Wednesday, August 16, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Grave Errors by Carol J. Perry


Title: Grave Errors
Series: Witch City Mystery #5
Author: Carol J. Perry

Goodreads Summary: Whose funeral will be next? 
For residents of Salem, Massachusetts, the day after Halloween brings empty candy wrappers, sagging pumpkins, and a community-wide identity crisis. That is, until Lee Barrett s TV production class suggests extending the spooky season with the traditional Mexican celebration Dia de Los Muertos. But when the students discover not all of Salem s dead are resting in peace, the post-October blues don t seem so bad after all . . . 
As if a series of haunting graveyard visits isn t disturbing enough, Lee and her policeman boyfriend connect the crime to an unsolved missing person case. Driven by a series of chilling psychic visions, Lee calls on her cleverest allies including her shrewd cat, O Ryan to go underground and dig up the evidence needed to put a lid on a cold case forever . . . before the latest headstone in town has her name on it! 

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

I loved this book, but I was also disappointed in parts of it. I like that Lee is a reluctant scryer. Her struggling with her ability really adds to the story. I really enjoyed the mystery, but I found the twists to be a bit predictable. The addition of a Day of the Dead celebration was awesome, but I felt that it was lacking a little in the explanation of the holiday and its traditions.

My Manicure: With a Day of the Dead theme going on, I just had to do sugar skulls. I honestly do not want to take this manicure off, I love it that much. I started out with Sinful Colors Black on Black - my favorite black creme. The sugars skulls were done with Bundle Monster 413 and the entire Electro Glo collection - Kandi Spirit, Monarch Dream, Tranceland, Mercury Bassline, Rave Babe, and Jungle Mirage. I don't have a blacklight to show it, but all six of the stamping polishes are blacklight reactive.


Monday, August 14, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Dog Dish of Doom by E.J. Copperman


Title: Dog Dish of Doom
Series: Agent to the Paws Mystery #1
Author: E.J. Copperman

Goodreads Summary: Kay Powell wants to find that break-out client who will become a star. And she thinks she's found him: His name is Bruno, and he has to be walked three times a day.

Kay is the Agent to the Paws, representing showbiz clients who aren't exactly people. In fact: they're dogs. Bruno's humans, Trent and Louise, are pains in the you-know-what, and Les McMaster, the famous director mounting a revival of Annie, might not hire Bruno just because he can't stand them.

This becomes less of an issue when Trent is discovered face down in Bruno's water dish, with a kitchen knife in his back. Kay's perfectly fine to let the NYPD handle the murder, but when the whole plot seems to center on Bruno, her protective instincts come into play. You can kill any people you want, but you'd better leave Kay's clients alone.

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

This was a really fun start to a new series. It has a unique sense of humor and over the top characters, which may not appeal to everyone, but I loved them. The mystery was well written, and it had a nicely paced plot.

My Manicure: I'm kind of in love with this manicure. I started with a base of Sinful Colors Black on Black. Then I stamped the dogs with Shany SH08 and Bundle Monster Monarch Dream, Tranceland, Mercury Bassline, and Rave Babe.


Wednesday, August 9, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Macramé Murder by Mollie Cox Bryan


Title: Macramé Murder
Series: Cora Crafts #3
Author: Mollie Cox Bryan

Goodreads Summary: As the head of a bustling crafting retreat, Cora Chevalier could use a break of her own. So she and her creative cohorts temporarily swap small-town Indigo Gap for the Sea Glass Island Craft Retreat, where they teach classes and create beachy crafts like shell mosaics and sea glass chimes. Cora and her boyfriend Adrian are enchanted by their surroundings—especially the stunning wedding and blissful newlyweds they encounter on the beach. But awe becomes shock when the bride turns up dead the next day . . .

The woman’s death appears to be the result of a severe jellyfish sting. But when it’s revealed that she was murdered and Adrian becomes a suspect, Cora must hitch the real culprit to the crime—and fast. Because it just might take everything she has to crack a case more twisted than her most complex macramé knot!

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

Oh, my. That opening scene was beautiful! I feel that in this book, I really had a chance to get to know the characters. The murder itself revealed a tangled web of deceit that reached much farther than I expected. There were some massive twists woven into the story, and I was a bit surprised when it was all revealed.

My Manicure: In the opening scene, there is a gorgeous beach wedding with the bride looking like a mermaid. So, these are my bridal mermaid nails. I started with Finger Paints Paper Mache, then topped that with Bundle Monster Curious Matter. The stamping was done with Bundle Monster 502 and Bundle Monster Bam! White.


