Cheli's Mountainous Category Challenge for 2021

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Cheli's Mountainous Category Challenge for 2021

Editat: març 29, 1:29pm

Hi everyone, this is my 13th annual category challenge.
This year, I made the decision that things have to change. I've been participating in the Category challenge since 2009 and have increased my number of categories each year to correspond with the year but I'm honest with myself that 21 categories was just too much so, this year I am going with something new. I'm going with the number of books to read in the categories instead. I made the definition of categories very simple so that maybe I concentrate more on the books and less on the way the books fit in categories.
This year my theme is CLIMBING MOUNT TBR. I have selected 5 categories (identified by 4 mountain ranges and a valley) to concentrate on the books that are currently sitting on my shelves, both virtual and real. I decided that I didn't seem to be making a lot of progress on catching up on series that I've already started so this year, I thought if I concentrate on specific series/authors, maybe I'll make more progress. So for each category, I will concentrate on Authors whose books I have already identified that I want to read.
The Alps Mountain Range will be for authors with initials A through E and 20 books to finish.
The Andes Mountain Range will be for authors with initials F through L and 21 books to finish.
The Himalayan Mountain Range will be for authors with initials M through R and 20 books to finish.
The Rocky Mountain Range will be for authors with initials S through Z and 21 books to finish.

Get it? 20 21, 20 21?

However, that can't be all, because as I thought, I realize that I do get some bright shiny new books or borrow from library for Book Club, so I realize that those books will fall into a valley since they aren't part of the mountains. I selected Sonoma Valley in California because it's one of my favorite places on earth.

In 2021 I'll be continuing the following formal challenges:

The 75 Book Challenge is where I can chat about my grandchildren, themes for the day or just anything I feel like as well as BOOKS.
US Presidents Challenge So far I'm still working on FDR and the Great Depression. I made very little progress the last few years so I really need to concentrate on this a bit more in 2021. Needless to say, this challenge has been extended to 2028 at least.
European Challenge - I still have 2/3 of Europe to explore. Hopefully, a few foreign countries are in my future this year - at least in books.
50 States challenge - Only five states left on the itinerary, and I'm hoping to finish this challenge in 2021.
Miscellanous monthly challenges that will help me find new things to stretch my reading include the CAT challenges, Alpha Kit - and books for my ladies' book club.

Then there are also several personal challenges that I will be endeavoring to work on in 2021.
Bookshelf Bootie - I'm trying to remind myself that when books come into to my house they need to be read soon. My goal is that 50% of new books in are read in the current year. Hopefully, that will include the books that I actually purchased as well as downloaded to my e-reader so that those books that show in my acquisition ticker on my ROOT thread will be read in a timely manner. I did manage to read nearly 50% of new books acquired in 2020. YEAH!!!
ROOT Challenge is my effort to read 84 books (7 per month at least) off my own shelves! (This includes books on my Nook/Kindle, ER & ARCs I receive for review, and audiobooks that I've downloaded in the past.) I've resolved to reduce the number of ARCs/ERs that I request so that more of the old books have priority. This resolution is very hard for me to do, but I'll try again in 2021. I did poorly in 2020 because I received 100+ books that had to be read and reviewed in the current year and I didn't keep up. Since the 4 categories only account for 82 books, the vast majority of my reading this year should be from my own books! Maybe I won't slide down the mountains too far!

When I first joined LT and took part in the 999 Challenge - I had my best reading year ever completing the 999 challenge twice with 162 books!
I really need to have that pace again or I will never catch up. But there may be a bright side - I saw somewhere that someone said that until they finished reading all the books on their TBR, they couldn't die! I like that philosophy, because I will be immortal!

I know in my heart that my book acquisitions are out of control... there is no way that I can ever read all the books in my possession in my lifetime and yet I keep getting more! I can't stop! At least it's not unhealthy like drugs or smoking or alcohol....but wait, I do drink wine while reading and eat candy and I'm not exercising, oh well.

So here we go!

Here are my categories and I am hoping to read at least the 20 or 21 in each mountain range category.

Alps Mountains
Sonoma Valley

Editat: Ahir, 8:33pm

I. The Alps - authors with initials A through E - 20 books

Probably one of the most photographed mountain ranges is the Alps. We've seen skiers ski down their slopes. We've seen castles that soar over their peaks.

Some of my favorite authors will fit in this category.

1. Lavender Blue Murder by Laura Childs
2. Page Marked for Murder by Lauren Elliott
3. Sayers Swindle by Victoria Abbott
4. One Poison Pie by Lynn Cahoon
5. Egg Shooters by Laura Childs
6. Little Bookshop of Murder by Maggie Blackburn
7. A Tourist's Guide to Murder by V.M. Burns
8. Peril in Paperback by Kate Carlisle
9. Killer Comfort Food by Lynn Cahoon
10. Big Fat Greek Murder by Kate Collins
11. A Spell for Trouble by Esme Addison
12. For whom the book tolls by Laura Gail Black
13. Under Cover of Murder by Lauren Elliott
14. The Coming of the Third Reich by Richard Evans
15. Death Gone A-Rye by Winnie Archer
16. Beware the East Wind by Barbara Barrett
17. Wolfe Widow by Victoria Abbott
18. Lethal Letters by Ellery Adams
19. Athena's Choice by Adam Boostrom

Apparently, my trek across the Alps has finished so I am going to move on to the next range in the Alpine system - Apennines a range of mountains that runs the length of the Italian Peninsula.
The goal here is 21 books. so that the authors A through E will reach 20 21.


Hard to believe that I am actually behind on a few of my favorite authors that fall in this category. They will have top priority and could even complete the category.

Adams, Ellery
Books by the Bay(3)
✔Lethal Letters
Writing All Wrongs
Killer Characters
Book Retreat Mystery
Murder in the Cookbook Nook
Barbara Barrett
Mah Jongg Mystery (5)
✔Beware the East Wind
Flower Power
Jokers Wild
The Charleston Challenge
The Dragon Lady Gets Her Due
Lynn Cahoon
Tourist Trap Mystery (1)
Picture Perfect Frame
Cat Latimer Mystery (1)
A Field Guide to Homicide
Kitchen Witch (2)
✔One Poison Pie
Two Wicked Desserts
Murder 101

Farm-to-Fork Mystery (2)
✔Killer Comfort Food
A Pumpkin Spice Killing
Kate Carlisle
Bibliophile Mystery (10)
✔Peril in Paperback
A Cookbook Conspiracy
Book Stops Here
Ripped From the Pages
Books of a Feather
Once Upon a Spine
Buried in Books
Book Supremacy
The Grim Reader
Little Black Book
Laura Childs
Tea Shop Mysteries (3)
✔Lavender Blue Murder
Haunted Hibiscus
Twisted Tea Christmas
Cackleberry Club Mystery (1)
✔Egg Shooters
Here are 13 additional authors that I want to concentrate on, series begun, and the number of books that I have waiting to be read for each. As you can see there are many so hopefully, I will get caught up on a few. There are actually more authors but I had to be realistic and narrow it down, so others that may fit in this category may pop up.

Abbott, Victoria - Book Collector Mysteries (4)
✔Sayers Swindle
✔Wolfe Widow

Marsh Madness
Hammett Hex
✔Addison, Esme - Enchanted Bay Mystery (1)
✔Archer, Winnie - Bread Shop Mystery (1)
Barrett, Lorna - Booktown Mystery (10)
Berry, Steve - Cotton Malone (14)
✔Black, Laura Gail - An Antique Bookshop Mystery (1)
✔Blackburn, Maggie - A Beach Reads Mystery (1)
✔Burns, V. M. - Mystery Bookshop (1)

Byron, Ellen - Cajun Country Mysteries (1)
Casey, Elizabeth Lynn - Southern Sewing Circle (8)
Chase, Erika - Ashton Corners Book Club (3)
Collins, Kate -
Flower Shop Mystery (15)
Goddess of Greene St. Mystery (1)
A Big Fat Greek Murder
Connolly, Sheila - Museum Mysteries (5)
Coyle, Cleo - Coffeehouse (10)
Davis, Krista - Domestic Diva (8)
Delaney, Devon - Cook-Off Mystery (2)
Elkins, Aaron - Lee Ofsted (2)
✔Where Have All the Birdies Gone?
On the Fringe
Elliott, Lauren - Beyond the Page Bookstore Mystery (3)
✔A Page Marked for Murder
✔Under the Cover of Murder

To the Tome of Murder

Editat: abr. 12, 3:26pm

II. Andes Mountains - initials F through L and 21 books to finish
The longest mountain range in the world are the Andes Mountains which run the length of the South American continent. Some of the oldest ruins found are in this huge mountain range. I definitely can find at least 21 books for this category.

