Blog Tour | The Bonnet Book by Nancy Menees Hardesty

The Bonnet Book by Nancy Menees Hardesty
Release date: August 1st, 2020
Publisher: Solificatio
Genres: Young adult, historical fiction

Goodreads | Amazon

Sent away on an orphan train at fourteen, smart and lovely Blanche Spencer lands in St. Louis, Missouri as a nursemaid, wearing rags and sleeping in a pantry. To rise above her servitude, she begins a self-education program. A trade booth at the 1904 World’s Fair and a Cobden, Illinois apprenticeship launch her into a hat-making career, which she documents in a tiny diary, The Bonnet Book.

An early example of self-determination and girl power, Blanche—now Bonnie—travels alone to the Wild West, where she’s presented with the chance of a lifetime and the possibility of love—both rife with challenges that test her drive, purpose in life, and sense of self.


Excerpt:


About the Author:

Nancy Menees Hardesty, born in Illinois and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, moved to San Francisco, California in 1969. Nancy spent six years researching and writing her debut novel, The Bonnet Book. She had various family journals and artifacts and the extensive help of her mother, Mary Kay Menees, who was the daughter-in-law of the book’s protagonist, Bonnie Spencer. The tiny “Bonnet Book” of hat sketches and the wooden hat-supply trunk featured in the book are still in the author’s possession.

Website | Goodreads | Facebook


Giveaway:

Click here to enter the Goodreads giveaway. You could win one of 10 copies of The Bonnet Book. It’s only open to US readers. Good luck!

August Wrap Up!

SOME THOUGHTS

So, I’ve officially finished my first month of the new school year. It’s been a lot busier than I anticipated so the blog posts (and reading) have kind of slowed down. I did manage to finish The Kingdom of Copper by S.A. Chakraborty and WOW! It was seriously even better than the first book and I’m just so in love with the series. I just ordered a copy of The Empire of Gold and can’t wait until I have it in my hands!!! What did you guys read this month that completely blew you away?

On another note, this post took forever to format! What’s with the new WordPress editor? It’s horribly frustrating and I don’t know where everything is. Argh! I was still using the old version up until a few days ago. *sobs* 


BOOKS HAULED


BOOKS READ

The Kingdom of Copper by S.A. Chakraborty | ♥♥♥♥♥


August TBR

My TBR is pretty much the same from last month. I only finished one book in August due to work commitments.


POSTS

Reviews:

The Story of Babushka · Dear Girl

Other:

Book Blitz Dating Mr. Darcy · Book Blitz Scandal’s Promise · The Bookish Heavenly Virtues Tag! · Quick Fire Fantasy Book Tag · #5OnMyTBR · My Life in Books Tag

Would You Rather Book Tag!

Book Blitz_ (5)I haven’t been doing many original posts here lately and it makes me sad. Online teaching has been exhausting lately! But here’s a fun tag that I found on A Fictional Bookworm to mix things up! I hope that you enjoy it 🙂


Would you rather only read ebooks or audiobooks?

While I’ve started to listen to more audiobooks, nothing beats actually looking at the words yourself. Also, while I like audiobooks, I sometimes don’t like how the narrator sounds or it’s just too slow for my liking.

Would you rather kiss the villain of your favourite book/series or hurt your favourite character?

Oooooh….this one is hard! I would never want to hurt my favourite character. So, I would kiss the villain but use the moment to inflict some kind of damage on them in order to help my favourite character defeat them.

Would you rather read all the books you want every single month but barely remember the plot or read 2 books a month but remember everything about them?

I would rather remember what I read. It’s something I struggled with now so that would be like having a superpower!

Would you rather read a book you love while listening to an album you hate or read a book you hate while listening to an album you love?

Can I have neither? I can’t focus while listening to music and reading. But if I had to decide, an album that I love because my mind would feel at ease. Reading if relaxing for me and having to listen to something I hate would ruin the experience.

Would you rather be able to go to your favourite fantasy world but no one can see you or go to a fantasy world you hate but everyone can see you?

Well, perhaps visiting my favourite fantasy world and not being seen would be the best option. It would be lonely but it would probably be safer if I didn’t get involved in anything. This is really a difficult question!

