Book Reviews

Book Review: The Three Dahlias by Katy Watson

Happy Monday bookish people! What’s better on a rainy Monday morning than a good book review about a cosy mystery.

As always in this book review I will give star ratings to four categories and I will write a little bit about each one. I will do my best to not include any spoilers in the book review. I hope you enjoy it!

The Three Dahlias Plot:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This book combines some of the best elements of Golden Age Detective Fiction/ Cosy Crime genres such as the isolated location, who doesn’t love a murder mystery set in an old manor house, a close knit cast of characters, and a bunch of intriguing twists. The Three Dahlias is based on the three actresses who have, and will have, played the character of Dahlia in different shows and films throughout the years. They come together for a Dahlia convention and then actually find themselves having to work together to solve a crime. I really enjoyed this take on the murder mystery, I haven’t read many novels or actually any that come to mind with three main protagonists but it was a nice way to make the reader feel part of the group.

The Three Dahlias Characters:

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

As much as I enjoyed each of the three characters individually, I sometimes felt that when they were together in the same scenes they blended into each other and the character development wasn’t as good. However, I still enjoyed the three female main characters being the ones to try and solve the mystery.

The Three Dahlias Writing and Dialogue

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I haven’t got much to say for this category because the writing was good, it allowed me to not think about the writing at all because I was engrossed in the story and that is a sign of a good writing style.

The Three Dahlias Overall

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I gave this book four stars overall because it was an enjoyable twist on the murder mystery genre.

Blurb/Synopsis:

Three rival actresses team up to solve a murder at the stately home of the author who made them famous – only to discover the solution lies in the stories themselves. A contemporary mystery with a Golden Age feel, perfect for fans of Agatha Christie and Jessica Fellowes.

In attendance: the VIP fans, staying at Aldermere; the fan club president turned convention organizer; the team behind the newest movie adaptation of Davenport’s books; the Davenport family themselves – and the three actresses famous for portraying Lettice’s 1930s detective, Dahlia Lively.

National treasure Rosalind King, from the original movies. TV Dahlia for thirteen seasons, Caro Hooper. And ex-child star Posy Starling, fresh out of the fame wilderness (and rehab) to take on the Dahlia mantle for the new movie.

Each actress has her own interpretation of the character – but this English summer weekend they will have to put aside their differences, as the crimes at Aldermere turns anything but cosy.

When fictional death turns into real bodies, can the three Dahlias find the answers to the murders among the fans, the film crew, the family – or even in Lettice’s books themselves?

That’s it for this book review, I hope you all enjoyed it!

Book Reviews

Book Review: pride and Premeditation by Tirzah price

Happy Monday bookish people! I hope you are all having a good day today. Today I am bringing you my book review for Pride and Premeditation by Tirzah Price, the first book in a Jane Austen Murder mystery series.

In this book review I will give star ratings to four categories and I will write a little bit about each one. I will do my best to not give any spoilers.

Pride and Premeditation Plot:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

This book follows Lizzie Bennett, daughter of a prominent lawyer and determined to prove herself as capable as any man she goes on a quest to solve a high profile murder case. I adored this book, it struck the perfect balance between romance, classic retelling and murder mystery, perfect for me anyway. This book is great for any Austen fans or mystery fans.

Pride and Premeditation Characters:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Lizzie Bennett is a headstrong and fiercely independent and intelligent. Matched with this is Mr Darcy, the lawyer from a rival law firm. I have to say his character grew on me, it both had it’s own uniqueness while reflecting the traditional Mr Darcy he was based on.

Pride and Premeditation Writing and Dialogue:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

This is one of the most well written books I have read in 2022. It swept me into the story within the first chapter.

Pride and Premeditation Overall:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Overall I gave this five stars because I cannot tell you in words how much I loved this book. Now excuse me I have to go buy Sense and Second Degree Murder, the next book in the series.