1. Murder at the Arts & Crafts Festival by G.P.Gardner
2. Dead-End Detective: A Piper and Porter Mystery by Amanda Flower
3. Murder at the PTA by Lee Hollis
4. Peachy Scream by Anna Gerard
5. The Body from the Past by Judi Lynn
6. Murder with a View by Diane Kelly
7. Courting Can Be Killer by Amanda Flower
8. No Ordinary Time by Doris Kearns Goodwin
9. Farm to Trouble by Amanda Flower
10. Book Charmer by Karen Harkins
11. Twenty-One Steps: Guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier by Jeff Gottesfeld
12. Ruby Red Herring by Tracy Gardner
13. A Room with a Roux by Sarah Fox
14. A Glimmer of a Clue by Daryl Wood Gerber
15. Wining and Dying by Daryl Wood Gerber
16. Lemon Drop Dead by Amanda Flower

Here are the authors that I want to concentrate on, series begun, and the number of books that I have waiting to be read for each. Again, there are many so hopefully, I will get caught up on some. Narrowed down to favorites and hope to get to's, so others that may fit in this category are possible.

Amanda Flower
Amish Candy Shop Mystery (1)
✔Lemon Drop Dead
Amish Matchmaker Mystery(1)
✔Courting Can Be Killer
Living History Museum Mystery (3)
Final Reveille
Final Tap
Final Vow
Piper and Porter Mystery
✔Dead-End Detective
Farm to Table Mysteries
✔Farm to Trouble
Daryl Wood Gerber
Fairy Garden Mystery(1)
✔A Glimmer of a Clue
Cookbook Nook Mystery(1)
✔Wining and Dying
Fluke, Joanne
Hannah Swensen (1)
Triple Chocolate Cheesecake Murder
Laurie R. King
Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes (1)
Castle Shade
Klein, Libby
Poppy McAllister Mystery (1)
Beauty Expos Are Murder
Hope to get to:

Fairstein, Linda Devlin Quick Mystery (1)
Finsilver, Janet Kelly Jackson 0
Fox, Sarah -
Pancake House Mystery(2)
✔A Room with a Roux
A Wrinkle in Thyme
Frank, Dorothea Benton 14
French, Tana Dublin Murder Squad (1)
✔Gardner, Tracy - Avery Ayers Mystery (1)
✔Gardner, GP Cleo Mack mystery (1)
Anna Gerard
Georgia B&B Mystery (2)
✔Peachy Scream
Peaches and Schemes
Gregory, Lena All-Day Breakfast Cafe Mystery (1)
Gregory, Philippa - Plantagenet and Tudor Novels (13)
Hamilton, Victoria Merry Muffin Mystery (5)
✔Harkins, Karen (1)
Hechtman, Betty - Crochet Mystery (8)
✔Hollis, Lee - Maya and Sandra Mystery (1)
Hollon, Cheryl Paint & Shine Mystery (1)
Jenkins, Beverly - Blessings (2)
Laurens, Stephanie Casebook of Barnaby Adair (7) Cynster Next Generation (8)
✔Kelly, Diane - House-Flipper Mystery (1)
Lee, Amanda Embroidery Mystery (5)
✔Lee, RJ - Bridge to Death Mystery (1)
Leon, Donna Commissario Brunetti (2)
Lippman, Laura Tess Monaghan (8)
Lynn, Judi Jazzi Zanders Mystery (2)
✔The Body from the Past
The Body in the Beauty Parlor

Editat: març 29, 6:17pm

Himalayan Mountains - initials M through R and 20 books to finish

The Himalayan Mountain Range has the tallest mountains - Mt. Everest, the tallest. I kind of think that the most TBRs are also in this group but it may just be my imagination. However, there are great authors that are sitting on the mountaintop.

1. Wedding Bear Blues by Meg Macy
2. Murder at Chateau sur Mer by Alyssa Maxwell
3. Crown Jewels of Britain and Europe by Prince Michael of Greece
4. Night Moves by Julie Mulhern
5. Here Comes the Body by Maria DiRico
6. Long Island Iced Tina by Maria DiRico
7. Perilous Undertaking by Deanna Raybourn
8. Murder Can Confuse Your Chihuahua by Rose Pressey
9. Murder Can Haunt your Handiwork by Rose Pressey

Here are the 18 authors that I want to concentrate on, series begun, and the number of books that I have waiting to be read for each. Again, there are far to many for me to get to all of them but, I certainly hope there will be many read here. My favorites will definitely get immediate attention when their latest books are released, the others will be part of my catch up plans


Mulhern, Julie
Country Club Murders (1)
✔Night Moves
Poppy Fields (6)
Fields' Guide to Assassins
Fields' Guide to Voodoo
Fields' Guide to Fog
Fields' Guide to Pharaohs
Fields' Guide to Dirty Money
Fields' Guide to Smuggling
Penny, Louise
Inspector Gamache (1)
The Madness of Crowds
Macy, Meg
Teddy Bear Mysteries (1)
✔Wedding Bear Blues
Maxwell, Alyssa
Gilded Newport (5)
✔Murder at Chateau sur Mer
Murder at Ochre Court
Murder at Crossways
Murder at Kingscote
Murder at Wakehurst
Raybourn, Deanna -
Veronica Speedwell (5)
✔A Perilous Undertaking
A Treacherous Curse
A Dangerous Collaboration
A Murderous Relation
An Unexpected Peril

Hope to get to:

MacNeal, Susan Elia Maggie Hope (1)
Marks, Mary - Quilting mysteries (7)
Karen MacInerney
Gray Whale Inn Mystery (7)
Berried to the Hilt
Brush with Death
Death Runs Adrift
Whale of a Crime
Claws for Alarm
Scone Cold Dead
Anchored Inn
McKinlay, Jenn - cupcake bakery (9) Library Lover's Mystery (7)
Maron, Margaret - Deborah Knott (15)
Pearson, Ridley, Barry, Dave - Peter (4)
Perry, Anne - Thomas Pitt (13)
Pressey, Rose - Haunted Craft Fair Mystery (2)
✔Murder Can Confuse Your Chihuahua
✔Murder Can Haunt Your Handiwork

Quincy, D. M. - Atlas Catesby Mystery
DiRico, Maria - Catering Hall Mystery (3)
✔Here Comes the Body
✔Long Island Iced Tina

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Murder
Riordan, Rick - Heroes of Olympus (2) Trials of Apollo (5)
Robbins, Sara Aspen Valley (6)
Rosett, Sara Ellie Avery Mystery (7)

Editat: març 29, 12:41pm

The Rocky Mountain Range will be for authors with initials S through Z and 21 books to finish.

The major mountain range on the North American continent are the Rocky Mountains which run from the northernmost part of British Columbia, in western Canada, to New Mexico in the Southwestern United States. The Continental Divide of the Americas is located in the Rocky Mountains and designates the line at which waters flow either to the Atlantic or Pacific Oceans. Will I be able to determine which way my reading will flow? I definitely can find at least 21 books for this category.

1. Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum by Kirsten Weiss
2. The Figure in the Photograph by Kevin Sullivan
3. A Conspiracy in Belgravia by Sherry Thomas
4. The Stolen Letter by Paige Shelton

Here are 18 authors that I want to concentrate on, series begun, and the number of books that I have waiting to be read for each. Again, there are far to many for me to get to all of them but, I certainly hope there will be many read here. My favorites will definitely get immediate attention when their latest books are released, the others will be part of my catch up plans

Paige Shelton
Scottish Bookshop Mystery (2)
✔Stolen Letter
Deadly Editions
Karen Rose Smith
Daisy's Tea Garden Mystery (1)
Murder with Orange Pekoe Tea
Victoria Thompson
Gaslight Mysteries (20)
Murder on Washington Square
Murder on Mulberry Bend
Murder on Marble Row
Murder on Lenox Hill
Murder in Little Italy
Murder In Chinatown
Murder on Bank Street
Murder on Waverly Place
Murder on Lexington Avenue
Murder on Sisters' Row
Murder on Fifth Avenue
Murder in Chelsea
Murder in Murray Hill
Murder on Amsterdam Avenue
Murder on St. Nicholas Avenue
Murder in Morningside Heights
Murder in the Bowery
Murder on Union Square
Murder on Trinity Place
Murder on Pleasant Avenue
Murder on Wall Street
Jacqueline Winspear
Maisie Dobbs (7)
Leaving Everything Most Loved (2013)
A Dangerous Place (2015)
Journey to Munich (2016)
In This Grave Hour (2017)
To Die but Once (2018)
The American Agent (2019)
The Consequences of Fear
Julia Spencer-Fleming
Clare Fergusson / Russ Van Alstyne (4)
I Shall Not Want
One Was a Soldier (2011)
Through the Evil Days (2013)
Hid from Our Eyes

