BSBD Header

BSBD Header

Friday, January 31, 2020

Dressed Up 4 Murder (Sophie Kimball Mystery #6) by J.C. Eaton


Dressed Up 4 Murder
by J.C. Eaton 

Kindle Edition
Expected publication: February 25th 2020 by Kensington


Goodreads synopsis: 
Last one standing is the winner . . .

The holiday season has arrived and bookkeeper/amateur sleuth, Sophie “Phee” Kimball, would love nothing more than to enjoy the comforts of her new home with her detective boyfriend near Arizona’s Sun City West. Instead, her mother Harriet wants to showcase her chiweenie-chihuahua-dachshund Streetman in the Precious Pooches Holiday Extravaganza costume events. The festivities begin in October and end on St. Patrick’s Day—with the winner starring in the St. Pat’s Day parade. But things quickly turn an awful shade of green when Streetman uncovers a dead body under a tarp-covered grill in the neighbor’s yard.

The victim is Cameron Tully, a seafood distributor working out of Phoenix, who died from ingesting a toxic sago palm leaf. Before the police can even find a motive and suspect, another Precious Pooch owner nearly dies from the same poison. With Harriet believing someone’s targeting her and Streetman because of the costume contests, Phee will need a potful of Irish luck to sniff out a killer . . .

***

4.5 Stars

This is the sixth book in the Sophie Kimball mystery series by J.C. Eaton.

What a hoot this was! Sophie’s mother, Harriett and her little doggie Streetman find a dead body underneath the grill at her neighbor’s house. The neighbors are snowbirds and currently out of town. Harriett is keeping an eye on their house for them. She pulls her daughter in to investigate so she can focus on her dog show priorities. Her goal is to win the trifecta of dog shows so she and Streetman can win a sweet prize.

It was funny reading this at times. Ironic funny. The cops and Phee would have the clue right in hand and then would discard the idea, move to a different theory and then later come back with a “DOH!” look on their faces.

The extremes to which Phee’s mother is so obsessed with her dog says a lot about why Phee keeps trying to distance herself from her mother and the book club girls.

The mystery in this is multi-layered and was sometimes a bit of a mind bender trying to figure out which aspect of the investigation they were trying to solve.

I enjoyed the heck out of this and look forward to other books in this series!

If you love a good cozy mystery, definitely check this one out. You won’t be disappointed.


I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) in return for an honest review. I thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me to read this title

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Shine Bright: A Color, Draw & Dream Book for a Beautiful Life by Lindsay Hopkins


Shine Bright: A Color, Draw & Dream Book for a Beautiful Life

Paperback, 96 pages
Expected publication: February 14th 2020 by Better Day Books



Goodreads synopsis: 
This is a book all about you! Build creativity and confidence with this super fun book that focuses on all of the awesome traits that make you special! Each chapter features adorable patterns to color, fun drawing lessons, and ideas for writing about your hopes and dreams. From llamas and mermaids to unicorns and butterflies, you'll find cuteness, inspiration, and fun on every page!

***

3.5 Stars

This is one of those books where I think having the physical ARC in hand would have made the experience better for me. This felt like a very meager workbook. I think there will be, I hope, little graphics to assist those who do not draw something to look at when creating their perfect llama, unicorn, butterfly, etc. There are drawing prompts in here as well as writing about those things that maybe you have overlooked about yourself.

It is hard to tell what this would look like in print since so much of it would be based on the vision of the author and what the publishing house will do with it once printed. I definitely would like to see this once it comes out on February 14! Valentine’s Day is a perfect day to show some love to yourself. So, definitely check this out if you want to find a more authentic you!


I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) in return for an honest review. I thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me to read this title

The Skeleton in the Closet (Southern Ghost Hunter Mysteries #2) by Angie Fox


The Skeleton in the Closet
by Angie Fox 

Paperback, 250 pages
Published August 26th 2015 by Angie Fox


Goodreads synopsis: 
From New York Times bestseller Angie Fox, the second book in the new Southern Ghost Hunter Mysteries.

A haunted library is no place for a girl who can see ghosts, but when Verity Long stumbles on a dead body in the middle of the main reading room, she has to believe someone… even a dead someone… must have witnessed the crime.

