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Death on the Night of Lost Lizards (A…
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Death on the Night of Lost Lizards (A HUNGARIAN TEA HOUSE MYSTERY) (edizione 2021)

di Julia Buckley (Autore)

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851,766,684 (4.5)1
Titolo:Death on the Night of Lost Lizards (A HUNGARIAN TEA HOUSE MYSTERY)
Autori:Julia Buckley (Autore)
Info:Berkley (2021), 288 pages
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Death on the Night of Lost Lizards di Julia Buckley

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Mostra 5 di 5
From the moment I read the author's dedication, "For my father and mother, in gratitude for Christmases past." I felt the possibility that it would be the month of December as I turned the pages. Two wonderful quotes led me to Chapter 1 entitled, "The Man in the Snow" and I was already entranced in the magic of the holiday season. I loved the opening to learn of Hana's memory of her grandmother explaining that "snow is friendlier than rain" as "snow sits on your shoulder and tells you the truth: that life is cold, but it warms us with beauty."

That is just one of the enchanting treasures of reading novels by Julia Buckley. In the midst of conversations, remembrances, and events there are beautiful descriptions that not only create charming settings where her characters live, work, and play but her writing transports the reader and his or her own imagination to feel like they have an inside view to all that occurs within the story. As I remember Hana purchasing a snow globe as one of her Christmas gifts for her grandmother it gives me another way to describe the author's writing. At the beginning of her story, the reader has shaken the precious globe and as the snow is dancing and glittering with beauty inside the globe there is delightful anticipation as to what will transpire in this special setting. As the snow settles, another mystery begins.

Hana, her mother Maggie, and grandmother continue to delight their customers with beautifully created events for the Christmas season and share many customs held dear in the Hungarian culture. Even as one event becomes a memorial tea for the gentleman that had planned the event and looked forward to the event as host there are traditions shared that remind me of the wonderful Christmases past hosted by my father and mother for our own family and many very similar in nature especially the holiday menus. I also found strength in these words that would be a blessing to give to all we meet on our life journey not only at Christmas but all the year through.

'When we think of grace,' she said, we think of something that allows us to regenerate, to sanctify, not just what we feel within, but what we see without. We seek our moments of grace, and we find reward in them. And in its most powerful form, grace gives us strength to endure any trial. I wish for you a Christmas filled with holy grace, and a year filled with opportunities to bring that feeling to others.'

For all who love this series it is a wonderful continuation of the relationships of all the characters we love. If you haven't yet started the series, I would encourage you to read the series in order as then the progression of the relationships is even more precious to enjoy. I hope this series has many more stories yet to be told. ( )
  FerneMysteryReader | Jun 13, 2021 |
Death on the Night of Lost Lizards is a gem of a story, an absolute gem! Events in Hana’s life have quieted down after her last two harrowing brushes with mysterious deaths. Not only that, things have also started to heat up with her new beau, Erik. While out shopping for the upcoming holidays, Hana thought she saw someone she recognized but she soon pushed off that thought. Though when a mysterious Hungarian artifact finds its way into her family’s tea house, it becomes apparent that Hana’s involvement in investigations is not as over as she had assumed. There is a connection to what she saw and she is determined to follow that thread where ever it may lead and no matter the danger.

I have to be honest, the third book in the Hungarian Tea House Mystery series is just as adorable as the previous two. I love it when an installment in a series keeps on meeting my expectations and Death on the Night of Lost Lizards absolutely does just that and more. Hana and her family continue to delight me with their “possible” supernatural abilities, super cute. Also, this time around, there was an inclusion of friends that helped Hana along the way as she puzzled her way through what she thought she knew and what her feelings were telling her. What a fun chase this story took me on! Overall, Death on the Night of Lost Lizards was filled with a wonderful cozy mystery, steeped with Hungarian folklore, and sweetened with charm.

This review is based on a complimentary book I received. It is an honest and voluntary review. The complimentary receipt of it in no way affected my review or rating. ( )
  TheGenreMinx | Jun 1, 2021 |
Death On The Night Of Lost Lizards is the third book in the A Hungarian Tea House Mystery series by Julia Buckley.

With summer on its way, this is a great time to read this wonderful addition to this series. The setting of the book is close to Christmas near blustery Chicago, Illinois.

Hana Keller is finishing up her Christmas shopping, and while waiting for her car to warm, she sees a young man with no coat on throw something into a dumpster behind a store. When Hana tries to tell Detective Erik Wolf, Erik, her boyfriend, informs her he is investigating the murder of a professor and will talk later. Later that day, Hana tells Erik what she saw, and he promises to have the dumpster searched. The next day Erik tells Hana that the police did find a coat with evidence wrapped in it.

