Lucky Catch by Deborah Coonts

  • LuckyCatch_Final(5)Title:  Lucky Catch
  • Series:  Lucky O’Toole #5
  • Author:  Deborah Coonts
  • Published:  August 2014 – Cool Gus Publishing
  • Source:  Publicist

Synopsis:  Trouble always comes in threes. At least that’s what Lucky O’Toole, the VP of Customer Relations for Las Vegas’ primo Strip casino/hotel, the Babylon, has heard for years from her mother. So, tonight, when Teddie, her former lover shows up at her office unannounced and very unexpected, her father offers Teddie a job at the Babylon, she is called to deal with a pig in residence at one of the hotels most exclusive and opulent suites, and Lucky’s current lover, Jean-Charles Bouclet stops answering his phone leaving Lucky to handle his five-year-old son, Lucky figures she has tonight’s compliment of chaos covered.

As usual, she is a tad optimistic.

With a cadre of celebrity chefs with the maturity of teenagers in Vegas for a televised cook-off, a prized Alba truffle in the Babylon’s care, and her mother’s pregnancy racing toward the inevitable, what could go wrong?

When the truffle is stolen from the walk-in in Jean-Charles’ gourmet burger joint at the Babylon and a young chef apparently killed with a smoking gun is found in Jean-Charles’ food truck on the back lot, trouble takes a sinister turn.

And Jean-Charles still isn’t answering his phone.

Another body is discovered. This one stuffed in an oven at Jean-Charles’ eponymous restaurant and set to broil.

Desperate to put a lid on the body count and more than frantic over her AWOL lover, Lucky uses her Vegas contacts to search in places and in ways the police wouldn’t or couldn’t. Teddie insists on riding shotgun. Lucky hasn’t the time nor the resolve to say no. She’s never been able to resist Teddie … not really. With danger dogging their heels, Lucky finds herself falling once again under his spell as they traverse Vegas, being drawn deeper and deeper into the highly competitive world of high-end eateries and the battle for the very rare, most highly prized gourmet foodstuffs.

Would somebody really kill for a truffle?

In a heartbeat.

And when Lucky’s path crosses the killer’s… will her goose be cooked?  (publisher)

My take:  I was so happy to be given a chance to read the latest Lucky O’Toole mystery. Deborah Coonts is back  with a new Vegas mystery featuring our favorite amateur sleuth, Lucky O’Toole. This time Lucky ‘s current beau goes missing – and at the same time the prized truffle due to be used in a cooking competition at the resort seems to be lost.

And then two dead bodies found on the premises of The Babylon Resort need to be dealt with. Finding out whodunit is just one of the items on Lucky’s list of things to do. She also has to deal with a pig in one of the resort’s exclusive bungalows; some curious RFID tags; and people who are not whom they appear to be – and that’s just the top of the list.

As usual, I enjoyed my visit to Lucky O’Toole’s Las Vegas. The setting is mostly high-end and the characters are all sorts of people. Lucky is still questioning her relationship with her current man while maybe second-guessing her last one. The cast of regulars in her world make appearances in Lucky Catch and help to solve the mystery. I liked it all and look forward to the next book in the series. Recommended to fans of fun mysteries. Lucky Catch is part of a series. It can stand on its own. You don’t have to read the series in order but that’s what I’d recommend!

Sunday Post

Happy Autumn!  The news this week is my daughter and her fiancé welcomed Gordon into their home. He’s a very sweet West Highland Terrier. It’s nice to have another dog in the family (we said goodbye to our 15-year-old Bailey last winter).

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Book arrivals:  (linked to Mailbox Monday)

you were meant for me (Oct7)  venice in the moonlight (Oct2)

Last week on Bookfan:

the fortune hunter  a place called harmony

Currently reading:

that summer (CD)  Mr. Miracle (Vine Oct7)

Happy reading!

Blog tour/Review: A Place Called Harmony by Jodi Thomas

Today I’m pleased to welcome back author Jodi Thomas whose new book A PLACE CALLED HARMONY  will publish on Tuesday, October 7, 2014. (Click here to preorder)

a place called harmonyIn A PLACE CALLED HARMONY readers will be looking at Harmony for the first time.  I enjoyed writing about the three men who were brave enough to travel half of Texas to build a town.  All three men came to me full and strong as did the women who loved them.  From the opening I was running full gallop with a plot.  With my great-grandmother’s chest sitting in front of my desk, I felt like I was loading up the wagon and heading for a new life.

Patrick McAllen had grown up on the gulf coast of Texas.  He had to run away to avoid his father’s wrath and shy little Annie agreed to go with him. Captain Matheson didn’t even know his family was relocating to build a town where only a trading post stood.  When he got to his wife Daisy, he realized how much having him near meant to her and how dearly he needed his ever-growing family.

Clint Truman had been looking for a way to die since he’d lost his family.  Drunk and down on his luck, a sheriff offered him a choice.  Go to jail or head north to build a town.  Clint didn’t think much of the idea but when he met a woman half-dead from starvation and caring a newborn in her arms, he saw someone who needed him and he couldn’t turn away.

As they all moved toward the trading post, each found not only a direction in life, but true love.

Step into the beginning of a town called Harmony.  Ride along with me through the adventures and the love stories.

Thank you for reading,

Jodi Thomas

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Jodi Thomas is the NY Times and USA Today bestselling author of 40 novels and 12 short story collections. A four-time RITA winner, Jodi currently serves as the Writer in Residence at West Texas A&M University in Canyon, Texas.

www.jodithomas.com

www.facebook.com/JodiThomasAuthor

www.twitter.com/jodithomas

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  • a place called harmonyTitle:  A Place Called Harmony
  • Series:  Harmony #8
  • Author:  Jodi Thomas
  • Genre:  Romance (Historical)
  • Published:  October 2014 – Berkley
  • Source:  Publisher

Description:  Jodi Thomas has captivated America with her novels set in the small town of Harmony, Texas. Now she tells the story of the three hard-luck men who first settled the town, a place where last chances and long-awaited dreams collide…

Desperate to escape his overbearing father, Patrick McAllen disappears with his bride, heading north to build a new town— discovering strength, honor and true love along the way.

