Tag Archive | mystery

Review: Mistaken Identity Crisis

Title: Mistaken Identity Crisis

Author: James J. Cudney

Date of Publication: June 30th, 2019

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Goodreads Summary:

A clever thief with a sinister calling card has invaded Braxton campus. A string of jewelry thefts continues to puzzle the sheriff given they’re remarkably similar to an unsolved eight-year-old case from shortly before Gabriel vanished one stormy night. When a missing ruby is discovered near an electrified dead body during the campus cable car redesign project, Kellan must investigate the real killer in order to protect his brother. Amidst sorority hazing practices and the victim’s connections to several prominent Wharton County citizens, a malicious motive becomes more obvious and trickier to prove.

As if the latest murder isn’t enough to keep him busy, Kellan partners with April to end the Castigliano and Vargas crime family feud. What really happened to Francesca while all those postcards showed up in Braxton? The mafia world is more calculating than Kellan realized, and if he wants to move forward, he’ll have to make a few ruthless sacrifices.

Election Day is over, and the new mayor takes office. Nana D celebrates her 75th birthday with an adventure. A double wedding occurs at Crilly Lake on Independence Day. And Kellan receives a few more surprises as the summer heat begins to settle in Wharton County.

My Review:

This series is pretty dang addicting! And let me tell you from the beginning, my queen—Nana D—is back again. I said this last time, but she needs her own book! Seriously! And she’s mayor!

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Kellan’s world spirals once again, and I loved being inside his head. What I really want for him one day is a nice vacation, because this boy deserves it! Throughout this series, he’s had amazing character growth and you feel for him because he always has decisions he needs to make!

The writing was on point, the descriptions were wonderful, and the thing is, the characters feel real here with dialogue that is spoken how people in real life would! The book is fast paced with plenty of mystery, and I already need the next one! Oh, and this is definitely my favorite cover in the series so far!

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What’s your favorite mystery?

 

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Review: Flower Power Trip

Title: Flower Power Trip

Author: James J. Cudney

Date of Publication: March 30th, 2019

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Goodreads Summary:

Braxton College is throwing the Heroes & Villains Costume Extravaganza to raise money for renovations to the antiquated Memorial Library. While attending, Kellan stumbles upon a close family friend standing over a dead body that’s dressed as Dr. Evil. Did one of Maggie’s sisters kill an annoying guest at the Roarke and Daughters Inn or does the victim have a more intimate connection to someone else on campus?

As Kellan helps the school’s president, Ursula, bury a scandalous secret from her past and unearth the identity of her stalker, he unexpectedly encounters a missing member of his own family who’s reappeared after a lengthy absence. When all of the peculiar events around town trace back to the Stoddards, a new family who recently moved to Wharton County, the explosive discovery only offers more confusion.

Between the special flower exhibit that’s made an unplanned stop on campus and strange postcards arriving each week from all around the world, Kellan can’t decide which mystery in his life should take priority. Unfortunately, the biggest one of all has yet to arrive at his doorstep. When it does, Kellan won’t know what hit him.

My Review:

This is such a fun series!! I was so excited to be back in Kellan’s head. The thing about Kellan is he feels like a real person with incredibly real choices! And Nana D! Her craziness and witty dialogue is back! I love her and would like a whole book on just her! Even a prequel to when she was younger!

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Kellan has another mystery to checkout and this one is pretty cool! Also there was a neat costume party that I would want to attend … like right now! The side characters are all great with distinctive personalities that don’t feel cookie cutter!

The writing and descriptions were so good! I’m impressed how with each book the plots get better, the story stronger than an already strong story, and a book that is a page turner that I’m unable to put down! It has to be my favorite in the series so far and I can’t wait to see what Kellan’s up to next! Because dun, dun, dun … cliffhanger!!!

 

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Have you started this series yet?

Review: Valley of Fire

Title: Valley of Fire

Author: Bronwyn Archer

Date of Publication: February 26th, 2019

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Goodreads Summary:

Hunted. Haunted. Heir to a life-changing fortune…and a hidden family tragedy.

