mystery series

Review: A is for Alibi

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A is for AlibiMy rating: 4 of 5 stars to A is for Alibi by Sue Grafton, the first book in the Kinsey Millhone private investigator cozy mystery series. It’s the book that started it all for me…

The opening lines of the book grab you when the narrator tells you that she killed a man. You want to know more about this situation. Then you get to know a little bit about Kinsey. Twice-divorced. 32. New to PI work. You already start to root for her as much as you ask questions about her former life.

In this one, it’s all about divorce and a cheating ex-husband. Nikki, not very likable, is released from prison and goes straight to Kinsey for help. She served time for killing her husband, but she claims she didn’t do it. Years later, she wants answers so she can move on with her life. And she gets them. Kinsey finds a second body and actually has to protect herself. Right out of the gate, you know this series won’t be a traditional cozy. But at the same time, it’s a very formulaic story. And that’s OK… I like those, too.

Kinsey is mostly a good character. Her attitude is sometimes a little annoying. She is still learning her job to some degree… not quite as good as VI Warshawski, but not as silly as Stephanie Plum. Lots to like about her too… except no real family to speak of. She eventually has Henry, but not enough for me.

The setting is Santa Teresa, California… a beautiful place among the vineyards and not too far from the ocean. Makes a good backdrop and some pretty scenes.

For an intro book, it’s strong. It was started back in the 1980s… so if you’re looking for something more current, this series isn’t for you.

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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Review: The Last Suppers

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The Last SuppersReview
3 1/2 (rounded up to 4) out 5 stars for The Last Suppers, the fourth in the “Gold Bear Culinary Mystery” series, by Diane Mott Davidson. In this book, Goldy’s about to get married, but unfortunately the wedding might be delayed when Tom calls about a murder. And it’s a priest!

Goldy’s close with other parishioners and the clerical folks in her Colorado church, but she is shocked to discover what’s lurking beneath the surface when she digs a little deeper this time. For a bride-to-be, she’s certainly not having any fun. Drama everywhere, both in her personal life and with the murder. Tom warns her to stay out of it, but she can’t help herself.

The book follows the normal pattern and is another good edition in the series. I enjoy the characters and there is growth… unlike some cozies where the main character tosses back and forth between two suitors forever. In this one, there is actually forward motion and a marriage. I like when love wins out a bit. A nice surprise in the latter portion of the book makes things better.

Smooth sailing with the series at this point… I had no real concerns
at this point
.

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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Review: The Body Farm

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The Body FarmReview
4 of 5 stars to Patricia Cornwell‘s fifth book in the Kay Scarpetta series, The Body Farm, published in 1994. The title alone tells you what kind of book this will be, and it is full of thrills and suspense. Scarpetta has an opportunity to try to capture a serial killer she’s dealt with sometime in the past. And with the history she needs to revisit in this one, you will learn a lot more about who she is and what’s happened to bring her to today.

Another good part of this book is the development of Scarpetta’s relationship with her niece, Lucy. Lucy’s now 21 and supposed to be an adult; however, her behaviors are still somewhat immature. I like getting to know the character more, even though she isn’t too likable at this point. Detective Pete Marino is prominent again, and you want to love him… but he still makes you angry.

As Scarpetta finds different body parts all over the place, she knows she’s close to meeting her match. The cleverness and complexity in this book makes it one of the better ones. It’s still early on in the series before the books get too “governmental” and “formal,” in regard to Scarpetta’s career.
The games being played are quite amusing and scary. Given the creepiness of the killer’s plans, this is another fine entry in the series.

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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Review: Burn Marks

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Burn Marks
Burn Marks by Sara Paretsky

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I vividly recall seeing the cover for this book when I started reading the series. I had asked for a bunch for Christmas after I read the first two, and this sat on my shelf for weeks as I had a few other books in front of it, plus we couldn’t find book 4 for a long time. And I refused to read this one, book 6, until I caught up. Burn Marks by Sara Paretsky will not let you down.

It is full of action, starting with the opening pages. How would you react if the relative you really didn’t want to deal with, but loved, showed up telling you that you owed her a favor? And you couldn’t remember why… probably because it wasn’t true… but when it’s family, sometimes you just have to go with it.

Aunt Elena is a hoot. She is what VI could turn into if she isn’t careful. But the whole story is a good challenge. You get lots of clues, some of which you don’t know how to handle, and in the end, it all fits together. And you also want to shake Elena until she starts being clear and honest.

