All of the books in this weekend's posts will be released this coming week!
The Semi-Sweet Hereafter is book three in Colette London's Chocolate Whisperer Mystery series. This is the second book I have read in the series. Hayden is back at another chocolate whisperer job this time in London and once again stumbles onto a murder. The dead man is the husband of her current client, Phoebe. While this book stands on its own, I think Hayden's actions are best understood if one has read the previous book. I liked this book although not quite as much as the last one. The slight shift in Hayden's character was the problem for me. The book is a good cozy mystery as long as readers can adjust to the frantic personality of the main character.
Leslie Nagel is the author of The Book Club Murders which is book one in the Oakwood Mystery series. Charley is a member of the Agathas, a mystery book club. When bodies start piling up in Oakwood, Charley steps in to help the police solve the murders. This book is marketed as a cozy mystery, but it does not fit the normal definition of a cozy mystery. First the book had too much romance and random sex for me. While I can handle a bit of romance, it was one of the main plots of this book. Second I had no use for the foul language. I do not feel that it adds anything to a book. With those points aside, the mystery was good. The series shows promise if the mystery becomes the main focus of future books.
British Manor Murder by Leslie Meier is the latest in the Lucy Stone Mystery series. I have read a few books in the series before this one. This book easily stands on its own. The series is still just as fresh as in the beginning. Lucy is off to England as the guest of Perry, earl of a large manor home. The trip is going well until some extra guests show up as well as dead body. I enjoyed the scenery of the book and felt as if I were along with Lucy in England. This is a fun and clean cozy mystery and reminded me I need to seek out more of Mrs. Meier's books!
Book two in the Henny Penny Farmette mystery series by Meera Lester is The Murder of a Queen Bee. I had not read the previous book in the series but had not trouble diving into this book. Abby is devastated to learn that her friend Fiona missed a planned lunch because she is dead. Abby quickly becomes immersed in the murder investigation. First the positives. The mystery was interesting, and I enjoyed the farm setting as well as the focus on bees and chickens. I had two negatives however. The first is that Abby is guy crazy. Just in this one book she has three possible love interests. I was very annoyed that she simply allowed a man who had hurt her so badly and then disappeared just move right back into her home. While I can handle a bit of romance, I do not care for that to have as much (and sometimes more) focus than the mystery. The second negative is one of the "tips" included in the book. Readers are told that backyard chicken eggs will only last five weeks in a home refrigerator. That is absurd, and I can assure you from personal experience that it is not true. It leaves me with some concern about the other information included. I would give the series another shot but am not impressed by this book alone.
disclosure: I received these e-books from NetGalley but was not otherwise compensated for these reviews. All opinions are my own.