Monday, October 16, 2017

Book Review and Giveaway - Murder on the Toy Town Express: A Vintage Toyshop Mystery by Barbara Early

Book Synopsis
Liz McCall has come to love running her father’s vintage toyshop back home in East Aurora, NY, so when the Train and Toy Show comes to town, she’s all aboard for a fun toy-filled weekend. The only hitch is that her childhood bully Craig McFadden, now local business rival, has set up a booth next to hers. But the fun and games are over when Craig falls from the ceiling in a publicity stunt gone wrong.

What was initially thought to be a fatal accident proves much more sinister. Pulled into the case by her feelings for both Ken, the police chief, and Jack, her high school sweetheart whose brother is one the prime suspects, Liz dives headfirst into the investigation. But as she digs deeper, she’s shocked to learn her father may have been the intended target.

The trouble train is barreling down and Liz may have just bought herself a first class ticket in Murder on the Toy Town Express, Barbara Early’s delightful second installment in her Vintage Toyshop mysteries.

My Review
Murder on the Toy Town Express is a fun read for cozy mystery fans, and anyone who loves retro toys will especially enjoy it.  I love all things retro, including vintage toys, and sometimes sell a few vintage toys in my online shop, so I especially enjoyed this book.

Liz works with her father in his vintage toy store in East Aurora, New York.  When they work a vintage toy show, she is shocked when her high school bully, now a comic book dealer, dies suddenly.  With the help of her father, friends, and semi-boyfriend, Ken (who also is police chief) she becomes involved in working to solve the crime.

This was such a fun read!  I couldn't put it down.  The characters are quirky, interesting, and likable.  And there are twists and then more twists.  I am usually pretty good at solving mysteries but did not have this one figured out until I was about 75% in!

This is the second book in the Vintage Toyshop Mystery series.  I have not read the first (yet!), but this book worked fine as a standalone mystery.

I loved, loved, loved the vintage toy details in this book.  As well as great details about model trains, there are mentions of toys like The Addams Family Card Game, The  Beatles: Flip Your Wig Game, Candy Land, Life, Lite-Brite, and more.  At one point the characters have a 1970's games night featuring Yahtzee, Risk, Clue, Mousetrap, Rebound, Which Witch, Sub Search, and Manhunt.  The party was complete even with '70's candies:  Good & Plenty, Milk Duds, Necco Wafers, Chuckles, and Sky Bars.

I enthusiastically recommend Murder on the Toy Town Express to other cozy fans.  It makes a great weekend read, and it is really fun!

Author Bio
Barbara Early earned an engineering degree, but after four years of doing nothing but math, developed a sudden allergy to the subject and decided to choose another occupation. Before she settled on murdering fictional people, she was a secretary, a school teacher, a pastor’s wife, and an amateur puppeteer. After several years living elsewhere, she and her husband moved back to her native Western New York State, where she enjoys cooking, crafts, classic movies and campy seventies television, board games, and posting pictures of her four cats on Facebook. She writes the Vintage Toyshop series and the Bridal Bouquet Shop Mysteries (as Beverly Allen).

Author Links
http://www.barbaraearly.com/
https://www.facebook.com/AuthorBarbaraEarly/
https://twitter.com/BarbEarly
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1671291.Barbara_Early
Author Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/cUh3Wn
Cozy Café: https://www.facebook.com/CozyCafeMysteries/
Killer Characters: http://www.killercharacters.com/search/label/Barbara%20Early 

Purchase Links
Amazon     B&N   BAM    INDIEBOUND    Book Depository

GIVEAWAYS
There are two (!) giveaways on this book tour.

Giveaway #1
Book swag!  Prize is a brightly colored vintage toyshop tote bag, key ring, train whistle, bookmarks, and assorted fun Toyshop swag (color and selection will vary).   U.S. Only.   Ends 10/23.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Giveaway #2
Prize includes signed copies of MURDER ON THE TOY TOWN EXPRESS (hardcover) and DEATH OF A TOY SOLDIER (paperback), a Vintage Toyshop tote bag, keyring, booksmarks, and assorted fun toyshop swag. U.S. Only.  Ends 10/19.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

I received a copy of this book from Great Escapes Book Tour and NetGalley.

37 comments:

Joan Hi. said...

Love the cover! and the story line

Jana Leah B said...

This series looks so fun & I love quirky characters.

Abigail Gibson said...

Thanks for this awesome giveaway!

Abigail Gibson said...

Barbara Early seems like a well seasoned author. Look forward to reading her works.

Dianne Casey said...

I really enjoyed the first book in the series. Would really like to read "Murder on the Toy Town Express".

Tracy Shafer said...

This sounds like such a fun book!

Anonymous said...

This would be a great holiday read. Looks like an enjoyable fun book!
Merry

Abigail said...

Sounds like a fun read! thanks for sharing the review and chance to win!

Julie Waldron said...

This looks like a fun book, thank you for the giveaway.

Darlene said...

I love mystery books, and the cover is great.

LeAnn Harbert said...

This sounds like a great book

Gabrielly said...

I love the cover.

Cynthia Schmied said...

Having grown up near train tracks for most of my life I am very interested in anything to do with trains.

Stephanie Shipley said...

This sounds like a great book! I can't wait to read it!

Lauryn Rescoe said...

This sounds like a great book! Thanks for sharing.

juanita may said...

Thanks for hosting this giveaway!

talktive tucker said...

Love murder mysteries. This looks like an insteresting book, jamie tucker

amy guillaume linderman said...

would love to read this! fun goodies

Kristin C said...

What a fun giveaway!

kdrae said...

This looks like a cute book!
kdraebellamy@yahoo.com

Tandi Cortez-Rios said...

Thanks for the giveaway!

Stephanie said...

Ooh, sounds like an interesting holiday read!

Nancy said...

I enjoy discovering mystery authors who are new to me. I also like holiday reads!

Nancy
allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

lildevilgirl22 said...

This book sounds good

Richard Brandt said...

My dad always set up his model train layout around the base of our Christmas tree so I love this milieu.

Saundra McKenzie said...

My grandson would love this. He is obsessed with trains.

Jackie said...

This sounds like a fun read. Thank you for the review.

Misty said...

What a cute read. I know we will enjoy this! (jozywails@gmail.com)

Eileen Boyce said...

this has to be fun to read!

Sandra Watts said...

What a great series. Thanks for hosting.

lkw1974 said...

thanks for the chance, would love to win :)

Jill J. said...

Precious books, great for kids!

Laura Lee said...

This sounds like such a great book!

desitheblonde said...

my brother would of loved this but he passed and i woud put it with my collection

Kayla Klontz said...

This looks like a great book.

MichelleCat said...

this looks absolutely adorable; the vintage has me going "eeek" LOVE

Anonymous said...

This looks like a great book! Holly Wright