Feb 252015
 

cozy wednesday 2013 640Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!
I am so happy to have former Wisconsinite Mary Ellen Hughes drop by for a visit!

Mary Ellen Hughes author pic

My Ten Favorite Things about Writing License to Dill

Starting a new series is always exciting, but it’s also plenty of hard, intensive work. There’s so many decisions to make, such as where to set it, who your characters will be, their relationships, and so on, which is what I went through with The Pickled Piper, book #1 of my Pickled and Preserved mystery series. After careful thought, I chose upstate New York as my setting and named my fictional town Cloverdale. I sent my twenty-nine year old principal character, Piper Lamb, there from Albany after she ended her going-nowhere engagement. And I put Piper’s Aunt Judy and Uncle Frank on a nearby farm, gave Piper a great assistant for her pickling shop, and introduced Piper to Will, a handsome Christmas tree farmer. So all the important decisions were made with book #1.

Book #2, License to Dill, by comparison, turned out to be a breeze. Everything was set up and ready to go! All I needed to do was write the mystery (“all” she added, laughingly). But having already done the ground work, I could now relax and focus on the plot, which became the first of my…

Ten Favorite Things About Writing License to Dill :
1. My characters, after a couple of weeks of rest, were super-eager for action. They practically snatched the pages from me to get back to work.

2. Piper and her new boyfriend, Will, had progressed beyond the awkward getting-to-know-you stage and were pretty happy and comfortable with each other.

3. Of course, I couldn’t let that continue, so I brought Piper’s ex-fiancé, Scott, back from his travels, and he decided to settle in Cloverdale. (Uh-oh.)

4. I imported an entire soccer team of handsome young men from Italy to challenge Cloverdale’s All-Stars, which meant writing exciting soccer scenes. I now understand the game much better!

5. The Italian team’s coach and manager occasionally spoke Italian. With the help of a Italian-born friend, I learned several useful Italian phrases and sometimes found myself writing with an Italian accent!

6. Since a dill field figures importantly in the murder, I learned—and shared in the book—quite a bit about growing and using fresh dill. I could practically smell that wonderful weed as I typed.

7. Since Piper makes all the pickles and preserves for her shop herself (with the help of her assistant, Amy), I kept various pickles on hand, because writing pickling scenes was sure to bring on a craving.

8. Piper spends plenty of time with her Aunt Judy and Uncle Frank at their farm. Whenever Piper drove up, Jack, their mixed-breed dog went crazy with excitement. I, unfortunately, am allergic to dogs, but I could enjoy petting Jack vicariously through Piper—with no sneezes!

9. While looking into the murder, Piper meets several people in the Cloverdale area with new-to-me occupations. I particularly loved writing about the chainsaw sculptor and will have to seriously consider bringing him back some day.

10. After spending months with Piper and all the people of Cloverdale in The Pickled Piper, I became pretty fond of them. (Well, most of them. There was, after all, a murderer in the mix.) But writing License to Dill was like going to a reunion—lots of fun getting reacquainted with everyone. But I do hope they’ve forgiven me by now for what I’ve put them through…

~Mary Ellen

About The Author

Mary Ellen Hughes is the author of the Craft Corner mystery series – WREATH OF DECEPTION, STRING OF LIES, and PAPER-THIN ALIBI – as well as the Maggie Olenski mysteries – RESORT TO MURDER and A TASTE OF DEATH.

She has also authored several short stories, including THE WOMAN ON THE TRAIN, and short mysteries included in the Chesapeake Crimes and Tales from the Backlist anthologies.

A transplanted Wisconsinite, Mary Ellen now lives in Maryland where she is excited to be working on her new Pickled and Preserved mystery series beginning with THE PICKLED PIPER.

license to dillLicense to Dill
(Pickled and Preserved Mystery)

2nd Book in Series
Cozy Mystery
Setting – New York
Release Date: February 3, 2015
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
The Berkley Publishing Group
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Chris O’Leary
Cover Design by Karen Oberrender
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425262467
E-Book ASIN: B00NUMIDHC
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Piper Lamb knows how to make fruits and vegetables keep for months. Unfortunately, it’s the people around her who are expiring too soon…

After her fiancé left her, Piper came to Cloverdale to rebuild her life and open up her shop, Piper’s Picklings, to sell pickles and preserves. When her ex decides to drop in for a visit—just as things are heating up between her and a local Christmas tree farmer—Piper finds herself in a jam.

But there are other visitors to worry about…

An Italian soccer team is set to play the Cloverdale All-Stars in an exhibition game. Their manager, Raffaele Conti, was a bitter rival of Piper’s dill supplier, local farmer Gerald Standley. After Conti is found dead in Standley’s field, Piper must work to clear Gerald’s name and find out who relished killing Raffaele before the town is soured by another death.

INCLUDES RECIPES!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I knew that darn Scott was going to be trouble when he appeared in Cloverdale at the end of The Pickled Piper and he is sticking around too, renting an office just down the street from Piper’s store. Piper does her best to fully explain to him their relationship is over, but Scott does not give up. Thankfully Will is a patient man but Scott just keeps popping up everywhere, even at the exhibition soccer game where he wedges himself into the seat closest to Piper. When the manager of the Italian team is killed he even tries to help Piper catch the killer. Piper truly has herself in a pickle as she tries to clear her friend’s name and make it clear to Scott she has moved on.

I love Piper, she is really making herself at home in Cloverdale. She still visits her Uncle Frank and Aunt Judy often but is branching out making new friends and her relationship with Will was moving at a nice pace. She made me laugh out loud several times and caused me to worry about her too as she finds herself in more than a bit of trouble.

Mary Ellen Hughes has given readers a nice treat by adding a few hunky Italian soccer players to the story. The way she tied this into the whole plot is very interesting and gives us a barrel full of suspects.

