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Missing You
Harlan Coben
Pearls and Poison
Duffy Brown

Decent anthology!

Down These Strange Streets - George R.R. Martin, Gardner R. Dozois, Joe R. Lansdale, Charlaine Harris

I'm a sucker for these UF anthologies.  I always fish in and usually end up liking only a handful of the stories.  Which was the case with this one.  With some I'd never read the series they were based on, so when I got lost I gave up on the stories.  Charlaine Harris' Dahlia story wasn't bad...probably a 2.5 to 3 star read.  Simon Green's John Taylor Nightside story was very mediocre.  However, Carrie Vaughn's story which gave us a look at Rick and his fairly recent past was VERY good.  I'd give it 4.5 stars.  Rick is one of my favorite characters in her Kitty universe.  I liked Diana Gabaldon's Lord John story, though I'm not familiar with the character at all. I've tried to get into her books in the past with no luck.  They just don't grab me.  Patricia Briggs' story dealt with Warren, one of favorites in the Mercy Thompson books, and his partner, Kyle, who has had zombie assassin sicced on him.  Great characters, good story.  If you're looking for some short stories to while away some time with, you could do much worse than this collection.

Awaiting the final installment!!

Independent Study: The Testing, Book 2 - Joelle Charbonneau

Okay, so I love Joelle Charbonneau!!  She writes 2 cozy mystery series for adults that I recommend to everyone I know who likes cozies even a little bit.  I loved THE TESTING, but I didn't love this one.  I liked it, but it didn't wow me like THE TESTING did.  To be perfectly fair, the 2nd book of most trilogies is usually the weakest one.  In the few trilogies I've read where the 2nd book was stellar, the final one has ended up being a dud, so I have every belief that Ms. Charbonneau is going to knock my socks off with GRADUATION DAY.  So.....I'll be anxiously awaiting it's release!

A First-Rate Visit With Old Friends!

Death Come Quickly - Susan Wittig Albert

This series is one of my top 5 favorites of any genre, and after 22 books it's STILL going strong.  I look forward to my visit to Pecan Springs every spring.  The characters are like old friends and they grow and change.  The stories are always excellent and this one didn't disappoint.  China gets involved in a cold case this time, so she's not in quite as much peril as in some books.  Murder and art fraud are the happenings this time and it all makes for a page-turning delight!  Brian & Caitie, as well as Blackie & Sheila have much going on for them in this one and changes coming on.  I always hate to see these end...and wait impatiently for spring to come again so I can look in on my old friends again!  RECOMMEND!

Cross-Stitch Before Dying: An Embroidery Mystery

Cross Stitch Before Dying - Amanda     Lee The last one of these was pretty much just an okay read. This one wasn't even that. I skimmed a lot of this book. It just wasn't interesting to me. The series started off great, but has truly petered out, at least for me. Marcy has become one dimensional and Angus is the only character I can truly say I really like. Great dog! The victim was a classic trainwreck and rather boring. I'll be passing on this series in the future. Too many that are consistently good and too many new series popping up every month to try!

Murder Sends a Postcard (A Haunted Souvenir)

Murder Sends a Postcard - Christy Fifield I really enjoy this series. Glory is a believable character who has become a bit stronger with each new book. Her relationship with Jake is starting to go somewhere and Bluebeard is becoming a bit more prominent, too. The "bad guy" did seem to come from out of nowhere, but things ended up being plausible nonetheless. I can't stand Glory's cousin, Peter, and hope that with developments in this book that he will go away in short order. He's a blowhard and a classic case of the educated idiot. Will definitely be on hand for the next entry in this fun series. RECOMMEND!

A Tough Nut to Kill (Nut House Mystery Series)

A Tough Nut to Kill - Elizabeth Lee This is hands down the best cozy I've read so far this year. Can't think of a thing I didn't like about it. Lindy was a strong, smart woman and her Meemaw, Miss Amelia, reminded me of Dove in the Benni Harper books for some reason. Good story, good characters and I enjoyed the bits of info you picked up here & there about pecan ranching. Most definitely a first-rate first in series. I'm looking forward to the next book! RECOMMEND!

Freezer I'll Shoot (A Vintage Kitchen Mystery)

Freezer I'll Shoot - Victoria Hamilton This series just does absolutely nothing for me. I don't care for Jaymie. To me she's a bit of a milquetoast. This one didn't improve upon the 2nd one for me, so I'll be saying bye-bye to this series now.

