Mar 152017
 


I am delighted to have Janet stop by today!
Her new book Murder at the Fortune Teller’s Table was released yesterday!

 

Kelly Jackson Mystery Series

by Janet Finsilver

 

When I read, not only do I look for a good story, I like to learn something new along the way. As a result of that, I’ve tried to put interesting facts into each of my books. I’ve researched some of the unique aspects of Mendocino, California, which my fictitious town of Redwood Cove is based on. Antique silver objects, Greek fortune telling, and sinker logs are a few of the areas I’ve sprinkled into my books. Dogs with special abilities are part of the series. I’d like to share some of this information with you in this post.

Years ago I read an article about a standard poodle trained to detect cancer in people. I found it fascinating. Since then numerous studies have been done. Dogs can find a variety of cancers. Their rate of success varies among the reports. Some research has shown up to 98% accuracy. This led to Fred, the basset hound in Murder at Redwood Cove.

My awareness for anything unusual regarding dogs was raised. I began seeing articles on a multitude of abilities. In Murder at the Mansion I introduced Jack and Jill, two canines trained to find bed bugs and termites. They extend their abilities to dry rot by the end of the book. Dogs are great for these tasks. Their acute sense of smell can lead them to hard-to-find bedbugs and prevent places being torn apart unnecessarily when searching for termites and dry rot. They are being used in England in many of the old mansions.

Princess, a tan Chihuahua, debuted in Murder at the Fortune Teller’s Table. She’s a feisty retired hearing assistance dog that sports jeweled collars. Princess began to be a little hard of hearing and was replaced by a black Chihuahua named Sergeant. It was fun learning about the different ways they help their owners.

That book also has a Post Traumatic Stress Disorder dog. You will often see them being referred to as PTSD dogs. I chose a Bernese Mountain Dog for that role. This was one of the most unusual areas I researched. They are trained to do whatever their owner needs which varies from person to person. They might circle around the person to keep crowds at a distance or go into a home to be sure no one is hiding in the building. There’s even a dog phone they can be taught to use in certain situations. It sits on the floor, has a large button for the dog to hit, and dials a number that has been programmed into it.

I mentioned earlier that Mendocino itself has interesting aspects to it. The town and surrounding land has been designated as the Mendocino and Headlands Historic District. Many of the buildings are from the 1800s. The Mendocino Presbyterian Church dedicated on July 5, 1868, is still in use. There are strict rules that need to be adhered to when building or remodeling so the town keeps its “Old West” charm.

I’m currently working on my fourth book tentatively titled Murder at the Mushroom Festival. Mushroom hunting is big in the Mendocino region. I’ve taken two classes and now know more about fungi than I thought would ever happen in my lifetime!

Sinker logs are unique to the area and are also part of the fourth book. These are old-growth redwood logs cut down in the 1800s that remained in the river bed. People began harvesting them when they realized how valuable they were because of their grain and colors. A halt was put to collecting them when authorities became concerned about damaging the habitat.

Learning about antique silver objects led me to learn about apostle spoons. In Murder at the Mansion, my protagonist finds twelve well-crafted silver spoons with intricate designs. They were used as christening presents, and the spoon represented the baby’s apostle. She also finds an object to resembling a fish, with fins on one side and a split tail. It’s a knitting sheath. A needle was put in it, allowing the woman’s right hand to be free to handle the yarn. It helped her to work more quickly and efficiently, especially when walking.

Greek fortune telling in Murder at the Fortune Teller’s Table involves reading the patterns in the grounds of Turkish coffee to predict the future. It’s a very ancient practice. Some people call it tasseography. A special copper pot with a long, triangular-shaped handle called a briki is used to prepare the coffee. There are a number of steps performed for the reading including putting the saucer on the cup, swirling the coffee in it three times, and flipping it over.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this glimpse at pieces of my Kelly Jackson mystery series!

~Janet


Murder at the Fortune Teller’s Table
(A Kelly Jackson Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Setting – California
Kensington Publishing Corporation/Lyrical Underground (March 14, 2017)
Paperback 190 Pages
ISBN-13: 978-1616509347
Kindle ASIN: B01HA435CI

 
 
 
 

Poisons, prophecies—and a peculiar past . . .

When a local woman begins searching for a couple she hasn’t seen since the 1960s, Redwood Cove Bed and Breakfast manager Kelly Jackson and the crime-solving group, the “Silver Sentinels,” are quick to help out. They’re also quick to guess that they’re in over their heads after the woman is found dead beside the body of a Greek fortune teller—and a fellow Sentinel gets attacked. As Kelly juggles work and her responsibilities at a food and wine festival in town, she and her sleuthing posse must confront a killer obsessed with old secrets . . . and solve a murder mystery more than fifty years in the making . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I have been looking forward to this book since finishing up the last one. This time Kelly and the Silver Sentinels start out tracking down a couple people that were in the area back in the 60’s but when their “client” is found dead along with a local fortune teller they are quickly involved to prove the two woman have been murdered. It puts their sleuthing skills to the test and a couple of them in danger too.