The story has a wonderful mystery, fun characters, a nice romantic subplot and the perfect amount of humor. I am already looking forward to my next visit to Cloverdale!!

a perfect escape5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

GIVEAWAY

Thanks to the people at Penguin I have 2 copies to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Following the new Google+ Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book Fan Page
will earn you 3 Bonus Entries.

Leave a comment for Mary Ellen for 5 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End March 11, 2015 at 11:59 PM CST
Winners Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winners Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Feb 182015
 

cozy wednesday 2013 640Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!

I am so excited to have Cate Price visit today!
Lie of the Needle, the 3rd A Deadly Notions Mystery came out last month.

Cate Price

LIE OF THE NEEDLE by Cate Price

Thanks so much for having me here today, Lori!

In Lie of the Needle, Daisy Buchanan has recently purchased some antique samplers for her store, Sometimes a Great Notion. It’s a quirky place where she sells vintage sewing notions and whatever else happens to catch her eye at an estate sale or auction. As she researches the value of the exquisite needlework, she wonders if a clue to the current murder could possibly be found on a family heirloom that was stitched over a hundred years ago.

lie of the needleOriginally samplers served as a way for women to store their personal repertoire of stitches. This collection of “samples” of favorite motifs and designs could be rolled up and kept with them as a guide.

In the eighteenth century, the purpose of a sampler gradually changed to become a teaching tool for young girls, not just to learn to sew, but also to practice their alphabet and numerals. A young woman had to have excellent needle skills to be suitable for marriage, as one of her primary responsibilities was to monogram and mend the household linens.

Some of the best examples in the early nineteenth century were made in Pennsylvania, and especially in the Quaker schools. One famous school that currently houses a collection of 130 antique samplers is the Westtown School in Chester County. Quakers had their own designs that extolled the virtues of simplicity and peace, like the bird-in-branch motif, paired doves and floating swans.

It’s amazing to me that this intricate work with tiny stitches was done by such young girls, some as little as seven or eight years old. The verses themselves often seem quite grim considering their age, but many of these children were no strangers to death. They had probably already experienced the loss of at least one of their siblings. A verse extract can go something like this:

When I am dead, laid in my grave
And all my bones gone rotten
When this you see, remember me
That I be not forgotten

Have you ever attempted making a sampler? Do you have any advice for those who might be considering taking on the challenge?

~Cate

About the Author:
Cate Price is a regular sight on the streets of her home town walking her two amazing rescue dogs, and she also enjoys gardening, yard sales, and cooking with friends. Writing the Deadly Notions mysteries proved to be rather an expensive project, because while researching auction houses, she also became addicted to bidding on box lots.
Cate is a member of Romance Writers of America, Sisters in Crime and Mystery Writers of America. Visit her at www.cateprice.com or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/catepriceauthor

lie of the needleLie of the Needle
(A Deadly Notions Mystery)

3rd in Series
Cozy Mystery
Setting: Pennsylvania
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery (January 6, 2015)
The Berkley Publishing Group
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Ben Perini
Cover Design by Diana Kolsky
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425258811
E-Book ASIN: B00KWG5RKK
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As the owner of Sometimes a Great Notion, a shop specializing in vintage sewing notions and antique treasures, Daisy Buchanan is a strong advocate of preserving the past. But when a killer strikes, she turns her attention to saving lives…

Talk about a great notion! As a fund-raiser to save a two-hundred-year-old farmhouse and stop an ambitious developer, the ladies of the Historical Society of Millbury, Pennsylvania, are producing a Hunky Men of Millbury calendar. Daisy is delighted to lend her support, and the female population of the village is abuzz with anticipation.

But after Daisy’s close friend Cyril doesn’t show up for his photo shoot and the calendar photographer is found dead, it’s beginning to look like the days may be numbered for the men of Millbury. Can a cryptic verse on an antique sampler help Daisy pin down the killer before another pinup runs out of time?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Murder and a missing person create mayhem in Millbury. The Historical Society fundraiser – Hunky Men of Millbury Calendar raises a few eyebrows and sounds like fun until Daisy’s friend and Martha’s beau, Cyril goes missing and the photographer is dead. In between running her shop, feeding Cyril’s cat, and worrying about Martha, Daisy is trying to sort out some History Society financial problem, find her friend, and pin down a killer.

The crazy thing is this is not the first book I have read this year that starts out with a naked man and the story build from there. Sure gets you attention right from the first page.

This was one of those books that just pulls you in deeper and deeper and when you think you know where the story is headed the author throws a twist and then another and then a really good one that knocks you back on your heels.

Cyril grabbed my heart in the last story, A Dollhouse to Die For, so I too was concerned about his welfare. Daisy and Joe are a wonderful caring couple. They look out for all of their friends and Daisy jumps right in to help Detective Serrano any time she can.

Cate Price writes a story in such a way that the reader really feels emotionally drawn to her characters and their lives. I wish Daisy and Joe were my neighbors. I think we would be great friends. I love all needlecrafts and my husband and Joe would really hit it off. She also stitches together a great mystery and I think this one tops the first 2 in this series.

This installment also has some great information about samplers, some with quite a history. From the first page to the last you are going to enjoy sampling each and every word. I loved this story!

a perfect escape5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

GIVEAWAY

Thanks to the people at Penguin I have 2 copies to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Following the new Google+ Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book Fan Page
will earn you 3 Bonus Entries.

