Saturday, September 18, 2021

Weekend Book Reviews

 A Tale of Two Cookies by Eve Calder is the third book in the Cookie House Mystery series.  Kate is
enjoying her new life at the Cookie House in Coral Cay, Florida.  When an old friend arrives in town with news of her impromptu wedding, Kate is thrilled to help.  When the groom vanishes, everyone begins to question if the bride was only having a wedding in her own mind as no one heard the groom say he was going to be a groom.  Kate also wonders what his connection was to the reality tv show being filmed on the island.  I love the setting of this series.  The plot twists in this particular book kept me guessing until the end.

The tenth book in the Cookbook Nook Mystery series by Daryl Wood Gerber is Wining and Dying.  Jenna is showing one of her paintings at Crystal Cove's Art and Wine Festival.  When one of her fellow artists is murdered, Jenna's friend is the main suspect.  Obviously Jenna must investigate.  Jenna uncovers a few secrets while trying to solve the mystery and not become the next victim.  Reading this book felt like visiting old friends.  The setting and mystery are the stars!

Whole Latte Murder by Lena Gregory is the fifth book in the All Day Breakfast Cafe Mystery series.  Gia's best friend Savannah is getting married so Gia and she are going in search of the perfect wedding dress.  First Savannah has to show a mansion to a wealthy client.  Savannah ends up missing, and her client is found dead.  Gia and most of the town are frantic to find her.  Unfortunately Savannah's sudden return leaves more questions than answers.  This is an action packed book with plenty of twists and turns.  I love the suprise-ish ending!

disclosure:  I received these e-books through NetGalley in exchange for honest reviews.  I received no other compensation and all opinions are my own!

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Weekend Book Reviews

 Laid Out in Lavender by Gin Jones is the third book in the Garlic Farm Mystery series.  Mabel continues to try to save her aunt's farm by branching out into weddings.  The first one seems doomed from the start.  The bride's and groom's adult children are against the wedding.  The wedding planner keeps disappearing.  The worst thing is when the best man is found murdered.  In order to save the farm, the wedding, and her neighbor, Mabel must begin her own investigation.  Mabel has definitely grown as a character, and the police detective is less annoying by the end of of the book.  This series is growing on me!

The fifth book in the By the Sea Mystery series by Kathleen Bridge is Buried by the Sea.  A group of archaeologists is staying at the Indialantic by the Sea while digging for artifacts left by Spanish explorers.  One claims to find the discovery of a lifetime only to wind up dead.  When the police focus on a reclusive resident, Liz, her boyfriend, and friends set out to prove his innocence.  The mystery kept me waffling back and forth on suspects.  I always enjoy the setting and quirky characters.  This book is a great addition to the series. 

Mint Condition Murder by Ellery Adams and Parker Riggs is the ninth book in the Antiques & Collectibles Mystery series.  When Molly and her mother go to interview the owner of a recently opened antique shop, they discover her dead body instead.  That mystery lead to more as Molly discovers old coins and an antique pistol.  As if that is not enough, her father shows up abruptly and wants to be part of Molly's life.  While the books does have several story lines, everything ties together well.  The mystery is interesting, and the antique focus adds to the book.

disclosure:  I received these books through NetGalley in exchange for honest reviews.  No other compensation was given, and all opinions are my own.

Saturday, July 24, 2021

Weekend Book Reviews

 Murder with a View by Diane Kelly is the third book in the House Flipper Mystery series.  Book three finds Whitney and her cousin Buck flipping an old motel with the help of a silent partner.  The motel has more than they bargained for including a squatter and a dead country musician.  Readers should not question how quickly the whole flip comes together with a three person crew and should ignore the realities of permits and inspections.  Those points aside I enjoy the characters and the setting for this book.  While I did solve the mystery ahead of time, several factors kept me second guessing myself for a bit.  This is a nice light cozy if you are not one to get caught up in the details.

The first book in the Beacon Bakeshop series by Darci Hanna is Murder at the Beacon Bakeshop.  Lindsey flees her life in New York for a fresh start after finding her fiance cheating with his pastry chef.  Her former financial career allows her to transform an old lighthouse into a bakery.  During her grand opening she is horrified when protesters seem set on destroying her dream.  Among them are her ex fiance and his girlfriend, Mia.  When Mia suddenly dies at the bakeshop after apparently eating something poisoned, Lindsey is the main suspect.  This small tourist town has several quirky and mysterious characters which add to the book's charm.  My issue is the fact that the police only suspect Lindsey even though Mia ate food stolen off several customers' plates.  A twist at the end surprised me.  I am already looking forward to the second book.

