Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Teaser Tuesday: The Gathering Edge by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Teaser:
She grinned. When she had first come aboard, she'd had words -- strong words -- to say about privacy and where she expected to be unmonitored by Bechimo himself.
This week I'm reading The Gathering Edge by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller. This is the 20th Liaden Universe novel by the pair. Here is the description from Amazon:
The luck runs rough around Theo Waitley. Not only are people trying to kill her and capture the self-aware intelligent ship Bechimo to whom Theo is bonded, they’re also trying to arrest her crew members, and throw the dignity of an important passenger, the duly-constituted norbear ambassador Hevelin, into question.

No wonder Theo and her crew felt the need of a break, and retired to what Bechimo refers to as "safe space." Unfortunately, safe space may not be so safe, anymore.  It seems that things are leaking through from another universe, and another time. In fact, whole spaceships are coming through.  One of those ships is a blasted battleship seemingly fleeing a long-lost war. What’s more, its crew may be members of Theo’s ancient ancestral line—her relatives. It’s certain that they are in dire need of help. Theo has a choice to make. It seems that Bechimo’s “safe space” is about to become deadly perilous.

Monday, April 24, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (April 24, 2017)

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

It’s Monday!  What Are You Reading is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week.  It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.

Other Than Reading...

I had another busy week packing and organizing at my house. I am not a big fan of clutter and it is already starting to bother me that I have piles and piles of stuff laying around that will be part of my rummage sale. The sale is still a month away. I'll be living with this clutter for a lot longer.

I'll be cleaning my garage later today. I want to wait until the day warms up a little more before I start. It's time to get rid of odds and ends that can be thrown away and also to get rid of the road sand that accumulates each winter. If I was willing to keep my car outside, I could start transferring rummage sale stuff to the garage. But spring in Minnesota often brings hail storms and I want my car protected.

The friend who is helping me with my packing is hoping to come today to take the bookshelves I'm giving her. She needed to arrange a time when she could borrow her dad's truck and bring her boyfriend to help do the heavy lifting. That will remove one large piece and give me room to stack more boxes. We've packed my books from A - McCaffrey and have only one room of books to pack. I don't have to have those shelves empty for the painter since they are built in and have backs. Also, a lot of rummage sale stuff is in front of them right now. We're thinking that we can be packing them after the sale and maybe even after the painter is finished. 

I signed the contract for a mover this week with the scheduled loading date of June 8 and delivery date of June 9. Now the move seems even more real. At last count, I had 27 more work days and only 35 more days that I will be here at my house before the moving van arrives. I'm also planning four more trips to my new home. I'll be there eleven days before June 8.

Read Last Week
A Gleam of Light by T.J. & M.L. Wolf was a contemporary science fiction/paranormal story that I received for review from the authors. I thought the inclusion of Hopi mythology made the story interesting. My review will be posted on May 6.

Death in the Abstract by Emily Barnes was a nice cozy mystery. I liked the Edina, Minnesota, setting and the fact that the main characters were retirement age. It had a nicely twisty plot and some really quirky characters. My review will be posted on May 11.

Currently
Edited Out by E. J. Copperman is a cozy that I got for review from Crooked Lane books. It is next on my stack.

Next Week
Reviews Posted
Want to See What I Added to My Stack Last Week?
To see what Young Adult books I have been reading and plan to read, check out Ms. Martin Teaches Media - my other blog.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Book Review: Grave Visions by Kalayna Price

Grave Visions
Author: Kalayna Price
Series: An Alex Craft Novel (Book 4)
Publication: Roc (February 2, 2016)

Description: The USA Today bestselling author of Grave Memory and Grave Dance returns with her bewitching heroine Alex Craft in a new novel of twisting urban fantasy where the secrets of the dead can wreak havoc on the living.

If you want to hear voices from the dead in Nekros City, you call Alex Craft. She’s a grave witch with reasonable rates and extraordinary powers who specializes in revealing the secrets of the dead. But she has her own secrets. She’s not human—and her newly discovered heritage is causing havoc for her both in the human realm and in Faerie.

