Thursday, January 26, 2023

Her Amish Adversary by Vannetta Chapman

 Her Amish Adversary
Book Summary

Joining forces with her rival…

Means risking everything.  

Running the RV park at her father’s Amish market makes Bethany Yoder happy—until he hires her childhood nemesis, Aaron King. Soon Bethany’s quaint ideas clash with Aaron’s 
Englisch-style upgrades. But they must work together to turn a profit…or else. When their unlikely alliance turns into something more, will Aaron’s secrets break them—and the business—apart forever?
My Thoughts

Her Amish Adversary by Vannetta Chapman is an entertaining story.  It is the second book in the Indiana Amish Market series.  It can be read as a standalone, but you will be missing out on a cute story (An Amish Proposal for Christmas).   I like Vannetta Chapman’s writing style.  Her stories draw me right in.  There is humor throughout.  I laughed often while reading this book.  The Yoder girls are delightful.  I cannot wait for Eunice’s story (I bet it will be a hoot).  Eunice comes up with some creative mechanical devices.  Bethany Yoder and Aaron King were at odds especially in the beginning (I had to laugh when he tracked mud into her office).  

Bethany is not happy to see Aaron.  He teased her relentlessly at school (I know how Bethany felt).  The teaser might enjoy it, but the one being teased does not.  The author addressed the subject of mental illness.  She handled the subject with sensitivity.  We get to see how one family members mental illness affects the whole family.  We return to the Shipshewana Outdoor Market, which is run by Amos Yoder, Bethany’s father.   The focus is on the RV park where Bethany is the RV park manager.  I can imagine spending the whole day at this large market (the food sounds scrumptious).  I like that we get to catch up with Becca Yoder and Gideon Fisher as well as the rest of the Yoder clan.  The ending left me smiling.  I am eager for the next Indiana Amish Market novelHer Amish Adversary is a tender tale with a massive market, a grubby rug, a sensitive secret, wedding planning, an old adversary, and a meeting of the minds.

Her Amish Adversary is available from Amazon* and Harlequin.  The first book in the Indiana Amish Market series is An Amish Proposal for Christmas.  You can find Vannetta Chapman's other novels here.  I am always eager to read Vannetta Chapman's latest novel.  Thank you for stopping by today.  I will return on Tuesday, January 31 with my thoughts on Four Leaf Cleaver by Maddie Day. It is the eleventh A Country Store MysteryI am heading out to our storage shed to clear out the clutter.  I have discovered that I own more ceiling fans than I need.  I only need six (the ceiling fans currently in our home are from the 80s and one light is from the 1970s).  I wonder what else is tucked into the storage shed (I know there are dozens of inflatables).  I hope that you have an enjoyable weekend.  Take care and Happy Reading!

Kris

The Avid Reader 

*This post contains affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Together for the Twins by Laurel Blount

 Together for the Twin
Book Summary

He opened his home to twin boys

Will he open his heart to their nanny?

Self-made man Ryder Montgomery is the guy with all the answers…until he inherits custody of his out-of-control twin nephews. Nanny Elise Cooper is a lifesaver and even agrees to give him parenting lessons. Soon they’re starting to feel like a real family. But with an end-of-summer expiration date, is it even possible to build a future together?  
My Thoughts

Together for the Twins by Laurel Blount is an entertaining story.  Ruby is slowly finding matches for the foster children that she raised who became part of her boisterous family.  Ryder has done very well for himself in the business world.  He has recently started his own business which demands his full attention.  When he becomes guardian of his sister’s twin boys, Ryder finds himself at a loss.  The four-year-old twins are terrors.  Ruby and the rest of his foster siblings are at their wits end.  Nanny Elise Cooper is an answer to his prayers.  She manages to get the twins in line right away.  Elise can take the job for the summer as long as she is provided separate accommodations.  She has no intention of getting involved with her boss.  As time passes, the foursome begins to feel like a family.  Elise is delighted to be welcomed into Ryder’s large and noisy family.  What happens, though, when Ryder fails to tell Elise about an important phone call?  

