Book Review: Ashley's War, The Untold Story of a Team of Women Soldiers on the Special Ops Battlefield by Gayle Tzemach Lemmon

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Ashley's War:  The Untold Story of a Team of Women Soldiers on the Special Ops Battlefield by Gayle Tzemach Lemmon is a non-fiction book published in April 2015.  The story follows several women and their quest to become the first women to be in combat along the Green Berets and Army Rangers. This is a book that was selected in my workplace for discussion between women and/or veterans.  The book discussion was broken into three parts much like how the story was broken up.  It garnered great conversations. Some of the things that happened in the book didn't surprise me, such as how physically demanding the tryouts were to be part of the special operations.  It's a demanding job that requires people to be not only physically strong but mentally strong.     What did shock me was that it took the military so long to allow women to fight along men on the battlefield.  Another thing that astonished me were how accepting most of the men in the Army Rangers were of the women fight

Book Review: Murder By The Seashore (California Bookshop Mystery, #1) by Samara Yew

Murder by the Seashore (California Bookshop Mystery, #1) by Samara Yew takes place in Oceanside, California.  It opens with Scarlett Gardner having a hard day at work because everything has gone wrong.  She partly blames Connor, her ex-boyfriend, because he dumped her and took off to greener pastures for a start up company when they were supposed to be running the bookstore she opened together.  Taking a walk on the nearby beach, Scarlett stumbles over a dead body, which turns out to be that of Lorelei Knight . . . the last customer who frequented her store the night before.  Now, Scarlett is the prime suspect and needs to clear her name.

First and foremost, I'd like to thank NetGalley for the Advanced Readers Copy (ARC) of Murder by the Seashore (California Bookshop Mystery, #1) by Samara Yew.  When I read the synopsis of this book, it sounded like it was right up my alley.  I received a copy of this cozy mystery for free in exchange for my honest review.

The beginning of the story started off a bit slow, but it quickly picked up pace.  I found myself falling in love with most of the characters . . . and the storyline, of course.  The few characters I didn't care for were Connor, Detective Maxwell, Autumn, and Martin.  However, Martin did redeem himself a bit later in the book.  You'll have to read the book to find out how!

There were plenty of twists and red herrings.  My first suspect was Evelyn Maxwell, who happened to be married to Police Detective Maxwell and work for Scarlett.  She acted very strange in my opinion.  Other people I suspected were Connor, Autumn, and Lucia.  I was glad to see that the person I finally decided upon as the culprit was in fact the murderer.  However, I never did figure out the connection between Lorelei and Scarlett.

I enjoyed this cozy mystery quite a bit because it's well written and held my attention.  I can't wait to find out what happens next in this series.  Four out of five stars is what I gave Murder by the Seashore (California Bookshop Mystery, #1) by Samara Yew.

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