Monday, August 7, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - All Signs Point to Murder by Connie di Marco


Title: All Signs Point To Murder
Series: Zodiac Mystery #2
Author: Connie di Marco

Goodreads Summary: The stars predict a wedding-day disaster, but San Francisco astrologer Julia Bonatti never expected murder

Julia Bonatti is alarmed by the astrological signs looming over Geneva Leary’s wedding day, but nobody asked Julia’s opinion and being a bridesmaid means supporting the bride no matter what. Even with the foreboding Moon-Mars-Pluto lineup in the heavens, no one’s prepared for the catastrophes that strike: a no-show sister, a passed-out wedding planner, and a lethal shooting in the dead of night.

With anger and grief threatening to tear the Leary family part, Julia is determined to understand how such a terrible tragedy could occur. As she digs deeper into the family’s secrets, her astrological insights will lead her to the truth about a criminal enterprise that stretches far beyond the California coast.

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

This was an interesting book, but I wish it did a better job of explaining the astrology parts. Since astrology and the mystery are tied together, I felt that the lack of explanation detracted from it. The characters were definitely interesting, and I'm looking forward to getting to know them better.

My Manicure: I went for a super simple look today. Since the book is astrology themed, I did a nice basic galaxy manicure. I started with KBShimmer Myth You Lots. I love how this polish reminds me of some of the Hubble galaxy pictures I've seen online. Then I took a piece of a cheapy sponge and dabbed Bundle Monster Bam! White on my accent nails. As usual with multichromes, the awkward finger angle is to show off the amazing shift.


Wednesday, August 2, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Oh, Fudge! by Nancy Coco


Title: Oh, Fudge!
Series: Candy-Coated Mystery #5
Author: Nancy Coco

Goodreads Summary: Life is always sweet in Allie McMurphy s delectable fudge shop. But murder can make things unpleasantly sticky . . . 

After Allie inherited her family s McMurphy Hotel and Fudge Shop, cousin Tori moved off to California in a bitter huff, and the two haven t spoken since. So to have her cousin reappear on Mackinac Island without warning is a big surprise but not as surprising as finding her standing over a dead woman impaled with a garden spade in the Mackinac Butterfly House. Butterflies may be free, but Tori won t be for much longer unless the cousins can bury the hatchet and work together to catch a killer who s taken flight. Because when it comes to family, blood is thicker than fudge . . . 

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

The setting and main characters were wonderful, but the mystery felt a little too simple. I also felt that Tori was a little too over-the-top at times. The scenes at the senior citizen center were my favorite - I loved how they were easily bribed with fudge, and not afraid to admit it. It was interesting to get a look at how the islanders view people. Although Allie lives on the island, she is still viewed as an outsider, which hinders her investigation at times.

My Manicure: Once I saw "butterfly garden" I knew exactly what I was doing. I started with Finger Paints Of Quartz You Can for a little shimmer in the base. Then I took pieces of a cheapy sponge and dabbed on Bundle Monster Tranceland, Mercury Bassline, and Monarch Dream. Finally, I stamped butterflies on my ring finger with Bundle Monster BM307 and So Metal.


Monday, July 31, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Cat About Town by Cate Conte


Title: Cat About Town
Series: Cat Cafe Mystery #1
Author: Cate Conte

Goodreads Summary: The first novel in a frisky new mystery series set in a small New England town, where an unlikely citizen is called in to solve the purrfect crime. . .

Maddie James has arrived in Daybreak Island, just off the coast of Massachusetts, eager to settle down and start her own business―and maybe even fall in love. When a stray orange tabby pounces into her life, she’s inspired to open a cat café. But little does Maddie know that she’s in for something a lot more catastrophic when her new furry companion finds the dead body of the town bully. Now all eyes are on Maddie: Who is this crazy cat-whisperer lady who’s come to town? If pet-hair-maintenance and crime-fighting weren’t keeping her busy enough, Maddie now has not one but two eligible bachelors who think she’s the cat’s pajamas . . . and will do anything to win her heart. But how can she even think about happily-ever-after while a killer remains on the loose―and on her path?

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

I really enjoyed this book. The mystery was great, and I loved the ending. It did start out a bit sad and slow, but the pacing did pick up pretty quickly.

