Kindred Spirits
September 1st, 2018 by diane92345

Kindred Spirits is a mystery.

Gabriel Ash is opening a bookstore.  His partner, Hazel Best, is helping him put the final books on the shelves before the mayor arrives to begin the Grand Opening.  Hazel goes to pick up Gabriel’s two children from their elementary school. While there, she foils a plot to kidnap the two sons and their nanny, Frankie. Gabriel immediately suspects his estranged wife, Cathy.  Cathy had kidnapped the boys before, keeping them from their father for four years. During police questioning, the boys insist that Frankie was really the intended target.

Much of this book doesn’t follow a logical thought process, which drives me crazy.  Going way back to the kidnapping, why, if their nanny was already at the school, did Hazel go to pick up the boys? Hazel seems like an ineffectual loose cannon. Why would you become a policewoman if you hate and refuse to follow rules.  This is marketed as a police procedural but it really wasn’t one since no procedures were followed. You know it is bad when you only relate to one character, Patience, who is a telepathic dog. I read the entire book since I agreed to review it.  Luckily, you do not have to do the same. 1 star.

Thanks to the publisher, Severn House, and NetGalley for an advanced copy.

Posted in Mystery & Thrillers Tagged with:

Silent Invasion
August 27th, 2018 by diane92345

In 1952 rural America, private eye Dick Mallet sees a strange light in the sky while looking for a missing person, Fanny Hobbs. The police find his car crashed into a pole and Dick nowhere to be found. Matt Sinkage, a reporter with a personal interest in UFOs, investigates Dick’s disappearance. Matt also thinks his neighbor, Mr. Kalashnikov, is a Russian spy. Silent Invasion 28is set in the fifties after all.

Written in 1986-87, the Silent Invasion’s plot seems dated with an obvious 80s paranoid perspective. I really tried to like the story. Unfortunately, I found it boring and slow-moving. Usually the artwork will keep me reading but I didn’t like that much either. I agree with the introduction that it takes a bit of time to get use to the “big foot” black and white art. I also didn’t connect with any of the characters. My issues may be related to just reading the fantastic Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles, which is set in the same period. I would suggest reading that not this unless you’re in the mood for some 80s nostalgia. 2 stars.

Thanks to the publisher,, and NetGalley for an advanced copy.

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Deadly Habit: A theatrical mystery
August 25th, 2018 by diane92345

A Deadly Habit plops Charles Paris in a West End play where a real murderer is afoot.

Charles Paris “spent a great deal more time out of work than in”. But things are looking up when his lackluster agent Maurice finds him a three-month job playing a monk in The Habit of Faith in London’s West End. Little does Charles know that he will soon be investigating a cast member’s murder while also trying to quit drinking his beloved Bell’s whiskey and reunite with his long-estranged wife, Frances.

It is hard to believe this is the twentieth book in the series. I read the first one in middle school and nine more during my twenties. Charles’ life is still as feckless and humorous as I remember. There is no need to read the series in order though this one does share a few minor spoilers to the earlier books.

The mystery was relatively easy to solve with the clues and red herrings plain to see. The setting of a British play and its petty backstage grumblings was a nice change from the usual cozy’s crafts or small businesses as was using an older male amateur detective. The inclusion of the #MeToo movement modernizes a tale that could be set any time in the 20th or 21st century. Overall, there is enough different here to recommend A Deadly Habit to cozy fans. 3 stars!

Thanks to the publisher, Severn House, and NetGalley for an advanced copy.

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