Fae can’t survive without a tie to Faerie, and now that Alex’s true nature has awoken, she’s no exception. She must align herself to a court and soon. To retain as much freedom as possible, she makes a deal to track the source of a new glamour-infused street drug which causes hallucinations that kill—and not just the user. Her investigation entangles Alex in a conflict brewing in Faerie, and she must find answers before she’s dragged so deep that she loses not only her freedom, but her life.

My Thoughts: Alex Craft is back. Her fae heritage is causing problems. If she doesn't swear to a court or gain independent status, she will fade away taking those sworn to her with her. She makes a deal with the Winter Queen to track down the being making a new drug called Glitter which is killing humans and which is being supplied by someone in her court.

Alex's investigation uncovers something not right in the Winter court which she needs to fix or the queen who promised her independence won't be alive to grant it. She is being assisted by the Queen's Knight Falin when he isn't being called away to fight off challenges to the Queen. Alex and Falin have a difficult relationship because she can't trust him. His first loyalty will always be to the Queen.

Alex has a number of other complicated relationships too. Her boyfriend is Death, a soul collector, who has been forbidden to be with her. She has known him since childhood but still knows almost nothing about him. Then there is the almost fiance that her father wants her to marry enough that he betrothed her to him when she was a child. The Winter Queen wants Alex to swear allegiance to her court and marry her nephew to try to get her and her unique ability under the Queen's control.

This story was entertaining and engaging. I like Alex and sympathized with her as she was being pulled in so many directions. I can't wait for the next episode in this great series.

Favorite Quote:
Please let us find something. I needed a break in this case. A map with a big red X on it was unlikely, but hopefully the BIB database would have something.
I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Friday Memes: Grave Visions by Kalayna Price

Happy Friday everybody!
Book Beginnings on Friday is now hosted by Rose City ReaderThe Friday 56 is hosted at Freda's Voice. Check out the links above for the rules and for the posts of the participants each week. Don’t dig for your favorite book, the coolest, the most intellectual. Use the CLOSEST.

Beginning:
The first time I raised a shade for profit, my client fainted. Since then, I've tried to better prepare clients for their encounter with the dead.

It doesn't always work.
Friday 56:
A sharp sob cut across the phone. Shit. I hadn't meant it as such, but I'd just broached the fact that the baby might not make it to the point of being a consideration. Foot meet mouth. Geez, I was bad at this.
This week I am finally getting a chance to read Grave Visions by Kalayna Price. I began this series years ago but there has been quite a gap since the previous book. Here is the description from Amazon:
The USA Today bestselling author of Grave Memory and Grave Dance returns with her bewitching heroine Alex Craft in a new novel of twisting urban fantasy where the secrets of the dead can wreak havoc on the living.

If you want to hear voices from the dead in Nekros City, you call Alex Craft. She’s a grave witch with reasonable rates and extraordinary powers who specializes in revealing the secrets of the dead. But she has her own secrets. She’s not human—and her newly discovered heritage is causing havoc for her both in the human realm and in Faerie.

Fae can’t survive without a tie to Faerie, and now that Alex’s true nature has awoken, she’s no exception. She must align herself to a court and soon. To retain as much freedom as possible, she makes a deal to track the source of a new glamour-infused street drug which causes hallucinations that kill—and not just the user. Her investigation entangles Alex in a conflict brewing in Faerie, and she must find answers before she’s dragged so deep that she loses not only her freedom, but her life.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

ARC Review: Echo of Danger by Marta Perry

Echo of Danger
Author: Marta Perry
Publication: HQN Books (April 25, 2017)

Description: In peaceful Pennsylvania Dutch country, a young mother discovers a shocking danger—and an unexpected ally 

A whisper of a threat looms over widow Deidre Morris. She and her young son have unwittingly become prisoners of her intimidating father-in-law's power. One wrong step could find her son torn from her and in the hands of the influential judge. But when Deidre collides with an intriguing stranger, the prospect of a new friendship gives her renewed hope…until a devastating murder rocks the quiet community of Echo Falls and Deidre learns first impressions can't be trusted.

