Monday, December 20, 2021

Holiday Magic at the Disney Parks

 This was a perfect read for me at this time of the year. The only downside was it made me want to go to the Disney parks RIGHT NOW.  The photographs and the stories do a phenomenal job of talking about and showing how the holidays are celebrated currently and in the past at the different parks around the world.  They discuss the different paths the decorations and events have taken and the pictures are absolutely amazing.  

Any Disney lover will find themselves smiling non-stop as they read this book.  


Holiday Magic at the Disney Parks: Celebrations Around the World from Fall to WinterHoliday Magic at the Disney Parks: Celebrations Around the World from Fall to Winter by Rebecca Cline
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

wonderful photography that will make any Disney lover smile. This book focuses on the history and photo journalism of the fall and winter holidays as they are celebrated around the world. The photography is wonderful and the reader truly gets a sense of the magic and the stories behind making the different holidays shine in the parks

View all my reviews


Challenge Prompts

The Challenge Prompts I will use this for are:  


  1. Library Love  #LibraryLoveChallenge  Book #134
  2. Beat the Backlist #BTB2021  #34 a book with illustrations
  3. Virtual Mount TBR #VirtualMountTBR2021   Book #147
  4. Back List Reader  #Backlistreader  Book #162
  5. Non Fiction Reader  #2021ReadNonFic  #7 hobbies
  6. Pick your Poison #22-3 A book you'd share with your child 
  7. Book Voyage  #bookvoyagechallenge spanning multiple continents


Sunday, December 19, 2021

Killer, Paper, Cut

 Kiki Lowenstein #9 by Joann Campbell Slan is the next book in the series.  A Halloween fundraising crop, straightforward if not a lot of work.  That is until Kiki's employee gets stabbed during the event.   The case brings out lots of secrets and underlying bigotry.  The book is great at highlighting not everything is as it seems with people and often we think they have it easier than they do.  In general, Kiki is a trusting individual so she is shocked by the way others have kept secrets and how mean they are to people.  She finds herself trying to solve the mystery of the attack on her friend all while trying to prepare for a move and help her son adjust to his new surroundings, oh yeah and deal with morning sickness at 7 months pregnant.  If it sounds a bit overwhelming, it is.  

Kiki's fiancee, Chad Dettweiler, tells her she has a hobby besides scrapbooking and that's worrying.  I definitely found myself relating to this side of her personality in addition to her love for scrapbooking.  I really liked that the store and hobby played a bigger role in this book than they had in the past 2 books.  I also found myself rooting for Kiki to finally find some quiet and easiness in her life.  Just in case you thought things would go better, drama ensues. We are left with a cliffhanger for the next book which left me ready to start the next one even though I have plenty on my list I need to finish first.  


Killer, Paper, CutKiller, Paper, Cut by Joanna Campbell Slan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

another enjoyable book that shows Kiki and her family growing literally and figuratively. It seems like Kiki just cannot catch a break as this time she and her family are facing an imminent move and she finds herself searching for answers to the attack on her employee, Lauren. In this book new relationships develop and old ones come under scrutiny. The ending leaves the reader hanging and wanting to read the next book in the series.

View all my reviews



Challenge Prompts

The Challenge Prompts I will use this for are:  


  1. Finishing the Series   #FinishingTheSeries2021  Kiki Lowenstein #8
  2. Virtual Mount TBR #VirtualMountTBR2021   Book #148
  3. Back List Reader  #Backlistreader  Book #163
  4. Calendar of Crime  #CalendarOfCrime2021   
  5. Cruisin thru Cozies  Free choice #101
  6. Cloak & Dagger  #CloakDaggerChal  Book #138
  7. Craving for Cozies  Book #119
  8. PopSugar #popsugarreadingchallenge50. A free book from your TBR list (gifted, borrowed, library) 
  9. Pick your Poison #3-4 A book about a haunted house 
  10. Six Shooter Challenge  Target #7  Shot #4

