Review: Sifting Through Clues by Daryl Wood Gerber

Crystal Cove is celebrating Book Club Bonanza and the Cookbook Nook is geared up and ready to participate. One of the planned festivities involves one of the book clubs traveling to various homes to eat and discuss the mystery the members are reading. Jenna Hart, co-owner of the Cookbook Nook, can’t wait to participate, but unfortunately things go seriously wrong when one of the hosts is found dead in her home during the event. Worse yet, one of the prime suspects is the chief of police’s mother, Pepper Pritchett. Can Jenna help exonerate Pepper without destroying her relationship with her police chief daughter, Cinnamon?

SIFTING THROUGH THE CLUES is the eighth book in the Cookbook Nook mystery series and can be read as a standalone story. Daryl Wood Gerber helpfully provides a quick cast of characters at the beginning of the book so that new readers can quickly jump into the series and enjoy the story. I have to admit that I can’t imagine reading one book in the Cookbook Nook series and not wanting to read them all!

While I love the entire Cookbook Nook series, SIFTING THROUGH THE CLUES is probably my favorite book yet. Daryl Wood Gerber’s inclusion of the book club theme meant we had plenty of mentions of books other than just the usual intriguing cookbook references. In fact, I’ve added several of the cookbooks to my list to buy as a result! And oh, I love how Daryl Wood Gerber worked in references to her two other series and I can’t wait to hear all about Jenna and Rhett’s visit to Maison Rousseau!

SIFTING THROUGH CLUES is another fun and engaging mystery series from the talented Daryl Wood Gerber. Not only will culinary mystery fans delight in this entertaining story, but I suspect book lovers everywhere will appreciate the numerous book references that are a centerpiece of the tale. Highly recommended!

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Review: Breaking Without You

Breaking Without You

Written by Carrie Ann Ryan

This story with have you in tears. Anyone who has lost a loved one or close friend to a sudden death should read this book It isn’t therapy but it does reach into the thoughts and actions of survivors.

Cameron Connolly and Violet Knight had both suffered the pains of life. He as a foster child until the Connolly’s had taken him in and she at the loss of him when he suddenly walked away with her heart and now a close friend to death. The last thing either expects is a second chance but life and fate hands you what you can handle – ready or not.

I cried from the beginning, though there is some laughter and loved watching the growing love between this couple as well the Connolly brothers who had some ground to make up too. While all worked toward healing, survival and love.

The healing touch of love is felt throughout this book, but the romance is steamy, the brothers are funny as well as jerks to each other and Violet and her friends are there for each other as only friends and sisters can be. If anyone can make you understand how to handle the heartbreak that life can hand you it is author Carrie Ann Ryan, with this amazing beginning to her new Fractured Connections series.

Review: Anything But A Duke by Christy Carlyle

Publish date  – 4/30/19     by Avon                                

ISBN13: 9780062854001              Series  Duke’s Den #2

Take one very independent lady who has the  capability and quick mind for inventions and one self-made man who often backs said entrepreneurs and what you get is an intriguing story of two brilliant people who haven’t got a clue that they were meant for each other.  

Perhaps because self-made man Aidan Iverson had more doors closed  in his thirty years than he’s ever cared he wasn’t being as broad minded by Ms Diana Ashby’s need to be recognized for the useful things she had invented.   As a member of the elite Duke’s Den, he has all the money he could possibly need, but the one thing he can’t purchase is true power. If roguish Aidan can’t buy his way into the aristocratic  hallowed halls, he’s ready to try a more extreme measure: marriage.

As  a proper lady, the only thing Diana Ashby desires is to be left alone to create her own devices. When her dreams are crushed, she must find another way to secure the backing for her invention. Knowing Aidan’s desire to enter her world, Diana strikes a deal to arrange Aidan’s marriage to a perfect lady—as long as that lady isn’t her. Diana doesn’t want any distractions from her work, particularly of the sinfully handsome variety.   As Diana and Aidan set out to find him an aristocratic match, neither are prepared for the passion that ignites between them or the love they can’t ignore.

So much fun, loved all the gadgets Diana came up with to make life easier!  Definitely can recommend this book.

