‘The Sweet Spot’ by Amy Poeppel is a novel about revenge and forgiveness — and finding family

Amy Poeppel doesn't write thrillers or mysteries with stunning twists that surprise. Rather, as with her new release, "The Sweet Spot," she writes about people who are like you and me. She creates people who suffer and act accordingly; people who do stupid things and regret it. In this novel, she introduces us to a … Continue reading ‘The Sweet Spot’ by Amy Poeppel is a novel about revenge and forgiveness — and finding family

‘Lie to Her’ by Melinda Leigh is another satisfying murder mystery in the ‘Bree Taggert’ series

While the mysteries in Melinda Leigh's "Bree Taggert" series all work as stand alone novels, those who start the series with the latest addition, "Lie to Her," will miss out on some great backstories which are shared in the previous novels. Such readers will still enjoy the twists and turns that Bree Taggert, the female … Continue reading ‘Lie to Her’ by Melinda Leigh is another satisfying murder mystery in the ‘Bree Taggert’ series

‘Seventeen: Last Man Standing’ by John Brownlow is filled with thrilling, nonstop action

In "Seventeen: Last Man Standing," author John Brownlow creates an assassin whose exploits are legendary, whose skill is apparently unsurpassed, and who explains the tricks of his trade to us as we follow his latest assignment in Berlin. It's what happens after that job that forms the basis for the action that is so engaging … Continue reading ‘Seventeen: Last Man Standing’ by John Brownlow is filled with thrilling, nonstop action

‘Killer Story’ by Matt Witten is a brilliant look at journalism, ethics, and blind determination to get the story

While journalists are finding it more and more difficult to obtain employment that is financially secure, in these turbulent times, broadcasting the truth about our world and politics is perhaps even more crucial than ever. In "Killer Story," author Matt Witten explores that subject through the eyes of Petra Kovach, a journalist who has been … Continue reading ‘Killer Story’ by Matt Witten is a brilliant look at journalism, ethics, and blind determination to get the story

‘Nine Liars’ by Maureen Johnson is another engrossing Stevie Bell mystery

On the cover of Maureen Johnson's latest Stevie Bell mystery, "Nine Liars," are the words: When everyone lies, somebody dies. This little epigram becomes important in the story, and I am embarrassed to admit that I neglected to read those important words before finishing this twisty and cleverly crafted novel. Here Stevie is called upon … Continue reading ‘Nine Liars’ by Maureen Johnson is another engrossing Stevie Bell mystery

‘The Widow’ by Kaira Rouda is a chilling look into elected officials… and their wives

In "The Widow," Kaira Rouda uses multiple points of view as she plots a novel that, by turns, grips us and repels us. The main character, Jody Asher, is the wife of one of Ohio's congressmen, Martin Asher. She and Martin met in law school, and while she had hoped for him to reach higher … Continue reading ‘The Widow’ by Kaira Rouda is a chilling look into elected officials… and their wives

‘The Midnighters’ by Hana Tooke is a delightful middle grade historical fiction romp with a soupçon of the supernatural

Many children know the feeling of not fitting in and in "The Midnighters," author Hana Tooke explores that feeling through her main character, Ema, whose fantastic, incredibly dangerous journey in this novel finally leads to her finding acceptance and respect. Ema was born into a family of scientists, and while she absorbed much of their … Continue reading ‘The Midnighters’ by Hana Tooke is a delightful middle grade historical fiction romp with a soupçon of the supernatural

‘Defy the Night’ and ‘Defend the Dawn’ are the first two books in Brigid Kemmerer’s fabulous new series

I admit that sometimes, I am spectacularly uninformed about the books I read. Take Brigid Kemmerer's new series which begins with "Defy the Night" and its sequel, "Defend the Dawn." I was sure that this was a duology, and I was thrilled that I would get to read both books in a row. I was … Continue reading ‘Defy the Night’ and ‘Defend the Dawn’ are the first two books in Brigid Kemmerer’s fabulous new series

‘Flight Risk’ by Cherie Priest is her second murder mystery featuring a psychic travel agent

A quirky travel agent who also has psychic talents is the star of "Flight Risk," the stand alone sequel to "Grave Reservations" by Cherie Priest. These fast-paced and clever mysteries feature Leda Foley, the aforementioned travel agent whose paranormal abilities are sometimes an asset and sometimes a frustration. In this novel she continues working with … Continue reading ‘Flight Risk’ by Cherie Priest is her second murder mystery featuring a psychic travel agent

‘The Dressmakers of Prospect Heights’ by Kitty Zeldis is about the bonds we form and finding family

In "The Dressmakers of Prospect Heights" Kitty Zeldis sweeps us back to experience a time after the Great War, when women not born with a silver spoon in their mouths were limited in their options. This lovely historical fiction presents us with strong female main characters who all also have flaws that make them very … Continue reading ‘The Dressmakers of Prospect Heights’ by Kitty Zeldis is about the bonds we form and finding family

‘The Winners’ by Fredrik Backman is a heartfelt conclusion to the ‘Beartown’ trilogy

The first thing you notice about "The Winners," Fredrik Backman's conclusion to the "Beartown" trilogy, is that it's huge—over 650 pages. But that's because Backman has a lot to tell us, and we are immediately immersed in the small towns of Beartown and Hed, it's neighboring town, watching as hockey brings the townspeople together and … Continue reading ‘The Winners’ by Fredrik Backman is a heartfelt conclusion to the ‘Beartown’ trilogy