Blurb/Synopsis:

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a young woman who desires a law career must be in want of a case. So when sixteen year old Lizzie Bennet hears about a scandalous society murder, she sees an opportunity to prove herself as a solicitor by solving the case and ensuring justice is served.

Except the man accused of the crime already has a lawyer on his side: Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy, the stern young heir to the prestigious Pemberley Associates law firm. Lizzie is determined to solve the murder before Darcy can so that she can show the world that a woman can be just as good as a man. (The fact that Darcy is an infuriating snob doesn’t help.) But there’s still a killer on the loose, and as the case gets more complicated, Lizzie and Darcy may have to start working together to avoid becoming the next victims themselves.

That’s it for this book review, I hope you all enjoyed it.

Book Reviews

Book Review – By The Book by Amanda Sellett

Happy Monday bookish people! I read very little in the past few months but a book I did enjoy was By the Book by Amanda Sellett and I am excited today to be bringing you my book review for it.

As usual, in this book review I will give star ratings to four categories and I will write a little bit about each one. I will do my best to not include any spoilers.

By The Book Plot:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This book follows Mary, a classic literature loving girl who feels rather ordinary compared to the rest of her very intelligent family. What I loved most about this book was the clever weaving of literary analogies and quotes throughout the story. As with a lot of the romance genre novels I’ve read, a lot of the conflict is brought about by miscommunication which isn’t my favourite thing to read.

By The Book Characters:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I loved Mary’s brain – the way she references books and their characters and uses that to inspire her friendships group. She is imaginative and I found her attitude and personality relatable on some level.

By The Book Writing and Dialogue:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I enjoyed the style of this novel, its writing was very easy to get lost in it.

By The Book Overall:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Overall, I gave this book four stars because I surprised myself by enjoying it. Of course a romance I would like involves books!

Blurb/Synopsis:

As a devotee of classic novels, Mary Porter-Malcolm knows all about Mistakes That Have Been Made, especially by impressionable young women. So when a girl at her new high school nearly succumbs to the wiles of a notorious cad, Mary starts compiling the Scoundrel Survival Guide, a rundown of literary types to be avoided at all costs.

Unfortunately, Mary is better at dishing out advice than taking it—and the number one bad boy on her list is terribly debonair. As her best intentions go up in flames, Mary discovers life doesn’t follow the same rules as fiction. If she wants a happy ending IRL, she’ll have to write it herself.

That’s it for this book review, I hope you enjoyed it! let me know if you have read this book and what you thought of it.

Book Reviews

Book Review: The Ex Hex by Erin Sterling

Happy Monday bookish people! I hope you are all having a good day today. Today I am bringing you my book review of the Ex Hex by Erin Sterling. I hope you all enjoy it.

In this book review I will give star ratings to four categories and I will write a little bit about each one. I will do my best to avoid any spoilers.

The Ex Hex Plot:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This book was a fun, witchy contemporary read to split up my reading of murder mysteries and fantasy. This book follows Vivi who, while going through a bad breakup, accidentally curses her ex and then when he comes back to town things start happening. The book did start to take on quite a serious tone towards the end which didn’t really fit the rest of the book in my opinion but most of the plot I did enjoy.

The Ex Hex Characters:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I loved Vivi as a main character, she is witty and sarcastic and a very strong female character, I didn’t always agree with her choices and in her place I definitely wouldn’t have done some of the things she did but I still enjoyed reading her story.

The Ex Hex writing and dialogue:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

There’s not a lot for me to say here, only that the pace and tone kept up with the plot very well and the writing was clear.

The Ex Hex overall:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I gave this book four stars overall because it was a fun palette cleanser in the middle of a readathon.

Blurb/Synopsis:

New York Times bestselling author Rachel Hawkins, writing as Erin Sterling, casts a spell with a spine-tingling romance full of wishes, witches, and hexes gone wrong.

