March Wrap Up!

March

Holy cow! I can’t believe it! March is BASICALLY over…seriously! How did this happen? We are a QUARTER of the way complete with 2018. This is pretty scary and fun all at the same time. I have been loving growing my channel, my blog, and my group of friends. It has been an absolute blessing and so humbling.

I thought that I would share this collage of pictures I took during March. This has been one of my favorite months. Being asked to be a host for March Mystery Madness has been super amazing and so much fun. Creating all different kinds of designs and for the Instagram Challenges and the Twitter page has been great!

I know you normally stop by my blog to read up on what I’ve read, what I suggest, and even just to get more in-depth on what I put on my Youtube channel, but I thought that I would give you a quick update on what’s going on in the world of me!

I have been loving creating templates, thumbnails, pictures, and videos so much that I have been wanting to learn more! I have applied and been accepted into a Graphic Design Certification program at a local college where I live. I am going to be starting classes this summer and I can’t wait. I am going to learn how to use Adobe Photoshop, Final Cut Pro, and so much more. I have always been known as a person who is addicted to school! I finished my Masters in December of 2016, so it didn’t take long for me to want to start something new!

This year has been a whirl wind of reading for me. I can’t believe how much I’ve read the past three months. This month I read 9 books! I think that is pretty amazing considering how busy this month was with March Mystery Madness, Twitter Sprints, Spring Break, and family time.

Silenced in the Surf

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So, I basically sped read through the whole entire Pacific Northwest Mystery series by Kate Dyer-Seeley aka Ellie Alexander. As most of you know, she is one of my most favorite authors.
Of course, I fell in love with this series as well. This is the third in the series and we are following Meg into another adventure. This time she is following a competition for water sports.

Justin Cruise, an extremely popular and cocky surfer, is found killed after showing off to Meg’s surfboard lesson. Of course, the person who found him was Meg, she seems to have a knack for it.

While, trying to stay away from the investigation, she is trying to figure out her relationship with Matt and helping her best friend Jill open herself to the person that she is. They have joined her on this work-cation and have even jumped on the band wagon on trying to find out what happened to Justin.

This newest book also dives deeper into the mystery of what happened to Meg’s dad. I can’t say it enough about how much I love the fact that there is a mystery within a mystery in this series.

Silenced in the Surf (1)

29429250This is the fourth installment of the Pacific Northwest Mystery series. I told you, I was having a HUGE READING BINGE for this series.This time we are running along with Meg in planning for the 5K Mud, Sweat & Beers! She has decided that she is going to get some real outdoor training for Northwest Extreme!!!! Finally, something she doesn’t have to be too scared about. And hey! She is trying to get outside of her comfort zone and take the audience of the paper with her on her fitness journey! Plus, beer. Yep. Enough said.

I love the name of the training business, Mind over Mudder. Ya get it?! Mudder?! Because it is a MUD RUN! *I’m dying*

Of course, training isn’t going to be easy. The two men that own the 5K camp are two very opposite gentlemen. One is very zen, while the other is a former drill sergeant. Meg doesn’t quite know what to make of them, but she does make a good friend in the camp who seems to be losing weight very quickly.

The macho ex drill sergeant suddenly kills over during a drill in what looks like a heart attack, but Meg doesn’t believe that was the case because of how healthy he was and how persistent he was about being good to your body. Meg decides that she is going to figure out what happened to him. This was such a fun book! I highly recommend it!
Silenced in the Surf (2)

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This was such a fun book! I read this for March Mystery Madness for the New Challenge. This was not only a new series for me but also a new author.

This series follows baker Hannah Swenson and her hectic life back at home with her business, her snotty sister, and pushy mother.
Hannah starts her day like normal. Getting up, drinking coffee, cuddling with her kitty, and getting ready for work. She starts to drive to work and sees the delivery man who normally comes to her shop every morning for rounds.
Hannah thinks that the most pertinent and pressing matter is making her mother realize that she doesn’t need a man to make her life any better. She does not want to be set up on a blind date. However, her mother is very persistent and tries to set her up with a dentist.

Hannah is in for a rude awakening when she finds the delivery man she just waved at killed in the alley at the back of her shop and is thrown into an investigation that shakes her whole entire world. Her brother-in-law is the cop on the scene and asks for her help in solving the case.

I really liked this book as a start of a series, there were somethings that I feel needed to be better in the set up. For example, Hannah and her brother-in-law’s relationship seemed kind of weird. That he asked her to help solve the case seemed unprofessional and almost unbelievable. It didn’t stop me from wanting to finish the book or keep going with the series, but I hope it becomes more believable as the series goes on.

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This book is fantastically wonderful. I chose this book for March Mystery Madness. This was for the Opposite Challenge. As you know the main sub-genre that I read in Mystery is the Cozy Mystery genre. So reading a Thriller was outside of my comfort zone, but this was a 4 Cleo Read for me. Or a 5 star on Goodreads.
As you see above, Series and Punniness are Not Applicable. This is a standalone series and it doesn’t have punniness as a rule.

This follows two different time periods in Vermont. 1950 and 2014. Technically this follows five different points of view. In 1950 it follows four girls at the Idlewild Girl’s School for troublemakers, illegitimate, and too smart for their own good girls. The school is said to haunted by Mary Hand who makes girls go a little bit crazy. In the past one of the students goes missing and is presumed a runaway.