Saturday, December 18, 2021

Group Photo Grave

 This is the next installment in the Kiki Lowenstein series by Joann Cambell Slan.  This one does get back to the roots of including the paper crafting and personnel of Time in a Bottle.  Kiki once again is trying to assist family members in clearing their names for a murder they didn't commit.  This story highlights more of Sheila's, Kiki's ex mother in law, past and relationships. Sheila and Kiki have an interesting relationship that has developed and expanded through the series.   In this book we see more of Sheila's relationship with Robbie and some of his past as well.  His professional life is brought up more in this book especially the political side of being Chief of Police.  There is plenty of drama to go around in addition to the solving of a murder.  All in all another good installment in the series.


Group, Photo, GraveGroup, Photo, Grave by Joanna Campbell Slan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This wedding does not turn out the way Kiki's mother in law, Sheila, intended it to. Despite a rough scene in the middle of the day, the reception finishes and she expects to leave on her dream cruise for her honeymoon with Robbie. Instead, they find themselves caught up in a politically motivated investigation that drags Sheila into the middle of the drama. This book develops Sheila and her history into the story more as we learn more about her HS days. She and her bridesmaids all went to CALA the same school Kiki's daughter, Anya, now attends. It seems that HS drama was not left in the past and someone seems to want to frame Kiki's family for the murder of a Plastic Surgeon. Kiki and Dettweiler attempt to help solve the murder while being forbidden to get involved publicly. As always Kiki gets drawn in and helps uncover the murderer. Another great installment in the series

View all my reviews


Challenge Prompts

The Challenge Prompts I will use this for are:  


  1. Finishing the Series   #FinishingTheSeries2021 yes book 8 in Kiki Lowenstein series
  2. Virtual Mount TBR #VirtualMountTBR2021   Book #147
  3. Back List Reader  #Backlistreader  Book #162
  4. Calendar of Crime  #CalendarOfCrime2021   
  5. Cruisin thru Cozies  Free choice #100
  6. Cloak & Dagger  #CloakDaggerChal  Book #137
  7. Craving for Cozies  Book #118
  8. PopSugar #popsugarreadingchallenge #47 A book from your TBR list you associate with a favorite person, place, or thing
  9. Pick your Poison #7-1 A book with a kilt on the cover - character wears a kilt all the time in book
  10. Medical Examiner Challenge  1 Toe Tags
  11. Six Shooter Challenge  Target #7  Shot #3
  12. 52 books in 52 weeks  #


Picture Perfect Corpse

 This is the 7th book, by Joann Campbell Slan, in the series involving Kiki Lowenstein and centers around her life as an employee at a St Louis scrapbook store.  Most of the installments include many scenes at the store and discuss paper crafting, this one did not have as much.  This wraps up a building drama between Kiki and Dettweiler's pasts.   Brenda Dettweiler cannot seem to let her ex go and now she is taking it out on Kiki and blaming her for the demise of her marriage;  taking no ownership of her fault in the situation.  Kiki is also finally getting some resolution in the death of her husband George 5 years before.  The story does wrap many of those threads up while introducing more complexity into their lives.  

The subplot about Nicci - Anya's friend is a relevant one for today's society and is something that should be discussed more to help those struggling with these demons to find help.  

I know many people won't enjoy the heavier topics discussed in the books and this is definitely not in the light and cheery cozy category but I do enjoy this series and look forward to discovering how the next pieces evolve in this ongoing saga.


Picture Perfect CorpsePicture Perfect Corpse by Joanna Campbell Slan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I always enjoy reading the Kiki Lowenstein books because they include my other favorite hobby- scrapbooking.