Attorney Jase Glassman's assignment is straightforward: befriend Deidre, gather incriminating evidence…and allow her dogged father-in-law to take custody of her child. Anything else, including losing himself in her honest charm, will compromise the job he was hired to do. Yet when a murderer ushers danger into the town, Jase's only instinct is to protect Deidre and her son—no matter the sacrifice.

My Thoughts: Jason Glassman has taken a job as an attorney in Echo Falls after he was betrayed by his fiance and almost disbarred because of what she did. When his new boss - Judge Morris - asks him to get close to his daughter-in-law and try to find out if she is a fit mother to his grandson, Jason agrees. But getting to know Deidre Morris shows him a woman far different than the picture the judge painted of her.

At their first encounter, he sees her home and they discover the body of her friend who was babysitting for five-year-old Kevin who has also been badly injured. Kevin doesn't remember anything about what happened. His last memory is of earlier that day. But someone is afraid that Kevin will remember.

Deidre wants to know what happened to her friend Dixie and she wants her small son to be safe. Jason spends time with Deidre and Kevin during this difficult time and begins to care for her. He becomes more and more convinced that the judge's suspicions are baseless.

Meanwhile the judge is keeping the pressure on Deidre to move Kevin and her to his cold, formal home. Deidre is reluctant because she knows what pressure he put on his son and doesn't want to subject her son to it. But the judge is a powerful man in the small town and it is hard for Deidre to go against him.

I enjoyed the setting of this story and the strong relationships. Deidre has a good support system among her Amish cousins. I also liked the way the relationship between Jason and Deidre grew slowly. This was a very nice romantic suspense story.

Favorite Quote:
Jason didn't know where that need to reassure Deidre had come from, but he'd better get back to a more professional stance with her in a hurry. It was not part of his assignment to get that involved with her. All he wanted was evidence, one way or the other, to either prove or disprove the judge's opinion of her. 
I got this one in exchange for an honest review from  You can buy your copy here.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

WoW: Dating the Undead by Juliet Lyons

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. She has a linky widget at her site each week for your post and to make it easy to find posts by other people.

The purpose of the meme is to spotlight books that we are eagerly anticipating. It is fun to take a look at what others are waiting for. I have noticed that it has expanded my wishlist though. Be warned!
Juliet Lyons
May 2

For mortals wanting to get up close and personal with the beautiful undead, there's...

V-DATE, THE UNDEAD DATING SERVICE

Silver Harris is over clingy men―maybe men altogether. But when she shares a toe-curling kiss with a sexy Irish vampire on New Year's Eve, she wonders if maybe it's human men she's done with. Silver turns to the popular vampire dating site, V-Date, but soon she's in over her head and her mysterious hottie is nowhere to be found...

Logan Byrne can't get that sassy redhead out of his head―or that kiss! When his boss assigns him to spy on V-Date members, he meets Silver again. Turns out, the police are recruiting humans to snitch on vampires through the dating site. As the snark and sparks fly, feelings between Silver and Logan grow deep and suddenly Logan isn't so sure he can betray her, no matter how dangerous the consequences might be.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Teaser Tuesday: Echo of Danger by Marta Perry

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Teaser (from 10% in the eARC):
Kevin's injury had been bad enough, but at least it had looked like an accident. But the woman -- that had been deliberate. He was no expert, but he'd be surprised if anyone could have survived that blow to the head. What on earth was going on in this supposedly peaceful small town?
This week I am reading Echo of Danger by Marta Perry from my review stack. Here is a description from Amazon for this Romantic Suspense title:
In peaceful Pennsylvania Dutch country, a young mother discovers a shocking danger—and an unexpected ally 

A whisper of a threat looms over widow Deidre Morris. She and her young son have unwittingly become prisoners of her intimidating father-in-law's power. One wrong step could find her son torn from her and in the hands of the influential judge. But when Deidre collides with an intriguing stranger, the prospect of a new friendship gives her renewed hope…until a devastating murder rocks the quiet community of Echo Falls and Deidre learns first impressions can't be trusted.

