January Wrap Up!

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January Wrap Up! Video

Trouble Is Brewing (A Bakeshop Mystery #6.5) 

Rating: 5/5
Series: A Bakeshop Mystery
Author: Ellie Alexander
Number: 6.5
http://amzn.to/2DHB1u7
This was such a fun and quick read. Two of my, now, favorite amateur sleuths meet as kindred women. I love that they had a mystery to solve as well! It wasn’t enough for me though. I craved more. Which is what I think was Ellie’s thought process. Leaving us wanting.

If you haven’t read Death on Tap, Sloan’s first Mystery, I highly suggest it. I love getting anything and everything that Ellie puts out into the world.

A fun short read. You do need to know that the story is finished at 35% and the rest of the book is a sneak peek into Death on Tap.

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Pumpkin Smoothie Murder (Harmony Cafe Cozy Mystery Book 4)
Rating: 2/5
Series: A Harmony Cafe Cozy Mystery
Author: Anna Lakewood
Number: 4
http://amzn.to/2BzJkGp
This was the fourth installment of the Harmony Cafe Series. Trouble has hit Autumn’s town again. This time, it’s aliens. Or is it?

I feel like this book was filled with so much potential as most of this series is, which is why keep reading it.

However, I feel like Autumn and her ex-husband’s rivalry is childish and isn’t well written. I also feel like the author is telling me things and not showing them to me.

The characters need to have more depth. I need to feel for the characters. Which isn’t the case in this series.

I will continue to read the next book to see if as the series advances maybe so does the author’s writing. I really do like the idea of this series which is why I picked it up. But I was not shocked by the ‘whodunit’ aspect. The plot was rushed and sort of everywhere.

I know that this is supposed to be a short story type of Cozy, but I still need a little bit more detail and twist.

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Charms and Chocolate Chips (Magical Bakery Mystery #3) 
Rating:
4/5
Series: A Magical Bakeshop Mystery
Author:Bailey Cates
Number:3
http://amzn.to/2DS3Bw6
If you follow my blogs, the reviews, or my YouTube channel, I have a slight addiction to Cozy Mysteries. Okay, maybe not SLIGHT…a HUGE addiction to Cozies. But more specifically, I have a weakness for cooking and magical mysteries. They just tickle my fancy. My waist and my imagination expand while reading these types of books.

Bailey Cates’ Magical Bakery Mystery does this to me every time. I crave what ever it is that Katie and Lucy are making in the Honeybee Bakery and I want to know more about the magic that Katie is learning about herself. Especially since I’ve dabbled in it as well.

This is the third installment in the series and it was just as amazing as the first two. You dive more into Declan and Katie’s relationship. What it means to Katie to be a white witch, a pure witch. Is she a catalyst? So many questions.

While trying to put extra karma out in the world for herself Katie volunteers at with a conservation group trying to save extinct or endangered animals. She loves it even though she is working basically two jobs. Unfortunately, whether it was just a happenstance or if she really does cause these things to happen, someone from the conservation is killed.

Katie, surround by her coven, feels responsible to figure out the ‘whodunit’, especially when it is not just her that is being threatened, but members of her Spell Book Club as well.

This was a delightful read. I love getting to know all of characters a little more as well as the AMAZING recipes at the back of the book. I can’t wait to try out the peanut butter cookies.

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Some Enchanted Éclair (Magical Bakery Mystery #4) 
Rating: 4/5
Series: A Magical Bakery Mystery
Author:Bailey Cates
Number: 4
http://amzn.to/2DIO4LX

As you can see I was on a Magical Bakery kick this month. Does anyone else get this way?! You fall in love with a town, a character, the way the writer portrays the mystery!?! That is how I feel with all of the books I read. I mostly read series because of this. I don’t like not being able to know more about a world.

In this addition to Katie Lightfoot’s life she is being brought outside of her comfort zone. Both in her business life and in her personal life as well.

A movie crew has shown up in town with some pretty high-profile actors and actresses. Some how the Spellbook Club gets brought into the hectic life of show business. One of them is supplying the wine, the other the flowers, Katie and her Aunt are asked last-minute to cater the event. This is a test on how much the Honey Bee Bakery can handle when it comes to clients and the future of the bakery.

However, this doesn’t seem to be the only challenge that is put on Katie. Some one on the set is murdered and a psychic on the set states that someone told her that Katie would be the one to solve it. So now, not only is she extending herself in her job with catering, but she is also extending herself further then she ever has with her magical abilities.

