Tag Archives: Joanne Fluke

The Deja Vu Review [23]: Food Themed Book


The Deja Vu Review is a new Sunday feature with mini-reviews from books I’ve read before I began my blog at The Book Addict’s Guide! Since I’ve been reading my whole life and only started my blog back in April of 2012, this is my opportunity to revisit some older books and share some mini-reviews of those that didn’t quite make it into the blog spotlight after the initial read.

This week’s topic: A Book with a Food Theme

Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder (Hannah Swensen, #1)Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder by Joanne Fluke
My Original GR rating: 4 of 5 stars
Comments: Cozy mysteries are always good for a few food themes! The Hannah Swensen books were kind of my gateway to cozies (although I’ve been reading a lot more YA than mysteries lately). Hannah works in a cookie shop (which kind of turns into a general dessert shop) and each book has several recipes throughout the book. Some of them are really good too! It’s a lot of fun (minus the weird love triangle that never gets resolved) and the food is delicious! My only qualm besides the love triangle was that the characters were a little cheesy at times, but then again, it IS a cozy so that’s to be expected!

Which books did you choose this week? Link up below! 

The Deja Vu Review [13]

The Deja Vu Review is a new Sunday feature with mini-reviews from books I’ve read before I began my blog at The Book Addict’s Guide! Since I’ve been reading my whole life and only started my blog back in April of 2012, this is my opportunity to revisit some older books and share some mini-reviews of those that didn’t quite make it into the blog spotlight after the initial read.

This week’s topic is: Your Favorite Mystery

Curse of the Spellmans (The Spellmans, #2)
Curse of the Spellmans by Lisa Lutz
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
My Original Goodreads Review
: Another great installment of the Spellman books. I loved the first one and couldn’t put it down, so I picked up this one and read every chance I got. The Spellmans are a delightfully off-beat family as they constantly use their PI skills to not only solve mysteries, but spy on each other. Very funny and good mysteries that keep you wondering throughout the book.
Comments: This is still one of my favorites series, even after five books. This was book two, but I think it’s still my favorite of the series!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder (Hannah Swensen, #1)Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder by Joanne Fluke
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Comments: When I first read this one, it was a super enjoyable cozy mystery. I liked how it involved baking (the MC owns a cookie shop) and each mystery in the series ties in the murder with a different baked good. I really enjoyed this series up until a certain point where the love triangle starting driving me nuts because it wasn’t going anywhere. I’m still debating whether or not to continue it at some point in time because the mysteries really were a lot of fun!

Top Ten Tuesday – June 5, 2012: Top Ten Most Unfortunate Character Names

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by the wonderful blog at The Broke and the Bookish, is a TTT rewind. Yessss!! Since I’m a newcomer to TTT I am very excited about being able to pick any category from the past to revisit (or in my case, free for all for a new list – What is it about making lists that is so cathartic?) sooo…

This one is back from Tuesday November 9, 2010:
Top Ten Most Unfortunate Character Names

1. The Cast of Town in a Blueberry Jam by B.B. Haywood: I think cozy mysteries are the worst offenders (maybe neck and neck with dystopia/sci-fi) of abusing silly names. I mean, come on. Candy Holliday (she was born on Halloween *eye roll*), her father “Doc” Holliday, Sapphire Vine, and “Jock” Larson. Really? Really guys?

2. Renesme Cullen from the Twilight Saga: Okay, so we were all on board with the whole vampire pregnancy up until a certain pointand Bella’s stubbornness about it, but then she wants to name her kid Renesme? I think she’s lost it. Vampire babies make you crazy. It was a nice tribute to the moms by combining Renee and Esme, but Renesme just does not work. Even the characters in the book made fun of it! That’s gotta count for something.

3. Various characters from the Hannah Swensen series by Joanne Fluke: So Hannah’s first love interest in this book is the dentist Norman Rhodes. Norman Rhodes? Granted he’s supposed to be on the “uncool” side, but for some reason I keep thinking “Norman Bates” or just a pudgy middle-aged man with a bad come over. Then there’s other randomly odd names like Rhonda Scharf, Shawna Lee Quinn, Lynne Larchmont, and Willa Sunquist. Not terrible, but I think overdoing it a little.

4. Various characters from series by V.C. Andrews: Yes, I definitely read V.C. Andrews as a kid/teen. As as kid? Aren’t these romance novels for the most part? Yep, and my mom didn’t like that one bit, but everyone in my class was reading them and so did I. But what’s up with these names? Butterfly? Cinnamon? Rain? Ice? Honey? I don’t get it.

5. The cast of The Hunger Games series: I guess this is set in a dystopian future world where real names are out of style. It’s creative, and I actually do like a lot of the names, but they’re just off the wall: Katniss, Peeta (why not just Peter or something?), Primrose, Gale (Gail/Gayle is a girl’s name?), Cinna, Venia, Cato, Thresh, Rue, Clove, Finnick, Marvel, Glimmer… Glimmer!? Even Katniss makes fun of that one… So why use it?

