Friday, May 31, 2019

Claws, Paws, Feathers, and Jaws - A Review


Impeccable Petunia Part 1
By Katie Christine

Petunia is not your ordinary chicken. Petunia, an intelligent hen of a different color, is on the bottom rung of the pecking order and often finds herself at odds with the other chickens, especially Bernadette, the daughter of one of the flock's leaders. Petunia has an affinity for color which leads her to help the woman who just moved in to the house near their coop. Spending time with the woman leads to even more problems with the flock. The leaders feel that Petunia is too subversive and needs to be stopped. Will she have to pay for her new friendships with her life?

CLAWS, PAWS, FEATHERS, & JAWS is more than merely a book about a chicken, even a very special chicken. It's a book about bullying, rising above society's expectations, and seeing the wonder in the world. It's also about friendship, even with those who are different and even frightening. And it's about fitting in.

There's lots of danger and excitement here. And also mean-spiritedness, animosity, cliques, and gossip. I always wanted chickens, but not after reading Part 1 of Impeccable Petunia. That flock is comparable to an LA gang. The Bloods have nothing on those chickens! 

I enjoyed reading about Petunia and her desire to get more out of life. The woman is a bit too emotional and indecisive for me, but I like how she cares for the animals and appreciates Petunia. The one thing I didn't like about the book was the ending. There wasn't one. No part of the story is resolved. We have a heart pounding climactic fight, but it ends on a cliff hanger. I want to read on and find out what happens. The good news is that there is an Impeccable Petunia Part 2.

CLAWS, PAWS, FEATHERS, & JAWS is an intriguing tale of life, death, and the struggle to fit in.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Facebook Friends Forever - A Guest Post & Sconed to Death Review

I'm pleased to welcome Lynn Cahoon back to Cozy Up With Kathy. Lynn writes the Cat Latimer Mystery series. SCONED TO DEATH is the fifth book in the series and was released this week.

Facebook Friends Forever.
Lynn Cahoon

Social media is the bane of my existence at times. At other times, I realize how grateful I am for the multitude of friends I’ve made over the years on Facebook. And the number of friends I’ve reconnected with because of Facebook.

Back in the day, you’d meet a friend at camp or at a convention and swear to be pen pals forever. If your experience is anything like mine, there would be a few letters back and forth, then real life would interfere and I’d lose the address and the friend.

Now, when you meet someone you click with, you can key their phone number in your cell while you’re still face to face. And also friend them on Facebook so you not only don’t lose connection, but you also know exactly when their plane left the airport that afternoon. Because they posted a pic of their new airport friend, the pilot.

It’s different making and keeping friends now, but I’m so excited about the possibilities. I love scrolling through my FB feed and checking out (ahem, spying) on my friends’ lives. Sometimes it feels like competition, but when it’s good, I can relate to the post. I feel that too. So it gets a like or a heart or a sad face.

When I lost my boys this January (Homer and Demon were my long term fur babies – 14 and 19 years old) I posted my grief on Facebook. Having Homer attacked, I had people supporting my anger and fear. When I had to put him down, people told me stories of their pets. And when, less than a month later, Demon, my old man, died from a broken heart, they held me up again.

And when we added to our family with the new pups, everyone celebrated with us.

So when I met my FB friends in real life, I’m overjoyed. So if I haven’t told you this lately, thank you. Thanks for reading my books, thanks for liking my posts, and thank you for sharing your life events with me. Together, we can do anything.

So if you love cozies, please consider SCONED TO DEATH. I’d love to keep this series going and my publisher needs to see numbers to do that. Your help and support is appreciated.



SCONED TO DEATH by Lynn Cahoon
The Fifth Cat Latimer Mystery

Local baker Dee Dee Meyer decides to make life difficult for the writer's retreat calling in supposed health violations after threatening Shauna and accusing her of stealing her scone recipe. But Dee Dee has troubles of her own when a famous chef from Denver is found murdered in her bakery. While Cat hosts a group of cozy mystery writers from Chicago she quietly starts to look into the life of the recently killed chef. What was he doing in Aspen Hills? Who wanted him dead? The girlfriend he recently left? His sister-in-law, a former friend of Cat's who rumor has it was sleeping with him? Cat quietly tries to put the puzzle together as she runs her latest retreat, helping her guests with more than just writers' tips.

