That Old Black Magic by Mary Jane Clark

I like mysteries, so I thought I’d try this one and I have never read any Mary Jane Clark novels.

That Old Black Magic (Wedding Cake Mystery, #4)Stats: Audio is narrated by Therese Plummer, 6 discs for 7.5′, pubished in 2014, print is 368 pages.

Blurb: New York Times bestselling author Mary Jane Clark whips up a savory and suspenseful confection in her newest mystery featuring Piper DonovanAspiring actress and wedding-cake decorator Piper Donovan has barely arrived in New Orleans to perfect her pastry skills at the renowned French Quarter bakery, Boulangerie Bertrand when a ghastly murder rocks the magical city.Intrigued by the case, Piper can’t help but look for the “Hoodoo Killer” among the faces around her. Could it be the handsome guide eager to give her special private tours? Or the inscrutable jazz musician who plays on historic Royal Street? What about the ratings-starved radio talk-show host? Or even the amiable owner of the local Gris-Gris Bar?Though Piper has a full plate decorating cakes for upcoming wedding celebrations, she’s also landed an exciting but unnerving role in a movie being shot in the Big Easy. When the murderer strikes again, leaving macabre clues, she thinks she can unmask the killer. But Piper will have to conjure up some old black magic of her own if she hopes to live long enough to reveal the truth.

What I liked: I’m not sure. It was an “okay” read and I didn’t figure out “who done it” before the author told me, but it was just kind of blah. I’m not even sure why I say that. I guess Piper was not a particularly interesting character and I guess the author really didn’t make me care too much about her. Maybe if I’d have read other books in the Piper Donovan series – this is #4 I think – I might have enjoyed it more. Oh, and Theresa Plummer does a fine job.

What I didn’t like: It wasn’t so much I didn’t like this thing I’m about to mention, it was more that it seemed odd – Piper is a cake decorator and an actress?!  What? The oddity of this in the story is she is visiting New Orleans to work with a renowned baker, then she hears about a 2 day acting job. Weird. Two day acting job in a movie? I don’t know the movie business much but that seems very unrealistic. I could see an actress moonlighting as a baker between gigs but to take on intership, so to speak, for baking must mean you’re serious about baking. But how can you be serious about baking and be serious about acting. I know it’s picky and this is supposed to be a cozy mystery, but…it just bothered me. And the writing was “okay.” It wasn’t very inspiring, if you know what I mean.

Rating: 3/5

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Published in: on November 27, 2017 at 11:26pm11  Leave a Comment  
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Lets Go All the Way – Sly Fox

For all of you (like me) who need a Thursday pick me up. 🙂

Published in: on October 5, 2017 at 11:26pm10  Leave a Comment  
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Smorgasbord Laughter Academy – Heavens Above and the other one!

To lighten your day.

Smorgasbord - Variety is the spice of life

A few jokes about heaven and hell… with no disrespect intended.. we all have our own version of what is to come and just hope that humour and laughter is included in the package.

God and Eve, for the Girls.

“ God I have a problem.”

“What’s the problem Eve?”

“I know that you created me and provided this beautiful garden and all these wonderful animals as well as that hilarious comedic snake, but I’m just not happy.”

“And why is that Eve?” “God I am lonely and bored and I am sick to death of apples!”

“Well, Eve, in that case, I have a solution, I shall create a man for you.”

“Man, what is that God?”

“A flawed, base, creature with many bad traits. He’ll lie, cheat and be vain. He will be witless and will revel in childish things. He will be bigger than you and will…

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Published in: on September 27, 2017 at 11:26am09  Leave a Comment  

How ‘The Red Tent’ invented a new kind of fiction 

CKBooks Publishing


I don’t know if your familiar with “The Red Tent” by Anita Diamant. It came out in 1997, but I really enjoyed it. It was quite different in how it focused on the lives of the women in that era. I’d recommend it.

Source:How ‘The Red Tent’ invented a new kind of fiction | Jewish Telegraphic Agency

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Published in: on August 5, 2017 at 11:26am08  Leave a Comment  

You READ – but do you leave REVIEWS?

I agree wholeheartedly! It takes a little bit of effort but means so much to the author.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

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If not, why not?

I don’t have time

The author probably spent a heck of a lot more time writing the story than you took to read it, no matter how slow you think you are, so why not take a few minutes to record your feelings about it.

I can’t write long fancy reviews like those I see on book review blogs

You don’t have to, Amazon, for example, only ask you to use a minimum of 25 non repeating words.