After drinking away the grief from his family’s death, Clint Truman avoids jail by taking a job in North Texas and settling down with a woman he vows to protect but never love—until her quiet compassion slowly breaks his hardened heart wide open…

All Gillian Matheson has ever known is Army life, leaving his true love to be a part-time spouse. But when a wounded Gillian returns home to find her desperately fighting to save their marriage, he’s determined to become the husband she deserves.

Amidst storms, outlaws, and unwelcome relatives, the three couples band together to build a town—and form a bond that breathes life into the place that will forever be called Harmony.  (publisher)

My take:  A Place Called Harmony is a must read for fans of Jodi Thomas and her Harmony series. I loved it. It was fun to see how the place where her modern-day series takes place got its start. The ancestors of the main characters of the Harmony series helped to build the town.

The Trumans, McAllens and the Mathesons meet after taking a man up on his offer to help build a town. We see them from the beginning and how they grow to be friends for life. Not only that, we see how each man meets his wife and begins a new journey together. I loved all three stories. These are good people who’ve survived tragedies and still trust that life can get better with the mates they’ve been fortunate enough to find.

A Place Called Harmony is a romantic adventure. It’s truly an American pioneer story and I recommend it. Included at the end is an excerpt from the next book in the Harmony series: One True Heart. It will be out in April 2015. I can’t wait to read it!

Wondrous Words Wednesday

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Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Kathy at Bermudaonion where you can share new words that you’ve encountered or spotlight words you love. Join in by writing a post and then add your link to Mr. Linky at Bermudaonion.


This week I’m reading WHEN THE SNOW FALLS. It’s a Christmas anthology including 4 stories/novellas by Fern Michaels, Nancy Bush, Rosanna Chiofalo, and Lin Stepp. I found two words that are new to me:

folderol – fol·de·rol –  Trivial or nonsensical fuss

“I’m not sure what I think about Christmas as a whole. I like some of it, but all the folderol can sometimes give me the heebie-jeebies. Actually, too much of anything can do that.”   (White Hot Christmas by Nancy Bush)

funicular – fu·nic·u·lar – A cable railroad, especially one on a mountainside, in which ascending and descending cars are counterbalanced.

“Not only are the views astounding from the summit but the funicular itself is an engineering feat.”   (Seven Days of Christmas by Rosanna Chiofalo)

When the Snow Falls (Oct7) Kensington

Definitions from the Oxford dictionaries (online) 

The Fortune Hunter by Daisy Goodwin

  • the fortune hunterTitle:  The Fortune Hunter: A Novel
  • Author:  Daisy Goodwin
  • Genre:  Historical Fiction
  • Published:  July 2014 – St. Martin’s Press
  • Source:   Publisher

Synopsis:   Empress Elizabeth of Austria, known as Sisi, is the Princess Diana of nineteenth-century Europe. Famously beautiful, as captured in a portrait with diamond stars in her hair, she is unfulfilled in her marriage to the older Emperor Franz Joseph. Sisi has spent years evading the stifling formality of royal life on her private train or yacht or, whenever she can, on the back of a horse.

Captain Bay Middleton is dashing, young, and the finest horseman in England. He is also impoverished, with no hope of buying the horse needed to win the Grand National—until he meets Charlotte Baird. A clever, plainspoken heiress whose money gives her a choice among suitors, Charlotte falls in love with Bay, the first man to really notice her, for his vulnerability as well as his glamour. When Sisi joins the legendary hunt organized by Earl Spencer in England, Bay is asked to guide her on the treacherous course. Their shared passion for riding leads to an infatuation that jeopardizes the growing bond between Bay and Charlotte, and threatens all of their futures.

The Fortune Hunter, a brilliant new novel by Daisy Goodwin, is a lush, irresistible story of the public lives and private longings of grand historical figures.  (publisher)

My take:  I’m a fan of historical fiction (especially the Victorian era) so when I was offered a copy of The Fortune Hunter I was happy to accept. I liked that one of the main characters was Austrian Empress Elizabeth (Sisi to family and friends) – someone I knew little about. She was an unusual and unhappy woman. Her husband Franz Joseph married her and then ignored her. She seemed to finally find happiness when she escaped her sheltered life in Austria and came to England to hunt.  Sisi was even happier when introduced to Captain Bay Middleton who would become her hunting pilot (guide) and possibly more.

At first my feelings toward Bay were mixed. He was all but promised to young heiress, Charlotte Baird, when he met the Empress. He appeared to genuinely love Charlotte but then was easily taken in by the Empress who wasted no time in drawing him into her world. He seemed to have no qualms about leaving his old world behind. In the end, I didn’t waste much sympathy on him.

I thought The Fortune Hunter was a rather quiet novel. The pace picked up in the second half and I enjoyed it but the first half was rather slow as the characters and their homes and hunts were laid out in great detail.

If you enjoy historical novels rich in detail you may want to read this book. I’m glad I did and will be interested to see what Daisy Goodwin writes about next.

Sunday Post

Book arrivals  (linked to Mailbox Monday)

make my wish come true (Nov3) A Quilt for Christmas (Oct14) school of fish (Sept30) that summer (CD)

Last week on Bookfan:

cancel the wedding (Aug5)  LuckyCatch_Final(5)

Currently reading:

When the Snow Falls (Oct7) Kensington

Happy reading!