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Mary's Books

I have loved to read since I was little. I would borrow many books from the library and still borrow to this day, but I also purchase books (mostly for my kids) and freebies on Kindle. I read as much as I can daily. Sometimes I read several books at one time. I don't have a preference of paper book over an ebook, I just love to read. Keeping lists of what I have read is a good way for me to remember. 

Currently reading

Murder at the Book Group
Maggie King
Holidays Can Be Murder
Janet Sailor, Connie Shelton
Churchill's Secret Agent: A Novel Based on a True Story
Linda Ciampoli, Max Ciampoli
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
Mary Ann Shaffer, Annie Barrows
Girl Missing
Tess Gerritsen
Thirteen Chocolates (A Chandler's Chocolate Box Mystery Book 1)
agatha chocolats
All Fudged Up
Nancy CoCo
The Devotional Bible: Experiencing The Heart of Jesus
Max Lucado
Progress: 51 %
Cover to Cover: Through the Bible in 365 Days
John A Carroll
Progress: 60 %

Treasure in Paradise

Treasure in Paradise (A Tj Jensen Mystery) (Volume 7) - Kathi Daley

TJ takes her sisters, her grandfather, her friend, Kyle and 7 animals to Gull Island, SC to take care of an old friend of the family's retreat. When she arrives, she and Kyle and Doc find a body in the attic. They call the police and start to learn about the victim, the deputy and all the players who might have killed the man. The reason she is so persistent is that Doc, a retired coroner, says that the man was murdered. While this goes on, she deals with someone trying to force a sale of the land she is currently taking care of. She also learns that she has feelings for Kyle and he has the same for her. 


I have been enjoying Kathi Daley's books and have marked as many as I could for reading. I like that this one went to SC, which is somewhere my husband and I have vacationed together and so we know some of the places mentioned. 

The Crimes of Grindelwald

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay (Harry Potter) - J.K. Rowling

My daughters got this book for me for my birthday for two reasons. 1. Because I enjoy the JK Rowling Harry Potter books and movies. 2. Because they really wanted to read it, too. They did allow me to read the book first, but as soon as I finished, they took it and ran off to read it, too. 


This goes back to after Newt got in trouble in the US and he has returned to England and is not allowed to travel out of England, but he is requested to work as an Auror and stop Credence. They want Credence dead, but Newt does not feel that is the way to go with Credence. He is also sought out by a young Albus Dumbledore. 


The story was interesting, but it ends with you wanting more. I haven't seen the movie yet, so I cannot say how it plays out in the movie, but I am curious. 

Ornaments of Death

Ornaments of Death: A Josie Prescott Antiques Mystery (Josie Prescott Antiques Mysteries) - Jane K. Cleland

Josie is having her annual Christmas party and her cousin, Ian, has arrived from England and she is beyond delighted to have him arrive. When he goes missing, she tries to find him and when he is missing for more than a day, a body is found and when she identifies it as her cousin, she finds out that his daughter is now missing. 


This story had many twists and turns and looked at ancestry and antiques and provenance. I had found it last year when my girls started getting braces and borrowed it, but ran out of time to read it, so I just would borrow and read a bit more, finally reading it now. 

The Cozy Cookbook

The Cozy Cookbook: More than 100 Recipes from Today's Bestselling Mystery Authors - Julie Hyzy, Laura Childs, Cleo Coyle, Jenn McKinlay, B.B. Haywood

This book is a collection of recipes from coy mystery books. The books are introduced and a chapter may be present. The book is broken up into categories, Breads, Cupcakes, etc. I have read some of the books or the books are on my to-read list, so this was interesting and I marked several of the recipes to try out. 

Book, Line and Sinker

Book, Line and Sinker - Jenn McKinlay

This is Book 3 of the Library Lover's Mysteries. 


Lindsey is on her second year in the community, she is dating Sully and there is a battle brewing between Yogi, Milton, and Trudy, who works at the City Building. She wants to let people pay to dig up the islands looking for treasure and Milton feels that it would destroy the community property. When Trudy is found dead, they look at Milton and Leslie feels she needs to get involved to prove his innocence. While all this is happening, her ex-fiancee comes to town and wants to reunite with her. She is uninterested in a reconciliation. 


This book was another chosen by my kids to listen to while we were driving to all their meetings. They truly enjoy listening to the books in the car and it leads to some interesting conversations. 


