Monday, September 11, 2017

A Highland Peril Interview and Giveaway

I'm pleased to welcome Amy M. Reade to the blog today. Amy writes the Malice Mystery series. HIGHLAND PERIL, the second book in the series was released last week.

Kathy: Sylvie and Seamus trade the urban pace of Edinburgh for the county life in a small village. Would you prefer to live in the hustle and bustle of the city or a slower paced more rural setting?

AMR: That’s an easy one. A more rural setting, preferably with a mild/cool climate and mountains everywhere I look. I’ve lived in both New York City and Washington, DC, and though I liked them both when I lived there, I much prefer a calmer way of life.

Kathy: Sylvie is a photographer and her husband is an artist. Are you artistic yourself? Do you have a favorite artist or style?

AMR: I wish I were artistic. Does that count? I do counted cross-stitch and I’ve dabbled in stamping, but other than that I leave artistry to the professionals. My favorite artistic style is probably impressionism, though my favorite artists are not impressionists. They’re ones who paint places I love. One is Michael Ringer, who paints scenes from the Thousand Islands in upstate New York and Canada, and another is Rosalie Prussing, who paints whimsical pictures of Hawaiian scenes.

Kathy: In HIGHLAND PERIL a long-lost Scottish masterpiece leads to looking into an unsolved mystery from the past. Do you enjoy looking into historic unsolved cases? Do you have a favorite?

AMR: I am fascinated by unsolved mysteries of any kind, whether they are historical or contemporary. And art mysteries can be among the most interesting. For some reason most of my favorite unsolved cases are from England and have little or nothing to do with art, though: for example, the identity of Jack the Ripper or where Agatha Christie was during the time she went missing.

Kathy:What first drew you to cozy mysteries?

AMR: Cozy mysteries are among my favorite mysteries to read.

Kathy: Do you write in any other genres?

AMR: HIGHLAND PERIL and the other books in the Malice series are written more like gothics, with a strong sense of setting and atmosphere, but they contain many of the hallmarks of cozies, including no explicit sex, almost no swearing, and an absence of gratuitous gore. My books tend to be a bit darker than cozies, but I find that many of my readers are cozy-lovers, too.

Kathy: Tell us about your series.

AMR: The Malice series is comprised of stories that follow members of the same family/small group of friends around the United Kingdom as they stumble across violence and misfortune. They’re always drawn into the drama and play a major role in figuring out whodunit.

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

AMR: I would have to say my favorite character in the series is Sylvie. She doesn’t take nonsense from anyone, she’s got just the right amount of snark, and she’s soft-hearted.

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

AMR: I would say the inspiration for my series came from visiting Scotland and falling in love with it. I wanted to set stories there; the history, the landscape, and the heritage all combine to make the perfect setting for a mystery.

Kathy: What made you decide to publish your work?

AMR: After I wrote my first book, SECRETS OF HALLSTEAD HOUSE, I just figured I had put too much work into it to let it sit in a drawer somewhere. It’s one of the best decisions I ever made.

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

AMR: M.C. Beaton, Jane Austen, Ernest Hemingway, and Phyllis Whitney.

Kathy: What are you currently reading?

AMR: I am currently reading three books: MURDER AT THE BOOK GROUP by Maggie King, BRAIN MAKER by David Perlmutter, MD, and WALKING THE BIBLE by Bruce Feiler.

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

AMR: My favorite hobby is cooking. It’s my favorite way to unwind, whether I’m baking or making soup or chopping vegetables.

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

AMR: Milk, maple syrup, pickled jalapenos, and cheese.

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

AMR: The third book in the Malice series is called MURDER IN THISTLECROSS and will be released in February, 2018. Beyond that, I don’t know yet. I am currently working on a Christmas cozy, due out in December, that I’m hoping will be the first in a series. I am also working on a contemporary mystery series.

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

AMR: I love my job and can’t imagine doing anything else. I am eager to work every day of the week and on vacations, and I can’t say that about practicing law, which I did before beginning to write.

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  1. Thank you for the interview and chance to win. You are truly blessed to be able to do counted cross stitch. I love stamped embroidery but the counted cross stitch defeats me. dbahn(at)iw(dot)net

    1. Hi Dianne, I've never tried stamped embroidery. I'm finding that the older I get the more my neck hurts when I do counted cross-stitch, so I have to be judicious about the time I spend doing it. Good luck in the giveaway!

  2. I like that this has a historical mystery that needs to be solved. Sounds like an interesting read.

    1. Hi Dianne, the historical part of this story was fascinating to research. Since the book came out I've been contacted by someone whose husband descends from one of the families that lived in Dunnottar Castle, where part of the historical mystery takes place. I just love reading about historical mysteries.

    2. How cool is that?! Historical mysteries are great!

  3. I like that this has a historical mystery that needs to be solved. Sounds like an interesting read.

  4. Thanks so much for having me on Cozy Up with Kathy! I loved the interview, as I love all the interviews I read on this blog. It's a treat and an honor to be featured here. Have a great day.

    1. Thank you! Please know that you are always welcome here at Cozy Up With Kathy!