View all my reviews


Challenge Prompts

The Challenge Prompts I will use this for are:  

  1. Finishing the Series   #FinishingTheSeries2021 yes still working through series
  2. Virtual Mount TBR #VirtualMountTBR2021   Book #145
  3. Back List Reader  #Backlistreader  Book #160
  4. Calendar of Crime  #CalendarOfCrime2021   
  5. Cruisin thru Cozies  Free choice #99
  6. Cloak & Dagger  #CloakDaggerChal  Book #136
  7. Craving for Cozies  Book #117
  8. PopSugar #popsugarreadingchallenge 44. The book on your TBR list with the ugliest cover 
  9. Pick your Poison #24-1 A book that had been on your TBR list more than a year
  10. Medical Examiner Challenge  3 Toe Tags
  11. Six Shooter Challenge  Target #7  Shot #2


The Disney Monorail

 This was a wonderful read about the history of monorails throughout the world starting as far back as the 1800s.   The tome also included much Disney lore and background information including stories of Walt and the development of the parks.  The book reveals just how passionate Walt was about incorporating innovation and development in the parks but also as influences for the world at large.   He really wanted to see a Protoype Community of Tomorrow built.  


The Disney Monorail: Imagineering a Highway in the SkyThe Disney Monorail: Imagineering a Highway in the Sky by Jeff Kurtti
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Fascinating history of monorails in general and a look at the deep desire by Walt to progress society using technology and innovation. Some great history and photos within this book

View all my reviews



Challenge Prompts

The Challenge Prompts I will use this for are:  


  1. Library Love  #LibraryLoveChallenge  Book #134
  2. Virtual Mount TBR #VirtualMountTBR2021   Book #144
  3. Back List Reader  #Backlistreader  Book #159
  4. Non Fiction Reader  #2021ReadNonFic  #11 inventions
  5. PopSugar #popsugarreadingchallenge #18. A book about a subject you are passionate about 
  6. Pick your Poison #18-4 An illustrated book 
  7. Monthly Motif #MonthlyMotifGXO  That's History

Friday, December 17, 2021

Reading Randomizer

 I came across a unique challenge that is being hosted at Storygraph.  It involves random number generators to clear books off your tbr list.  You will use a list that can be sorted by author, publication date etc.  You then generate a random number and see which book that directs you to read from your list.  I used my Goodreads board that is my Want to Read.   Coincidentally I ended up with quite a number of Non fiction books on my list so that will lend itself to coordinate with the non fiction reading challenge



January Book 1: Generate a random number (1 - # of books on your TBR) and read the book that appears at that position on your TBR list. 

Lady Clementine  Marie Benedict 

January Book 2: Sort TBR list by date (published, I'm guessing) in ascending order. Generate a random number and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

A Tennis Pro to Die For Judy Moore

February Book 1: Sort TBR list by date (published, I'm guessing) in descending order. Generate a random number and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Jackie Janet & Lee Randy Tarraborelli

February Book 2: Sort TBR list by author in ascending order. Generate a random number from 1-50 and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

The Man Who Loved Books Too Much Alison Hoover bartlett

March Book 1: Sort TBR list by author in ascending order. Generate a random number from 50-75 and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Crepe Factor Laura Childs

March Book 2: Sort TBR list by author in ascending order. Generate a random number from 75-100 and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Perils of Paris Ana T Drew

April Book 1: Sort TBR list by author in ascending order. Generate a random number from 1-# of books on your TBR and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Deadly Deletion Lorainne Bartlett

April Book 2: Sort TBR list by author in reverse alphabetical order. Generate a random number from 1-50 and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Eight Perfect Murders Peter Swanson

May Book 1: Sort TBR list by author in reverse alphabetical order. Generate a random number from 50-75 and read the book that appears in that position on your list. The Thirteenth Tale Diane Setterfield

May Book 2: Sort TBR list by author in reverse alphabetical order. Generate a random number from 75-100 and read the book that appears in that position on your list.

The Seven Sisters Lucinda Riley

June Book 1: Sort TBR list by author in reverse alphabetical order. Generate a random number from 1-# of books on your TBR and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Scone Cold Killer Lena Gregory

June Book 2: Sort TBR list by title in ascending order. Generate a random number from 1-25 and read the book that appears in that position on your list. Becoming Michelle Obama

July Book 1: Sort TBR list by title in ascending order. Generate a random number from 25-50 and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Cilkas Journey Heather Morris

July Book 2: Sort TBR list by title in ascending order. Generate a random number from 50-75 and read the book that appears in that position on your list.