Fast forward to 2014, you are following Fiona Sheridan a journalist who is stuck in the past of 20 years ago. Her sister was found brutally murdered in the field of the shut down and decrepit Idlewild School. Fiona is trying to get over the death of her older sister when someone purchases Idlewild and is intending to open it back up as a girls school.

Fiona starts interview people about the past 20 years ago when her sister was killed and then stumbles upon the mystery of the missing girl from 1950. She uncovers police corruption and a sleepy town’s buried secrets.

This was such an amazing book to read. I loved the characters, the mystery, and the relationships within the story. I wish there would be more in world but I love the way it ended. I actually made a reading Vlog for this book, if you want to watch it click here.

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IMG_9567This is the first in the Firefly Junction Cozy Mystery series by London Lovett. She also writes one of my absolute favorite series The Port Danby series as well.
I had really really high hopes for this series because I love Pink and all of the people in Port Danby. I am not saying that this wasn’t a great start to a series because it most definitely was!

This is series is about Sunni Taylor with her social life and writing career in tatters at the ripe old age of thirty-five, she decides to pack up her things and join her sisters, Lana and Emily, in the small town of Firefly Junction.

She has gotten a journalist job at the local newspaper for the town to keep money coming in while she renovates the rundown Cider Ridge Inn. She is wanting to turn it into a bed and breakfast for the town.

Her very first assignment is SUPER interesting, she is interview people about the High School janitor’s early retirement. This is the biggest story in the town until the janitor is found killed in the town’s park. A dull human interest piece becomes incredibly interesting to Sunni when she rushes to the crime scene. Unfortunately the newspaper’s editor takes Sunni off of the story and gives it to the inept senior journalist.
This of course does not stop Sunni from investigation.

So while investigating the murder, trying to avoid the irritating, pushy, and cocky Dectective Jackson, and wondering if her Inn is haunted, Sunni is trying to figure out who she is and what she wants out of life.

This was a good start to a new series by London Lovett. I really did enjoy it! I am looking forward to the next book in the series and seeing how the story grows.

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34488843Again, I told you that I binge read this whole entire series. This was, I believe, the finale to the Pacific Northwest Mystery Series. That is what I gathered from Kate. I think that, if it is the last, it perfectly wraps up the mystery within the mystery of what happened with Meg’s dad and the whole drug ring that was going on within Oregon.

During this adventure Meg is asked by Matt to pitch a story to Northwest Extreme to do a piece on the Bend, Oregon’s Caves and the new legislation that is being considered to allow the public into the caves and the public lands surrounding it.

Little did Meg know that she was going to be pulled into another murder of a local ranger and a drug ring happening right under the noses of politicians and police within the state.

This was such a fun and quick read. I loved watching Meg grow and mature as the books continued. Her relationship with Matt was left hanging, I want to know if she decided to move to the Bend with Matt or stay with Northwest Extreme. I could do with one more book in this world and with these characters. Even if Kate doesn’t write another one, I am perfectly content with the way it has ended!

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This was the Cozy Mystery Bookclub book of the month for March. We actually just had the Live Stream last night, here is the link if you wanted to go watch it! Kate Carlisle herself even stopped by and said Hi! How cool is that?!?

This was one of my most favorite books that I read this morning. I loved it as a first book in the series. Getting to know the fiery Irish Contractor Shannon was so much fun! I loved her whole attitude the relationships that were being built between her and her best friend, and her and her father.

Shannon is finally ready to open herself back up to a potential relationship when one of her friends sets her up on a blind date. It was going extremely well during dinner that when Jerry, the date, asked her to walk on the beach after dinner she was more than willing. However, he decided to make a pass at her and when she denied him he went into a rage. He tore her shirt, bruised her, and tried to force himself on her all while people were watching from the pier. Shannon, not to be forced to do anything and was taught by the men on the construction crew to protect herself, got in quite a few jabs and kicks! She threatened to kill him if he came around her again.

Little did she know that she would find his body in a house that she was refurbishing. She immediately becomes a suspect and finds herself fighting to clear her name. After her date she swears off men and yet two unexpectedly fall into her lap.

This was such a marvelous beginning to a new series! I am so excited to dive more into this series to see what other adventures Shannon and her friends get into in the next book!

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Aaron and I started Ready Player One on our drive down to Texas to get on our cruise. I love that it seems to be a tradition for long road trips. We have been picking books that we want to read together. Since we both read at different speeds and this is the best was to do it via Audiobook.

Aaron and I are actually seeing the movie this weekend and I will be do a chat with The Lawn Gnome on Youtube comparing the book and the movie. I can already see many differences between both of them, but I am going to try to enjoy both of them as they are.

This book follows a kid named Wade Watts. It is the year 2045 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The world has become impoverished in many areas. People are no longer living life outside in the real world. The new world that most people live in is the Oasis.

“Wade’s devoted his life to studying the puzzles hidden within this world’s digital confines, puzzles that are based on their creator’s obsession with the pop culture of decades past and that promise massive power and fortune to whoever can unlock them. When Wade stumbles upon the first clue, he finds himself beset by players willing to kill to take this ultimate prize. The race is on, and if Wade’s going to survive, he’ll have to win—and confront the real world he’s always been so desperate to escape.”

