Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Currently Reading...

I'm currently reading Egg Drop Dead by Laura Childs. This book is the seventh book in the Cackleberry Club Mystery series and was released yesterday!

Suzanne Dietz simply planned on picking up some cheese for her farm to table cafe, the Cackleberry Club. What she found was unmilked cows in distress and the murdered body of the mild mannered dairy man. Urged on by her friends Toni and Petra, Suzanne simply can't leave the murder alone and decides to "poke around, quietly". Will investigating the murder, no matter how quietly, put a strain on her relationship with Sam and possibly impede their upcoming nuptials? Or worse, will it put her in the sights of a killer once again?

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

A Literally Dead Interview & Giveaway

I'm happy to welcome Lois Winston to the blog today. Lois writes the Empty Nest Mystery series. LITERALLY DEAD, the second book in the series, was released earlier this year.


Kathy: In LITERALLY DEAD Gracie Elliott attends a major writers conference. Do you attend writers conferences?

LW: Yes, I attended my first writing conference nearly twenty years ago. That’s where I learned how much I needed to learn—about both the craft of writing and the business end of publishing. All these years later I still occasionally attend writing conferences because there’s always more to learn.


Kathy: Gracie gets to meet one of her favorite authors only to find the woman is NOT a nice person. Have you ever been let down when you've met someone you idolized?

LW: Sadly, yes. I won’t name names, but let’s just say the person’s private persona didn’t come anywhere close to living up to the public one.


Kathy: What first drew you to cozy mysteries?

LW: Although I began my career writing romance, I think genetically there was always a mystery author lurking inside me. My grandfather was the captain of a major metropolitan county police force. From as early as I can remember, I was always able to figure out whodunit minutes or pages into most mysteries. However, writing mysteries seemed a safer occupation than actually following in my grandfather’s footsteps and setting out to solve real-life crimes.


Kathy: Do you write in any other genres?

LW: As I said above, I started out writing romance, but Talk Gertie to Me, my first published novel, wasn’t a romance. Although it contained a romance, it was mostly a humorous fish-out-of-water story involving the relationship between a mother and daughter. My second published novel was the romantic suspense Love, Lies and a Double Shot of Deception. Then I moved on to writing amateur sleuth mysteries. I’m also published in nonfiction and have one middle-grade chapter book to my credit.


Kathy: Tell us about your series.

LW: The Empty Nest Mystery series features textile designer Gracie Elliott. Gracie has always had a dream of becoming a published romance novelist. When she finds her career outsourced to a Third World nation, she searches for a job that will allow her time to write. What she doesn’t anticipate are the murders that intrude on her various fledgling business ventures.

I also write the critically acclaimed Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, which currently consists of five full-length novels and three mini-mysteries. Anastasia is the crafts editor of a woman’s magazine. When her husband drops dead at a roulette table in Las Vegas, she quickly learns her comfortable middle-class life is built on lies and deceit. She’s left with two kids, a Shakespeare-quoting parrot, her communist mother-in-law, and debt equal to the gross national product of Uzbekistan. Anastasia begins to moonlight at various jobs in order to whittle down that massive debt, but dead bodies keep getting in her way.


Kathy: Do you have a favorite character? If so, who and why?

LW: Oh dear! That’s like asking a mother if she has a favorite child. I love all the protagonists I create. If I didn’t love them, I wouldn’t write about them. Also, just like there’s a little of me in each of my children, there’s a bit of me in all my heroines, especially Anastasia and Gracie.


Kathy: Did you have a specific inspiration for your series?

LW: The Empty Nest Mystery series is my homage to the classic Thin Man movies starring Myrna Loy and Dick Powell. However, I’ve given my series a modern day spin by making Gracie my sleuth. Her college professor husband Blake is her (often reluctant) sidekick who takes on the task of trying to keep her out of trouble.


Kathy: What made you decide to publish your work?

LW: This will sound like a cliché, but my entire writing career started with a dream—not a dream to become published but one I dreamt. Normally I don’t remember my dreams. However, not only did I remember this one, it played out in chapters over the course of several nights. I decided to write the dream down, and before I knew it, I’d written a book. The next logical stepped seemed to be finding a publisher. Of course, I had no idea it would take ten years from the time of that dream until I saw my first book in print, but the journey has been well worth it.


