Devil Days in Deadwood:
# 11 (Deadwood Humorous Mystery)
Genres: Fantasy, (Young) Adult, Mystery, Horror,
23 May 2020
“Hell is empty and all the devils are here.” ~William Shakespeare
Violet Parker knows better than to play with devils. They always cheat, especially when lives are at stake. Deadwood’s charming, troublemaking, and soul-sucking devils are no different, and they’re biting at her heels.
But the clock is ticking and Violet has no choice—she must risk her life to save her treasured Aunt Zoe. With any luck, she might be able to trick the devils and beat the old terrors at their own game. If not, Deadwood could end up short one Executioner.
“Executioners don't duck, they swing.” ~Violet Parker
There are 11 books – so far – In this series plus 5 short stories, but plenty of opportunity for more stories to come. Not all the monsters have yet appeared (?) or been vanquished. Whilst the short stories fit in between some of the main books, they are not essential to the main story line – which does continue through the books. None are stand-alone and even the short stories should not be read before their place in the series as the entire story-line is closely entwined.
So, these stories have plenty of humour, lots of ghosts, some murders, romance – quite hot at times, and the Old Wild West crops up as this is Deadwood as in ‘Shoot Out in the Corral’ Deadwood. With brothels, saloons, casinos, and gold – and thus mines and all the icky things that live in old mines! Also cropping up are: myths and mythology, folk tales and horror stories, demons, devils (yes there is a distinction – depends on rank), mediums of various types, ectoplasm and poltergeists – goes with mediums? So full on with all the various nasties you can think of, plus a few more to give you the heeby jeebies at night.
I did enjoy our heroine who was so very protective of her twins, and her boyfriend ‘Doc’ was also good. After all, he put up with her and her various eccentricities and adventures and rather messy way of killing… And she has a job as a realtor – which is the second most common job in Deadwood (they call them residential advisors), so it is tough, and they seem to do a lot of work. But unlike some property companies, she seems to get a steady salary and bonuses for selling and renting, so she has always something to fall back in terms of income.
The writing style was lively, and it was difficult to get bored, and I am now waiting for the next in the series to come out. In fact, I broke one of my cardinal rules and bought 15 books! The first was free but …. That was a lot of books for me to buy as I get so many free. But I couldn’t stop reading – I read all 16 books in one week.
Now we get quite a few descriptions of meals in the stories, and yes, we are in the South Dakota mountains and it is bitterly cold and snowy quite a lot of the year, (Deadwood averages 138 inches of snow per year. The US average is 28 inches of snow per year.) but still, the meals all seem to be very high carb and fat and very low in vegetables and fruit especially for the children. Pizza appears a lot and fruit appears in pies with tinned fillings and sugary tops; there was a mention of a cabbage and some salads, but the green bean casserole (why casserole green beans?) has added fat, as well apparently, according to Campbells Soups, mushroom soup and fried onions.
And then there is sugar, more sugar, and variations of sugar in various sweet foods.
Is there a shortage of fresh/frozen vegetables? Can someone explain please?
Yes, I do realise this is a novel and it isn’t reality but it does seem to me, that there usually a reflection of truth in here somewhere, either in the local culture of the South Dakotas or the author, so I checked with the State regional foods. And the Black Hills Visitor lists the following:
1. Kolache – cakes with cream cheese filling
3. Wojapi – berry dipping sauce
4. Chislic – deep fried meat cubes
5. Buffalo meat
6. Walleye fish
7. Indian Tacos (on Fry Bread)
8. Kuchen with custard
Yup. High carb, sugar and fat…
And look out for the Purple Boots and their importance and influence…
So, I strongly recommend this if you like paranormal fun and aren’t likely to get nightmares.
What A Nunderful World
(Nun of Your Business Mysteries Book 5)
Women's fiction, humorous fiction, cosy, women sleuths, fantasy
(27 Feb. 2020)
Hello! It's me again, Trixie Lavender and my best demon friend the stoic but adorable Coop.
Things have been going pretty great for us these days. Inkerbelle's Tattoos is doing well financially. Our clientele is growing by the day, and we're about to purchase the guest house we’ve been living in from our dear friend Knuckles.
Finally, we'll have the roots we've so desperately yearned for. Now, if only we could figure out how to get rid of the troublesome demon inside me...
We’ve also been focusing on Coop and her efforts to live her best life. As a newb to Earth, she’s on a quest to experience as much as she possibly can and that includes her latest passion, makeup.
While attending an event for Coop’s favorite beauty guru and online superstar Glitzy Mitzy, we watch in horror as she dies right before our very eyes.
Another good set of books from a great author with lots of human and paranormal going-ons.
5 books so far in this series but as I am binge reading by the time this gets posted I will have completed all 5 but I’m pretty sure that book 5 will have some spoilers so…
Here we have an ex-nun turned amateur detective. Her sidekicks are:
A demon – as a gorgeous woman; Coop (who has various surnames in the books and appears to be on the spectrum)
A demon inhabiting an owl; (Winston with an Irish accent)
A demon inhabiting a dog; (Jeff with a Boston accent)
2 tattoo artists
A homeless shelter owner who is an ex-undercover detective
Some homeless people she meets and makes friends with
And occasionally a local detective who is British born and seems to speak with every British known slang – too many in reality, seeing as she has lived in the States since she was 10, British mother or not.
