I'm pleased to welcome Jackie Layton to Cozy Up With Kathy today. Jackie writes the Low Country Dog Walker series. Dog-Gone Dead is the second book in the series.
Kathy: Andi Grace Scott is a dog walker. Do you have dogs of your own?
JL: Yes. I have a Westie. Heinz just turned fourteen.
Kathy: Do you have any favorite dog breeds?
JL: I have so many allergies, and while I enjoy all dogs, I can only have hypoallergenic dogs. Heinz is a good companion and a great watchdog.
Kathy: Andi's brother is a landscaper. Do you like to garden?
JL: I love to garden. When we lived in Kentucky, I had large gardens. I don’t have a big yard now, and I’m still learning how to garden on the coast because the soil is so different. We’ve been blessed to have some of our new neighbors share their extra plants with us. Mexican petunias, yellow lilies, and a different variety of black-eyed Susans are some of the flowers we’ve been given. We’ve also bought some at the local nurseries, and I’m trying to figure out what grows best here.
Kathy: In Dog-Gone Dead Andi finds a body under some mulch. This begs the question-what color mulch do you use?
JL: I prefer chunky brown mulch, but with the pandemic we found somebody we could buy pine straw from who’d deliver it. It’s a Southern thing, and it looks nice and fluffy.
Kathy: What first drew you to cozy mysteries?
JL: When I was visiting my grandmother Hubbard as a child, I found my mother’s Nancy Drew books. I started reading them and I was hooked. I’ve almost always lived in small towns, and the cozy settings appeal to me.
Kathy: Do you write in any other genres?
JL: I’ve also tried writing romance and romantic suspense, but cozies are my favorite genre.
Kathy: Tell us about your series.
JL: Andi Grace Scott is a dog walker in Heyward Beach, South Carolina, the town she’s always lived in. Andi Grace has a caretake personality, and she enjoys finding ways to help her friends and neighbors.
Kathy: Do you have a favorite character? If so, who and why?
JL: Andi Grace is my favorite. She’s athletic and gutsy. If she sees an injustice, she’ll do whatever it takes to help the underdog.
Kathy: Did you have a specific inspiration for your series?
Kathy: What made you decide to publish your work?
JL: I’ve dreamed of writing most of my life, but it never seemed realistic. When my youngest son was in high school, I decided if I didn’t try, it would never happen. I took classes, attended conferences, and studied the craft of writing and began to write.
Kathy: If you could have a dinner party and invite 4 authors, living or dead, in any genre, who would you invite?
JL: Agatha Christie, Mary Higgins Clark, Robert Whitlow, and Diane Mott Davidson.
Kathy: What are you currently reading?
JL: The First to Lie by Hank Phillippi Ryan.
Kathy: Will you share any of your hobbies or interests with us?
JL: I enjoy reading, gardening, walking, biking, and playing cards.
Kathy: Name 4 items you always have in your fridge or pantry.
JL: Almond milk, Greek yogurt, coffee, and apples.
Kathy: Do you have plans for future books either in your current series or a new series?
JL: Yes. Bag of Bones will come out later in 2020, and I just signed a contract for the next three books in the Low Country Dog Walker Mystery series.
Kathy: What's your favorite thing about being an author?
JL: I love brainstorming stories, but the best thing is making friends with other authors and readers.
Dog-Gone Dead: A Low Country Dog Walker Mystery by Jackie Layton
About Dog-Gone Dead
Cozy Mystery 2nd in Series
Publisher: Bell Bridge Books (June 26, 2020)
Paperback: 248 pages
Who’d have thought mulch could cause such a stink?
Low Country dog walker Andi Grace Scott is happy to score some free mulch from one of her brother’s landscaping jobs—until she discovers the dead body buried beneath the bark.
Worse, her brother’s landscaping tools were used to commit the murder. Once the police arrest her brother and seem happy to have “caught their man,” Andi Grace has no choice but to track down the real killer. She’ll risk everything to prove her brother’s innocence. Even if it means turning over every rock in town.
If you love small-town coastal life, dogs, and strong heroines, you’ll love Dog-Gone Dead.
About Jackie Layton
Former Kentucky pharmacist Jackie Layton loves her new life in the Low Country. When she’s not writing, Jackie enjoys walks on the beach, bike rides and collecting shells. The first two books in Jackie's Low Country Dog Walker Mystery series are Bite the Dust and Dog-Gone Dead. Jackie always enjoys hearing from readers.