Friday, July 31, 2015

Fudging the Interview, Review, & Giveaway

I'm so pleased to welcome Daryl Wood Gerber back to Cozy Up With Kathy. Fudging the Books, the fourth in her Cookbook Nook Mystery series will be released next week!


Kathy: Pirates come to town in Fudging the Books. Are you a fan of pirates and pirate movies?

DWG: Yes, there’s something about pirates…they’re big, brassy, fun. I know, in real life, pirates are BAD! Really bad. But in movies and books (I’ve enjoyed the Pirates of the Caribbean series and old-style movies with pirates), they seem to fulfill a fantasy about the wild life, going to sea, and being free. Let me share an excerpt when Jenna and Bailey are climbing a rock wall. Note: FUDGING THE BOOKS does not involve “real pirates.” Pirate Week is a fun romp in Crystal Cove where folks dress up like pirates, climb rock walls, go whale watching, and take in Pirates of Penzance or hunt for missing gold doubloons.

Here’s the excerpt (remember that Jenna used to be an advertising executive):

Halfway up the climbing wall, Bailey glanced at the costumed crowd below and said to me, “Why do you think people romanticize pirates?”

I told her about a commercial campaign we did at Taylor & Squibb. It was for Habañero Spice, a product from the Caribbean, and involved a horde of Johnny Depp look-alike pirates. “My boss said people glamorized pirates because pirates lived by their own rules. People forget about the violence pirates did and still do.”

Here’s another excerpt, an inner thought for Jenna:

I recalled asking my aunt why Pirate Week was such a big lure, because pirates were notoriously not nice people. She said the intent of Pirate Week wasn’t for one minute to suggest that real, honest-to-goodness pirates were in any way, shape, or form worth emulating, but the image of swaggering pirateness was fun and exciting and, in her words, harmless. The Pirates of the Caribbean movies were a success because being a pirate looked like a blast.


Kathy: Who is your favorite swashbuckler?

DWG: Errol Flynn. I mean, I like Johnny Depp, but Errol Flynn had a swagger that was something to behold. Handsome as all get out. Those dimples. Yipes! And as Robin Hood? Wow. Yes, definitely my favorite.


Kathy: I love fudge and generally make it every Christmas to give as gifts. Are you a fudge fan? Do you have a favorite fudge flavor?

DWG: I love fudge. I used to make See’s fudge and give it as gifts at Christmas, too. Talk about butter and sugar and deliciousness! Oh, yum! As far as my tastes, I’m a purist. I like dark chocolate fudge. I will eat other styles. I like salted caramel fudge—a lot—but I truly love dark fudge, no nuts.


Kathy: You already had a successful series out when you began to publish the Cookbook Nook Mystery series. Is it easier to produce a second series, once you have the idea behind it?

DWG: It’s easier to write, period, when you have the idea and you know the characters, the setting, and the plot. I like to work with structure. I’m not a seat-of-the-pants writer, so I plot things out. Yes, I might diverge from my original idea (consider it a road map and short day trips are okay), but I like knowing where I’m going. It was NOT easier trying to sell myself as Daryl Wood Gerber to fans of Avery Aames. It has taken a long time to teach people that Daryl and Avery are one and the same. Why did I have a pseudonym? Because my publisher came up with the idea of the Cheese Shop Mysteries and hired me to write them. I was, as yet, unpublished, and jumped at the chance.


Kathy: Are you able to share any future plans for Jenna Hart?

DWG: In the 5th book, which will come out August 2016, Jenna is in for some big surprises. She will still be in charge of The Cookbook Nook and the Nook Café, and she will still be learning how to cook, but there are some eye-openers for her! Can’t share more than that. Love? Yes, maybe, okay, yes. Definitely love. But more!


Kathy: Was there a specific inspiration for this story?

DWG: Krista Davis had arranged for a number of authors to do a book signing at a culinary bookshop in Occoqwan, Virginia the day before the Malice Domestic Conference. At the time, I was only writing as Avery Aames. The moment I arrived at the village where the shop was located, I fell in love. When I walked into the store, I was bowled over. I wanted to buy/own everything in the store. Cookbooks, fictional books that involved food, salt- and pepper-shakers, potholders, aprons, foodie puzzles. It was a foodie/culinary mystery lover’s paradise, and I knew I had to write about it. I went home and crafted three chapters and a bible for the series and sent them off to my agent, who loved what I wrote and pitched the series to my editor. She, too, is a foodie, and got it right away. Sadly, the store is now closed, but its memory lives on in The Cookbook Nook.


Kathy: Will you share any other upcoming books?

