Monday, August 22, 2022

Book Review and Signed Copy GIVEAWAY: Devil's Chew Toy, by Rob Osler {ends 8/30}

Guest review by: Becki Bayley

Hollister called. She apologized for bagging out on me the night before. Her excuse: Mysti had felt neglected, and so for the sake of their relationship, Hollister had needed to hang out with her. I said I understood (I didn’t). I was eager to fill her in on my discovery of 6969 Bounder Road, the second threatening note, and the detectives’ visit – along with the bombshell that Camilo was in the country because of his DACA status. For all that, I decided it was better to talk in person. We agreed to meet at Slice in an hour. 

When I arrived, Hollister was already at the same table by the window. “Top of the morning, Batwoman.”

She tipped her mug. “Robin.”

“No, no, no. We’ve been through this before. Spiderman, please.”

“What, you don’t want to wear a kick-ass cape and sexy tights? Fine by me. Wouldn’t be my choice.”

The cast of characters could have made this book sound just ridiculous, but it’s a well-written and interesting story too!

Official synopsis: 
Book Review and Signed Copy GIVEAWAY: Devil's Chew Toy, by Rob Osler {ends 8/30}
Seattle teacher and part-time blogger Hayden McCall wakes sporting one hell of a shiner, with the police knocking at his door. It seems that his new crush, dancer Camilo Rodriguez, has gone missing and they suspect foul play. What happened the night before? And where is Camilo?

Determined to find answers, pint-sized, good-hearted Hayden seeks out two of Camilo’s friends—Hollister and Burley—both lesbians and both fiercely devoted to their friend. From them, Hayden learns that Camilo is a “Dreamer” whose parents had been deported years earlier, and whose sister, Daniela, is presumed to have returned to Venezuela with them. Convinced that the cops won’t take a brown boy’s disappearance seriously, the girls join Hayden’s hunt for Camilo. 

The first clues turn up at Barkingham Palace, a pet store where Camilo had taken a part-time job. The store’s owner, Della Rupert, claims ignorance, but Hayden knows something is up. And then there’s Camilo’s ex-boyfriend, Ryan, who’s suddenly grown inexplicably wealthy. When Hayden and Hollister follow Ryan to a secure airport warehouse, they make a shocking connection between him and Della—and uncover the twisted scheme that’s made both of them rich.

The trail of clues leads them to the grounds of a magnificent estate on an island in Puget Sound, where they’ll finally learn the truth about Camilo’s disappearance—and the fate of his family.

The first pitch for this book read: “...this hilarious, big-hearted LGBTQ+ mystery follows an unlucky in love—and life—gay relationship blogger who teams up with a take-charge lesbian and a fiesty bull terrier to find a missing go-go boy and bring down an international crime ring…” Who could pass that up?? While it was a big promise for a super-fun story, Hayden, Hollister, Burley, and Commander truly may be the best set of heroes ever!

Their stories felt real, and not over-embellished for stereotypes. The daily struggles they faced included college, working to make ends meet, immigration, and yes, peoples’ perceptions of them based on how they presented. But they all had hearts of gold (usually) and recognized the good in those around them whenever possible. 

Overall, this book got 4 out of 5 stars from me. While the author could have leaned on the quirks of the characters to sell books, the great writing and depth of the story made it a thoroughly enjoyable read. Hopefully we can find out what happens next! I’d recommend this book for those who like found family stories, unique and varied characters, and quirky cozy mysteries.

{click here to purchase - currently free for Audible members!}

Becki Bayley has lived more than a half century and enjoys reading (obvs), writing, and learning more about the world around her. Check out some of her discoveries at her blog, SweetlyBSquared.com.

GIVEAWAY:

One of my lucky readers will win a SIGNED COPY of Devil's Chew Toy, as well as a dog bone bookmark!

Enter via the widget below. Giveaway will end on Tuesday, August 30th, at 11:59pm ET, and winner will be notified via email the next day and have 24 hours to respond, or an alternate winner will be chosen.

U.S. residents only, please.

Good luck!

Devil's Chew Toy, by Rob Osler

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