Jackie's Booklikes

Insights for the Booksites - reading mostly for my own pleasure


Beechwood Harbor Novellas packed into one book

Betwixt: A Beechwood Harbor Collection  - Danielle Garrett

I really enjoyed all the stories in the Beechwood Harbor Magic Mystery Collection. 

Betwixt includes these novellas:

A Witch of a Day


Cats, Bats and Talking Hats- A vampire party isn't Holly's idea of a good time. Especially not on Hallow's Eve when things have a tendency of getting a little crazy without help from a pack of fanged frenemies.

When a human stumbles into the mix, Holly has to act fast to keep the creepy soiree from turning into a crime scene.
Cats, Bats, and Talking Hats is a short story that tells the story of Holly's first Hallow's Eve at the Beechwood Manor. She's still getting to know her paranormal roomies when things go sideways at Lacey's Halloween party. In some ways, this is Holly's first mystery with the Beechwood Manor gang.

This story was first published in the Witch or Treat Anthology in 2017

Good Gravy! Thanksgiving at Beechwood Manor

The magic and human worlds collide on Thanksgiving Day in the Beechwood Manor.

Good Gravy! Thanksgiving at Beechwood Manor was a blog exclusive for my newsletter group in the fall of 2016. It's a short story that gives a glimpse into the holidays in the harbor. This story falls between Twice the Witch and Witch Slapped in the timeline.


Along Came A Ghost


The Ghost Hunter Who Saved Christmas

It's Christmastime in Beechwood Harbor, a sleepy coastal town that's teeming with paranormal beings. The local children are waiting eagerly for the sound of sleigh bells and reindeer hooves, but in the days before Christmas Eve, their dreams turn to nightmares and a rash of hysteria threatens to overshadow the big day!

Local ghost whisperer Scarlet Sanderson already has her hands full with her thriving floral business and an impending visit from her uppity parents. But when she hears that there's a revenge-=hungry super-elf on the loose, she can't sit on the sidelines. Together with Holly Boldt, a powerful witch, they have to stop the elf from stealing away every child's dreams of Christmas before it's too late.

The Ghost Hunter Who Saved Christmas is a Christmas novella that features Scarlet Sanderson, Beechwood's own ghost whisperer, as she teams up with Holly to save the town from a nightmare-inducing elf the week of Christmas.
This novella was originally published in the Spells and Jinglebells Anthology in 2017. I loved the idea of Scarlet and Holly working a case together and have plans to team them up again in the future!


A Witch’s Best Friend

Holly and her friends have a bad case of senioritis as they enter the final week before graduation. When a classmate throws one final hurrah, she tip-toes into the night to attend.
But with a legendary monster lurking on the school grounds, she'll soon find out that she would have been better off staying in bed.
A Witch's Best Friend is a short story that tells the tale (or, should I say tail?) of how Holly and Boots met.

As you know, Boots and Holly are inseparable, but there was a time when Holly didn't have her forever fur ball at her side. This story is set before the events of any of the books and send you into Holly's final week at the magic academy.

Undercover Wolf
Undercover Wolf is a novella that falls in line after Lucky Witch in the timeline of Holly's series. This story contains *major spoilers* if you've not read up through that book.

Finished Reading A Witch of A Day

A Witch of A Day - Danielle Garrett

Turns out Holly Boldt was framed by an evil wizard. This stranger forced her to make an illegal magic spell and she got busted for it. That is how and why she ended up in Beechwood Manor halfway house for displaced paranormals.  

The evil stranger, on the other hand, attempted to break Holly's ex-boyfriend out of jail by using the magic potion/spell. Well, now she won't have to appear in court in front of her ex-boyfriend anymore, because he is going to rot in jail, but it also means she is banished from her supernatural Haven community.



Starting to Read: A Witch of a Day: A Beechwood Harbor Magic Mystery Novella

A Witch of A Day - Danielle Garrett

It's Friday the Thirteenth and Holly Boldt is having a Witch of a Day.

Instead of celebrating with the rest of the supernatural community, she finds herself staring at the four walls of a jail cell. Wild accusations are flying faster than a bat out of hell. One wrong move and her fate will be sealed.

This is what happens when you talk to strangers...


Find out how Holly ended up in Beechwood Harbor in this prequel novella to the Beechwood Harbor Magic Mysteries series by Danielle Garrett.