I thought it was well-written with realistic characters.  The author created great characters.   Ruby Sawyer is a delight.  The twins were quite a pair.   I laughed often while reading Together for the Twins.  The ending was touching and nicely wrapped up Together for the Twins.  I appreciated the Christian element in the story.  It was not heavy handed or preachy.  I like how the adults were teaching the twins by example.  Together for the Twins is the third book in the Cedar Ridge series.  It can be read as a standalone, but you will be missing out on two diverting tales.  My favorite part of the story is when Ruby showed Elise the memory quilt she was making for Ryder.  It is a touching scene.  Together for the Twins is a charming story with troublesome twins, an inexperienced uncle, a knowledgeable nanny, a merry matchmaker, a lobbed library book, a beneficial fort, and a lively family.

Excerpt

Ryder sat on the edge of Tuck’s twin bed, listening to Elise reading a bedtime story about a frog and a toad. He’d taken over the bedtime routine for the most part, but tonight the twins had talked Elise into participating. She’d agreed, and here they were.

He could have gone downstairs and cracked open his laptop, but he hadn’t. The truth was, he hadn’t wanted to leave. Right now, Ryder couldn’t think of any place in the world he’d rather be.

Outside, a summer storm had blown in, and rain was pattering steadily down. Lightning was flashing in the distance, and thunder rumbled. It was the sort of night that—before he’d come to live with Ruby—had made him hunker down uneasily on his bare mattress—or the back seat of his dad’s Dodge, if they happened to be homeless at the time.

But here, inside in the circle of lamplight, everything was cozy and pleasant.

The boys, freshly scrubbed and in their favorite pajamas, sat up in their beds, stuffed dinosaurs tucked carefully under the sheets, absorbed in the story. Elise read expressively, the light behind her gilding her hair, the pages whispering as she turned them, one by one.

He was thankful she was reading tonight. He wasn’t sure he could have managed it. Right now he felt like that storybook frog was caught right in the middle of his throat.

When he was a kid, not much older than Tuck and Benji, he remembered being too hungry to sleep and slipping out of the singlewide he and his dad were renting. He’d roamed the trailer park on summer evenings while his father was absorbed in whatever ball game he’d bet on that night. Sometimes Ryder had caught glimpses through windows of scenes like this one, families grouped together around tables with plates of food, or kids snug in beds that looked clean and had sheets.

He hadn’t known much about God back then, but he’d known enough to pray that one day he’d have a home like that. One complete with a grown-up who cared, and enough money to stay clean and well-fed. When the foster system had bounced him to Ruby’s house, that prayer had been answered.

Now God had answered again. With Elise’s help, he’d managed to give his nephews just the kind of home he’d dreamed about as a kid. The relief and gratitude filled his heart so full that it barely fit in his chest.

His eyes were drawn back to Elise’s profile, to the way her expression changed depending on what she was reading. He could feel his own expression changing as he watched her.

They hadn’t had a chance to talk yet. But they would. That was coming, and he prayed he could find the right way to tell her what he was feeling.

And he’d better pray, because the odds of him getting this right on his own were low. He wasn’t even sure what these feelings meant, much less how he could communicate that to Elise.

Guilt. Fear. Joy. Gratitude. All those emotions were mixed up together inside of him, rising up like the bubbles in the twins’ bath a little while ago.

But the bubble that popped up the most often—and the biggest one—was hope. That was the one that had his stomach churning, and it had been ever since he’d kissed her.

That kiss marked either the end of something or a brand-new beginning. He couldn’t be sure which until he and Elise talked things over, but he knew what he was hoping for.

“And they lived happily ever after,” Elise finished in a soothing voice.

Yes, please, God, Ryder prayed silently. That.

Together for the Twins is available from Amazon*.  You can find Laurel Blount's other novels here.  Readers can follow Laurel Blount on Amazon and you will receive an email when she releases a new book.  Laurel Blount has Courage in the Storm coming out April 25.  It is the third A Johns Mill Amish Romance.  Here are a few books that were published this week:  Her Amish Adversary by Vannetta Chapman, Irish Coffee Murder by Leslie Meier, Lee Hollis, and Barbara Ross, Rachael's Decision by Molly Jebber, and The Amish Bachelor's Bride by Pamela Desmond Wright.  I will return tomorrow with Her Amish Adversary by Vannetta Chapman.  It is the second book in the Indiana Amish Market series.  Thank you for stopping by today.    Take care and Happy Reading!


