The Cellist

I have always enjoyed the Gabriel Allon spy series by Silva, but this latest is a bit disappointing. I found it rather long on details and very political, which is not what I expected to find. The author makes his opinions known to the reader, and he adds an addendum at the end of the book explaining all the fine points on the last presidential election. If you’re into political mysteries, however, then you’ll enjoy this title.

Arsenic and Adobo

What happens when a food critic falls into his meal and dies at your aunt’s restaurant? Lila is determined to discover how her ex-boyfriend Derek could have been poisoned at her Tita Rosie’s cafe. And someone had planted drugs in Lila’s restaurant locker, so she is furious at being accused of dealing drugs. With the aid of her Filipino godmothers and her best friend Adeena, who works next door at Java Jo’s, Lila goes after the murderer. Can she find out the culprit before it’s too late? This is the first in a new series by Mia Mansansala. Lots of interesting recipes at the back of the novel to try out, too!

The Vanishing Stair

Number two in the Truly Devious teen mystery series, The Vanishing Stair has Stevie Bell returning to the prestigious Ellingham Academy, where the murder of a student took place before she was sent home. Edward King, a politician that her parents work for, convinces those parents to let Stevie go back to the school. In turn, he expects her to keep an eye on his son, whom Stevie likes very much. Actually, the same intensity of feeling with which she dislikes Edward King. Another student’s dead body turns up, and the stakes are raised. Can Stevie solve the mystery of Ellingham and catch the murderer before it’s too late? Tune in to find out…

Stranger in the Mirror

The Stranger in the Mirror starts off strong and then the plot seems to go off the deep end. The main character, Addison, is about to get married to a wonderful man, but has a past that haunts her. Actually, she can’t remember anything about her past beyond two years ago when she was found walking on the side of the road and rescued by a kind stranger. In those two years her memory has failed to return and she has moved on. Alternate chapters are from the point of view of Addison’s husband, Justin, who has been looking for her for the past two years after his beloved wife and mother of his young daughter suddenly went missing. The obvious questions arise: why/how did Addison lose her memory? Is her new husband-to-be or old husband dangerous? Will she recover her memory and remember her old life? Stretching the limits of the reader’s suspension of disbelief, The Stranger in the Mirror entertains for the first half of the story until the plot gets a bit far beyond believable. An entertaining summer suspense read.

Legacy of Murder

This title is number 2 in the Kate Hamilton mysteries written by Connie Berry. Kate, an antiques dealer, travels to England to visit her daughter Christine, where she is interning at an old English mansion. The woman planning an exhibition at the mansion winds up murdered, and Kate steps in. But can she solve the murder of the young woman before the murderer strikes again? An enjoyable cozy mystery…