When Irish Eyes Are Lying: The Kilteegan Bridge Story-Book 4 by Jean Grainger – #BookReview – #TuesdayBookBlog

#1 New Release in Historical Irish Fiction

Book Blurb:

Kilteegan Bridge, Ireland. 1975 

Despite the best efforts to the older generation to maintain standards, short skirts, long hair and loud music are all the rage in Kilteegan Bridge.  

When Irish Eyes Are Lying by Jean GraingerEmmet Kogan has set his sights on an education at the prestigious Stanford University in California, while his cousin Nellie also longs to get away, but for very different reasons. If she’s to escape too, it will mean wrapping herself in a web of lies, but it’s a price she’s willing to pay. 

Lena and Eli are terrified they will lose their boy to the bright lights of America forever, while Emily and Blackie make a decision to keep a dangerous secret, despite knowing the damage such duplicity can do.  

On the exciting streets of 1970s San Francisco, two young Irish people have to learn to navigate this new world of wonderful opportunities and dangerous vices, and learn that no matter how open and accepting a society is, there are always rules.  

Rules that if broken, carry a heavy penalty.

My Review:

This installment in the Kilteegan Bridge series had me ripping one direction and then another. I felt at the beginning like it might have been a bit of déjà vu with Lena.

Several storylines in this episode that included Nellie (déjà vu Lena), Nellie’s cousin Emmett and his birth dad Malachy, as well as Fintan Slattery’s misunderstanding of the power of the “Good People.”

Granted, I loved the insight into the “fairy” tales (the Good People) who can get downright dangerously vindictive when crossed. So many origins in our customs today that stem from ancient myths, gospels and superstitions handed down and still observed. (Leave the Hawthorn tree alone and do not violate the fairy ring!!)

When Irish Eyes Are Lying by Jean GraingerTo escape Nellie’s unhappy experience, she is invited and allowed to go to Palo Alto where Malachy is living with his birth father in preparation for going to Stanford. Another very eye-opening storyline that had me remembering my grandmother’s dread of what was happening in San Francisco. Totally involved in our own drama at home, however, none of that scary scene really touched me at the time. The drug and free love culture was spreading far afield, but I don’t remember it hitting Sacramento quite that hard. Or, maybe I was just that far removed.

Meanwhile, back at home in Kilteegan Bridge, Lena and Eli immersed in helping family Emily and Blackie takes a tragic turn, one that was gut-wrenching. I haven’t recovered from that yet and not happy with the turn the narrative has taken also hope it doesn’t go the way I suspect Book 5 will lead. Ms. Grainger pulled no punches in this one!

I’ve read and thoroughly enjoyed each of the entries in the series, the last one More Harm Than Good, following each of the characters so well developed they are part of the neighborhood, I know and love them, each with immersive stories of their own. But this one hurt.

I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the author that in no way influenced this review. These are my honest thoughts.

Rosepoint Rating: Four Stars 4 stars

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Book Details:

Genre: Historical Irish Fiction, Historical Mystery, Thriller & Suspense Fiction, Saga Fiction
Publisher: Gold Harp Media
ASIN: B0BLTP1YCY
Print Length: 285 pages
Publication Date: January 17, 2023
Source: Author ARC
Title Link(s): When Irish Eyes Are Lying [Amazon]

 

Jean Grainger - authorThe Author: JEAN GRAINGER is a USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR

SELECTED BY BOOKBUB READERS IN TOP 19 OF HISTORICAL FICTION BOOKS.

WINNER OF THE 2016 AUTHOR’S CIRCLE HISTORICAL NOVEL OF EXCELLENCE

Hello and thanks for taking time out to check out my page. If you’re wondering what you’re getting with my books then think of the late great Maeve Binchy but sometimes with a historical twist. I was born in Cork, Ireland in 1971 and I come from a large family of storytellers, so much so that we had to have ‘The Talking Spoon’, only the person holding the spoon could talk!

I have worked as a history lecturer at University, a teacher of English, History and Drama in secondary school, a playwright, and a tour guide of my beloved Ireland. I am married to the lovely Diarmuid and we have four children. We live in a 200 year old stone cottage in Mid-Cork with my family and the world’s smallest dogs, called Scrappy and Scoobi..

My experiences leading groups, mainly from the United States, led me to write my first novel, ‘The Tour’. My observances of the often funny, sometimes sad but always interesting events on tours fascinated me. People really did confide the most extraordinary things, the safety of strangers I suppose. It’s a fictional story set on a tour bus but many of the characters are based on people I met over the years.