Fatal Fried Rice by Vivien Chien is the seventh book in the Noodle Shop Mystery series.  Lana is doing well as manager of her family's noodle shop.  Cooking is the one area that alludes her.  She decides to take an Asian cooking course and surprise her family.  On the first night while returning to get her ingredient list, she finds the body of her cooking instructor instead.  Even worse she becomes the main suspect in the case.  I have read this series from the beginning, and it is one of my favorites.  This book would not be as good without the previous ones.  The mystery kept me going back and forth between suspects.  I do adore Lana and her friend Kimmy.  I look forward to the next book.

disclosure:  I received these e-books through NetGalley in exchange for honest reviews.  No other compensation was given and all opinions are my own!

Saturday, June 12, 2021

Weekend Book Reviews

 A Room with a Roux by Sarah Fox is the seventh book in the Pancake House Mystery series.  Marley and her husband Brett get a quick getaway to nearby Holly Lodge.  It seems to be the perfect break until they stumble upon a body buried in the snow.  Books that venture away from the normal setting can be problematic.  This is not my favorite in the series for that reason.  I did find it to be a nice light read with an enjoyable mystery.  I will be back for book number eight!

The fourth book in the Abby McCree Mystery series by Alexis Morgan is Death by Intermission.  Abby and Tripp are having date night at the town's Movies in the Park event, but Abby cannot keep her thoughts away from her mom and her mom's new boyfriend.  Thoughts of everything are wiped out when Abby and her mom discover a body while cleaning up after the event.  With her mom's boyfriend as the main suspect, Abby launches her own investigation.  This could be my favorite book in the series.  The only drawback for me is Abby's mom Phoebe.  Phoebe is the very definition of a spoiled brat, and Abby is less likable with Phoebe around.  Aside from that I enjoyed the book and look forward to the next.

Killer Comfort Food by Lynn Cahoon is the fifth book in the Farm to Fork Mystery series.  Angie is worried she is going to lose her farm to a big processing plant.  There are several intertwined plotlines in this book.  Among them are a missing woman tied to a lawyer for the plant, criminal activity, and an employee being stalked by her ex.  Even though this book has quite a bit going on, everything ties together nicely and kept me enthralled until the end.

disclosure:  I received these e-books from NetGalley in exchange for honest reviews.  All opinions are my own

Monday, June 7, 2021

Week 3

 I am about two weeks behind on this, but I have a good excuse.  This was the rare time when I had three whole weeks off from the farmers market.  I have spent the time working extra hard to restock my inventory and set aside some items for the holiday season.  I still have one week left.  I hope to work on a few quick items that can be squeezed into a few empty spots in my totes.  

*My third goal from 52 Small Changes was exercise.  While I have not been doing a "workout", I have been getting my 10,000 steps in through working in the garden and making multiple trips to check on the baby chicks and turkeys.  

Change number four is keeping a food journal.  Let's just say my diet needs work and move on to change five.  (Future changes will address the poor eating habits).  Change five is being optimistic.  To help with this I will plan a thankful post for later in the week.  

*Blog Three Times This Week

*Chick-a-D Designs

Stop buying yarn!!  All joking aside I am ordering with specific orders or projects in mind.  The problem is that I have a mess in my craft room - again!  No more yarn purchases for the next two weeks.

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Recipe Review of the Week - Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

 I collect recipes.  I stock up on cookbooks, tear pages from magazines, and save way too many on Pinterest.  My goal is to actually try some and more them from "this looks good" to either a save or trash pile.  I am going to try one recipe a week.  

Also once I find a great recipe for a particular item I will stop trying recipes.  I broke my own rule this first week.  I had the perfect recipe for a chocolate chip cookie bar.  Instead of using it I tried a different one.  It was a disaster and I am not even going to share it here.  Instead I will share my favorite.  I apologize for the lack of a photo, but the recipe I did use was an epic disaster.

This chocolate chip cookie cake is fantastic.  I have made it dozens of times with no issues.  This is my go to recipe for birthdays for my Sunday night youth group.  When given a choice between a cake, cupcakes, and this cookie cake, all but the youngest chooses the cookie cake.  

Follow the link to see the gorgeous photos and get the recipe to make your own.  I promise to quit looking for chocolate chip cookie cake/bar recipes. 

Monday, May 17, 2021

Week 2

* Goal 2 from 52 Small Changes - Sleep

My aim was for a sleep score of 80+ every night with the Fitbit.  I missed one night where my sleep was fair rather than good.  I'm a light sleep at best so I'm happy with that.  Water consumption did not go well so I'll work on that again this week.  Week 3 is exercise.  I'm charging the batteries for the Wii Fit today and will alternate some yoga with walking on the treadclimber.

*Blog three times a week

Yay!  I hit that goal I am going to aim for four this week with a recipe post as the new feature.

*Chick-a-D Designs

I managed to add a few things for the future craft shows/festival.  I have orders to finish up this week so my stocking up may slow a bit.  I still want to add at least 5 items to my inventory and future.