We know by book 4 how she came to have her sidekicks and how Trixie got booted out of the convent but who the demon is that Trixie is so intimately acquainted with and why is left to book 5 – unless there is a book 6 to come – not yet known.
So, these are cosy mysteries with a rather naïve and bumbling detective, lots of twists in the tales, light hearted humour, good style and enough ‘must knows’; ‘more/whys?’ to keep you reading.
West Side series #5
romance, suspense, thriller, female sleuth
19 Jan 2021
Be careful who you chase... From the moment we meet, I'm a goner. Her slender fingers slip into mine and hot damn. Sydney Frost is all-natural with an alluring chilly demeanor. A challenge. I'm in lust and in too deep by the time I discover the truth. She's an undercover agent with the FBI, and I'm her prime suspect. She's an undercover agent with a simple task: get close to the suspect. My job is simple. Go in, find the information the FBI needs, and get out before my cover is blown. I never counted on one very important thing, though. Him. Chase Maitlin is not my type. He’s cocky and overly confident. Too bad he’s also smart, funny, and ridiculously sexy. Can a romance built on lies ever lead to happily ever after? Chase and Sadie are about to find out… Chasing Frost, the fifth book in the West Side series, is a steamy, enemies-to-lovers, sometimes funny, sometimes suspenseful, contemporary romance featuring a smart, dedicated heroine and the sexy bad boy who steals her heart. The standalone series of contemporary romance novels can be read in any order.
This an FBI thriller/suspense story. Whilst I quite liked the storyline I was not so enthused by the characters and their descriptions. I thought that Chase came out as a better described character than Sophie. But overall, neither character came across sharply. My overall impression of the writing was that it was rather ‘doughy’ in style – sticky and and bit soft. needed to be sharpened up.
High Heels and Handguns
Kate Howard #1
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense
Publication date: February 7th 2020
For Kate Howard, former Army Special Forces Sergeant, life as a one-woman personal protection detail comes with challenges. Wearing civilian camouflage while guarding high-profile clients is a dangerous game of rock, paper, hollow point.
After an explosive and deadly end to her client’s reelection fundraiser, which left his young son in critical condition, Kate must accept help from an unwanted source: the soldier she loved and left in Afghanistan, bloody, broken, and barely alive.
Special Forces Officer Paxton Banks, Kate’s former captain—now an FBI agent—is assigned to investigate the attempt on her client’s life. After ten years, old emotions and new threats whip Kate’s world into complicated chaos. But when other elected officials are threatened, Kate and Paxton must tamp down their fiery feelings to catch a madman hell-bent on revenge.
So if you were a female personal body guard, would you want to be tottering around in 5 inch heels? 6 inch? [never figured out how anyone walked anywhere in those] Even if they were designer heels gifted to you?
How can you run and catch the bad guys? Can you find a way to have an ankle holster? And look really smart and professional and NOT like a beefy bodyguard but like a personal assistant?
And then you find that the FBI get involved and an ex-boyfriend comes on the scene. So how were you going to prove yourself in your chosen career?
I liked the heroine and her desire to be a kick ass female and thought the storyline was reasonably well undertaken and written. I look forward to seeing how Kate develops in future books.
Women Sleuths, Norse and Icelandic Stories, Murder Mystery, Psychological Thriller
March 15, 2018
After being unceremoniously forced into early retirement at the age of 64, Detective Inspector Hulda Hermannsd ttir of the Reykjavik Police is refusing to go quietly. Hulda is told to pick a cold case to investigate for two more weeks and she knows just the one. A young woman found dead on the seaweed-covered rocks of the Vatnsleysustrond. A woman who had come to Iceland in search of refuge and found only a watery grave. Her death was ruled a suicide after a slapdash investigation. But when Hulda starts to ask questions she soon realises that there was something far darker to this case. That this was not the only young woman to disappear from the hostel where the asylum seekers waited for their judgement and that no one is telling the whole story. And that if she uncovers something she shouldn't her own life might be in danger.
It was a dark and dreary time in Iceland – but then Iceland doesn’t get much sun and fun at the best of times – and if I was an asylum seeker, it is one of the last places I would chose to go to. Winter lasts a very long time indeed – and there aren’t a lot of people there (it is the most sparsely populated country in Europe) – and there isn’t much that is green and… bits of it are falling off – [Personal fact – I saw a glacier ‘calving’ once in Alaska – it was outstanding and so blue!]
But if needs must, then you go. But what you don’t want to find is a system where being female is something that puts you in yet more danger.
We have e new detective to me in this book – a Hulda Hermannsdóttir of Reykjavik, who doesn’t get on so well with her colleagues and thus is left investigating a cold case – the death of an asylium seeker. But what she gradually uncovers is rather more than she expected.
I am not a great Nordic Noir fan, whether in books or on TV, but this book fascinated me. It was well plotted and well translated and the style was polished. It was basically good storytelling for a murder and in the classic style.
I enjoyed it and the as for the ending – well a good plot with plenty of red herrings (and the Icelandic folks probably know quite a lot about them) – and unexpected ending.