Scott, Michele Wine Lover's Mystery (4)
Sefton, Maggie Knitting Mystery (8)
Shea, Susan C French Village Mystery (2)
Small, Bertrice Silk Merchant's Daughters (1)
Sprinkle, Patricia Thoroughly Southern Mystery (7)
Stanton, Mary Beaufort and Company Mystery (2)
Steen, Jane Scott-De Quincy Mysteries 0
St James, Dorothy Beloved Bookroom Mystery (1)
Susan Kiernan-Lewis Maggie Newberry Mysteries (18)
Swanson, Denise Chef-to-Go Mystery (1)
Taylor, Patrick Irish Country (13)
Thomas, Sherry - Lady Sherlock (4)
✔A Conspiracy in Belgravia
The Hollow of Fear
The Art of Theft
Murder on Cold Street
Trauth, Suzanne Dodie O'Dell Mystery (1)
Walker, LynDee Nichelle Clarke Mystery (7)
Washburn, Livia J. Fresh-Baked Mystery (12)
Wilhelm, Kate Barbara Holloway (10)
Willig, Lauren Pink Carnation (1)
Weiss, Kirsten
Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum(4)
✔Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum
Pressed to Death
Deja Moo
Chocolate a la Murder

Editat: març 21, 4:17pm


Even though I have more than 500 books on Mount TBR, I know that there will be times when I will be reading books that are not part of the mountain ranges - in essence, they will be shiny new books I couldn't resist, library books, book club selections. So if I am not reading from the mountain, I must be in a valley. My husband and I have made repeated trips from the East Coast to the California Wine Country and our favorite valley is Sonoma.

Here is where those undiscovered and undetermined books will be slated.

1. The Birth Order Book by Kevin Leman - book club
2. The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo - granddaughter's class reading
3. The Wedding Tree by Robin Wells - book club
4. The Story of Arthur Truluv - book club

Editat: març 29, 3:16pm

1. One word title
2. By or about a marginalized group
3. Dark or light in title
4. Book with a character you'd like as a friend - Night Moves
5. Focus on art
6. Book with a title that describes you
7. Book you heartily recommend - Ruby Red Herring
8. A book about nature or the environment
9. Classical element in title (Western: earth, air, wind, fire, aether/void. Chinese: wood, fire, earth, metal, water) -
10. 2 or more authors - Sayers Swindle
11. Impulse read
12. Love story - The Wedding Tree
13. CAT OR KIT - A Conspiracy in Belgravia MysteryKIT February
14. Set in or author from the Southern Hemisphere
15. A book that made you laugh Long Island Iced Tina
16. Suggested by a person from another generation - The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane my granddaughter
17. New to you author - Birth Order Book
18. Set somewhere you'd like to visit
19. History or alternate history - The Coming of the Third Reich
20. 20 or less LT members -Wedding Bear Blues
21. Less than 200 pages - Twenty-One Steps: Guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
22. Senior citizen as the protagonist - A Tourist's Guide to Murder
23. Book with the name of a building in the title - Murder at Chateau sur Mer
24. Time in title, subject - No Ordinary Time
25. Book with or about magic -A Spell for Trouble

Editat: abr. 3, 12:33pm


1. Wedding Bear Blues
2. Lavender Blue Murder
3. Murder at Chateau sur Mer
4. Page Marked for Murder
5. Sayers Swindle
6. Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum
7. Murder at the Arts & Crafts Festival
8. Birth Order Book
9. Dead-End Detective
10. Murder at the PTA
11. One Poison Pie
12. Egg Shooters
13. Peachy Scream
14. The Body From The Past
15. Little Bookshop of Murder
16. Crown Jewels of Europe
17. A Tourist's Guide to Murder
18. Peril in Paperback
19. Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane
20. Spell for Trouble
21. Killer Comfort Food
22. A Big Fat Greek Murder
23. The Figure in the Photograph
24. Murder with a View
25. For Whom the Book Tolls
26. The Wedding Tree
27. Courting Can Be Killer
28. Farm to trouble
29. No Ordinary Time: Franklin & Eleanor Roosevelt: Home Front in World War II
30. A Conspiracy in Belgravia
31. Book Charmer
32. Twenty-One Steps: Guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
33. Night Moves
34. Cold Reading Murder
35. Here Comes the Body
36. Long Island Iced Tina
37. Under Cover of Murder
38. The Story of Arthur Truluv
39. The Coming of the Third Reich
40. Death Gone A-Rye
41. The Stolen Letter
42. Ruby Red Herring
43. Perilous Undertaking
44. Murder Can Confuse Your Chihuahua
45. Murder Can Haunt Your Handiwork
46. A Room With A Roux

Editat: abr. 13, 6:53pm


47. A Glimmer of a Clue
48. Beware the East Wind
49. Wolfe Widow
50. Wining and Dying
51. Lethal Letters
52. Lemon Drop Dead
53. Athena's Choice

Editat: des. 26, 2020, 6:41pm


Editat: des. 26, 2020, 6:41pm


des. 26, 2020, 10:43pm

Beautiful pics! Good luck with your 2021 reading.

des. 26, 2020, 11:46pm

Hope you have a wonderful year scaling those mountains of books to be read!

des. 27, 2020, 11:04am

What lovely pictures! I think keeping it simpler is a great idea - it's so easy to get overwhelmed with the number of challenges.

des. 27, 2020, 12:06pm

Have fun scaling Mt. TBR in 2021, Chelle!

des. 27, 2020, 12:18pm

Great pictures and a great idea on how to accomplish climbing the TBR pile. Unless I'm reading things wrong, it looks like you have a number of series with only 1 book to be up-to-date. I wish I could say that.

des. 27, 2020, 1:06pm

Love the images of the mountains. Wishing you luck in scaling mount TBR.

des. 27, 2020, 1:55pm

Great idea to keep it simple and use the number "2021" in a different way. Good luck with your series reading!

des. 27, 2020, 3:10pm

Chèli, wishing you a Happy New Year and the best of luck with your TBR climbing. I'll look forward to following your progress with BingoDog, too.

des. 27, 2020, 4:30pm

I love this! Happy mountain climbing!!

des. 27, 2020, 5:54pm

Great theme! My book acquisitions are out of control too . . . As you say, at least it's not alcohol or drugs!

des. 28, 2020, 7:51pm

Interesting way to organize your reading and some great pictures.

gen. 1, 12:26pm

Hi Chèli, wishing you good luck as you climb Mount TBR in 2021!

gen. 5, 12:29pm

Enjoy your mountain climbing, Chèli! Armchair exercise is the best!

Editat: gen. 25, 2:21pm

Challenge Book # 1
Wedding Bear Blues ★★★★
Meg Macy
Category - Himalayas
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

Sasha Silverman and her sister, Maddie, are pretty busy leading up to Valentine's Day - not just with work at the Silver Bear Shop and Factory but they serving in the bridal for their friend Cissy who is turning into a bridezilla! Things go downhill when the best man is found murdered in a ladies' room stall at the rehearsal dinner. Oops, that puts the wedding on hold! Well, while they wait for rescheduling (and whatever changes Cissy is going to insist upon) design efforts go forward on a Wedding bear couple to be ready for the June wedding frenzy. Further wedding party issues keep Sasha and Maddie busy trying to solve the murder so that the wedding can proceed.

I love teddy bears! So to have my first book of 2021 be chock full of teddies thrilled me but the mystery kept me enthralled as well. The characters are funny and lovable. The story was well-written with clues well-hidden.

Editat: gen. 25, 2:21pm

Challenge Book # 2
Lavender Blue Murder ★★★★
Laura Childs
Category - Alps
Source - OverDrive
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

Theodosia and Drayton are taking part in a old-fashioned shooting party (Indigo Tea is also catering) when they hear a shot that doesn't sound like it came from a shotgun but a revolver, so they head out to see if everything is okay. They come across their host, Reginald Doyle, shot and dead.

The days following are filled with private investigating of the people who were involved with Doyle's life as well as preparations for the Indigo Tea Shoppe's firsts of a Gone with the Wind tea and a Lavender Lady Tea. The possible suspects are frequently in the tea shop and Theo is busy checking into any connection that could be relevant to the murder.

The food that Haley provides makes your mouth water and the scents described the reader can almost smell. The regular characters are just like old friends.

I really wish there was an Indigo Tea Shoppe!

Editat: gen. 25, 2:21pm

Challenge Book # 3
Murder at Chateau sur Mer ★★★½
Alyssa Maxwell
Category - Himalayas
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

Emmaline Cross, poor relation of the Vanderbilts and society columnist for the Newport Observer, is caught in a difficult situation when she is recruited by Senator George Wetmore's wife to discover the details that resulted in the dead body at the bottom of the steps at Chateau sur Mer, the Wetmore's home in Newport. The victim, Lilah Buford, a prostitute at the Blue Moon tavern, had been making an effort to contact Mrs. Wetmore at a polo match earlier in the day and now she was dead. What did she need to communicate with Mrs. Wetmore about? Was the matter the cause of her death? How could she have gotten into this guarded home without anyone knowing?