Leave a comment for Cate for 5 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End March 4, 2015 at 11:59 PM CST
Winners Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winners Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Feb 172015
 

arsenic and old booksArsenic and Old Books
(Cat in the Stacks Mystery)

6th in Series
Cozy Mystery
Setting – Mississippi
Release Date: January 27, 2015
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
The Berkley Publishing Group
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Dan Craig
Cover Design by Lesley Worrell
Hardcover: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425257296
E-Book ASIN: B00KWG611O
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In Athena, Mississippi, librarian Charlie Harris is known for his good nature—and for his Maine coon cat Diesel that he walks on a leash. Charlie returned to his hometown to immerse himself in books, but taking the plunge into a recent acquisition will have him in over his head…

Lucinda Beckwith Long, the mayor of Athena, has donated a set of Civil War-era diaries to the archives of Athena College. The books were recently discovered among the personal effects of an ancestor of Mrs. Long’s husband. The mayor would like Charlie to preserve and to substantiate them as a part of the Long family legacy—something that could benefit her son, Beck, as he prepares to campaign for the state senate.

Beck’s biggest rival is Jasper Singletary. His Southern roots are as deep as Beck’s, and their families have been bitter enemies since the Civil War. Jasper claims the Long clan has a history of underhanded behavior at the expense of the Singletarys. He’d like to get a look at the diaries in an attempt to expose the Long family’s past sins. Meanwhile, a history professor at the college is also determined to get her hands on the books in a last-ditch bid for tenure. But their interest suddenly turns deadly…

Now Charlie is left with a catalog of questions. The diaries seem worth killing for, and one thing is certain: Charlie will need to be careful, because the more he reads, the closer he could be coming to his final chapter…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

History and politics clash as 4 diaries dating back to the Civil War are donated to Athena College. As soon as word gets out of the acquisition people are banging down Charlie’s door to get their hands on them. Before Charlie can even get a good look at the books they are stolen from his office and a woman ends up dead. Just what is written in these diaries? Charlie feels obligated to find out but has to be careful because if the information has already gotten on person killed Charlie could be next!

These are some of my favorite characters. Charlie Harris is a true Southern gentleman with a huge heart. His constant companion is a Maine Coon cat named Diesel. This cat stole my heart when I met him in the first Cat in the Stacks Mystery, Murder Past Due. He reminded me so much of my own cat that I just fell in love.

The Civil War diaries were a fantastic element. I did figure out one part of the mystery a little early due to some knowledge I acquired several years ago but that truly didn’t take away from this story.

Charlie was so busy solving the mystery this time that with the exception of Diesel many of the supporting characters we have grown to love really just had cameo roles in this story. Most of the new characters introduced were suspects and spent a lot of time on the pages and everyone of them was playing an angle and were pretty selfish types. Good for the story but I missed seeing my old friends more.

James writing flows so easily making the pages fly and our visit to Athena ends much too soon. There is a fun short story included that tells us how Charlie came to be Diesel person and part of the family.

I love this series and look forward to each new installment. I can’t wait to escape to Athena, Mississippi next year!

just you and a friend5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Find out more about Miranda James and her books on her webpage here.

I am giving away my review copy!

Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End March 3, 2014 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Feb 142015
 

romeowRomeow and Juliet
(Whales and Tails Mystery Book 1)

Cozy Mystery
Setting: Island off Washington State
Paperback: 204 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (January 1, 2015)
ISBN-13: 978-1503015487
E-Book ASIN: B00OYAGHN6
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Romeow and Juliet is the first in a cozy mystery series set on Madrona Island, a fictional island within the San Juan Islands off the coast of Washington State. As a fourth generation islander Caitlin Hart is struggling to make her way as the economy and culture of the island evolves toward a tourism based industry. Cait lives in a cabin on her aunt’s oceanfront estate where she helps her aunt run Harthaven Cat Sanctuary. When she isn’t working with the cats, she helps best friend Tara, operate the coffee bar/bookstore/cat lounge they own, named Coffee Cat Books.

In the first installment to the series Cait and her dog Max find the body of a member of the island council dead in the back room of the old fish cannery. As Cait delves into the murder she finds herself with an unlikely sleuthing partner that might just lead to a relationship of a more personal kind.

Meanwhile, Romeo, as stray cat that followed Cait home, is causing all sorts of problems for Cait as, in spite of dire warnings from the neighbor next door, he refuses to stay away from her very expensive show cat, Juliet. Could Romeo really be trying to tell Cait something about the neighbor that she initially refuses to see?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I am a late arrival to the Kathi Daley party. I see all her books on Facebook and have helped her promote a few of them but she writes and published so fast that for someone like me that likes to read series books in order it would take me awhile to catch up. When I saw she was debuting a new series I knew it was my chance to get in on the festivities.

Caitlin Hart is a character I can identify with immediately. She loves animals just like I do and she takes it to a whole new level by helping her aunt run the Harthaven Cat Sanctuary. She is working to open a coffee and bookstore with her best friend, Tara, that will also feature cats for adoption. She also has a dog of her own that goes almost everywhere with her.

In addition to Cait, her aunt and Tara the island has a wonderful group of very interesting residents, including 2 very special felines, Romeow and Juliet who seem just destined to be together.

While Cait and Tara are checking out the place that will become home to Coffee Cat Books they make a shocking discovery that may set back their plans for quite some time.

Kathi Daley has given us everything needed for a great cozy mystery. A small island setting, wonderful human and animal characters, small town politics and issues facing big town outsiders and a very “cativating” whodunit too!

I think I read this story in record time and then quickly downloaded book #2, The Mad Catter which I will be reading and reviewing soon. Grimm’s Furry Tail (Whales and Tails Mystery Book 3) is being released March 15 and I will be ready for it. This is one Kathi Daley Series I am going to stay on top of. I am also going to work her other books into my reading schedule as soon as I can!

a perfect escape5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

kathi daley Kathi Daley is the author of the Zoe Donovan Mysteries, Tj Jensen Paradise Lake and now the Whales and Tails Mystery series.

