Hid from Our Eyes by Julia Spencer-Fleming

Hid from Our Eyes

A Clare Fergusson / Russ Van Alstyne Mystery

It’s been quite a few years since we were left hanging by the last book. And I am not one bit upset. It was worth the wait. And we are all grateful.

Clare is one of my favorite characters. She’s a former helicopter pilot and is now an Episcopal  Priest with a newborn baby and a Police Chief husband. These characters are deeply flawed and that is why I love them.

The setting is Miller’s Kill in upstate New York. The story is told in the year 1952, 1972, and now.

In 1952 the police chief was Harry McNeil. Called to an odd crime scene where he finds a dead young woman in a party dress. No shoes, no purse, no stockings, no obvious cause of death. With little to go on, it seemed like there was little done.

In 1972, Jack Liddle is Chief and is called to a crime scene with the exact same set of circumstances, in the same place. He remembers the first girl and the only thing different is this time they may have a suspect. Russ Van Alstyne found the body. Recently home from the war in Vietnam and still angry and confused, he is quickly the first suspect. But there is no evidence to support anyone being a person of interest.

Present Day. Russ is now the police chief and gets the call. Another young lady has been found in the same place. Dead, in a party dress and nothing else. The pressure is on for the crime to be solved. Especially since the town residents are getting ready to vote on keeping the police force or not.

While Clare is trying to juggle motherhood, the priesthood, her church, and breastfeeding, she still has time to do some digging into the case. And she does just that.

This one was very twisty and just when I thought I knew who the bad person was, I did not! And of course, we have a cliffhanger. And I love it!

Thank you, Julia!

NetGalley/  April 7th, 2020 by Minotaur Books

 

 

 

A BAD DAY FOR SUNSHINE by DARYNDA JONES

A Bad Day for Sunshine (Sunshine Vicram, #1)

Sunshine Vicram #1

Sheriff Sunshine Vicram finds her cup o’ joe more than half full when the small village of Del Sol, New Mexico, becomes the center of national attention for a kidnapper on the loose.

Del Sol, New Mexico. Hometown of Sunshine Vicram, the newly elected Sheriff who didn’t even know she was in the running. On her first day on the job, she sees a missing rooster report, a flasher, and an escaped inmate and a missing teenager. 

Returning to Del Sol also means facing her past and protecting her own teenaged daughter, Auri. Although new in town, Auri has spent summers with her grandparents there and knows a few people. But the one who befriended her first is Sybil. Only now Sybil is missing, another boy goes missing and a snowstorm is hindering everything.

With help from not one but two sizzling hot guys. One, a man from her past who still makes her insides gooey and one a hot U.S. Marshall.

There were so many side plots and things going on you couldn’t blink or you would miss a clue! This book was both heartbreaking and hilarious. Who can do that??? This new series is one to watch! I absolutely loved this story and look forward to more!

April 7th, 2020 by St. Martin’s Press/ NetGalley

 

 

 

SIN EATER by MEGAN CAMPISI

Sin Eater

The Sin Eater walks among us, unseen, unheard
Sins of our flesh become sins of Hers
Following Her to the grave, unseen, unheard
The Sin Eater Walks Among Us.

In 16th Century England, 14-year-old May Owens, an orphan, has been condemned to a life sentence for stealing bread. It could have been worse. Her punishment is to be a Sin-Eater. Apprenticed to the old Sin-Eater. She can’t speak and none should speak to her except the dying. It is she who will sit and hear all of their sins and take them into herself by eating the food that represents each sin.

She is treated brutally and marked with a collar around her neck and an S tattooed on her tongue. She has very little learning except for the letters in her name. And she can barely understand the old woman who is teaching her.

Called to the castle, they enter to hear the sins of a dying woman. A governess at court. When they return to eat the food, there is a deer heart on the coffin. But May nor the old woman heard her confess to murder. When the old woman refused to eat it, she is killed and May is left on her own.

As more women die in the castle, May thinks she may have figured out why. And along the way figured out who she really is. Now she just needs to figure out who! Before she is the next to die.

This was in no way what the blurb said. The Handmaid’s Tale meets Alice in Wonderland.  I think that is a disservice to the book. This was a dark, gritty tale full of mystery and legend with characters both tragic and humorous. May Owens may have been born to be much more than her life became, and her strength and determination was that of a warrior.

Most of the book was hauntingly sad but this was the 16th Century. The one definitely made a mark on my heart.