Though the cover is plain, it seemed so mysterious to me… called out to the old-time detective story and makes you very curious. Plus, I was always curious what happens in a fire; this helps explain a lot of the technical details in an easy-to-understand manner. And Paretsky is really strong at bringing to the forefront the pertinent details so it is educational in a way you don’t expect. It’s one of the better ones in the series, but don’t take my word for it. Go out and see!

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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Review: Eleven on Top

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Eleven on Top4 out of 5 stars to Eleven on Top, the 11th book in the “Stephanie Plum” cozy mystery series by Janet Evanovich. This book was one of the more funny in the series, particularly for two reasons:

Stephanie is being chased by someone who came back from the grave. She thought the person was dead, but it’s not true… and someone has a grudge. The humor that comes along with this one makes it worth the read.

Stephanie, of course, needs more money. And she takes on multiple additional jobs besides being a crack detective. And she has the most hilarious jobs… gets fired in the funniest ways… and her two careers intersect to such a point that you will almost lose control from laughter.

It’s worth it just to see what the average human will take in a dead-end job to try and keep above water. It’s not a funny topic in real life, of course, but the author’s style of writing and the way the character just leaps off the page, is hilarious.

Forget substance. Forget imagery. Forget great language. This is just an opportunity to laugh for 3 to 4 hours. It helps to have read a few books in the series so you know who each of the characters are… but even if you’re new to the series, it’ll still be a fun one.

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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Review: Angels & Demons

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Angels & Demons Review
4+ out of 5 stars to Dan Brown‘s Angels & Demons, the first book in his “Robert Langdon” thriller series. When I saw the movie trailer for The Da Vinci Code, I was hooked and immediately bought the book so I could read it first. When I got home, I realized it was not the first in the series…

I refused to read it… and then I went to the store and got the first one, Angels & Demons, so I could read them in order. And while it’s not really necessary, I always follow the order (unless I have an ARC with a due date on a newer book and no time to get to the whole series). So I started Angels & Demons, and I was was simply blown away.

Not everyone loves Dan Brown, and people aren’t always kind, but man… I LOVE HIS BOOKS! And I’m not afraid to say it… so if you don’t like them… don’t be hating on this review because I will

On a more serious note, the climax with each of the murders, the deep connections to so many Catholic rituals and ceremonies, the brilliance of the chase… it just left me unable to stop reading it. It’s exactly the kind of book I like to read:

1. Has some connection to me — I’m Catholic and knew most of the stuff they were talking about

2. I love reading about murder — since I won’t do it in real life, I have to get my thrills somehow

3. Secrets are the best thing in the world — I have so many about others, but I never let anyone have one about me

4. Classic battle of good versus evil — This is my life. Should I be good or bad today? Ugh… Sophie’s catch #22…

5. It’s non-stop thought-provoking messages and themes — How much control and time do we really have right now?

Oh, that’s the spot baby!

And with that said… if you want a real review with details about the story, go find someone else’s! Today was all about just being excited to think about the book again. Now that said, I thought Da Vinci Code was a slight bit better, hence the 4 here.

Ciao! I’ve got some branding to do…

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

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Review: Double Shot

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Double ShotReview
Diane Mott Davidson‘s “Gold Bear Culinary Mystery” series were one of the original cozy series I started reading, and once I started, I ran through the first ten as quickly as I could. By then, I was caught up and had to wait for the successive ones to be released. Double Shot, her 12th book in the series, was the first one I had to wait for… and I was restless. My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Goldy and her antics, and friends, were a nice release from the reality going on around me at the time. And when her ex-husband, Dr. John Richard Korman, showed up, we all knew there’d be trouble. From the beginning of the series, Marla and Goldy talked up so many bad things about him, I was certain he’d be killed in the future only to cast suspicion on one of them… and the payoff happens in this book.

The doctor is first being stalked, then found dead. The police, even though Goldy’s new husband, is one of them, can’t help but find her behavior a little shady. Even Marla wondered what Goldy had been up to. And the whole time, Goldy’s trying to protect her son Arch from the bad side of his father. As expected, she handles it well and even Arch is grateful for her support during his father’s murder.

After a dozen books hearing about the louse, it was good to see it taken care of. Yes, I know… I shouldn’t condone murder. But it was in a book… where fantasies are healthy, my friends. Even Jessica Fletcher agrees with me in the books she writes — and that I’ve read!

Series fans must read this one purely to see the comeuppance. But it would not be a good one to start the series with, as history is important.

About Me
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I read A LOT. I write A LOT. And now I blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll also find TV & Film reviews, the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge and lots of blogging about places I’ve visited all over the world. And you can find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Vote in the poll and ratings. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

View all my reviews