Alice loves her job and wants to keep it – whatever the price. But then she’s told the company is switching to flexible working and hot desking…Alice’s desk might look a mess, but she knows exactly where everything is. Or she did. Until she found out she’s going to share it with the most annoying guy in the office.
Jamie can work from anywhere. He’s quite happy to sweep his work life into a box at the end of the working day. But can sharing a desk with Alice be as much fun as teasing her in person?
With no option but to try it and see, will their relationship turn into open warfare or will it ever progress beyond a post-it note?
Source: NetGalley and One More Chapter Rating: None, DNF at 54%
The Bottom Line: Honestly, I can’t believe I made it to the 54% mark with this book. The synopsis sounded so fun, and I do love a well-organized desk, but Alice’s whining simply became too much, and I had to throw in the towel. From the moment the book opens, Alice is whining either aloud or via her inner monologue about one injustice or another and at some point, I realized I was reading the same sentences (figuratively speaking) over and over again. I think I held on as long as I did hoping the book would take a turn and Alice would begin to evolve, the become something more, and really bring me around to rooting for her. Unfortunately, none of that happened by the halfway point and I had to, sadly, give up on this read.
Vivian Wainwright is living her dream. The middle-aged widow owns the Misty Bay Tearoom, a quaint, English-accented shop on the Oregon coast. But on the eve of the tearoom’s second anniversary, the dream turns nightmarish when a man falls to his death from a hotel balcony.
The body belongs to Dean Ramsey, ex-husband of Vivian’s assistant, Jenna. Detective Tony Messina quickly zeroes in on Jenna as prime suspect, since she was seen leaving the hotel shortly before the body was found.
Vivian and her other assistant, Gracie, set out to help clear Jenna’s name, using their wit and a bit of criminology know-how Vivian picked up from her late attorney husband. Detective Messina is on board, but he’s starting to develop feelings for his number one suspect. Puzzling questions persist–chief among them, whose clothes was Dean wearing when he landed on the rocky shore?
To complicate matters, Vivian’s friend, pet shop owner Hal Douglass, seems to know some secrets about the hotel that could add a long list of names to the suspect list…including Hal’s own. Vivian must work quickly because if she can’t, Jenna faces a murder rap…or worse.
Source: NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books Rating: None, DNF at 15%
The Bottom Line: Historically, Crooked Lane Books has been a great publishing house for me, and I have fallen in love with several of their series. Unfortunately, this series isn’t going to fall into that category. At 15% I realized all the characters were reading as the same person for me and I couldn’t really connect to the story. Even with an early murder, I found the pacing to be incredibly slow and with no real sense of urgency. It was easy for me to set this book aside and move on to the next offering.
Returning home from the daily hunt for the rationed ingredients necessary to keep his family pâtisserie open, André Albert finds his four-year-old son in the street, his wife gone, and an emaciated Jewish woman cowering behind the display case.
Without Mireille, the foundation of André’s world crumbles. He desperately searches for her, but finds more trouble than answers. Lives are further jeopardized when he agrees to hide Émilie, the escapee, and a Nazi officer shows up to investigate Mireille’s disappearance.
André will do anything to bring his wife home, catapulting him, their son, and Émilie on a perilous journey impeded by temptation, past trauma, and stunning revelations.
Source: NetGalley and Mortal Coil Books Rating: None, DNF at 30%
The Bottom Line: UGH! Yet another World War II era read that just didn’t hit the mark for me. I very much like the premise of this book but found the execution lacking. There are simply too many issues with this book to get me beyond the 30% mark. I found Andrė to be a rather tiresome character, his response to his wife’s disappearance to be rather unbelievable, and the appearance of the Jewish woman to be odd. I’m sure that last bit would have eventually been explained, but for me, it was too little too late, and Andrė, as a character, became unbearable. I wanted this story to come together and be interesting and engaging, but that didn’t happen by the 30% mark, so I set this one aside for a different story.