Kris

The Avid Reader 

*This post contains affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

The Amish Bachelor's Bride by Pamela Desmond Wright

 The Amish Bachelor's Bride

The Amish Bachelor's Bride JustRead Blog + Review Tour 

Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour for The Amish Bachelor's Bride by Pamela Desmond Wright, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

About the Book

The Amish Bachelor's Bride Title: The Amish Bachelor's Bride 
Author: Pamela Desmond Wright 
Publisher: Love Inspired 
Release Date: January 24, 2023 
Genre: Christian, Contemporary Romance, Amish Fiction

Marrying in name only…

Could lead to more than they expected 

Single mother Lavinia Simmons’s world is turned upside down when she discovers her late husband gambled away their home. A quick marriage of convenience to bachelor Noem Witzel in return for caring for his niece and nephew is the solution both Lavinia and Noem need. Neither of them is looking for romance. But what if these perfect strangers have other ideas?

PURCHASE LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | BookDepository | IndieBound | Christianbook | BookBub


About the Author

Pamela Desmond Wright

Pamela Desmond Wright grew up in a small, dusty Texas town. Like the Amish, Pamela is a fan of the simple life. Her childhood includes memories of the olden days; old-fashioned oil lamps, cooking over an authentic wood-burning stove and making popcorn over a crackling fire at her grandparents' cabin. The cabin was later donated to The Muleshoe Heritage Center in Muleshoe Texas where it can be viewed by the public.

Connect with Pamela by visiting pameladesmondwright.com to follow her on social media or subscribe to email newsletter updates.


My Thoughts

The Amish Bachelor’s Bride by Pamela Desmond Wright is a sweet story.  I was immediately drawn into the book.  I was curious to see how Noem and Lavinia’s story would play out.  Noem is going to raise his young niece and infant nephew after the death of his younger sister.  Lavinia is a widow with a young daughter to raise.  Lavinia discovered her husband had a surprising secret which has forced her to sell her home.  Bishop James Grabor suggests that Lavinia and Noem marry for convenience.  Noem and Lavinia need to find a way to work together for the sake of the children.  Matters are further complicated by Noem’s grumpy father, Gabriel.  Gabriel has not been the same since his wife died.  

I thought The Amish Bachelor’s Bride was well-written with engaging characters.  I enjoyed Lavinia’s large, friendly family.  Noem has been interested in Lavinia when they were teens on their rumspringa.  Unfortunately, by the time Noem worked up the courage to ask Lavinia out, she was stepping out with her future husband, Josiah.  The Amish Bachelor’s Bride is a story about forgiveness, family, love, and faith.  I appreciated the epilogue which nicely wrapped up the story.  I enjoyed the humor scattered throughout.  It was nice to catch up with Abram Mueller, Lavinia’s brother, and his wife, Maddie from Finding Her Amish Home.  I hope we get more stories about the Mueller clan.  The Amish Bachelor’s Bride is a touching tale with a benevolent bishop, a peevish father, an unforeseen secret, a shunned sister, and a lively family.

Excerpt

Lifting the blinds of the kitchen window, Lavinia Simmons gazed over the fenced-in yard. A glance told her the day was going to be dim. A brisk wind flicked at the trees. The threat of a storm hung in the air.

She searched for a bit of cheer. April showers bring May flowers.

Looking outside, she couldn’t help but think of her ehmann. The first stirrings of spring used to be Josiah’s favorite time of the year. He’d worked hard to landscape the acreage surrounding the home he’d built with his own hands. The whitewashed house nestled amid lovingly planted gardens, where a variety of plants grew in lush abundance. After a long, frosty winter, the eager buds were beginning to raise their sleepy heads. Soon, they would burst into an array of colorful blossoms.

Spring was a renewal, a resurrection. Not only of the spirit but also of hope. Just as the Heavenly Father promised.