Her ghostly sidekick Frankie warns her to stay out of it. The very alive, very handsome deputy sheriff, Ellis Wydell, inadvertently places her directly in the middle of it. And her ex-fiancĂ©, Ellis’s brother, is back with an agenda of his own.

Undaunted, Verity presses forward, uncovering scandalous secrets, long-forgotten ghosts, and a shocking trail of clues that places her directly in the path of a killer.

***

4.5 Stars

This is the second book in the Southern Ghost Hunter mystery series by Angie Fox.

I feel like there is a real kinship to the Scooby-Doo gang here. Not sure why. There are ghosts, yes. But they are usually misunderstood and the bad guy is usually a living person who is not living their best life.

This had a lot of good backstory and gave us a glimpse into the lives of Ellis’s parents and how invested they are into keeping their standing in the community even when a long held truth about town history is found to be an out and out lie!

I never really felt like the reason Verity’s ex was trying to squeeze himself back into her life was thoroughly uncovered. By the end, when he didn’t want her anymore, I figured that he must have been as wrapped up in his family’s drama as his mother was.

This series is sort of unassuming. It looks like one of those superficial cozy series that just seem to be spit out every two weeks with only a few pages to the mystery. But this is not that. This series is completely thought out and just a joy to read. I don’t feel like I am waisting my time reading this. I am enjoying the heck out of it! 

Can’t wait to start reading the rest of the series! I am hooked on Verity, Ellis and Frankie!

If you love a good cozy mystery, definitely check this one out. You won’t be disappointed.


I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) in return for an honest review. I thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me to read this title

A Ghostly Gift (Southern Ghost Hunter Mysteries #1.5) by Angie Fox



A Ghostly Gift
by Angie Fox 

ebook, 56 pages
Published February 15th 2015 by Angie Fox

Goodreads synopsis: 
From New York Times best-selling author Angie Fox - a fabulously fun short story in the new Southern Ghost Hunter Mystery series.

Verity Long doesn't want to see ghosts, and she'd rather not let anyone know her little secret, either. But when a restless spirit stirs up trouble in her friend's resale shop, Verity and her very new, very dead gangster friend team up to learn what is really happening. They discover an age-old secret and must learn the truth behind a mysterious disappearance... before it's too late.

***

5 Stars

This is the first novella (#1.5)  in the Southern Ghost Hunter mystery series by Angie Fox.

This was a real quick read and there wasn’t a lot of conflict here or mystery. Everything was wrapped up in very few pages but I thought it was so sweet how Verity helped a lonely ghost find his lost love. Just AWE-inspiring!

Just wish there had been some Ellis sightings in this novella. I missed seeing him in the pages of this one.

If you love a good cozy mystery, definitely check this one out. You won’t be disappointed.


I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) in return for an honest review. I thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me to read this title.

Southern Spirits: 5th Anniversary Deluxe Box Set by Angie Fox


Southern Spirits 
5th Anniversary Deluxe Box Set
by Angie Fox 

ebook, 475 pages
Published January 17th 2020 by Moose Island Books


Goodreads synopsis: 

Southern Spirits:
When out of work graphic designer Verity Long accidentally traps a ghost on her property, she’s saddled with more than a supernatural sidekick—she gains the ability to see spirits. It leads to an offer she can’t refuse from the town’s bad boy, the brother of her ex and the last man she should ever partner with.
   Ellis Wydell is in possession of a stunning historic property haunted by some of Sugarland Tennessee’s finest former citizens. Only some of them are growing restless—and destructive. He hires Verity put an end to the disturbances. But soon Verity learns there’s more to the mysterious estate than floating specters, secret passageways, and hidden rooms.
   There’s a modern day mystery afoot, one that hinges on a decades-old murder. Verity isn't above questioning the living, or the dead. But can she discover the truth before the killer finds her?

A Ghostly Gift
Verity Long doesn't want to see ghosts, and she'd rather not let anyone know her little secret, either. But when a restless spirit stirs up trouble in her friend's resale shop, Verity and her very new, very dead gangster friend team up to learn what is really happening. They discover an age-old secret and must learn the truth behind a mysterious disappearance... before it's too late.