DWG: I have a new Cheese Shop Mystery coming out in February 2016, FOR CHEDDAR OR WORSE. It’s a fun story where a group of cheese experts gather at an inn in Providence. I think Dame Agatha would approve of the storyline. There’s also the 5th in A Cookbook Nook Mystery series coming out in August 2016. The title has yet to be determined, but a Wild West Extravaganza is coming to town, and the book will feature barbecue and grilled foods. Yum! I like the titles A SIZZLING TALE and GRILLING THE SUBJECT. We’ll see if the publisher likes either. They usually enjoy my titles. After that, there is a lot in the works for me. My agent is trying to sell a new mystery series as well as a suspense novel.


BIO:

Agatha Award-winning and nationally bestselling author DARYL WOOD GERBER writes the Cookbook Nook Mysteries, set in the fictional coastal town of Crystal Cove, California. As Avery Aames, she also writes the Cheese Shop Mysteries, set in quaint Providence, Ohio. Fun tidbit: as an actress, Daryl appeared in “Murder, She Wrote”. She is married, loves to cook, and has a darling, frisky Goldendoodle named Sparky. Visit Daryl or Avery at www.darylwoodgerber.com.


GIVEAWAY:

Daryl has offered to giveaway a book to one of the commenters. Your choice of the first three Cookbook Nook Mysteries: FINAL SENTENCE or INHERIT THE WORD or STIRRING THE PLOT. Please leave your comment, as well as an e-mail address, on this post no later than 11:59 pm Sunday, August 2, 2015.


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Review

Fudging the Books by Daryl Wood Gerber
The Fourth Bookshop Nook Mystery

It's February and chocolate and pirates have descended on Crystal Cove, California. Jenna Hart is coating the Cookbook Nook in chocolate by featuring chocolate themed cookbooks, displays, and tasty, chocolatey treats to eat! Friend, candymaker, and cook book author Coco gives a talk and book signing replete with her own entourage, her vibrant editor, an unpleasant copyeditor, and dashing photographer. There are some interesting undercurrents going on, undercurrents that soon become deadly.

In this, the 4th Cookbook Nook Mystery, Gerber gives us a variety of suspects, most quite unlikeable. There's the persnickety copyeditor who seems to be horning in on everything, the victim's brother who seems almost buffoonish yet malicious at the same time, the fitness nag, and the, well, dashing Dash. And although it seems impossible, could the friend Jenna and Bailey are protecting actually be guilty?

Motives, both seen and unseen, drive the story and the characters. While Bailey's character went down in my estimation due to her ignorance and attitude towards cats, I found a new character to admire in Hershey; a cat who knows what he wants and how to get it! Fudging the Books combines pirates, chocolate, friendship, and food into a fun mystery that also shows us, like Hershey, it's fine to be independent, but good to be there for others when trouble appears.

63 comments:

  1. Thank you ... I enjoyed reading this interview! "Fudging the Books" sounds wonderful and I have added it to my TBR list. Thank you for this opportunity. :)
    peggyhyndman(at)att(dot)net

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    1. Peggy, super! If you add it to your "wish" list online (and you don't even buy it), it could still help someone else find it. :)

      ~Daryl

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  2. Great interview! Sounds like a fun book to read! Thanks for the chance!
    angelhwk68@yahoo.com

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  3. Good interview, love the series and thank you for the chance :)
    jslbrown2009 at aol dot com

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  4. Loved the interview! I am a fan of Daryl Wood Gerber's books, and I am looking forward to reading Fudging the Books. Thank you for the giveaway.
    myrifraf(at)gmail(dot)com

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  5. Great interview. Love the bookcover. Looks like great cozy mystery.

    xzjh04@ Gmail.com

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    1. Kiki, isn't the artist amazing?!! :)

      ~Daryl

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  6. An enjoyable interview and great cozy. Thanks for this lovely giveaway. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

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    1. Thanks, "Petite" - love to see you here!

      ~Daryl

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  7. Hi, all, glad you stopped by. Kathy, I'm so sorry Bailey went down in your estimation. I have a couple of friends who just aren't cat people and can't seem to figure it out. Bailey will learn, but she's definitely a "newbie" in this department. I hope she'll win your heart back in the next book. Meanwhile, Hershey...what a fun "character" to write! :) All my best and thanks for the interview and lovely review!

    ~Daryl

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    1. Thank you for visiting and spending time here. You're always welcome! People who aren't cat people? Shudder! lol

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  8. A most interesting and lovely interview. Fudge etc. Love your books. Many thanks for this great giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Thanks, Traveler. So nice to see you here.