Would you rather only read historical fiction novels or sci-fi?

Oh no! I love both genres but I need to go with historical fiction. My obsession with reading really started with the genre and I have so many books based in ancient Egypt and Scotland to catch up on!

Would you rather only read the books but never watch the movie/TV show adaptations or only watch the adaptations but never read the books?

Only read the books! Most of the time the TV/movie adaptions are a letdown. Plus, the books are always much more detailed with fully fleshed-out characters that I become more attached to.

Would you rather only read backlist titles or new releases?

I have more than enough backlist titles to keep me reading for years and years. And, eventually, all new books become backlist books so I wouldn’t miss out.

Would you rather only read standalones or series?

I’m going to say series but what I mean are duologies or trilogies. I tend not to read beyond three books. I’ve been disappointed too many times by authors dragging stories out and ruining everything I loved about them.

Would you rather always be able to guess the twist, or never being able to guess the twist?

Never be able to guess the twist! It’s so much more fun that way. If I always knew what was going to happen things would get boring really quickly. Not knowing what’s going to happen and becoming so invested in the story and characters is what makes reading so enjoyable.


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Blog Tour | Butterfly Broken by Rebecca L. Carpenter

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Butterfly broken ebook cover (1)Butterfly Broken by Rebecca L. Carpenter
Release date: September 1st, 2020
Publisher: Lakewater Press
Genres: Young adult, science fiction

Goodreads | Amazon

HER SECRET. HIS BETRAYAL. THEIR REDEMPTION.

“Hasn’t nature had enough–her thirst for blood satisfied?”

Bethany Keatley hoped her life would finally be normal, but on returning home to Springs, Georgia and the love of her her life, Jeremiah Wright, she discovers she’s to blame for for his hideous burns. Peace will never be hers. Yet, when she transfers her blood into Jeremiah’s, his mangled hand heals.

Bethany’s his cure but she’s not the only one who knows.

Abducted and locked away by powerful, desperate people hired to destroy her supernatural blood, Bethany and Jeremiah undergo unethical experiments. It’s only after the sheer potential of their mixed blood is revealed that their enemies turn on each other and new alliances are formed.

Who can be trusted when everyone has something to gain?

Bethany and Jeremiah unite to fight for their lives against real-life villains and an unquenchable power growing within Bethany, but time is running out, and Bethany can’t take any more loss.

With Jeremiah’s life on the line, a new monster will be unleashed.

In the third and final book of the breathtaking and award-winning Metamorphosis Series, Rebecca Carpenter delivers a fast-paced, spine-chilling experience that you’ll find impossible to put down.


Teaser:

Misfiring nerves shoot from my fingertips, searching for some sort of connection. The short bursts of lightning fizzle as quickly as they appear, but new ones take their place, the cycle continuing over and over, the effect as painful as being repeatedly stabbed under the fingernail.


Other Books in the Trilogy:

Don’t miss out on reading the first two books in the Metamorphosis trilogy!

Butterly Bones (Book #1)
Release date: November 2016
Publisher: Lakewater Press

Bethany should be dead, just like the doctors predicted. But along came the butterflies, altering the order of nature. And now nature is hell-bent on revenge. Because when fate’s path is disrupted, it’s only a matter of time before balance must be restored.

Butterfly Blood (Book #2)
Release Date: August 2018
Publisher: Lakewater Press

A sixteen-year-old girl who cheated death continues her fight for survival as she goes up against real-life monsters, desperate for her unique blood while risking everything to reunite with the love of her life, who is battling his own soul-sucking demons.


About the Author:

Rebecca author photoRebecca Carpenter is a native of western Colorado. She is married with two grown children and has been blessed with four amazing grandchildren. She owns and directs a large childcare center where she shares her love for books. In her spare time, she freelances as a copy editor, helping others attain their writing dreams. She finds solace and clarity while spending time with her husband exploring the beautiful mountains of Colorado.

Website | GoodreadsTwitter | Facebook


Giveaway:

Click here to enter the blog tour giveaway. It’s international and you could win paperback copies of the Metamorphosis trilogy. Good luck!

