Red Lady, Red Lady, show us your face…
It’s 1991 and Heather, her best friend Becca and their two other friends are obsessed with serial killers, and all things macabre.
Becca is the storyteller of the group and comes up with some seriously scary tales. But the one keeps coming back. The Red Lady. Once a witch murdered by her own town while not one of her friends speaks up for her. Revenge quickly follows with the entire town dying.
Becca believes the story and even makes a believer out of Rachel and Gia, the other girls in the Dead Girls Club. But Heather is sure there is no such thing. Until something happens and she begins to doubt herself and Becca.
With Becca believing all she needs is her best friends help her to prove the Red Lady is real, Heather swears to help her. And then Becca is dead and Heather will never be the same.
Fast forward 30 years and strange things are happening. Heather is sure she is being followed. When half of a BFF necklace shows up in the mail, Heather is sure of one thing. Someone knows what she did. Someone knows she killed her best friend and now they are coming for her.
This was a ghost story in the best way! A group of young girls, obsessed with Stephen King and Ted Bundy equally, mess with magic and a long-dead witch when the real horror is much closer and alive than they know.
I love a good ghost tale! And this one I read in 3 hours even eating dinner while reading. I had to know what was real and what wasn’t. And I never saw that ending coming at all! I suspected everyone and all for good reasons, but wow, that ending!
NetGalley/December 10th, 2019 by Crooked Lane Books
Lighthouse Library Mystery #6
When we last left Lucy and The Bodie Island Lighthouse Library, Lucy and Bertie were thinking of ways to raise money to repair the foundation. Now the work is not far from completion. The Book Club is reading Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne. Quite apt with the huge equipment digging all around the library and way down.
Things are humming along when the foreman comes running in demanding Bertie and Lucy follow him to the dig site. They have found something and no one is touching it until they see it. Buried treasure? Civil War relics? They find a box. Inside, a small diary with nothing inside but the tides and the weather for each day. Oh! And 2 pages that have fallen out. One is a marked map with numbers on it and one sheet looks like something written in code.
Everyone from Louise Jane to Diane and Curtis are fighting to see the papers and Bertie is even fending off the other historians who are planning a Settler’s Day soon on the grounds. One in particular. One who wants what he wants now. And when he is found dead in Bertie’s office and the map and coded paper are missing, everyone is intent on cracking the code and finding treasure.
There was a really nice subplot concerning The Freedman’s Colony and the new development the city is fighting. I really enjoyed the history lesson.
Lucy tried so hard not to stick her pert little nose in things but we all know her better than that. But this time she may end up on the wrong side of history! Unless her arch-nemesis can save the day!
I love this series. A lighthouse and a library? And Charles the library cat? Cuteness overload.
NetGalley/ October 8th, 2019 by Crooked Lane Books
A Kate Hamilton Mystery #2
Kate Hamilton is back in the UK. This time our intrepid antique dealer from America is here to visit her daughter, the headstrong Christine, where she is serving an internship at Finchley Hall located in Long Barston.
With an empty room in the converted stables, Kate is happy to be here spending time with her daughter and with her boyfriend, DI Tom Mallory, whom we met in the first mystery.
Touring the rather neglected home and grounds, they find a young woman’s body at the edge of the lake. Dead. And this isn’t the first time a body has been found there. This particular body, however, is heading up the enormous task of inventorying the large collections that have been part of the family for generations. Including the rare ruby ring.
An odd household, to be sure, Mugg, the butler/everything else and one cook/maid/housekeeper, along with Lady Barbara. Elderly and with very poor vision, she depends on Mugg for everything.
There were several other plotlines and the bodies are still falling, when Kate’s own daughter is hauled into the station and questioned about the latest one.
I really don’t want to spoil any of the fun in this book. The characters are great fun and I can’t wait for Kate to be back in the UK!
Netgalley/ October 8th, 2019 by Crooked Lane Books
A Haunted Library Mystery #3
Carrie and Smokey Joe are back for another adventure in the Haunted Library. And their resident ghost, Evelyn, isn’t the only one taking refuge in the library. The homeless population has grown in their small town and many are using the library to stay warm during the day. Good people who through no fault of their own are now homeless.
Carrie gets involved with a group trying to establish a daytime place for the homeless. Haven House sounds like a wonderful place with help in all areas of their lives. But from the beginning, there is gossip that the place will be used as a gambling house at night. That the buyers are shady and the entire deal sketchy.
When Dorothy has a slip on some black ice, Carrie, as the newly appointed Sunshine Delegate for the library, goes to visit her in the hospital where a drugged up Dorothy tells her that her own husband is trying to kill her and may have killed her Aunt Evelyn.
Dorothy is not a well-liked person. If you have read the first two books, you already know that. And while Carrie doesn’t want to get involved, she can’t say no to Evelyn.
Carrie has really grown as a character and I am quite impressed by this cast of interesting people. And what is better than a library? A haunted library!
NetGalley/ September 10th, 2019 by Crooked Lane Books
A Little Library Mystery #4
Little Person author Zoe Zola believes that one of the unluckiest things in life is to receive an invitation—in the form of a letter edged in black—to an Agatha Christie symposium at an old Upper Peninsula hunting lodge. Her reluctance dissipates when she learns that the organizer is named Emily Brent—the name of a character poisoned by cyanide in Christie’s And Then There Were None.
As much as I love the idea of this type of story, it was difficult to get through. There wasn’t a single character that I liked or thought believable.
The ending was very quick and unsatisfying.
NetGalley/Crooked Lane Books August 13th, 2019
Twelve years ago Masha lost her toddler son, Gabriel. That loss has changed her forever. She is living in a state of grief. Her friends now are the ones who lie forever in her local cemetery where she visits every day and if she isn’t there, she is practicing drowning in the local pool.
Sally is the local odd ball. She dresses odd and feed crows and sings at the cemetery. She may sound daft, but she is a very wise woman who had a much different life at one time. Most of the women in this story have lived lives of joy and deep sorrow. The question is how does one live with such pain?
In the next town over a woman is dying of cancer. Her 15-year-old son Mattie is her primary concern. A long time ago Alice did something horrible and now she must make it right before she dies and leaves her son alone.
This was a real slow starter for me. Rambling and I was frustrated when I got to the end and thought, “Really?”.
NetGalley/June 11th 2019 by Crooked Lane Books
A tale inspired by a fairy tale we heard a lot growing up. Changelings. A horrid topic for any mother but a deliciously wicked and creepy idea for a fairy tale! Or is it more than a fairy tale?
Lauren Tranter has given birth to twin boys and is exhausted and unsure of even how to feed them. Her husband, who I disliked immediately, seems to think she will be fine by her self and leaves her there alone with the tiny twins, Morgan and Riley to figure it out.
Lauren knows she isn’t crazy when she calls 911 to say someone is trying to steal her babies. Lauren knows what she saw. A slimy hag of a woman trying to switch her eel like babies for Laurens healthy children. And from the way she speaks, this isn’t the first time.
Lauren is living in fear someone will steal the boys and the husband is definitely acting sketchy so she is pretty much alone. A month goes by and finally she takes the boys to the park. She only closed her eyes for a second and they were gone. And the babies they find look like Morgan and Riley but Lauren knows the truth. These weird little things are not her children and she isn’t going to let it go until someone believes her.
The decision she makes could be deadly and will she have the courage to do what must be done to get her children back?
I loved this book. The characters were described so well you could easily imagine every one of them. Even the weird little changelings!
Netgalley/ Crooked Lane Books