Happy Wednesday and Happy 4th of July everyone! What an amazing year so far, am I right? I can’t believe that we are already halfway through 2018. It seems like yesterday that it was the beginning of the New Year and now we are already almost done with Summer break and I’ll be heading back to work later this month!
I had a pretty decent reading month! I was super exited to find new authors, new characters to fall in love with, and a new genre to read. Sometimes you have to get outside of your comfort zone to really spread your horizons and fall in head over heels with something different. This month, I would say that I stepped outside of my comfort zone! So, without further ado lets get into this!
Our Dark Duet by Victoria Schwab was the second book in the series and I really enjoyed it. Normally with Young Adult novels you expect everything to end happy and that the main character will get what they want or are looking for.
I did not expect that this book would be so dark! Even though the title most certainly did warn me! Haha! I loved getting to know Kate and August more. Watching them evolve and become the young adults that they were meant to become was something that I really enjoyed.
I will admit, I did tear up in this book. I was more attached to these characters then I thought I would be and I am super happy that I decided to finish this duology. It was most certainly worth the read.
Mayhen at The Orient Express was the first book in A League of Literary Ladies Cozy Mystery Series. It was also the Cozy Mystery Bookclub book of the month for June.
I rated this book a 4/5 Stars. I really enjoyed the different characters and the fact that it gave a nod to the Mystery Queen Agatha Christie. I loved that there wasn’t just one main character. I enjoyed getting to know the four ladies who ended up being the League of Literary Ladies.
I do anticipate reading more from this series because I am eager to see how their friendships blossom and I also want to know more about Bea Cartwright’s life from before she moved onto the island.
While I was joining in for the Library-A-Thon I picked up the Court of Thorns and Roses series. As my blog post for the readathon stated, I was originally going to be listening to Cinder on audiobook. However, once I started the audiobook I realized that I couldn’t stand the woman’s voice who was narrating it and that I needed to pick up something else in that genre and read it for myself.
Thus started an addiction to a brand new series that was totally outside of my comfort zone. I have fallen in love with the Fae world in this series. The characters are so well developed. The flaws, the strengths, the weakness, the falls, and the way they bring each other up.
I can’t explain what this series really means to me. I loved it so much that I brought my best friend Bre into reading the series and she is as in love with the series as I am, maybe even more if I’m being honest. All I know is that I will be reading everything written by Sarah J. Maas soon. If she writes this way in all of her books, then I am already in love.
As always Ellie Alexander has left my heart fluttering and my mouth watering! This was the 8th book in The Bakeshop Mystery series featuring the amazing baker Jules Capshaw. She has a lot on her plate during this book! A wedding to plan, an expansion of her bakeshop Torte, her feelings for her estranged husband, and trying to be there for her friends. To top it off someone has a grudge towards Jules herself and tries to poison her!
This book had me laughing, it had me tearing up, and falling in love with the characters over and over again. Ellie has a way with her characters, she brings them alive. She is able to weave words of meaning, feeling, and scrumptiousness like The Bard himself!
I recommend this series to anyone who loves coffee, friends, family, and a good mystery! You will find yourself lost in the world of the characters trying to figure out the ‘whodunit’. This book had me on my toes the whole time guessing and I loved every second of it!
I have always been wary of reading poetry. I have never really been able to get into it. Even in high school when I took a Creative Writing course and we were required to do a whole unit on Poetry and write our own I always felt silly. I don’t know why.
It didn’t help that all of the poetry that was required reading during school was the old and classical poetry. I know that as a history major I should appreciate and love the classics, but I personally don’t. At least not a lot of them.
So when Bre and I hung out last week and went to Books-A-Million we stopped by the poetry section. Bre is an English Major and is getting her Bachelors in English. She was talking to me about poetry and mentioned this author and her poetry books. I opened the first one up and immediately knew that I was hooked.
I bought both books on Thursday and read both of them while laying in bed on Friday. I loved this set of poetry. I could relate to all of it. Some of it broke my heart. Other parts made me laugh. I loved all of the different aspects.
