Michigan Winters…

…The gift that won’t stop giving.

But I really, really wish it would 😦 Schools and businesses were closed all last week; beginning the Friday before. 6 days off from school for my daughter. A half day Monday and Tuesday, and school closed again today because of the ice storm we got overnight. And the second ice storm is coming tonight. So no school again tomorrow. I am just hoping I can make it to work Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I need to keep these vacation days for warmer weather!

Are you stuck somewhere getting hit with the Polar Vortex and now the second storm? How are you keeping the family from getting cabin fever?

The Begonia Bribe – Alyse Carlson

Book 2 in the Garden Society Mystery series.

the begonia bribe cover image

This was a great follow-up to The Azalea Assault. Cam (Camellia) Harris is now tasked with managing the Little Miss Begonia Pageant being held in one of Roanoke’s nicest parks. Cam runs into one of her least favorite people from high school, Mindy, and Cam’s best friend Annie likes her even less. Cam never expected she would get so wrapped up into Mindy’s personal life, but there she is, right in the middle.

Cam once again gets her reporter boyfriend Rob, as well as Annie, caught up in a murder investigation. Annie’s boyfriend, and Rob’s best friend Jake, Police officer in Roanoke, keeps trying his best to get Cam to mind her own business. Cam just seems to always be one step ahead of him.

There are many characters intertwined in this story, from past and present, and again you do not see it coming. The storyline is great, and the characters are well rounded and you really feel for them. Can Cam figure out who the murderer is before more lives are ruined?

I am looking for some new cozy series to read while Michigan is officially closed, so let me know your favorites!

The Azalea Assault – Alyse Carlson

This is the first of three cozy mysteries in the Garden Society Mystery series. As the 3rd one was written in 2014, I do not expect there to be others. Truly a shame ☹

the azalea assault cover image

Cam Harris is the PR person for the Roanoke Garden Society, and gardening has never been more dangerous. When the nationally celebrated Garden Delights magazine agrees to come to Roanoke to feature Roanoke’s best gardens, Cam is tasked with making sure everything goes off without a hitch.

With the help of her best friend Annie, and her boyfriend Rob, she soon finds herself in the middle of a bunch of suspects who had motive to kill the star photographer. Now she not only needs to find another photographer, she also needs to keep her sister Petunia and brother-in-law Nick on the right side of the law, as they soon become the main suspects.

There are a lot of characters wrapped up in this book, but they all have their place in the story, and it flows smoothly from one chapter to the next. If you have read many cozies (such as I have), you sometimes can see what is coming next. This story keeps you guessing to the end.

There are descriptions of many different plants, but not much on the side of actual gardening tips (which I wasn’t expecting).

Here in Michigan right now we are wrapped in the middle of a polar vortex, and literally the whole state is shut down. Which means I took tomorrow off from work, so I have plenty of time to finish book three, write review number two, and do some writing for my own cozy mystery book number 1!

You can learn more about Alyse here: Alyse Carlson – Penguin Random House

Are you trapped inside too? What are you reading to get you by?

Hoping for a Library Trip…

… well, hoping my oldest runs to the library for me while she is spending the weekend with me. I wonder if there is a limit on how many books can be checked out? I’ve been continuing the Nancy Drew series and I can literally read 4 or 5 of those a day if that is all I was reading. But I do have other things to read as well 😊

As far as I know my surgery went well. The surgeon didn’t come and see me at all yesterday after I got back to my room. I have been here all alone as well so I don’t even know how long the surgery took. They had to put a metal plate and screws in as I broke 3 different ankle bones. I definitely have a long and painful road ahead of me.

My oldest daughter will be picking me up today and spending the weekend with me, so I’m a happy girl about that.

Trying to not stress about the fact that I have no idea what I am going to do Monday when she is back home and my 13 year old has school all morning and afternoon.

Real Murders (Don’t Panic! It’s A Book)

My latest read I started, I have read it before, but am definitely happy to be reading this one again, and will be getting all of the books in this series. Not too many things make me happier than going to Barnes and Noble!

Title: Real Murders – An Aurora Teagarden Mystery

Author: Charlaine Harris

Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime: New York

The 1st book in the Aurora Teagarden Mystery series
The 1st book in the Aurora Teagarden Mystery series

Main Character: Aurora Teagarden; 4’11” tall, big, round tortoise rimmed glasses, and was lucky enough to fulfill her childhood dream of becoming a librarian (Oh, I wish!!)

Aurora, affectionately called Roe by those near and dear to her, is one of 12 members of a club known as “The Real Murders Club”. They meet once a month to discuss murder cases. Each person gets one month a year, and they bring in guest speakers, such as a detective that worked on the case, news reporter,  or a family member.

By the time I reached chapter 3, we already had our 1st dead body. Mamie Wright, a fellow member of the Real Murders Club, is dead in the kitchen of the VFW hall where they have their monthly meetings. Found by none other than Aurora.

I will introduce you to the rest of the residents as they become more important to the story.

It has been so long since I have read this story that I really do not remember what happens, or what the body count might be by the time I make it to the end. I think I will have plenty of time to read today since the second round of Michigan blizzard is set to hit around noon.

Are you going to get some reading done this weekend?