Thursday, January 28, 2016

I'll Never Let You Go (Morgans of Nashville)


I've finished "I'll Never Let You Go" the 3rd book in her Morgans of Nashville series by Mary Burton.

Product Description


He promised to kill her. One night four years ago, Leah Carson’s husband almost succeeded. Philip stabbed her twenty-three times before fleeing. The police are sure he’s dead. But fear won’t let Leah believe it.


It starts with little things. Missing keys. A flat tire. Mysterious flowers. All easily explained away if the pattern wasn’t so terrifyingly familiar. Leah has a new veterinary practice and a new life with no ties to her nightmare. But Tennessee Bureau of Investigation agent Alex Morgan suspects something. And when another woman’s body is found, stabbed twenty-three times, Leah knows her past has found her.


As Leah and Alex untangle the horrifying truth, he watches her, ready for the perfect moment. Until death — that was the vow they made. And a killer always keeps his word.

About the Author

Mary Burton lives with her family in Central Virginia. She is an avid hiker and enjoys the occasional triathlon. She can be reached by e-mail at

Product Details
Series: Morgans of Nashville
Mass Market Paperback: 416 pages
Publisher: Zebra (October 27, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1420132156
ISBN-13: 978-1420132151

My Review:


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Cozy, Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Books Wish List

Please list the books from your wishlist that you are hoping to add to your shelves in a comment, thanks.

Cozy, Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Books, I'm Waiting For:

The New York Times bestselling author of Closer Than You Think returns with a breathtaking new novel of suspense in the Cincinnati series — one that crosses the line between danger and desire, and justice and revenge.

Homicide Detective Scarlett Bishop has seen enough bad guys slip through the cracks and innocent victims go unavenged to know that good doesn't always prevail. So far she’s been able to lock away her rage and her vigilante fantasies. That lock is about to break.

Former Army Ranger Marcus O'Bannion is a fierce champion of victims’ rights. His secret past gives him good reason. He believes he’s seen the depths of human depravity, but then his investigation into the murder of a young girl who once asked for his help lures him and Scarlett down a dark, dark road — and straight into the crosshairs of a dangerous, powerful underground ring that deals in human trafficking. To stop them, Scarlett and Marcus have to be just as cunning and just as ruthless. But first they have to make it out alive.

The new novel featuring homicide detective Eve Dallas from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Devoted in Death.

Sometimes brotherhood can be another word for conspiracy

Dennis Mira just had two unpleasant surprises. First he learned that his cousin Edward was secretly meeting with a real estate agent about their late grandfather’s magnificent West Village brownstone, despite the promise they both made to keep it in the family. Then, when he went to the house to confront Edward about it, he got a blunt object to the back of the head.

Luckily Dennis is married to Charlotte Mira, the NYPSD’s top profiler and a good friend of Lieutenant Eve Dallas. When the two arrive on the scene, he explains that the last thing he saw was Edward in a chair, bruised and bloody. When he came to, his cousin was gone. With the mess cleaned up and the security disks removed, there’s nothing left behind but a few traces for forensics to analyze.

As a former lawyer, judge, and senator, Edward Mira mingled with the elite and crossed paths with criminals, making enemies on a regular basis. Like so many politicians, he also made some very close friends behind closed — and locked — doors. But a badge and a billionaire husband can get you into places others can’t go, and Eve intends to shine some light on the dirty deals and dark motives behind the disappearance of a powerful man, the family discord over a multimillion-dollar piece of real estate and a new case that no one saw coming.

Deirdre "Foxtrot" Lancaster returns-with her otherworldly animal companions Whiskey and Tango - to shine a light on the dark side of fame.

Foxtrot has seen a lot of strange things as assistant to billionaire Zelda Zoransky at her wacky mansion. And that includes her telepathic cat Tango and ectoplasmic pooch Whiskey. So it's no surprise to find a horde of zombies lurching across the lawn - even if they are just actors in a horror movie that's filming on the mansion grounds. The special effects look pretty convincing. But all that fake blood doesn't fool Whiskey, who quickly sniffs out the truth: one of those corpses is real...

A DEADLY TAIL Before you can say, "Lights, camera, murder," Foxtrot and her furry partners-in-crime-solving are caught up in the drama of who - killed-who and why. With a crazy cast of characters including a neurotic director, a star-hungry diva-even with an appearance by Lassie's ghost - it's bound to have one hell of a twist ending. But first, Foxtrot and her supernatural sidekicks have to find a killer amongst them - before the whole case is a wrap in the next Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot novel from Dixie Lyle.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

New Release 2016 (Jan 26)

A bodyguard, a bounty hunter, a P.I. -- the men of Brodie Operations Security Service, Inc. are down for the job.

Sinners, whores, and sluts beware -- your time is at hand: a faceless menace is threatening lingerie models on a cross country tour, and Ethan Brodie is there to defend and protect.

Ethan's learned the hard way that beauty is no substitute for character. So even though Valentine Hart is one of the most breathtaking women he's ever seen, he's keeping his hands off and his eyes open. Or that's what he tells himself.

Then one of the models is murdered, and the closer Ethan gets to the answers, the closer he finds himself to Valentine -- and the hotter the pressure feels. There's more to Val -- more to the other girls -- than he could have guessed. But one is keeping a secret that could kill them all.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Weekly Cozy, Mystery Thriller and Romantic Suspense Reads (Jan 25)

 Weekly Cozy, Mystery Thriller and Romantic Suspense Reads

Weekly Cozy, Mystery Thriller and Romantic Suspense Reads is a weekly Monday Meme that is hosted by Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews:

Post the books you read last week and books being read this week.

Read Last Week:

1.  The Buried - Shelley Coriell

Weekly Read:

1.  I'll Never Let You Go - Mary Burton

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Emma Miller's Plain Dead Blog Tour with Spotlight and Giveaway


I am so excited to have Emma Miller here at Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews with a Spotlight and Giveaway.

Thanks and Emma and Great Escapes Virtual Book for allowing me to join your Plain Dead Blog Tour!

Please take it away, Emma!