Dead Wake Erik Larson

August Book 1: Sort TBR list by title in ascending order. Generate a random number from 75-100 and read the book that appears in that position on your list.

Deep Shadow Nick Sullivan

August Book 2: Sort TBR list by title in ascending order. Generate a random number from 1-# of books on your TBR and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

The Fated Sky Mary Robinette Kowal

September Book 1: Sort TBR list by title in reverse alphabetical order. Generate a random number from 1-25 and read the book that appears in that position on your list.

What Remains Carole Radziwill

September Book 2: Sort TBR list by title in reverse alphabetical order. Generate a random number from 25-50 and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Three Nights in August Buzz Bissinger

October Book 1: Sort TBR list by title in reverse alphabetical order. Generate a random number from 50-75 and read the book that appears in that position on your list. Stiff Mary Roach

October Book 2: Sort TBR list by title in reverse alphabetical order. Generate a random number from 75-100 and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

The Relentless Moon Mary Robinette Kowal

November Book 1:  Sort TBR list by title in reverse alphabetical order. Generate a random number from 1-# of books on your TBR and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Farthing Jo Walton

November Book 2: Sort TBR list by ISBN in ascending order. Generate a random number from 1-# of books on your TBR and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Diamond Doris Doris Payne

December Book 1: Sort TBR list by ISBN in ascending order. Generate a random number from 1-50 of books on your TBR and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Christmas Candy Corpse

December Book 2: Sort TBR list by ISBN in ascending order. Generate a random number from 50-100 of books on your TBR and read the book that appears in that position on your list. 

Her Deepest Fear

Bonus: Read earliest added book on your list: The Flamenco Academy

Friday, December 10, 2021

The Christmas Swap

 This was an enjoyable Christmas story by Melody Carlson that I picked up by chance as a hoopla book.  In November there were hoopla freebies through my library- meaning you could borrow without it counting against your monthly allotment.  I picked this book by  because it sounded intriguing.  This isn't a genre I usually read but I did enjoy the light romance story.  Although some of it was predictable, the author did not always take the easy way out with the storyline.  The protagonist had to explain to his family why he wasn't joining them on their Christmas trip to AZ.  Instead of making everything perfectly happy go lucky there were definitely bumps in the road.  I definitely visualized this as a Hallmark Movie and then found out afterward that it was in fact made into a Hallmark movie.  I;ll have to be on the lookout when surfing through those movies.  

All in all a nice holiday story that makes you smile.



The Christmas SwapThe Christmas Swap by Melody Carlson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A very enjoyable heartwarming book. What’s not to love about Christmas in Breckenridge. The characters are very believable- shallow Gillian, puppy dog Grant, show off Harris and sweet Emma invade West’s home over Christmas. But West has trust issues and this doesn’t reveal his true identity. The ensuing story is somewhat formulaic but enjoyable nonetheless

View all my reviews


  

Challenge Prompts

The Challenge Prompts I will use this for are:  


  1. Library Love  #LibraryLoveChallenge  Book #
  2. Pick your Poison #3-3 A book with a cabin on the cover 
  3. Backpacking Bookworm  #bbReadingChallenge2021 character on a journey


Popsugar 2022

 I will attempt the PopSugar challenge again in 22.  Hopefully I have better luck at finishing it this time.  The challenge prompts really gave me issues in 21


