Will the woman he left behind a decade ago be His Salvation?
Seth McCullough left behind his high school sweetheart, Krista Chancellor, determined to keep her safe. Running from his own demons, Seth joined the military, hoping for a new start.
Ten years later, after experiencing psychological and physical trauma, Seth takes a trip to Mexico for rest and relaxation. Waking up one morning confused, bloody, and linked to multiple high profile murders, Seth is sure he’s lost what little sanity he has left. Determined to find answers, Seth reaches out to the only person he ever trusted, his old flame, Krista.
Now, Krista and Seth find themselves embroiled in an agenda too terrifying to comprehend. Not sure who to trust, and looking for answers, will the woman he left behind over a decade ago be His Salvation, or his ruin?
PLEASE NOTE: This is the second edition. It has extensive rewrites and has been re-edited.
About the Author
Michelle King lives in the Pacific Northwest with her four quirky and beautiful children. She loves coffee, Superman, rollercoasters, and has an addiction to chapstick.
She works as a registered nurse and in her spare time writes novels. As a multi-genre author, she has written in the categories of romance suspense, young adult, women’s fiction, and literary fiction. She has won four literary awards.
This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. The author will be presenting a $20 Amazon/BN gift card to a randomly drawn winner. Click on the tour banner at the top to see the other stops on the tour.
Bookmarked for Murder (Mystery Bookshop) by V.M. Burns
A modern-day locked room (actually a tour bus) mystery and a tale set in 1938 England are both included in Bookmarked for Murder.
The author uses a clever plot device of having the main sleuth, Samantha, be creating the period mystery as we watch. Since Sam is also a mystery bookstore owner, she also recommends other excellent cozy mysteries a la the Death on Demand mystery series. The main plot on the bus involves Sam, her grandmother Jo, and her three neighbors at the senior living residence, Shady Acres. This allows the author to include some gentle humor.
“You ordered fifteen pizzas?” [says the] freckle-faced kid, who looked about twelve, with […] a red hoodie with a Star Trek insignia, and red Converse All-Stars. “Nice shoes,” said Nana Jo. […] “Thanks. All the old ladies usually like them.”
The coroner was removing the body from the bus. “That’s what’s left of the last person who called me an old lady. Remember, on Star Trek, the red shirts always die first.”—from Bookmarked for Murder
The historic fiction mystery within the mystery is set immediately prior to World War II. Lady Elizabeth and her niece, Lady Penelope, solve the mystery of a woman who fell to her death convinced her family was trying to kill her for her valuables.
Both the present-day and historic mysteries include plenty of character development. The humor is fun. Most enjoyable is the self-referential mystery trope references. I thought I would die laughing when Sam asked the detective for “a big reveal, like in Hercule Poirot books, where you bring all the suspects together and then the sleuth […] can reveal whodunit.” His reply? “Are you joking? This isn’t television. Real killers don’t crack under the pressure of hearing the evidence against them. Real killers laugh in the face of overwhelming mountains of evidence and deny to their dying day that they’re guilty.” What mystery reader hasn’t had that thought? But I’ve never seen it used in such a clever tongue-in-cheek way before. If you read a lot of cozies, Bookmarked for Murder will be a hilarious addition to your library with its witty takes on old mystery tropes and two intriguing mysteries to solve along with the heroines. 4 stars!
Thanks to Kensington Books and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway below for a chance to win one of five $20 Amazon gift cards!
Amateur sleuth Samantha Washington’s shopping trip to Chicago takes a deadly detour when a man is murdered on her bus . . .
After some post-Christmas retail therapy in the Windy City, mystery bookshop owner and historical whodunit novelist Sam Washington is returning home to North Harbor, Michigan, on a chartered bus. With Nana Jo and her gal pals Irma, Dorothy, and Ruby Mae from Shady Acres Retirement Village along for the ride, it’s a lively trip. But one passenger is not so lively—a gentleman Irma befriended is found dead in his seat after an unscheduled stop. The ladies immediately shift gears to find out who punched his ticket, while Sam slips into the driver’s seat to make sure Nana Jo and her crew steer clear of fatal conclusions . . .