Jealousy plays a major role in the fifth Cat Latimer Mystery. Jealousy finds its way out of hurt, control, revenge, and low self esteem by various characters, some not even seen on the page. While jealousy may be the motivating emotion here, it's be no means the only one. It's the realistic depiction of emotions that makes SCONED TO DEATH so moving. I love the fact that Cat gets angry and that she broadcasts it, even when trying, at times, to be discreet! We get to see Shauna slowly coming to terms with her grief. Life is good, but certainly not perfect for these women and the book is not afraid to show it.

I was absolutely loving this book, until I came across a major pet peeve. In an exciting penultimate scene the killer's eyes are described as being "bright with madness". I wish that authors would remember that killing people does not make a person insane. There may have been some delusional behavior with this particular killer, but there's enough of a stigma with mental illness without adding to it by having madness in the murderer's eyes.

SCONED TO DEATH is a well plotted character driven mystery. Interesting subplots enhance the story along with a subtle message about domestic violence. You are not alone and there is help.


Sconed to Death
Cat Latimer 5
May 28th. 2019

Cat Latimer pursues a scone-cold killer who iced a top chef in a local bakery . . .

Cat has a full plate at her Aspen Hills Warm Springs Resort, as a group of aspiring cozy mystery authors arrives for a writers retreat. So when baker Dee Dee Meyer stirs up trouble by filing a false complaint with the health inspector against the B&B—all because she insists Cat's best friend Shauna stole her recipes—Cat marches into the shop to confront her.

But Dee Dee's about to have her own batch of trouble. Greyson Finn—a celebrity chef and, until today, one of Denver's most eligible bachelors—has been found dead in her bakery. Cat's uncle Pete, who happens to be the chief of police, warns her not to engage in any half-baked sleuthing. But as her curiosity rises, Cat's determined to discover who served the chef his just desserts—before the killer takes a powder . . .


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Lynn Cahoon is the award-winning author of several NYT and USA Today best-selling cozy mystery series. The Tourist Trap series is set in central coastal California with six holiday novellas releasing in 2018-2019. She also pens the Cat Latimer series available in mass market paperback. Her newest series, the Farm to Fork mystery series, released in 2018. She lives in a small town like the ones she loves to write about with her husband and two fur babies. Sign up for her newsletter at


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Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Currently Reading...

I just finished reading Sconed to Death by Lynne Cahoon. This book is the fifth book in the Cat Latimer Mystery series and was released yesterday.

Local baker Dee Dee Meyer decides to make life difficult for the writer's retreat calling in supposed health violations after threatening Shauna and accusing her of stealing her scone recipe. But Dee Dee has troubles of her own when a famous chef from Denver is found murdered in her bakery. While Cat hosts a group of cozy mystery writers from Chicago she quietly starts to look into the life of the recently killed chef. What was he doing in Aspen Hills? Who wanted him dead? The girlfriend he recently left? His sister-in-law, a former friend of Cat's who rumor has it was sleeping with him? Cat quietly tries to put the puzzle together as she runs her latest retreat, helping her guests with more than just writers tips.

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Crêpe Expectations - A Review


The Fifth Pancake House Mystery

While chasing an errant kitten in the woods behind Wildwood Inn Marley McKinney makes a startling discovery: a skull. The remains belong to Demetra Kozani, a local girl gone missing ten years prior. The former classmate of Chloe wasn't short on enemies, but was she actually killed by another student? As the town of gets ready for its annual amateur chef competition Marley finds herself puzzling over the long ago mystery. Could the killer still be in Wildwood Cove?

Sarah Fox deftly combines daily life in Wildwood Cove with an intriguing mystery to create a thriving community filled with interesting people you want to know better. Character growth and development are paramount and Marley's search for family identity is key in this book.

I love being back in Wildwood Cove and am happy to drool over Chef Ivan's creations (Boston Cream Crêpes!) as well as the gruff chef himself. In this fifth Pancake House Mystery we're treated to a cooking competition as well as a cold case mystery.

CREPE EXPECTATIONS delivers both heart pounding and heart warming moments as Marley gets involved in another murder. 

Recipes included.

Monday, May 27, 2019

Drowning Lessons - An Interview & Giveaway

I'm happy to welcome Rachel Neuburger Reynolds to Cozy Up With Kathy today. Rachel writes the Red Frog Beach Mystery series. Drowning Lessons is the first book in the series and was released earlier this month.

