Publisher: Berkley

A Ghostly Light by Juliet Blackwell

Posted August 19, 2017 by karenbaron in Cozy, Dogs, Ghosts, Guest Post, Mystery, Paranormal Mystery, Review, Series, Urban / 0 Comments

A Ghostly Light by Juliet BlackwellA Ghostly Light by Juliet Blackwell
Published by Berkley on June 4th 2017
Genres: Cozy, Mystery, Paranormal
Pages: 330
Format: Kindle
five-stars

In the latest mystery from the New York Times bestselling author of Give Up the Ghost, it will take a beacon of ghostly intervention to guide contractor Mel Turner to the truth... Dangerous tides ahead...  When her friend Alicia hires Turner Construction to renovate a historic lighthouse in the San Francisco Bay, Mel Turner can’t wait to get her hands dirty. Alicia plans to transform the island property into a welcoming inn, and while Mel has never attempted a project so ambitious—or so tall—before, she’s definitely up for the challenge.   But trouble soon arises when Alicia’s abusive ex-husband shows up to threaten both her and Mel, and later turns up dead at the base of the lighthouse stairs. With no other suspects in sight, things start looking choppy for Alicia. Now, if Mel wants to clear her friend’s name, she’ll need the help of the lighthouse’s resident ghosts to shine a light on the real culprit...

This lighthouse holds more than just light.

A Ghostly Light by Juliet Blackwell this is one of my favorite series. I truly love the mix of history, home renovation, paranormal, mystery and the quirkiness of San Francisco and the bay area.

The world that Ms. Blackwell has created by mixing fact and fiction is so believable. Honestly, I would like to hire Turner Construction just to be a little part of this world.

I really think that Mel is shining in this addition. It’s nice to see her with her new man Landon. She is so happy. She still has things to work on (such as her recent fear of heights0 but don’t we all. She is finally working through all of her jobs: ghost, construction or murder. Landon is extremely supportive. It’s so sweet.

Mel has two mysteries to solve: the recent murder that her friend has been accused of and the mystery of the lighthouse ghost. Ms. Blackwell does such a great job keeping the whole thing moving through the past, present and glimpses of the future.

I adored the lighthouse history that was included with the story. The treasure maps were so thoughtful. What a wonderful way to teach and entertain your child, so much better than handing them a cellphone to play with.

I found this quote online and thought it was such a great fit for this story. “Books are lighthouses erected in the great sea of time.” ~E.P. Whipple

My rating is 5 stars, of course. If you haven’t read the other books you should try the first book in the series, Home Renovation or you can just start with this one. I guarantee you will want more. Mel and her entourage are worth your time.

**A Ghostly Light**

** Goodreads **        

This is a Guest Review for Baroness’ Book Trove. Thank you for the opportunity to review this book for your site. ~Jen

five-stars

About Juliet Blackwell

Juliet Blackwell was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, the youngest child of a jet pilot from New York and an editor from Texas. She graduated with a degree in Latin American Studies from University of California, Santa Cruz, and went on to earn Masters degrees in Anthropology and Social Work from the State University of New York, Albany.

While in graduate school she published several articles based on her research with immigrant families from Mexico and Viet Nam, as well as one full-length translation: Miguel León-Portilla’s seminal work, Endangered Cultures. Juliet taught Medical Anthropology at SUNY-Albany, was a producer for a BBC documentary about Vietnamese children left behind by US soldiers, and worked as an elementary school social worker in rural New York. Upon her return to California, she became a professional artist and ran her own decorative painting, historical renovation, and domestic design studio for more than a decade.

In addition to mainstream novels, Juliet pens the New York Times Bestselling Witchcraft Mysteries and the Haunted Home Renovation series. As Hailey Lind, she wrote the Agatha Award-nominated Art Lover’s Mystery series. She is past president of Northern California Sisters in Crime and former board member of Mystery Writers of America.

Juliet lives in a hundred-year-old house with extensive botanical gardens in Northern California but spends as much time as possible in Europe and Latin America. She believes in the magic of language, travel, and cultural exchange to open hearts, minds, and souls.


