The Cakes of Monte Cristo

Rita Lucero will find a hidden necklace that was located in the bakery thanks to a new employee. She will be delighted with the find but as she learns more about the necklace Rita wonders if it is indeed cursed.

The Cakes of Monte Cristo is the sixth book to the series A Piece of Cake Mystery by Jacklyn Brady. I really liked this book, I got into the story right away. The mystery of the ruby necklace intrigued me. You wondered what family it truly belonged to and why was it hidden.

Rita is still stressed and jumping to conclusions but she seems a little less stressed. Though she is as curious as ever and stubborn as she does not believe everyone’s warning about the necklace. To be honest I don’t know if I would believe but I would be wary. I was happy that Miss Frankie wasn’t so overbearing with things she was having Rita complete. It seemed their relationship was back on track. Rita is still wondering about Ox and his resentment. It really seems that he doesn’t have any but Ox is not what you call a people person.

If this series is finished then I am happy for the most part, but there was no conclusion on to who Rita will be with and that bugs me. Jacklyn Brady is leaving it open. Although maybe this isn’t the end, if it isn’t I think I would be willing to continue reading it.

Rebel Without a Cake

Rita Lucero was preparing for Halloween when she will get an offer to make the cakes for one of the biggest events that they would get. Rita will be determined to make things work but when she helps Bernice with a supposed ghost problem things will quickly get out of hand. Rita will also discover some secrets were better left unheard.

Rebel Without a Cake is the fifth book to the series A Piece of Cake Mystery by Jacklyn Brady. I liked the book but out of the series for me this just didn’t draw me in like the others.

Rita’s character is handling a lot and it seems she is crankier than ever in this book. At this point I hope that she gets a vacation so she can just relax. I also hope that she had an actual conversation with Miss Frankie about not just signing her up for task without asking. It was done in the book but not in the right way. I don’t dislike Miss Frankie but she can be a bulldozer in the conversation. I want them to have a true partnership in the business and a relationship where one is not dominating the other.

Within this series there has been Edie who was full of annoyance with Rita but they have gotten close and I now really love Edie. She is a pain in the butt but you now know that is just Edie. Though she does have a sweet side and concerns about the others in the shop. I hope that Jacklyn Brady continues with Edie keeping hold of River. She needs someone at her side to care about her as well.

I am reading the sixth book next which looks to be the last of the series.

The Cakes of Wrath

Rita Lucero will be forced to go to a community meeting as she has a temporary seat on the board. Things will start to escalate when Rita will be almost hit by a van. Rita will start to wonder if the van was meant for her or someone else, especially when Destiny will be found dead a couple days later.

The Cakes of Wrath is the fourth book to the series A Piece of Cake Mystery by Jacklyn Brady. I enjoyed the book. Although at times I wish that Rita was not so curious because it is getting to the point of unbelievable. With all that she had gone through you would think that she would try and avoid situations that had a dead body. Though without her curious nature the book would not be the same.

I thought it was interesting getting the community together in this book. You got to know a lot more characters and understand the town a little better. I thought it added to the mystery of Destiny’s murder. There were a lot more suspects to wonder about.

I was a little disappointed that Sullivan was not in the picture. Gabriel is the main guy and I wonder if he will be with Rita. For some reason I just don’t like him and hope at the end of the series she is with Sullivan.

The characters that were driving me crazy and they were supposed to were Detective Winslow and Pearl, and even Miss Frankie. The detective was going after Rita and it really sounded like he had a grudge against her which I am not sure why he did. Pearl was just immature. She always seemed to get her own way and not worry about anything. Then there is Miss Frankie, she getting to the point of overbearing with doing things she thinks she could do without asking others their opinion.

Even with the dislike of some of the characters I am reading the fifth book next.

Arsenic and Old Cake

The last thing Rita Lucero wanted to do was go to an inn and spy but she was doing it for a friend. Rita and Gabriel will pose as a couple on their honeymoon to try and find out if their friends long lost brother had really surfaced. The situation will get tricky when a murder happens to one of the residents.

Arsenic and Old Cake is the third book from the series A Piece of Cake Mystery by Jacklyn Brady. I thought the book was entertaining but it was not my favorite of the series. I found it a little ridicules with the residents but they were hiding a secret. I will have to say the secret was good as I didn’t guess it, but knew they were hiding something that much was obvious.

Rita’s character is reluctant to help but because she is backed in a corner she will do so. Rita gets backed into a corner a lot. Though she will go all in when her curiosity takes hold. She is relentless when it comes to solving a mystery.

The one thing that is consistent with bugging me is the relationship that Rita has with Liam and Gabriel. I just want her to chose which man she wants. I personally like Liam better. I just hope a decision will be made at one point in the series.