Kathy: Drowning Lessons features a destination wedding. Have you ever participated in one?

RN: I’ve never taken part of one of the grandeur or crazy scheduling of Drowning Lessons, but I have been to a few which have both been lovely. I went to an autumn wedding about 45-minutes outside of Charlottesville, VA quite a few years back. More recently, we went to a summer wedding on a beach in Portugal. It was very laid back and beautiful.

Now thinking about it, I guess that technically my wedding was a destination wedding. My husband and I live in England, but we got married in Boston, where I grew up. All of his friends came from Europe, and my friends are all scattered around the country. It wasn’t an exotic destination wedding for me, but a three-day holiday for everyone else!

Kathy: The first Red Frog Beach Mystery takes place in Bocas del Toro, a remote chain of islands off the Caribbean coast of Panama. What made you decide to set your story here?

RN: I went to Panama on vacation in 2002 and we had randomly scheduled three days in Bocas del Toro. I completely fell in love with the place. We were in a water taxi and passed a snorkeling boat tour. There must have been something amazing to see, because everyone was just frozen; face down in identical life vests, maybe watching a sea turtle. So, seventeen years ago I looked at that image, thinking that could be the scene of the perfect crime, and have had it in my head since then.

Kathy: Lexie Marino is maid of honor to Olivia, a bridezilla. Have you known a bridezilla?

RN: I am lucky to say that every wedding that I have been a part of has been devoid of any bridezillas. None of my bride friends were out of control in the least. When I first thought about Drowning Lessons, the main character was the bride. When I switched the protagonist to the maid of honor, I started asking friends if they had any crazy experiences with brides. Some of the stories shocked me!

Kathy: What first drew you to cozy mysteries?

RN: My mother was definitely the reason that I became interested in cozy mysteries. We had a very small library on the second floor of our house when I grew up, and my mom had a huge collection of Agatha Christie books. I was too young to read the mysteries, but I loved opening the books and seeing her casts of characters on the first few pages. Truth be told, I secretly wanted to do that in Drowning Lessons. My mom was a librarian, and mysteries and poetry were her things, so it all came from her!

Kathy: Do you write in any other genres?

RN: In the world of novels, mysteries are the only thing I write. I am also a playwright, and I’ve had my plays produced in London, Edinburgh, and New York.

Kathy: Tell us about your series.

RN: Drowning Lessons is Book One of the Red Frog Beach Mystery series, all of which takes place in Bocas del Toro. The first book is maid of honor Lexie’s introduction to the island, where she relocates to in Book 2, The Wipeout Affair. Some of the favorite members of the wedding party have also relocated, joining the fun locals we met in book one.

I am also working on The Evelyn Bay Murder Mystery series, which I’ll get back to when I finish the five books in the Red Frog Beach series. The series takes place on a fictional town on the North Fork of Long Island, NY, led by a recent divorcee and ex-Broadway dancer, who moves to Evelyn Bay for a second shot at happiness. It’s a very fun series that is very close to my heart.

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

RN: The villains all have the best lines, don’t they?

I love my protagonist, Lexie. She’s nursing a broken heart but determined to make sure her best friend’s wedding stays on track, murder or not.

There were a few characters who I really enjoyed writing. One of them is Becky, the groom’s assistant. She’s very smart, but has a very stream of consciousness mile-a-minute way of talking. I could really go out on a limb with her in terms of fun.

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

RN: Sometimes an image just gets stuck in your head. That snorkeling trip in 2002 inspired me and never let go.

The Evelyn Bay series is written in honor of my mother, Evelyn, who died of ALS in 2017.

Kathy: What made you decide to publish your work?

RN: I had a traditional publisher for Drowning Lessons, and just before Thanksgiving I learned they were “closing their traditional publishing arm.” I was broken hearted for a brief bit of time, and then decided to go indie. Sometime you have to make your own luck!

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

RN: This is going to be fun! My guest of honor would always be F Scott Fitzgerald! I’d also invite Raymond Chandler, as he was the first mystery author I discovered on my own. Then I’d round it out with True Blood’s Charlaine Harris and J K Rowling. I think it would be quite a party!

Kathy: What are you currently reading?

RN: I just finished The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Hare. I loved it.

