Body at Buccaneer’s Bay by Josh Lanyon

Body at Buccaneer’s Bay by Josh Lanyon

Ellery once again finds a dead body, this time while diving with his boyfriend, Chief Police Officer Jack Carson. The body is sealed into an old diving suit they find in a shipwreck. Then, Odette Wallace, a wealthy widow, hires Ellery to find out who is trying to kill her. Apparently, she's a big believer in the ability of amateur sleuths. Of course, the two mysteries are connected The mystery was interesting. Everyone on the island has an idea about who the man in the suit was, but no proof. Odette and the step-children are not the nicest people, and Ellery probably shouldn't have taken the case but he needs the money. Ellery figures out the solution in the end, just a step or two behind Jack. The wrap-up was a bit anti-climactic though. Ellery is his usual smart, but bumbling self. Jack is very competent, and to me his concerns regarding Elliott getting swept up in cases make sense. I...
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A Corpse for Christmas by Rena Leith

A Corpse for Christmas by Rena Leith

A Corpse for Christmas is the third in the Cass Peake series, but the first I've read. For me, it took a while to get all the characters straight, and I think if I had read the series in order, that wouldn't have been an issue. I also would have felt like I knew at least Cass and the other recurring characters, including Doris the ghost, better. Cass takes on the job of doing a new video for a local college and hires some young people to help her out. It's the holidays so the campus is pretty empty, making it easier to film locations, but while working, Cass and her crew stumble onto a murder. Her obligatory cop boyfriend, George, doesn’t like her getting involved, but Cass of course can't let it go, especially when a neighbor asks for her help. There's a lot going on here. We have the project for the local college; it's Christmas so Cass' brother...
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Best in Snow by David Rosenfelt

Best in Snow by David Rosenfelt

Best in Snow is the first Andy Carpenter mystery I've picked up. I couldn't resist the adorable cover and Grover Gardner as narrator. It worked fine as a stand-alone for me, although I'm sure I would have known more about Andy and the other recurring characters had I read the series from the beginning. At 24 books, that's not going to happen. This time around, Andy finds a dead body while walking his dogs. A former reporter for Andy Carpenter is an almost retired defense attorney with more than enough money, so he can pick and choose his clients- unless his friend and newspaper editor asks him to help out a former reporter charged with the mayor's murder. Then he doesn't get much of a choice. Andy is clever and sarcastic and downright funny, all of which Gardner pulls off perfectly. The dialogue is entertaining and the dogs are all adorable. The plot was well-done, with plenty of twists and turns,...
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Half-baked Holidays by Kat Bastion

Half-baked Holidays by Kat Bastion

Half-Baked Holidays is a collection of novellas full of romance and holiday fun. They're short and pretty much rely on love at first meeting, but I thoroughly enjoyed them. All of the characters are charming or adorable or sexy. The stories are light, with attraction and flirting and learning about themselves and each other, but no major complications, no major tensions, just sweet stories. There's no cheating on each other, no love triangles. There's also no sex, just plenty of kissing and holding hands and cookies and hot chocolate. I don't know that I had a favorite story - they all made me smile. ...
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The Starlight Mint Surprise Murder by Marla A. White

The Starlight Mint Surprise Murder by Marla A. White

Mel is a former cop, now the owner of the Babbling Brook Inn. When she finds a guest dead in front of the fireplace in her lobby, her instincts won't let her believe it was a simple heart attack. The Starlight Mint Surprise Murder is a fun, Christmassy novella. Mel is a good character, smart, tenacious. She's afraid the death will scare guests away from her inn, so decides she has to do some investigating with the help of a local restaurant owner, Jackson, and the town doctor. At the same time, she's trying to perfect her grandma's cookie recipe for the town's contest. A good cozy mystery sleuth always has to juggle real life and solving the crime. I was suspicious of the killer pretty quickly and it turned out I was right. That didn't stop me from enjoying the book though. The clues are well-placed and the story moves along quickly. We had a couple of suspects and Mel tries...
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Slashing Through the Snow by Jacqueline Frost

Slashing Through the Snow by Jacqueline Frost

Slashing Through the Snow is the third book of the cozy A Christmas Tree Farm Mystery series. Each book works as a standalone, but some of the characters and relationships evolve through the series. In the first book of the series, Holly had returned back home to her parents' Christmas Tree farm in Mistletoe, Maine. Now, the farm's bed and breakfast that she will be managing is open. Unfortunately, one of the first few guests, a rather nasty critic, is found dead just off the front porch. And one of Holly's friends, Cookie, a sweet if kooky older woman, is the most obvious suspect. Holly decided she has to investigate so she can provide her sheriff boyfriend with another suspect. The mystery itself was good, with several potential suspects, and enough clues and red herrings to keep you guessing. Holly stirs up a bit of trouble with her questioning and gets rather serious threats and finds herself in two more...
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