Skeleton in the Closet
A haunted library is no place for a girl who can see ghosts, but when Verity Long stumbles on a dead body in the middle of the main reading room, she has to believe someone… even a dead someone… must have witnessed the crime.
   Her ghostly sidekick Frankie warns her to stay out of it. The very alive, very handsome deputy sheriff, Ellis Wydell, inadvertently places her directly in the middle of it. And her ex-fiancĂ©, Ellis’s brother, is back with an agenda of his own.
   Undaunted, Verity presses forward, uncovering scandalous secrets, long-forgotten ghosts, and a shocking trail of clues that places her directly in the path of a killer.

***

This collector’s edition has two full books over 35o pages each and a small novella that is super cute and inspiring. This is the type of bind-up that will give you a great introduction to the series and then suck you into the world enough that you will want to continue on with book three.

Southern Spirits Book #1

4.5 Stars

This is the first book in the Southern Ghost Hunter mystery series by Angie Fox.

This book was like a comedy of errors. First Vertity traps Frankie on her property after she dumps his ashes into the garden thinking it was just an ordinary vase in need of washing. Now he is stuck to just haunting her property. But since there is a bit of residue in the vase, Verity can tote the container around and it gives Frankie the ability to move beyond the house’s property line.

Verity is in a bind. She is about to lose her house and she needs money fast. First Frankie has a get rich quick idea which backfires, then she realizes that with Frankie’s help, she can see spirits. Now her ex’s brother, Ellis, is in need of a little ghostbusting and enlists Verity to assist him in disposing of the annoying spirits causing destruction on his property. Verity can’t say no. She needs the money. But being around Mr. Wonderful won’t be easy. He is the brother of her ex and he doesn’t have the highest opinion of her. Not to mention, he is the town cop and could probably arrest her if he so willed.

I thought this was a hilarious cozy mystery romp into the spirit world. I never knew what to expect and the plot went places that would probably crop up in future books. The world building on this was awesome. What a great start to a series. I am looking forward to seeing what Fox has in store for us next. I am intrigued by the budding relationship between Verity and Ellis too. Crossing my fingers for a love match between the two of them.

A Ghostly Gift Book #1.5

5 Stars

This is the first novella (#1.5)  in the Southern Ghost Hunter mystery series by Angie Fox.

This was a real quick read and there wasn’t a lot of conflict here or mystery. Everything was wrapped up in very few pages but I thought it was so sweet how Verity helped a lonely ghost find his lost love. Just AWE-inspiring!

Just wish there had been some Ellis sightings in this novella. I missed seeing him in the pages of this one.


Skeleton in the Closet #2

4.5 Stars

This is the second book in the Southern Ghost Hunter mystery series by Angie Fox.

I feel like there is a real kinship to the Scooby-Doo gang here. Not sure why. There are ghosts, yes. But they are usually misunderstood and the bad guy is usually a living person who is not living their best life.

This had a lot of good backstory and gave us a glimpse into the lives of Ellis’s parents and how invested they are into keeping their standing in the community even when a long held truth about town history is found to be an out and out lie!

I never really felt like the reason Verity’s ex was trying to squeeze himself back into her life was thoroughly uncovered. By the end, when he didn’t want her anymore, I figured that he must have been as wrapped up in his family’s drama as his mother was.

This series is sort of unassuming. It looks like one of those superficial cozy series that just seem to be spit out every two weeks with only a few pages to the mystery. But this is not that. This series is completely thought out and just a joy to read. I don’t feel like I am waisting my time reading this. I am enjoying the heck out of it! 

Can’t wait to start reading the rest of the series! I am hooked on Verity, Ellis and Frankie!

If you love a good cozy mystery, definitely check this one out. You won’t be disappointed.


I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) in return for an honest review. I thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me to read this title.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Southern Spirits (Southern Ghost Hunter Mysteries #1) by Angie Fox


Southern Spirits
by Angie Fox 

Paperback, 320 pages
Published January 21st 2015 by Angie Fox (first published January 13th 2015)





Goodreads synopsis: 
When out of work graphic designer Verity Long accidentally traps a ghost on her property, she’s saddled with more than a supernatural sidekick—she gains the ability to see spirits. It leads to an offer she can’t refuse from the town’s bad boy, the brother of her ex and the last man she should ever partner with.