[truncated—please see author’s page for full bio]

Many of the people who have reviewed my books have said that you get to know the characters and really become attached to them, that’s wonderful for me to hear because that’s how I feel about them too. I grew up on Maeve Binchy and Deirdre Purcell and I aspired to being like them. If you buy one of my books I’m very grateful and I really hope you enjoy it. If you do, or even if you don’t, please take the time to post a review. Writing is a source of constant contentment to me and I am so fortunate to have the time and the inclination to do it, but to read a review written by a reader really does make my day.

©2023 V Williams

#TuesdayBookBlog

The Huntress by Kate Quinn – #Audiobook Review – #ThrowbackThursday

The Huntress by Kate Quinn

Goodreads Choice Award Nominee

Rosepoint Publishing:   Five Stars 5 stars

Book Blurb:

From the author of the New York Times and USA Today best-selling novel The Alice Network comes another fascinating historical novel about a battle-haunted English journalist and a Russian female bomber pilot who join forces to track the Huntress, a Nazi war criminal gone to ground in America.

In the aftermath of war, the hunter becomes the hunted….

Bold and fearless, Nina Markova always dreamed of flying. When the Nazis attack the Soviet Union, she risks everything to join the legendary Night Witches, an all-female night bomber regiment wreaking havoc on the invading Germans. When she is stranded behind enemy lines, Nina becomes the prey of a lethal Nazi murderess known as the Huntress, and only Nina’s bravery and cunning will keep her alive.

Transformed by the horrors he witnessed from Omaha Beach to the Nuremberg Trials, British war correspondent Ian Graham has become a Nazi hunter. Yet one target eludes him: a vicious predator known as the Huntress. To find her, the fierce, disciplined investigator joins forces with the only witness to escape the Huntress alive: the brazen, cocksure Nina. But a shared secret could derail their mission unless Ian and Nina force themselves to confront it.

Growing up in post-war Boston, 17-year-old Jordan McBride is determined to become a photographer. When her long-widowed father unexpectedly comes home with a new fiancée, Jordan is thrilled. But there is something disconcerting about the soft-spoken German widow. Certain that danger is lurking, Jordan begins to delve into her new stepmother’s past – only to discover that there are mysteries buried deep in her family…secrets that may threaten all Jordan holds dear.

In this immersive, heart-wrenching story, Kate Quinn illuminates the consequences of war on individual lives, and the price we pay to seek justice and truth. 

This audiobook includes an episode of the Book Club Girl Podcast, featuring an interview with Kate Quinn about The Huntress. 

My Review:

I was diverted to this novel by a blog buddy who wrote a glowing review of another work by this author. That one not being available at my library (unusual, I know!), I chose this one instead and from the moment I had my earbuds comfortably embedded could find it almost impossible to turn it off for anything. Finally, I didn’t bother, and just sat and listened to it.

This turned out to be one very mind-blowing audiobook, I’m sure in no small part owing to the amazing narrator who slid Russian names off her tongue as easily as German or English.

The Night WitchesThis masterful work carries a sinister, skin-crawling aura of suspense from the first chapter to the triumphal conclusion. This is a profoundly compulsive read that begins with the story of Nina Markova that gradually evolves into an extremely powerful protagonist—formidable in her staunch unwavering focus, passionate in her role as one of the first Soviet women pilots of WWII known as The Night Witches and extremely profane in expression. Oh, God, she is amazing and I loved every chapter that was hers!

The Huntress by Kate QuinnNina, however, is but one of three main POVs that take turns in chapters devoted to each character and the timeline that evolves over years from the war to 1950s Boston that sees seventeen-year-old Jordan McBride—equally passionate in her exploration of photography goals at a time most young girls were thinking marriage and babies. It is her widowed father who marries a German widow, Annaliese, who brings along a four-year-old daughter, Ruth. Jordan captures a photo of Annaliese that sets her hackles up and fires potent suspicions.

Following the end of the war, Nazi war criminal hunter and British war correspondent Ian Graham is joined by his buddy and Nina in the hunt for die Jagerin, The Huntress—a deliciously disturbing woman who escaped her palatial lakeside estate, site of decadent Nazi retreats.

The pace is frenetic. Each chapter reveals more about the protagonists and the dark Annaliese. Jordan, who knows she captured the real woman behind the façade, Nina with as much incentive to find her as Ian, gradually reveals more about her own harrowing war efforts piloting a plane made of wood and canvas.

This could be a suspense thriller that takes place seventy years ago as much as a historical thriller. It is an incredible narrative that hooks, revs, and speeds to a satisfying conclusion, producing a hugely character-driven story that will reverberate long after you’ve finished the book. Will easily be a memorable favorite that straddles years.

