Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Who, What, When, Where, and Why - Guest Post & Giveaway

I'm happy to let Jo-Ann Lamon Reccoppa take over my blog today. Jo-Ann pens the Jersey Girl Cozy Mystery series. Another Man's Poison is the third book in the series.

Who, what, when, where and why.
by Jo-Ann Lamon Reccoppa

Every reporter knows the basics for writing a newspaper story. She’s has to hit all the high notes to satisfy each of the questions above. Sometimes if she’s really sharp or very lucky, she can come up with the how. Colleen Caruso, the protagonist in my Jersey Girl Cozy Mystery series, always comes up with the how.

Colleen isn’t brilliant. She definitely isn’t savvy. As her boss and current love interest never ceases to point out, she isn’t even the most talented writer at her hometown newspaper. Everyone at the Town Crier knows Colleen is kind of like Avis (for those out there old enough to remember the TV commercials). She ranks Number 2 on the paper’s staff. She tries harder.

I based Colleen’s character on many of my own experiences as a stringer for a local media group here in New Jersey. No, I haven’t covered any homicides. I’ve never even been in danger except for the bank robbery I accidentally stumbled onto when I turned into a parking lot – without a camera or a notepad. That was long ago in the pre-cell phone dark ages. The only damage done was the tongue-lashing I received from my editor, who reminded me all reporters carry around a camera wherever they go just in case. Still, the event was good enough to make it into the series.

There are other incidents, of course. Like the time I covered a story on flying lessons at the local airport. In one chapter of Hide nor Hair, the second book in the series, Colleen was in the sky in a four-seater Cessna when she experienced a panic attack. Sitting inside a flying coffin will do that to you. Unfortunately, I wrote the scene from first-hand experience. I was inside that same Cessna covering a story and I had an ugly panic attack – the kind where logic and reason leaves you completely and you’re seriously considering jumping out of the plane. By the way, that’s a bad move.

In Another Man’s Poison, Colleen tracks down a killer in the culinary world. As part of my regular assignments, I routinely wrote restaurant reviews – a big help when writing a fictional murder in a restaurant setting. Though I’ve never been poisoned at any of the eateries I covered, I did have first-hand experience of what goes on behind the scenes. The owners of one establishment told me in strictest confidence that their restaurant was haunted. They heard strange noises each night after closing, when the dining room was free of guests and dark. I put on my reporter hat and was able to track down the source of the noise – the ghost that wasn’t a haunt at all. The strange noises came from an automatic pump that provided water to the ice-maker. They were heartbroken with the simple explanation and told me I had Scullied their theory (remember the X-Files?). I prefer to think I used common sense and followed the source of the noise until I found the why. Just like Colleen Caruso!



Crime reporter Colleen Caruso’s appetite for romance with her hunky boss falls flatter than a ruined souffl√© when he keels over after one bite of his trout almondine. With his food editor wife mysteriously poisoned three years before, Ken was and still remains the prime suspect. Clearly someone wanted both Ken and Nadine Rhodes dead, and Colleen finds herself hot on the case of the poisoned plate. She whisks her way into the scrumptious world of the culinary arts, hoping her investigation isn’t a recipe for disaster. Colleen is determined to give those responsible their just desserts, but has this Jersey Girl bitten off more than she can chew? 

About the author:

Jo-Ann Lamon Reccoppa is the creator of the Jersey Girl Cozy Mystery series, which includes New Math is Murder; Hide Nor Hair, and the latest installment, Another Man’s Poison, released in August, 2017. Reccoppa has worked for many years as a newspaper stringer, writing everything from serious medical pieces to restaurant reviews. Her short stories have appeared in several genre magazines, in addition to a mystery which appeared in the Barnes & Noble Crafty Cat Crimes anthology.


ANOTHER MAN’S POISON, #3 in the Jersey Girl Cozy Mystery series.

Series: A Jersey Girl Cozy Mystery
Paperback: 274 pages
Publisher: PageSpring Publishing (August 25, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1939403421
ISBN-13: 978-1939403421

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