Can’t-Wait Wednesday: Dead Blow by Lisa Preston

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings. This is a weekly meme to spotlight and discuss the books we’re excited about that we have yet to read. The books I choose aren’t released yet and usually won’t be published for at least two or three months. So I have a while to wait!

I love finding out about books which will publish in future months and I like to share my excitement about the books. I also like to find out about new books on other people’s blogs and hope they’ll sometimes find something to look forward to on my blog.

I’m excited to read . . .

Dead Blow by Lisa Preston

Series: Horseshoer Mystery #2

Published by Skyhorse

Publishing date: November 5

Genre: Mystery

Synopsis: A dead blow hammer leaves little to no mark on the surface it strikes. It’s not a shoer’s tool, but horseshoer Rainy Dale knows them and knows there are more questions than answers about how her new client became a widow. The old woman says there was hardly a bruise on her dead husband. Why was he driving his tractor so dangerously near the killer bull? How long did it take him to die after the machine rolled and pinned him? The whole town seems aware of the dead man’s wandering eye. Did the widow know? It all happened just before Rainy came to town, about the time that her fiancé, Guy, volunteered with his buddy to help search for a young woman who went missing from Cowdry, Oregon. Rainy is supposed to be making wedding plans and friends, but she can’t help being drawn into the town’s old intrigues.

Once again, Rainy will have to dig deep and use all the tools in her box to both defend herself and the people she’s just learning to love. 


I read the first book in this series last year and liked it a lot. I haven’t read a book with a horseshoer as the main character. I’m looking forward to learning more about Rainy as well as reading a good mystery.

Review: The Clincher by Lisa Preston

The Clincher by Lisa Preston

Series: Horseshoer Mystery #1

Genre:  Mystery

Setting: Central Oregon, United States

Source: Ebook, Library

Publishing Date: November 2018

288 pages

Synopsis: Clinching is the technique used to bend a driven horseshoe nail to hold the shoe to a hoof. Rainy Dale is The Clincher, a twenty-something high school-dropout turned farrier (horseshoer) who is haunted by a secret she carries. Estranged from her California d-list actress momma and her ranch hand Texas daddy, she tracked down her childhood horse in small-town Oregon–a land full of cowboys and their horses–then stayed to build a life with her tools, steel, and forge. She’s sleeping in a garage and trying not to fall for her landlord, the hapless and hopeful chef, Guy, who is determined to create the perfect souffle while Rainy would prefer to just stuff her mouth with fuel for her physically demanding job. As the new kid in town, Rainy has an uphill battle to prove herself, especially to her male clients, but when one of her clients turns up dead, Rainy is in over her head as both a suspect and a seeker of the truth. The Clincher is the first in a series of horseshoer mysteries featuring the irrepressible, irreverent, and irresistible Rainy Dale and her loveable and unlikely side-kick (her culinarily inclined boyfriend, Guy).

My thoughts

Such a good book! I really enjoyed Rainy Dale. She has a strong voice plus I’m not sure I’ve read any books about farriers (horseshoers) before. I learned all sorts of things about horses and shoeing. The cover was what first attracted my attention to this book and then that it was also a mystery. When I read a little of the synopsis and realized it took place somewhere in Central Oregon (where I grew up) this looked like a match for me! And it was.

A good mystery

The mystery is good, the characters–especially Rainy and her chef boyfriend Guy–are so fun to read about. I sometimes felt sorry for Guy who is such a good person. He has trouble understanding Rainy who is complicated and troubled. She hasn’t had the easiest childhood since she was shuttled back and forth between her divorced parents (a Hollywood actress and a truck driver ranch hand). She’s trying to be a better person and has many internal dialogues with herself! I sometimes felt like I was eavesdropping…lol.

Rainy is a suspect when one of her clients is found dead. Rainy is the last person known to see her. Rainy feels guilty about the fact the woman invited her for a talk and a drink after Rainy finishes the horseshoe job. Rainy turned her down because she found the woman irritating. In hindsight Rainy realizes the woman was nervous.