Aaron and I really enjoyed this book. It was one of his favorites before I even knew about it and he was really excited that I was willing to read it. I loved all of the 80s fun facts with the movies, music, and pop culture! It was so much fun to remember all of those. Aaron and I have even been watching movies now that we are home that were talked about in the book and I have loved it! I love that a book has brought us closer when I didn’t know that we could get any closer. It was just such a fun book to read! I highly recommend it!

Cozy Mystery Review

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This is one of my favorite Cozy Mystery series that I started at the beginning of me finding this series. It is the Booktown Mystery Series by Lorna Barrett. It follows Trish and her sister Angelica and their amazing friends on the main street that is themed after different types of genres of books.

Tricia’s shop is called Haven’t Got A Clue and she sells antique mysteries as well as new releases. Angelica started a cookbook shop but also has her hands in different businesses throughout the town.

This time around the booksellers of Booktown are going on vacation, a cruise. Not just any cruise though. This is a themed cruise, a book themed cruise! Famous authors, editors, and different types of goodies are all on the cruise. This is a time where everyone can make new business contacts, get some reading in, and relax a little before the tourist season starts again!

However, the town jinx Tricia, seems to have brought the bad luck with her, or so others from Booktown believe. When a hateful and self involved thriller writer turns up dead and Tricia is the one who finds the body. Tricia has promised her sister that she will try and stay out of the investigation, but the security on board are trying to pass off her death as a suicide. Trish disagrees.

It was great to be back into the world of Booktown. I loved getting more involved with Trish and Angelica’s past. Understanding why they are the way they are. Seeing their relationship grow even more warmed my heart, which is why relationship got four Cleo’s. This was a pretty good book over all!

March Mystery Madness| TBR

March Mystery Madness TBR Video 

Hey hey my Mystery Madness Lovers! I hope that you are having an AMAZING Friday! I know that I am. I am super excited to get home, get into comfy clothes, and get ready for a long night of drinking tea and reading! I am almost finished reading Slayed on The Slopes By: Kate Dyer-Seeley (aka Ellie Alexander).

With March Mystery Madness slowly sneaking up on us, I can’t believe March 1st is next week, I have picked SIX books to go with the six challenge words. Now if you don’t remember the descriptions of the challenges you can click here for the blog post that I put out. So, without further ado, let’s get started!

March Mystery Madness

download-3For new, I am super excited to try Joanne Fluke’s Hannah Swensen Mystery Series! You know me! Anything with food, baking, and a little mystery I am in love with. I have been suggested this series over and over again. I am super happy that I have picked it up to read for the challenge New. It is actually new to me in TWO ways. A new author and a new series! Bam! Look at me go!!! *pats myself on the back*

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download-7For the borrowed Challenge I am super excited to be picking up the latest in the Port Danby series! I have fallen in love with the town of Port Danby and with Pink’s flower shop and everyone in the town. I am super excited for Tulips and Trouble to come out on March 18th! You have to go pre-order it here!
It is such a fun and quick read. I am using it as my borrow challenges because I will be renting or borrowing it from Kindle Unlimited.

March Mystery Madness (2)

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The next book that I am hoping to read is Miss Seeton Paints The Town By: Hamilton Crane. I actually grabbed quite a few from this series at my local used bookstore Gardner’s.
I quickly fell in love with Miss. Seeton on the cover. Seriously, she seems like my kind of woman. She looks feisty, daring, and like she isn’t going to take crap from no one.
The reason that this falls under Foreign is due to the fact that it is based in Scotland!
Which, if you haven’t ever been to Scotland, I highly recommend it! March Mystery Madness (3)

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This was the challenge that I was most worried about. As you know, I mostly read Cozy Mysteries, Fluffy Mysteries, where most things end on a happy part. A least for the most part.
Of course people die, because there wouldn’t be a book without a death, but still, it is light.
I am aiming to reading a little outside of my comfort zone for this challenge though. I got this book in my Book of The Month club order. It is supposed to be a creepy thriller, suspense, mystery. It takes place at a girl’s boarding school. It also goes back and forth between the 1950s and present day. I think that’s pretty cool. I am eager to read it. March Mystery Madness (4)

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The next challenge is Shelf. I took this to mean that I was going to Shop My Own Shelf. Which I did. I have had quite a few book hauls recently (It’s a judgy-free zone guys!), and I know for a fact that there are a ton of books that I am needed to read. Tons of series that I have to catch up on. You know the drill.
So I am super excited to read Title Wave. It is the next book in the Booktown Mystery series that I have fallen in love with over the years. I am eagerly awaiting on finding out what happened to Tricia’s shop Haven’t Got A Clue. It’s going to be so much fun! March Mystery Madness (5)

download-6And last but certainly not least is the challenge of Historical. I have been meaning to read as many Agatha Christie novels as I can. She is what I and many consider to be the Mother of the Cozy Mystery sub-genre. I have read And Then There Were None, Murder on The Orient Express, and some short stories.
I have even watched a lot of Miss. Marple episodes on Netflix and everything. I figured it was time for me to give A Miss Marple Mystery a shot.
What is awesome, is during Spring Break Aaron and I will actually be on a cruise. So, I am most definitely saving this for when we are on the boat! I think that it will be a blast to read. I’ll really feel like I am in the moment. You know?

