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Ronna

ratings
164
REVIEWS
163
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
83
HELPFUL VOTES
386

  • The Right Side of Wrong: A Red River Mystery, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Reavis Z. Wortham
    • Narrated By Traber Burns
    Overall
    (9)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (8)

    In 1965 Constable Cody Parker’s frightening dreams of gathering storm clouds for the tight-knit Parker family from Center Springs, Texas, proved accurate. Cody is ambushed and nearly killed on a lonely country road during an unusually heavy snowfall. With that attack, the locals fear that a disturbed murderer "the Skinner" has returned to their community. While his nephew recovers, Constable Ned Parker struggles to connect a seemingly unrelated series of murders.

    Ronna says: "Thoroughly entertaining thriller of a yarn!!!"
    "Thoroughly entertaining thriller of a yarn!!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This third installment of the Red River mysteries is once again a good old fashioned, rip roaring, 1960's, Texas, western. The story combines more modern day western thrills with lawmakers and desperadoes, and great yarns narrated by a couple of pre-teen scalawags. You'll pardon my language, considering I just finished this thoroughly entertaining book!

    Constable Cody Parker was shot at while driving down a backroad during an unusual Texas snow storm. Badly smashed within his car and a tree, Cody is rescued by a new elderly man in town, Tom Bell, just in time to save Cody's body from becoming food for a hungry pack of wild dogs. Constable Ned Parker begins the search for the shooter and finds himself caught in a new evil coming to his town. Tearing down illegal whiskey stills was easy work compared to the trouble caused by these new drug traders. Meanwhile, the kids, Top and Pepper, are satisfying their curiosity about, Ted Bell. Thus the adventures and goosebumps begin!!

    Once again, Wortham combines, mystery, thrills, humor, and good old fashioned story telling as his characters get into, and barley out of, trouble. Red River is still a distinctly segregated place, but the main characters are a mix of whites, blacks, American Indians, and Mexicans who defy these boundaries within their communities to work and love together, as God intended. The misadventures of Top and Pepper add a rich element to the story as well. This book is not quit like any other book out there today, and is a greatly appreciated change. I thoroughly enjoyed this third installment, and am looking forward to many more books from Reavis Z Wortham.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Wrong Girl

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Hank Phillippi Ryan
    • Narrated By Ilyana Kadushin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (14)

    Hank Phillippi Ryan presents a spine-chilling, heart-wrenching suspense novel that explores a terrifying scenario striking at the heart of every family. Does a respected adoption agency have a frightening secret? Tipped off by a determined ex-colleague on a desperate quest to find her birth mother, Boston newspaper reporter Jane Ryland begins to suspect that the agency is engaging in the ultimate betrayal - reuniting birth parents with the wrong children.

    Ronna says: "Overworked child services leads to greed & murder"
    "Overworked child services leads to greed & murder"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This second book in the Investigative reporter, Jane Ryland, series is greatly aided by the knowledge that Hank Phillippi Ryan, a TV reporter herself, has in how a story is developed through personal investigations, police procedurals, and keeping all your sources available for inside information.

    Jane is working for a floundering Boston newspaper when her friend, Tucker, asks her to help her. Tucker has been matched up with her birth mother and they are getting along beautifully, until Tucker finds out that she's been matched with the wrong woman. At the same time, Jane's boss sends her out on a story of a murdered woman, also being investigated by her secret boyfriend, Jake, on the Boston police force. These investigations slowly collide in a larger investigation of the Brannigan Agency that matches adoptees and birth mothers, the foster care system, Child Services, and greedy individuals.

    The pace and building atmosphere of this story are superb in creating great tension and plot that made me feel that I was deeply involved with these people's lives. The problems that are present in the extremely overworked child and foster care system were aptly used in creating a very believable, but deeply troubling plot for this mystery. Definitely a memorable book. I listened to this on audio and believe that added a great deal to my enjoyment of this book !

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Boiled Over: A Maine Clambake Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Barbara Ross
    • Narrated By Dara Rosenberg
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    For Julia Snowden, the Founder's Day summer celebration in Busman's Harbor, Maine, means helping her family's clambake company to prepare an authentic taste of New England seafood. Any Mainer will tell you that a real clambake needs wood for the fire... so why is there a foot sticking out of the oven?