Ellis Wydell is in possession of a stunning historic property haunted by some of Sugarland Tennessee’s finest former citizens. Only some of them are growing restless—and destructive. He hires Verity put an end to the disturbances. But soon Verity learns there’s more to the mysterious estate than floating specters, secret passageways, and hidden rooms.

There’s a modern day mystery afoot, one that hinges on a decades-old murder. Verity isn't above questioning the living, or the dead. But can she discover the truth before the killer finds her?

***

4.5 Stars

This is the first book in the Southern Ghost Hunter mystery series by Angie Fox.

This book was like a comedy of errors. First Vertity traps Frankie on her property after she dumps his ashes into the garden thinking it was just an ordinary vase in need of washing. Now he is stuck to just haunting her property. But since there is a bit of residue in the vase, Verity can tote the container around and it gives Frankie the ability to move beyond the house’s property line.

Verity is in a bind. She is about to lose her house and she needs money fast. First Frankie has a get rich quick idea which backfires, then she realizes that with Frankie’s help, she can see spirits. Now her ex’s brother, Ellis, is in need of a little ghostbusting and enlists Verity to assist him in disposing of the annoying spirits causing destruction on his property. Verity can’t say no. She needs the money. But being around Mr. Wonderful won’t be easy. He is the brother of her ex and he doesn’t have the highest opinion of her. Not to mention, he is the town cop and could probably arrest her if he so willed.

I thought this was a hilarious cozy mystery romp into the spirit world. I never knew what to expect and the plot went places that would probably crop up in future books. The world building on this was awesome. What a great start to a series. I am looking forward to seeing what Fox has in store for us next. I am intrigued by the budding relationship between Verity and Ellis too. Crossing my fingers for a love match between the two of them.

If you love a good cozy mystery, definitely check this one out. You won’t be disappointed.


I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) in return for an honest review. I thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me to read this title.

Rescuing Autumn (An FBI Romance) by Allyson Simonian


Rescuing Autumn
(An FBI Romance)

Kindle Edition
Published January 2020 (First Published April 25th 2019) Original Title: Meeting Danger




Goodreads synopsis: 
Camden Taylor is an FBI agent, working undercover in an outlaw motorcycle club. When the brothers kidnap a rival from another club, Camden has no choice but to blow his cover in order to save the man's life.

Autumn Mason has lived with Butch Cobb, president of Wicked Disciples, for nearly five years. Butch is terrifying—as abusive as he is powerful—and there is no escaping him. But when Autumn witnesses Camden being beaten and held prisoner, she is forced to make a desperate decision. Will she choose to be loyal, or will she do what she knows is right?

Please note: This book was originally published by Kindle Press as Meeting Danger. The series' authors have split the series, each taking ownership for one title.

***

4.5 Stars

This is the first book in the A FBI Romance series by Allyson Simonian.

I am not certain if this is going to be a series but since it was labeled “An FBI Romance” I am going to assume so. Looks like it used to be part of a bundle where multiple authors put a story into one large volume. Now it has been busted apart and each story is now its own individual book.

Basic premise: Autumn has had a hard life. She never attended school, she didn’t know how to read and her brother left her with a much older man who was a drug runner /gang member and an all over bad guy. Camden Taylor is working undercover at the FBI trying to uncover trying to infiltrate the Wicked Disciples. Autumn saves his life after his cover is blown and he takes her to the protection of his grandparent’s farm.

I thought this was a great story. Even though there are bits of romance in this, it felt more like a suspense or thriller story with a dash of happily ever after added in for good measure. Romantic suspense would fit the bill for this title, more suspense than romance, however.  It is the type of book that really keeps you on your toes. Loads of tension and awfulness. You wonder how people can survive such abuse and begin to think people’s bad treatment of them is normal.

This book also felt like a bit of a police procedural as Cam and his FBI roommate Martin were digging into the details of this gang, Wicked Disciples. At the same time Cam befriends an inmate during his undercover stint in the prison he believes to be innocent and he begins looking into his case at the same time as all the gang related nonsense connected to Autumn.

There seems from this description that there would be a lot of downtime in this book but there really wasn’t. I enjoyed the classic boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl and they live happily ever after. The chase after the killer(s) was thrilling and I kept wondering if Cam would ever find Autumn after she disappeared to St. Louis looking for her brother.

