Long Overdue at the Lakeside Library (Lakeside Library Mystery #2) by Holly Danvers

Pages: 304

Publisher: Crooked Lane Books

Published: February 8, 2022

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Available Formats: Digital, Audio, and Hardcover

My Review: I enjoyed the second book as much as the first. There is something about how the series is written that it feels real and inviting. The friendship between Rain and Julia keeps you coming back for more.

We join Rain and crew during an ice fishing tournament where a local is murdered. Unfortunately, Julia’s husband is on the hook for the murder. Will a brutal start to winter keep Rain and Julia from fishing out the killer?

In my review for book one, Murder at the Lakeside Library, I had hoped for more in Rain’s parents in book two and that did not happen but that was ok. We do have an addition of a romantic interest for Rain and so far he seems steamy hot (when you read the book you will understand why I said this). Does he beat out Jace? Only time will tell.

Both books are perfect curl up by the fire and read until the wee hours of the morning reads.

I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, Crooked Lane Books, through NetGalley. All opinions expressed above are entirely my own.

NetGalley: An icy cold murder and a library patron collide in Holly Danver’s second Lakeside Library Mystery.

A glowing wood stove, a cozy log cabin, and shelves full of books are all Rain Wilmot needs to ride out the Wisconsin winter, now that she’s made her family’s Lofty Pines library her year-round home. But the warm-hearted librarian’s blood runs cold when local man, Wallace Benson, is found dead during the annual Ice Fishing Jamboree. 

After Benson’s body is found in his ice shanty, Rain recalls that she recently saw the victim in her library, borrowing a few cookbooks to prepare for the fishing tournament’s communal “chili dump.” She later finds these same books returned to the library’s drop box, with an enigmatic note from Benson to Rain.

As Rain seeks to understand the message, the prime suspect becomes Rain’s friend Nick, who was the last person to see Wallace alive and who returned to the Jamboree with a nasty cut on his hand. The knife found in his tackle box only makes Nick’s troubles worse. But Rain keeps fishing for other suspects. Was the killer Danny, who lost his arm to a logging accident involving Wallace? Or Danny’s bitter father, whose dreams of retirement were dashed by his son’s accident?

With the help of her friends Julia and Jace, Rain sets out to hook the real culprit and clear Nick’s name. But can her sleuthing skills protect her from a killer who’d like to take her out of circulation?

Hot and Sour Suspects (A Noodle Shop Mystery #8) by Vivien Chien

Pages: 320

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Published: January 25, 2022

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Available Formats: Digital, Mass Market Paperback

My Review: I absolutely love this series and stalk NetGalley until the newest one is available. Lana Lee is a hoot and makes me wish I could really visit her in her Cleveland restaurant. I always want to take my book and eat noodles all day long while reading.

In the newest addition, Lana and her BFF Megan host a speed dating event at Ho-Lee Noodle House on a slower Friday. All goes well until much later when one of the Asia Village Shop owners is found with a dead body. Can Lana and Megan figure out the killer before their friend is speedily put in jail?

Lana is a bit more reflective in Hot and Sour Suspects but if you follow the author’s cancer journey you completely understand why. Personally, I enjoyed that Lana’s sister, Anna, was not shown in the most perfect light. I don’t wish her troubles on her but it does show she is human and makes errors just like the rest of us. There are a few LOL moments when Lana’s mom enters the picture.

You must read this series and start from the beginning. You will thank me later. The covers alone are worth buying the books. They are beautiful!

I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, St. Martin’s Press, through NetGalley. All opinions expressed above are entirely my own.

NetGalley: Lana Lee returns for another delectable cozy set in a Chinese restaurant in Vivien Chien’s Hot and Sour Suspects.

Pair your noodles with this steaming mystery, and you have the perfect chilly night combination!”—PopSugar

At the Ho-Lee Noodle House, murder is on the menu.

When Lana Lee’s best friend, Megan Riley, asks her to help host a speed dating contest at Ho-Lee Noodle House, she doesn’t see the harm in lending a hand. The night goes better than anticipated, and both Lana and Megan are beyond thrilled with the results. But before they can break out the champagne, Rina Su, fellow Asia Village shop owner and speed dating participant, calls to inform Lana that the date she’s just matched with has been murdered. Under suspicion of foul play, Rina enlists Lana’s help in finding out what really happened that night.

Without hesitation, Lana begins to dig into the man in question. To her dismay, she quickly finds that Rina’s date has a rather unsavory past. There’s a long line of slighted women, angry neighbors, and perturbed co-workers—all of whom seem to have a motive.

As Lana continues to spiral down the treacherous path of scorned lovers and mistreated acquaintances, she can’t help but dwell on how quickly an innocent evening filled with hope and positivity could turn so sour. When the media gets in on the case, Lana must rush to find the killer before more dates turn deadly.

Renewed for Murder (Blue Ridge Library Mysteries #6) by Victoria Gilbert

Pages: 352

Publisher: Crooked Lane Books

Published: December 7, 2021

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Available Formats: Digital, Hardcover, and Audio

My Review: For me, the mystery was interesting but the cast of suspects always seems to involve a lot of the same people. Plus it felt very drawn out.

I was a bit put off by Richard’s neediness with missing Amy when he left for town. They are mature adult newlyweds, not early twenty-something newlyweds. I’m not a fan of clingy men.

It is not a favorite of mine in the series.

I received a complimentary copy from the publisher through NetGalley. All opinions expressed above are entirely my own.

NetGalley: Librarian Amy Webber dances with death in critically acclaimed author Victoria Gilbert’s sixth Blue Ridge Library mystery.

August in Taylorsford, Virginia finds library director Amy Webber and her new husband, dancer Richard Muir, settling into married life–and a new project. Richard and his dance partner, Karla, are choreographing a suite based on folk music and folk tales, while Amy scours the library’s resources to supply background information on the dance’s source material. But the mellifluous music comes to a jarring halt when an unknown woman’s body turns up in Zelda Shoemaker’s backyard gazebo.

Chief Deputy Brad Tucker puts Zelda at the top of his suspect list, thanks to a blackmail letter he finds in the dead woman’s pocket. Zelda’s best friend, Amy’s aunt Lydia Talbot, begs Amy to use her research skills to clear Zelda’s name. But the task is confounded by Zelda’s very out-of-character refusal to reveal why the victim might have blackmailed her.

Complicating matters further, Amy unearths records of a long-ago tragedy that casts doubt on Zelda’s innocence. She enlists hubby Richard, Aunt Lydia, art dealer Kurt Kendrick, Mayor Sunny Fields, and sundry other quirky townsfolk in a quest to exonerate Zelda. But will revealing the truth end up forcing Zelda to spend the rest of her life behind bars?

Meanwhile, the killer is still out there. Amy had better be fleet on her feet, because death is on her dance card, and her number may be up.