Review: Dying to Cruise by Dawn Brookes

Dying to Cruise

Dawn Brookes

Alex Lee (Narrator)

A Rachel Prince Mystery, Book 4

Kindle Edition, 305 pages
Published August 1st 2019 by Oakwood Publishing
The only thing worse than getting stuck aboard a cruise ship with a murderer, is discovering that your ex is on board…
A ruthless killer intent on revenge. Can Rachel get to the bottom of an intriguing mystery before it’s too late?.

Rachel Prince is drawn to investigate when the body of the leader of a Bucket List tour party is discovered in the library on the first day of her Antipodean cruise. Can this seemingly harmless group of elderly people have a killer among them?

Rachel thinks she is living the dream. Taking a cruise around Australia and New Zealand as a guest lecturer and meeting up again with her best friend, cruise ship nurse, Sarah. The scene is set for the holiday of a lifetime!

Difficulties abound for everyone when an interim chief of security causes countless problems and appears to take an intense dislike of Sarah. Not trusting the new chief to get to the bottom of the murder, Rachel investigates on her own, soon discovering that the dead woman from the Bucket List tour party had been receiving anonymous threatening emails. To make matters infinitely worse, Rachel’s ex turns up on board, and things start to go horribly wrong.

The cruise ship sleuth needs to work fast to find out if one of the gentle elders on the bucket list tour is a murderer while avoiding her ex like the plague.

 

 

 

 

4 Stars

 

Rachel is back at sea for another adventure that could only happen to her in Dying to Cruise.

 

Rachel is aboard the Coral Queen to teach a self defense class and for some fun and relaxation but she has once again found herself in the mindless of a murder.  When Florence, travel director for the Bucket List group, dies suddenly, Rachel finds herself in the thick of it again. With Rachel’s charming nature and humorous cast of friends weave readers with their witty banter and smile worthy antics through the twist and turns of Dying to Cruise.

 

I have enjoyed every story in the Rachel Prince Mysteries Series thus far. Dying to Cruise is a fantastic addition to this fun and entertaining series. Rachel is a top notch character with a lot of drive and will. I love how she has developed over the course of the series.  Ms. Brooke balances the humor and suspense nicely giving read a fun. It makes you think read. Dying to Cruise is a quick paced, keep you guessing, laugh out loud cozy read. Narrator Alex Lee truly brings these amazing characters to life. Giving that extra that makes a good story great.

 

 

Review: Shadow Silence by Yasmine Galenorn

 

 

Shadow Silence

Yasmine Galenorn

Whisper Hollow Series, Book 2

Publisher: Nightqueen Enterprises LLC; 2 edition (January 20, 2020)

 

Whisper Hollow, where spirits walk among the living, and the lake never gives up her dead…

Fifteen years ago, I ran away from Whisper Hollow, Washington, a small town on Crescent Lake in the Olympic Peninsula. But truth is, if you were born here, you can never really leave. I’m Kerris Fellwater, and I’m a spirit shaman. It’s my responsibility to drive the dead back to their graves, because around Whisper Hollow, people-and secrets-don’t always stay buried.

My best friend Peggin finds herself under a curse after she is almost taken by the Lady of the Lake. As Bryan-my guardian and mate-and I work to break the hex, we stumble over a dark and violent mystery from the past. One the Hounds of Cú Chulainn will do anything to stop us from bringing to light.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4 Stars

 

Shadow Silence is an outstanding experience in paranormal romance. Yasmine Galenorn masterfully builds worlds that you can’t help but to get lost in.

 

The second installment of the Whisper Hollow Series continues to entrance readers into a place where anything could be and is lurking.  Ms. Galenorn paints a vivid picture of the danger and magic that lay within Kerris path. I love that Kerris learns as she goes. She’s become so much stronger within a book. She takes her roll on fully and gives herself to her fate. Kerris’ friends are her family and the bonds are deep with her chosen few. Loyal and more powerful than she realizes, Kerris becomes more interesting with each book.

 

Shadow Silence finds Peggin at the fingertips of danger known as the lady of the lake. Shadow spirits all over town and dark magic at play. Kerris learns that sometimes you just have to wait for things to happen before you can do anything about it. The main plot arc continues to thicken, the suspense builds and not everyone is whom they seem to be. And I can see many things that could happen just from the events of Shadow Silence.

 

Ms. Galenorn would building and attention to detail is like none other. Shadow Silence, like most of Ms. Galenorn’s work, is based in mythology, legend and lore with her unique twist that gives the reader a new or different perspective. Shadow Silence is quick moving, dark magical, adventure.

