Posted in audio books, Book Review

The Latest Veronica Speedwell Story

A Murderous Relation by Deanna Raybourn Narrated by Angele Masters

It is no secret that I am addicted to audiobooks and one of my favorites has been the Veronica Speedwell series. Narrator Angele Masters brings this character brilliantly to life.

While I was late in discovering the author, Deanna Raybourn, coming up her only after she started the Veronica Speedwell series, I have become a die-hard fan. If you haven’t read or listened to this series you need to start at the beginning, believe me, these books are worth your time. The Veronica Speedwell series begins with A Curious Beginning. Veronica is a modern woman in Victorian England. She has had to rely on her own wits to survive. She is a butterfly hunter, scientist and scholar. She writes papers using only her initials because the era is not welcoming to women with thoughts in their heads, even with a woman monarch.

From the first book in this series to this fifth book, A Murderous Relation, Deanna Raybourn has given us a little more insight into the main characters Veronica and her colleague Stoker, and those closest to them. While each story stands alone the relationship and the growth of the characters from book one to five is an important progression.

Veronica is a woman of honor, strength and conviction. While she may not be conventional, she is of her era, but she is also the embodiment of the women who changed the world. Like women from all eras in history, Veronica pushes against the constraints polite society has put up her, she strives to be greater than her stature and she is determined to do whatever has to be done to see the job completed.

In A Murderous Relation, Veronica is once more to be used as a pawn against the monarchy. She and Stoker find themselves protecting the prince against those who would start a royal scandal. Is it just about an expensive gift to a courtesan or will they try to accuse him of being the notorious Jack the Ripper? Will Veronica and Stoker live to explore the romantic relationship that’s been simmering for way too long or will their relationship be used to destroy England?  

Posted in audio books, Book Review

Dr. Strange Beard by Penny Reid

Narrated by Chris Brinkley and Chloe Miller

Winston Brothers Book 5

Veterinary doctor, Roscoe Winston is still nursing a broken heart leftover from high school. He avoids Simone Payton at all costs. With an eidetic memory, Roscoe can’t afford anymore memories of Simone breaking his heart.

The youngest of the Winston Brothers, he was somewhat protected from their evil father, but he remembers more than anyone realizes.

Simone, back home investigating a series of murders, is undercover FBI agent working at her mother’s donut shop. When a chance encounter with the Winston Patriarch and her former best friend it sends the estranged friends into a tailspin of romance and intrigue. Throw in a prejudiced cop who threatens her cover by bringing her unwanted attention when those who care about her want to come to her rescue.

Murder, romance, FBI, lies, memories, horses, and puppies, oh and we can’t forget the clowns, Penny Reid has done it again. I’m almost afraid to read the last book. I don’t want this series to end. Maybe I’ll just start all over again. Love the beards y’all. This is a fantastic series with laughter, love, sexy romantic heroes and kick-ass heroines, and all the emotions. Penny Reid doesn’t backdown from the tough issues, but she doesn’t preach. She opens the eyes of the reader and allows us to see the beauty in our differences, our similarities and the celebration of it all.

Penny Reid makes me laugh, cry and fall in love and that’s just with her grocery list…y’all have got to read this series.

Posted in audio books, Book Review

I’m In LOVE with The Beards!

Grin and Beard It  by Penny Reid, Narrated by Chris Brinkley, Cielo Camargo

When Jethro Winston stumbles upon a beautiful woman lost and stranded in the Great Smokey Mountains of Tennessee, he has no clue that she is the award-winning actress, comedian and writer, Sienna Diaz.

The curvy, vivacious woman makes him smile and he falls a bit in love with her that very first day, even though he mistakenly thinks her name is Sarah.

Sienna is used to handsome men, heck she works in Hollywood, but Jethro Winston is a real man. He is strong, confident, capable and oh so sexy. She never expects to see him again but then she never expects to get lost, again, on the same mountain road.

When his brother Cletus orders her to tell him the truth about who she is, Jethro still doesn’t understand what it means to be with a woman who is an A-list celebrity until they are up to their eyeballs in fans. With is colorful past, Jethro knows he should bow out and not taint Sienna with is mistakes, instead they keep finding themselves pulled and pushed together by those that love them and want them happy as well as their own desires for each other.

Can two people from two very different worlds find their happily ever after? It is a laugh-out-loud ride as they try to find out. Penny Reid gives you all the feels, I laughed until I almost peed my pants and I sniffled and cried along with the characters, I even got mad and wanted to tell a few of them off. When you get that invested into a story, you know it’s good. I’m onto the next in the series.