I am reading The Cakes of Wrath next.

Cake on a Hot Tin Roof

Rita Lucero did not want to host the Mardi Gras party but was forced into the role. She will work hard to make the party a success but when one of the guest winds up dead a whole lot of trouble starts for Rita’s family.

Cake on a Hot Tin Roof is the second book to the series A Piece of Cake Mystery by Jacklyn Brady. I am really enjoying this series. It actually surprised me because of my lack of interest with mystery’s. Although to be fair this is definitely not a very serious mystery, this is what is considered a cozy mystery. It was fast paced and it kept me interested.

Rita’s character is out of her element with the amount of work to do. Although she is ready for that hard work. Personally she needs to take a break and chill out for a moment but that would be unlikely to happen. With the investigation Rita stays close to it as her family could be in trouble. I liked her tenacious attitude with the investigation but she was too head strong and acted first then thought.

The investigation was interesting as she did her own interviewing of the bystanders. I was wondering who had done it without too much success with guessing the right person. The main police officer was Liam Sullivan who had been introduced in the first book. Now as a romance reader I am always looking to see who will become attached. Liam definitely has a shot and then there is Gabriel the bartender. Only time will tell if Rita’s character will become more than interested in one of them. I just don’t want the whole love triangle thing happening. It gets annoying and I lose interested.

With each story I am also learning more about the staff and I have to say I am not too impressed by them. They are clearly resentful of Rita for invading their territory. Though I have noticed that some of the ice has thawed and they are warming up to her.

I decided to continue with this series and will be reading Arsenic and Old Cake next.

A Sheetcake Named Desire

Rita Lucero was at her ex’s, Phillippe Renier, bakery to finally get him to sign the divorce papers but she will quickly find that would be impossible. Phillippe was found dead with a chef’s knife in the chest at his bakery. Rita will have to find out who would want to kill her ex which will be difficult when everyone was hiding something.

A Sheetcake Named Desire is the first book to the series A Piece of Cake Mystery by Jacklyn Brady. I am trying another mystery and I have to say I really enjoyed this story. I just sat down and read. It was quick and fun and full of mystery that was kind of quirky.

Rita’s character was a pastry chef who had her own business but her life is interrupted with the abrupt departure of her husband. I liked that Rita was an amateur sleuth and she wasn’t always right. In fact she was letting her emotions get in the way at times when she was trying to solve her ex’s murder.

With mystery books I love trying to guess who had killed whomever. With certain mystery’s I can guess pretty easily. For this book I was guessing throughout the book and was not guessing right on the actual murderer. I will say that my suspicions on other parts of the book I was guessing right, at least to a point. I liked that the book had me actually thinking and coming up with questions as I was reading the book.

I will definitely be coming back to this series. I am curious to read how Rita’s life will be changed and what other murders will happen. Also if there will be anything happening with the bartender or the detective. The romance reader is always looking for some romance in the book. I don’t know if that will happen and even if it doesn’t I have a feeling I will like this series.

Grace Under Pressure

Grace Wheaton was the assistant curator to the Marshfield Manor but that will quickly change when the curator will be shot dead in the manor. Grace will work with the police to find out who was behind the shooting and if he was the real target.

Grace Under Pressure is the first book of the series Manor House Mystery by Julie Hyzy. I have been searching for mysteries to read. I am trying to broaden my range of books other than romance. I came across this cozy mystery and I have to say it hooked me in right away. It dragged a little for me in the middle but I was all in with this mystery.

Grace’s character was a woman who was very much into procedures and she wanted to prove that she could do a good job. In other words Grace was good in a tricky situation. I liked her role in the book, she was almost a private investigator but she had to be with the incompetent police. The other side characters were intriguing. There was Bennett who owned the manor and Frances who was the long time administrative assistant. These two characters will no doubt be in the other books. Then there was Jack Embers who is the mysterious gardener. His presence in the book was also intriguing because his family had founded the town. There is not a lot with Jack in the book but I look forward to knowing more about him.

There was a good twist that I didn’t see coming which I thought was interesting. The twist wouldn’t be resolved in the first book and I feel it is going to be a question mark until there is solid proof.

One thing that I didn’t feel was needed was Liza’s part, Grace’s sister. Liza isn’t mentioned much but you know she is flighty and selfish. Spoiler alert she married Grace’s ex. That part was two lines, not much to go one but I looked at the summary’s for the other books and it looks like Liza will be in those stories causing trouble. So I guess Julie Hyzy was setting up Liza’s character for future story lines.

I am definitely going to check out the second book to the series. Hopefully it will be as good as the first, if not better. I am not always one for a series with the same main character because it can get stale pretty fast. Although with Grace she was pretty entertaining to read.

