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Book Review: Mary Jane by Jessica Anya Blau

Mary Jane by Jessica Anya Blau is a coming of age novel taking place in Baltimore, Maryland. During the 1970's, fourteen year old Mary Jane is caught in the middle of her family's conservative ideals and the progressive ideals of the Cone family where she is a summer nanny. Mary Jane is a sheltered teen who enjoys cooking with her mother, listening to Broadway Show Tunes, and singing in the church choir. On the first day of work, she is shocked at the mess in the Cone's home and introduces them to home cooked meals and keeping the house clean. In return, Mary Jane gets a front row seat to sex, drugs, and rock & roll. This novel was the selected for the book club I belong to. Again, this is a novel that I likely wouldn't have chosen to read on my own, but I was glad I did. Mary Jane is the first novel I've read by Jessica Anya Blau, and I was impressed with her storytelling.  Touching on race, class, and stereotypes, along with drugs and infidelity, it reminded

Book Review: The Murder Game by Janice Harrell

book review of the murder game janice harrell
You're invited to a murder . . . that is how the ad read, but in all actuality, it's an invitation to an unsupervised birthday party at the vacation home of Dusty Ellis. Meg Redding is the only one who knows the true motive behind Dusty holding the murder mystery party . . . to find out who murdered his twin sister and why. However, when one of the guests turns up dead, everyone is on edge and don't know who they can trust in The Murder Game by Janice Harrell.

The Murder Game by Janice Harrell is a young adult novel that I read as a teen. I remember being completely on edge the entire book and was taken by surprise when the killer was revealed. When I decided to reread this book as an adult, I didn't remember much about it other than what I've already mentioned. What I enjoyed about reading it as an adult is that Janice Harrell did a nice job of laying out motive of several of the characters and giving clues as to who the killer was, and as an adult, I was able to figure out who it was from the beginning. I did love that one of the characters knew who the killer was and was blackmailing the killer. The storyline was a nice take off of Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None.

Five out of five stars is what I gave The Murder Game by Janice Harrell. If you enjoyed this book, I'd recommend Temptation (Secret Diaries, #1) by Janice Harrell or And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie.

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