The narrators, Chris Brinkley and Cielo Camargo do an excellent job of filling the room with the story. As I listened in the car, folding clothes or at work, I felt as if I were right there on the mountain right in the middle of all the adventure. They truly brought the characters to life and made the novel an excellent experience.

If you haven’t read or listened to The Winston Brother series, why not? It’s so much fun! Y’all come on and join me…or not, you’ll just be the ones missing out.

Gotta go, I’ve got a hot date with a good book.

Posted in audio books, Book Review

Death at the Dakota

by M K Graff, Narrated by Lucinda Gainey (Audible)

While I read Death at the Dakota when it came out and loved this second Trudy Genova story, I have to tell you, listening to the audiobook is even better. Lucinda Gainey does an excellent job of portraying Trudy and narrating the story. She brings it to life and makes it feel like you’re in the movie.

I really love this series. Trudy is sweet and funny, and nosey. She is smart and sexy, too. Her relationship with NYPD Detective Ned O’Malley is so real. Yes, they come from different backgrounds, but their basic morality and ethics are the same. They fit together.

Trudy’s job as medical consultant for film and tv sounds like a fun job. The atmosphere at the Dakota adds to the story making it more intriguing and atmospheric. I love Trudy’s can-do spirit and determined personality. MK gives her readers a view of Trudy’s past without dumping it over our heads, a taste of what her future might be, i.e. her dream of writing a mystery series set in England. We, the reader feel we know Trudy and her friends. They come alive and the plot twists, setting and story are all part of the ride.

If you haven’t read the Trudy Genova Manhattan Mysteries, you could start with this one, but I encourage you to also read the first one, Death Unscripted. If you like British cozy mysteries, check out M K Graff’s Nora Tierney series, I love them too and know you will. 

Posted in audio books, Book Review


Rivals Frenemies who Changed the World by Scott McCormick

Narrated by Prentice Onayemi, Samantha Turret, Khristine Hvam, Gabriel Vaughan and Josh Hurley

An Audible Original

I found this to be both interesting and entertaining. I love history and science, well, the history of science and invention. This is a collection of short stories about people in history who were both friends and competitors. The competitions often became quite violent, even deadly. They were also rather ridiculous, at least in retrospect, and costly.

Cope or Marsh, the jerks (I’d use another word, but I’ll keep it pg) who discovered many of America’s dinosaurs. It’s a wonder we have anything correct with the two of them inventing things just to one-up the other.

Hamilton and Burr, who political rivalry was rather bizarre and truly could have been more beneficial if they’d remained friends. It’s funny how Burr is often portrayed as the bad guy when the facts are somewhat different.

Queen Elizabeth and Mary Queen of Scots, oh what a bloody mess that was.

Adidas and Puma, brothers battling over shoes and dividing a town as well as a family.

This is a side of history we’ve not seen before and I found it fun and interesting. There were definitely stories that will stay with me for years to come and others I’ll want to research further.

If you like history with a little twist, check out Rivals.

Posted in audio books, Book Review


Crucible by James Rollins, Narrated by Christian Baskous (Audible)

Y’all know I’m addicted to audiobooks and James Rollins books are great to listen to, they’re like an action adventure movie without the picture.

I’m not sure what I enjoy most, the Sigma Force story or the author’s notes at the end of the book. James Rollins is one of the most interesting authors of our time. I don’t want to give too much away but I will say this, what do you get when you add an ancient book from the Spanish Inquisition and modern technology with a holy religious relic and the possibilities of technology to come? What you get is James Rollins Crucible.

Celebrating their first Christmas as a couple and expecting their first child, Commander Gray Pierce returns with his partner Monk to find the woman he loves missing along with Monk’s daughters, and Monk’s wife, Kat near death on the kitchen floor.

At least two separate factions are trying to get their hands on the new technology recently demonstrated in Portugal. Technology someone was willing to kill for. Before going offline, a distress signal was sent to Sigma.

After saying goodbye to his wife, Monk promises to rescue their daughters. He joins Gray to find out if the murders in Portugal are connected to the attack on Commander Pierce’s house.

A manuscript from the Spanish Inquisition, Malleus Maleficarium, the Hammer of Witches, two religious orders on opposite ends of the faith, a snow witch rebuilding the unit she inherited, and the promise of advanced technology the world isn’t ready for yet.