But this year Josiah wouldn’t celebrate the coming of the new season. His eyes were forever closed, and his soul rested in the hands of the Lord. The accident that had almost taken his young nephew’s life had taken Josiah’s instead. Though the youngie was warned to stay away from the frozen pond, Eli had wandered onto the ice. Weak and not yet frozen solid, the fragile surface had given way, plunging the kinder into freezing water. Chopping wood nearby, Josiah heard Eli’s cries and rushed to help. He’d gotten the boi out safely, but not before taking on a chill. Rushed to the hospital, he’d died a few hours later of respiratory system failure brought on by hypothermia. His death was sudden and unexpected.

j

Vision blurring, she pressed a hand to her mouth to stifle a sob. Josiah had passed last November, just before the holidays. Healthy and in the prime of life, he should have had a bright future.

But Gott had other plans.

“Lavinia?” Her bruder’s voice interrupted her thoughts. “Did you hear a word I’ve said?”

Swiping at her eyes, Lavinia turned away from the window. “Forgive me. My mind wandered. Give me a minute and I’ll have some tea ready.”

Peering over the rim of his glasses, Abram Mueller offered a smile. “Take your time. I’m still going over the paperwork that will close the mortgage and get everything out of Josiah’s name.”

“I’m sorry you’re having to help me.” Flipping on the tap, Lavinia filled a kettle with water before setting it on the stove. After adding loose tea leaves to a metal ball, she dropped it inside to steep. Stomach going tight, her hands shook. “I’m still shocked to find out he mortgaged our home without my knowledge.”

Setting out her best china, she filled two delicate cups with the tarry brew. The scent of bergamot tickled her nostrils as steam rose. A hot cup of Earl Grey would be just the thing to set her right. Having added a pitcher of fresh cream and a bowl of sugar to a tray, she carried everything to the table.

Expression serious, Abram scribbled a few figures. “The property should have been in both of your names. Then he couldn’t have gambled away the roof over your head.”

Lavinia sat, smoothing her hands across her lap. “I wish it was all a bad dream.” After his death, she’d discovered Josiah had kept a lot of secrets. Her perfect ehmann was a deeply flawed man.

Abram shook his head. “There would have come a point when he had to tell you he couldn’t make the payments anymore.”

She blinked. Barely five months had gone by since Josiah died. In that brief time, her life had fallen completely apart.

Tour Giveaway

(1) winner will receive a Kindle Fire 7!

(1) winner will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

The Amish Bachelor's Bride JustRead Giveaway

Full tour schedule linked below. The giveaway begins at midnight January 23, 2023 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on January 30, 2023. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

Enter Giveaway

The Amish Bachelor's Bride is available from Amazon*.  You can find Pamela Desmond Wright's other novels here.  Do not forget to enter the giveaway.  You can click here to enter.  Good Luck!  Thank you for stopping by today.  Tomorrow I will be sharing my thoughts on Together for the Twins by Laurel Blount.  I am off to do some organizing.  I am trying to get the closets and cabinets organized (tired of hunting for things).  I hope that you have a happy day.  Take care and Happy Reading!


Kris

The Avid Reader 

Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours

*This post contains affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Murder at the Bookstore by Sue Minix

 Murder at the Bookstore

Book Summary

Crime writer Jen returns to her small hometown with a bestselling book behind her and a bad case of writer’s block. Finding sanctuary in the local bookstore, with an endless supply of coffee, Jen waits impatiently for inspiration to strike.

But when the owner of the bookstore dies suddenly in mysterious circumstances, Jen has a real-life murder to solve.

The stakes are suddenly higher when evidence places Jen at the scene of the crime and the reading of the will names her as the new owner of the bookstore …

Can she crack the case and clear her name, before the killer strikes again?

My Thoughts

Jen Dawson is suffering from writer’s block.  She spends her days in Ravenous Readers, a bookstore owned by Jen’s friend, Althea Cunningham, hoping inspiration will strike.  Jen is trying to write the sequel to Double Trouble, a mystery involving twin teenage sleuths.  Jen is shocked when she receives the news that Althea is dead.  The death is ruled suspicious, and Jen finds herself on the suspect list.  An item of Jen’s is found at the crime scene.  Jen is told to keep her nose out of the investigation, but she has no intention of heeding that advice.  Can Jen reveal the killer before she finds herself composing her next novel in prison?

