Category Archives: Contemporary

Review: True-Blue Cowboy Christmas by Nicole Helm

Title: True-Blue Cowboy Christmas by Nicole Helm
Big Sky Cowboys Series Book Three
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 352 pages
Book Rating: B

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


Thack Lane has his hands full. For the past seven years, he’s been struggling to move on from his wife’s tragic death and raise a daughter all by his lonesome. He doesn’t have time for himself, much less a cheerful new neighbor with a smile that can light up the ranch.

Christmas spirit? Bah, humbug.

With Christmas right around the corner, Summer Shaw is searching for somewhere to belong. When her neighbor’s young daughter takes a shine to her, she is thrilled. But Thack is something else altogether. He’s got walls around his heart that no amount of holiday wishes can scale. Yet as joy comes creeping back to the lonely homestead, Summer and Thack may just find their happily ever after before the last of the Christmas miracles are through…


A sweet holiday themed romance, True-Blue Cowboy Christmas is the third installment in Nicole Helm’s Big Sky Cowboys series and readers will be thrilled to finally get the inside scoop on the youngest Shaw sibling, Summer.

The only one of the Shaw children not to grow up on the family’s ranch, Summer has slowly been getting to know her brother and sister since moving to Montana two years earlier. Like both her siblings, she plays her cards very close to her chest, so she has not revealed much about her life prior to arriving in town. Summer wants nothing more than to belong and she is unfailingly cheerful and very hesitant to make waves. She refuses to dwell on her unpleasant memories and as a result, she feels much better about herself than she did before moving to the ranch. A little disheartened by her lack of progress getting to know her taciturn father, Summer finds herself at loose ends after her brother’s and sister’s recent marriages.

Widower Thack Lane is carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders and he wants nothing more than to protect his seven year old daughter, Kate, from ever experiencing heartache or pain. Following his wife’s tragic death, he put all his energy into raising Kate and running the family ranch. With his dad Merle’s help, Thack has done a pretty good job juggling the demands of parenthood with the ranch work. However, it has become difficult to keep up with Kate as she ignores the rules and runs a little wild. Desperate to maintain tight control over a world that has proven to be quite harsh, Thack is not exactly happy when Merle hires Summer to help out around the house. While he eventually realizes that she is just what Kate needs, Thack is determine to ignore his unexpected attraction to his beautiful neighbor.

Summer has been a bit of an enigmatic character since she arrived but there is little doubt that things were not ideal with her mom. She is so upbeat, happy and calm that her reaction to Thack when he arrives to find his daughter is a bit of a surprise. These chinks in her equanimity are the first real hints that her life with her mom was more than just unpleasant but she continues to push aside her painful memories. Once she gets to know Thack, she realizes that he is genuinely worried about Kate but she does not hesitate to tell him that he might need to loosen up a bit. Not knowing his history, Summer has no idea how hard it is for him to give up control but Thack gradually becomes aware that he needs to let go of his irrational guilt and take a chance that things will work out for him. However, when Summer’s past catches up with her, can he convince her to stop running from trouble?

Set against the backdrop of the holiday season, True-Blue Cowboy Christmas is an emotional novel of healing, family and love. This final installment in Nicole Helm’s Big Sky Cowboys series is less angst ridden but it still packs a powerful punch as Thack and Summer finally make peace with their respective pasts. All of the unanswered questions about the Shaw family’s complicated history are finally resolved with a pulse-pounding, adrenaline-filled yet slightly over the top conclusion All in all, a lovely holiday romance that old and new fans are sure to enjoy.

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Filed under Big Sky Cowboys Series, Contemporary, Nicole Helm, Rated B, Review, Romance, Sourcebooks Casablanca, True-Blue Cowboy Christmas

Review: Home on the Range by Ruth Logan Herne

Title: Home on the Range by Ruth Logan Herne
Double S Ranch Series Book Three
Publisher: Multnomah
Genre: Contemporary, Christian, Romance
Length: 322 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through Blogging for Books


Can the brother left behind and a woman without hope work together for the good of two precious children?

Nick Stafford stayed in central Washington, working his family’s large ranch after his brothers left to pursue other passions—but his toughest job is being a single dad. As a child he watched his father fail at marriage and parenting, so Nick was determined to show him up. He’d be a better husband, father, and ranch manager than Sam Stafford ever was. Despite that commitment, three years after Nick’s wife left him, he has a daughter in trouble at school and both of his girls are facing issues that force him to rethink his stubborn plans.

