Review of A Ghostly Undertaking


Another day. Another funeral. Another ghost. Another average day in the life of young funeral home director, Emma Lee Raines. After a perilous run-in with a plastic Santa Claus, Emma Lee, co-owner of Eternal Slumber Funeral Home in Sleepy Hollow, Kentucky, sees the ghost of town gossip Ruthie Sue Payne, who is proving to be a real pain, more so in death than while living. Recently deceased, Ruthie reveals to Emma Lee that her demise wasn’t caused by accidentally falling down the steps at the Sleepy Hollow Inn as everyone believes—she was pushed…murdered. In order for the ghost to cross over—and for Emma Lee to be rid of Ruthie for good—she must find a desperate killer…or risk being haunted forever. (Goodreads)


Emma Lee is trying the best she can to handle the “Funeral Trauma” that she is suffering from. Ever since she got hit over the head with a falling Santa Clause. she can see ghosts. This can be very problematic for a funeral home director. When Ruthie Sue Payne shows up after her death, asking for help to find her murderer, Emma Lee does not have a choice but to help her.

This book is such a great read and I am happy to see that it is only the first in the Ghostly Southern Mysteries series. Paranormal ghost cozies are one of my favorite genres and this one is as good as any I have read.

The characters are well developed, well rounded and three dimensional. I really enjoyed learning about Emma Lee and how she became a ghost “seer’. I also enjoyed reading about the bickering that went one between Emma Lee and Ruthie Sue. In life they were not friends and Emma Lee did not particularly like Ruthie Sue. Emma
Lee’s grandmother and Ruthie Sue were sworn enemies and both were married to the same man, at different times. But after spending so much time with Ruthie Sue, Emma Lee realizes that she missed out on not knowing Ruthie Sue while she was alive, and actually liked her. I thought this was a touching moment in the story and a lesson that we can all learn: do not judge someone until you get to know them, you might just be surprised when you do.

The writing style flows smoothly and the book is an easy read. The author is very talented using the written word for descriptions of the setting and the characters. The small town setting is perfectly portrayed and the gossip mill is alive and strong. The mystery is carried on throughout the entire book and there are many twists and turns to keep the reader guessing. I did not figure out the killer until it was revealed at the end of the book.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a well crafted paranormal cozy. I am very happy that there are more books in the series to read, and I plan on reading them all. Treat yourself and read them too.


Review of Up To No Gouda

Up To No Gouda

Grilled Cheese Mystery, Book #1

Linda Reilly

5 Stars


The first in a delicious new culinary cozy series featuring a grilled cheese eatery owner who must solve murders in her small town before she is put under lock and brie

Back in Balsam Dell to heal after the death of her husband, Carly Hale is finally pursuing her lifelong dream—opening Carly’s Grilled Cheese Eatery. After only five months, business is booming as Vermont vacationers and townspeople alike flock to lunch on her Party Havartis and other grilled cheese concoctions. All but Lyle Bagley, Carly’s one-time high school boyfriend and now town bully who just bought the building that houses her eatery and wants Carly out. After a muenster of a fight, Carly’s forced to put her nose to the rind and find a solution to keep her business afloat.

That is…until Lyle is discovered dead behind the dumpster of Carly’s shop, and one of her employees becomes the prime suspect. In order to save her eatery and prove her friend’s innocence, Carly must sleuth out the killer before she’s the one who gets grilled.

With a delightful cast of characters, an inventive amateur sleuth, and a whole host of cheesy hijinks, Up to No Gouda is the perfect cozy murder mystery to melt into. (Goodreads)


The characters are well rounded and well developed. Carly has opened her grilled cheese restaurant and it has been going really well. Her employees, Suzanne and Grant, have become friends, as well as employees.  All is going well until an old boyfriend tells her that he now owns the building and he is closing down her restaurant.  When he is later found dead, Carly and her employees are considered persons of interest.  Carly will have to figure out who the killer is before her dream restaurant becomes a curdled mess.

The writing style flows smoothly and the book is an easy read.  The author is very talented in her descriptive writing and through much of the book I felt like I was right there, watching all the action taking place.  The mystery was well plotted and there were enough clues to sift through and suspects to consider.  The mystery was not easily solved and I did not know who the killer was until it was revealed at the end.

This was a good beginning to a new series and I am looking forward to reading about other predicaments Carly gets into.  All of this author’s series are good.

I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher, Poisoned Pen Press, and NetGalley, which I greatly appreciate.

Up to No Gouda (Grilled Cheese Mysteries Book 1) by [Linda Reilly]

New Releases For The Week of January 16th, 2022

Pumpkin Spice & Deadly Heist (The Nosy Paralegal Mystery Series Book 1) by [Tanya R. Taylor]

Alan Danzabar has been accused of participating in a blatant bank robbery that resulted in the shooting death of a security guard.

All fingers are pointing at Alan by others who have been arrested and ultimately confessed to the crime, but Alan insists that he is innocent.

Will he get off the hook with the help of J. Wilfred & Company, particularly an employee there by the name of Barbara Sandosa who takes it upon herself to dig much deeper to uncover the truth in ways that her boss would never dream of? Or will Alan Danzabar be exposed as a liar and a killer?

Series overview:

Barbara Sandosa, a pastry lover and avid cook, works in her small town’s most reputable law firm.

And although she’s been hired to do a particular job, she finds herself prying into the private lives of her boss’s clients, unbeknownst to them and drags young Harry Buford along for the “rocky” ride. What she uncovers in some cases shocks the innocent minds of those in her community, including her level-headed boss who’s being handsomely paid to defend all who have retained his services.

Will Barbara’s curiosity literally save the day or will it get her into deep trouble – possibly costing her her job?

