Carla Loves To Read

Over the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road: Growing Older with Silliness, High Spirits and a lot of Heart by Cathi Turow

401097544.5 Stars

Published May 10th 2018 by Dog Ear Publishing

I am of that age where my children have moved out, my husband recently passed away and my dog has passed on, so I live in my 4 bedroom house alone. The author has taken on all these issues and challenges of aging with creativity and compassion. As I read this book, there were solutions suggested in a humourous and positive way. In “Over the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road” wisdom comes from the funniest and most unusual places/things! Who would have thought that The Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe, would have suggestions about empty nesting, or the wind about death. I am looking at the world a little bit differently as a result of this trip on The Yellow Brick Road.

I came across this book while reading a friend’s blog and I am glad I read it. As I read this book it evoked many different emotions. At times I smiled others I felt tears. I reflected on what Cathi Turow shared and realized that I have the same questions. I haven’t been reflecting on life, but perhaps I should. Do I need this huge house and yard? What are my interests that I want to pursue? Time to make some decisions and this book gave me the prodding I needed. Definitely a worthy read for you if you’re going through a self-reflection time in your empty-nesting life. If you have any friends that are pondering these things or entering into this phase of life, pick this book up for them as well.

Continue reading “Over the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road: Growing Older with Silliness, High Spirits and a lot of Heart by Cathi Turow”


Stiffs and Swine (A Supper Club Mystery #4) by Ellery Adams

Stiffs and Swine (Supper Club Mysteries Book 4)4.5 Stars

Published March 26th 2018 by Beyond the Page (first published October 8th 2008)

It was late summer in Quincy’s Gap and the Flab Five have been invited to be judges at the beauty contest of sows at a neighboring town’s Hog Fest. They also end up judging the Brisket contest and the pie eating contest. It is several days at the festival eating fair food, and trying to figure out who killed the obnoxious BBQ contestant as well as who is selling drugs. At the same time, back in Quincy Gap, Scot and Francis are trying to figure out what the teens who are hanging out on Friday nights are doing in the library.

We learn more about Gillian in this story after she is taken in for questioning since she had an altercation with Jimmy the day before he was found dead. Since Lucy is now a deputy, her help was welcomed by Sheriff Jade Jones, but she wanted the rest to stay out of the situation. Bennett develops a crush on the Sheriff, which shows us another side to him. He is also studying to become a contestant on Jeopardy. He has a lot of trivia in his brain. James and Lucy’s relationship was still a little strained after their breakup, but they still functioned well together as mystery-solving friends. James is drifting from Murphy since she seemed to have changed as well as keeping secrets from him. It was nice to see Scott and Francis solving their own mystery and what they do outside the library. Jackson and Mila are continuing to become closer in this story and James hopes that it progresses.

Between the police and the Flab Five, they figured out what was going on, but just like the police, they have to have enough evidence to arrest and prosecute. The ending of the story was tense and James has to make some quick decisions. I enjoy the fact that even though the friends are flawed and do not always agree with one another, they are true friends, loyal and always work together to solve the mystery. I would love to meet this group of friends and get the opportunity to solve a mystery with them.

Continue reading “Stiffs and Swine (A Supper Club Mystery #4) by Ellery Adams”

In Bed with the Beast (Naughty Princess Club #2) by Tara Sivec

In Bed with the Beast (The Naughty Princess Club, #2)4.5 Stars

Published June 5th 2018 by Swerve

Once upon a time… three Beautiful women lived on or near Fairytale Lane. The first book in the series tells us how the group came together and is the story of Cynthia (Cindy Ella) and how she finds her Prince Charming. This book is about Isabelle, aka Belle. The shy librarian lives in her father’s basement, uses every cent she makes to buy books and falls in love with The Beast, aka Vincent, who is the bouncer at Charmings Nightclub. When Belle decides to stand up to her father, he throws her out of the house. After spending several nights sleeping on the floor of the library, Vincent suggests an alternate living arrangement. She also wants to start doing parties for the Naughty Princess Club so has to shake off her shyness and naivety to dance at Charmings.

Belle is a hoot. This shy librarian can really let someone have it when she gets angry. When her sexy side is let loose, her and Beast have some interesting meetings, one taking place in her library. Ariel and Cindy are also a part of this story, but Belle takes center stage. We also get to know a bit more about her father in this story. I just love how Tara Sivec comes up with these ideas and makes them both hilarious and sexy. I actually enjoyed Belle’s story more than Cindy’s so I am looking forward to reading the next/last book in this series to see what she comes up with. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book via Netgalley.

