Reviews

Review: A Study in Scarlet Women by Sherry Thomas

Book Review

a study in scarlet women
A Study in Scarlet Women
by Sherry Thomas
(Lady Sherlock #1)
Historical Fiction, Mystery
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Synopsis
With her inquisitive mind, Charlotte Holmes has never felt comfortable with the demureness expected of the fairer sex in upper-class society. But even she never thought that she would become a social pariah, an outcast fending for herself on the mean streets of London.

When the city is struck by a trio of unexpected deaths and suspicion falls on her sister and her father, Charlotte is desperate to find the true culprits and clear the family name. She’ll have help from friends new and old—a kind-hearted widow, a police inspector, and a man who has long loved her.

But in the end, it will be up to Charlotte, under the assumed name Sherlock Holmes, to challenge society’s expectations and match wits against an unseen mastermind.

What I thought
So I might be a little biased since Sherlock Holmes-esque reads are comfort reads for me. So it is no surprise that I really liked this twist on Sherlock Holmes. This is a classic woman in Victorian England taking control of her life no matter how society/her family wants to use her for. I live for these types of books.

I liked how the Author swapped the gender of Sherlock but still found a way to incorporate the classic characters that we all associate with Sherlock Holmes stories. They don’t reside in their classic roles which I enjoyed rather than the author trying to force them in there. For example, Charlette has sisters, not a brother named Mycroft, but Mycroft still shows up as he should just in a different place. Yes, I am being purposefully vague so as not to spoil anything. Everyone you need for a classic Holmes esque story comes together nicely.

One of the things that I adored about the character Charlotte was her relationship with her sister Bernadette. Even though she was a classic Holmes character (very offish to everyone) her relationship with her sister Bernadette is a very sweet one. Charlotte seemed to be the only person that understands her and you can tell she truly cares for her.

There is the possibility of a love story brewing and I am curious to see how it plays out. The “love interest” seems to be a man of high morals so I am interested to see how this all plays out in the other books.

My Rating: /55 Stars

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Reviews

Review: Capturing the Devil by Kerri Maniscalco

Book Review

capturing-the-devil


Capturing the Devil
by Kerri Maniscalco
(Stalking Jack the Ripper #4)
Young Adult, Historical Fiction, Mystery
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Synopsis
Audrey Rose Wadsworth and Thomas Cresswell have landed in America, a bold, brash land unlike the genteel streets of London they knew. But like London, the city of Chicago hides its dark secrets well. When the two attend the spectacular World’s Fair, they find the once-in-a-lifetime event tainted with reports of missing people and unsolved murders.

Determined to help, Audrey Rose and Thomas begin their investigations, only to find themselves facing a serial killer unlike any they’ve heard of before. Identifying him is one thing, but capturing him—and getting dangerously lost in the infamous Murder Hotel he constructed as a terrifying torture device—is another.

Will Audrey Rose and Thomas see their last mystery to the end—together and in love—or will their fortunes finally run out when their most depraved adversary makes one final, devastating kill?

What I thought
This is the final book in the Stalking Jack the Ripper series.  

I must say the author did a lot of research on different theories regarding Jack the Ripper.  Even the American connection, which as a person growing up fascinated by the longest unsolved case still open at Scotland Yard, I was in nerd heaven. Serial Killers, aside I left this book so happy with the end.  

I absolutely adore Thomas and Audrey Rose. Oh and Audrey’s grandmother now we all know where she gets her spunk from.  I have to say I loved watching her grandmother knock Thomas’s father down a few pegs.  

I am going to admit to something that I only realized at the end and couldn’t believe I missed it until then but these two characters are very Holmesish how did I not see this but it does help explain some of my love of the story.

I won’t lie I hope we get a spin-off series sometime in the future about Thomas and Audrey’s future endeavors. 

If you haven’t picked up this series yet and you like historical fiction based in this time period you really should.