All Fudged Up (Candy-Coated Mysteries)

All Fudged Up - Nancy CoCo I really enjoyed this one. The fact that it takes place on Mackinac Island didn't hurt either. One of my favorite places anywhere, even if it is in Michigan! I really liked Allie and the quirky cast of characters. Her puppy is just an added pleasure. A good story and some excellent sounding "cocktail" fudge recipes that I'll never make, but they're fun to read about anyway. Looking forward to the next in this series. RECOMMEND!

Charms and Chocolate Chips: A Magical Bakery Mystery

Charms and Chocolate Chips - Bailey Cates I like this series....mostly. It feels a lot like Ellery Adams' Charmed Pie Shoppe series.......and Adams comes out on top for me. These are pretty good books, but the characters' presence just aren't as strong for me. This was a decent mystery and Katie is coming along with the acceptance of her abilities. Hope to see more of her mother. I'll keep reading, but I much prefer the Home Crafting series this author writes as Cricket McRae.

Night Broken (A Mercy Thompson Novel)

Night Broken - Patricia Briggs This series is a definite favorite of mine and have only been really disappointed with one book out of 8. Pretty good track record. It was nice to see Coyote show up again...FINALLY, and also have another shifter introduced. I really hate people like Adam's ex, Christy, and liked seeing how Mercy had to struggle to be the better person when it came to dealing with her. Serious bad guy in this one and I'm glad Mercy was able to save one of the characters. I wonder how he's going to deal with the aftermath of what he did before he was "rescued". Definitely looking forward to the next one. RECOMMEND!

Red Rising

Red Rising - Pierce Brown First off, let me say I really liked this book. Secondly, let me say I'm not really sure why. Women seemed to me to be very low 2nd class, if not 3rd class, in this book. Yes, there is a female who is a leader of the Golds, but I'm not sure that she's not a puppet. I mean women get the shaft - a LOT - in this book, starting with Darrow's long-suffering wife, Eo. She dies so he can be a hero. Then there's a lot of rape going on, don't get me started on that. But hidden within all this is a really good story. Darrow has the makings of a good hero, but it remains to be seen just exactly where & to what this will lead him. Anyway, will look forward to the next installment....if not all the Roman & Greek names!! Those drove me to distraction! On the whole, RECOMMEND!

A Chorus Line-Up (A Glee Club Mystery)

A Chorus Line-Up - Joelle Charbonneau I think I'd like anything Joelle Charbonneau wrote! I really liked her Rebecca Robbins series, which is on at least temporary hiatus and this one is even better! Wonderful, well drawn characters and terrific story. Will be interesting to see what happens with Paige in the next one with the way this one ended. Just as an aside, if you also enjoy YA, Ms. Charbonneau's The Testing trilogy - the first 2 are available now, the 3rd comes in June of this year - is well worth a read! RECOMMEND!

Throw in the Trowel: A Flower Shop Mystery

Throw in the Trowel - Kate Collins This series has long been a favorite of mine and this was another excellent addition. Abby & Marco are just settling into married life when human remains are found under the basement floor of Down the Hatch. Marco wants to leave it alone, but Abby can never resist a mystery. Great characters and good story. You can't go wrong. RECOMMEND!

Walking In the Midst of Fire: A Remy Chandler Novel

Walking In the Midst of Fire - Thomas E. Sniegoski These books are a bit different than the norm, what with Remy being an angel and all. There was much going on in this one and Remy's relationship with Linda had moved ahead by leaps and bounds. The ending of this one leaves a lot hanging in the balance which is why I only gave it 3 stars instead of 4. Cliffhangers of this magnitude are just too much, IMHO, and I don't see another in this series on the horizon right now. That makes it even worse!

A Spark Unseen

A Spark Unseen - Sharon Cameron I won a copy of this on GR First Reads and just now got to it as I wanted to read the first one before reading this. And enjoyable read, with more of a gothic type feel to it than steampunk, which was good for me as I'm not a big fan of steampunk. Katharine is a good strong character with good instincts. While these books are not my usual read they were a nice change of pace and this one went MUCH faster for me than the first one did. Would definitely recommend both books to anyone who enjoys a nice gothic tale with a bit of steampunk thrown in!

Pecan Pies and Homicides (A Charmed Pie Shoppe Mystery)

Pecan Pies and Homicides - Ellery Adams I was not crazy about the previous book in this series as I thought it was just a bit too "out there". Well, this one did the same thing, but I liked it! I was glad to finally get some insight into Hugh. I knew he was something "other", but couldn't figure out what. I was happy with this one so am looking forward to what comes next. RECOMMEND!