Come for the murder, stay for the romance.

Kathi lives in the beautiful alpine community of Lake Tahoe with her husband Ken and dog Echo. When she’s not writing she enjoys hanging out on the beach with her children and grandchildren. During the summer she enjoys hiking, kayaking, mountain biking, wakeboarding, and sunset cruises on the lake. During the winter she enjoys cross country skiing, snowshoeing, and curling up by a fire with a good book.

Kathi uses her mountain home as inspiration for her books, all which include appearances by the wildlife she shares her life with.

Visit Kathi on Facebook at Kathi Daley Books, and on Twitter @kathidaley.

She also has a website, www.kathidaley.com, where she shares photos of her mountain home as well as recipes featured in her books.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Feb 112015
 

cozy wednesday 2013 640Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!

My guest today is the fabulous Kate Collins!

kate collins

CREATIVITY ON THE RUN, ER, WALK

By Kate Collins

Brains are fascinating organs. They’re the original computers, processing whatever they take in and spitting it out when you need it – hopefully. They’re inventive, too, making up all kinds of stories to amuse, soothe, or scare us out of a night’s sleep. For me that inventiveness started at a very young age when I was certain my chest of drawers turned into a big hairy gorilla at night. I also convinced the neighbor kids that a monster lived in the crawlspace of our house. That backfired on me, however, because I told the story so often I came to believe it and wouldn’t go anywhere near that part of the house. There’s a price to be paid for being too creative.

root awakeningRecently I read an article* about how brains function better and are less prone to dementia when the body is exercised. What especially caught my attention was the paragraph that said exercise boosts creativity and helps a person come up with new solutions to problems. As a mystery writer, my ears perked up. I’m constantly solving problems, mostly of my own making, but still, sometimes I back a character into a corner and then have to figure a way out of it.

When that happens, when I’m staring at the words on my monitor and nothing is coming, I have to escape. For me that means taking a walk and letting the wayward scene play in my head like a movie and allowing my characters to talk about what’s happening. It also means that if you see me out walking and my lips are moving, pay no attention. I’m just working out their dialogue.

I wasn’t surprised, therefore, when I read in the article that researchers at Stanford University found that walking can increase creativity up to sixty percent. I’ll vouch for that! Even a casual stroll around the house or office can be beneficial, anything to step away from the words – or lack thereof – on the computer screen.

According to the researchers: “Four experiments demonstrate that walking boosts creative ideation in real time and shortly after… Walking opens up the free flow of ideas, and it is a simple and robust solution to the goals of increasing creativity and increasing physical activity.”

So it’s a win-win situation. Creativity goes up, calories burn off, blood circulates, muscles pump, and those feel-good endorphins rise. When I sit back down again, the ideas are there and so are my characters, waiting with a big “Welcome back, Kate. Let’s get this mystery solved.”

~Kate

Kate Collins is a New York Times bestselling author of the popular and long-running Flower Shop Mystery series. A Root Awakening, #16 in the series, is a February, 2015 release. Read about Kate’s mysteries, historical romances, and children’s anthologies at www.katecollinsbooks.com

*Source: www.Mercola.com (1-23-2015) “The Remarkable Effects of Exercise on Cognition and Brain Cell Regeneration.”

root awakeningA Root Awakening:
A Flower Shop Mystery

16th in Series
Cozy Mystery
Setting – Indiana
An Obsidian Mystery
An Imprint of New American Library
Published by The Penguin Group
Release Date: February 3, 2015
Mass Market Paperback: 336 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0451415516
E-Book ASIN: B00LMGK55Q
goodreads-badge-add-plus

 

Abby Knight’s marriage may be in full bloom, but house hunting is no bed of roses in latest novel in the New York Times bestselling Flower Shop Mystery series…

Now that they’ve tied the knot, flower shop owner Abby Knight and her husband, Marco, want to put down roots. When it comes to picking a house, Marco can’t wait to get his hands dirty, while Abby isn’t ready for a fixer-upper. But conflict really sprouts when they’re checking out a dilapidated Victorian and watch a construction worker take a life-threatening tumble.

Since witnesses claim the man shouted for help, suggesting that the fall was no accident, the victim’s flamboyant wife hires Marco to find the person responsible. Meanwhile, Abby keeps secret from Marco her own investigation into the home’s inhabitants, a family whose off-kilter behavior has aroused her suspicions. If only Abby’s very pregnant cousin, Jillian, will stop distracting Abby with false labor pains, she can conclude her own inquiries before Marco finds out…and her case blossoms into a disaster.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

House hunting can be fun but most times it is pretty daunting. Buying a house is a huge decision and Marco and Abby are not exactly on the same page as to the type of house they want. Marco is okay with a fixer upper but Abby knows with them both owning businesses and a private investigating company they are not going to have much time for fixing anything up. But she is willing to look. They arrive to check out a Victorian that is already receiving a bit of a facelift just in time to see one of the workers fall many feet from his ladder to the ground. It looks like an accident but the victim’s wife hires Marco and Abby to investigate. Abby also thinks there is something off about the people renting the house and her brain just can’t let it go so she does a little investigating on her own.

Not sure what their next move is regarding finding a home a very pregnant comes to the rescue and offers to find them the perfect place to purchase. The trick will be finding it before she actually really truly goes into labor and has the baby. Hilarity ensues!

This is the 16th book in this series. That should tell you something right there. This is an excellent series and Kate Collins is a wonderful storyteller. She continues to keep these character fresh and their adventures colorful and entertaining. They are definitely blooming in the place she has planted them.

As someone who has worked on a construction crew the man falling from the ladder sent extra chills through my entire body. Those Victorian homes are tall, my first thought was where was his safety harness but then I quickly became enthralled in the mystery. Did he just lose his balance or was he really pushed? Why? and Who? and was he going to survive? Abby and Marco seem to be getting nowhere in their investigation.