My Rating: /55 Stars

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New Releases

Cover Reveal: Nutmeg Street: Egyptian Secrets by Sherrill Joseph @MysteryAuthor7 @RRBookTours1 #Mystery #MG #MiddleGrade

A fantastic cover for an exciting upcoming debut novel by the author, Sherrill Joseph! Read more about Nutmeg Street: Egyptian Secrets below!

NutmegStreet-EgyptianSecretes_cover2(1).jpg


Nutmeg Street: Egyptian Secrets
by Sherrill Joseph
(A Botanic Hill Detectives Mysteries #1)
Expected Publication Date: February 1, 2020
Genre: MG/ Middle Grade/ Mystery (Ages 9 – 12)

World-famous Egyptologist Dr. Winston Thornsley died suddenly two months ago in disgrace. His widow, Ida Thornsley, remains convinced her husband was falsely accused of stealing an ancient burial urn he discovered in Egypt last summer, but local and federal law enforcement officers are stumped.

Mrs. Thornsley, desperate for answers, calls in her thirteen-year-old neighbors, the Botanic Hill Detectives—twins Lanny and Lexi Wyatt, Moki Kalani, and Rani Kumar. Their exciting mission? To find the urn and its real thief, bring the criminal to justice, and exonerate Dr. Thornsley so his spotless reputation can be restored.

A roomful of venomous snakes, the poisoned Egyptian pond, and Dragon Pit Man are just a few of the tests awaiting the four tech-savvy teenagers. As the detectives begin to unravel the sinister plot, the mystery takes a dangerous turn. Answers are at their fingertips—if they can only convince their parents to let them solve the case.

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Excerpt

“Here we go again. An aftershock! I’ve been afraid this would happen,” said Dr. Kurtz. She rapidly surveyed the room full of terrariums. “And one of my assistants just called to say he’s found a somewhat hidden but large crack from this morning’s tremor on one of our venomous snake enclosure’s glass panes. It’s a major emergency. Come out with me quickly boys—now! I have to attend to this immediately,” she shouted behind her, as she grabbed her tool bag, yanked open the heavy door, and fled outside and down the breezeway to the enclosure.

Unfortunately, Moki and Lanny weren’t as fast as Dr. Kurtz. The door banged shut in their surprised faces and locked. They were trapped in a windowless room.

As if that weren’t bad enough, the power failed simultaneously, and the room went pitch black. Both boys froze, helplessly surrounded by three walls of venomous snakes they could still hear but no longer see.

Egyptian Secrets, in paperback and eBook, will be available for
purchase on Amazon, February 1, 2020!

Author Bio

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Sherrill Joseph’s debut novel, Nutmeg Street: Egyptian Secrets, had been inside her head for decades. The mystery genre took hold of her as a fifth-grader when she discovered Nancy Drew and Phyllis A. Whitney mysteries. Years later, it still hasn’t let go.

After graduating Phi Beta Kappa and summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in English literature and a master’s in education, Sherrill spent the next thirty-five years as a K-12 literacy teacher. When she retired from teaching in 2013, the Botanic Hill Detectives and their mysteries finally sprang to life.

Forever inspired by her beautiful students in the San Diego public schools, the author has peopled and themed the Botanic Hill Detectives mysteries with children of various abilities, cultures, and interests. She strongly believes that embracing diversity is the key to a better world.

Sherrill is a native San Diegan where she lives in a ninety-year-old house in a historic neighborhood with her bichon frisé-poodle mix, Jimmy Lambchop. In addition to her dog, the city of San Diego, reading and writing, the author loves her daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughter. She must also include dark chocolate, popcorn, old movies, staircases, the color purple, and daisies. She is a member of SCBWI and the Authors’ Guild and promises many more adventures with the squad to come.

Sherrill Joseph | Newsletter | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Cover Reveal Organized By:

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Reviews

Review: Suitors and Sabotage by Cindy Anstey

Book Review

Suitors and Sabotage.png
Suitors and Sabotage
by Cindy Anstey
Historical, Mystery, Young Adult, Romance
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Synopsis
Shy aspiring artist Imogene Chively has just had a successful Season in London, complete with a suitor of her father’s approval. Imogene is ambivalent about the young gentleman until he comes to visit her at the Chively estate with his younger brother in tow. When her interest is piqued, however, it is for the wrong brother.