 

So, that is the end of this blog on my March Mystery Madness TBR. Are you planning on reading anything for this readathon? If you are let me know down below. Make sure to follow our twitter and until next time, Happy Reading!

Top 5 Best Cozies for Cooking

As I have STATED many many times I have a slight weakness for Baking Mysteries, Food Mysteries, Wine Mysteries, and so on. Okay, okay, maybe not a SLIGHT weakness…a huge giant weakness for them. I love that I can get my sugar fix basically without any calories. I love that I learn about new recipes. I love that the authors love baking and cooking as much as I do. I have tried so many different recipes from my favorite authors, that I thought that I should go ahead and do a WHOLE blog and video on the different Cooking Cozies I read.
Top 5| Cooking Cozies Video

Friday there will also be a blog about baking and a video about a Cooking with Cozies inspired Baking Box. So stay tuned! If you aren’t subscribed to my Youtube channel you should be! So, without further ado here are MY favorite Cozies that have cooking, baking, and food in it!

downloadBakeshop Mystery Series By: Ellie Alexander
The Bakeshop Mystery series revolves around an amazing mother and daughter duo, Helen and Juliet Capshaw. They own the amazing Torte bakery.
Juliet has come home from being on the high sea for the past ten years and she is finally seeing what she has been missing when she moves home to Ashland, Oregon.
Of course things start out a bit rocky like a ship on rough water when a well-known, but not well liked supporter of the Shakespeare Festival is killed.
Jules makes it her job to figure out the ‘whodunit’, but can she do it without getting sunk?

download-1Magical Bakeshop Mystery Series By: Katie Lightfoot
The Magical Bakeshop Mystery following Katie Lightfoot, her Aunt Lucy and Uncle Ben, in the amazing Honeybee Bakery in Savannah, Georgia. The bake shop is named after Lucy’s cat Honeybee.
This is such a fun and quirky Cozy Mystery series. Katie has quit her job and has moved to Savannah to follow her life long dream of opening a bakery and getting to make edible art for a living. She is so excited to be spending time with her Aunt and Uncle and settling into her new life.
No one ever said that the life of a business owner was easy though. There are always going to be people who you can’t please. Not everyone will be able eat a sweet and change their sour demeanor. But Katie never thought that she would have to lose a customer in such a tasteless way.
After the customer leaves in a huff she was murdered, leaving the main suspect to be Katie’s Uncle Ben. Katie makes it her goal to figure out what happened so that the police’s over baked ideas don’t burn her Uncle.

imagesPeridale Cafe Mystery Series By: Agatha Frost
I found this Cozy Mystery series on my Kindle when I signed up for Kindle Unlimited on Amazon. The books are normally .99 cents to $2.99. But they are free on Kindle Unlimited.
This series is based in Peridale, London and follows one of my favorite families I have ever had the pleasure of reading about. Julia South has moved back home from London after finding that her husband is a lying cheating man.
She has opened her very own bakery and couldn’t be happier. She thought that her life was going to be sweets, talk, and peppermint licorice tea. She was incredibly shocked to find a dead body in her cafe however, the town’s most awkward citizen. And the new Detective Inspector doesn’t want Julia to put her nose into the investigation. He under estimated her ability to talk to others in town and getting herself into trouble. Jules is going to find the killer and bake a damn good chocolate cake.

download-2  A Chocolate Covered Mystery Series By: Kathy Aarons 
Growing up my best friend Breann and I have always wanted to own our own bookstore. Heck, it is still a dream to this day. We’ve always wanted to share our love for literature, comics, and bookish goodies with everyone that we can get in contact with. I know what you’re thinking, “Courtny, why are you talking about this? You should be talking about the Cozy Mystery series.” Well, I am leading up to it! Gosh!
The Chocolate Covered Mystery series by Kathy Aarons is Friendship Goals. Seriously. I live vicariously through best friends Michelle Serrano and Erica Russell. They have combined their bookstore and chocolate store into heaven. Seriously. If you ask me, NOTHING is better than a great cup of joe, a piece of chocolate cake, and an amazing book.
To celebrate the combining of their store they are hosting the towns Great Fudge Cook-Off during their Memorial Day weekend Arts Festival. Things are off to a great start! Everyone is super excited for the judging and even the local photographer is excited to capture this fun and amazing weekend!
However, it seems like the photographer has taken her last picture when she is found dead in Chocolate and Chapters apparently poisoned by Michelle’s chocolates. Is their dream of owning their own store crumbling like a cookie? Will they be able to whip up the killer and get the shop back on the right foot? Go check it out!

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A Coffeehouse Mystery series By: Cleo Coyle
This series really does amplify my love for coffee and also my desire to learn. This isn’t just any old Cozy Mystery. Nope. Cleo Coyle has extensive knowledge about the coffee process. From the ground in which they come from, the place, the soil, the process of getting them to the perfect flavor, and more.
I swear when I started reading her series this past summer I drank an extra cup of coffee everyday…maybe two extra cups!
This series follows Clare Cozi and her life as the Manager of the renowned Village Blend. She has been asked, by her ex-mother in law to come back to the city and help run the shop.
Even though Clare wants nothing to do with her ex-husband she can’t say no. She will be closer to her daughter who is starting her first year in college and it helps that Madame is letting her life in the plush and exquisite apartment on top of the coffee-house!
Clare has started moving her things into the apartment upstairs one more and finds the coffee-house not shut down the way it should have been the previous night. As she investigates she finds her night manager murdered, coffee beans scattered everywhere, but no sign of forced entry. Two night cops deem this unfortunate death to be an accident. Clare however does not believe this to be an accident. She thinks that her manager was murdered and that she might be next.
This is such a fun series! Not only is there amazing coffee recipes inside the book but there are also food recipes! This is one of my favorite Cozy Mystery series that I have read. I highly suggest it!