A Gala Event GP

Posted December 30, 2015 by karenbaron in Cozy, Mystery, Review, Rural, Series / 0 Comments

A Gala Event GPA Gala Event by Sheila Connolly
Series: Orchard #9
Series Rating: five-stars
Published by Berkley on October 6th 2015
Genres: Cozy, Fiction, Mystery, Romance
Pages: 304
Format: Kindle
five-stars

Wedding bells are ringing for Meg and Seth in the latest Orchard Mystery from the New York Times bestselling author of Picked to Die
The fall harvest may be just about over, but orchard owner Meg Corey is busier than ever planning her wedding to Seth Chapin. Who knew picking apples would be less work than picking out rings and a dress? And even though the happy couple has invited most of Granford, Massachusetts, to the ceremony, they might have to make room for one more guest…
Ex-con Aaron Eastman has unexpectedly reappeared in his hometown, searching for answers to the tragic fire in his family’s past that put him behind bars twenty-five years ago. Moved by his sincerity, Meg vows to do everything she can to help him solve the cold case. As she cobbles together the clues, it becomes increasingly clear that Aaron may have been considered the bad seed of the family, but someone else was one bad apple…
Includes Delicious Recipes!

My Thoughts:                     So happy for this couple! This one gets 5 stars.

I truly like Meg’s character. She stands up for what she believes even if that means she has to take the hard road. She is completely a down to earth woman. She reminds me of my old friend Nopal. Nopal would call herself an old farm woman. She didn’t put on airs and she preferred to keep her mind and body busy, much like Meg. Meg and Seth make a great pair, they are both hardworking, honest and don’t shy giving helping a hand.

In this episode Meg’s friend Gail uncharacteristically freaks out and hurts a stranger. In comes Meg to help figure out what happened recently and then she attempts to solve a very old cold case with hardly any evidence. Meg enlists the assistance of Seth’s sister, mother, Gail, Art and of course Seth. This task seems daunting until most of the paperwork is back and they have done some leg work. Each person had a different part of the puzzle which allowed Meg to come up with the best conclusion possible and present it to Aaron and his siblings.

I think what I like most in this story was the melting of the different personalities through the actual story. There are quite a few characters (and I do mean characters) in this series. They seemed to all come together for the wedding and do it in a way that was sincere. Although Meg and Seth get married in this book, there are so many other things going on, such as planning the nuptials, the ex-con showing up, his relationship with his siblings, remodeling, finishing the harvest, entertaining, Thanksgiving, the birth of a new character, and the solving of an old fire. Talk about multi-tasking.

This is an outstanding series, I would highly recommend it and do. You may want to start from the first book in the series (One Bad Apple) even though that isn’t necessary as each book stands alone also. There are some nice apple recipes included if you like to bake/cook. So check it out!

This is a Guest Review for Baroness’ Book Trove. Thank you for the opportunity to review this book for your site. ~Jen

If you would like to see other reviews like this one, check out BaronessBookTrove.com.

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five-stars

About Sheila Connolly

Connolly was born in Rochester, New York, and since then has lived in Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, California, and Massachusetts. In 1972 she graduated with honors from Wellesley College, then earned a Ph.D. in Fine Arts from Harvard University. When art history jobs proved elusive, she obtained an M.B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley. She has worked as an art historian, a municipal financial advisor for U.S. cities and states, a non-profit fundraiser for institutions and two statewide political campaigns, and a professional genealogist. She has included elements of all of these in her mysteries.

Connolly is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Romance Writers of America, and Sisters in Crime, and is also a member of the steering committee for the New England Crime Bake, an annual mystery conference.

Currently she lives in southeastern Massachusetts, with her husband, daughter, and three cats.

(Info above from Wikipedia)


Home for a Spell by Madelyn Alt

Posted August 5, 2015 by karenbaron in Cozy, Murder, Paranormal Mystery, Paranormal Romance, Review, Series, Witches / 0 Comments

Home for a Spell by Madelyn AltHome for a Spell by Madelyn Alt
Series: A Bewitching Mystery #7
Series Rating: five-stars
Published by Berkley on January 4, 2011
Genres: Cozy, Fantasy, Fiction, Mystery, Paranormal
Pages: 290
Format: Hardcover
five-stars

In Madelyn Alt’s “enchanting and bewitching”* series, Maggie O’Neill is Stony Mill, Indiana’s newest witch. It’s a job that entails a fair share of magic and mysticism – and sometimes brews up a perilous potion of mystery and murder…

Maggie is back at work at the antique shop Enchantments. Unfortunately, she’s hobbled by a broken ankle, which makes helping customers a pretty lame proposition. But just because she’s sporting a bright yellow, sparkle-covered cast doesn’t mean the rest of her life is slowing down.