A horse and dog? Oh yes!

Rainy’s horse, Red, and Australian shepherd dog, Charlie, are fun to read about. Charlie herds Guy’s goslings and the search Rainy made to find her childhood horse Red help make the book special. The author knows a lot about horses and dogs which I appreciate.

I’m so glad the second book in the series–Dead Blow is set to publish in 2019.

My Rating: B+

Have you read any books by this author?

Sunday Post: October 2

Sunday-PostThis is a great meme to take part in every week and I thank Kimba for hosting it!

I like this meme because it gives me an opportunity to take a look back at last week and forward to next week in both my personal life and my blog and book life! I also like to see what other people are doing and what books everyone is reading.

Last week–home and blog

Road trip

Because of our car accident (hitting a deer–we were unhurt, but the car and the deer were not so fortunate) so we cut our road trip short. We planned to be gone another week, but we don’t have a date when the car will be repaired and the rental car was expensive so after our visit with family in Oregon we left the West Coast and headed home to Iowa. (You can see a photo of the damaged car in last week’s Sunday Post.)

We’d planned for a leisurely trip to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, then to a dinosaur site in Wyoming and finally to visit a friend in the Denver area. That will be a trip for another time.

We spent part of our week at the Oregon coast. I have a special love for it since that was the first time I saw the ocean–when I was about six years old. I remember how excited I was!

We had beautiful weather at the coast this visit–mostly sunny and in the upper 60’s. The Oregon coast often is foggy, windy, cloudy or rainy so this was lovely. (However, I like it even when it’s foggy or raining!)

The blog

The first week we were gone I had posts scheduled and thought I would get more done while we traveled, but that has been harder than it seems. Using my cell phone to prepare posts isn’t as easy as I thought and lots of places in the mountains and rural areas have no cell service. The next couple weeks I will see how much I can get done. I do hope to visit more blogs and catch up with what everyone else is doing.

I did get lots of reading done. My husband and I also listened to two audiobooks together as we drove.

Blog posts

My books

What I’m reading
  • The Sound of Broken Glass by Deborah Crombie
What I read last two weeks
  • Address to Die For by Mary Feliz
  • Blood on the Tracks by Barbara Nickless
New–Books, E-books, NetGalley, Audiobooks–purchased or free or from library


Next Week–home & blog

We’re back in Iowa so have all the catching up to do with everything. It feels like we’ve been gone for months–instead of just three weeks!

Blog posts

  • October books on my list
  • Waiting on Wednesday
  • Review
  • Sunday Post

What did you do last week? What books did you collect? What are you planning?




Silenced in the Surf by Kate E. Dyer-Seeley

silenced-in-the-surf-by-kate-e-dyer-seeleySilenced in the Surf by Kate E. Dyer-Seeley
Series: Pacific Northwest #3
Genre: Mystery
Setting: Portland, Oregon and Hood River on the Columbia River in Oregon
Published by Kensington, 2016
Format: e-Arc (Release Date: March 29)
–I received a review copy of this book from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. The opinions stated here are entirely my own.
304 pages
Grade: B-
Synopsis: Covering a windsurfing competition should have been a breeze for reporter Meg Reed, but with a killer in the curl, she’s headed for rough waters…

Hood River in the Columbia River Gorge is the windsurfing capital of the world, and Meg is stoked to cover the King of the Hook event for Portland’s Northwest Extreme magazine. Before the competition gets under way, Meg has a chance to try some windsurfing on her own. But when the current sweeps her downriver, she spots a body snagged on the rocks. The dead man is Justin Cruise, aka Cruise Control, a celebrity windsurfer and not exactly a nice guy. It’s soon clear his death was no accident, and Cruise had no shortage of enemies. As Meg dives right in to discover who wiped out the windsurfer, she’ll need to keep her balance—or she too may get blown away.