Editions Available: Kindle

Bicycles, Barking & Murder: A Cozy English Animal Mystery (A Dickens & Christie Mystery Book 6) by [Kathy Manos Penn]

A major cycling event. A high-profile murder. Can the Little Old Ladies’ Detective Agency stop a killer from riding away scot-free?

Leta Parker’s fit-and-fifty reinvention in the Cotswolds continues rolling along fabulously. Happy among her new friends and talking dog and cat, the sharp-minded expat is delighted to learn the prestigious Tour of Britain will pedal through the quaint village next year. But everyone’s excitement quickly crashes when the news is accompanied by a dead body.

Unconvinced when the police park the crime as a random act of violence, Leta teams up again with the Little Old Ladies’ Detective Agency to push the investigation into high gear. But with those who knew the victim remaining tight-lipped, the silver-haired sleuths could be stuck in the peloton as a callous killer sprints away.

Can the whip-smart women gain ground on a murderer before the trail goes cold?

Bicycles, Barking & Murder is the sixth book in the delightful Dickens & Christie cozy mystery series. If you like shrewd seniors, charming British locations, and a dash of darn-good humor, then you’ll love Kathy Manos Penn’s race to the felonious finish.

Buy Bicycles, Barking & Murder to ride the culprit out of town today! (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Paperback

Body in the Shop: A cozy mystery novella (Muddlebay Mysteries Book 5) by [Wendy Cartmell]

There’s something rotten in Muddlebay.

There is an outbreak of salmonella in Muddlebay and the source is traced to a local pie shop. The next day, the owner, Peter Powell, is found dead in the back of his shop.

Investigating, DS Flynn Moran has to decide if Powell’s death was a terrible accident, or a deliberate act? And what about the food poisoning? Did Powell do it himself? If so, why did the owner of Powell’s Pies want to kill people?
Was he hoping to take as many lives with him as possible, as he committed suicide?
What on earth had the people of Muddlebay done to him to deserve such a fate?

Or was someone else behind Peter Powell’s death? Someone who wanted to frighten Muddlebay shop owners?

Wendy Cartmell is well known for her bestselling, Sgt Major Crane mysteries and more recently her DI Jo Wolfe supernatural crime thrillers. She’d always had an idea for a cozy mystery series bubbling away in the background and the result is the Muddlebay mysteries. Look out for them in eBook, audiobook and paperback.

The fifth instalment of DS Flynn Moran’s experiences in Muddlebay. Think Midsomer Murders and Murder, She Wrote, with a dollop of humour, all rolled into one. Muddlebay – where nothing much happens – apart from murder!

“This is a lovely series – murder and mystery tinged with the occasional humour.”
“Nothing ever happens in Muddlebay- don’t believe it!!””
“A great first story in the Muddlebay mysteries with a quirky detective who has been pushed out from the Met.”
“A light hearted book with several twists to the plot, ideal holiday reading.” (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle


Hell hath no fury like a family disinherited…

American millionaire Daniel Cartwright has been shot dead: three times in the chest, and once in the head. His body is found in Harvard Yard, dressed in evening attire. No one knows who he planned to meet there, or why the staunch Oxford man would be caught dead at Harvard―literally.

Australian Rowland Sinclair, his mate from Oxford and longtime friend, is named executor of the will, to his great surprise―and that of Danny’s family. Events turn downright ugly when the will all but disinherits Danny’s siblings in favor of one Otis Norcross, whom no one knows or is able to locate. Amidst assault, kidnapping, and threats of slander, Rowly struggles to understand Danny’s motives, find the missing heir, and identify his friend’s killer before the clock―and his luck―run out.

A deft blend of history and mystery, WHERE THERE’S A WILL offers an alternately charming and chilling snapshot of Boston and New York in the 1930s, with cameo appearances by luminaries of the day including Marion Davies, Randolph Hearst, Errol Flynn, Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, and an arrogantly ardent Joe Kennedy, who proves no match for Rowly’s sculptress friend Edna… (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Paperback

Robert B. Parker's Bye Bye Baby (Spenser Book 50) by [Ace Atkins]

Boston PI Spenser takes on a new case in this installment in Robert B. Parker’s iconic New York Times bestselling series.

Carolina Garcia-Ramirez is a rising star in national politics, taking on the establishment with her progressive agenda. Tough, outspoken, and driven, the young congresswoman has ignited a new conversation in Boston about race, poverty, health care, and the environment. Now facing her second campaign, she finds herself not only fighting a tight primary with an old guard challenger but also contending with numerous death threats coming from hundreds of suspects.

When her chief of staff reaches out to Spenser for security and help finding the culprits of what he believes to be the most credible threats, Garcia-Ramirez is less than thrilled. Since her first grassroots run, she’s used to the antipathy and intimidation women of color often face when seeking power. To her, it’s all noise. But it turns out an FBI agent disagrees, warning Spenser that Garcia-Ramirez might be in real danger this time.

It doesn’t take long for Spenser to cross paths with an extremist group called The Minutemen, led by a wealthy Harvard grad named Bishop Graves. Although Graves is a social media sensation, pushing an agenda of white supremacy and toxic masculinity, he denies he’s behind the attacks. As the primary nears and threats become a deadly plot, it’s up to Spenser, Hawk, and a surprise trusted ally to ensure the congresswoman is safe. This is Spenser doing what he does best, living by a personal code and moral compass that can’t ever be broken. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Hardcover, Audiobook

One Step Too Far: A Novel (A Frankie Elkin Novel Book 2) by [Lisa Gardner]

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Lisa Gardner, a thrilling new novel that sends missing persons expert Frankie Elkin into a national forest in Wyoming looking for a young man who disappeared without a trace.  But when the search team encounters immediate threats to their survival, Frankie realizes she’s up against something very dark—and she’s running out of time. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Hardcover, Paperback, Audiobook

Capers and Carnage (A Myrtle Lake Cozy Mystery Book 3) by [Constance Barker]

Welcome to The Blue Spruce Coffee Shop Where the Java is Hot and the Murder is Cold Blooded

The Purcell women love this time of year in New England: pumpkins, fallen leaves, and Myrtle Lake’s annual Harvest Festival! They’re busy decorating the coffee shop and whipping up spicy autumn treats as their neighbors trade quips and crack wise.

