Caraval by Stephanie Garber

Caraval is a magical 5 night game that happens once a year. Anything can happen while you’re on the island but you have to be invited and Scarlett has finally been invited. Scar receives 3 tickets in the mail, 1 for herself, 1 for her fiance, and 1 for her sister Tella.

Tella is almost immediately kidnapped when they arrive at Caraval. All of the players must follow the clues and find her within 5 days or she dies. Whoever finds her first wins and this year’s prize is a wish, a wish for anything they could dream of.

You will find magic, murder, mystery, and romance all tied up nicely in this story. This is a darkly enchanting debut by Garber that is sure to pull readers into its clutches from page 1.

Night Watch by Iris & Roy Johansen

Kendra Michaels’ adventures continue in the fourth book of the series. Dr. Waldridge, the man who gave her the ability to see, is in trouble. He wouldn’t say why he flew from England to California, he seems on edge, and then he told her it was safer if she didn’t know. Now he’s disappeared and apparently hired himself a PI to find a colleague beforehand. Lynch is willing to help but he comes with complications that Kendra doesn’t want to deal with yet.

The research which led to Kendra’s ability to see used stem cells to repair her eyes. As Kendra delves deeper she discovers the program has been turned in a new direction. A less helpful direction.

This is another solid suspense novel to add to your reading shelf.

Downfall by J.A. Jance

Sheriff Joanna Brady is going through a lot in her life. She just solved the murder of her mother and step-father. Now she has to arrange their funerals while solving a double murder. On top of that, Joanna’s pregnant and her oldest daughter is going off to college.

Two women are found dead at the bottom of the locally known Geronimo peak, about a 400 ft climb. As the investigation kicks off, no connections can be found between the women so who was the target and who was in the wrong place at the wrong time? One is a graduate student and the other is a high school teacher, what possible motive would someone have to kill either one?

This is a great addition to the Brady series, set in beautiful Arizona. Having never read any of the others, I found it very easy to read as a standalone. Any background information I needed was provided. I definitely enjoyed the mystery, I didn’t know who it was until the Sheriff Brady figured it out for me! The storyline does include a controversial subject, teacher-student relationships, but it wasn’t graphic.

Curious Minds by Evanovich and Sutton

This is the first in a new series by Evanovich and Sutton. We are introduced to Riley Moon, a recent graduate from Harvard Business and Harvard Law. She has landed her dream job, an analyst at Blane-Grunwald. Unfortunately her mentor, Gunter Grunwald, has gone missing and his brother is acting very strangely about it. Riley is given a new assignment, meet with a very wealthy client and convince him that he needs to visit the bank to discuss his recently inherited millions. However, Emerson Knight has an entirely different idea about what he needs to do. Emerson suspects that the Grunwalds have done something nefarious. Soon he believes that his gold and the Fed’s gold has been replaced with fakes. Moon and Knight set out on a cross country adventure to solve the mystery of Gunter and the gold.

I have to say that Emerson Knight and his quirky behaviour and persona reminded me of Sherlock Holmes. Emerson is extremely smart, doesn’t rely on anyone, has a menagerie of animals living at his estate, has the most unusual friends, and disregards the rules (and laws) when they aren’t convenient for him. He drags Riley into his illegal schemes in order to solve the mystery. A great, easy read. Already a fan of Evanovich, I will definitely be reading the next book in the series to see what sort of hi jinks Moon and Knight get up to.

Paper and Fire by Rachel Caine

Paper and Fire is the second book in the Great Library series. In the future the Great Library controls access to all information. Every citizen has a tablet and they can instantly call up access to whatever information they want. Except if that information is deemed unacceptable by the Great Library. Automatons guard buildings and act of their own accord attacking people they deem a danger or threat. Those in power are corrupt and when they feel threatened people inevitably die.

Jess Brightwell and his friends have decided they don’t like the corruption at the center of the Great Library. They are willing to risk their lives to put an end to it; some will die for it. The characters are wonderfully fleshed out and you will immediately become attached to them. This dark and riveting story will have you immediately wishing for the next book in the series to appear. Highly recommended!

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