Book Review

A Good Day for Chardonnay by Darynda Jones [Book Review]

Book Review

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BOOK INFO

Title: A Good Day for Chardonnay

Author: Darynda Jones

Publisher: St, Martin’s Press

Publish Date: July 27, 2021

Genre: Crime Fiction

Series: Sunshine Vicram #2

My Rating: 5/5

A Good Day for Chardonnay by Darynda Jones

BOOK BLURB

Running a small-town police force in the mountains of New Mexico should be a smooth, carefree kind of job. Sadly, full-time Sheriff—and even fuller-time coffee guzzler—Sunshine Vicram, didn’t get that memo.

All Sunshine really wants is one easy-going day. You know, the kind that starts with coffee and a donut (or three) and ends with take-out pizza and a glass of chardonnay (or seven). Turns out, that’s about as easy as switching to decaf. (What kind of people do that? And who hurt them?)

Before she can say iced mocha latte, Sunny’s got a bar fight gone bad, a teenage daughter hunting a serial killer and, oh yes, the still unresolved mystery of her own abduction years prior. All evidence points to a local distiller, a dangerous bad boy named Levi Ravinder, but Sun knows he’s not the villain of her story. Still, perhaps beneath it all, he possesses the keys to her disappearance. At the very least, beneath it all, he possesses a serious set of abs. She’s seen it. Once. Accidentally.

Between policing a town her hunky chief deputy calls four cents short of a nickel, that pesky crush she has on Levi which seems to grow exponentially every day, and an irascible raccoon that just doesn’t know when to quit, Sunny’s life is about to rocket to a whole new level of crazy.

Yep, definitely a good day for chardonnay.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

A Good Day for Chardonnay is the second book in the Sunshine Vicram series. Sunshine is the sheriff in a small New Mexico town. Sunshine has her hands full in this one. For one, her daughter, Auri, is hunting a serial killer. Also, there is new evidence in the mystery of Sunshine’s kidnapping when she was younger.

This is the second book in the series, and I definitely recommend starting with the first book, A Bad Day for Sunshine. Both books are clever and exciting reads.

A Good Day for Chardonnay has a great cast of quirky characters, a desert town setting, a little romance, and a gripping mystery. A fantastic novel for fans of mystery thrillers with strong female protagonists and sarcastic humor.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the Sunshine Vicram series:
  1. A Bad Day for Sunshine
  2. A Good Day for Chardonnay
Book Review

Steel Fear by Brandon Webb and John David Mann [Book Review]

Book Review

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BOOK INFO

Title: Steel Fear

Author: Brandon Webb and John David Mann

Publisher: Bantam

Publish Date: July 13, 2021

Genre: Mystery Thriller

Series: Finn Thrillers #1

My Rating: 4/5

Steel Fear by Brandon Webb and John David Mann

BOOK BLURB

The moment Navy SEAL sniper Finn sets foot on the USS Abraham Lincoln to hitch a ride home from the Persian Gulf, it’s clear something is deeply wrong. Leadership is weak. Morale is low. And when crew members start disappearing one by one, what at first seems like a random string of suicides soon reveals something far more sinister: There’s a serial killer on board. Suspicion falls on Finn, the newcomer to the ship. After all, he’s being sent home in disgrace, recalled from the field under the dark cloud of a mission gone horribly wrong. He’s also a lone wolf, haunted by gaps in his memory and the elusive sense that something he missed may have contributed to civilian deaths on his last assignment. Finding the killer offers a chance at redemption . . . if he can stay alive long enough to prove it isn’t him.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Chief Finn is a veteran Navy SEAL who ends up on an aircraft carrier. While Finn is on the ship, a series of deaths occurs. At first, it appears to be suicides. As the number of deaths increase, it becomes clear that a serial killer is on the ship.

Steel Fear is told using multiple points of view. Finn is one viewpoint, and he is a mysterious character. The people on board treat him with both respect and suspicion. Another viewpoint is Monica, an aircraft pilot. She questions her roommate’s death, and suspects more is happening than anyone else will admit.

