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Search tags: Mysteries
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review 2018-11-19 00:11
Santa Puppy
Santa Puppy - Lynn Cahoon

So many things wrong. A dog is in the pound because his owner had died and no one had removed the old collar, no one found the key to the lockbox until Jill and her family and friends show up to wash and care for the dogs. Also, when they found the key they decided that the money found in the box of the homeless man who had owned the dog should go to the love of his life, Lizzie. Without a will, the money would go to the state until they found a next of kin. Other than that, I did enjoy the story and the "mystery" of finding the elusive Lizzy and trying to convince her to take the dog. 

 

 

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review 2018-11-17 13:24
Tea Cups and Carnage
Tea Cups and Carnage - Lynn Cahoon

I found out that this was the middle of the series, rather than the first, but it didn't seem to harm the telling of the story and I did enjoy the story. 

 

A new person has moved to South Cove and she wants to open a Tea Store, she feels that the best thing in the world is sitting down with friends on an afternoon and enjoying a nice tea. Nell, who helps other store owners by selling some of their things in her store (tea from the new store, coffee to the local cafe, etc) is making friends with her new neighbor. She is also helping to raise money for the library so they can continue to provide services to the community, especially the children. She and her aunt, Jackie, and employee, Sasha, are working on an event to help the library. They are also working on the festival that is bringing in tourists to the town. All of this activity and suddenly, Kathi's sister appears and she is looking for work. She is also trying to get her sister to come back to Texas. Two motorcycle riders are also in town causing trouble, they are nearly hitting people with their bikes, riding where they are legally not allowed and harming people who get too close (Aunt Jackie getting knocked off her feet). All this is just too much for Nell, but she feels she needs to find out who killed one of the bikers and left him for dead. 

 

I really enjoyed this story and it prompted me to try and read others from the series in whatever order I am able to obtain the stories. 

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review 2018-11-17 13:11
A Deadly Brew
A Deadly Brew (A Tourist Trap Mystery) - Lynn Cahoon

Nell and Greg and their friends all go on an overnight double date (or could it be considered a triple date) to a local house that is considered haunted. The woman who had owned the house disappeared and they want to find out through ghost hunting and ouji boards and other things what may have happened to the woman, before the house is torn down and everything is lost. After the first night, Nell wakes up very cold from a dream she had and Esmerelda thinks she might be sensitive and the search for clues starts in earnest. 

 

I really enjoyed this story. It only had a few people and looked at an old mystery and had some ghostly happenings. It was also quick and easy to listen to and only needed about 2 hours of my day. 

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review 2018-11-16 19:40
24 Festive Tasks: Doors 3, 21 and 24 - Books for Melbourne Cup Day, Kwanzaa and Epiphany
Field of Thirteen - Dick Francis
The Guards - Ken Bruen,Gerry O'Brien
The Clock Strikes Twelve - Diana Bishop,Patricia Wentworth


Dick Francis: Field of Thirteen

I've owned this collection of short stories since forever and decided our Melbourne Cup Day book task was the perfect occation so pull it out and finally read it.  Candidly, I'm not sure why Dick Francis didn't write more short stories: both his style of writing and his plot construction lent themselves perfectly to the short form, and I tend to view even some of his novels as short story constructs extended to novel length rather than books conceived as novels in the first place (even though they probably were).  Be that as it may, this is a very enjoyable collection featuring some of Francis's best writing, set in the world of racehorse breeding (and stealing and betting), and against the great race events of Britain and the U.S., from the Grand National, Ascot, Sandown Park, the Marlborough Racing Club Gallops, Cheltenham and Stratford to the Kentucky Derby, plus the odd imaginary racetrack (unfortunately, not also the Melbourne Cup).  Not all of the mysteries involve a death, and not all the deaths that occur are caused intentionally -- word to the wise, however, steeplechase racing is a hazardous sport for humans and horses alike, and Francis makes no bones about this particular fact.

 


Ken Bruen: The Guards
(Narrator: Gerry O'Brien)

Ken Bruen's Jack Taylor series has been on my radar ever since I watched the first episode of its TV adapatation, starring Iain Glen.  The Guards provides as gut-punch an opener as is conceivable to the series; we see how and why Taylor is dismissed from the Gardaí Síochána, and though the motif of the loner detective who struggles not only at socializing but also with a range of other things, most notably including full-blown alcoholism, is a veritable staple in today's detective fiction, I can think of few other series where particularly the protagonist's addiction is explored this forthrightly (well, OK, Harry Hole comes to mind).  Taylor is -- literally -- not afraid to pull punches, but he is fiercly loyal to those to whom he feels loyalty is due ... and ready to take his loyalty all the way if necessary.  I've never been to County Galway, where the series is set, and I can't shake the feeling that I'd get even more out of it if I had, but even so, this is one series I'm glad to have finally added to those that I'm now following (and I'm not exactly sad I have a bunch of installments to catch up on first).  Gerry O'Brien's narration, too, did a stellar job in transporting the book's tone and atmosphere.

 

I listened to this for the Kwanzaa square (a book with a black cover). 

 


Patricia Wentworth: The Clock Strikes Twelve
(Narrator: Diana Bishop)

This came with high praise from both Tigus and Moonlight, so I knew I had a lot to look forward to -- and I was certainly not disappointed!  This is a New Year's Eve story and the "family patriarch publicly announces 'I know someone here has betrayed family interests and you've got until midnight to come forward and confess your sins'" classic mystery plot variant ... seriously, someone should have told those Golden Age family patriarchs not to do this sort of thing because it'll invariably get them killed.  Anyway, Wentworth had comfortably settled into her formula by the time she wrote this book, and I agree with Moonlight -- this is now my new favorite entry in the series, too.  Though written strictly to Wentworth's formula (cozy rural setting with bickering family [or village population], lovers to (re)bond, a reasonable but not impenetrable amount of red herrings, a perhaps not entirely unexpected villain, and an investigation by thoroughly compentent police inspectors who are, nevertheless, easily "bested" by Miss Silver), the characters and their various conflicts are finely and credibly drawn and jump off the page as real people ... and Miss Silver, as always, is a sheer delight.  Well done, Maudie!  And Patricia -- and Diana (Bishop), whose reading of the Miss Silver books I've thoroughly come to enjoy.

 

I'm counting this book towards the "Epiphany" square of "24 Festive Tasks" (a book with the word "twelve" in the title).

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review 2018-11-15 23:20
Privy to the Dead
Privy to the Dead - Sheila Connolly

This was a different kind of story. The MC is a museum director who has been given funds specifically for renovating the museum. While in the basement with the foreman, they find a covered area that is believed to have been a privy to a previous house on that site. She requests that all the "trash" be carefully collected and then the curators can go through it and see if there is anything interesting. After the privy is cleaned out, a worker for the site is believed to have been murdered outside the museum. It is in trying to find out what he had found that Nell and Martha find out about Martha's family and what was taken from the privy. 

 

This was an interesting story and I thought it was interesting that in the collection of "items" it was just gathered up without thorough documentation. It was interesting to read the search of records to find out answers for a murder that happened recently and one that happened over a hundred years before. 

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