Will Katie be able to keep the bakery a float? Will she be able to find the murderer before the final cut? GO CHECK IT OUT!

34909427Scone Cold Killer (All-Day Breakfast Café Mystery #1)
Rating: 4/5
Series: An All-Day Breakfast Cafe Mystery
Author:Lena Gregory
Number: 1
http://amzn.to/2EifVDr

This was such a fun book to read! I was actually given the ARC from Net Galley for an honest review. I think I have found one of my new favorite series.

This follows Gia Morelli, she knows it’s time to get out of New York, when her marriage falls apart.  Her husband was a scam artist, a liar, and a cheat. He swindled millions of dollars from the wealthy in New York and slept with anything that walked and had money. 

People were constantly harassing her in New York, from phone calls to stalking. Gia can’t take much more of it. The only person that is sticking by her side is her college roommate and best friend Savannah. Savannah cons her friend into moving and starting her life long dream, opening an All-Day Breakfast Cafe in a small town in Central Florida. 

Gia is in a cultural shock. Everyone is kind and open to her in Florida. She is living in a house backed against a beautiful forest. And she braves snakes, bears, and SPIDERS to live there. She couldn’t be happier to maybe, have a place to call home for the first time in her life.

However, life from New York seems to follow her when the morning she opens her restaurant she takes the trash out to find her ex-husband in the dumpster. Looking like a murder she is considered the prime suspect.

While she was looking for an over easy kind of life, it looks like it might be scrambled. Can she save her new life or is her past catching up to her?

Gia and Savannah are #bestfriendgoals. I loved this book so much. The characters, the story, and trying to guess the #whodunnit was so much fun. This was a great start to the series.

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Dead in the Water (Scarlet Cove #1)
Rating: 
4/5
Series: A Scarlet Cove Seaside Cozy Mystery
Author: Agatha Frost & Evelyn Amber
Number: 1
http://amzn.to/2roQHR4

As you may know from my previous blogs, I love Agatha Frost and her Peridale Cafe series. I have read ALL 10 that are out so far.

When I stumbled onto another series by her and one of her best friends I couldn’t help but squeal with excitement. Another Cozy Mystery series!?!?! Yas please!!!

This is the first book in the Scarlet Cove Seaside Cozy Mystery series. It follows Liz Jones, formally retired as a detective from Manchester, I believe, at the age of 42.

She is wanting to start fresh, opening up her own Craft Store, and to paint to her hearts desire. She finds all of the citizens in Scarlet Cove to be quirky but enjoyable. She makes fast friends with a few. Bad impressions with some. And realizes that it might be harder to kick the habit of sleuthing then she thought.

While painting on the sandy beach she hears the desperate calls from a dog on a boat. Realizing that there seems to be no one steering the boat, her and the owner sail out and find a dead body.  Will Liz be able to leave her past behind and be open to her creative side? Or is she going to slip back into her past career choice and find the killer.

36349274Castle on the Hill (Scarlet Cove #2) 
Rating: 4/5
Series: A Scarlet Cove Seaside Cozy Mystery
Author: Agatha Frost & Evelyn Amber
Number: 2
http://amzn.to/2Fr87yT

One of the reasons why Scarlet Cove is so popular for tourists is the legend that follows the Castle on the Hill. The rumor that the Lord of the castle cut the heads off of everyone under the roof, making the castle bleed blood.

The second book in the series starts on Halloween and the festival that the town throws in honor for this sordid history. Of course, there are those that are excitedly waiting to see the ghosts of the headless.

Liz believes that all of this is just humbug. A way to bring tourists to the town. Something that is just for fun. Except when she takes a walk around the castle that same night and her foot shoots an object across the floor. A squishy head shaped object. Is the castle really haunted? Are the ghosts fed up with being seen as a joke? Or is something else going on? It looks like Liz is going to have to put her detective hat on again!

This was a fun and quick read! I loved getting to know Liz more. I am eagerly awaiting the third book in the series coming out later this month.

34050839Dark, Witch & Creamy (Bewitched by Chocolate #1)
Rating: 
3/5
Series: Bewitch By Chocolate
Author: H.Y. Hanna
Number: 1
http://amzn.to/2EZPuSl

This is the first in the Bewitched By Chocolate series by HY Hanna. I have actually read all of her Oxford Tearoom series and have LOVED it. I was super surprised and excited to see that she had another series on Kindle Unlimited and wanted to give it a try! I am so glad I did.

