Between a Book and a Hard Place By Denise Swanson: Review/Giveaway

Mar 19, 2016 | 2016 Articles, Cynthia Chow, Mysteryrat's Maze

by Cynthia Chow

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of Between a Book and a Hard Place, along with a link to purchase the book where a portion goes to help support KRL & an indie bookstore.

No one would ever call Shadow Bend, Missouri boring, and nothing highlighted this more than their most recent city council meeting. As the owner of Devereaux’s Dime Store and Gift Baskets, Dev Sinclair had strong interest on the vote to approve zoning for a proposed SRO. The shocker is that this would be the least contentious topic of the night. First, the Sinclair family nemesis Nadine Underwood supported an alientologist’s proposal to study residents being body snatched by Extra-Terrestrials. Then, closer and more lethal to Dev’s heart, the newest husband of her mother appeared with an offer to support the reestablishment of a much needed Shadow Bend Library.

It’s been thirteen years since Dev last set eyes on Yvette Sinclair Benedict. After her husband was unjustly sent to prison, Yvette abandoned Dev to be raised by her grandparents. Kern Sinclair may finally be free, but Dev can’t help but be concerned about his forgiving attitude and vulnerability towards Yvette’s alluring ways. Dev’s worries prove to be justified when she receives a call from her father to come to the library, where both he and Yvette stand over Jett Benedict’s

Dev will do anything to prevent her father from returning to prison, so she doesn’t hesitate to lie to the police or tamper with evidence in order to conceal his presence at the scene. This means that Dev has to conduct her own investigation to discover who wanted Benedict dead, and the unsettling truth is the suspects are far too close to Dev’s soul. The two men in her life assist when they can, but Noah Underwood and Jake Del Vecchio have so many complications going on in their own lives that it will be up to Dev to keep her father out of prison and her mother out of their lives.

Readers who are fans of Swanson’s Scumble River Mystery series will adore this very Southern novel of families, flirtations, and small-town shenanigans. The romantic triangle between Dev, Noah, and Jake continues to propel the novel, and viewpoints from both Noah and Jake will have readers sympathetic to both frustratingly noble suitors. Loads of humor in the form of witty one-liners keep the tone light, and the secrets hidden by the many characters will have readers intrigued. This continues to be a reliably fun mystery series full of smoldering romance and Southern traditions.

To enter to win a copy of Between a Book and a Hard Place, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “between,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen March 26, 2016. U.S. residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address, and if via comment please include your email address.

You can use this link to purchase this book & a portion goes to help support KRL & indie bookstore Mysterious Galaxy:

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section.

Cynthia Chow is the branch manager of Kaneohe Public Library on the island of Oahu. She balances a librarian lifestyle of cardigans and hair buns with a passion for motorcycle riding and regrettable tattoos (sorry, Mom).


  1. Thanks for the chance 🙂
    jslbrown2009 at aol dot com

  2. This is a new series for me, and I love the whole premiss. I have read a few book with a southern flair and add murder? Yeah…what else would make this series better? Nothing. It’s sounds great. Thanks, Denise, for a great read! Thanks, KRL, for the opportunity!

  3. I would love to read this because it looks good and I haven’t read any of her books yet! Thank you for having the giveaway.

  4. This book would be a great title to add to my cozy challenge list. Thanks for a chance to win a copy.

  5. j.presler (at)

  6. I haven’t read this series yet, but I really enjoy books with a Southern setting. Would love to read.

  7. I hope to win.

  8. I enjoy reading this cozy mystery series, and I am looking forward to this one. Thank you for the chance to win.

  9. What a terrific sounding book. I want to find out about the body snatchers. I have known some people who could be prime examples of that…

  10. Thanks for the great review and chance to win. I have read every book in this series and can’t wait to read this one.

  11. I’d walk a looooooong ways to read another Denise Swanson book!!!!!

  12. I tried sending a email to try and win this book, but it wouldn’t go through. So I commenting on this artical to try and win. Would love to win this book, sounds like it would be a great book. My email address is /

    • Between a Book and a Hard Place

  13. I definitely have this one on my to buy list.
    I enjoy this series and look forward to reading this episode.

    karen94066 at aol dot com

  14. Living in the south, any book with a little Southern in it gets my attention! Would love to read this book. Thankyou for the opportunity! Jill;

  15. We have a winner!


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