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Archive for '8/10'

Proper English

Proper English (2019) K.J. Charles Set in England in 1902 If Pat stayed, she would continue running Skirmidge House, and either she would resent Olivia for treating her as an upper servant, or Olivia would resent her for usurping her rights as head of the household Pat did not corset. She had had no mother […]

Lady Odelia’s Secret

Lady Odelia’s Secret (2022) Jane Steen (Scott-De Quincy Mysteries) Set in England in 1882. As usual, I experienced the strange shock that it was my husband—my Justin—buried under the tall new monument, set apart within its own patch of closely scythed grass. “What do you think?” I asked my sister. “No railing?” She raised her […]

The Mistletoe Motive

The Mistletoe Motive (2021) Chloe Liese Gabriella Di Natale love Christmas. She also loves working in Bailey’s Bookshop, where she can recommend books (especially her favorite romances) to customers. But the store is in trouble. A chain is trying to put them out of business, so the Bailey’s hired another manager–one focused on business–to try […]

Rough Around the Hedges

Rough Around the Hedges (2023) Lish McBride (Uncanny Romance) Vanessa Woodbridge and her sister defied their father–and paid the price when both were cut off. But Vanessa wants to go to school, but to do so she needs her father to verify her education–since she and her sister were both home schooled. He sighed. “You […]

A Little Too Familiar

A Little Too Familiar (2022) Lish McBride (Uncanny Romance) Declan needs to get away. His sister has fallen in love with his ex-girlfriend, and since they were all living together, it’s mighty uncomfortable. So he’s leaving Portland for Seattle. Even after a century and a half of being in the open, the Uncanny still made […]

Mrs. Holloway’s Christmas Pudding

Mrs. Holloway’s Christmas Pudding (2023) Jennifer Ashley (Kat Holloway Mysteries) Set in London in 1882 There have been two Mrs. Holloway novellas this year, and this one is focused more on Mrs. Holloway. It’s almost Christmas and everyone is getting ready for the holiday. We’d had an excess of the fruit, which Mrs. Bywater had […]

Secrets Typed in Blood

Secrets Typed in Blood (2022) Stephen Spotswood (Pentecost & Parker) Set in New York City in 1947 This is one of the books that I wanted to read, but couldn’t get myself in the mood for. So I went ahead and read it. First, I really hate the new covers. Well, hate is a strong […]

Paladin’s Faith

Paladin’s Faith (2023) T. Kingfisher (The Saint of Steel) Marguerite Florian left town in a hurry after helping her friend Grace led her to trouble (Paladin’s Grace). Which wasn’t necessarily unexpected, since Marguerite is a spy. So she turns to the White Rat. Apparently one of the problems they had solved was bribery. You couldn’t […]

The Mysterious Mr. Quin

The Mysterious Mr. Quin (1930) Agatha Christie The Passing of Mr. Quinn Grand Magazine (1923) The Shadow on the Glass Grand Magazine October (1923) At the ‘Bells and Motley’  A Man of Magic Grand Magazine (1925) The Sign in the Sky The Police Magazine (1925) / A Sign in the Sky Grand Magazine (1925) The […]

Swordheart, Audio Book

Swordheart, Audio Book (2018/2021) T. Kingfisher narrated by Jesse Vilinsky I’d been playing this as background for a couple of months–not especially paying attention, but wanting voices talking. Then I finished Michael Prichard’s narration of the Spenser series (I absolutely cannot stand listening to David Duke’s narration) and while floundering trying to figure out what […]

The Widening Gyre, Audio Book

The Widening Gyre, Audio Book (1983) Robert B. Parker narrated by Michael Prichard (Spenser) I’ve been borrowing these from the library, and the book before this one was checked out, so I jumped ahead. I mean, I’ve already read the series multiple times. Spenser is starting to unravel. I sipped another small swallow of whiskey. […]

Early Autumn, Audio Book

Early Autumn, Audio Book (1981) Robert B. Parker narrated by Michael Prichard (Spenser) Enter Paul Giacomin, and some more Hawk. “Paul Giacomin,” I said. “Yes,” Susan said. “You said you wanted to talk about him.” “But not while I’m watching the ball game.” “Can’t you watch and talk at the same time? If you can’t, […]