Fawkes is one of those books that surprised me. I went into it believing that this was going to be a Young Adult Fantasy novels, which is the reason why I picked it up! I have been on a Fantasy kick lately. This book was so much more than that.
This is technically a Historical Fiction novel with a fantastical twist. It was a wonderful rendition of 1600s England. An outcast of people who live by the pure way of magic called the Keepers versus the Igniters a group of people who talk to the White Light, the original color who created all other color powers. There is a war between them with the Keepers being exiled, killed, tortured, and worse.
This story is based on true events with fantastical characteristics. I loved the characters. The elements of magic were really intricate and fun. I loved the idea of having a mask that helps with their magic.
Our main character is Thomas Fawkes. He is a teenager who is readying himself for his last year in school where he will get his mask from his famous father Guy Fawkes and he will finally be able to cure himself from the Stone Plague that has swept through the country since the Igniters have taken the White Light.
Thomas’ father fails to show up to the ceremony where he is supposed to be getting his mask. Thomas is bound and determined to find his father and demand his mask. He finds himself in London and scary place for Keepers and Plague. He is drawn into a plot, trying to find his feelings for his father, whether or not he is a Keeper or an Igniter.
This was a fun, magical, and well written book about finding yourself, accepting others for their differences, and learning a little bit about history. I highly recommend.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson through NetGalley, Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Hello everyone! I know it has been a while since my last post! Life has been incredibly busy! As a teacher the end of the school year is FAST approaching and there are so many things to do and so little time! I have been reading A LOT better in the month of May, let me tell you though! A lot better. I have actually been reaching a little bit outside of my comfort zone lately as well, which I am proud of. I needed a short reprieve from Cozies for a little bit and now I am ready to tackle my Cozy TBR Pile!
As stated above this is my short TBR for the Library-A-Thon that will be held June 3rd 2018 thru June 9th 2018. I was tagged to be apart of this Readathon by my good friend Jashana , if you are NOT following her I suggest you get to it! She is hilarious, blunt, and stick you right with what she is thinking! She is a breath of fresh air! The Creator Saajid and Co-Hosts are Kelly and Kathy. Go follow their channels and without further ado, let’s get into this TBR!
There are 6 Challenges to this Library-A-Thon:
1. Borrow and read a book set in a country that you’ve never read a book set in before.
2. Borrow and read a book that you’ve never heard of before.
3. Borrow and read a book that’s out of your comfort zone (genre, age group, themes, etc.)
4. Borrow and read a book that you’ve been meaning to read, but haven’t gotten around to.
5. Borrow and read a book recommended by a librarian.
6. Borrow and read a bookish book (for instance, a book about books, a book with ‘book’ in the title or a book with a book on the cover).
I have three books that I am really excited to read! What’s awesome is that I went onto Hoopla, Overdrive, and My Library’s App to find all of these books and they were all suggested or they popped up to be read!
For the challenges of Borrow and read a book set in a country that you’ve never read a book set in before and a book outside of your comfort zone I am choosing Cinder By: Marissa Meyer!
This is a retelling of Cinderella I believe. I have seen this series roaming around Booktube over the past year, but I haven’t read or picked it up until now. I am going to try and read it as an Audiobook from Hoopla.
I don’t normally read Young Adult fiction so it is kind of outside of my comfort zone, but I am still excited and intrigued by the idea of this series.
CINDER, a gifted mechanic in New Beijing, is also a cyborg. She’s reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s sudden illness. But when her life becomes entwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she finds herself at the centre of a violent struggle between the desires of an evil queen – and a dangerous temptation.
Cinder is caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal. Now she must uncover secrets about her mysterious past in order to protect Earth’s future.
For Challenges 5 and 6:
5. Borrow and read a book recommended by a librarian.
6. Borrow and read a bookish book (for instance, a book about books, a book with ‘book’ in the title or a book with a book on the cover).
I have chosen “The Library at the Edge of the World” By: Felicity Hayes-McCoy! This book seemed to fit these two challenges PERFECTLY! Seriously, I couldn’t have planned it better!
