Mini reviews: A mixed bag. 14 by JT Ellison 2*, The Twelve Dice of Christmas by Gail Oust 3*, Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater 4*.

14 by JT Ellison

Goodreads synopsis

In the mid-1980s the Snow White Killer terrorised the streets of Nashville, Tennessee. Then suddenly the murders stopped. A letter from the killer to the police stated that his work was done. Now four more bodies are found, marked with his fatal signature. The residents fear a madman has returned, decades later, to finish his sick fairy tale.

Our review

So gutted about this book! I loved the first one in the series, so thought this second one would be just as good, If not better. How wrong I was…

This ‘thriller’ follows lieutenant Taylor Jackson and her fiance John Baldwin as they hunt for the notorious Snow White Killer’s copycat.

It started off quite slow, so I put it down and gave it some space before picking it up again. But when I did it just kind of ambled along with nothing to capture my attention.

I got confused by the story line more than once, and I don’t know if that was just me or if it was overly complicated?!

There was alot of unnecessarily sexist prose in this book, which just didn’t happen in the first one. Disappointing for a female author. 

He liked Taylor Jackson, admired her spunk. 

– fine. But then – 

Admired those long legs, too. Her fiance was a lucky man.

– this really adds nothing to the story. And it happened…… a lot. 

Overall, it wasn’t terrible, but I definitely wouldn’t read it again as I struggled to finish it the first time.

The Twelve Dice of Christmas by Gail Oust

Goodreads Synopsis

In the new Kate McCall Mystery from the author of Death Rolls the Dice, when Kate stumbles on the skeletal remains of a man who disappeared decades ago, she’ll have to solve the coldest of cold cases to nab a killer before the holidays really go south . . .

Our review

This was a cosy Christmas mystery. It had everything you really need for a holiday murder book. 

Kate and her elderly friends are part of the ‘Bunco Babes’. They get together to play dice and generally do what retired people do. 

When the Bunco Babes help their neighbour with the Christmas decorations, they get more than they bargained for when they find a skeleton!!!!! 

The skeleton belongs to the husband of Eula Mae, the lady who Kate was helping put decs up for. Everyone assumed he just ran away twenty odd years ago and left her. Now Kate must solve this mystery and find out what happened all those year ago.

It was a cute little read and one that I would recommend.

Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Goodreads Synopsis

For years, Grace has watched the wolves in the woods behind her house. One yellow-eyed wolf—her wolf—is a chilling presence she can’t seem to live without.

Meanwhile, Sam has lived two lives: In winter, the frozen woods, the protection of the pack, and the silent company of a fearless girl. In summer, a few precious months of being human… until the cold makes him shift back again.

Now, Grace meets a yellow-eyed boy whose familiarity takes her breath away. It’s her wolf. It has to be. But as winter nears, Sam must fight to stay human—or risk losing himself, and Grace, forever.

Our Review

A bit of a slow burn of a story which becomes quite compelling about 75% through then tales off only to come back with a good twist- it was a solid three star book for me but I gave it an extra one for the twist. 

I was thinking I wouldn’t read the rest of the books but after the ending I am finding myself being drawn to them so we will see.


Happy reading!

Becca and Kate x

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