Plain Dead
(An Amish Mystery)

3rd in Series
Cozy Mysteries
Publisher: Kensington (December 29, 2015)
Paperback: 272 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0758291769


When a newspaperman is murdered in the Amish community of Stone Mill, Pennsylvania, Rachel Mast digs up the dirt to find out who wanted to bury the lead.

Although she left her Old Order Amish ways in her youth, Rachel discovered corporate life in the English world to be complicated and unfulfilling. Having returned to Stone Mill, she’s happy to be running her own B&B. But she’s also learning — in more ways than one — that the past is not always so easily left behind.

After local newspaperman Bill Billingsly is found gagged and tied to his front porch, left to freeze overnight in a snowstorm, Detective Evan Parks — Rachel’s beau — uncovers a file of scandalous information Billingsly intended to publish, including a record of Rachel pleading no contest to charges of corporate misconduct. Though Evan is certain of her innocence, it’s up to Rachel to find the real killer. A closer examination of the victim’s unpublished report leads Rachel to believe the Amish community is far from sinless. But if she’s not careful her obituary might be the next to appear in print.

About The Author

Emma Miller is the author of Redeeming Grace and Anna’s Gift. She lives with her family in Kent County, Delaware


Purchase Links



B and N


Please follow the rest of the tour here, thanks:

Cozy, Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Books Wish List

Please list the books from your wishlist that you are hoping to add to your shelves in a comment, thanks.

Cozy, Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Books, I'm Waiting For:

NYPD Red chases a ruthless murderer with an uncontrollable lust for money -- and blood.

It's another glamorous night in the heart of Manhattan: at a glitzy movie premiere, a gorgeous starlet, dressed to the nines and dripping in millions of dollars' worth of jewelry on loan, makes her way past a horde of fans and paparazzi. But then there's a sudden loud noise, an even louder scream, and a vicious crime with millions of witnesses and no suspect -- and now NYPD Red has a new case on its hands.

NYPD Red: the elite task force assigned to protect the rich, famous, and connected in the city where crime never sleeps. Detective Zach Jordan and his partner, Kylie MacDonald -- a former girlfriend from the police academy who he hasn't quite gotten over -- are the best that Red has to offer, brilliant and tireless investigators who will stop at nothing to crack a case, even if it means putting their own complicated lives on the back burner.

From celebrity penthouses to the depths of Manhattan's criminal underworld, Zach and Kylie are soon in hot pursuit of a cold-blooded killer with everything to lose, and millions to gain if he can just shake the detectives on his trail. With the city on edge, the mayor out of patience, and the flames of their personal relationship threatening to reignite and ruin everything, Zach and Kylie are facing down their worst fears -- and their worst enemy yet.

A bodyguard, a bounty hunter, a P.I. -- the men of Brodie Operations Security Service, Inc. are down for the job.

Sinners, whores, and sluts beware -- your time is at hand: a faceless menace is threatening lingerie models on a cross country tour, and Ethan Brodie is there to defend and protect.

Ethan's learned the hard way that beauty is no substitute for character. So even though Valentine Hart is one of the most breathtaking women he's ever seen, he's keeping his hands off and his eyes open. Or that's what he tells himself.

Then one of the models is murdered, and the closer Ethan gets to the answers, the closer he finds himself to Valentine -- and the hotter the pressure feels. There's more to Val -- more to the other girls -- than he could have guessed. But one is keeping a secret that could kill them all.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

The Buried (The Apostles)


I've finished "The Buried" the 2nd book in her Apostles series by Shelley Coriell.

Product Description

"It's cold. And dark. I can't breathe."

Successful, ambitious state prosecutor Grace Courtemanche is at the top of her game. Then she gets a chilling call from a young woman claiming to be buried alive. Desperate to find the victim before it's too late, Grace will do whatever it takes even if it means excavating the darkest secrets of her own past and turning to the one man she thought she would never see again.

FBI agent Theodore "Hatch" Hatcher is a man without roots-and that's the way he likes it. But when a grisly crime shatters Cyprus Bend, Florida, Hatch is dragged back to the small town - and the one woman - he hoped was in his rearview for good. Forced to confront the wreckage of their love affair, Hatch and Grace may just find that sometimes the deepest wounds leave the most beautiful scars - and that history repeating itself may just be what they need to stop a killer and save their own hearts.

About the Author

A former newspaper reporter, magazine editor, and restaurant reviewer. These days Shelley writes smart, funny novels for teens and big, edgy romantic suspense. A six-time Romance Writers of America Golden Heart Finalist, she lives and loves in Arizona with her family and the world's neediest rescue Weimaraner. When she's not behind the keyboard, you'll find her baking high-calorie, high-fat desserts and haunting local farmers markets for the perfect plum.

Product Details
Series: The Apostles (Book 2)

Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Forever (October 28, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 145552851X
ISBN-13: 978-1455528516

My Review:


Lea Wait's Thread and Gone Blog Tour with a Spotlight and Giveaway


I am so excited to have Lea Wait here at Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews with a Spotlight and Giveaway.

Thanks and Lea and Great Escapes Virtual Book for allowing me to join your Thread and Gone Blog Tour!

Please take it away, Lea!

Thread and Gone
(A Mainely Needlepoint Mystery)

3rd in Series
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Kensington (December 29, 2015)
ISBN-13: 978-1617730085


When a priceless antique is stolen, murder unravels the peaceful seaside town of Haven Harbor, Maine.

Angie Curtis and her fellow Mainely Needlepointers know how to enjoy their holidays. But nothing grabs their attention like tying up loose threads. So when Mary Clough drops in on the group’s Fourth of July supper with a question about antique needlepoint she’s discovered in her family Colonial-era home, Angie and her ravelers are happy to look into the matter.

Their best guess is that the mystery piece may have been stitched by Mary, Queen of Scots, famous not just for losing her head, but also for her needlepointing. If they’re right, the piece would be extremely valuable. For safekeeping, Angie turns the piece over to her family lawyer, who places it in her office safe. But when the lawyer is found dead with the safe and ransacked, the real mystery begins.