Attorney Jase Glassman's assignment is straightforward: befriend Deidre, gather incriminating evidence…and allow her dogged father-in-law to take custody of her child. Anything else, including losing himself in her honest charm, will compromise the job he was hired to do. Yet when a murderer ushers danger into the town, Jase's only instinct is to protect Deidre and her son—no matter the sacrifice.

Monday, April 17, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (April 17, 2017)

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

It’s Monday!  What Are You Reading is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week.  It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.

Other Than Reading... 

A couple of meeting helped fill up a short work week. Our Spring Break started on Friday and we have Monday off too. I packed a car load and headed up to my new house on Friday morning. Now I'm just relaxing with my brother. There have been lots of fix ups and spruce up at the house we are selling. However, we are waiting for bids on the basement repair before we can go on. One bid arrived for much more than we were expecting. We're hoping the second bid is better.

When I get back this week, I'll be entertaining moving estimates from two different companies. Meanwhile the packing and sorting go on as I'm getting ready for my rummage sale. 

Read Last Week
Grave Visions by Kalayna Price is the fourth book in the Alex Craft urban fantasy series with book five coming in July. I enjoyed catching up with this character. It has been five years since I read the first three books in the series. My review will be posted on April 21.

Currently
A Gleam of Light by T.J. and M.L.Wolf is next on my adult stack. I still have a couple of YAs to read first though.

Next Week
I will be reading books from my review stack that are coming out in May next.
Both are second books in series. I've read the first books.

Reviews Posted
Want to See What I Added to My Stack Last Week?
Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay
Roses by Rose Mannering
 Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel
Cold Welcome by Elizabeth Moon
Legal Ease by Lori Ryan
Penalty Clause by Lori Ryan

To see what Young Adult books I have been reading and plan to read, check out Ms. Martin Teaches Media - my other blog.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Book Review: One Fell Sweep by Ilona Andrews

One Fell Sweep
Author: Ilona Andrews
Series: Innkeeper Chronicles (Book 3)
Publication: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (December 21, 2016)

Description: Dina DeMille may run the nicest Bed and Breakfast in Red Deer, Texas, but she caters to a very particular kind of guest… the kind that no one on Earth is supposed to know about. Guests like a former intergalactic tyrant with an impressive bounty on her head, the Lord Marshal of a powerful vampire clan, and a displaced-and-superhot werewolf; so don’t stand too close, or you may be collateral damage. But what passes for Dina’s normal life is about to be thrown into chaos. First, she must rescue her long-distant older sister, Maud, who’s been exiled with her family to a planet that functions as the most lawless penal colony since Botany Bay. Then she agrees to help a guest whose last chance at saving his civilization could bring death and disaster to all Dina holds dear. Now Gertrude Hunt is under siege by a clan of assassins. To keep her guests safe and to find her missing parents, Dina will risk everything, even if she has to pay the ultimate price. Though Sean may have something to say about that!

My Thoughts: In this episode, Dina rescues her sister Maud and Maud's five-year-old daughter Helen from exile on a very dangerous planet. Dina also accepts a Hiru as a guest. The Hiru are a race that has almost completely been massacred by the Draziri who look at exterminating Hiru as a religious requirement.

Dina calls on Arland to help rescue her sister and Sean goes along too. Both Sean and Arland remain at the inn to help Dina defend it from the Draziri. Sean and Dina are falling in love but Dina is worried that Sean won't want to stay with her. She is tied to her inn and will be for life. Sean has only recently come back from difficult galactic adventures and she fears he will want more adventures in the future. There is also a growing relationship between Maud and Arland complicated by the fact the he is a vampire and Maud's former husband the the reason for her exile was also a vampire.

The story had lots of action on a variety of different worlds. There was plenty of action on Earth too. Dina is having difficulty keeping the actions of the Draziri secret from the human police since the Draziri don't care if they expose the inn and its secrets.

I like the characters in this series. Maud and Helen are new to the series but are both interesting and entertaining. We find out more about the relationship between inns and innkeepers in this story and also about the governing authority that manages them.

