Daily Archives: December 11, 2016

Triple Time With 2017 Anticipation by Holstine, Love, and Zgorski

While most bloggers are discussing their favorite books of 2016 – and certainly we are not immune to doing that as well – we, Kristopher, Lesa, and Dru Ann have decided to focus our attention on the future. Our most recent Triple Post below will share with our followers some of the books we are most looking forward to in the coming months. By traveling to each of our three blogs, readers will discover nine new titles to add to their ever-growing to-be-read mountains.

Not wanting to lose sight of the holiday season, we have also each included a seasonally-themed book from the past that we think readers might enjoy delving into as the hustle and bustle of the month ahead begins.

But most of all, we just want to thank you for reading our blogs and hope that the books we have suggested over the past year have helped to add enjoyment to your day-to-day lives. If you have suggestions for Triple Post themes for 2017, do let us know.

book-symbol

I met the author at the BOLO Soiree in New Orleans at 2016 Bouchercon.  We chatted briefing and when Jill told me the premise of her book, I knew then, that I was eager to read the first book in her “Riley Ellison”  debut series from Prospect Park Books coming April 11, 2017.

The Good Byline by Jill Orr

orr

Meet Riley Ellison, a smart, quirky, young library assistant who’s become known in her hometown of Tuttle Corner, Virginia, as Riley Bless-Her-Heart. Ever since her beloved granddaddy died and her longtime boyfriend broke up with her, Riley has been withdrawing from life. In an effort to rejoin the living, she signs up for an online dating service and tries to reconnect with her childhood best friend, Jordan James, a reporter at the Tuttle Times. But when she learns that Jordan committed suicide, Riley is shaken to the core.

Riley agrees to write Jordan’s obituary as a way to learn more about why a young woman with so much to live for would suddenly opt out. Jordan’s co-worker, a paranoid reporter with a penchant for conspiracy theories, convinces Riley that Jordan’s death was no suicide. He leads her down a dangerous path toward organized crime, secret lovers, and suspicious taco trucks.

Riley’s serpentine hunt for the truth eventually intersects with her emerging love life, and she makes a discovery that puts everything Riley holds dear—her job, the people she loves, and even her life—in danger. Will writing this obituary be the death of her?


Just to whet your appetite for more, one of the books on Kristopher’s list is . . .

In Farleigh Field by Rhys Bowen (March 1, 2017)

bowen

Rhys Bowen has been entertaining readers with historical stories for quite some time – both with her cozy Her Royal Spyness series and the more serious, but also rather cozy Molly Murphy mysteries. Now she is writing a historical thriller set during World War Two. Set in an ancestral home in England, In Farleigh Field sounds like a blend of Downton Abbey and The Bletchley Circle.


and on Lesa’s list is. . .

Desert Vengeance by Betty Webb
webb

Do you know Lena Jones, the hard-nosed Scottsdale, Arizona private investigator? In the course of Betty Webb’s series, we’ve learned bits and pieces about Lena, who only vaguely remembers her childhood before she ended up in the foster system. It was a system that provided more nightmares for the young girl, as we learn in the ninth book in the series, Desert Vengeance.

Lena is waiting at the prison when one of her foster fathers, Brian Wycoff, is released from prison. He raped her when she was only nine, and he served twenty-five years for the abuse of other children in his care. Now, the former policewoman turned private investigator is stalking the man, reminding him and his wife of their actions. But, Wycoff’s wife is murdered. And, when Wycoff himself ends up dead, Lena tops the suspect list. When another woman is arrested, Lena agrees to investigate on her behalf. It’s a case that will test Lena’s beliefs, and take her one step closer to understanding her own story. Desert Vengeance is scheduled for a February release.


And the holiday-themed book I chose to share with my readers is. . . Rituals of the Season by Margaret Maron. This is one of my favorite book in this charmingly terrific series where Deborah Knott finally marries the man of her dreams.

maron

Judge Deborah Knott has a severe case of anxiety in the final days before her late December nuptials to Deputy Sheriff Dwight Bryant. Her calendar is booked solid with receptions and parties, last-minute details, and family obligations. There is absolutely no way she can fit a homicide case into her schedule.

Nevertheless, when a friend and colleague is shot on the icy drive home and Dwight becomes the lead detective on the case, Deborah is immediately involved. Issues of ethics and confidentiality suddenly face her . . . right on the next pillow.