Emma sets out to find the answers but the manner of her investigation may endanger her livelihood if not her life.

It was great to see all the characters surrounding Emma again. The mystery was very complex as well as entertaining. The writing, as usual, was superb.

Editat: gen. 25, 2:21pm

Challenge Book # 4
A Page Marked for Murder ★★★½
Lauren Elliott
Category - Alps
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

Greystone Harbor is preparing for their annual Fire and Ice Festival as the new year starts but Addie Greystone, owner of Beyond the Page bookstore, has preparations of her own to make. While standing outside in cold, looking at her empty display window, searching for inspiration, she is surprised by Pippi, a small dog who belongs to her friend Gloria, who never lets Pippi out of her sight. But where is Gloria. Crossing over to the Festival area, Addie finds that Gloria has fallen from a ladder and is injured. Martha, Gloria's friend arrives as the EMTs are taking Gloria to the hospital. Addie and Martha volunteer to get Gloria and Pippi's things from her home (Addie is recruited to dog sit) and while there, Addie notices that Gloria was reading a first edition of the Secret Garden - worth about $25,000.

When visiting Gloria the next day she asks Addie to bring the book to her so that she has something to occupy her while in the hospital. However, when Addie goes to Gloria's to pick it up, it's gone!

In the meantime, Martha has run into some trouble. Martha's daughter, Paige (Addie's assistant) is having custody issues with her daughter's father, and when he is found murdered outside Martha's bakery, Martha is the prime suspect.

Addie has to juggle Pippi's care, a murder investigation along with some romance of her own.

Such an entertaining story and very well-written!

Looking forward to seeing these characters again, hopefully soon!

Editat: gen. 25, 2:22pm

Challenge Book # 5
The Sayers Swindle ★★★½
Victoria Abbott
Category - Alps
Source - OverDrive
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, 75 Book Challenge

Jordan Bingham works for Vera Van Alst, living at her estate while helping to maintain the extensive book collection. Her main task at present is to recover the Sayers collection, eight Sayers mysteries that were stolen from Vera's collection before her employment. The local book seller, Karen Smith, had sold the books to another collector, not knowing they were stolen but she is unable to remember the details because of an attack which left her severely injured with a head injury resulting in memory loss. Jordan has been trying to help Karen jog her memory so that the new owners can be contacted to try to retrieve the books. When the buyers are located, their actions seem to be a bit strange and Jordan draws on her family to help determine what's happening and how she can get the Sayers collection back.

The twists and turns are accompanied by the less then lawful antics of her uncles, bringing a smile more than once. The characters still need some fleshing out, but the story was entertaining.

gen. 14, 5:23pm

>26 cyderry: That one should be coming up soon for me on my TBR list from the library where I work. It does look like it should be coming up next month and maybe sooner.

Editat: gen. 25, 2:22pm

Challenge Book # 6
Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum ★★★
Kirsten Weiss
Category - Rockies
Source - Nook
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

I wasn't really sure what to expect from this book. It had its moments, some interesting characters, but without the the Ghost detecting cat, and the hunky motorcycle shop owner, I'm not sure I would have made it through. The murder mystery wasn't very hard to solve, and some of the "regular" characters could stand some greater development. I might try another, but definitely not right away.

Editat: gen. 25, 2:22pm

Challenge Book # 7
Murder at the Arts and Crafts Festival ★★★
G. P. Gardner
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

Cleo Mack, head administrator of the Harbor Village retirement community, has a lot on her plate the end of March when Fairhope, Alabama is hosting its Arts & Crafts Festival. Just before opening day, Cleo needs to check out the Art that is for sale to get something for the main lobby. She has also been invited to an anniversary dinner for her friends and her "boyfriend" has the new house being redecorated just for her.

When se returns from the anniversary dinner, she's told that Twinkle Thaw, sister of one of residents has been taken ill after her sister's birthday party. Later, Cleo finds out that Twinkle died of poisoning. Need to protect Harbor Village, Cleo sets out to find the murderer.

It's great when the protagonist is a few years older than normal and the other regulars are seniors. The story had multiple layers as well as a few good laughs.

Editat: gen. 25, 2:23pm

Challenge Book # 8
The Birth Order Book: Why You Are The Way You Are ★★★
Dr. Kevin Leman
Category - Andes
Source - Nook
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, 75 Book Challenge

My ladies' Book Club selected this as a change of pace to start 2021 and we had a good time with it. The vast majority of the group were firstborns with a few middleborns and one baby in the mix. Mostly the group felt that the analysis stated was spot on with only a few disagreements. I, personally, didn't feel that I fit my birth order category, but everyone else said that it was definitely me. The discussion was lively and a great deal of fun and laughter ensued.

The style of writing for such a "serious" topic was light and friendly making us all feel as if Dr. Leman was speaking directly to us. Including his own family made it more personal however, he did seem to be trying to sell a bunch of other books at the same time. It was a good book for a book club to help getting to know each other better.

gen. 21, 6:16pm

>32 cyderry: Fairhope! I've been there many times. I may need to try the series even if you only gave it 3 stars.

gen. 22, 1:11pm

>34 thornton37814: Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed it, I just didn't think that the mystery was as good as the others in the series.

Editat: gen. 25, 2:23pm

Challenge Book # 9
Dead-End Detective: A Piper and Porter Mystery ★★★
Amanda Flower
Category - Andes
Source - NetShelf
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

Was so excited about a new series by Amanda Flower - one of my favorite authors and then when I was granted an audio version to "read" that's even better! The story surrounds Darby Piper who as a partner with Samantha Porter owns a detective agency. But when Samantha is found murdered, Darby is totally thrown for a loop. Not only is she the prime suspect but instead of inheriting Samantha's part of the agency she is saddled with Tate Porter - Samantha's nephew - who seems to be a unreliable world traveler with a past. Will they be able to get along and figure out who and why Samantha met her end?

I really enjoyed the story as well as the narration by Laura Faye Smith. I can foresee a future of unusual collaborations between the two principals and know that Ms. Flower's writing will bring them even more fully alive!

gen. 22, 4:43pm

>35 cyderry: I hope to start with #1 so maybe I'll be enjoying the series before I get to that installment.

Editat: gen. 22, 4:45pm

>36 cyderry: Sounds like an interesting premise for that series. (I see we cross-posted. I had several threads open.)

gen. 24, 3:51pm

When you have books that you really enjoyed reading, do you hold on to them or pass them on to someone else?

I always kind of think that I'm going to re-read them but rarely find time for a re-read - there are so many that I haven't read yet!

This week I was talking to my sister and she mentioned that she found an author, Mary Balogh, whose books she really enjoyed and when she told me who it was, I agreed saying that I loved her books too. Then we started talking about the Bridgerton series from Julia Quinn that's on Netflix and I said that I just loved the books. She said "They were books!!?" So I told her yeah and that she had just seen the adaption from the first book, that there were at least 7 more. I checked my catalog and found I had several on my shelf waiting for that elusive re-read. Today I boxed up all the ones that I'd already read to send to her. 14 were by Mary Balogh and the 8 first Bridgerton books. Her birthday's next week.

gen. 24, 6:10pm

Happy early birthday to your sister! Great idea to pass along the books for her to read. I pass along books I've already read to my parents or my best friend, but I always tell them whether I want the books back. If I don't specifically say, though, they assume I want the books back.

Editat: gen. 25, 2:23pm

Challenge Book # 10
Murder at the PTA ★★★
Lee Hollis
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

Sandra Wallage, the wife of United States Senator Stephen Wallage, has been elected the President of the PTA at the high school where her two sons attend, however, there doesn't appear to be smooth sailing ahead since not only has the local scandal sheet, The Dirty Laundry, targeted the Senator, but there seems to have been a murder at the school as well.

Sandra teams up with Maya, a former high school classmate/retired cop, to try to get to the bottom of who and why the Dirty Laundry is attacking.

The pace was very slow at the beginning, not sure if it was related to introduction of the characters or connecting everyone involved. A few fewer characters may have helped.

Editat: gen. 25, 2:24pm

Challenge Book # 11
One Poison Pie ★★★★
Lynn Cahoon
Category - Alps
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

It's always fun to read about a good witch, reminding me of Glinda, the Good Witch of the North from the Wizard of Oz. In this new series, Mia Malone, a kitchen witch, has return to Magic Springs and is starting a catering business. She has an ex-boyfriend/chef who is after her recipe book, while at the same time sharing her home and business with the ex's sister. Mia's first client is murdered just before the birthday party that Mia is catering and the murder weapon could be Mia's missing chef's knife.

There is a full cast of characters that is integrated well into the story which leads to more character development.