As she drives her mobile library van between villages of Ireland’s West Coast, Hanna Casey tries not to think about a lot of things. Like the sophisticated lifestyle she abandoned after finding her English barrister husband in bed with another woman. Or that she’s back in Lissbeg, the rural Irish town she walked away from in her teens, living in the back bedroom of her overbearing mother’s retirement bungalow. Or, worse yet, her nagging fear that, as the local librarian and a prominent figure in the community, her failed marriage and ignominious return have made her a focus of gossip.
With her teenage daughter, Jazz, off traveling the world and her relationship with her own mother growing increasingly tense, Hanna is determined to reclaim her independence by restoring a derelict cottage left to her by her great-aunt. But when the threatened closure of the Lissbeg Library puts her personal plans in jeopardy, Hanna finds herself leading a battle to restore the heart and soul of the Finfarran Peninsula’s fragmented community. And she’s about to discover that the neighbors she’d always kept at a distance have come to mean more to her than she ever could have imagined.
This book covers two challenges that seem to negate each other, but I promise that I makes sense, at least…to me it does!
Challenges 2 and 4
2. Borrow and read a book that you’ve never heard of before.
4. Borrow and read a book that you’ve been meaning to read, but haven’t gotten around to.
As you all know I love Agatha Christie! The Mother of Cozy Mysteries! I have really been meaning to read more of her work (hence challenge 4). I am so happy that the library had a short story that I have never heard of before. I have heard about Tommy & Tuppence, but I didn’t know anything about their storyline or anything about the characters (hence challenge 2)!
Captain Sessle is found stabbed through the heart with a hatpin, and the only clue is a bit of red wool in his hand. A pretty blonde is charged because she was wearing a bright red wool coat, but the Beresfords aren’t so sure. Was there more behind the killing than a cute girl and some red yarn?
That is the end of my TBR for the Library-A-Thon! I am super excited to get started on these books after the school year is over! I am super excited that this readathon starts RIGHT after school ends!
Hey hey my Cozy Companions! I hope that you are having an AMAZING day! I am super glad that April is over. I don’t know about you guys, but April was an extremely hard month for me. I couldn’t focus, I couldn’t get motivated, I just needed May to start so that I felt like the slate was clean! I read a whopping four books this month! Three of which were WONDERFUL! Let me know what you read this month down below or if you’ve read these books and what you thought of them!
A Piece of Cake Mystery Series
The first book that I read this month was a buddy read with Kayla from @literatureads! She is one of the sweetest people I have met from Booktube and Twitter. It was her idea to start this series together!
This book follows Rita Lucero. She is trying to start her life over, but there is one little thing holding her back. Her soon-to-be ex-husband refuses to sign the divorce papers even though he is the one that left her.
Rita hops on a plan from Arizona and flies to New Orleans willing to camp out in his reception area of his bakery until he signs the papers. This quick trip leaves Rita with the dead body of her ex-husband, a black lined bakery, and maybe becoming the next murder victim.
This was a really fun book to read. I loved the characters, the plot ran smoothly, and the whodunit was very well done. Overall this book has made me want to continue the series!
A Spice Shop Mystery Series
This book was April’s Cozy Mystery Bookclub Pick! This was such a fun series to start! If you want the complete book talk with the bookclub click here!
Pepper Reece is finally happy with her life. She left her cheating husband, left a well-paying job, and bought up the local Spice Shop in the heart of Seattle’s Pike Place Market!
The only thing Pepper has to worry about is getting her newest designs done for the shop. Should she stick with the old design that is true and loved? Or should she strike out on her own and put more of herself into the design of her new shop?
These thoughts are being put on hold however when a presumed homeless man is found dead in the front of Pepper’s shop with a paper cup with her logo on it near the body. The police show up, including her bike riding cop ex-husband.
Chaos ensues when one of Pepper’s employees is arrested for the murder of the unknown man. Will Pepper be able to keep her store afloat, find out who the mysterious man is, and save her coworker from prison? You’ll just have to read to find out!
The next book that I read in April was “Then She War Gone” by Lisa Jewell. I really thought that this book was going to be like The Broken Girls, by Simone St. James.
Boy was I wrong. This book was not to my taste at all. I rated it a 2/5 stars on Goodreads. I actually can’t wait until I unhaul this book.