Kathy: If you could have a dinner party and invite 4 authors, living or dead, in any genre, who would you invite?

LW: Hmm…I’ve been asked this question before, and my answer has often depended on my mood, what I’ve read recently, and books that have stuck in my head long after I’ve finished them. For today’s dinner party I’ve decided to invite historical mystery author Ariana Franklin for her Mistress of the Art of Death series and City of Shadows, women’s fiction author Kristin Hannah for Winter Garden and The Nightingale, Amy Stewart for Girl Waits with Gun, and B.A. Shapiro for The Art Forger. I highly recommend all of the aforementioned books.


Kathy: What are you currently reading?

LW: In for a Penny by Maggie Toussaint


Kathy: Will you share any of your hobbies or interests with us?

LW: I’m pretty much addicted to Broadway and off-Broadway plays and musicals. Living within a short commute of Manhattan enables me to feed that addiction, but it’s a costly habit and one I need to keep in check if I don’t want to go broke!


Kathy: Name 4 items you always have in your fridge or pantry.

LW: coffee, milk (for the coffee,) chocolate, and ice cream


Kathy: Do you have plans for future books either in your current series or a new series?

LW: Absolutely! I’m currently working on the sixth full-length Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery. Once I finish that, I’ll be starting on the third Empty Nest Mystery.


Kathy: What's your favorite thing about being an author?

LW: When readers tell me how much they’ve enjoyed the stories I create.


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Monday, December 5, 2016

Cat in the Flock - Book Blast & Giveaway

Cat in the Flock

by Lisa Brunette

December 2016 Book Blast

& on Tour March 1-30, 2017

Synopsis:

A sexy murder-mystery with a spiritual edge.
For most people, dreams are a way to escape reality. But for Cat McCormick, they're a way to get closer to the truth. Cat can 'slip' into other people's dreams.
After graduating college with a degree in criminal justice but little in the way of real-life experience, Cat moves from the Midwest to Seattle to apprentice with her Granny Grace, who shares the ability. Granny uses dreamslipping as a private investigator, and Cat plans to follow in her footsteps.
But forced to take work as a security guard, Cat discovers a mother and daughter on the run. Following the clues, she goes undercover in a Midwestern megachurch, where she finds redemption and goodwill amidst repression, hypocrisy, and murder.


Praise:

"A fascinating tale of mystery, romance, and what one woman's dreams are made of. Brunette will keep you awake far into the night.” -- Mary Daheim, bestselling author of the Bed-and-Breakfast and Emma Lord/Alpine mysteries
"Already hooked, this reader intends further sojourns in Cat's dreamslipping world. Highly recommended." -- Frances Carden, Readers Lane
"Gripping, sexy and profound, CAT IN THE FLOCK is an excellent first novel. Lisa Brunette is an author to enjoy now and watch for the future.” -- Jon Talton, author of the David Mapstone Mysteries, the Cincinnati Casebooks and the thriller Deadline Man
"A little Sue Grafton and a dose of Janet Evanovich… is just the right recipe for a promising new series.” -- Rev. Eric O'del
"The launch of an intriguing female detective series... A mystery with an unusual twist and quirky settings; an enjoyable surprise for fans of the genre." -- Kirkus Reviews

Book Details:

Genre: Mystery
Published by: Sky Harbor Press
Publication Date: December 27th 2014
Number of Pages: 197
ISBN: 0986237701 (ISBN13: 9780986237706)
Series: Dreamslippers #1

 

Don't Miss Your Chance to Purchase Cat in the Flock at Amazon , at Barnes & Noble , & Add it To Your List on Goodreads !