About V.M. Burns
V.M. Burns was born in Northwestern Indiana and spent many years in Southwestern Michigan on the Lake Michigan shoreline. She is a lover of dogs, British historic cozies, and scones with clotted cream. After many years in the Midwest, she went in search of milder winters and currently lives in Eastern Tennessee with her poodles. Her debut novel, The Plot is Murder was nominated for a 2017 Agatha Award for Best First Novel. Valerie is a member of Mystery Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, and a lifetime member of Sisters in Crime. Readers can learn more by visiting her website at vmburns.com
In Under the Guise of Night, the first Lady Bantham is burned to death in an auto accident allegedly on her way to an assignation with her lover. Three years later, the new Lady Bantham is haunted by a figure that looks suspiciously like the other Lady Bantham. Former Scotland Yard detective Jasper is on hand at a masquerade in Venice when the first Lady Bentham is found murdered three years after she is declared dead in the auto accident by him. Where has she been? Who murdered her? And why? What does this mean for the legality of the second Lady Bentham’s marriage to Lord Bentham?
Under the Guise of Night effectively sets the mood just like a real Agatha Christie tale. There is a large suspect pool with individual clues spread about to eliminate them one by one. The twisty reveal during a confrontation in the ballroom was the perfect final touch. 4.5 stars!
Thanks to Canelo Books and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
Scarlet Fever: A Novel (“Sister” Jane) by Rita Mae Brown
I have read and loved all of the author’s Mrs. Murphy series so when I saw Scarlet Fever on NetGalley I snapped it up. Mrs. Murphy books are a more traditional cat cozy mystery though the cats and dog do talk and investigate crimes.
Scarlet Fever is book number twelve in the “Sister” Jane mysteries. This book literally has a hundred characters. There are talking hounds, dogs, and horses—all with intricate family relationships. There are also many human characters with seemingly long-standing issues from previous books in the series. The author does provide a detailed biography of the cast at the beginning. However, it was difficult to get into the mystery while frequently having to turn pages back and forth. Therefore, I would not recommend starting the series with this entry.
However, if you like fox hunting, you will love this series that focuses minutely on the methods used by the hunters, their hounds, and the foxes trying to outwit them both. Long-term fans of the “Sister” Jane mysteries will be sure to enjoy Scarlet Fever. 4 stars!
Thanks to Ballantine Books, Random House and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway for a print copy of the book below!
About Scarlet Fever
Scarlet Fever: A Novel (“Sister” Jane) Cozy Mystery 12th in Series Ballantine Books (November 26, 2019) Hardcover: 304 pages ISBN-10: 0593130006 ISBN-13: 978-0593130001 Digital ASIN: B07P8J8KVM
Winter blizzards bring a flurry of cases to solve in this riveting new foxhunting mystery featuring “Sister” Jane Arnold and her incorrigible hounds from New York Times bestselling author Rita Mae Brown.
Frigid February air has settled into the bones of the Blue Ridge Mountains, making for a slow foxhunting season, though “Sister” Jane Arnold’s enthusiasm is not so easily deterred. With the winter chill come tweed coats, blazing fireplaces—and perhaps another to share the warmth with, as the bold hunting scarlets worn by the men in Sister Jane’s hunting club make the hearts of women flutter—until someone’s stops entirely.
Harry Dunbar, a member of the Jefferson Hunt club with a penchant for antique furniture, is found with his skull cracked at the bottom of the stairs to a local store. There are no telltale signs of foul play—save for the priceless (and stolen) Erté fox ring in his pocket. Sister and her hounds set out to uncover the truth: was this simply an accident—a case of bad luck—or something much more sinister?
Steeped in the deep traditions of Virginia horse country and featuring a colorful cast of characters both two- and four-legged, Scarlet Fever is another spirited mystery from Rita Mae Brown.
About Rita Mae Brown
Rita Mae Brown is the bestselling author of the Sneaky Pie Brown mysteries; the Sister Jane series; the Runnymede novels, including Six of One and Cakewalk; A Nose for Justice and Murder Unleashed;Rubyfruit Jungle; and In Her Day; as well as many other books. An Emmy-nominated screenwriter and a poet, Brown lives in Afton, Virginia, and is a Master of Foxhounds and the huntsman.
Only ten miles off the coast of Tinker’s Cove Maine lies Fletcher’s Island. But the island, owned by venture capitalist billionaire Scott Newman seems a world apart. It has been refurbished at great expense to its original state including no Wi-Fi, no electricity, and only sailing ships for transport back to the twenty-first century. When Lucy Stone, a part-time investigative reporter is invited to stay on the island and write a puff piece for her newspaper little does she know it will ultimately be to an Invitation Only Murder.
It is hard-to-believe that this is the twenty-sixth entry in the Lucy Stone series. The plot seems as fresh as the first one. I fully enjoyed seeing Lucy away from her usual support team of friends and family. The idea of living life as it was almost two centuries ago was an original hook and drove a lot of the plot twists. I also learned a bit about puffins. Overall, Invitation Only Murder is a nice entry into the series and should be snapped up by Lucy Stone fans. 4 stars!
Thanks to Kensington Books and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.