follows Helen and The Professor’s marriage! They are trying to find their forever home. Jules goes with her mom to check out a house by the lake and finds two children playing in the lake. However their screams following aren’t screams of joy. They have found a skull in the depths of the water where a town was flooded.

This installment of A Bakeshop Mystery has the reader diving into the past of Ashland, a sunken town, and something weird with a parcel of land that is going up for sale. The owner is also found killed and Jules thinks it’s connected to the skeleton found in the lake.

This was another wonderful addition to the series. I loved learning more about Ashland’s past, the people in the town, and one of my favorite characters Andy has more of a role. I don’t want to give away too much though! So you’ll have to check it out!
6Crimes Against a Book Club
Debut Novel
By: Kathy Cooperman
https://amzn.to/2ToqUSS
*****
I totally went against ALL of my TBR for the month of January and I am SO happy that I did! Ha! I have had A WONDERFUL reading month! It has been a great start to 2019!

This is a book that I don’t quite remember how it got on my Kindle but I am SO happy that it did! This has to be one of the funniest and easiest reads I have had in a long while. I would put the genre as Chick-Lit and I am living for it!

This is the debut novel for Kathy Cooperman and I can’t wait to read more of what she has to come out. She might be an insta-buy from now on!

This book is all about best friend Annie and Sarah. They are living life like they always have. Sarah is a high powered lawyer while Annie is a stay-at-home mom with a PHD in Chemistry. Sarah is trying for kids but it seems that she put her career ahead of her life wants for too long and is going through the arduous process of EXPENSIVE IVF while still working 80 hour weeks. Annie has given her career a brief pause so that she can raise her three kids. She finds out from her middle child’s teacher that he has autism and need expensive therapy that they just can’t afford.  

These two women are desperate to make quick cash to help afford the things that they need in order to start a family and to keep a family. With Sarah’s drop dead looks and Annie’s brains and knowledge of chemistry they decide to sell a “luxury” face cream to the wealthy and aging beauties in Annie’s bookclub. This seems like a win-win in Sarah and Annie’s books until Annie tries to mess with the innocent formula and adds a not-so-legal ingredient to the cream to give it a little oompf.

This book had me laughing, tearing up, and loving my best friend even more. I know that we would do anything for each other. This is a must read!

 

Cozy Releases| February 2019

Video!

51wp7c2cjslA Gentlewoman’s Guide to Murder
https://amzn.to/2FXwHM5

Kindle Edition
1st one
February 8th

by Victoria Hamilton

The shocking murder of Sir Henry Claybourne leaves Regency London shaken and horror-struck. But for genteel spinster Miss Emmeline St. Germaine, the crime slices far too close to home. Just hours before the knight’s death she held a dagger to him, threatening him to stay silent as she rescued a scullery maid he had procured for his pleasure.

Did the man—or woman—who murdered the knight know of her visit? Her secret identity at risk, her reputation and life in jeopardy, Emmeline must solve the crime or face scandalous exposure and ruination, or worse—the hangman’s noose—for a crime she did not commit.

51fw0cdyl8l$4.99 Murder at the Palace
https://amzn.to/2WpW9ia
(A Movie Palace Mystery Book 1) Kindle Edition
1st One
February 12th

by Margaret Dumas

Welcome to the Palace movie theater! Now Showing: Philandering husbands, ghostly sidekicks, and a murder or two.

When Nora Paige’s movie-star husband leaves her for his latest co-star, she flees Hollywood to take refuge in San Francisco at the Palace, a historic movie theater that shows the classic films she loves. There she finds a band of misfit film buffs who care about movies (almost) as much as she does.

She also finds some shady financial dealings and the body of a murdered stranger.