Book Blitz | Dating Mr. Darcy by Kate O’Keeffe

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Dating Mr. DarcyDating Mr. Darcy by Kate O’Keeffe
Release date: August 25th, 2020
Publisher: Wild Lime Books
Genres: Adult, comedy, romance

GoodreadsAmazon

Haunted by questions and her own insecurities, Lady Emily Sinclair longs to discover why her betrothed abandoned her and married another. Seven years have passed, but the pain of his betrayal still lingers, buried beneath layers of humiliation and mistrust. When he returns after the Napoleonic Wars, she vows to avoid him. If only her foolish heart felt the same.

Broken and addicted to his medication, widower Andrew Quimby, Lord Cardmore, rattles around his ancient manor, oblivious to his deteriorating health and state of mind. When he learns the woman he was forced to abandon remains unmarried, he vows to try to win her back, even if it means returning to a society he despises.

But Andrew soon discovers he has a secret enemy. Threatening notes appear and sinister accidents put those in his inner circle in danger. Can he overcome his demons in time to keep them safe or will everyone and everything he loves disappear forever.


Excerpt:

How on this sweet Earth did I get myself into this position?

I’m not talking metaphorically or spiritually or anything like that here, you understand.

Oh, no. I’m being much more literal.

Right now, I’m all alone in the back of the limo, whizzing through the outskirts of Houston on my way to some ranch out in banjo territory. I’ve managed to remove my mic, which was a feat all its own, and now I’m wrangling with my Timothy leggings. With an almighty effort, I pull them up to my thighs, my dress bunched up under my chin. Ever bunched up a sequin dress under your chin? Not comfortable.

As the car turns corners, my task becomes increasingly complex. Just when I scoop my butt up off the seat to pull the leggings up, the car turns, and I go crashing into the door. Luckily it’s firmly shut or I’d be splattered across the road somewhere.

By the time I’m halfway done, I’m hot and sweaty and panting like I’ve gone three rounds in the ring with Muhammad Ali. Or some other boxer from this century. (Fighting’s so not my thing).

My leggings finally in place, I heave a sigh of relief. Time for my Timothy top. I pull my sequined dress over my head, only for it to get snagged on my hair.

I tug at the dress. It pulls at my hair but it holds tight. I tug again. This thing is not budging.

The car begins to slow. I peer out the smoky glass window and see a large house at the end of the long drive. It looks like a ranch in the middle of nowhere.

Uh-oh.

Panic begins to set in. I need to get this darn dress off and pull on my T-shirt over my strapless bra, and I need to do it now.

As the car slows to a stop, I yank on the dress, hard, only to cry out in pain as my hair refuses to untangle itself from the many sequins.

I hear a car door thud closed and know the driver is about to walk around to open my door.

No! We can’t be here already!

Think, Emma, think!

In just my leggings and strapless bra, my dress acting as some sort of weird hair extension, I’m not only going to be the laughing stock of the nation, but I’m sure the Mr. Darcy wannabe will send me home before he can say “that one was totally cray cray.” Penny’s and my dream will amount to nothing.

With probably less than about three seconds to go before the driver reaches my door, I ditch the near-impossible hair issue and focus on getting my top on. I grab it out of my clutch and loop one leg through, then the next. With a strength that would impress Wonder Woman herself, I yank the top up over my thighs, and begin to loop an arm through one side. So far, so good. All I’ve got to do now is loop the other arm through and …

The next thing I know, the wall I’m leaning up against gives way and I fall backwards out of the privacy of the limo and land with a thud on my butt.

Ooof.

As my butt meets the hard, unforgiving ground, the wind is instantly sucked out of me and the pain sears. Trying to regain my balance, my legs flail in the air like I’m some kind of insect that can’t get itself back up. At least twelve different cuss words erupt from my mouth. Cuss words my mother would blush to hear me say.
Everything goes quiet around me.

Smooth, Emma. Real smooth.

“Well, that was quite an entrance,” a voice says.