My goodreads tracking page can be found here


REGULAR
1. A book published in 2022
2. A book set on a plane, train, or cruise ship
3. A book about or set in a nonpatriarchal society
4. A book with a tiger on the cover or "tiger" in the title
5. A sapphic book
6. A book by a Latinx author
7. A book with an onomatopoeia in its title
8. A book with a protagonist who uses a mobility aid
9. A book about a "found family"
10. An Anisfield-Wolf Book Award winner
11. A #BookTok recommendation
12. A book about the afterlife
13. A book set in the 1980s
14. A book with cutlery on the cover or in the title
15. A book by a Pacific Islander author
16. A book about witches
17. A book becoming a TV series or movie in 2022
18. A romance novel by a BIPOC author
19. A book that takes place during your favorite season
20. A book whose title begins with the last letter of your previous read
21. A book about a band or musical group
22. A book with a character on the ace spectrum
23. A book with a recipe in it
24. A book you can read in one sitting
25. A book about a secret
26. A book with a misleading title
27. A Hugo Award winner
28. A book set during a holiday
29. A different book by an author you read in 2021
30. A book with the name of a board game in the title
31. A book featuring a man-made disaster
32. A book with a quote from your favorite author on the cover or Amazon page
33. A social-horror book
34. A book set in Victorian times
35. A book with a constellation on the cover or in the title
36. A book you know nothing about
37. A book about gender identity
38. A book featuring a party
39. An #OwnVoices SFF (science fiction and fantasy) book
40. A book that fulfills your favorite prompt from a past POPSUGAR Reading Challenge


Advanced

41. A book with a reflected image on the cover or "mirror" in the title
42. A book that features two languages
43. A book with a palindromic title
44. A duology (1)
45. A duology (2)
46. A book about someone leading a double life
47. A book featuring a parallel reality
48. A book with two POVs
49. Two books set in twin towns, aka "sister cities" (1)
50. Two books set in twin towns, aka "sister cities" (2)

Thursday, December 9, 2021

Book Voyage 2022

 Another year of Reading around the world awaits in the BookList Girls Book Voyage challenge.  The schedule is the same as last year but since there were many books I didn't read it won't be a problem.  This page contains links to book lists contained on their blog so it is a great resource for ideas.  If you would like to sign up here's the link.  






A Slice of Murder

 This is the first book in a series by Chris Cavender.   It is set in a small town outside Charlotte, NC.  The title refers to a pizza slice as that is the main setting of the cozy mystery.  Eleanor is the unfortunate delivery person who discovers a dead customer;  one who happened to have been on the receiving end of a public slap by her.   Turns out the customer is more than just a flirt who makes undesired advances.  

He has plenty of questionable aspects to his past that come out as Ellie and her sister investigate his murder.  Ellie has a past relationship with the sheriff which is not helping her prove her innocence.  As the story progresses there are more and more suspicions that lead to more and more possible suspects.   The climax is quite dramatic and not exactly the expected villain.   The story does a great job of building on Ellie's relationship with her sister, her employees, and a friend who would like to be more than friends.  Cavender does a nice job of developing these relationships and leaves the reader wondering where things will progress in future books.  I look forward to reading more in the Pizza Lovers series.


A Slice of MurderA Slice of Murder by Chris Cavender
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

great character developement, lots of suspects and a surprising conclusion

View all my reviews



Challenge Prompts

The Challenge Prompts I will use this for are:  

.

  1. Library Love  #LibraryLoveChallenge  Book #131
  2. Virtual Mount TBR #VirtualMountTBR2021   Book #143
  3. Back List Reader  #Backlistreader  Book #158
  4. Cruisin thru Cozies  Free choice #98
  5. Cloak & Dagger  #CloakDaggerChal  Book #135
  6. Craving for Cozies  Book #116
  7. Medical Examiner Challenge  1 Toe Tags
  8. Six Shooter Challenge  Target #78  Shot #1


Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Nancy Drew Challenge

 Based on the Nancy Drew books for determining prompts and the levels of the challenge to be completed.  This is hosted by Bev on MyReadersBlock  She is going for completion in 2022 but really doing it as a perpetual one which is how I plan to attack this challenge.