For Dr. Elsa Andreas, life fell apart when tragedy caused her to abandon her family therapy practice and retreat to the backwoods of Gray’s Glen. Her school principal sister believes Elsa can guide the Stafford girls and that working with kids will draw Elsa out of her protective bubble.

Summer on the Double S teems with life and adventure. Amid the bounty of God and land, will Nick and Elsa find the courage to build futures based on faith rather than fear?


Home on the Range by Ruth Logan Herne is an incredibly heartfelt novel of healing and renewed faith.  This second installment in the Double S Ranch series features a pair of adorable little girls, a divorced single dad and a somewhat fragile yet surprisingly resilient psychologist.  Although this latest release can be read as a standalone, I HIGHLY recommend the first book in the series as well.

For months, middle brother Nick Stafford has stubbornly resisted all efforts to take his daughters, six year old Dakota and eight year old Cheyenne, to a counselor to help them deal with the abandonment of their mother.  However, with Cheyenne putting herself into dangerous situations and on the verge of failing school, he knows it is time to put aside his reservations and seek professional assistance.  While Dakota is refreshingly open with an upbeat personality, Cheyenne is rebellious, stubborn and lashing out at everyone around her.  Nick is a little leery of entrusting his girls to reclusive therapist Dr. Elsa Andreas but he is determined to do right by his daughters.  Gratified to see Cheyenne slowly but surely improving with each session, he is pleasantly surprised by the realization that he is also benefiting from talking to Elsa.  When Nick and Elsa realize there is more to their relationship than their mutual concern for the girls, will they take a chance on love?

Nick is the only one of his brothers to remain in Washington to work on their family ranch.  His relationship with his father, Sam, is contentious and emotionally distant.  He has never come to terms with his mother’s long ago abandonment but he always dreamed of having a family of his own.  His marriage to his now ex-wife Whitney ended when she walked out on him and their daughters and then left town with another man.  Although he only wants to keep his girls safe and make them happy, he has been stubbornly resisting Cheyenne’s efforts to become more involved with the ranch that his ex-wife hated.  However events in the past several months have escalated to the point that Nick finally realizes that something needs to change before he completely alienates Cheyenne.  Taking his daughters to therapy is just the first step in fixing the problems wrought by Whitney’s desertion but just as Nick is making positive changes in their lives, their progress is threatened by his ex-wife’s sudden return.

Leaving behind a lucrative practice in the aftermath of tragedy, Elsa has been living a solitary life in seclusion.  Despite her initial reluctance to counsel the girls, she is surprised by how easily Nick’s daughters slip past her defenses. As she becomes more engaged in helping the girls cope with their problems, Elsa finally begins to heal from the wounds from the traumatic events that sent her into a downward spiral.  The changes are gradual but significant as she begins to fully participate in life and she is stunned by her sudden interest in Nick.  Fully committed to providing Cheyenne and Dakota with the counseling they need, Elsa is also open to exploring her unexpected relationship with Nick.  What, if any, impact will Whitney’s return have on their fledgling romance?

The situation with Whitney is realistically portrayed and it is absolutely heartbreaking watching her careless and sometimes, indifferent, treatment of her daughters. While Dakota keeps her distance from her mother, Cheyenne is thrilled to see her again.  However, reality does not exactly match up to Cheyenne’s dreams of their reunion and she is soon dealing with fresh disappointment as Whitney fails to follow through with promises.  Nick is fairly certain he knows the real reason his ex-wife has come back into their lives, but despite his reservations, he is willing to give to her chance to fix her relationship with their daughters.  He remains firm with her despite her bitterness over perceived slights and although he gives her some leeway as she repeats past mistakes, Nick continues to try protect them from further heartache from their mother.

The relationship between Nick and Elsa begins  as friendship and gradually turns to love as they spend time together.  Although their initial interactions are related to the girls, they soon discover they share common interests outside of their mutual concern for Dakota and Cheyenne.  As their lives become more closely intertwined, their feelings for each other quickly evolve into something much deeper.  However, Elsa’s hesitation in revealing the truth about her past leads to trouble and Nick cannot help but feel betrayed once he discovers she has been less than honest with him.

