Catching up on my #NetGalley #BookReviews @Darynda @RKapelkeDale, Betty Webb


Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

The fun of growing all of your plants in containers is the ability to move them whenever you want to refresh the garden. Some need either more or less lighting, others become too large for their environment, and then some show off their best colors in the fall and deserve a key location.

This all started because I insisted that we should try growing citrus even though they need protection over the winter. We bought a Washington navel orange and a Bearss lime, and now we need to build a shelter for them. We live full-time in our RV in a recreational park, which means small lots- accounting for all the switching around of the older plants. It’s like fall cleaning without the dust bunnies, lol.

This week I have a few NetGalley books to share with you, so let’s get started.

The posts on this site may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission should you make a purchase using a link.

Some people greet the day with open arms. Sheriff Sunshine Vicram would rather give it a hearty shove and get back into bed, because there’s just too much going on right now. 

Amazon Link

If the attention-grabbing titles or captivating covers aren’t enough to press the buy button, then the opening lines from Ms. Jones’ latest in the Sunshine Vicram series (I love her name!) should do it.

Normally, Sheriff Sunshine Vicram would’ve been alarmed at the sight of a knitting needle sticking out of a guy’s neck. At the very least, she would’ve been concerned for the horrified man’s well-being. Yet, there she stood. Unmoved. Unshaken. Unstirred.

A Hard Day for a Hangover- Darynda Jones

While this is the third book in an engrossing series, it’s not necessary to read them in order, the author does an excellent job with introducing her readers to the backstory-though all three are must-reads!

Sunshine was passively coerced into her position as sheriff of her hometown by her well-meaning parents and is determined to succeed for her teenage daughter’s sake. When a young girl is found beaten and the body of another is discovered nearby, Sunny and her deputy (best bud Quincy) investigate, concerned their own teens could be in danger.

This is a fast-paced read filled with heart and fun little gems like this one from the chapter headings:

If one day you intend to be the little old person in a nursing home who leads the rebellion and puts vodka in all the IV bags, we are having a sale on Absolut. Stock up now!
—Sign at The Roadhouse

Darynda Jones. A Hard Day for a Hangover (Kindle Locations 4281-4284). Kindle Edition.

I understand this to be the final book in this series. I hope Ms. Jones reconsiders, these characters are the best!


My Dark Vanessa meets The Queen’s Gambit in this new novel of suspense about the bonds of family, the limits of talent, the risks of ambition, and the rewards of revenge.

Amazon Link

After the surprising death of her flighty mother, Saskia returns to her family’s heritage home only to find the rug pulled out from under her feet when the inheritance she expects to receive is given to an ex-boyfriend instead.

When Saskia walked away from a promising career as a pianist, her famous painter mother made no effort to hide her disappointment, driving her daughter out of her home. Hurt, Saskia stayed away, finding odd jobs, and dreaming of the day she could return to her beloved Elf House.

The house is described in such a manner that it is an entity in and of itself.

Nobody knows where the elves came from. In lieu of gargoyles, that pair of fairy-tale creatures has framed the doorway of the Harper mansion for as long as anyone can remember. Kneeling mischievously, their pointed ears sticking out from their stocking caps, they lie in wait. Watching the births and the deaths, the parties and the funerals, the beginnings and the endings. But who, every Harper for generations has asked, put them there?

Rachel Kapelke-Dale. The Ingenue (Kindle Locations 17-20). Kindle Edition.

Told in two time periods-Saskia’s youth, and present day, after the death of her mother-the story rolls out tense family dynamics, societal pressures, exceptional talent and the expectations that go with it, along with destructive relationships make this a serious, thought-provoking read.


Pulsing with the glamour and excitement of the Jazz Age, Lost in Paris explores a young woman’s journey to redeem herself from the heartaches of her past, while finding her way forward in tumultuous, unprecedented times.

Amazon Link

Zoe lives in the most vibrant city in Europe- Paris. With famous artists, poets, and actors circling her orbit, she should be on top of the world, but secrets from the past won’t stay buried. When her good friend, Hadley Hemmingway misplaces a suitcase carrying all of her husband’s writings, Zoe offers to search for it, only to come across one murder victim after another.

Suddenly Zoe finds herself in the middle of a murder investigation and all roads seem to lead back to one of her friends as the killer.

Set in 1920’s Paris at the end of the First World War, the author brings the time period to life with stunning detail to fashion and the french setting with its rich versus poor culture.

Zoe is a complex character. She’s a talented artist in her own right, a slick poker player, and an ingénue. Caring, loyal, and impulsive, which lands her in danger over and over again. I like how the author inserted true-life people into the storyline, adding an element of recognition and a natural curiosity to the reading experience.

An entertaining read!


Do you remember Phyllis Diller? Do you see a resemblance? 🙂

47 Comments

  1. Lovely catchup post, Jacquie… and I do see Phyllis there!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Lol, good to know I’m not alone!