This ensemble cast led but Kelly Jackson, manager of the Redwood Cove B&B, is just fabulous. Their canine companions are icing the cake. Diverse and genuine they all mesh together using their strengths to their advantage to not only solve mysteries but to keep each other safe. I like that they stay in touch and work together with the local police. Their past experience shows they can trust each other and it is a little twist to the normal cozy where the protags investigate without the consent of the authorities. The new characters are very interesting too.

This plot is complicated because there are a lot of suspects and everyone seems to be hiding something. A multitude of twists and a surprising ending had me positively glued to the pages.

Ms. Finsilver adds a touch of romance to this story, is Kelly headed for a new relationship?

I have enjoyed all three stories in this series and I am excited for number four. All can be read on their own but I suggest starting at the beginning.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

Janet Finsilver is the USA TODAY best-selling author of the Kelly Jackson mystery series. She worked in education for many years as a teacher, a program administrator, and a workshop presenter. Janet majored in English and earned a Master’s Degree in Education. She loves animals and has two dogs–Kylie and Ellie. Janet has ridden western style since she was a child and was a member of the National Ski Patrol. One of the highlights of her life was touching whales in the San Ignacio Lagoon. MURDER AT REDWOOD COVE, her debut mystery, was released on October 13, 2015. Her second book, MURDER AT THE MANSION, was released on June 7, 2016.

Author Links

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Find out more about Janet Finsilver and her books on her webpage here.

GIVEAWAY
The author is giving away 1 e-book copy of Murder at the Fortune Teller’s Table!

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.

Leave a comment for Janet 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 29, 2017 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.”

Jun 212016
 

special guest blue

I am so happy to welcome Janet Finsilver to Escape With Dollycas today! 

Janet Finsilver

Hi Everyone,
I am sharing an excerpt from my new book, Murder at the Mansion today!

 

I could almost hear my red hair beginning to curl in the foggy air as I walked outside. I got in the middle bench seat and placed the hors d’oeuvres on my lap.

Redwood Heights was only a short distance from the Redwood Cove Bed-and-Breakfast. A block from the inn, we took a left turn down a hill and went around a corner, and there it was.

I gasped. The building sat nestled among giant redwoods. It was two stories with row after row of windows interspersed with French doors leading to balconies protected by black wrought-iron railings. A master craftsman had twisted them into intricate twirls and patterns, same as the ones encircling the top of the building. The mansion reminded me of a majestic English queen, the towering trees her staff-in-waiting, her billowing skirts the outcropping of buildings spreading to either side, her crown the widow’s walk on top.

murder at the mansionUSA TODAY_ebookThis answered one question—what Daniel and Helen had meant when they said this property was different. It definitely wasn’t like any other Resorts International properties I knew. The ones I’d experienced and the ones I’d read about had a more casual air to them.

We pulled into the back and unloaded. Helen busied herself in the kitchen, heating the appetizers.

“I get them ready, then the staff minds them and adds as necessary to the hot trays in the parlor,” she explained.

“The guest area is this way.” Daniel pointed to a hallway.

We walked into a room filled with guests and over to the sideboard holding the evening’s offerings.

Large crystal chandeliers lit the room. Tables were covered with white brocade tablecloths. A stack of fine china plates sat next to an array of artisan cheeses and several wine choices.

I looked around the room. Lustrous pearls rested on cashmere sweaters. The diamond on one woman’s hand competed in size with the crystal finial hanging from the center of the chandelier. The gentle orchestral strains of “Moon River” accompanied the conversation in the room.

These weren’t the fleece-and-denim Redwood Cove visitors I had gotten to know. I straightened my jacket and ran my hand through my fog-frizzed hair.

A young woman offered some of Helen’s appetizers to a guest. As she reached for one, a shrill scream ripped through the room, shattering the tranquil moment.

~Janet

murder at the mansionUSA TODAY_ebook

Murder at the Mansion
(A Kelly Jackson Mystery)

Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – California
Lyrical Underground (June 7, 2016)
Paperback: 190 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1616509323
E-Book ASIN: B015MA6EDO
goodreads-badge-add-plus

 

 

Fortunes, fineries, and foul play . . .

It’s whale-watching season in Redwood Cove, and B&B manager Kelly Jackson’s battening down the hatches for the tourist rush at Redwood Heights—a Victorian-style estate owned by her boss. And due to recent jewelry thefts, her duties include keeping track of the many dust-covered artifacts spread throughout the property. But when Kelly finds Sylvia Porter’s lifeless body, menial tasks don’t seem so terrible. Enlisting the help of a ragtag group of brainy retirees, aka the “Silver Sentinels,” Kelly’s on the hunt for clues hidden behind the mansion’s glamorous façade. . .and for a killer who may want to make history of her next!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Kelly Jackson is the new manager at the Redwood Cove B&B and while some renovations are being made she is helping out another Resorts International estate, Redwood Heights. The manager there is a little prickly about Kelly taking an inventory of the place but Kelly is making the best of the situation. When she finds one of the guests Sylvia Porter, dead the inventory goes on hold. She knows she will need the Silver Sentinels help to find the killer.

I reviewed the first book in the series, Murder at Redwood Cove, last Friday. It was such a joy to read these stories back to back.