 

Read an excerpt:

Prologue

Sherrie marched into her daughter’s bedroom and dragged a child-sized roller bag suitcase out of the closet. The girl stood in the middle of the room, still in her pajamas. Milk from breakfast had dried around the edges of her lips.
“Ruthie,” the mother said. “I need you to get dressed. We’re going to take a…trip.” Sherrie tried to make her voice sound cheery, but the desperation she felt came through in her tone.
“What’s wrong, Mommy?”
Sherrie set the suitcase on the bed. The bubble- gum pink had once seemed innocent but now looked fleshy and indecent. She glanced at the clock over the bed. He’d been golfing for a good fifteen minutes by now, long enough for her to make sure he didn’t come back for a favorite club or the right gloves. She wanted to be on that morning flight by the time he got home and discovered them gone.
She flung open the chest of drawers and grabbed all of the girl’s socks and underwear, a pair of corduroy pants, black cotton tights, a sweater the color of a Midwestern sky. Nothing pink. Only warm things. Seattle in her memory was cold and wet. It was a grey city; grey clouds over grey buildings. Even the water was grey.
One doll would fit. Made of cloth, it could be folded in on itself and slid down the backside of the suitcase.
“Can I bring the ballerina skirt?”
Any other day, she would have corrected her daughter, who needed to learn the precise names of things. Tutu. There it was in the closet, hanging because it took up too much room in the drawer. She yanked it free, sending the hanger to the floor. Ordinarily, she would pick that up; her house was so clean it hurt her eyes with its spareness—as if theirs were a showroom house, not lived in. She left the hanger there, aware of the thrill this fraction of disobedience gave her. She shoved everything into the little pink case, but with the fluffy tulle taking up so much space, the zipper would not close. The choice was clear. The doll would be a comfort to Ruthie in Seattle, but the tutu would not.
“We’ll come back for this later,” she said, tossing the tutu onto the bed. The zipper closed, the sound of it satisfying.
“No, Mommy!” Ruthie stomped her foot. “I want it now!”
“Then you’re going to have to wear it. Now get dressed while I pack my clothes.” But she felt a pang of guilt for her reprimanding tone, and for having to leave the tutu. Bending down, she used her thumb to wipe some of the milk crust from her daughter’s face. “I’ll let you wear anything you want on this trip, okay, sweetheart? And clean your face with the cloth in the bathroom, like Mommy showed you.”
The girl nodded, as if sensing this was not the time for a tantrum.
Sherrie’s own packing, she did with even less consideration. Under things, shirts. A fleece hoodie. Warm socks. She remembered she needed layers in Seattle. Sometimes it could seem warm even though it rained and the sun had not come out for weeks. Her keepsakes in their tiny, locked chest would not fit. They were the only things she had to remind herself of her life before this, but she would have to leave them behind.
Sherrie kept watch on the clock and glanced out the window twice to make sure his car wasn’t out front even though she knew he wouldn’t be home for another hour. The sun had risen blood-red over the cornfields in the distance, lighting them as if on fire. She’d miss that. And she thought of thunderstorms, which seemed never to occur in Seattle. She’d miss those, too.
Ruthie appeared in the doorway. Her face was clean, but none of her clothes matched. She was wearing pink high-tops that seemed wrong for the city they were going to, the situation, and everything else, but she had apparently decided not to wear the tutu.
“Time to leave.” She took the girl’s hand, promising to herself she’d never let go.

Author Bio:

Lisa was born in Santa Rosa, California, but that was only home for a year. A so-called "military brat," she lived in nine different houses and attended nine different schools by the time she was 14. Through all of the moves, her one constant was books. She read everything, from the entire Nancy Drew and Trixie Belden mystery series to her mother's books by Daphne DuMaurier and Taylor Caldwell.
A widely published author, game writer, and journalist, Lisa has interviewed homeless women, the designer of the Batmobile, and a sex expert, to name just a few colorful characters. This experience, not to mention her own large, quirky family, led her to create some truly memorable characters in her Dreamslippers Series and other works, whether books or games.
Always a vivid dreamer, not to mention a wannabe psychic, Lisa feels perfectly at home slipping into suspects’ dreams, at least in her imagination. Her husband isn’t so sure she can’t pick up his dreams in real life, though.
With a hefty list of awards and publications to her name, Lisa now lives in a small town in Washington State, but who knows how long that will last…

 

Lisa publishes a bimonthly newsletter. Sign up and receive a free book!

