Putting On The Witch by Joyce and Jim Lavene ~ A Cozy review and Giveaway

Posted: October 9, 2016 in Cozy Mystery, giveaways, reviews
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It has been so sad, losing both Joyce and Jim LaVene. They are two of my most cherished authors and I had many a fun email chats with Joyce. Having read so many of their books in several different series, I can say they are also at the top of my list of cozy mystery authors.

I was so thrilled to have the opportunity to read and review their latest book. And this is the first print copy of theirs that I have owned. It will always be a special book for me. Thank you, Joyce and Jim, for the many cozy hours I spent being charmed by your stories. You’ll be missed.


Putting on the Witch
by Joyce and Jim Lavene

Epic. One word to describe this book.
From the first book in this series I was spell bound.
~Karen’s Reviews



Putting on the Witch (Retired Witches Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Berkley (October 4, 2016)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425268278
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My Review

Having read and enjoyed so many books by these two wonderful authors, I never had a doubt whether I’d enjoy this one too. Losing both Joyce and Jim within the last year, the reading community is feeling the loss, as am I. I’m thrilled to be able to share my thoughts about their newest release.

What a fun story. I was particularly happy to have both female and male witches in this one.  And there’s some witches that are getting ready to retire that are still discovering new powers. I think I’d be hard pressed to quit if I still had something new brewing inside me. And that’s where one character finds herself.

The Grand Witches Council is throwing a big gala at a hidden mansion. The Who’s Who of witches are all present and our rag tag group joins the festivities. They’re not liked by the upper crust and that is made apparent when one of the council members is found dead.

Bring on the Spanish Inquisitor. He used to persecute witches. Torture and burning were his trade. Now he’s bound by the witches and used to sniff out their own kind when one goes bad. There’s a delightful twist with him. One I didn’t see coming, and it really made for more fun reading.

There were too many suspects with their own agendas for me to have a smidgeon of a chance of figuring out who the killer was, so I just relaxed and let the authors show me.

Now, what’s a cozy without some critters. Most of the witches in this story have a cat as their familiar. And one of the familiars has a big, naughty secret. Bad kitty.

Some other fun stuff is a witches beauty shop where you go for a complete makeover from head to toe. The glamour only lasts for one night, but think how easy it would be to get ready. And there’s a haunted bracelet that causes some sticky situations.  The scene with it’s eyes kind of creeped me out.

Plenty of mystery abounds, with some fun twists and witchy shenanigans to keep you engaged. This would be a good one for your Halloween reading list.

I have this very bad habit of jumping into a series anywhere. I’ve not read the first two books, but the authors, as is their norm, made it easy and fun for me to join in here. I did stumble a wee bit until I got all of the character’s sorted out. Then it was all fun to the finish.

5 Stars



With their coven’s spell book still missing, Molly and Elsie—along with their ghostly friend Olivia, her daughter Dorothy, and her boyfriend Brian—are all on edge, especially now that Dorothy’s infamously wicked father is back in the picture. So when they receive an invitation to an exclusive Witches Ball, the ladies jump at the chance to dress up and have some fun.

The castle locale is spectacular and the party is hopping, but the festivities come to a swift end when a member of the Grand Council of Witches is murdered. With the whole place on lock down, the coven is determined to find the cunning killer, even with an angry council and a real Spanish Inquisitor breathing down their necks…


I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

About The Authors

Joyce and Jim Lavene wrote award-winning, bestselling mystery fiction as themselves, J.J. Cook, and Ellie Grant. They had written and published more than 70 novels for Harlequin, Berkley, Amazon, and Gallery Books along with hundreds of non-fiction articles for national and regional publications. Joyce passed away October 20, 2015 and Jim passed on May 5, 2016. They are missed by family, friends and their many fans.



Purchase links:

Amazon – Barnes and Noble 


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Other books in the series.

21911686  24611676


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For a list of my reviews go HERE.

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To see all of my giveaways click on the lucky kitty below!

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  1. Anne C says:

    Love the cover! Excited to read this!

  2. Sounds like a great series! So sad they are gone, all their books always looked so fun.

    • fuonlyknew says:

      I’ll surely miss them, Stormi. I still plan to go back and read other books I’ve not got to yet.

  3. noraadrienne says:

    I’m a huge fan of the J’s and own 10 of their titles. I’d be honored to win this book to add to my collection (which I definitely plan on completing).

    • fuonlyknew says:

      I have many of their books too. They were wonderful writers and I’ve had so many good times with their stories. I still plan to read more.

  4. I had no idea either had passed away. So sad, yet what a legacy they left behind. And how wonderful to share the joy of creating together!

    • fuonlyknew says:

      True talents and life mates:) I talked to Joyce and our plan was for me to read all of their books. I’ve read many and will continue until there are, sadly, no more to read.

  5. diannekc says:

    Can’t wait to read “Putting on the Witch”, this is a great series. The Lavene’s will be missed.

    • fuonlyknew says:

      I’ve enjoyed so many of there books in several different series. They will surely be missed!

  6. Lola says:

    This series sounds so fun with witches and cats! And those covers look great!

  7. I love stories that have critters in them. I knew you would enjoy this. :-)
    sherry @ fundinmental