About The Author

Lea Wait lives on the coast of Maine. A fourth generation antique dealer, and author of the Agatha-nominated Shadows Antique Print mystery series, she loves all things antiques and Maine, and she’s learning to do needlepoint. She also writes historical novels for young people set in (where else?) nineteenth-century Maine. Lea adopted her four daughters when she was single; she’s now the grandmother of eight, and married to artist Bob Thomas.

Author Link

Webpage –
GoodReads –

Purchase Links


IndieBound –

B and N –


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Please follow the rest of the tour here, thanks:

S.K. Derban's Uneven Exchange Blog Tour with Spotlight and Excerpt


I am so excited to have S.K. Derban here at Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews with a Spotlight and Excerpt.

Thanks S.K. and Pump Up Your Book Promotions for allowing me to join The Winemaker Detective Blog Tour!

Please take it away, S.K.!

About the Author

Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, S.K. Derban moved to London within the first three months, and remained in England until the age of five. Her mother, born and raised in the United Kingdom, was involved with the London Royal Ballet Company, and a great fan of the arts. Even after returning to the United States, S.K. Derban’s life was filled with a love of the theatre and a passion for British murder mysteries. Her personal travel and missionary adventures also help to transport readers virtually across the globe. S.K. Derban has smuggled Bibles into China on five separate occasions, and has been to Israel on seven missionary trips. When writing, she relies on all aspects of her life, from a strong faith in the Lord, to her unique combination of professional experience. The many personal adventures of S.K. Derban are readily apparent as they shine through into her characters.

Her latest book is the mystery romance, Uneven Exchange.

For More Information

Visit S.K. Derban’s website.

Connect with S.K. on Facebook and Twitter.

Find out more about S.K. at Goodreads.

Visit S.K.’s blog.

About the Book

Title: Uneven Exchange
Author: S.K. Derban
Publisher: Limitless Publishing
Pages: 344
Genre: Mystery/Romance

Like fire and ice, Alexandra Callet’s life runs hot and cold.

At the age of thirty-three, Alexandra owns a stunning home and a successful interior design company. But she is in love with her business partner, Jake Taylor, and he doesn’t even seem to realize she’s a woman. She should be on top of the world, but instead she feels dragged down by the void in her heart. Hoping for answers, she decides a trip to Mexico might soothe her soul.

Jake Taylor only pretends to be a confirmed bachelor.

Jake has been entranced by Alexandra’s determination and exotic beauty since the moment they met, but she has no idea how he feels. He considers confessing his love, but fears jeopardizing their friendship and business. He’s caught in a web of pretending he doesn’t care, and doesn’t see a way out of it.

Alexandra is recruited for a dangerous mission.

Following her trip to Mexico, her resemblance to a member of an assassin’s family leads Alexandra to be recruited by the DEA. Her training leaves her distracted, and her business begins to suffer. Jake notices her sudden change, and feels her slipping both personally and professionally beyond his reach. Should he finally take the chance before it’s too late? After all, he has nothing to lose.

However, when Alexandra returns to Mexico for her mission, things go terribly wrong. 

Will she be able find the strength to fight and escape the peaceful haven that has now become her prison? Or will Jake lose Alexandra forever.

For More Information

Uneven Exchange is available at Amazon.

Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.


Every so often while eating, Armando casually glanced in Daniela’s direction. However, he soon became distracted by his meal. After what seemed to be just a few moments, Armando was surprised when he looked up and saw Daniela walking directly toward him. She wore a matching black linen button-down blouse and wrap skirt with black espadrilles. Their ankle ties accentuated the firmness of her bare, sculptured calves. The arm openings of her sleeveless blouse were cut inwardly at an angle, revealing the graceful line of her shoulders. The skirt hit right below the knee, but as Daniela walked toward him, her movements caused the split to flap open, revealing a provocative and ample view of her inner thigh with each step. Daniela’s hair was loosely secured, with soft tendrils surrounding her face and lightly brushing against her neck. The slightly tousled look only enhanced her beauty. Armando stared helplessly, his mouth open. She stopped directly in front of him and held out a cocktail napkin. Armando could feel her perfume penetrating his body. Slowly, he accepted the napkin.

“Sssshhhh,” she whispered, while gently placing a finger over her full parted lips when he started to speak. Then she turned and seductively sauntered away.

Without breathing, Armando visually followed the languid sway of her hips as Daniela walked through the restaurant and toward the front exit.

When she finally stepped beyond their view, Conner gasped, “Wow!”

Armando remained breathless as he continued to grip the folded napkin.

“Well,” Conner pressed, “open it. What did she write?”

Still in a trance, Armando unfolded the napkin and placed it on the table. The only writing was a telephone number.

“Double wow,” Conner said. “Be still my heart!”

“My heart is not the problem.”

“Then it’s a good thing we’re leaving in the morning.”

“Morning might not be soon enough,” Armando moaned. “I can still smell her perfume!”

Conner inhaled deeply. “Oh man, me too. Did you see her skirt?”

“Who could miss it?” Armando exhaled loudly before asking, “Now how am I ever going to make it through the night? It’s going to be even more difficult knowing she’s right next door.” “How about taking a cold shower?” Conner suggested.

Disappointed, Armando nodded in agreement. “Cold shower it is.”

Monday, January 18, 2016

Weekly Cozy, Mystery Thriller and Romantic Suspense Reads (Jan 18)

 Weekly Cozy, Mystery Thriller and Romantic Suspense Reads

Weekly Cozy, Mystery Thriller and Romantic Suspense Reads is a weekly Monday Meme that is hosted by Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews:

Post the books you read last week and books being read this week.

Read Last Week:

1.  Make Me - Lee Child

Weekly Read:

1.  The Buried - Shelley Coriell
2.  Extreme Honor - Piper J. Drake

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Library Haul 2016 (Jan 17 - 23)

Here's the list of books I picked up from the library this week:


1.  Fear the Dark - Kay Hooper

Friday, January 15, 2016

Make Me: A Jack Reacher Novel

I've finished "Make Me" the 20th book in his Jack Reacher series by Lee Child.

