Friday, August 19, 2022

Friday Five - Five Short Reviews for Books I've Read Recently

I'm taking a bit of a break from my usual Friday Linkups to try something a little different.  I'm in a list making kind of mood so I thought I'd start making random five lists.  Sometimes they'll be bookish other weeks not so much. This week I'm sharing 5 quick reviews for books I've read recently.

1. Tight Rope by Amanda Quick - I love the Burning Cove series and I really enjoyed the 3rd book in this series featuring former trapeze artist, Amalie Vaugh, and engineer and investigator, Matthias Jones.  Amalie especially is an interesting character with a bit of a daring spirit without being dumb about it.  Matthias is a bit quieter but has some interesting traits as well as a personal and professional connection to Burning Cove's notorious resident, Luther Pell.  The mystery is an interesting one with lots of twists and turns that kept me guessing.  I'm already looking forward to the next one!  My Rating: Really Liked It (4 Stars)

2.  The Killing at Kingfisher Hill by Sophie Hannah - I really enjoyed the first 3/4 of it but it felt a bit like Hannah wrote herself into a bit of a plot corner as there were so many bits and pieces of mystery that it became convoluted at the end and not every issue was really addressed.  I'm a huge Agatha Christie fan and have enjoyed these Poirot books by Sophie Hannah.  Hercule Poirot doesn't feel exactly the same but it feels like the author respected and understood the character.  I also really enjoy Poirot's sidekick in this series - Scotland Yard Inspector Catchpool.  He's as nice as Hastings but slightly less gullible.  My Rating: Liked It (3 Stars)

3.  The Cider Shop Rules by Julie Anne Lindsey
- I really enjoy this series and this third book might be my favorite one yet.  Winnie is a great main character and I love her family and friends - especially Dot with all of her animal rescues.  The pumpkin patch murder scene was interesting and I liked that Winnie was torn between investigating and staying out of it.  I especially enjoyed the character growth with Colton and meeting his family.  This was a fun mystery with some suspense and a tense reveal.  My Rating: Really Liked It! (4 Stars)

4.  Teaching From Rest:  A Homeschooler's Guide to Unshakable Peace by Sarah Mackenzie - The Read Aloud Family 
 by this author was one of my absolute favorite books and so inspirational when we were making the transition to homeschooling.  I was so intrigued by this one as we can all use a little peace and teaching from a calmer place also was appealing.  Unfortunately, this wasn't quite what I wanted it to be.  This is a very short book - only about 90 pages - and to me reads much more like a devotional than a book with any practical advice.  If you are interested in this I would recommend trying to find a used copy or one through the library.  My Rating: Not For Me (1 Star)

5.  The Book of Cold Cases by Simone St. James -
This is my first book Simone St. James but it won't be my last.  I listened to the audio version of this one and was completely caught up in the slowly unraveling story about a decades old murders and a house and woman that seem permanently stuck in 1977 - the year the murders occurred.  I found the story compelling and creepy and really liked seeing Shea's modern day investigation progress as well as trying to understand Beth as she was growing up in the 1960s and 70s.  I will definitely be picking up more books from this author and I highly recommend the audio version.  My Rating: Really Liked It! (4 Stars)


  1. Hmm pity about the homeschool one, and how does one ever get unshakeable peace?!! I lost touch with Amanda Quick's books but know I did find them interesting.

  2. These sound good. Sorry you didn't like the homeschooler's guide. The others sound like my kind of books.

  3. I like the sound of The Book of Cold Cases. Lovely reviews!

  4. Simone St. James is such a great author! I'm excited to read this latest book by her. :)

  5. I enjoy St. James' books, too, although THE BOOK OF COLD CASES is probably my least favorite of the ones I've read. I recently read her LOST AMONG THE LIVING and really liked it.

  6. I still need to read The Read aloud Family. I just checked and Hoopla has the audiobook! 😊