This was one of those books I just couldn’t put down. I knew what Abby was thinking but the author twisted it in a way I didn’t see coming at all. An extraordinary WHODUNIT!

I am a huge fan of this author and I anxiously await each installment and am never disappointed, in fact she always exceeds my expectations. We have already learned #17 is called Florist Grump and it hits stores in November! I truly can’t wait!

a perfect escape5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

GIVEAWAY

Thanks to the people at Penguin I have 2 copies to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Following the new Google+ Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book Fan Page
will earn you 3 Bonus Entries.

Leave a comment for Kate for 5 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 25, 2015 at 11:59 PM CST
Winners Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winners Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Feb 052015
 

 

special guest blueDuffy Brown is my Very Special Guest Today!
Dead Man Walker was released on Tuesday!

duffy brownHi, all. Dead Man Walker was out on Tuesday. It’s the fourth book in my Consignment Shop Mysteries and it’s Walker Boone’s story meaning it’s from his point of view and starts off…

“See, there he is, Mr. Boone,” Mercedes said to me. “Just like I told you on the phone, Conway Adkins dead as a fence post in his very own claw-foot bathtub and naked as the day he was born.”

“I take you added the washcloth?” I said to Mercedes, both of us standing in the doorway and staring at the corpse.

“Couldn’t be having the man laying there with his shrivelness all exposed to the world now could I. Not proper for a man his age.”

“Or for the rest of us,” I added.

dead man walkerA guy’s point of view, especially a hunky dude like Walker Boone is way different than writing in the female point of view. Guys don’t think about the color of their purse. They don’t do lunch or get over a problem with retail therapy…namely shopping for shoes. They don’t go out for ice cream when they’re down, they don’t mainline chocolate or eat peanut butter out of the jar…not that I would ever do such a thing.

Guys meet with their buds at the local watering hole and down a few or maybe they shoot pool or shoot hoops. Or they get bar grub or ribs or wings. Wings are always a guy pleaser.

I love guy friendships. Sherlock and Watson, Chandler and Joey on Friends, Fred Flinstone and Barney Rubble, Bert and Ernie, Batman and Robin…you get the picture.

Walker has Big Joey…

“Dawg,” Big Joey said to me as I slip onto a stool next to his, everyone in the place giving Joey space. “Know you’d show.”
Big Joey was built like a Mac truck,
muscles buffed to jet black, gold tooth,
pony tail and main man of the Seventeenth
Street gang…my former home and forever
family. He was my brother in every sense of
the word except parental commonality.

Of course Walker Boone has other friendships, girl friendships like with Reagan. The two started off rocky in that Walker represented Reagan’s ex in her divorce but in solving mysteries they kept tripping over each other. At the end of Dead Man Walker, Walker’s on the run and Reagan and Bruce Willis…the other Bruce Willis…is there to help him out…

“This is circumstantial evidence,” I said to Reagan as we stood on the sidewalk outside my house. “The police have to see that someone’s setting me up to cover their own butt.”

“It’s your butt that needs covering, Walker Boone,” Reagan offered. “The police found your .38 and it matches the bullet that killed Conway. The cops are on their way. You got to get out of here right now.”

I looked at my red ‘57 Chevy convertible parked at the curb. “Might as well put a target on my back driving this thing.”

Reagan shoved her helmet at me. “Take Princess.”

“A scooter? You want me to ride a pink scooter named Princess?”

“Better than that being your nickname in the big house.”

This is Walker Boone’s story, his friendships the people and pets in his life that help him out no matter what.

So what about you? If you were in a tough spot like Walker who would help you out? Who would cover for you and lend you their pink scooter to get away? Who is your Big Joey or Reagan Summerside?

~Duffy

 

dead man walkerDead Man Walker
(A Consignment Shop Mystery Book 4)

Cozy Mystery
Setting – Georgia
Publisher: Berkley (February 3, 2015)
E-Book File Size: 1004 KB
Print Length: 71 pages
ASIN: B00KGH5GVA
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It’s springtime in Savannah, the azaleas and magnolias are in bloom, and Reagan Summerside’s consignment shop, the Prissy Fox, is bustling with customers out to enjoy the beautiful weather. On a day like today, what could go wrong?

As a mortician beautician and housekeeper, Mercedes is no stranger to corpses or messy bathrooms. But the last thing she expects to find in a client’s bathtub is a dead body! Now she’s a murder suspect and it seems like her life is going down the drain. She turns to local lawyer Walker Boone to get her out of hot water.

But Walker has his own surprising connections to the dead man in the tub, and now he needs Reagan’s help to clear his own name—and keep him alive…

Includes a preview of the Consignment Shop Mystery, Demise in Denim.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I have seen this listed as Book 3.5 and Book 4 depending which site you’re on. What I call it is a prequel to Book 4, or teaser, or torture!! It is so good! but man Duffy and Berkley! this is so hard! Demise in Denim comes out April 7 and I am virtually standing here tapping my foot waiting for that day to arrive.

I absolutely llloooovvvvvveeeee these characters and look forward to visiting them so much. This time Walker has himself in a bathtub load of trouble and Reagan is doing everything she can to get him out of it. But she may land herself in trouble right along with him!

What really makes the book fun was that it is told Walker’s point of view instead of Reagan’s. He sees things like a man which as women know is totally and completely different. They seem to find unusual things of great importance and twist things more to their own advantage…right? It had to be very interesting for Duffy to write.

As you can see this story is really a novella and believe me it ends much too soon but I know Duffy will reward our patience tenfold but my foot is still tapping :) I highly recommend you grab a copy of this very fast read with this warning – be prepared to laugh out loud and get ready to join me impatiently waiting for Demise in Denim. We may need to start a support group.

a perfect escape5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Visit Duffy’s Webpage here to find out more about her and her books!