Initial impressions

  • I love the setting of the book in the Columbia Gorge. The author did a great job bringing it to life.

The story

  • Meg works for Northwest Extreme Magazine and travels to Hood River to cover a windsurfing competition.
  • During a windsurfing lesson she is swept downriver and ends up finding a body on rocks along the shore.
  • It looks like the death could be accidental, but the windsurfer had lots of enemies.


  • I grew up in Oregon so this book was great fun to read. I’ve seen the windsurfers on the Columbia River. I’ve never done that myself or wanted to. I’m a little like Meg before she got her job at Northwest Extreme magazine…lol.
  • I haven’t read the other books, but was able to follow along just fine. However, I think reading the earlier books is a great idea!
  • There is an ongoing story arc that sounds like it started in the first book. Meg’s father who was a reporter working on a story was murdered. The murder was never solved and Meg is trying to discover what happened.
  • There are funny parts and some scary parts and even one I can think of which is both: when Meg gets a windsurfing lesson, is carried away by the wind and current, can’t get the sail up and falls off the board several times–funny and scary both.
  • A beautiful cover!
  • I like the way the author describes Hood River and the windsurfing scene and all the people who descend on the little town. Not everyone in town likes all the windsurfers and tourists. I like all the brewpubs visited during the book!


  • The end of the book didn’t feel like an end. I have a feeling the next book will start about where this ended.
  • The mystery part of the story isn’t quite complete either. Of course, in real life everything isn’t tied up in a neat bow, but I wonder if that will wrap-up in the next book also.

And concluding thoughts . . .

  • Book 4 in the series–First Degree Murder–is scheduled to arrive on shelves in December 2016.

Have you read this book? How did you like it?

Author info

  • Kate Dyer-Seeley writes the Pacific Northwest Mystery Series for Kensington Publishing, featuring a young journalist, Meg Reed, who bills herself as an intrepid adventurer in order to land a gig writing for Northwest Extreme. Only Meg’s idea of sport is climbing onto the couch without spilling her latte.
  • She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and son, where you can find her hitting the trail, at an artisan coffee shop, or at her favorite pub. Better yet—all three.

Reading Challenges

“You Again” by JoAnn Ross

you-again-by-JoAnn-Ross“You Again” by JoAnn Ross
Series: Shelter Bay #6.5
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Setting: NYC & Shelter Bay, Oregon
Published by Catlelough Publishing LLC, 2014
E-book, purchased
172 pages
Grade: B
Synopsis: A book nerd, a brainiac science guy, and a misplaced killer whale…

Meghann Quinn wasn’t always a hugely successful author. Adam Wayne wasn’t always a marine biologist studying whales. Back in high school in Shelter Bay, Oregon, she was the shy book nerd helping the brainiac science guy pass English. Meghann had no idea Adam would turn into such a hottie. Adam has no idea their once-upon-a-time sweet summer romance inspired Meghann’s popular teen novels.

Two shy geeks didn’t have the courage to share their true feelings back then. But now that Meghann’s back in town, they’re pondering life’s important questions. Such as, will Adam ask her to the Snow Ball? And what are they going to do about the lost Orca who shows up on Christmas Eve? And can two nerds get past their initial insecurity to take a second chance on a once-in-a-lifetime love?

You Again also will appear in a Home for Christmas Duet with Jessica Scott.

Initial impressions

  • A fun, fast read about two people who meet again after 10 years.


  • Adam and Meaghann are characters I would enjoy knowing.
  • Meaghann tutored Adam in English during high school and they liked each other, but lost track of each other when they went off to college.
  • Meaghann is now a successful young adult author. Adam is a marine biologist living in their home town of Shelter Bay, Oregon.
  • When she’s invited to Shelter Bay for a fund-raising event, Meaghann arrives a couple of days before Christmas. And she and Adam both want another chance at love.
  • I loved reading about the Christmas parade of boats. And all about the orca (killer whales). I thought the author did a good job making them part of the story.
  • Even though I haven’t read any other books in this series I didn’t have any trouble picking up this book and knowing what was going on.