Product Description

“Why is this town called Mother’s Rest?” That’s all Reacher wants to know. But no one will tell him. It’s a tiny place hidden in a thousand square miles of wheat fields, with a railroad stop, and sullen and watchful people, and a worried woman named Michelle Chang, who mistakes him for someone else: her missing partner in a private investigation she thinks must have started small and then turned lethal.

Reacher has no particular place to go, and all the time in the world to get there, and there’s something about Chang so he teams up with her and starts to ask around. He thinks: How bad can this thing be? But before long he’s plunged into a desperate race through LA, Chicago, Phoenix, and San Francisco, and through the hidden parts of the internet, up against thugs and assassins every step of the way — right back to where he started, in Mother’s Rest, where he must confront the worst nightmare he could imagine.

Walking away would have been easier. But as always, Reacher’s rule is: If you want me to stop, you’re going to have to make me.

About the Author

Lee Child is the author of twenty New York Times bestselling Jack Reacher thrillers, eleven of which have reached the #1 position. All have been optioned for major motion pictures; the first, Jack Reacher, was based on One Shot. Foreign rights in the Reacher series have sold in almost a hundred territories. A native of England and a former television director, Lee Child lives in New York City.

Product Details
Series: Jack Reacher (Book 20)
Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Press; First Edition edition (September 8, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0804178771
ISBN-13: 978-0804178778

My Review:


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

New Release 2016 (Jan 12)

Kovac and Liska take on multiple twisted cases as #1 New York Times bestselling author Tami Hoag explores a murder from the past, a murder from the present, and a life that was never meant to be.

As the dreary, bitter weather of late fall descends on Minneapolis, Detective Nikki Liska is restless, already bored with her new assignment to the cold case squad. She misses the rush of pulling an all-nighter and the sense of urgency of hunting a desperate killer on the loose. Most of all she misses her old partner, Sam Kovac.

Kovac is having an even harder time adjusting to Liska’s absence, saddled with a green new partner younger than most of Sam's wardrobe. But Kovac is distracted from his troubles by an especially brutal double homicide: a prominent university professor and his wife, bludgeoned and hacked to death in their home with a ceremonial Japanese samurai sword. Liska’s case - the unsolved murder of a decorated sex crimes detective - is less of a distraction: Twenty five years later, there is little hope for finding the killer who got away.

Meanwhile, Minneapolis resident Evi Burke has a life she only dreamed of as a kid in and out of foster homes: a beautiful home, a family, people who love her, a fulfilling job. But a danger from her past is stalking her idyllic present. A danger bent on destroying the perfect life she was never meant to have.

As the trails of two crimes a quarter of century apart twist and cross, Kovac and Liska race to find answers before a killer strikes again.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Jean-Pierre Alaux and Noël Balen's The Winemarker Detective Blog Tour with a Spotlight and Excerpt


I am so excited to have Jean-Pierre Alaux and Noël Balen here at Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews with a Spotlight and Excerpt.

Thanks Bryan and Pump Up Your Book Promotions for allowing me to join The Winemaker Detective Blog Tour!

Please take it away, Jean-Pierre and Noel!

Q and A with Jean-Pierre Alaux and Noël Balen, creators of the Winemaker Detective

Jean-Pierre Alaux and Noël Balen came up with the idea for the Winemaker Detective mystery series ( while sharing a meal, with a bottle of Château Gaudou 1996, a red wine from Cahors with smooth tannins and a balanced nose. Jean-Pierre Alaux is a magazine, radio, and television journalist when he is not writing novels in southwestern France. He is the grandson of a winemaker and for him there is no greater common denominator than wine. Coauthor of the series, Noël Balen lives in Paris, where he shares his time between writing, making records, and lecturing on music. He is currently working on another series — Gourmet Crimes — which will be out in 2016 in English. The Winemaker Detective series, which has 22 books and is a hit TV series in France, is being published in English by Le French Book ( Here the authors answer a few questions.

1.  What authors have inspired you and your writing?

Perhaps the first to mention is Georges Simenon, because he was an expert in the art of creating mysteries with atmosphere in few words. Even today, rereading Simenon is a pleasure unlike any other. His work is timeless. Our references also include other classic authors such as Maupassant, Mauriac and Balzac, along with such foreign authors as Henning Mankell and Andrea Camilleri. It is hard to pick just a few authors of the authors who have inspired us directly.

2.  What is it about the genre that makes the story translatable to other cultures?

Our books are set in the world of wine and winemaking. Wine by definition is a drink that brings people together. The history of humanity is intertwined with the fruit of the vine. Rare are the cultures that have not given wine some place of honor. Also, it is not a coincidence either that our central hero Benjamin Cooker is part British. Haven’t the British been one of the best ambassadors for Bordeaux wines? It seems natural that a wine-base mystery series will find a place in all countries where wine plays a role in the culture.

3.  What makes your novel quintessentially "French"?

Well, France is the world’s top producer of wine and has a long-standing reputation in this area. Wine may be made throughout the world, but France still holds more than its share of top estates and names in the business. And the stories about legendary wines are deeply rooted in France, in Bordeaux and Burgundy. Our hero benefits from vast knowledge in this area, and France’s cultural heritage, both the vineyards and architectural sites, adds a dimension to these books that stimulates the imagination. Who doesn’t start dreaming when they read about the countryside around Medoc or the Yquem fortress surrounded by morning fog?

4.  What was it about this book specifically that will appeal to American readers?

Americans have an understanding of the wine world that is only matched by the Belgians in terms of European wines. This knowledge lends itself to enjoying the universe in which Benjamin Cooker works. The series is meant to be both fun and to teach readers something. The places we mention — restaurants, sites and more — are worth the detour in real life too, and all the information about wine is all thoroughly researched and accurate. We are not yet finished exploring France’s wine world. We are Epicurean, and will remain so, and we know that the wine world is an endless source. The more you think you know, the more humbling it becomes. There are so many fine wines to drink, and every year Mother Nature makes something new. This series could go on infinitely.