Steel Fear is an exciting thriller with intriguing characters and plenty of action. The story moves fast and keeps the reader guessing. I don’t typically read military thrillers, but I”m happy I picked this one up.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the Finn Thrillers series:
  1. Steel Fear
Book Review

The Bone Code by Kathy Reichs [Book Review]

Book Review

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BOOK INFO

Title: The Bone Code

Author: Kathy Reichs

Publisher: Scribner

Publish Date: July 6, 2021

Genre: Police Procedural

Series: Temperance Brennan #20

My Rating: 4/5

The Bone Code by Kathy Reichs

BOOK BLURB

On the way to hurricane-ravaged Isle of Palms, a barrier island off the South Carolina coast, Tempe receives a call from the Charleston coroner. The storm has tossed ashore a medical waste container. Inside are two decomposed bodies wrapped in plastic sheeting and bound with electrical wire. Tempe recognizes many of the details as identical to those of an unsolved case she handled in Quebec years earlier. With a growing sense of foreboding, she travels to Montreal to gather evidence.

Meanwhile, health authorities in South Carolina become increasingly alarmed as a human flesh-eating contagion spreads. So focused is Tempe on identifying the container victims that, initially, she doesn’t register how their murders and the pestilence may be related. But she does recognize one unsettling fact. Someone is protecting a dark secret—and willing to do anything to keep it hidden.

An absorbing look at the sinister uses to which genetics can be put, and featuring a cascade of ever-more-shocking revelations, The Bone Code is Temperance Brennan’s most astonishing case yet—one that gives new meaning to today’s headlines.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

The Bone Code is the twentieth book in the Temperance Brennan series. Temperance is a forensic anthropologist who has worked on a variety of cases. While this could be read as a standalone novel, I recommend reading some of the earlier books first.

In The Bone Code, Temperance gets involved with a case in Charleston that reminds her of a cold case she worked years earlier in Quebec. Meanwhile, a virus outbreak in Charleston is causing panic. Temperance works to connect the two cases and uncover more than just a murderer.

This is a series that I’ve enjoyed over the years. There are a few books in this series that I haven’t read, but I plan to go back and read them soon. Temperance is intelligent and driven in her work. She makes for a strong and interesting protagonist.

The Bone Code is sure to be enjoyed by fans of this series. For readers unfamiliar with Temperance, I recommend checking out this series if you like crime fiction.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the Temperance Brennan series:
  1. Déjà Dead
  2. Death du Jour
  3. Deadly Decisions
  4. Fatal Voyage
  5. Grave Secrets
  6. Bare Bones
  7. Monday Mourning
  8. Cross Bones
  9. Break No Bones
  10. Bones to Ashes
  11. Devil Bones
  12. 206 Bones
  13. Spider Bones
  14. Flash and Bones
  15. Bones Are Forever
  16. Bones of the Lost
  17. Bones Never Lie
  18. Speaking in Bones
  19. A Conspiracy of Bones
  20. The Bone Code
Book Review

Lie Beside Me by Gytha Lodge [Book Review]

Book Review

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BOOK INFO

Title: Lie Beside Me

Author: Gytha Lodge

Publisher: Random House

Publish Date: June 22, 2021

Genre: Police Procedural

Series: DCI Jonah Sheens #3

My Rating: 4/5

Lie Beside Me by Gytha Lodge

BOOK BLURB

Louise wakes up. Her head aches, her mouth is dry, her memory is fuzzy—but she suspects she’s done something bad.

She rolls over toward her husband, Niall. The man who, until recently, made her feel loved.

But it’s not Niall lying beside her. In fact, she’s never seen this man before.

And he’s not breathing. . . .

As Louise desperately struggles to piece her memories back together, it’s clear to Jonah Sheens and his team that she is their prime suspect—though they soon find she’s not the only one with something to hide.