Home on the Range is an incredible journey of healing and faith that will resonate with readers who have struggled to put their complete trust in God.  The characters are multi-faceted and beautifully rendered with relatable imperfections, strengths and desires.  The storyline is endearing and believable with each of the characters undergoing tremendous growth as they overcome adversity. This newest addition to Ruth Logan Herne’s delightful Double S Ranch series is an emotionally compelling story that old and new fans are going to love.

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Filed under Christian, Contemporary, Double S Ranch Series, Home on the Range, Multnomah Books, Rated B+, Review, Romance, Ruth Logan Herne

Review: IQ by Joe Ide

Title: IQ by Joe Ide
Publisher: Mullholland Books
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery
Length: 337 pages
Book Rating: B

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


A resident of one of LA’s toughest neighborhoods uses his blistering intellect to solve the crimes the LAPD ignores.

East Long Beach. The LAPD is barely keeping up with the neighborhood’s high crime rate. Murders go unsolved, lost children unrecovered. But someone from the neighborhood has taken it upon himself to help solve the cases the police can’t or won’t touch.

They call him IQ. He’s a loner and a high school dropout, his unassuming nature disguising a relentless determination and a fierce intelligence. He charges his clients whatever they can afford, which might be a set of tires or a homemade casserole. To get by, he’s forced to take on clients that can pay.

This time, it’s a rap mogul whose life is in danger. As Isaiah investigates, he encounters a vengeful ex-wife, a crew of notorious cutthroats, a monstrous attack dog, and a hit man who even other hit men say is a lunatic. The deeper Isaiah digs, the more far reaching and dangerous the case becomes.


With IQ, debut mystery author Joe Ide breathes fresh life into the all too familiar private detective trope with both the lead character, Isaiah “IQ” Quintabe and the gritty setting.  Throw in an intriguing storyline, an interesting sidekick and a complicated yet fascinating backstory and you have the perfect ingredients for a riveting novel that will leave readers hoping for future books starring IQ.

Isaiah is a high school dropout with a near genius IQ whose work as an unlicensed word of mouth PI garners him plenty of work but not a whole of cash.  When his old high school roommate and ex-partner in crime Juanell Dodson calls him with a job opportunity, he has no intention of taking the case.  But with his funds dwindling at an alarming rate, he is forced to reconsider and thus begins his investigation into who has taken a hit out on rap superstar Calvin “Black the Knife” Wright.  Which person in Cal’s life is responsible for hiring a hit man who unleashed a lethal attack dog to take him out?  Could it be Cal’s ex-wife Noelle, an aspiring pop diva who positively loathes her ex-husband?  Or could it be someone from Cal’s trusted inner circle?

A brilliant student with a bright future ahead of him, Isaiah was on track to make something big out of his life when tragedy forever altered his path. Floundering, deeply depressed and struggling to keep a roof over his head, he becomes roommates with Dodson, who, at the time, was a low level gangbanger dealing drugs.  When Isaiah’s quest for revenge takes over his life, Dodson convinces Isaiah to become his partner in crime.  No ordinary criminals, the two approach their heists in a cool, deliberate manner as Isaiah plans their burglaries with meticulous detail and a calculated plan to fence their merchandise so they fly under the radar.  However, Isaiah eventually gets tired of Dodson’s flashy lifestyle and live-in girlfriend and after a close call on one of the burglaries, he tries to end their partnership.  After a pivotal moment that provides him with some much needed clarity, Isaiah gets on the right side of the law and often takes cases for people who pay him with goods more often than cash.

Isaiah solves his cases using a combination of intelligence, common sense and acute observations.  With his latest case, he quickly zeroes in on the unusual manner in which the hit man tried to kill Cal and using his vast network of resources, he and Dodson narrow down their suspect list and pay an innocuous visit to a dog breeder in the area.  Although their questions yield few answers, Isaiah is convinced he is their man but he has difficult time convincing anyone, including Dodson, they are on the right track.  The investigation continues to plod along without them uncovering any major evidence but Isaiah is tenacious in his attempt to piece together the puzzle.

Isaiah’s relationship with Dodson is complex and at times acrimonious due to their history together.  Flashbacks to their criminal past slowly reveal how their partnership came to a tempestuous end.  Isaiah is guilt-ridden over his (perceived) role in a tragedy from those long ago days and he refuses to give up trying to right that oh so tragic wrong.  He really is a good guy who was dealt a terrible hand and while he may have temporarily veered off track, his conscience would not allow him to stay there.  Isaiah’s need to help those is need is admirable and he has a strong moral compass that now keeps him on the straight and narrow.