My Manicure: I went for the easy inspiration this time. I started with Zoya Alicia to add a bit of glitz. Then I stamped the cat with QA40 and Bundle Monster Straight Up Black. Cute, but simple.


Wednesday, July 26, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Assaulted Caramel by Amanda Flower


Title: Assaulted Caramel
Series: Amish Candy Shop Mystery #1
Author: Amanda Flower

Goodreads Summary: Sometimes you need a sweet tooth to take a bite out of crime . . .

Bailey King is living the sweet life as assistant chocolatier at world-famous JP Chocolates in New York City. But just when Bailey’s up for a life-changing promotion, her grandmother calls with news that her grandfather’s heart condition has worsened. Bailey rushes to Harvest, Ohio, where her grandparents still run Swissmen Sweets, the Amish candy shop where she was first introduced to delicious fudge, truffles, and other assorted delights.

She finds her grandfather is doing better than she feared. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for a local Englisch developer, whom Bailey finds dead in the candy shop kitchen—with Jebediah King’s chocolate knife buried in his chest. Now the police are sweet on her grandfather as the prime suspect. Despite the sincere efforts of a yummy deputy with chocolate-brown eyes, Bailey takes it on herself to clear Jebediah. But as a cunning killer tries to fudge the truth, Bailey may be headed straight into a whole batch of trouble . . .

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

This was a great start to a new series. It had a great mystery and awesome characters. The setting was wonderful, and I wish it was real so I could visit! I'm definitely looking forward to the next book.

My Manicure: Mmmm, chocolatey drips. I was going to do chocolate covered caramels, but I don't have a caramel colored polish. I started with a base of Zoya Cinnamon. Then I used What's Up Nails drip vinyls and Philly Loves Lacquer 6PM Thanksgiving Coffee Run for the chocolate drips.


Monday, July 24, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Knot What You Think by Mary Marks


Title: Knot What You Think
Series: Quilting Mystery #5
Author: Mary Marks

Goodreads Summary: The newest member of Martha’s close-knit quilting circle has an eye for couture. But when the designer’s fingerprints are found blanketing a crime scene, Martha must prove that he didn’t have a hand in homicide! 

Martha Rose is alarmed by the discovery of Dolleen Doyle’s dead body, especially when evidence suggests a fellow quilter committed the crime.  Set on clearing her pal, Martha searches for answers—but with ties to a convicted fraudster’s stolen millions and a secret office room, the victim’s past raises even more questions. As Martha inches towards the culprit, she learns that wrapping the case up—and living to baste another square—will be trickier than she ever imagined . . .

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

I giggled, I laughed, I snorted...all in the first few pages. This is the first book that I have read in this series, and it definitely won't be the last. It definitely is a series that should be read in order due to spoilers, but if you read them out of order you'll still be able to follow the story. The mystery was great, with some very interesting revelations, and the epilogue was absolutely wonderful.

My Manicure: I attempted to go with a quilt type design today. It actually had to be done a little backwards from my normal process. I started out with stamping the images, but leaving them on the stamper. That was done with Bundle Monster 607 and Straight Up Black. After it dried, I painted in some of the spots with some unlabeled Color Club polishes. Then I painted my nails with Finger Paints Of Quartz You Can. After that dried, I put some Orly Bonder on my accent nails and stamped the painted images on.


Wednesday, July 19, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Leave It To Cleaver by Victoria Hamilton


Title: Leave It To Cleaver
Series: Vintage Kitchen Mystery #6
Author: Victoria Hamilton

Goodreads Summary: Vintage cookware and cookbook collector Jaymie Leighton has agreed to help her sister clear out the house of a deceased older neighbor, and she’s thrilled at the prospect of discovering antique kitchenware and other treasures—until she opens a vintage trunk in the cellar and finds the remains of a teenage girl with a cleaver buried in her skull. When the body of a second girl is found just days later in a nearby river, the clues all indicate that the crimes are connected—and that the culprit’s motives are hidden in the past. 

Jaymie just wants to cut and run, but the victims were both high school classmates of her sister when they disappeared, and that makes Jaymie the perfect person to help the local police investigate the killings. As she dredges up old memories and even older rivalries and jealousies, her list of suspects grows. But Jaymie knows she’ll have to whittle it down to just one, and fast, because someone has decided to cut their ties to Jaymie—in the most fatal of ways . . . 

Includes a vintage recipe! 