I downloaded a copy of this audiobook from my local well-stocked library. These are my honest thoughts. Whether or not you like historical fiction, this is intense reading and is heartily recommended.

Book Details:

Genre: World War II Historical Fiction, War & Military Fiction, Espionage Thrillers
Publisher:  HarperAudio
ASIN: B07GXZNPSB
Listening Length: 19 hrs 4 mins
Narrator: Saskia Maarleveld
Publication Date: February 26, 2019
Source: Local Library (Audiobook Selections)
Title Link: The Huntress [Amazon]
Barnes & Noble
Kobo

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Kate Quinn - authorThe Author: Kate Quinn is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of historical fiction. A native of southern California, she attended Boston University where she earned a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Classical Voice. She has written four novels in the Empress of Rome Saga, and two books in the Italian Renaissance, before turning to the 20th century with “The Alice Network”, “The Huntress,” “The Rose Code,” and “The Diamond Eye.” All have been translated into multiple languages. Kate and her husband now live in San Diego with three rescue dogs.

Saskia Maarleveld - narratorThe Narrator: Saskia Maarleveld is an experienced audiobook narrator and voice-over actress based in New York City. Raised in New Zealand and France, she is highly skilled with accents and dialects, and many of her books have been narrated entirely in accents other than her own. In addition to audiobooks, Saskia’s voice can be heard in animation, video games, and commercials. She attributes her love and understanding of reading books aloud to coming from a large family where audiobooks were the only way to get though car rides without fighting! Visit saskiamaarleveld.com to learn more.

©2023 V Williams

Book hangover

Night Witches attribute: History.com

Born and Bred Texan (Magnolia Bluff Crime Chronicles) Book 9 of 9 by Jinx Schwartz – #BookReview – #TuesdayBookBlog

Book Blurb:

Born and Bred Texan by Jinx SchwartzBlue Bonet, widowed and in mourning, returns to Magnolia Bluff in her home state of Texas. Her grandmother had bequeathed an old lake house to her, and she cherishes childhood memories there. She arrives at the lake and finds the house she remembers as being grand, is now in disrepair.
She tackles the repairs, and is determined to make a new life for herself,
It seems like an uphill battle.
A rollercoaster of ups and down conspire to destroy her dream, and she begins to wonder if you really can’t go home again.

My Review:

I was notified, as I am occasionally, by Amazon telling me one of my favorite authors is releasing a new book, this one by Jinx Schwartz. Oh my stars! Well, it’s been ages since I read and reviewed the last Hetta Coffey book, so of course I jumped on it. Even (gasp) paid for it and I don’t do a lot of those. I loved those Hetta Coffey books. I had so much fun with those short and sweet novels, most read prior to this blog, but I did review Just the Pits as a #ThrowbackThursday post back in 2017.

So, somehow I was thinking a new book, new series, I’d get in on the first of the series. Nope. It’s Book 9. Boy, I hate when that happens.

Born and Bred Texan by Jinx SchwartzNow, I’m wondering, if this seemed like the intro to a new series, what have I missed? Blue Bonet is widowed and in mourning returns to Magnolia Bluff in Texas. Her grandmother has bequeathed an old lake house to her and she remembers the home with fond memories as a child. Now, maybe not so much. It’s sadly outdated, in need of some serious repair and remodeling.

Well, mercy! The old place has good bones and she finds the perfect handyman (Handy) to fix it up—apparently a general contractor, carpenter, electrician, and plumber rolled into one. This guy is super and I loved his character, could easily picture him. Of course, there is a dog, Toto, seeking a new owner after hers’ is found deceased on the back forty, which introduces (at least to me) Sheriff Leslie.

Having gone to school locally, Blue has a network of old school chums that make for some interesting support characters (Gloria or Glory), as well as family not too far from Grams’s old place.

“…my neighbor raises chickens and the damned things live in Clucker Taj Majal.”

“I take a drug to help with depression, and then feel depressed that I need a drug?”

“…I need immoral support…”

As always with Schwartz’s books, there is that snarky sense of humor, although Blue dials back on the boozing, she’s up for hijinks and doesn’t balk at getting to the bottom of the mystery of the bodies on her property. I enjoyed the description of the area, the property, the lake, and the surrounding environs—including the wildlife. The work on the house sounded amazing and I would have loved a tour of the home and her separate studio.