Murder at Spindle Manor

Murder at Spindle Manor (2022) Morgan Stang (Lamplight Murder Mysteries) Isabeau Agarwal is a huntress, and her latest hunt has led her to Spindle Manor, to search out a monster that takes the memory and skins of it victims, replicating them until it finds a new victim. “Is there any way I may be of […]

Looking for Rachel Wallace, Audio Book

Looking for Rachel Wallace, Audio Book (1980) Robert B. Parker narrated by Michael Prichard (Spenser) Publisher: Random House Audio Rating: 8/10

Promised Land, Audio Book

Promised Land, Audio Book (1976) Robert B. Parker narrated by Michael Prichard (Spenser) We are now beginning to see Spenser develop into who he is in later stories. “Maybe Millie might know.” “Your daughter?” “Yeah, she’s sixteen. That’s old enough for them to have girl talk and stuff, I imagine. Maybe she’s got something you […]

Mortal Stakes, Audio Book

Mortal Stakes (1975/2009) Robert B. Parker narrated by Michael Prichard (Spenser) Baseball! For serious looking at baseball there are few places better than Fenway Park. The stands are close to the playing field, the fences are a hopeful green, and the young men in their white uniforms are working on real grass, the authentic natural […]

The Rise: A Short Story

The Rise: A Short Story (2023) Ian Rankin I keep moving a reread of the Inspector Rebus series up my TBR pile, but never quite actually start rereading. Possibly because the first book is one of my least favorites, and partially because the stories tend to be somewhat dark. This story was not dark. There […]

Role Playing

Role Playing (2023) Cathy Yardley Maggie Le thought being divorced was hard. But her son Kit living for college was worse. Now she had no reason to leave her house, except to get food. “Second: I have changed markedly since my twenties,” she said. “I don’t want to wear bandage dresses and club all night […]

Winter’s Gifts

Winter’s Gifts (2023) Ben Aaronovitch (Rivers of London) Kimberly Reynold’s met Peter Grant during Whispers Underground, and they have kept in touch since. Probably because Kimberly is now stuck dealing with all the Weird Stuff. I wasn’t sure how I felt about a whole book with Kimberly. Mama is not a fan of the federal […]

Death at the Manor

Death at the Manor (2022) Katharine Schellman (Lily Adler) Set in England in 1815. Jack’s ship is repaired and ready to return to see, and Lily is headed to the country to visit her aunt. “Will you write me?” “Of course. I shall tell you how revered I am aboard ship and how no one […]

Naked Once More

Naked Once More (1989) Elizabeth Peters (Jacqueline Kirby) “I had a ball, showing off and smirking at the cameras and thinking up cute, acerbic comments.” “Many of which you stole from Dorothy Parker.” The people who yearned for the good old days might not have enjoyed the reality; good old days before penicillin and heart […]

The Body in the Garden

The Body in the Garden (2020) Katharine Schellman Set in England in 1815. Lily Adler has returned to London in an attempt to restart her life after the loss of her husband. Lily had to take a deep breath before she could respond. It had been two years, but her chest still clenched almost too […]

Only When It’s Us

Only When It’s Us (2020) Chloe Liese (Bergman Brothers) Trigger Warnings: cancer, death, grief I read Always Only You and liked it, but didn’t rush out to read other books in the series. Finally, I decided I might be in the mood to try another, and tore through the story, despite all the very hard […]

Hunting Ground, Audio Book

Hunting Ground, Audio Book (2009) Patricia Briggs narrated by Holter Graham (Alpha & Omega) His grandfather had often told him that he tried too hard to move trees when a wiser man would walk around them. My people are cursed with the love of beautiful things and no ability to create them. This is the […]

Known Devil

Known Devil (2014) Justin Gustainis (Occult Crimes Unit Investigation) Karl hadn’t complained about taking the damaged elf to the hospital. He wouldn’t be allowed to take part in any interrogation, anyway. The Supreme Court had ruled in Barlow v. Maine almost forty years ago that anything a suspect said in the presence of a vampire […]

Murder Most Actual

Murder Most Actual (2021) Alexis Hall Clue, but with a married lesbian couple. (N)ext to the real log fire sat an equally real, although substantially less loggish, gentleman dressed in a manner that might have been called natty at around the time people used the word natty, but which now read more as hipsterish. Mr […]