Forced to flee her graduation ball pursued by the Russian assassins who loaned her father money, eighteen-year-old Lana must go on the run. She’s just discovered her late mother—who threw herself off the Golden Gate Bridge for reasons no one knows—was also heir to a grand Gilded Age fortune—but she never told Lana the truth about her past. Haunted by questions—and by the ghost of her godmother, who can reach into this world from the beyond—Lana must survive long enough to claim her fortune.

Her only hope is the gorgeous, intimidating Alexander Ambrose. Who also happens to be her wealthy distant cousin. After finding badly injured in the middle of the desert, he convinces her she alone is heir to their mysterious great-aunt’s Gilded Age fortune.

Her enemies have other ideas. When she finds out they are waiting for her at the airport, she convinces Alexander to take her on a wild drive across the United States in his sleek Aston Martin.

If she doesn’t survive the journey, her devious, greedy stepmother Ramona Crawford will claim her fortune.

But first, however, she must survive Alexander Ambrose.

My Review:

I’ve been waiting forever for this sequel. Literally, FOREVER! I’ll just start off by saying that, yes, it was just as good as book one!

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I liked Lana because she wasn’t a cry baby! Tough things happened to her and she moved on, didn’t wallow in the pity! Also, there’s a road trip of sorts and those are one of my absolute favorite things! Then let’s put Alexander in the picture, and it’s heck yeah from there!

I loved Alexander! Loved learning more about him, his past, and how he developed as a character along with Lana. And the swoon was soooooo good! There’s some mystery, suspense, and action all intertwined in this fun sequel! Also, there’s a certain character here that I would like a book about!

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What’s your favorite Cinderella retelling?

Review: The Space Between

Title: The Space Between

Author: Brenna Yovanoff

Date of Publication: November 14th, 2011

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Goodreads Summary:

Everything is made of steel, even the flowers. How can you love anything in a place like this?

Daphne is the half-demon, half-fallen angel daughter of Lucifer and Lilith. Life for her is an endless expanse of time, until her brother Obie is kidnapped – and Daphne realizes she may be partially responsible. Determined to find him, Daphne travels from her home in Pandemonium to the vast streets of Earth, where everything is colder and more terrifying. With the help of the human boy she believes was the last person to see her brother alive, Daphne glimpses into his dreams, discovering clues to Obie’s whereabouts. As she delves deeper into her demonic powers, she must navigate the jealousies and alliances of the violent archangels who stand in her way. But she also discovers, unexpectedly, what it means to love and be human in a world where human is the hardest thing to be.

My Review:

This is now the fourth Brenna Yovanoff book I’ve read, and I seriously hate myself for not finding her books sooner! This one was so much fun and put a whole new unique spin on demons! And yes, all the feels!

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Daphne is probably the cutest demon I’ve read about. Loved her personality! She had struggles within herself, adjusting to the world above, searching for her missing brother, and meeting a human boy, Truman, who will need to help her!

The descriptions were so cool, and the story was original. There was swoon, emotion, action, mythology, horror vibes—pretty much all things cool! It was perfect!

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What’s your favorite unique book?

Review: Paper Valentine

Title: Paper Valentine

Author: Brenna Yovanoff

Date of Publication: January 8th, 2013

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Goodreads Summary:

The city of Ludlow is gripped by the hottest July on record. The asphalt is melting, the birds are dying, petty crime is on the rise, and someone in Hannah Wagnor’s peaceful suburban community is killing girls.

For Hannah, the summer is a complicated one. Her best friend Lillian died six months ago, and Hannah just wants her life to go back to normal. But how can things be normal when Lillian’s ghost is haunting her bedroom, pushing her to investigate the mysterious string of murders? Hannah’s just trying to understand why her friend self-destructed, and where she fits now that Lillian isn’t there to save her a place among the social elite. And she must stop thinking about Finny Boone, the big, enigmatic delinquent whose main hobbies seem to include petty larceny and surprising acts of kindness.

With the entire city in a panic, Hannah soon finds herself drawn into a world of ghost girls and horrifying secrets. She realizes that only by confronting the Valentine Killer will she be able move on with her life—and it’s up to her to put together the pieces before he strikes again.

My Review:

I absolutely loved The Replacement! So what did I have to do? Order a bunch of other books by this author! There was some nice solving crime type thing in this one!

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Paper Valentine had a bit of everything! Mystery, friendship, horror, romance, and a great MC. Hannah wasn’t typical and she felt like a real teen. Sometimes she was a follower, sometimes a leader, sometimes indecisive, as are most teens when they are trying to discover themselves.