    Ronna says: "Families ties can be murder"
    "Families ties can be murder"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Julia Snowden left her high powered New York job to help her family keep the Snowden Family Clambake making a profit, but she still plans to return to her "real" job. She's already helped in one murder investigation, getting her boyfriend out of trouble. Now on the Founder's Day committee, she comes to the docks to check on the Snowden families giant Clam baking oven, just to find a human leg hanging out of the fire and her newest young employee, Cabe, running away from the scene. Drawn into the investigation once again, Julia sets out to prove that this nice young kid, Cabe, is definitely innocent.

    I really have been enjoying this series. I like the atmosphere and food descriptions of the Maine coast and all of it's seafood. The cast of returning characters have really grown on me, and the situations and clues to this new mystery are done with suspense that kept me guessing, but definitely led me to the solution. I listened to this on audio and enjoyed the narration.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Clammed Up: A Maine Clambake Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Barbara Ross
    • Narrated By Dara Rosenberg
    Overall
    (5)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (3)

    Julia Snowden returned to her hometown to rescue her family's struggling clambake business - not to solve crimes. But that was before a catered wedding on picturesque Morrow Island turned into a reception for murder. When the best man's corpse is found hanging from the grand staircase in the Snowden family mansion, Julia must put the chowder pot on the back burner and join the search for the killer. And with suspicion falling on her old crush, Chris Durand, the recipe for saving her business and salvaging her love life might be one and the same…

    Ronna says: "Clambakes can be deadly!!"
    "Clambakes can be deadly!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This new Maine Clambake Series starts off with a hanging body at a wedding. Not a good thing for a wedding celebration or the Snowden Family Clambake Company. Julia Snowden has left her high power job in New York to try and keep her family's floundering business from going under. Everything has been invested to keep it going, including her Mom's house, their boat, and the island where they have their clambakes.

    I really enjoyed this book as the mystery took a few twisting turns and the conclusion was different but very believable. Also enjoyed the emphasis on family sticking together--those by blood and those by long time friendships. The hints at future romantic entanglements between a few of the characters left me wanting to get right into the next book. Recipes were included, and the food descriptions in the book made me feel like I was right there at the clambake. Winning start to this new series!

    I listened to this on audio and really enjoyed the added dramatics. I'm finding that cozy reads are really fun to listen to as well as to read.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Reading Circle

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Ashton Lee
    • Narrated By Kate Baldwin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    Welcome to the quirky town of Cherico, Mississippi, where potluck meetings at the local library provide a feast for mind and stomach alike. . .If some folks had their way, the Cherico library would have shut down long ago. Councilman Durden Sparks aims to divert funding to a cause dear to his heart - and his wallet.

    Ronna says: "Can Maura Beth keep the library open?"
    "Can Maura Beth keep the library open?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The Cherry Cola Book Club of Cherico, Mississippi is on it's one year reprieve from Councilman Spark's determination to close the town's library down and use the funds to build his "Legacy", an industrial park--(THE CHERRY COLA BOOK CLUB). But librarian, Maura Beth Mayhew, still has tricks up her sleeve and a growing number of friends and patrons who are backing her efforts to keep the library open.

    As with the first book, there's interesting information on just what it takes to keep a library open. There's also an intriguing discussion of another book, FOREST GUMP, that gets it's members lives and view points front and center. The characters are becoming much more developed, with some romances and secrets revealed. The southern charm, humor, and gumption continues making this a terrific read. Secrets revealed give this story the bases for lots more books in this series--I hope!!

    I listened to the Audible version of this book which added lots of enjoyment to an already great read!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Cherry Cola Book Club

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Ashton Lee
    • Narrated By Marguerite Gavin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (15)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (15)

    In a small town in Mississippi, a young, upbeat librarian has been given an ultimatum: increase the library’s circulation dramatically or close its doors. Maura doesn’t just start a book club; she gets involved in unique and unexpected ways with her patrons. She entertains and advises, she has potluck dinners, and life in the town begins to imitate art. The patrons begin to relate their own lives to the work of writers like Margaret Mitchell and Harper Lee. In moving and personal ways, Maura helps them deal with such subjects as long-lost love and a brush with death.

    Ronna says: "Library book club full of "characters""
    "Library book club full of "characters""
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you love your library and reading books, this is an excellent take on keeping a library going. This story is witty, informative, and full of southern small town charm. The Cherry Cola book group in Mississippi, was born out of desperation when librarian, Maura Beth Mathew finds that a crotchety city councilman wants to close down the library and use those funds to start a commercial area. If numbers of library users and library events don't raise, the library closes.