      Like

  2. joylennick says:

    Hola Jacquie, Me too – had an immediate giggle. She was such a likeable character! What a prolific writer you are! Amazing. I’ve only managed nine books; tenth finished but awaiting a publisher ‘The Dobrowski Portrait’ – set in Poland and the UK during and after WW11 – about war, the family, ‘life’ and romance. All power to your fingers and imagination…Cheers. x

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ooh, that sounds interesting, Joy- best of luck with it!

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      1. joylennick says:

        Gracias, Jacquie. Appreciated. xx

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for sharing, Jacquie!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Fun Fall reads, Jill!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Lots of great catching up! Thanks for sharing, Jacquie 💕🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hope I’ve managed to tickle your reader’s mind, Harmony 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Staci Troilo says:

    The Phyllis Diller plant has me giggling.

    Excellent reviews, Jacquie. Good luck with the citrus!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hubby thinks I’m crazy, lol. I’m always seeing weird things in clouds and plants 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Kymber Hawke says:

    Thank you for sharing such great books! Even though my TBR is overflowing with goodness, I can’t help but always add more to it.

    I loooooove the Phyllis Diller plant. haha

    Liked by 1 person

    1. She was such a character, lol

      Liked by 1 person

  7. petespringerauthor says:

    I liked your description of A Hard Day for a Hangover—”an attention-getting title.” It’s an excellent example of immediately engaging a reader.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So important. You need to hook a reader the second they see your work so that their curiosity will kick in and hopefully bring on a sale.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Sophie @BewareOfTheReader says:

    Lost i Paris seems just my cup of tea!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I read another book set in Paris during the same timeframe and really enjoyed it, as well.

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  9. D.L. Finn, Author says:

    I am a big fan of potted plants. The only way I’ve been able to have a gardina. I want to try a lemon tree next. Great reviews, sounds like you’ve been doing some good reading. That does remind me of Phyllis Diller…lol! Xo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We had a beautiful lemon that was a heavy producer until we became lax and didn’t protect it for winter. They’ll hold their fruit up to minus 3, but need to be covered from the rain.
      Gardenias are so lovely!

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      1. D.L. Finn, Author says:

        I have to give it a try. I could either bring it in during winter or put it in green house. I surprised the gardenias has survived here.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I love the new look of the blog, Jacquie. I did a double-take when I landed here. Very clean. And fun to hear about your version of “redecorating.” You’re like Mother Nature setting everything up for fall. Thanks for the book reviews. The Ingenue appealed to me the most – mostly because it sounds a little dark and right for the season. And that plant does remind me of Phyllis Diller. Lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for noticing the new look, Diana. Time for a fresh face, lol
      Yes, The Ingenue is moody, kind of like me 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. LOL. Your new look makes we want to get a new look too. Maybe a change of background?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Fall colors would look nice 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

          1. 😀 If I have time tonight, I’ll play… or maybe wait for winter.

            Liked by 1 person

  11. I’d love fall cleaning without the dust bunnies. It’s cool the way you move your pots around to showcase the plants in season. I too see Phyllis Diller! What a picture. Nice selection of reviews, Jacquie.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Mary. The photo is a clematis after its petals have dropped, creating a fall skirt around the stem 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Jan Sikes says:

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on these, Jacquie. “A Hard Day For A Hangover” grabbed my attention. Sounds really good. You are brave to try and grow citrus that far north. Good luck with protecting them through the winter. Hope it works.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I really like the sound of The Ingenue, Jacquie, although I can’t say the title makes any sense to me. I am glad you are enjoying autumn in your pot garden. I love my garden too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ingenue means someone born with incredible talent- in her case, pianist.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ah, that makes more sense.

        Liked by 1 person

  14. I know that feeling well, I am always behind on something.
    Good luck to all.
    I love your photography. I do remember Phyllis Diller and you captured that. LOL

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wondered if I was aging myself by mentioning Ms. Diller, lol

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  15. markbierman says:

    All the best with the citrus trees, Jacquie. The reviews were excellent, too!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Mark. We like to test the planting zone boundaries, lol

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Oh my gosh that is indeed a Phyllis Diller plant;) Sounds like you picked three great reads. Thanks for sharing. Sunshine Vicram is a great name. Did you see Doug Cooper has a Cuss Abbott? I’m so jealous I didn’t think of that one:)
    YOU have a great one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol, I like it! Some people are so inventive, sigh

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  17. Toni Pike says:

    What a great group, Jacquie – love those opening lines!! Toni x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve been finding some gems to read lately, Toni. Thank you for stopping by to check out my reviews 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Good reviews, Jacquie. You caught my attention on a few. Doesn’t it feel good to catch up!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes! I hate feeling behind the eight ball, lol

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      1. BTW, I just got your latest book through NetGalley. I am so excited to get to read it! Review in your future, girlfriend (and namesake).

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yay, thank you! Good to know at least one person found it over there, lol

          Liked by 1 person

  19. LOL, loved the Phyllis Diller plant, Jacquie. Thanks for these reviews. They all sound good, but the first series sounds like something I’d enjoy very much. The quotes cracked me up.
    Hugs on the wing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I like adding quotes to my reviews. It gives prospective readers a sense of the writer’s voice. Thanks for dropping by, Teagan!

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