Then Jameson Creel, owner of the village’s sole convenience store, dies in a highly suspicious car crash. Despite the Sheriff’s warning to stay out of official business, Carla, Charlie, and retired detective Saylor Reeves jump into the fray, eager to settle matters before their seasonal shindig hits high gear. They surface suspects like a militant mechanic, a mutinous manager, and a lax lawman, and feel they’re about to close the case in record time.

Then law enforcement latches onto village favorite Jarvis the sea captain as prime suspect, and the coffee shop crew surges into overdrive. As they fight frantically to untangle the clues in time to save their friend, news comes that the creepy lights in the forest aren’t spectral at all. Folks see human figures laboring in the dark.

But who’s out there? And what are they doing under cover of night?

Carla and Charlie have a bad feeling about this one.

Something stinks in Myrtle Lake, and it’s not just the bird turds found in the wrecked muscle car. Only the Myrtle Lake crew can root out the rot. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Paperback

The Mitford Vanishing: A Mitford Murders Mystery (The Mitford Murders Book 5) by [Jessica Fellowes]

A mystery with the fascinating Mitford sisters at its heart, Jessica Fellowes’s The Mitford Vanishing is the fifth installment in the Mitford Murders series, inspired by a real-life murder in a story full of intrigue…

Downton Abbey meets Agatha Christie in this witty and twisty mystery.” —In Touch Weekly on The Mitford Murders

1937. War with Germany is dawning, and a civil war already rages in Spain. Split across political lines, the six Mitford sisters are more divided than ever. Meanwhile their former maid Louisa Cannon is now a private detective, working with her policeman husband Guy Sullivan.

Louisa and Guy are surprised when a call comes in from novelist Nancy Mitford requesting that they look into the disappearance of her Communist sister Jessica in Spain. But one case leads to another as they are also asked to investigate the mysterious vanishing of a soldier.

As the two cases come together, Louisa and Guy discover that every marriage has its secrets—but some are more deadly than others. Suddenly home feels a long way away… (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Hardcover, Paperback, Audiobook

Review Of Diggin’ Up The Dirt

Diggin' Up Dirt (Kenni Lowry Mystery Book 7) by [Tonya Kappes]

Diggin’ Up Dirt
Kenni Lowry, Book #7
Tonya Kappes
5 Stars


Sweet as honey, soured by murder!

Everyone in Cottonwood loves the new bakery, Sweet Shop. Until a Cottonwood resident is found dead with a half-eaten donut in her hand.

Sheriff Kenni Lowry has her hands full. With a new murder in town and a new deputy to train, she’s not sure if she’s ever gonna get this booger solved.

Sheriff Elmer Sims comes to the rescue, stepping up as Kenni’s ghost deputy. As the ex-dead-now-ghost deputy and Kenni’s Poppa, there’s clues beyond the sprinkles in the donut that only he can see.

Add to Kenni’s stress, Finn Vincent’s, Kenni’s hunky boyfriend and new sheriff of Clay’s Ferry, parents have come to town to meet Kenni and her parents. And Kenni’s mama ain’t too happy. As they say in the South, nobody’s happy if mama ain’t happy.

With Poppa’s keen insight and Kenni’s determination, Kenni focuses all her attention on bringing the killer to justice before the yeast rises and another dead body turns up.

Save room for dessert. You don’t want to miss this Southern mystery!

– – – – – – – – – – – – –

DIGGIN’ UP THE DIRT by Tonya Kappes | A Henery Press Mystery. If you like one, you’ll probably like them all. (Goodreads)


The writing style flows smoothly and it defines the characters very clearly by their actions and words. It pulled me into the story right from the beginning and took me on a great adventure. The author is very talented in her descriptive writing and I could picture everything in my mind clearly. Cottonwood is a place I would like to go visit.

The characters are well developed and well rounded. Any time that I get to spend with Kenni and Poppa is time well spent. The love they have for each other is so strong and you can tell how happy they are to be able to spend time together, even if it is in different dimensions. The relationship between Kenni and her momma is as volatile as ever and it makes some very funny moments.

The mystery is well plotted and moves along at a nice pace. There were plenty of clues to sift through and suspects to consider. Throw in some twists and turns and you have a mystery that is not easily solved.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a well crafted cozy mystery. If you like humor, family loyalty and ghostly mischief, this is a must read book.

I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher, Henery Press, and Edelweiss, which I greatly appreciate.

Review of A Deadly Inside Scoop

The characters are well rounded and well developed.  Win has reopened her grandparent’s ice cream shop and she is looking forward to having a thriving business.  But sadly that does not work out as she planned because a man has been found murdered.  With the help of her friends Maisie and Riya, they have to figure out who the killer is so she can get back to selling her ice cream.

The author is very talented in her descriptive  writing and these descriptions pulled me into the book from the beginning.  The writing style flows smoothly and the book is an easy read.  The mystery was well plotted and there were enough clues to sift through and suspects to consider.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a well crafted cozy mystery.  I look forward to seeing what Win’s next adventure is.

I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book provided by the publisher and NetGalley, which I greatly appreciate.

