Culinary Cozy Mystery Box Set 2: Books 6-10 of the Frosted Love Series

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When a customer of Echo’s drops dead in her story, there isn’t much anyone could do but be surprised at this. Echo is such a quiet girl, but now she’s a prim suspect in the murder investigation. Missy can’t stand by as he best friend is being framed for murder. She also has to deal with someone defacing her property, and she tries to find the culprit.

This is the first book in the series that I could see the culprit from a mile away. The murder and the reasons for the murder seemed obvious from the start which made it a little sad. The relationship between Missy and Chas in this book was a little strained but they talked it out like adult, which I liked. Though not completely realistic, being able to talk to each other about their feelings is a refreshing concept.

I did like how Safflower gave more background to Echo that we were given a few books before. I really did like the interaction and the first fight between Echo and Missy. Though they made up like old friends would.

Though Chas wasn’t in the book much when he was, it was fun and quirky. He has become a lovable character that definitely had to grow on me. He has done a completely 180 when it comes to Missy which I adore. He’s random thoughts popping into the story is a little distracting but fun.

Over all I like this book.

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Echo and Missy join forces to expand both of their businesses. However, when a mutual client of their two stores is found dead, they are once again under investigation for yes another murder. However, nothing is adding up with this case, and it all seems like Echo’s past might be catching up with her again.

I swear, Echo’s past won’t stay where it needs to, in the past. She once again goes through a beating when she’s in the middle of a murder investigation as a suspect. However, Missy is right there with her in the hot seat. Though Missy tries to let the police do their work, she does voice her opinion on the case.

The murderer was an easy guess about 1/2 through but most mysteries are. The characters in this book negates me disliking the fact that I figured out the murderer quickly.

All the characters were front and center in this book which is nice. I kinda wished that we learnt more about them, or even got to see them interact with each other more. However, this was a good book to add to the series

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While helping out with the children’s fundraiser, Ben went missing and a dead man was found in his clown suit. With Ben no where in sight, he becomes the first suspect in the crime. When the man is tied to Cheryl, there are a lot more complications that sneak into the case. Missy can’t sit on the side lines when one of he staff is a murder suspect.

For once Missy isn’t the suspect, however, it is someone in her staff. Finally, Cheryl has finally gotten some backstory which I felt was lacking. This is a very interesting finding out what happened before she came to Missy’s Muffins. However, everything felt a little forceful through out the story. I felt like the story was put together just to give her a backstory and wasn’t really planned.

The murder mystery itself was well thought out and interesting, even though they kinda shoe horned Ben and Cheryl into the story line. I also enjoy how they worked in more history to the victims in the story which makes you relate to them more.

Over all this was a very good book.

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After the high school baking contest, a judge is murdered and a losing student is suspected of being the murder. As Missy knows the student she is highly skeptical that the she committed the crimes. She goes after the truth even though the police seems certain they know who the killer is.

Well that’s one way of getting out of planning a wedding. We get to meet the Mayor’s daughter and might I say that she was written to be a piece of work. She gets along with Missy as well as oil and water combine. I must say though that the murderer wasn’t terribly difficult to figure out. However, they were well thought out and explained. There was a few things that were left hanging at the end that I hope are explained more in the next book.

I did enjoy the way that they used the high school’s bake off to jump off into the mystery. Given that Missy is a known baker it makes complete sense that she would be present at that even. This book again, does not have Missy in the hot seat, and for once her staff aren’t being checked into.

I did enjoy how the relationship between Chas and Missy has grown over this book, and how cute they are together. This was a really fun little book to read.

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After a little prying, Chas finally opens up to Missy about his past. Given that it’s his father’s birthday, they agree to go to his estate in New York. However, when someone is murdered at the party, Missy is once again a suspect even though she never met the man. Chas is determined to make sure the actual murderer is caught so that they can go home together.

Chas’ background was quite a shocker I feel. I suspected that he probably had a secret or two, but that is big. Missy finally meeting his family was interesting, as they come from a very different upbringing. I will say though, given what they’ve been through you would think that Missy would have more confidence in their relationship bit she’s the first person to jump ship.

I enjoyed the story line and mystery, it was interesting to see the Beckett family dynamic and how Missy fit into it. Though I found that murderer was a little obvious I still liked how it played out in the story.

This book went into Chas’ past up until parts of his high school. I am hoping that the trend to develop characters continues into future books.


