Lessons for Suspicious Minds by Charlie Cochrane #Review

Lessons for Suspicious Minds by Charlie Cochrane #ReviewLessons for Suspicious Minds by Charlie Cochrane

Series: #10 Cambridge Fellows
Genres: Historical Romance, M/M Romance, Romantic Suspense
Published by Riptide on April 20, 2015
Pages: 255
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
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I have praised this series to the heavens with each new installment and I have said so much about each intricate bit because I love the depth and quality to these stories. I held my breath after All Lessons Learned just hoping that it wouldn’t be the end and thankfully the author has seen fit to give me more. This particular story ended up being poignant for the simple fact that it dips back in time before the events of the last few books to happier, simpler times. I loved that Orlando and Jonty are out sleuthing in the company of the incomparable Stewarts.

I suppose in theory some of these books can be read out of order, but seriously, if you have the choice, don’t. Some suspense series have mild series story arcs that run through them. In my opinion, this one isn’t one of those. These tell a romance story and develop the characters along the way. Even some of the cases have connections and there are references to previous cases laced throughout. It would be like spending time with a group of people with you being the only one who is new. Haha, yes, my fan-dom is showing. Sorry- okay, I’m not.

The story opens when Jonty and Orlando finish the term with their students at university and are invited to join Jonty’s parents to spend time at the country estate of Helena Steward’s godmother. Jonty and Orlando figure out quickly that this is no innocent country house party and that they have been hooked in to solve what might be a murder. Both enjoy amateur detecting so willingly go along, but then another suspicious death lands in their laps and the host family are reluctant to have the tidy suicide of a friend teased at. Detective fever is high, but that doesn’t stop Orlando from getting jealous of the handsome footman, Jonty from ‘fessing up to a little project he started on Orlando’s behalf, or the very real fun of the two spending time with Jonty’s eccentric parents.

The mystery is an interesting one that kept me guessing a little though I figured out some of it. It was one that left a bad taste in my mouth as it did the two fellows. Interesting shades of gray solution. I enjoy that side of the plot of course, but what is always my favorite is just spending time with the two lovers. The witty dialogue and heartwarming passion that is consistent with the historical times and setting are the heart of the story. The tie to suicide is particularly hard on Orlando because of his own father’s death in that manner and Jonty is as sensitive to this as Orlando himself. They also mull around the possibility of solving the remaining mystery of Orlando’s roots though Jonty is fearful that opening that can of worms might send Orlando off the deep end again.

All in all, it was a pleasure to return to a favorite series and spend time on the detecting trail with two engaging guys in this Edwardian era romantic suspense. Any one who enjoys the idea of m/m, historical fiction and romantic suspense all blended together into something good should try the series.

My thanks to Riptide Publishing for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for my honest review.

Romance Roundabout #146 LGBT

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About Charlie Cochrane

As Charlie Cochrane couldn’t be trusted to do any of her jobs of choice—like managing a rugby team—she writes. Her favourite genre is gay fiction, predominantly historical romances/mysteries, with titles published by Carina, Samhain, Bold Strokes, MLR, Riptide and Lethe.

Charlie’s Cambridge Fellows Series of Edwardian romantic mysteries was instrumental in her being named Author of the Year 2009 by the review site Speak Its Name. She’s a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, Mystery People, International Thriller Writers Inc and is on the organising team for UK Meet for readers/writers of GLBT fiction. She regularly appears with The Deadly Dames.

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.
  • Charlie Cochrane

    Thanks for hosting me – could you relabel this, though? That isn’t an excerpt, it’s the second part of an ongoing story that’s linked to the series but not part of it!

  • I love these types of fun historicals, they always remind me of Sherlock Holmes!

  • I love it when you love a series so much that you hope it doesn’t end and get excited when a new book comes out. Thanks for the review and excerpt.

    • Charlie Cochrane

      So pleased to hear that!

    • Me too, Mary! I have just a few that I adore and don’t want to end. This is one of them.

  • Anne Barwell

    I need to play catch up with the lads – am sadly a couple of books behind 🙁 and I do so love them and their sleuthing.

    • Me too, Anne! I love them being together as sleuths more than the actual mysteries which aren’t too bad either. 😉

  • Aw am so glad you got another one! And that you loved it so much 🙂

    • I was sooooo tickled to see this latest release, Anna. I hope she does more.

  • Ree Dee

    Thank you for having another new book to add to the list of Cambridge Fellows! I am new to the series but hopefully it will keep going for a long while! Thank you!

    • Ree Dee

      Oops! ree.dee.2014 at gmail.com

    • These are great and there are several, Ree Dee. Try to get them in order so you can enjoy them the most.

  • trix23

    Thanks for the review…I really need to catch up!

    vitajex(at)Aol(Dot)com

    • Oh yes! You definitely need to catch up. The last few were the most powerful in the series.

  • I love the sound of the banter and despite figuring some of it out it looks like the mystery was well done making it a balanced tale.

    • It was a good mystery. These split between telling the mystery and a romance story too which I really like. It all feels so authentically Edwardian too so its Historical Romantic Suspense.

  • Lindy Gomez

    When you love spending time with the characters, then you know the story is amazing! That is always my favorite part. Witty dialogue and passionate romance make a story amazing. I use to read a ton of historical romance, but haven’t in a long time! I miss it 🙁

    Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

    • You are very right, Lindy! Amazing stories are generally b/c the characters are ones that I love being with.

      Oh, that’s a bummer! I hope you get a chance to pick up some Historical Romance again. I go through seasons of preferring certain genres and then rotate when I’m ready for something fresh.