Oh, and then there’s Trixie, the lively ghost of a 1930’s usherette who appears only to Nora and has a lot to catch up on. With the help of her new ghostly friend, can Nora catch the killer before there’s another murder at the Palace?
51meq17m0ylMurders and Metaphors
https://amzn.to/2FX68Xq

A Magical Bookshop Mystery Kindle Edition
3rd book
February 12th
by Amanda Flower

January means ice wine season in the Niagara Falls region, but the festivities leave Charming Books owner Violet Waverly cold, still reeling from a past heartbreak. A past heartbreak who will be present at the annual midnight grape-harvest festival, and no magic in the world or incantation powerful enough could get Violet to attend. But Grandma Daisy, an omniscient force all on her own, informs Violet that she’s already arranged for the mystical Charming Books to host celebrity sommelier Belinda Perkins’s book signing at the party. Little do either Waverly women know, the ice wine festival will turn colder still when Violet finds Belinda in the middle of the frozen vineyard—with a grape harvest knife protruding from her chest.
Belinda grew up in Cascade Springs, but she left town years ago after a huge falling-out with her three sisters. One of those sisters, Violet’s high school friend Lacey Dupont, attends the book signing in the hope of making amends with her sister, but Belinda and Lacey end up disrupting the signing with a very public shouting match and Lacey quickly becomes the prime suspect in the sommelier’s murder.
Violet is sure Lacey is innocent, and to keep her friend out of prison, Violet asks for guidance from her magical bookshop. The shop’s ethereal essence points her to Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, but what have the four March sisters to do with the four Perkins sisters? If she can’t figure it out, Violet, herself, may turn as cold as ice. Violet, Grandma Daisy, Emerson the tuxedo cat, and resident crow Faulkner are back on the case in Murders and Metaphors, USA Today bestselling author Amanda Flower’s enchanting third Magical Bookshop mystery.

61f3ytihp0lPast Due for Murder
https://amzn.to/2FX70LG

A Blue Ridge Library Mystery Kindle Edition
3rd book
February 12th

by Victoria Gilbert

Spring has sprung in quaint Taylorsford, Virginia, and the mayor has revived the town’s long-defunct May Day celebration to boost tourism. As part of the festivities, library director Amy Webber is helping to organize a research project and presentation by a local folklore expert. All seems well at first—but spring takes on a sudden chill when a university student inexplicably vanishes during a bonfire.

The local police cast a wide net to find the missing woman, but in a shocking turn of events, Amy’s swoon-worthy neighbor Richard Muir becomes a person of interest in the case. Not only is Richard the woman’s dance instructor, he also doesn’t have an alibi for the night the student vanished—or at least not one he’ll divulge, even to Amy.

When the missing student is finally discovered lost in the mountains, with no memory of recent events—and a dead body lying nearby—an already disturbing mystery takes on a sinister new hue. Blessed with her innate curiosity and a librarian’s gift for research, Amy may be the only one who can learn the truth in Past Due for Murder, Victoria Gilbert’s third charming Blue Ridge Library mystery.

51utw5xp22l$5.99 One Feta in the Grave
https://amzn.to/2WskJii

(A Kebab Kitchen Mystery Book 3) Kindle Edition
February 26th

by Tina Kashian

As summer comes to an end in her Jersey Shore town, Lucy Berberian continues to manage her family’s Mediterranean restaurant. The Kebab Kitchen also has a food tent at this year’s beach festival. But now a local businessman is under the boardwalk—dead by the sea …

With a sand castle contest and live music, Ocean Crest bids a bittersweet farewell to tourist season. Summer will return next year … but Archie Kincaid won’t. The full-of-himself store owner has been fatally shot, soon after a screaming match with Lucy’s best friend. Katie’s far from the only suspect, though, since Archie had some bitter rivals—as well as some relationships no one knew about. It’s up to Lucy to look into some seedy characters and solve the case before the wrong person gets skewered …
51balnd20llPie Hard
https://amzn.to/2MFCeXX

(A Pie Town Mystery Book 3) Kindle Edition
February 26th

by Kirsten Weiss

Business at the bakery may have slowed down, but Val Harris isn’t about to eat humble pie—not until a reality cooking show decides to whip the struggling Pie Town into shape. If Val can tolerate criticism from an abrasive pastry chef during filming, the free publicity might turn the unusual opportunity into the sweetest deal she didn’t know she needed.