Gritty with authentic dialogue, IQ is an incredibly well-written mystery with a distinctive crime fighting duo. Joe Ide’s descriptive prose brings the setting and characters vibrantly to life which makes the reader feel like they are part of story and not just a spectator to the unfolding events. Although a bit of a slow starter, the novel is eventually impossible to put down as Isaiah and Dodson try to unravel the mystery of who hired a hit man to kill Cal.  I absolutely loved this fantastic debut and highly recommend it to fans of the genre.

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Filed under Contemporary, IQ, Joe Ide, Mullholland Books, Mystery, Rated B, Review

Review: Black Flowers, White Lies by Yvonne Ventresca

Title: Black Flowers, White Lies by Yvonne Ventresca
Publisher: Sky Pony Press
Genre: Contemporary, Young Adult, Mystery, suspense
Length: 272 pages
Book Rating: B

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through Edelweiss


Her father died before she was born, but Ella Benton knows they have a supernatural connection. Since her mother discourages these beliefs, Ella keeps her cemetery visits secret. But she may not be the only one with secrets. Ella’s mother might be lying about how Dad died sixteen years ago. Newfound evidence points to his death in a psychiatric hospital, not as a result of a tragic car accident as her mother always claimed. After a lifetime of just the two of them, Mom suddenly feels like a stranger.

When a handprint much like the one Ella left on her father’s tombstone mysteriously appears on the bathroom mirror, at first she wonders if Dad is warning her of danger as he did once before. If it’s not a warning, could her new too-good-to-be-true boyfriend be responsible for the strange occurrences? Or maybe it’s the grieving building superintendent whose dead daughter strongly resembles Ella? As the unexplained events become more frequent and more sinister, Ella becomes terrified about who—or what—might harm her.

Soon the evidence points to someone else entirely: Ella herself. What if, like her father, she’s suffering from a breakdown? In this second novel from award-winning author Yvonne Ventresca, Ella desperately needs to find answers, no matter how disturbing the truth might be.


In Black Flowers, White Lies by Yvonne Ventresca, Ariella “Ella” Benton is convinced supernatural forces are responsible for a series of strange occurrences that begin happening after her mother and new stepfather leave for their honeymoon.  Turning to her new stepbrother, Blake, for help, she is soon uncertain whom to trust as they try to uncover the truth.

Despite never knowing her father, Ella feels a strong connection with him.  She has a strong belief in the supernatural and she is convinced he is looking out for her.  With both his birthday and the anniversary of his death coming up, Ella turns to tarot cards and séances to contact him in addition to her frequent trips to visit his grave.  When Blake provides her with new information about her dad’s long ago death right before their parents’ wedding, she decides to hold off on confronting her mom with the inconsistencies until after she returns from her honeymoon.  So when inexplicable things begin occurring almost as soon as her mom departs, Ella is certain that an otherworldly presence is responsible. However is there, in fact, a much more down to earth reason for the increasingly disturbing events that she is experiencing?

Ella is a likable, albeit somewhat naive and trusting, fifteen year old.  She is not looking forward to gaining a stepfather but she is resigned to accepting him into her life.  With everything just a little off kilter between her and her mom, Ella is clinging a little more tightly to her father’s memory than usual and she is angry when she finds out her mom has probably been lying to her about his death.  However, not wanting to ruin her mom’s happiness or cause her to worry once she is on her honeymoon, Ella keeps quiet about this new information and the strange things that are going on in her absence. Instead Ella confides in her good friend Grace, but when her friend is not exactly supportive, she turns to Blake for help.

Blake’s relationship with his father has been troubled for years but with the upcoming wedding, he has decided to let go of his anger.  Once he arrives in town for the wedding, he is nothing but kindhearted and considerate to everyone as they transition into a family.  Once the wedding is over, Blake stays at Ella’s apartment while he waits to begin college.  Although there are a few awkward moments between them, Ella and Blake seem to moving into an amenable step sibling relationship.

Ella’s situation quickly turns suspenseful as she begins experiencing frightening phenomena and hearing things no one else seems to hear.  Initially, she is convinced these things are the result of a ghostly presence, but Blake and Grace’s reactions cause her to doubt herself.  After Blake’s revelations about her father, Ella grows concerned she might be suffering from an undiagnosed mental disorder and after a horrifying and completely out of character incident, she is certain something is wrong with her.  However, unexpected information comes to light that points in a completely different direction, but can Ella trust her instincts?