Culinary Cozy Mystery Box Set 2: Books 6-10 of the Frosted Love Series

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Culinary Cozy Mystery Box Set (Frosted Love Cozy Mystery #1-5)

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Melissa Gladstone, also known as Missy, is roped into a murder as her assistant is the prime suspect after her business-rival was found dead. While the police department is barking up the wrong tree in her opinion, Missy decides to take justice in her own hands and figure out who really killed him and clear her devoted assistance name.

This is an interesting book and it nearly got a 4 star if it wasn’t for Chas’ character. He had a really nice beginning, however, I really started to dislike him 1/2 through. He reminds be a lot of Mike in the Hannah Swensen book series.

The story was interesting and it even incorporated a mystery that wasn’t in this book. The characters were interesting and relatable to a point. Missy is a strong independent woman who was self-made. Her assistant Ben is following closely in her shoes. Chas, though annoying has his own back story and does show his sweet since to Missy.

the plot was well thought out and was interesting until the very end. This wasn’t the standard mystery that you could follow the culprit from early on in the story, but the twist in the end was a little nice.

Over all it was a very nice story.

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With plans for expansions in mind, Missy is more than a little excited that she was invited to the cupcake competition. She also decides that it would be a good time to unwind and have a little vacation. She quickly finds out, however, that a childhood rival had something to do with her invitation. Knowing her like she did, she wasn’t surprised that there were strings attached to her invitation. But once she’s found dead, Missy is the prime suspect as their past isn’t exactly a secret.

This may seem weird but… Yay a series that takes the heroine out of their town. One of the issues that I have with a lot if mystery book was addresses in this book but I’m sure we’ll go back to normal in the next book. I do like seeing the characters traveling, which I know would be hard when you own a store.

Chas was redeemed in this book. I didn’t like him in the last book, but as he did come to Las Vegas to help her, he’s been redeemed a bit. He was awfully sweet to Missy in this book.

How Missy has accidentally gotten herself mixed up in a murder again is quite comical. She has done nothing wrong past being at the wrong place at the wrong time. Though I had a suspicion of who the murderer was, it was subtle.

This was a good book.

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Back in Louisiana, Missy is ready to forget the fiasco in Las Vegas. However, while expanding her shop, she notices something fishy going on in town. When some people try to strong arm her into using their dry goods business, and another shop owner turns something just doesn’t feel right. She and Chas work together to figure out what happening and who is trying to get her to stop the expansion of the shop.

This nearly got 5 stars… but when you’ve nearly been killed twice, I fell like you would probably be a little more cautious when you are investigating. Missy must be a real glutton for punishment because she doesn’t learn.

We do get a new shop assistant, but sadly we really don’t get any background to her yes. I really hope the we get more information about her in future books.

The mystery and story in this book is very interesting and not completely linear. Though the murder mystery wasn’t exactly the hardest thing to figure out. I still really enjoyed the build up. There was a little twist in the end that made the story even more interesting. This was a good addition to the series.

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After a new woman takes over the ice cream joint across the road from her Delville location, Missy gets an odd sense that she’s hiding something. When odd things starts happening, Missy is worried that her new friend might be in the middle of it. However, being a southern lady, Missy isn’t about to push, no matter what Chas might tell her.

How Missy keeps getting in the middle of murder investigations as a prime suspect is beyond me. She works very hard with her muffin shop that she doesn’t have time to commit murders but never less she keeps getting into the middle of it.

Though this is not the standard mystery book as she is not actively searching or helping much in the investigation, we still get to follow along. Chas keeps her so well informed that it is helpful. I will say though, the change in voice messes up the flow for me. Even though it is all written in 3rd person, when the focus is removed from Missy for only a few sentences without a break it’s a little weird.

I do like that we get to know more information about Echo in this book. It gives the character more depth and a richer feel to the story. It is a good continuation.

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When Chas takes Missy away for a well deserved vacation, they happen to get wrapped up into a murder investigation with in a few days of being in Cozumel. While Chas tries to run a little interference, as well as a shadow investigation. Missy, meanwhile, just wants to hide from the world and make cupcakes. She trusts Chas to clear their names.

I know that no one reads these books for realism, but 5 books a 5 murder investigations that Missy is in the middle of is a bit much. Chas also manages to also perform an investigation in Mexico, far outside of his jurisdictions.

Though there was no real way to follow the mystery and figure it out in this book, it was a fun read. I kinda wish that there was more description when it came to the scenery in Mexico, but overall it was fun.

The cupcakes described in this book sounded absolutely scrumptious, and put me in the mood for baking. Missy’s relationship with Chas in this book started to blossom a bit more, now that they have been dating for a few months. He is still as overprotective as always, but I think thats understandable at this point.