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

This is the first book I've read in this series, and I found it interesting. Even though I had no idea who the characters were, I has no problem following the story. The jumping back and forth through time with different viewpoints was a bit jarring at first, but in the end it really added to the story and helped to show the past events rather than just tell them. I did find the mystery to be a little too easy to solve.

My Manicure: Today I was inspired by the red knit sweaters that were woven through the story. I started with a base of Finger Paints Brilliant Brushstroke. Then I stamped with Bundle Monster 203 and Red Sea to give a slightly knit look.


Monday, July 17, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Killer Party by Lynn Cahoon


Title: Killer Party
Series: Tourist Trap Mystery #9
Author: Lynn Cahoon

Goodreads Summary: For a gang of old college buddies, the quaint resort town of South Cove, California, is the perfect spot for a no-holds-barred bachelor party. But for Jill Gardner—owner of Coffee, Books and More—this stag party is going to be murder . . .

After a few months of living with her boyfriend Greg, Jill is still getting used to sharing such close quarters, but she’s got no hesitation about joining him for a weekend at South Cove’s most luxurious resort. While Greg and his college pals celebrate their buddy’s upcoming wedding, Jill intends to pamper herself in style. But when the groom is found floating facedown in the pool, Jill must find the killer fast, or she might not have a boyfriend to come home to any more . . .

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

That is how a mystery should be written! It had a surprising ending, yet it didn't feel like it came out of nowhere. There were also some nice little mini mysteries to help keep the plot moving. I also loved how stories from Greg's past were woven through the story, helping to make him feel like a more complete character.

My Manicure: Oh my gosh, this is summer in a manicure! I was going for a pool party theme, which turned to cocktails by the pool. I started out with Zoya Kiki, because hot pink just screams summer to me. Then I stamped the drink with Bundle Monster 507 and So Metal.


Wednesday, July 12, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Dead Storage by Mary Feliz


Title: Dead Storage
Series: Maggie McDonald Mystery #3
Author: Mary Feliz

Goodreads Summary: As a professional organizer, Maggie McDonald brings order to messy situations. But when a good friend becomes a murder suspect, surviving the chaos is one tall task . . . 

Despite a looming deadline, Maggie thinks she has what it takes to help friends Jason and Stephen unclutter their large Victorian in time for its scheduled renovation. But before she can fill a single bin with unused junk, Jason leaves for Texas on an emergency business trip, Stephen’s injured mastiff limps home—and Stephen himself lands in jail for murder. Someone killed the owner of a local Chinese restaurant and stuffed him in the freezer. Stephen, caught at the crime scene covered in blood, is the number one suspect. Now Maggie must devise a strategy to sort through secrets and set him free—before she’s tossed into permanent storage next . . .

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

I almost feel like I need different ratings for different parts of this book. Overall, it is a good book. The mystery, which is the most important part, was very well-written and a bit surprising. The rest of the book was a bit heartbreaking as it talked about PTSD in humans and animals.

My Manicure: I decided to go for an American themed manicure since the plot revolves around a veteran. I started with Finger Paints Magritte's Masterpiece (blue) and Zoya Renee (red). Then I stamped the stars using Bundle Monster H25 and KBShimmer PT Young Thing.


Monday, July 10, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - 30 Second Death by Laura Bradford


Title: 30 Second Death
Series: Toby Tobias Mystery #2
Author: Laura Bradford

Goodreads Summary: To help an old friend, Tobi Tobias gets a third-rate thespian a part in a commercial, and learns that in the advertising business, bad acting can lead to murder . . .

When Tobi Tobias opened her own advertising agency, Carter McDade was there for her every step of the way. A brilliant hairdresser, Carter has just landed his dream project: doing hair and makeup for a theatrical production of Rapunzel. But the dream turns into a nightmare when he runs into Fiona Renoir, a cruel, talentless starlet who won’t let Carter touch a hair on her head.

To get Fiona out of Carter’s hair, Tobi hires the difficult actress for a bit part in her latest commercial. But true to character, Fiona is a terror on set, and Tobi is starting to think she’s made the biggest mistake of her life. But things get even worse when Fiona drops dead in the hairdresser’s chair, and the only suspect is the man left holding the tainted hair dye, Carter McDade. And unless Tobi can prove his innocence, he’ll never do hair in this town again.