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About the Author:

KateKate O’Keeffe is a bestselling author of fun, feel-good romantic comedies. She lives and loves in beautiful Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand with her family, two scruffy dogs, and a cat who thinks he’s a scruffy dog too. He’s not: he’s a cat. When she’s not penning her latest story, Kate can be found hiking up hills (slowly), traveling to different countries, and eating chocolate. A lot of it.

Website | GoodreadsTwitter | Facebook | Instagram


Giveaway:

Click here to enter a blitz giveaway. It’s international and you could win a $20 Amazon gift card. Be sure to enter before September 3rd. Good luck!

Book Blitz | Scandal’s Promise by Pamela Gibson

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SPScandal’s Promise by Pamela Gibson
Release date: August 19th, 2020
Publisher: Soul Mate Publishing
Genres: Adult, historical romance

GoodreadsAmazon

Haunted by questions and her own insecurities, Lady Emily Sinclair longs to discover why her betrothed abandoned her and married another. Seven years have passed, but the pain of his betrayal still lingers, buried beneath layers of humiliation and mistrust. When he returns after the Napoleonic Wars, she vows to avoid him. If only her foolish heart felt the same.

Broken and addicted to his medication, widower Andrew Quimby, Lord Cardmore, rattles around his ancient manor, oblivious to his deteriorating health and state of mind. When he learns the woman he was forced to abandon remains unmarried, he vows to try to win her back, even if it means returning to a society he despises.

But Andrew soon discovers he has a secret enemy. Threatening notes appear and sinister accidents put those in his inner circle in danger. Can he overcome his demons in time to keep them safe or will everyone and everything he loves disappear forever.


Excerpt:

A tiny birdlike woman with sharp features stared at him from across the room. Her bonnet and outwear lay neatly on a chair. Next to it was the heavy woollen coat and hat of the young boy with frightened eyes who clutched her hand.

Andrew’s breath hitched as he looked at the child. Blue eyes, glistening with unshed tears, peeked up at him from a narrow face with a defiant chin. His guinea-gold tousled hair was cut short and his clothes were fashionable, albeit wrinkled.

The woman raised her head and glared at him. “I beg your pardon, my lord. I realize the hour is late. My name is Bricker. I was told to deliver Master George to you and then be on my way. I’ve taken a room in the village coaching house for the night, and I will return to London in the morning.”

Andrew forced himself to meet her gaze and speak in a calm voice while turmoil swirled in his gut.

“You can’t leave him here.”

“I can and I will.”

“Why now?”

“My employer’s wife has passed on, and he has no interest in the child. Madame was the one who insisted on providing the boy with a home. Master George was the only link she had with her daughter.”

“And you?”

“I’ve been his nurse since his birth at his grandparents’ London home.”

“If you are leaving, who will care for him?”

“With all due respect, that’s your problem, my lord.”

She turned to the child who began to sob. He buried his face in her skirts and fisted his small hands in the folds, his back shaking.

Her body vibrated with hatred. “See what you’ve done. You’ve upset him. He’s only six years old and not accustomed to cold toffs like you.”

Andrew stiffened, repressing the urge to curse. Instead, he modulated his tone. “He cannot stay. I have no staff, no nursery. There’s nothing here for him to wear or play with. You must leave and take him back to where you came from.”

“His valise is outside in the hall. It has his belongings. He hasn’t much. As you would know if you’d deigned to take an interest in him.”

He supposed the verbal blow was deserved, despite the circumstances now confronting him, but his patience was at an end.

What the bloody hell am I to do with a child?

“You’re right. I know nothing about children. You can see he’s distressed. Can you not stay? I can pay you.” Panic gripped his throat, threatening to strangle him.

“I have another post. And now I must take my leave. ’Tis cold and wet, and I long for my bed.”

“Don’t go,” implored Andrew. “He’s crying. What does he need?”

“Give him a bit of soup and a bed. He’ll be right as rain in the morning.”

She disengaged the boy’s hands and bent down to face him. “You mustn’t cry, Master George. This is your home now. I’m sure his lordship must have a horse or two in his stables. You’ll see what a fine house this is when morning comes.”