Still little to no development with any of the new shop workers, but I’m hoping to see more in future books.

Tree’s Hollow Witches

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After her life as a gossip writer in the city wears Lenny out, she’s high tails it to her aunt bed and breakfast in Tree Hollows. When the local handyman is murdered right after she becomes the papers investigative reporter she takes a look into it. After meeting the hot forest ranger, her life seems to be on the right path. Also, she only finds out that she’s a witch when she arrives in Tree Hollow, talk about a whole new life.

I was really liking the book, until I actually stopped and thought about it a little more.

As a mystery book it is a fun quick story with lovable though eccentric characters. The cat was worked in seamlessly as an interesting character with out any assistance from other characters. Being new at something makes everything harder, especially being the new girl in town. Lenny has the odds stacked against her as the new girl in town. Nathan is the sweet and protective guy in this story, however, I feel like  he might want to put his foot down a little more about the situations that Lenny gets herself in.

Now for the part that threw me for a loop. How  is it that Lenny just accepts the fact that she has a talking cat and is suddenly a witch? I had to go back and make sure that I didn’t miss anything. It’s a really good thing that I’m a speed reader when I have to be. Needless to say that I really didn’t like that aspect of the book. I’m still going to read the other 2 books because I like the characters so much.

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When Aunt Kara decides to rename the bed and breakfast, she didn’t expect the winner to turn up dead. Nathan and Lenny decide to look into it, and when a Russian ghost won’t leave her alone, she decides that there is probably something there. However, Lenny also has to figure out how to tell Nathan about her witchy persuasion.

Ok so I’m just sure how to feel about this. Nathan’s reaction to Lenny being a witch seems to be completely blase about it and it mimics her reaction to finding out. It’s like everyone is just going around half believing that witches actually exist. I will say that the ending was just mean, but that’s all I’ll say about it.

I do love the book the mystery line of the book is interesting. How Lenny’s magic helps her in the investigation is a fun little twist to the other books that I’ve read in the mystery genre. The characters are just so adorable especially Esme and Brad when they are together.

This is still a really cute book even if the characters aren’t realistic.

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After a hit and run, Nathan is fighting for his life, while Lenny watches helplessly. When his psycho ex-girlfriend comes back into the situation, things get a whole lot weirder. With amnesia and demons haunting the neighborhood, Lenny has a lot to deal with.

I really wanted to like the end of this trilogy more than I did. The writing style is fantastic and the characters are quaint. However, the story just made very little sense to me and I felt like it needed more explanations. Multiple different plot points were just dropped into the story with no explanation or continual use. Some characters were just kind of put into a scene and then went no where. I don’t mind having a few holes but there were too many in this one that I just couldn’t figure out.

I feel that if the book was longer or maybe edited in a different way I could have enjoyed it a lot more that I did. It’s still a quaint little story though.

Cougar Surrender Series

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After being exiled for 4 years, Taylor has settled into his quiet life among humans and werewolves. However, his father’s health is on the decline and his banishment was overthrown so he’s making his way back to Anchorage. Meanwhile, Aspen get’s abandoned at a pit stop by her ex-friend and gets picked up by Taylor. What a lovely way to start a romance.

This is actually a really good start of a story. Chenery is a very good writer and she comes out to play in this novella. Her sex scenes are tasteful and well used. The main characters are well developed and you can actually believe that they could easily fall in love. Similar with most shifter books, if we all had magic to tell us who we belong with it would be easy to settle down. For a short read, this is a fun little read.

 

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After Taylor settled down with Aspen, the rules about dating humans have relaxed a bit. So Blaise goes out hunting for a human mate. It doesn’t take long for him to find someone who spikes his interest. Similarly, once Harley sets her eyes on Blaise she decides that she has to have him. She comes up with a hair-brained idea to get close to him. Sure enough, he bites and they speed through the dating processes. All while Blaise worries about his father’s health.

Suspicions confirmed in this book and that’s all I’m saying about that. Harley as a character is a little too conveniently designed as a character, however, she’s perfect for Blaise. She has a very similar personality to Blaise which makes them a perfect fit. Blaise gets fleshed out a lot more in this book, natural, and he is very fun. I do which he had a job and wasn’t acting the part of a rich bum. Given my love for Chenery’s writing style, I loved how things were interconnected. This was an excellent continuation of the 1st novella.

