Bubba and the 12 Deadly Days of Christmas

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Bubba and the 12 Deadly Days of Christmas (Bubba Snoddy #2)

I am a bit torn on how to rate this. It took me a while to get into the story because I was so confused as to what was happening, if I had read the first book I would have known though. The characters are all very eccentric but in a fun way that makes you like them. The mystery is a good one because I was baffled the entire time and could not figure who it might be though there were a lot of possibilities. I have never been to the south but the way they were talking I guess could be authentic and it is also another reason that makes them kind of charming.

Bubba Snoddy had a hard time the year before when he almost went to jail for the murder of his ex-fiancee. Now here it is Christmas and as he is heading toward the sheriff station he stumbles over the dead body of a man he had recently quarreled with. It does not look good and he is once again being looked at as the prime suspect in a murder. Soon it comes to light that something sinister is happening in the little town of Pegramville.

When his mother finds another body things just become more complicated. Not only is he a suspect his mother is now suspected of murder as well.

I am going to be reading the first book in this series so that I can get some background on these characters. I also think I want to read the next book at least since it ended with a cliffhanger that I did not see coming. It was an enjoyable read with some good laughs and a heck of a mystery.

My rating: 3.5/4 of 5 stars

Doggone Christmas

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Doggone Christmas (Polly Parrett Pet-Sitter Cozy Murder Mysteries #1)

This was a fun read with a mystery that was good but not great since it was almost to easy to figure it out. Not that it was a problem because even with that you still needed to know the why of things. The two main characters were well fleshed out as to who they were, some of the peripheral characters were just a little less than one dimensional, the animals were however just what you expected them to be. The romance which was happening in the background was nicely done and did not move to fast or slow.

Polly Parrett runs an animal sitting service and has a mother who is handicapped and needs to sell the family home for something smaller, preferable in town. To that end they have contacted a Realtor to sell and help them buy another home, they get Tyler Breslin who owns the realty company. Things seem very simple and they are happy to find that they will not have to pay a lot of money to get their home ready for sale.

Polly finds herself attracted to Tyler but is sure he could never feel the same. He asks her out to dinner in order to go over the paperwork and while they have a pleasant time the ending is not something either could have seen coming. As they are leaving Polly hears someone threatening to shoot a dog and runs to help, what they find is a standoff between a homeless man, his dog and a cop. Bad luck for the homeless guy, Rooster, who is accused of murder and his dog, Elaine, who is set to be euthanized for being vicious. If Polly and Tyler can not prove his innocence then he could be sent away for a murder he did not commit.

This was nice and kind of sweet with the type of happy ending you expect. For those who love a cozy mystery, this is ideal.

A Very Shitake Christmas

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A Very Shitake Christmas (Shitake Mystery #1.5)

This was short but pulled me in immediately and had me like the characters and ready to follow them. I always like a book with a strong female character and Mo is definitely strong in her own way. The setting is contemporary and makes it perfect. The language is what you would expect with little quirks to keep it interesting from both the Brits and Americans. The relationships are very real and do not seem forced or rushed but built from the bottom up.

Imogene ‘Mo’ Tuttle had worked as a private detective until she met Ross Grant and would have been fired for trying to protect him. They have since moved in together and she is still out of work while he has been cast in one new movie with another to start after filming ends on this one. To really make things interesting Ross’s father Bertram contacts Mo and tells her he will be coming for Christmas, she of course assumes she has 6 months to prepare, but he celebrates the historical Christmas in June.

Mo gets a cal from her old boss wanting to hire her back, but Mo is not interested in going back full time but is willing to take work as an independent contractor. Her first job is to serve a restraining order on a man who is very good at eluding them. When she gets to close to things he takes revenge in a novel way.

This was a fun read without any big mystery or anything but characters who had plenty of personality. After reading this I have to read the first book in the series since this was 1.5 and find out how things got started.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Killer Twist

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Killer Twist (Ghostwriter Mystery #1)

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I read the fourth book in this series first and was so happy with it that I had to go back to the beginning and see where it all started. Surprisingly enough this book was just as good as the one I originally read. The only real complaint I have is that it lagged in the beginning, though it at least gave a little background on the main characters as it did so. Once it starts to move it does so at a nice pace that actually helps to build the suspense as it introduces more suspects. I found the dialogue to be just right to elicit the emotions and feelings they wanted.

Roxy Parker is a ghost writer, which means she is hired by those wishing to write their memoirs to make it sound intelligent and well written, and she does not get any credit. Roxy is just fine with that as long as they continue to pay her and she can continue to pay her bills. Roxy also has a rather macabre hobby, she collects crime clippings, mostly about murders which her boss calls her “Book of Death.”

Roxy has been hired to ghost write the memoir of the wealthy society matron Beatrice Musgrove. So far things have been very tame and somewhat boring, but then Beatrice says that she has a few revelations coming up that will make for more interesting reading. Days before she is to see Roxy and reveal her true secrets she is murdered in her home and it is declared a suicide, which Roxy does not believe for one minute. She launches her own investigation and finds that some things might be better left alone.

