Another Saturday Night and I Ain’t Got Nobody

Yep, posting Saturday instead of Tuesday. Couldn’t help it, it is in the title.

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Another Saturday Night and I Ain’t Got Nobody (Page Turners Novel #1) by Jennie Marts

Sunny is a second grade teacher and is involved in a book club full of her eclectic friends. There is Maggie, a lawyer, recently divorced, and mother of two teenage boys; Cassie, mom of two, married since college, PTA perfection; Edna, a elderly, loud talking, in search of a good time, and crime show addict; and Paige, teenage niece of Cassie who is dealing with the rejection of her mother and hides her feelings under a goth appearance.

They meet every Wednesday for good food, gabbing, movies, and a bit of discussion on whatever book they read.

Lately the book club has two missions they have thrown themselves into:

One, Sunny and Edna’s neighbor hasn’t been seen in quite some time but a young man has come and set up in the homestead. Edna is convinced he has a gun, is a criminal, and murdered Walter. Sunny thinks he is to die for handsome and wants to spend more time with him. However, as much as Sunny likes him, there is something that rings false about him; and the crew start looking into where Walter is and what Jake is up to.

Second, the Page Turners have decided that it is time Sunny got involved with someone. It has been two years since her last relationship so they decide to set her up for six Saturdays, in the hopes that she finds Mr. Right.

This summer Sunny dates a rich but boring stockbroker; a single dad who can’t take no for an answer; a friendly video gamer; a laid back cowboy; a health foodie fisherman; and a mysterious yet friendly FBI Agent.

While all this is going on, Sunny receives hang up phone calls and has a stalker who wants to take their relationship to the next level.

Will Sunny discover who Jake really is? Will she find the perfect date? Or will none of that matter as she becomes victim to an insane stalker.

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Thoughts After Reading:

I received this book free in return of an honest review.

I thought this mystery was only okay. It had an interesting premise, but the development of the characters were extremely shallow and it felt as if the author was going in different directions. Instead of a concise story it was more of a slapdash of different elements.

We have the possibility of the neighbor being a killer which doesn’t really go anywhere, and his character having no real substance.

The dates set up by the book club friends were just too extreme and overdone in an attempt to get you to laugh (which you don’t). I mean really, what women wearing Jimmy Choos would walk in the grass on her lawn instead of the pathway and accidentally step on dog poo without realizing it?

What WOW date would ever risk bringing someone along on a raid without finding out if she even knew what she was doing? They were just dumb.

That’s it?

How could she fall in horse poop and not tell?

The stalker of Sunny was interesting, but again the reveal wasn’t done well as it felt the author didn’t take time to fully craft it but chose a character to wrap it up. The ending was cheap, boring, and cliché.

They call this “page turners” but the women hardly even read, mostly gossip, eat, and watch movies. Maybe they should have gone with a film name instead of literary as they don’t seem to really enjoy it.

It had some fun parts, but those weren’t enough to rescue this book. Another one I’d pass on by.

For more blind date-themed mysteries, go to Dying for a Date

For more stalking mysteries, go to Candy from a Stranger

For more reviews, go to The Cold Dish

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Cinnamon Roll Smoothie

Thoughts Before Cooking:

I love smoothies! I love making them the night before and having them ready to go for when I head out to work. So whenever I spot one on pinterest, I put it on my board as a to-make. This is from Family Fresh Meals.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup of Vanilla Almond Milk (Or Milk + Vanilla Extract or Milk + Vanilla Creamer)
  • 1/2 Cup of Vanilla Greek Yogurt
  • 1/4 Cup of Old Fashioned Oats
  • 1 Tablespoon of Brown Sugar
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Cinnamon
  • 1 Frozen Banana

Directions:

  1. Blend all together in blender.

Thoughts after Cooking:

I thought it was really good. It didn’t make me think of cinnamon rolls, but it was good.

For more smoothie recipes, go to Blueberry Muffin Smoothie

For more Pinterest recipes, go to Crock-Pot Sausage, Spinach, and White Bean Soup

For more drink recipes, go to Blueberry Infused Water, Fresh & Frozen 

Crock-Pot Sausage, Spinach, and White Bean Soup

Thoughts Before Cooking:

I was given a crock-pot, and since then have been trying to find recipes as it makes life so much easier knowing I can be hard and work, and that when I get home and am tired I have dinner already made and waiting.

