Wednesday Reads — My Favorite Summer Reads

Happy Wednesday book lovers! Today is officially the last day of summer and tomorrow we will wake up to a new season….Fall! I know many of you started celebrating fall when last month while I have been clinging to summer with all that is in me and trying to make every day count! Last week I shared with y’all the books I will be reading this fall and since today is the last day of summer (sniff sniff) I thought I would share with some of my favorite summer reads!

What did you read over the summer? What were your favorite summer/beach reads?

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Two Parts Sugar, One Part Murder (A Baker Street Mystery) by Valerie Burns

This new mystery by Valerie Burns but this book was hands down my favorite summer read even if the book is set in winter.

I couldn’t wait to get this book in my hot little hands and it didn’t disappoint! In fact I read this book in less than 24 hours I just couldn’t put it down. I gave this book 4 stars but only because the book ended on a cliffhanger and it is definitely a set up for the next book.

The Beacon Bakeshop series: Murder at the Beacon BakeshopMurder at the Christmas Cookie Bake-off, and Murder at the Blueberry Festival by Darci Hannah I could not stop reading any of these books from the first book to the third book I found myself staying up way later than I should have. Darci Hannah is an amazing author and these are all 5 star reads. I connected to Lindsey Bakewell who is starting over in Beacon Harbor, MI after a very bad breakup by opening a bakery. Between baking delicious pastries she is also busy solving murders and will she ever find a baking assistant? All the characters in the book are just delightful and I can’t wait for the 4th book in the series.

Bayou Book Thief (A Vintage Cookbook Mystery) by Ellen Byron this is the first book in this series by Ellen Byron who also writes another series that is set in the Louisiana Bayou and another series under the name Maria DiRico. This was my first time reading anything by this author but it want be my last and can’t wait for the second book in this series. I did enjoy the amateur sleuth Ricki James but the real star of is the city of New Orleans and its cuisine. I found myself wanting to make plans immediately to visit The Big Easy and eat my way through the city! Can’t wait read the next book.

Death by Bubble Tea (An L.A. Night Market Mystery) by Jennifer J. Chow is a new series from this author and it departs from several cozy mystery themes: it’s not set in a small town but Los Angeles, there is no cozy companion, and at present there is no love interest but somehow the author still kept the cozy mystery vibe without them. Yale Yee and her cousin Celine who is visiting from Hong Kong are as different as two people could be Yale is quiet, bookish, and anti-tech while Celine is a very tech savvy, outgoing, and she could be called a lot of things but bookish is not one of them. Yale is still dealing with the trauma of her mother’s death which she feels responsible for when Celine comes for a visit. I loved how the differences didn’t pull them apart but was an asset in their sleuthing even if it was a little rocky along the way.

The Trouble in Paradise Mystery Series by Carrie Doyle: It Takes Two to Mango and Something’s Guava Give. If you are a fan of Death in Paradise and Agatha Raisin then this is the series for you! Plum Lockhart finds herself on the Caribbean Island of Parasio when the travel magazine she is editor in chief of folds and she can’t find another job in New York. Plum is pushy, impatient, rude, and arrogant who is finding it hard to adjust in this first book. I almost stopped reading it but the more I read the more I begin to like Plum and the author does a wonderful job drawing you in and giving you a peek into what makes Plum who she is so I am so glad I stuck with this series.

The Cape Cod Foodie Mystery Series by Amy Pershing: A Side of Murder (Book 1) and Murder is No Picnic (Book 3) I discovered this series thanks to the online book community who just raved about this series and so I added to my summer reading list and I am glad I did. Samantha Barnes is back home in Cape Cod after going viral for all the wrong reasons but she is settling in and making a life for herself not as a chef but as the Cape Cod foodie, reconnecting with friends old and new, and solving murders. This series is worth your time and as with the majority of culinary mystery series there are receipes.

Pint of No Return (Shake Shop Mystery) by Dana Mentink be prepared to indulge in milkshakes! The whole time I was reading this first book in this series I found myself over indulging in milkshakes but aside from that the character development and plot are very well written and it was just a fun and enjoyable read. The real star is Trindad’s senior dog!

Smile Beach Murder (An Outer Banks Bookshop Mystery) by Alicia Bessett, I took this book with me to the beach and it was the perfect book to sit out on the beach or in my case the balcony of our Air BnB and read this book. I found it a little slow going on at first but it soon picked up the pace a little what I enjoyed most was joining Callie on the start of her healing journey in dealing with the death of her mom who died 25 years ago when she fell from the local lighthouse and when the death of Eva Meeks happens at the lighthouse it is declared a suicide but Callie’s reporter instincts tells her its murder. When Eva’s daughter tells Callie she doesn’t believe her mother killed herself Callie promises her she will investigate. Great read and I figured out who the killer was so yeah for me!

The Proof is In the Poison (A Southern Homebrew Mystery) by Diane Kelly is the 2nd book in this series that I refer to as the Moonshine mystery series and is a great follow up after her debut novel The Moonshine Shack Murder which takes place in Chattanooga, TN where Hattie Hayes is finally living her dream by opening up her own moonshine business but then there’s a murder and Hattie is suspect #1. When the killer was revealed all I had was sympathy and could understand why and was so sad.

Abby Collette’s Body and Soul Food book 1 in the Books and Biscuits cozy mystery and A Deadly Inside Scoop the first book in her Ice Cream Parlor mystery series. In Body and Soul Food the amateur sleuths are reunited twins Koby and Keaton who open a bookstore & soul food restaurant who find themselves sleuthing when their friend is murdered (4 1/2 stars). In A Deadly Inside Scoop Bronwyn Crewse has been given the keys to the family business when her cousin moves to North Carolina. With all the delays of the renovation the ice cream parlor ends up opening the day of a major snow storm! Then that same day Bronwyn finds a body behind her business and her father is the prime suspect. Bronwyn along with her childhood best friends are on the case to clear her father, save her business, and find a killer (5 out of 5 big Stars). You can’t go wrong with either book I promise you once you pick them up you want put them down until the killer is revealed.

Arsenic and Adobo (A Tita Rosie’s Kitchen Mystery) by Mia P. Manansala there is a reason this first book in this series won this year’s Anthony Award for first novel. I enjoyed learning about Pilipino culture and loved how the author had such diverse characters too. Lila Macapagal has left Chicago to go back home and help her Tita Rosie save the family restaurant. When Lila’s old high school boyfriend who is now a food critic comes in to cause trouble but instead ends up dying after arguing with Lila things go from bad to worse. With her family restaurant now shut down as a crime scene she is on the case to clear her family’s name and hopefully save the restaurant. This cozy was a fun read that dealt with some heavy topics at times in a respectful way. It is so deserving of this honor! 5 out of 5 big stars!

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