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

I absolutely love this series! This was another book that I have been impatiently waiting for since I finished the first book, and now I'm anxiously awaiting book three. The romantic bits were a bit predictable, but oh my gosh that mystery! I loved it! There were so many suspects and some good motives. Add in a visit from her grandpa and the plot was jam-packed from beginning to end.

My Manicure: I finally got to do a manicure manicure! Part of the spa day commercial is a mani/pedi, so I had to do a mani themed mani. I started with a base of KBShimmer Rollin' With The Chromies because it is one of my all time favorites. OK, now that I stopped staring at my nails yet again... The stamping was done with Bundle Monster 619 and So Metal. Seriously, those polish bottles are just too cute! And I do apologize for the awkward angle of my finger in the picture, but it was the only way I could show off the awesome shift.


Wednesday, July 5, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Death in D Minor by Alexia Gordon


Title: Death in D Minor
Series: Gethsemane Brown Mystery #2
Author: Alexia Gordon

Goodreads Summary: Gethsemane Brown, African-American classical musician and expatriate to an Irish village, solved a string of murders, led a school orchestra to victory in a major competition, and got used to living with a snarky ghost. She can rest easy over the Christmas holiday. Right? Wrong. The ghost has disappeared, her landlord's about to sell her cottage to a hotel developer, and her brother-in-law is coming for a visit—with one day’s notice.

She scrambles to call her spectral roomie back from beyond and find a way to save the cottage from certain destruction. But real estate takes a backseat when her brother-in-law is accused of stealing a valuable antique. Gethsemane strikes a deal with a garda investigator to go undercover as a musician at a charity ball and snoop for evidence linking antiques to a forgery/theft ring in exchange for the investigator’s help clearing her brother-in-law. At the party, she accidentally conjures the ghost of an eighteenth-century sea captain, then ends up the prime suspect in the party host’s murder. With the captain’s help, she races to untangle a web of phony art and stolen antiques to exonerate herself and her brother-in-law. Then the killer targets her. Will she save herself and bring a thief and murderer to justice, or will her encore investigation become her swan song?

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

I have been waiting impatiently for this book since I read Murder in G Major. I can honestly say it was worth the wait. The mystery ended up being more amazing than I thought it would be. My only minor issue is that there is one scene that felt a little too descriptive for a cozy. It isn't overly gory or disturbing, but there was just enough detail to send my imagination into overdrive.

My Manicure: Another fashion inspired flop today. The inspiration is an iridescent silver dress with a diamond necklace. I started with KBShimmer PT Young Thing topped with Sally Hansen Disco Ball on most of my nails. This gave a holographic silver plus iridescent glitter look. On my ring finger I used Zoya Sue stamped with Mash 70 and PT Young Thing, then topped the stamping with Disco Ball and added Swarovski AB rhinestones for the diamonds.


Monday, July 3, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - If the Haunting Fits, Wear It by Rose Pressey


Title: If the Haunting Fits, Wear It
Series: Haunted Vintage Mystery #5
Author: Rose Pressey

Goodreads Summary: As fashion maven Cookie Chanel tracks a murderer at the Kentucky Derby, all bets are off...

When Cookie Chanel lands a dream assignment of providing vintage hats for a high-society Kentucky Derby party, she's brimming with excitement. Leaving her mother and best friend to mind the store at It's Vintage Y'All, Cookie packs up her psychic cat and races to Kentucky. But before she can hang her hat, her enthusiasm is dampened when the rider of the potential Derby-winning horse is put out to pasture. Now she's saddled with the jockey's ghost, who insists she find his killer. With suspects ranging from an odds-on favorite to a dark horse, Cookie may just find herself in a dead heat before the photo finish...

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

This was so much fun to read! The ghosts are awesome, and the random comments and bickering added a lot of humor. I absolutely love "Grandma Pearl's Pearls of Wisdom." She sounds like she would've been such a sassy character. The mystery itself felt a little weak, but I can't pinpoint exactly what didn't work for me.

My Manicure: I attempted to do one of Cookie's dresses, but I kind of failed. Partially because I simply hate yellow on me. I started with a base of Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Buttercup. Pretty in the bottle, kind of ugly on me, and a streaky mess. Then I stamped my flowers with Winstonia 212 and Bundle Monster Bam! White, then stuck a rhinestone in the center of each one.


Wednesday, June 28, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Death of a Lobster Lover by Lee Hollis


Title: Death of a Lobster Lover
Series: Hayley Powell Food and Cocktail Mystery #9
Author: Lee Hollis

Goodreads Summary: Food and cocktails columnist Hayley Powell is off on a girls' getaway with her two best friends. But soon they'll have to get away from a killer...

