Saturday, September 30, 2023

Book Review: DIVINE RETRIBUTION (Divine Devils #4) By R Weir

About the Book:

After the murder of a woman he cared for, his world shattered and in turmoil, Hunter Divine has gone dark, living life off the grid. Fighting the internal demons that want to drag him into the mire, Hunter quietly begins a search for answers about his childhood. A mother he loved, who died too young, and the rolling stone father who left Hunter bitter and alone.

As Hunter digs deep, he learns secrets with ties to a woman in a powerful organization, who claims to be his mother. When assassins show up with orders to kill the other members of The Divine Devils, Hunter is forced to make a choice. Either ally with this evil woman or join his friends in the great beyond. A resolution he must find on his own, with the knowledge, death awaits him with every move he makes. The search down a lethal road for salvation and Divine Retribution. 

Hunter Divine: Willing to move heaven and hell in this riveting final chapter. 


Hunter's Divine Devils are disbanded and he's hiding out trying to find the link to the killer and some woman who claims she is his rightful mother. He avoids his previous problems with alcohol and drugs, channeling all his energy into his mission. Although disbanded, each member of the group starts poking around themselves and connecting as they gather information. 

As the pieces come together, the tension builds and the pace quickens. Well-written, there are the characters to like, as well as villains, including the one who wants all the Divine Devils dead and Hunter working for her. Hard to put down with many dead or injured, yet an effective ending. 

Although this is the fourth in the series, it can be read as a stand-alone. That said, it's always best to start at the beginning of a series, rather than the end. I'd highly recommend this book (and the series) for those who don't mind graphic scenes and who enjoy suspense, action, and a fast pace. I'm sorry the series is ending.

FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in the hopes that I would post an honest review. This has not affected the content of my review in any way. 

The Divine Devils 
Fallen Star 
Sold Souls 

About the Author 

Award-winning author R Weir lives in the Mile-High City with his family, where the Rocky Mountain High isn't always achieved with an herbal substance. When not glued to the computer, he relaxes by enjoying the outdoors and traveling in his motorhome. 

His writing delves into genres with gritty investigators exploring mystery, crime, suspense, and thrills, with involved plots and unexpected twists. Featuring former US Marshal Hunter Divine, a dire, determined man searching for salvation in his broken life. While private eye Jarvis Mann is tough and snarky, with as many faults as virtues. Characters exhibiting traces of his sense of humor, though he’s not nearly as tough and fearless. Though no evil stands a chance against his written word! 

Be sure visit R Weir’s author webpage for information about new releases, to sign-up for his newsletter and receive a free eBook. Also reach out on Facebook, Twitter, or via email; for he loves to hear and interact with readers. 

Sunday, September 24, 2023

Spotlight: READING, WRITING AND MURDER (Chocolate Martini Sisters Mystery Book 2) by Brenda Whiteside and Joyce Proell

About the Book 

When sparks fly between the keynote speaker and her timid assistant over a handsome mystery author, the subtitle on this anticipated tranquil weekend spells drama. If a heated love triangle, bruised egos, and betrayal aren’t enough to upset the atmosphere, the conference banquet erupts into a drunken brawl and sends the place spinning. After a body is discovered, Nic and Em do what they do best—snoop—and become embroiled in a mystery that jumps off the pages of a true-crime bestseller. 

With more than enough suspects and little time, the amateur sleuths have their hands full finding the killer. But can the competitive Chocolate Martini Sisters solve the crime before the prickly chief detective does, or will a murderer outwit them all? With more than enough suspects and little time, the amateur sleuths have their hands full finding the killer. 

Buy Links

About the Authors 

Joyce Proell is the award-winning author of Amaryllis, Eliza and the Cady Delafield mysteries: A Deadly Truth, A Burning Truth and A Wicked Truth. Along with her husband and little dog, Nellie, she lives in Minnesota in her very own little house on the prairie. She loves to hear from readers. 

Brenda Whiteside is the award-winning author of romantic suspense, romance, and cozy mystery. After living in six states and two countries—so far—she and her husband have settled in Central Arizona. They admit to being gypsies at heart and won't discount the possibility of another move. They share their home with a rescue dog named Amigo. While FDW fishes, Brenda writes. 
Visit Brenda at: 

Friday, September 22, 2023

Book Review: THE LILLIPUT BAR MYSTERY - A Lady Locksmith Mystery by Edna Curry

About the Book 

Cassie Jenning’s job as a small-town locksmith often puts her in odd and scary situations. In this story, she was behind the Lilliput Bar when the owner was shot. Now Sheriff Ben would like nothing better than to solve the case quickly by arresting her. Homicide Detective Chance Martin burned out on violence in Minneapolis, so took a small town job thinking he’d find peace. Instead, he’s in charge of solving this murder. He meets Cassie and can’t believe she’s involved. But can he prove it? 


