Saturday, March 26, 2016

BITTERSWEET by Susan Wittig Albert

Book 4 in the Family Fortune Mysteries 
by Dawn Eastman

Psychic Clyde Fortune and her zany family are back in the fourth in the national bestselling series from the author of A Fright to the Death.
Former cop and novice psychic Clyde Fortune finds herself in a race for justice when a Zombie Fun Run turns deadly...
All of Crystal Haven, Michigan, is psyching up to participate in a Zombie Fun Run organized by Clyde’s nephew Seth, but Clyde is fretful about the undead festivities. For one thing, her sister, Grace, has unexpectedly returned to town after fifteen years. For another, Clyde has the nagging feeling that something is about to go wrong...
When one of the zombie runners is found murdered and then Grace disappears, Clyde realizes her grim premonition is dead-on. Now, she and her police detective boyfriend Mac must find a ghoulish murderer before someone points the finger at Grace. And when a tangled web of family secrets and old grudges combines with a mysterious case of stolen diamonds, even someone as quick-witted as Clyde might not be able to outrun a killer...


Fans of the Family Fortune Mystery series are going to love this newest installment!

It’s hard to believe that author Dawn Eastman is already to book four in this series. What’s not hard to believe is that the Family Fortune series has such a following of fans. It really is a delightful para-cozy series.

Ms. Eastman doesn’t disappoint with AN UNHAPPY MEDIUM. Clyde Fortune and her fun family are back and as quirky as ever. And what is more fitting for this town full of characters than a zombie run? Oh yeah, a zombie run with a real dead body.

Creatively written, with twists, turns, and sub stories, author Eastmen had me guessing and second guessing myself through the entire book. I was dead wrong in my guesses, leading to the reveal taking me by surprise.

As I mentioned, returning fans with be thrilled with AN UNHAPPY MEDIUM. And all fans of para-cozies need to check out this series. You won’t be disappointed.


Book 23 in the China Bayles Mysteries
by Susan Wittig Albert

This Thanksgiving, be grateful for the “savvy sleuthing”* of New York Times bestselling author Susan Wittig Albert’s China Bayles—who teams up with an old friend to solve a case of theft and murder in a South Texas ranching community…
For Thanksgiving, China is planning to visit her mother, Leatha, and her mother’s husband, Sam. She’s also looking forward to catching up with a friend, game warden Mackenzie “Mack” Chambers. But Leatha calls with bad news: Sam has had a heart attack. 
While Sam recuperates, Leatha does have a helper—Sue Ellen Krause. But Sue Ellen—who’s leaving her husband, the assistant foreman at a trophy game ranch—has troubles of her own. Before she can tell China the full story, Sue Ellen is killed in a car crash. 
When a local veterinarian is shot, Mack believes his murder could be related to fawns stolen from a nearby ranch. And China wonders if Sue Ellen’s death may not have been an accident, and if there’s a connection to the stolen animals...


Paperback edition

When I read what the subject of BITTERSWEET was, trophy game ranches, places where animals are kept and raised for the purpose of hunting them for thrills and trophies, I almost choose not to read the book. I personally find such places appalling and feel they should be outlawed.  But I was sent this book by the publisher to review, so I read it. I found it to be very well written. There is no doubt author Susan Wittig Albert knows how to draw readers into a story.

Written partly in first person with China narrating, and partly in third person with the story of China’s friend Mackenzie “Mack” Chambers being told, I wasn’t sure I was going to care for it at first, but I found myself looking forward to the spots where the POV changed (Normally at the start of a new chapter). It kept the story fresh, and I think it was a creative choice.

And even though the subject was not a favorite of mine, without giving anything away, I had reason to smile near the end when the universe had a unique revenge planned for the villain. I cheered!

Rounding out the book is very interesting information on different types of plants, and some tasty sounding recipes.

(This review is from excerpts of the review 
I wrote for the hardcover edition in 2015.)

Both of these titles are available for pre-order
Release date: April 5!

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  1. I love Dawn Eastman's series and am happy to see another one come out. Your review is the only thing making me want to read the other book. I have read some of Susan Wittig Albert's books but haven't followed them like I do some of my other authors. I will have to reconsider reading her thanks to you!

    1. Hey Doward! I only started reading Susan Wittig Albert last year. I enjoy this series much more than her other one. I still have a long way to go to catch up on this one.

      Thank you for your kind words. I love helping people find new book, and authors! You've made my day!

  2. Thank you, Lisa K. I really am glad you went ahead and read Ms Albert's book. Not a fan of those ranches, either but love her stories. Also, thanks for the introducing me to a new author and series. :)

  3. Thanks, Lisa. (It's so good seeing your reviews, again.) Bittersweet would have concerned me, too. I'm so glad there is a unique revenge for the villain! Happy Saturday, to you.