I felt the pace of the book was a bit slow as I waited for something to happen and then it stayed low-key anyway while life went on. Maybe I was used to the pacing set by the Hetta Coffey books, but this seemed to veer a bit off the mystery several times as it delved into unrelated matters. And by the way, cousin Hetta does manage to make an appearance—loved it—with her dog Po Thang and SO Jenks.

The conclusion was likewise rather low key, already suspected. Fast and furious mop-up in the epilogue. You might appreciate a more domestic type of undercurrent mystery, interesting characters, and the Texas setting. You may not appreciate the edit misses or the insta-love.

These are my honest thoughts. I may try one more book in this series, but definitely prefer the pace and setting of the Hetta Coffey mysteries.

Rosepoint Rating: Three point Five Stars 3 1/2 stars

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Book Details:

Genre: Women’s Detective Fiction, Amateur Sleuths, Cozy Animal Mystery
ASIN: B0BKX1SY36
Print Length: 258 pages
Publication Date: December 20, 2022
Source: Verified Purchase
Title Link: Born and Bred in Texas [Amazon]

 

Jinx Schwartz - authorThe Author: [Goodreads] Jinx Schwartz is the USA TODAY Best-selling author of the award-winning Hetta Coffey series.

JUST ADD WATER, first in the series, introduces Hetta, a sassy Texan with a snazzy yacht, and she’s not afraid to use it. JUST ADD SALT, JUST ADD TROUBLE, JUST DESERTS, JUST THE PITS, JUST NEEDS KILLIN’, AND JUST DIFFERENT DEVILS get her into hot Mexican Waters. JUST PARDON MY FRENCH, BOOK 8, FINDS HETTA IN FRANCE and Book 9: JUST FOLLOW THE MONEY, takes a wild ride on two continents, and JUST FOR THE BIRDS, Book 10, gets her afowl of exotic bird smugglers. Book 11 finds her in Texas, and living in an RV until her boat goes missing back in Mexico, and in Just On Porpoise (12 ) her attention is drawn to the almost extinct Vaquita, and JUST SO WRONG (13) finds Hetta taking on the dogfighting trade. Her other books: The Texicans (Texas 1806-1836 Historical Western), Land of Mountains, a YA/TWEEN set in Haiti in the 1950’s, Troubled Sea, a thriller in Mexico’s Sea of Cortez, and BAJA GET AWAY, suspensful romance in Mexico.

Jinx spends equal time in Arizona and Mexico.

Website – http://jinxschwartz.com

Twitter – @jinxschwartz

©2023 V Williams

Happy New Year - 2023

Mitzy Moon Mysteries Books 2 and 3 by Trixie Silvertale – #BookReview – #paranormalcozymystery

Mitzy Moon Mysteries Books 1-3 by Trixie Silvertale

“Welcome to Pin Cherry Harbor where Mitzy Moon serves up the guilty!

“Mitzy Moon Mysteries revolve around Mitzy’s blossoming psychic powers and her uncanny amateur sleuthing skills in Pin Cherry Harbor (a fictional town on the shores of a great lake in almost-Canada).
“A wonderful cast of supporting characters, including an entitled feline and a skilled alchemist, help uncover clues and solve cases.”

Tattoos & Clues-Book 2

Book Blurb:

A beachside stroll. A deadly discovery. Will this psychic sleuth swim or sink?
Mitzy wishes she could turn a blind third-eye to her hit-or-miss powers. Instead, while taking her fiendish feline for a walk, they make a stomach-churning find on shore. Despite her loss of appetite, she can’t help but get a closer look at the unique ink etched into the corpse…

Before she can track down the killer, Mitzy must sweet-talk her way off the sexy sheriff’s suspect list. And once again her meddling Ghost-ma is dying to interfere with the case. But when the trail leads to dangerous smugglers who shoot first and don’t ask questions, she could end up in over her head…

Can Mitzy uncover the truth, or will hers be the next body to float to the surface?

My Review:

An interesting second book went right into the Mitzy as a suspect thing (again—one of my least favorites), although obviously no reason in the world she would be. It does, however, promote the “Sheriff Too Hot To Handle” Erick who steadfastly refuses to recognize Mitzy as anything but an interloper.

Tattoos & Clues by Trixie SilvertaleThe “Ghost-ma” is a major support character as is Silas, Mitzy’s attorney (also an alchemist) and an old friend of her recently deceased grandmother. Mitzy was an orphan after her mother died and she spent the remainder of her childhood in foster homes. The experienced honed a street-smart, independent, and savvy early twenty-something who was shocked to discover she had a father, much less a grandmother. She left Sedona, Arizona, without a backward glance and is beginning to earn a reputation in the fictitious far northern village of Pin Cherry Harbor.