I can’t express myself very well

No-one is asking you to produce a literary masterpiece, start off with things you liked, didn’t like or a mix of both about the book, e.g.,

I liked this book because –

it reminded me of –

it made me think about –

it made me so scared I couldn’t sleep for –

it made me feel homesick for –

it made…

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Published in: on August 1, 2017 at 11:26pm08  Leave a Comment  

Photo Phriday

Came across this lovely image by John MacDonald on Vicki Goodwin’s blog – The Page Turner. Lovely, just lovely.

The Dock by John Macdonald

Published in: on April 14, 2017 at 11:26pm04  Comments (2)  
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THE RETURN OF AN OLD SCOURGE: STARVATION

I came across this post by Claude Forthomme (a woman) and wanted to share it.

Source: THE RETURN OF AN OLD SCOURGE: STARVATION

Published in: on April 12, 2017 at 11:26pm04  Leave a Comment  

Publisher cancels Milo Yiannopoulos book ‘Dangerous’

CKBooks Publishing

Don’t know if you saw this interesting bit of news, but since we were discussing Milo’s book earlier, I thought you might like to know.

And who said your voice doesn’t matter?

Though he’ll either self-publish or find someone else who will publish it for him, I’m sure. It was ranked 83 on Amazon’s overall book list, after all.

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NEW YORK (AP) — Right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos’ publisher has cancelled his planned book, “Dangerous.”

Source: Publisher cancels Milo Yiannopoulos book ‘Dangerous’

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Published in: on February 21, 2017 at 11:26pm02  Comments (2)  

Thrice the Binded Cat Hath Mew’d – Alan Bradley

My daughter bought this and she shared it with me once she was done with it.

StatThrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mew'd (Flavia de Luce, #8)s: published in 2016, hardcover is smaller than most hardcover, it’s 331 pages.

Blurb: (Goodreads) In spite of being ejected from Miss Bodycote’s Female Academy in Canada, twelve-year-old Flavia de Luce is excited to be sailing home to England. But instead of a joyous homecoming, she is greeted on the docks with unfortunate news: Her father has fallen ill, and a hospital visit will have to wait while he rests. But with Flavia’s blasted sisters and insufferable cousin underfoot, Buckshaw now seems both too empty—and not empty enough. Only too eager to run an errand for the vicar’s wife, Flavia hops on her trusty bicycle, Gladys, to deliver a message to a reclusive wood-carver. Finding the front door ajar, Flavia enters and stumbles upon the poor man’s body hanging upside down on the back of his bedroom door. The only living creature in the house is a feline that shows little interest in the disturbing scene. Curiosity may not kill this cat, but Flavia is energized at the prospect of a new investigation. It’s amazing what the discovery of a corpse can do for one’s spirits. But what awaits Flavia will shake her to the very core.

What I liked: Flavia is her usual, enjoyable self, even after eight books. Bradley has a good end to the murder mystery. Why he ended the book (not the mystery itself) is a big question, but I’m not going to discuss that so I don’t give it away. I listened to part of this (with the talented Jayne Entwistle as narrator, as usual) and read part, which confirmed that listening is more enjoyable to me. I also notice I miss less or remember more (not sure which) with audio.

What I didn’t like: This wasn’t my favorite Flavia story. It didn’t seem quite as tightly written – meaning there were things in the book I didn’t know why Bradley put it in and some odd things with the writing. For example – Flavia meets a significant character (a stranger to her) and Bradley doesn’t fully describe what he looks like until she meets him (Hillary) the second time. And when she meets him the first time, she ends up rubbing his shoulders. This seems out of character and in addition, an odd thing to do to a stranger. Another odd addition is the Horn Dance that apparently happens in town each year. It just seemed like it was stuck in there just so a character can sing at it (the reasoning of which is part of the plot). I assume Bradley didn’t tell the reader why Flavia was ejected from Miss Bodycote’s Female Academy in Canada because he’s mention this more in the next book, but it was something that felt was missing, along with the secret organization (forget the name) and what that groups goal/work is, which I thought would be discussed. I thought that was a line in his other books that he was working toward, but not with this book.

Rating: 3.5/5  As I said, not my favorite Flavia novel but still entertaining. From the ending, Bradley’s obviously going to write another one.

Old Tune Tuesday – Suddenly I See – KT Tunstall

I know, this isn’t that old, but this came up for me on Pandora and I thought you might like to tap your toes today 🙂

Published in: on November 29, 2016 at 11:26pm11  Leave a Comment  
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