If this book is indeed a series, I hope the author makes her next main character, Martin, Cam’s roommate and co-worker in the FBI. He has all sorts of posibilities surrounding him, I think.

Overall, just one great book.

If you love a good romantic suspense, definitely check this one out. You won’t be disappointed.


I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) in return for an honest review. I thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me to read this title.

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Copycat (DS Jenna Morgan #2) by Diane Saxon


Copycat
(DS Jenna Morgan #2)

Kindle Edition, 392 pages
Expected publication: February 18th 2020 by Boldwood Books




Goodreads synopsis: 
When a beautiful, red haired nurse’s body is found mutilated in her house in Lawley the morning after a date with Detective Constable Ryan Downey, all eyes turn to him.

With a very specific modus operandi, Detective Sergeant Jenna Morgan and her team know exactly who the offender is, the trouble is he’s currently serving a life stretch in HMP Long Lartin.

It soon becomes evident to DS Morgan and her team that there maybe a copycat killer is on the loose.

In a race against time, they need to track down the copycat and discover who is pulling whose strings?

***

4.5 Stars

This is the second book in the DS Jenna Morgan series by Diane Saxon.

This is the first book I have read in this series and I discovered I was a bit behind in the backstory going into this. Apparently, Jenna had been thrown for a loop in the previous book with the kidnapping of her sister, Fliss. She was still in recovery mode after the fallout from that and now is thrust into a case of a brutally murdered woman made to look like the work of another madman currently in jail. And so begins a string of murders of redheaded nurses. These women are discovered using a dating app. One of Jenn’s colleagues, DC Ryan Downey, has been using this app to find dates and in fact was the last person to see the first victim alive.

This was a quite exciting read and it was one of those books that really keeps you on your toes as you follow along with the action. Very twisty-turney as there is a pretty decent twist three-fourths of the way through revealing something about the killer even the reader, who is seeing things from the killer’s perspective from time to time, didn’t realize.

I totally enjoy a good police procedural and this one is set in Britain. So the policing system is a tad different than it is over here in the US. If you love Midsomer Murders, you will definitely dig this book. This is a good mystery suspense thriller/police procedural/detective fiction book you will want to have sitting on your shelf. 


I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) in return for an honest review. I thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me to read this title.

Monday, January 27, 2020

Pies before Guys (Pie Town Mystery #4) by Kirsten Weiss


Pies before Guys

Kindle Edition
Expected publication: February 25th 2020 by Kensington



Goodreads synopsis: 
Val’s crime-solving club digs into a piping hot new case!

A poetry slam at a bakery? Why not! Even though Pie Town proprietor Val Harris would rather be spending time with her newfound half-brother, she knows her employee, Abril, is beyond excited to be hosting the event. Especially since it stars the apple pie of Abril’s eye, poet and professor Michael Starke. But the evening ends on a sour note when Professor Starke is found murdered mere moments after being accused of plagiarism.

Just like that, Pie Town is at the center of another criminal inquiry. At Abril’s request—and much to Detective Carmichael’s consternation—Val and Charlene decide to investigate Starke’s death. But the case is as tough as an overworked crust and the Baker Street Bakers are only coming up with scraps. If they don’t pinch the cultured killer soon, Pie Town’s reputation could crumble. 

***

4.5 Stars

This is the fourth book in the Pie Town Mystery series by Kirsten Weiss.

Basic premise: A local professor is found dead after reading poetry at a poetry slam put on at the Pie Town Bakery. As soon as the body was discovered the suspect list just kept growing in leaps and bounds. Val reluctantly puts the Baker Street Bakers back into the mystery solving business, much to Detective Carmichael’s dismay. 

There was all kinds of gooey goodness in this story. The characters were amazing. So fully formed it felt like I was reading about our neighbor’s exploits instead of reading a book. Even the cat had a quirky disposition. 

I have to admit that the mystery was so good that when the killer was finally revealed, I was stunned. I didn’t even have that person on my suspect list. Figures! This series just keeps getting better and better and I look forward to each release as they come out.

If you haven’t read this series, might I suggest you start from the beginning. Let the atmosphere enfold you into the Pie Town goodness. You won’t regret it.


I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) in return for an honest review. I thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me to read this title.