March 2, 2021

February 2021 Round-Up

February 2021 round-up

I read a dozen books in February 2021. 11 ARCs from NetGalley or Edelweiss. And one library book. Some were books I’d been looking forward to since they were announced. Others were new-to-me authors that I discovered either through publishers’ catalogs. Or people singing their praises online. A reason that I love the online book community!

A Tale of Two Cookies

February 2021 Round-UpA Tale of Two Cookies by Eve Calder
Series: Cookie House Mystery #3
Published by St. Martin's Press on April 27, 2021
Genres: Mystery
Pages: 352
Format: Paperback
Goodreads
four-stars
Also by this author: Sugar and Vice

Blurb:

Pastry chef Kate McGuire is loving life on the laid-back island of Coral Cay, Florida. As the junior partner in a bakery renowned for luscious desserts—especially her cookies—life is pretty sweet. So when an old friend arrives and announces a spur-of-the-moment beach wedding, that’s just the icing on the wedding cake.

But the groom vanishes right as a television crew descends on the town to film a hot, new reality show. Is there a connection? Is her friend Desiree somehow involved? Or did groom Judson simply get cold feet? The bride and groom were paired better than warm cookies and cold milk, so Kate doesn’t buy it.


Happy Endings

February 2021 Round-UpHappy Endings by Thien-Kim Lam
Published by Avon on May 18, 2021
Genres: Romance
Pages: 320
Format: Paperback
Goodreads
three-half-stars

Blurb:

Trixie Nguyen is determined to make her sex toy business a success, proving to her traditional Vietnamese parents that she can succeed in a nontraditional career. She's made a fresh start in Washington DC, and her first pop-up event is going well—until she runs into the ex who dumped her. With a Post-it note.

The last person Andre Walker expected to see in his soul food restaurant was the woman he left behind in New Orleans. Their chemistry is still scorching, but he's desperately trying to save his family restaurant from gentrifying developers. The solution? Partnering with his ex to turn Mama Hazel’s into a vibrator pop-up shop for hungry and horny clients.


Fugitive Telemetry

February 2021 Round-UpFugtive Telemetry by Martha Wells
Published by Tordotcom on April 27, 2021
Genres: Science fiction
Pages: 176
Format: Hardcover
Goodreads
five-stars

Blurb:

When Murderbot discovers a dead body on Preservation Station, it knows it is going to have to assist station security to determine who the body is (was), how they were killed (that should be relatively straightforward, at least), and why (because apparently that matters to a lot of people—who knew?)

Yes, the unthinkable is about to happen: Murderbot must voluntarily speak to humans!

Again!


The Betrayals

February 2021 Round-UpThe Betrayals by Bridget Collins
Published by William Morrow on November 12, 2020
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 416
Format: eBook
Goodreads
four-stars

Blurb:

At Montverre, an exclusive academy tucked away in the mountains, the best and brightest are trained for excellence in the grand jeu: an arcane and mysterious contest. Léo Martin was once a student there, but lost his passion for the grand jeu following a violent tragedy. Now he returns in disgrace, exiled to his old place of learning with his political career in tatters.

Montverre has changed since he studied there, even allowing a woman, Claire Dryden, to serve in the grand jeu’s highest office of Magister Ludi. When Léo first sees Claire he senses an odd connection with her, though he’s sure they have never met before.


Serena Singh Flips the Script

February 2021 Round-UpSerena Singh Flips the Script by Sonya Lalli
Published by Berkley on February 16, 2021
Genres: Women's fiction
Pages: 352
Format: Paperback
Goodreads
four-stars
Also by this author: Serena Singh Flips the Script

Blurb:

Serena Singh is tired of everyone telling her what she should want--and she is ready to prove to her mother, her sister, and the aunties in her community that a woman does not need domestic bliss to have a happy life.


The Witch’s Heart

February 2021 Round-UpThe Witch's Heart by Genevieve Gornichec
Published by Ace on February 9, 2021
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 368
Format: Hardcover
Goodreads
four-stars

Blurb:

Angrboda's story begins where most witches' tales end: with a burning. A punishment from Odin for refusing to provide him with knowledge of the future, the fire leaves Angrboda injured and powerless, and she flees into the farthest reaches of a remote forest. There she is found by a man who reveals himself to be Loki, and her initial distrust of him transforms into a deep and abiding love.

Their union produces three unusual children, each with a secret destiny, who Angrboda is keen to raise at the edge of the world, safely hidden from Odin's all-seeing eye. But as Angrboda slowly recovers her prophetic powers, she learns that her blissful life—and possibly all of existence—is in danger.


Hot Copy

February 2021 Round-UpHot Copy on April 13, 2021
Genres: Romance
Pages: 297
Format: eBook
Goodreads
three-stars

Blurb:

Corinne Blunt knows what people think of her—she’s an icy, unapproachable executive. It’s the price she’s had to pay to get to the top. But there’s knowing you have a reputation in the office, and there’s hearing your new intern laugh when someone calls you “Blunt the C*nt” in the elevator on his first day.