Did she do it? And, if not, can they catch the real killer before they strike again?

In this gripping novel, a young woman finds that trying to make sense of her life’s bad choices might prove the most dangerous reckoning there is.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

A woman awakens to discover that the man beside her is not only not her husband, but he’s dead. Though she doesn’t remember what happened, she can’t believe she killed this man. When the police arrive, they find the body in the front yard. The woman is clearly keeping secrets and is a prime suspect.

Lie Beside Me is told using alternating points of view – the suspect, Louise, and the detective, Jonah. Louise is insecure and a struggling alcoholic. Jonah is trying to find a killer. The mystery is well paced and complex.

Lie Beside Me is the third book in the DCI Jonah Sheens series, but it can be read as a standalone. I’ve read the previous two books (She Lies in Wait and Watching from the Dark), and think this series is getting better with each book.

Twisty and intriguing. Lie Beside Me is a straightforward police procedural. A great series for fans of British police procedurals.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the DCI Jonah Sheens series:
  1. She Lies in Wait
  2. Watching from the Dark
  3. Lie Beside Me
Book Review

Beyond the Headlines by R.G. Belsky [Book Review]

Book Review

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BOOK INFO

Title: Beyond the Headlines

Author: R.G. Belsky

Publisher: Oceanview Publishing

Publish Date: May 4, 2021

Genre: Amateur Sleuth

Series: Clare Carlson #4

My Rating: 4/5

Beyond the Headlines by R.G. Belsky

BOOK BLURB

She was a mega-celebrity—he was a billionaire businessman—now he’s dead—she’s in jail

Laurie Bateman was living the American dream. Since her arrival as an infant in the U.S. after the fall of Saigon, the pretty Vietnamese girl had gone on to become a supermodel, a successful actress, and, finally, the wife of one of the country’s top corporate dealmakers. That dream has now turned into a nightmare when she is arrested for the murder of her wealthy husband.

New York City TV journalist Clare Carlson does an emotional jailhouse interview in which Bateman proclaims her innocence—and becomes a cause celebre for women’s rights groups around the country.

At first sympathetic, then increasingly suspicious of Laurie Bateman and her story, Clare delves into a baffling mystery which has roots extending back nearly fifty years to the height of the Vietnam War.

Soon, there are more murders, more victims, and more questions as Clare struggles against dire evil forces to break the biggest story of her life.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Beyond the Headlines is the fourth book in the Clare Carlson series by R.G. Belsky. Clare is a journalist who has worked on several high profile investigations. In Beyond the Headlines, Clare is asked to do a jailhouse interview with a woman arrested for her wealthy husband’s murder. The woman proclaims her innocence, but Clare does some digging to discover the truth.

Clare is a flawed character. She is intelligent and witty, but she also makes some bad decisions. She does have some great investigative skills though, and the determination to find truth.

I’ve read the previous book in this series, and recommend reading this series in order. However, Beyond the Headlines can be read as a stand-alone.

Beyond the Headlines is a gripping mystery. Engaging, interesting, and suspenseful.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the Clare Carlson series:
  1. Yesterday’s News
  2. Below the Fold
  3. The Last Scoop
  4. Beyond the Headlines
Book Review

You Love Me by Caroline Kepnes [Book Review]

Book Review

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BOOK INFO

Title: You Love Me

Author: Caroline Kepnes

Publisher: Random House

Publish Date: April 6, 2021

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Series: You #3

My Rating: 4/5

You Love Me by Caroline Kepnes

BOOK BLURB

Joe Goldberg is done with the cities. He’s done with the muck and the posers, done with Love. Now he’s saying hello to nature, to simple pleasures on a cozy island in the Pacific Northwest. For the first time in a long time, he can just breathe.

He gets a job at the local library—he does know a thing or two about books—and that’s where he meets her: Mary Kay DiMarco. Librarian. Joe won’t meddle, he will not obsess. He’ll win her the old-fashioned way . . . by providing a shoulder to cry on, a helping hand. Over time, they’ll both heal their wounds and begin their happily ever after in this sleepy town.