Continue reading “In Bed with the Beast (Naughty Princess Club #2) by Tara Sivec”

Book Haul July 9 – 15

Hello all. This is where I share the books I got approved for on Netgally and Edelweiss. Also if I received any from authors or publishers, won in a giveaway or bought on Amazon or Kobo.

I thought I had done really well toning down my requests, then I got a bunch approved that were pending. It looks like a lot this week, but many were requested a few weeks ago.

Netgalley: 15 + 7


Plus seven children’s books.

From Amazon: 3

Getting Out of Hand (Sapphire Falls) by [Nicholas, Erin] After All (Ever After in Sapphire Falls) by [Nicholas, Erin] Pineapple Land War: A Pineapple Port Mystery: Book Four (Pineapple Port Mysteries 4) by [Vansant, Amy]

Received from Author: 3

Over the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road: Growing Older with Silliness, High Spirits and a lot of Heart   

Once again, If you see a book on here that you reviewed or talked about, then it is probably your fault that I added it to my TBR. You are all a bad influence on me, keep it up. 😉 😉

If you have read any of these books, let me know so I can read you review (unless I already commented and you are the reason I requested it). If any of these titles tempt you, let me know that I am paying some of you back. 😇😘😛🤗

The Forgotten Ones by Steena Holmes

The Forgotten Ones4.5 Stars

Published April 1st 2018 by Lake Union Publishing

The Forgotten Ones is a heart-breaking novel that will break your heart many times over. It explores mental illness and how it affects families, love and loss.

Elle is a nurse who works in pediatrics at the local hospital with her best friend Brennley. Bren works in the cancer ward and tells Elle about one of her patients. David is a cranky old man who has no one to spend time with him. He is estranged from his daughter and his granddaughter does not even know he exists. When Bren helps him write one last letter to his daughter, she realizes that her patient is actually her best friend Elle’s grandfather. Elle has never met this grandfather and was always told by her mother Marie that her grandparents were both dead. Elle is curious and wants to meet her grandfather. She wants to find out about her mother’s past and get to know this man. Elle starts meet with David on a regular basis and he starts telling her stories about her mother Marie’s past as well as his and Gertie’s relationship with her. Marie is not happy that Elle is seeing her grandfather. Grace, her mother’s caregiver continually tells Elle that his stories are not true. Will Elle ever find out the truth about her mother’s past? Is David telling the truth?

Elle is a very strong young woman. She has cared for her mother for years, but is trying to have a life of her own. Family ties are strong and so is loyalty. David is a sad character. He has dealt with woman all his life that have mental illness in varying degrees, but his love for his wife, Gertie, leads him to make some bad decisions that not only affect his life, but his daughter’s and granddaughter’s as well. The emotions that this book evokes are strong and have left me thinking about what I would do in the same situation. What will you do for the person you love? If you enjoy an emotive read, pick this one up. Continue reading “The Forgotten Ones by Steena Holmes”

Double Mint (Davis Way Crime Caper #4) by Gretchen Archer

Double Mint (Davis Way Crime Caper, #4)4.5 Stars

Published July 2015 by Henery Press

Once again, Davis Way, Fantasy, Baylor and No Hair are trying to save the casino. Bradley (Davis’ husband) is now the manager and they are working together. Being newlyweds, this might not be the best idea. When the events manager disappears, the vault is robbed and Davis and Bradley are living at the casino in the managers suite that looks like New Orleans spewed all over, you know there is going to be mayhem. Add in that Davis is sure Magnolia, the previous manager’s wife, is sneaking into their apartments, Biana Sanders is still as crazy as ever and there is a rather crazy pilot helping them out and the laughs are also there. This story has a more serious take on it than previous ones, but Davis still bumbles her way into and out of trouble. Someone had to find the missing platinum and Davis is sure the Banking Conference has something to do with it. Missing guests, counterfeit money and a printing room found hidden in their quarters gets Davis up in arms, especially when Bradley tells her to butt out.

The characters in this story are fleshed out a bit more. We find out about Fantasy’s home life and family, and she makes a big mistake in this book that could cost her a lot. Baylor comes across as a young, dumb, bodyguard type character in this story, even more than the last one, but comes through when he is needed. Bradley and Davis show some sides of their relationship that we have not seen before and it adds some dimension to Bradley. Finally, Bianca actually had me feeling a bit sorry for her. The new characters in this story were portrayed well, some funny, some nasty. The plot moved quickly as there was a lot going on, but it was not confusing. Once again, I enjoyed the escapades of Davis and her team. I can’t wait to see what Gretchen Archer has in mind for her next story.

Continue reading “Double Mint (Davis Way Crime Caper #4) by Gretchen Archer”

WWW Wednesday (July 11, 2018)

I made it home from my two day outing with my sister and after catching up on all my reviews, I am ready to post my WWW Wednesday, on Thursday.


Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme is hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words. The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?

Double Mint (Davis Way Crime Caper, #4) The Forgotten Ones  Frozen Stiff (Mattie Winston Mysteries, #3)

Audio                       Computer                 Physical Book

What did you recently finish reading?

Since last Wednesday, I finished reading and/or listening to seven books this week. Click on the book to go to my review.

Chili con Corpses (Supper Club Mysteries, #3) The Girl in the Woods Lowcountry Bookshop (Liz Talbot Mystery #7) Double Strike (Davis Way Crime Caper, #3) Fit to Die (Supper Club Mysteries Book 2) In the Clearing (Tracy Crosswhite, #3) The Perfect Couple

As well I also read 4 children’s books. My goal is at least one a day, but with being away this week did not get that many read.

What do you think you’ll read next?

In Bed with the Beast (The Naughty Princess Club, #2)

In Bed with the Beast (Naughty Princess Club #2)

by Tara Sivec

Published June 5th 2018 by Swerve

A tale as old as time: she needs a place to stay, he’s a grump with a secret and an extra room…can love find a way?

Meet the Naughty Princess Club, a series from USA Today bestselling author Tara Sivec that brings readers to Fairytale Lane and the hilarity—and romance—that three women fall into once they decide to strut their stuff and bring on their own happily ever after.

Living in her overprotective dad’s basement, shy Belle lives her life through books. Being a part of the Naughty Princess Club is the first adventure she’s ever had, plus she desperately needs the money to save one of her favorite places – the local library.

But when her new friends and new business gets her kicked out of her dad’s house, Belle is rescued by the surly Vincent “Beast” Adams who invites her to be his house guest until she gets back on her feet. Despite his attitude problem and long list of rules, Belle finds herself warming to the muscled man with a penchant for growling and starts seeing a gentle side to him that wasn’t there before.

Yet there’s a room that Beast keeps locked and Belle keeps getting hints that Beast is hiding something…can a nerdy librarian tame the beast or will their romance be over before it has a chance to blossom?


Double Knot (Davis Way Crime Caper, #5)

Double Knot (Davis Way Crime Caper #5)

by Gretchen Archer

Published April 12th 2016 by Henery Press

Super Spy Davis Way sets sail on a Caribbean cruise aboard the MS Probability with fifty billionaires, a boatload of Louis Vuitton luggage, Anderson Cooper, and her mother. (Her mother?) The weather is perfect, the seas are calm, and Suite 704 is spectacular. Until the door slams shut. For good.

Obviously, it’s a system glitch. Surely someone will show up to free Davis, Miss Hawaii, and the creepy staff. But when the minutes turn to hours and the hours stretch into a day, Davis knows it’s up to her. With $50,000 in casino chips, a pot roast, and a crash course in banking, she races against the clock to determine why they’re being held, stop the people behind it, and find a way out.

Secrets are revealed, antiquities are destroyed, and they’re running out of dishes. It’s mayday on Probability when Davis Way realizes that only the truth will set her free.


The Ex

The Ex

by Alafair Burke

Twenty years ago she ruined his life. Now she has the chance to save it.

Widower Jack Harris has resisted the dating scene ever since the shooting of his wife Molly by a fifteen-year-old boy three years ago. An early morning run along the Hudson River changes that when he spots a woman in last night’s party dress, barefoot, enjoying a champagne picnic alone, reading his favorite novel. Everything about her reminds him of what he used to have with Molly. Eager to help Jack find love again, his best friend posts a message on a popular website after he mentions the encounter. Days later, that same beautiful stranger responds and invites Jack to meet her in person at the waterfront. That’s when Jack’s world falls apart.

Olivia Randall is one of New York City’s best criminal defense lawyers. When she hears that her former fiancé, Jack Harris, has been arrested for a triple homicide—and that one of the victims was connected to his wife’s murder—there is no doubt in her mind as to his innocence. The only question is who would go to such great lengths to frame him—and why?

For Olivia, representing Jack is a way to make up for past regrets, to absolve herself of guilt from a tragic decision, a secret she has held for twenty years. But as the evidence against him mounts, she is forced to confront her doubts. The man she knew could not have done this. But what if she never really knew him?


Over the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road: Growing Older with Silliness, High Spirits and a lot of HeartOver the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road: Growing Older with Silliness, High Spirits and a lot of Heart

by Cathi Turow

Published May 10th 2018 by Dog Ear Publishing

All those who live “Over the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road” are growing older and figuring out where they belong in the world. In this whimsical collection of adult conversations, silliness is woven around the heartfelt thoughts and painful feelings we have as we begin to wrinkle and crinkle. The conversations take place in an allegorical land, where The Old Woman Who Lives in a Shoe is now an empty nester and has mixed feelings about downsizing to a sandal. The aging Tooth Fairy talks about slowing down and becoming an Implant Fairy. A five-hundred-year-old tree still wants to feel part of the world, though he’s too fragile to carry birds on his branches, and a loaf of stale bread faces age discrimination and searches for ways to continue to bring out the best in herself. Each conversation strikes a brilliant balance between humor and spirituality.