A Deadly Inside Scoop (An Ice Cream Parlor Mystery Book 1) by [Abby Collette]

Review of Uneasy Prey

On the way to the emergency room, an elderly woman regains consciousness long enough to inform paramedic Zoe Chambers that her fall down the basement steps was no accident. Before she can say more, she succumbs to her injuries, launching Zoe and Police Chief Pete Adams into the investigation of a burglary ring targeting the area’s vulnerable senior citizens.

Zoe—in spite of Pete’s objections—takes it upon herself to act as protection detail after the con men, disguised as water company employees, set their sights on Zoe’s beloved former landlady. It’s a decision that eventually puts Zoe in harm’s way.

With Zoe already recovering from one close call, Pete must race against time to stop the crime ring—and a dangerous killer—before they strike again.

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Farm-To-Fork Series Spotlight

Today on my blog I have a Series Spotlight for Lynn Cahoon’s Farm-To-Fork Mystery Series. I have read them all and they were all very good.

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Angie Turner hopes her new farm-to-table restaurant can be a fresh start in her old hometown in rural Idaho. But when a goat dairy farmer is murdered, Angie must turn the tables on a bleating black sheep . . .
With three weeks until opening night for their restaurant, the County Seat, Angie and her best friend and business partner Felicia are scrambling to line up local vendors—from the farmer’s market to the goat dairy farm of Old Man Moss. Fortunately, the cantankerous Moss takes a shine to Angie, as does his kid goat Precious. So when Angie hears the bloodcurdling news of foul play at the dairy farm, she jumps in to mind the man’s livestock and help solve the murder. One thing’s for sure, there’s no whey Angie’s going to let some killer get her goat . . .

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The time seems ripe for success as Angie Turner opens her farm-to-table restaurant in her Idaho hometown—until her new tomato supplier is accused of murder and Angie has to pick the real killer . . .
To Angie, nothing tastes more like summer than her Nona’s fried green tomatoes. Eager to add the recipe to the menu at the County Seat, she’s found the perfect produce supplier—her sous chef Estebe’s cousin, Javier. Just one problem: ladies’ man Javier’s current hot tomato Heather has turned up dead, and he’s the prime suspect. Somehow, between managing her restaurant and navigating a romantic triangle between Estebe and Ian, the owner/manager of the farmer’s market, Angie needs to produce evidence to clear Javier—before this green tomato farmer gets fried . . . 


Angie Turner’s restaurant, The County Seat, is conveniently located near a first-class farmers market—so her menu is full of fresh ingredients. But a visiting culinary professor has just had a taste of something very unhealthy . . .
Angie first meets Daniel Monet at a local mission, where she and her chef-in-training, Hope, are serving barbeque chicken poutine to the homeless. Monet is one of Hope’s teachers—but Angie’s boyfriend knows him from his youthful days in England, and he went by a different name back then. After Sheriff Brown shows up the next morning to report that the pseudo-French gourmet has been dead on top of a pool table, the victim of poisoned wine, it seems his real name might not have been the only secret he was hiding. The bon vivant is no longer vivant, and with Hope’s prints on the glass, it’ll be Angie who has to sauce out the real killer . . .

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Chef Angie Turner of The County Seat—Idaho’s finest farm-to-table restaurant—is preparing a private dinner in the mountains during ski season, but the trip’s about to go downhill . . .

It’s a rockin’ New Year for Angie and her crew as they cater a bash for a famous band—and as a bonus, they’ll get to stay at the singer’s Sun Valley house for a whole week once the party’s over. But there are hints of discord, and the event hits a sour note when one of the musicians is found with a drumstick in his chest.

Is this a case of creative differences turned lethal or is there another motive at play? Angie’s jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire as she and her fellow foodies try to solve the case before the killer comes out for an encore . . . 

Chef Angie Turner of The County Seat—Idaho’s finest farm-to-table restaurant—is preparing a private dinner in the mountains during ski season, but the trip’s about to go downhill . . .

It’s a rockin’ New Year for Angie and her crew as they cater a bash for a famous band—and as a bonus, they’ll get to stay at the singer’s Sun Valley house for a whole week once the party’s over. But there are hints of discord, and the event hits a sour note when one of the musicians is found with a drumstick in his chest.

Is this a case of creative differences turned lethal or is there another motive at play? Angie’s jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire as she and her fellow foodies try to solve the case before the killer comes out for an encore . . . 

Deep Fried Revenge (A Farm-to-Fork Mystery Book 4) by [Lynn Cahoon]

Angie Turner is all prepped to face Boise’s culinary best when she enters her restaurant, The County Seat, into a big State Fair challenge. Instead, she gets dunked into a new murder investigation after a killer starts scrapping her competition . . .
The Idaho State Fair is in full swing and chefs are lining up to enter Boise’s Best Restaurant contest, including Angie and her County Seat crew. They might be the hometown favorite, but the competition is steeper than a funhouse floor. And when a top contender is felled following a heated confrontation over a corn dog recipe, winning suddenly becomes a matter of life or death. With a foul foodie on the prowl, it’s up to Angie to dig into the case and put a murderer on ice. 


Angie Turner, chef at Idaho’s finest farm-to-table restaurant, has organized a team-building event at a haunted prison, only to find a real-life murderer in their midst. . . .
Contented employees make for a successful restaurant, which is why the County Seat’s crew goes on a quarterly out-of-office meeting. This time, the location is the Old Idaho Penitentiary near the Boise Foothills, a prison brimming with ghostly lore. The lock-in features actors role-playing as guards, fascinating prison stories . . . and an unscripted murder.
Who sentenced one of the faux guards to a very authentic death? Angie, her boyfriend, and the County Seat gang are locked in with a killer—excellent motivation for a little sleuthing. Between ghostly apparitions and flesh-and-blood suspects, Angie’s plate is full, but will her luck, and her life, hold out until the gates reopen at dawn?