 

 

Review: A View to a Kilt by Kaitlyn Dunnett

A View to a Kilt

Kaitlyn Dunnett

Liss MacMrimmon Mysteries, Book 13

Kindle Edition, 304 pages
Expected publication: January 28th 2020 by Kensington

A series of blizzards have kept tourists away from Moosetookalook, Maine, and shoppers out of Liss MacCrimmon’s Scottish Emporium. But as warmer weather brings promises of tartan sales and new faces, melting snow reveals cold-blooded murder . . .

Liss has suddenly found herself in charge of the March Madness Mud Season Sale, a town-wide celebration created to boost the local economy during the slushy weeks of early spring. With businesses ailing after a rough winter, the pressure is on to make this year’s effort the can’t-miss-event of the season. But before Liss can get her hands dirty, her husband makes a horrifying discovery. There’s a dead man on their property, and he didn’t die of natural causes . . .

Stunned by the murder mystery developing in her own backyard, Liss receives another shock. The victim is identified as Charlie MacCrimmon, an uncle believed to have died eleven years before Liss was born. No one has seen or heard from Charlie since he went off to fight in Vietnam. What secrets could he have been hiding for so many years, and who would want to kill a man long thought to be dead?

Enlisting the help of her family, Liss uncovers more questions than answers as she delves into her uncle’s murky past. One thing is clear—before he met his end, Uncle Charlie was desperately trying to warn her about something sinister. And unless Liss can soon track down a maniacal criminal as elusive as the Loch Ness Monster, she just might be the next MacCrimmon to disappear . . .

 

 

 

3.5 Stars

 

Liss seems to find herself tangled into trouble whether she is trying or not. She’s a fun and strong woman that has a caring streak that runs deep. Lover of cats and amateur sleuth, she will make you laugh while getting the information she wants.  She’s a small town girl will a mind that thinks outside the box. A wonderful main character.

 

A View to a Kilt was a fun cozy read. Ms. Dunnett keeps the reader going with a well developed, keep you thinking plot.  You can tell this was part of a long going series, however new readers like myself are easily about to jump right in and not feel lost. I love when the town or setting of the book is almost like a character. Moosetookalook is an interesting town with personality and flair.  The residents are even more so. Small towns are always full of secrets and sometimes they end up in your own backyard. The backyard is Liss’ this time and hits close to home. From the quaintness of the town, to the colorful personalities of the people within it, to a plot that spins an excellent tale, Ms. Dunnett’s A View to a Kilt was a one sit read for me.

 

 

 

Review: Mermaid Inn by Jenny Holiday

Mermaid Inn

Jenny Holiday

Matchmaker Bay Series, Book 1

Mass Market Paperback, 480 pages
Expected publication: January 28th 2020 by Forever

Escape to Matchmaker Bay in this hilarious and heartwarming second chance romance from the USA Today bestselling “master of witty banter” (Entertainment Weekly).

Eve Abbott has a problem-actually, make that a lot of problems. And they’re all going to get worse the moment her toes hit the sand in Matchmaker Bay. Once a blissful summer escape, now the tiny town just reminds Eve of loss. Inheriting her aunt’s beloved Mermaid Inn is the only reason Eve is coming back. She’s definitely not ready to handle nosy neighbors, extensive renovations, or the discovery that a certain heartbreaker still lives down the street…

Police Chief Sawyer Collins always does the right thing, even when it costs him everything. Like Evie. He’s spent the past ten years trying to forget her–to forget how right she felt in his arms, to forget the pain in her eyes the day she left. The last thing he expects is to see her back in town or to find that the spark between them is as strong as ever. Sawyer knows this is his only chance to prove that his feelings have always been real… before Eve turns tail and leaves for good.

Includes the bonus novella Meant to Be by Alison Bliss!

 

 

 

4 Stars

Librarian Eve Abbott is determined and a bit angry. Upon inheriting her aunt’s home all those things she left in Matchmaker Bay are brought to the surface putting her determination to sell the house in high gear. Due to a stipulation in the will, Eve now finds herself stuck in the last place she what’s to be. In the proximity of the last person she wants to be around in a town full of meddling people who think it’s their job to match make.