The trouble is . . . Mary Kay already has a life. She’s a mother. She’s a friend. She’s . . . busy.

True love can only triumph if both people are willing to make room for the real thing. Joe cleared his decks. He’s ready. And hopefully, with his encouragement and undying support, Mary Kay will do the right thing and make room for him.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

You Love Me is the third book in the You series by Caroline Kepnes. Joe Goldberg is back! He’s left the city and moved to a quiet island in the Pacific Northwest. He’s working at a library and has focused his attention on a new woman.

Joe continues to be an intriguing character. He’s met a new woman, Mary Kay, but she’s not exactly interested in Joe. No worries though, Joe has a plan to win Mary Kay over. Joe is a stalker and psychopath, and it’s interesting to read along as his plan unfolds.

Although You Love Me is part of a series, it can be read as a standalone. I have read the first book, You, but haven’t read the second book, Hidden Bodies. I’ve enjoyed the two books I have read, and plan on reading Hidden Bodies soon.

You Love Me is a gripping and twisted story. I liked that the story was from Joe’s viewpoint. Getting into his mind made for a disturbing yet intriguing read.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the You series:
  1. You
  2. Hidden Bodies
  3. You Love Me
Book Review

Deadly Editions by Paige Shelton [Book Review]

Book Review

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BOOK INFO

Title: Deadly Editions

Author: Paige Shelton

Publisher: Minotaur Books

Publish Date: April 6, 2021

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Series: Scottish Bookshop Mystery #6

My Rating: 4/5

Deadly Editions by Paige Shelton

BOOK BLURB

A treasure hunt through Edinburgh gives way to a search for a villain terrorizing the city in the sixth Scottish Bookshop Mystery.

It’s a quiet, snowy morning at The Cracked Spine bookshop, when bookseller Delaney Nichols receives a mysterious visitor, a messenger. He presents her with a perplexing note: an invitation to a meeting with eccentric socialite Shelagh O’Conner, who requests Delaney’s participation in an exclusive treasure hunt. Delaney is intrigued, but also cautious: Shelagh, while charming in person, has a reputation for her hijinks as a wealthy young woman in the ’70s. She was even once suspected for the murder of a former boyfriend, though ultimately cleared of all charges.

But Delaney is enticed by the grand prize at the end of the treasure hunt: a highly valuable first edition copy of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, by Robert Louis Stevenson. The winner is also to receive the contents of Shelagh’s vast library, and all participants will earn a large sum of cash.

The night after the first meeting of the treasure hunters, however, several homes in Edinburgh are robbed in a manner reminiscent of Shelagh’s old tricks. And when a man connected to Shelagh is killed, suspicion builds. Except Shelagh herself has disappeared from her home, seemingly kidnapped by the villain.

Terror mounts throughout the city as Delaney attempts to solve the mystery, while trying to evade the killer’s clutches. But it’s hard to know who to trust when around every corner, a new monster could be lurking.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Deadly Editions is the sixth book in the Scottish Bookshop mystery series. The main character, Delaney, is an American woman who relocated to Scotland to work in a unique bookshop, the Cracked Spine. Delaney occasionally helps solve mysteries. Deadly Editions starts with Delaney on a treasure hunt, but leads to her looking for a killer.

I recommend starting with the first book in this series, The Cracked Spine. Each book in the series has a unique mystery, but the relationships between the characters grows throughout Delaney’s time in Scotland.

Deadly Editions is a delightful cozy mystery. The characters are likable and the story is entertaining. Light, fun, and quirky. A good read for fans of cozies.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the Scottish Bookshop series:
  1. The Cracked Spine
  2. Of Books and Bagpipes
  3. Lost Books and Old Bones
  4. The Loch Ness Papers
  5. The Stolen Letter
  6. Deadly Editions
Book Review

Under the Cover of Murder by Lauren Elliott [Book Review]

Book Review

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BOOK INFO

Title: Under the Cover of Murder

Author: Lauren Elliott

Publisher: Kensington Books

Publish Date: March 30, 2021

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Series: Beyond the Page Bookstore #6

My Rating: 4/5

Under the Cover of Murder by Lauren Elliott

BOOK BLURB

Bookshop owner and maid of honor Addie Greyborne vows to catch the killer who crashed her best friend’s wedding . . .

