• book,  Uncategorized

    SERIES REVIEW: Secrets and Scrabble Books 6-7 by Josh Lanyon

    Secrets and Scrabble: Lament at Loon Landing – Josh Lanyon

    Fakes, folk music, and ghost fires

    When legendary folk singer Lara Fairplay agrees to make her comeback appearance at Pirate Cove’s annual maritime music festival, everyone in the quaint seaside village is delighted—including mystery bookstore owner and sometimes amateur sleuth, Ellery Page.

    Lara is scheduled to perform a recently discovered piece of music attributed to “the father of American music,” Stephen Foster.

    Several mysterious accidents later, Ellery is less delighted—especially when it becomes clear to him that someone plans to silence the celebrity songbird forever.

    4 Stars – minor quibbles but I loved it to bits

    Soundtrack: Loon
    Artist: Volody

    Secrets and Scrabble: Death at the Deep Dive – Josh Lanyon

    When Pirate Cove’s mystery bookstore owner and sometimes-amateur sleuth Ellery Page discovers a vintage diving collection bag full of antique gold coins tucked away for safe keeping in the stockroom of The Crow’s Nest, it sets off a series of increasingly dangerous events, culminating in meeting Police Chief Jack Carson’s parents. Er… Culminating in murder.

    4 Stars – minor quibbles but I loved it to bits

    Soundtrack: Dive
    Artist: Olivia Dean

    Secrets and Scrabble is a charming cozy mystery set in small-town Pirates’ Cove starring former actor and now bookseller Ellery Page, and his boyfriend, Police Chief Jack Carson.

    At this point, the series is now more cozy than mysterious. The experience more a pleasant visit to old (very nosy) friends than an exercise at sleuthing. The books are highly entertaining, the characters are mostly septuagenarians running a very, very efficient gossip mill, and Ellery and Jack are uber-endearing as a couple.

    For Lament at Loon Landing, the island is graced by the presence of an ex-con folk singer and her colorful entourage. With death threats hanging over her head, Ellery is voluntold to find out if the threats are real. Our boy now has a reputation as a sleuth, and as much as it exasperates Jack, the chief is still the supportive boyfriend who helps Ellery with tips a.k.a. case notes here and there.

    Death at the Deep Dive circles back to the doubloons Ellery and Jack found during their diving date in Book 5, Body at Buccaneer’s Bay. The matriarch of one of the old families, the Shantys, hired Ellery to find out who killed her brother, the former owner of the doubloons.

    For both books, the culprits were very obvious. I’m not sure if author Josh Lanyon is mirroring the real world, where the main suspect is usually the criminal. It was all a matter of tagging along until Ellery connected the dots.

    Not to say the mysteries are not intriguing because they are. It’s how they weave through island life, moving Ellery through various peoples and locales of Pirate’s Cove. It makes everything more immersive.

    In Book 6, the conflict between the MCs is Jack torn between his duty as the police chief and his personal connections with the people involved in the case. I am Team Jack here because the Chief is really just doing his job.

    For Book 7, not much relationship conflict here. Things are getting more serious between Ellery and Jack. The ending was a super cute surprise!

    Lament at Loon Landing and Death at the Deep Dive kept Secrets and Scrabble‘s cozy small-town magic going strong. The mysteries might not be mindboggling, but overall, I’m eager for another exciting stay.

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  • song,  Uncategorized

    SOUNDTRACK: Loon by Volody & Dive by Olivia Dean

    Soundtrack to Secrets and Scrabble: Lament at Loon Landing by Josh Lanyon

    Loon by Volody for a book about a folk singer and her lying, cheating, stealing manager/husband.

    oh it’s a pity
    you gotta treat me this way
    I maybe crazy
    but darling you made me that way

    one day you say you love me and you never let go
    the next day I found my life on the block(?)
    voices in my head they say I ought to let you go

    perhaps some sleep might do me good
    I’ve been cockled at best
    but when I close my bloodshot eyes
    and rest my weary head

    Soundtrack to Secrets and Scrabble: Death at the Deep Dive by Josh Lanyon

    Dive by Olivia Dean for a book about a police chief taking the plunge and his amateur sleuth boyfriend who made it worth it.

    It’s so crazy
    Lately you just understand my feelings
    Make me see I’m capable and fine
    And feeling beautified
    Tonight, I’m ready to dive

    Maybe it’s the loving in your eyes (I’m here, see through)
    Maybe it’s the magic in the wine (I’m feeling loose)
    Maybe it’s the fact that every time I fall, I lose it all
    But you got me from my head to my feet
    And I’m ready to dive