Charming Ben Steeple has a secret: despite being an architectural apprentice, he has no drawing aptitude. When Imogene offers to teach him, Ben is soon smitten by the young lady he considers his brother’s intended.

But hiding their true feelings becomes the least of their problems when, after a series of “accidents,” it becomes apparent that someone means Ben harm. And as their affection for each other grows—despite their efforts to remain just friends—so does the danger. . .

What I thought

I read this book as a buddy read with the wonderful Brittany from Perfectly Tolerable. If you have not checked, her out you really should. She also reviewed this book and you can find her review here.  Brittany is wonderful and more on the ball than I am lol she posted her review right after we read the book unlike me who let my reviews pile up.

I really enjoyed this book.  Imogene who was given one season for only one reason, to find a suitor, and did she ever with Earnest he is everything that her father had in mind, the firstborn of an influential family. Due to the constant criticism from her parents, she is an anxious person. (Brittany touches more on this in her review) Okay her parents are just downright mean, just to be mean, I really felt for Imogene there was no reason they picked on her the way they did. After the season was over Earnest comes to call and brings his brother Ben along for support. Once Ben sees Imogene’s drawings, he is impressed with her ability to render art. With that common interest, Ben begins bringing Imogene out of her shell and it is such a cute story to watch unfold even if they don’t realize there could be a future for them. Ben and Imogene are at constant war with their feelings since it is Earnest that wants/is supposed to ask for Imogene’s hand. And they do not realize that they have feeling for each other even though it is obvious to everyone else.

I only had one issue with this story and Brittany had the same issue too.  Imogene leads Earnest on for far too long. Imogene wants to tell him but is asked not to because her friend is trying to impress Ben and they know that if Earnest leaves then Ben will too.  I can’t be too mad about it all since Imogene acknowledges that it isn’t right, so the story does not support that issue but recognizes that it is wrong.

If you enjoy clean Regency Romance/Mystery novels than you should really give this one a chance.

My Rating: /54 StarsFollow me on other platforms:
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Reviews

Review: Duels & Deception by Cindy Anstey

Book Review

Duels & Deception
Duels & Deception
by Cindy Anstey
Historical, Mystery, Young Adult, Romance
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Synopsis
Miss Lydia Whitfield, heiress to the family fortune, has her future entirely planned out. She will run the family estate until she marries the man of her late father’s choosing, and then she will spend the rest of her days as a devoted wife. Confident in those arrangements, Lydia has tasked her young law clerk, Mr. Robert Newton, to begin drawing up the marriage contracts. Everything is going according to plan.

Until Lydia—and Robert along with her—is kidnapped. Someone is after her fortune and won’t hesitate to destroy her reputation to get it. With Robert’s help, Lydia strives to keep her family’s good name intact and expose whoever is behind the devious plot. But as their investigation delves deeper and their affections for each other grow, Lydia starts to wonder whether her carefully planned future is in fact what she truly wants…

What I thought
I read this book as a buddy read with the wonderful Brittany from Perfectly Tolerable. If you have not checked, her out you really should. She also reviewed this book and you can find her review here.

Before Lydia’s father passed, he arranged for her to marry their neighbor, Lord Aldershot.  Lydia has accepted this and is willing to marry him because it was what her father wanted.  When issues arise with the estate Lydia and her uncle do not agree about the crops they should be planting.  Her father’s lawyer sends Mr. Robert Newton, his clerk, to handle the issue. After they resolve the crop issue Lydia asks him to begin the process of drawing up the marriage contracts. Lydia is a business-oriented person and you see she has resigned herself to a marriage of tolerance rather than love.

When Lynda goes to sign the marriage contract she is kidnapped and subsequently so is Mr. Newton Since the kidnappers only need her they through Robert out and hold Lydia in a barn for no other purpose than ruining her.  Luckily for Lydia, her friends step up and she is saved from being ruined.  But the question remains who would do this?