Evil Dark

Evil Dark (2012) Justin Gustainis (Occult Crimes Unit Investigation) There’s just something about an over-the-top supernatural police procedural. Pretend that there’s a file folder somewhere, a big, thick one, labeled Real Bad Ideas. There’s at least three things I can think of that belong in there – inviting a werewolf for a moonlight stroll, telling […]

Cry Wolf

Cry Wolf, Audio Book (2009) Patricia Briggs narrated by Holter Graham (Alpha & Omega) Anna was forcibly Changed, and then terrorized by her pack, as the alpha’s last ditch effort to keep from having to kill his mate. Now she has come with Charles–her mate, according to her wolf (and his)–to Aspen Creek. Unfortunately, there […]

Shifting Shadows: Stories from the World of Mercy Thompson, Audio Book

Shifting Shadows: Stories from the World of Mercy Thompson, Audio Book (2014) Patricia Briggs narrated by Lorelei King and Alexander Cendese Silver Fairy Gifts (previously published in Naked City) Gray (previously published in Home Improvement: Undead Edition) Seeing Eye (previously published in Strange Brew) Alpha and Omega (previously published in On the Prowl) The Star […]

The Ghoul Vendetta, Audio Book

The Ghoul Vendetta (2017) Lisa Shearin narrated by Johanna Parker (SPI Files) My grandma Fraser had always told me I had “little dog syndrome”— small size, big attitude, delusions of toughness. I appreciated Ian’s training efforts in that area as well as hand-to-hand combat, but I’d pretty much gotten as good as I was going […]

A Dangerous Collaboration

A Dangerous Collaboration, Audio Book (2019) Deanna Raybourn narrated by Angèle Masters (Veronica Speedwell) Set in England in 1888. Lord Rosemorran had behaved with his characteristic good-natured vagueness, offering money to fund the venture and raising objections only when he realized his sister’s absence would mean taking care of his own children. “In my well-being. […]

Hard Spell

Hard Spell (2011) Justin Gustainis (Occult Crimes Unit Investigation) This is the city – Scranton, Pennsylvania. My name’s Markowski. I carry a badge.   Also a crucifix, some wooden stakes, a big vial of holy water, and a 9 mm Beretta loaded with silver bullets. I put a vial containing fresh crushed garlic in my shirt […]

Best Laid Plans

Best Laid Plans (2021) Roan Parrish (Garnet Run) He looked at the situation and chose to acknowledge all the dimensions of it. Dimensions (as he thought of them) weren’t positive or negative. They were simply the truth of how he felt about things. He cut off his thought spiral and pictured windshield wipers clearing the […]

Better Than People

Better Than People (2020) Roan Parrish (Garnet Run) Every day had dilated to a month, every night to a year, and Jack found himself wishing for anything— anything— to break the monotony of lying on the couch all day long and in bed all night. This part was always the hardest. The moment when he […]

The Dragon Conspiracy, Audio Book

The Dragon Conspiracy (2015) Lisa Shearin narrated by Johanna Parker (SPI Files) (T)he sprinkles on the squashed cupcake of my evening. (S)omewhere a charmer was missing his snake. If you were smart, you lived your life and treated the people who were in your life— those who were important to you, those you loved— as […]

The Grendel Affair, Audio Book

The Grendel Affair (2014) Lisa Shearin narrated by Johanna Parker (SPI Files) Being able to clear a line of beer cans from an old washer would never save anyone’s life, and I’d never actually heard of a deer taking a hunter hostage and using him as a shield while being hoisted into a helicopter. So […]

A Fatal Illusion

A Fatal Illusion (2023) Anna Lee Huber (Lady Darby) Set in England in 1832 This book picks up immediately after the events of the previous book. Kiera and Gage are rushing to Yorkshire after receiving a message that Lord Gage had been shot. Lord Gage isn’t dead, but he is also much unchanged despite having […]

The Mislaid Magician: or Ten Years After

The Mislaid Magician: or Ten Years After (2006) Patricia C. Wrede & Caroline Stevermer (Cecelia and Kate) (Cecelia and Kate) Set in England in 1828 Thomas has convinced himself that he is being clever. He (he and Ripley, the coachman, to be exact) will drive to London and back, enjoying himself thoroughly the while. In […]