This series is about Caitlyn, her mother, a famous singer, recently passed away in a car accident. She leaves Caitlyn a letter divulging that she is not her actually daughter. She was found on the side of a road in England.

She flies halfway across the world to follow her past and try to find any trace of her family that let her go. She ends up in the quaint English village of Tillyhenge where she finds out a man has been murdered by what people are assuming is magic.

Tillyhenge seems to be encompassed with a certain feeling. Cell phones don’t work. The internet is sketchy at best. Caitlyn finds herself staying with the local “old witch”, rescuing a kitten, and meeting Lord James Fitzroy. “Not to mention discovering that she herself might have magical blood in her veins!”

When she’s dragged into the murder investigation and realises that dark magic is involved, Caitlyn is forced to choose. Can she embrace her witchy powers in time to solve the mystery and save those she loves?

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Marigolds and Murder (Port Danby #1) 
Rating:4/5
Series: Port Danby Cozy Mystery
Author: London Lovett
Number: 1
http://amzn.to/2FY5i9x

I actually just finished the book today (Sunday, Jan. 28th), and I am sooo glad that I pick this series up! Pink cracks me up! The beautiful colors of this series’ covers are what reeled me into world of Port Danby.

This series follows Lacey ‘Pink’ Pinkerton. She has decided that after a bad break up she was going to quit her six figure job as the ‘million dollar nose’, move across the country, and open up her own flower business. She moved to Port Danby with her pet crow Kingston and her cat Nevermore. She is ready to start fresh.

She has a keen sense of smell. So much so that she can pick apart the different ingredients in a slice of pumpkin bread. She never thought that her overly powerful nose would get her stuck in the middle of a murder investigation. Will her heightened sense of smell be able to track down the killer for detective James? Or is she going to be smelling roses as another victim? You’ll have to read it and find out.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR STOPPING BY MY BLOG! IT MEANS THAT ABSOLUTE WORLD TO ME. PLEASE CONSIDER FOLLOWING MY REVIEWS! I HAVE NEW CONTENT COMING OUT EVERY WEEK. YOU CAN ALSO GO TO MY OTHER SOCIAL MEDIAS WHERE I PUT OUT TONS OF COZY MYSTERY GOODNESS! IT’S SO MUCH FUN TO TALK TO OTHERS ABOUT ALL OF THE BOOKS THAT I LOVE READING! LEAVE SOME COMMENTS DOWN BELOW IF YOU HAVE READ ANY OF THESE. All of these reviews are of my own thoughts and opinions. They are not influenced by anyone else.
*AMAZON LINKS ARE AFFILIATE LINKS. IF THAT MAKES YOU UNCOMFORTABLE PLEASE DON’T FEEL LIKE YOU HAVE TO USE THEM.

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!

 

Top 5 Cozy Mysteries for Beginners

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Top 5| Cozy Mysteries for Beginners Video
Hey hey everyone! I hope you all are curled up where you love to read, a glass of wine or cup of tea/coffee next to you, and maybe a furchild curled up at your feet while you are reading this blog. Here in Oklahoma it is currently 26˚F or -3˚C. In some places that isn’t too cold, but here it is freezing. This is the perfect time to wrap myself in my coziest blanket into a burrito and read. As I was sitting here on my couch I started thinking about cozies, as I do, and I wanted to start some Top 5 content for you. Without further ado…
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*Nebula*-My Sister’s Puppy

I asked you all on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram what you would like me to vlog/blog about most for tomorrow’s Booktube video.

The most popular topic was the best cozy mysteries for beginners. There are so many Cozy Mysteries out in the subgenre that it can be overwhelming on what book to choose, what theme, what type of protagonist, and so much more. I am going to give you my top five from different themes.

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Meet Your Baker-Ellie Alexander

Theme: Baking 

http://amzn.to/2Dl8URY

As most of you know this is actually the Cozy Mystery Club’s January pick for the Bookclub this month. This is for a very good reason!

The Bakeshop Mystery series is a wonderful series to start on if you haven’t read a Cozy before. The characters are complex, have their own backgrounds, and are extremely relatable.

Reading this series you don’t feel as though you are missing anything. Everyone has eaten a baked good, made cupcakes, or have seen them in movies. It is something that is common and most of the time brings happy thoughts to a person.

The first book has Juliet Capshaw coming home from her life as a head pastry chef with a broken heart. You feel for Jules and how she is licking her wounds and starting back home.

