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Archive for '8.5/10'

Where Shadows Dance, Audiobook

Where Shadows Dance, Audiobook (2011) C.S. Harris narrated by Davina Porter (Sebastian St. Cyr) Set in London in 1812 When Paul Gibson purchases his latest cadaver for research, he discovers the young man, Alexander Ross, did not die of a weak heart, but was instead murdered. Unable to report the discovery that his stolen corpse […]

What Remains of Heaven, Audiobook

What Remains of Heaven, Audio Book (2009/2016) C.S. Harris narrated by Davina Porter (Sebastian St. Cyr) Set in England in 1812. When the controversial, reform-minded Bishop of London is found bludgeoned to death in an ancient crypt beside the corpse of an unidentified man murdered decades before, Sebastian St. Cyr, Viscount Devlin, is asked by […]

The Emperor’s Conspiracy

The Emperor’s Conspiracy (2012) Michelle Diener (Regency London) Set in England in 1811. Once you accept the premise of the relationship between Charlotte and Lady Howe, this is a fantastic mystery and romance. Lady Howe really is marvelous. “There is no man in this house,” Catherine said into the silence. “So I’ll ask you as […]

An Unexpected Gentleman

An Unexpected Gentleman (2011) Alissa Johnson (Haverston Family) Set in the early 1800s in Scotland All Adelaide Ward wants is to marry for the security of her family: her sister, her nephew, and (probably) her brother. And if doing that means marrying Baron Robert Maxwell, she is willing to do so. But Connor Brice wants […]

A Morbid Taste for Bones

A Morbid Taste for Bones (1977) Ellis Peters (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael) Set in England in 1137. The herbarium in particular was his kingdom, for he had built it up gradually through the fifteen years of labour, and added to it many exotic plants of his own careful raising, collected in a roving youth that […]

Phantom Pond

Phantom Pond (2023) Juneau Black (Shady Hollow) It’s Mischief Night, and everyone is ready for games and treats and tricks–and everyone knows not to go into the woods, or creeping Juniper, the witch who lives there, will get you. First, I really love this series. She jumped in surprise but then realized it was only […]

Evergreen Chase

Evergreen Chase (2021) Juneau Black (Shady Hollow) It’s almost Solstice, but someone has stolen Shady Hollow’s solstice tree–the tallest in the forest! The one that Callum Burrows has been been tending for years. It’s been my privilege to tend this year’s tree. It was selected thirty-six years ago, and it’s become the finest, tallest, and […]

Cry Wolf

Cry Wolf (2021) Charlie Adhara (Big Bad Wolf) Any resemblance to actual persons or events is coincidental. Though if you do know of a criminal plot involving werewolves that has taken place at any of these locales, that is a coincidence I would love to know about. I love that Cayla–and Coopers interactions with her […]

Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing (2020) Charlie Adhara (Big Bad Wolf) It’s the random, unexpected passages that delight me. And then there were the days—not many, but memorable ones—Cooper had come home unexpectedly or woken up a little earlier than usual to find Park “in fur” sticking his considerably longer nose into those impossible-to-reach places while […]

Thrown to the Wolves

Thrown to the Wolves (2019) Charlie Adhara (Big Bad Wolf) Cooper meets Oliver’s family. It goes worse than expected. And one was expecting it to go badly, what with it being a funeral. Cooper put the guidebook down and cleared his throat. This was getting ridiculous. “Did you tell them I was coming?” Park blinked […]

Damaged Goods

Damaged Goods (2018) Talia Hibbert (Ravenswood) The worst thing about Samir’s parents—worse than the cruelty, the manipulation, the toxicity—was the fact that Samir had loved them. You would think, with the number of awful things she’d done in her life, that they’d all blur together. But she remembered every desperate, acidic moment. Those two words […]

Paladin’s Strength

Paladin’s Strength (2021) T. Kingfisher (The Saint of Steel) For some reason, every time Galen said”Boss” to Istvhan I kept thinking of Loiosh from Steven Brust’s Vlad Taltos series. “What are you afraid of, Boss?” “Shut up, Loiosh.” “What if she kills you, Boss?” called Galen. “Then either avenge me or put her in charge. […]