This was a great story that kept me reading late into the night. I had to know how things were going to work out for Sean and Dina and what was going to happen to the Hiru.

Favorite Quote:
He grinned at me, turning into the old Sean Evans. The transformation was so sudden, I blinked to make sure I didn't imagine it.

"You're a carebear."

"What?"

"You're the type to get out of a perfectly dry car in the middle of a storm in your best dress so you can scoop a wet dog off the road. You help people, Dina. That's what you do. And the Hiru need help."

"I'm sensible," I told him.

"I'll give you till tonight," he said. "You won't even last twenty-four hours. I bet my right arm on it."
I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Friday Memes: One Fell Sweep by Ilona Andrews

Happy Friday everybody!
Book Beginnings on Friday is now hosted by Rose City ReaderThe Friday 56 is hosted at Freda's Voice. Check out the links above for the rules and for the posts of the participants each week. Don’t dig for your favorite book, the coolest, the most intellectual. Use the CLOSEST.

Beginning:
A faint chime tugged me out of sleep. I opened my eyes and blinked. 
Friday 56:
Maud's bedroom in our parents' inn was a dark place, filled with books, weapons, and oddities we all collected either from excursions to Baha-char or from regulars who occasionally brought us gifts. Dad used to joke that Maud never grew out of the cave phase.
This week I am reading One Fell Sweep by Ilona Andrews. Here is the description from Amazon:
Dina DeMille may run the nicest Bed and Breakfast in Red Deer, Texas, but she caters to a very particular kind of guest… the kind that no one on Earth is supposed to know about. Guests like a former intergalactic tyrant with an impressive bounty on her head, the Lord Marshal of a powerful vampire clan, and a displaced-and-superhot werewolf; so don’t stand too close, or you may be collateral damage. But what passes for Dina’s normal life is about to be thrown into chaos. First, she must rescue her long-distant older sister, Maud, who’s been exiled with her family to a planet that functions as the most lawless penal colony since Botany Bay. Then she agrees to help a guest whose last chance at saving his civilization could bring death and disaster to all Dina holds dear. Now Gertrude Hunt is under siege by a clan of assassins. To keep her guests safe and to find her missing parents, Dina will risk everything, even if she has to pay the ultimate price. Though Sean may have something to say about that! 

Thursday, April 13, 2017

ARC Review: Kale to the Queen by Nell Hampton

Kale to the Queen
Author: Nell Hampton
Series: A Kensington Palace Chef Mystery (Book 1)
Publication: Crooked Lane Books (April 11, 2017)

Description: Chef Carrie Ann Cole is about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime--an assignment as the new Personal Chef to the Royal Family at Kensington Palace. But no sooner has Carrie Ann touched down across the pond and donned her apron than a dead body crops up beneath the royal kale beds.

With one assistant dead and the other soon under suspicion for his murder, Carrie Ann is scrambling to keep her kitchen up and running. Not to mention she gets off to an immediate bad start with the tempestuous Royal Chef Butterbottom, who has a bitter taste in his mouth since the prestigious position in the Royal Family's kitchen was given to an "over-privileged, under-educated American chef."

But the Royal Family's appetites wait for no one, and Carrie Ann must solve the murder and still get supper on the table on time--even with the annoyingly handsome Head of Security Ian Gordon tracking her every move like an MI6 agent. Suspects abound as an American chef adds a bit of spice to the traditional royal household in the first in Nell Hampton's charming and tasty Kensington Palace Chef Mystery series, Kale to the Queen.

My Thoughts: Carrie Ann Cole is following her dream of being a personal chef when she takes a job working for the duke and duchess of Cambridge in Kensington Palace. But to reach her goals, she has to leave behind her boyfriend of six years who is pursuing his goal of becoming a Michelin chef. They have agreed to take a break in their relationship.

Everything is new to this Chicago girl when she gets to the palace. She certainly wasn't expecting to find one of her assistants murdered under the kale in the greenhouse attached to her kitchen on her second day in London. And, when her other assistant is arrested for the crime, Carrie Ann launches her own investigation to try to clear him of blame.

