Thursday, April 4, 2019

April Showers bring...ROCCO's cozy reviews!

Ma-Row! My cozy reviews for the month of April!

A Writer's Apprentice Mystery
Julia Buckley
April 2, 2019
Berkley Prime Crime
Four Stars

Lena London is back in her fourth adventure and better than ever!  this time out her friend and mentor, novellist Camilla Graham, needs some help!

It's summertime, and while Lena and Camilla are busy at work, a town vandal is running amok.  In the midst of this they get a visit from an old acquaintence of Camilla's hinting at a dark secret in Camilla's past, Lena assumes there is nothing to fear, since Camilla has nothing to hide, but guess again, Lena!  Turns out Camilla's husband had a family secret which the woman thretens to expose.  When the woman is found dead, they're convinced it's connected to the secret she was threatening to reveal.  Can Lena solve the mystery before the finger of suspicion points at Camilla?

Well, of course the answer to that question is yes, but not until Lena has some harrowing experiences.  A good addition to this series.  four stars.

A Lady Darby Mystery
April 2, 2019
Anna Lee Huber
Four Stars

Lady Darby returns to London with her new husband, Sebastian Gage, but newlywed bliss won't last for long when her past comes back to haunt her in the latest exciting installment in this national bestselling series.

November 1831. After fleeing London in infamy more than two years prior, Lady Kiera Darby's return to the city is anything but mundane, though not for the reasons she expected. A gang of body snatchers is arrested on suspicion of imitating the notorious misdeeds of Edinburgh criminals, Burke and Hare--killing people from the streets and selling their bodies to medical schools. Then Kiera's past--a past she thought she'd finally made peace with--rises up to haunt her. 

All of London is horrified by the evidence that "burkers" are, indeed, at work in their city. The terrified populace hovers on a knife's edge, ready to take their enmity out on any likely suspect. And when Kiera receives a letter of blackmail, threatening to divulge details about her late anatomist husband's involvement with the body snatchers and wrongfully implicate her, she begins to apprehend just how precarious her situation is. Not only for herself, but also her new husband and investigative partner, Sebastian Gage, and their unborn child. 

Meanwhile, the young scion of a noble family has been found murdered a block from his home, and the man's family wants Kiera and Gage to investigate. Is it a failed attempt by the London burkers, having left the body behind, or the crime of someone much closer to home? Someone who stalks the privileged, using the uproar over the burkers to cover his own dark deeds?

Krista Davis
  • Print Length: 336 pages
  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Kensington (April 30, 2019)
  • Publication Date: April 30, 2019
  • Four Stars

Everyone's favorite diva returns in a new adventure!

Nothing heats up Old Town quite like the annual Pie Festival, and this year is no exception, especially since Sophie’s professional rival, Natasha Smith, is barred from participating. Sophie, meanwhile, has been asked to oversee the pie eating contest. But the drama really rolls out when celebrity judge, Patsy Lee Presley, host of television’s most popular cooking show, bites the crust during the competition, and Sophie’s friends are suspected of the crime. 

As the folks of Old Town dish, the tough truth about Patsy’s meteoric rise to domestic stardom begins to leak. It turns out that Patsy’s sweet exterior hid a secret sour side, which alienated many of her closest allies, including a jilted ex-husband, a bitter ex-mentor, and a jaded ex-best friend. With the festival falling apart, and her friends in danger of being boxed up for murder, Sophie must cobble together the clues and stop a flakey fiend from serving up any more deadly desserts.

this has always been one of my favorite series. Love to see Sophie and the gang delve into sleuth mode!
four stars!

Knit and Nibble mystery
Peggy Ehrhardt
April 30, 2019

Knit and Nibble’s numbers are growing! In addition to a litter of adorable kittens, the knitting club just welcomed their newest member, Caralee Lorimer, who’s learning to knit for her upcoming role in A Tale of Two Cities. According to the amateur actress, the behind-the-scenes drama at the theater is getting downright catty, and Caralee wants a reckoning for Arborville’s pretentious suburbanites. Her claws are out, and just like her character in the play, Caralee is ready to name names. But before she can finish her snitchy stitches, Caralee is killed in a suspicious theater accident. Someone thinks they’ve staged a perfect murder, but Pamela and her Knit and Nibblers are ready to pounce on the real killer . . . before it’s curtains for anyone else!

An entertaining new series! Definitely worth a look.  Four stars.

A Puzzle Lady Mystery
Parnell Hall
Pegasus Books
April 2, 2019
Four Stars

It’s no surprise when Cora Felton’s ex-husband’s sensational tell-all memoir, Confessions of a Trophy Husband: My Life with the Puzzle Lady, is optioned for the movies, but it certainly raises eyebrows when the Puzzle Lady herself signed on as an associate producer. Cora explains gamely that she hoped to have some control over the project. The truth is that she needs the money.  
Now Cora is filming her life story on location in New York City, and things couldn’t be worse. She doesn’t like the script, she doesn’t like the director, and she absolutely hates the actress who is playing her in the movie. It’s almost a relief when the first dead body shows up on the set. If only it didn’t come with a crossword puzzle . . .

Lea Wait
  • Series: A Mainely Needlepoint Mystery (Book 8)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Kensington (April 30, 2019)
  • Four Stars

Ike Hamilton is a part of the Haven Harbor community just like anyone else, though he’s fallen on hard times and has to make do on disability checks and deposit bottles. Most of the locals do what they can to help him out, and needlepointing partners Angie and Sarah are happy to see him at the annual Blessing of the Fleet, honoring all those lost at sea over the centuries.

But when harmless Ike is stabbed, suspicion quickly falls on a troubled teenage boy who’s new in town. Angie’s convinced that young Leo is innocent—but if he didn’t do it, who did? Turns out Ike may have appeared simple-minded, but he knew a few secrets that someone might have murdered him to keep quiet. Angie sets out to trace Ike’s bottle-collecting route to find out what he witnessed—and for this killer, there may be no redemption . . .


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