It’s a new year, and time for a new Goodreads Challenge! I’ve managed to read 50 books per year for the last five years or so, and I decided to continue with that number. I figured one book a week is manageable. Unfortunately, I fought a cold and dealt with a few other issues, so I’m a bit short this month. I’m optimistic that I’ll catch up soon, so I’ll keep the goal. In the meantime, here’s what I’ve read so far:
Christmas Cake Murder by Joanne Fluke
It has been a long time since I’d read a Hannah Swenson cozy mystery, so several things in the story puzzled me, such as Hannah living with her mother rather than in her own condo, her repeated reflections on her heartbreak in college, and her lack of a job. Since the book is labeled as #24 in the series, it took some time to figure out that this was a prequel to book #1. The story itself is cute, though the writing doesn’t seem to be as polished as I’m used to seeing from this author. There’s a bit of a mystery, but it’s quickly resolved. And there’s a murder, as the title suggests, but it happens later in the book and doesn’t have much of an impact on the plot. Fun, light holiday reading.
Swamp Team 3 by Jana DeLeon
Miss Fortune Mystery, Book 4
Fortune Redding and her band of geriatric sidekicks continue to entertain in a big way. Fortune has found a friend in Ally, a waitress at Fortune’s favorite restaurant, and when it appears an arsonist is responsible for the fire at Ally’s home, Fortune offers to let Ally stay with her. But the strange and ominous events keep happening: a stalker, suspicious strangers, and a murder. As usual, Fortune, Ida Mae, and Gertie are on the job, leaving the local police frustrated. I can’t wait to dig into the next adventure!
Mountain View Lodge by Lucie Ulrich
A Tillie Spencer Novella, Book 2
I read the first Tillie Spencer book when it was released, but somehow missed reading the second book until now. Tillie is one mysterious lady – part angel, part fairy godmother, part sage. She always shows up at just the right moment, saying just the right thing to the right person, making sure that the hero and heroine end up together. This was a cute sweet romance, and I liked Coll, especially since he’s a musician and he’s Scottish, like my own sweetie. I had a little trouble liking the heroine, though. At times Autumn seemed too mopey. But the romance is sweet, and the location wedding is one I’d love to see. I’m looking forward to seeing where Tillie shows up next.