Between her rivalry with another chef at the palace and her run-ins with the security chief, Carrie Ann learns a lot about the people who work at the palace. Of course, we get tantalizing glimpses of the meals that she is preparing for the Royal family too.

This was a fun mystery of the cozy variety.

Favorite Quote:
"John..." I glanced up to see Ian leaning against my bedroom doorjamb, his gun holstered and his arms crossed. "I have to go. We'll talk about this later. Okay? I've had a bad day."

"Sure, baby," he said. "Sure. I'll see you soon." A good review could make a restaurant. A great review could make a chef. John's attention was not focused on me.
I got this one in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

ARC Review: Change Agent by Daniel Suarez

Change Agent
Author: Daniel Suarez
Publication: Dutton (April 18, 2017)

Description: On a crowded train platform, Interpol agent Kenneth Durand feels the sting of a needle—and his transformation begins...

In 2045 Kenneth Durand leads Interpol’s most effective team against genetic crime, hunting down black market labs that perform "vanity edits" on human embryos for a price. These illegal procedures augment embryos in ways that are rapidly accelerating human evolution—preying on human-trafficking victims to experiment and advance their technology.

With the worlds of genetic crime and human trafficking converging, Durand and his fellow Interpol agents discover that one figure looms behind it all: Marcus Demang Wyckes, leader of a powerful and sophisticated cartel known as the Huli jing.

But the Huli jing have identified Durand, too. After being forcibly dosed with a radical new change agent, Durand wakes from a coma weeks later to find he’s been genetically transformed into someone else—his most wanted suspect: Wyckes.

Now a fugitive, pursued through the genetic underworld by his former colleagues and the police, Durand is determined to restore his original DNA by locating the source of the mysterious—and highly valuable—change agent. But Durand hasn’t anticipated just how difficult locating his enemy will be. With the technology to genetically edit the living, Wyckes and his Huli jing could be anyone and everyone—and they have plans to undermine identity itself.

My Thoughts: This near future science fiction story talks about a future world that has changed immensely because of developments in biology and genetic engineering. In this world genes can be edited to create the baby you want. Kenneth Durand works with Interpol to shut down illegal labs that are custom-designing babies. He has been too successful. He has drawn the attention of the cartel who controls this illegal genetic engineering.

Ken is injected with a "change agent" which rewrites his DNA and makes him genetically and physically the identical double of Marcus Demang Wyckes, the head of the Huli jing who is wanted all over the world for his many crimes. Ken survives the transition which wasn't what the Huli jing actually wanted. Only, now he needs to convince his colleagues in Interpol that he is not Wyckes. Since the technique used on him was supposed to be impossible, this isn't easy. He is also on the run from Wyckes' right hand man who wants him dead to get the heat off the real Wyckes.

Meanwhile, Ken wants to stop Wyckes and his society-changing plans and get his own body and DNA back. He wants to get back to his beloved wife and daughter and will do what is necessary to make it happen.

The story takes place in Southeast Asia which has become the center of the new science and society. On his journey to find Wyckes, Ken finds colleagues and assistance from a variety of sources including rebel ethnic groups who are fighting corrupt governments and scientists who might just be on the shady side.

The story was fast paced but a little to scientifically detailed for this non-scientist reader. I have no idea how much of the science is possible but I found it all disturbingly plausible. Fans of hard science fiction will enjoy this story.

Favorite Quote:
There needed to be a brief exception in his life -- an ethics time-out. A moment of selfishness. Just one, and he would get back to who he'd been. He felt the quicksand swallowing him as he realized he was going to do this. That, in fact, people had already died so that he could reach the seat he was in right now, in this macabre showroom.
I got this one in exchange for an honest review from the publisher. You can buy your copy here.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Teaser Tuesday: Kale to the Queen by Nell Hampton

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Teaser:
"Oh, no, Chef," he said and took the carrots and asparagus from me to cut and prep them. "My mum actually likes the nursing home. She orders people about as if she were the queen herself." He laughed. "My job is to stay out of the way and say, 'Yes, Mum, that's fine with me.'"
This week I'm reading Kale to the Queen by Nell Hampton. What could be better than a cozy mystery set in Kensington Palace? Here's the description from Amazon:
Chef Carrie Ann Cole is about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime--an assignment as the new Personal Chef to the Royal Family at Kensington Palace. But no sooner has Carrie Ann touched down across the pond and donned her apron than a dead body crops up beneath the royal kale beds.