Like most cozy mysteries, Cassie Jennings lives in a small town, with many secrets. Cassie's a locksmith and called out at all hours when someone finds themselves in trouble. That night she's called and when she responds, she sees a truck drive away and doesn't think much of it until she finds the bar owner dead. The local Sheriff doesn't have any experience and enlists the help Chance Martin. Chance was a city detective and Sheriff Ben hopes he can tie up the murder quickly. Things get complicated with Chance and Cassie attracted to each other. As they both search for the killer, the attraction gets stronger and they uncover secrets.

Cassie is a likable and believable character with a unique occupation, and not about to take the fall for the murder. Chance is also likable though not pleased to be drawn into the work he thought he'd left behind. The story is well-plotted with enough action to keep me reading. There's most of the elements of a cozy mystery, including family drama and well-placed humor. Some may have issues with the change in point of view from Cassie to the police. This is the first in the Lady Locksmith Mysteries with more to come for Cassie and Chance.

Body in the Antique Trunk Book 2 
The Missing Banker Book3 
Girl Who Cried Wolf -Book 4 
Robbery at the Lilliput Bar -a short story 

About the Author 

Edna Curry is married and lives in central Minnesota. She often sets her novels there among the lakes, evergreens and river valleys. She especially enjoys the Dalles area of the St.Croix Valley, gateway to the Wild River, which draws many tourists who give her story ideas. Besides non-fiction articles, she writes mystery, romance and romantic suspense novels. She also does editing and proofreading as Fern Valentine.  
Visit her webpageAmazon author page, Facebook, TwitterBookbub.

Saturday, September 9, 2023

Book Review: A STATUE TO DIE FOR (Carmen De Luca Art Sleuth Mysteries Book #2) by Jennifer S. Alderson

About the Book

Carmen De Luca is having the time of her life recovering stolen artwork from nefarious European collectors for her employer, the Rosewood Agency…until her partner, Baroness Sophie Rutherford, is injured during a mission gone wrong. 

Their boss wants to ground them, but Carmen’s not ready to give up on her newly revitalized career without a fight. So she begs her best friend, Rhonda Rhodes, an antiques expert and the host of a popular television show, to fly over and take the Baroness’s place. Carmen isn’t rich or interesting enough to get on the guest list of the exclusive parties she uses to access her targets’ homes—but Rhonda is. Carmen’s boss agrees to her unorthodox plan, but with one caveat—she can’t disclose to Rhonda that she’s actually an art sleuth currently on assignment. 

With no alternative other than to pack up and fly home, Carmen agrees to deceive her friend. She picks Rhonda up at the airport, thinking they can see some of Europe’s most famous sights before her next assignment, only to discover that her friend’s already made other plans. On the flight over, Rhonda’s seatmate invited her to attend an exclusive party being held on a pirate ship and hosted by a Hollywood director. How can they resist? 

What begins as a fun night partying with an eclectic group of film directors, actors, and producers turns into a deadly game of whodunnit when their host is murdered with his own copy of the Maltese Falcon statue. Now Carmen must use her wits and expertise to sift through the many motives and uncover the killer’s true identity, if she and Rhonda are to get off the ship alive. 

Movie moguls, priceless props, and long-buried secrets make for a deadly combination in this delightful mystery that is sure to appeal to fans of cozy crime and amateur sleuth mysteries. 

Collecting Can Be Murder 
Forgeries and Fatalities 
A Killer Inheritance

Carmen's job is rather unorthodox at times. She goes along with the "Baroness" to exclusive locations all around Europe, trying to locate long lost (stolen) art objects. This time, her target is Hollywood memorabilia stolen by Alistair ten years ago, who promptly disappeared. The Baroness is in the hospital and Carmen convinces her friend, Rhonda, to help her. Rhonda, unlike Carmen, is famous and well-received and doesn't realize the true goal of Carmen's viewing the memorabilia - to get the thief arrested and the goods returned. 

