Book Reviews

MONKEY BUSINESS BY LOIS SCHMITT
Synopsis:
A zoo with its lions, crocodiles, and snakes is a dangerous place―a perfect place for murder. 

When the director of a Long Island zoo is murdered by snake venom, Kristy Farrell, former English teacher turned wildlife reporter, takes a personal interest in the case. Her brother Tim, the zoo’s curator in charge of reptiles, is the leading suspect. Although the evidence is circumstantial, Kristy is sure the homicide detective, a childhood nemesis of her brother, is out to frame Tim.

Believing that the killer is one of her brother’s colleagues, Kristy investigates the internal politics and personal relationships at the zoo. As she delves into each suspect’s life, she uncovers weak alibis and powerful motives, including greed, blackmail, infidelity, and revenge. The trail leads her to a Greenwich Village pet store with a shady history, a radical animal rights group, a wildlife art exhibit on Long Island’s infamous gold coast, and a bizarre animal auction in rural Ohio where just about anything―dead or alive―can be purchased for the right price.

Meanwhile, the zoo is plagued with accidents, a second murder occurs, and Kristy’s life is threatened. With everyone’s nerves on edge, Kristy races to find the killer before the killer strikes again.

Monkey Business is an animal lover’s mystery. The book delves into the world of endangered species, wildlife smuggling, and the underground trade in exotic reptiles, birds, and mammals.

Review:
I thoroughly enjoyed Monkey Business By Lois Schmitt. It starts off with a proverbial bang.
Our author draws readers right into the scene from the very get go with her smart and funny literary tone.
There is a lot going on in this well written cozy mystery style book, with many scenarios, and easy to follow, twists and turns. It is written incredibly well and thoughtfully smart.. With the many, “whodunnits” and some what quirky characters, readers are compelled to put on their own detective hats as well.
 
Author Lois Schmitt gives readers interesting insight to the inner workings and politics of what goes on in zoos. I’m an animal lover, so I accordingly loved all the animal references and knowledge that is bountifully included in this story. But, I would have to say that even if you think you might not go in for a book where the main setting is at a zoo, you might be willingly surprised with this one. It’s colorful and hilarious; as I  laughed my way through the book.
 
I think the author  has a clear, unique voice and personal style of writing.
I was impressed by how the author tied everything together. Just as the title, “Monkey Business” sounds like a wild ride, it is a crazy up and down journey of how the main character, Kristy Farrell, struggles to find the killer of the director of the zoo.
 
Writing a mystery takes a great amount of intellectual ability in order to pull off the difficulty and ingenuity needed to create puzzle like scenarios. To present problems difficult to solve and situations difficult to resolve, can be extremely difficult. But author Lois Schmitt rises up to the mental challenge and pulls it off beautifully and expertly.
I was more than pleasantly satisfied with the entire book and very pleased and gratified with the outcome at the end.
Author Platforms highly recommends “Monkey Business” By Lois Schmitt
“eighty and out” by KIM CANO
Synopsis:
Traumatized by visits to the nursing home to see their elderly aunt, Louise and her sister Jeannie, made a youthful pact to not live past age eighty. Was it a silly childhood idea, or were they wise beyond their years? Most importantly, will they go through with it when the time comes?

Will they go through with it? And will Louise’s romantic dreams of a life out west ever come to pass?

Those questions were fervently on my mind as I quickly turned each page in anticipation. This is a must read story for women of all ages, written by an excellent writer.

Author Kim Cano, cleverly weaves together an endearing life story of two sisters journey through life with all its challenges and obstacles. This is a highly emotional read as the characters experience happiness, joy, sorrow and loss. But the writer seems to expertly pull it off as a splendid “feel good read,” leaving readers with a sense of happiness.

I absolutely loved this story. I couldn’t put it down. The plot development is thoughtful, skillful and exceptional. The characters were so well developed, I felt I knew them myself. This is one of the most well written books I have read in a long while. It’s evident and unmistakable that Kim Cano is an educated experienced writer, with a unique voice and beautiful literary prose. Brilliantly
structured, moving along steadily and continuously, the story flows through time with ease and purpose, and with a means to the end. The way she was able to pass through time so smoothly and eloquently really impressed me.


Right from the start, the exciting plot and stage is set, getting the readers minds engaged and locked into the storyline, making it very difficult to put it down. How will this turn out? The question burned into my mind throughout the entire read. I found myself secretly pleading with the author, quickly turning the pages, to give this story the end it deserved. She did not disappoint. In fact, the ending was well worth the anticipation. The dialogue between characters flowed so well, I was astonished. This was a smart read. Well written with no grammatical or other errors, making the readability pleasantly enjoyable.
Eighty and out is also filled with wisdom, soul searching, and self-realization. Very engaging and relatable. I learned a lot from this story, things that I can apply to my own life.
Kim Cano is one talented, passionate and extraordinary writer.
I highly recommend “eighty and out” to all women that love a good chick lit read that is written with creativity, knowledge, wisdom and passion.
“eighty and out” earns 5 stars from Chick Lit Cafe
Reviewed by Emma

Chick Lit Cafe Click to Purchase “eighty and out” by KIM CANO now.

Is it a break? Or is it a blip?
‘You’ve just had a holiday,’ I pointed out, trying not to yawn. ‘Wasn’t that enough of a break?’
‘I don’t mean that kind of break.’
There’s nothing worse than the last day of holiday. Oh wait, there is. When what should have been a proposal turns into a break, Liv and Adam find themselves on opposite sides of the life they had mapped out.
Friends and family all think they’re crazy; Liv throws herself into work – animals are so much simpler than humans – and Adam tries to get himself out of the hole he’s dug.
But as the short break becomes a chasm, can they find a way back to each other? Most importantly, do they want to?
 
Lindsey Kelk has done it again. Chick Lit Cafe loves her latest novel, “We Were on a Break.”
Smart, funny and filled with wisdom this latest book is enjoyable from beginning to end.
Kelk’s unique voice is clearly heard as her characters are well formed with unique dialog and warmth. 
The story line is familiar and hits a home run. A fairly quick read, mostly because we couldn’t put it down.
It’s one of those stories that leaves a good taste and good feelings.
Chick Lit Cafe recommends “We Were on a Break” to all Chick~Lit lovers out there.
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