Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe

Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe by Heather Webber

Published:  July 2019 – Forge Books

from my shelves

Description:  

THE USA TODAY BESTSELLER Heather Webber’s Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe is a captivating blend of magical realism, heartwarming romance, and small-town Southern charm.

Nestled in the mountain shadows of Alabama lies the little town of Wicklow. It is here that Anna Kate has returned to bury her beloved Granny Zee, owner of the Blackbird Café.

It was supposed to be a quick trip to close the café and settle her grandmother’s estate, but despite her best intentions to avoid forming ties or even getting to know her father’s side of the family, Anna Kate finds herself inexplicably drawn to the quirky Southern town her mother ran away from so many years ago, and the mysterious blackbird pie everybody can’t stop talking about.

As the truth about her past slowly becomes clear, Anna Kate will need to decide if this lone blackbird will finally be able to take her broken wings and fly. (publisher)

My take: What a lovely way to close out one year and begin a new one. I’m so happy I chose Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe to be my first book of 2021. This is a story of finding where you belong and having the courage to embrace it. There’s a touch of magical realism, a little romance, and a lot of heart. Its set in the small Alabama mountain town of Wicklow and filled with quirky characters – people looking for peace of mind and hoping for the courage to accept it. I loved it all and would love to read more by Heather Webber.


 

Lucky Bastard by Deborah Coonts

Lucky Bastard

  • Title:  Lucky Bastard
  • Author:  Deborah Coonts
  • Genre:  Mystery series
  • Published:  May 2013 – Forge Books
  • Source:   Review copy from publisher via NetGalley

Synopsis (publisher)Lucky O’Toole may have been promoted to Vice President of Customer Relations for the Babylon, Las Vegas’ primo Strip property, but nothing has changed. When Paxton Dane, a former member of the Babylon’s Security detail turned Private Investigator, discovers a young woman dead, sprawled across the hood of a new, bright red Ferrari California in the Babylon’s dealership, a Jimmy Choo stiletto stuck in her carotid, he calls Lucky to handle the problem.

Lucky’s life is already in precarious balance. Her mother, Mona, is pregnant, hormonal, bored, and looking for ways to fill her days. Teddie, Lucky’s former lover, has hit the road on his quest to find international stardom. But, realizing he’s made a mistake, he writes a song for Lucky, then hits the talk shows, pleading his case. Lucky is less than amused with the national spotlight on her personal life. She’s having enough trouble as it is fending off the amorous attentions of Chef Jean-Charles Bouclet, the Babylon’s tasty new dish. Lucky feels mixing business and pleasure with the chef is a sure-fire recipe for disaster.

And the timing could not be worse. The Smack-Down Poker tournament with all the media attention the second-largest poker tournament in the world attracts is holding it’s final table at the Babylon. Hookers, thieves, players, cheaters, media, and hangers-on all descend looking to win or to score.

When one of the major players turns up dead, Lucky starts putting the pieces together with the help of Cole Weston, a hearing-impaired professional poker player. They chase clues and suspects through Vegas to the storm drains underneath the city—where the runoff from a summer monsoonal shower turns deadly.

After a revelation by someone close to her sends her world reeling even further, Lucky struggles to keep her life in balance, and a murderer from killing again as bodies pile up.

Then, just when she’s losing control… life deals another major complication to her personal life….and it’s not going to be pretty.

My take:  Lucky O’Toole is the new VP of Customer Relations at The Babylon resort in Las Vegas. She’s a trouble shooter who seems to be constantly stalked by trouble. This time it finds her in the form of a dead body sprawled on top of a Ferrari in the dealership housed within the resort. You’d think one dead body would be enough but a few more are discovered within hours of each other. To make matters worse it seems someone close to Lucky is a prime suspect.

While trying to figure out why a friend is under suspicion of murder she also has to balance her love life. Things are heating up with the resort’s French chef and her ex continues to beg for forgiveness. When does this girl sleep?

I’ve never been to Las Vegas but I love my visits via the Lucky O’Toole series. On the surface its fun and glamorous but we also glimpse the seedy underside of the city. Lucky is a lovable character who has a knack for attracting trouble and then finds a way to help the LVPD solve the crime.

I find this series thoroughly entertaining and can’t wait to see what happens to Lucky next – in life and love.

For More Information, Please Visit DeborahCoonts.com

LuckyBastardVBT