Except no one in San Nicholas has an appetite for dessert once murder steals the spotlight. When the show’s bossy producer gets pushed to her death, Val and her flaky, septuagenarian pie crust expert, Charlene, follow crumbs in hopes of finding the killer. But with cameras still rolling and the shocking identity of the victim’s replacement a guaranteed recipe for disaster, Val needs to stay cool long enough to solve the crime and keep Pie Town from falling apart—or else she just might go up in smoke before she ever graces the small screen.

 

Top 5: Male Cozy Sleuths

Want to watch my reactions to punny titles and more? Watch the video as well! 

51vpgznefjl._sx308_bo1,204,203,200_

Stay At Home Dead (Stay At Home Dad Mysteries) Mass Market Paperback – January 1, 2012
https://amzn.to/2DoqiqA

by Jeffrey Allen  (Author)

It’s a day like any other for Deuce Winters, a stay-at-home dad in sleepy Rose Petal, Texas, where he and his three-year-old daughter Carly are making their weekly trip to the grocery store. But the discovery of a dead body in his mini-van quickly throws his quiet life into disarray. In a town where gossip spreads faster than a brush fire in July, it doesn’t help that the victim ruined Deuce’s high school football career and married his ex-girlfriend. . .

As the number one suspect in the court of public opinion, Deuce is determined to clear his name, with a little help from his wife Julianne, a high-powered attorney who lovingly refers to him as her “househusband.” His search for the killer leads him to a business plan gone awry and a gaggle of jilted lovers. All the while, he’ll have to contend with a diminutive but feisty detective, the ruthless preschool PTA, and more than his fair share of Texas-sized hairdos–not to mention the laundry. . .

First in a New Series!

 

51latp+to2l._sx326_bo1,204,203,200_Murder on the Mind Paperback – February 2, 2011
https://amzn.to/2CAeyQk

by L. L. Bartlett  (Author)

After a brutal mugging in Manhattan leaves him with a broken arm and fractured skull, insurance investigator Jeff Resnick reluctantly agrees to recover at the home of his estranged half brother, Richard. At first, Jeff believes his graphic nightmares of a slaughtered buck are just the workings of his traumatized mind. But when a local banker is found in the same condition, Jeff believes the attack has left him with a sixth sense–an ability to witness murder before it happens. Piecing together clues he saw in his visions, Jeff attempts to solve the crime. His brother Richard is skeptical, but unsettling developments begin to forge a tentative bond. Soon, things that couldn€™t be explained by premonition come to light, and Jeff finds himself probing into dangerous secrets that touch his own traumatic past in wintry Buffalo–and the killer is ready to eliminate Jeff€™s visions permanently.

 

41sjw2hcksl._sx300_bo1,204,203,200_Fellowship of Fear (A Gideon Oliver Mystery) Mass Market Paperback – April 5, 2005
https://amzn.to/2sC0AIY

by Aaron Elkins  (Author)

First in the Edgar Award–winning series “that never disappoints,” featuring the forensic anthropologist known as the Skeleton Detective (The Philadelphia Inquirer).

When anthropology professor Gideon Oliver is offered a teaching fellowship at US military bases in Germany, Sicily, Spain, and Holland, he wastes no time accepting. Stimulating courses to teach, a decent stipend, all expenses paid, plenty of interesting European travel . . . What’s not to like?

It does not take him long to find out. On his first night, he is forced to fend off two desperate, black‑clad men who have invaded his Heidelberg hotel room with intent to kill. And then there are a few trivial details that the recruiting agency forgot to mention—such as the fact that the two previous holders of the fellowship both met with mysterious ends.

From there, it is all downhill. Gideon finds himself the target in an unfamiliar game for which no one has bothered to give him the rules. What he does have is his own considerable intellect and his remarkable forensic skills. He will need them, for he is playing for some fairly high stakes: the security of Western Europe.

 

51scvtoheplRetirement Homes Are Murder (Paul Jacobson Geezer-lit Mystery Series Book 1) Kindle Edition
https://amzn.to/2RZcgnx

by Mike Befeler  (Author)

Remembering nothing from the day before, crotchety octogenarian Paul Jacobson must become an amateur sleuth to clear himself as a murder suspect when he finds a dead body in the trash chute of a retirement home. As Paul’s snooping and short-term memory loss get him in trouble with the local police, his new friends and granddaughter Jennifer help him solve an expanding list of crimes. Paul finds romance as he struggles to escape a murderer intent on a repeat performance.

