Tag Archive: mystery



A Ghoulish Midlife (Witching After Forty, #1)A Ghoulish Midlife by Lia Davis
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I needed a light read. This did the trick. Though it had scary topics, it was all tongue-in-cheek fun.
Coleen Marlo, the narrator, was fun to listen to, although her males sounded hoarse and hard to distinguish from each other.

This is a story for you if you like witchy stories with humor. It is a fast read; I think I read it in one night. It’s weird that I still call listening to a book ‘reading.’ But it goes in my head as if my eyes were on it. I like Audible because I don’t have to have the light on to read. I like how narrators can pronounce words that might not be common in my world. And in this case, Coleen giggled or nearly shouted at the appropriate moments, keeping me interested the whole time.

Sadly, I am not in the mood to reach out for the next book. I think it was the googly, girlie attitude toward the handsome man. I hate that stuff. Not romantic. Just small-minded reasons to do things. I like stronger, smarter characters.

Still, like I said before, it was a quick, fun read.

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The Bookshop of YesterdaysThe Bookshop of Yesterdays by Amy Meyerson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ann Marie Gideon (Narrator) kept this book real. It was an enjoyable read. No great romance to mess up the story, but there are a couple in there as the main character, Miranda, tries to figure out her life. In the tags, it is listed as a mystery, but it isn’t a murder mystery. It is more about Miranda’s questions about life.

I love this kind of book. It is lightweight enough to keep me sane, yet there is enough story to keep my interest.

And it is a book about books.

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Eric Conger was the narrator of this audiobook from the Libby library app. For the most part, he was good. But when it came to acting the female parts, not so much. Male voices tend to demean women, it seems.

To the author’s credit, there were smart women and women of power in the mix of scientists, politicians, and the like. It just didn’t come across that way through the narrator.

Once past that issue, which may not show up in the written version, the story was riveting. What was that spacecraft nearing Saturn? What would the aliens look or act like? And what if the Chinese ship gets there before the USA?

John Sanford’s research is obvious. You don’t feel the magic happening. You see commonsense answers explored. And as the reader, you feel part of the team looking for answers. And the more I read, and listened, the more I wanted to know.

The end of the book is my favorite part, the science explored while writing the fiction. I highly recommend sticking around to read, and listen, to this part.

I will try to find the Kindle version and listen to text-to-speech. I want to read this again!


Relatively Normal Secrets (The Falinnheim Chronicles, #1)Relatively Normal Secrets by C.W. Allen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Want a little reprieve from the heavier material you’ve been reading lately? This is the book. It is so much fun and a quick read. After all, it is a chapter book for middle grades. But I don’t quite know how to intrigue you without giving spoilers. Here is the blurb, even it has spoilers I wouldn’t have included.

“Tuesday and Zed Furst are perfectly normal children with perfectly strange parents. Their father won’t discuss his job, their mother never leaves the house without her guard dog, and the topic of the family tree is off limits.

When a last minute “business trip” gets the adults out of the way, Zed and Tuesday decide to get to the bottom of things once and for all. Too bad some thugs with shape-shifting weapons have other ideas. Their escape leaves them trapped in the modern-meets-medieval Falinnheim, where everyone insists their father is a disgraced fugitive. They hope whoever is leaving them coded clues may have some answers, but they’re not sure they’re going to like what they learn.

If they ever want to see their parents again, they’ll need the help of a smuggler with a broken compass, their unusually talented dog, some extremely organized bandits, and a selection of suspiciously misquoted nursery rhymes.

Zed and Tuesday may not have all the answers, but one thing is certain: when it comes to normal, everything is relative.”

Add to the adventure the great narration by Ivy Tara Blair in this Audible version, and you will be in a place of pure enjoyment.

I don’t remember how I heard about these books, but I am already reading the second. I love the characters and how they go about solving the mysteries around them.

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Remarkably Bright CreaturesRemarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

OH, I needed that! What a fun little book!