  • The story is quite short and Adam and Meaghann decide they love each other very quickly. But it is home-for-christmasChristmas!

And a few thoughts . . .

  • I bought “You Again” last year as part of the Home for Christmas e-book along with Jessica Scott’s “All I Want for Christmas is You.”
  • I read this novella as my December review for Wendy’s TBR Challenge (see below).

Have you read this book? How did you like it?

Author info

  • When New York Times bestselling author JoAnn Ross was seven-years-old, she had no doubt whatsoever that she’d grow up to play center field for the New York Yankees. Writing would be her backup occupation, something she planned to do after retiring from baseball. Those were, in her mind, her only options. While waiting for the Yankees management to call, she wrote her first novella — a tragic romance about two star-crossed mallard ducks — for a second grade writing assignment.
  • The paper earned a gold star. And JoAnn kept writing.She’s now written around one hundred novels (she quit keeping track long ago) and has been published in twenty-six countries.
  • Although the Yankees have yet to call her to New York to platoon center field, JoAnn figures making one out of two life goals isn’t bad.
  • Currently writing her Shelter Bay series (set on the Oregon Coast, where her high school sweetheart husband bought her a bag of saltwater taffy, then proposed), along with a River’s Bend Murphy Brothers trilogy spin-off (set in Southern Oregon ranching country, where she grew up), and her award winning Irish Castlelough series, JoAnn lives with her husband and three rescued dogs, who pretty much rule the house, in the Pacific Northwest.

Reading Challenges

Top Ten Tuesday–Beach Reads

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme sponsored by the Broke and the Bookish blog. I don’t participate every week, but it’s a fun meme with great topics each week.

I’m actually going to the beach this summer…to the Oregon beach toward the end of July for a few days. I grew up in Oregon and love the Oregon beach…some beautiful beaches to walk on. However, the beaches aren’t usually ones to laze on. The Oregon coast gets lots of rain–even in the summer–and when it’s not raining it’s usually only about 60 maybe up to 70 degrees! The water is cold, too, but it’s still beautiful.

My husband and I and our three adult children are flying out and meeting in Oregon. My brother and sister-in-law who live in Oregon will meet us there and possibly my niece and her family. I can’t wait! I won’t read all ten books on my vacation…I do need to spend some time with my family…lol!

Here are the e-books I plan to put on my e-reader:

Trying to catch up

Where Serpents Sleep (Sebastian St. Cyr mysteries, book 4)
by C. S. Harris book
I’m way behind in this series, so I’m going to start here and re-read this one.
An Artificial Night by Seanan McGuire
A great series…I want to catch up with October Daye and plan to re-read the third book.
Ghost Ship by Sharon Lee & Steve Miller
I love the Liaden series and am so glad Lee and Miller are continuing the series. I love the characters and space opera adventure. I think I’m three books behind!

New series to start

The Shape of Desire by Sharon Shinn
A Shifting Circle series, book 1
Sharon Shinn is one of my favorite authors, but I haven’t read this book yet. It was published a year ago and only one more book in the series so far (Still Life with Shape Shifter)!
The Silvered by Tanya Huff
I’ve read and enjoyed many of Tanya Huff’s books. This was published last November and I’ve been wanting to read it since I read about it.

New authors

The Chocolate Thief by Laura Florand
Summer Knight by Jim Butcher
Hounded by Kevin Hearne
the Iron Druid Chronicles, book 1

A little romance

An Invitation to Sin by Sarah Morgan
I enjoy Sarah Morgan’s books and a Harlequin Presents is the perfect quick beach read!
The Ugly Duchess by Eloisa James
I bought Once Upon a Tower in May and then realized I hadn’t read the book which came out last fall