This is another edge of your seat thriller as Christmas in Paris takes on new meaning. Gray and Monk must work against the clock to save the ones they love and face the very real facts that for some, it may already be too late.

This isn’t just another Christmas story, but it is one I’d love to see made into a movie. Awesome book, fantastic characters, James Rollins rocks.

Posted in audio books, Book Review

The Wallflower Wager

The Wallflower Wager by Tessa Dare, Narrated by Mary Jane Wells  (Audible)

Girl Meets Duke series, but this girl, Lady Penelope Campion meets Mr. Gabriel Duke, known as the Duke of Ruin.

The wealthy Duke is known for being ruthless in his business dealings with the ton. He cares for nothing but what will make him a penny. Having grown up with nothing, Gabriel has no time for sentiment and little patience for his lovely neighbor’s unique menagerie. He is concerned only with how it will affect the cost of the house he is renovating.

Penny cares nothing for wealth or progress, fashion or even society. She is loyal to her friends both two-legged and four, furry, feathered or simply hairy. She has never been interested in a man and is surprised by her reaction to Gabriel. She falls into lust with him when she comes upon him right after his bath, having invaded his room when trying to rescue her foul-mouthed fowl.

Tessa Dare delights readers with humor, sexy characters and plot twists.

When Penny fears she will be sent away from London and the home she has carved for herself, she joins forces with her neighbor to rehome her animals and attempts to rejoin society.

Gabriel Duke is the least likely hero, but he really sees Penny and he is honest with her. Their romance is a bit of surprise to everyone but the reader, we could see they belong together. A lovely story of misfits and finding your perfect fit. It is one of the reasons I love romance, everyone deserves their happy ever after.

Posted in audio books, Book Review

Who In The World Is Carmen Sandiego?

By Rebecca Tinker, Narrated by Kyla Garcia (Audible)

I remember watching this cartoon with my children. When I saw the story available on Audible, I decided I had to try it.

I enjoy a variety of stories from YA to risqué and I am not sorry I chose to listen to Who in the World is Carmen Sandiego?

Carmen Sandiego is wanted across the globe but who is this young criminal? The story of Carmen’s beginnings is a fun story of adventure and training. A bit of a duck out of water, the young girl known to us as Carmen Sandiego is really good at her training and education, but she lacks something her instructors see but she has yet to realize.

When she meets Player, she learns more about the world than just geography. Anxious to leave the island, it isn’t until she gets what she wants that she learns she isn’t destined for the life she’d always believed.

The Carmen Sandiego we know, the lady in the red fedora is just one of her many disguises but this one stuck and became the persona she adopted when she left the Vile academy and set out to right the wrongs of its operatives.

I thought the story was a lot of fun and I enjoyed.

Posted in audio books, Book Review

Audiobook Review “Wait Until Midnight” by Amanda Quick

Wait Until Midnight by Amanda Quick, narrated by Louisa Jane Underwood

When alias Mr. Groves turns up at home of sensation novelist Caroline Fordyce claiming to have grave news, she muses it is probably a mistake. Intrigued, she welcomes the man into her office and discovers he is the perfect specimen for her nefarious character.

Mr. Groves AKA, Adam Hardesty, is not thrilled to be cast in the role of villain. He has come about a case of murder and a missing diary and hopes Mrs. Fordyce can shed some light upon the subject. Afraid she and her aunts will become embroiled in another scandal, Caroline joins forces with Adam in the hope of clearing her name and discovering the truth. If they have a little adventure along the way that’s just fine, as long as the avoid scandal.

Adam Hardesty has a rule about scandals, he doesn’t like them. He has rules about a lot of things but his relationship with Mrs. Fordyce will bend, if not break all of his rules. When Caroline sacrifices her own reputation to give him an alibi, he knows she is a woman of honor, but does she still see him as a villain?

Old scandals, new scandals, psychics and mediums, con-artists and murders, will the couple survive to find their happy ending? This one was a bit of a surprise, I’m not sure I haven’t read it before, but it was a story worth reading or listening to again. I adore Amanda Quick and I enjoyed Wait Until Midnight.

If you are a fan of Amanda Quick’s books, or like your historical romance with a bit of mystery and thriller, then you’ll enjoy Wait Until Midnight. Louisa Jane Underwood was the perfect narrator, making the characters so real I almost feared I’d be the next victim. Check out this audiobook and others by both Amanda Quick and narrator, Louisa Jane Underwood.