I got this off pinterest but it originally comes from D*** Delicious.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp of Olive Oil
  • 1-12.8 oz Package of Smoked Andouille Sausage or Kielbasa Sausage
  • 3 Cloves of Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Onion, Diced
  • 3 Carrots, Peeled and Diced
  • 2 Stalks of Celery, Diced
  • 2-15 oz Cans of Great Northern Beans, Drained and Rinsed
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Dried Oregano
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 4 Cups of Chicken Broth
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 3 Cups of Baby Spinach
  • 2 Cups of Water

Directions:

  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
  2. Add sausage and cook, stirring frequently, until lightly browned, about 3-4 mins.
  3. Place sausage, garlic, onion, carrots, celery, beans, oregano, and bay leaves into the slow cooker.
  4. Stir in chicken broth and water until well combined.
  5. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Cover and cook on low heat for 7-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours.
  7. Stir in spinach until wilted.
  8. Serve immediately.

Thoughts After Cooking:

I loved it. It was delicious and healthy.

For more Pinterest recipes, go to Hasselback Potatoes

For more Crock-pot recipes, go to Slow Cooker Pinto Beans

For more soup recipes, go to French Onion Soup

The Cold Dish

The Cold Dish (Walt Longmire Mystery #1) by Craig Johnson

Thoughts Before Reading:

So my sister and I were hanging out and saw Longmire on TV. I love anything Western and Wyoming (after all I lived there for a while)

So we started watching it. Right away I was hooked, and I ended up hooking others.

I loved the first three seasons the of the show. I thought the character of Longmire was excellent in his crime-solving abilities, very Sherlock Holmes and with such a love of literature!

And then Lou Diamond Phillips as Longmire’s best friend and member of the Cheyenne tribe, Henry Standing Bear. He was so fantastic!

So when I discovered that it was based on a book series, I decided I had to read it.

Plot Synopsis:

After twenty-four years as a Sheriff of Absaroka County, WY; he is thinking this will be his last year. He is hoping to pave the way for his outspoken deputy, Victoria “Vic”Moreitti.

However, when they find the body of Cody Pritchard, he knows retirement is not happening anytime soon. Two years ago, Cody was one of four boys who raped a mentally challenged Cheyenne girl. The boys were given a light sentence, something that upsetted many people. It looks like someone may be out for revenge, but who? And why now?

Thoughts After Reading:

This was horrible!

Ugh!

I was so shocked! The TV show was amazing and how could it even be created based on this horrible book.

Huh

I mean Walt didn’t really sheriff or investigate. Who wants to read a mystery where the main character doesn’t even care about crime solving, Instead he spends all his time trying to start a relationship, ugh.

I’d give this one star and urge others to just skip it and head straight to the TV show.

I know I won’t be reading anymore of these books for a long time, maybe never.

For more on The Cold Dish, go to It Was Brain-Tanned Leather, As Soft As a Horse’s Nose, and the Color of Butter Melting in the Sun

For more Westerns, go to Capital Bride

For more mystery reviews, go to The Mysterious Affair at Styles

The Jigsaw Puzzle

“The Jigsaw Puzzle” by Unknown from Tales From the Midnight Hour edited by J.D. Stamper

Lisa has been searching for something to take home to do, but has found nothing. Then she spots a jigsaw puzzle box. It says 500 pieces and that it is The Strangest Jigsaw Puzzle in the World. Something about that calls to Lisa and she buys it.

Hmm…

Mr. Tuborg, the owner, doesn’t remember ever buying it-and sells it to her.

She stops to buy dinner and heads off for home. As soon as she gets to her room she starts making the puzzle and notices some similar things in the puzzle to her room.

In fact, the more Lisa puts the puzzle together the more it looks exactly like her room. Even she is in it.

The woman in the puzzle is terrified! Scared! Horrified!

Soon there is only one piece missing. Lisa doesn’t want to finish it, but can’t help herself. It’s just a puzzle right?

When she finishes the puzzle she sees a terrifying creature behind the girl in the puzzle. Then she turns around and screams because there it is!

Thoughts After Reading:

A great spooky story.

For more short stories from The Midnight Hour, go to The Black Velvet Ribbon

For more short stories, go to Definitely, A Crime of Passion

The Mysterious Affair at Styles

Happy Birthday Agatha Christie!

Today is 128th birthday of Agatha Christie and in her honor we have:

The Mysterious Affair at Styles (Hercule Poirot #1) by Agatha Christie

I love Agatha Christie’s books. I’ve read almost every single one, but I have never done it in order. I have always wanted to-and will be and be posting on here after I have read them.

My love for Agatha Christie’s book all began when my nana found out I loved mysteries. She gave me a book that held three of her novels in one binding-The Seven Dials Mystery, Crooked House, and Ordeal by Innocence. After that I was hooked and bought/devoured any of her books I could find in thrift stores-taking home as many as I was able to.