All of these reviews are of my own opinion. I have not been paid to talk about any of these books or authors. I think they are all amazing authors and series. The links to the 1st book in all of the series are affiliate links, I do receive a SMALL commission from them. If that makes you uncomfortable don’t feel like you have to use them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

March Mystery Madness

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March Mystery Madness Video

I started my Booktube Channel and Blog for two reasons. One: To talk about my love of reading with others who have the same love. Two: To keep a journey of my reading life alive for me to come back and see how I have changed and grown as a person and reader. I have been slowly focusing on my favorite genre as the books that I talk most about and take pictures the most of, Cozy Mysteries. I know, you’re shocked! You had no idea, right?! Ha!

In January I was asked by, LizziefayeLovesBooks to be a host for March Mystery Madness! How cool is that?! I have started to make a name for myself in the Booktube world as a Cozy Mystery reader! Yay! I have even pulled some people to the Cozy Side with Coffee/Tea, a comfy blanket, and promise of adventure. All while never leaving your couch.

March Mystery Madness was started by Lizzie and Tori. They have challenges and Mystery related videos and blogs coming out all through March! How amazing is that?! It is right up my alley!

This year the theme of the challenges are going to focus on SIX different words. The way you interpret the words are all up to you, but I will let you know how I am going to interpret them for my Month of Mystery!

March Mystery Madness

The first word is NEW,  I am taking this as buying the 1st book in a new series that I have never read before. I am normally very good at picking up new books and authors, but there have been a few that have been suggested to me so many times that I haven’t picked up. I am hoping to pick up something new in March.

March Mystery Madness (1)

This is going to be a little harder for me to do. Normally I would just borrow a book from one of my friends, but none of them read mysteries like I do. So I am going to borrow a cozy mystery from Kindle Unlimited. You can only borrow up to 10 books at a time. I am hoping to borrow the newest London Lovett book that is coming out in March!

March Mystery Madness (2)

There was talk about picking up a book that was first written in another language, but I think I am going to take this as read a book where the series is based in another country then your own!

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This one is probably going to be the hardest of all of the challenges. I read mostly Cozy Mystery books. I love the way they make me feel. Cozy. Warm. And like an ametur sleuth. I am going to try and go outside of my comfort zone and read something that is still a mystery but not a Cozy.

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I have bought quite a few new books recently. I can’t help it, those damned PUNNY titles and cute covers just make my heart melt. This is going to be an easy challenge for me. I am going to pick one of the books on my own Cozy Mystery shelves!

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And last, but certainly not least, we have the last challenge, HISTORICAL.  This is another challenge that shouldn’t be too hard for me! I am planning on reading an Agatha Christie book for this challenge! If that isn’t historical I don’t know what is! Plus, she is the Queen of Cozies. The person who created them!

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Kady is a blogger who will be a Twitter host

 

Top 5 Cozies: Bookish Themed

Cozies for Beginners
Hey hey you guys! I hope that you are having a stupendous week! I know I am! Here in Oklahoma the weather is driving me insane! One minute it is below freezing and the next it’s almost 70°F. My allergies would SURE LOVE IT if the weather decided to make up it’s mind! How’s the weather where you are at? Let me live vicariously through you!
I don’t know about you but I am LOVING making these Top 5 Cozies blogs/videos! They are so much fun to try and find books and series that match up with the theme I have chosen. That is one of the things I love about the Cozy Mystery genre. There are so many different themes, places, animals, and elements that go into the different types of mysteries that you find within this sub-genre of Cozy Mysteries.
One of my MOST favorite themes/subjects to read about in a Cozy are books themselves. This could be a person that is a librarian as the protagonist, a book club, or even an author. I love it when the characters have the same love and passions as myself. Today I am bringing you my Top 5 Cozies that are Bookish Themed.

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One of my most favorite Cozy Mystery series would have to be A Magical Cats Mystery series By: Sofie Kelly. This series, starting with Curiosity Thrilled The Cat, gives me everything that I need when it comes to a library fix and  kitty cat needs.

Kathleen Paulson is leaving her live in Boston to help breath life back into Mayville Heights’ Library which has seen better days. You follow her on her journey of forgetting her past and living for th present. She is trying to become the happy person that she knows she can be.

She didn’t know that with this new start to her life that she would be adopting some fiesty and very humanlike cats, Hercules and Owen. She might have bitten off more than she can chew when she comes to the realization that her cats have powers that are beyond those of jumping from great heights and landing one all fours, or having nine lives.

That isn’t all murder seems to become part of her life, where in the first book she finds herself as a prime suspect. With the help of her fine felines she tries to prove her innocence.