It promises to be Greyborne Harbor’s wedding of the year. The impending nuptials of Serena Chandler and Zach Ludlow will take place aboard his family’s luxurious super-yacht, currently moored in the harbor and the talk of the town. But on the day of the wedding, a man’s body washes up on the beach with no ID, only a torn page from a book in his pocket. As owner of Beyond the Page Books and Curios, bibliophile Addie is called in to identify the book, but she cannot.

The morning following the extravagant ceremony, a second body washes ashore and Addie has a sinking feeling that the two deaths are connected. While the guests are held on the yacht as the police investigate, at least Addie can peruse Zach’s father’s rare books library on board. A copy of Agatha Christie’s first Hercule Poirot novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles, provides a clue that the killer may still be on the ship—but narrowing down the suspects without becoming the next victim may prove a truly Herculean task . . .


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Under the Cover of Murder is the sixth book in the Beyond the Page Bookstore Mystery by Lauren Elliott. Beyond the Page Books and Curios is owned by Addie Greyborne, a bibliophile who occasionally helps solve crimes. In this book, Addie is a bridesmaid in her best friend’s wedding set on a yacht. When an unknown man is found washed ashore, and then a wedding guest is killed, Addie is on the case to catch the killer.

I’ve read the previous books in this series, and have enjoyed watching the characters grow. While Under the Cover of Murder can be read as a standalone, I recommend reading this series in order.

I liked the yacht setting for this mystery. It makes it more of a locked room mystery, which is one of my favorite types of mysteries to read. One of the things that makes this series fun is the connection the mysteries have to books. Addie is drawn to help because of her knowledge of books.

Under the Cover of Murder is a delightful cozy mystery. This is a cozy mystery series that I enjoy keeping up with. Good for fans of cozies who enjoy bookish themes set in a small town.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the Beyond the Page Bookstore series:
  1. Murder by the Book
  2. Prologue to Murder
  3. Murder in the First Edition
  4. Proof of Murder
  5. A Page Marked for Murder
  6. Under the Cover of Murder
Book Review

Heartbreak Bay by Rachel Caine [Book Review]

Book Review

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BOOK INFO

Title: Heartbreak Bay

Author: Rachel Caine

Publisher: Thomas & Mercer

Publish Date: March 9, 2021

Genre: Mystery Thriller

Series: Stillhouse Lake #5

My Rating: 4/5

Heartbreak Bay by Rachel Caine

BOOK BLURB

They’re hunting a killer so silent, so invisible, that his unspeakable crimes are the only proof he exists.

A car submerged in a remote pond. The bodies of two girls strapped into their seats. The mystery of their mother, vanished without a trace, leads Gwen Proctor and Kezia Claremont into dangerous territory.

On the surface, Gwen’s life is good—two children approaching adulthood, a committed partner, and a harrowing past dead and gone. But that past is attracting the attention of someone invisible…and unstoppable. Trouble’s just beginning. So is the body count in this backwoods Tennessee town.

As threats mount and Gwen’s hunted by an enemy who pulls all the strings, Kezia has her back. But working to solve these vicious and unreasonable crimes will expose them both to a killer they can’t for the life of them see coming.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Heartbreak Bay is the fifth and final book in the Stillhouse Lake series by Rachel Caine. Gwen Proctor and friends are back to solve more gruesome crimes. In this book, Gwen and Kezia work together to catch a serial killer.