Anyways, The Mysterious Affair at Styles was the first of Agatha Christie’s books published under her own name and the first of her mysteries. And it all started with a harmless “bet” between her sister Madge. Madge said that Agatha wouldn’t be able to write a good but she showed her.

Boom

It is the middle of WWII-rationing, moving from city to country, refugees, etc. Colonel Hastings, our narrator and Hercule Poirot’s best friend, starts off the novel in the flavor of Mr. Watson-a recount of the event, the murder, and the “mysterious affair” at Styles.

It all started when he ran into his good friend, John Cavendish. John invites him to join him and the family at Styles. At Styles, is John and his wife Mary-the country squire and wife, the younger brother Lawrence-studied to be a doctor but instead pursued literary ambitions with no success; and Cynthia-a young girl from poor family who is taken in by charity and works as a nurse.

Mrs. Cavendish married John and Lawrence’s father after their mother died, raising them as her own. When Mr. Cavendish died she inherited all the money until her death, which it then reverts home to John, the eldest, and money to Lawrence. She enjoyed the role as Mrs. Cavendish-and controlling the boys with how much money she doles out.

“Mrs. Cavendish, however, was a lady who liked to make her own plans, and expected other people to fall in with them, and in this case she certainly had the whip hand, namely: the purse strings.”

Well, there we go. A petri dish of tension just building for murder.

But to Colonel Hastings surprise, Mrs. Cavendish remarried! Her nurse Evelyn “Evie” Howard had a cousin visit-one Evie did not care for, and her helped Mrs. Cavendish with her many projects. The two fell in love and wed, now Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Inglethorpe.

No one likes Alfred Inglethorpe, Mrs. Cavendish-er Inglethorpe’s new husband. They all see him as a gold digger, but she won’t listen to anyone.

Colonel Hasting doesn’t see why anyone would be attracted to Alfred Inglethorpe. He looks more like a caricature rather than a real person.

“I looked with some curiosity at ‘Alfred darling’. He certainly struck an alien note…It was one of the longest and blackest [beards] I have ever seen. He wore gold-rimmed pince-nez, and had a curious impassivity of feature. It struck me that he might look natural on a stage, but was strangely out of place in real life. His voice was rather deep  and unctuous.”

Hmm…

Evie and Mrs Inglethorpe fight when Evie speaks out against Alfred. Mrs. Inglethorpe sends her packing and as she leaves, her last words were that someone was going to kill Mrs Inglethorpe and implores Colonel Hastings to watch out for her.

Then comes the fateful day. Everyone seems a bit off, excitement and tension in the air. They have a great luncheon, where everyone takes part in a tableaux and shows how they are fantastic actors.

They then visit Cynthia at work, have tea with her, and take a look at the dispensary and the poisons.

On the way back they stop at the post office as Colonel Hastings needs stamps and who should be there but Hercule Poirot! Hstings old friend and former leader of the Belgian police. And the greatest detective!

There is a fight that night between Alfred and Mrs Inglethorpe. After dinner, they have coffee or cocoa and then Alfred goes out to see a friend.

Hmm…

That night the tragedy was struck.

That night Colonel Hasting is awaken by Lawrence. John and the maid Dorcas are also awake and trying to get in Mrs Inglehorpr’s room as it is bolted. They can tell something is wrong and are trying to help her.

They go through Alfred’s room, and Hastings notices that there is no sign of him having been there that night-the bed not mussed everything. They get in and try to help her but are unable to. Her last words:

“Alfred-Alfred-“

They believe that she is poisoned. Everyone is a bit shocked and at a loss of what to do, so Colonel Hastings suggests bringing in Poirot.

Hastings tells Poirot all he can remember of what he knows that has happened in the past few days. They then look over Mrs. Inglethorpe’s room and the house.

Poirot finds six interesting things that will lead them to the killer.

  1. A coffee cup that as has been ground into powder.
  2. A despatch case with a key in the lock.
  3. A stain on the floor.
  4. Fragment of some dark green fabric-only a thread or two, but recognizable.
  5. A large splash of candle grease on the floor by the writing table.
  6. And the sixth he keeps to himself.

Poirot also discovers that Mrs. Inglethorpe wrote a new will:

Everything points to Alfred, but when he goes on trial-Poirot brings information that sets him free-free from being formally charged.

How could Poirot do that? And if it isn;t Alfred? Then who is it?

You’ll just have to read to find out.

Thoughts After Reading:

It was amazing as all her work is. Every time I read I am captured into the book and just astounded at how well she crafts a tale.