A seventy-year-old main character? Finally!

A chance to see life from the octopus’s point of view? Yes!

I was lucky to listen to this book on a Libby audiobook. The voices are fantastic!

Marin Ireland (Narrator),  Michael Urie (Narrator),

Especially octopus’s pompous voice.

I don’t want to give any of it away. Just dive in and enjoy!

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Ape HouseApe House by Sara Gruen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a fun book. I was able to pick it up on Libby as an audiobook. The story was great. Paul Boehmer (Narrator) was not the best. The only difference in characters was the Russian prostitute. The other women sounded foolish. All the men sounded the same. That caused me, the listener, to miss who was talking.

I enjoyed the bits about the monkeys and thinking about how much we could learn from other species if we could meet with some language. I thought the author showed the mentality of both humans and apes.

If you get the chance, I recommend this read. I think the psychology and philosophies brought up are interesting to ponder.

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Per Linda:

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “key.” Use it as a noun, a verb, or use it metaphorically. Have fun!

“Key!” she shouted. It made no sense to me. What key? What did I need a key for?

She was pointing down toward the table in the mud room. There was a key. But why did she shout? What am I supposed to use it for? I barely had the time to think. A huge man was behind my mom. Suddenly she was tumbling down the stairs. It took me no time to realize she was dead. Her neck bent sideways at a ninety-degree angle.

Without another thought, I took the key and ran to the car. Luckily, those keys were in my pocket. I wasted no time getting out of town. This seemed an impossible mission. But we’d had so many break-ins at home and work that I knew it had something to do with me. In that sense, I was a key. People were being killed. People I loved.

An old motel just out of town offered me the respite I needed. While sitting at the old bed, hoping the bed bugs would be kind, I looked at the key. Not house, not car, bank? Why me?

These questions would have to wait. A strange sound came from the bathroom. A toy wind-up monkey?

end of stream

Working Stiff: Two Years, 262 Bodies, and the Making of a Medical ExaminerWorking Stiff: Two Years, 262 Bodies, and the Making of a Medical Examiner by Judy Melinek
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

First of all, don’t read this book before going to sleep. Or you won’t, especially from the part about 9/11 on. Still, it is such an engaging read. And the narrator, Tanya Eby, made the book lively, even though much of it is about death.

If Grey’s Anatomy has taught me anything about the life of a potential surgeon, it is the lack of sleep and how dangerous that lack can be for the doctor and the patient. It is that lack of sleep and trying to be a young mother that the author, Judy Melinek, realized she needed a different path, even though this path was nearly finished for the author. But all that training did lead her to be a Medical Examiner in New York.

We Americans hide from sex and death. We can talk of taxes until the cows come home. But of the two topics, death seems the least discussed. And that is too bad. We need to know about that part of life for ourselves and our loved ones.

If you are a writer, this book can be quite the reference. I can see many ways the book can be used to write a mystery or lend credence to a fatality in the novel.

I highly recommend this book, especially in audio form. I was lucky to pick it up from the library on Libby.

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A Plague of ZombiesA Plague of Zombies by Diana Gabaldon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I am going to give this another listen later. I feel I lost something or that it ended far too soon.

I love reading about Lord John. His sense of morality, committed to doing the right thing, propels him more than other men you might read about. He cares deeply and wants to save lives and hearts/

The narrator isn’t as fun as Davina Porter and I think she could have done this book. But Jeff Woodman does a good job keeping the story going.

If you are on an Outlander binge you can’t quit, here is one to help give you your fix.

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State of TerrorState of Terror by Hillary Rodham Clinton
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Yikes! This book was so suspenseful I couldn’t get a good night’s sleep until I finished. And even then, it is so easily probable it may prevent sleep for the next decade.

Joan Allen, the narrator, made the story come alive. I think the mixture of a great thriller writer and someone who had been in politics gave the story believability.

I picked up this copy on Libby, the library audio app. I highly recommend this book.

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