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

RN: I’ll share my most recent hobby. I’ve wanted to play the guitar since I was 12, but never tried. My husband gave me a guitar for Christmas, so I’ve been taking lessons once a week and practicing every day. It’s hard work, but I love it.

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

RN: Salted pistachios are my weakness. I’ve had to start hiding them in my desk because my husband will eat them all. Besides that, I’d say red pepper hummus, avocado, and cooked shrimp.

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

RN: I’ve tied myself up for years with ideas! There will be five in the Red Frog Beach Series, the second of which will be released late-August. I’ve written book one of the Evelyn Bay series and have a total of seven in mind. Finally, I’ve got a non-mystery tentatively called Pinch Me Quick that has been percolating for one day in the future.

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

RN: I think that the ability to hold on to your imagination brings me a lot of joy. I’ve got my head in the clouds, always thinking about what’s going to come next with my characters. I wouldn’t have it any other way.


The author has graciously offered a digital copy of Drowning Lessons to one reader. In order to qualify, simply comment on this post no later than 11:59pm EDT Thursday, May 30, 2019. Tell us if you've ever been to a destination wedding or known a bridezilla. Also be sure to leave an e-mail address so that I can contact you, should your comment be chosen. Good luck!

Sunday, May 26, 2019

What's Your Favorite Bookstore - A Guest Post & Giveaway

I'm pleased to let David Burnsworth take over the blog today. David writes the Blu Carraway Mystery series. Caught Up in It is the third book in the series.

What's your favorite bookstore?
David Burnsworth

The first bookstore that I remember visiting was a Walden Books. I was maybe 6 or 8 and at the time I was interested in books about trucks. My mother taught me to read with a children’s book about a truck driver and his delivery route. I of course liked the truck and my mom used that to my advantage and had me read the story to her at night.

When we moved to Atlanta, my parents found this used bookstore called the Book Nook which I recently found out was still in business. They had a great used comic book selection and it was a treat to go there on the weekends. I got into roll playing games in the early eighties—Dungeons and Dragons and Car Wars—about the time we found another unique bookstore called Oxford Books. They had a great selection of material to support my gaming habit, as well as a great selection of new comics. Unfortunately, like my interest in those games, that bookstore no longer exists.

In Knoxville, my mother found this great store called McKay’s Books. It’s still in business and I usually pick up a few used CD’s when I’m in town. Also, I like books on automobiles and sometimes they have a jackpot on used ones.

Since my first book came out back in 2014, I have had my launch parties at Fiction Addiction, another great indie bookstore in Greenville, South Carolina. Jill, the owner, is awesome to work with. In fact, all the independent book sellers around where I live are great and are very welcoming for me to have signings.

When my wife and I are on vacation, we always come across a Barnes and Noble and usually stop in for a coffee and a magazine.

And then there’s Amazon. Because I can find just about anything I need there, it is hard to ignore this retailer. The ease with which I can make a purchase would be disturbing if it weren’t so convenient.

Where do you like to buy your books?


Caught Up in It (Blu Carraway Mystery) by David Burnsworth

About the Book

Hard-Boiled Mystery 3rd in Series  
Henery Press (April 23, 2019)  
Hardcover: 286 pages 
The award-winning diva, C, has got a big problem: someone wants her dead. A team of mercenaries attempts to gun her down in Kuala Lumpur. Lucky for her, Lowcountry Private Investigator, Blu Carraway, is already on the job there for a different client.
Double-lucky for C, they make their move when she’s chit-chatting with him in a bar. Unlucky for the mercenaries, four of them end up dead.
The hunt is on now for the mega-pop star. Where does she go to hide out? The sleepy islands around Charleston, South Carolina—Blu’s backyard. He’s already proven himself once, so C hires the Blu Carraway Investigation Agency to protect her for real.
The job takes Blu halfway around the world and several cities in between. The search for the truth reveals what could drive a person to want someone else dead.
And Blu Carraway ends up right in the way.

About the Author

David Burnsworth became fascinated with the Deep South at a young age. After a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Tennessee and fifteen years in the corporate world, he made the decision to write a novel. He is the author of both the Brack Pelton and the Blu Carraway Mystery Series. Having lived in Charleston on Sullivan’s Island for five years, the setting was a foregone conclusion. He and his wife call South Carolina home.

Author Links: 

Purchase Links - Amazon - B&N - Kobo

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