Friday, April 24, 2015

THE BOOK STOPS HERE by Kate Carlisle

Book 1 in the Cypress Cove Mystery series
by Carlene O'Neal

In California wine country, the town of Cypress Cove may seem peaceful. But someone’s about to pop their cork…

After losing her job as a photojournalist, Penny Lively is trying to get her life back in focus. Inheriting the family winery from her late aunt may be the fresh start she needs. Thankfully she’s got her niece Hayley and her handsome winery manager Connor to help. But the person in need of more urgent assistance is Antonia Martinelli, the owner of the neighboring winery, who has her own barrel full of problems. Someone’s spoiling her wine, and with the upcoming Autumn Festival, she needs Penny’s nose for clues to sniff out the culprit.

But Penny’s search for answers sours after the body of a staff member is found in a grape crusher. Since Hayley was the last to see him alive, she’s the prime suspect in the case. Now Penny must hurry to find the real killer before Hayley withers on the vine…


ONE FOOT IN THE GRAPE was a good start for the new Cypress Cove Mystery series.

Although I’m not a wine drinker (not a drinker at all for that matter), the beauty of vineyards are undeniable. While reading this story, it was easy to picture myself among the rows of ripening grapes, with the sun shining on a quiet, peaceful day. Well, you know, if there hadn’t been a murder. ;-)

Author Carlene O’Neil has done a wonderful job on this first book.  Well thought out characters, like protagonist Penny Lively, make for an entertaining read. I look forward to watching the growth of these characters in upcoming installments.

Brava to the author for a death I haven’t seen in a cozy before . . . a grape crusher! Once the body is found, the mystery continues to ripen as the book draws to a conclusion I didn’t come close to guessing.

A robust bouquet of well written mystery, ONE FOOT IN THE GRAPE is sure to be a new favorite among cozy fans. 


Book 3 in the Baker's Treat Mystery series
by Nancy J. Parra

The author of Murder Gone A-Rye and Gluten for Punishment returns to Oiltop, Kansas, where gluten-free baker Toni Holmes has to separate the wheat from the chaff to clear her brother of murder… 

It’s never a good time for a crisis. Toni’s busy whipping up gluten-free holiday treats when a murder forces her to put baking on the back burner. A dead man has been found in the bathtub of a local inn—in a room registered to her brother, Tim.

With her sibling now a prime suspect in a mysterious homicide, Toni is determined to find out who set him up. But she’s about to get some unwanted assistance from former investigative journalist Grandma Ruth, who won’t let anything slow her progress in running down a killer…


FLOURLESS TO STOP HIM is a delectable addition to the Baker’s Treat Mystery series.

This book had me with the first three sentences . . . I love my family. I do. But there are times when I sincerely wish they would take a day off . . . Ha! I know that feeling well! But I do love the concept of a home where extended family members are free to come and go. That they will always have a roof over their heads.

The cast of characters are every bit as much a treat as the delicious recipes that are included. I think anyone would have a hard time not loving lead character Toni’s Grandma Ruth, the ninety something ex-investigative reporter, lifelong member of Mensa. And Grandma Ruth is in great form in this installment!

This was a real page turner of a mystery that kept me reading past my bedtime. I just had to know whodunit, and once I did, I couldn’t believe it!

I also love that in today’s world, with more and more people developing food allergies, author Nancy J. Parra had the idea to do a gluten free bakery. The fact that it is set in the middle of wheat country . . . priceless. As I mentioned above, there are wonderful recipes, gluten free, included in the book.

I look forward to the next book in the Baker’s Treat Mystery series. Ms. Parra has a real job on her hands topping this one! 


Book 9 in the Bibliophile Mystery series
by Kate Carlisle

You never know what treasures can be found in someone’s attic. Unfortunately for bookbinder Brooklyn Wainwright, some of them are worth killing for in the latest in the New York Timesbestselling Bibliophile Mystery series.
Brooklyn is thrilled to be appearing on the hit TV show This Old Attic as a rare-book expert and appraiser. Her first subject is a valuable first-edition copy of the children’s classic The Secret Garden.
After the episode airs, a man storms onto the set claiming that the owner of the book, a flower seller named Vera, found the book at his garage sale, and he wants it back—or else. Afterward, Randolph Rayburn, the show’s host, confides in Brooklyn that he’s terrified by the man’s threats and fears that he is being stalked.
When several violent incidents occur on the set, Brooklyn and her security expert boyfriend, Derek, are shaken. But Brooklyn’s discovery of Vera’s corpse in her flower shop convinces her she has to find the killer—before her chance at prime time and her life are canceled…permanently.


I haven’t read the first few books in the Bibliophile Mystery series, but I see I will have to make up for lost time. I really enjoyed this story. Author Kate Carlisle has a wonderful flare for mystery. She always delivers a page turner.

I was fascinated by the concept that buying something at a garage sale and finding out it was worth gobs of money could get you killed. I think when I find my fortune at a yard sale I’ll keep quiet about it. ;-)

As with a few books I’ve read recently, the victim was found well into the book. I personally like that. There’s so much more time for a back on the person killed. It makes them more human and not just a faceless body.

This book was fast paced and attention holding. Lots of twists and turns to keep the reader guessing. I kept telling myself just one more page, only one more chapter. It took a lot to pull me away from it.

If you’re a fan of classic mysteries, you’re going to love THE BOOK STOPS HERE.

All three of these great titles are 
available for pre-order for their 
Tuesday, May 5 release date! 

As always, please leave a comment and 
let me know what you think!

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  1. Thank you for the reviews of the books. I giggle when I read "Brava to the author for a death I haven’t seen in a cozy before . . . a grape crusher! " Only a cozy fan would be happy over a creative way....

    My dad has a gluten allergy so all of us have gone gluten free. So I am interested in reading (and very interested in the recipes) Flourless To Stop Him.

    The Book Stops Here sounds like a fun page turner book. The cover is adorable!

    I have added all 3 books to my TBR list. :D

  2. Thanks, Lisa. Carlene O'Neil is new to me and the book cover is very enticing. You just keep adding to my TBR list! :) Have a great weekend!

  3. Definitely going to be adding these books to my ever growing book list. Thanks for such great reviews of them all!

  4. How can there be a new book by Nancy that was completely off my radar? Thanks for the reviews, makes me want to read them all.

  5. These all look great--nice mix of a new one and some faves!

  6. Thanks for opening my eyes to One Foot In The Grape. It sounds like a must read