GIVEAWAYDuffy is giving away 2 Swag Sets
Each includes a tote bag and a Dead Man Walker pen!!

U.S. ONLY

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Following the new Google+ Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book Fan Page
will earn you 3 Bonus Entries.

Leave a comment for Duffy for 5 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 19, 2015 at 11:59 PM CST
Winners Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winners Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Feb 042015
 

cozy wednesday 2013 640Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!
Fry Another Day finally hit store shelves yesterday and it was well worth the wait!
Zoe Chase – owner of the Biscuit Bowl food truck is my guest today!

 Fry another day

An Update from the Sweet Magnolia Food Truck Race
By Zoe Chase – owner of the Biscuit Bowl food truck
From Fry Another Day
By J.J. Cook

We’re here in Atlanta – finally! The Sweet Magnolia Food Truck Race has been grueling so far. I was expecting some stiff competition from the other food trucks, but not the kind that comes with murder!

I have to tell you that Uncle Saul, Miguel, Ollie, Delia have worked as hard as I have to make sure things go right. It hasn’t been easy with competitors like Our Daily Bread, Stick It Here, Meggie’s Mushrooms, and Pizza Papa. They have really pushed us to our limits.

Plus the weird things the sponsors want us to do – making biscuits out of sweet potatoes, serving food on roller skates, and finding mystery food judges – have been a challenge.

But what could I expect from a food truck race from Charlotte, NC to my hometown of Mobile, Alabama? Ten food trucks trying to win the $50,000 grand prize that will change our lives!

Of course, the kiss Miguel and I shared could be a life-changer too!

I’m so hopeful to be the last food truck standing, and make sure Miguel knows how I feel about him. It’s an exciting time in my life. I hope you will share it.

See you on the road! Be sure to vote for the Biscuit Bowl!

Spiced Peaches
Spiced peaches were a hit for us during the food truck race. They aren’t hard to make, and have a cool, delicious zing!
Ingredients:

2 cups water
2 cups of sugar
1 tablespoon whole allspice
1 tablespoon whole cloves
4, 3 inch cinnamon sticks
2 pounds of peaches (about 10 medium)
You’ll also need one small square of cheesecloth.
Directions:
Mix sugar and water in a heavy saucepan.
Tie allspice and cloves in the cheesecloth. Add this, and the cinnamon sticks, to the water and sugar.
Cover and boil for 5 minutes.
Peel the peaches while the water and sugar are cooking. After the syrup is done boiling, remove cinnamon sticks and cheesecloth bag. Drop the peaches into boiling syrup, a few at a time
Simmer peaches until tender; about 5 minutes.
Delicious with vanilla ice cream!
~Zoe

I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

About The Authors

Joyce and Jim Lavene write award-winning, best selling mystery fiction as themselves, J.J. Cook, and Ellie Grant. They have written and published more than 70 novels for Harlequin, Berkley, Amazon, and Simon and Schuster along with hundreds of non-fiction articles for national and regional publications. They live in rural North Carolina with their family.

Author  Links 

 Jim’s Facebook Page

Joyce and Jim’s Facebook page

Our Amazon AuthorCentral Page

Joyce’s Twitter

J.J. Cook’s webpage

Fry another dayFry Another Day
(Biscuit Bowl Food Truck)

Cozy Mystery
Setting: Alabama
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
The Berkley Publishing Group (February 3, 2015)
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Griesback & Martucci
Cover Design by Jason Gill
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425263464
E-Book ASIN: B00LMGK40W
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With a few loyal friends in tow—including her handsome attorney, Miguel, and her cat, Crème Brûlée—Zoe drives the Biscuit Bowl to Charlotte, North Carolina, to enter a nationally televised food truck race. The contest features challenges across the Southeast, and with a fifty-thousand-dollar grand prize, competition isn’t just fierce—it’s killer.

As everyone gears up for the first challenge, another food trucker from Zoe’s hometown is found dead. The race rolls on, but when the body count rises, police begin to suspect Miguel. Now Zoe must race to catch the killer before her attorney needs an attorney.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Road Trip! Zoe and the Biscuit Bowl crew have entered the Sweet Magnolia Food Truck Race. Ten food trucks from the Southeast are all vying to win $50,000. Sounds like fun and it is until one truck vendors is found dead. What everyone thinks was a crazy accident is soon ruled a murder and Zoe’s attorney friend Miguel seems to be a prime suspect. Now Zoe is after more than 1 prize. The $50,000 and finding the real killer. It couldn’t really be Miguel…could it?

Damn J.J. Cook has done it again! I couldn’t put this book down!

Zoe, Ollie, Uncle Saul, Delia, Miguel and even Zoe’s cat Crème Brûlée are all back and traveling around the Southeastern part of the United States serving up their deep fried bread bowls with some very tasty fillings all to win a prize that would get Zoe a huge step closer to opening up her own sit-down restaurant. They are up for any challenge including wearing roller skates or serving patrons during a torrential rain storm.

This story is just like a show you would see on the Food Network, well maybe not the murder, but you know what I mean. People will go on television and do just about anything for money. The author takes that and turns it sideways to include a murder mystery giving us an extremely entertaining read.

The characters are engaging and all have their idiosyncrasies that cozy readers love. I enjoyed traveling with them from North Carolina to Georgia and home to Alabama. Never a direct route, there was always a monkey wrench or two thrown in along the way. The challenges were interesting and the “seat of the pants” method of producing the show probably happens more often than television viewers realize.

