Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sunday Salon: A Cozy, A Paranormal Romance, And A Thriller

Sunday Salon is a delightful way to find new and exciting books each763356_coffee_break week that can lead you on some marvelous adventures, stir your imagination, chill you to the bone or have you laughing out loud.

This week I’d like to share my thoughts on three books I’ve read. While these books fall into different genres, they all have one thing in common - they were very good reads. So get comfortable while I tell you about a cozy murder mystery, a paranormal romance, and a thriller. Quite a combination, don’t you think?

WINED AND DIED by Cricket McRae

Wined_and_Died_1_featureSophie Mae Ambrose can’t seem to keep herself out of unauthorized investigations and dangerous situations.

When her husband, Detective Barr Ambrose, bought a box of used mini cassettes at a thrift store, Sophie Mae never imaged they would lead her to a killer. The 11-year-old daughter of their housemate, Meghan Bly, listened to one of the tapes and began asking questions. Young Erin discovered the tapes had belonged to a therapist recording notes about her clients.

Sophia Mae listens to the tapes in order to return them. What she learned was the therapist believed one of her clients was considering murdering a member of the prominent Swenson family, owners of the Grendel Meadery in Cadyville. However, no report had been made to the police and the therapist had since died of an apparent heart attack.

Sophie Mae begins to search for answers wondering if the young therapist’s death was natural causes and who the intended murder victim could be. When one of the Swenson family dies of a heart attack, even the police begin to wonder.

WINED AND DIED is a delightful cozy murder mystery that will have you laughing as you try to unravel the mystery with Sophie Mae. Author Cricket McRae has created a cast of characters that are very realistic and charming.

This is the 5th installment in the Home Crafting Mystery series, but is a stand alone book. While there are references to prior events, they are not so prominent as to confuse new readers. An added bonus, the book contains recipes for home crafted items including Homemade Ginger Beer.

WINED AND DIED is a fast pace, enjoyable read that will be hard to put down once you begin. 

Cricket McRae’s website is

Wined And Died by Cricket McRae, A Home Crafting Mystery, Midnight Ink, @2011, ISBN: 978-0-7387-2334-1, Paperback, 284 pages

FTC Full Disclosure - This book was sent to me by the author in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

In Heat of Bite - Reapproved 
Witches, vampyres and werewolves, oh my!

All Rhiannon Sinclair wanted to do was to make sure her sister Ginny was safe even if it meant going all the way to London from Edinburgh and having to see her vicious aunt.

When she wasn’t allowed to see her sister, Rhi stomped off to a nearby park and had a temper tantrum. But being a weather-controlling witch, Rhi’s tantrums usually involve wind, rain, thunder and lightning. She was in the middle of such a storm when Matthew Halkett, Earl of Blodswell, spotted her and thought she needed rescuing.

Matthew can’t help himself when it comes to rescuing damsels in distress. He is truly a knight in shining armor who has been coming to damsels rescue for countless decades. He was reborn as a vampyre during the Holy War when he was discovered dying on the battlefield.

When Matthew tries to rescue Rhi from the storm, the two of them find themselves battling more emotions than they ever imaged. Things really get heated when Rhi discovers Matthew is the one who turned her friend Alec MacQuarrie into a vampyre. Then there’s the matter of her conven sister Caitrin Eynsford who is married to a werewolf.

As the events begin to unfold, Rhi and Matthew find themselves draw to each other. The bantering between the Englishman and the Scottish lass are endearing.

IN THE HEAT OF THE BITE is the second installment in the vampyre series by author Lydia Dare, but is a stand alone book. There are returning characters from the first book, as well as the Westfield werewolf series, that will delight fans of this author. At the same time, new readers won’t be left in the dark but hopefully intrigued enough to check out the other books.

This is one vampyre series that will have you laughing and swooning. 

Author Lydia Dare’s website is

In the Heat of the Bite by Lydia Dare, Sourcebooks Casablanca, @2011, ISBN: 978-1-4022-4510-7, Paperback, 384 pages

FTC Full Disclosure - I requested this book and it was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

THE SERIAL KILLER’S WIFE by Robert Swartwood

0395 Robert Swartwood ecover The Serial Killer's Wife_2Sarah Walter would do anything to protect her son, Matthew. She would even return to being Elizabeth Piccioni, wife of serial killer Eddie Piccioni.

When her husband was arrested for the rape and murder of a number of women, Elizabeth took her son and ran. That had been five years ago and she had since made a new life for herself and her son cutting ties with everyone from her former life.

Now a robotic voice calling himself Cain informs her she must return to her former life and secure her husband’s trophies from his kills. If not, her son will be killed. She is sent photos every hour showing her bound son and the hours ticking down till his death unless she produces the ring fingers of her husband’s victims.

She sets off on her journey and is joined by the new man in her life. While she has not informed Todd of her past, she quickly must fill in the blanks in order to accomplish her task. As they encounter people from Sarah’s past, the body count begins to rise. At every turn it seems Cain is one step ahead of them.

Sarah’s race against-the-clock is filled with suspense and intrigue. It’s a breath-taking ride filled with twists and surprises along the way. Just when you have everything figured out, author Robert Swartwood drops in a surprise or two.

THE SERIAL KILLER’S WIFE will grab you and not let go until you find out who the real ‘Widower Maker’ is.

Author Robert Swartwood’s website is

The Serial Killer‘s Wife by Robert Swartwood, RMS Press, @2011, ASIN: B0055001E6, Kindle Edition, 400 KB 

FTC Full Disclosure - This eBook was sent to me by the author in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

I hope everyone is having a great Sunday. Thanks for stopping by. Be sure to stop back by next week as I have a number of great authors and an Indie Publishing Company lined up to guest blog. Hope you’ll drop by, say hello and make them feel welcomed. Thanks again, y’all are the best! Have a wonderful day. I’ll be thinking of y’all even though I won’t be able to visit with you.



  1. Wined and Dined sounds like a delightful cozy. Would love to read it.

  2. Mason - Thanks for sharing these reads. It's interesting that you've three such different kinds of books this time. I like the variety :-). I learn about new kinds of books every time I come here! I'm very glad you enjoyed them all.

  3. I have Wined and Died in my queue and I can't wait to read it.

  4. I've seen Cricket's book several places online this week.

  5. I REALLY want to read the cozy and the thriller so what does that say about me? My family is starting to wonder. ;)

  6. I've never been a big cozy mystery fan, I'm more of a thriller reader, but since I've been reading your blog I've found some really enjoyable reads.

    I enjoyed In the Heat Of The Bite, too!

    Sia McKye's Thoughts...OVER COFFEE

  7. Love it! Your reading interests are a lot like mine ... all over the place. :) All of these sound great to me! thanks for the tips.

  8. Wined and Died sounds like adorable fun. I need a good cozy. :O)

  9. Wined and Died is also the one that seems most tempting to me.

    Enjoy what is left of your weekend ;)

    Dorte H.


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