NetGalley/ April 7th, 2020 by Atria Books

 

 

 

 

 

 

PRIDE of EDEN by TAYLOR BROWN

Pride of Eden

The enthralling new novel from the acclaimed author of Fallen Land, The River of Kings, and Gods of Howl Mountain

Little Eden is a wildlife sanctuary on the Georgia coast. Rather low rent and shabby. Much like the ruins of an entire development that failed when the interstate moved locations.

Anse Caulfield runs the place. We aren’t sure how he manages that financially but he is a character. A veteran of Vietnam, Jockey, and lover of all wild animals. Especially Henrietta, his prized cat that Anse loves fiercely. When she gets out and is killed, he is obsessed with finding more, saving more animals and righting wrongs.

Anse and Tyler, a vet, live together at the sanctuary and she worries endlessly about Anse.  When another former soldier and animal activist, Malay, shows up looking for work, Anse hires her. She feels the same respect for the animals and the rage at how they are treated. Along with local friend Lope, they take on the smugglers, the back alley sellers of rare cats who are soon abandoned and left to die.

But someone else wants one of the cats they saved. And for a reason, you won’t believe until you read it!

If you read The Gods of Howl Mountain, you know Brown has a gift for weaving stories and characters that is magical. For me personally, my family is from Sapelo Island and St. Simon’s Island. We grew up speaking Geechee and running wild much like the feral cattle left to roam the island. This was very personal to me. The cruelty of people to raise an animal by hand and then let men come in a fenced area to kill it is mindboggling. What kind of person does that?  Turns out, a lot of them.

Thank you, Mr. Brown, for another brilliant read!

NetGalley/ March 17th, 2020 by St. Martin’s Press

 

 

 

 

 

Please See Us by Caitlin Mullen

Please See Us

Two young women, unlikely friends, both find themselves in Atlantic City.  Summer in AC used to be a time of packed boardwalks, casinos, and tourists. But no more. The only people out on the marshland are two dead women. Jane Does. Laid out behind a seedy hotel.

Clara, who is just a teenager, lives with her aunt and works as a boardwalk psychic to help pay the rent. The aunt was a real piece of work. When Clara begins having real visions after a visit from the father of a missing girl, she thinks the visions may be about her. And then more women go missing.

Lily, who used to work in the art gallery world, is just starting a job at the spa in town. She has had enough of her own drama to overcome but that won’t stop her from teaming up with Clara to find the girls who are still going missing.

But did they put their trust in the wrong person? Will they both come out alive?

This was eerie and heartbreaking. I loved the characters, even the wicked ones are done so well. Very good read!

NetGalley/ March 3rd, 2020 by Gallery Books

 

 

 

THE LADY OF THE LAKE BY PETER GUTTRIDGE

The Lady of the Lake

When a body is found in a lake belonging to Nimue Grace, a reclusive actress, DI Sarah Gilchrist and her partner DS Bellamy Heap are on the case.

The dead man, Major Rabbitt was not well-liked by any stretch of the imagination. He was a pig. His ex hated him, his business rivals hated him. And no one said it but I’m pretty sure his own kids did not like him.

There was a lot going on here. There were so many suspects I had no idea who the killer was. At one point I thought it was an ostrich. Yes. Or the drug dealer. Or the ex. And on and on!  That gets extra points because I didn’t guess right at all!!

Good Job!

NetGalley/March 3rd, 2020 by Severn House Publishers

 

 

 

REVOLVER ROAD by CHRISTI DAUGHERTY (A HarperMcClain Mystery)

Revolver Road (Harper McClain, #3)

Crime reporter Harper McClain is back on the beat when a troubled musician vanishes in Christi Daugherty’s Revolver Road.

We’re back in Savannah with crime reporter Harper McClain. After being told to RUN!, she is hiding out on Tybee Island while she figures out who wants her dead.

In between working at the newspaper and trying to solve her mother’s murder, she is now on the case of who killed Xavier Rayne. An up and coming music star who was set to go on tour when he walked out of his rented beach house on Tybee. His girlfriend and two bandmates are acting very suspicious and when a body shows up with bullet holes they all become suspects.

Digging deeper into the case has her not quite sure who to believe and now threats against her own life are being made which have nothing to do with the Rayne case. Someone is watching her. Someone wants to protect her. Someone wants her dead.

Who can she trust?

I love this series. Every one. This book is the reason I did not see the Super Bowl! That is how edge of your seat crazy suspenseful this book is!

Highly recommend!

NetGalley/March 10th 2020 by Minotaur Books