Murder, She Meowed
by Liz Mugavero
Mystery & Thrillers
Pub Date 29 Jan 2019
Wedding preparations can be murder - but in this case it is literally true as the body of the young man scheduled to dance at Stan’s bachelorette party is discovered within the fake cake. Between trying to prevent her mother from taking over her wedding, running her pet patisserie, and helping Jessie solve the crime, Stan has her hands full. But unless the murder is quickly solved she won’t rest easy - particularly when a stalker starts targeting her and her business.
Liz Mugavero’s pawsitively organic mysteries are a treat for animal lovers as well as mystery lovers. I enjoyed Murder She Meowed immensely, especially the interactions between Stan and her family and friends. Frog Ledge is a believably close knit community, and all of the characters readers have come to know are present without situations feeling forced. The mystery itself is well crafted, and has many surprises in store...
I wasn’t sure what to expect from Gretchen Galway’s debut paranormal mystery. I was decidedly impressed. Not only did the mystery keep me guessing, but it applied magic in a creative way. I absolutely loved Random, Alma’s dog, and found Alma’s empathy for others believable.
The only weakness was that some characters were less developed than others. Some characters were little more than names while others had a bit of personality attached. With a touch more character development, I’d rate Dead Witch on a Bridge a 5 rather than a 4.
4 / 5
I received a copy of Dead Witch on a Bridge from the publisher and Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review.
The first in a new paranormal mystery series by USA Today bestselling author Gretchen Galway.
Is her magic strong enough to stop a killer?
On her first assignment as a demon-hunting witch, Alma was...
I have a little bit of mixed feelings about Where Secrets Lie. On the one hand, the case, which starts out slow becomes more and more fascinating as the layers of truth are discovered. On the other hand, Butler’s depiction of his investigating team is somewhat lacking. For a good part of the novel they were bland cardboard cutouts. More effort was made further in, but I can’t say the characters were particularly compelling. You only got a little bit of what made them tick.
While I liked the plot, I think more could have been done to bring the central characters to life. That being said, I’m willing to try another of D.S. Butler’s novels.
3 / 5
I received a copy of Where Secrets Lie from the publisher and Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review.
Shrill Dusk is an entertaining urban fantasy that doesn’t take itself too seriously. After neatly skirting the apocalypse, Manchester has become infused with magic. Most flee the city, while others, discovering their unique heritage stay. Charley is a professional gambler with a heart of gold. She likes helping people and tends to think of others first, not always to her benefit. What she doesn’t realize is that she has the potential to be a leader, or the firepower to back it up.
Do people need strict laws? Or can they survive with openness and pure democracy? That’s the question at the end of Shrill Dusk, and one that will be important in future novels. Charley is an idealist and has the magic to protect her group. The werewolves have their own protection. Shrill Dusk’s purpose was to create the setting, demonstrate the type of person Charley is, and create a p...
Bones Behind the Wheel A Haunted Guesthouse Mystery
by E. J. Copperman
Crooked Lane Books
Mystery & Thrillers
Pub Date 08 Jan 2019
A Lincoln continental is difficult to ignore, particularly when it is buried in your backyard along with a skeleton- but that doesn’t mean Alison Kerby doesn’t try, despite her family’s and her resident ghostly investigator’s ardent interest in the very cold case. Adding to the fun is the car’s mysterious disappearance and reappearance. The mystery underlying Bones Behind the Wheel is fascinating - I was captivated from the start.
It is nice to see how Alison’s family interacts and works together on the case, along with Paul, the resident detective (deceased) and Maxie (also deceased). The interplay with Lieutenant McElone is often funny, but it’s clear she is a professional and not one to jump to conclusions, despite her dislike of ghosts. The one weak point characterwise is Alison. It is a case of “she protests too much”. Her reluctance to...
by Kristi Charish
Penguin Random House Canada
General Fiction (Adult) , Sci Fi & Fantasy
Pub Date 08 Jan 2019
Lipstick Voodoo is a pleasant departure from the average paranormal/ urban fantasy. While it isn’t perfect, (Nate can be extremely annoying) it has a lot in its favor - an intriguing magical premise (spiritual energy comes from the otherside and can be used to contact/raise the dead), a capable heroine, and interesting supporting characters (a sorcerer’s Ghost, a zombie attorney/bar owner, a dead grunge rocker stuck in a decaying body, etc..).
Kincaid Strange is a Voodoo practitioner, bringing the dead back in order to resolve issues and answer questions. She was looking for murderers with the local police, but the new chief has canceled all contracts and is painting all practitioners as charlatans. Now, she is left dealing with lawyers looking to resolve disputed wills. Kincaid’s biggest problem is...
I picked up The Man on the Middle Floor because I was intrigued by the description. I was not impressed. Nick’s violence, anger and sexuality were difficult to face. I know these are issues with autistic adults but Elizabeth S Moore repeatedly pushes these aspects to the reader. It makes him impossible to identify with. Equally disturbing is Karen, who is so obsessed with her research that she is guilty of child neglect. Her selfishness and her inability to connect with or empathize with others make her a figure who it is easier to simply dislike than to understand. While she functions, it is impossible to say that she functions well, and her subsequent decay seems almost like justice. The third player, Tam is the most human of the three characters. His detachment is not born of mental illness or obsession, but rather an environment that is changi...