My only question is - where is the poison pie?

gen. 25, 2:19pm

Challenge Book # 12
Egg Shooters ★★★★
Laura Childs
Category - Alps
Source - NetShelf
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, 75 Book Challenge

Suzanne Dietz decides that she's going to take a thermos of chili to her fiancé Dr. Sam Hazelet at the hospital, however, no good deed goes unpunished because while waiting to make her delivery she is a witness to a masked gunman killing the security guard and wounding a nurse. The only thing she can think to do to protect herself is to throw the thermos full of chili at the gunman. The gunman escapes, and Suzanne is labeled a hero. But she believes that the security guard was the hero and is determined to everything she can to find the killer.

The story was very well-written and the characters continue to grow. It was so much fun to be able to hear them in this audio version. The story really came to life.

gen. 25, 2:49pm

Challenge Book # 13
Peachy Scream ★★★½
Anna Gerard
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

Nina Fleet, owner of Fleet House B&B in Cymbeline, Georgia is all prepared for the Georgia Amateur Shakespeare Players Troupe (GASP) to take up residence in her B&B for the annual Shakespeare Festival, what she wasn't prepared for was her archenemy, Harry Westcott III to be a member/director of the troupe. Calling a truce to their feud, Nina and Harry join forces when on the first day of rehearsals, Len, who was cast as Hamlet, is found dead in the garden. How did he die and are others at risk?

This was a very fun mystery with the characters continuing to b e fleshed out as well as the one time characters being very entertaining. And the dog will steal your heart!

feb. 1, 2:59pm

Challenge Book # 14
The Body from the Past ★★★★
Judi Lynn
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

Jazzi Zanders along with her husband Ansel and cousin Jerod are starting on their next flipping project - manor type home in nearby Merlot. During demolition, they have come across a locked room. After breaking in, they find a time capsule, the room has not been open since the 70's when the teenage occupant was murdered at her high school graduation party and it was never solved.

Jazzi finds a hope chest with years of personal journals of the victim, but none of the family want anything to do with the contents. Jazzi can't seem to let Jessica's hopes die without justice and so she sets out to find out who end this young life.

What a great mystery! There were so many variants because of the time lapse since the murder but somehow this reader was completely sucked in.

I really love Jazzi and Ansel and their family dynamics. What a wonderful contrast to the mystery. Looking forward to the next one!

feb. 1, 5:37pm

Challenge Book # 15
Little Bookshop of Murder ★★★
Maggie Blackburn
Category - Alps
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

Summer Merriweather, a Shakespeare professor, returns to Brigid's Island, NC, for her mother's funeral. Hildy Merriweather's death was completely unexpected and the more that Summer hears about her mother's last day, the more she is certain that death was not from natural causes. When there is a fire at her home and arson is determined, and then a burglary at the Beach Reads bookstore, Summer and her Aunt Agatha are sure that someone is trying to eliminate the family.

I enjoyed the mystery however, I'm not sure about the foibles of the main character. I think it would have been better without them. The Book club members needed more dimension as well as the other family members.

This was a Advanced Reader's Copy but even with that known there were a few too many grammatical and spelling errors.

feb. 1, 5:56pm

Challenge Book # 16
Crown Jewels of Britain and Europe ★★★
Prince Michael of Greece
Category - Himalayas
Source - Amazon 2020
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (M/P), 75 Book Challenge

When I started watching the Crown on Netflix, I was intrigued by the flash and sparkled of the crown jewels. I purchased 3 books - Crown Jewels: The Official Illustrated History which showed all of Great Britain's crown jewels, The Jewels of Queen Elizabeth II: Her Personal Collection, and this book. I wanted to see how the British collection stood up to the rest of Europe. Europe lost. Some of the pieces from the Danish, Swedish, and Belgian were gorgeous, and the pictures in this book were so much better - more close up so that you could see the details - however, the variety and volume of Queen Elizabeth II's collection as well as the British Crown Jewels made this collection far superior to any other. I'm not sure why, maybe because of the extent of the British empire of Queen Victoria (who received much of the collection) or the acquisitions of the Russian Tsar's family jewels my Queen Mary.

Whatever the reason, if you want to see some really sparkly jewels, Great Britain has them hands down.

Editat: feb. 2, 5:34am

>47 cyderry: I will never stop finding the velvet hat inside the crown funny. I know it's for warmth in draughty old buildings and the fur rim is to cushion the wearer's head, but the velvet cushion sticking up through the metalwork just makes me giggle every time. :D

feb. 15, 11:31am

Challenge Book # 17
A Tourist's Guide to Murder ★★★½
V.M. Burns
Category - Alps
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

Samantha is joining her Nana Jo and Shady Acres friends on a trip for a mystery tour of England - Sam to do research for her next book, the ladies just to have a good time. However, things don't start off well with forgotten passports, nearly missed planes, lost luggage, and the murder of the Tour company owner. Not that the ladies are suspects, but they do want to get involved in solving the crime. After all, they could be traveling with a murderer!

Not knowing the area/people/culture creates some interesting scenarios for this band of senior sleuths. I also enjoy the story within the story - Samantha's new book in progress. I wonder if the author will publish Samantha's writings all together at sometime.

feb. 15, 11:51am

Challenge Book # 18
Peril in Paperback ★★★★
Kate Carlisle
Category - Alps
Source - NOOK
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

Brooklyn has been invited to the 50th birthday party of her friend Suzie's aunt Grace at her isolated country home located on the shores of Lake Tahoe. Grace had been the owner /primary designer for a computer game developer and she has taken her skills and incorporated them into the design of her retreat home - moving walls, hidden accesses and holographic changes.

One of the early "events" for the celebrations, is a séance where one of the guests is poisoned - but the poison was meant for Grace! A massive snowstorm arrives shortly after Gabriel who helps keep the remaining guests "safe" while waiting for the police.

This was so much fun - not just figuring out the whodunnit but also trying to picture the various changes as they happen.

feb. 15, 12:56pm

>39 cyderry: I enjoyed the Netflix series Bridgerton, but I expect the books would make me crazy. I tend to dislike the 'romance' genre as a whole. I just can't get behind the whole idea of knowing the end before you begin with regard to happily ever after.

feb. 15, 1:57pm

Challenge Book # 19
The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane ★★★★
Kate DiCamillo
Category - Sonoma
Source - Public Library
Other Challenges - ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

What a delightful story of a china rabbit and his adventures! As one who believes that stuffed animals, dolls and such do have feelings and a life somehow, somewhere, it was so much fun to read about Edward Tulane's adventures.

My granddaughter was reading this book for school and so I borrowed it from the library so that we could discuss it. With the pandemic still in our midst, phone calls and skype calls are our way of communicating and having such an amusing story to talk about was refreshing. Great for kids of all ages!

feb. 15, 3:11pm

Challenge Book # 20
A Spell for Trouble ★★★½
Esme Addison
Category - Alps
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

Alex Daniels has run into a bit of personal problems including unemployment, so she has accepted the invitation of her aunt to visit Bellamy Bay, NC and reconnect with her mother's family. During her time helping at her Aunt Lidia's herbal shop, Alex learns that she is descended from "mermaids" and is a water witch. When her aunty is arrested for a murder, Alex is determined to use her emerging powers to prove her innocent.

This was a fun story introducing Alex and her family. I can see many happy hours in the future in their company

feb. 15, 4:00pm

Challenge Book # 21
Killer Comfort Food ★★★★
Lynn Cahoon
Category - Alps
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

Angie Turner, co-owner and chef for the County Seat restaurant, has a lot on her plate literally. Besides her duties in the kitchen, Angie is battling a land takeover by a large conglomerate who want to building a soybean factory on her farm and those around her. She is the lone holdout for selling. She wants to stay on her little farm with her private little zoo. But things are getting tough - the townsfolk are anxious for the plant and new jobs and the improvements they think will come with it. However, the lawyer in charge of the land acquisition has his own problems - getting Angie to change her mind and the fact that his wife is missing. Why does the factory have to be on that piece of land? Is it all related?

Angie and her crew are a great cast of characters, people you would want as your friends. The story was interesting with sufficient twists and turns and a great ending.

feb. 15, 4:18pm

Challenge Book # 22
A Big Fat Greek Murder ★★★★
Kate Collins
Category - Alps
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

Athena Spencer works at her family's garden center keeping the books. She also helps out at the family diner on occasion. When a wedding rehearsal dinner is booked at short notice (her sister, Selene, is an emergency bridesmaid) Athena jumps in to help. But nothing can help the fact that the groom is a no-show and later found stabbed to death with her sister's hair shears. Athena is positive that Selene is innocent even as circumstantial evidence continues to point Selene's way. Enlisting the help of Case Donnelly, Athena is definite they can find the evidence unmasking the real killer.