About the Authors

Jean-Pierre Alaux and Noël Balen, wine lover and music lover respectively, came up with the idea for the Winemaker Detective series while sharing a meal, with a bottle of Château Gaudou 1996, a red wine from Cahors with smooth tannins and a balanced nose. The series has 24 titles to date and is a hit TV series in France. So far 10 have been translated. Jean-Pierre Alaux currently lives in southwestern France and Noël in Paris. They both are full-time writers and participate in the TV adaptation of their series.

Translator Sally Pane studied French at State University of New York Oswego and the Sorbonne before receiving her Masters Degree in French Literature from the University of Colorado. She has translated several titles in this series.

And Anne Trager has a passion for crime fiction that equals her love of France. After years working in translation, publishing and communications, she founded the mystery and thriller publishing house Le French Book, dedicated to picking top mysteries and thrillers from France and translating them into English.

Their latest book is the cozy mystery, The Winemaker Detective: An Omnibus.

For More Information 

Visit the authors’ website..
Connect with the authors on Facebook and Twitter.
Find out more about the authors at Goodreads.

About the Book

Title: The Winemaker Detective: An Omnibus
Author: Jean-Pierre Alaux & Noel Balen
Publisher: LeFrench Book
Pages: 309
Genre: Mystery/French Cozy/Culinary Mystery

An immersion in French countryside, gourmet attitude, and light-hearted mystery.

Two amateur sleuths gumshoe around French wine country, where money, deceit, jealousy, inheritance and greed are all the ingredients needed for crime. Master winemaker Benjamin Cooker and his sidekick Virgile Lanssien solve mysteries in vineyards with a dose of Epicurean enjoyment of fine food and beverage. Each story is a homage to wine and winemakers, as well as a mystery.

In Treachery in Bordeaux, barrels at the prestigious grand cru Moniales Haut-Brion wine estate in Bordeaux have been contaminated. Is it negligence or sabotage?

In Grand Cru Heist, Benjamin Cooker’s world gets turned upside down one night in Paris. He retreats to the region around Tours to recover. He and his assistant Virgile turn PI to solve two murders and very particular heist.

In Nightmare in Burgundy, a dream wine tasting trip to Burgundy that turns into a troubling nightmare when Cooker and his assistant stumble upon a mystery revolving around messages from another era.

This made-for-TV series is "difficult to forget and oddly addictive" (ForeWord Reviews).

For More Information 

The Winemaker Detective: An Omnibus is available at Amazon.

Pick up your copy at Barnes & Noble.

Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.


The morning was cool and radiant. A west wind had swept the clouds far inland to the gentle hills beyond the city of Bordeaux. Benjamin Cooker gave two whistles, one short, the other drawn out, and Bacchus appeared from the high grass on the riverbank. He had that impertinent look Irish setters get when you remind them that they are dogs. Benjamin liked this clever and deceptively disciplined attitude. He would never roam his childhood landscapes with an animal that was too docile. The Médoc was still wild, despite its well-ordered garden veneer, and it would always be that way. In the distance, a few low wisps of fog were finishing their lazy dance along the Gironde Estuary. It was nearly eleven and time to go home.

The Grangebelle’s graceful shape rose among the poplar trees. The building would have seemed bulky, were it not for the elegant roof, the lightly draped pergola, the delicate sparkling of the greenhouse, and the old varnished vases set out in the vegetation with studied negligence. Elisabeth moved silently among the copper pots in the kitchen. She shivered slightly when he kissed her neck. He poured himself a cup of Grand Yunnan tea with slow and precise movements. She knew he was tired. She was perfectly aware of his nights of poor sleep, the deleted pages, the files he relentlessly ordered and reordered, the doubts he had when he completed a tasting note, his concern for the smallest detail, and the chronic worry that he would deliver his manuscript late and disappoint his publisher. Benjamin had worked in his office until five in the morning, taking refuge in the green opaline halo of his old Empire-style lamp. Then he had slipped under the covers to join her, his body ice-cold and his breathing short.

Who could have imagined that France’s most famous winemaker, the established authority who caused both grand cru estate owners and unknown young vintners to tremble, was, in fact, a man tormented by the meaning of his words, the accuracy of his judgments, and an objectivity that he brandished like a religious credo? When it came time to hand over a manuscript, his self-doubts assailed him—the man whom the entire profession thought of as entrenched in certainty and science and masterfully accomplished in the fine art of critiquing wines. Benjamin Cooker knew that everyone, without exception, would be waiting for his book to arrive in the stores. They would be weighing his qualifiers and judging his worst and best choices. It was essential that the publication of his guide never blemish his reputation as a winemaker and a sought-after, even secret, advisor in the art of elaborating wines. He made it a point of honor and proved it with his sometimes scathing criticism of wines he himself had crafted. To him, moral integrity stemmed more often than not from this astonishing faculty of uncompromising self-judgment, even when it was forced and terribly unfair. He sometimes thought it belonged to another century, a faraway time, when self-esteem and a certain sense of honor prevailed over the desire for recognition.

He closed his eyes as he drank his tea. He knew that this moment of rest would not last long and that he should make the most of it, appreciating these slow, spread-out seconds. Elisabeth remained quiet.

“Send him to me as soon as he gets here. I need to have a few words with him before lunch,” he said, calmly setting down his cup.

Benjamin Cooker dragged himself back to the half-light of his office. He spent more than an hour examining his tasting notes for a Premières Côtes de Blaye and finished by persuading himself that there was nothing left to add. However, his preamble about the specific characteristics of the soil and the vineyard’s history was a little short on information, despite his in-depth knowledge of every acre. There was nothing wrong with what he had written, but nothing really specific either. He would have to draw a more detailed picture, refine the contours, and play with an anecdote or two to clarify the text. He did not even lift his eyes from his notes when the doorbell rang out in the hallway. He was nervously scribbling some poetic lines about the Blaye citadel when Elisabeth knocked at the door. She knocked three more times before he told her to come in.

“Our guest has arrived, Benjamin.”

“Welcome, young man!” the winemaker said, pushing his glasses to his forehead.

An athletic and honest-looking young man with short hair honored him with a strong handshake that left Benjamin wondering if his fingers would still work.