The staff at the Redwood Cove B&B were all helping out at Redwood Heights for the Whale Frolic event. The Silver Sentinels, Ivan, Rudy, Gertie, Mary, and the Professor used the conference room at Redwood Cove as their meeting place.  Scott Thompson, another employee of Resort International also makes a return. So all the characters I liked in the first book were back. New characters were introduced and unfortunately most of them became suspects. I was happy to see Scott return and enjoyed the romantic tingles between him and Kelly. I almost forgot the mention 2 more dogs, beagles, Jack and Jill, join the cast. They have a very interesting talent.

There are 2 mysteries in the story. Along with the murder guests at Redwood Heights have reported pieces of jewelry missing. Both take several twists. One is filled with a little espionage, a bit of intriguing history, family secrets and a deep hatred is revealed. The senior citizens are like dogs with bones trying to figure who would want Sylvia Porter dead and why. Kelly makes some interesting discoveries that again put her in harm’s way. It was a lot of fun following right along with all the clues. The other mystery has a very clever conclusion.

Again, these characters just shined.  The author has really fleshed them out and made them real and vital.

I am really excited about this series. I will be anxiously awaiting the next installment!

.

perfect 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

About The Author

Janet Finsilver is the USA TODAY best-selling author of the Kelly Jackson mystery series. She worked in education for many years as a teacher, a program administrator, and a workshop presenter. Janet majored in English and earned a Master’s Degree in Education. She loves animals and has two dogs—Kylie and Ellie. Janet has ridden western style since she was a child and was a member of the National Ski Patrol. One of the highlights of her life was touching whales in the San Ignacio Lagoon. Murder at Redwood Cove, her debut mystery, was released on October 13, 2015. Her second book, Murder at the Mansion, is now out.

Website    Blog     Facebook Author Fan Page      Twitter    Pinterest    Goodreads 


Click on covers to order from Amazon.

Murder at the Mansion – Barnes & Noble Nook      Google Play        Kobo        Apple iTunes       Kensington Publishing

Murder at Redwood Cove – Nook     Google Play        Kobo       Apple iTunes       Kensington Publishing

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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.”

Jun 172016
 

9WbGnJTR
On Flashback Fridays I will share with you the books I missed when they were first
released that have been screaming at me from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.

murder at redwood cave
Murder at Redwood Cove
(A Kelly Jackson Mystery)

Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – California
Lyrical Press (October 13, 2015)
Paperback: 198 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1616509309
E-Book Print Length: 200 pages
ASIN: B00TNBLYD4
goodreads-badge-add-plus

 

 

Bed, breakfast…and a body!

If it weren’t for the fact that she’s replacing a dead man, Kelly Jackson would love her new job managing the Redwood Cove Bed and Breakfast on the coast of Northern California. But Bob Phillips did plunge off the cliff to his death…and Kelly’s starting to think it may not have been an accident. Bob’s retired friends—The “Silver Sentinels”—are also on the case, especially when Kelly is attacked…and another body turns up. Kelly has her hands full with overseeing the B&B’s annual Taste of Chocolate and Wine Festival, but she’s also closing in on the killer…who’s ready to send Kelly on her own permanent vacation…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Kelly Jackson is an executive administrator of Resorts International. That means when needed she travels to a resort property to troubleshoot the problem and fill in where necessary.  She is sent to the Redwood Cove Bed and Breakfast in Northern California when the manager is found dead at the bottom of a cliff. The police have determined that it was an accident but The “Silver Sentinels” do not agree. This group of senior citizens think their friend Bob was murdered. They draw Kelly into their confidence and she wonders if they are right. When she is attacked, she knows that wasn’t an accident, so maybe Bob’s fall wasn’t either. So in addition to stepping into Bob’s shoes at the B&B she finds herself nosing around to find his killer.

Kelly Jackson is a very engaging character. Her boss believes all the employees at all their resorts are family. That is just how Kelly treats everyone she meets at Redwood Cove B&B. From Helen, the cook, and her son Tommy, that leave in a small guest house on the property, to Daniel, the handyman along with his daughter Allie, and all the wonderful “Silver Sentinels”, she treats them all as genuine friends. I liked them all too!

I loved Fred, Tommy’s adorable basset hound. There is a heartwarming back story on how they came together.

The setting is absolutely gorgeous and Kelly has a wonderful view from her room. Even the morning fog sounds absolutely delightful.

It seems that Bob Phillips was an extraordinary man with a big heart. He was very eco-conscious and believed in protecting all parts of the environment. Could this have gotten him killed? The story takes several twists as Kelly tries to eliminate suspects. This twists were very well written. The ending was full of suspense and a complete surprise.

The characters are what really stand out to me in this story. From youngsters to oldsters they are an amazing group. I want to pack my bags and head for the Redwood Cove Bed and Breakfast and meet up with them today. There should be any more trouble there right?? Well, I will be starting the next book in the series right away. I will keep you posted!

perfect 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Find out more about Janet Finsilver and her books on her webpage here.

GIVEAWAY
I am giving away 1 e-book copy of Murder at Redwood Cove
Book will be sent direct from Amazon.

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.

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 July 1, 2016 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.”

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