The mystery was good, but I felt like the characters needed a bit more definition, more dimension. - right now they seem a might two dimensional. Maybe next book

feb. 15, 4:26pm

Challenge Book # 23
The Figure in the Photograph ½
Kevin Sullivan
Category - Rockies
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

Unfortunately, I did not enjoy this book. I'm not sure whether it was because of the beginning set in Cuba or images that it conjured but I just couldn't get with the main character or the story.

Probably was me, because the writing, though slow at times, gave the reader a good idea of the character's feelings and kept the action moving. I wasn't a fan of the shift in locale or lack of real tie-in between the Cuban portion and the Scottish portion.

feb. 25, 2:01pm

Challenge Book # 24
Murder With a View ★★★
Diane Kelly
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

Whitney Whitaker and her cousin Buck are house flippers but in this installment they are renovating an old motor lodge into condos. The location is close to the musical venues in Nashville so musicians may be as interested as promoters. Things, however, don't go according to plans. First day, they discover a homeless veteran squatting in Room 9 and Day two reveals the dead body of a well-known singer. The mystery of who killed the singer is filled with possibilities from a stalker, groupies, band members ,and managers and let's not forget the unknown girlfriend.

Whitney feels that they need to solve the murder before they can advertise the sale of the renovated units but that doesn't seem to be as easy as they hope.

The mystery seemed to lack a bit of spark and the characters were a bit two dimensional. I hope that the next installment will improve.

març 1, 12:50pm

>57 cyderry: I like the cat on the cover!

març 1, 1:53pm

>58 thornton37814: Sawdust (cat) played an important role in the book.

març 1, 4:32pm

Challenge Book # 25
For Whom the Book Tolls ★★★½
Laura Gail Black
Category - Alps
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

Jenna Quinn has had some setbacks - being on trial for murder and embezzlement may be more than setbacks - but being found not guilty has "freed" Jenna to search for a place to regroup and start again. Her uncle offers his home but Jenna won't get three until late. Jenna finds the key that he left for her and she settles in for the night certain that she can catchup with her uncle in the morning but setbacks keep following her - Jenna finds her uncle dead at the bottom of the steps the next morning.

The police determine that it was murder and because of Jenna's past and her subsequent inheritance, target her as the most likely suspect. Needing to clear her name once again has Jenna determined to solve the murder.

This was a really good start for a new series - the central character was very well defined, however, the secondary characters needed more fleshing out.
The setting was very appealing so I'm looking forward to another installment.

març 1, 4:40pm

Challenge Book # 26
The Wedding Tree ★★★
Robin Wells
Category - SONOMA
Source - Public Library
Other Challenges - ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

Hope Stevens is called to Wedding Tree, LA to help her grandmother clear out her home so that she can move closer to family in an assisted living facility. Grandma Addie proceeds to tell Hope the love story of her true love during WWII and the subsequent actions that resulted.

I read this book for my ladies Book Club. It wasn't bad but it wasn't great either. It seemed very typical and didn't really have any great substance to the tale - just same old, same old.

març 1, 5:15pm

Challenge Book # 27
Courting Can Be Killer ★★★★
Amanda Flower
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

Ben Baughman is determined to marry Tess Lieb but Tess's father, Tobias, has other plans for his daughter and without his blessing the marriage will not take place. Millie Fisher, the town matchmaker, is quite found of Ben and tries to find out why Tobias is against the marriage but before the reasons are exposed Ben is killed in a fire at the Flea market. Ben was a hardworking man and Millie is certain that there was some other reason that ended Ben's life. She's certain when she starts getting threats.

Love to visit Harvest, OH and the Amish residents as they interact with the Englischers. The mystery was very well-written and the characters are superb!

març 1, 6:59pm

Challenge Book # 28
Farm to Trouble ★★★★
Amanda Flower
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

Shiloh Bellamy was a successful producer in Hollywood but when her father asked for her help on the family farm in Michigan, she chucks it all and heads back to her roots. Thinking that she can revitalize the farm by going organic, she signs a deal with a local developer not knowing his unscrupulous ways. When he is found murdered shortly after her return, she and her father are prime suspects. Shiloh needs to write a new script identifying the true murderer.

I liked the premise of the series but thought that the story dragged a bit at the beginning and was somewhat repetitive of some details as the story unfolded.

I love this author's books so I know this series will get better.

Editat: març 21, 4:49pm

Challenge Book # 29
No Ordinary Time ★★★★
Doris Kearns Goodwin
Category - Andes
Source - Overdrive
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge, US Presidents Challenge

2020 marked the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II and this book seemed a good choice to gather the information regarding the events of that time period. The start of the war in Europe was not covered in detail but only told as to how it affected the American economy and political environment. The portrayal of the lives of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt and how they managed not only their private lives but the political arena (lending lease, isolationism, etc.) was extremely well chronicled. When the attack on Pearl Harbor occurred, as the reader, even though I knew it was coming, i still felt the sense of shock that Americans must have felt at the time.

The details of the depravation of war time, the Japanese interment camps, the home front news were call shown in a manner that brought reality to the forefront.

Editat: març 21, 4:49pm

Challenge Book # 30
A Conspiracy in Belgravia ★★★
Sherry Thomas
Category - Rockies
Source - Overdrive
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge, MysteryKIT Challenge,

Charlotte Holmes and Mrs. Watson are still pretending that "Sherlock" is ill and that they are the go between for any clients. This story seemed a bit busy with everything that was going on - trying to help Lady Ingram find a lost love that turns out to be Charlotte's unknown half-brother, decoding a special cipher, martial art lessons, and the introduction of Moriarty all seemed too much to twist together and come up with a well-written mystery. Maybe a bit more definition and a little less "stuff" would have made this more enjoyable.

Editat: març 21, 4:49pm

Challenge Book # 31
The Book Charmer ★★★
Karen Hawkins
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (T/K), 75 Book Challenge

This book doesn't seemed to be well titled, IMO. Yes, there is a character, Sarah Dove, who talks with books, however, she is not the main character. This story centers around Grace Wheeler who moves to Dove Pond with her orphaned niece and her former foster mother, Mama G, who has developed dementia. Grace has taken on the job of town clerk which has duties that she is not interested in undertaking. She only wants to make life easier for Mama G for the time that she has left. But because everyone in town believes that Grace is necessary to save the town from financial ruin, trickery and manipulation are involved in making her stay.

The segments that are related to Mama G's dementia and its effects were well-written and moving, however, the sections which were related to Grace as a mother to her niece and her interactions with the other town folk lack depth that would have made this a great book, now it is only pretty good. I wonder what will come in the future for the residents of Dove Pond.

Editat: març 21, 4:49pm

Challenge Book # 32
Twenty-One Steps: Guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier ★★★★½
Jeff Gottesfeld
Category - Andes
Source - LibraryThing Early Reviewers
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

Living in the Washington, D.C. suburbs I have visited Arlington National Cemetery during my life, however, this small but beautifully illustrated book carries great depth in a few words. The story is told from the viewpoint of the unknown soldier who has been brought to this site to represent all the American soldiers who have died in war and were never recognized and returned to their families. The significance of the 21 steps, 21 seconds of waiting, the entire process that the guards go through is movingly told.

The tomb has been guarded non-stop since midnight July 2, 1936 by an elite group of soldiers, the "Old Guard", who believe that they are privileged to be awarded this assignment. They have never shirked their duty, not during hurricanes, blizzards, not 9/11 attacks nearby - they guard with honor.

Editat: març 21, 4:50pm

Challenge Book # 33
Night Moves ★★★★½
Julie Mulhern
Category - Himalayas
Source - Amazon
Other Challenges - 75 Book Challenge

Ellison Russell is deliriously happy as she is now engaged to homicide detective Anarchy Jones, much to her mother's chagrin. Since Anarchy is the one investigating the death of the husband of one of her friends, maybe Ellison has stopped finding dead bodies. She has plenty of other problems to solve - a badly behaved dog, a former boyfriend moving in next door, her mother trying to change her matrimonial mind in favor of the old boyfriend, and oh, yes, a dead body.

I love, love, love this series. I don't know if it's because it's set in the 70's, the descriptions of Ellison's mother's reactions to whatever doesn't please her. It doesn't really matter because I laugh, I cry, my heart races - it's just terrific! I finish the book in a day and then I have to wait months for the next one. I will wait -IMPATIENTLY!

març 16, 9:13pm

març 17, 9:44pm

Happy St. Patrick's Day to you, Cheli!

març 21, 5:07pm

Challenge Book # 34
Cold Reading Murder ★★★½
R.J. Lee
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

Since I play bridge, I picked up this series and have greatly enjoy reading it. Combining two of my favorite pastimes (bridge and reading) is a win/win for me. This time Wendy Winchester is teaching 5 new players about the game. One is a psychic, and offers her home for the first lesson including readings for all the participants. The psychic is found dead and the town is reeling - who would do this? Was it one of the new players who didn't like what the psychic saw?

