Daily Archives: December 25, 2016

My Musing ~ Spouse on Haunted Hill by E.J. Copperman

Spouse on Haunted Hill by E.J. Copperman is the 8th book in the “Haunted Guesthouse” mystery series. Publisher: Penguin Random House, December 2016

spouse-on-haunted-hillAlison’s shady ex needs to use her haunted guesthouse as a hideout in the latest from the national bestselling author of Ghost in the Wind.

Where Alison Kerby’s ex-husband goes, trouble follows. This time, unfortunately, he’s brought that trouble right to her doorstep. On the run from a business deal gone bad, Steven, aka “the Swine,” owes some scary people a staggering sum of money. No need to panic, though. He has a plan: Sell Alison’s Jersey Shore guesthouse to pay them off.

Before Alison has a chance to read Steven the riot act, he disappears—after a mysterious man trailing him ends up full of bullet holes. Now the police are next to darken her doorway. For all his faults, Steven is still the father of Alison’s daughter, so with the help of ghosts Maxie and Paul, Alison sets out to find her ex and clear him of the murder. But if the bad guys get to him first, he may not have a ghost of a chance…

This is the best book in this delightfully endearing series. Nothing good happens when The Swine arrives at the airport with Melissa and what follows is an adventure populated with gangsters that darkens the doorstop of Alison’s guesthouse. The author did a great job in setting this well-written mystery with multiple plot that cascaded into a series of escapades that brings out the best in all the characters, especially our heroine. The suspect list was small, but I love that surprising twist that the author put in place and that truly enhance the telling of the story. Everyone played a pivotal role in the narrative and I liked how this book ended with new adventures awaiting the gang. I’m so happy there will be at least two more books in this excellent series.

My Musing ~ Iced Under by Barbara Ross

Iced Under by Barbara Ross is the fifth book in the “Maine Clambake” mystery series. Publisher: Kensington, December 27, 2016

iced-underThe snow is deep in Maine’s Busman’s Harbor and the mighty rivers are covered in ice. Snowden Family Clambake Company proprietor Julia Snowden and her mother, Jacqueline, are hunkered down for the winter when a mysterious package arrives—heating up February with an unexpected case of murder . . .

Inside the mystery package is an enormous black diamond necklace that once belonged to Julia’s great-grandmother and disappeared in the 1920s. Who could have sent it—and why? Julia’s search for clues takes her on a perilous journey through her mother’s troubled family history, from a squabble over the family fortune in “frozen water” to the recent unexplained death of Jacqueline’s long-lost cousin Hugh—who’d been missing and presumed drowned for more than forty years. To protect her mother’s inheritance, Julia must fend off a small army of feuding relatives, solve the mystery surrounding Hugh’s demise, and get back home before the next blizzard buries them all . . .

Love, love, love this book. Everything about this book garnered my attention from the moment Julia learned about the necklace and her mother’s family history. To bring closure to the story, Julia traveled to Boston only to find herself yet involved in another murder investigation, and this time the suspects are her long-lost relatives. This brilliantly executed drama was staged perfectly and the narrative put me in the middle of all the action. The mystery kept me intrigued in all that was happening with the cast, from the death of cousin Hugh, to who sent the package, to who was trying to put the kibosh on family members and to why. I liked that with each turn of a chapter, I got to know more about the Morrows and watch the family dynamics play out as their exploits led to the person responsible. This is all happening as back home, the family is awaiting an arrival. The ending was priceless, leaving me with tears in my eyes and a warm-felt heart. With a great cast of characters and engaging conversation, this is the best book in this terrific series and I can’t wait for the next book with Julia and her friends.

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

My Musing ~ Stalked by Elizabeth by Elizabeth Heiter

Stalked by Elizabeth by Elizabeth Heiter is the fourth book in the “Profiler” series. Publisher: MIRA, December 27,  2016

stalkedIf you’re reading this, I’m already dead. . .
That’s the note seventeen-year-old Haley Cooke leaves behind when she disappears from inside her high school. FBI profiler Evelyn Baine is called in to figure out who had reason to hurt her. On the surface, the popular cheerleader has no enemies, but as Evelyn digs deeper, she discovers that everyone close to Haley has something to hide. Everyone from estranged parents, to an older boyfriend with questionable connections, to a best friend who envies Haley’s life.

Secrets can be deadly. . .
One of those secrets may have gotten Haley killed. If she’s still alive, Evelyn knows that the more the investigation ramps up, the more pressure they could be putting on Haley’s kidnapper to make her disappear for good. It’s also possible the teenager isn’t in danger at all, but has skillfully manipulated everyone and staged her own disappearance. Only one thing is certain: uncovering Haley’s fate could be dangerous—even deadly—to Evelyn herself.

From beginning to end, the fast-paced and frenzied action never stopped and I was rewarded with a solid plot with plenty of twists and turns to keep me engrossed all that was happening within the pages. With the intensity of this multi-plot tale moving at a good pace, it was hard to put this book down, quickly becoming a page turner. The narrative was explicitly detailed giving me enough supposition to see into the role that Evelyn and the other cast were playing that set the tone of this well-written drama. The author did a great job in telling this story and the more I read, the more I came to understand what Evelyn and Kyle do, and how it related to their daily life as well. I also liked watching both these characters grow into their own. This was an enjoyable read and I look forward to more adventures with Evelyn, Kyle and their friends.

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