I really thought that this was going to have a better mystery, a better plot, and more character development.
Ellie Mack is the perfect child. Perfect grades. Gorgeous. Everything was coming her way. Until she goes missing. The police believe that she has runaway.
This story is broken up into multiple points of view, which is very confusing as you are reading. You follow Laurel, Ellie’s mother, Ellie, and others. I don’t want to give away too much information or it will spoil the book for you.
There are many parts in this book that were triggers for me and made me feel really uncomfortable. I got this book through my Book of The Month Club pick. This is something that I will not be re-reading again.
The final book that I read in April was You Are A Badass! How to Stop Doubting You Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life, by Jen Sincero.
As I stated at the beginning of this blog, I had a pretty rough month in April. I live in Oklahoma and am a teacher. There was a walkout for two weeks due to the fight for more funding in our classrooms and into education. I won’t get into politics with anyone, just know that children are my heart and I want the best for them!
You would think that with two weeks off that I would have devoured as many books as possible. I would have thought so too. That however wasn’t the case. I was broken-hearted, I believe. I couldn’t find the energy to read or to do much of anything.
I went and protested quite a few times during the walkout, twice in Oklahoma City. But I couldn’t bring myself to do much of anything. I needed to get out of this funk. I wanted to read a book that would help bounce me back!
This is when I saw this bright yellow cover that made me smile. Especially with its quirky and out of the norm title! I laughed and couldn’t stop smiling, so I put the book in the Amazon cart with The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**K, which I am currently reading.
This book really helped me see everything going on in the world in a different way. I needed to let myself become better. I needed to stop holding myself back. If you really want to see my reaction on this mind-blowing book watch this video!
So, that was my reading month for April. It wasn’t as extensive as the first three months of 2018, but I am still proud of everything that I read. All of them, good or bad, helped shape me into my thoughts of today.
I hope that you have an amazing reading month in May! What are you planning on reading in May? I’m horrible at TBRs! Haha!
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.
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.
This 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!
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.
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.
This 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.
Again, 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!
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!
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!
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!
I have recently revamped my Cozy Mystery Rating System. There are just some things that are required when there is a Cozy being read. I have created this Rating System, if you will. It consists of five main categories: Characters, The Whodunit, Relationships, Series, and Punniness. Each of these are rated with 1-4 Cleo The Cat’s, as shown below, and then the total is averaged!
Why did I choose Cleo The Cat, you ask? Well, for one, I do have a cat named Cleo. She is extremely feisty, curious, and highly photogenic. It helps that A LOT of Cozies have fur children in the series. I thought that it would be fun to use Cleo as the mascot.
I mean look at how cute that kitty cat is!!! How can you not want to rate with her?! The only thing that would make her cuter is if she had a bow!
Characters is the first category that I rate. If the main protagonist isn’t likable I don’t care how much potential the story has, I can’t get into it. I have to feel close to the characters, like they can be my friends.
The Whodunit is the next category. Was the author actually able to fool me to a reasonable degree on who the antagonist/killer was? If they were they would get 4 Cleo’s. For how many mysteries have read it is sometimes hard for an author to trick me or lead me astray. I love it when they can!
Relationships is the third category that I rate. This is the relationship or romance that is within the story line. I love the secondary characters just as much or sometimes more than the main character. If there are not well written and drawn out relationships within the series then it is not worth reading to me.
Series is the fourth category. There are two different ways that I rate with this. If it is the first book in the series than I would rate this as whether or not I am going to want to continue with the series. If I am in the middle of the series I will rate it to the degree in which the series is progressing. Is it getting better? Are the characters growing?
Punniness is the last category. I know, I know, Punniness technically isn’t a word. BUT it is a word to me. One of the reasons why I picked up Cozies in the first place are the amazing titles. Curiosity Thrilled the Cat?! Meet Your Baker?! A Killer Read?!? Yes, this is amazing. I am buying a book by its cover and title. You do too. Don’t tell me you don’t. I want to see how fun and funny a series is.
Look below at a visual for the Cozy Mystery Rating System!