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Angie Turner’s Idaho restaurant, the County Seat, is known and loved for its fresh food. For Angie, it’s also meant a fresh start. But when big agriculture comes to town—along with whispers of foul play—Angie could lose more than the farm . . .

A soybean processing plant is trying to buy up the land around the small farm Angie’s beloved Nona left her. If Angie doesn’t sell, she’ll be surrounded by the plant and the congestion that comes with it. On the other hand, it’s Nona’s farmhouse. What is Angie supposed to do without it? Move into a condo in town with Precious, Mabel, and Dom—respectively, a goat, chicken, and dog. Worse, a troubling rumor is circulating about the lawyer who’s heading up the development: His socialite wife seems to be missing. When Barb, owner of the local bar, asks Angie to look into the woman’s disappearance, she’s hesitant—until Barb reveals her surprising connection. Now it’s up to Angie to find the woman, uncover a shady plot, and hang onto her home—before she becomes a criminal’s final course . . 

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Angie Turner’s Idaho restaurant, the County Seat, owes its success not only to its farm-fresh fair, but also to its devoted and passionate staff. But a team-building retreat turns into much more than they bargained for . . .

Angie and her County Seat staff are all prepared for some much-needed R&R. Hope’s been hinting at an arts-and-crafts themed retreat. Instead, they end up at a military veteran’s home, where it’s their job to get it spic and span for summer. In between weeding the garden and painting the rooms, Angie starts up a conversation with an older vet who wants to make amends with his son before it’s too late. Unfortunately, he has no idea of his son’s whereabouts. It’s the perfect side job for the County Seat team, but someone keeps blocking their efforts. And the more they try to find out why, the more they’re certain someone’s life might be in danger . . .


Angie Turner’s Idaho restaurant, the County Seat, is the perfect site for a picturesque country wedding, but the party planning skids to a halt when the groom-to-be is implicated in a murder investigation…

When Angie’s best friend and business partner, Felicia Williams, picks the County Seat to host her upcoming nuptials, Angie wants it to feel like a family affair–especially since Felicia is set to marry the farm-to-fork restaurant’s talented sous chef, Estebe Blackstone. Unfortunately, the bride’s actual family is far less enthusiastic about the union. They’re pulling out all the stops to cancel the couple’s wedding, even arranging for a surprise visit from Felicia’s ex-fiancé (and her father’s current lackey). But when her ex is killed days before the ceremony and Estebe is framed for the crime, Angie and the County Seat crew must scramble to solve the murder and save the wedding . . .

About Lynn Cahoon:

Lynn Cahoon is the author of the NYT and USA Today best-selling Tourist Trap cozy mystery series. She also pens the Cat Latimer series, the Farm to Fork series, and the Kitchen Witch series. Small town setting, big time fun with a bit of murder to keep it interesting. Romance novels are published under the pen name, Lynn Collins. She lives in a small river town like Mark Twain with her husband and three fur kids.

New Releases For The Week Of January 9th, 2022–Part 2

The Mystery of Albert E. Finch: A Victorian Bookclub Mystery (A VICTORIAN BOOK CLUB MYSTERY 3) by [Callie Hutton]

In USA Today bestselling author Callie Hutton’s third Victorian Book Club mystery, will wedding bells or death knells ring for Lady Amy and Lord William?

Bath, England, 1892. Celebrated mystery author Lady Amy Lovell is set to tie the knot with Lord William Wethington, a fellow member of the Mystery Book Club of Bath. Amy’s great-aunt, Lady Priscilla Granville, has offered to host their wedding at her stately Derby Manor House. But on the eve of the ceremony, the festive air in the drawing room is marred by Mrs. Alice Finch’s argument with her husband, Albert, in another room. The next morning at the wedding breakfast, Alice falls face-first into her breakfast—dead.

When Amy and William’s favorite detectives are summoned to the house, they see two champagne glasses in front of Mrs. Finch and none in front of her husband. Did Albert give his wife a poisoned drink? Always looking for the easiest solution, the detectives charge Albert with the murder.

But Lady Amy is not convinced that Albert is guilty. There are too many things that don’t add up. In the hopes of being able to leave Bath and begin their honeymoon, Amy and William once again take things into their own hands.  Suspects begin to pop up, but nothing takes them more by surprise than the discovery of a second body.  

Stuck in Bath until the whole poisonous predicament is solved, Amy and William are anxious to collar the perfidious poisoner and be on their way to their honeymoon. If they can’t catch the killer, not only is their newlywed bliss under threat, but they may not live to see happily-ever-after at all. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Hardcover, Audiobook

A Pain in the Tuchis, a Mrs. Kaplan Mystery (Mrs. Kaplan Mysteries) by [Mark  Reutlinger]

Combining the classic charms of Agatha Christie with the delightful humor of M. C. Beaton’s Agatha Raisin novels, Mark Reutlinger’s Mrs. Kaplan mystery series returns as a notorious crank meets an untimely fate.
Yom Kippur is a day of reflection and soul searching. But at the Julius and Rebecca Cohen Home for Jewish Seniors, Vera Gold misses this opportunity to atone for her many sins when she up and dies. Indeed, Vera was such a pain in the tuchis to all those around her that when her sister claims Vera was deliberately poisoned, the tough question isn’t who would want to kill her—but who wouldn’t? (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Paperback

Murder at the Mansions (1920s High Society Lady Detective Mystery Book 7) by [Sara Rosett]

South Regent Mansions has all the modern conveniences . . . including murder

London, February, 1924. Discreet sleuth for the high society set, Olive Belgrave is delighted with her new flat at South Regent Mansions where she’s made several friends, including the modern career woman, Minerva, who draws a popular cartoon about a flapper for a London newspaper.