Definitely a fun read!

març 21, 5:10pm

Challenge Book # 35
Here Comes the Body ★★★½
Maria DiRico
Category - Himalayas
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

So much fun!

Coming from an Italian family and having a Nonna nothing like the main character, Mia Carina, I laughed at many of the exploits of her Nonna (grandmother) and the rest of the family (part of the mob). Mia's father, Ravello, is the manager of the Belle View Catering Hall, which he is trying to run as a legitimate business (he wants to stay out of prison). He has Mia return to Astoria to be the event planner and her first one is deadly. A bachelor party with a stripper to pop out of a cake, turns into a murder investigation when no one pops out and instead a stabbed body is found within. Since Ravello had an argument with the victim previously, he's heading the list of suspects. Mia is determined not to need to visit the prison for her father (she already visits her brother - auto theft) and along with her Nonna works to find the killer.

loved it!

març 21, 5:13pm

Challenge Book # 36
Here Comes the Body ★★★★
Maria DiRico
Category - Himalayas
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

I enjoyed the first in the series so much, I had to read this second one right away!

Mia Carina is still working at the Belle View Catering Hall with her father. This time Mia's best friend, Nicole, is having a baby and she has to deal with dueling baby showers. Nicole's mother is hosting the shower at Belle View Catering Hall while Nicole's stepmother, Tina, is hosting at the fanciest place in Manhattan (Nicole hates the whole idea but has to go along for her father's sake). For the shower at Belle View, Nicole is greeted by friends and family and has a great time until the Tina makes her grand entrance. Hoping that Mia will help her handle the next shower, Nicole invites her to the fancy one. The fancy shower is more a showcase for Tina than a baby shower and Nicole is so upset that she leaves early.
What Mia finds is that Belle View will need a lot of work if it plans to compete. But something isn't right here. When Mia later finds Tina floating dead near Belle View, she knows that she needs to find the murderer to keep Belle View from shutting down.

With her neighbors and Nonna helping, Mia investigates Tina's past and present to figure out who and why.

When is the next one coming? I want it now!!

març 21, 5:15pm

Challenge Book # 37
Under the Cover of Murder ★★★★
Lauren Elliott
Category - Alps
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

Addie Greyborne is busy with the last minute preparations for her best friend's (Serena) wedding on board the family superyacht when she is asked by the local authorities to look at a portion of a book that was found on a body that washed up on the shore. As the local expert on books, the small fabric slice doesn't give enough information for her to make the identification but after the wedding, while perusing the yacht library she discovers the book in question. Then one of the wedding guests is found murdered the next morning and all the remaining guests are forced to remain aboard while the police investigate.

This was very interesting since all the suspects were there on the yacht and Addie was able to eavesdrop and question without having to travel around.

Love the characters and their interactions.

març 21, 5:34pm

Challenge Book # 38
The Story of Arthur Truluv ★★★
Elizabeth Berg
Category - Sonoma
Source - Library
Other Challenges - 75 Book Challenge

I read this for my book club, I was the one who suggested it because it sounded so delightful and loving and with the pandemic still keeping people shut in we wanted something happy. Everybody loved it but me. I'm not saying I didn't like it, just that it didn't give me that happy feeling that I was looking for.

I did like the story of how Arthur befriends Maddy and takes her into his home - kind of adopting her. I also liked how Arthur never wanted to hurt his neighbor's feelings but was willing to do that if he need to to protect Maddy. Arthur was a very caring man. However, the sadness that Arthur exuded because of his wife, Nola's death dragged down my feelings as well so that by the end I had tears rolling down my face.

It was a well-written book, just not what I was looking for or expecting.

març 21, 5:41pm

Challenge Book # 39
The Coming of the Third Reich ★★★★
Richard J. Evans
Category - Alps
Source - Library Overdrive
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

I selected this book for background reading regarding World War II and my ongoing study of the United States presidents. Since I am currently "studying" FDR I felt that I needed to understand what the war was all about. Before reading this book, my total understanding of Nazi Germany was a dictator who wanted to rule the world while eliminating the Jewish people and showing the world Aryan supremacy. Wow, did I get an education! And now I know I need more information.

This book showed the dangers of following blindly the dictates of a charismatic leader who has his own agenda which may or may not be the best for all. IMO what I saw in Hitler from this book, was a man who originally wanted to free the German people from the penalties that had been inflicted on Germany by the Allies at the end of World War I. And that cause may have been valid, however, once he managed to gain power he went to the extremes of controlling everything forcing the German Jews before the war to leave or buckle under. Those that left survived, those that chose to remain were annihilated. Hitler took a fledgling democratic society and within a few short years, forced those that were not part of the Nazi party (5 major political parties) and wiped them out with violence and intimidation.

Reading of how artists and scientists were treated if they were Jewish or married to a Jew is shocking, but seeing the numbers and names of those who were involved even more so. Three of the displaced scientists—Einstein, Franck, and Schrödinger had already received the Nobel prize in physics. five more would eventually receive the prize. Artists were also driven out in a "cultural cleansing". Wikipedia states it better than I can. "In 1937 in Munich, two simultaneous events demonstrated the Nazis’ views about art. One exhibition displayed art that should be eliminated (“The Degenerate Art Exhibition”), while the other promoted, by contrast, the official aesthetic (“The Great German Art Exhibition”)." Modern artists were said to be compromising the purity of the German race and lost their jobs at galleries and such while artwork was removed and destroyed. If they remained in Germany, many ended up in concentration camps.

The revelations in this book are alarming. Similarities are noticeable with today's society. We must not let this ever happen again.

març 29, 2:38pm

Challenge Book # 40
Death Gone A-Rye ★★★½
Winnie Archer
Category - Alps
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

Santa Sofia is abuzz with the news that Nessa Renchrik, the School Board President was murdered. Ivy Culpepper listens to the chatter at Yeast of Eden but when she finds that her boyfriend Miguel Baptista may be a suspect because he had an affair with her 11 years ago. The new town detective is trying to solve the murder before the Sheriff, his boss and Ivy's BFF/SIL, returns from her honeymoon. Ivy knows Miguel had nothing to do with it and sets her mind to clear him from police suspicion ASAP.

Love the main characters as well as the background. Recipes sound yummy!

març 29, 2:52pm

Challenge Book # 41
The Stolen Letter ★★★★
Paige Shelton
Category - Rockies
Source - Public Library
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, 75 Book Challenge

Delaney Nichols is returning from her honeymoon and rushing to her job at the Cracked Spine book store when she literally runs into a woman who looks enough like her to be an older sister. Finding that she is headed to the Cracked Spine as well, Delaney and Mary Stewart (she thinks she was Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots in a past life)walk together remarking on their resemblance. Feeling a friendship starting they agree to dine together with their husbands. After a pleasant evening, the next day Delaney is accosted with the news that the bookstore is being closed because of unsafe conditions. Barely having time to fathom this news, there is an explosion which they later find out killed Mary Stewart's husband, the man spear-heading the closure.

The story swirls around incarnations, bureaucracy and history but it is extremely fun!

març 29, 3:08pm

Challenge Book # 42
Ruby Red Herring ★★★★½
Tracy Gardner
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

This was an absolutely sensational start to a new series!

I usually expect new series to be a bit slow at the beginning because of the need to introduce the characters and their relationships to each other, and there could have been a bit more background at the start, but by the time you are thoroughly involved in the multiple mysteries, the background has been peppered throughout and you have no problems connecting the dots if you are paying attention.

Avery Ayers parents were killed in an auto accident the previous year and now she is not only her sister's guardian but also in charge at the family business, Antiquities & Artifacts Appraised. Avery is starting a new appraisal project which is very high profile, and with it has comes threats, mysterious notes, break-ins, and murder. What does the Xiang Dynasty bejeweled dragon medallion have to do with this appraisal and possibly her parents death?

ABSOLUTELY PHENOMENAL! I couldn't put it down!

març 29, 5:49pm

Challenge Book # 43
A Perilous Undertaking ★★★½
Deanna Raybourn
Category - Himalayas
Source - Amazon for Kindle
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

Veronica Speedwell, the daughter of the Prince of Wales, but unknown to the world, has been asked by Princess Louise, daughter of Queen Victoria, to look into the conviction of her friend, Miles Ramsforth, for the murder of his mistress. She enlists the help of her colleague and friend, Stoker Templeton-Vane.

The investigation leads them into a world of Bohemian artist s and orgies as well as interaction with Stoker's estranged aristocratic family.

The mystery was well-written and the characters are developing nicely.

març 29, 5:58pm

Challenge Book # 44
Murder Can Confuse Your Chihuahua ★★
Rose Pressey
Category - Himalayas
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

Celeste Cabot has an unusual talent, she is an artist who when she paints unknown to her as she paints, she inserts the spirit of a wondering soul who will then manifest itself to her. That would be okay if this didn't always happen when a murder has occurred. Because she has these ghosts hanging around she gets herself and others into some IMO stupid situations.

