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Search tags: Cozy-Mysteries
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review 2020-11-24 02:54
The Devil's Bones (Sarah Booth Delaney, #21)
The Devil's Bones - Carolyn Haines

Not one of the best ones by a long shot.  The story meandered, felt disjointed - something that was not helped by the secondary plot introduction - and the killer was telegraphed from the first scene they were in.

 

Normally, I love this series and I love these characters, but between the meandering and the lack of mystery behind a string of murders, there wasn't much to keep me engaged.  The author also seemed more melancholy and wistful than usual, with less of the humour I enjoy so much.

 

All together, it resulted in a poor showing for book #21.  Hopefully #22 regains the series stride.

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review 2020-11-24 02:20
Howl of Wolves (Sam Clair, #4)
A Howl of Wolves - Judith Flanders

Flanders writes a great mystery, whose main character has a dry wit that I enjoy.

 

Howl of Wolves is centred around a theatre production, which isn't one of my favourite settings, but it worked. I enjoyed watching Sam put facts and observations together without wedging herself in where she didn't belong, or going around the backs of the police.  The murderer might have been several people but wasn't obvious enough to ruin the surprise.

 

I'd like to hope that there will be a fifth book, but it's been awhile since this one was published.  No more Sam and Jake adventures would be a disappointment.

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review 2020-11-13 08:32
Mama Rides Shotgun (Mace Bauer, #2)
Mama Rides Shotgun - Deborah Sharp

Re-read update:  This book did not hold up well on re-read.  I had the same issue with the re-invention of the first book's history, and the rest of it, even though I didn't remember who the murderer was, I found extremely tedious and meandering.

Here's hoping the third book holds up better.

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review 2020-11-11 21:29
Mick Abruzzo: The Second Wire
Mick Abruzzo: The Second Wire - Nancy Martin

At the start of book 10 A Little Night Murder (I think) it's obvious there's some backstory missing; something that was going on between book 9 and 10.  This short story fills in the gaps.  It's not strictly necessary, but for a reader invested in the series, it's satisfying to have.  

 

As a bonus (because not all between novel novellas are equal) this is a very well written, fully formed story about Mick's struggles to get out of the family business and stay legit.  Martin always wrote Mick as a real person, struggling against his upbringing to be better and this story gives the struggle centre stage.  

 

Really well done and reminds me why and how much I miss this series.

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review 2020-11-11 20:45
Mama Does Time (Mace Bauer, #1) Re-read
Mama Does Time - Deborah Sharp

Update for second read:  Holds up to my first review perfectly; 7 years later and I still can't keep Maddie and Marty straight in my head.  Still a very good read.

 

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I put off reading this book for a long time because it just had way too redneck-y a vibe for me to think I'd find it enjoyable. But then I read about the author being a native Floridian (as I am) and I thought, well, I should give this a go, she should be able to do "old Florida" justice with out turning everyone into caricatures.

So I was pleased to find myself thoroughly involved in this book by about 1/3 of the way in. I had to struggle a bit to keep Marty and Maddie straight, but each character very much has their own personality and for the most part, they're colourful and likeable. Of course I love the Old Florida setting. 

The plot was well done; a lot of red herrings and suspects, a lot of clues. Very strong ending.

I'll be ordering the next books in the series, and I'm hoping for some more scenes of the chemistry sort between Carlos and Mace. :)

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