Joann C. (joluvsamystery) - Reviews

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Agnes Grey
Agnes Grey
Author: Anne Bronte
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.2/5 Stars.
 9
Review Date: 8/7/2018


This is an underrated gem. The Bronte Sisters had real talent for writing. I loved this book. It is stepping back into history and feeling like you are really there living the experience. The fact that it is partly a true account made it even more engaging. This is a rather simple tale but at the same time brilliant.


The American Heiress (aka My Last Duchess)
The American Heiress (aka My Last Duchess)
Author: Daisy Goodwin
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.
 25
Review Date: 1/27/2018


I am a big Downton Abbey fan so I thought I would like this book and I did like it 3.5 stars worth. It is a good read, the last half better than the first.


Amy Snow: A Novel
Amy Snow: A Novel
Author: Tracy Rees
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.4/5 Stars.
 6
Review Date: 1/27/2018


Delightful! When I first began reading this novel I was put in mind of Jane Austen and as the story progressed it felt a bit "Dickensish" but that is not to say that it is dark. I loved it from the first page to the last. The beautiful writing carries this story along so pleasurably. I hope Ms Rees has a long writing career for me and others to enjoy. There is a slew of this type of novel out there, this is one of the best.


Before I Go To Sleep
Before I Go To Sleep
Author: S. J. Watson
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 192
Review Date: 1/27/2018


Just OK, rather slow going. Nothing great here.


Before the Fall
Before the Fall
Author: Noah Hawley
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 63
Review Date: 6/13/2018
Helpful Score: 1


This book started out so promising but went downhill rather fast. I kept thinking that the ending would be fantastic and turn it all around but that did not happen. I was making my own guesses to the outcome and I will say that my endings would have been way better. When I finished this book all I could say is, "REALLY, THIS IS WHY THE PLANE CRASHED". OMG, so dumb. I am not sure if it deserves even one star - such a let down.


The Blue Castle
The Blue Castle
Author: L. M. Montgomery
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 1/27/2018


This is one of my favorite books. If you are not familiar with L.M. Montgomery she wrote the "Anne of Green Gables" series of books. This may be her only book written for adults. It is a lovely story about a young woman who is being oppressed by her family and decides to break away and live by her own ideas. Just a lovely book.


The Book of Fires
The Book of Fires
Author: Jane Borodale
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 14
Review Date: 5/24/2018


Some unusual subject matter -making fireworks in the 18th century. The story revolves around an innocent country girl trying to survive in London on her own while trying to hide a secret. The writing is very good. I was drawn to the character of Agnes and with every page I was hoping that good things would come her way. Not a predictable story at all. I found it a very satisfying read.


The Chilbury Ladies' Choir
The Chilbury Ladies' Choir
Author: Jennifer Ryan
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 9/14/2017


This is one of the best books I have read so far this year. The writing is excellent! Every time I opened the book I was right there in Chilbury. Kitty and Mrs. Paltry had some lol moments. This is a keeper for me. I will definitely want to re-visit the people of Chilbury again. Looking forward to more from this author. The BBC could make a fantastic series out of this one.


Chill Factor
Chill Factor
Author: Sandra Brown
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 325
Review Date: 1/26/2018


Just OK. I skimmed most of the book. It just did not grab me. The romance part was cheesy and a bit silly. The mystery was not "chilling". I have read a few other of Sandra Brown's books and all of them have been 2.5 or 3 stars for me. I will most likely mark her off my to read list. Although I did give 4 stars to her "Rainwater".
It was an unusual story and quite good.


The Circular Staircase
The Circular Staircase
Author: Mary Roberts Rinehart
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.
 3
Review Date: 9/26/2017
Helpful Score: 1


This was my first reading of Mary Roberts Rinehart and I thought it was absolutely delightful. The main character and her maid are hilarious. I do love some humor in my mysteries. The story is full of twists and turns and I had a big smile on my face every time I opened it up. Written in 1907 it is a vintage mystery. I will read more of Ms. Rinehart.