Death, Taxes and Sweet Potato Fries

I don’t normally check out just any book. I usually like to do some research on what the book is about and if it is part of a series. Well I guess I am looking for a change because I had gone to my library and just browsed the new fiction. The book Death, Taxes and Sweet Potato Fries immediately caught my attention. I am an accountant so I was immediately intrigued with a book with the word taxes in the title.

IRS Special Agent Tara Holloway is given a new case with the coyotes which will lead her to her ex-boyfriend’s company, who could be part of the situation. Tara will have to find the missing girls before the coyotes could get away with human trafficking and she will get some help from her team and fiance, Nick.

Death, Taxes and Sweet Potato Fries is the eleventh book to the series by Diane Kelly. I knew immediately as I started the book that it was a story already in progress but it did not stop me from enjoying the book. This was quirky and a little out there but overall enjoyable.

Tara’s character is a woman who can do what she wanted. She didn’t need to be assisted by a man but she will give in every once in awhile to the man she loves. I liked that Tara was a take charge but that can often get someone in trouble. I liked the relationship she had with Nick. It was stable and you knew that Nick would be sticking around. He also balanced Tara’s character.

I am not sure that I will read the entire series even though I found this one to be entertaining. I will look into the series and see what other cases that Tara has to solve.

 

Whispers At Midnight

Whispers at MidnightCarly Linton was back in her the home where she moved to when she was a little kid. With the help of her friend they were opening a bed and breakfast for the town but a burglar will make things difficult for them. Carly will soon find out that the burglar was after her.

Matt Converse was sheriff in the small town. He had many responsibilities which included protecting his town, his sisters and now the woman that he had known twelve years ago. Matt will make it his mission to protect Carly and find the person who was after her.

Whispers at Midnight is a novel by Karen Robards. First off loved this book. I was pulled into the plot and could not put it down. I started this book right after dinner and did not stop reading until I reached the last page. There was a desire to find out the person who was after Carly and who killed those other two woman.

Matt is an interesting character. He is the sheriff and a big brother so he is over protective but he is sometimes a little too obtuse. Carly was a girl in love with the bad boy and was heartbroken. She gets the chance at heartbreak again when she lets him in. Together they had a certain sarcasm which played out between them. It was their way of talking it seemed but it fit as they were both too afraid to take that next step. They will get it right, it just takes some danger, a little jealousy and some honesty.

Alright the mystery of the man was not obvious when I was reading it. At first I kept thinking who would be after Carly and how were they connected. Well you find out it was the institution where children lived when they had nowhere else to go. That was the obvious connection but the thought of what happened stayed with me. I kept thinking about what could have happened and I didn’t really have a clue that is until the mystery was solved. I was shocked with what happened, it was pretty disturbing. Robards writes out those surprises well and it will keep you on your toes throughout the story.

The Husbands Secret

The Husband's SecretCecilia Fitzpatrick finds a letter written by her husband that is only to be opened if he had died. Cecilia is obviously curious and her husband will become frantic with the mention of the letter. Cecilia will open the letter as she will wonder what her husband is trying to hide which unfolds a mystery and will change several lives.

The Husband’s Secret is a novel by Liane Moriarty. I was recommended this book by my book club and I thought I would give it a chance. I was certainly intrigued with these three women, Cecilia, Tess and Rachael. Their stories are separated by chapters but throughout the book they will blend together as they are interacting with each other within the book.

I liked how Moriarty wrote the storyline with these three women and how they are connected someway to each other in the circumstances of Janie’s, Rachael’s daughter, who was killed years ago. Now there was some pretty horrible things that were written in this book with what happened to some of the characters like what Cecilia found out in her husbands letter or the despair Rachael was feeling since her daughters death. For me though I was drawn towards Tess and her problem with her husband and cousin. I felt bad for her and wanted her to find a way to be happy again. She finds it with Connor who was connected to Janie as a potential boyfriend back in the day and was the prime suspect in her murder. I liked Connor so I was hoping he wasn’t the killer.

I thought Moriarty built up the scene well when the true killer was revealed. I wasn’t expecting the person to be the killer but it made sense and the book just takes off from there as the characters who were living in ignorance were now driven with guilt. The need to tell the truth is great for some while others just want to bury the truth, but the truth never stays buried forever.

In the end the secrets were mostly out and people have moved on but the guilt of certain things were still there. Moriarty ended the last chapter and how she explained that the characters will never know certain facts about how their lives would have been impacted if they did go to an appointment or hear a person shout out to them. So for me the ending I wasn’t sure how I felt about the ending. It was a good ending to the book but it wasn’t the happy ending that you would normally like. Of course this is not a cheerful book.