Levels

Hannah Gruen (the housekeeper): 1 - 9 books

Bess Marvin (a delicate, feminine friend): 10 - 18 

George Fayne(described as tomboy,friend): 19 -27

Carson Drew (father and attorney): 28 - 35 books

Ned Nickerson (boyfriend): 36 - 44 books  

Nancy Drew (sleuth extraordinaire): 45 - 56 (my goal) books 



1. The Secret of the Old Clock (1930) - read a time travel book

2. The Hidden Staircase (1930) - OR read a book that has been hidden on your TBR list 

3. The Bungalow Mystery (1930) - OR read a book with a house on the cover

4. The Mystery at Lilac Inn (1930) - OR read a book where the mc stays at an inn or hotel 

5. The Secret of Shadow Ranch (1931) - read a book with horses in the story

6. The Secret of Red Gate Farm (1931) - OR read a book where the mc has a garden 

7. The Clue in the Diary (1932) - read an epistolary book

8. Nancy's Mysterious Letter (1932) - read a book with a first name in the title

9. The Sign of the Twisted Candles (1933) - read a book where the mc uses a candle

10. Password to Larkspur Lane (1933) - read a book with flowers on the cover

11. The Clue of the Broken Locket (1934) - read a book where the mc receives jewelry

12. The Message in the Hollow Oak (1935) - read a book with a tree on the cover

13. The Mystery of the Ivory Charm (1936) - read a book with a lot of white on the cover

14. The Whispering Statue (1937) - read a book that has been recommended to you

15. The Haunted Bridge (1937) - read a book set near a river

16. The Clue of the Tapping Heels (1939) - read a book where the mc dances

17. Mystery of the Brass-Bound Trunk (1940) - read a book with some kind of metal in the title

18. The Mystery of the Moss-Covered Mansion (1941) - read a book with a very large building on the cover

19. The Quest of the Missing Map (1942) - read a book where the mc uses a map

20. The Clue in the Jewel Box (1943) - read a book with jewelry on the cover

21. The Secret in the Old Attic (1944) - read a book with antiques in the story

22. The Clue in the Crumbling Wall (1945) - read a book where the mc is a prisoner for a time

23. The Mystery of the Tolling Bell (1946) - listen to an audio book

24. The Clue in the Old Album (1947) - read a book where the mc uses a camera

25. The Ghost of Blackwood Hall (1948) - read a book with a ghost in the story

26. The Clue of the Leaning Chimney (1949) - read a book where the mc builds a fire

27. The Secret of the Wooden Lady (1950) - read a book written by a female author

28. The Clue of the Black Keys (1951) - read a book with a lot of black on the cover

29. The Mystery at the Ski Jump (1952) - read a book set during the wintertime

30. The Clue of the Velvet Mask (1953) - read a book with a robbery in it

31. The Ringmaster's Secret (1953) - read a book with an animal on the cover

32. The Scarlet Slipper Mystery (1954) - read a book with a lot of red on the cover

33. The Witch Tree Symbol (1955) - read a paranormal book

34. The Hidden Window Mystery (1956) - read a book with a window on the cover

35. The Haunted Showboat (1957) - read a book that has been made into a movie

36. The Secret of the Golden Pavilion (1959) - read a best seller

37. The Clue in the Old Stagecoach (1960) - read a historical book

38. The Mystery of the Fire Dragon (1961) - read a fantasy book

39. The Clue of the Dancing Puppet (1962) - read a book with a small child in the story

40. The Moonstone Castle Mystery (1963) - read a book with a moon on the cover

41. The Clue of the Whistling Bagpipes (1964) - read a book where the mc plays a musical instrument

42. The Phantom of Pine Hill (1965) - read a book set in the mountains

43. The Mystery of the 99 Steps (1966) - read a book with a number in the title

44. The Clue in the Crossword Cipher (1967) - read a book where a puzzle of some kind is solved

45. The Spider Sapphire Mystery (1968) - OR read a book with a lot of blue on the cover 

46. The Invisible Intruder (1969) - read a book with less than 50 ratings

47. The Mysterious Mannequin (1970) - read a book by an relatively unknown author

