Book Review: TROUBLE IN THE TAROT by Kari Lee Townsend

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Series: A Fortune Teller Mystery, #3
Publisher: Berkley
Released: March 5, 2013
Source: Review copy from the publisher

For psychic Sunshine Meadows, sometimes fortunes can be deceiving…

Lately Sunny has been experiencing a period of big opportunity: her business in Divinity, New York, is thriving, and Detective Mitch Stone has finally agreed to take Sunny on a date. But thanks to her clairvoyant abilities, Sunny knows better than anyone that life deals out bad cards along with the good.

When Sunny agrees to read tarot cards at the annual Summer Solstice Carnival, she meets her Granny Gert‘s “arch nemesis” Fiona Atwater, and is overcome by a vision of Fiona in a violent argument. Sunny knows trouble is brewing when Granny and Fiona start having squabbles all over town. But the fighting comes to a head when a local baker gets run over by a big white Cadillac—and Granny and Fiona are found at the crime scene.

Sunny knows she should step aside and let Mitch handle the investigating, but she’s not about to ignore her visions and leave her granny’s life in fate’s hands…

———

The fabulous and fun A Fortune Teller Mystery series continues with TROUBLE IN THE TAROT, and it’s my favorite one so far. This time around, Sunny’s grandmother finds herself in a whole lot of trouble. First, Granny Gert’s lifelong enemy Fiona comes to town wanting to outdo her in the Summer Solstice Carnival bake-off. Then they’re arrested for murder when the local baker is hit and killed by Granny’s huge Cadillac, and both ladies are found at the scene of the crime.

Fiona and Granny are put under house arrest after evidence against them surfaces. Unfortunately for poor Sunny, the house arrest will take place in her house! She’s helped with police investigations in the past, but this time her boyfriend Detective Mitch Stone wants her to stay out of it. Though, with Fiona and Granny’s bickering enough to drive her crazy, Sunny is determined to clear their names, even if it means going behind Mitch’s back to do so.

The mystery in this book was tricky – did not see the ending coming at all! There were several possible suspects who might have wanted Bernadette the baker out of the picture. Secrets, blackmail and bakery business make for a deadly combination in Divinity, New York! I loved how Sunny used her smarts and fortune telling gifts to solve the case.

TROUBLE IN THE TAROT was an enjoyable cozy mystery filled with suspense and humor. I had to snicker at Fiona and Granny Gert as they flirted with the men in town and constantly tried to outdo each other. Morty the mysterious magical cat takes center stage several times too. Love him! I’m hoping the next book comes out soon.

Rating: 4½ Stars

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review: CORPSE IN THE CRYSTAL BALL by Kari Lee Townsend

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Series: A Fortune Teller Mystery, #2
Publisher: Berkley
Released: June 5, 2012
Source: Review copy from the publisher

Psychic Sunshine Meadows makes a dark discovery in the woods… After clearing her name as the prime suspect in a murder, Sunny Meadows hopes she can finally enjoy some serenity in the idyllic town of Divinity in upstate New York. She’d also like a second chance with Detective Mitch Stone. But when Mitch’s gorgeous ex-girlfriend Isabel Gonzales shows up, Sunny’s not sure she can compete. Then Isabel mysteriously disappears. When the police turn to Sunny for help, her visions lead to the discovery of Isabel’s corpse in the woods. Before she died, Isabel scrawled a message in the dirt implicating Mitch in her murder. Now Sunny must help the man she’s falling in love with as she sets out to find the real killer. But this time Sunny’s clairvoyant abilities might not save her–as what she doesn’t see “can “hurt her…

———

Psychic Sunny Meadows is settling into her new home in Divinity, New York. Her grandmother has come to stay for a while, and Sunny suspects her parents sent Granny Gert to keep an eye on her. Even though things are rocky between Sunny and her love interest Detective Mitch Stone, life is good – until Mitch’s ex-girlfriend Isabel is murdered not long after arriving in town.