 

51zxezu3jdl._sx308_bo1,204,203,200_It Happened One Knife (A Double Feature Mystery) Mass Market Paperback – July 1, 2008
https://amzn.to/2FMOrbY

A new Double Feature mystery opens— with fun movie facts and trivia.

Elliot Freed is beyond happy when legendary comics Lillis & Townes appear at his refurbished all-comedy theater. But when insinuations arise that the duo were involved in a decades-old Hollywood murder, Elliot sets out to prove the rumors wrong.

Curvy Cozy Sleuths

Curvy Cozy Sleuths Video

4130lc3n71lSize 12 Is Not Fat

A Heather Wells Mystery (Heather Wells Mysteries Book 1) Kindle Edition

by Meg Cabot  (Author)

Heather Wells Rocks!

Or, at least, she did. That was before she left the pop-idol life behind after she gained a dress size or two — and lost a boyfriend, a recording contract, and her life savings (when Mom took the money and ran off to Argentina). Now that the glamour and glory days of endless mall appearances are in the past, Heather’s perfectly happy with her new size 12 shape (the average for the American woman!) and her new job as an assistant dorm director at one of New York’s top colleges. That is, until the dead body of a female student from Heather’s residence hall is discovered at the bottom of an elevator shaft.

The cops and the college president are ready to chalk the death off as an accident, the result of reckless youthful mischief. But Heather knows teenage girls . . . and girls do not elevator surf. Yet no one wants to listen — not the police, her colleagues, or the P.I. who owns the brownstone where she lives — even when more students start turning up dead in equally ordinary and subtly sinister ways. So Heather makes the decision to take on yet another new career: as spunky girl detective!

But her new job comes with few benefits, no cheering crowds, and lots of liabilities, some of them potentially fatal. And nothing ticks off a killer more than a portly ex-pop star who’s sticking her nose where it doesn’t belong . . .

51ptkcgz3alDying to Be Thin: A Fat City Mystery Mass Market Paperback– October 2, 2007

The first course in a sleuth series sure to satisfy.

In just a week, plus-sized TV producer Kate Gallagher has been laid off because of her weight and dumped by her boyfriend. So she enrolls in a weight loss clinic in Durham, NC. Soon, Kate’s ready to sell her soul for some sweets. But when a diet guru turns up dead with fondue forks where his eyes were, Kate loses her appetite-and has a breaking story on her hands…

51+s2h7tzclCarbs & Cadavers (Supper Club Mysteries Book 1) Kindle Edition

by Ellery Adams  (Author)

Meet the Supper Club, a group of friends dead set on counting calories and catching killers . . .

After giving up his dream job and moving back home to the small town of Quincy’s Gap, English literature professor James Henry is tired of finding his happiness at the bottom of a bag of cheese doodles. In an effort to expand his social life and reduce his waistline, he joins a supper club for dieters who lovingly call themselves the Flab Five. He knows he and his new friends will have to watch what they eat, but he never expected to find murder on the menu.

Former high school football star Brinkley Myers was worshipped by fans and loathed by women. When he mysteriously drops dead in the local bakery, a young waitress at the town diner is suspected of foul play. Convinced she’s innocent, the Flab Five team up to weigh in on the investigation.

As the group begins to digest the clues and track down the real killer, they start to worry that they’ve bitten off more than they can chew, and it will take every ounce of willpower they have to keep losing weight without losing their lives . . .
51tu2ilge0lChocolate Chip Cookie Murder (Hannah Swensen series Book 1) Kindle Edition

by Joanne Fluke  (Author)

Take one amateur sleuth. Mix in some eccentric Minnesota locals. Add a generous dollop of crackling suspense, and you’ve got the recipe for this delicious new mystery series featuring Hannah Swensen, the red-haired, cookie-baking heroine whose gingersnaps are almost as tart as her mouth and whose penchant for solving crime is definitely stirring things up.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder

Hannah already has her hands full trying to dodge her mother’s attempts to marry her off while running The Cookie Jar, Lake Eden’s most popular bakery. But once Ron LaSalle, the beloved delivery man from the Cozy Cow Dairy, is found murdered behind her bakery with Hannah’s famous Chocolate Chip Crunchies scattered around him, her life just can’t get any worse. Determined not to let her cookies get a bad reputation, she sets out to track down a killer. But if she doesn’t watch her back, Hannah’s sweet life may get burned to a crisp.