“So you’re Virgile Lanssien,” Benjamin said, lowering his reading glasses to the tip of his nose.

He invited the young man to sit down and observed him over the top of his lenses for a minute. His dark, pensive good looks would have been almost overwhelming, were it not for the spark of mischief in his eyes. He was dressed simply in a pair of slightly washed-out jeans, a navy blue polo shirt, and white sneakers. He was smart enough not to feign a laid-back attitude when everything about him was on edge. Benjamin appreciated people who did not posture.

“I have heard a lot about the time you spent at the wine school. Professor Dedieu was unending in his praise for your work, and I have to admit that I was rather impressed by your thesis. I have a copy of it here. The title is a little complicated, Maceration Enzyme Preparation: Mechanism of Action and Reasonable Use, but your reasoning was straightforward and clear, particularly the section about blind tasting an enzymatic treatment of cabernet sauvignon must. Well done, very well done! Please do excuse me for not having been part of the jury when you defended your dissertation.”

“I won’t hide my disappointment, sir.”

“In any case, my presence would not have changed the result: You greatly deserved the honors you received. I had an emergency call that day to care for some grapevines in Fronsac, and it couldn’t wait. The flowering was tricky and required quite a bit of attention.”

“I understand, sir. Did you save them at least?”

“More or less. There were enough grapes for me to offer you a bottle,” Benjamin said, smiling.
The young man settled into the armchair and relaxed a little. He knew that these formalities foreshadowed a flow of questions that he would have to answer with candor and precision. Benjamin Cooker was a master no cheating could fool. Virgile had read everything written by this man, whose reputation stretched as far as North America and South Africa. He had also heard everything there was to know about the “flying winemaker”— all the scandal mongering and bitter words, along with the passionate commentaries and praise. Everything and its opposite were the usual lot of exceptional people, the ransom paid by those who had succeeded in imposing their singularity.

Virgile Lanssien tried to hide his apprehension and answered the sudden volley of questions that descended on him as distinctly as possible. They covered so many topics — layering, copper sulfate spraying, sulfur dioxide additions, microclimates, grand cru longevity, aging on lees, filtering and fining, gravel or limestone soils, fermentation temperatures, primary aromas, and degrees of alcohol — in such disorder, yet Virgile managed to avoid the traps with a skilled farmer’s cunning.

“Well, Virgile — I can call you Virgile, can’t I? I think that after these appetizers, we have earned the right to a meal.”

Elisabeth, wearing a checkered apron tied at her waist, welcomed them into the kitchen.

“We will eat in the kitchen, if that does not bother you, Mr. Lanssien.”

“To the contrary, ma’am. May I help with anything?”

“Why don’t you set the table. The plates are in that cupboard. The cutlery is here.”

Benjamin was surprised to see his wife accept the young man as if he were already part of the family. But Elisabeth knew her man well enough to guess that the job interview was going well.

The winemaker grabbed three stem glasses and poured the wine he had decanted that morning, before the walk with Bacchus.

“Taste this, Virgile.”

Benjamin observed his future assistant while he cut the bread and placed the even slices in a basket. The boy knew how to taste. He used his eyes, his nose, and his palate in a natural way, with the attitude of someone who knew more than he showed.

“Wine can be so good when it’s good!”

An amused smile crossed Benjamin’s lips. The young man had a talent for finding the truth beneath the surface but also a certain guilelessness. Virgile was a cultivated ingénue with enough freshness and spontaneity to compensate for the long years he had focused entirely on his studies.

“I will not be so cruel as to subject you to a blind tasting,” Benjamin said, turning the empty bottle to display the label.

“Haut-Brion 1982!” the young man said with a note of rapture. “To tell you the truth, I’ve never tasted one of these before.”

“Enjoy it then. It’s harder and harder to grab this vintage away from the small-time speculators who are complicating our lives.”

“I made something simple,” Elisabeth interrupted, putting an old cast-iron casserole on the table.

Virgile paused, unfolded his napkin, and gave the pot an apprehensive look. Large chunks of eel floated in a thick greenish sauce filled with so many herbs, it looked like a patch of weeds.

“I know, at first glance it does not look very appetizing, but it is a recipe that deserves overcoming your first impression.”

“I think I know what it is.”

“Lamprey à la Bordelaise. It’s a classic,” said Elisabeth.

“With this dish, you should always drink the wine that was used in the cooking,” Benjamin said, dishing out generous portions. “And nothing is better with lamprey than a red Graves.”

Virgile stuck his fork into a piece of eel, dipped it in the sauce, and nibbled at it.

“It is first rate, Mrs. Cooker! Excellent.”

“And now, let’s try a little of this Haut-Brion with that,” Benjamin suggested. “Just a swallow, and then tell me what you think.”

Virgile did as he was told, with a pleasure he had some trouble hiding.

“It is beautifully complex, particularly with the tannins that are very present. Rather surprising but not aggressive.”

Benjamin remained silent and savored his lamprey.

“It leaves a very smooth sensation in the mouth,” Virgile continued. “And yet it has a kind of grainy texture.”

“Very perceptive. That is typical of Haut-Brion. It is both strong and silky. And what else?”

“It’s fruity, wild fruits, with hints of berries, blackberries, and black currant fruit.”

“True enough,” Benjamin said. “You can taste cherry pits later on, don’t you think?”

“I didn’t notice, but now that you mention it.”

“Beware of what people say. Some may not find that hint of cherry pits, and they wouldn’t be wrong.”

The guest took the blow without flinching. Benjamin had no trouble pushing his interrogation further. The Pessac-Léognan grand cru loosened Virgile’s tongue, and secrets slipped out in every sentence. He recounted his childhood in Montravel, near Bergerac, where his father was a wine grower who shipped his harvest to the wine cooperative and had no ambitions for his estate.

“You’ll take over the business one day, won’t you?” Elisabeth asked.

“I don’t think so. At least not as long as my father is in charge of the property. My older brother is all they need for now to take care of the vineyards.”

“That’s too bad. Bergerac wines have come a long way and could certainly benefit from your talent,” Benjamin said.