Murder at the Bookstore by Sue Minix is the debut of The Bookstore Mysteries.  Murder at the Bookstore was a letdown.  I was a not a fan of Jen Dawson.  She is twenty-eight going on sixteen.  The story is told in the first person, so we are subjected to all of Jen’s thoughts especially about Russell, the barista at the bookstore.  She goes on and on about his physical features (reminds me of a teenager with their first crush).  I wish Jen was more likeable and relatable.  I found her to be self-absorbed.  The characters were lacking development.  There were general details on Jen especially regarding her recently failed romance (I got tired of hearing about it).  The whodunit can be solved before the victim is killed.  The author did everything but hire a skywriter (I could envision a giant neon arrow with the word killer pointing at the guilty party).  The why for the crime is no mystery.  Jen asks questions in her quest to identify the killer.  She has all the subtlety of a bull in a china shop.  Jen makes bad decisions and puts herself at risk several times.  The reveal is long-winded.  All the details are revealed.  I did like Jen’s best friend, Brittany Dunlop.  She is a true friend.  Murder at the Bookstore is a small-town whodunit with a creative roadblock, a dead friend, a becoming barista, rope trouble, a misplaced pen, a blink bind, and ravenous readers.  

Murder at the Bookstore is available from Amazon*.  I suggest you download a sample so you can judge this new cozy mystery for yourself.  Thank you for joining me today.  I will return on Tuesday, January 24 with Together for the Twins by Laurel Blount.  It is a cute story.  I hope that you have a relaxing weekend.  Take care and Happy Reading!


Kris

The Avid Reader 

*This post contains affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

A Study in Chocolate by Amber Royer

A Study in Chocolate 

About the Book

Felicity Koerber’s bean to bar chocolate shop on Galveston’s historic Strand is expanding, as it has become a gathering spot for the community, despite having been the scene of multiple murders. Artists she met while doing a chocolate sculpture are now working out of the shop. So when Felicity is invited to tea by an eccentric art collector, she’s intrigued, especially when she gets asked to pose for a portrait done with chocolate on chocolate. However, when a murder takes place the next day at the same historic house where the tea was held, one of Felicity’s artist friends becomes the main suspect.
When the killer threatens that, unless Felicity unravels the murder, one of her two love interests will be the next victim, she finds herself unwittingly at the center of a puzzle, with a Sherlock Holmes obsessed murderer who wants to be the next Moriarty – and wants to cast Felicity as Sherlock.

Felicity starts finding unexpected connects between her friends and acquaintances, and has to deal with the idea that someone who knows her is a murderer. At the same time, she has to keep her business running, despite construction dust and unruly customers – and an unexpected order for thousands of truffles.

Satchmo the retired police dog turned therapy dog returns to help her sniff out a few clues, and the kidnapping of Ruffles, the quirky artist’s cat, helps lead Felicity into the puzzle. Can Felicity solve it in time to protect the people she cares about from becoming additional victims?


My Thoughts

A Study in Chocolate by Amber Royer was not an enjoyable story to read.  It is the fifth a Bean to Bar Mystery and I recommend reading the series in order.  There are numerous mentions to the past murders that Felicity helped solve.   My trouble with the story began with the first chapter.  I had trouble with the writing style. The story is told in the first person.  Felicity’s thoughts seemed to tumble around from subject to subject.  The descriptions are detailed (which slows down the pacing).  The mystery was interesting.  The killer seems to be a fan of Sherlock Holmes.  A Study in Scarlet is at the center of the puzzle.  The mystery was higgledly piggledy.  I wish the whodunit had been more of a challenge to solve.  The whodunit can be cracked before the murder takes place.  Felicity also has two love interests (my biggest pet peeve).  She cannot decide between her two beaus.  Felicity told the gentlemen that she will make a choice before her friend’s wedding.  It does not help that both men are going to be groomsmen. 

Felicity with help from her investor has purchased the shop next door.  This will allow customers to view how chocolates are created (the process from start to finish).  I am surprised that a small chocolate shop owner would invest money in such an endeavor.  I could see allowing customers to view the dipping of chocolates or the making of fudge at the front of the shop but not utilizing a whole shop for the purpose.   Especially with the shop being on an island where your income relies on tourists.  My favorite character was Satchmo, the retired police dog who is now a therapy dog.  I did enjoy the lushing descriptions of the chocolates (highlight of the book).  While A Study in Chocolate was not for me, I suggest you download a sample so you can judge it for yourself.  A Study in Chocolate is a molten mystery with a private party, a cat companion, pocketed chocolates, a book clue, a paramour predicament, and a scarlet solution.  