 

51e2c66istlDeath Nell (A Noshes Up North Culinary Mystery Book 1) Kindle Edition

by Mary Grace Murphy  (Author)

Nell Bailey has always suspected food would be the death of her, but never did she consider her relationship with tempting treats would cause her to be a target for murder.

After writing an extremely negative review of “Sam’s Slam” and posting it on her blog “Noshes Up North,” a follower takes issue with her comments and won’t let it go. The cyber bullying continues culminating in a gruesome murder.

A fellow foodie, coincidentally also named Nell, has been slain in a most heinous manner. Could it be a case of mistaken identity and she was the intended victim?

As Nell wonders how to deal with the situation, her lifetime battle with weight and self image give her no relief. She finds herself relying on her group of good friends for advice and support. Then she gets help from an unexpected source – Sam, the owner of the restaurant she had torn to shreds in her review.

As sparks start to ignite between them, a chilling question rears its ugly head in the back of Nell’s mind. Could Sam possibly be the killer? And does he want her dead?

 

Top 5 Multicultural Sleuths

Video Review

51dddysniml._sx303_bo1,204,203,200_A.L Herbert writes the Mahalia Watkins Soul Food Mystery

https://amzn.to/2VGtgOv

African American

Welcome to Mahalia’s Sweet Tea–the finest soul food restaurant in Prince George’s County, Maryland. In between preparing her famous cornbread and mashed potatoes so creamy “they’ll make you want to slap your Momma,” owner Halia Watkins is about to dip her spoon into a grisly mystery. . .

Halia Watkins has her hands full cooking, hosting, and keeping her boisterous young cousin, Wavonne, from getting too sassy with customers. Having fast-talking entrepreneur Marcus Rand turn up in her kitchen is annoying enough when he’s alive–but finding his dead body face-down on her ceramic tile after hours is much worse.

Marcus had his enemies, and the cast iron frying pan beside his corpse suggests that at last, his shady business deals went too far. Halia is desperate to keep Sweet Tea’s name out of the sordid spotlight but her efforts only make Wavonne a prime suspect. Now Halia will have to serve up the real villain–before the killer returns for a second helping. 

Features delicious recipes from Mahalia’s Sweet Tea, including Sour Cream CornBread and Sweet Corn Casserole!

 

51usyrrbhbl._sx331_bo1,204,203,200_V.M. Burns (Mystery Bookshop #1)

African American

https://amzn.to/2FlWvjN

The small town of North Harbor on the shores of Lake Michigan is about to have a new mystery bookstore. But before the first customer can browse its shelves, the store’s owner is suspected of her own murder plot . . .

Samantha Washington has dreamed of owning her own mystery bookstore for as long as she can remember. And as she prepares for the store’s grand opening, she’s also realizing another dream—penning a cozy mystery set in England between the wars. While Samantha hires employees and fills the shelves with the latest mysteries, quick-witted Lady Penelope Marsh, long-overshadowed by her beautiful sister Daphne, refuses to lose the besotted Victor Carlston to her sibling’s charms. When one of Daphne’s suitors is murdered in a maze, Penelope steps in to solve the labyrinthine puzzle and win Victor.

But as Samantha indulges her imagination, the unimaginable happens in real life. A shady realtor turns up dead in her backyard, and the police suspect her—after all, the owner of a mystery bookstore might know a thing or two about murder. Aided by her feisty grandmother and an enthusiastic ensemble of colorful retirees, Samantha is determined to close the case before she opens her store. But will she live to conclude her own story when the killer has a revised ending in mind for her?