The Koala of Death

The Koala of Death - Betty Webb

Book 2 of the Gunn Zoo Mystery


Teddy is awoken to the sound of something bumping her houseboat. When she goes out she finds a fellow zookeeper floating dead in the water. When another keeper is accused she feels that she needs to help him and get to the truth...for several reasons. She is being forced to be the tv presence of the zoo, the PR person and the blog writer, and all she wants to do is be a keeper, taking care of her animals. When the murderer starts aiming at her, she really feels the need to find the truth. She wants to return to her home and not live in her mother's place. 


This book was requested on the trip and we finished it and my family was laughing at some of the things that happened and were "said." My husband even asked, "How did I find these books?" 

Lowcountry Bookshop

Lowcountry Bookshop - Susan M. Boyer

A post office worker is accused of hitting a man in the street, but she proclaims her innocence. Liz and her husband, Nate, are private investigators who are hired by the attorney hired to prove her innocence. Along the way, they discover that a bookshop in Charleston, SC is being used to help women get away from their abusive partners. They are hidden at a club that is very exclusive. 


The story was interesting at times and fun at other times, but there were times that I was not thrilled with the story and was grateful that the story was not over 300 pages long. 

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer - Mark Twain

I read this book so many times....in high school, in college, just for fun as an adult and with my kids when it was assigned to them. Recently, I was wanting something fun and different to read and I re-read it again. It amazes me how much I noticed in this reading that I didn't see all the previous times. Tom and the other boys' preoccupation with witches and spells to remove warts and how much better read the boys were in the 1800s. It still is funny that his aunt doses him with medicine that she finds and he hates. Also how much imagination boys have and their running around and getting into so much trouble. I still enjoy this story and wish my kids would read it again and see what is different for them from when they first read it and now. 

The Marriage Lie

The Marriage Lie - Kimberly Belle

She thought she was happily married to a man who was wonderful and loved her entirely. This lasted until she is told that he died in a plane crash, on a plane headed to Seattle, WA - not Florida. She thought he was on a plane headed to Florida to attend a conference where he was a speaker. He told his secretary that he was going to Mexico with his wife to celebrate their anniversary. She is devastated and refuses to believe that he died. Suddenly she starts getting threats over money that has disappeared and strange messages that continue to convince her that her husband isn't dead. She finds out all the lies that he told her before they were married and doesn't know what to do and seeks the advice of the attorney who worked to bring all the survivors together. 


This was a page-turner. I had trouble reading it because of driving and my husband wanting me to talk to him while he drove. So I read whenever I could. 

The Anteater of Death

The Anteater of Death - Betty Webb

A couple of years ago, I was walking through the stacks at the library and saw the title on this book and laughed. I borrowed it and loved the story. I then borrowed and read all the other books in the series. I borrowed this book again as a Kindle and as an audio through Overdrive. I did this so that I could get the girls interested in the series. We listened to the whole book on the way to Maryland to go to Antietam and we started another book from the series on the way home. My husband loved the story. 


Teddy is a zookeeper taking care of the giant anteater, Lucy. A man is found dead in her cage and she is accused of killing him and the current director, an animal hater, orders her destroyed. After an autopsy, it is learned that the anteater is innocent of murdering the man. Teddy then works on getting her freed from her smaller cage so that when she has her baby it is less stressful and all goes well. There is so much information in the book about zoos and the animals and about anteaters. I really did enjoy this book the second time around. 


Needled to Death

Needled to Death - Maggie Sefton

I read this book several years ago and is the 2nd book in the series. Kelly is working from home in Colorado while she continues to work out how to pay off the mortgage on her aunt's house, the ranch she inherited and figuring out how she can stay in Ft. Collins with her new found friends. When she and Jennifer take a visiting group of yarn artists to Vicki's home in the canyon, when they get there, they find her dead. This starts Kelly's involvement with the family and the finances that were part of the life of Vicki. 


The story is fun to read and listen to. My kids enjoyed listening to it as well. 