Nine years ago, Vivienne Jones nursed her broken heart like any young witch would: vodka, weepy music, bubble baths…and a curse on the horrible boyfriend. Sure, Vivi knows she shouldn’t use her magic this way, but with only an “orchard hayride” scented candle on hand, she isn’t worried it will cause him anything more than a bad hair day or two.

That is until Rhys Penhallow, descendent of the town’s ancestors, breaker of hearts, and annoyingly just as gorgeous as he always was, returns to Graves Glen, Georgia. What should be a quick trip to recharge the town’s ley lines and make an appearance at the annual fall festival turns disastrously wrong. With one calamity after another striking Rhys, Vivi realizes her silly little Ex Hex may not have been so harmless after all.

Suddenly, Graves Glen is under attack from murderous wind-up toys, a pissed off ghost, and a talking cat with some interesting things to say. Vivi and Rhys have to ignore their off the charts chemistry to work together to save the town and find a way to break the break-up curse before it’s too late.

That’s it for this book review, I hope you all enjoyed it!

Book Reviews

Book Review: The Howling Hag Mystery by Nicki Thornton

Happy Monday bookish people! I hope you are all having a good day today. I am bringing you my book review of The Howling Hag Mystery – a hint of my opinion before we get into the book review, I am currently trying to sell my copy of this book as I didn’t enjoy it as much as I hoped I would.

As usual in this book review I will give star ratings to four categories and I will write a little bit about each one. I will try to keep this review as spoiler free as possible.

The Howling Hag Mystery Plot:

Rating: 3 out of 5.

First of all, how great is this title? The Howling Hag mystery, some lovely alliteration and imagery. The title didn’t match the plot in my opinion. I ma being generous and giving the plot 3 stars because (this is a few months after reading) while I am writing this review I can barely remember what happened in this book. I was sold on the synopsis, a cat helping solve mysteries, and for me this wasn’t what was happening in the book.

The Howling Hag Mystery Characters:

Rating: 2 out of 5.

Again, I know there was a cat and I think there was a girl and a boy as the main characters but I can’t remember, it was all very forgettable for me. I am not trying to be harsh but I do think it is important to share my opinion on this book even though I didn’t enjoy it to be a fair reviewer, and I leave it a while after reading before reviewing so that I can say whether it was a forgettable read or not and for me, this one was.

The Howling Hag mystery Writing and Dialogue:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The writing in this book was pretty good. It is a book aimed at 8-12 I believe but the writing wasn’t too young and as an adult reading it I didn’t feel it was too young for me to be reading it.

The Howling Hag Mystery Overall:

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Overall I gave this book three stars because it wasn’t my cup of tea, a younger reader might love it but it definitely wasn’t a new favourite for me.

Blurb/Synopsis:

Raven Charming knows the rules of using magic in the real world. So she is horrified to uncover the worst kind of trickery in her village. Luckily, help is at hand – a sharp-talking black cat called Nightshade with a talent for solving magical mysteries…

That’s it for this book review, I hope you all enjoyed it!

Book Reviews

Book Review: The Three Dog Problem by S J Bennett

Happy Monday bookish people! I hope you are all having a good day today. I am bringing you my book review for The Three Dog Problem by S J Bennett, the sequel to The Windsor Knot.

In this book review I will be giving star ratings to four categories and I will write a little bit about each one. I will do my best to not include any spoilers.

The Three Dog Problem Plot:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This series is sold as a mystery story where the Queen is the one investigating and solving the crime, this isn’t exactly true. It’s the Queen and a few other people so as long as you don’t go in thinking it is only the Queen on her own solving the crime you won’t be disappointed. I quite enjoy how this book series stands out from other books in the mystery genre. I personally enjoyed this second book in the series more than the first book, I think the first book had too many elements and the twists were like sharp corners whereas in this book they were set up a bit more throughout the book which gave you the chance to try and guess what was going to happen.