48. The Crooked Banister (1971) - read a book with stairs on the cover

49. The Secret of Mirror Bay (1972) - read a book that is set near a body of water

50. The Double Jinx Mystery (1973) - read a book with twins in it

51. Mystery of the Glowing Eye (1974) - read a book with glowing reviews

52. The Secret of the Forgotten City (1975) - re-read a book that you read a long time ago

53. The Sky Phantom (1976) - read a book where the mc flies on an airplane

54. The Strange Message in the Parchment (1977) - read a hardback or paperback book (no ebooks)

55. Mystery of Crocodile Island (1978) - read a book set on an island

56. The Thirteenth Pearl (1979) - read a book published in 2013

Gardenias and a Grave Mistake

 This is the first book in the series about Diana Flowers by Ruby Loren.  I had previously read the prequel to this series and enjoyed it.  I am not sure how much I really like this series but I will give at least one more book a go before deciding one way or the other.  It wasn't a bad book it just didn't capture me like other series do.  I think it might  just be the fact it is the initial book in the series so I will continue for at least one more.

The characters are quirky and there is plenty of suspicions to go around when a best man appears dead in a wedding cake at the first-ever wedding event Diana is working at.  It doesn't help that it is her neighbor's wedding and she's been a bit of a bridezilla.   She gets caught up in the whodunnit as the local DCI is a bit of a bumbling fool.

Add to that the mystery of why Jim had left her his house and fields and there is plenty perplexing Diana. The mystery slowly unravels and it makes sense in the end after plenty of confusion on who is guilty. 
If you are interested in gardening and flowers in particular you will like that aspect of the series for sure.  I don't have a green thumb so that part didn't resonant strongly with me.


Gardenias and a Grave MistakeGardenias and a Grave Mistake by Ruby Loren
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

an interesting mix of characters in a cozy mystery set in South East England. There is plenty of suspicion and duplicity going on while Diana Flowers is trying to solve a mystery or 2 in this first book in the series. there are some quirky characters and I am interested to see how the series progresses. enjoyable cozy including nosy neighbors and a bridezilla, not to mention past childhood boyfriends. I liked that this cozy did not have the MC involved in a romantic relationship even if she is coming out of a bad breakup

View all my reviews


Challenge Prompts

The Challenge Prompts I will use this for are:  


  1. Finishing the Series   #FinishingTheSeries2021  Book 1 Diana Flowers
  2. Virtual Mount TBR #VirtualMountTBR2021   Book #142
  3. Back List Reader  #Backlistreader  Book #157
  4. Cruisin thru Cozies  Free choice #97
  5. Cloak & Dagger  #CloakDaggerChal  Book #134
  6. Craving for Cozies  Book #115
  7. Medical Examiner Challenge  4 Toe Tags
  8. Six Shooter Challenge  Target #  Shot #

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

While I Was Reading

 


2022 Reading Challenge Categories

Books Completed 0/12




  1. A book with a question in the title.

  1. A book of non-violent true crime.
  2. A book with a cover you don’t like.
  3. A historical fiction novel not set in Europe.
  4. A book with a character’s name in the title.
  5. A book featuring paranormal activity (fiction or non.)
  6. A book with a number in the title.
  7. A food related memoir.
  8. A book that’s won an award.
  9. A middle grade novel.
  10. A book by an author who shares your zodiac sign.
  11. A book that’s a combination of genres.

OWLS 2022

 This is the Harry Potter challenge hosted at HPOOTP Facebook page.  I want to be more actively involved in this page this year.  They do a wonderful job at the creative side of the challenge and there are lots of different categories and varieties of books selected by participants.   

For a full list of challenges I found for 2022 see this blog entry.