Black Flowers, White Lies is an intriguing young adult novel with a clever plot that will keep readers on the edge of their seats from the very first page. Yvonne Ventresca’s skillful misdirects and red herrings make it impossible to figure out what (or who) is responsible for the eerie events that Ella is experiencing. While the novel is well-written and quite riveting, the conclusion is rather rushed and the lack of a clear resolution is a little frustrating.  Despite a few lingering questions, this young adult mystery is an engaging read that fans of the genre will enjoy.

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Filed under Black Flowers White Lies, Contemporary, Mystery, Rated B, Review, Sky Pony Press, suspense, Young Adult, Yvonne Ventresca

Review: Just Fine with Caroline by Annie England Noblin

Title: Just Fine with Caroline by Annie England Noblin
Cold River Series Book One
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Genre: Contemporary, Women’s Fiction
Length: 368 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher


From the author of Sit! Stay! Speak! comes a tender, terrific novel complete with long-buried secrets, a three-legged pot belly pig, and an irresistible dog—an unforgettable story about love, friendship, and community. Perfect for fans of Mary Kay Andrews and Mary Alice Monroe.

Caroline O’Connor never dreamed she’d be back home in Cold River, Missouri, the Ozark Mountain town where everyone is ‘up your business.’…they mean well as they drive you crazy. She thought she’d left town for good, but now she’s back, helping to care for her New York born mother—struck with Alzheimer’s, and prone to saying and doing anything—and her father, the beloved local doctor frustrated he can’t cure his own wife.

As for Caroline, she’s doing ‘just fine’ coping with her parents, her brazen cousin Ava Dawn’s marital disasters, her mostly-deaf dog…and with Noah Cranwell, far-flung relative of a local family mostly infamous for running moonshine, an ex-veteran who’s come to Cold River with troubles of his own.

Caroline believes she knows everything about Cold River and the people who live in its hills and hollers … but sometimes life’s greatest surprises happen closest to home


Annie England Noblin’s delightful Cold River series is off to wonderful beginning with the first installment, Just Fine with Caroline.  This absolutely marvelous novel is a poignant but uplifting story that I highly recommend to readers of contemporary women’s fiction.

Caroline O’Connor left college before obtaining her degree to move back to her small hometown nestled in the Missouri Ozarks to help care for her mother after she is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.  During the summer months, she runs her mom’s bait shop in addition to caring for her mom.  This summer is a little livelier than usual due to the unexpected arrival of Noah Cranwell, who plans to reopen his family’s store, the return of Caroline’s ex-boyfriend, Reese Graham and her cousin Ava Dawn’s impending divorce.  Despite living in a small town where everyone knows everyone else’s business, the Cranwell family remains a bit of a mystery and Caroline is stunned to discover her family is harboring a shocking secret as well.

Caroline is struggling with the reality of her mom’s worsening condition while feeling like her life is in limbo.  While she does not begrudge assisting her parents’ through this difficult time, she cannot help but feel like she is waiting for her own life to begin.  At the same time, Caroline is a little frustrated with her emotionally distant father who is not handling his wife’s diagnosis very well.  Not exactly content with the status quo, Caroline just  sort of drifts through her days until she meets Noah.  She  is quite drawn to him but will their burgeoning relationship survive once Caroline learns the truth about a long held family secret?

After several years in the military, Noah is finally ready to put down roots. He is soon caught up in renovating his family’s long closed business while at the same time reconnecting with his grandfather.  He is just as surprised as Caroline by their mutual attraction and although there is tension between their families, they enjoy getting to know one another.  However, secrets do not always remain hidden and Caroline feels betrayed by him once her family’s secret is revealed.  Is their fragile relationship strong enough to withstand this stunning setback?

A secondary story arc featuring Ava Dawn’s decision to leave her abusive husband, Roy, provides added depth to the main storyline.  Her troubled marriage has to be the worst kept secret in town and although she has left Roy numerous times in the past, this time Ava Dawn is serious about divorcing him.  Further complicating the situation is her involvement with a popular church and its minister, Brother Haiden Crow.  Unlike Caroline who does not trust Brother Crow, Ava Dawn hangs on his word  but does her involvement with him go beyond spiritual guidance?