This is such a fun series. I love watching Kathleen grow into her new home, making friends, falling in love, and seeing her make decisions that need to be made in the face of danger. I love how when she is working in the library she really does try and get everyone the book that is best for them. She is changing the way that the library is viewed and people are flocking to it. Makes my dream of owning a bookstore or being a librarian even more powerful.

She also writers under Sofie Ryan, Pam Whitty, and Karen Davidson.

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The next book series is A Black Cat Bookshop Mystery by: Ali Brandon, the first book is Double Books for Death. This series is based inside a bookshop. And AMAZING bookshop, by the way. Darla Pettistone is tired of her life in Texas, all of the southern expectations of a girl have pushed her over the edge. When her Great-Aunt Dee has past away and left her New York Bookshop to Darla she is ready to high tail it out of Texas.

As the new owner of Pettistone’s Fine Books Darla is bound and determined to show that she can run the shop and make it successful. Even when it comes to dealing with prima-donna authors who think that they are better then the average peon. However, since the author is the hottest, most popular Young Adult writer at the time Darla is willing to look past her shirtiness and have her at the shop for a signing.

It seems that karma has reared its ugly head at the affluent author when she is killed in what appears to be an accident. However, the police seem to be looking into the wrong clues. Hamlet, Darla’s Aunt Dee’s shop cat, who is more well read then most adults, finds a clue to point at the fact that the author wasn’t killed in an accident, that it was premeditated.

This is such a fun series to read. I have read the first 3 and have the 4th one in my TBR pile for this year. I will have to say that Hamlet is actually my favorite character. It is highly unlikly to like a side character more than the main character, but he is just so sassy and puts Darla in her place that it cracks me up everytime.

She writes under other names, such as, Dian A.S. Stuckart, Alexa Smart, and Anna Gerard.

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Another sub-genre of the Bookish themes that I love readng are Book Club Mysteries. One of my favorites would have to be An Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery Series by: Erike Chase. The first book in the series is A Killer Read. I love how the author mixes a mystery bookclub into a Cozy Mystery series. It is like a world within a world. I know that if I ever found myself in the middle of a murder investigation that I might act like some of the members of the book club. There are so many different types of people in the club, which I love. Teenagers, teachers, high socialites, middle class, upper class, lower class. They all join each other every meeting and talk about the book that someone from the club had chosen. I LOVE IT!

Another reason why I love this series so much is that I can relate to the main character’s occupation, Lizzie Turner is a reading specialist for her school district. As a teacher, I can relate to a lot of the things that she talks about during her work day. She also tries to tutor the students who are at risk for dropping out and not graduating. She is a girl of my own heart.

Other than the fact that I love this character as a real person. I love how the book club gets pulled into a real murder mystery during their first meeting as the Ashston Corners Mystery Readers and Cheese Straw Society at Molly Mathew’s Southern Mansion. A stranger shows up asking to use the telephone. Molly, and her Southern Manners, obliges. After hearing arguing on the phone, the book club pretends to be interested in other things as the stranger leaves.

Later the strangers body is found with a very interesting clue, an antique pistol that belonged to Molly’s late husband. This puts her as the prime suspect. Molly, who is like a mother to Lizzie, is questioned. Lizzie cannot allow this to happen. She can’t lose another parent…the plot thickens as Lizzie finds a manuscript in her mailbox sheding light on something in the Mathew’s past.

This is such a fun series. I have read the whole series and have loved it. Apparently Erika Chase also writes under the name Linda Wiken and writes the Dinner Club Mystery Series. 

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Another series, that I can’t put down is A Booktown Mystery series,  by: Lorna Barrett. There are 12 books in this series starting with, Murder is Binding.  Stoneham, New Hampshire is the home of the Booktown. Stoneham was hit pretty hard with resession and needed a new make over. The owner of the town’s main street decided to make Stoneham a tourist destination by having bookshops of all different genres up and down both sides of the street.

This is perfect for Tricia Miles, owner of Haven’t Got a Clue, it is a wonder place to find a great mystery to read! Tricia loves it in Stoneham. Away from the busy city and the past that she is trying to forget. She is met with welcoming faces, fun competition, and the challenge of running her very first business.

However, a fellow bookshop owner, Doris Gleason is found murdered in her own Cook Book Shop with a knife sticking out of her body. Being the newcomer, Tricia is looked at as the killer. “To clear her name, Tricia will have to take a page out of one of her own mysteries-and hunt down someone who isn’t killing by the book.”

This is such a fun series, I love all of the chararacters including Tricia’s sister Angelica. Watching their relationship grow throughout the books has been so much fun!

Lorna Barrett also writes under the pen names, L.L. Bartlett and Lorraine Bartlett.

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And last, but certainly not least is the Cozy Mystery Bookclub book of the month for February, Lending A Paw,  by Laurie Cass. This is part of A Bookmoblie Cat Mystery Series. 

I will admit, that I haven’t finished this book yet! But I am super excited about it. Has anyone else ever had the dream of opening their own book store *RAISES HAND HIGH*? My best friend, Bre, and I were talking about opening up a Bookmobile in our home town. Maybe a lending library or something along those lines. That way we can dip our feet in the book owner’s water and see what we think. I can’t wait to dive more into this book and see what that might be like!