6. Characters from Murder of a Small Town Honey by Denise Swanson: Three of the main characters are Skye Denison (my cousin’s dog’s name is Skye so that didn’t help), Honey Adair (why do people like the name Honey so much? It bothers me), and Mrs. Gumtree. I think I found the book less favorable because I didn’t like the names. In all honesty, it does matter!

7. Bubbles Yablonsky: There was a series featuring main character Bubbles Yablonsky (the first of which is Bubbles Unbound). I actually heard it was rather enjoyable, but I didn’t like her name so I didn’t even try to read it.

8. Zaphod Beebleprox from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy: Okay, I know this one is supposed to be silly, but still!

9. Dickie Orr from the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich: He’s a weasel and his name sounds like it too!

10. Jack Daniels from the Jack Daniels series by J.A. Konrath: Cute, but kind of annoying. Lots of liquor jokes and always confusion that Jack is a lady – short for Jacqueline.

30 Days of Books: Intro + Days 1 & 2

So I was checking out the updates from my fellow bloggers this morning and I came across a really cool idea that Vyki @ On The Shelf is participating with (which she got from For Those Who Live to Read), which is 30 Days of Books. Each day there is a different book-related topic or question to post about (ie. best/worst/favorite-type deals), the list of which I’m linking back to On The Shelf since she’s got them posted all nice and neat like! I know I already posted today for my Freaky Friday edition #2, but I was so excited that I wanted to start today! And since I’m going to be gone this weekend, I’ll start with days 1 & 2 and resume on Sunday.

30 Days of Books: Day #1

A book series you wish had gone on longer OR a book series you wish would just end already
I know it says “OR” but I’m going to respond to both 🙂

A series I wish had gone on longer:

Harry Potter of course! We all wish this never had to end. I know there are a few fan-written stories that take on the adventure’s of Harry’s son James AND you can read them for free on GoodReads: James Potter and the Hall of Elders’ Crossing. Has anyone read these? I’ve peeked around the reviews on GoodReads and most of them look pretty decent. Maybe it’s a way to keep the magic alive even after J.K. stops with Harry.

I was going to say the Heather Wells series by Meg Cabot – Those books were so much fun! I picked them up from my sister and they kind of brought me out of my “reading slump” in which I hadn’t been reading for a while. I had always wished there were more books to this series, but to my pleasant surprise, I found out that Size 12 and Ready to Rock is due out this July! Can’t wait!!

A series I wish would just end already: The Hannah Swensen series by Joanne Fluke.

Okay, let me explain. This is actually one of my favorite cozy mystery series… In the beginning. I loved Hannah’s little town in Minnesota where it’s always cold but the citizens are always warm. I loved Hannah always corrected her sister’s grammar (because I’m a grammar stickler as well!), and sometimes the mysteries were easy, but mostly they were real puzzlers! The reason I couldn’t take the series any more is because of the “love story” (yes, in quotes) that runs througout the novel. In the first book Hannah meets two men: Norman the dentist and Mike the dreamy cop. Hannah’s in her 30s and still single so when she starts getting the attention of these two guys, her whole family goes ga-ga for her to settle down. But in the first book (and every book thereafter), she’s constantly being pushed to pick one of those guys and marry him – But she just met both of these guys! And througout the series (I’ve finished through book 8), she continues to date both of them. And by date, I mean gets a quick kiss and occasionally hangs out. We’ve been through 8 books, both of these suckers are still hanging around for a 6th grader’s relationship, and the topic of marriage is still constantly pushed and pushed and pushed. I really liked the mysteries in these books and it all started out really fun so I do continue to recommend them. Maybe other people aren’t bothered by this like I am – Who knows. But all I know is, I’ve had enough! Until Hannah makes a commitment, I’m taking a break from the series. And as a last clarification, I guess I shouldn’t say I wish it would end – I just wish the “love triangle” aspect would end already and give the readers something to cheer about (or gripe about) as she chooses a guy!

30 Days of Books: Day #2
A book or series you wish more people were reading and talking about

Okay, I’m gonna go old school on this. Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech was – no wait, IS – my all-time favorite children’s/middle grade book. I guess it’s kind of a toss up between that and The Giver by Lois Lowry, but I know I read Walk Two Moons several times as a kid and maybe I should get my hands on a copy because I’m pretty sure I’d still really enjoy it! It follows the story of Salamanca Tree Hiddle (Sal for short) as she embarks upon a road trip with her family to reunite with her mother in Idaho. Along the way, she tells the her account of Phoebe Winterbottom to entertain her grandmother. It’s a heartwarming, enlightening, and bittersweet story and it’s stuck with me ever since I was a kid. Man, I need to read this again… Here’s the link to GoodReads if you want to know more: Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech and don’t read the spoilers if you going to read the book!! Which I highly recommend that you do read it, regardless of age 🙂