The quaint fishing village of Salmon Cove, Maine, seems like the ideal location for a girls' weekend with Hayley's gal pals, Liddy and Mona. Liddy's on the rebound from a breakup, but when she meets a handsome tourist, it looks like a little romance might liven things up.

Unfortunately, Liddy's new sweetheart is found dead on the beach the next morning at the town's Lobster Bake, next to an overturned cooking pot. The liberated lobsters may be scrambling back to the sea, but Hayley's not about to let a murderer escape so easily. To crack the case, she'll need to blow the lid off some serious undercover activity--or risk becoming ensnared in a killer's trap...

My Review: **I voluntarily reviewed this ARC**

I'm still in shock at that ending. As the mystery unfolds, it really is one shock after another. My only complaint is that you really need some tissues handy for the final column. The recipes sound delicious, and I'm working on figuring out if I can turn those cocktails into mocktails.

My Manicure: Since there is a definite ocean setting to the book, I went for an ocean themed manicure. I started with a base of Finger Paints Inkblot Blue, then topped it with Laugh My Art Off. Then I stamped using Bundle Monster 502 and Bam! White.


Monday, June 26, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Death of a Bachelorette by Laura Levine


Title: Death of a Bachelorette
Series: Jaine Austen Mystery #15
Author: Laura Levine

Goodreads Summary: Freelance writer Jaine Austen thought working for a knock-off reality show in the tropics would be paradise. But when she and her kitty Prozac find themselves trapped between a dimwitted leading man, catty contestants, and a cold-blooded murderer, the splashy gig becomes one deadly nightmare...

Jaine's life has been a royal pain since she started penning dialogue for Some Day My Prince Will Come--a cheesy dating show that features bachelorettes competing for the heart of Spencer Dalworth VII, a very distant heir to the British throne. As if fending off golf ball-sized bugs on a sweltering island wasn't tough enough, Jaine must test her patience against an irritable production crew and fierce contestants who will do anything to get their prince...

But Jaine never expected murder to enter the script. When one of the finalists dies in a freak accident, it's clear someone wanted the woman out of the race for good--and the police won't allow a soul off the island until they seize the culprit. Terrified of existing another day without air conditioning and eager to return home, Jaine is throwing herself into the investigation. And she better pounce on clues quickly--or there won't be any survivors left...

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

Oh my gosh this was so funny! In a way, it was a typical Jaine Austen book, but at the same time it manages to mix things up a bit. I loved the mystery, and was a bit sad when the book ended. I can't wait for the next book to come out.

My Manicure: Since Jaine is on a fabulous trip to Tahiti, I went with a tropical theme. The "ocean" is KBShimmer Ink Again, one of my favorite blues. The palm trees were stamped with MoYou London Tourist 17 and Bundle Monster Straight Up Black.


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - The Tell-Tale Tarte by Maya Corrigan


Title: The Tell-Tale Tarte
Series: Five-Ingredient Mystery #4
Author: Maya Corrigan

Goodreads Summary: It's a cold January in the Chesapeake Bay area, but Cool Down Cafe manager Val Deniston has plenty to sweat over--like catering a book club event, testing recipes for her Granddad's cookbook, and catching the author of a deadly tale of murder. . .

The last thing Val needs in her life is an unsolved murder, especially when the victim, an actor famed for impersonating Edgar Allan Poe, happens to be dressed exactly like her Granddad. To keep an eye on Granddad, whose latest job takes him to the home of Rick Usher, a local author inspired by Poe, Val gets herself hired as a cook in Rick's House of Usher. When she discovers the actor wasn't the only one doing an impersonation, separating the innocent from the murderous becomes a real-life horror story. But Val must decipher a killer's M.O. sooner rather than later . . . or she can forget about finding poetic justice.

Includes 6 delicious five-ingredient recipes!

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

This was an interesting book. The Poe facts were a neat addition and helped make the story feel a little more real.

My Manicure: My inspiration this time around was the "tell-tale tarte". I started with a base of Zoya Blair. Then I stamped with Bundle Monster H13 and Heart of Gold. This look will be perfect for fall.