City of Lies (Counterfeit Lady, Bk 1)
City of Lies (Counterfeit Lady, Bk 1)
Author: Victoria Thompson
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 12
Review Date: 2/1/2018
Helpful Score: 1


Good but predictable. I enjoyed reading this book but not a keeper or re-read for me.


Cut to the Quick
Cut to the Quick
Author: Kate Ross
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.
 10
Review Date: 1/27/2018


This Regency Mystery reminds me of an Agatha Christie novel. The mystery is excellent and the writing is excellent. Ms. Ross completed 4 in the series before she passed away. These books will be keepers for me to re-read.


A Dangerous Fortune
A Dangerous Fortune
Author: Ken Follett
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
 44
Review Date: 1/27/2018


Ken Follett is such an engaging writer. The story pulled me in right away and I eagerly kept turning the pages to find out what would happen to this vast array of characters. Most of his books have a bit of "made for TV movie" about them but his plots and characters are so interesting I overlook that aspect. A very good read.


A Dark and Stormy Murder (Writer's Apprentice, Bk 1)
A Dark and Stormy Murder (Writer's Apprentice, Bk 1)
Author: Julia Buckley
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 32
Review Date: 9/14/2017


It's OK. I will not read the second in the series. The main reason being that I really did not warm to the main character. I did not like her enough to want to delve into her life in the second of the series. IF, this main character had been more likable I would have given this book 5 stars and would be looking forward to more. The relationship between Lena and Sam should have been expanded -was not fleshed out. Anyway, I'm done.


Eliza Waite
Eliza Waite
Author: Ashley Sweeney
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 3
Review Date: 2/12/2017


I really liked this book. It was well written and the history was interesting. The characters of the story drew me in and I finished the book quickly. I would recommend this book to fans of historical romance.


Firefly Lane
Firefly Lane
Author: Kristin Hannah
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 196
Review Date: 1/27/2018


This is the type of writing that just bores me.
It is like a bad soap opera. Oh wait, all soap operas are bad - that's just me. I wish I had read "The Nightingale" first because now it is just hanging out on my TBR shelf. When I get around to it I sure hope it is better than this one. BTW, this story is sooooo just like "Beaches" - remembering that old Bette Midler movie.


The Girl from the Diadem
The Girl from the Diadem
Author: Jean Merrill
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.5/5 Stars.
 2
Review Date: 5/24/2018


Well I am keeping this one because I will certainly want to read it again. This book is so cleverly written and such a delight. I gobbled it down all at once then I immediately went to Amazon to see what else Ms Merrill has written but unfortunately didn't really find anything else of interest. I'm so glad I recently came across this book it is a jewel and stays in my library.


The Hanover Square Affair (Captain Lacey Regency Mysteries) (Volume 1)
Review Date: 1/27/2018


Well now I believe I like Captain Lacey quite a lot and I love the Regency time period. The plot of the mystery itself was not 5 star but I really like all of the characters; the Captain's very rich "almost" best friend, the pair of footmen that are brothers, Marianne, his upstairs neighbor and even the evil Mr. Denis. I can see that the author will have much to write about with all of these great characters.
I am going to buy the next two in the series and read them right away.


Hit Man (Keller, Bk 1)
Hit Man (Keller, Bk 1)
Author: Lawrence Block
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 18
Review Date: 9/14/2017


So glad I came across this series. I have so enjoyed reading this book. Lawrence Block has a HIT in "Hit Man". As soon as I finished it I ordered the next four books in the series. Already I am sad there are only five books in the series. I love the wit and humor of Block's writing - had a few laugh out loud moments. Just love Keller (main character) and Dot as well. I have to give a book 5 stars when I CANNOT put it down. I see Mr. Block has written many other books besides this series. I will be checking them out very soon.


The House At Tyneford
The House At Tyneford
Author: Natasha Solomons
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.
 3
Review Date: 1/27/2018


Not so good. The premise was good and I wanted to like this book but I found myself skimming through some of it and did not like the ending at all. So I would not recommend this book.


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