Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Lavender Morning by Jude Deveraux

This book was a bit hard for me to follow.  There is a lot of time switching for the story of Jocelyn who is present day and Miss Edi's life in 1941.  Even when they started figuring out the mystery, I wasn't sure I understood what they were finding.
I enjoy Jude's books, this one wasn't my fav.
Jocelyn Minton is a woman torn between two worlds. Her mother grew up attending private schools and afternoon teas, but she married the local handyman. After her mother died when Joce was only five years old, her father remarried into his own class, and Joce became an outsider -- until she met Edilean Harcourt. Although she was sixty years Joce's senior, Miss Edi was a kindred soul who understood her like no one else ever had. When Miss Edi passes away, she leaves Joce all her worldly possessions, including an eighteenth-century house and a letter with clues to a mystery that began in 1941. In the letter, Miss Edi also mentions that she has found the perfect man for Joce -- a handsome young lawyer. Joce is shocked to learn that the mystery, the house, and the future love of her life are all in Edilean, a small town in Virginia that Miss Edi never told her about. Hurt that the woman who meant so much to her kept so many secrets, Jocelyn moves to this tight-knit village in an attempt to understand the legacy that has been left to her. As she begins to dig into Miss Edi's mystery, she soon discovers some shocking surprises about her family's history and her own future -- and she meets a man with his own mysterious past.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Temptation by Jude Deveraux

When I first started reading this book, I didn't think I would like it.  There was to much drama between step father and step daughter.  If you find yourself feeling the same, keep reading for just a bit longer.  The book gets better and will reel you in.

Hidden secrets, high passion, and a healthy dose of humor are Deveraux hallmarks, and Temptation is one of her best. The tempting bestseller features a fish-out-of-water heroine, a hidden family treasure, and a Scottish laird who would rather die than be married.

Temperance O'Neil is a women's rights activist in New York City at the turn of the 20th century. At the age of 29, she had given little thought, time, or attention to her love life and thrown all of her energy into helping the city's poor and downtrodden women. But when Temperance's widowed mother shows up with her new husband, Angus McCairn, everything changes. Angus has control over the O'Neil money and uses it to force Temperance to move to Scotland, where he's determined to make a "proper" lady of her. This results in a brief but amusing battle of wills that culminates in a blackmail deal: If Temperance can make Angus's nephew, James, take a wife within the next six months, then she can have her money and her house back.

Temperance travels to James's home in the Highlands, only to discover a huge, filthy, ramshackle house and a style of living that is far from the city ways she is used to. Showing up under the guise of being the new housekeeper, Temperance sets about tidying up the place and finding James the perfect woman. While trying to sneak a humorous parade of inappropriate candidates past James's watchful eye, Temperance finds herself falling in love with the man. But just as she comes to this realization, the perfect match for James shows up: his childhood sweetheart, who is now a widow. Torn between the work she once did, her passion for the people in her new life, and her love for James, Temperance makes a hard decision that forces her to risk everything she holds dear.

Deveraux makes good use of historical detail and creates characters who are charmingly and believably flawed. There's a fun mystery to solve regarding a hidden family treasure and the reason behind Angus's determination to see his nephew married off, and plenty of obstacles to overcome. All of it is seasoned with Deveraux's trademark humor and passion, a recipe that never fails to satisfy.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

The Darling Dahlias and the Cucumber Tree by Susan Wittig Albert

I love the writing style of Susan Wittig Albert.  Her stories glide effortlessly with wonderful descriptions and great characters.  This is a new series that has a bit of a historical fiction flare to it and it takes place in the 1930s.  This deals with a gardening club in the fictional town of Darling Alabama.
The country may be struggling through the Great Depression, but the good ladies of Darling, Alabama, are determined to keep their chins up and their town beautiful. Their garden club, the Darling Dahlias, has just inherited a new clubhouse and garden, complete with two beautiful cucumber trees in full bloom. But life in Darling is not all garden parties and rosemary lemonade. When local blond bombshell Bunny Scott is found in a suspicious car wreck, the Dahlias decide to dig into the town's buried secrets, and club members Lizzy, Ophelia, and Verna soon find leads sprouting up faster than weeds. The town is all abuzz with news of an escaped convict from the prison farm, rumors of trouble at the bank, and tales of a ghost heard digging around the cucumber tree. If anyone can get to the root of these mysteries, it's the Darling Dahlias.