But then Minerva comes to Olive for help after catching a glimpse of a disturbing sight—a dead body. At least, that’s what Minerva thought she saw, but there’s not a dead body anywhere in the posh building, and the residents are continuing with their lives as they normally do. Is Minerva seeing things? Is she barmy? Or is there a more sinister explanation?

To help restore Minerva’s peace of mind, Olive investigates her neighbors. They include: society’s “it” girl of the moment, an accountant with a fondness for gadgets, a snooty society matron, and a school teacher turned bridge instructor. Olive uncovers rivalries, clandestine affairs, and hidden jealousies. With dashing Jasper at her side, Olive must discover whose secret is worth killing for.

If you like sophisticated whodunits, charming characters, and novels with a lighthearted tone, you’ll enjoy the seventh installment of the High Society Lady Detective series, Murder at the Mansions, from USA Today bestselling author, Sara Rosett. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Hardcover, Paperback, Audiobook

Mainely Angst (A Goff Langdon Mainely Mystery Book 4) by [Matt Cost]

A multi-layered mystery sizzling with infidelity, abduction, and danger, “Mainely Angst” is a smorgasbord of anxieties caused by the pandemic, political unrest, betrayal, and loss.”–InD’tale Magazine
Award winning author Matt Cost brings us the fourth book in the Mainely Mystery series in which a boy is abducted and threatened with execution if the governor of Maine doesn’t ease business restrictions and masking requirements due to the pandemic. 

Langdon is muddling his way through the pandemic like everybody else. Business restrictions have dealt a blow to his mystery bookstore, and nobody leaves the house anymore to get into trouble and create a need for a PI. At the same time, his marriage is stronger than ever, and he’s had a chance to catch up on things around the house.

Then it all changes. The bookstore opens back up, and he gets hired to find a missing woman, find proof of sexual harassment against another local business owner, and track down a kidnapped boy before he is executed by a madman in a desperate bid to force the state to ease masking restrictions.

“Somebody stole my wife,” the man said.
Did Annika Morin leave her husband… or was she taken?

I was sexually harass’ by my boss and then fire’ when I refused his advances.” Raven’s dark eyes flashed a promise of anger and vengeance.
Local brew pub owner Rick Strong is accused of sexual harassment, which seems likely, but is he guilty of much more? Or is it entirely fabricated?

“Where is my boy?” Jill asked, her words anguished.
And then the boy is abducted, and the kidnapper attempts to hold the entire state hostage. If the governor refuses their demands, the kidnapper promises to execute the child on Halloween.

With the help of his wife, Chabal, and his friends Bart the bad-tempered cop, 4 by Four the playboy lawyer, Richam and Jewell, and Star, his bookstore employee, Langdon is in a race against time to find the missing wife, obtain proof against an unlikeable business owner, and track down a kidnapped boy before it is too late…(Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Hardcover, Paperback

Tailing Trouble (A Furry Friends Mystery Book 2) by [Laura Scott]

Wisconsin veterinarian Ally Winter must solve a well-heeled young woman’s a-paw-ling murder in USA Today bestselling author Laura Scott’s second Furry Friends mystery.

Thirty-something veterinarian Ally Winter has found a new “leash” on life since she moved back to her hometown of Willow Bluff, Wisconsin. But when she takes Domino, the black standard poodle she’s boarding for the weekend, for a sunny September stroll along the shore of Lake Michigan, the diminutive dog dashes off, only to return with a single, polka-dotted, high-heeled shoe. Retracing Domino’s paw prints back to a weeping willow tree, they find the other shoe. It’s still on the foot of 20-year-old Pricilla Green–lying dead beneath the willow, with a silk scarf knotted tightly around her neck.

Willow Bluff’s finest–and handsomest–detective, Noah Jorgenson, is soon on the tail of the killer. But he has another worry on his mind when Ally’s grandfather, a lifelong true-crime buff, starts to suspect that the recent burglary of a local big-box store may have some connection to Pricilla’s murder. Noah cautions Ally to keep Gramps well away from the homicide investigation, but the old dog is drawn to danger like a puppy is to a squeaky ball.

The fur flies as Ally, Noah, Gramps, and Domino race the clock to fetch the felon. It will take all of their canine canniness to comb out the twists and curls in this wild and woolly case. And if they fail, they won’t live to go walkies again. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Hardcover, Audiobook

Hush Hush: A Shane Cleary Mystery by [Gabriel Valjan]

Shane Cleary is living a comfortable life. He has money. He has a girl.

But a visit from a friend shakes up his status quo. Chess may be the metaphor, but the case is one that lifts the lid on problems nobody in Boston wants to talk about.

Murder. Race. Class. It’s all Hush Hush.

Neither the crime nor the verdict is simple, and yet it is Black and White.

Shane will need more than a suit of armor if he wants to play knight. Can Justice be found? And at what cost? (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Paperback

Fatal Fantasy: A Grace Street Mystery by [Jane Tesh]

In this eighth book of the Grace Street Mystery Series, PI David Randall and his psychic friend Camden are ready to enjoy ExtravaganzaCon, a week of science fiction and fantasy, when two people are murdered in the convention hotel. One of the victims is skeptic and debunker of all things paranormal, Sean Snyder. The other is Iris Hudson, ill-mannered author of the popular Dark Star series. To find the killer, Randal must deal with a lofty Faerie Queen, a disruptive Batman, a trio of fierce warrior women, and an artist whose horrific paintings may hold a clue to a fantasy world that has become all too real. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle

New Releases For The Week Of January 9th, 2022–Part 1

Find Me: A Novel by [Alafair Burke]

“Alafair Burke’s latest propulsive thrill-ride is a suspenseful, twisty mystery about memory, friendship and secrets. A page-turner of the highest order.” -Laura Dave, author of The Last Thing He Told Me

The disappearance of a young woman leaves her best friend reeling and an NYPD homicide detective digging into her own past in this twisty mystery about the power of female friendships. From the New York Times bestselling author of The Better Sister and The Wife.