She has moved home to one of the most breathtaking small towns I have ever seen, Ashland, Oregon. The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is starting to bring in lots of visitors and that means more customers for Torte, Jules’ family bakery ran by her mom, Helen.

One of Torte’s customers and newest board member for the festival is found dead. Jules’ ex-flame Thomas is the investigator on the murder. It seems that even though the customer is dead, the love between Thomas and Jules might not be.

*self promo plug* If you want to join us for the Live Stream on “Why We Love Cozies” on January 17th @ 7pm CST that would be amazing! We are also having a wrap up on Meet Your Baker on January 31st @ 7pm CST -link coming-

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Curiosity Thrilled The Cat- Sofie Kelly    *in picture Tom Cat*

Theme: Magical Cats/Librarian

http://amzn.to/2D24cuG

This is probably one of my absolute favorite cat series. One thing you will probably notice if you go looking into the Cozy Mystery section of a bookstore is that there are a lot of furchildren that follow our protagonists.

I love kitties, if you couldn’t tell by my lovely Tom here. He looks JUST LIKE Hercules on the cover!

Hercules, the stocky tuxedo cat, and Owen, the tabby with a cat-nip addiction are feral cats that Kathleen Paulson found when she moved to the small town Mayville Heights, Minnesota to help remodel and build onto the local library.

Kathleen has left her life and broken heart in Boston. During the Wild Rose Summer Music Festival a murder occurs and Kathleen finds herself as the Prime Suspect. She also finds that her kitty cats are more special then she thought. I mean, I’m pretty sure that walking through walls and becoming invisible aren’t normal traits for felines. Am I riiight?

However off putting it may be to watch her one of her cats walk through a wall, she finds herself depending on their special abilities to help solve the crime and save her new reputation. Isn’t this just purr-fact?

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Pleating for Mercy-Melissa Bourbon

Theme: Sewing/Magical

http://amzn.to/2D5o28w

Harlow Cassidy is a special woman. When I mean special, I mean SPECIAL. All of the Cassidy women are special, they possess gifts. Gifts to help others. Harlow Jane Cassidy’s gift you ask? Creating beautifully stunning dresses. Not just aesthetically, but ones that help the owners grant their deepest desires.

When Harlow’s Great-Grandmother passes away and leaves her house to her, Harlow moves home from Manhattan to Bliss,Texas.

She was an extremely popular fashion designer and decides that she is going to turn her Grandmother’s old farmhouse into a custom dressmaking boutique! She feels as though she can feel her Great-Grandmother’s presence in the house with her, the memories are so strong.

One of Harlow’s very first customers is a childhood friend, Josie. She is needed a wedding dress and bride’s maid dresses, and quickly. However, things aren’t starting out like a Happy Ever After.

The bride, Josie’s, boss and maid of honor is found dead outside of the farm house and it looks like the bride-to-be is the prime suspect. It looks like Josie is going to need a lot more from Harlow then the perfect wedding dress, she needs this to be solved.

I love that this series has little elements of magic, ghosts, and a little bit of history mixed into it. If you love reading about powerful strong women, this is the Cozy for you!

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A Killer Read-Erika Chase

Theme: BookClub/Teacher

http://amzn.to/2DmMQqa

This series surrounds the members of the Ashton Corners Mystery Readers and Cheese Straws Society Book Club. Haha! I know, that is a mouth full! That’s what I thought when I read that. But it intrigued me.

Another thing that made me want to read this was the fact that the main character, Lizzie Turner, is a Reading Specialist and LOVES mystery books!

Does that sounds like anyone else?! I am a Digital Learning Specialist and I love Cozies. Erika Chase was pretty much writing this book for me. Am I right? Am I right?!? Whew. Okay, lets get back to it.

Lizzie is part of the ACMRaCSS (yup…) and they are having their very first meeting. A stranger knocks on the door to ask to use the phone of Molly Mathew’s whose southern mansion is the meeting place for the book club.

After making a ruckus and not being a very good guest the stranger leaves. Only to be found killed later with an antique gun that belonged to Molly’s late husband. Of course this makes Molly, the elderly woman, the lead suspect. Lizzie’s high school crush appears to be the police chief in charge of the investigation.

Not only does that make Lizzie even more determined to find out what happened to the strange but a chapters from a mysterious manuscript start showing up in her mailbox. Detailing things about the stranger that was murdered, Molly’s name surfaces in the chapters.