Whether writing at J.J. Cook or their pseudonyms you can’t go wrong reading anything they write. They have something for everyone to love and always have a new book right around the corner. Happy Reading!

a perfect escape

5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

GIVEAWAY

Thanks to the people at Penguin I have 2 copies to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Following the new Google+ Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book Fan Page will earn you 3 Bonus Entries.

Leave a comment for J.J. Cook for 5 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 18, 2015 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Jan 302015
 

 

great escape tour banner large kelly's koffee shop640It’s my turn today on the Kelly’s Koffee Shop Great Escapes Book Tour!

KKSfront
Kelly’s Koffee Shop
(A Cedar Bay Cozy Mystery Book 1)

First in Series
Setting: Oregon
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (November 8, 2014)
Paperback: 152 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1503015630
E-Book ASIN: B00PE26G7U
goodreads-badge-add-plus

 

Kelly pulled into the harbor parking lot next to the pier and noticed that Amber’s car wasn’t in its usual place and there was no sign of her. She was usually standing at the door of Kelly’s Koffee Shop, waiting for Kelly to open up. Wonder what that’s all about, she thought. The local residents of Cedar Bay come to Kelly’s Koffee Shop for breakfast, lunch, and lots of gossip. Kelly serves it all up as she works to solve the murder of the high school Homecoming Queen. The townspeople can’t believe what has happened in their sleepy little Oregon seaside town. She identifies five prime suspects, but which one did it? Follow Kelly, her boxer dog, Rebel, and her boyfriend, Mike, the county sheriff, as they try to determine who the killer is in a murder that’s shocked the town.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Kelly’s Koffee Shop sounds like quite a gathering spot. Cedar Bay seems beautiful and like a place I would love to visit.

I like Kelly, she seems about my age with grown children and she has a wonderful canine companion too. She has a very close relationship with a certain law officer who willingly shares way too much information with her. They make a good team, but that would get him in trouble in a bigger town. They seem to work together with some assistance from Kelly’s pooch to solve the case.

This is a very quick read but I think the conclusion was a bit forced and rushed. I think I am used to reading cozies that are twice as long that include a little more investigating and chasing suspects and clues. There were plenty of suspects and I would have liked a bit more information and detail about them. Part of the fun is the following the clues and eliminating the suspects.

I did enjoy the story and look forward to reading more about Kelly and the folks of Cedar Bay. Murder at Jade Cove is already downloaded to my Kindle and White Cloud Retreat has just been released.

still at the beach but not as tranquil3 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent


cropped-bg1About This Author

Dianne lives in Huntington Beach, California with her husband Tom, a former California State Senator, and is a frequent contributor to the Huffington Post.

Author Links

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/110409099727295696245/posts
Facebook Author Page: http://www.facebook.com/#!/AuthorDianneHarman
Contributor: Huffington Post
Amazon: http://ow.ly/s6pN5 
Smashwords: http://ow.ly/u4Fb2
 Web Site http://www.DianneHarman.com
Blog: http://dianneharman.com/blog/
Twitter: @DianneDHarman

GIVEAWAYI have 1 e-copy to giveaway!!

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 6, 2015 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Jan 272015
 

special guest blue

Melissa-Bourbon-Ramirez-_2

Aprons!
by Melissa Bourbon

I’ve learned so much about aprons in the past year. They are the central sewing theme in A Seamless Murder, and I loved finding out more about this fantastic American tradition.

I’ve become fascinated with aprons, in fact. I have about 4 hanging from hooks in my kitchen now, my daughter almost always wears one when she helps me cook, my sons love to don them and joke around in the kitchen, and I have my favorites that I wear—for special occasions and for everyday use.

SEAMLESS MURDERThere’s something about wearing an apron that changes the way I feel at that moment. I think it’s the same for a great piece of clothing, but with an apron, you can easily change your mood or a facet of your personality for a period of time. Wearing certain aprons in my collection make me smile. Others make me feel like a more serious cook. And still others can take the fun out of cooking and make it feel like more of a chore.

One thing I love about writing is that I get to explore subjects that are interesting to me. I get to immerse myself in new topics. And my interests often guide the direction or themes of my books. This time around it was aprons.

I’d love to hear about your relationship with aprons. Do you wear them? Love them? Have no use for them? As I said, I love them, so I’m really curious to hear what others think of them.

**

On another note, my mom, a masterful sewist, made a bunch of aprons for me as I wrote A Seamless Murder. They don’t all correspond to the book’s aprons, but a few are pretty close. And I’m giving some of them away via my newsletter! I’m so excited, because I know there are other apron lovers out there.

If you’re an apron-lover… or if you don’t know your personal thoughts about aprons but are curious to find out, join my newsletter and you can enter to win!

Happy reading!

Melissa

Sign up for Melissa’s newsletter

To find out more about Melissa Bourbon and her books visit her webpage here.

SEAMLESS MURDERA Seamless Murder:
A Magical Dressmaking Mystery

Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
Setting: Texas
An Obsidian Mystery (January 6, 2015)
Published by The Penguin Group
Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0451417213
E-Book ASIN: B00KWG9JP4
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With a needle and thread, Harlow Jane Cassidy is capable of magic. Her neighbors in Bliss, Texas, on the other hand, are capable of murder….

Any garment Harlow stitches together has the power to grant the deepest desire of whomever wears it. So when she’s asked to sew aprons for a local women’s group, Harlow must get to know each member. First up is Delta Lee Mobley, who doesn’t care much for Harlow’s family—or anyone else in Bliss, for that matter. Granting Delta’s greatest wish could only lead to trouble….