    The characters who make up the book group are quite interesting and diverse. Their discussions of Gone With The Wind and To Kill A Mockingbird cover everything from history to personal issues, with great warmth and lots of humor. Of course, the councilman's contributions are definitely meant to foil the fun.

    I really enjoyed this book, learning a lots about libraries and librarians, but mostly I enjoyed all the characters and their creative efforts to keep their library the center if their community and a treat in their lives. I listened to the audio version of this book and thoroughly enjoyed it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The City

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Dean Koontz
    • Narrated By Korey Jackson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (112)
    Performance
    (105)
    Story
    (100)

    There are millions of stories in the city - some magical, some tragic, others terror-filled or triumphant. Jonah Kirk’s story is all of those things as he draws listeners into his life in the city as a young boy, introducing his indomitable grandfather, also a "piano man"; his single mother, a struggling singer; and the heroes, villains, and everyday saints and sinners who make up the fabric of the metropolis in which they live - and who will change the course of Jonah’s life forever. Welcome to The City, a place of evergreen dreams where enchantment and malice entwine.

    justin says: "How exactly a 2-star review with 4 hours???"
    "Simple but profound coming of age story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It's very difficult for me to pin point why I enjoy Koontz's writing so much, but I thoroughly enjoy every book of his that I have read. It's the way he turns a phrase, and seven words are actually better than one word in his writing. He takes simple thoughts and makes them sound profound. He makes me think with just the simplest statements. For example, in THE CITY, he says numerous times, "no matter what happens, everything will be all right in the end.". For most people's belief systems, this is very true, but I never thought of it in such a straight forward way.

    THE CITY is basically the coming of age story of a young African American boy, Jonah Kirk, born in the late 40's. He tells his life story around the events of the day. He's a musical prodigy from a musical family. Though his father had left the family when Jonah was very young, circumstances happen where his father's actions actually have a profound affect on Jonah's life.

    It's difficult to say any more about this story without giving spoilers, so I'll just say that Koontz still remains one of my favorite authors and I think that it's definitely worth any serious reader's time to enjoy the style and stories of Koontz. I listened to this on Audible which I believe enhanced this story because it seemed as though Jonah was actually talking about his own life.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Death of a Kitchen Diva

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Lee Hollis
    • Narrated By Tara Ochs
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (24)
    Performance
    (21)
    Story
    (21)

    Single mom Hayley Powell is barely keeping her leaking roof over her head when her boss at the Island Times gives her a new assignment - taking over the paper's food column. Hayley's not sure she has the chops - she's an office manager, not a writer, even if her friends clamor for her mouth-watering potluck dishes. But the extra income is tempting, and Hayley's chatty first column is suddenly on everyone's menu - with one exception. When rival food writer Karen Appelbaum is found face-down dead in a bowl of Hayley's creamy clam chowder, all signs point to Hayley.

    lola says: "protagonist was boring"
    "Newspaper recipe writer cozy mystery"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Small town newspaper office manager, Hayley Powell, finds a little extra income by taking over her newspaper's food recipe column. She's in competition with the town's larger newspaper's foodie columnist. When they both come out with the same recipe for clam chowder tongues wag. Worse still, when Hayley goes to confront her competitor, she finds her dead on the floor with her spilled chowder. Being the main murder suspect sends Hayley on a dangerous path to prove her innocence.

    This start to a new cozy series has potential, but needs to improve to win me over. Hayley's parenting skills have a lot to be desired. Though my biggest issue was that the murderer really wasn't discussed enough in the book to give the reader a chance to discover who they were. The recipe columns were perhaps the best part of the book. Will give the next in the series a try before deciding to continue with this series or not.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Gods of Gotham

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Lyndsay Faye
    • Narrated By Steven Boyer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (516)
    Performance
    (442)
    Story
    (446)

    It is 1845. New York City forms its first police force. The great potato famine hits Ireland. These two seemingly disparate events will change New York City. Forever.... Timothy Wilde tends bar near the Exchange, fantasizing about the day he has enough money to win the girl of his dreams. But when his dreams literally incinerate in a fire devastating downtown Manhattan, he finds himself disfigured, unemployed, and homeless. His older brother obtains Timothy a job in the newly minted NYPD, but he is highly skeptical of this new "police force".

    Joanne says: "A wonderful book"
    "Beginning of New York detectives"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    In 1845 New York, the city is full of contention because of all the Irish immigrants coming to America to escape the potato famine. Everything is blamed on Catholicism, with numerous tracts written laying every ill at their feet. There are some who want to help the poor and downtrodden and those who push for conversion to Protestantism before help will be given. But life goes on anyway possible. The houses of prostitution and the political party meetings are gathering places for the powerful and poor alike. Within all this is the beginning of the New York "coppers"-- policeman who try to keep order within the city.