 

51-nqhfhpqlAnne R. Tan (Raina Sun Mystery #1)

Raining Men and Corpses

Book 1 of the Raina Sun Murder Mystery series.

https://amzn.to/2AEp0pM

Asian

A contemporary humorous mystery set in the fictitious small college town of Gold Springs, California. Raina Sun is a typical graduate student trying to keep her head above water as the bills roll in from a lawsuit disputing an inheritance from her dysfunctional family. Then her dashing college adviser cons her out of several months of rent.

Her quest to get her money back sets into motion a streak of bad luck. First, she finds the dead body of an ex-lover and becomes the prime suspect to his murder. The only man she ever loved reappears as the lead detective to the case and wants to reignite their passion (or at least he’s sending out smoke signals).

Her life careens out of control as her best friend does whatever it takes to get the inside scoop for the town’s newspaper. And her grandma moves into Raina’s postage-stamp-sized apartment, dragging a red suitcase and trouble. The family secret Raina has been running away from is now staring at her across the dining room table every morning.

Raina must figure out how to extract herself before things get dicey. There is no place for an amateur when it comes to murder.

The eclectic cast of characters in this amateur sleuth mystery will have you scratching your head and laughing until the end.

519emabsb3l._sx303_bo1,204,203,200_Death by Dumpling

https://amzn.to/2SLAMWq

(A Noodle Shop Mystery #1)

by Vivien Chien (Goodreads Author)

Asian

Welcome to the Ho-Lee Noodle House, where the Chinese food is to die for. . .

The last place Lana Lee thought she would ever end up is back at her family’s restaurant. But after a brutal break-up and a dramatic workplace walk-out, she figures that a return to the Cleveland area to help wait tables is her best option for putting her life back together. Even if that means having to put up with her mother, who is dead-set on finding her a husband.

Lana’s love life soon becomes yesterday’s news once the restaurant’s property manager, Mr. Feng, turns up dead―after a delivery of shrimp dumplings from Ho-Lee. But how could this have happened when everyone on staff knew about Mr. Feng’s severe, life-threatening shellfish allergy? Now, with the whole restaurant under suspicion for murder and the local media in a feeding frenzy―to say nothing of the gorgeous police detective who keeps turning up for take-out―it’s up to Lana to find out who is behind Feng’s killer order. . . before her own number is up.

 

51nzr8+31klThe Christmas Carol Murders (Dickens Junction)Paperback – September 25, 2012

https://amzn.to/2M1vLq5

LGBTQ+

by Christopher Lord

It’s the holiday season in Dickens Junction, Oregon. Local bookstore owner Simon Alastair is getting ready for the community’s annual celebration of Charles Dickens’s well-known story. But when a mysterious stranger shows up in the Junction and is murdered hours later, Simon begins to suspect that his little community has been targeted for destruction by a shadowy organization. With the support of Zach, a dashing young magazine reporter, Simon decides to investigate the crime himself. When a second murder follows, Simon must confront the worst questions of all: which of his friends and business associates is a ruthless murderer? And why is everyone suddenly reading Ayn Rand?

The Christmas Carol Murders is the first of an exciting new cozy mystery series combining the atmosphere of a classic Agatha Christie puzzle, the deft touch of Charlotte MacLeod, a hint of Oscar Wilde’s humor, and the literary spirit of the great Charles Dickens.

51wrqirtyql._sx311_bo1,204,203,200_The Eagle Catcher (A Wind River Reservation Myste)Paperback – December 31, 2012

https://amzn.to/2CdXEGK

NATIVE

by Margaret Coel  (Author)

On the windswept plains of Wyoming’s Wind River Reservation, Arapahos have gathered for the Ethete powwow. It is a sacred time to reaffirm the balance and harmony in life. But these feelings of unity quickly give way to fear when tribal chairman Harvey Castle is found murdered—and every bit of evidence points to his nephew, Anthony.

There are two people who don’t believe the young man capable of murder: Father John O’Malley, history scholar and pastor of St. Francis Mission, and Vicky Holden, an attorney who has recently returned to the reservation to help her people. Their investigation draws Father John and Vicky across the high plains of the Wind River Reservation—from the intimate Arapaho community centers to a byzantine world of incalculable corruption and finally into the past. It is here, in the “Old Time,” where Father John catches a rare glimpse into the Arapaho life few outsiders ever see—and a crime fewer could imagine.