Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Two Mini Reviews - Murder on Memory Lake + Engaged in Death


Goodreads:  Murder on Memory Lake (Ferrara Family Mysteries #1) by J.D. Griffo

Blurb:  Alberta Scaglione’ s spinster aunt had some secrets—like the fortune she squirreled away and a secret lake house in Tranquility, New Jersey. More surprising: she’s left it all to Alberta. Alberta, a widow, is no spring chicken and she’s gotten used to disappointment. So having a beautiful view, surrounded by hydrangeas, honeysuckle, and her cat, Lola, sounds blissful after years of yelling and bickering and cooking countless lasagnas.

But Tranquility isn’t as peaceful as it sounds. There’s a body in the water—and it belongs to Alberta’s childhood nemesis. Alberta suspects foul play and when Alberta’s estranged granddaughter, an aspiring crime reporter, shows up, it only makes sense for them to team up and investigate . . .

My Thoughts:  This book was a fun one.  The personalities are large and the mystery was a good one with enough characters to fill out the book but without so many that it strayed into info dump.  I really liked the developing relationship between Alberta and her granddaughter Jinx as well as the addition of Alberta's sister and sister-in-law.  I did guess the conclusion before the reveal but it was so fun getting there that I didn't mind.  This is on the zanier side of the cozy spectrum but never crossed the line into silly and kept me entertained from beginning to end.  My main complaint was that we don't learn very much about Alberta's inherited house but that's just because I do love a house with family secrets.   My Rating:  Liked It!

Goodreads:  Engaged in Death (A Wedding Planner Mystery #1) by Stephanie Blackmoore

Blurb:   All appears peaceful in sleepy Port Quincy, Pennsylvania--but in this small town, old grudges die hard. . .

After dumping her cheating fiancé and cancelling the wedding, Mallory Shepard can't bear another disaster. So when the former bride-to-be unexpectedly inherits Thistle Park, a ramshackle mansion in her ex's hometown of Port Quincy, it's a problem she can't afford--literally. Abound with stray cats, peeling wallpaper, and nosy neighbors, Mallory is dying to sell it off--once she finally fixes up both the place and her messy life. . .

Turns out, Thistle Park has its charms. But the honeymoon phase is abruptly cut short when an unwanted visitor is found dead on the front lawn. Enlisting the help of her sister Rachel, Mallory vows to unveil the killer before she herself becomes married to the suspect list. . .

My Thoughts:  I love an inherited ramshackle premise and on the basis of that alone I picked up this book.  It took me a bit to get into.  I didn't connect with Mallory or feel invested in the mystery right away.  However, as the story went on I began to really enjoy this one and really enjoy spending time with Mallory and her sister Rachel.  I liked how Mallory got involved in the investigation - she didn't want to cause trouble but at the same time she just couldn't resist asking questions and looking for answers.  Now that she and Rachel have finally made their decisions about what they want to do career-wise I suspect that this series is going to be really fun - and luckily there are several books after this one to dive into!  My Rating: Liked It!


  1. Both of these are on my TBR. They look like fun.

  2. Both of these sound really good. I might need to get my hands on Murder on Memory Lane because I need some zany in my life.

  3. Two new series to get into, cosy mysteries just keep giving I am learning. They both sound worth continuing with for sure.

  4. These do both sound like entertaining reads. I don't mind zany, but I do mind silly. Sounds like MURDER ON MEMORY LAKE strikes the right balance.

  5. These both look like fun! I need to read more cozy mysteries!