Monday, July 21, 2014

A Deadly Grind by Victoria Hamilton

When I first started reading this book, I thought a hoosier was either a person born in Indiana or a sports team.    This is book 1 in the Vintage Kitchen Mystery series.  I will read the second book to see if I want to continue the series.  The characters didn't have as much spunk as some of my favorite books, but the book was still enjoyable.

A Hoosier to die for?When vintage cookware and cookbook collector Jaymie Leighton spies an original 1920s Hoosier brand kitchen cabinet at an estate auction, it’s love at first sight. Despite the protests of her sister that the 19th-century yellow-brick house they share in Michigan is already too cluttered with Jaymie’s “junk,” she successfully outbids the other buyers and triumphantly takes home her Hoosier.

But that night on the summer porch where they’ve left the Hoosier to be cleaned up, a man is murdered, struck on the head with  the steel meat grinder that is part of the cabinet. Who is this stranger—and what was he doing on their porch? Does his death have anything to do with the Hoosier?

As the police struggle to determine the man’s identity, Jaymie can’t help doing a little digging on her own, accompanied by her three-legged Yorkie Poo, Hopalong. But in her bid to uncover the truth about the hidden secrets of the Hoosier, Jaymie may be the one who ends up going, going…gone.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Charlie Bone and the Red Knight by Jenny Nimmo

This is the last book of the Children of the Red King series.  It's a YA series but great fun loaded with adventure with magical children.

Charlie and his friends take on the most powerful and dangerous magic in Book Eight of this extraordinary series. As wicked forces come to a head at Bloor's Academy, Charlie and his friends must use all their magic and all their might to fight the evil and save Charlie's parents. In his greatest adventure yet, Charlie must discover the fate of his family, the evil intentions of the Bloors, what has become of Septimus Bloor's will, and, most important, the destiny of the Red King's heirs. But are the Children of the Red King strong enough to defeat the darkness to find the answers? 

Dark forces are gathering at Bloor's Academy as the Bloors search for a lost box containing a hidden will- a will that reveals the true destiny of the Red King's heirs. And the Bloors are determined to keep Charlie Bone from finding it first. But Charlie is also facing the lord of the sea, who is trying to drown his parents, and a deadly expert swordsman from another century. The Red Knight might be the only hope. But who is the mysterious Red Kinight? And can he help Charlie and his friends defeat the evil magic for good?

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Smitten Book Club by Colleen Coble

This is a fun book that has plenty of fun, a little mystery but in a Nancy Drew way, no one gets hurt and a little romance. 


""Consider that your beau is like a coveted novel whose compelling first lines you've just begun to read." --A Gentlewoman's Guide to Love and Courtship"

At a rummage sale, Heather, a member of the Fireside Book Club, discovers a turn-of-the-century romantic advice book written by a once-famous Smitten, Vermont, resident. When she shares the precious volume with her friends in the club, they find clues about a hidden treasure rumored to be buried in their tiny town.

As Heather, Abby, Lia, and Molly take turns reading the book, each projects onto it her own literary tastes. Heather sees it as a mystery. Abby discovers delicious dashes of Jane Austen. Lia sees in it the idealism of a bygone day. And Molly just wishes they'd made the book into a movie!

One by one, each of the women finds romantic love--often in spite of the historic book's advice. And in searching for the legendary gold, the friends discover the best kind of treasure. The kind that brings hope and healing to each of their hearts.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins

Hex Hall is book 1 of the Hex Hall series.  I will definitely be continuing the series.
Sophie is thought to be a trouble maker, but she is really just a witch that doesn't know how strong or important she is.


Three years ago, Sophie Mercer discovered that she was a witch. It's gotten her into a few scrapes. Her non-gifted mother has been as supportive as possible, consulting Sophie's estranged father--an elusive European warlock--only when necessary. But when Sophie attracts too much human attention for a prom-night spell gone horribly wrong, it's her dad who decides her punishment: exile to Hex Hall, an isolated reform school for wayward Prodigium, a.k.a. witches, faeries, and shapeshifters.

By the end of her first day among fellow freak-teens, Sophie has quite a scorecard: three powerful enemies who look like supermodels, a futile crush on a gorgeous warlock, a creepy tagalong ghost, and a new roommate who happens to be the most hated person and only vampire student on campus. Worse, Sophie soon learns that a mysterious predator has been attacking students, and her only friend is the number-one suspect.
As a series of blood-curdling mysteries starts to converge, Sophie prepares for the biggest threat of all: an ancient secret society determined to destroy all Prodigium, especially her.