Minnie Hamilton is our protagonist and librarian in the tourist town of Chilson, Michigan. She is starting out her maiden voyage of the bookmoblie. However, she will not be going at it alone. Try and she might Minnie can’t seem to shake her rescue cat, Eddie, from joining her. It looks like she has a copilot, whether she wants one or not!

She believes that the day is going out pretty well! People are enjoying the ease and convience of the bookmobile. Thinking that their day is over she heads to her last stop. Eddie darts out of the van and straight into a dead body. Minie believes that she is going to leave the crime stopping to the local police, but Eddie seems to turn up evidence that points to murder. “Together, they’ll work to find the killer–because a good librarian always knows when justice is overdue.”

I am super excited to finish reading this book. I just know I’ll love it, I already have the first four in the series!

Cozy Mystery Releases: February

61C7VlQe9vLCozy Mystery Releases: February Video

Series: Pen & Ink Mysger
Author: Krista Davis
Number: 1
Date Released: Feb. 27th
http://amzn.to/2Ef1HmR
By day, Florrie Fox manages Color Me Read bookstore in Georgetown, Washington D.C. By night, she creates her own intricately detailed coloring books for adults, filling the pages with objects that catch her eye. There’s plenty of inspiration in her new apartment—a beautiful carriage house belonging to Professor John Maxwell, Florrie’s boss. He offers the property to Florrie rent-free with one condition—she must move in immediately to prevent his covetous sister and nephew from trying to claim it.

When the professor’s nephew, Delbert, arrives, he proves just as sketchy as Florrie feared. But the following morning, Delbert has vanished. It’s not until she visits the third floor of the store that Florrie makes a tragic discovery—there’s a trap door in the landing, and a dead Delbert inside. The esteemed Professor Maxwell is an obvious suspect, but Florrie is certain this case isn’t so black and white. Doodling clues, she begins to consider other colorful characters on the scene, all with a motive for murder. With a killer drawing closer, Florrie will need to think outside the lines . . . before death makes his mark again.

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Series: A Sherlock Holmes Bookshop
Author: Vicki Delaney
Number: 3
Date Released: Feb. 13
http://amzn.to/2DHulfz
Legendary stage and movie star Sir Nigel Bellingham arrives on Cape Cod to star in a stage production of The Hound of the Baskervilles put on by the West London Theater Festival. When Sir Nigel, some of the cast, and the director visit the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop at 222 Baker Street, Gemma Doyle realizes that Sir Nigel is not at all suited to the role. He is long past his prime and an old drunk to boot. The cast, in particular the much younger actor who previously had the role, are not happy, but the show must go on.

Before the play opens, Leslie Wilson, mother of Gemma’s best friend Jayne, arranges a fundraising afternoon tea to be catered by Mrs. Hudson’s Tea Room. The tea is a huge success, but when it’s time to leave, Sir Nigel has gone missing—only to be found at the bottom of the rocky cliff, dead. Along with the dead body, Gemma finds evidence incriminating Leslie Wilson. When the police, in the presence of handsome detective Ryan Ashburton and suspicious detective Louise Estrada, focus their attention on Leslie despite the numerous other suspects, the game is once again afoot and it’s again up to the highly perceptive Gemma and the ever-confused but loyal Jayne to clear Jayne’s mother’s name.

 

518CyoJRrLLSeries:Amish Candy Shop
Author: Amanda Flower
Number: 2
Date Released: Feb. 27
http://amzn.to/2Bzbnpu
Harvest, Ohio, is a long way from New York City, where Bailey King left a coveted job as a head chocolatier to take over Swissmen Sweets, her Amish grandparents’ candy shop. Now, while caring for her recently widowed grandmother, she plans to honor her grandfather’s memory by entering the annual Amish Confectionery Competition. But between lavender blueberry fudge and chocolate cherry ganache truffles, Bailey may have bitten off more than she can chew when the search for a missing pot-bellied pig turns up a body suffering from sugar overload—the fatal kind . . .

A candy maker from a neighboring town who wanted Englischer Bailey disqualified for being an outsider, Josephine Weaver died from an allergy to an essential licorice ingredient. The suspects include: Josephine’s niece, a young woman going through her rumspringa, or running around time, and Bailey herself. Now it falls to Bailey, who’s sweet on the local sheriff’s deputy, to clear their names and entice a killer with a cast-iron stomach for cold-blooded murder . . .

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Series: Cat Rescue Mystery
Author: T.C. LoTempio
Number: 2
Date Released: Feb. 13
http://amzn.to/2Bz2pIT
Getting used to life back home in Deer Park, North Carolina, Sydney McCall and her right-hand tabby, Toby, are helping her sister Kat run the local animal shelter. Syd and Kat are all excited about the prospect of the shelter’s newest fundraiser: shopping channel queen Ulla Townsend. Shelter admin Maggie Shayne vehemently refuses to have anything to do with the woman, but the fundraiser ensues as planned. That is, until Ulla turns up dead in the middle of the event.

The cause of death is determined to be an allergic reaction, but Syd and Toby are sniffing out something fishy. When Syd met Ulla, it was clear she was distasteful and rude. And right before the event, Syd spotted some behind-the-scenes drama between Ulla and her manager. As they begin to investigate, they realize there is no shortage of suspects, and Maggie is at the top of the list.