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After both of Jase’s cousins have found human mates, Jase is on the look out for one as well. Little did he know that while searching for his cousin Celeb to face justice, he would stumble across Katarina. The superintendent of Celeb’s knocks Jase’s socks off after threatening him with a bat. No afraid to throw her weight around despite her small size turns Jase on in many ways.

Though no matter how unlikely this story is, it’s still compelling. Chenery crafts a girl perfectly for each of the boys that we’ve met so far. Katarina is no exception. The chemistry, though not instantaneous, is still present a little later on. The descriptive writing that Chenery puts into this book is perfect for the point we are in the story. Only one book left and I can’t wait to see what’s going to happen next.

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After his brother found his human mate, Grady continues to frequent the bar looking for his own. One evening, when he left the bar he notices Celab. While going over him, Celeb gets a pipe and smashes it against Grady’s head. Enter Sage, a cop who comes and ‘saves’ Grady. To stop her from calling the ambulance, Grady kisses her and invites her out. In her confusion, she agrees and out story begins.

This is an excellent end to this story, though I still want the IT guy to find his mate. The story is tied up a little too neatly, but since these books focus primarily on the relationships then I forgive them. This book has the least amount of sex but the closest relationship. Grady is shown to be one of the most grown up in the family and he supported sage when she needs it most. This was by far the best book of the series.

Love in a Nutshell (Culhane Family #1)

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This is the first book in a duo. I don’t know if there are any plans for a 3rd book in this series at this time. Yes, it’s another Janet Evanovich book, and yes I am still missing my father like crazy which is why I’m gravitating to her. Unlike the other books that I’ve reviewed (Except for Turbo Twenty Three) I have never read this book before this time.

Kate Appleton is down on her luck. Her husband left her, she’s lost her job, and now that she’s at her parent’s summer home in Keene’s Harbor, the man who bought her parent’s mortgage is threatening to foreclose on her. While she struggles through her life, she gets hired by Matt Culhane, a brewmaster who needs a spy to figure out who is trying to sabotage his brewery and restaurant. There are only 3 things that make Kate bad for the job. She’s new in town, she hates beer and no one trusts her. All that aside, Kate and Matt work together to track down the saboteur while trying to keep it completely professional.

There is no way around the truth. This is a harlequin type novel through and through. I love Evanovich and her writing style comes through in this novel, however, it’s a little more unbelievable that I can handle. Kate and Matt are excellent characters that have so much potential that I feel was underutilised. I’m not saying it’s a bad book, just not something to read if you want to think deeply. You have a very fast love story, a not so tense storyline, and the end is cleaned up a little too nicely. It’s a perfect story that isn’t very believable, but nice for a few hours of turn your brain off reading. So if you’re looking for a comedic, sweet and romantic escape this is the book for you.

Vampire in Love

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This is a really cliché movie and another one containing Kiritani Mirei. She does a fantastic job, I just wish the movie was better.

So we follow Kiira (Kiritani Mirei), a young vampire who is in love. However, due to an attack on her parent’s mansion resulting in their death, Kiira’s pulled away from everything that she’s known grandfather, Sojiro (Emoto Akira). This also pulls her away from Tetsu (Totsuka Shota), the boy she fell in love with. She is constantly looking for him after crossing paths for a moment years before.

The premise is cheesy so I don’t know why I expected any more from this movie. I’m going to blame it on the fact that I’ve been spoiled by the good movies that I have been watching lately. The filmography is fantastic and most of the actors acting was good. Maybe it’s because Totsuka has the least experience acting, I found some of his scenes awkward, but since this was his 2nd time acting and 1st as a lead I’ll let him slide. Also, Vampires who run a bakery is a little weird in my humble opinion. Overall, it’s fun but not something to put at the top of the to watch list.


Otaku Talk Movies – Vampire In Love

Love Live! School Idol Project

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I want to say that this is the first introduction to idol animes but I’m not sure if Kaikan Phrase (Sensual Phrase) is considered an idol story or just a shonen with a heavy emphasis on music. I don’t think that category idol anime was around back then.

We follow a group of girls as the push through their issues and become a school’s idol group. They mix and match their different personalities to make a group that works. Their goal in making this group is to increase the new students applying at the school in order to keep the school open.

This anime is very focused on their singing and dancing so there isn’t much of a story, however, the graphics around their dancing is awesome. If you don’t like 3d animation then you will probably not like the dance scenes. I enjoyed it but there just isn’t anything really to discuss. It’s a formulaic idol anime. it’s solid enough but it’s not going to change your life.


Otaku Talks Anime – Love Live! School Idol Project