Is Lizzie prepared to find herself in the midst of a REAL mystery or would she rather be reading fiction?

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Double Booked for DEATH-Ali Brandon

Theme: Bookshop

http://amzn.to/2DnBMca

One of my biggest dreams is to own my very own bookstore/cafe. I know, that is most avid readers dream.

Raise your hand if you would love to be paid to read and drink coffee? Yup. Me too. I know it’s more than that, I ran my Nonnie’s shop for ten years, but I still think it would be cool.

Darla Pettistone left Texas and moved to Brooklyn to do just want I want to do. However, she didn’t have to build the bookstore from the ground up. It was left to her by her Great-Aunt Dee. The bookstore came with its very own ornery and stubborn mascot, Hamlet. *He is the most entertaining and deep character of the series…seriously…I love him so much.*

Darla is setting to prove to herself and her family back in Texas that she can run Pettistone’s Fine Books and keep a tight leash on Hamlet all while hosting the stores very first event since her Aunt Dee’s passing.

The hottest bestselling Young Adult author of the moment is coming to Pettistone’s Fine Books for a signing of her new book. Lines for this signing are wrapping around the corners and down the streets even the night before the signing. Fan and protesters alike. This even could bring big business to the new owner. I mean there is no such thing as bad publicity right? Right?!

Unfortunately, the author meets an unsavory end. This is not good for business. Even though it is ruled an accident loyal fans are blaming the bookstore and writing nasty reviews as well as picketing the store. Hamlet, on the other paw, finds a clue that points Darla to the conclusion that the death of the author wasn’t an accident.

Darla fears that the killer is out there watching her every move. “Can the interfering Hamlet point the paw at the culprit without losing one of his own nine lives?”

Well my Cozy Friends, those are the Top 5 Cozies for Beginners! I hope that you enjoyed them. Let me know in the comments if you have read any of these series, you have other suggestions, or if you are going to order them! I would love to talk with you about these amazing series.

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*All Links to books are affiliate links. If you click them and order the books I get a very small commission from it. If that makes you uncomfortable but you still want to read the books, please go to your local bookstore or online shop.

January Reading…|So Far

Good afternoon everyone! I am just stopping by to let you know how much I have read so fafr this month! I still can’t believe that it is 2018! Seriously, that is mind boggling to me. Well, let’s get to it!

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This was the fourth installment of the Harmony Cafe Series. Trouble has hit Autumn’s town again. This time, it’s aliens. Or is it?

I feel like this book was filled with so much potential as most of this series is, which is why keep reading it.

However, I feel like Autumn and her ex-husband’s rivalry is childish and isn’t well written. I also feel like the author is telling me things and not showing them to me.

The characters need to have more depth. I need to feel for the characters. Which isn’t the case in this series.

I will continue to read the next book to see if as the series advances maybe so does the author’s writing. I really do like the idea of this series which is why I picked it up. But I was not shocked by the ‘whodunit’ aspect. The plot was rushed and sort of everywhere.

I know that this is supposed to be a short story type of Cozy, but I still need a little bit more detail and twist.

 

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This was such a fun and quick read. Two of my, now, favorite amateur sleuths meet as kindred women. I love that they had a mystery to solve as well! It wasn’t enough for me though. I craved more. Which is what I think was Ellie’s thought process. Leaving us wanting.

If you haven’t read Death on Tap, Sloan’s first Mystery, I highly suggest it. I love getting anything and everything that Ellie puts out into the world.

A fun short read. You do need to know that the story is finished at 35% and the rest of the book is a sneak peek into Death on Tap.

 

16000243If you follow my blogs, the reviews, or my youtube channel, I have a slight addiction to Cozy Mysteries. Okay, maybe not SLIGHT…a HUGE addiction to Cozies. But more specifically, I have a weakness for cooking and magical mysteries. They just tickle my fancy. My waist and my imagination expand while reading these types of books.

Bailey Cates’ Magical Bakery Mystery does this to me everytime. I crave what ever it is that Katie and Lucy are making in the Honeybee Bakery and I want to know more about the magic that Katie is learning about herself. Expecially since I’ve dabbled in it as well.

This is the third installment in the series and it was just as amazing as the first two. You dive more into Declan and Katie’s relationship. What it means to Katie to be a white witch, a pure witch. Is she a catalyst? So many questions.

