Sunday, October 14, 2018

A Crafter Knits a Clue Interview & Giveaway

I'm happy to welcome Holly Quinn to Cozy Up With Kathy today. Holly writes the Handcrafted Mystery series. A Crafter Knits a Clue, the first book in the series, was released last week.

Kathy: A Crafter Knits a Clue finds Sammy Kane moving back to her hometown and changing her expectations about her life. Have you ever made a drastic change in your own life path?

HQ: Writing this Handcrafted Mystery series was not initially on my radar. My agent suggested I write one, and here we are!

Kathy: In this first Handcrafted Mystery Sammy takes over her friend's craft store. Are you a crafty person yourself? What crafts do you enjoy, either to make or look at?

HQ: I’m a very crafty person—mostly out of necessity. I live in a very cold climate and wouldn’t survive without numerous projects to keep me occupied. I sell painted glasses at a nearby gift shop (especially during the holiday season). I’ve quilted in the past, sewn and tied blankets, but haven’t recently, due to lack of time. My husband bought me a burn wood kit last year for Christmas, so I’ve tried my hand at that. I tend to master a craft, become bored, and then move on to something else to challenge me. I love perusing craft fairs and specialty stores to see what new things people are creating with their own two hands. I’d rather purchase something unique and handmade rather than something off the internet or a store as I know it’s made with love.

Kathy: Sammy has her trusted golden retriever and I had my cat with me when I first moved to another state. Did you have an animal companion with you when you started a new chapter of her life? Do you have any now?

HQ: Actually, no. Unfortunately, I suffer terrible allergies. Bara, the dog in the series, is based on my Aunt and Uncle’s dog and has long since passed. I really want to bring a Golden Retriever into my life, but I’m afraid if I do— and find out my allergies really suffer, I’d be crushed to then give the puppy up. Right now, I have four outdoor chickens! 😊

Kathy: What first drew you to cozy mysteries?

HQ: I watch a lot of Hallmark Movies and Mysteries. I was raised in the library reading Nancy Drew as many other cozy fans can attest to and have loved finding a good mystery since my youth. I have a very busy and curious mind so anything I write seems to always gravitate toward the mystery spectrum. My Agent also suggested the cozy genera for me.

Kathy: Do you write in any other genres?

HQ: Yes, I’ve published two stand-alone novels in another persona. (Both Christian Fiction). Unfortunately, the publishing company is no longer in business. The books are out there, but I have no control nor gain over them.

Kathy: Tell us about your series.

HQ: A Crafter Knits a Clue, the first book in the Handcrafted Mystery series, follows Sammy Kane, who a few years prior, took over her beloved best friend’s craft store after her untimely death. The Main Street shop, Community Craft, is situated in a small Midwest town. The store not only sells the locals’ handmade wares, but it’s also the communal hotspot. Craft lessons take place, and members of the community gather to fundraise and support anyone who might have a burden, or to organize events such as the seasonal beautification for the town. With her sister and cousin, Sammy revives their childhood detective club, S.H.E. (S for Sammy, H for Heidi, her cousin, and E for Ellie, her sister, to help solve crimes.

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

HQ: No, I love them all. When you spend as much time as I do with these characters (especially developing a series), they become very real to me, so I love them …quirks, flaws, and all.

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

HQ: As I mentioned earlier, I sell painted glass at a gift store in town called Faith and Giggles. The community spirit I’ve witnessed there was definitely inspirational and is the backdrop for this series.

Kathy: What made you decide to publish your work?

HQ: I’ve been writing fulltime since 2009. This is more of who I am than what I do.

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

HQ: Jesus Christ. I couldn’t invite any others to join in as I would want a front seat and all His attention -Ha!

Honestly that is a tough question, one I’d have to ponder for a bit as there are so many talented and amazing authors out there. This I will say, they would be mystery authors.

Kathy: What are you currently reading?

HQ: Flowers and Foul Play by Amanda Flower

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (for my library book club)

I’m also reading 296 pages of my own work as I’m in the final edit of the 2nd book in the Handcrafted Mystery Series: A Crafter Hooks a Killer.

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

HQ: WRITE, read, paint, sew, quilt, garden (both veggie and flowers), cook, preserve veg’s and herbs

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

HQ: Vanilla creamer for coffee, butter, cheese (I live in WI) of course I have cheese! And lettuce ha!

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

HQ: I am contracted for 3 books thus far in the Handcrafted Mystery series. The 2nd book: A Crafter Hooks a Killer- pub date June 2019 and the 3rd untitled book pub date Feb 2020.

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

HQ: Working early morning or late hours in my yoga pants. I love that when I’m writing it’s really one of the only times I’m completely present in the moment—the rest of my life I’m a multitasking ninja.


A Crafter Knits a Clue: A Handcrafted Mystery by Holly Quinn

About the Book

Crooked Lane Books (October 9, 2018)
For fans of Betty Hechtman and Maggie Sefton, the latest craft frenzy is Holly Quinn’s Handcrafted series debut.
Sammy Kane just moved back to her hometown to run a craft store. But when the owner of a nearby yarn shop is murdered, Sammy will needle little help finding the killer.
When a heartbroken Samantha “Sammy” Kane returns to her hometown of Heartsford, WI, for her best friend Kate’s funeral, she learns that Kate’s much-loved craft store is in danger of perishing with its owner. Confounding all her expectations of the life she would live, Sammy moves back home with her golden retriever and takes over Community Craft. A few doors down Main Street, fellow new arrival Ingrid Wilson has just opened the Yarn Barn, a real “purl” of a shop. But when Sammy strolls over to see if Ingrid could use a little help, she finds Ingrid’s dead body—with a green aluminum knitting needle lodged in her throat.
Detective Liam Nash is thrown for a loop as every single citizen of Heartsford seems to have a theory about Ingrid’s murder. And nearly everyone in town seems to be a suspect. But the last time Sammy did any sleuthing was as a little moppet. And this is not fun and games. Sammy is eager to help the handsome Liam—who seems to be endlessly inventive in finding reasons to talk with her—and when Liam arrests affable woodworker Miles Danbury, Sammy puts everything on the line to help clear Miles.
As the case comes dangerously close to unraveling, Sammy must stitch the clues together. But the killer has other plans—and if Sammy’s not careful, she may wind up in a perilous knot in A Crafter Knits a Clue, the first warm and woolly yarn of Holly Quinn’s new Handcrafted mysteries.

About the Author

Holly Quinn is both an avid reader and crafter. Holly sells her artistic creations locally and dreamed of one day opening a gift shop to sell local artist’s handiwork. Instead, she began writing about it and thus her journey of the Handcrafted Mystery series was born. Visit her @  
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Purchase Links -  Amazon B&N IndieBound BAM Powell's Walmart BookBub

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  1. Thank you for the wonderful interview with Holly Quinn and for being part of the book tour. Enjoyed learning more about both author and book.

    I'd very much love the opportunity to read "A Crafter Knits a Clue" which is on my TBR list. Love the cover from the cute pooch to the skull made from the runaway yarn.
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

  2. Thanks for the interview and hosting me on your lovely blog today! I'm enjoying the tour and new world of cozy mystery! :)

  3. Great interview! I am crafty too, so I am really looking forward to this series. Thanks for the chance to win and congratulations on the new series!

  4. Great interview! I love crafting!

  5. Thanks for the great interview & the book looks amazing. Thanks for your great generosity.