Oh my goodness guys! I have no idea how I did this! reading 11 books in one month. I feel like I am not the same person! I don’t know if I even read that many last year in one month! Whew! I just couldn’t help it! When I find a series I devour it. I read through them all. I am super excited to see what next month brings!!
If you have not picked up the Port Dandy series by London Lovett you are missing out! I read books 1-4 in about 4 or 5 days. I just ate them up! We are following Pink and her new flower shop in Port Danby. She has moved from the big city to the small town of Port Danby to start life anew after finding out that her fiance was cheating on her. She finds herself in the middle of a murder investigation and finds that her inane sense of smell helps break the case right open!
In the second book, Carnation & Chaos, Pink is super excited that she is going to be helping set up the Third Annual Food Fair! This is going to be bringing big business to the town. Everyone on main street is getting their shops ready when a very famous and not well liked blogger is found killed in her hotel. Pink helps Detective James Briggs (YUM!) by using her keen sense of smell to help figure out the whodunit! This was such a fun read. Lovett has me rolling when it comes to the relationship between Pink and her crow. I love it! I am also loving the relationship building between Pink and James. I am totally Team James. I also NEED to know what happened at the mansion so many years ago!
In the third book, Roses & Revenge, Pink is excited for the annual Harbor Holiday Lights Flotilla. She is excited to see how the harbor is lit up for the holidays! Hot cocoa, a good book, and cuddling with her pet crow are somethings that are on her to-do list. However, when the captain of a boat is found strangled to death on the pier, Pink sticks her nose into Detective James’ business in trying to figure out who killed the man!
This is such a fun book! I love how Pink tells her best friend whats-what. That she needs to stop being so selfish and that she needs to get over herself. She isn’t going to just sit there and not say what needs to be said!
I also love how there is a mystery inside a mystery with this series. While you’re trying to figure out the main murder, Pink is still trying to figure out what happened at the mansion!
There is love in the air in Port Danby! Pink has a new assistant who is taking care of the shop while she is trying to figure out what happened at the Mansion and Pink’s past is also rearing its ugly head when Georgio’s Perfume Company comes to Port Danby for a photoshoot for their newest perfume line.
This of course was the company that Pink used to work for and she is faced with running into her ex-fiance.
Who is going to be Pinks Valentine? James? Dash? Her ex? She doesn’t have time to contemplate this when a someone with the company is found killed in their trailer and Pink’s ex is the primary suspect.
Torn with helping Detective James figure out what happened and who did it and helping her friends, Pink is trying to come to the terms that someone she knows is a killer.
Stroke of Death is the third book in the Scarlet Cove series by Agatha Frost and Evelyn Amber. It follows retiree Liz Jones. She has moved to Scarlet Cove to live out the rest of her life painting and running her craft store.
Not only is she running her business but she is running an Art Group after hours where people from around the town can come and be taught painting, gossip, and relax after a long day.
The local gallery’s tyrannical manager Katelyn Monroe is on vacation so Liz’s best friend Nancy suggests taking their paintings to the gallery for a one night show. It is extremely popular until Katelyn shows up early unannounced, throws a hissy-fit, rips Liz’s painting, and is found murdered in her office.
Liz did not expect to find herself wrapped up in another murder. It gets a little too personal when she has to suspect her best friend and everyone in the art club. This was a fun, short, and easy cozy mystery to read. It isn’t as in depth as I would have wanted but it was a great series to read on Kindle Unlimited.
Lending A Paw was the Cozy Mystery Bookclub book pick for the month of February! It was a super super cute book. It is about the grand sailing of the Bookmobile for the local library in Chilson, Michigan. Librarian Minnie is super nervous and excited to start out on this amazing trip of spreading literacy to hard to reach places.
The first day went pretty well, even though Eddie, Minnie’s cat tagged along, books were checked out, people left happy, and Minnie was ready to call it a day. When Eddie decides, on the last stop, to run out of the van and into a run down house. Minnie follows and finds a man that she knows killed.
She wants to leave this crime in the hands of the professionals but when she realizes that they are not following the right clues she has to direct them to the correct suspect. This was a very cute series. I enjoyed it very much and I will be trying out the others in the series. Hopefully the series gets even better as they go on.