Monday, June 19, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Murder at the Puppy Fest by Lauren Berenson


Title: Murder at the Puppy Fest
Series: Melanie Travis #20
Author: Laurien Berenson

Goodreads Summary: Frolicking with dogs is Melanie Travis's idea of heaven. So when she's invited to be a "puppy wrangler" at a benefit for a local dog rescue, the last thing she expects is to be chasing after a tricky killer...

As a busy mom and pedigree Poodle owner, Melanie has little time to spare. Still, she doesn't mind helping out at Puppy Fest, an annual fundraiser to benefit Puppy Posse, a local dog rescue organization. Considering the venue--Belle Haven mansion, owned by wealthy philanthropist Leo Brody--it's shaping up to be the can't-miss charity event of the summer. Unfortunately, when Melanie's breeding background lands her in the doghouse with Jane, Leo's snappy daughter who runs the rescue, Melanie finds herself simultaneously managing Puppy Fest and the millionaire's hopelessly fractious family.

But once Puppy Fest kicks off, Leo is nowhere to be found--until Melanie discovers his current mistress crouching over his dead body. According to police, the father of nine's severe nut allergy went into overdrive after he accidentally consumed a contaminated cookie. However, Libby, one of Leo's children and a friend of Melanie's Aunt Peg, believes someone deliberately put him down for good. And now, she's begging a reluctant Melanie to unearth the secrets hidden by the Brody pack. But the closer Melanie gets to fetching answers, the higher the stakes become--and the more she realizes that she's chasing a criminal who's been groomed to win...

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

I definitely have mixed feelings about this one. Overall it was interesting, and I loved Kevin and the dogs. The mystery was really good until it got to the motive. I also really didn't like Aunt Peg's attitude towards mutts, but I liked that pound puppies were a big part of the book.

My Manicure: For this manicure, I wanted to keep the colors simple. It's been a while since I did a basic black and white color scheme, which also happens to be perfect for a dog theme. I started with a base of Finger Paints Paper Mache. Then I did a water marble with it and Sinful Colors Black on Black. It's really weird for me to have no holo, shimmer, glitter, or even splash of color in my manicure, but I think the simple color scheme really makes the design pop.

And now for the funny pictures. This is what a water marble looks like pre-cleanup. All the way to my knuckle, under my nails... yeah, it was a pain to cleanup.


Wednesday, June 14, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Sweet Tea and Spirits by Angie Fox


Title: Sweet Tea and Spirits
Series: Southern Ghost Hunter Mystery #5
Author: Angie Fox

Goodreads Summary: Southern girl Verity Long is about as high society as her pet skunk. Which is why she’s surprised as anyone when the new head of the Sugarland social set invites her to join the "it" girls. But this is no social call. Verity’s new client needs her to go in undercover and investigate strange happenings at the group’s historic headquarters. 

But while spirits are whispering hints of murder, the socialites are more focused on Verity’s 1978, avocado-green Cadillac. And when Verity stumbles upon a fresh body, she's going to need the long-dead citizens of Sugarland to help her solve the crime. Good thing she has the handsome deputy sheriff Ellis Wydell on hand, as well as her ghostly sidekick Frankie. The bad thing is, the ghosts are now whispering about the end of a certain ghost hunter.

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

I love this series! I found Frankie's storyline to be very entertaining this time. Seriously, I think Angie Fox managed to fit a bit of everything in there - including a ghost being afraid for his (after)life. Verity's storyline was also really good, with some very interesting revelations.

My Manicure: Yay! A semi-successful water marble! I was inspired by the colors on the cover. I am a total purple lover, so it was perfect for me. I started with a base of Vapid Pegasus Poots, which makes me giggle every time I type it. The marbling was done with Pegasus Poots and ILNP Kings & Queens. I had a little trouble with my ring finger, but I love how my middle finger looks. My next step is figuring out how to avoid making a mess of my fingers. Seriously, I had polish all the way to my knuckle.


Monday, June 12, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Antiques Frame by Barbara Allan


Title: Antiques Frame
Series: Trash 'n' Treasures Mystery #11
Author: Barbara Allan

Goodreads Summary: With their reality TV series, "Antiques Sleuths," Brandy Borne and her quaintly kooky mother, Vivian, have a real hit on their hands. But another hit enters the picture, after a rival bidder becomes a one-woman show at their televised auctions and it s the estranged wife of Brandy s police-chief beau, Tony! Soon the fine art of murder colors the scene, fitting Brandy for an ornately elaborate frame. 
But when you re inside a frame, it s difficult to make out the picture. That s why Brandy s mom her daughter now wearing basic jailhouse orange must sort through a rogue s gallery of suspects including a too-friendly farmer s wife, a ratings-happy TV producer, a questionable husband-and-wife auctioneer team, and even the chief of police himself. 
Brandy and Vivian race to determine how an empty antique frame can hold a deadly portrait, a picture worth a thousand dangerous words. Aided only by Sushi, their loyal shih tzu, and police dog Rocky, the wacky mother-and-daughter sleuthing team must learn the killer s identity before they become the subjects of another masterpiece of murder. 