A Treacherous Curse, Audio Book

A Treacherous Curse, Audio Book (2018) Deanna Raybourn narrated by Angèle Masters (Veronica Speedwell) Set in England in 1888 Stoker blushed furiously. “For the love of God, put that thing away.” “I cannot imagine why you are so bashful on the subject of the male genitalia of Homo sapiens when you are the only one […]

The Grand Tour: Or, The Purloined Coronation Regalia

The Grand Tour: Or, The Purloined Coronation Regalia (2004) Patricia C. Wrede & Caroline Stevermer (Cecelia and Kate) Set in Europe in 1817. The weakness of this story is that I don’t believe the Cecy’s narrative as being “written testimony”. There was just too much personal stuff that seemed unlikely to have been put into […]

Sorcery & Cecelia: or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot

Sorcery & Cecelia: or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot (1988) Patricia C. Wrede & Caroline Stevermer (Cecelia and Kate) Set in England in 1817 (Horace Walpole is by no means Aunt Charlotte’s favorite author, but the opportunity to hire the genuine Mayfair town house he genuinely died in for the Season has given her a new […]

A Perilous Undertaking, Audio Book

A Perilous Undertaking, Audio Book (2017) Deanna Raybourn narrated by Angèle Masters (Veronica Speedwell) Set in England in 1887 We’re continuing to listen to this series in the car, and Michael continues to enjoy it. We meet Lady Wellingtonia. “In my day, chairs were not for comfort. They were to keep your bottom from touching […]

Family Man

Family Man (2013) Heidi Cullinan and Marie Sexton Vince is struggling with the fact that he still isn’t properly settled down. It was finding out kids born the year he graduated high school were now legal to drink. And he’s beginning to wonder if maybe it’s because he’s queer. Trey works two jobs while going […]

Chosen, Audio Edition

Chosen (2014) Benedict Jacka narrated by Gildart Jackson (Alex Verus) Alex spent years hiding from his past. Finally, he started to reach out, to make friends, but his past has come roaring back with a vengeance. What I particularly liked about this story is that Alex’s past came back to do more than haunt him–and […]

Bee Cave Magic

Bee Cave Magic (2020) Kelly Fox This is a fun story in the same way CS Poe‘s Marriage, Love and a Baby Carriage. It’s silly and outrageous, with all the ridiculous shifter tropes, but it adds in it’s own fun twists. Mrs. Hornblower, a pelican shifter transplant from Corpus. I love fantasy stories that give […]

Not So Cookie Cutter

Not So Cookie Cutter (2019) Aidan Wayne He clasped his hands behind his back, at-ease stance so he wouldn’t cross his arms. He’d been told enough times that it made him look like a thug, so he tried to avoid doing it. He tended to hyper focus when it came to certain subjects, and to […]

An Unnatural Vice

An Unnatural Vice (2017) K.J. Charles (Sins of the Cities) Justin stayed upstairs until he heard the door shut. Some people would call it flagrant physical cowardice to leave a twelve-year-old girl to deal with a large enraged man, and those people would be absolutely right, but Justin would have bet the house that Nathaniel […]

Fatality in F

Fatality in F (2019) Alexia Gordon (Gethsemane Brown) I don’t recognize all the varieties. I know tulip.” She pointed at the familiar red cup-shaped blossom and then at a frilly red bloom. “That’s chrysanthemum. And these,” she lowered her head to inhale the subtle sweetness of several perfect, red, urn-shaped buds, “Roses, of course. What’s […]

Killing in C Sharp

Killing in C Sharp (2018) Alexia Gordon (Gethsemane Brown) Ghost Hunting Adventures reigned notorious for both its physicality and the amount of profanity that had to be bleeped out. “Some versions say Maja was the choice from the jump. Long and short of it, the baroness tricked Maja into going to the construction site where […]

Death in D Minor

Death in D Minor (2917) Alexia Gordon (Gethsemane Brown Mysteries) “Thank you, Miss Brown,” Hank said. “Doctor Brown,” she corrected. “Oh, that’s right, you do have some sort of degree in, what is it, music?” “A Ph.D. From Yale.” “You must forgive me, Doctor Brown. I believe I mentioned before I don’t pay much attention […]