Nov 162017
 

Cremains of the Day (A Tallie Graver Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Kensington (October 31, 2017)
Mass Market Paperback: 293 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1496712219
Kindle ASIN: B01N4VUGWR

 

 

There’s no reverse on the hearse . . .

For Tallulah Graver, marrying wealthy Waldo Phillips seemed like the best way out of the family business, the Graver Funeral Home. But when her marriage falls apart and Tallie is left with next to nothing, she turns to cleaning houses to make ends meet. As humbling as it is to tidy the mansions of the snobby socialites she used to call friends, at least she doesn’t have to be around dead bodies. Until . . .

She discovers one of her employers lying in a closet with a knife sticking out of her chest. This unpleasant shock seems to be part of a web of weird experiences: Tallie’s friend Gina’s shop is broken into, her ex is stun-gunned where it hurts the most, and now she’s receiving flowers from the dead woman. Granted the deliveryman is handsome, but seriously, that’s enough to cast a pall over anyone’s day. Now Tallie needs to dig deep to clean up this mess—before she finds herself in a grave situation.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

The Graver family business is funerals, how appropriate, but Tallulah Graver wanted out so she married Waldo Phillips III. While staying married to him kept her in a nice lifestyle and away from dead people she could stand Waldo one more minute and left him with almost everything and moved into the apartment over her family’s funeral home. To survive on her own she works there part time and now cleans houses like the one she used to live in. That is until she finds one of her clients stabbed to death. Add to that she finds her ex tasered behind her friend Gina’s shop and there is a flower delivery man following her everywhere. Tallie has not had a good week. The bumbling police have her at the top of their suspect list for both Waldo’s attack and the murder. The only way to prove them wrong is sweep the clues together herself and hand them to the police on a silver platter or in an open casket, whichever works best.

Misty Simon has given readers a great mystery to start off this series. Tallulah Graver (Tallie) is a strong protagonist. She does her best to shake off her old life and get on with her new one. How she ever stayed with that jerk of a husband as long as she did is beyond me. He deserved to be tasered or worse. His actions put Tallie in a very precarious situation. A first class jackass! Yes, there is a bit of course language in the book and considering where Waldo was tasered an adult theme. It didn’t bother me a bit because the language fits the situations and the other added some timeless humor.

The primary and secondary characters were well written and there is plenty of room for growth in the main characters. The dialogue was realistic and engaging. The flower delivery man was such a clever twist to the story and I will not say more because I do not want to ruin the story for you. I really liked it.

The book sets a nice pace and the mystery unfolds very nicely with some exciting twists. There were several suspects and some very interesting discoveries. I was very entertained by the way it all played out.

For the first book in the series I was very impressed. I could easily picture the funeral home and Tallie’s apartment as well as the mansion where the murder took place. I hope to see more development in the setting, getting to know the town and more of its residents better in future installments. The ending left me very happy and looking forward to the next book in the series. Grounds of Remorse is “coming soon” according to the final page of my e-copy.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

Laughter and Love are two main components of any story I write. Laughter really is the best medicine and my heroines always figure that out at some point, though perhaps some later than others. I live in Central Pennsylvania with my family and two rambunctious dogs in a house that is about to celebrate its two hundredth birthday. You can find Misty Simon on Facebook here.

 


Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
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Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
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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.”

Nov 152017
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!

I am excited to have Wendy Tyson here to visit today!
Her latest book Seeds of Revenge was released yesterday!

Escape with Dollycas

By Wendy Tyson

 

One of my earliest memories as a child involved a trip to the Pennsylvania countryside. I was about three or four years old, and my parents took me and my brother to visit friends in the mountains. We drove to their farmhouse in the evening, and when we arrived it was late. I remember a collage of sensations: cold air against my skin, an endless sky, a cozy bedroom, the soft fur of their cat, and a warm bed with a thick quilt and coverlet. I can’t tell you much else about that visit beyond how it made me feel, but for some reason the experience stayed with me.

It was only recently that I realized I’d recreated some of that feeling in our new home, a chalet in Vermont’s Green Mountains. The house is tiny by today’s standards, but cozy, and the living room looks out on a deck and the mountains beyond. We keep the house cool, but I’ve dressed the beds with heavy quilts—the weight of the blankets is somehow a comfort. At night when I walk the dogs, my senses are assaulted by the scents and sounds of the surrounding woods.

In the spring, the peeper frogs chirp in an amphibian chorus, and coyotes, owls, turkeys, and bullfrogs are often heard in the summer and fall through our open windows. Winter is dead quiet, except for the wind and occasional freezing rain/sleet pelting the metal roof—but the view of the snow carpeting the countryside? Breathtaking. The biggest delight of all may be the night sky. We’re treated to a blanket of stars on clear nights, and sometimes my family and I will spend hours outside, identifying constellations and enjoying the peace.