The Three Dog Problem Characters:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Obviously The Queen is one of the main characters in this series and she is presented very well, the right balance between regal and mischievous. She is the brains of the whole thing even though she doesn’t let everyone in on that secret.

The Three Dog Problem Writing and Dialogue:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I like the writing in this series because it carries a light tone for half of the book and then you feel the tone get darker as you get closer to the reveal and that is something I enjoy in a book, also, the pace changes perfectly in accordance to the plot.

The Three Dog Problem Overall:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I gave this book four stars overall because I really enjoy the difference from other books in the genre and how the mystery unfolds in each book.

Blurb/Synopsis

In the wake of a referendum which has divided the nation, the last thing the Queen needs is any more problems to worry about. But when an oil painting of the Royal Yacht Britannia – first given to the Queen in the 1960s – shows up unexpectedly in a Royal Navy exhibition, she begins to realise that something is up.

When a body is found in the Palace swimming pool, she finds herself once again in the middle of an investigation which has more twists and turns than she could ever have suspected. With her trusted secretary Rozie by her side, the Queen is determined to solve the case. But will she be able to do it before the murderer strikes again?

That’s it for this book review, I hope you all enjoyed it!

Book Reviews

Book Review: The Mystery of Three Quarters by Sophie Hannah

Happy Monday bookish people! I hope you are all having a good day today. I am bringing you my review of The Mystery of Three Quarters by Sophie Hannah, one of the books in her new Poirot book series.

In this book review I will give star ratings to four categories and I will write a little bit about each one. I will do my best to not include any spoilers.

The Mystery of Three Quarters Plot:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This was the third of Sophie Hannah’s Poirot books that I have read and in this one Poirot finds out that someone has sent seemingly unconnected people letters accusing them of being a murderer and they have been signed as if by Poirot himself. I found this premise very interesting, it throws the reader into the suspense from the first page and that is one thing I really enjoy in mystery books, I like to feel apart of the mystery from early on.

The Mystery of Three Quarters Characters:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Of course the main character in this book is Poirot. I have always loved anything to do with Poirot, since I was a child and I used to watch all the David Suchet episodes on TV on a Sunday while eating my lunch and of course I have read many of the Agatha Christie books. I think it’s where my love of crime fiction started.

The Mystery of Three Quarters Writing and Dialogue:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

It must have taken a lot of research for Sophie Hannah to begin writing these books because there have been a lot of adaptations of Poirot but I think that she captures his mannerisms and speech very well.

The Mystery of Three Quarters Overall:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I gave this book four stars overall because I enjoyed this one just as much as the rest of the other two in the series I have read.

Blurb/Synopsis:

The world’s most beloved detective, Hercule Poirot, the legendary star of Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express and most recently The Monogram Murders and Closed Casket, returns in a stylish, diabolically clever mystery set in the London of 1930.

Hercule Poirot returns home after an agreeable luncheon to find an angry woman waiting to berate him outside his front door. Her name is Sylvia Rule, and she demands to know why Poirot has accused her of the murder of Barnabas Pandy, a man she has neither heard of nor ever met. She is furious to be so accused, and deeply shocked. Poirot is equally shocked, because he too has never heard of any Barnabas Pandy, and he certainly did not send the letter in question. He cannot convince Sylvia Rule of his innocence, however, and she marches away in a rage.

Shaken, Poirot goes inside, only to find that he has a visitor waiting for him — a man called John McCrodden who also claims also to have received a letter from Poirot that morning, accusing him of the murder of Barnabas Pandy…

Poirot wonders how many more letters of this sort have been sent in his name. Who sent them, and why? More importantly, who is Barnabas Pandy, is he dead, and, if so, was he murdered? And can Poirot find out the answers without putting more lives in danger?

That’s it for this book review, I hope you all enjoyed it!

Book Reviews

Book Review: The Marlow Murder Club by Robert Thorogood

Happy Monday bookish people! I hope you are all having a good day today. I am bringing you my book review of The Marlow Murder Club by Robert Thorogood.