While trying to put extra karma out in the world for herself Katie volutneers at with a conservation group trying to save extinct or endangered animals. She loves it even though she is working basically two jobs. Unfortunately, whether it was just a happanstance or if she really does cause these things to happen, someone from the conservation is killed.

Katie, surround by her coven, feels responsibile to figure out the ‘whodunit’, especially when it is not just her that is being threatened, but memebers of her Spell Book Club as well.

This was a delightful read. I love getting to know all of characters a little more as well as the AMAZING recipes at the back of the book. I can’t wait to try out the peanutbutter cookies.

Welp, that’s what I have read so far!!! What have you read so far? Make sure to follow my youtube channel and my instagram page for more bookish stuffs!

January’s Cozy Mystery Releases

Cozy Mystery Releases| January Video 51j41hCJ27L

Releases: January 2nd 

http://amzn.to/2Cb6lVo

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Murder takes the cake in an irresistible Emergency Dessert Squad mystery from the national bestselling author of The Silence of the Flans.

The Emergency Dessert Squad business is booming, with owner and baker Winnie Johnson working overtime to satisfy the emergency cravings of Silver Lake, Ohio. Her latest order, a plate of motivational desserts for an artists’ retreat, is just what she needs to keep her mind off her own relationship woes.

But Winnie’s problems seem like trifles when she discovers the body of retreat owner Sally Dearfield mere inches away from five oh-so-eccentric and viable suspects. Now, this baking detective must uncover the inspiration behind Sally’s murder before another creative genius is iced.

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Release: January 2nd

http://amzn.to/2C9l1nP

Book 7

Want more of a review? 

Torte—the beloved small-town bakeshop run by Jules Capshaw—is set to hit the stage. But who would have guessed that murder would makes a surprise appearance?

It’s the role of a lifetime for Jules. The Shakespeare Festival has returned to Ashland, Oregon, for the season and Torte has been cast as the supplier of Elizabethan-era treats for the main event. But on the eve of opening night, a brawl between Jules’s friend Lance, the artistic director, and a strapping young thespian named Anthony almost brings down the house. . .and the next morning, Anthony is dead. Jules knows that Lance loves his drama—and his just desserts—but she also knows that murder is way off-script for him. Now it’s up to Jules to cut through a bevy of backstage betrayals and catty co-stars who all have their own secrets—before the curtain drops on someone else. . .

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 Releases: January 9th

http://amzn.to/2Edoyie

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1920s India: Perveen Mistry, Bombay’s first female lawyer, is investigating a suspicious will on behalf of three Muslim widows living in full purdah when the case takes a turn toward the murderous. The author of the Agatha and Macavity Award-winning Rei Shimura novels brings us an atmospheric new historical mystery with a captivating heroine.
 
Inspired in part by the woman who made history as India’s first female attorney, The Widows of Malabar Hill is a richly wrought story of multicultural 1920s Bombay as well as the debut of a sharp and promising new sleuth.

Perveen Mistry, the daughter of a respected Zoroastrian family, has just joined her father’s law firm, becoming one of the first female lawyers in India. Armed with a legal education from Oxford, Perveen also has a tragic personal history that makes women’s legal rights especially important to her.

Mistry Law has been appointed to execute the will of Mr. Omar Farid, a wealthy Muslim mill owner who has left three widows behind. But as Perveen examines the paperwork, she notices something strange: all three of the wives have signed over their full inheritance to a charity. What will they live on? Perveen is suspicious, especially since one of the widows has signed her form with an X—meaning she probably couldn’t even read the document. The Farid widows live in full purdah—in strict seclusion, never leaving the women’s quarters or speaking to any men. Are they being taken advantage of by an unscrupulous guardian? Perveen tries to investigate, and realizes her instincts were correct when tensions escalate to murder. Now it is her responsibility to figure out what really happened on Malabar Hill, and to ensure that no innocent women or children are
in further danger.

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Releases: January 15th 

http://amzn.to/2Dv2Zsg

Book 1

When Nora Alexander arrives in Piney Woods, Texas, to fulfill her dying mother’s last wish, she has no idea what awaits her. First she is run off the road, then the sealed letter she delivers turns out to be a scathing rebuke to the town’s most beloved citizen and favored candidate for Piney Woods Pioneer: Adam Brockwell. Next thing you know, Adam has been murdered in a nasty knife attack. Suspicion instantly falls on Nora, one of the last people to see him alive. After all, everyone in Piney Woods loved him. Or did they? Nora learns that her mother had a complicated past she never shared with her daughter.