The side characters were well developed. I liked Finny and Hannah’s sister Ariel a lot! I had a bit of the movies Valentine meets Scream vibes in this yet mixed with originality. Can’t wait to read more from Yovanoff!

 

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What’s your favorite mystery involving ghosts?

Review: Red Glove

Title: Red Glove

Author: Holly Black

Date of Publication: April 5th, 2011

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Goodreads Summary:

In Cassel Sharpe’s world, they go together. Cassel always though he was an ordinary guy, until he realized his memories were being manipulated by his brothers. Now he knows the truth – he’s the most powerful curse worker around. A touch of his hand can transform anything – or anyone – into something else.

That was how Lila, the girl he loved, became a white cat. Cassel was tricked into thinking he killed her, when actually he tried to save her. Now that she’s human again, he should be overjoyed. Trouble is, Lila’s been cursed to love him, a little gift from his emotion-worker mom. And if Lila’s love is as phony as Cassel’s made-up memories, then he can’t believe anything she says or does.

When Cassel’s oldest brother is murdered, the Feds recruit Cassel to help make sense of the only clue – crime-scene images of a woman in red gloves. But the mob is after Cassel too – they know how valuable he could be to them. Cassel is going to have to stay one step ahead of both sides just to survive. But where can he turn when he can’t trust anyone – least of all, himself?

Love is a curse and the con is the only answer in a game too dangerous to lose.

My Review:

An excellent sequel indeed! Makes me want to go out and get me some red gloves to parade around in!

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Cassel is definitely one of my favorite male characters ever! He makes wrong choices, a lot, but he’s so dang likable—I want to squeeze his cheeks! Of course, Lila got worked in the previous book, so Cassel doesn’t know if he can trust himself around her because her feelings for him he doesn’t believe them to be real. It’s a mess of feelings, and an addicting one!

Also his brother, Phillip, is dead, so it’s quite the mystery to figure out how he ended up that way. And the freaking ending! Another cliffhanger to where I have to read the next book! Loved it! And the magic system is just so cool!

 

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Have you read this series?

Review: Academic Curveball

Title: Academic Curveball

Author: James J. Cudney

Date of Publication: October 15th, 2018

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Goodreads Summary:

When Kellan Ayrwick, a thirty-two-year-old single father, is forced to return home for his father’s retirement from Braxton College, he finds the dead body of a professor in Diamond Hall’s stairwell. Unfortunately, Kellan has a connection to the victim, and so do several members of his family. Could one of them be guilty of murder? Then he finds a second body after discovering mysterious donations to the college’s athletic program, a nasty blog denouncing his father, and a criminal attempting to change student grades so the star baseball pitcher isn’t expelled.

Someone is playing games on campus, but none of the facts add up. With the help of his eccentric and trouble-making nana weeding through the clues, Kellan tries to stay out of the sheriff’s way. Fate has other plans. Kellan is close to discovering the killer’s identity just as someone he loves is put in grave danger of becoming victim number three. And if that’s not enough to wreak havoc on his family, everything comes crashing to a halt when his own past comes spiraling back to change his life forever.

In this debut novel in the Braxton Campus Mystery Series, readers discover a cozy, secluded Pennsylvania village full of quirky, sarcastic, and nosy residents. Among the daily workings of Braxton College and the charming Ayrwick family, Kellan weighs his investigative talents against an opportunity to achieve a much sought-after dream. When this first book ends, the drama is set for the next adventure in Kellan’s future… and it’s one you won’t want to miss.

My Review:

This is the third book I’ve read by Cudney and what I love is how each novel is so different yet each one is equally awesome! Cudney is quickly becoming one of my favorite Adult book writers!

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Academic Curveball kept me on my toes while I tried to figure out the mystery. I also loved Kellan and reading from his POV! He felt real and completely relatable, which is one of my favorite kind of characters. Seriously this author can write some dang good characters!

The setting was seriously cool, and it makes me want to head out to Pennsylvania right now! What you’ll get is plenty of mystery, fantastic writing, and witty dialogue. And that ending seriously has me yearning for book 2!! Highly recommend!

 

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What’s your favorite mystery?