Some pasts won’t stay forgotten . . .

She calls herself Hope Miller, but she has no idea who she actually is. Fifteen years ago, she was found in a small New Jersey town thrown from an overturned vehicle, with no clue to her identity. Doctors assumed her amnesia was a temporary side effect of her injuries, but she never regained her memory. Hope eventually started a new life with a new name in a new town that welcomed her, yet always wondered what she may have left behind—or been running from. Now, she’s leaving New Jersey to start over once again.

Manhattan defense lawyer Lindsay Kelly, Hope’s best friend and the one who found her after the accident, understands why Hope wants a new beginning. But she worries how her friend will fare in her new East Hampton home, far away from everything familiar. Lindsay’s worst fears are confirmed when she discovers Hope has vanished without a trace—the only lead a drop of blood found where she was last seen. Even more ominously, the blood matches a DNA sample with a connection to a notorious Kansas murderer.

With nowhere else to turn, Lindsay calls NYPD homicide detective Ellie Hatcher, the daughter of the cop who dedicated his life to hunting the Kansas killer. Ellie has always believed there was more to the story of her father’s death twenty years earlier—and she now fears that Hope’s recent disappearance could be related.

In pursuit of answers, the women search for the truth beneath long-buried secrets. And when their searches converge, what they find will upend everything they’ve ever known. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Hardcover, Paperback, Audiobook

Meet Cassie Gwynne: bookworm, cat lover, reluctant heiress… and determined detective?

Florida, 1883. Cassie Gwynne is looking for a fresh start when she steps off the steamship at Fernandina harbor for the first time. She’s trying hard to be a proper lady, for once. She’s styled her unruly hair, shined her boots, and even purchased a whole new fashionable (or at least fashionably priced) wardrobe. However, she’s certain finding a body is not very ladylike behavior…

While out exploring the beautiful island with her Aunt Flora, Cassie stumbles across the body of Peanut Runkles, town grump and her aunt’s neighbor, lying at the foot of the harbor pilots’ lookout tower. To make matters worse, because Peanut and Flora have been quarreling for years over everything from Flora’s eccentric ideas to her pet pig’s fondness for Peanut’s vegetable patch, Flora is immediately arrested for murder.

Desperate to save the only family she has left, Cassie vows to prove Flora’s innocence and untangle the mystery herself, no matter how much certain others may disapprove. Cassie’s brilliant mind and nose for a clue lead her on an investigation that takes her all around the island, and even earns her a valiant furry friend in Esy the kitten.

But how does the mysterious ledger Cassie finds hidden in a secret drawer in Peanut’s desk connect to the crime? Cassie is determined to dig up the truth, but can she catch the killer before her time on the island comes to a deadly end?

This warm and witty cozy mystery will transport you to the island city of Fernandina and introduce you to a feisty heroine far before her time! Perfect for fans of Verity Bright, T E Kinsey and Deanna Raybourn. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Paperback

The Girls on the Shore by [Ann Cleeves]

Ann Cleeves—New York Times bestselling and award-winning author of the Vera and Shetland series, both of which are hit TV shows—returns with a darkly delicious short story, “The Girls on the Shore”, featuring DI Matthew Venn from the Two Rivers series.

It was winter. Cold and clear, a different sort of day for this coast where the westerly winds usually blew rain and cloud.

Detective Inspector Matthew Venn is standing by his kitchen window when he first spots them. Two young girls, facing away from him, seemingly staring towards something in the distance. They are holding hands, and they are alone.

Though not a natural with children, Matthew knows he must find out why the girls are here, on a school day, unsupervised. And so he meets Olivia and Imogen, a pair of sisters whose secrets Matthew must uncover if he hopes to get them home. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle

Dead Messages (Texts From Beyond Book 1) by [Kristen Brand]

She texts dead people…

Sydney Farina, full-time baker and cynic, is having a bad enough week when her boss forces her to go into work on her day off. When she arrives to find her boss’s corpse on the floor, her week gets a whole lot worse.

She’s shocked to learn it was murder—though maybe not too shocked. Her short-tempered boss, Glenda Whitaker, made more enemies than she did sprinkled cupcakes.

Then the texts start coming.

They’re from Glenda’s number, demanding Sydney find out who murdered her. Sydney thinks the messages are a bad joke at first, but when they reveal things only Glenda would know, she’s forced to accept the truth:

She’s getting texts from a dead woman.

Glenda’s ghost wants justice, but Sydney doesn’t know the first thing about solving murders. As she investigates her coworkers, can she find out who killed Glenda? Or will she join her grouchy boss on the other side of the grave?

Dead Messages is a cozy mystery novella with a touch of the paranormal. If you like quirky characters and fun whodunits, then dive in and start reading today. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Paperback

A Three Book Problem: A Sherlock Holmes Bookshop Mystery by [Vicki Delany]

Gemma Doyle is back on the case in bestselling author Vicki Delany’s seventh Sherlock Holmes Bookshop mystery when a poisoned dart ends in demise.