When she learns the victim is Professor Balog, and of his valuable collection of Hungarian artifacts, she realizes she knows of him. She has seen him at her favorite antique store. Hana starts talking with the other professors in Balog’s department, and to a person, they say Balog was well-liked. Hana is skilled at asking questions, as well as listening. She will overhear conversations at the family tea house, which will point her to several suspects, which she will share with Erik.

Erik’s sister has problems with her pregnancy and has asked Hana to use her psychic abilities to learn if everything will turn out all right. Hana has only recently discovered her skills and hasn’t them that much and is torn between using them or not.

The book is well-written and plotted. The characters are well-developed and very interesting, and believable. I particularly enjoyed learning about Hungarian traditions, folklore, and especially some traditional foods. The author also included recipes for some of the foods mentioned in the book.

I am eagerly awaiting the next book in this delightful series. ( )
  FredYoder | May 30, 2021 |
I have never written a book review for a cozy mystery and said that it was hauntingly beautiful at times, but that is exactly how I felt about Death on the Night of Lost Lizards by Julia Buckley. Her imagery of the winter evenings combined with the dreamlike states of her psychic visions created the perfect atmosphere for this cozy taking place during the Christmas season.

I keep coming back to the Hungarian Tea House Mysteries for the detailed and varied characters, the wonderful descriptions of the food, tea sets and parties, and the Hungarian folklore along with the interesting Hungarian facts, all combined with a touch of psychic activity… which keeps increasing a bit with every new book.

This book also included some suspense with Erik’s sister and some of the events that happened, so for me, that was a great bonus. The mystery was well thought out and kept me guessing, and I’m still enjoying Hana and Erik’s relationship, which is a must for me to continue any series.

I highly recommend the Hungarian Tea House Mysteries. And while you could start with book three and not be confused, do yourself a favor and start with book one instead, Death in a Budapest Butterfly. ( )
  KimHeniadis | May 25, 2021 |
Hana Keller works at her family's Hungarian tea house. She loves it, along with her family, her cats, and her new beau, homicide detective Erik Wolf. It's coming on Christmas, and she knows she needs to shop for gifts, so while she's waiting for her car to warm up, she sees a familiar figure that she can't quite place. The young man is without a coat, and they meet eyes for just a second. When Hana leaves, she can't get the image out of her mind.

When she gets to work she discovers that a professor at the nearby university has been murdered that morning. She mentions the strangeness of the man's actions, going in and out of an alleyway, and tells Erik that he needs to check the dumpster. Now, with evidence found, Hana is well and good into another murder investigation. She also discovers that Professor Balog had an extensive collection of Hungarian art himself, a priceless collection, that sets people to wondering how he could afford it all.

But it's not long before Hana sees some of the suspects -- other professors who claim to like the dead professor but still had issues with him, and it leaves Erik with suspects aplenty. Along with this, Erik's sister is having problems of her own, and Hana's life is about to get more interesting and complicated at the same time.

Her Uncle Zoltan sends her a beautiful set of Hungarian teacups and teapot that have Chinese lizards on them for her approaching birthday, and she's wanted them since she was young, and immediately starts having tea parties at her apartment to show off her prize. But something in the design starts to make her think about life, and it bothers her...

She's also using her newfound psychic skills to try and help Erik, but knows she can only do so much. It's the tea set that starts her thinking, and when she starts her own investigation, seeing some of the professors here and there, little does she know that eventually it will all come full circle and a surprising killer will emerge...

This is the third book in the series and I have loved every one of them. Ms, Buckley gives us a beautiful story of murder -- believe it or not -- and Hana's thoughts are first and foremost. She finds true joy in the Christmas season and ponders life and death, and everything is just lovely to read. Yes, we have a mystery in trying to find a murderer, but it is in this in between that brings it all together one piece at a time.

Many things are happening at once - and I am loath to tell you what they are since it would definitely be too many spoilers - but I will say that this book itself is magical. It brings you pleasure in just reading it. There are so many things that are intriguing within, and it makes the Christmas season more beautiful than it already is. As a matter of fact, I intend to read this book again at Christmas, just because I love it so.

I am also extremely pleased that the author presented us with a truly captivating murder mystery without politics (as some authors are now wont to do), and gives us nothing but a truly delicious murder to dig into and try and discover the killer.

While trying myself to put the pieces together, it came as a surprise to both Hana and I at the same time who this person was. The reasons for the killing were sad in itself but who knows what another person thinks? All in all, the tapestry came together one thread at a time, and was woven superbly together. My only lament is that this series is too few and far between. I love the characters, the setting, learning Hungarian phrases and lore (history is all so stimulating to me). Hana's family are quirky and loving, and her relationship with the quiet detective is progressing nicely. Also, as a lover of cats, I can't get enough of Antony and Cleopatra. Brava, Ms. Buckley, for giving us another look into Hana's life. Highly recommended. ( )
  joannefm2 | May 6, 2021 |
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