Speculations in Sin

Speculations in Sin (2024) Jennifer Ashley (Kat Holloway / Below Stairs Mystery) Set in London in 1883 Joanna–Kat’s best friend and the woman who keeps Grace, Joanna’s daughter, is in trouble. Her husband has been accused of embezzlement, and if he loses his job not only will Grace have nowhere to live, but Joanna and […]

Mirror Lake

Mirror Lake (2020) Juneau Black (A Shady Hollow Mystery) Orville Braun has decided to run for sheriff, and Vera’s boss, BW Stone, wants Vera to give the paper the inside scoop. But Vera has ethics and decides to consult the local lawyer for advice. “Ah, but now you have the important phrase on the advice […]

Cold Clay

Cold Clay (2017) Juneau Black (A Shady Hollow Mystery) Things have been returning to normal in Shadow Hollow–until a skeleton is discovered in Cold Clay Orchards during harvest. Vera Vixen manages to be there to catch all the details. “Whatever it is, Vera, remember that I’m the one they called. You can observe from a […]

Paladin’s Grace

Paladin’s Grace (2020) T. Kingfisher (The Saint of Steel) The Rat’s priests fixed things that could be fixed, and when things were broken past all mending, they helped people pick up the pieces. “Gentlemen,” said Beartongue, “I forbid you to smash the Archon’s decor and try to duel with it.” “Yes, your holiness.” “I’ll have […]

The Missing Page

The Missing Page (2021) Cat Sebastian (Page & Sommers) Set in in England in 1947 “The letter from the solicitor said the uncle’s will stipulated that all legatees attend the reading at the family home in Cornwall or forfeit their bequest.” Leo’s eyebrows shot straight up. “Was it his uncle’s dying wish to reenact a […]

Hither, Page

Hither, Page (2019) Cat Sebastian (Page & Sommers) Set in England in 1946. This story reminds me very much of an Agatha Christie, only with boinking. A combination of A Murder is Announced and The Moving Finger. None of the witnesses could suggest a possible motive, nor did any of them think Mrs. Hoggett had […]

London Falling, Audio Book

London Falling, Audio Book (2014) Paul Cornell narrated by Damian Lynch (Shadow Police) TW: child abuse, child death, murder, torture, faked suicide, general horribleness. He’d been out, sort of, at his last nick. A few of the lads had asked, so he’d told them. And then his DI, Pete Grieves, had, too, over a pint—deliberately […]

Lady Helena Investigates

Lady Helena Investigates (2018) Jane Steen (Scott-De Quincy Mysteries) Set in England in 1881 It’s too early to make big decisions about your life. You must give yourself time to grieve, Baby. That’s why deepest mourning should be carried out with the mirrors covered, you know. You’re not supposed to be looking at yourself and […]

Tales from the Folly: A Rivers of London Short Story Collection, Audio Book

Tales from the Folly: A Rivers of London Short Story Collection, Audio Book (2020) Ben Aaronovitch narrated by: the author, Kobna Holdbrook-Smith, Ben Elliot, Felix Grainger, Sam Peter Jackson, Alex Kingston, Shvorne Marks, and Penelope Rawlins (Rivers of London) Part One: The Peter Grant Stories The Home Crowd Advantage The Domestic The Cockpit The Loneliness […]

False Value, Audio Book

False Value, Audio Book (2020) Ben Aaronovitch narrated by Kobna Holdbrook-Smith (Rivers of London) Johnson had made a point of calling the human resources department “HR” rather than its official internal company name, the Magrathean Ape-Descended Life Form Utilization Service, just as he called the department I had just joined “Security” rather than the Vogon […]

The October Man, Audio Book

The October Man, Audio Book (2018) Ben Aaronovitch narrated by Sam Peter Jackson (Rivers of London) If it remains static and unchanging then we call it a despair. If it seeks to extend its influence then it is a malignancy. The curves were even more exaggerated, but there was no mistaking the face—although the expression […]

A Holiday By Gaslight

A Holiday By Gaslight (2018) Mimi Matthews Set in England in 1861 Sophie’s father keeps improving their country estate–whether they have the funds to do so or not–so when wealthy manufacturer asks permission to court her, the family agrees. But despite wanting to help her family, Sophie also wants to be happy. Is it so […]

