Saturday, November 1, 2014

Books Read October 2014

Allan, Barbara
  • Antiques Roadkill
Fiction.  First in a cozy mystery series about a recently divorced woman and her eccentric mother who are getting used to living together again.  Brandy, dealing with the depression after her divorce is on Prozac, and her mother has her own medicinal supply of drugs.  Their house had been full of family treasures and antique furniture, but a quick-talking dealer had conned Brandy’s mother out of many of them during one of her off spells.  At a luncheon where the dealer is the main interest, Brandy challenges him about ripping off elders, a challenge that puts her in the guilty seat when he later turns up dead.

Baron, Aileen G.
  • The Gold of Thrace
Fiction.  First in a mystery series starring Tamar Saticoy, an American archaelogy professor who is on a dig in Turkey.  One the last day before the dig is shut down for the season, she discovers a floor mosaic, but before she can take pictures of it, it is stolen in the night.  She goes on a quest to find the missing mosaic, which takes her to Switzerland.  The theft of antiquities and the search for the thieves is big business, and Tamar finds herself in mortal danger.

Byrne, Kerrigan with Cynthia St. Aubin, Cindy Stark, and Tifinie Helmer
  • Which Witch is Which?
Fiction.  First in an erotic fantasy series about four elemental witches living in Port Townsend who are destined to die at the hands of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse in order to save mankind.

Christie, Agatha
  • Destination Unknown
Fiction.  Hilary Craven has lost her husband and her young daughter, and all she wants is to disappear somewhere.  She gets her chance when an airplane crash changes her life.  A famous scientist, Tom Betterton, is also wanting to escape his life and leaves his wife behind in England to join a group of scientists behind the Iron Curtain.  Their paths cross when Hilary takes the place of his wife, who has died in a plane crash, and their adventure is only beginning.

Dale, Risa
  • Darkness Brewing
Fiction.  13 haunting tales written by members of the Coffee House Writers Group.

Galenorn, Yasmine
  • Flight from Hell
Fiction.  First in the Fly by Night urban fantasy series set in Seattle.  It introduces Shimmer, a blue dragon who was caught stealing from the white dragons and sentenced to spend five years in Seattle to work off her debt.  Her boss, and sort-of parole officer, Alex, runs the Fly by Night Magical Private Investigation company.  An old foe of Alex’s arrives in town to destroy him and manages to kidnap Shimmer, forcing the D’Artigo sisters and their friends to search for her.

Hart, Carolyn
  • Merry, Merry Ghost
Fiction.  Bailey Ruth is back in this second incarnation which once again sends her back down to Adelaide, Oklahoma, the town she lived in with her husband Bobby Mac.  In her second mission to the land of the living, she is charged with the protection of a young boy who is set to inherit millions, millions that were initially promised to other people.  At least one of them doesn’t want to share, and Bailey Ruth is like a mama bear trying to protect the child.

George, Anne
  • Murder Runs in The Family
Fiction.  Third in a cozy mystery series about two 60-something sisters in Alabama who keep ending up involved in solving murders usually somehow connected to their friends and family.  Meg, a professional genealogist meets with the sisters for lunch, then an hour later is seen plummeting to her death from the 10th floor of the courthouse.

Lamb, John J.
  • The Mournful Teddy
Fiction.  First in a cozy series set in Virginia.  Brad is an ex-police detective who has retired after an injury in the line of duty.  His wife, Ashleigh, creates teddy bears, and they both enjoy going to teddy bear shows.  A special and very rare teddy bear, The Mourning Bear, is supposedly coming up for auction at the show,  but the bear never arrives.  In the meantime, Brad finds a body in the river at the edge of their property, only the deceased wan’t drowned, he was strangled.  Brad and Ash work together to solve both crimes.

Myers, Time
  • At Wick’s End
Fiction.  First in a cozy  mystery series set in North Carolina.  Harrison Black has just inherited his great-aunt’s candle shop.  She recently died after a fall from a ladder.  Harrison knows nothing about making candles, but luckily, his great-aunt employed a very capable worker named Eve to help her with the shop.  Eve offers to help Harrison learn the craft, and Harrison finds that he truly enjoys the work.  Soon after he moves into the apartment above the shop, his apartment is ransacked, then the locker room is ransacked, and Harrison starts to believe that his aunt, Belle, didn’t merely have an accident.  He believes she was murdered.

Penny, Louise
  • Still Life 
Fiction.  First in the Inspector Gamache mystery series set in Quebec.  Gamache travels to a small village outside of Montreal to investigate the death of an elderly painter.  She seems to have been killed by an arrow, and at the beginning of hunting season, it’s reasonable that  her death is an accident, but Gamache finds soon enough that her death has a sinister element, and he brings his team in to help solve the mystery.

Pressfield, Steven
  • The War of Art
Non-fiction.  What Resistance is and how to fight it.

Reid, Terri
  • Loose Ends 
Fiction.  First in a paranormal cozy mystery series.  Mary O’Reilly in an ex-Chicago cop who was on her way to make detective, when she was shot and killed in the line of duty.  When the hospital was able to resuscitate her, she realized that she could see, hear and speak with ghosts, something that would interfere with her job.  Deciding she needed a change, she moved to a small town and set up shop as a private investigator with a special talent.  She is contacted by the wealthy wife of a state senator, who believes that her house is haunted.  Unravelling the strings of this case puts Mary in danger again, while she is aided by a very handsome police chief.

Rosenberg, Joel
  • Family Matters
Fiction.  Second book in the Sparky Hemingway series.  Sparky lives with his girlfriend and his foster daughter in Hardwood, ND.  He works as a freelance copyeditor, which pays the bills but doesn’t leave much room for spending sprees.  The mayor of Hardwood and some of his cronies are trying to lock down a Trauma Center Level III for Hardwood as a way of bringing in more people, jobs and money.  The city commission has opted to temporarily hire Sparky as chief of police in an effort to raise their chances of their town being chosen for the TC.  Sparky has a lot to learn and little patience for learning it, but he does get the job done.

Spinelli, Eileen
  • Hero Cat
Fiction.  Brave story of a mama cat who races into a burning building to save her five kittens.  Based on a true story.

Toussaint, Maggie
  • On the Nickel
Fiction.  Second in the cozy mystery series set in Maryland and starring Cleopatra Jones, accountant extraordinaire, who lives with her eccentric mother and two precocious daughters.  Cleo’s investigative skills come into play again, as she tries to clear her mother’s name in the murder of her mother’s ex-nemesis.  Though many others in the town wished the woman ill, Cleo’s mother is the only suspect.

Westmacott, Mary
  • Unfinished Portrait
Fiction.  One of Agatha Christie’s novels written under her pen name.  A man meets a woman on a hill staring out to sea.  After a brief exchange, he leaves her and walks back toward town.  A sudden impulse grabs him, and he runs back up the hill only in time to see her dive into the ocean.  He longs to hear her story.

Writers’ Mill
  • The Writers’ Mill Journal

Fiction.  Collection of short stories and poems written by members of the Writers’ Mill writing group.

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