Friday, March 31, 2023

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. Circle of Innocence by Annette Dashofy - This is the first book in the Zoe Chambers mystery series that focuses on Paramedic and Deputy Coroner Zoe.  It's kind of in between a procedural mystery and a cozy mystery because some of the topics explored are a bit darker and the language used is occasionally a bit stronger.  I really loved the paramedic angle as it isn't really something I've seen before and is interesting to read about as well as it making sense for Zoe to be on crime scenes and part of the action.  I liked the mystery and Zoe as a main character and am adding it to my ever growing series list.  My Rating: Liked It (3.5 Stars)

2.  Killers of a Certain Age by Deanna Raybourn -
I have been a fan of Raybourn's books for years so I was excited to pick up this book which is completely unlike any of her other books that I've read.  This was a fun concept - a group of assassins on a all expense paid retirement trip learns that they are the next target.  This puts this group of older women with a collection of quite unusual skills on the run having to learn just who wants them dead and why.  I really enjoyed both the flashbacks as well as the present day journey.  It did drag a bit in the middle but other than that I really enjoyed it!  I really liked that the characters are a bit older and that they were seriously good at killing people.  It was definitely a unique read!  My Rating: Really Liked It (4 Stars)

3.  A Good Day for Chardonnay by Daryinda Jones -
This is the 2nd book about Sunshine Vicram, a quirky sheriff of an even quirkier town in New Mexico.  In this book we make some progress in a series long mystery involving Sunshine's abduction as a teenager and her complicated relationship with Levi.  There's also a stabbing, a years old child abduction, and a town wide secret society that must be investigated.  As well, Sunshine's daughter has her own cold case to investigate as well as dealing with changes in her own relationship.  This is a fun book with interesting characters and very much kept me entertained.  There are times when the dialogue between characters feels a bit too artfully clever but for the most part this is a fun read and a series that I'm very much looking forward to continuing.  My Rating: Really Liked It (4 Stars)

4.  Devil in Spring by Lisa Kleypas -
I've been really enjoying the Ravenel books and Kleypas has long been one of my favorite authors.  I was a bit surprised that Pandora's book was so early in the series as in the previous books she seemed so childish.  Unfortunately, my feelings on this continued well into her story.  I really loved Gabriel and I loved seeing his parents who were the main couple in one of my favorite romances The Devil in Winter.  I also really enjoyed seeing the characters from the previous books.  My main problem was that Pandora just seems like such a child for much of the book and it made it a bit hard for me to really root for her HEA when she seems about 14.  She did grow up quite a bit as the story went on and by the end I was definitely pulled into the story and treally enjoyed it but I just wish some of the maturity could have happened before the story started.  My Rating: Liked It! (3.5 Stars)

5.  The Lost and Found Bookshop by Susan Wiggs -
I have really enjoyed previous books by Susan Wiggs and I enjoyed this one though maybe not as much as I expected.  The book starts out with Natalie Harper going through a tragic loss which forces her to reevaluate her life.  She finds herself running the family bookstore and trying to figure out how best to deal with her grandfather who is starting to slide into dementia which is just the opposite of the stability she craves - especially with the bookstore in crisis.  As the story progresses Natalie finds more of herself and learns more about her family.  I really enjoyed Natalie discovering more about her family and the discoveries in the walls of the store.  I also really enjoyed her relationship with Peach and just Peach as a character.  What kept me from absolutely loving this is that it felt like there was just a lot of blank space in between all the good moments which slowed the pace a bit too much for me.  My Rating:  Really Liked It (4 Stars)

What books have you read recently?


  1. I love the covers of the first and last books, and love the title of the Jones book. #'s 2 & 4 piqued my interest.

  2. I enjoyed the Deannna Raybourn and Darynda Jones books. I want to read more Susan Wiggs including that one.

    Anne - Books of My Heart

  3. I really liked The Lost and Found Bookshop! And Killers of a Certain Age is one I hope to read soon. Like your short reviews. :D

  4. I've read the last four of these and enjoyed them. Probably the one I least enjoyed was Killers of a Certain Age - found it a bit too bloodthirsty!! I loved A Good Day for Chardonay, waiting for the last one to come down in price.

  5. I would love to read through some of Lisa Kleypas series.

  6. I like books about bookstores, too. 🤗