 

Told not to leave town by Tuck the flirty sheriff, Nora finds a job with Tuck’s Aunt Marty trying to get the rundown Tunie Hotel back in the black. The old hotel was Piney Woods’ heart and soul in its heyday as an oil boomtown. Now the secrets it harbors may be the key to getting Nora off the hook. She’s going to need to solve the mystery quickly to avoid arrest, or worse: becoming the killer’s next victim.

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Releases: January 30th 

http://amzn.to/2zNrz5B

Book 1

Life just got a little sweeter in the island fishing village of Eastport, Maine. Jacobia “Jake” Tiptree and her best friend Ellie are opening a waterfront bake shop, The Chocolate Moose, where their tasty treats pair perfectly with the salty ocean breeze. But while Jake has moved on from fixing up houses, she still can’t resist the urge to snoop into the occasional murder.
 
Jake and Ellie have been through a lot together, from home repair to homicide investigation. So when they decide to open a chocolate-themed bakery, they figure it’ll be a piece of cake. With Ellie’s old family recipes luring in customers, they expect to make plenty of dough this Fourth of July weekend. Having family home for the holiday only sweetens the deal for Jake—until the ill wind of an early-season hurricane blows up her plans. When the storm hits, Jake’s grown son Sam is stranded in a Boston bus station, and her husband Wade is stuck on a cargo ship. But as bitter as the storm is, something even more sinister is brewing in the kitchen of The Chocolate Moose—where health inspector Matt Muldoon is found murdered.
 
Ellie never made a secret of her distaste for Matt, who had been raining on their parade with bogus talk of health code violations. Now, with no alibi for the night of the murder, she’s in a sticky situation with the police—and it’s up to Jake to catch the real killer and keep Ellie living in the land of the free.

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Releases: January 30th 

http://amzn.to/2zN8PmP

Book 3

A celebrity couple getting hitched on Valentine’s Day would be a big boost for Mallory Shepard’s wedding planning business, but someone’s got cold feet: a corpse . . .

Actress Dakota Craig is set to tie the knot with her famous musician boyfriend at Mallory’s Pennsylvania B&B on the most romantic day of the year. Best of all, the whole thing will air on the reality TV show I Do. But the maid of honor has dropped out of the wedding party—by dropping dead.

A lot of people insist the show must go on, so Mallory’s investigation keeps getting sidetracked by everything from a meddling mother to a foot of snow to a side project making arrangements for a high school Winter Ball. But if she doesn’t catch the noxious culprit, the bride might wind up with a funeral wreath instead of a bouquet .

The Cozy Mystery Tag!

30-minute recipes (1)

The Cozy Mystery Tag Video

Oh my goodness everyone! I have so much exciting news to share with you all! Angela from WordsonthePageathon and I have created the Cozy Mystery Tag! How amazing is that?!?

She contacted me a few weeks ago on Twitter asking about my love for Cozies. Of course, you know me, I went on and on a million miles a second! I mean how could I not!?! You all know how amazingly fun, quirky, and just down right home-y Cozies can feel. They warm my heart and bring a smile to my face with their punny titles.

Okay, okay, okay, Courtny get to the point! What are the questions that you two came up with!!! So, without further ado:

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Location, Location, Location: Your Favorite Small-Town Cozy?

ASHLAND OREGON! YES YES YES. I mean how could you not love this town?! It is the quintessential small town. This town is based in Ellie Alexander’s Bakeshop Mystery Series. Everyone is so kind and open. It is like a huge family in one town. Apparently, that is how it is in real life as well. Ashland_Historic_District_(Ashland,_Oregon).jpg

For the Love of Food: Your Favorite Food Themed Cozy?
That would again have to be Ellie Alexanders Bake Shop Series. Whether it is Jules Maroons, Andrews newest coffee creation, or Carlos’ usage of local goods. Everything in this series makes my mouth water.

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Man’s/Woman’s Best Friend: Your Favorite Furry Friend?I love the kitty cats in Sofie Kelly’s A Magical Cat Mystery series! I mean seriously, Hercules and Owen are the funniest, most playful and protective cats that are out there. They have magical abilities that make them mischievous and helpful all at the same time. Kathleen is the most lucky of cat owners if you ask me!

Law Enforcement: Friend or Foe?: Name Your Favorite Ally/Enemy Law Enforcer.