Isabel leaves a message just before her death that points a finger at Mitch for the killing. Even though Mitch is grumpy and brooding (and handsome!), Sunny knows he can’t possibly be a murderer. Luckily for Mitch, Sunny and her psychic/sluthing abilities have become valuable to the police department, and once again she’s put on the case.

CORPSE IN THE CRYSTAL BALL is a fun cozy mystery with a touch of romance and the paranormal. I enjoyed the mystery in this one and how hard Sunny worked to clear Mitch’s name. Readers get to learn more about Mitch’s past and why he’s such a “Mr. Grumpy Pants.” I did have an inkling as to who the culprit was, however the “why” behind the crime had me baffled. The ending was very exciting – loved it!

I’m still waiting to find out more about Morty the mystery cat, one of my favorite characters in the series. There’s something special about him, and I’m itching to know his story!

This book was an enchanting follow up to TEMPEST IN THE TEA LEAVES. A Fortune Teller Mystery series has quickly become one of my new favorites. Looking forward to the next!

Rating: 4 Star

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review: TEMPEST IN THE TEA LEAVES by Kari Lee Townsend

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Series: A Fortune Teller Mystery, #1
Publisher: Berkley
Released: August 2, 2011
Source: Review copy from the publisher

In the fortune telling business there are a lot of pretenders, but Sunshine Meadows is the real deal—and her predictions can be lethally accurate…

Sunny is a big city psychic who moves to the quaint town of Divinity, NY to open her fortune telling business in an ancient victorian house, inheriting the strange cat residing within. Sunny gives her first reading to the frazzled town librarian and discovers the woman is going to die. When the woman flees in terror, Sunny calls the police, only she’s too late. The ruggedly handsome, hard-nosed detective is a “non-believer.” He finds the librarian dead, and Sunny becomes his number one suspect, forcing her to prove her innocence before the real killer can put an end to the psychic’s future.

———

Tempest in the Tea Leaves is a light and fun cozy mystery with a touch of the paranormal and a hint of romance. This is the first book in Kari Lee Townsend’s A Fortune Teller Mystery series. I enjoyed this book!

Fortune teller Sunshine Meadows (aka Sunny) leaves New York City for the small town of Divinity in upstate New York, because she’s tired of her high society parents not believing in her or her special gift. Determined to make a new start in Divinity before her trust fund money runs out, she buys an old Victorian house to set up shop, complete with its own mysterious white cat.

Unfortunately for Sunny, things go down hill quickly. Her first customer is the frantic town librarian who wants a reading. After reading her tea leaves, Sunny has a vision of the librarian’s murder. Sunny warns the police of her vision, but alas it is too late. The librarian is dead just as she predicted, and Sunny is the prime suspect.

Sunny insists she’s innocent – she’s new in town and has no motive! Detective Mitch Stone doesn’t believe in any of her psychic woo-woo, but he gives her the benefit of the doubt – for now. That will change if and when hard evidence turns up against her, so it’s up to Sunny to help the detective find the real killer.

Tempest in the Tea Leaves was a delightful read. Sunny was a likable character with the perfect job for helping to solve a murder, even though it’s her fortune telling that got her in trouble in the first place! The author crafted an entertaining mystery that kept me guessing up until the end. There were a few times I thought “that would never really happen with a murder suspect,” but I went with it anyway.

The engaging characters pulled me into the story. I had plenty of giggle out loud moments, especially the witty exchanges between Sunny and “grumpy pants” Detective Stone, and Sunny and her snooty parents. Even her mysterious cat Morty was a hoot. He had a personality all his own. I’m so curious about Morty and his (and Sunny’s) spooky Victorian house (aka Vicky). I’m looking forward to finding out more about them in future books.

Tempest in the Tea Leaves is a strong start to a new series. I would recommend it to fans of cozy mysteries who like the addition of a paranormal element.

Rating: 4 Stars

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.