Her boyfriend, the magically inclined Marcus, has some unfinished business that she feels guilty about distracting him from. And her best friend and upstairs neighbor is getting ready to tie the knot with her own boyfriend and move away. This leads Maggie to wonder if it isn’t time to find her own change of scenery. First things first: a new apartment.

But when she finally finds a place to call her own, Maggie’s dream of new digs turns into a nightmare after the apartment manager is found dead before she can even sign the lease. And Maggie finds herself not only searching for a new home – but for a frightfully clever killer…
*Midwest Book Review

My take on this book: I am happy to say that I am giving this book a five stars because it kept my attention and I actually like the storyline this time. Granted we don’t see much of Steff or Dr. Dan or of mostly anyone else in the N.I.G.H.T.S unless they are the ones working at the antique shop with Maggie, Liss, Tara, and Evie.

The one time that Steff is mentioned is when Liss tells her that she is moving with Dr. Dan sometime soon. Which is how Maggie ends up trying to find a new place and she kind of does. Even if the apartment manager gives her the creeps and she had no clue why.

This time I actually figured out who did it along with Maggie and them. Granted I didn’t understand the motive for this person. However, I did realize it was her and we found out the reason at the end of the book. Let’s just say that even though the ending of the book is perfect. This might be the last book of Maggie’s life and that is sad. And we are left to our own devices on thinking up stuff for Maggie and the N.I.G.H.T.S. and what has been going on in their life.

Anyways until next time, enjoy this book review brought to you by:

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five-stars

About Madelyn Alt

Madelyn doesn’t seem to be writing anymore.


A Witch in Time by Madelyn Alt

Posted August 3, 2015 by karenbaron in Cozy, Murder, Paranormal Mystery, Paranormal Romance, Review, Series, Witches / 0 Comments

A Witch in Time by Madelyn AltA Witch in Time by Madelyn Alt
Series: A Bewitching Mystery #6
Series Rating: five-stars
Published by Berkley on April 6, 2010
Genres: Cozy, Fantasy, Fiction, Mystery, Paranormal
Pages: 304
Format: Hardcover
five-stars

“This new series is going to be a winner.”**

Madelyn Alt’s mysteries featuring Maggie O’Neill – Stony Mill, Indiana’s newest witch – have been praised as “quirky, enchanting, mystical, and addictive.”** And exploring the spirit world has never been this much fun – or this much trouble…

For the past few weeks, Maggie has found that two is far better than one. She’s been attached at the hip to the smoking-hot Marcus Quinn. Things couldn’t get any better – until her sister, Mel, gives birth to not one but two little bundles of joy…

Maggie’s just left Enchantments, Indiana’s finest mystical antiques shop, for a date with Marcus when the call about Mel comes. Stopping to pick up refreshments for her family on the way to the hospital, she learns that a Stony Mill teenager has been found dead.

Later that night, at the hospital, she hears a whispered conversation that sends chills down her spine. Could the conversation be related to the teen’s death? Or to a murder that hasn’t happened yet? It may take all her witchy intuition to find out…

**Annette Blair

*The Romance Readers Connection

My take on this book: CAUTION!! THIS REVIEW MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS! IF YOU DON’T WANT TO READ ANY SPOILERS PLEASE STOP READING NOW! IF YOU DO WANT TO READ SPOILERS CONTINUE ON! I WON’T ALWAYS HAVE SPOILERS THOUGH!!

Maggie O’Neill is back in another good mystery. Right off the bat this book will be five stars. Maggie uncharacteristically, wanted to be done working at the store early that afternoon. She wanted to get her butt over to Marcus’s place so that they could watch movies and maybe do something more… That is until her mom called Liss who then called Marcus who told Maggie to get to the hospital asap.

Maggie was pretty much busy with doing all the things her sister and mother wanted her to do at the hospital while waiting for her sister to give birth to her baby. Or in the case babies that no one knew about. Not even Felicity knew about the babies. The day after Mel gave birth to her twin girls Maggie was on her way out and going to her job when she broke her ankle.

