by Sunny Frazier
It’s been a scorching, waterless, and fiery summer here on the West Coast. The rest of the country is dealing with heat, floods, hurricanes, and tornados. Covid is making a deadly comeback. This is when a good book is necessary for sanity. Stay well and hydrated!
Vicki Delany has started a new retro series: A Catskill Summer Resort Mysteries. In the first book of the series, Deadly Summer Nights, we meet Elizabeth Grady. Set in 1953, Elizabeth’s mom is running Haggeman’s Catskills Resort, and Elizabeth is helping out. When a guest is found dead with a copy of The Communist Manifesto in his cabin, the local police chief is convinced the man was a Russian spy. Elizabeth has to fight the Red Scare to solve the murder and keep the resort in business.
It’s the dog days of August in California, but the Tarzana Hookers crochet club keeps busy with their knitting needles. Molly Pink’s friend is converting a house she’s just inherited into a rental, and the neighbors are not happy. When a drone dumps mollusk shells over the property, killing the house cleaner, Molly and her ex, a homicide detective, investigate, but the witnesses clam up. One for the Hooks is the fourteenth Crochet Mystery by Betty Hechtman.
?August in Lake Potawatomi, Wisconsin, brings the annual baking contest. Baker-turned-mystery writer Teddie St. John has a pie in competition. Unfortunately, the head judge is found dead with his face in a coconut cream pie—and the weapon is one of Teddie’s rolling pins. With the help of friends, Teddie must concoct a recipe to clear her name. Deadly Delights is the second book in Laura Jensen Walker’s Bookish Baker Mysteries.(While this one came out in June, it is set in August).
Last month I mentioned Cate Conte’s latest Cat Café Mystery, Claws for Alarm. Unfortunately, I paired the title with the wrong blurb. In this fifth book, Maddie James has expanded the JJ’s House of Purrs in Daybreak Island, Massachusetts, from ten felines to fifteen. This brings in national attention. The executive director of The East Coast Animal Rescue League wants to do a fundraiser. But when the woman is found strangled with a cat leash, Maddie wonders if something else sinister going on and if others in the rescue community are in jeopardy.
Animal rescue can be risky business as Liz Denton, owner of Furever Pets, soon learns. She’s found a forever home for Maine Coon cat, Sheamus. But before the adoption happens, the new owner is found murdered. Worse yet, it’s discovered he a was accused of killing his wife thirty years ago. Liz’s curiosity is whetted, and she’s determined to sniff out the killer. It’s Dial ‘M’ for Maine Coon, the second in the Furever Pets Mysteries by Alex Erickson.
Diesel, another Maine Coon, is one lucky cat. His owner, librarian Charlie Harris, has inherited his granddad’s house in Athena, Mississippi. He thought the place was bought by a long-time tenant, but when the man dies, Charlie discovers the house was never sold. He also discovers there is a skeleton in the closet—literally. While the Sheriff investigates, the cold case heats up when the tenant’s grandson is found dead on the land. What the Cat Dragged In is the fourteenth Cat in the Stacks mystery by Miranda James.
Still craving more cat tales? Author Molly Fitz has gathered ten authors to create a travel anthology featuring kitties along for the ride. When the Cat’s Away is a great way to spend a staycation. Curl up with your cat for a fun read.
BEST OF THE REST
Maddie Day—No Grater Crime: A Country Store Mystery #9
Karen Rose Smith—Murder with Orange Pekoe Tea: A Daisy’s Tea Garden Mystery #7
Bree Baker—Partners in Lime: Seaside Café #6
Lucy Burdette—A Scone of Contention: A Key West Food Critic Mystery #11
Maddie Day—No Grater Crime: Country Store Mystery #9
Agatha Frost—Toffee Apple Torment: Claire’s Candles #6
Angela M. Sanders—Seven-Year Witch: Witch Way Librarian #2
JoAnna Carl—The Chocolate Raccoon Rigmarole: Chocoholic Mystery #18
Leslie Langtry—Mosquito Bite Murder: Merry Wrath Mystery #19
?A.R. Winters—Pranks and Perplexities in Las Vegas: Tiffany Black Mysteries #26
Dale Mayer—Nabbed in the Nasturtiums: Lovely Lethal Gardens #14
Donna Andrews—Murder Most Fowl: Meg Lagslow #28
Tracy Gardner—Still Life and Death: Shepherd Sisters Mystery #3
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