Mini-reviews: Loyalty, Throw In The Trowel, & In The Blood

Traveling With T reviews books quite a bit. I try to post at least 1 or 2 review a week (of at least write a couple for future use!) But sometimes, I just want to read. And then after I read, I really just want to fangirl around. Or scream “READ THIS BOOK!” But it’s so hard to accurately write a review with just the words “READ THIS BOOK!” and until I become a You-Tube sensation for “fangirling” it’s going to be hard to accurately describe my levels of fangirling.  So…. Enter the mini-reviews. I’m able to type a couple of quick thoughts about these books that I read on my own time (not my review time), readers of Traveling With T are able to see some books that T picks, and I can just scream “READ THE BOOK” or fangirl for a bit! Win/win/win!


Photo Credit: Goodreads

Photo Credit: Goodreads


Lana Granger lives a life of lies. She has told so many lies about where she comes from and who she is that the truth is like a cloudy nightmare she can’t quite recall. About to graduate from college and with her trust fund almost tapped out, she takes a job babysitting a troubled boy named Luke. Expelled from schools all over the country, the manipulative young Luke is accustomed to controlling the people in his life. But, in Lana, he may have met his match. Or has Lana met hers?

When Lana’s closest friend, Beck, mysteriously disappears, Lana resumes her lying ways—to friends, to the police, to herself. The police have a lot of questions for Lana when the story about her whereabouts the night Beck disappeared doesn’t jibe with eyewitness accounts. Lana will do anything to hide the truth, but it might not be enough to keep her ominous secrets buried: someone else knows about Lana’s lies. And he’s dying to tell.

Traveling With T Thoughts:

OMG. Go get this book. It barely left in my hands in the nearly 2 days it took me to read and I devoured it, loved every bit. Now, I’ll be honest- I did figure out one of the deliciously twisty parts early- well, I had strong suspicions. After that was revealed, I was worried I’d be disappointed. No. Not even for a minute. Lisa Unger just kept on. And the last line… Brilliant.

I’ve been a fan of the psychological thriller/suspense genre for a while- and lately, I’ve been disappointed. Maybe I’ve been picking the wrong books, I don’t know. But Lisa, with IN THE BLOOD, totally restored my bookish faith in that genre.


throw in the trowel

Photo Credit: Goodreads


Flower Shop owner Abby Knight has just returned from a romantic honeymoon with the man of her dreams. There’s no reason for the bloom to be off the rose just because she and Marco are returning to normal life. But when Marco discovers a skeleton buried in the basement of his bar, it is a bit of a mood killer.

When the body is identified as a carpenter who went missing back in the 1970s, Abby and Marco decide to cultivate the clues to solve the cold case. What could be more romantic? But the deeper they dig, the more desperate the murderer grows. And if Marco and Abby don’t unearth the killer’s identity, they may not live to see their first anniversary.

Traveling With T’s Thoughts:

Goodness, I have been a fan of Kate Collins FLOWER SHOP series for years. Abby and I have been like PB&J forever! Solid addition to the Flower Shop series with THROW IN THE TROWEL. The mystery is fun, the characters are wonderful, and I eagerly await the next book. Marco and Abby are just as much fun married as they were dating!


loyalty by ingrid thoft

Photo Credit: Putnam Books


The Ludlows are a hard-charging family, and patriarch Carl Ludlow treats his offspring like employees—which they are. But his daughter, Fina, is a bit of a black sheep. A law school dropout, her father keeps her in the fold as the firm’s private investigator, working alongside her brothers.

Juggling her family of high-powered (and highly dysfunctional) attorneys, the cops and Boston’s criminal element is usually something Fina does without breaking a sweat. But when her sister-in-law disappears, she’s caught up in a case unlike any she’s encountered before.

Carl wants things resolved without police interference, but the deeper Fina digs, the more impossible that seems. The Ludlows close ranks, and her brother Rand and his unruly teenage daughter Haley grow mysteriously distant from the family. As Fina unearths more dirt, the demands of family loyalty intensify. But Fina is after the truth—no matter the cost.

Traveling With T’s Thoughts:

So LOYALTY was a book that was brought to my attention during a agonizing month when I wasn’t buying any new books. And wouldn’t you know Putnam Books tweeted about that LOYALTY during my book-buying hiatus? But I kept it in my mind. And then I asked for it for my birthday. And then I didn’t read it till a few weeks ago. BUT I LOVED IT. Fina was such a bad-ass character, strong and independent- like a younger Kinsey from Sue Grafton’s ABC series. Fina just oozes charisma, she’s tough, she has 2 men in her life (and she’s not wishy-washy about them; she’s empowered about them and the relationship she chooses to have). Basically, Fina is a gal who you don’t want to mess with- and I dig that!


Did you find a new book to add to your TBR pile? Let a girl know by commenting!


Happy Reading and Bookishly Yours,

T @ Traveling With T

T Traveling With T pic sign off

6 thoughts on “Mini-reviews: Loyalty, Throw In The Trowel, & In The Blood

  1. momssmallvictories says:

    These all sound great. I agree sometimes you need time to just read for yourself. I really would like to read In the Blood, I do enjoy a good psychological thriller. The flower shop ine sounds fun too. Yea I promised myself I would read the books I own before buying any more. So far I have held to that but I have a lot of catching up on reading to do!

    • In The Blood… OMG amazing. And whenever you read it, let me know. Because I want to hear your reaction. The Flower Shop series is cute. It’s a light, cozy read and the story line is great!

  2. T, I’m definitely going to check out Unger’s In the Blood, sounds good. I chatted with you on an earlier post about book clubs and the discussion motivated me to try looking again in the area for a book club to join. I found one in the next town over sponsored by a IBS, and we had our first meeting this past Sunday – only 5 but they were great ladies, and I really liked the book they chose: Lie Still by Julia Heaberlin. It’s set in my neck of the woods in the Ft. Worth area and is full of Texas caricatures and is a great thriller with a blend of suspense and some amusing moments to lighten the tension. I’m reading the author’s first book now Playing Dead, and I think I’m going to like this one more than Lie Still!

    • YAY! So glad you found a book club! Here’s hoping that it stays a fun and great club! I actually read LIE STILL last summer when it first came out for review. I enjoyed it! I’ve been meaning to look into PLAYING DEAD, but between my review books & own reading books, had not found the time!

      • I just finished Playing Dead this morning and I liked it even more than Lie Still. It was suspenseful right up until the very end. The last 10% of the book kept me turning the pages and I couldn’t put it down. The author does a good job of wrapping up the numerous story threads woven throughout the book and tying everything together. A very good read!

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