A mixture here of Kindle reads, library book sale finds, and books checked out from the library to read.
I’ll start with what I didn’t like, in fact a very rare DNF, Sophie Hannah’s Kind of Cruel, This was a book sale find. I haven’t read any other books in the series but I have heard a lot about the author. The book starts with insomniac Amber visiting a hypnotherapist to try to find some relief from the lack of sleep. During her session she says the phrase kind, cruel, kind of cruel”, which just happens to be a key piece in a murder inquiry. Amber has no idea what it is all about and neither does anybody else either. The book meanders on and about half way through I gave up and skipped to the end just to see what happened. The characters, setting and mystery just didn’t engage me. The reveal was actually who I suspected, because it was really the only “mysterious/normal” character, if that is a thing, but the reasoning was extremely convoluted.
The Day She Disappeared: A Novel is my second Christobel Kent novel and it is so much better than the first The Loving Husband. Nat becomes concerned about the “disappearance” of fellow barmaid Beth, even though at first no one else is. Finally, allied with Victor, an elderly and beloved bar patron, with concerns of his own, Nat tries to find out what exactly has happened to Beth. The atmosphere here is tense and closed in feeling and the pace becomes frantic as Nat gets closer to some answers and the danger seems to be looming closer over both Nat and Victor. A real sense of menace and dread and intriguing, intelligent characters make for a good mystery read here.
The Red Book of Primrose House is the second in the A Potting Shed Mystery series. I really liked the first in the series. In this book, Pru has taken on a new garden restoration project that is plagued by vandalism and finally a murder, on top of that Pru is dealing with issues in her personal life, looking for missing links to her family’s past and working on her love life with Christopher. There are just a few red herrings here, but in general the mystery was straight forward. I feel this book emphasized more the development of Pru and Christopher’s story than the mystery, but I still enjoyed it and will definitely continue to read the series.
The Bad Things is a Kindle read that I think I read about on Omnimystery and ordered. The story concerns a supposed killer, Jackie Wood, of two children being released from prison on a technicality after many years. The aunt of the children, Alex Devlin, is a writer and decides to interview her in an effort to find out where one of the children’s bodies is because it has never turned up. Jackie is murdered and the investigation begins to turn up secrets about the original case that Alex Devlin, among others, would rather have remain buried. What stood out for me in this book was the utter lack of remorse shown for the ruined lives of innocent people. It was just appalling. Good compelling mystery read.
Rest in Pizza is the 4th in a Pizza themed cozy mystery series by Chris Cavender. The pizza parlor is owned by one widowed sister, Eleanor Swift, who runs it with the help of her sister Maddy Spencer and some part-time employees. In this outing, a TV celebrity chef, an obnoxious personality, comes to town for a book signing, and manages to get himself murdered in Eleanor’s pizza parlour. This puts Eleanor and her sister on the trail of a killer and maybe in the killer’s sights themselves. Fun, quick, mystery read with realistic characters in a well drawn small town setting. This is a cozy series that I do enjoy.
Dead Gone is a book that I believe I heard about from Omnimystery. I checked it out from the library, it is a first from a new author, Luca Vesta. Very much a psychological murder mystery, in fact psychology is the method and the motive for the murders. The detectives were a little thinly drawn to start with but I’m sure that there will be more books in this series that will flesh them out further. There are flashes here and there to let you know pieces of their past. The plot is well done with letters from the perpetrator and glimpses into the crimes, what happens to the victims and to the victim’s family’s along with what the police are doing. Really well done mystery, a bit on the brutal side.