Maggie was thrown into a loop over the conversation she heard from the elevator and has been trying to figure out who the people were while trying to figure out who they were talking about. That right there has been the biggest mystery especially considering the weird way that Dr. Dan has been acting around Steff. Steff is Maggie’s best friend. Marcus has also been trying to get Maggie to stay put so that her ankle could heal which is turned out to be pretty hard. Since Maggie has too many things to worry about right now. Like helping her sister with the twin girls while her husband is missing, figuring out what happened to the teen that died, figuring with why Tony Nunizo was killed, and to heal her ankle.

Madelyn Alt has woven a great mystery book as once again I didn’t guess who the killer was, once again. That has been becoming a trend for me as I haven’t figured out who killed the person that got killed in any of Madelyn Alt books.

Anyways until next time enjoy this book review brought to you by
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five-stars

About Madelyn Alt

Madelyn doesn’t seem to be writing anymore.


GP Hooked on Ewe

Posted July 31, 2015 by karenbaron in Cozy, Murder, Review / 0 Comments

GP Hooked on EweHooked on Ewe by Hannah Reed
Series: Scottish Highlands #2
Series Rating: five-stars
Published by Berkley on July 7th 2015
Genres: Cozy, Fiction, Mystery
Pages: 304
Format: Kindle
five-stars

In national bestselling author Hannah Reed’s latest Scottish Highlands mystery, aspiring romance novelist Eden Elliott discovers the landscape isn’t the only thing that’s dramatic when a local woman is done in...
It’s early September in Glenkillen, Scotland, when American expat (and budding romance novelist) Eden Elliott is recruited by the local inspector to act as a special constable. Fortunately it’s in name only, since not much happens in Glenkillen.
For now Eden has her hands full with other things: preparing for the sheepdog trial on the MacBride farm—a fundraiser for the local hospice—and helping her friend Vicki with her first yarn club skein-of-the-month deliveries. Everything seems to be coming together—until the head of the welcoming committee is found strangled to death with a club member’s yarn.
Now Eden feels compelled to honor her commitment as constable and herd together the clues, figure out which ones are dogs, and which ones will lead to a ruthless killer . . .

My Thoughts:        Loved it! It’s easily a 5 star book!

Eden Elliot, is an American living in the Scottish Highlands for 6 months. She is supposed to be writing a series of romance books, but she keeps getting wrapped up in these local murders. She is writing, one book down and another to finish before she returns home. Now Eden has even been appointed special constable (volunteer cop). The locals think she is blunt and says what on her mind without tact. Sometimes their phrases along with her responses are pretty funny. Eden is building some great relationships, like her new best friend Vicki, the sexy Leith, and grouchy, quiet Inspector Jamieson. Who doesn’t like a story with tall Highland men, speaking with that awesome accent and don’t forget the kilts? Eden really should listen to her friend Ami and check out those kilts a little closer.

I like the characters that Eden comes across. I also like the way the regular supporting characters are growing and their reactions are completely believable. I can picture the area, and her hang outs with such clarity. Ms. Reed has painted a magnificent picture for us. This is a wonderful cozy mystery series, I am definitely recommending it to my friends.

I look forward to the next installment of Scottish Highland Mysteries.

This is a Guest Review for Baroness’ Book Trove. Thank you for the opportunity to review this book for your site. ~Jen

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five-stars

About Hannah Reed

Hannah Reed is the pen name of author Deb Baker.

As Deb (her real name) she has authored The Gertie Johnson Backwoods Adventures
and The Dolls To Die For Series.

In her youth, Deb dreamed of working as a private investigator or as an undercover cop.
So when Deb began writing a new series, the Queen Bee mysteries, she did something
she always wanted to do — she went undercover with an alias!

Hannah was one of her all-time favorite names. Reed was her great-grandmother’s
maiden name. So she put the two together.

As it turns out, the author Hannah Reed is much younger than Deb Baker. She’s also
more daring, more willing to step right into the midst of any sticky situation, and she’s
not afraid to tell it like it is.

As Deb says, “Look out! When Hannah’s around, big trouble is sure to follow.”