You can also visit Lisa on her Website , on Twitter , & at Facebook .

Visit these other Sites for More in this December 6 2016 Book Blast:


Plus Join Us In March 2017:

We'll be touring Cat in the Flock by Lisa Brunette with great reviews, interviews, guest posts, and MORE GIVEAWAYS!

Enter For Your Chance to WIN!:

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours for Lisa Brunette. There will be 2 winners of one (1) eBook copy of Cat in the Flock by Lisa Brunette. The giveaway begins on December 5th and runs through December 13th, 2016.
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Get More Great Reads at Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours

 

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Review & Giveaway - Get Me to the Grave on Time

Review


GET ME TO THE GRAVE ON TIME by D.E. Ireland
The Third Eliza Doolittle and Henry Higgins Mystery

'Tis the season for weddings and Henry Higgins is fit to be tied! Considering matrimony a most unwelcome state, Higgins is forced to attend four weddings, starting with that of an old family friend. The wedding is not the dull affair he expected when the groom, instead of saying "I do" says he can't marry Minerva...who proceeds to pummel him with her bouquet. Sequestering him for his own safety didn't save the beleaguered groom, however. Instead he's found dead, poisoned by the bridal cog-a special drink meant for the bride and her groom. The groom's mistress is the obvious suspect and Eliza's cousin Jack, an inspector with Scotland Yard, is brought in on the case, even though his own wedding is about to occur. Jack's wedding is brought to a shocking conclusion as he is shot, along with Colonel Pickering, immediately following the nuptials. As they recover from their wounds, Eliza and Henry once again take up pursuit of a murderer. Will they solve the crime before the killer strikes again? 

I love traveling back in time, especially when I get to visit with old friends and the main characters of GET ME TO THE GRAVE ON TIME are certainly old friends. Eliza, with her love of sweets and shopping, the curmudgeonly Higgins, and the beneficent Colonel Pickering bring me back to the days of my youth when I played Eliza in PYGMALION. I so enjoy seeing these characters evolve and the dynamics between them and others are also intriguing. With Freddy getting more annoying and Eliza more fed up with his endless proposals we meet a new romantic possibility in Detective Ramsey. At least Professor Higgins and I see that possibility. Another dashing hero enters the series in the character of Percy. I love him and can only hope to read even more of him in books to come.

D.E. Ireland convey the richness of the period with historical accuracy. Detailed descriptions of the weddings, from the Scottish traditions to suffragette colors and foods I wish I could take off of the page (chilled white grapes and candied violets, anyone?) transport readers to the hot summer days of 1913.

Fascinating characters, a thrilling mystery, and a possible Indian curse are only some of the reasons to read GET ME TO THE GRAVE ON TIME. D.E. Ireland continues the lives of these memorable characters in a fresh new mystery filled with laughter as well as danger.

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Friday, December 2, 2016

Meet Meg Reed - Guest Post & Giveaway

Meet Meg Reed
by Kate Dyer-Seeley


Meet Meg Reed. She’s a spunky (and more than slightly klutzy) twenty-something who is navigating a world of firsts with a little murder thrown in. Meg is a bit like Bridget Jones in the wild. She loves all things pink, vintage fashion, artisan coffee, and great microbrew. Her idea of sport is climbing onto the couch without spilling her latte, so when she lands her first official gig writing for Northwest Extreme magazine, let’s just say that she’s in over her head. Way over her head.

From clawing her way to the top of a two-thousand foot peak to getting stranded in a blizzard on the slopes of Mt. Hood to trying to catch big air on a windsurfing board in the middle of the mighty Columbia River, Meg has had a rough go of it. In First Degree Mudder (the 4th book in the Pacific Northwest Mysteries) she thinks she could actually be in for a break. Her assignment is simple—train and run a fun 5k run: Mud, Sweat, and Beers. What could be so tough about that?