The woman led the boy to a spindly chair and seated him. The child hid his face in his hands and wailed like his heart was broken. With a final pat, she put on her coat and hat and strode toward the door. “My hired conveyance is waiting. I’ll see myself out.” Footsteps echoed in the hall, fading as the woman reached the outer door.

Ralston stood with his hands behind his back, his eyes wide. The child’s wailing increased, and Andrew cringed. How was he to stop the noise? His valet hovered near the doorway. “Lester. Bring the new housemaid. I believe her name is Matilda. She should be in Mrs. Evans’s quarters or nearby.”

“Very good, milord.”

Ralston, who’d been silent during the drama seemed to recover from his stupor and frowned. “Do you even know who this is?”

“Sadly, I do.”

“Do you mind enlightening me? I admit this is more entertainment than I’ve had in a decade.”

“His name is George.”

“I believe I got that.”

“He is—he is my son.”

Ralston fell into a nearby chair. “I’m astonished. I’d heard Caroline died in childbirth, but I thought the child was stillborn.”

“He’s very much alive, as you can see. And hear.”


About the Author:

209763Author of eight books on California history and fifteen romance novels, Pamela Gibson is a former City Manager who lives in the Nevada desert. Having spent the last three years messing about in boats, a hobby that included a five-thousand-mile trip in a 32-foot Nordic Tug, she now spends most of her time indoors happily reading, writing, cooking and keeping up with the antics of Ralph, the Rescue Cat.

Website | GoodreadsTwitter | Facebook | Instagram


Giveaway:

Click here to enter a blitz giveaway. It’s international and you could win a $20 Amazon gift card. Be sure to enter before September 3rd. Good luck!

The Bookish Heavenly Virtues Tag!

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I saw this book tag on Destiny’s blog Howling Libraries and thought I would also give it a shot. If you don’t follow Destiny please go give her some love. Her blog and YouTube channel are amazing! ♥


CHASTITY: Which author/book/series do you wish you had never read?

Glorification of violence. Annoying characters. Bad decisions. Butchering of history. Plot holes. I could go on and on. I can’t believe I read them all. Why?! *shakes head*

TEMPERANCE: Which book/series did you find so good, that you didn’t want to read it all at once, and you read it in doses just to make the pleasure last longer?

This series was so beautifully written. I tried my best to read it slowly. A few chapters each night. Of course, sometimes I couldn’t help myself but I never wanted the story to end!

CHARITY: Which book/series/author do you tirelessly push to others, telling them about it or even given away spare copies bought for that reason?

I LOVE THIS SERIES WITH ALL OF MY HEART! Regency era demon-slaying is usually all I have to say to get people interested. I’ve pushed this on all of my Jane Austen loving friends and basically anyone that will listen to me.

DILIGENCE: Which series/author do you follow no matter what happens and how long you have to wait?

Ok, Leigh Bardugo released books quite regularly so I guess it’s not really an issue. But I would wait for years and years if I had to!

PATIENCE: Is there an author/book/series you’ve read that improved with time the most, starting out unpromising, but ultimately proving rewarding?

I honestly can’t think of a book or series that improved over time that I thought was rewarding. In my experience, if a book starts off on the wrong foot it probably will continue that way or it will be alright but never something I’m excited about. Same with a series. If the first book wasn’t enjoyable I’ll rarely pick up the second one.

KINDNESS: Which fictitious character would you consider your role model in the hassle of everyday life?

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Inej Ghafa from the Six of Crows duology. No matter what happens she always remains calm and mentally strong (artwork by Merwild).

HUMILITY: Which book/series/author do you find most underrated?

Kat Ross is one of my all-time favourite fantasy/mystery writers. I stumbled upon her Fourth Element series through a blog tour a few years ago and have just LOVED everything that she’s released since then. The worldbuilding, magic, history and relationships just keep me coming back for more and more. I highly recommend checking her books out.

Blog Tour | The Story of Babushka by Catherine Flores

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I received this book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Babushka_170x240_en_Cover_frontThe Story of Babushka by Catherine Flores

Release date: July 20th, 2020
Publisher: ACL Creative Studio
Genres: Children’s literature, fantasy
Format: eBook

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GoodreadsAmazon

Babushka wants to find out the meaning of life so she sends her bodies out of the forest and into the world to search for answers. But there is a hurdle to overcome before all of the bodies can reunite and return to the forest.