Last Call at the Nightingale

Last Call at the Nightingale (2022) Katharine Schellman (Nightingale Mysteries) Set in New York City in 1924 Vivian Kelly and her sister Florence are glad to have jobs, a roof over the heads, and food on the table (even if it isn’t always enough food). (W)orking at a dressmaker’s shop meant they both had to […]

A Christmas Dance

A Christmas Dance (2014) Alissa Johnson Miss Byerly did not feature in his matrimonial plans. Pity, really, that she wasn’t a bit softer. He’d spoken to her once or twice before and she seemed an intelligent sort, with an efficiency of speech and manner he appreciated. But he wasn’t in need of additional efficiency in […]

Moon Over Soho, Audio Book

Moon Over Soho, Audio Book (2012) Ben Aaronovitch narrated by Kobna Holdbrook-Smith (Rivers of London) People don’t like to speak ill of the dead even when they’re monsters, let alone when they’re loved ones. People like to forget any bad things that someone did and why should they remember? It’s not like they’re going to […]

Murder on the Lamplight Express

Murder on the Lamplight Express (2023) Morgan Stang (The Lamplight Murder Mysteries) Like the previous book, this story is delightful. The sequel to Murder at Spindle Manor finds Isabeau Agarwal and her partner racing to catch a train. Literally, as they Isabeau received her orders to “ensure the safety of all passengers and crew until […]

The Wonder Engine, Audio Book

The Wonder Engine, Audio Book (2018/2019) T. Kingfisher narrated by Khristine Hvam (Clocktaur War) This book picks up where the previous book left off. The group has made it to Anuket City, but have to find Brother Amadai, avoid the crime lord who wants Slate dead, and somehow stop the Clockwork Boys. I’ll be honest, […]

Clockwork Boys, Audio Book

Clockwork Boys, Audio Book (2017/2019) T. Kingfisher narrated by Khristine Hvam (Clocktaur War) A paladin, an assassin, a forger, a scholar. Three of whom have been sentenced to a suicide mission as repayment for their crimes. The have to get into Anuket City, find a scholar’s lost journal, and discover a way to stop the […]

A Power Unbound

A Power Unbound (2023) Freya Marske (The Last Binding) Set in England in 1909 The final book in the Last Binding Trilogy centers on Alston, Lord Hawthorn who has been arrogant and supercilious throughout the series, but here becomes Jack, and Alan, Alanzo Rossi, who met Alston, Maud, and Violet on the ship from America […]

System Collapse

System Collapse (2023) Martha Wells (Murderbot Diaries) MURDERBOT! This story picks up immediately following the events of Network Effect–ART and Murderbot are trying to keep their humans safe from the Barish-Estranza corporation while forging a planetary charter and waiting for reinforcement from ART’s university. It’s going as it always does for Murderbot. So the next […]

A Savage Place, Audio Book

A Savage Place, Audio Book (1981) Robert B. Parker narrated by Michael Prichard (Spenser) Spenser gets a call from Rachel Wallace that she has recommended him to a reporter in California. She won’t tell him anything other than the woman will be calling soon. Candy Sloan is a reporter who wants to be more than […]

Murder at Midnight

Murder at Midnight (2023) Katharine Schellman (Lily Adler) Set in England in 1816 The fourth Lily Adler book finds her at a house party with her late husband’s family, Matthew Spenser, and the Hartleys. Lily had always found their custom of calling each other by their middle names—the names chosen by their mother, rather than […]

A Restless Truth

A Restless Truth (2022) Freya Marske (Last Binding) Set in England in 1908 (or so) One of the things I especially like about this series are the lovely secondary characters. “Miss Debenham,” he said, warm with pride, “meet Lady Albert Barton. My wife.” Oh. Lady Albert Barton rolled her eyes and sat down heavily on […]

Dead Heat, Audio Book

Dead Heat, Audio Book (2015) Patricia Briggs narrated by Holter Graham (Alpha & Omega) This is my second favorite book in this series (the first being the previous book). Max laughed. “That’s right, pipsqueak. Maybe if I didn’t like horses so much, Mom wouldn’t have married Kage. And then you wouldn’t even be around.” “Yes, […]

Ever After Always

Ever After Always (2021) Chloe Liese (Bergman Brothers) Aiden and Freya have been married for almost a decade, but the last six months have not been good. They have, in fact, been bad. But that’s when it all went downhill. That’s when it tripped something inside me that I haven’t been able to get under […]

