Sunday, July 11, 2021

Review - The Cider Shop Rules

I just finished the Cider Shop Rules by Julie Anne Lindsey and while the wait seemed to last forever and ever! (Imagine a little kid’s wanting to open Christmas presents but Christmas was still three whole days away!) Fine - it wasn’t forever, but I’m thrilled it’s nearly here! This is a terrific whodunnit in which the murder suspect didn’t even appear on my radar until Lindsey was ready for me to start suspecting that particular killer. 
That particular killer, you ask? Yes. There are two. Heh heh heh. 

Imagine a beautiful fall day in the midst of pumpkin and cider festivals where families and friends are gathered to celebrate the season. Nearby, a Civil War reenactment is going on throwing more interesting characters. When it’s time to leave the festival, our Cider Shop friends take off for ice cream only to discover a body in the back of their truck. Oops. The best part? I didn’t know who it was until the author revealed it. 

Love me a good whodunnit!

I love cozy mysteries by Julie Anne Lindsey. She’s an author who’s books I pick up as soon as they come out. Well, actually, that’s not true. 

I’ve now taking to pre-ordering her books because I’m clearly not patient enough to wait for release date. Can’t help myself. She writes great whodunnits and likable, intelligent and yes, quirky characters, that you can’t help but fall in love with. 
See? Four of these pre-orders are books by Julie Anne Lindsey (aka Bree Baker for Partners in Lime). I just don’t want to miss them. 

The Cider Shop Rules in the latest in the Cider Shop cozy mystery series. I received the book as an ARC from NetGalley and posted this review both there and on Goodreads. 

I loved going back to Blossom Valley to spend time with Winnie, Granny, and Colton. Blossom Valley is knee deep in autumn festivals when the owner of the pumpkin farm is found dead in the back of Winnie’s truck. The town is all aflutter with the news and the community’s expectations that Winnie will help find the killer.

Naturally, Winnie doesn’t want to find anything out, but when threats find their way to her Cider Shop, she has no choice but to step in, much to the chagrin of Sheriff Colton Wise.

It certainly doesn’t help that Winnie is being stalked by an escaped serial killer on top of receiving warnings to stay away from asking questions about the man whose body was found in her truck.

I’ll be honest, there were a couple of times when I agreed with Colton about her promising him one thing and turning right around and doing the opposite and kind of wish he’d tried to drive that further into her head, but for the most part, she did alright and had me on the edge of the seat to find out what what she could learn. I could not stop turning those pages!

I enjoyed the expansion of characters in this book. Along the way, we meet some of Colton’s family, including his brother, Blake, a sheriff in a neighboring county, and his parents. We were also treated to a cameo from a couple characters in another cozy series by Lindsey, one I’ve not yet read, but will binge-read soon!

Be sure to pick up this latest / third installment of the Cider Shop Mysteries by Julie Anne Lindsey. I promise you won’t be disappointed. And the ending… GAHHH! Loved it. (I.e. FINALLY!) Ahem. :-)

Full disclosure - whenever I see a book by Julie Anne Lindsey, I pick it up. If you’ve not yet read her books, I highly suggest you check out her website and start reading. They’re all good!

Ebook was provide as an ARC by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thanks very much to NetGalley and Kensington Publishing for this opportunity.

The Cider Shop Rules is due to hit the shelves on July 27 but is available now for pre-order. The first and second books in the series are Apple Cider Slaying and Pulp Friction and yes - I absolutely love the punny titles. (Is punny a word?) 

I strongly encourage you to take a look at her website and try some of her books if you haven’t already. She writes Cozy Mysteries, including a new series, Bonnie and Clyde, starting with Burden of Poof coming out this fall. 

Julie Anne Lindsey official website - Goodreads - Barnes & Noble - Amazon 

Read my Goodreads review


Thursday, July 8, 2021

Coffee and a Classic - June

Check out my June Coffee and a Classic subscription box!

Coffee and a Classic is a monthly subscription box that arrives about the middle of each month with a classic novel, pre-chosen by the sender. I haven't read a lot of the classics that everyone says you should read or that every Top 100 list contains, so I figured this would be a good way to get some into my library and let me try some new (to me) authors and books I might not normally read. 

How it works: Readers can subscribe to the adult classics, which is what I get, or the children's classics which are geared to younger readers. This is what I received this month! 

June's book is One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, a book I've never actually read, but have heard is beyond excellent. July's book will be The Odyssey by Homer. May's book was Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. 

Included in the box are a handful of items that are related to the book itself including coffee or tea (I choose tea) and a mug. Of course, you have the option of foregoing the mug and coffee or tea in favor of the book and other goodies. 

Coffee and a Classic are taking orders now for their August book. It'll be up as a sneak peek later this month. 

Happy reading! 

 - Heather


Twitter - @GrantsCrossing

Instagram - @GrantsCrossing

Goodreads - H.M.S. Brown - Find this and other book reviews here



Saturday, July 3, 2021

Review - Lovebug

I just finished listening to the cutest book on Audible

Lovebug, by Erin Mallon, is a contemporary romance / RomCom that features a sheltered entomologist and a gruff groundskeeper who, over the course of a summer camp at a local arboretum, are brought together through overzealous optimism and a shared love of nature.

This book looked absolutely cute when I read the description. I just finished and ended up really really enjoying it, but the first 10 or so chapters were excruciatingly painful to listen to. The main character, Mabel, was an Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt kind of character who was annoyingly optimistic without being very wise to the ways of the world. I only made it through the pilot episode of Kimmy Schmidt.) She also came across as incredibly ditzy. Talking about bugs - loved it. I learned things in this book, so for me, that part was interesting, but listening to her interact with others during the first 10-11-12 chapters... ugh. 

Her night out with her girlfriends when she described her sex life with her fiancé, especially painful. Just...ugh. I'll never think of Law & Order SVU the same way again. Oh. Yes, I will. It's a great show.

My recommendation? Like with making it through book 10 of Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time Series (you know the one, the book that is nothing but everyone's reaction to what happened the last chapter of book 9 with nothing new until literally 3 pages from the end? Yeah. That one.), I highly recommend you stick with this. Seriously - the main character becomes real and far more relatable starting about the end of chapter 12. And - there are 29 chapters + an epilogue. (Plus an interesting summary of the writing process from the author afterwards, so you need to listen to / read that as well)

After that point, I felt that 24-year old Mabel finally started coming into her own and becoming her own person who allowed herself to actually feel something other than pressure to make everyone else happy. There were some tough issues that were faced afterwards that an insanely sheltered person had difficulty dealing with, but that were a joy to listen to. 

Wally? He was awesome, of course. Nothing like a good guy who can see beyond the surface, beyond the façade put up by Mabel. He was also pleasantly patient as well and let her do things at her own pace.

Stick with the story - it's a good one and I already have Flirtasaurus (Natural History #1) to listen to by Erin Mallon as well. As an experienced book narrator, she does a fabulous job of reading her own book and look forward to more in this series. 

Learn more about Erin Mallon at her website. Find Lovebug at Goodreads - Barnes & Noble - Amazon 

 My Goodreads review.

 - Heather


Twitter - @GrantsCrossing

Instagram - @GrantsCrossing

Goodreads - H.M.S. Brown - Find this and other book reviews here

Harold Addison Scribner - Radioman, Third Class, US Naval Reserve

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