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review 2017-07-27 03:08
Breach of Crust (Charmed Pie Shop, #5)
Breach of Crust - Ellery Adams

Boy has this series gotten 'out there'.  It's almost more fantasy than cozy mystery.


I liked the characters and setting as much as ever, but the plot of this one was just too much for me.  The murder mystery was well plotted, but the whole climax at the end was just too melodramatic and over-the-top; if it had been written to be an urban fantasy, it would have worked much better; as a cozy, it just comes across too cute to take seriously.


I loved the very end though; it was believably sweet.






Pages read:  278

$$: $6.00


(Book's characters have a direct connection to Camelot)

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review 2017-04-12 10:07
Fatal Fortune (Psychic Eye Mystery, #12)
Fatal Fortune: - Victoria Laurie

Not as good as the last one, but a very decent read.


Six months have passed since Abby woke up with the bomb strapped on her chest, and she's enjoying her life being as dull and routine as possible, until she gets a voice mail from her best friend at 3am telling her "It's not what it seems" and asking her to immediately go to their shared office to get and hid a file.  Afterwards, she finds out Candace is wanted for murder - and the entire crime is caught on video.


The rest of the book is Abby's attempts to first find her friend for an explanation and ultimately to hopefully prove her innocence.


There's less sentimentality in this book, but the plotting feels a little nutty.  It's no more nutty than a bomb strapped to your chest, but that had the benefit of suspense... it was written to be a high tension story, while this one is a more traditional mystery.  It was still good though; I was able to read the whole thing in one setting today (an admittedly lazy day) because it was written more than well enough to keep my attention.


I've got one more in my pile, and I might be getting to it sooner rather than later.  It's been fun to be in Abby's world, and I'm not quite tired of it yet.

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review 2017-04-09 11:16
Aunt Dimity and the Buried Treasure (Aunt Dimity, #21)
Aunt Dimity and the Buried Treasure - Nancy Atherton

This is one of those books I read because I've been reading the series from the start and a certain amount of loyalty is involved.   As with a lot of series, it started off strong, but has levelled off over the years to become gentle stories that resemble morality tales.


Lori stumbles across an old piece of jewellery in her attic one day, resulting in a search for the man who gave it to Dimity, back after WWII, while in the village, the good people discover the joys and pitfalls of metal detecting.


Recent books in the series were getting on my nerves because Lori was gullible and tended to jump to the most ridiculous conclusions imaginable, but this time around she was far more competent and rational; there was still a level of anxiety, but it was much more believable.


Atherton has an incredible way of bringing wartime London to life and I think it is this more than anything that keeps me coming back every year for the next book. 

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review 2017-01-08 22:58
By Familiar Means (A Witch's Cat Mystery, #2)
By Familiar Means - Delia James

Not bad, not great.  Nothing new, but pleasantly written with genuinely nice characters.  Annabelle's grandmother is in town and she gets involved in the 'mystery' of course.  She sometimes skirts the bleeding edge of what's fast becoming a 'grandma' trope in cozies: an 80 year old with the body of a 60 year old and the maturity of a 20 year old.  There's a love triangle brewing too - not once has it been articulated, but you just know it's there, lurking.


Annabelle takes on a mural commission and while touring the new premises, finds a secret tunnel with a dead body.  Because it's not really a secret tunnel unless there's a dead body.


The mystery plotting was...ok.  I'm not sure anymore if whodunits are just being poorly plotted and written, or if the new trend is to make it obvious who the bad guys are, but keep the reader guessing as to which bad guy actually did the deed.  If this were real life the culprits would have been labelled inept before page 50.  Even in print, the false leads were weak beyond belief and the arrest made no sense.


But even so, this wasn't an unenjoyable read.  It was light and relaxing; I just won't go crazy for the next one.

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review 2016-07-28 07:56
Take the Monkey and Run (Call of the Wilde, #4)
Take the Monkey and Run - Laura Morrigan

This is one of two series I'd have sworn I would have disliked because as much as I love animals, I don't care for books that overly anthropomorphise them.  The premise of this series is a woman who can telepathically communicate with all animals and uses this gift to solve crimes.


But Morrigan does such a good job with this; if such a gift as this existed, I imagine it would manifest itself similarly to the author's idea of it: images, emotions, and for domesticated animals a limited number of words they've learned associations for. Guard.  Treat. Stay. Outside.


Additionally the characters are great.  Relationships are positive, personalities are interesting.  There's no love triangle, but there is an intriguing man of mystery in the background, where it seems he'll stay.


The mystery in this one was good, but it really skirted a line between mystery and sci-fi.  It isn't, but the ending... well, no spoilers.  But I was rolling my eyes a tiny bit.  Touch over the top.  She also skirts some animal cruelty issues; not enough to be in your face, but enough to be a little confronting.  Thankfully she strikes that delicate balance.


Also, I should just mention: this mystery isn't about a murder (although there's a cold case murder very peripherally connected); it's about a missing person.  I know some people really enjoy mysteries that don't involve murder, so I thought I'd mention it here.


Can't wait for the next one! 

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