 

Mermaid Inn is a sweet second chance romance. Eve was an amazing heroine. Life through her A curveball and she went with it. Her character develops so much from the beginning to the end of the book it was like watching a new flower blossom. I love that she decided to take her fears head-on, push through the bad parts, and was able to overcome. Eve pushed herself on many levels throughout this book and I think that’s part of why I enjoyed her so much. Sawyer was noble in his thoughts but his execution pretty much sucked. I love the reasons he did what he did but like a man if they would just learn to talk things would be different.  I also enjoyed the tenderness that he had for Eve. They were truly a couple that was meant to be.

 

A charming lakeside town in Canada sets the stage for a fun and heartwarming second chance at love in Mermaid Inn.  Eve and Sawyer take a slow dance around the attraction and chemistry they share. They are truly a wonderful couple together. The lake scenes with Sawyer and Eve are some of my favorites of the book. They show trust and caring along with determination and Hope. Jenny Holiday spin a wonderful tale of second chance love.

 

 

Review: Four Money by Jayne Rylon

 

Four Money

Jayne Rylon

Ever and Always Duet, Book 1

Kindle Edition, 167 pages
Expected publication: January 28th 2020 by Happy Endings Publishing

 

Would it be the worst thing in the world to accept an obscene amount of money in exchange for living with a guy and a couple of his best friends for three months?

Seems like a no brainer. But what if it means sharing their beds, too?

Let’s be honest, Holly would probably do that for free considering how hot, successful, and fun to be around they are.
Besides, if she helps Trent cash in on his inheritance—with a few naughty strings attached—she could pay for the life-saving surgery her mother’s insurance company has denied.

The one thing she can’t afford is falling in love when the man she’s obsessed with plans to ditch her after their ninety days are over.

Four Money is book one of the Ever & Always duet. Holly, Trent, Lorenzo, and Owen’s story will conclude in Four Love.

 

 

 

 

 

3.5 Stars

Ms. Rylon hit the reader hard and fast with Four Money.

What would you do for the right amount of money?

Holly is about to her wits end trying to figure a way to pay medical expenses for her mom. Trent is a professional gambler trying to stack the chips to fund the startup for his company. Lorenzo and Owen are Trent’s closest friends, roommates and his poly partners.

Holly is a force for sure, pure willpower and guts with such a caring nature. Trent is smart and funny. I truly enjoyed his personality and passion. We truly only just start to get to know Lorenzo and Owen in Four Money, however their charisma shines through.Opportunity knocked and Trent and Holly answered not know the surprise that was about to become their lives.

Four Money packs a punch from beginning to end. Wow. Well written characters, a super fast paced story and plot that will knock you down. Four Money is a chance on life in more ways than one. Reviewer Warring: This book is a Duet and that is stated before I started reading. Ms. Rylon hits us with quite the cliffhanger that I never saw coming. If you are not a fan of cliffhangers, highly recommend that you wait until Four Love release and read them back to back.

 

Review: Wild Side by Mari Carr

Wild Side

Mari Carr

Wilder Irish Series, Book 9

Kindle Edition, 194 pages

Expected publication: January 28th 2020

 

No strings attached? Wrong. So wrong.

Layla moved to Baltimore in search of a fresh start. After too many years in a lackluster relationship, she’s ready to embrace her wild side. Casual is her new middle name and the last thing she wants or needs is a serious relationship.

Finn and his best friend, Miguel are ALL IN on showing Layla a good time. After all, neither one of them is looking for love either. Or so they think.

Until Finn falls for Layla and Miguel falls for Finn and Layla falls for…both men. Then it’s a wild side freefall as the three lovers try to make one plus one plus one equal the perfect match.

 

 

 

 4.5 stars

 

Wild Side is a super hot, yet tender story of moving past being friends and giving into the impulses that lovers crave.  Mari Carr blends passion and a bit of suspense give the reader one delightful read.

 

Finn is finally seeing that the Collins curse is a gift and not a burden.  He sees what his family has and wants this in his life. Layla has returned to Baltimore to restart life after the ending of a relationship and to be away from the thumb of her protecting brothers. She wants a wild adventure, to explore her own wild side. Miguel had a rough start but has become an amazing man. Family to him is more than blood. Miguel wants what Finn’s family has shown him.

 

Wow!  Talk about a friends to lovers story. Wild Side is so many good thing wrapped in a beautiful package. Friendship and family, love and adventure, truth and emotions, honestly and self discovery.  When desired emotions become tangled within friendship it can either make or break. Finn like Layla, Miguel like Layla and Miguel liked Finn. What they didn’t see coming was the connection the three of them shared together. They gave into the chemistry, attraction and impulse to be something more. Mari Carr more than made the story about love. Sexual orientation didn’t matter it was about their emotions and feelings for each other acting on them and figuring out where they stood with each other. Not only was this an intensely hot, toe curling story it was very endearing and heartwarming as well. It was about love.