It’s a crisp, early October weekend, and business is slowing down as fall descends at the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop and Emporium and adjacent Mrs. Hudson’s Tea Room. Wealthy philanthropist and prominent Sherlockian David Masterson has rented Suffolk Gardens House, where he plans to entertain his friends in a traditional English country house weekend.

As the chosen caterers, Jayne Wilson and Gemma Doyle get to work preparing lavish meals and setting up Sherlockian books and props for entertainment. Meanwhile, police detective Ryan Ashburton has taken time away from his duties to assist in the kitchen. It quickly becomes apparent that David’s guests don’t like each other–or their host. Plus, some of them aren’t even acquainted with the adventures of the Great Detective.

Before Gemma can ponder their relationships a poisoned dart sails through the window of the library, presenting Gemma Doyle with a three-book problem. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Hardcover, Audiobook

Kiss My Ash (The Bloomin' Psychic Book 4) by [Annabel Chase]

Mia Thorne’s midlife makeover is going better than she ever expected. She has a new job, a new relationship, a new garden—well, never mind the garden. She doesn’t even mind that she’s back to pounding the pavement to generate ad revenue for the local newspaper.
Unfortunately an important meeting with the marketing director of the Newberry Playhouse generates the wrong kind of buzz when a beloved actress is found dead the day of her big performance. The murder triggers a ghostly rumor that had been put to rest long ago. With suspects crawling out of the seemingly haunted scenery, Chief Tuck and Detective Fairfax have their hands full and Mia is only too happy to pitch in.
Can Mia solve the case and help the show go on or will the final curtain fall on the historic playhouse?

Kiss My Ash is the fourth book in The Bloomin’ Psychic series. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Paperback, Audiobook

Crimes and Covers: A Magical Bookshop Mystery by [Amanda Flower]

Violet Waverly sleuths a Thoreau-ly puzzling Christmastime murder in Agatha Award-winning, USA Today bestselling author Amanda Flower’s fifth Magical Bookshop mystery.

Christmas is coming to the Western New York village of Cascade Springs, and so is the long-awaited wedding of Charming Books proprietor Violet Waverly and police chief David Rainwater. Grandma Daisy and Violet’s best friend, Sadie, go all out to make the nuptials the event of the season–whether Violet likes it or not. But the reception becomes memorable for all the wrong reasons when a woman’s dead body floats by on the frigid Niagara River.

Violet is shocked to recognize the deceased as a mysterious woman who visited Charming Books two days before the wedding, toting a rare first edition of Henry David Thoreau’s Walden. Well aware that a mint condition copy could be worth more than $14,000, Violet told the woman she would have to have the book appraised before she could consider buying it. Most displeased, the woman tucked the precious tome under her arm and stormed out of the shop. Now she’s dead, and an enigmatic message scrawled in pen upon her palm reads, “They stole my book.”

It’s a confounding case, indeed. But fortunately, Violet can draw on the resources of her bookshop’s magical consciousness, which communicates clues to Violet via quotes from Walden. With Emerson the tuxedo cat and Faulkner the crow at her side, Violet sets out to recover the priceless book by solving a murder most transcendental. (Amazon)

Editions Available: Kindle, Hardcover

Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours–Enter A Wizard Stage Left

Spotlight images clipart

Enter a Wizard, Stage Left (A Zodiac Mystery)
Traditional Mystery
Prequel Novella
Suspense Publishing (October 26, 2021)
Print length ‏ : ‎ 111 pages
ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09JGV526H

Purchase Link – Amazon 

Word On The Street:

Enter a Wizard, Stage Left (A Zodiac Mystery)
by Connie di Marco

Come and journey as the reason for the crime fall, and soon you will want to read this series!
~Maureen’s Musings

Great characters, well to the series…ed clues and an adrenaline-fueled search create a dynamic and enthralling read.
~Cozy Up With Kathy

About The Book:

Julia Bonatti wasn’t always a crime-solving San Francisco astrologer. She was a young woman, engaged to the love of her life, preparing for a teaching career when tragedy struck. Her fiancé was killed in a hit and run accident. As Julia struggles with her loss and attempts to find meaning in her life again, she takes refuge with her grandmother Gloria. But there’s little time for grief or rest because Gloria, a retired seamstress, needs Julia’s help. Gloria’s been hired to create costumes for a production of Agatha Christie’s Appointment with Death at the newly opened Theatre Mars in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood.

Theatre Mars is a stunning jewel, the cast is supremely talented and the script is brilliant. What could go wrong? Julia gets the first hint of trouble when her new friend, the owner of The Mystic Eye bookshop, warns that all might not go well. Opening night will take place during the dark of the moon, the last three days before the new moon, a time that bodes disaster for any new project. The dire prediction comes true when the lead actress is murdered before the final curtain, echoing the play itself. Julia discovers a vital clue to the murder, but a clue that puts Gloria’s life in grave danger. Can Julia rescue her grandmother before it’s too late? And will a black cat play a leading role?

About The Author:

With the Zodiac Mysteries, featuring Julia Bonatti, a crime-solving San Francisco astrologer, Connie di Marco has combined her fascination with astrology and her love of writing mysteries.  Writing as Connie Archer, she’s the national bestselling author of the Soup Lover’s Mysteries from Berkley Prime Crime.  You can find her excerpts and recipes in The Cozy Cookbook and The Mystery Writers of America Cookbook.  She is a member of International Thriller Writers, Mystery Writers of America, and Sisters in Crime.  She lives in Los Angeles but dreams constantly of the San Francisco fog.

Author LinksWebsite: di Marco

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January 5 – Maureen’s Musings – REVIEW

January 5 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT


January 6 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

January 7 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, GUEST POST

January 7 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

January 8 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST

January 8 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT

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January 13 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

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