A Marvellous Light

A Marvellous Light (2021) Freya Marske (The Last Binding) Set in England in 1908 Another time period I love–not yet modernity, but some of the trappings are starting to appear. A chauffeur was not needed. Robin referred vaguely to friends of his who owned motorcars and had taught him the knack of it in Hyde […]

The Brimstone Deception, Audio Book

The Brimstone Deception (2016) Lisa Shearin narrated by Johanna Parker (SPI Files) I didn’t envy Kylie her job right now. Actually, I’d never envied Kylie’s job. I was a horrible liar and even worse at hiding how I felt when around people I didn’t like. “Just know that if he ever hurts you—” “Honey, you’re […]


Compulsory (2023) Martha Wells (The Murderbot Diaries) MURDERBOT SHORT STORY Thank you Tania! <3 Publisher: Subterranean Press

The Wolf at Bay

The Wolf at Bay (2019) Charlie Adhara (Big Bad Wolf) “You’ve been standing here staring at that flower shop for fifteen minutes. So is it for her birthday or anniversary, or are you making up for a fight? Because I’ve been married for thirty-two years, and believe me, there are different bouquets for different occasions.” […]

Mystery on the Menu: A Three-Course Collection of Cozy Mysteries

Mystery on the Menu: A Three-Course Collection of Cozy Mysteries (2023) Nicole Kimberling After rereading Grilled Cheese and Goblins I was wishing I had more mysteries by Nicole Kimberling when LO! I see she has a new mystery coming out! I can preorder it! DONE! As with her other books, this was a series of […]

Blank Spaces

Blank Spaces (2016) Cass Lennox (Toronto Connections) Flirting? Good God. Calorie-conscious and delusional. Vaughn knew how to pick them. He set the spoon down. “I’m not flirting with you.” “Really.” Jonah’s voice dripped with disbelief. “You don’t call putting food in my mouth flirting?” “No, actually. I share food with my eating companions regularly.” Vaughn […]

The Wolf at the Door

The Wolf at the Door (2018) Charlie Adhara (Big Bad Wolf) Werewolves, but not quite how most popular culture described them. The Trust had explained werewolves had always existed, living amongst humans, but due to persecution had slipped quite intentionally into hiding and mythology. I really like her take on werewolves, and the world building […]

Hither, Page

Hither, Page (2019) Cat Sebastian (Page & Sommers) Set in England in 1946. Mrs Hoggett is dead, and although her death was certainly suspicious, there is nothing directory pointing to murder. None of the witnesses could suggest a possible motive, nor did any of them think Mrs. Hoggett had enemies. Leo had actually laughed out […]

The Lawrence Browne Affair

The Lawrence Browne Affair (2017) Cat Sebastian (The Turner Series) Set in England in 1816. Apparently I’m just picking books I want to read and ignoring the rest of any series they might be in. Georgie had taken matters into his own hands, and now Georgie was persona non grata in London, and probably everywhere […]

Agents of Winter

Agents of Winter (2022) Ada Maria Soto (The Agency) Martin’s dietitian would be glad as well. Evidently, his comment at his last appointment of ‘I currently weigh more than I did prior to the incident’ did not paint a good picture of Martin’s long-term health management skills. Martin was sent home with an entirely new […]

Hottie Scotty and Mr. Porter

Hottie Scotty and Mr. Porter (2016) R Cooper Why reread? Because Scotty is so very sweet and kind. He picked up Becks to give nervous, overprotective Bobby a break from watching over her all the time, before taking Bobby’s hand for the walk home. Scott didn’t get any more time to think about it, because […]

A Dangerous Madness

A Dangerous Madness (2014) Michelle Diener (Regency London) Set in England in 1812 Phoebe’s betrothed’s forceful whisper was as loud as her soft-spoken question, but she bit her tongue. She wondered what her tongue would look like after they’d spent a lifetime together. Maybe one day she’d bite it in half. She ached to break […]


Joy (2017) C.S. Poe (A Lancaster Story) “Are there, like… street signs or—” “He’s not from around here,” Nancy said to a guy at the counter who started laughing. “No, honey, just drive. The roads around here will bring you right through into the next town.” I put down the bin of dishes I’d been […]