I will post reviews as soon as I finish. Have you read any of the above books. Let me know what you thought about them. As you can see, I am trying to catch up on some of the cozy series where I missed some books, so I will probably zoom through them.

Have a wonderful week reading and enjoying the weather.

Double Strike (Davis Way Crime Caper #3) by Gretchen Archer

Double Strike (Davis Way Crime Caper, #3)5 Very Funny Stars

Published October 21st 2014 by Henery Press

Once again, Gretchen Archer pens a fast moving mystery with Davis Way still undercover for the Bellissimo Casino. This book was once again full of humor, almost slapstick. Davis aka David, is still acting as a double for Bianca Saunders and in this story, she gets Bianca in some situations that hit the press. Of course keeping Bianca from finding out what has happened is a job in itself. When there is a fire at the Bellisimo on the day of Davis and Bradley’s wedding, the plans go awry. Add in the fact that her divorce to her ex-ex was never finalized and Davis is in some hot water. The “Strike it Rich Game” is where she is supposed to be concentrating her attention, but there is just way too much other stuff going on.

Davis Way and her associates are becoming more developed and we are seeing other sides to them to make them real to us. Everyone is a person with motivation, a back story, and a unique personality. Even the “bad guys” are complicated. I love how they put together the motivation and the plans of the bad guys so that we can actually believe the story could have happened. The interpersonal relationships are also filling out. Bradley Cole now works with Davis, at the same casino. He is the manager now, so he sees what she is doing and is there to help.

I really enjoyed this book. The characters, the intricacies of the plot, the humor, the unexpected happenings and the relationships all mesh together to create an enjoyable series. Ms. Archer’s descriptions of southern culture are wonderful. I doubt they will make her popular in Alabama, but it’s some of the best, snarky, sharp, intelligent descriptive writing of a place and its culture I’ve ever read. I found myself reading sections out loud to my son, who laughed along with me. Gretchen Archer is a great author to enjoy with each book in the series better than the last. I definitely recommend this one.

Continue reading “Double Strike (Davis Way Crime Caper #3) by Gretchen Archer”

The Girl in the Woods by Patricia MacDonald

The Girl in the Woods3 Stars

Published June 1st 2018 by Severn House Publishers

The Girl in the Woods by author Patricia MacDonald was a very twisty story. It is the story of Blair both before and after her move from home. At the age of 13, Blair’s best friend Molly is murdered after her Uncle Ellis sends her home alone in the rain. Blair has always felt guilty about this situation. Uncle Ellis took the girls in after their mother died and he was not a very good guardian. he was bigoted, cheap, mean, and more. The only thing he did not seem to do was sexually or physically assault the girls. When Blair got the opportunity, she left, got a great education and started her own business. When she gets the call that her sister is now in hospice, she returns home to spend time with her in her last few days or weeks. Shortly before Celeste dies she whispers a confession to Blair that reveals that the man who has been in prison for 15 years for killing Molly is innocent. Blair is shocked and promises Celeste that she will do everything she can to free him. It is not easy to get those in authority to listen, believe, and become involved in freeing a convicted man. Blair realizes that it is up to her to find the real killer in order to keep her promise to Celeste. There are a lot of clues still out there and as Blair finds more and more information, the story takes several turns.

The characters in the story are all fascinating. Ellis Dietz, the crotchety uncle, is easy to dislike, until he does something that makes you think, maybe he is not all bad. The P.I. that Blair hires seems to not care about the case, but then does everything he can to help Blair. The newspaper reporter who starts off helping Blair, leaves her high and dry when it benefits her. Even Blair’s young nephew has to make some pretty heavy decisions and as young people often do, takes a misstep along the way that could be very dangerous.

The Girl in the Woods by author Patricia MacDonald was a good story. I enjoyed the book not only for the psychological suspense but also for the questions it brought to my mind about the whole plot of the story. What would you do in this situation? The thing I did not like was that there were several themes that seemed to be taken from various stories and lumped together in this book. I did figure out who the murderer was early in the story, but not why. I liked this book and once I started reading I finished it quickly as I wanted to see what would happen next. Those who enjoy thriller/suspense stories, will enjoy this one. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book via Netgalley.

Continue reading “The Girl in the Woods by Patricia MacDonald”

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