WHAT IS A BABUSHKA?

The Babushka doll, also known as a “Matryoshka” or “Russian Nesting Doll”, is a traditional Russian toy first made over 100 years ago. The doll has come to symbolize Russian folk culture, as well as the complex and beautiful layers of women. This is the story of one very special doll, with five bodies that together make the Babushka: There was the outermost body, Antonia. She was pure beauty and everyone who saw her raved about her good looks. Beneath that body of beauty hid the second body, Loretta, who was richly adorned. She wore gold ornaments, and her robe was decorated with many different gems that glittered like the ocean on a sunny day. Hidden within the rich body was Paula the body that held all the talents. Whatever Paula did, she was sure to succeed. She knew how to work and always did so with joy and determination. Under the shell of the talented body was Viola, the body of wisdom. Viola knew a lot about the world and learned very quickly. She was always full of brilliant ideas and had clever solutions for every problem. The last body, the innermost and smallest of all, was Mary, the embodiment of love. Mary had a compassionate heart and was very helpful. She had the special ability to dry tears and mend broken hearts. All these bodies together formed the beautiful Babushka.

Babushka dolls bring back fond memories from my childhood. I used to play with the dolls at my grandparent’s house. I was always fascinated by their many colours, intricate designs and the stories about life in Russia that came along with them. The Story of Babushka took me back in time and I enjoyed every minute of it!

The Story of Babushka was a lovely read! Written for children, the book tells the story of a Babushka doll and its five unique layers or hidden bodies. As the layers of the Babushka doll search for the meaning of life, the reader learns a very important message about self-love and belonging. The story is told in an easy to read format that will keep children interested and wanting to keep on turning the page. I also thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful illustrations by Ana Beatriz Marques. Again, the images reminded me of my grandparent’s house with their bold colours, splashes of gold and familiar Russian style.

My daughter is a bit too young to read this book right now, but I will be purchasing a physical copy to share with her in a few years. I highly recommend this wonderful book to children under the age of 12, although I truly believe that people of all ages would enjoy its message and illustrations.


Book Trailer

 


About the Author

20394184Since quitting her full-time job at a branding communication agency in Zurich, Catherine has gone on to become a successful freelance designer and a children’s author. She lives on the small island of Madeira with her family, spending her time growing vegetables in her garden and working for clients around the world.

Website | Twitter | Goodreads

Quick Fire Fantasy Book Tag

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It’s been almost a week since I last wrote a post. Right now, at work we are preparing to start the school year online so everything has been a bit hectic. Past lesson plans have been thrown out the window and we’ve been given 3 weeks to basically come up with new multi-subject projects. I’m trying not to stress out but it’s kind of difficult not to. So, as a way to help take my mind off of work, here is a short book tag about my all time favourite book genre, fantasy. Enjoy!


The Rules

  • Thank the person who tagged you and link back to their post
  • Link to the creator’s blog in your post
  • Answer the prompts below – all fantasy books!
  • Tag 5 others to take part
  • Enjoy! 🙂

1. 5-STAR BOOK

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2. ALWAYS GOING TO RECOMMEND

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3. OWN IT BUT HAVEN’T READ

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4. WOULD READ IT AGAIN

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5. IN ANOTHER WORLD

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6. BACK ON EARTH

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#5OnMyTBR: Mystery Books

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#5OnMyTBR is a bookish meme hosted by E. @ Local Bee Hunter’s Nook and you can learn more about it here or in the post announcing it. It occurs every Monday when we post about 5 books on our TBR.

The prompt for today is…mystery books. Looking at my TBR made me realize that I don’t read mystery very often. These were essentially the only mystery books I could find. Three come from a fantastic series by Kat Ross and the others I don’t remember adding on Goodreads. Anyway, I’m glad that I was able to explore this genre on my TBR because I realized that during my break from blogging and reading I missed out on 3 releases from Kat Ross! I love her books and now need to catch up ASAP!

Have you read any of these books? If so, what were your thoughts on them?