But trouble finds Delta all the same. The day after Harlow delivers her apron, Delta’s body is discovered in the cemetery. It seems one of the townsfolk harbored ill will toward one of their own. Harlow’s sleuthing skills are a cut above the rest, and with a few magical tricks up her sleeve, she is determined to cuff this killer once and for all.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Making aprons for a woman’s group should be an easy task for most seamstresses but because of Harlow Jane Cassidy’s magical gift of granting the wearer’s deepest desire she needs to really get to know her customers. Delta Mobley is the head of the group and also Harlow’s next door neighbor but sharing a property line doesn’t mean you know or even like the people next door. There has been a little feud going on between the Cassidy and Mobley families for years, maybe making Delta an apron will be the first step to the families being more neighborly.

The apron gets made but before any real change between the families can happen Delta’s body is found in an open grave in the local cemetery. Harlow quickly finds out her family is not the only one who had problems with Delta. The suspects soon become many including her own family and the ladies in the woman’s group. Harlow believes by using a little bit of magic and asking the right questions she may be able to stitch together the clues and catch the killer before anyone else life is cut short.

These characters never fail to draw me into their story and I always learn a little something too. In this installment a local woman’s group is planning a progressive dinner when each course is served at a different member’s home. I have been to a couple of these events and they were fun and very interesting. In my case I always met new people and some became good friends. In this case the ladies in the group and their husbands all know each other and split up into comfortable groups.  That left Harlow and Will as the outsiders of the group and they were focused more on finding a killer rather than making friends. They also planned to do a little snooping so one had to cover for the other.  Like I said these events can be interesting.

Meeting all these new characters was entertaining. I hope some of them return in future stories. But my favorites are still Harlow, her mother whose gift makes gardens bloom and grass grow, her goat whispering grandmother and my most favorite of all Meemaw, who has her own special gift of getting just what she wants. Meemaw sets us up with one heck of a cliffhanger!

The author was able to show us Delta was a very complex woman and a woman that had changed of late. She did have a unique way of communicating with her family. Some people hold things in and bottle them up, some vent things very well. Delta form of communicating was sweet sometimes but left me thinking that if she was a “venter” or a woman that voiced her opinions wrong or right she may not have died.

Melissa Bourbon sews together another wonderful mystery that keeps us on pins and needles until all the clues are pieced together. A little sewing mixed with a little sleuthing always makes for happy reading.

a perfect escape5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

GIVEAWAY

Thanks to the people at Penguin I have 2 copies to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Following the new Google+ Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book Fan Page will earn you 3 Bonus Entries.

Leave a comment for Melissa for 5 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 10, 2015 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Jan 222015
 

kill 'em with cayenneKill ‘Em with Cayenne: A Spice Shop Mystery (Spice Shop Mystery Series)
2nd in Series
Cozy Mystery
Setting: Georgia
Published by Minotaur Books (December 16, 2014)
Hardcover: 320 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1250011053
E-Book ASIN: B00KK433QO

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Kill ‘Em with Cayenne, a brand new finger-lickin’ good mystery from Gail Oust, featuring small-town Georgia spice shop owner Piper Prescott, a smart and spunky amateur sleuth.

Spices are flying off the shelves of Spice It Up!, and Piper Prescott couldn’t be happier. It’s that time of year again—time for the annual Brandywine Creek Barbecue Festival. Soon contestants and BBQ aficionados from all over the Southeast will converge on the town. Many of Brandywine Creek’s citizens plan to participate in the week-long festivities and are busily concocting savory rubs and sassy sauces. Among the locals vying for the grand prize are Becca Dapkins and Maybelle Humphries. The women have been arch enemies ever since Buzz Oliver dumped Maybelle after a thirteen-year courtship and started seeing Becca.

When Becca’s body is found near one of the festival booths, bludgeoned by a brisket, Maybelle becomes one of Chief Wyatt McBride’s top suspects. Determined to help clear her friend’s name, Piper begins her own investigation, much to McBride’s consternation. As the festival draws closer, will Piper and Reba Mae be able to find the real killer and clear Maybelle’s name? Will Piper make it to the annual shag contest with Doug Winters, the mild-mannered vet she’s been seeing? And, who will win the BBQ cook-off?

 

Dollycas’s Thoughts

The annual Brandywine Creek Barbecue Festival takes a significant turn when Barbara Quinlan nee Bunker comes home to visit and introduces herself as “Barbie-Q” and tells everyone she is there to film the festival for her new television shoe Some Like It Hot. That doesn’t sit well with Becca Dapkins at all. Becca and Barbie have a past and it wasn’t good. In fact Becca’s relationship with many residents of Brandywine Creek isn’t good. When Becca’s body is found the suspects should be many but Piper’s friend, Maybelle Humphries, becomes the prime suspect. This puts Piper hot to start investigating with an assist of Reba Mae. Add this to all the other festival fun and things get really spicy!

Gail Oust second Spice Shop Mystery marks the return of the characters we liked from the first book. She also introduces us to some very interesting characters in town for the Barbecue Festival especially Miss Barbie-Q. Piper’s dog, Casey, led Piper to the discover Becca’s body, but I don’t think he liked the references to becoming a cadaver dog :)

The plot of the mystery is very creative and something I wasn’t expecting was the missing ingredient that brings the whole murder recipe together.

I wish the romance between Piper and local vet Doug had a little more heat. I think she needs to explore the options she may have with Police Chief MacBride.

I am already looking forward to the next Spice Shop Mystery!

just you and a friend4 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About This Author

Gail Oust is often accused of flunking retirement. While working as a nurse/vascular technologist, she penned nine historical romances under the pseudonym of Elizabeth Turner. It wasn’t until she and her husband retired to South Carolina that inspiration struck for a mystery. Hearing the words “maybe it’s a dead body” while golfing fired her imagination for writing a cozy. Ever since then, she spends more time on a computer than at a golf course. Author of the Bunco Babe mysteries, she’s currently working on a new Spice Shop mystery series.

Author Links:  www.gailoust.com, Goodreads

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”