The instructions from their page:

The Ordinary Wizarding Levels (O.W.L.s) Reading Challenge
Each of the 12 classes have 5 prompts. You can decide which grades to go for in which classes and which classes you want to attempt an OWL in (receive a passing grade). Thus, you can build the challenge to the number of books you want to read! For example, you can choose to do only 1 subject and go for an O grade (5 books), or you could attempt to earn 3 passing grades in 3 subjects (9 books), or you can choose to go for all 12 subjects & all prompts (60 books) – or anywhere in between!
O.W.L. Grades are as follows:
Failing Grades:
Troll (T) : Start a prompt in a subject, but don’t finish any
Dreadful (D): Finish 1 prompt in a subject
Poor (P): Finish 2 prompts in a subject
*Passing Grades: *
Acceptable (A): Finish 3 prompts in a subject
Exceeds Expectations (E): Finish 4 prompts in a subject
Outstanding (O): Finish 5 prompts in a subject.
Prompts do NOT have to be completed in order. While the challenge is to read unique books for each prompt, this is your challenge and you can make the rules fit as you’d like. Any format of book (audiobook, physical book, ebook, comic, etc) counts–our rule of thumb is if you can mark it as ‘read’ on a book tracking site, it counts. Again, this is your challenge and you’re free to interpret the rules and prompts as you see fit.

Ancient Runes

Ancient Runes: A book in translation

Deathly Hallows: A book that has a symbol on the cover

Tales of Beedle the Bard: A fairytale retelling

Mistranslation: A book whose title is translated differently

Parseltongue: A book that contains a fictional language


Arithmancy

Arithmancy: A book with a number on the cover or in the title

Golden Trio: A book that’s a part of a series

Hoggy Warty Hogwarts: A book that involves music

Magical Numbers: A book that relates to a magical number (pi or pi(e), 7, 3, 13, etc)

Mad Eye Moody: A book with multiple points of view


Astronomy

Astronomy: A book set in outer space

Star Gazing: A book with a star on the cover or in the title

Star Struck: A book about a celebrity

Sirius Black: Includes a character with a celestial name  

Telescope: A book you spotted on social media


Care of Magical Creatures

Care of Magical Creatures: Includes a magical creature

Niffler: A book with a shiny cover

Fantastic Beasts: A book with an animal on the cover

Unicorn: Your most anticipated book of the year

Monster Book of Monsters: A scary looking book


Charms

Charms: A book by a favorite author

Cheering Charm: A funny or happy book

Flitwick: A short book or book of short stories 

Wingardium Leviosa: A book that contains a feather

Time Turner: A book with dual timelines


Defense Against the Dark Arts

DADA: A book featuring good vs. evil

Dark Arts: A book featuring dark magic

Death Eaters: A book with a dark cover

Magical Me: A book with an incompetent character

Remus Lupin: A paranormal book


Divination

Divination: A book set in the future

Trelawney: A book featuring a prophecy 

Star Chart: A book related to your zodiac sign

Unfogging the Future: A mystery or thriller

The Grim: Contains a death


Herbology
Herbology: A book with a plant on the cover or in the title

Pomona Sprout: Contains a character with a herbology related name

Greenhouses: A book with a green cover

Mandrake: A book that made you cry

Neville Longbottom: Contains a character who is an underdog


History of Magic

History of Magic: A book that mentions a historical witch or wizard

Harry Potter: A book that mentions Harry Potter

Hogwarts, A History: A historical fiction

Helena Ravenclaw: A novella or prequel

Cuthbert Binns: A book you “slept” on


Muggle Studies 

Muggle Studies: An own voices book

Flying Car: A book related to STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Math)

Hogwarts: A book set in a school

Daily Prophet: A nonfiction book

Rubber Duck: A book with a yellow cover


Potions

Potions: A book that includes poison

Amortentia: A book that includes a romance

Severus Snape: Turn to page 394 - A book with page 394.

No Foolish Wand Waving: A book without magic

Liquid Luck: Luck of the draw: choose a book randomly


Transfiguration

Transfiguration: A book to screen adaptation

Animagus: Includes a shapeshifter

Switching Spell: A book whose cover and dust jacket are different colors

Minerva McGonagall: Contains a strong female character

Vanishment Spell: A bestseller (that vanishes off the shelf!)