Rhonda manages to get them invited to a party hosted by Alistair and the people at the Rosewood Agency are thrilled. Alistair almost doesn't let them attend - no uninvited guests - until he recognizes Rhonda. The party is on an old ship and goes out to sea with a group of guests, other than Rhonda and Carmen, who have nothing positive to say to Alistair. He stole from all of them. 

The story is well-written, and the characters have unique voices, if not similar motivations, including Alistair. Carmen manages to alert the Coast Guard when the Captain and crew abandon them rather than follow Alistair's directions. Suspense, danger, and secret passages keep the story moving. If you like a good mystery, you'll enjoy this one. This is my second in the series, but it could be easily read out of order - Carmen and the Baroness are now in a different country with mostly different characters.

FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in the hopes that I would post an honest review. This has not affected the content of my review in any way.

About the Author

Jennifer S. Alderson was born in San Francisco, grew up in Seattle, and currently lives in Amsterdam. After traveling extensively around Asia, Oceania, and Central America, she lived in Darwin, Australia, before finally settling in the Netherlands. 

Jennifer’s love of travel, art, and culture inspires her award-winning Zelda Richardson Mystery series, her Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mysteries, and her Carmen De Luca Art Sleuth Mysteries. 

Her background in journalism, multimedia development, and art history enriches her novels. When not writing, she can be found perusing a museum, biking around Amsterdam, or enjoying a coffee along the canal while planning her next research trip. 

For more information about the author and her upcoming novels, please visit:

Sunday, September 3, 2023

THE LEGACY OF NANCY DREW AND THE HARDY BOYS (Bouchercon Tribute to the "Ghosts of Honor")

As a fan of Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys, and the Dana Girls, I so enjoyed being part of this panel. If you've checked out my Hannah and Tamar Mysteries, the series was inspired by the Dana Girls with sister teen sleuths. It was a pleasure to be on the panel with these authors here at Bouchercon 2023.


Jennifer Fisher is a Nancy Drew consultant and author. Her book, Clues for Real Life: The Classic Wit and Wisdom of Nancy Drew, was published in 2007. She is currently writing a biography on Mildred Wirt Benson - Mildred Wirt Benson - The Real Nancy Drew.  Jenn is president of the Nancy Drew fan group, The Nancy Drew Sleuths, and plans their annual conventions and handles the officially licensed Nancy Drew merchandising lines. Learn all about Nancy Drew at her website. Find out more about the Nancy Drew Sleuths .


Called a "genius" by Lee Child and "one of the all time greats" by Karin Slaughter, Sara Paretsky transformed the role of women in the mystery world with her detective, V.I. Warshawski. V.I. is tough, feminine and vulnerable, but above all loyal to her friends and clients. Paretsky and Warshawski share a love of singing, Golden Retrievers and Italian reds. V.I. has escaped many near-death experiences, including drowning in Chicago's swamps (Blood Shot), falling down an elevator shaft (Burn Marks), and multiple attempts to shoot her down (Dead Land). Paretsky would have retired to the Umbrian Hills after one such event, but V.I. keeps coming back for more.  You can visit her at her website, on Facebook, Twitter/X

Julie Hennrikus aka Julia Henry is thrilled to be writing the Garden Squad series for Kensington. The Garden Squad are four friends--Lilly, Delia, Tamara, Ernie--who are clandestine gardeners in their town of Goosebush, MA, solving gardening problems that the red tape of the town is tying up. They also solve mysteries that pop up. She also writes the Theater Cop series as J.A. Hennrikus, and the Clock Shop series as Julianne Holmes. website  Twitter/X 

Linda Joy Singleton is the author of over 55 books for young readers, including the Curious Cat Spy Club mysteries. She also has a huge library of vintage series mysteries like Nancy Drew and July Bolton. A longtime member o SinC and SCBWI, she is a frequent speaker at schools, libraries, and writing events. She lives in Northern California with here husband and their menagerie of animals including pigs, cats, dogs, peacocks, horses and mini-cows. For free books, writing tips, and downloadable activities for kids, contact her through her website.