Just Fine with Caroline is an incredibly moving novel that delves into the complicated dynamics of family relationships. Caroline’s heartbreak over losing her mother to the vagaries of Alzheimer’s Disease is realistically portrayed and will definitely resonate with readers whose lives have been affected by the ravages of the disease.  The romance between Caroline and Noah is sweet yet steamy but misunderstandings and lack of communication threaten to derail their relationship at the first hint of trouble.  he Missouri Ozarks serve as the perfect backdrop for this marvelous story and Annie England Noblin brings the town of Cold River and its inhabitants vividly to life. An absolutely charming first installment in a promising new series that I absolutely loved and highly recommend.

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Filed under Annie England Noblin, Cold River Series, Contemporary, Just Fine with Caroline, Rated B+, Review, William Morrow Paperbacks, Women's Fiction

Review: Something Buried, Something Blue by Wendy Corsi Staub

Title: Something Buried, Something Blue by Wendy Corsi Staub
Lily Dale Mystery Series Book Two
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Supernatural Elements
Length: 304 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


New York Times bestselling author Wendy Corsi Staub is back with the second in her critically-acclaimed cozy mystery series.

After agreeing to stay in Lily Dale through the winter as caretakers of the Valley View Guesthouse and its feline residents, widowed mom Bella Jordan and her son Max are looking forward to the peaceful off-season after a hectic summer. That is until the medium next door, Odelia Lauder, recruits Bella to host a destination wedding for the world’s most petulant bride, Johneen Maynard, a friend of Odelia’s granddaughter.

Things take an even more stressful turn as the wedding day looms amidst an October blizzard, when suddenly the Spirits start giving Odelia a major heads up that the bride might be fated for death. And if there’s any truth to her premonitions, the wedding is off—and that’s the least of their problems.

It’s a race to figure out who would want to kill Johneen before her attacker has a chance to strike in Something Buried, Something Blue.


Something Buried, Something Blue is the second installment in Wendy Corsi Staub’s Lily Dale Mystery series featuring innkeeper Isabella “Bella” Jordan.  This cozy mystery has slight supernatural elements and features a cast of eclectic yet charming characters and while it is the second book in the series, it can be read as a standalone.

Having fully committed to remaining in the Spiritualist community with her young son Max, Bella reluctantly agrees to put together a destination wedding for a friend of her neighbor and friend, Odelia Lauder.  Johneen Maynard and her fiancé Parker Langley have been searching for an out of the way place for their upcoming nuptials and Lily Dale turns out to be the perfect place for their big day.  Unfortunately, Johneen is a bit of a Bridezilla but Bella and Odelia organize a lovely ceremony for the couple. However, Odelia soon begins receiving rather ominous messages from her Spirit guide that seem to indicate that Johneen could be in danger and Bella is concerned about an impending storm that threatens their plans for an outdoor ceremony.  She becomes even more frazzled when her overbearing mother-in-law unexpectedly arrives and Odelia is a no show for last minute wedding preparations. Bella breathes a sigh of relief once the couple exchange their vows but is Johneen truly out of danger?  Who (or what) is responsible for the strange occurrences that have been plaguing the Valley View Guesthouse since the wedding party’s arrival?  Bella is determined to find out the truth but will she inadvertently put herself in harm’s way as she searches for answers?

Once again, Bella is out of her element  but she rises to the challenge of planning the upcoming wedding.  She is hoping a successful wedding will provide a way for the guesthouse to make some much needed revenue during Lily Dale’s off season so she works hard to satisfy her unpleasant bride to be.  Bella is still rather skeptical of the townspeople’s psychic abilities, so she tries to come up with rational explanations for Odelia’s foreboding messages about the upcoming ceremony.  After the guests arrive, she is so focused on the last minute details that she is convinced she is imagining some of the odd things she has been experiencing.  Bella is also trying to figure out what is behind Millicent’s sudden visit and surprisingly, her mother-in-law’s misgivings about her new friends raises a few suspicions of her own in the aftermath of the wedding.

Something Buried, Something Blue is a perplexing addition to The Lily Dale Mystery series.  Aided by a little psychic intuition and some good old fashioned detective work, Bella uncovers the truth about the mysterious events and Wendy Corsi Staub brings the novel to an exciting, pulse-pounding conclusion.

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Filed under Contemporary, Crooked Lane Books, Lily Dale Mystery, Mystery, Rated B+, Review, Something Buried Something Blue, Supernatural Elements, Wendy Corsi Staub