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review 2018-03-19 10:04
Miss Silver Comes to Stay (Miss Silver mysteries, #15 or 16)
Miss Silver Comes to Stay - Patricia Wentworth

This was my second Miss Silver mystery; the first one I read was the first in the series, and frankly, it left me dubious about reading the rest, but I found this and one other on the bottom shelf at a local used book store and threw caution to the wind. 


My brief googling has this book at either 15 or 16 in the series, and it shows.  It was so much better!  90% less sappy puppy romance, 100% better plotting and characterisations.  And the writing... the writing felt fresh and a little edgy, in that way that third person POV does when it's done correctly.  An occasional and very subtle breaking of the fourth wall added to that feeling that I was reading a very accomplished writer's work.


I've heard that Wentworth was rather fond of using wills in her story lines, and this one doesn't disprove the rumour, but ... no, I'm not going to go further - I'm not sure it doesn't skirt the boundaries of spoiler-ville.


The mystery plotting... masterful.  I was sucked into the story thoroughly; totally hooked and I missed it all, until it was so late in the game that it made no difference.  I like Miss Silver; she's Miss Marple without the pretence of fluffiness and helplessness, so losing to her didn't bother me in the least.  I only wish she'd stop coughing all the time.  Someone ought to give that woman a cough drop.


I hope the other Miss Silver book I grabbed at the same time is as good, and I'll definitely be taking the time to look at the series' books again, though I might completely break rank with my life long habits and skip the first few books.  Now I know how good she can be, I'd rather not suffer through Wentworth's growing pains if I can avoid it.


This book is the perfect fit for the Kill Your Darlings game's COD: Arsenical Toothpaste.  It is a mystery, and it's main character is a woman over the age of 55.  There should be bonus points for the knitting.  ;-)

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review 2018-03-19 04:57
The Medium (Emily Chambers Spirit Medium Trilogy #1) - C.J. Archer

This is a pretty awesome mystery book as Emily the MC isn't a fainting violet and actually has agency in this romance/mystery. HOWever, the one she falls for isn't George the flesh and blood human, but Jacob. I hate Jacob and I really wish Emily wasn't in love with him.

You see, Jacob is tall dark and growly type of man. He's DANGEROUS more than once he's threatened Emily by hitting things and doing that arm against the wall corralling thing men do to control women. He even wanted to see her dead on many occasions just so they could be together forever in death. So, of course  he's the main love interest. I just wanted to toss my ereader across the room.

I preferred George. He's the weak type that wears glasses. Someone to protect. He's the opposite of Jacob and because he's weak... Emily doesn't want him. I really wish I could find a romance where it's the woman protecting the man and stuff. That was not in this book however.

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review 2018-03-19 03:29
Dial Meow For Murder
Dial Meow for Murder (Lucky Paws Petsitting Mystery) - Bethany Blake

This is book 2 in the series by Bethany Blake. It is Halloween and Daphne has moved into the old caretaker's cabin. She has shown up at the old Flynt Mansion to help sell her dog treats to help raise funds for the dog rescue. Her mother is having a fit in the mansion as the owner cannot be found and her cat is running around and the place is a mess. Finally, Daphne, trying to catch the cat finds the body of Lillian Flynt and then takes in her terror of a cat. 


She and Jonathon are becoming better friends and he has formed a good relationship with Artie and Axis (the two dogs from the previous book that she convinced him to adopt). His ex-wife has moved to the area and seems to be trying to have a relationship with him. Her sometimes boyfriend is trying to have a serious conversation with him. 


Along the way, she finds another body and finds the real murderer. 


Pretty good story and Daphne is starting to become more dependable, but still flighty. I do recommend reading the stories in order and there is a 3rd book on the way in the spring. 


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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-03-19 02:59
Great plot with good action
Hemlock - Kathleen Peacock

***Possible spoilers, you’ve been warned***


The book starts off well and has a good pace and momentum throughout the book. The setting is also well done and small with a handful of characters so it’s simple and makes the reading enjoyable. I particularly liked the dream sequences Mac has with Amy. They can be cliche but it helps move the plot along and adds to the mood.


The werewolf aspect is interesting in the book. The notion of them having a ‘rehabilitation’ camp has a dystopia feel and there’s also Mac trying to solve Amy’s murder. So there’s different characteristics of the book to please YA readers which makes the experience reading this fun and enjoyable.


Of course you need a bit of romance in the story as well right? I’m all for Kyle and Mac being together. I found the love triangle aspect here irritating and forced on. Jason did not have sort of chemistry at all with Mac. It felt forced, awkward, and well...it just didn’t sit well with me (your boyfriend likes your best friend...just. No.) The love triangle just made things so cliche and sappy. The story didn’t need this. It was fine with just Kyle and Mac!


The mystery aspect was good throughout the novel. The crumb trail to figuring out who was behind the attacks wasn’t that obvious until the late third of the book and although it was already known who it was, the action sequence and climax of the story was pretty exciting and a lot of things are revealed. The revelations weren’t the type to blind side you, it fits well into the story and puts the pieces together. Which is fine. I think the action scenes are enough to keep readers interested.


I was happy with the way the book ended and I’ll be picking up the second one. Recommended for YA lovers who just want a good light read with some good action and a readable enjoyable plot.

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review 2018-03-19 02:24
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd - Agatha Christie

The house next door, The Larches, has recently been taken by a stranger. To Caroline’s extreme annoyance, she has not been able to find out anything about him, except that he is a foreigner. The Intelligence Corps has proved a broken reed. Presumably the man has milk and vegetables and joints of meat and occasional whitings just like everybody else, but none of the people who make it their business to supply these things seem to have acquired any information. His name, apparently, is Mr Porrott— a name which conveys an odd feeling of unreality. The one thing we do know about him is that he is interested in the growing of vegetable marrows.

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is an absolute classic, even among the other books of the Poirot series. 


For one, this is the book that catapulted Christie from an average mystery writer to a being recognised as a driving force in the genre. It's her sixth book, and it is the first with a twist that is utterly memorable. 


This is also the book where we meet Poirot in his attempted retirement. Attempted, because there is this pesky unexplained death that happens in the village of King's Abbot, which draws Poirot away from his garden. And quite rightly so!

Poirot is no gardener! 


This is made very obvious right from the start where we get to watch something that is rare in the series - Poirot's being defeated and humiliated, by nothing more than the infamous vegetable marrow:

"I saw the chance to escape into the garden. I am rather fond of gardening. I was busily exterminating dandelion roots when a shout of warning sounded from close by and a heavy body whizzed by my ears and fell at my feet with a repellent squelch. It was a vegetable marrow!

I looked up angrily. Over the wall, to my left, there appeared a face. An egg-shaped head, partially covered with suspiciously black hair, two immense moustaches, and a pair of watchful eyes. It was our mysterious neighbour, Mr Porrott. He broke at once into fluent apologies.

“I demand of you a thousand pardons, monsieur. I am without defence. For some months now I cultivate the marrows. This morning suddenly I enrage myself with these marrows. I send them to promenade themselves— alas! not only mentally but physically. I seize the biggest. I hurl him over the wall. Monsieur, I am ashamed. I prostrate myself.”

Seriously, this is one of my favourite scenes in the whole series, and it is why I have re-read The Murder of Roger Ackroyd several times. Once you know the twist, it is hard to forget and makes a re-read somewhat pointless. 

However, the scene in the vegetable patch is one that is funny every time.

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