Okay, enjoyed it, some further character development of both main and support characters as well as the people of the village. Twiggy, the eccentric bookstore manager and Odell, owner of Myrtle’s Diner, are beginning to come to the fore. There are characters here everyone can identify with, including the latter, and of course, Odell strongly reminds me of that old TV show with Linda Lavin and Vic Tayback as the fry cook, in “Alice.”

There is enough growth that it leaves you wanting to read Book 3 and that’s where the whole series really takes on a life of its own.

Rosepoint Rating: Four Stars 4 stars

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Book Details:

Genre: Amateur Sleuth Mysteries, Ghost Mysteries, Cozy Animal Mystery
Publisher: Sittin’ On A Goldmine Productions LLC
ASIN: B07YR6RSSH
Print Length: 286 pages
Publication Date: November 19, 2019
Source: Local Library

Title Link(s):
Amazon   |   Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo (audiobook)

Wings & Broken Things

Book Blurb:

A crime with no eyewitness. A determined psychic sleuth. Will her search for clues take her where angels fear to tread?

Mitzy Moon is eager to test her expanding abilities. She’d love to look into the hit-and-run that struck down her favorite veterinarian while everyone was at the Yuletide Extravaganza. But before she can suss out a single tip, the advances of a charming green-eyed stranger offer a dangerous distraction…

Desperate to put her investigation back on track, she goes undercover at the high school and lands on the wrong side of the law by lunch. And her “get out of jail free” card comes with the help of her meddling Grams, an interfering feline, and her alchemically inclined attorney. But when a curse puts her powers on the fritz, she may not be able to save everyone…

Can Mitzy juggle dating and sleuthing, or will a hex knock off more than her halo?

My Review:

Love this series already, the lightheartedness and sense of humor, great characters, and Pyewacket—not your average kitty!

Also delighted to read of the Swedish background (influence), since that is where my grandmother’s people are located (six miles from the North Sea actually). (My mother was very blonde although my grandmother was redheaded.)

Glögg–Swedish – means ‘to burn or mull’ which then evolved to become ‘glowing-hot wine’, and glögg by the late 1800s.

Wings & Broken Things by Trixie SilvertaleIt is through her Ghost-ma and now Silas as well that she is discovering she has “gifts” of which she was previously unaware. The problem is the discovery of just which gifts and how to use or interpret them. Quite possibly there are those out there with unusual gifts of their own that have a history with her grandmother. Oops.

In this novel, Mitzy will seek to find the person responsible for the hit-and-run of the surviving favorite town veterinarian and a missing angel statue. No bodies, not a lot of blood, but the introduction of a new and interesting character that might provide the dreaded romantic triangle.

Book 3 works heavily on character development and advances the series into the must-read category. It’s an easy read, although I’d love to get my hands on an audiobook. Books 2 and 3 further atmospherics but with a quantum leap in main character Mitzy. I’m loving the way she is being introduced to the paranormal possibilities but do tire of the trip and falls. Lots of quotables, snarky dialogue, and sense of humor keep the well-paced storyline spellbound. (Pun intended.)

“Questions are free; answers could cost you.”

I received a physical copy of the hefty compilation of Books 1, 2, and 3 from an inter-library exchange that in no way influenced this review. I’d previously read Book 1, Fries and Alibis, gleaned from a promo in October that totally fired my imagination and set up an affection for Pyewacket. But I couldn’t stop there and went on the hunt for Book 2. Glad I ended up with Book 3 as well for the character development. Those first three of the series sealed an amazing cast of characters, seated her position as owner of the bookstore, and created a salty air north Atlantic atmospheric village setting in “almost Canada” that’ll carry me through the rest (I think). Prolific author, now there are 21 in this series and I’ve already put in a request for another two. (If you’re a fan of audiobooks, they are available and my first choice.)

I’m a fan of paranormal mysteries and this pushes a number of buttons on my must have for a cozy. I could possibly do with a little less of the dreaded romance triangle and skinny jeans, but the dialogue (geared for a younger crowd), characters, and Pyewacket is endlessly entertaining. If you haven’t already discovered this author and series, I’d heartily recommend as too much fun! Trust me.