      ~Daryl

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  9. Learned something new with this interview, always a good thing to/for me. I want to know where your characters get their near-perfect cats - I was adopted by a cat several years ago and she still treats me like staff! 😓 Thanks for the opportunity to win one of your books, I just love 'em! book__wyrm@sbcglobal.net

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    1. Anne, you made me laugh out loud! Yes, some cats are like that. ;)

      ~Daryl

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  10. Best interview I've read in a long time! Now I really can't wait to read the book. Fingers crossed to win ahrrrr. My best pirate imitation lol
    vernagass@gmail.com

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    1. Verna, thank you so much. Thanks to Kathy for the great questions!

      ~Daryl

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    2. Thank you Verna. I'm so pleased you enjoyed the interview!

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  11. Great interview! Love this series and looking forward to this new one. Pirates and Fudge what more could you want!

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    1. Jeannie, thanks. To answer your question, um, more pirates and more fudge? LOL

      ~Daryl

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  12. I haven't had the chance to read this series yet, so many books- so few bucks, but they are on my TBR list. I'd love to win one to get me started! mtrver@gmail.com

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    1. Kathy, let your librarian know! :)

      ~Daryl

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  13. Good interview and good review. Yep, Errol Flynn is the one! Thanks for the giveaway.

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    1. Errol Flynn. So hunky with that fun, sassy smile!

      ~Daryl

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  14. Thank you for posting such an enjoyable interview! Any book that involves a mystery, pirates, and chocolate is just my cup of tea, and I really look forward to reading Fudging the Books and also the Cheese Shop series! Happy Friday! Nicole
    nicolev.girldetective@gmail.com :-)
    p.s. I agree with you about Errol Flynn, too! As my mother would have said.... they just don't make them like they used to! :-)

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    1. Nicole, glad to hear it! Enjoy! FYI, they make some like they used to. Hugh Jackman, for one, although he's going to be a wicked pirate in the upcoming Pan film. Sigh.

      ~Daryl

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  15. Thanks....great interview. rhondajgothier@yahoo.com

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  16. If it's chocolate it must be good.
    thanks for the chance to start a new series.
    txmlhl@yahoo.com

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  17. I love Daryl's Cheese Shop Mystery series, and am just starting this series! I enjoy the storylines and characters and all the wonderful recipes....chocolate and pirates? Yes! Beyond these books, I enjoy following Daryl on Facebook. It's like having a long distance "friend." kat8762@aol.com

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    1. Kathleen, glad to hear it. And thanks for being a long distance "friend." It is fun how FB is connecting people across the globe!

      ~Daryl

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  18. Thanks for the chance to win a copy of Daryl Wood Gerber's books. She has very intriguing books. robeader53@yahoo.com

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  19. I love this series, the recipes are good too ! kathambre@yahoo.com

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    1. Glad you enjoy the recipes. I do test them all. :)

      ~Daryl

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  20. Yum, love your books.
    cjreynolds52@comcast.net

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  21. Great interview! I can't wait to read about Pirate Week! Thanks!
    JHolden955(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. I want Pirate Week to happen in my town. :)

      ~Daryl

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  22. Great interview....I can't wait to read the new book..

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    1. Thanks, Colodreamer! I'm assuming Colorado? What a beautiful place.

      ~Daryl

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  23. This was a fun interview! And thank you for hosting the contest. I would love to win Stirring the Plot so I'll be (almost) up to date - this one sounds amazing! jeaniedannheim (at) ymail (dot) com

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  24. I so enjoy these cozies.I started with Nancy Drew over 50 years ago and I get a lot of enjoyment out of them. Sure sounds like fun. Thanks for this opportunity.

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    1. Nancy, so glad to hear that. I loved Nancy Drew. Oh to be a teenaged detective.

      ~Daryl

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  25. Forgot the email
    jluebke@frontier.com

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  26. These are such fun books. But will I gain weight if I eat fudge while reading this book? Thanks for the contest.
    suefarrell.farrell@gmail.com

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    1. You won't gain wait reading about fudge. So moderation is key. :)

      ~Daryl

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  27. I would love to win any of these!! Pp92596 at outlook dot com

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    1. Robin, so thrilled you stopped by!

      ~Daryl

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  28. I loved the first two books, I would be thrilled to win.

    kaye dot killgore at comcast dot net

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  29. Looking forward to reading this book!
    davisel1830@hotmail.com

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  30. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  31. Love the interview. I so want to read this book! servedogmom@yahoo.com

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  32. The interview was terrific! Thank you for the giveaway!
    dblaser@windstream.net

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  33. A fabulous post thank you & I am loving this title.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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  34. Great interview, thank you.

    Kit3247(at)aol(dot)com

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  35. I'm on a diet---will reading about fudge put on weight?? Thanks for the fun interview and contest.
    suefarrell.farrell@gmail.com

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  36. Congratulations Robin Coxon! Random.org picked your comment. Be on th elook out for an e-mail from me!

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