A Study in Chocolate is available from Amazon*.  You can find the other Bean to Bar Mysteries here.  You can follow Amber Royer on Amazon and receive an email when she has a new book release.  Thank you for stopping by today.  I will return tomorrow with Murder at the Bookstore by Sue Minix.  It is the debut of The Bookstore Mysteries.  I wanted to let you know how the toilet seat with rusted bolt turned out.  It helps to have a reciprocating saw in house.  Since nothing would loosen the bolt, I attached a metal blade to the reciprocating saw and went to work.  It was not easy, but I managed to cut the head off the bolt.   I now have a new toilet seat in place that has a slow close lid.  I am glad that my father taught me how to use power tools.  I hope you have a beautiful day.  Take care and Happy Reading!

Kris

The Avid Reader 

*This post contains affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

The Courtship Plan by Kathleen Fuller

 The Courtship Plan


Book Summary

Finding a husband is serious business. And serious business requires serious planning.

Charity Raber is one of many single women who came to Birch Creek, Ohio, with one goal in mind: secure a husband from among the desperate bachelors a newspaper advertisement claimed inhabited the town. Even though that claim proved to be nothing more than a cruel prank, Charity is still hopeful that her happy ending might be within reach when she’s set up on a date with Jesse Bontrager. That is until Jesse not-so-gently shares that he has no interest in a relationship with anyone—and especially not with her.

One year later, Charity is working as a caretaker for a kind, elderly English woman in the nearby town of Marigold. She’s also working hard on a brand-new courtship plan. A plan that absolutely does not involve Jesse Bontrager. But when he moves next door and is made aware of her scheming, Charity vows to prove that her plan is foolproof. Meanwhile, Jesse is sure she’ll make a fool of herself. And for some reason he’s not willing to let that happen.

This stubborn bachelor and determined bachelorette will soon learn that their plans rarely work out as expected—but God’s plans always will.

My Thoughts

The Courtship Plan by Kathleen Fuller is a cute story.  Charity Raber arrives in Birth Creek, Ohio with one goal in mind—to find a husband.  Charity’s critical stepmother showed her an ad stating that bachelor’s in the town were looking for wives and then she pushed her out the door.  Unfortunately, Charity has no success in finding a suitor.  Her hopes rise when she is set up on a lunch date with Jesse Bontrager.  It turned out to be nothing more than a cruel prank.  A year later, Charity is serving as a companion to a kind English woman near Marigold.  Charity still wishes to marry and has come up with a courtship plan.  Jesse takes a new job and moves in next door to Charity.  Jesse learns of Charity’s plan.  He is afraid that Charity will end up making a fool of herself.   Jesse has gotten to know Charity and he does not want to see her feelings hurt.  

I laughed often while reading The Courtship Plan.  The author created great characters.  I enjoyed getting to know Jesse, Charity, and Shirley Pearson.  Shirley is the older woman who is Charity’s employer.  I loved Monroe, Shirley’s dog.  I believe Monroe was Houdini in a previous life.  Monroe’s antics had me chuckling.  Charity is quirky character.  Her mouth had no filter.  Charity has a big heart.  She is aware of her failings thanks to her disparaging stepmother.  Jesse is a kindhearted man.  He is looking forward to peace and quiet in his new home (he comes from a large, noisy family).  Jesse did not count on the gregarious Charity or an escape artist dog.  The romance moved along at a gentle pace which suited the story and characters.  The faith elements include forgiveness, prayer, God’s plan for our lives, and God’s timing.  There is a good life lesson in this story.  The importance of taking responsibility for our actions and making things right (no matter how much time has passed).  I enjoyed the first An Amish of Marigold Novel, and I am looking forward to the next book in the series.  The Courtship Plan is an entertaining tale with an upsetting prank, a foolproof plan, an escapee pooch, a convivial family, and a gentle God.