Rosepoint Rating: Four point Five Stars 4 1/2 stars

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Book Details:

Genre: Amateur Sleuth Mysteries, Ghost Mysteries, Cozy Animal Mystery
Publisher: Sittin’ On A Goldmine Productions LLC
ISBN: ‎ 0999875833
ASIN: B07ZK32Q69
Print Length: 286 pages
Publication Date: December 13, 2019
Source: Local Library 

Title Link(s):
Amazon   |   Barnes & Noble  |  Kobo (audiobook)

 

Trixie Silvertale - authorThe Author: USA TODAY Bestselling author Trixie Silvertale grew up reading an endless supply of Lilian Jackson Braun, Hardy Boys, and Nancy Drew novels. She loves the amateur sleuths in cozy mysteries and is obsessed with all things paranormal. Those two passions unite in her Mitzy Moon Mysteries, and she’s thrilled to write them and share them with you.

When she’s not consumed by writing, she bakes to fuel her creative engine and tends to her herb garden.

Visit her online at:
http://www.TrixieSilvertale.com
Instagram @trixiesilvertale

©2022 V Williams

#ThrowbackThursday

The Sandcastle Hurricane by Carolyn Brown – #BookReview – #TuesdayBookBlog

Book Blurb:

Family, wounded hearts, and a Texas bed-and-breakfast are in need of repair in New York Times bestselling author Carolyn Brown’s inviting novel about down-home comfort and second chances.

The Sandcastle Hurricane by Carolyn BrownCousins Tabby and Ellie Mae are due for a change. Running their aunt’s beachfront bed-and-breakfast in Sandcastle, Texas, is just the thing to shake things up…though their lives spin out of control in more ways than one when a hurricane barrels into the coastline. It’s a miracle it didn’t carry them off to Kansas. Not so lucky are the assisted-living center and a small eclectic group of local folks who take shelter with the cousins.

Two estranged sisters, rowdy as a circus, need a referee for a battle that goes back decades. And a pair of veterans, best friends for years, hash out bittersweet old times. There’s also handyman Alex LaSalle and his business partner, Ricky, experts at repairing the hurricane’s damage—and at making Tabby’s and Ellie Mae’s hearts beat a little faster.

As unpredictable, crowded, and stormy as it gets, the Sandcastle B and B is still the perfect harbor for healing past wounds, finding romance, and making up for lost time. Add in Tabby’s homemade pecan pie, and the Texas shore feels like a little slice of paradise.

My Review:

Ah, a novel of damaged souls bound together in the face of nature’s forceful notice that there are worse things out there. Time to count the blessings and coincidentally this is the perfect time of year to do that.

The Sandcastle Hurricane by Carolyn BrownCousins Tabby and Ellie May have had their full share of tragedy and the timing is right for their Aunt Charlotte to sign over her beachfront B&B to her nieces and split for drier pastures. Heaven knows they have ideas on what to do with the property which will require some updating but the relocation for both of them to the south is a great time for them to band together, start over, and do it.

Unfortunately, they barely unpack their bags before they are notified of an impending hurricane and dear ole auntie calls to tell them he’s sending Alex to them with four assisted living persons who could not be evacuated—no place to go.

Well, at least Alex and his partner Ricky can provide some eye candy as well as a built-in repair crew after the hurricane.

Hurricane Delilah is taking her old sweet time decimating the formerly peaceful village and it appears their elderly guests will be forced to stay until everyone is bosom buddies. The two old sisters are like a couple vipers while the two old veterans swap war stories. The cousins manage to make it work without B&B experience or electricity and discover the group is a family in itself.

Nothing like a feel good Hallmark type novel to set a reader up for the upcoming holiday season. Not as syrupy sweet as Hallmark, as there might be some objectionable language and implied sexual activity, but it is a lesson in coming together for the common good. There are themes of kindness, loss, grief, and recovery. Fresh starts are a good thing, families are a good thing, pets are a good thing, and so are romances but these are just too convenient to be very realistic.

I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the author and publisher through @NetGalley that in no way influenced this review. These are my honest thoughts.

Rosepoint Rating: Three point Five Stars 3 1/2 stars

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Book Details:

Genre: Small Town & Rural Fiction, Contemporary Women’s Fiction, Women’s Romance Fiction
Publisher: Montlake
ISBN: ‎ 1542038383
ASIN: B09S37L4Q7
Print Length: 315 pages
Publication Date: November 8, 2022
Source: Publisher and NetGalley

Title Link(s):

Amazon   |   Barnes & Noble

Carolyn Brown - authorThe Author: Carolyn Brown is a New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, Publisher’s Weekly and #1 Amazon and #1 Washington Post bestselling author. She is the author of more than 100 novels and several novellas. She’s a recipient of the Bookseller’s Best Award, Montlake Romance’s prestigious Montlake Diamond Award, and also a three-time recipient of the National Reader’s Choice Award. Brown has been published for more than 20 years, and her books have been translated 21 foreign languages.