Finished Reading Murder's A Witch by Danielle Garrett

Murder's a Witch: A Beechwood Harbor Magic Mystery (Beechwood Harbor Magic Mysteries Book 1) - Danielle Garrett

Is Murder's a Witch a marketing ploy to get us to read more of her books? It's a genius. My fondness for paranormal fantasy and witches has been rekindled. Holly Boldt is a potion's witch that comes to live in a halfway house for displaced paranormals in Beechwood Harbor. The elusive reason why she ends up living with 4 other paranormals is not explained until we read the prequel novella, <i>Witch of A Day</i>, but we have a vampire, a shapeshifter wolf, a gargoyle and a ghost.
I don't know what it takes to write good characters but Danielle seems to have it in spades.
I loved all the characters in this book!
Even the ones who are bad.

Halloween Frost

Halloween Frost (Mythos Academy #1.5)Halloween Frost by Jennifer Estep

I didn't know anything about the world of Mythos Academy because I have never read the first installment but it sounds like the protagonist Gwen Frost, is training to be a kickass warrior. I like it a lot. I picked it up because it is near Halloween.
Gwen's friend wants to dress up and go trick or treating but their fun was lost on a monster and that is just how it is at Mythos Academy. Fight and kill as many of those things as possible. However, the one she has a crush on saves her, yet again. O be still my heart. Her sword, Vic, can talk and has a mouth on him. It was a gift from some god. I need to work out the details guys so don't @ me. It looks like their bags of treats was lost on someone playing a mean trick on them.

Source: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32516150-halloween-frost

Spartan Promise: A Mythos Academy Novel (Mythos Academy spinoff series Book 2)

Spartan Promise: A Mythos Academy Novel (Mythos Academy spinoff series Book 2) - Jennifer Estep

Thanks to Jennifer Estep publishing and Amazon Digital Services for allowing me an advanced readers copy. 

It is set to be released on Jan 15, 2019




Hunting for the bad guys has never been so dangerous . . .

My name is Rory Forseti, and I attend the Colorado branch of Mythos Academy, a school of warrior kids, powerful artifacts, and mythological monsters.

I’m a student, a fierce Spartan warrior, and a member of Team Midgard, a group of kids and adults tasked with stopping the evil Reapers of Chaos. There is one Reaper I’m determined to hunt down above all others: Covington, the man who murdered my parents.

So when the Midgard gets a tip that Covington is going to try to steal a dangerous artifact, I’m ready to fight. But the situation is far more complicated than it seems, and the Reapers aren’t my only enemies.

I’ll have to use all my Spartan strength and skills to survive this. And even then, it might be my blood that gets spilled . . .


#FraterfestRAT Finished Reading In Darkness We Must Abide Book One

In Darkness We Must Abide: The Complete First Season - Rhiannon Frater

Reading this book contributed to the FraterfestRAT challenge

Will this have a happy ending? I can only hope *crosses fingers



It was Halloween 2007 that broke the last straw for Vanora Socoli. Alisha and Roman were bitten with the vampire curse but would never hurt their sister, still, Vanora felt she had to leave her vampire family after what she saw.


Vanora was young but very naïve and had unrealistic expectations regarding the true nature of vampirism, but so did Roman although they fed off of animal blood and were doing a pretty good job of it until...well. 


There was some other terrible evil brewing in the background to which a very handsome and mysterious Armando was involved. dun duh dun dun


I have read other books by Rhiannon Frater and loved them. The Tale of the Vampire Bride and Pretty When She Kills are both epic vampire novels. I have not read the As The World Dies zombie trilogy nor finished her science fiction series The Last Bastion of the Living. I hope she continues writing excellent fiction horror inspired books like these.



Reading Update: 23% In Darkness We Must Abide

In Darkness We Must Abide: The Complete First Season - Rhiannon Frater


Glorious! That is how I feel after I downloaded In Darkness We Must Abide #1Death In The Shadows #2, and Ashes in the Night #3 on my kindle for the Fraterfest Readathon!


It's Day 2 and I've only managed to read Deadly Class, a graphic novel, listen to a 7 hr audiobook The Vampire Stories of Nancy Kilpatrick and boy! was it a vampire erotica or what? lol. I can't say it was amazing. I remember much about nothing really. I also read a few short stories from Tales from the Cauldron and the first episode in Rhiannon Fraters Vampire series that I am currently reading and probably will continue with until I'm finished all 3 books OR the readathon ends. 