Marilyn Rondeau

REVIEW: MARRYING WINTERBOURNE BY LISA KLEYPAS

Review: Marrying Winterbourne By Lisa Kleypas

Publishing – May 31, 2019

ISBN13: 9780062371843.            SeriesThe Ravenels #2

Characters  Lady Helen Ravenel, Rhys Winterborne

First of all MARRYING WINTERBOURNE was delightful and Ms Kleypas’        originality and creative scenarios have left me with that wonderful ahhhhhh…. feeling once again.     I discovered Lisa Kleypas many years ago, and I find that as the years progress her writing  gets more and more refined like a fine wine. It just gets better than ever and one must give high marks to this new series The Ravenels.    

Common-born Rhys Winterborne’s vast wealth and success weren’t given to him.  In business and beyond, Rhys gets exactly what he wants through a unyielding determination to succeed.   From the moment he meets the shy, aristocratic Lady Helen Ravenel, he is determined to possess her. And if it takes ruining her to ensure she marries him, then so be it.  However as his all consuming lust changes into a love he’s never felt before, he’s afraid of losing her.

Right from the start Lady Helen was a bit frightened of the Rhys but as she gets to know him better she sees the vulnerability and the gentleness of the man.   Helen realizes she is in love with Rhys but then discovered something about herself that could destroy the man she loves.  Her biggest decision, should she trust in love or continue the lie that if Rhys knew would destroy his faith in her?

Marilyn Rondeau

REVIEW: Missing Pieces by Susan Clayton-Goldner

  • Print Length: 274 pages.           Publisher: Tirgearr Publishing (April 17, 2019)
  • ASIN: B07PGR4Y3M                           RATING: 5*

How many times have you uttered or thought the words, I hate you I wish you were dead about a parent?  Well most teens might have that reaction when the words “NO” were uttered when you really thought you were in the right and the parent was stupid and didn’t understand. However for Emma / Lillianna these were thoughts and words she spoke and thought for most of her life against a father whom she basically didn’t understand.  But when it came down to it, would Emma / Lilliana be able to refuse to see or forgive a man who she blamed for what she considered her horrible childhood?

For the last twenty years Lilliana Fergusson pretended her father was dead. She moved to Oregon—far away from her childhood home in Delaware—changed her name from Emma to Lillianna and vowed after her mother died to never go home.  But then her brother, Greg, phoned, begging her to come back to help care for their father who had been diagnosed with a dangerous, aortic aneurysm.  Again Lilliana is adamant in her refusal. When did her father, ever take care of her?

Speaking to her husband after refusing her brother, Lilliana was convinced that yes, it was her decision, and yet maybe she needed to give herself one last chance before regrets would be all she had left.

Lilliana’s father, Calvin Miller, was a disabled WWII veteran. He had survived a grenade explosion that killed his best friend and  took off most of his right hand as well as leaving him with osteomyelitis in his leg, a bone-destroying infection, that refused to heal. His surgeon believes Calvin’s only chance for survival is amputation of his leg before trying to fix the aneurysm.  Would Lillianna be able to put to rest the hatred she’d held for the father she ran from twenty years prior and would some of that healing fold over to herself as she learned about the life her father had lived.   Can she leave her safe life and reenter the minefield of her childhood?

Exceptional writing and hard to put down – Highly recommended.

Marilyn Rondeau

Review: Ink by Numbers

Ink by Numbers

Author: Carrie Ann Ryan

Novella

May I say that I love the Montgomery clan, no matter what city they are in and can I find a “Brushes With Lushes” class somewhere close by?

In this novella Kaylee Chambers is an artist, a business woman and a big disappointment to her mother. She divorced a cheating husband and she is … OMG … working with her hands. How terrible! She will stick to art and friendship, so why does Landon keep tugging at her heart.

Landon knows numbers and he knows families can be a pain, but the one thing he finally comes to realize is that Kaylee is the one for him. She might not have been ready when they first met but he’s hoping that somehow she would come to him and feel the same love.

Ink by Numbers is a novella that will grab you by the heart as you watch these two dance around one another until they realize friendship is good but Love is so much better. Carrie Ann Ryan knows how to give her readers a sweet yet very steamy romance that leaves us with the warm fuzzies. Cannot wait for the next offering of this talented writer.