I had a good idea of who the killer was well before the end but it was still fun finding out if I was right or not. A good mystery always has enough red herrings that you make mistakes more than you get it right at the beginning. There was one thing that annoyed me greatly about Roxy and it was the fact that she liked Merlot, I hate Merlot. A little light romance or at least an attempt at romance on the part of one character. Good clean mystery.

Got Your Number

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Got Your Number

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This was a nice story and all but things were a bit slow for a long time as the characters were being introduced and made more real. They were still not fully fleshed out but a couple had made themselves very annoying for most of the book. The plot was really good once we get into the heart of things and the fact that there is more than one thing happening makes it even harder to figure out what is really happening. There are some laugh out loud moments and a few where I just had to stop and go ‘what?’.Roxann Beadleman came from a broken home and it affected everything in her life as she grew up. She attended Notre Dame along with her cousin Angora and something good and bad happened while they were there. Roxann graduates with honors and instead of going on to bigger things she ends up eking out an existence as she works as the middle person in rescuing abused women and children. One rescue is causing her more trouble than usual because a cop is trying to find the woman along with her crazy ex-husband.

When her house is broken into she decides to head home for a while which ends up sending her on a trip down memory lane she could have done without. Going back to school is never a good thing.

I like the writing style and the fact that even though the situations could be serious there is always an element of humor present to lighten things up.

“Roxann, have you ever wanted to kill someone?” At the eerily serious note in her cousin’s voice, warning bells chimed in her head. “Everyone has moments of extreme anger,” she said carefully. “No,” Angora said, her gaze locked on Roxann’s, her pupils dilated. “I mean really kill someone.” In her lap, her hands convulsed. “I think I could kill Trenton and not feel a bit guilty.” A chill tickled the back of Roxann’s neck as she recalled moments in college when she’d questioned Angora’s stability. “Passion is a powerful emotion. Sometimes it can feel like hate instead of love.” But Angora seemed to be somewhere else. “All I know is that I put my life on hold too many times because of promises men made to me.” Her voice had taken on a bitter tone. “What makes the beasts think they can use a woman and then toss her aside when she becomes inconvenient?”
Stephanie Bond, Got Your Number Stephanie Bond

The Word Exchange

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The Word Exchange

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This book seems to cover a number of genre’s including science fiction, mystery, and romance. The story is basically about the use of language and how it is used and how we would be affected without it. The story starts slowly but builds to a point that you become thoroughly engrossed with what is happening and trying to figure out who and what is behind things. The language is good but sometimes just a little over the head of someone who does not know about library science with references to people who you may have never heard of. I just looked them up to see who they were and learned something in the process. The characters are well written and you can’t help but have an opinion on them because you get a chance to really know those who are central to the plot and get a good look at the others.

Anana and her father Doug work for the Dictionary working on the NADEL (North American Dictionary of the English Language) and are preparing the 3rd edition for print. Doug is totally anti-MEME (a device used for everything from movies to banking) and has caused the deterioration of language because of its invasive nature into the minds of the public. Things seem to be going well though Anana is heartbroken over her breakup with Max, her boyfriend of 4 years and the mastermind behind a game which invites people to make up words, which he sells to Synchronics. This company is trying to corner the market on words and their meanings.

When people start to show signs of aphasia and illness it becomes a race to find out who or what is causing it and to find a cure before the world becomes infected.

This is an entertaining story but it is about more than words, it seems almost to be a cautionary tale about how technology can take away more than we are willing to lose if we are not careful. The romance is very low-key, mostly pining about lost love or not having the guts to say you love someone. The mystery elements are nicely done though you have an idea who is behind it but you need the why. I also have to say that Anana annoyed me a great deal of the time, she seemed to want to get killed to me because she did not really think much for someone who came off as smart and capable, but was acting like a five-year old who just had to be rebellious. Other than her I enjoyed the other characters and the action. This gave me something to think about and I like that.

Bump In The Night

Bump in the Night

Bump in the Night

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This was a quick and fun read with a good mystery to solve. Nothing is better than a locked door mystery with multiple suspects all with good motives. The fact that so much information was able to be packed into such a short story is amazing. From the start I was pulled in and ready to try to solve the mystery before it got to the end. The number of characters is not large but definitely enough to make it more difficult.

Renni is a lawyer who made the mistake of sleeping with a co-worker and partner at her law firm. When Daniel shows up at 2am pounding on her door she lets him in to keep the peace with her neighbors. Though he is her ex she has a quickie and leaves him asleep on her couch, the next morning he’s dead and she has a problem. Who could have killed him? See if you can figure it out.

I have a total love of good locked door mysteries, well not just locked door. If you have a little time or are sitting and waiting somewhere this can be a great way to spend the time.