While Heartbreak Bay is an exciting book, it does start more slowly than the previous books in this series. This story is told using multiple points of view – Gwen, Kezia, and Sam. Gwen is still the primary character, but it was nice to get more of Kezia in this book. The characters continue to be easy to root for and likable. The story is once again grim and twisted. While this isn’t my favorite book in the series, it was an excellent read. For readers who enjoy dark and suspenseful thrillers, I highly recommend this series. Definitely read them in order though.

The Stillhouse Lake series has been captivating and suspenseful. The author, Rachel Caine, passed away in November of 2020, so this is her last book. This has been one of my favorite series in recent years, and this final book was an emotional read. I had the pleasure meeting Rachel (Roxanne Longstreet Conrad) at a library event a few years ago. It was a delight to meet her and hear her talk about this series and other books she had written.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the Stillhouse Lake series:

  1. Stillhouse Lake
  2. Killman Creek
  3. Wolfhunter River
  4. Bitter Falls
  5. Heartbreak Bay
Book Review

Black Coral by Andrew Mayne [Book Review]

Book Review

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BOOK INFO

Title: Black Coral

Author: Andrew Mayne

Publisher: Thomas & Mercer

Publish Date: February 16, 2021

Genre: Crime & Detective

Series: Underwater Investigation Unit #2

My Rating: 4/5

Black Coral by Andrew Mayne

BOOK BLURB

For a police diver in Florida, solving a cold-case mystery brings a serial killer out of hiding in a deep, dark thriller by the Wall Street Journal bestselling author of The Naturalist.

Sloan McPherson and the Underwater Investigation Unit have discovered a van at the bottom of a murky Florida pond. Sealed inside the watery tomb are the bodies of four teenagers who disappeared thirty years ago after leaving a rock concert. To authorities, it looks like a tragic accident. To Sloan, it looks like murder. Every piece of evidence is starting to connect to a string of cold case vanishings throughout Florida. Clue by clue, Sloan navigates the warm, dark waters where natural predators feed, knowing that the most dangerous one is still above the surface—nesting and dormant.

But when a fresh young kill is found in the Everglades, Sloan fears that her investigation has reawakened a monster. How can she catch someone who’s a genius at hiding in plain sight? By acting as prey. The dangerous gambit is working—only too well. She’s being lured into a deception of the madman’s own design. Has Sloan set a trap for a serial killer? Or has he set one for her?


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Black Coral is the second book in the mystery series Underwater Investigation Unit. I enjoyed the first book, The Girl Beneath the Sea, so I was looking forward to reading the latest addition to the series. This continues to be a great series. Black Coral can be read as a standalone, but I recommend starting with the first book.

In Black Coral, the Underwater Investigation Unit is called to the scene of a van at the bottom of a pond. This discovery leads to a suspenseful hunt for a serial killer. A well written story with interesting characters. I especially enjoy Sloan, as she continues to be a strong and complex character.

Exciting and intriguing mystery. A great read for fans of crime thrillers.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the Underwater Investigation Unit series:

  1. The Girl Beneath the Sea
  2. Black Coral
Book Review

The Other Mothers by M.M. Chouinard [Book Review]

The Other Mothers by M.M. Chouinard

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BOOK INFO

Title: The Other Mothers

Author: M.M. Chouinard

Publisher: Bookouture

Publish Date: January 20, 2021

Genre: Crime & Detective

Series: Detective Jo Fournier #4

My Rating: 4/5

The Other Mothers by M.M. Chouinard

BOOK BLURB

It’s a crisp spring morning when the small-town community around Briar Ridge Elementary School is shattered by devastating news. Bright and shy five-year-old Nicole has disappeared at recess.

Nicole’s mother, Gia, is lost in her grief. On the same day her baby girl vanished, Gia found out she was pregnant with the sister Nicole had begged for. Gia is also devastated that her best friend Karen was supervising the playground when Nicole was taken. And when Nicole’s body is discovered, Gia can’t help but ask: why didn’t Karen protect her little girl?

