December 2, 2012

book review: diners, dives & dead ends

Action-packed from page one with unexpected twists and turns along the way, Terri L. Austin's Diners, Dives & Dead Ends offers plenty of intrigue for fans of mystery -- and a little romance.

Rose Strickland is a 24-year-old who is working at Ma's Diner and taking a couple of classes at her community college while she figures out what she wants from life. Formerly a child of privilege, her life circumstances are different than the ones her parents planned for her.

Life already off track, it goes even farther off the deep end when her best friend Axton shows up at the diner and asks her to hold on to his backpack for him. He then goes missing. Rose must turn to her long-time friends and new ones as she tries to find him.

After learning about connections to organized crime, Rose thinks she has a plan to save her friend and her self, but things are not always what they seem.

This story was super exciting and interesting. I'm a fan of a good mystery, and this was one I could not put down. Throw in a good mystery with a couple of possible love interests to delve into as the story progresses, this had everything I was looking for.

As far as main characters go, Rose was a good one. She starts out aimless and wandering through life, but as the mystery unfolds more, so does her determination to make a real life for her self.

Her friends are wonderful. From her anime loving fellow waitress and the rest of the diner staff to her nephew and sister, they all love and support Rose as much as she does in return.

Like I just mentioned, the new men in her life are also fun to read. Without spoiling any of the story, I definitely have my favorite who I hope to see her end up with. I'm pretty traditional in my romance and love connections from the past. Who am I kidding, I'm a total sucker for falling in love with the kid who used to sit behind you in class years ago. So I think you'll be able to guess who I'm pulling for after you read the book. (His name rhymes with... rain.)

The story's ending took a twist I didn't see coming. I admit that when I reached what I thought was the resolution, I was surprised to see there were so many pages left in the story. I wondered if the ending was going to drag out -- and will say I was surprised, because the rest of the story moved so quickly. Then almost out of nowhere: boom, another twist.

Knowing what Rose went through in this story, I am interested to see what happens next. I'm really pulling for her and hope she can get over some of the darker points. But if I had to guess, I imagine certain incidents were a turning point in her life, and it's going be rocky on her road to recovery. Her life has changed and there's no going back.

Rating: 4.5 of 5

Be sure to check back tomorrow for a guest post from the author.

About the Author
Terri L. Austin lives in Missouri with her funny, handsome husband and a high maintenance peekapoo. She loves to hear from readers. Find her on Twitter, FB,, Goodreads and Henery Press. She and her writer friends have a book chat every Wednesday on Little Read Hens. Check it out and join in the conversation!

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  1. I love this book! I'm ready for #2 which I think is just out! Such a funny mystery and I love that Sullivan!