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Matrimony. Mayhem, and Murder (A Fiona Quinn Mystery) by C.S. McDonald (Book Review)

Matimony Mayhem and Murder (A Fiona Quinn Mystery) by C.S. McDonald

 
The venue is set, invitations sent, and the flowers ordered. It’s almost time for Fiona and Nathan to get married…again. What could possibly go wrong? Nothing…well, until the wedding planner is found dead.
Then the woman Fiona has never met shows up–Nathan’s enigmatic mom, Rita Landry. And she’s wearing a gorgeous but mysterious necklace. Worse, Rita is being followed by two sinister-looking men, forcing her to flee the country. And who gets dragged along? None other than the bride-to be! How does a girl prepare for all of that? Looks like Fiona’s perfectly planned matrimony has morphed into mayhem and murder!

You’re formally invited to Fiona and Nathan’s wedding. Question is: Will the wedding happen?
 
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I received a complimentary copy of this book from iRead Book Tours. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
 
 
It’s very common for some hiccups to occur in preparation for a wedding or even during the big event. However, no one could have foreseen the details unfolding before Nathan and Fiona got married for a second time.


First off, their wedding planner gets whacked, and Fiona’s brother is the prime suspect. You’d think that’s the worst event to happen, but that is just the beginning of the drama. A very important and expensive necklace has gone missing, two persistent Russian agents are following Nat’s mom around, and yet that’s still not all the drama. 


C.S. McDonald has named this book appropriately because there was Matrimony. Mayhem, and Murder. There was also a meddlesome mom, aka Nancy, Fiona’s mom. If I’m ever in trouble, I want her in my corner. I want Rita (Nat’s mom) as well! 


While the story does contain a murder, which is not a funny crime, C.S. McDonald included much humor in this story. I found Rita’s interaction with the Russian agents quite amusing. Fiona’s retelling of Chad’s “band performance” was also quite comical. 


From beginning to end, I was entertained by Matrimony. Mayhem, and Murder. It’s a story I would proudly recommend others to read. 

 
Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: 
❤❤
 
 
Amazon 
add to goodreads
 
 
 
 
 
Meet the Author: 
For twenty-six years C.S. McDonald’s life whirled around a song and a dance. Classically trained at Pittsburgh Ballet Theater School, The Pittsburgh Dance Alloy, and many others, she became a professional dancer and choreographer. During that time, she choreographed many musicals and an opera for the Pittsburgh Savoyards. In 2011 she retired from her dance career to write. Under her real name, Cindy McDonald, she writes murder-suspense and romantic suspense novels. In 2014 she added the pen name, C.S. McDonald, to write children’s books for her grandchildren. In 2016 she added the Fiona Quinn Mysteries to that expansion. She decided to write the cozy mystery series that everyone, including teens and tweens, can read and enjoy. Presently, the Fiona Quinn Mysteries nine books with a tenth slated for 2021. The books are also available on audio, narrated by Maren Swenson Waxenberg. Cindy’s newest venture is The Owl’s Nest Mysteries. Once again, she has set her cozy mystery in Pittsburgh. The female protagonist, Alexa Owl, is much different from Fiona Quinn. The Owl’s Next Mysteries has a little grit, a little time travel, a little romance, and a whole lot of cozy! Ms. McDonald resides on her Thoroughbred farm known as Fly by Night Stables near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with her husband, Bill, and her poorly behaved Cocker Spaniel, Allister.
 
 
Connect with the author:  
Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook
 
 
 

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Peel Back and See by Mike Thorn (Book Review)

In spaces both familiar and strange, unknowable horrors lurk.

From the recesses of the Internet, where cosmic terror shows its face on an endless live feed, to a museum celebrating the sordid legacy of an occultist painter, this chilling collection of sixteen short stories will plunge you into the eerie, pessimistic imagination of Mike Thorn. Peel Back and See urges its readers to look closer, to push past surface-level appearances and face the things that stir below.

 

Amazon Purchase Link
Journalstone.com

 

(review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) 

 

Peel Back and See is a collection of sixteen (16) short stories that are heavy on unforgettable encounters with hungry creatures, blood and gore, fear, Satan, and (weirdly enough) sexual arousal. 

Some stories stuck with me more than others. Below are my top five (5). 

1.) Mr. Mucata’s Final Requests: Everyone knows you don’t try to double-cross Satan. I mean, come on, don’t even try. Deals with him are also a bad idea. Seriously, the worst possible choice a person can make. If you believe in the devil, demons, and hell, say NO to anything offered. Period!

2.) @GorgoYama2013: We’re raised to know you NEVER go into a stranger’s car. Horror movies have ingrained in us to NEVER go into a strange basement, especially alone. Victor broke all the rules. What he met could best be described as a horrific version of Krang (the brain) from TMNT. If you don’t know who I am talking about, look him up! 

3.) Vomitus Bacchanalius: Okay, people are vomiting. Aliens are eating the regurgitated food. There are goo-faced men. Ugh, this story was gross, BUT good! I loved the nod to Gordon Ramsay too. 🙂

4.) The Furnace Room Mutant: This story stood out more because you’d think an unnatural being would be the monster in the story. I like it when authors step out from the paranormal norm. 🙂

5.) Havoc: This was the first story in the collection, and it made me close my laptop and take one giant step back from it. Read the story, and you’ll understand why. There was only one part I wasn’t too keen on — a flashback scene between student and teacher. I don’t want to divulge too much, but it made my score drop from a five to a four. (for this story only, not the overall score of the anthology)

 

 In Peel Back and See, thirteen of the sixteen stories scored three and above. That’s impressive! I encourage others to read the collection and see which story has you cowering under the covers. 


Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤

Amazon Purchase Link
Journalstone.com

 

 

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Mike Thorn is the author of the short story collection Darkest Hours. His fiction has appeared in numerous magazines, anthologies and podcasts, including Vastarien, Dark Moon Digest, The NoSleep Podcast, Tales to Terrify, and Prairie Gothic. His film criticism has been published in MUBI Notebook, The Film Stage, and Vague Visages. He completed his M.A. with a major in English literature at the University of Calgary, where he wrote a thesis on epistemophobia in John Carpenter’s Prince of Darkness.

Connect with him on Twitter (@MikeThornWrites) or visit his website for more information: mikethornwrites.com.

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Nurse Mommy by Kristyn Boland (Book Review)

Children’s Fiction (Ages 2-10),  38 pages

 
What does Mommy do when she leaves for work? From giving medicine to using her stethoscope, Nurse Mommy’s job is important because she helps patients get better. But what about her family back home—does Nurse Mommy really have to go to work? Nurse Mommy helps kids understand what the nurse they love is doing when they go to work at night.
 
 
 
I received a complimentary copy of this book from
iRead Book Tours.
I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.

 
This past year has been challenging for our healthcare workers. We’ve seen them stretched thin, witnessed their anguish over the ones they’ve lost, and their sadness of not seeing their loved ones who are waiting at home. Young kids don’t quite grasp why their parent is leaving. They miss them and let you know pretty loudly (at times) how much. 


It’s often difficult to explain why a parent has to leave home or what their job entails.   In Nurse Mommy, listening to the daddy explain what mommy does when she leaves the house, how mommy misses them as much as they miss her, and how daddy is still there for the child will touch your heart. 


While doctors and nurses have stressful jobs, Nurse Mommy reminds us that the parent who stays home has a tough job as well. Vanessa Alexandre (illustrator) was able to capture every tender, heart-felt moment—quite beautifully. 


Highly recommend! 

 
Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤❤
 
 
 
 
 
Meet the Author:
Author Kristyn Boland

 
Kristyn Boland lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, with her husband, Tim, her son, Owen, and their dog, Bo. She graduated from East Carolina University College of Nursing in 2014. Kristyn started her career working in Pediatric Intensive Care and later moved to Postpartum Care, where she takes care of moms and their new babies in the hospital. When she returned to work after having her son, she wanted to find a book for her husband to read to her son at bedtime explaining where she was and why she went to work at night. When she couldn’t find one, she decided to write it herself!
connect with the author: website instagram
 

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Bobos Babes Adventures: The Missing Egg by Karen M. Bobos (Book Review)

BOBOS BABES ADVENTURES: THE MISSING EGG by Karen Bobos

Children’s Fiction (Ages 3-7),  28 pages

 
 
In the magical land of Harmony, the Bobos Babes love adventure and helping friends in need. When they find out that the swan family has lost a soon-to-hatch swan egg, they are quick to help … before it’s too late! Young readers and their families will enjoy the return of the Bobos Babes and their animal friends in this second title in the fanciful read-aloud picture book series. The Bobos Babes Adventures collection brings families stories of exciting exploits, magical missions, and caring friendships, showcasing that kindness, generosity, and thoughtfulness always win.
Buy the Book:
Amazon

Bobos Babes
 
 
 
I received a complimentary copy of this book from 
iRead Book Tours.
I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
 
 
Bobos Babes Adventures: The Missing Egg by Karen M. Bobos was an adventurous tale highlighting the goodness in people. Three sisters, all living in a land called Harmony, were known for their good deeds. Angel Scarlett, Princess Daphne, and Cora (the fairy) used their magical powers to spread joy and help those residing in their charmingly named land. 


In this tale, the Bobos Babes banded together to help a swan find his missing unhatched baby. During their search for the bundle of joy, we meet three of swan’s buddies. 


Young readers will love all the animals and the sweet sisters. For the animal friends, Emily Hercock (illustrator) gave all of them a distinct personality. For me, I loved sunglass-wearing Armando, the armadillo. 


As for the three sisters, their dresses were not all pink, and this will please young kids who don’t fancy the color pink—like my daughter. 


On a side note, I loved the “Did you know” bubble in the story. I did not know the fun fact. (no spoilers) 🙂

 
 
 
Heart Rating System:
1 (lowest) and 5 (highest) 
Score: ❤❤
 
 
 
 
Karen M. Bobos
Author Karen Bobos

 
Bobos began writing poetry and stories at the early age of ten. She is a life-long Chicagoan who now raises her family in the downtown area. During the 2020 Coronavirus Pandemic, Chicago also became a city of unrest. Trying to keep her three young daughters in a world of magic during such scary times, the Bobos Babes Adventures were born. Her goal was to create a world of Harmony for her family and hopefully for others to escape, even if only for a moment. The first book of the series, The Case of the Giggles, was published in December 2020. The Missing Egg launched in March 2021. Thus far, she has written ten Bobos Babes Adventures and two chapter books. Two additional books, The Lion’s Secret and The Bobcat Birthday Party, are coming in 2021.
connect with the author: website facebook instagram
 
 

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