This was such a wonderful and refreshing read! This is the first in the Rose City Mystery series by Kate Dyer-Seeley (aka Ellie Alexander). One of my absolutely FAVORITE Cozy Mystery authors!
Britta has finally had it with her husband. She is tired of being the only one with a job. The only one that pays bills or goes grocery shopping. She realizes that she is done with this life when she comes home to find flowers on her kitchen counter. Sweet! You think. How thoughtful. Except these weren’t for her. They were from her husband. However they were for another woman.
Britta has decided to move back home to help her Aunt Elin run her amazing flower shop, Blooma. The store is expanding and Elin needs all of Britta’s help with her amazing artistic eye and way with flowers.
Britta realizes she has been away from home too long when she finds that even though she and her aunt had weekly phone calls that Elin was hiding things from her. Like a rivalry with another florist. Someone trying to buy out the shop. And finally when a body is found inside Blooma Britta realizes that she needs to find out what happened.
I truly loved this book. I love how well Kate/Elli writes her characters. They truly do feel like family. They have me laughing, cry, and getting angry with them. I adore how much the author puts herself into everyone of her series.
*This was sent to me as an Advanced Reader Copy for a free review.
I’m not going to talk too much about these, other than the fact that they were adorable. I loved seeing the different points of view to my favorite Disney story. It was so amazing to see what the Beast thought while watching them fall in love. Or how Belle was really starting to see inside of the Beast’s heart. I just loved it. It was extremely nostalgic for me. The art is absolutely breathtaking and I even loved the little comics in between the chapters. It was wonderful. I most definitely recommend them! I rated them both 5 stars.
This is the first in the Pacific Northwest Mystery series by Kate Dyer-Seeley/Ellie Alexander. Again, like I said before she is one of my favorite authors. Aaron actually bought me the first four in the series for Christmas and I am so excited that I finally got around to reading it. It was so worth it!
In this series we are following Meg, a new graduated Journalism major. She has had an extremely rough year. Before she graduated her father was found killed in a hit and run.
She was couch ridden for months on her best friend’s couch.
She was having trouble finding a job since newspapers are shutting down left and right. She had no idea what she was going to do with her life. Until she ran into Greg, the owner of Northwest Extreme an outdoors magazine.
Lying her butt off about being athletic Meg gets a job at the magazine. She is given her very first assignment following around the reality show that revolves around climbing the most death defying places for the chance to win a million dollars. She has no clue what she has gotten herself into. She is petrified of heights. It doesn’t help that when she fakes a fall she witnesses one of the competitors in the show falling to their death.
Journalism runs in Meg’s bones. Her dad was considered one of the best. When Meg smells that this death wasn’t an accident, she is like a dog with a bone hide. She can’t let go. She has to figure out who did it, even if she finds herself hanging on for her life.
I truly love this series. Meg is in her early twenties and has a lot to learn. Sometimes I want to smack her in the head and tell her what she should be doing but she has been growing during the series. (I am currently on the third novel).
This book was AMAZING! This is the second book in the Pacific Northwest Mystery series. I actually did my first Cozy Vlogs while reading this book. Here is Part One and Part Two.
Meg still isn’t very athletic, but she is an amazing writer. Greg has decided that he is going to keep her. It helps that she is amazing with social media and had tripled the following for the magazine. It has been a crazy ride. Something that I truly love about this series is the fact that there is a mystery inside of a mystery. We find out that Meg’s Dad’s death might not have been an accident. So while Meg is trying to figure what’s going on there she has volunteered herself to follow some mountain men, the Ridge Rangers, who are starting a new business helping people reach the summit in Oregon.
There seems to be some fighting amongst the Ridge Rangers and the man who is funding the business. That happens sometimes, but what doesn’t happen is someone getting shot and killed outside in a winter storm. Meg knows that she needs to back away from this because of the last murder she was caught in the middle of. But when one of her friends is considered a suspect she finds herself diving into the mystery, once again.
This one had me on the edge of my seat and I have NO IDEA who the killer was. This is rare for me because I usually know. I loved this book very much!