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

Oh my gosh, I could not stop laughing! The format of the book is unique, with the narration alternating between Brandy and Vivian as they "write" their book. Every so often the editor has to jump in to get Vivian back on track. The mystery was interesting, but for me reading Brandy and Vivian's antics was the best part.

My Manicure: This was supposed to be Sushi inspired. I'm blaming too much sun for how it turned out. I started with a base of Sinful Colors Kovet for a nice cream base. I then blobbed on Dollish Polish SQUIRREL!!!, Philly Loves Lacquer 2 AM Coffee Run, Zoya Cinnamon, and KBShimmer Yeti or Not, and dabbed and smooshed it with plastic wrap.


Wednesday, June 7, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Treble at the Jam Fest by Leslie Budewitz


Title: Treble at the Jam Fest
Series: Food Lovers' Village #4
Author: Leslie Budewitz

Goodreads Summary: Erin Murphy, manager of Murphy’s Mercantile (aka the Merc), is tuning up for Jewel Bay’s annual Jazz Festival. Between keeping the Merc’s shelves stocked with Montana’s tastiest local fare and hosting the festival’s kick-off concert, Erin has her hands full.

Discord erupts when jazz guitarist Gerry Martin is found dead on the rocks above the Jewel River. The one-time international sensation had fallen out of sync with festival organizers, students, and performers. Was his death an accident—or did someone even the score?

Despite the warning signs to not get involved, Erin investigates. And when the killer attacks, she orchestrates her efforts into one last crescendo, hoping to avoid a deadly finale.

My Review: **I voluntarily read this ARC**

I absolutely love the descriptiveness of this book. Leslie Budewitz has a way with words that paints a gorgeous picture. The mystery was great, with plenty of suspects.

My Manicure: This was one of those manicures that planned itself before I was even done with the book. I was inspired by storm clouds rolling in. The base is Zoya Temperance. The stamping is done with Bundle Monster 312 and So Metal.

And now for an amusing bonus. I really loved the sound of the Peach Bellini, but I can't do champagne. So I made up a faux Bellini with sparkling white grape juice. And of course I have to include a hilariously awkward photo of it.


Monday, June 5, 2017

My Nails and My Book Review - Death by Vanilla Latte by Alex Erickson


Title: Death by Vanilla Latte
Series: Bookstore Cafe Mystery #4
Author: Alex Erickson

Goodreads Summary: Ever since cafe owner Krissy Hancock settled into a relationship and mostly forgot about old flames, life has become surprisingly serene. Too bad her father, famed mystery writer James Hancock, had to pay an unexpected visit to Death by Coffee and brew up a batch of trouble... 
While caught off-guard by her dad's presence, Krissy never dreamed he'd become the biggest murder suspect in town. But that's exactly what happens when James's boorish agent a man he allegedly fired just hours earlier is found cold and lifeless, a still-warm vanilla latte resting by his hand... 
With Pine Hills divided over her father s innocence and a fanatical fan keen on locking the author away for safe keeping, Krissy must end the madness and identify the real criminal even if that means meeting an ex or two along the way. But as her social life becomes increasingly chaotic, Krissy may be caught in a case that's far too hot to handle...

My Review: **I voluntarily reviewed this ARC**

Oh my gosh, Krissy's dad needs to visit more often! I loved how his character was written, and he added a lot to the story. The mystery was great, with lots of suspects and a personal connection to Krissy.

My Manicure: Coffee! Coffee, coffee, coffee... OK, I might be going a little overboard with that intro, but I couldn't help it. I mean, really, it's a coffee shop setting, so I had to go with coffee. And I really shouldn't be trying to blog when I'm tired - I get a little rambly. My base is Finger Paints Of Quartz You Can. I wanted something that would actually show the stamping, but wasn't just plain white. Then I stamped on coffee beans and coffee drinks with MoYou London Cookbook 03 and Bundle Monster Annatto Clay.