“Perhaps one day. I rarely go back, truth be told. Mostly to see my mother, who accuses me of deserting the nest, and my younger sister, who is the only one I can confide in.”

He talked a lot, not so much because he wanted to monopolize the conversation, but rather to satisfy his hosts’ unfeigned curiosity. To earn his future boss’s trust, he felt it was appropriate to answer the Cooker couple’s unspoken questions. The winemaker needed to know what was hidden in this excellent and dedicated student. Never had he experienced a job interview that was so informal and piecemeal. He disclosed himself without ostentation, without mystery, and without immodesty. He talked about swimming in the Dordogne River and playing for the Bergerac rugby club, but only for one season, because he preferred canoeing and kayaking. He mentioned his first medals when he joined the swim team, his years studying winemaking at La Tour Blanche, near Château d’Yquem, before he did his military service, and his studio apartment on Rue Saint-Rémi, from which you could see a little bit of the Garonne.

Between two anecdotes, Benjamin went to get a second carafe of Haut-Brion and allowed himself to share some of his own personal memories. It pleased Elisabeth to see her husband finally relaxed and able to forget the tribulations of his writing for a while. Benjamin recounted the crazy, hare-brained ideas his father, Paul William — an antique dealer in London — had and his mother Eleonore’s patience. Her maiden name was Fontenac, and she had spent her entire youth here in Grangebelle, on the banks of the Gironde, before she fell in love with that extravagant Englishman who collected old books in a shop at Notting Hill.

Virgile listened. His handsome brown eyes were wide open, and he looked like a slightly frightened child as he began to fully comprehend that this was the famous Cooker, the Cooker, whose books he had devoured and who was now sharing confidences. The oenologist enjoyed telling the young graduate about his chaotic career. He had studied law for a year in England, spent a year at the Paris Fine Arts Academy, worked for a year at the Wagons-Lits in train catering and sleeping-car services, and then bartended for a year at the Caveau de la Huchette in the capital before being hired at a wine shop in the fifth arrondissement in Paris, where he worked for three years while taking wine classes.

“The year I turned thirty, I started my wine consulting business,” Benjamin said. “Elisabeth and I ended up moving here after my maternal grandfather, Eugène Fontenac, passed away. Since that day, I haven’t been able to imagine living anywhere other than Bordeaux.”

“That’s an unusual career path,” Virgile said.

“Yes, it is atypical. I had been around wine since I was a kid, when I visited my grandfather in Grangebelle during summer vacations, but I needed a little time for all that to distill. I had a lot of doubts during my Paris years, and I spent a lot of time searching. I have followed a rather roundabout path, but I do not regret any of the detours.”

“It’s intriguing, like the path a drop of Armagnac takes before it comes out of the alembic.”

“That’s a fine image,” Elisabeth said. “But sometimes it is better not to know all of the mysteries lying in the dark.”

“This is one area in which my wife and I differ. I believe you should always seek to uncover secrets.”

“I don’t really have an opinion on the subject,” Virgile said, studying the bottom of his empty glass.

Benjamin Cooker stood up and folded his napkin.

“My dear Virgile, from now on, consider yourself my assistant. We’ll discuss the conditions later. I hope that this wine cleared your mind, because I believe you will need all of your faculties. We have a particularly delicate mission awaiting us.”

“And when will I be starting?”

The winemaker took a last sip of Haut-Brion and set his glass down slowly. He slipped a hand into his jacket pocket, looked Virgile in the eye, and handed him a set of keys.

“Right now.”

Please follow the rest of the tour here, thanks:

Weekly Cozy, Mystery Thriller and Romantic Suspense Reads (Jan 11)

 Weekly Cozy, Mystery Thriller and Romantic Suspense Reads

Weekly Cozy, Mystery Thriller and Romantic Suspense Reads is a weekly Monday Meme that is hosted by Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews:

Post the books you read last week and books being read this week.

Read Last Week:

1.  Cross Justice - James Patterson
2.  On Thin Icing (2nd Part) - Ellie Alexander
3.  Meet Your Baker - Ellie Alexander

Weekly Read:

1.  Make Me - Lee Child

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Meet Your Baker (A Bakeshop Mystery)

I've finished "Meet Your Baker" the 1st book in her Bakeshop Mystery series by Ellie Alexander.

Product Description

Welcome to Torte-a friendly, small-town family bake shop where the treats are so good that, sometimes, it's criminal.

After graduating from culinary school, Juliet Capshaw returns to her quaint hometown of Ashland, Oregon, to heal a broken heart and help her mom at the family bakery. The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is bringing in lots of tourists looking for some crumpets to go with their heroic couplets. But when one of Torte's customers turns up dead, there's much ado about murder.

The victim is Nancy Hudson, the festival's newest board member. A modern-day Lady Macbeth, Nancy has given more than a few actors and artists enough reasons to kill her but still. The silver lining? Jules's high school sweetheart, Thomas, is the investigator on the case. His flirtations are as delicious as ever, and Jules can't help but want to have her cake and eat it too. But will she have her just desserts? Murder might be bad for business, but love is the sweetest treat of all.

About the Author

ELLIE ALEXANDER is a Pacific Northwest native who spends ample time testing pastry recipes in her home kitchen or at one of the many famed coffeehouses nearby. When she's not coated in flour, you'll find her outside exploring hiking trails and trying to burn off calories consumed in the name of research. You can friend her on Facebook to learn more!

Product Details
Series: A Bakeshop Mystery (Book 1)

Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks (December 30, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1250054230
ISBN-13: 978-1250054234

My Review:


Saturday, January 9, 2016

Cozy, Mystery Thriller and Romantic Suspense Mail (Jan 9)

Cozy, Mystery Thriller and Romantic Suspense Mail is hosted every Saturday at Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews.

I received this in the mail this week.

Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks? Case in point: Piper Prescott's former mother-in-law Melly. Beneath her twin sets and pearls beats the heart of a geek ― a geek whose programming changes for the point-of-sale software in Piper's shop have the owners of the program ready to make her an offer she can't refuse. "Trusty" Rusty Tulley and Chip Balboa swing by Brandywine Creek ― just in time for the town's annual Oktoberfest, which has cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom flying off Piper's shelves in record numbers. News spreads faster than a text message, and Melly is the toast of the town.