Renovations to the house where the newlyweds will live are shockingly behind schedule—and, as the clock ticks down, Deborah has serious doubts her rowdy brothers will finish the new construction in time. Meanwhile, her sisters-in-law are giving her etiquette advice, her maid of honor is so pregnant she may deliver during the ceremony, and somehow, Deborah must find a way to connect with her way young stepson-to-be.

And as if things are not already hectic enough, two law students turn up and demand that she help them stop the execution of an innocent woman—one who is scheduled to die in less than a month.

Now Deborah is in danger of losing sight of what really matters—the big, brown-eyed man who’s about to say “I do.” But just when she thinks she’s finally got order in the court and in her life, fate has one more pulse-pounding surprise in store . . .


Thanks again for stopping by my blog today. Please visit the other two blogs, BOLO Book and Lesa’s Book Critiques, to see what other books we are anticipating in 2017.

My Musing ~ Footprints to Murder by Marcia Talley

Footprints to Murder by Marcia Talley is the 15th book in the “Hannah Ives” mystery series. Publisher: Severn House Publishers, December 2016

footprints-to-murderWhen a man is murdered in the woods and the main suspect appears to be a giant ape, Hannah steps in to solve the mystery. Does Bigfoot really exist?

Hannah is delighted to reconnect with her former roommate, Susan Lockley, owner of Scarborough Fairs, at a college reunion, and agrees to step in when Susan’s assistant drops out of managing the Sasquatch Sesquicentennial in Granite Falls, Oregon. But when Martin Radcliffe, a professional debunker, is found murdered, surrounded by gigantic footprints, the culprit appears, or was meant to appear, obvious: Bigfoot.

Fantasy or fact? As the conference disintegrates into a chaos of finger pointing, mistrust and fear, it falls to Hannah to restore order. Working closely with Jake, a retired policeman and his K-9, Harley, Hannah hastens to stave off the vigilantes and solve the crime before Bigfoot, if he exists, comes one step closer to extinction.

This is my first Hannah book and I wondered why it took me so long to start this series. This well-written light drama pulled me in immediately keeping me engaged in all that was happening. When Hannah becomes embroiled in another murder mystery, she has to pick through truths and untruths in order to solve this puzzling whodunit where suspects are aplenty. I like the way the narrative lent itself to the telling of this tale as the path the players took kept the story moving at a good pace with some twists and turns that was staged perfectly and led to the killer’s identity and capture. I enjoyed this book and I look forward to reading more of Hannah’s adventures.

FTC Full Disclosure – I received a digital ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley.

My Musing ~ Pot Luck by Kendel Lynn

Pot Luck by Kendel Lynn is the fourth book in the “Elliott Lisbon” humorous mystery serious. Publisher: Henery Press, December 13, 2016

pot-luckGOING FOR THE GOLD. . .

It’s time for the Irish Spring at the Ballantyne Foundation, and charity director/PI-in-training Elliott Lisbon kicks off the annual Pot of Gold Cook-Off in shamrock style. Twenty chefs compete for the corned beef and cabbage crown but only one can win the title. The odds improve when one chef goes missing. . .until Elli finds the Ballantyne’s own Chef Carmichael standing over the body with a knife.

With pug puppies, Colonel Mustard and Mrs. White, by her side, Elli searches both sides of coastal living for a clue to the killer. From million dollar condos to a run-down trailer park, the evidence pits her against sexy Nick Ransom, and the case gets hotter than a handful of peppercorns. But despite a confession and cooperative suspect, she knows something about the case smells funny—and it has nothing to do with the cook-off.

The luck of the Irish is nowhere in sight, but if Elli can’t crack this one open, Chef’s goose will get cooked for good.

This is one of those series that I love revisiting when a new book comes around. When a friend is murder and the primary suspect claims to have committed the crime and you don’t believe him, what else are you to do but investigate to find the true killer and of course add investigative hours towards your PI license? And that is where this engaging story began and kept me entertained as the author did a great job in setting the stage for a well written mystery complete with several suspects, a handsome lieutenant and two precocious little pugs. The narrative kept me in tuned with all that was happening from trailer parks, to golf courses, to the Big House and a few surprising twists that resulted in the apprehension of the perpetrator. I like that all the main characters played a pivotal roles that enhanced the telling of this tale. Elli is one of my favorite characters and I love her strong sense of being, her spunkiness and her determination to do what needs to be done. Boasting an eclectic cast of characters, clever and enticing dialogue and the perfect backdrop of the Ballantyne estate and Sea Pine Island, this is one of the best books in this delightfully captivating series.