Someone knows what happened in school that day and is keeping the truth secret. Gia’s been hiding a part of herself for years and it’s eating her apart. And Karen is definitely lying—but what is more important than finding the killer of her best friend’s daughter?

As Gia and Karen struggle with their guilt, a teacher at Briar Ridge dies in what looks like a tragic accident. But with two deaths in such a short time, one of the parents is lying. In this school, where soccer moms flock to the gates with cookies for teachers, someone is willing to kill to keep a secret. The only question is who.


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

The Other Mothers is the latest book in the Detective Jo Fournier series by M.M. Chouinard. In this novel, Jo’s investigation involves a local elementary school. A child goes missing at recess, and is later found dead. Of course, Jo is determined to find who killed the child.

This is a fantastic crime series. I love mystery series with strong female characters. Jo is smart, dedicated, and tough, but she’s also got flaws, making her relatable. Her personal story is interwoven into the mystery story, making for a more enjoyable novel. In fact, all of the characters are well developed and interesting.

This is the fourth novel in the series, and I recommend reading this series in order. However, The Other Mothers can be read as a standalone novel.

The Other Mothers is a complex and intriguing mystery. With a compelling story and entertaining twists, this novel is sure to thrill fans of crime fiction.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the Detective Jo Fournier series:
  1. The Dancing Girls
  2. Taken to the Grave
  3. Her Daughter’s Cry
  4. The Other Mothers
Book Review

Premeditated Mortar by Kate Carlisle [Book Review]

Premeditated Mortar by Kate Carlisle

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more info, read my Disclosure Policy.


BOOK INFO

Title: Premeditated Mortar

Author: Kate Carlisle

Publisher: Berkley

Publish Date: December 1, 2020

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Series: Fixer-Upper Mystery #8

My Rating: 4/5

Premeditated Mortar by Kate Carlisle

BOOK BLURB

Contractor Shannon Hammer gets tangled up in murder at a spooky old asylum in the latest Fixer-Upper Mystery from New York Times bestselling author Kate Carlisle. . . .

Shannon Hammer is about to embark on one of the biggest projects of her career. Her best friend Jane Hennessey has purchased one wing of the Gables, formerly the old state insane asylum, located on a bucolic hillside two miles northeast of Lighthouse Cove. Jane plans to turn her section into a small luxury hotel complete with twenty ocean-view rooms, a spa, and a restaurant.

Shannon is raring to get started on the enormous project and is shocked when a group of unruly protesters shows up at the groundbreaking ceremony and wreaks havoc. She’s even more freaked-out when someone pushes her into a pit of bricks in a closed-off room of the asylum. Despite her close call, Shannon wants nothing more than to get back to work . . . until she finds a body not far from where she was pushed. Now Shannon is determined to get to the bottom of the goings-on at the Gables even if it kills her. . . .


Purchase Links: Amazon


MY REVIEW

Shannon Hammer is back in this 8th book in the Fixer Upper mystery series. Shannon is a contractor who specializes in Victorian homes. Also, she occasionally come across a mystery to solve. In this book, Shannon takes on a renovation project of an old state insane asylum. She is excited to take on the new project, however, protesters and a dead body are hindering her progress.

I previously reviewed A Wrench in the the Works, which was the sixth book in the Fixer-Upper series and the first one I read. However, I have now read most of the books in this series, and the books continue to be enjoyable cozy mysteries. As with most series, it helps to better understand backstories if the series is read in order. That said, Premeditated Mortar can be read as a standalone.

An engaging and entertaining cozy mystery. With likable characters and a charming setting, this was a wonderful light mystery. I liked the renovation aspect of the story, especially the renovation of an old asylum. In short, a recommended read for fans of cozies. Delightful and fun.

I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books in the Fixer-Upper Mystery Series:
  1. A High-End Finish
  2. This Old Homicide
  3. Crowned and Moldering
  4. Deck the Hallways
  5. Eaves of Destruction
  6. A Wrench in the Works
  7. Shot Through the Hearth
  8. Premeditated Mortar