When she’s not writing, she likes to plot new stories in her backyard with her tom cat, Boots Randolph Terminator Outlaw, who protects the yard from all kinds of wicked varmints like crickets, locusts, and spiders.

Visit her at http://www.carolynbrownbooks.com.

©2022 V Williams V Williams

#TuesdayBookBlog

The Nature of Secrets (Finley O’Sullivan Book 2) by Debra Webb – #BookReview – #womensleuths

Book Blurb:

From USA Today bestselling author Debra Webb comes a thrilling installment in the Finley O’Sullivan series about a well-connected woman who stands accused of her husband’s murder. She’s innocent—unless Finley proves otherwise.

The Nature of Secrets by Debra WebbLegal investigator Finley O’Sullivan has had a difficult year in the wake of her husband’s murder. But in her line of work, there’s no time to grieve. Her job is to protect the firm’s clients and defend their innocence through grueling investigative work.

Ellen Winthrop is a force to be reckoned with in the financial world. In a male-dominated industry, she shattered the glass ceiling by empowering and promoting women. But now her husband is dead, killed in the Winthrop family home—and she stands accused of his murder.

Finley, as the investigator at the firm Ellen Winthrop hired to defend her, has a clear objective: prove that Ellen didn’t do it. But the deeper Finley digs into the Winthrops’ marriage, the more she starts to doubt Ellen’s story. The uncomfortable truth is that Ellen Winthrop may in fact have killed her husband.

And he might not have been the first.

His Review:

Working as an assistant detective for the police department was not the career Finley O’Sullivan envisioned for her life. Leaving the department and organizing a private detective firm seemed to be the answer to her problems. She and another of the detectives went into private investigations.

The Nature of Secrets by Debra WebbThis book had so many murders and unnatural deaths that I almost lost track! Finley cannot maintain a lasting relationship. She keeps choosing losers that wind up being killed! I began to feel like she has become a black widow and men should run, not walk, away from her.

CE WilliamsI prefer more mystery in my mysteries! I felt sorry for any man that decided to go out with the attractive Finley because it put a hit on their lives. I finished the book and applaud the writer for doing the same. Fans of the author will no doubt enjoy the addition to her series. My expectation in a mystery novel, however, is to try to determine who the killer is rather than compile a body count. 3.5 stars – CE Williams

Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with the opportunity to read and review this book.

Rosepoint Publishing: Three point Five Stars 3 1/2 stars

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Book Details:

Genre: Women Sleuths, Police Procedurals
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
ASIN: B0B3M9TNB8
Print Length: 351 pages
Publication Date: March 14, 2023
Source: Publisher and NetGalley
Title Link:  The Nature of Secrets [Amazon]

 

Debra Webb - authorThe Author: DEBRA WEBB is the USA Today and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author of more than 160 novels, including reader favorites the Shades of Death, the Faces of Evil, and the Colby Agency. She is the recipient of the prestigious Romantic Times Career Achievement Award for Romantic Suspense as well as numerous Reviewers Choice Awards. In 2012 Debra was honored as the first recipient of the esteemed L. A. Banks Warrior Woman Award for her courage, strength, and grace in the face of adversity. Recently Debra was awarded the distinguished Centennial Award for having achieved publication of her 100th novel. With this award Debra joined the ranks of a handful of authors like Nora Roberts and Carole Mortimer.

With more than four million books in print in numerous languages and countries, Debra’s love of storytelling goes back to her childhood when, at the age of nine, her mother bought her an old typewriter in a tag sale. Born in Alabama, Debra grew up on a farm. She spent every available hour exploring the world around her and creating her stories. She wrote her first story at age nine and her first romance at thirteen. It wasn’t until she spent three years working for the Commanding General of the US Army in Berlin behind the Iron Curtain and a five-year stint in NASA’s Shuttle Program that she realized her true calling. A collision course between suspense and romance was set. Since then she has expanded her work into some of the darkest places the human psyche dares to go.

Visit Debra at http://www.debrawebb.com.

©2022 – CE Williams – V Williams V Williams

Enjoy Your Sunday

 

More Harm Than Good: The Kilteegan Bridge Story-Book 3 by Jean Grainger – #BookReview – #TuesdayBookBlog

Rosepoint Rating: Five Stars 5 stars
“He always joked that in other cultures, there was a lot of talk and very little action, whereas in Ireland the reverse was true.” 

Book Blurb:

Kilteegan Bridge, Ireland 1974

More Harm Than Good by Jean GraingerFor each member of the O’Sullivan family there are turbulent times ahead.