The Courtship Plan is available from Amazon*.  Two to Tango is Kathleen Fuller's next release.  It is fourth A Maple Falls Romance and it will publish on July 11.  Readers can follow Kathleen Fuller on Amazon to receive an email when she has a new book coming out.  Thank you for joining me today.  Tomorrow I will share my thoughts on A Study in Chocolate by Amber Royer.  It is the fifth Bean to Bar Mystery.  I am off to battle a bolt and nut.  All I want to do is replace the old toilet seat.  Unfortunately, the nut is rusted in place.  I have tried dish soap and WD40.  I followed several suggestions I found online, but the nut has stayed in place.  The only option left is to cut the bolt off.   I tried to use the cutting wheel on the Dremel, and I ended up with two broken cutting wheels. It is time to bring out the big guns.  Wish me luck!  I hope that you have an uplifting day.  Take care and Happy Reading!

Kris

The Avid Reader 

*This post contains affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Critical Threat by Lynette Eason

 Critical Threat
Book Summary

FBI Special Agent Grace Billingsley tracks serial killers, using her skills as a psychiatrist and behavioral analyst to get dangerous people off the street and safely behind bars. But prison psychiatrist Sam Monroe knows that just because a killer is incarcerated doesn't mean they're not a threat. His own father, Peter, is a serial killer--in prison but certainly not out of Sam's life, as much as he wishes he was.

When bodies start showing up with Peter's MO, Sam and Grace are both called in to consult. They've met before--and though Grace thought they'd made a real connection, Sam ghosted her. They'll have to get past the awkwardness and mistrust to solve this case--especially because it's about to get personal.

USA Today bestselling author Lynette Eason doesn't give you time to catch your breath in this breakneck race to stop a serial killer.

My Thoughts

Critical Threat by Lynette Eason is the third book in the Extreme Measures series.  It can be read as a standalone.  There are references to the characters from first two books in the Extreme Measures series.  It can be a little confusing if you have not read those books.  I found Critical Threat to be a slow starter.  The pacing does pick up later in the book.  The characters are realistic.  We get to know Grace Billingsley and Sam Monroe.  I like that they are not law enforcement officers.  We get a different perspective.  Grace is a behavioral analyst (like the characters on Criminal Minds) and Sam is prison psychiatrist.  It was interesting learning about their professions.  I did not enjoy the drama in Grace and Sam’s lives.  I felt it was a bit much.  Grace has a brother who is an addict.  Grace’s family blames her for getting him addicted.  Sam has two kids and an ex-wife.   I could have done without the ex-wife drama.  Sam is also the son of a serial killer.  

The crimes were interesting.  There is graphic detail (the victims’ tongues are cut out).  I wish the mystery had not been so easy to solve (I wanted it to be challenging).  Some details do not seem realistic.  I am amazed at how often the killer was able to get close to Grace despite an alarm system and a security detail.  Plus, Grace is an FBI agent.  If she is as good as she claims, Grace should have picked up on him tailing her or being nearby.  The ending was fast paced.  There is romance interspersed with finding dead women and threats from the killer.  The romance progresses slowly.  I wish I had felt chemistry between Sam and Grace.  It felt like they were close friends instead of two people falling in love.  The Christian element is light.  Sam and Grace are Christians.  They talk about how they came to be Christians and there is prayer.  The point of view alternates between Grace, Sam, and the killer.  With the alternating POV, there are repetitive details especially with the Grace related incidents.  I would have enjoyed the story more if the pacing in the beginning had been snappier and there was less repetition.  Critical Threat will slay you with the son of a serial killer, an enraged inmate, a chancy killer, observant behaviorist, a teen wanting a telephone, and a terrible threat.  

Critical Threat is available from Amazon*.  The first two books in the Extreme Measures series are Life Flight and CrossfireCountdown is the fourth book, and it will be out on August 1, 2023.  You can follow Lynette Eason on Amazon and you will receive an email when she has a new book release. I appreciate you stopping by today.  I hope that you have a delightful weekend.  I will return on January 17 with The Courtship Plan by Kathleen Fuller.  It is the first An Amish of Marigold Novel.  Take care and Happy Reading!


Kris

The Avid Reader 

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