Murder, She Wrote, The Maine Mutiny

Murder, She Wrote: The Maine Mutiny - Jessica Fletcher

Cabot Cove is gearing up for their first Lobster Festival and have asked the Lobstermen to not sell their lobster to other places so that there are plenty of lobster for the festival. There is so much happening while getting ready for the festival and Jessica asks if she can help. She agrees to write the article for the special paper that is going to be sold during the festival week. She gets the men to agree to let her on a boat to watch and learn. Learn she does. She learns that the man who is the "broker" is thought to be cheating the men and they are between a rock and hard place. When that man is found dead on Spencer's boat (an old man whose boat has been sabotaged many times) and Jessica is left to die in the middle of the ocean on that same boat, she wants to find out who really murdered the broker. 


The story starts with Jessica adrift on the boat and suffering from amnesia and a head injury. Then the story goes back to before the head injury. I don't really enjoy that kind of a story, but this time I was interested in the story and did some research on lobsters. Mostly because I can't ever eat them and I just wanted to learn some more. 

A Midsummer's Night Scream

A Midsummer Night's Scream - Jill Churchill

Jane has finished her first book and it is being looked at for publication and she needs to find an agent to help protect her interests. While this is going on, she and her friend, Shelley, are tasting meals created by caterers, hired by Shelley to provide small, snack meals to the cast and crew of the play. The play is written and directed by Professor Emery, who dislikes the actor, playing the oldest son. Shelley and Jane make friends with the female actor hired to portray the matriarch. They all go to a class together with the costume designer, to learn cross stitch. 


So much is happening in the story and it helped to move it along and I feel like I have read this book before, but I don't remember ever borrowing it before. I feel that it is important to note that it was published in 2005 because there is a character who states that she will never have a computer in her home and she won't use one. I find this interesting as there are now people who state that they won't ever own a smartphone but have computers in their homes. 

Talking God

Talking God - Tony Hillerman

I have this book as a paperback or hardcover (I have a lot of his mysteries) and I read them when I was in college and it made me want to go to this area, after college. I did make it to the area and I loved it out there. I still love to read these books. 


Highhawk is a young man who wants to claim his place in Navajo society. His grandmother was Navajo. He is talented in the making and caring for Native American Artifacts. He starts a campaign to get bones of Native Americans returned to their people and reburied. To that end, he digs up a prominent white couple and sends their bones to the person who said that they needed real bones for museum visitors. This causes him to have a warrant for his arrest. Chee is the officer sent to arrest him and then Janet asks him to come to Washington, DC to help her understand what this man is really thinking and help her with the man who is following her. While he is there, so is Joe Leaphorn. He is on a different case and he is looking for the identity of a man who was found stabbed to death in the desert. 


I still really enjoy this story and will keep my copy of this book. 

Six Cats a Slaying

Six Cats a Slayin' (Cat in the Stacks Mystery) - Miranda James

Charlie goes out and finds a box of five kittens on his porch with a note asking him to take care of the kittens, because "he" said he is going to drown them. Charlie brings in the kittens and starts caring for them with the help of his cat, Diesel. While this is happening a mysterious woman moves into the house across the street from him. She is very flirtatious and seems to be looking for a wealthy man to take care of her, but also is a realtor who wants to "sell" the houses of her neighbors. She has a party and during the party, she dies. This is where Charlie starts using his skills for research to find out more about the woman and learns more than he thought that helps Keisha Berry find out who murdered the woman. He also tries to find out who the child is that left the kittens on his doorstep, as "she" seems to be keeping track of the kittens and leaving money to help care for the kittens. 


This was such a great story. It looks at how a new mom can need help and how children can overhear a conversation and not understand all that is happening. This would fit under my holiday listing. 

The Silence of the Library

The Silence of the Library - Miranda James

It is Library Week and Charlie had suggested that they highlight authors that he had enjoyed in his youth. In the book, you have two stories happening at one time. You have the story that Charlie is re-reading, a Victoria Thane mystery, which makes me think of Nancy Drew Mysteries. The funny thing about the story is that a comment is made about how many times Victoria is injured, tied up, or drugged while sleuthing. The other mystery involves the death of a woman who loves the author of the Victoria Thane mysteries. She has a collection of different items that she has collected over her life. She even runs the EBC fan page. EBC agrees to come to the library and do a question-answer session and maybe meet some of her fans, but then she and her daughter started asking for money for their time. Then the lady who runs the fan page is found murdered. Charlie helps find out the truth while reading his book and researching the values of his prized books. 


I just used an audio version of this book as I was driving and we listened while driving to Navarre to visit family and then home again. My husband got into the book and wanted to find out how it ended. This is a win in my book when the whole family enjoys the story.