    Timothy Wilde was a barman until a tremendous fire burned a large part of the city. His politically minded, fireman, older brother got him a job as a "copper". When a ten year old girl, covered in blood, comes running and hollering down the street--"they're going to tear him to pieces", Timothy begins an adventure that also starts the beginning of a detective force that will investigate crimes rather than just try to keep the peace. An adventure that will test everything within him.

    Religious, political, and other tensions are played out very well in this mystery . Chapters are headed by quotes from the times. The life styles of the people is very different but earlier similar to today in some places. The characters drew me into the story immediately. Though I suspected the culprits, I was still spellbound with the story. Definitely good historical atmosphere written into a compelling mystery. I listened to the audio version, which added a lot to my enjoyment of this book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Murder at Ebbetts Field

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Troy Soos
    • Narrated By Johnny Heller
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    Murder at Ebbets Field whisks you back to the golden beginnings of professional baseball and the innocent glamour of the first motion pictures. The 1914 race for the pennant is heating up, and Giant's rookie Mickey Rawlings dreams of playing in the World Series. But vicious publicity swirls around him when he discovers the body of a glamorous movie star - who just happens to be the new Dodgers owner - at Coney Island. Soon bad luck stalks him, calling outs on and off the field.

    Ronna says: "Murder mystery with baseball and movies"
    "Murder mystery with baseball and movies"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    MURDER AT EBBETTS FIELD by Troy Soos--Second mystery outing for Mickey Rawlings. Now he's with the New York Giants and is hoping to play in the World Series. But being a utility player, he is asked to do numerous things just to stay part of the team. When a movie producer asks for a Giant player to be in his movie with starlet, Florence Hampton, Rawlings is picked, because being in a movie is not a good thing for a ball player.

    After the glitzy after movie opening party, Florence is found necked and dead by the beach. The thing is, Florence hated the water. So was it an accident , suicide, or murder. Rawlings' newspaper friend from the first book, asks Mickey to find out what really happened to her. Since Rawlings did so well solving an earlier murder, he agreed. It also didn't hurt that another starlet encouraged Mickey and agreed to help him, because Florence was her best friend.

    Lots of fun information kept me intrigued with this book, but there was perhaps a bit too much movie info for someone wanting a summer baseball read. But the mystery was great and I didn't know what happened until Mickey figured it out. Soos' books remind a bit of Agatha Christie's Poirot, in that the story takes many twists and turns, then the murderer is names with the complete explanation to follow at the end.

    I am learning lots about the times with these baseball books, so I plan to continue with the series. I listened to this on audio which added to my enjoyment.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Tattered Quilt

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Wanda E. Brunstetter
    • Narrated By Renee Ertl
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (14)

    More lives need some mending... Amish widow-turned-newlywed Emma Yoder Miller begins another quilting class with a new group of unlikely students, all with tattered pieces of their lives that need mending. Selma is a belittling busybody. Terry is a rugged roofer who just wants a casual date with a pretty classmate. Blaine loses a bet and has to join the class, where he soon finds himself in friendly competition with Terry. Anna’s mother signs her up in a desperate attempt to keep Anna from leaving the Amish faith.

    Susan Fryman says: "The Tattered Quilt"
    "Quilts, friendships, love and God--"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is the second book built around shattered, unhappy, and needy lives. Emma Yoder Miller was a widow who found her wonderful new husband in the last quilting class. Now she continues to run six week quilting classes, with her husband, for the people that God sends her. A strange group of people have found themselves beginning classes whether they want to or not.

    Anna is 18 and wants to experience life outside of her Amish community, but her mother has signed her up for this class in hope of keeping her from the Englishers. Selma was gifted with these classes by a neighbor who finds her abrasive attitudes in need of attention. Terry is a blue collar guy who sees a pretty girl in the class and decides to join in hopes of getting a date. Blain just lost a fishing bet and grudgingly goes to class as a looser. Carmen has her own secret motive, and Cheryl just wants her favorite grandmother's quilt mended and stays around for the class.

    This book takes this rag muffin group into the perfect place for them to learn that God is watching out for all his people, and has a plan for everyone to find joy in his presence within their own different and varied lives. Emma is the catalyst, and quilting is the means for great lessons and conversations about life, love, family and God. I really enjoy this series and hope it continues with more books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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