I am at 23% in book one so far and loving it.



DNF I've read 144 out of 424 pages.

Under My Hat: Tales from the Cauldron - Jim Butcher, Frances Hardinge, Holly Black, Delia Sherman, Neil Gaiman, Tanith Lee, Peter S. Beagle, M. Rickert, Tim Pratt, Margo Lanagan, Isobelle Carmody, Ellen Klages, Jonathan Strahan, Diana Peterfreund, Ellen Kushner, Charles de Lint, Jane Yolen, Garth Nix, Patricia A

I don't have time for this crap. I didn't like any of the stories in this book.

Deadly Class 
Deadly Class 
King's Dominion School of the Deadly Arts
King's Dominion School of the Deadly Arts
EH! Variant by Farel Dalrymple
EH! Variant by Farel Dalrymple
DCBS Variant by Declan Shalvey & Jordie Bellaire
DCBS Variant by Declan Shalvey & Jordie Bellaire

I never liked High School. Perhaps that is why this graphic novel appealed to me. But meh, I thought it looked cool and it was on sale.


from the back cover:




It's 1987 and homeless teenager Marcus Lopez Arguello has no reason to keep living. Until one fateful evening he is approached by a mysterious girl who invites him to join Kings Dominion Atelier of the Deadly Arts, a brutal, clandestine high school, where the world's top crime families send the next generation of assassins to be trained, Murder is an art, killing is a craft and the dagger in your back is no metaphor. 


Death Comes Home (In Darkness We Must Abide, #1)

Death Comes Home (In Darkness We Must Abide, #1)Death Comes Home by Rhiannon Frater

Reading this book contributed to Fraterfest Readathon 2018.

A short first episode of the supernatural serial, which takes place in the Socoli Mansion. Vanora Socoli, a young girl, watches from an upstairs window a parade of coffins at a funeral coming to their final resting place on the Socoli Estate of which Roman and Alisha Socoli inherit. Unfortunately, they mistakenly opened the coffin of a vampire, unaware of its existence. He/it is hungry for blood.


I WANT MORE! I don't understand why this is in so many parts. Ugh, Why?

Fraterfest Readathon progress update: I've read 93 out of 424 pages.

Under My Hat: Tales from the Cauldron - Jim Butcher, Frances Hardinge, Holly Black, Delia Sherman, Neil Gaiman, Tanith Lee, Peter S. Beagle, M. Rickert, Tim Pratt, Margo Lanagan, Isobelle Carmody, Ellen Klages, Jonathan Strahan, Diana Peterfreund, Ellen Kushner, Charles de Lint, Jane Yolen, Garth Nix, Patricia A

Payment Due is about a witch switching bodies with a cat so she would be better enabled to spy on the bailiff who had taken some of her grandmother's belongings. In order to retrieve them, she had to enter his home as his cat. It was a risky switcheroo as the cat wasn't very pleasant while in her body but whatever. She was able to save the day I guess. 


I didn't like the next story. A Handful of Ashes. Ugh! For gosh sakes I couldn't stop yawning and dozing off but finally this morning I persevered. Trudged through the muck and mire of a mess. It was a terribly written short story, that happens in a witch school * unlike Harry Potters Hogwarts * Some names and things I was not familiar with like Ogham, Brythonic, geas, sizars I mean wtf? 


So we're off to a slow start in Fraterfest RAT but no worries. I slept for about 8 hours. It is 9:46 AM 


Source: http://caffeinatedbookreviewer.com/2018/09/fraterfest-readathon-sign-up.html

Reading progress update: I've read 34 out of 424 pages.

Under My Hat: Tales from the Cauldron - Jim Butcher, Frances Hardinge, Holly Black, Delia Sherman, Neil Gaiman, Tanith Lee, Peter S. Beagle, M. Rickert, Tim Pratt, Margo Lanagan, Isobelle Carmody, Ellen Klages, Jonathan Strahan, Diana Peterfreund, Ellen Kushner, Charles de Lint, Jane Yolen, Garth Nix, Patricia A

I am about to begin picking up where I left off in Tales from the Cauldron in contribution to the Fraterfest Readathon which starts at 12 midnight tonight and ends next Tuesday. October 11-16. I shall begin reading a short story called Payment Due by Frances Hardinge.