For more Agatha Christiego to The Murder at the Vicarage

For more gold diggers, go to A Case of Identity

For more death by poisons, go to Death by Darjeeling

For more mysteries that take place during World War II, go to The Butterfly and the Violin

Hasselback Potatoes

I love potatoes and am willing to try nearly every recipe I come across.

So when I spotted this on pinterest and had a spud, I figured why not?!

I realized afterwards that there was more exact measurements to the recipe and I was mislead by the recipe picture. I will redo it and post the changes.

Ingredients:

  • Yukon Gold Potato
  • Olive Oil
  • Butter
  • Salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven at 425 degrees F.
  2. Peel the potato.
  3. Cut the potatoes almost all the way through, but not completely.
  4. Drizzle with olive oil, butter, and salt.
  5. Bake for 40 mins or until cooked and crispy.

Thoughts After Cooking:

I thought it was good but would have been better of I had the proper amounts. Oh well, I’ll redo it and see how it comes out.

Oh well

For more Pinterest recipes, go to Garlic and Herb Roasted Potatoes

For more potato recipes, go to Cheese Potato Crisps

Next Victim

Next Victim (Abby Sinclair and Tess McCallum Series #2) by Michael Prescott

Thoughts Before Reading:

So I picked this book up at a library book sale. I never realized that it was part of a series until I was going to post the book review on here. It is weird because the first book The Shadow Hunter, has nothing to do with Tess McCallum but featured Abby Sinclair.

Hmm…

And in this book there is no Abby Sinclair. I’m not sure why it is called the Abby Sinclair and Tess McCallum Series. Maybe they meet up later in the series?

Plot Synopsis:

FBI Agent Tess McCallum has been searching for  a serial killer for years. Barely anything is known about him other than the brand of duct tape he uses, the knife, etc. No one knows his name or anything else, just that he refers to himself as Mobius.

After he murdered her boyfriend, Tess became more determined than ever to get him. She goes after every lead and every person who has a ghost of a resemblance.

Meanwhile, Amanda Pierce is on the run from the federal government. She was working for a company that was creating a chemical weapon for the military. She has stolen it and was in the middle of trying to sell it, when she crossed paths with Mobius.

Now they are on a race against time as they have to find Mobius before he unleashes this chemical and kills millions.

But one thing is in their favor. When they were close to grabbing Mobius he slipped through them but left a very important clue behind. But will this clue be enough to find him? Or will al be lost?

I wonder…

Thoughts After Reading:

So when I first read this book I wanted to be a behavioral scientist and work for the FBI. I read this and was jazzed.

However, after I read the first book I reread this one and didn’t like it as much. This time it felt formulaic and predictable. In this book Tess had a personal connection to a death by the killer and was trying to hunt him down-proving herself and making up for the past-just like Abby.

Hmm…

The killer identity is a twist and it turns out to be someone they know professionally.

It gave me mixed feelings as it was a good thriller but was also…old hat.

It’s possible that Prescott might have done that to build a shared history for when they team up later. I’m not sure, but I’ll find out. When I start reading a series, I always finish it.

Eventually…

For more from Abby Sinclair and Tess McCallum Series, go to The Shadow Hunter

For more FBI Agent mysteries, go to Sunset Reads: Damian & Layla

For more serial killers, go to Candy from a Stranger

 

Definitely, A Crime of Passion

“Definitely, A Crime of Passion” from Death Wears a Beauty Mask by Mary Higgins Clark

The former president, Henry Parker Britland IV, Secretary of State, Thomas Acker Shipman, has been arrested for murder of his ex-girlfriend, Arabella. He started dating not long after his wife died to a much, much younger woman. She left him, but guess that he didn’t want to give her up.

The turn of events was that he shot her and then went to bed. The housekeeper found the body in the morning.

What?!

This sounds extremely strange to the former President and his wife Sandra, “Sunday”. Him killing in a passion, doesn’t sound like the always calm and collected Thomas they know so well.

But even if he had a snapping point that caused him to do so, why would he go to bed after? That doesn’t sound right.

The two decide to investigate and found out that Henry broke up the relationship, not Arabella like the tabloids said.

Well if he did he wasn’t that “passionate” so why shoot her.

Hmm…

More and more doesn’t add up. So who is hiding the real truth?

Thoughts After Reading:

I didn’t like this as much I found it to be extremely obvious. I knew right away who the killer was and just found it comical that the former president and his wife were investigating.

But you know me, I don’t like Eleanor Roosevelt Investigates either.

For more Death Wears a Beauty Mask short stories, go to Death Wears a Beauty Mask

For more Mary Higgins Clark, go to Where Are You Now?

For more presidential investigators, go to The Hyde Park Murder

For more short stories, go to Conspiracy