 

Wild Side is a great addition to the Wilder Irish, Collins family series.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Review: Forever Strong by Piper J. Drake

 

Forever Strong

Piper J. Drake

True Heroes Series, Book 6

Paperback, 304 pages
Expected publication: January 28th 2020 by Forever

 

On the beautiful Hawaiian Islands, not all is paradise in this high-stakes, action-packed romantic suspense.

He’ll risk his life for her . . . but will he risk his heart?
Jiang Ying Yue assumed her kidnapping was random, that she was in the wrong place at the wrong time. After all, who would want to harm her? But then her rescuer—a charismatic former soldier who takes her breath away—uncovers a traitor in her father’s organization. Now, Ying Yue realizes that she’s become a pawn in a dangerous game, and her kidnapper won’t be satisfied until she disappears for good.

Zu Anyanwu’s work with Search and Protect and his canine partner Buck have always been his first priority . . . until he’s tasked with keeping Ying Yue safe. To him, the brave and resilient investment expert is more than just another client. But with danger closing in, Zu can’t let his emotions get in the way of the most important job he’s ever had—protecting the woman he loves.

 

 

 

 

 

 

4.5 Stars

 

Ying Yue is a woman I would want as my friend. Kind, honest, willing and able. She will go above and beyond for those she cares for and will not just take an answer at face value. Ying Yue is not afraid to ask questions. Wisdom and strength are come in layers for this beautiful woman. For a woman who has been through one of the most terrifying things you could possibly imagine, she knows when to keep her witts and knows when it’s safe to break down.

 

Zu Anyanwu is a man of few words and a lot of purpose. Owner and founder of Search and Protect, Zu takes pride in his job and his ability to focus. Along with his canine partner, Buck, they put their lives on the line for the safety of others. Zu is a bit of a mystery man, purposefully to keep his head in the game at all times.

 

Piper J. Drake starts Forever Strong with a blaze of action that continues until the very last pages. Ying Yue and Zu make on fine pair. From the moment of meeting, in the most terrifying of times, a connection sparked and became something deeper in a blink of an eye. Trust was gained and gave out of fear and need, that need became a beautiful bond formed with life shattering chaos coming from all sides. Zu and Ying Yue’s  passion is tender, deep and intimate giving a softness to the harsh reality around them. Ms. Drake flawlessly combined a fast paced, high action, dangerous tale with amazing characters and a tender romance leaving this reader completely satisfied.

 

Review: The Book Of Candlelight by Ellery Adams

The Book Of Candle Light

Ellery Adams

Secret, Book, & Scone Society Series, Book 3

Hardcover, 224 pages
Expected publication: January 28th 2020 by Kensington

In the new Secret, Book, and Scone Society novel from New York Times bestselling author Ellery Adams, the rain in Miracle Springs, North Carolina, has been relentless—and a flood of trouble is about to be unleashed . . .

As the owner of Miracle Books, Nora Pennington figures all the wet weather this spring is at least good for business. The local inns are packed with stranded travelers, and among them Nora finds both new customers and a new friend, the sixtysomething Sheldon, who starts helping out at the store.

Since a little rain never hurt anyone, Nora rides her bike over to the flea market one sodden day and buys a bowl from Danny, a Cherokee potter. It’ll make a great present for Nora’s EMT boyfriend, but the next day, a little rain turns into a lot of rain, and the Miracle River overflows it banks. Amid the wreckage of a collapsed footbridge, a body lies within the churning water.

Nora and the sheriff both doubt the ruling of accidental drowning, and Nora decides it’s time for the Secret, Book, and Scone Society to spring into action. When another body turns up, it becomes clearer that Danny’s death can’t be blamed on a natural disaster. A crucial clue may lie within the stone walls of the Inn of Mist and Roses: a diary, over a century old and spattered with candle wax, that leads Nora and her friends through a maze of intrigue—and onto the trail of a murderer . . .

 

 

 

3.5 Stars

 

The Book of Candlelight is a wonderfully written cozy mystery with a big helping of romance add in.

 

Nora Pennington, owner of Miracle Books, has made a few mistakes of which she is not proud of, yet owns up to. She is a book whisperer. Her able to connect a person with a book of their liking is a very nice trait to have. Nora is complex in all the right ways. Learning from her mistakes and moving on with life through new friendships with other holding secrets of their own and her love of pastries and books.