Now Syd and Toby must claw their way to the truth before everything goes paws up at their animal shelter in Death by a Whisker.
51xBgKyD3qLSeries: Irish Village
Author: Carlene O’Connor
Number: 3
Date Released: Feb. 27
http://amzn.to/2nm2Elj
It’s official! Siobhán is now Garda O’Sullivan, and her five siblings couldn’t be prouder. While brother James runs Naomi’s Bistro, Siobhán is doing her part to keep the village safe. Of course, Kilbane is pretty quiet compared to a place like Dublin, where Macdara Flannery has gone to be a detective sergeant.

Then one night the local priest summons Siobhán to the church cemetery. There’s a dead man in the graveyard—aboveground. He lies shot on a blanket of freshly fallen snow, hand stretched out toward a nearby headstone. He’s a stranger, but the priest has heard talk of an American tourist in town, searching for his Irish ancestor.

A detective sergeant is dispatched from Dublin to assist with the case, and as fate would have it, it’s Macdara. After his parting, things are awkward between them, but they have to work together. They learn the victim was from Dublin—Dublin, Ohio, that is. And when his family members are located and told of his murder, the plot thickens. Siobhán begins to dig for a motive among the gnarled roots of the family tree. But as long-buried secrets are unearthed, she and Macdara will need to stay two steps ahead of the killer or end up with more than one foot in the grave.

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Series: An Auction Block Mystery
Author: Loretta Ross
Number: 4
Date Released: Feb. 8
http://amzn.to/2Eg2RP3
Next on Wren and Death’s Appraisal List:

Item #1: An Old Family Feud.

Item #2: A Missing Woman.

Item #3: A Body in the Rosebushes of their Dream House

Auctioneer Wren Morgan and her private eye fiancé Death (pronounced “Deeth”) Bogart are ready to meet each other’s parents and settle down together. But their sleuthing days are far from over. While Death and Wren are helping prepare auction items at an old supper club, a Viking reenactor nearly dies at the historical settlement next door. The cause? Seeing the ghost of his daughter, who went missing twenty years ago.

As Wren looks into what happened to the Viking’s daughter, Death is hired to investigate the theft of historical items that have high sentimental value. When their respective investigations turn out to be connected, the couple gets caught in a deadly conflict.

My Cozy Reader Manifesto

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As a lot of you know I am new to blogging. Sometimes I have a problem with words. A big problem. Like I can’t form a coherent sentence. I word vomit all over the place. A lot of the time I don’t even finish full thoughts. HA! This is a problem if you are wanting to read a well thoughtout and beautifully written review, tag, or post.
So, I was looking into different topics that I could talk about on here. As an educator there wasn’t anything better than prompts! I loved giving my students creative writing prompts in the morning to get their brains going! I stumbled on the prompt about a Reader’s Manifesto. I mean, how cool is the word manifesto?! I feel smarter just typing out the word.  So, without further ado, here is the writing prompt. Whew, 500 words or less. I’ve totes got this.
Summarize your identity as a reader, your challenges and personal missions, values, and where you see yourself in the reading world all in the space of 500 words. (1)

A manifesto is the declaring your goals and aims to yourself and your audience. I have never thought about a creating a manifesto for my reading goals. Quite a few people create reading goals on Goodreads or a TBR for the month. It is always harder for me to create a TBR then it is for an overall goal for myself. I don’t like being tied down as a reader. I am, what you might call, a ‘mood reader’. I fly by the seat of my pants.

Am I in the mood for a library themed cozy?

Yes?

I’ll read Sofie Kelly.

Am I craving some amazing baking?

Totes!

I’ll read Bailey Cates or Ellie Alexander.

Do I want to read about creative people?

YAS!

I’ll read Elizabeth Lynn Casey or Melissa Bourbon.

I don’t like promising to you all that I am going to read a specific book or series and then my mind is in the mood for the complete opposite.

That being said I still believe that you as my reader deserve to know what kind of books, goals, and missions I have set for myself here in the reading world.

I have actually created a very specific Cozy Mystery reading goal for myself this year. I plan on reading 52 Cozies in 2018! Whew. I know that is pretty intense. *puts hands over head to make a tent*….Get it? I’m in a tent…HAHAHAHA. IN TENTS?!?!  I’m funny…..

*coughs awkwardly* This is a pretty big goal. My goal last year was to read 65 books total. I managed with 68, but not all of those were Cozies.

Why Cozies you ask? Short answer? I love them.

Long answer? They are a way for me to escape the word. With the world full of sorrow and hate I need something that will leave me laughing, push my mind, and make me feel cozy. This is what this genre does for me. I love getting the feel of a small community and sleepy town.

I love getting to know all of the different characters. Their quirks. Their flaws. Their passions. They start to feel like family to me.

I love that Cozies are in series. I can grow with the characters. I want to read books that bring me joy.

I am not going to read books that are just hyped to be hyped. This year, I’m reading ALL the books that peak my interest!

My mission this year is to respect my time. Read when I can. Read when I want. Read what I want. Our time as human beings on this world is limited and valuable. I am going to make sure that I am as conscientious of my time as I can.  

This is the year of Cozy Mysteries for me. I am going to step outside of my box. I am going to read all the different themed Cozies. Cooking. Baking. Bookclubs. Witches. Magic. Southern. Western. Older Protagonists. Younger Protagonists. Male Protagonists. YES!