I love Barker in the Peridale Cafe Series by Agatha Frost. I feel like he is so kind, caring, and actually does his job. I feel like in a lot of Cozies the law enforcer can sometimes be airheaded or not believable. Barker actually receives consequences for some of the things that he allowed Julia to do. He is just extremely relatable.

Idle Hands: Favorite Job or Hobby to Read About?

I love reading about bakers like Jules in The Bakeshop Mystery Series and Katie Lightfoot in The Magical Bakeshop Mystery Series. I also LOVE Librarians like Katheen in the Magical Cats Mystery Series or Tori in The Southern Sewing Circle Series. Mostly baking and anything that involves books and reading!

Elementary My Dear Watson: Favorite Best Friend/Watson Esque Character?Will & Grace

I LOVE Lance! He is so spunky and full of drama! Seriously, the relationship that Jules and Lance have in the Bakeshop Mystery series is life goals. Lance is an in your face, telling you what you need to hear best gay friend. Every time I read about him I think of Will & Grace. Is that just me?!?!

One Big Happy Family: Who is Your Favorite Cozy Family?

There are two different types of family to me. There is your blood family that you were born into. Then there is your chosen family, the people who you chose to have in your life on a daily basis.

The blood family I would have to choose would have to be from the Peridale Cafe Mystery Series. The most amazing family would have to be Julia South, her grandma Dot, Jessie, and Barker. They crack me up! I love how crazy and spunky Grandma Dot is. How Jessie, deep down is sweet and just wants to be love, but shows everyone this hard exterior. And I love how much of a protective person Julia is. They are such a great family.

But I also love the amazing women in the Southern Sewing Circle, I know they aren’t blood related but they treat each other like they are. All of the ladies throughout the Sewing Club treat each other like they are sisters, grandmas, granddaughters. They make me smile.

Tis The Season: What is Your Favorite Holiday-Themed Cozy Read?

I love A Midwinter’s Tale By: Sofie Kelly OR Agatha Frost’s new Peridale Mystery Gingerbread and Ghosts. I actually have a whole review on Agatha Frost’s newest book Gingerbread and Ghosts here!

Sometimes Punny is Best: Name Your Favorite Punniest Title.d3dcdac9936e78d3b01a039ec9ee4092

Seriously?!?!? Can I even choose one?!? They all make me freaking giggle. Like Meet Your Baker?!? Bookmarked for Death! Deadly Patterns? Murder by the Glass?! Latte Trouble?!

The list can go on and on. One of the many characteristics that brought on my love for Cozy Mysteries was the fact that the titles made me laugh so much. Never underestimate the value of laughter.

Month-to-Month: Solving Mysteries Through the Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer. What is Your favorite Seasonal Cozy Series?

My favorite series that seems to go in order of the seasons, right now, would have to be Ellie Alexander’s A Bakeshop Mystery series. You can go from one book to another and they are completely in sequence.

Special Skills: Does Your Favorite Amateur Detective Have a Unique Skill? download

I love Katie Lightfoot and her Aunt from Bailey Cates A Magical Bakery Series. They bake with magic. Giving their customers just what they need to get through something in their life.

Reading Time: How Do You Get Cozy to Read a Cozy?

I get into a BRRRRRUUUUITTO! Seriously. I curl up on the couch and most of the time 2 to 3 out of our 4 animals lay on me while I read. See below….

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Recommendations: What is Your Favorite Cozy Mystery?

My favorite Cozy Mystery currently is the Bakeshop Mystery by Ellie Alexander. I actually just found out that she wrote under another name! Aaron actually got me the books for Christmas, so I am excited to read those.

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ANNNNNNNNND for the BIG ANNOUNCEMENT: Angela and I are starting Booktube’s Cozy Mystery Book Club! It is going to be so much fun! Make sure to follow us on our twitter @cozymysteryclub!

The Bookclub book for January is:

download (1)MEET YOUR BAKER BY: ELLIE ALEXANDER

Go and get your copy so we can start reading together! I have also been in contact with Ellie herself and she is so excited that we are using the first in her series that she is sending some signed books and Torte Swag for us to share with the participants! How amazing is that?!?! Look below for the streaming dates!

LIVE STREAM ON WHY WE LOVE COZIES: JANUARY 17TH @7:00PM CST

LIVE STREAM FOR MEET YOUR BAKER : JANIUARY 31ST @7:00 CST

Thank you so much for stopping by my blog! Thinking about following me for updates on all of the Cozy Mystery events, releases, and reviews. Until next time, HAPPY READING!