However she quickly realizes that getting in shape for the grueling run is going to take every ounce of strengthen and endurance that she can muster. This isn’t just a jaunt around a track or a mild sprint through the park. Mud, Sweat, and Beers is going to test every muscle in her body. She’ll have to slog through thick and gooey mud, navigate under barbed wire trenches, and scale a twenty foot wall. As if that wasn’t difficult enough, Meg discovers Billy the Tank, a retired Army drill sergeant tasked with training Meg and her motley crew, murdered in the steam room. Not only will she have to find a way to finish the race on her own, but if she’s not careful she could have a killer on her tail and have to run for her life.

When I’m working on one of Meg’s adventures (or misadventures) I try to put myself in her shoes both literally and figuratively. I spent hours researching and watching mud runs which have become quite the craze not just here in the Pacific Northwest but all over the globe. Racers pay upwards of one-hundred dollars to be put through a brutal and punishing course coated in a layer of mud. I was curious about the personalities attracted to extreme races, so when my kiddo who is a natural runner handed me a flier for an Insane Inflatable Race coming to town, I signed us up.

Call it a twist of fate or plain crummy luck but a week before the race I was out for my daily walk, tripped on the sidewalk, and broke my wrist. For the record my daily walk is about as tame as possible. My route takes me over even ground and along a family friendly waterfront path. I simply tripped over my own feet and landed on my wrist. It was a classic Meg move that landed me with a pink cast and a front row seat to cheer on my son when he crossed the finish line.

Maybe this is a sign that I should stick to fiction, or maybe it’s my fiction coming to life. Either way I hope you enjoy Meg’s muddy adventure and look for a pink cast to work its way into a future book!

*****************************************************************************

Author Links

Web: http://www.katedyerseeley.com
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/katedyerseeley
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/katedyerseeleyauthor
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/katedyerseeley/
 Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5370469.Kate_E_Dyer_Seeley

 Purchase Links

Amazon  B&N  Target   IndieBound



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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Currently Reading...

I'm currently reading Get Me to the Grave on Time by D.E. Ireland. This book is the third in the Eliza Doolittle and Henry Higgins Mystery series and was released November 1st.

'Tis the season for weddings and Henry Higgins is fit to be tied! Considering matrimony a most unwelcome state, Higgins is forced to attend four weddings, starting with that of an old family friend. The wedding is not the dull affair he expected when the groom, instead of saying "I do" says he can't marry Minerva...who proceeds to pummel him with her bouquet. Sequestering him for his own safety didn't save the beleaguered groom, however. Instead he's found dead, poisoned by the bridal cog-a special drink meant for the bride and her groom. The groom's mistress is the obvious suspect and Eliza's cousin Jack, an inspector with Scotland Yard, is brought in on the case, even though his own wedding is about to occur. Jack's wedding is brought to a shocking conclusion as he is shot, along with Colonel Pickering, immediately following the nuptials. As they recover from their wounds, Eliza and Henry once again take up pursuit of a murderer. Will they solve the crime before the killer strikes again?

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Spotlight - Basket Case

Today I'd like to shine a spotlight on a book on my TBR pile. Basket Case by Nancy Haddock is the first book in the Silver Six Crafting Mystery series.

From the back cover:

There isn't much crime in Lilyvale, Arkansas, but local authorities have their hands full with Ms. Sherry Mae Stanton Cutler and her housemates-a crafty group of retirees who've dubbed themselves the Silver Six. But when Sherry Mae's niece, Nixy, arrives to keep them in line, Lilyvale also holds host to a killer.

When Leslee Stanton "Nixy" Nix gets the latest call from Lilyvale detective Eric Shoar, she knows it means trouble. There's been another kitchen explosion at her aunt Sherry's farmhouse, and the dreamy voiced detective has had enough. If Nixy doesn't check on her aunt in person, the Silver Six could become wards of the court.But the trouble Nixy finds in Lilyvale is not at all what she expects.

The seniors are hosting a folk art festival at the farmhouse, featuring Sherry's handwoven baskets, when land developer Jill Elsman arrives to bully Nixy's aunt into selling the property. When Jill is later found dead in the cemetery, Sherry is suspected of weaving a murder plot, and it's up to Nixy and the Silver Six to untangle the truth.

Recipes and Crafting Tips included.