But it isn't long before Melly's status changes to public enemy number one when Chip's body is found at the foot of her basement stairs. Questions start to pile up when handsome police chief Wyatt McBride arrives on the scene and the coroner sets the time of death for the previous evening. McBride wants to know why it took Melly so long to report the incident ― especially after she admits to arguing with Chip about the contract he wanted her to sign. Piper knows Melly would never hurt a fly, so she enlists the help of her BFF Reba Mae to clear her name ― but can they find the real killer before Melly gets sent away for good? A mouth-watering entry in Gail Oust's delicious Spice Shop series, Cinnamon Toasted is sure to delight cozy fans of all stripes.

Friday, January 8, 2016

On Thin Icing: A Bakeshop Mystery

I've finished "On Thin Icing" the 3rd book in her Bakeshop Mystery series by Ellie Alexander.

Product Description

Welcome to Torte-a small-town family bakeshop where the treats are killer good.

It's the dead of winter in the sleepy town of Ashland, which means no tourists - and fewer customers - for Jules Capshaw and her bakery. But when she's asked to cater an off-season retreat for the directors of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, business starts heating up until Jules finds a dead body in the freezer.

Someone at the retreat has apparently iced the bartender, a well-known flirt with a legendary temper - that is, before a killer beat him to the punch. Then, from out of nowhere, Jules's own ex-husband shows up at the shop - and soon becomes a suspect. With accusations piling up higher than the snow-and thicker than a chocolate mousse cake - Jules has to think outside the (recipe) box to find the real culprit and make sure he gets his just desserts.

About the Author

ELLIE ALEXANDER is a Pacific Northwest native who spends ample time testing pastry recipes in her home kitchen or at one of the many famed coffeehouses nearby. When she's not coated in flour, you'll find her outside exploring hiking trails and trying to burn off calories consumed in the name of research. She is the author of the Bakeshop Mysteries, including Meet Your Baker and A Batter of Life and Death. You can find her on Facebook to learn more!

Product Details
Series: A Bakeshop Mystery (Book 3)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Minotaur Books (December 29, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1250054257
ISBN-13: 978-1250054258

My Review:


Thursday, January 7, 2016

Colleen J. Shogan's Stabbing in the Senate Tour with a Spotlight


I am so excited to have Colleen J. Shogan here at Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews with a Spotlight and Giveaway.

Thanks and Colleen and Great Escapes Virtual Book for allowing me to join your Stabbing in the Senate Blog Tour!

Please take it away, Colleen!

Stabbing in the Senate
(A Washington Whodunit)

Cozy Mystery
A Brand New Series
Camel Press (November 15, 2015)
Paperback: 236 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1603813310

goodreads-badge-add-plusShop Indie Bookstores


Life is good for Kit Marshall. She’s a staffer in D.C. for a popular senator, and she lives with an adoring beagle and a brainy boyfriend with a trust fund. Then, one morning, Kit arrives at the office early and finds her boss, Senator Langsford, impaled by a stainless steel replica of an Army attack helicopter. Panicked, she pulls the weapon out of his chest and instantly becomes the prime suspect in his murder. Circumstances back Kit’s claim of innocence, but her photograph has gone viral, and the heat won’t be off until the killer is found. Well-loved though the senator was, suspects abound. Langsford had begun to vote with his conscience, which meant he was often at odds with his party. Not only had the senator decided to quash the ambitions of a major military contractor, but his likely successor is a congressman he trounced in the last election. Then there’s the suspiciously dry-eyed Widow Langsford. Kit’s tabloid infamy horrifies her boyfriend’s upper-crust family, and it could destroy her career. However, she and her free-spirited friend Meg have a more pressing reason to play sleuth. The police are clueless in more ways than one, and Kit worries that the next task on the killer’s agenda will be to end her life.

author photo square

About The Author

Colleen J. Shogan is the deputy director of the Congressional Research Service (CRS) at the Library of Congress. She is a former Senate staffer who started reading mysteries at the age of six. A political scientist by training, Colleen has taught American government at George Mason University, Georgetown, and Penn. Stabbing in the Senate is her first novel.

Author Link




Purchase Links


B and N


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Please follow the rest of the tour here, thanks:

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Cross Justice

I've finished "Cross Justice" the 23rd book in Alex Cross series by James Patterson.

Product Description

The toughest cases hit closest to home.

Alex Cross left his hometown, and some awful family tragedies, for a better life with Nana Mama in Washington, DC. He hasn't looked back.

Now his cousin Stefan has been accused of a horrible, unthinkable murder, and Cross drives south with Bree, Nana Mama, Jannie, and Ali to Starksville, North Carolina, for the first time in thirty-five years. Back home, he discovers a once proud community down on its luck, and local residents who don't welcome him with open arms. As Cross steps into his family home, the horrors of his childhood flood back -- and he learns that they're not really over. He brings all his skill to finding out the truth about his cousin's case. But truth is hard to come by in a town where no one feels safe to speak.

Chasing his ghosts takes Cross all the way down to the sugarcane fields of Florida, where he gets pulled into a case that has local cops needing his kind of expertise: a string of socialite murders with ever more grisly settings. He's chasing too many loose end -- a brutal killer, the truth about his own past, and justice for his cousin -- and any one of the answers might be fatal.

In Cross Justice, Alex Cross confronts the deadliest -- and most personal -- case of his career. It's a propulsive, edge-of-your-seat thrill ride that proves you can go home again -- but it just might kill you.

About the Author 

James Patterson's books have sold more than 300 million copies, and he has had more #1 bestsellers than any other author. In addition to his novels for adults, he has also written numerous books for young readers, and with initiatives that include, he has dedicated himself to improving access to books that will keep kids reading for life. He lives in Florida with his family.

Product Details
Series: Alex Cross
Hardcover: 448 pages
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company; First Edition edition (November 23, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0316407046
ISBN-13: 978-0316407045

My Review: