Blog Tour Review: The Development

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Title: The Development
Author: Jackie Kabler
Genre: Fiction
Publisher: Accent Press
Source: Neverland Blog Tours
Release Date: May 10, 2018
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

After a stressful week, TV reporter Cora Baxter is ready for a quiet weekend. What she isn’t counting on is witnessing the shocking death of a young woman on her way home.

Cora discovers that seventeen-year-old Leanne has been protesting against a new housing development, angering the powerful establishment. Leanne’s death is ruled a suicide but, when puzzling information comes to light, Cora decides to investigate further.

She might not know what an unscrupulous businessman, a suspended police officer and hate-mail sending neighbours have to do with the case – but she does know there is a news story there.

With her eccentric camera crew on hand to help, can Cora work out what happened in the days before Leanne’s death? And was it really suicide after all?

Review:

I enjoyed this mystery!

I felt a personal connection to this story because the main character lives near Gloucestershire, which is home to my university, University of Gloucestershire. I’m currently doing my Master’s remotely, but I will be going to Gloucester to graduate in the fall, so I loved reading about the town!

This story really kept me on the edge of my seat. I couldn’t predict what the clues would reveal. I also liked that Cora worked as a news reporter. She had a perfect position to explore the case, while also being removed from it. She also was able to get permission to work on it for the news, which was a bonus. Most of the time in books when someone who isn’t on the police force wants to investigate something, they get in trouble, but Cora was lucky.

I really enjoyed this crime filled mystery!

About the Author:

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Jackie Kabler is a journalist, TV presenter and author. She spent twenty years as a TV news reporter for GMTV, ITV and BBC news, and now works as a presenter for shopping channel QVC and is author of the Cora Baxter Mysteries, a series of  murder mysteries set in a television newsroom. The Development is her third novel. Jackie lives in Gloucestershire with her husband, who is a GP.

Website jackiekabler.com

Twitter @jackiekabler

Facebook www.facebook.com/jackiekablerauthor

Instagram @officialjackiekabler

Thank you Neverland Blog Tours for letting me participate in this blog tour.

Review: The Stone of Destiny


Title: The Stone of Destiny: A Sherlock Holmes Adventure
Author: Richard T. Ryan
Genre: Mystery
Publisher: MX Publishing
Source: Author
Release Date: June 5, 2017
Rating: ★★★★★

Goodreads Synopsis:

During the elaborate funeral for Queen Victoria, a group of Irish separatists breaks into Westminster Abbey and steals the Coronation Stone, on which every monarch of England has been crowned since the 14th century. After learning of the theft from Mycroft, Sherlock Holmes is tasked with recovering the stone and returning it to England. In pursuit of the many-named stone, which has a rich and colorful history, Holmes and Watson travel to Ireland in disguise as they try to infiltrate the Irish Republican Brotherhood, the group they believe responsible for the theft. The story features a number of historical characters, including a very young Michael Collins, who would go on to play a prominent role in Irish history; John Theodore Tussaud, the grandson of Madame Tussaud; and George Bradley, the dean of Westminster at the time of the theft. There are also references to a number of other Victorian luminaries, including Joseph Lister and Frederick Treves. For fans of Conan Doyle’s immortal detective, the game is always afoot. However, for the great detective the stakes have never been higher as he must mollify a king who refuses to ascend the throne until “order has been restored.”

Review:

I have never read a Sherlock Holmes mystery that wasn’t written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. I was always worried the author wouldn’t capture the true essence of Sherlock. Luckily, Richard Ryan did a great job at creating a new mystery for the iconic detective. 

Watson’s narration read just like the original stories. He went along with whatever Sherlock suggested. Also, like many Sherlock mysteries, I learned something new along the way. I didn’t realize that contact lenses were invented so long ago (and now you’ll have to read the story to find out how/why Sherlock encountered contact lenses!). 

I also liked the way that the narration alternated between Watson’s account and a narration of the theives. I could see the whole story unfolding, but it still wasn’t clear how Sherlock would find the missing stone (and I knew he would because Sherlock always figures out the mystery). When John and Sherlock were separated, Sherlock explained to him later what he was doing in his absence. This was a great way of explaining what was happening without a narrator present for it. 

One thing that I would have liked to see more of was Sherlock’s deducing. That was always one of my favourite parts of his mysteries. There was some seducing but I would have liked to see more of it, because that skill is what makes Sherlock unique. 

I loved this story! I highly recommend it for any fans of Sherlock Holmes. 

Emma Watson as Belle

For my first blog post I am writing about one of my idols, Emma Watson. She’s such a role model with her He for She campaign and her Our Shared Shelf book club. She has also portrayed two of my favourite characters on the big screen: Hermione Granger and Belle. Both characters are avid readers, and were a huge inspiration to me when I was a kid. I wouldn’t be writing this today if it weren’t for those two characters, so it means so much that this amazing actress is the face of both of them.

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Photo from Elle.com

This dress from the London premiere of Beauty and the Beast says it all! She is a real princess in this gown. Just look at that train! Her co-star, Dan Stevens even carried the train for her, proving her princess status.

I think she’s an amazing person and I admire her so much!

Here’s the link to the article at Elle.com about her dress: http://www.elle.com/fashion/celebrity-style/news/a43291/emma-watson-cinderella-dress-london-beauty-and-the-beast-premiere/