As always in this book review I will be giving star ratings to four categories and I will write a little bit about each one. I will do my best to avoid any spoilers.

The Marlow Murder Club Plot:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I have to be honest, I went into this book with some preconceptions. First was that I had already read The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman a while before this and I had heard that they were similar and they were a bit, the characters were in the older age group and the overall tone of the book is quite light. For me that was the end of the similarities which I was happy about because I ended up enjoying The Marlow Murder Club more then The Thursday Murder Club. The other preconception I had was that Robert Thorogood wrote a lot of the Death In Paradise episodes and my friend and I have seen every single episode, we love the series, actually we compete over it to see who gets the most right by the end of each series. I was worried that the book would feel like a repeat of one of the episodes, and personally that meant that I was a bit disappointed by the ending of this book because, without spoiling anything, I was able to guess the ending early on because it was a similar plot to one of the episodes.

The Marlow Murder Club Characters:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Judith Potts is the main character (there are more of them in the group later in the book but I won’t spoil anything) and I really felt like I could relate to her, an elderly lady who can’t help herself but be nosy. That’s definitely going to be me. It’s really hard to talk about the characters in this book without spoiling anything so I won’t say too much more but I will say I loved the energy of Judith Potts and her friends, this book was a great introduction to them and I hope that we will see more of them in coming books.

The Marlow Murder Club Writing and Dialogue

Rating: 4 out of 5.

As I said earlier, this book has a very light tone to it, there’s a lot of comedic elements to it which was something that I thought worked really well for the mystery in this book.

The Marlow Murder Club Overall:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Overall, I gave this book a rating of four stars because I enjoyed the gathering pace of the novel and I thought the mystery was well-plotted, the only thing I didn’t enjoy was the ending and how similar it was to the episodes of Death In Paradise.

Blurb/Synopsis:

To solve an impossible murder, you need an impossible hero…

Judith Potts is seventy-seven years old and blissfully happy. She lives on her own in a faded mansion just outside Marlow, there’s no man in her life to tell her what to do or how much whisky to drink, and to keep herself busy she sets crosswords for The Times newspaper.

One evening, while out swimming in the Thames, Judith witnesses a brutal murder. The local police don’t believe her story, so she decides to investigate for herself, and is soon joined in her quest by Suzie, a salt-of-the-earth dog-walker, and Becks, the prim and proper wife of the local Vicar.

Together, they are the Marlow Murder Club.

When another body turns up, they realise they have a real-life serial killer on their hands. And the puzzle they set out to solve has become a trap from which they might never escape…

That’s it for this book review, I hope you all enjoyed it!

blog tours, Book Reviews

Book Review The Very Nice Box by Laura Blackett and Eve Gleichman

Happy Sunday bookish people! I am excited today to be bringing you my book review for The Very Nice Box by Laura Blackett and Eve Gleichman as part of the book tour. Thank you to Verve books for sending me a copy of this book to read and review.
In this book review I will be giving star ratings to four categories and writing a little bit about each one. I will do my best to not include any spoilers.

The Very Nice Box Plot

Rating: 3 out of 5.

I was interested in reading this book because the description sounded like a quirky take on the fiction genre even though books with a focus on romance aren’t usually my favourites to read. I thought it was an overall enjoyable read because it makes you see the world completely differently.

This story is about Ava Simon who designs storage boxes for STADA, a furniture company and she is still recovering from a tragedy that gives an interesting overview to the whole story, and she gets a new boss who is determined to get close to her.

The ending to this book was one of my favourite moments because, for me, it felt satisfying, the characters got the endings it felt like were right for their characters.

The Very Nice Box Characters

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Ava is the main character we follow in this book. I found myself quite drawn to her character, she keeps her life together by creating routines and order in everything which is something I have definitely done so I can relate to her character in an interesting way. That is one of the things that made this book an enjoyable read for me.

