This month I am featuring one of our favorite writer’s, Connie Shelton, who writes two different mystery series. One is Samantha Sweet and the other is Charlie Parker. The first book in each of these series is currently being offered for FREE on Amazon Kindle. So, of course, I had to try both of them. I like the Samantha Sweet mysteries just a little bit more than the Charlie Parker only because I like to read about bakeries and owning your own shop. Well, maybe it’s really just about the food. They are both well written and keep you guessing almost to the very end. They both feature strong female leads that work hard, support their friends and family and on the side they solve some mysteries.
Ms. Shelton started writing the Charlie Parker Mysteries first and now has about 15 books in the series. Later, she added the Samantha Sweet Mysteries to her writing arsenal and has about 10 books in that one. Both series are set in New Mexico where the author grew up and lived most of her life. You can read more about her and her writing process on her website: http://connieshelton.com/meet-connie-in-this-online-interview.html. I have never been to New Mexico so when the author describes her scenes so well it helps me to be able to picture them in my head quite vividly.
Sadly, I have only been able to read the first book in the Charlie Parker Mysteries so can’t really give you a more detailed overview of the characters and how they evolve over time. I do like the idea of an accountant getting involved in mysteries and with her brother and partner being a private investigator she can call on him for help from time to time. Hey, that is what brothers are for anyway. From the first book in the series we get a broad overview of the characters but you can’t wait to read more about them and the next mystery. Hopefully soon I will be able to purchase more of her books in this series.
I have purchased 4 more eBooks in the Samantha Sweet Mysteries. I really like the characters, how they are evolving and the subtle hints of magic surrounding the wooden box given to Sam by a dying witch that she found in one of her houses that she cleans up for the U.S.D.A. Sam has taken a number of different jobs to support herself and her daughter over the years. Now that her daughter is grown she can concentrate on achieving her life-long goal of owning and running her very own bakery. And with a little help, every now and then, from the magical box she can get things done while she solves a few mysteries on the side. Even after 5 books the writer keeps you guessing about this box so you just have to keep purchasing her eBooks to find out more.
When you get time we hope you will check out these two great mystery series written by a very good writer, Connie Shelton. Of course, you should also bookmark her website: http://connieshelton.com/. Take some time to read through her website pages and maybe even subscribe to her newsletter. When you do read some of her books we also hope you will take a few minutes and write a review yourself on Amazon or even on one of the book reading sites like GoodReads.
Get the First Kindle eBook in the Samantha Sweet Mysteries for FREE
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Sight Unseen by Iris Johansen published July 2014. Since, we were in the White Springs, Florida area for over 8 months so we decided to go ahead and get a Suwannee River Regional Library card. This is an extremely small library that is only opened a couple of hours during the week and even closes for lunch. But they do have some of the latest books of a few of my favorite authors. We also enjoyed getting our favorite TV series on DVD to watch while we are volunteering in the state parks. We are trying to get caught up on our favorite author’s writings. Being able to go online at one of the local libraries near where we are staying and placing our books on hold is a nice service for us avid readers.
Slowly, the regional libraries are adding more and more of the newer books online as eBooks through some of the national library services. Suwannee River Regional uses Overdrive for their eBook service. You only need your library card number to check these books out. Of course, for the more popular writers and newest books you will have to go on a waiting list. With the email notification service you will know when your book is ready for checkout, how many days you have to download it and how many days you have to read it. This service only allows you to checkout 5 eBooks at a time and have on hold another 5 books. Granted, once you have finished reading one you can turn it back in for more. When you look for an eBook to read you have to make sure that your library has purchased the rights to the eBook reader that you have.
In trying to wrap-up the one very pressing Eve Duncan mystery, Iris Johansen, has given her readers several books in one year with nice long and interesting story lines that will culminate in the revelation about her daughter’s, Bonnie, mysterious death. She has written them from each of the main characters point of view with their own climatic endings while keeping you on the edge of your seat to learn, finally, how her little daughter died and where she is buried. As with any series you will want to read them in order to ensure that you don’t miss any vital clues. These three books together will give a complete picture of the characters and how they have been dealing with their loss. You will also get a lot of background on each of the characters that Ms. Johansen wasn’t able to fit into any of the other books in the series. We won’t go into any more details as you can read their great synopses on her website:
Storm Cycle written by Iris Johansen in 2009 and coauthor by Roy Johansen. I just had to go back and read some of this great author’s books that I have missed and/or forgotten. This is one of them. From her website: “Rachel Kirby is a computer genius whose personal life is hell. Her beloved twin sister has a chronic illness that will ultimately take her life. After that, Rachel will have no one. Until one day she receives a mysterious email from someone trapped inside a collapsed Egyptian tomb, thousands of miles away. John Tanek knows that Rachel is his only hope of survival and with trademark grim humor, he considers himself lucky that one thing on this expedition has gone right: his laptop still works. With time running out, Rachel orchestrates his rescue–and in doing so, drags herself into a deadly web. Because Tanek’s “accident” was hardly that. What he has discovered is something many people want…and will kill for. Rachel soon learns that she needs the knowledge from the tomb as well, because it may hold the key to her sister’s cure. That is, if she can trust John Tanek not to betray her. And if they both live long enough to unravel the mystery of an ancient female physician. With Johansen and Johansen’s trademark research, fast-pace, charismatic characters, and intriguing twists, STORM CYCLE will carry you away..” Continue reading
Now that we are on the road so much I haven’t had the time to read or even the mailing address to get print magazines. I have only tried digital magazines once with a Readers Digest subscription when I first got my Kindle Fire but there didn’t seem to be as much reading material in the digital version as in one of their print versions. I do like that I can view them on my Kindle Fire and not have them taking up space in our RV.
From what we can tell from the reviews and from my own experience this format may have not hit it’s prime yet. Currently, Ellery Queen and Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine subscriptions are selling at $2.99 per month. They contain all of the short stories and most of the reviews but not as many pictures and none of the advertising as the print versions. I don’t know if I would be willing to keep paying $3.00 per month for 9 to 10 issues of these magazines that don’t have ALL that the print versions have to offer.