Friday, February 23, 2018

ARC Book Review: Cofin, Scarcely Used (A Flaxborough Mystery) by Colin Watson

Release Date: February 22, 2018
Publisher: Farrago
Format: ebook
Pages: 160 pages
Genre:  British Mystery
Buy: Kindle | Paperback

Synopsis:

In the respectable seaside town of Flaxborough, the equally respectable councillor Harold Carobleat is laid to rest. Cause of death: pneumonia.

But he is scarcely cold in his coffin before Detective Inspector Purbright, affable and annoyingly polite, must turn out again to examine the death of Carobleat’s neighbour, Marcus Gwill, former prop. of the local rag, the Citizen. This time it looks like foul play, unless a surfeit of marshmallows had led the late and rather unlamented Mr Gwill to commit suicide by electrocution. (‘Power without responsibility’, murmurs Purbright.)

How were the dead men connected, both to each other and to a small but select band of other town worthies? Purbright becomes intrigued by a stream of advertisements Gwill was putting in the Citizen, for some very oddly named antique items…


Review:

Originally published in 1958 these are being re-released. This is a well crafted British mystery, and while its a bit dated it still holds its own.  Detective Purbright and Love keep you moving along in this mystery while they slowly uncover the details of murder in the sleepy little town of Flaxborough.

The characters are well done, and the tale has a bit of whimsy to it as well as interesting detective work.  I read so many modern tales that its interesting to see how things were done with out the forensics we rely so much on today.

I'm glad they decided to republish them, its interesting to read how so many things have changed yet remain the same. This is an interesting witty mystery that will have you smirking and turning pages.





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Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Audio Book Review: Marina by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Release Date: July 22, 2014
Publisher: Hatchette Audio
Format: Audio
Length: 7 hours 30 minutes
Narrator: Daniel Weyman
Genre:  Gothic Mystery
Buy: Audible | Kindle | Paperback

Synopsis: 

When Fifteen-year-old Oscar Drai suddenly vanishes from his boarding school in Barcelona, no one knows his whereabouts for seven days and seven nights.

His story begins when he meets the strange Marina while he's exploring an old quarter of the city. She leads Oscar to a cemetery, where they watch a macabre ritual that occurs on the last Sunday of each month. At exactly ten o'clock in the morning, a woman shrouded in a black velvet cloak descends from her carriage to place a single rose on an unmarked grave.

When Oscar and Marina decide to follow her, they begin a journey that transports them to a forgotten postwar Barcelona--a world of aristocrats and actresses, inventors and tycoons--an reveals a dark secret that lies waiting in the mysterious labyrinth beneath the city streets.

Review:

I fell in love with this author after reading Shadow of the Wind - this book has a similar feel.  A creepy mystery. It all starts one day when 15 year old Oscar stumbles upon a house he thinks is empty only to stumble upon Hermon and his daughter Marina and an even deeper mystery surrounding a disfigured opera singer and a man who built prosthetic limbs.

As with most of Zafon's books this one is very atmospheric, you can feel the fog as it rolls through the night, hear the hoof beats of the horses, and feel the soft coat of Marina's cat. A masterful storyteller Zafon transports us to Barcelona, and a creepy tale about first love, loss, and letting go.

Scary, sad and beautiful this book doesn't disappoint. Daniel Wyman really does this book justice with his reading. He brings you even deeper into the story with his hypnotic voice.





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Monday, February 19, 2018

Audio Book Review: Asa: A marked Man Novel (Book 6) by Jay Crownover

Release Date: October 21, 2014
Publisher: Harper Audio
Format: Audio
Length: 9 hours 18 minutes
Narrator: Christian Fox, Harper Kendall
Genre:  Romance
Buy: Audible | Kindle | Paperback

Synopsis: 

Starting over in Denver with a whole new circle of friends and family, Asa Cross struggles with being the man he knows everyone wants him to be and the man he knows he really is. A leopard doesn't change its spots, and Asa has always been a predator. He doesn't want to hurt those who love and rely on him, especially one luscious arresting cop who suddenly seems to be interested in him for far more than his penchant for breaking the law. But letting go of old habits is hard, and it's easy to hit bottom when it's the place you know best.

Royal Hastings is quickly learning what the bottom looks like after a tragic situation at work threatens not only her career but her partner's life. As a woman who has only ever had a few real friends, she's trying to muddle through her confusion and devastation all alone. Except she can't stop thinking about the sexy Southern bartender she locked up. Crushing on Asa is the last thing she needs, but his allure is too strong to resist. His long criminal record can only hurt her already shaky career, and chasing after a guy who has no respect for the law or himself can only end in heartbreak.
A longtime criminal and a cop together just seems so wrong...but for Asa and Royal, being wrong together is the only right choice to make.

Review:


Asa has finally cleaned up his act but doesn't believe he won't slip up and go back to his wicked ways. Royal has the body of a pin up model but is a cop and she has a thing for the smooth talking southern bartender Asa, she just has to convince him that dating a cop isn't a bad idea. Asa is filled with self loathing and feels like anything bad that happens to him at this point in his life is what he deserves for the way he spent his early days.

While they are part of the Marked family neither Asa or Royal are inked or pierced like the rest.  This is an entertaining hot romance that shows 2nd chances aren't always a bad thing.





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Friday, February 16, 2018

Audio Book Review: Rowdy: A Marked Man Novel (Book 5) by Jay Crownover

Release Date: October 21, 2014
Publisher: Harper Audio
Format: Audio
Length: 10 hours 28 minutes
Narrator: Alexandra Marcuse, Cody Hammersmith
Genre:  Romance
Buy: Audible | Kindle | Paperback

Synopsis: 

After the only girl he ever loved told him that he would never be enough, Rowdy St. James knocked the Texas dust off his boots and set out to live up to his nickname. A good ol' boy looking for good times and good friends, Rowdy refuses to take anything too seriously, especially when it comes to the opposite sex. Burned by love once, he isn't going to let himself trust a woman again. But that's before his new coworker arrives, a ghost from the past who's suddenly making him question every lesson he's ever learned.

Salem Cruz grew up in a house with too many rules and too little fun - a world of unhappiness she couldn't wait to forget. But one nice thing from childhood has stayed with her: the memory of the sweet, blue-eyed boy next door who'd been head over heels in love with her little sister.
Now fate and an old friend have brought her and Rowdy together, and Salem is determined to show him that once upon a time he picked the wrong sister. A mission that is working perfectly - until the one person that ties them together appears, threatening to tear them apart for good.

Review:


Rowdy is the next to learn that you can't outrun your past.  Nash's father took a bunch of misfit guys, trained them to be tattoo artists and also liked to play with their lives.  Just before he died he told Nash to hire smokin hot Salem Cruz to work in the new shop he had set to open. When Rowdy walks into the new shop he runs smack into his past in the shapely form of Salem, the next door neighbor who's sister broke his heart when he was a teenager.

Smoking hot sex, intriguing plot, and complicated relationships.  While this one felt a little different than the other 4 in this series it was still good. It also set up the romance for the next book in this series between Asa and Royal.






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