Teresa Inge
grew up reading Nancy Drew mysteries. Combining her love of reading mysteries and writing professional articles led to writing short fiction and novellas. Today, she doesn't carry a rod like her idol but she hot rods. She juggles assisting two busy executives and is president of the Sisters in Crime, Mystery by the Sea chapter. Teresa is the author of the Virginia is for Mysteries Series, 50 Shades of Cabernet, Mutt Mysteries Series, and Coastal Crimes: Mysteries by the Sea, and Murder by the Glass: Cocktail Mysteries. Teresa resides in Southeastern Virginia with her husband and two dogs. She can be reached on all social media or by posting a comment on her website. Facebook

Edward Zuckerman began his career as a journalist, writing about zombies, killer bees, and many other subjects for Rolling Stone, Spy, the New Yorker, Harper's, Esquire, and other magazines. He wrote two well-reviewed nonfiction books, "The Day After World War III" and "Small Fortunes," and then moved into writing for television dramas, including "Law & Order" (50+ episodes), "Blue Bloods," and "Law & Order: SVU." He has won two Edgar Awards from the Mystery Writers of America and an Emmy for his work on "Law & Order." He lives in Manhattan and Manhattan Beach, California. Wealth Management is his first novel. Twitter/X.

Christa Nardi is an avid reader with her love of mysteries beginning with Nancy Drew and other teen mysteries. She’s shifted to more contemporary mystery, crime, and cozy mysteries over time. Her protagonists are smart, intelligent female sleuths. Christa supports animal rescue and other efforts to help others. She has been a long time writer from poetry and short stories to mystery series. Christa is a member of Sisters in Crime. She recently earned the 2023 Finalist award in Sleuths  from Readers' Favorite for The Itch of Murder. When not reading or writing, Christa enjoys travel and playing with her dogs and granddaughters. Website Facebook Twitter/X

It was a fun panel, talking about the sleuths I grew up with. Do check out these other authors!

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Saturday, September 2, 2023

Bouchercon Panel: A DETECTIVE'S BEST FRIEND (Jodi Burnett, Kathleen Donnelly, Margaret Mizushima, C.B. Wilson)

Bouchercon is an annual readers/writers conference. I had the pleasure of moderating a panel of notable authors who incorporate dogs in their mysteries. It was great to get to know them and their books. 

A Detectives's Best Friend : Writing Canine Characters 

Jodi Burnett is a Colorado native and a mountain girl at heart. She loves writing Mystery and Suspense Thrillers from her small ranch southeast of Denver where she dotes on her dogs and horses, complains about her cows, and writes to create a home for her imaginings. She is the author of fourteen novels and three novellas over four series: The Flint River Series, FBI K9 Thrillers, Tin Star K9, and the US Marshal Thrillers. Her books are available in paperback, eBook and audiobook formats. Inspired by life in the country, Jodi fosters her creative side by writing, painting watercolors, quilting, crafting stained-glass, and traveling. She is a member of Novelists, Inc. and Sisters In Crime, and is thrilled to be here at her first Bouchercon this year.

Award-winning author Kathleen Donnelly has been a handler for Sherlock Hounds Detection Canines—a Colorado-based narcotics K-9 company—since 2005. She loves crafting realism into her fictional stories from her dog-handling experience. Along with working dogs, Kathleen trained horses and enjoys spending time with her own mare. Her love of the mountains came from growing up in Colorado. Her debut novel, Chasing Justice, won a Best Book Award from the American Book Fest and was a 2023 Silver Falchion finalist. She lives near the Colorado foothills with her husband and four-legged coworkers. 

Margaret Mizushima (pronounced me-zoo-she-ma) is the author of the award winning 8-book series, Timber Creek K-9 Mysteries, featuring Deputy Mattie Cobb, her K-9 partner Robo, and Dr. Cole Walker, who is Robo’s veterinarian and Mattie’s love interest. Her latest book is titled Standing Dead. Margaret enjoys combining her love of the Colorado high country with her love of animals and her experience assisting her veterinarian husband to create outdoor mysteries with plenty of action. After retiring last year from ranching and their veterinary practice, she and her husband packed up Bertie and Hannah, their two German shorthaired pointers, and moved from their home state of Colorado to the Pacific Northwest to be closer to family. 

The award-winning author of Cozy Pet Mysteries, C.B. Wilson’s love of writing was spurred by an early childhood encounter with a Nancy Drew book where she precociously wrote what she felt was a better ending. Her fascination with dogs and their passionate owners inspired her 6-book series set in Barkview, California, the dog friendliest city in America with a cat-loving main character. C.B. lives in Peoria, AZ with her husband. She is an avid pickleball player who enjoys traveling to play tournaments. She admits to chocoholic tendencies and laughing out loud at dog comics. Her book, Doodled to Death, was a 2023 Silver Fachion finalist for Cozy Mystery.