With one assistant dead and the other soon under suspicion for his murder, Carrie Ann is scrambling to keep her kitchen up and running. Not to mention she gets off to an immediate bad start with the tempestuous Royal Chef Butterbottom, who has a bitter taste in his mouth since the prestigious position in the Royal Family's kitchen was given to an "over-privileged, under-educated American chef."

But the Royal Family's appetites wait for no one, and Carrie Ann must solve the murder and still get supper on the table on time--even with the annoyingly handsome Head of Security Ian Gordon tracking her every move like an MI6 agent. Suspects abound as an American chef adds a bit of spice to the traditional royal household in the first in Nell Hampton's charming and tasty Kensington Palace Chef Mystery series, Kale to the Queen.

Monday, April 10, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (April 10, 2017)

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

It’s Monday!  What Are You Reading is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week.  It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.

Other Than Reading... 

Yay for the beginning of the baseball season! Besides loving the Atlanta Braves, the start of the baseball season heralds the coming summer. I have about 35 more working days until I retire.

I had to spend a day at the Mayo Clinic this week for testing and consulting with my gastroenterologist which gave me a lot of extra reading time while I was waiting for tests, etc. As usual, I came home and developed some sort of crud. Too many sick people around there for my immune system, I guess. Of course, one the tests also had consequences for the rest of the week. I'm glad the results were good and will be even more glad once I feel "back to normal."

I'm looking forward to going home for Easter. I already have more than a carload of stuff that I'd like to bring with me. I've also been exchanging a flurry of emails with the realtor who is selling our Duluth home as she keeps me up to date with the various fix-up projects that are needed before it goes on the market. She's clearly a full-service realtor. She has arranged the cleaners and painters and whatever which is saving my brother and I a ton of work. I'm eager to see the changes when I get home. Her thought is that we will be able to put it on the market by May 1.

I really need to find a mover soon. I'm so caught up in cleaning and sorting to get ready for my sale that I haven't done that yet. I haven't made much visible progress this week. But my front closet with all my winter outerwear has been sorted through and packed to go home with me this week. A lot of it will be donated but this isn't the season to donate winter clothes. I will bring them to Duluth and donate extras next Fall.

Read Last Week
I started Finding Gideon by Eric Jerome Dickey and abandoned it at 20%. The sort-of stream of consciousness writing peering into the minds of two evil characters wasn't for me.

I grabbed One Fell Sweep by Ilona Andrews as a palate (and brain) cleanser because I can always count on that author to give me a successful reading experience. This book was great. I really like this main character and was in the mood for a good urban fantasy. My review will be posted on April 15.

Echo of Danger by Marta Perry was from my review stack and was an entertaining romantic suspense title. I liked both characters and thought the mystery was okay too. I did have a strong suspicion about the villain's identity early on but it didn't ruin my enjoyment of the story. My review will be posted on April 20.

Currently
Grave Visions by Kalayna Price is from my TBR mountain and continues my urban fantasy theme. This is the fourth book in the Alex Craft series. Despite the three year gap since the last book, I was quickly back into the story.

Next Week
A Gleam of Light by T.J. & M.L. Wolf is next on my stack but I have a few YAs that need to be read before I can get to it.

Reviews Posted
Want to See What I Added to My Stack Last Week?
As a new subscriber to Toni Anderson's newsletter, I was offered two of her books for free. I downloaded A Cold, Dark Place and Cold Pursuit to my Kindle.
I also added two new books to my review stack.
To see what Young Adult books I have been reading and plan to read, check out Ms. Martin Teaches Media - my other blog.