A Handful of Ashes by Garth Nix

Little Gods by Holly Black

Barrio Girls by Charles De Lint

Felidis by Tanith Lee

Witch Work by Neil Gaiman

The Education of a Witch by Ellen Klages

The Threefold World by Ellen Kushner

The Witch in the Wood by Delia Sherman

Which Witch by Patricia A. McKillip

The Carved Forest by Tim Pratt

Burning Castles by M. Rickert

The Stone Witch by Isobelle Carmody

Andersen's Witch by Jane Yolen

B is for Bigfoot by Jim Butcher

Great-Grandmother in the Cellar by Peter S. Beagle

Crow and Caper, Caper and Crow by Margo Lanagan


These are all the stories included Under My Hat: Tales from the Cauldron. I got this book from my library and have renewed it so I can finish it for Fraterfest. Anyway, I first heard about it through the books in the Harry Dresden series on Goodreads. 


Happy Reading!


"You can have everything in the world, but if you don't have love, none of it means crap"
Blood Rites - Jim Butcher

I just finished reading Blood Rites and this quote from Harry is from the bible. The famous 1 Corinthians chapter thirteen called the Love chapter. Thomas the vampire, Harry finds out, is his brotha from the same motha.


I love James Marsters audio performance. He always does a great job and I admire him. I think he is the reason I get sucked into this world all the time. I couldn't experience Harry Dresden better without him narrating the book.


Finished Reading Ellie Jordan Ghost Trapper

Ellie Jordan, Ghost Trapper - J.L. Bryan

I loved J.L Bryan's ghosts and Ellie Jordan's character! Some ghosts are bad but others are only trying to help, like Mercy. The ghosts in this story are trapped in a house called The Marsh House. It is a creepy dark mansion that was sold to a family with dreams of turning it into a bed and breakfast or possibly a hotel. However, they quickly find out it is haunted when strange things begin to happen.

The father is a drunken slob who refuses to believe there is a ghost in their house and his daughter Lexie is traumatized by having seen one.

It is the ghost of Mercy Cutledge, which we know, is only trying to warn them by telling them to leave because there is a dangerous evil inside the walls.

(show spoiler)

Her mother Anna Treadwell is the only sensible one who reaches out to Ellie Jordan for help.


Ellie Jordan has to get rid of the ghost of Mercy Cutledge, so they perform a couple things, like stage a funeral, but it doesn't work, so now, Ellie is forced to evict her. Before that happens, she gathers more facts about the owners of that particular house. I found the research fascinating. Ellie and her partner Stacey also break into the same loonie bin asylum her ghost lived in but was long since shut down and abandoned. That part gave me the creeps. They didn't have a machete but wore boots and waded in tangled vines, smashed glass and tall weeds in a thorny jungle.  I can picture them both running like a bat out of hell out of that decrepit place. Good times.  


After doing some research, she finds out the owner used to be Augustus March born 1848 and had amassed a lot of money. He marries Eugenia who was a good church-going woman, but she develops a strange sudden illness and died in 1901. It was suspicious.

Augustus has a bad reputation and a few years later his house is turned into a high-class brothel or some shit like that. I can't remember if he did it himself or if it was his niece Louisa Marsh (?). Augustus left his house to her, which by the end of his life was about all he had left.

He was stabbed to death in 1954 by Mercy Cutledge and everyone assumes she was crazy. She accuses Mr. Marsh of being an "occult wizard who is in league with demons" She was sent to an asylum aka mental hospital but later was murdered in Mr. Marsh's house.

(show spoiler)

Long story.


Anyway, the writing is good. I was afraid when Ellie began discussing how some ghosts can actually hurt us, that I would start hearing and seeing ghosts and didn't want them to hurt me ~ Lol I felt like crawling under my blanket with the classic case of the shivers. Like Scooby-Doo!

I am looking forward to reading more in the series. I am already attached to the characters. So fun.

Reading progress update: I've read 60%.

Ellie Jordan, Ghost Trapper - J.L. Bryan

When Ellie tells us that ghosts can sometimes hurt you, i.e: burn you telekinetically, I admit to being scared *shivers um I need to sleep tonight?