The mystery didn't real hold my attention and the main character for me needs a major rewrite. I will try one more in the series, but if there is no major character development, I will abandon this series. The idea is good, but the execution poor.

març 29, 6:15pm

Challenge Book # 45
Murder Can Haunt Your Handiwork ½
Rose Pressey
Category - Himalayas
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

Celeste Cabot is an artist who has the uncanny ability to paint, unbeknownst to her, a picture inside her artwork of an unsettled ghost which results in their manifestation to her. They do this at a time when a murder has occurred in Celeste's area. Celeste feels that the ghosts are there to help her find the murderer and she throws herself into unusual situations that she should have just left alone.

I was really hoping that since there was a bit of a change of scenery for this craft fair (Biltmore in NC) that things would change , but, alas, same old, same old.
Celeste Cabot is the stupidest character I have ever come across in my reading of cozy mysteries and I can't tolerate her lack of discipline. She complains about her brothers always getting into trouble without thinking, this the pot calling the kettle black.

I will not be continuing this series.

abr. 2, 10:00am

>79 cyderry: You liked that one better than I did.

>82 cyderry: That one sounds dreadful. You rarely give anything 1/2 star. I know I can give that series a pass since >81 cyderry: was only 2 stars.

abr. 2, 1:36pm

>83 thornton37814: Lori, For the Haunted Craft Fair series, I kept saying to myself that this character has got to get better, but it seemed she just got worse. I couldn't read and watch her stupidity anymore. The smartest thing I think she did in all three books I read, was lock the door. I really hate to give a bad review, I try to find something positive, but I just couldn't.

abr. 2, 9:09pm

>84 cyderry: Hopefully your next one will be better.

Editat: abr. 3, 6:13pm

Challenge Book # 46
A Room with a Roux ★★★½
Sarah Fox
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (U/R), 75 Book Challenge

Marley and her husband Brett are taking a romantic getaway in the mountains since they postponed their honeymoon. They have found what they think is the perfect spot - Holly Lodge. They have been snowshoeing and hot tubbing and have met some interesting people in this out-of-the-way B&B but things turn bad when they find the owner in a snowbank, stabbed to death.

Return home early, several of the other guests come to Wildwood Cove too. With some of the suspects in their town, Marley and Brett decide to protect their town, they need to find the murderer.

The story follows their efforts to a snowy conclusion. The regular characters are fun and the mystery was well-written.

abr. 3, 6:15pm

Series - status after the first quarter
1 series abandoned
9 series continued, still books to read
12 series have had the most recent release read!
12 series were started (OMG! Why do I keep doing this to myself?)


Night Moves series brought current
Ruby Red Herring new series started

I decided that since I really want to try to keep current on the series that I read, it might be helpful if I saw how I was doing. Not sure whether I'm encouraged or discouraged since the series kept current is the same number as new series started.

abr. 3, 6:24pm

Just catching up on your thread. A busy year so far!

abr. 13, 4:50pm

Challenge Book # 47
A Glimmer of a Clue ★★★½
Daryl Wood Gerber
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (A/W), 75 Book Challenge

Courtney Kelly likes that she has fairy friends and enjoys her business of Fairy gardens and Tea shop but sometimes things are not always happy and fun. After breaking up a catfight between Wanda nd Lana in front of her shop, Courtney is hoping that they will stay away from each other but a few days later at a charity fundraiser, she finds Wanda over the murdered body of Lana holding the murder weapon. Wanda is dazed and not sure what happened. Can Courtney and her fairy friends find a way to clear Wanda of the murder?

What fun to picture the fairies whizzing back and forth trying to learn secrets from others! The characters are fun and the setting and mystery entertaining.

abr. 13, 5:00pm

Challenge Book # 48
Beware the East Wind ★★★½
Barbara Barrett
Category - Alps
Source - Amazon
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, 75 Book Challenge

Marianne, Sydney, Micki and Kat, the Mah Jongg foursome, have been asked by a friend's husband to clear his wife Portia of the murder of her catering business partner. Portia hasn't been arrested but she feels that it's just a matter of time. It seems that her partner who was also a hypnotist may have been learning secrets from her "patients" or was it someone else.

This was an interesting mystery because I have tried hypnosis and couldn't be put under. However, the characters involved may have been more susceptible.

I love seeing the ladies around the mah jongg table trying to put together all the clues. Fun, Fun, FUN!

abr. 13, 5:28pm

Challenge Book # 49
The Wolfe Widow ★★★½
Victoria Abbott
Category - Alps
Source - Public Library Overdrive
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (A/W), 75 Book Challenge

Jordan Bingham loves her job. She lives with and works for Vera Van Alst, an eccentric old lady who collects books and has Jordan working to add to her collection. But things take an unusual turn when one evening a mysterious woman, Muriel Delgado, arrives at the estate and shortly after Jordan is fired and told to leave the premises immediately.

Totally confused, Jordan swiftly moves out and settles at her uncle's home but is determined to find out why she lost the best job ever. To do that she has to find out who Muriel Delgado is and what influence she has over Ms Van Alst. Having a few family members who nay or may not be members of the mob gives Jordan a few edges in her investigation of what's going on. But even mob connections don't necessarily mean that Jordan won't be in danger.

So much fun with an uncle who always seems to always screw up, disguises that are a bit over the top, burner phones, unregistered cars, crooked cops or not and characters that are out of character! The mystery is good too!

abr. 13, 5:40pm

Challenge Book # 50
Wining and Dying ★★★½
Daryl Wood Gerber
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (A/W), 75 Book Challenge

Crystal Cove is holding its 5th Annual Art and Wine Festival, where local artists submit entries for next year's poster and local wineries show off their newest vintages. Jenna Hart, owner of the cookbook nook coffee shop has entered a painting in the competition and is one of the finalists. Her friend's husband, Keller, is also. When the top competitor is found stabbed with with one of Keller's tools, Jenna jumps right in to try to find who is framing her friend.

The mystery with the art and wine references was good but this time a little on the mystery. It was pretty easy to figure out the murderer.

Looking forward to next time.

abr. 13, 6:07pm

Challenge Book # 51
Lethal Letters ★★★½
Ellery Adams
Category - Alps
Source - Nook
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (A/W), 75 Book Challenge

Olivia has gone to the church with her friend Michel for the final arrangements related to Michel's wedding in a few days. While there, workmen at the church uncover a time capsule buried in the sacristy wall. Olivia notices that there is a copper box about the size of a pair of shoes, however, when several days later she is told what the historical society discovered in the time capsule, there is no mention of the copper box. Knowing that the pastor was alarmed at the time of the discovery, Olivia is concerned at the disappearance. At the same time, Olivia has to deal with her young niece's finding of a young woman on the beach who apparently was murdered. Determining that the young victim was a friend of the Historical society leader, Olivia wonders if there is a connection. More and more clues are uncovered but who do they point to?

Love the mystery created by the time capsule being unburied. The characters and their interactions kept things interesting and the intricate plot fascinating.

Looking forward to the next one!

abr. 13, 6:45pm

Challenge Book # 52
Lemon Drop Dead ★★★½
Amanda Flower
Category - Andes
Source - NetGalley
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (A/W), 75 Book Challenge

Bailey King operates Swissmen Sweets with her Amish grandmother in Harvest, OH. A young Amish woman, Emily has worked with Bailey at the candy shop ever since her family shunned her because she had a baby out of wedlock. Few knew Emily's secret but now that she is happily married and expecting a baby, the town wants to help her celebrate by throwing her a baby shower. A stranger appears talking about Emily's first child and then that night the stranger is found strangled in the shop of Emily's estranged family.

Since no one knows about the stranger, Bailey takes what little she knows and starts hunting. The information and details that Bailey finds could tear apart friends and family, but can she ignore what she knows?

Terrific story, create character development, love the news that rocks all. can't wait for the next one!

abr. 13, 6:50pm

Challenge Book # 53
Athena's Choice ★★★★½
Adam Boostrom
Category - Alps
Source - NetShelf Audio
Other Challenges - ROOT Challenge, ALPHAKit (A/W), 75 Book Challenge

Can you imagine society 80 years from now, where a pandemic has killed all the men in the world and computers can control everything for human care from food preparation, clothing and housing all by 3 D printing and holograms? When this book started I wasn't too sure that I was going to manage to get through it, but amazingly, it hooked me and I literally couldn't put it down. I read it in one sitting.

The story has all the amazing technological aspects I've noted but also a great story of a young girl, Athena, who has been put into an unusual position by the Third Core (master computer) where she has to help try to find the thieves that have stolen the research for the Lazarus Genome, an effort to bring man back from oblivion by re-populating the male of the species.