FTC Full Disclosure – I received an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) book from the author.

My Musing ~ Forgotten City by Carrie Smith

Forgotten City by Carrie Smith is the second book in the “Claire Codella” mystery series. Publisher: Crooked Lane Books, December 13, 2016

forgotten-cityNYPD Detective Claire Codella is chomping at the bit for a new case. Lieutenant McGowan is determined to keep her out of the news, but she’s about to be back in the public eye in a big way.

Broadway legend Lucy Merchant has tragically succumbed to early onset Alzheimer’s. At age fifty-six, she’s tucked away in the dementia care unit of the ultra-exclusive Manhattan care facility Park Manor. When she falls asleep and doesn’t wake up, her billionaire husband is ready for the funeral, but her daughter demands an investigation.

Only three months back on the job after cancer treatment, Codella finds herself at the center of a high profile case nearly everyone–especially her lieutenant–wants to shut down. But the forensic evidence raises alarming questions and Codella needs answers. To find them, she will have to crack the defenses of slippery administrators, frightened caregivers, and unobliging family members, all while unlocking some of her own dark memories.

Forgotten City, Carrie Smith’s gripping follow-up to Silent City, pits the unrelenting detective against a cast of diverse New Yorkers driven by their desires and ambitions and haunted by their pasts. But can she piece together the truth before the murderer kills again?

This is the second book in the series and I loved it. This is a well-written drama and I like the ease in which it flowed from chapter to chapter. The action was non-stop and the narrative pulled me in immediately, quickly becoming a page turner. The multi-plot mystery was executed in a way to keep me intrigued as to what was happening with this eclectic cast of characters. From the initial death, to hint of murder to the husband’s reaction to caretaker’s angst and to the others who all played a pivotal role in the conclusion to this story. I love Claire’s spunk and determination to face the world and her superior, who is a jerk. The author did a great job in casting culpability towards those involved in the homicide and it was those sneaky little surprising twists that ratcheted this riveting tale up a notch or two. In addition to a great cast, the dialogue was engaging and of course it has the perfect backdrop of New York City. I thought the first book in the series was great, but this one outshines it by a mile. I’m so happy that there is a third book on the horizon and I can’t wait to read the next book in this terrific series.

FTC Full Disclosure – I received an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) from the author.

My Musing ~ The Reek of Red Herrings by Catriona McPherson

The Reek of Red Herrings by Catriona McPherson is the fifth book in the “Dandy Gilver” historical mystery series. Publisher: Minotaur Books, December 13, 2016.  Note: Overall, there are 11 books in the “Dandy Gilver” series published in the U.K.

The Reek of Red HerringsOn the rain-drenched, wave-lashed, wind-battered Banffshire coast, tiny fishing villages perch on ledges that would make a seagull think twice, and crumbly mansions cling to crumblier cliff tops while, out in the bay, the herring drifters brave the storms to catch their silver darlings. It’s nowhere for a child of gentle Northamptonshire to spend Christmas.

But when odd things start to turn up in barrels of fish―with a strong whiff of murder most foul―that’s exactly where Dandy Gilver finds herself. Enlisted to investigate, she and her trusty cohort, Alec Osborne, are soon swept up in the fisherfolks’ wedding season as well as the mystery. Between age-old traditions and brand-new horrors, Dandy must think the unthinkable to solve her grisliest case yet.

I love how this book was set-up to keep me engaged in all facets of this intriguing drama. The multi-plot storyline led me on various deadly encounters within the narrative that was visually descriptive. At times I stumbled over the language, but it added to my understanding of what was going on and by the end, it felt comfortable. The mystery was well-planned with twists and turns that captured the essence of the participants and each move taken by Dandy and Alec took us closer to our quarry. Catriona writes with great aplomb bringing a vivid interpretation of 1920s Scotland that enriched the presentation of this solid whodunit. This was an enjoyable read with a satisfying outcome.

FTC Full Disclosure – I received an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) from the author.