 

When the death of a local potter during a monstrous storm goes from appearing to be an accident, Nora has other thoughts. With her eye for detail, a newcomer that makes fabulous Cuban coffee and her friends in the Secret, Book and Scone club, Nora takes a few steps into the past to figure out what is happening with someone’s future.

 

The Book of Candlelight is a highly enjoyable mix of romance and cozy mystery. The characters are Thoroughly developed and you can tell the author spent a lot of time and effort on all things pertaining to those characters. The plot is solid and kept the story moving along nicely. I loved the atmosphere of Miracle Books.  The author has easily transported the reader into the pages of The Book of Candlelight giving them a cozy place to settle and take it all in. I enjoyed getting to know and see Nora in action. Ellery Adams made a fan of this reader in one book.

Review: Taken With You by Carrie Ann Ryan

Taken With You

Carrie Ann Ryan

Fractured Connections Series, Book 4

1001 Dark Nights

Kindle Edition, 118 pages
Expected publication: January 28th 2020 by Evil Eye Concepts, Incorporated

It all started at a wedding. Beckham didn’t mean to dance with Meadow. And he really didn’t mean to kiss her. But now, she’s the only thing on his mind. And when it all comes down to it, she’s the only person he can’t have.

He’ll just have to stay away from her, no matter how hard they’re pulled together.

Running away from her friend’s wedding isn’t the best way to keep the gossip at bay. But falling for the mysterious and gorgeous bartender at her friends’ bar will only make it worse. Beckham has his secrets, and she refuses to pry.

Once burned, twice kicked down, and never allowed to get up again. Yet taking a chance with him might be the only choice she has. And the only one she wants.

 

 

 

 

 

4.5 Stars

 

Meadow and Beckham both have a dark past that intertwined them together but yet only one of them knows. Both have left behind a life and a version of themselves that they are not proud of but have learned from to be the people they are now. Both have found a place where the meaning of friendship and family mean something very different than they are used to.

Both are very guarded of themselves yet trying to just live life. Beckham and Meadow are both broken and together they find a way to heal.  They are sweet and passionate separately and together they are explosive.

 

Taken With You is a fantastic quick read in the Fractured Connections Series. Meadow and Beckham will make your heart pitter patter while catching up with characters from the previous books in the series.

 

Review: Almost Just Friends by Jill Shalvis

Almost Just Friends

Jill Shalvis

Wildstone Series, Book 4

Paperback, 384 pages
Expected publication: January 21st 2020 by William Morrow Paperbacks

New York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis returns to Wildstone with the touching story of finding your place in the world—and the people who make it home.

Piper Manning’s about as tough as they come, she’s had to be. She raised her siblings and they’ve thankfully flown the coop. All she has to do is finish fixing up the lake house her grandparents left her, sell it, and then she’s free.

When a massive storm hits, she runs into a tall, dark and brooding stranger, Camden Reid. There’s a spark there, one that shocks her. Surprising her further, her sister and brother return, each of them holding their own secrets. The smart move would be for Piper to ignore them all but Cam unleashes emotions deep inside of her that she can’t deny, making her yearn for something she doesn’t understand. And her siblings…well, they need each other.

Only when the secrets come out, it changes everything Piper thinks she knows about her family, herself…and Cam. Can she find a way to outrun the demons? The answer is closer than she thinks—just as the new life she craves may have already begun.

 

 

4.5 Stars

 

Almost Just Friends is almost too real. Heart and home, trust and sacrifice, hurt and healing wrapped in a tale family and love.

Piper thinks she got herself on the right track. She has a game plan, lots of lists and more than enough will to accomplish the goals she sets. Piper is as fierce and tenacious as they come. Growing up fast, caring for her siblings and trying to make the best of what they had, has given Piper a hard edge, but the woman has a heart like no other. She is not a stranger to sacrifice, and she would sacrifice over and over again for those she loves.

In blows a storm that lights a spark with a stranger, carrying her siblings home and a bucket full of secrets to make Piper’s head spin. Just wanting a new life became something altogether different than what she want. But needed more than she knew. With a handsome Cam knocking on her romance door, her siblings and their respective secrets eating at her, Piper’s new life hands already began.

Almost Just Friends is all about family, those born to you and those you choose to bring in. Hot messes and all. Life is not always easy but those around you make it a lot better. Ms. Shalvis twisted wit and humor with emotion and life’s choices that make people people discover who they are and whom they want to be. Piper and Cam captivate reader with the depth at which they will go and of just who they are. A story you truly don’t want to miss.