Eli’s need to do his best for his patients is a cause for a bitter divide in the community. Emmet seems hell bent on going down a path in life his parents dread but they’re unable to stop him. Jack’s life and liberty are in grave peril as his secret faces exposure, while Emily’s troubles are, it seems only just beginning with the return of someone she would much rather had disappeared forever. And Maria must decide, is blood really thicker than water, and should family always come first, no matter the cost?

In More Harm than Good, the Kilteegan Bridge Series continues, as the modernity of the 1970’s challenges Irish traditional ways, and generations clash, sometimes with deadly consequences.

My Review:

Master Irish storyteller Jean Grainger adds Book 3 to the emotional family drama Kilteegan Bridge series. Book 3 has progressed to the mid-70s (from the 50s in Book 1) to a strong climate of changing Irish attitudes. It’s hard to change and change doesn’t come easy.

Eli and Lena have seen their little ones become teens and the teens are exploring and rebelling as teens are wont to do. Some of the rebellion is serious and will spell major upheaval for both Lena and Eli as well as the extended family, all of whom face desperate problems of their own.

More Harm Than Good by Jean GraingerWhat secrets are Jack and Skipper keeping? Emmet and Nellie? Too young to know what they don’t know, too young and naïve to be aware they are being played. Too inexperienced to know what to do or where to turn. But they are family. And family sticks together always and takes care of one their own—in one way or another.

Don’t they?

I love the way the author builds her characters into flesh and blood. The village of Kilteegan so real, atmospheric, the people under the heavy hand of the Catholic Church that governs with an iron fist and manipulates their lives.

I love that daft sense of humor she brings to her tales. The analogies often break the tension just when it’s needed and never fail to bring a smile or chuckle.

“…sometimes you’re as useful as an ashtray on a motorbike.”

The narrative needs an occasional break from the serious turn into themes of religious control, homosexuality, unwed pregnancy, and mental illness. A couple issues are dealt with strongly and sympathetically, possibly revealing a more lenient attitude than the issues provided at the time.

I love it when Jean Grainger releases another novel in one of her series. I read both Book 1 The Trouble with Secrets and Book 2 What Divides Us and loved this addition, although it could be read as a standalone. The author can weave a historical chronicle into an Irish family drama that clutches at the heart and leaves ripples of familiarity. Few have not confronted a similar situation and easily understand the impact.

I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the author that in no way influenced this review. These are my honest thoughts and I’m looking forward to Book 4. Recommended!

Add to Goodreads

Book Details:

Genre: Historical Irish Fiction, Historical British Fiction, Historical Mystery, Thriller & Suspense Fiction
ASIN: B0BFXLYXJK
Print Length: 280 pages
Publication Date: November 15, 2022 – Happy Release Day!
Source: Author contact

Title Link(s):

Amazon   |   Barnes & Noble

 

Jean Grainger - authorThe Author: JEAN GRAINGER is a USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR

SELECTED BY BOOKBUB READERS IN TOP 19 OF HISTORICAL FICTION BOOKS.

WINNER OF THE 2016 AUTHOR’S CIRCLE HISTORICAL NOVEL OF EXCELLENCE

Hello and thanks for taking time out to check out my page. If you’re wondering what you’re getting with my books then think of the late great Maeve Binchy but sometimes with a historical twist. I was born in Cork, Ireland in 1971 and I come from a large family of storytellers, so much so that we had to have ‘The Talking Spoon’, only the person holding the spoon could talk!

I have worked as a history lecturer at University, a teacher of English, History and Drama in secondary school, a playwright, and a tour guide of my beloved Ireland. I am married to the lovely Diarmuid and we have four children. We live in a 200 year old stone cottage in Mid-Cork with my family and the world’s smallest dogs, called Scrappy and Scoobi..

My experiences leading groups, mainly from the United States, led me to write my first novel, ‘The Tour’. My observances of the often funny, sometimes sad but always interesting events on tours fascinated me. People really did confide the most extraordinary things, the safety of strangers I suppose. It’s a fictional story set on a tour bus but many of the characters are based on people I met over the years.

[truncated—please see author’s page for full bio]

Many of the people who have reviewed my books have said that you get to know the characters and really become attached to them, that’s wonderful for me to hear because that’s how I feel about them too. I grew up on Maeve Binchy and Deirdre Purcell and I aspired to being like them. If you buy one of my books I’m very grateful and I really hope you enjoy it. If you do, or even if you don’t, please take the time to post a review. Writing is a source of constant contentment to me and I am so fortunate to have the time and the inclination to do it, but to read a review written by a reader really does make my day.

©2022 V Williams V Williams

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