I have the same issue she had with this story the amount of “wool-gathering” aka daydreaming that happens.  I mean yes it happens but not mid-conversation. As much as it happens in this story. Other than that, it was a good story that I really enjoyed.

My Rating: /54.5 starsFollow me on other platforms:
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Reviews

Review: Escaping from Houdini by Kerri Maniscalco

Book Review

Escaping from Houdini
Escaping from Houdini
by Kerri Maniscalco
(Stalking Jack the Ripper #3)
Young Adult, Historical, Mystery
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Synopsis
Audrey Rose Wadsworth and her partner-in-crime-investigation, Thomas Cresswell, are en route to New York to help solve another blood-soaked mystery. Embarking on a week-long voyage across the Atlantic on the opulent RMS Etruria, they’re delighted to discover a traveling troupe of circus performers, fortune tellers, and a certain charismatic young escape artist entertaining the first-class passengers nightly.

But then, privileged young women begin to go missing without explanation, and a series of brutal slayings shocks the entire ship. The disturbing influence of the Moonlight Carnival pervades the decks as the murders grow ever more freakish, with nowhere to escape except the unforgiving sea.

It’s up to Audrey Rose and Thomas to piece together the gruesome investigation as even more passengers die before reaching their destination. But with clues to the next victim pointing to someone she loves, can Audrey Rose unravel the mystery before the killer’s horrifying finale?

What I thought
I put off reading this book for so long and I think it had a lot to do with the hype surrounding it. There was so much build-up to its release then there were so many negative reviews that I…well…panicked it guess. I loved books 1 and 2 so much that I didn’t want to ruin them by reading this one. I know dumb reason especially if when I am rating it 4 stars.

I completely get why those people were mad. Thomas Cresswell is downright amazing and Audrey was a fool, no matter her motivations. At the end of the day it all worked out and I don’t think anyone will be doubting them as a couple ever again. That ending has to be the sweetest thing I have read in a long time.

I enjoyed this book from the beginning and did not want to put it down. Yes, I cringed through some scenes, but without those scenes, the ending would not have been as sweet. This book was a journey for these two characters who both lacked confidence in their feelings, and I think that this book truly silenced Audrey’s biggest fear. If you have read the other books in the series you should know which one I mean If not ask below.

If you are waiting to pick this one up because of the bad buzz it got, in the beginning, don’t. Watching these two grow through this issue was so worth it. I have to say I didn’t think it was possible but I like Thomas even more after this one.

My Rating: /54 StarsFollow me on other platforms:
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New Releases

Waiting On Wednesday: The Sinister Mystery of the Mesmerizing Girl by Theodora Goss

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting On Wednesday was a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine. Each Wednesday you got to highlight a book that you were really looking forward to. Unfortunately, the original creator is no longer able to host the meme and it has now linked up with Can’t Wait Wednesday over at Wishful Endings.

This week I’ve chosen: The Sinister Mystery of the Mesmerizing Girl by Theodora Goss

The Sinister Mystery of the Mesmerizing Girl
The Sinister Mystery of the Mesmerizing Girl

by Theodora Goss
(The Extraordinary Adventures of the Athena Club #3)
Fantasy, Mystery, Historical Fiction

Mary Jekyll and the Athena Club race to save Alice—and foil a plot to unseat the Queen, in the electrifying conclusion to the trilogy that began with the Nebula Award finalist and Locus Award winner The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter.

Life’s always an adventure for the Athena Club…especially when one of their own has been kidnapped! After their thrilling European escapades rescuing Lucinda van Helsing, Mary Jekyll and her friends return home to discover that their friend and kitchen maid Alice has vanished— and so has their friend and employer Sherlock Holmes!

As they race to find Alice and bring her home safely, they discover that Alice and Sherlock’s kidnapping are only one small part of a plot that threatens Queen Victoria, and the very future of the British Empire. Can Mary, Diana, Beatrice, Catherine, and Justine save their friends—and save the Empire? Find out in the final installment of the fantastic and memorable Extraordinary Adventures of the Athena Club series.

Expected publication: October 1, 2019

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