The Very Nice Box Writing and Dialogue

Rating: 4 out of 5.

As I say a lot in this section of my reviews I like when writing is clear and fluid, it helps me to not focus so much on how the sentences work together and just enjoy the story. For me, this book does just that.

The Very Nice Box Overall

Rating: 3 out of 5.

I gave this book three stars overall because I found it to be an interesting mix of quirky, comedic, and intense not exactly fiction and I enjoyed reading it but I didn’t enjoy it as much as I have some other books so that is why I gave this book this rating.

blurb/Synopsis:

Ava Simon designs storage boxes for STÄDA, a slick Brooklyn-based furniture company. She’s hard-working, obsessive, and heartbroken from a tragedy that killed her girlfriend and upended her life. It’s been years since she’s let anyone in.

But when Ava’s new boss—the young and magnetic Mat Putnam—offers Ava a ride home one afternoon, an unlikely relationship blossoms. Ava remembers how rewarding it can be to open up—and, despite her instincts, she becomes enamored. But Mat isn’t who he claims to be, and the romance takes a sharp turn.

The Very Nice Box is a wryly funny, suspenseful debut—with a shocking twist. It’s at once a send-up of male entitlement and a big-hearted account of grief, friendship, and trust.

Just to let you all know I tried to include an image here of the cover but for some reason it wouldn’t let me today.

that’s it for this book review, I hope you all enjoyed it!

Book Reviews

Book Review: Dangerous Women by Hope Adams

Happy Monday bookish people! I hope you’re all having a good day today. I am bringing you the book review for Dangerous Women by Hope Adams.

In this book review I will give star ratings to four categories and I will write a little bit about each one. I will try to keep it as spoiler free as possible. I hope you enjoy my book review.

Dangerous Women Plot

Rating: 4 out of 5.

In this book the reader is transported into the world of a Women’s convict ship on it’s many weeks travelling across the sea to Australia for a new life. Then one of the women gets murdered. Not only is this book highly atmospheric, it has layers of tension, imagery and mystery and it is one of my favourite books of 2022 so far. I have recently been loving the historical mysteries and this novel fits in that genre perfectly. There’s not a lot I can say about this plot without spoiling anything because it is full of twists but I can say that if you like mystery books I would definitely recommend this book to you.

Dangerous Women Characters

Rating: 4 out of 5.

In this book you are mainly focused on the women as the main characters, and there are quite a few of them with their own important link to the plot, you also see the captain often. By following these characters I got very attached to a few of them, in particular the group of ladies who are part of the sewing group. This book, although it has a strong plot, is very character driven which I think works very well.

Dangerous Women Writing and Dialogue

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This book is told from multiple perspectives which adds a very interesting layer to the mystery because you as the reader are learning things that the other characters might not know. I’m not usually the biggest fan of multiple perspectives but for this book it works.

Dangerous Women Overall

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I gave this book four stars overall because it was a fast-paced, high stakes historical mystery and I enjoyed it.

Blurb/Synopsis:

Nearly two hundred condemned women on board a sailing ship bound for Australia. One of them is a murderer. From debut author Hope Adams comes a thrilling novel based on the 1841 voyage of the convict ship Rajah, about confinement, hope, and the terrible things we do to survive.

London, 1841. One hundred eighty Englishwomen file aboard the Rajah, embarking on a three-month voyage to the other side of the world.

They’re daughters, sisters, mothers–and convicts.

Transported for petty crimes.

Except one of them has a deadly secret, and will do anything to flee justice.

As the Rajah sails farther from land, the women forge a tenuous kinship. Until, in the middle of the cold and unforgiving sea, a young mother is mortally wounded, and the hunt is on for the assailant before he or she strikes again.

Each woman called in for question has something to fear: Will she be attacked next? Will she be believed? Because far from land, there is nowhere to flee, and how can you prove innocence when you’ve already been found guilty?

That’s it for this book review, I hope you all enjoyed it!