She’d hoped to finally find an ally in Wesley Chambers, but she’s not about to let him off the hook for joining the office boys’ club. Taking refuge in the professional boundaries between them, she relegates Wes to assistant work—which would do the trick, if he weren’t so eager to prove he’s a decent human being.


Murder at the Taffy Shop

February 2021 Round-UpMurder at the Taffy Shop by Maddie Day
Published by Kensington Publishing on March 30, 2021
Genres: Mystery
Pages: 304
Format: Paperback
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: Murder at the Taffy Shop

Blurb:

When your mother is an astrologist and your dad is a minister, you learn to keep an open mind. This is just what Mac loves to do—exercise her mind by puzzling out fictional clues in the mystery novels she reads and discusses with her Cozy Capers Book Group.

But now Mac’s friend Gin has found herself in a sticky situation. After wealthy genealogist Beverly Ruchart is found dead outside Gin’s taffy shop, the candy maker becomes a person of interest. When it’s revealed that Beverly was poisoned the night Gin brought a box of taffy to a dinner party at Beverly’s house, she’s bumped to the top of the suspect list. It’s up to Mac and her Cozy Capers crime-solvers to unwrap this real-life mystery.


Faithless in Death

February 2021 Round-UpFaithless in Death by JD Robb
Published by St. Martin's Press on February 9, 2021
Genres: Mystery
Pages: 400
Format: Hardcover
Goodreads
four-half-stars

Blurb:

The scene in the West Village studio appears to be classic crime-of-passion: two wine glasses by the bed, music playing, and a young sculptor named Ariel Byrd with the back of her head bashed in. But when Dallas tracks down the wealthy Upper East Side woman who called 911, the details don't add up. Gwen Huffman is wealthy, elegant, comforted by her handsome fiancé as she sheds tears over the trauma of finding the body--but why did it take an hour to report it? And why is she lying about little things?

As Eve and her team look into Gwen, her past, and the people around her, they find that the lies are about more than murder. As with sculpture, they need to chip away at the layers of deception to find the shape within--and soon they're getting the FBI involved in a case that involves a sinister, fanatical group and a stunning criminal conspiracy.


All the Murmuring Bones

February 2021 Round-UpAll the Murmuring Bones by AG Slatter
Published by Titan Books on March 9, 2021
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 368
Format: Paperback
Goodreads
five-stars
Also by this author: All the Murmuring Bones

Blurb:

Long ago Miren O'Malley's family prospered due to a deal struck with the Mer: safety for their ships in return for a child of each generation. But for many years the family have been unable to keep their side of the bargain and have fallen into decline. Miren's grandmother is determined to restore their glory, even at the price of Miren's freedom.

A spellbinding tale of dark family secrets, magic and witches, and creatures of myth and the sea; of strong women and the men who seek to control them.


How to Find a Princess

February 2021 Round-UpHow to Find a Princess by Alyssa Cole
Series: Runaway Royals #2
Published by Avon on May 25, 2021
Genres: Romance
Pages: 400
Format: Paperback
Goodreads
three-half-stars
Also by this author: How to Catch a Queen
Also in this series: How to Catch a Queen

Blurb:

Makeda Hicks has lost her job and her girlfriend in one fell swoop. The last thing she’s in the mood for is to rehash the story of her grandmother’s infamous summer fling with a runaway prince from Ibarania, or the investigator from the World Federation of Monarchies tasked with searching for Ibarania’s missing heir.

Yet when Beznaria Chetchevaliere crashes into her life, the sleek and sexy investigator exudes exactly the kind of chaos that organized and efficient Makeda finds irresistible, even if Bez is determined to drag her into a world of royal duty Makeda wants nothing to do with.

When a threat to her grandmother’s livelihood pushes Makeda to agree to return to Ibarania, Bez takes her on a transatlantic adventure with a crew of lovable weirdos, a fake marriage, and one-bed hijinks on the high seas. When they finally make it to Ibarania, they realize there’s more at stake than just cash and crown, and Makeda must learn what it means to fight for what she desires and not what she feels bound to by duty.


Arsenic and Adobo

February 2021 Round-UpArsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala
Published by Berkley on May 4, 2021
Genres: Mystery
Pages: 336
Format: eBook
Goodreads
five-stars

Blurb:

When Lila Macapagal moves back home to recover from a horrible breakup, her life seems to be following all the typical rom-com tropes. She's tasked with saving her Tita Rosie's failing restaurant, and she has to deal with a group of matchmaking aunties who shower her with love and judgment. But when a notoriously nasty food critic (who happens to be her ex-boyfriend) drops dead moments after a confrontation with Lila, her life quickly swerves from a Nora Ephron romp to an Agatha Christie case.

With the cops treating her like she's the one and only suspect, and the shady landlord looking to finally kick the Macapagal family out and resell the storefront, Lila's left with no choice but to conduct her own investigation. Armed with the nosy auntie network, her barista best bud, and her trusted Dachshund, Longanisa, Lila takes on this tasty, twisted case and soon finds her own neck on the chopping block…


In conclusion

My February 2021 Round-Up was full of fantastic reads! I hope your February was as well.

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