Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Book Review: Targets in Ties

I'm so happy to be part of Tristi Pinkston's blog tour for her new novel Targets in Ties. She's offering a fun prize that I'll tell you about at the end. But before I get started, can I just say how full of awesomeness last night's Castle and Hawaii Five-O were? I loved both shows! Castle went back to it's roots with funny banter, a twisty murder to solve, and a little hand-holding. Hawaii Five-O had James Caan sharing the screen with his son, series regular Scott Caan, and some of his one-liners had me laughing out loud. Loved it all.

I also enjoyed Tristi's book. (See how I used a segue there?) I hadn't read any of the other Secret Sisters mysteries and apparently this is the fourth book in the series. It didn't bother me much, though, because it was easy to pick up who the characters were and their endearing quirks that totally made the story. It probably would have been a richer reading experience had I known all the history between these characters, but I don't know that for sure, since, of course, I haven't read the others. How's that for logic?

The story begins with three little old ladies, Ida Mae, Arlette, and Tansy getting ready to take a trip south of the border. While they're there, they'll also pick up Ida Mae's nephew, Ren, from his mission. Before they can do that, however, Ida Mae gets caught up in the intrigue surrounding an antiquities thief who claims he's innocent and needs the three ladies' help. As they all fall deeper and deeper into this web, the ladies don't know who to trust and where to turn for help, but they sure got themselves in a lot of trouble trying to get themselves out of trouble. If you know what I mean. It's a cozy mystery done well.

I liked the straightforward feel of the book---both in the characters and in the plot. It was an afternoon read with a lot of fun one-liners that made me laugh. I think I'm going to pick up the other three mysteries in the series so I can catch up, and, of course, wait for the next adventure to come out!

Since I am part of Tristi's blog tour, she is offering a contest in conjunction with it. Here's what you have to do:

Leave a comment on this blog post, and go visit Tristi's blog here and become a follower. You will then be entered to win this fun scrapbooking pack, including paper, tags, two decals, and metal tag frames. You have until midnight Mountain time on March 3rd to enter to win.

And here is the back copy of her book, Targets in Ties.

After two long years, Ren’s mission is finally over, and it’s time for Ida Mae, Arlette, and Tansy to travel to Mexico to pick him up. They have their itinerary all planned out—visiting the ruins in the Yucatan, shopping, playing in the sand and surf—and then they’ll head to Ren’s mission home and be reunited with that dear boy.

But a wanted antiquities thief crosses their path, and soon the ladies find themselves tangled up in a web of lies, intrigue, and costly jewelry. Held hostage by men desperate for riches, they do what only they can do—keep their heads about them, plan their escape, and discuss the proper making of tortillas. Will they survive their most harrowing adventure yet?


Debra Erfert said...

I know how to make tortillas! And they're delicious homemade fresh off the griddle.

I almost laughed when I saw Tristi's book cover, not that it isn't nice looking, but that her name is so small and tucked down at the bottom. One of our classes at the ANWA conference was given by Deirdra Coppel, a graphic artist who not only is an author, but does beautiful book covers. One of the peculiarities of LDS women writers is we undervalue our names and have a tendency of putting them very small at the bottom of the book cover. I guess I never noticed it before, but when I saw Tristi's name exactly as Deirdra described, it hit me so ironically that someone who has had three books previously published in the series, she should have her name pronounce much more than it is.

I'm planning on going back to college for a semester or two and updating my degree to include graphic art. I plan on rectifying this problem with our dear sisters and start designing book covers while pursuing my publishing dream.

I forgot about Castle. Sheesh ... But I have a good excuse. I picked up a cold at the conference and feel like so much used Kleenex.

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

Debra, how could you miss Castle? *shakes head* I guess it's understandable if you're sick. I hope you feel better soon. It's funny you mention the author's name on the cover, though. With my book, All's Fair, I was stunned at how big my name was, it looked almost as big as the title! But even with that, it's still my favorite cover. And I think you should definitely do the cover design thing. We need your creativity out there! :)

Jon Spell said...

Castle was wonderful, but there's been one thing nagging me ever since. The actress who played Sleeping Beauty - what else has she done? She looks so familiar and I just can't place her.

I loved when Beckett says something like, Wow, Castle, that's really well thought out and reasonable. Actually, there were a few very humorous comments from Kate in this one.

Ok, here's the weird thing for me. A few years ago, I submitted a short story to LDS Publisher for a Halloween contest where the villain used a detached bear claw to simulate an animal attack. Whoa.

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

I didn't recognize the actress, Jon. I thought that Ryan had some of the funniest lines of the night. "As you wish." "Ever since I watched Chucky I can't look at dolls." He was on his game last night. LOL

Maybe LDS Publisher moonlights as a writer for Castle and used your story! What? It could happen . . . :)

Angie said...

I love the Secret Sisters books! Can't wait to read this one.

Ann T. said...

Oh yes, you will have to get the rest of the series. The characters are true to form in all of their escapades. You will love them as much as "Targets in Ties".

Sarah Pearson said...

This book sounds like a fun read. I think I'd have to start at the beginning of the series though, I hate starting mid-series :-)

Tristi Pinkston said...

Thanks so much for your review, Julie! I'm glad you enjoyed the book.