The house is a favorite place to write. When it’s cold outside (or buggy), I pull the table in front of the window and write on my laptop, but in the summer (once the black flies are gone), I write outside, either on the deck or at a table under a tree in the woods. I prefer a view when I write. Maybe it’s the series I’m working on, but the connection to nature helps me think.

In some way I’ve created a similar retreat with my Greenhouse mysteries—Washington Acres Farm. Megan and her grandmother Bibi—along with two dogs, two goats, a barn cat, and a brood of chickens—live in the Pennsylvania countryside, in an old farmhouse, surrounded by woods. The kitchen is an amalgamation of the kitchens I grew up in, especially those of my grandmothers. It’s not modern or flashy. The cabinets are old, built by Megan’s grandfather in his workshop. There’s no island or high-end appliances. Instead, a beat-up farm table functions as workspace and an eating area. The gas stove is old but reliable, and the double farmhouse sink is often filled with fresh vegetables from the farm waiting to be simmered or stewed or steamed.

The Washington Acres farm kitchen is a place to congregate and talk. Tough discussions are had there. And often it’s the place the pieces of a mystery come together.

Megan, a military widow and former Chicago environmental lawyer, returns to the fictional town of Winsome and her grandmother’s farm when in her early thirties, at the behest of her father, who needed Megan to stay with her grandmother. But as with many homecomings, Megan’s return to Winsome is as much a salve to her own emotional wounds as it is a help to Bibi. Megan finds healing in that kitchen, in the drafty bedrooms, within the walls of the old barn, and along the forest trails.

My mother and I discussed my early childhood memory recently. She was surprised the trip made such an impression. We only stayed at the farmhouse for one night, and by the time we arrived it was late, so she and my father put my baby brother and me to bed. It was cold outside, she said, and the house was drafty and large. She didn’t recall a cat. I slept in a room with a handmade quilt, and the next morning we had pancakes in the big working kitchen.

“You may be transferring some of your experiences from your grandmothers’ houses onto that trip,” my mom suggested. “You always like to spend time with your grandparents.”

Maybe she’s right. Maybe it was the elusive nature of such an early memory that had an indelible effect on me. Or maybe it was reinforced by the trips I would take later in life. Regardless of the why, now that I’m older and have lost so many people who were dear to me, I’m grateful I could recreate that sense of cozy in my Vermont home, and equally grateful to spend time in Washington Acres with Megan and Bibi.

I hope readers enjoy it there, too.

~Wendy

Thanks for visiting Wendy, I love this post! 

Now let me tell you what I think of her new book. It is a Fantastic Escape!


Seeds of Revenge (A Greenhouse Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Henery Press (November 14, 2017)
Paperback: 288 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1635112757
Kindle ASIN: B07519T827

 

 

 

It’s time to cuddle up with a holiday whodunit. Smell the crisp pines and baking cranberries as you sip your hot apple cider. It may be the season, but the mood in Winsome is anything but jolly.

Megan Sawyer is determined to farm year-round. So much so that she braves a December snowstorm to pitch her fresh greenhouse greens to Philadelphia chefs.

And then she sees a stranger stranded on the side of the road.

But this woman is no stranger to Winsome. It’s Becca Fox. A love chemist (you read that right). She’s headed to her aunt’s house to sell her love potions at holiday events.

Or so Becca thinks.

Her sneaky aunt only invited Becca home to reunite her with her estranged father. It sounds noble and kind-hearted, until the man ends up dead.

Megan soon finds herself in the middle. She realizes Becca’s not the only one getting iced over. Megan’s own aunt, the famous mystery author, is dragged into the drama. Her novels implicate her and she’s in trouble.

Now it’s personal. Our Megan must follow a cryptic trail of literary clues, all while sifting through the victim’s sordid past. She gets closer to the truth as the murderer gets closer to her.

How’s that for a ho ho ho? Don’t let your fresh apple crisp burn in the oven because you’re lost in this holiday homicide.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

The “seeds of revenge” are planted deep within this mystery. Megan Sawyer, being the good person she is rescues a stranded motorist in the middle of a blizzard. She delivers Becca Fox right to her aunt’s door. Becca plans to sell her “love potions” at her aunt’s nursery over the holidays. Things are frosty upon her arrival as she meets her father, the man she holds responsible for her mother’s death, on her aunt’s front porch. Becca is upset about the collusion between the two. Megan finds herself in icy straights when the man is found dead. Not only is Becca a suspect but in a remarkable twist so is her own aunt, the famous mystery author. Megan has no choice but the dig in to the investigation putting herself on the killer’s hit list. It doesn’t matter if she has been naughty or nice, this could be her last Christmas in Winsome.

I have heard of love potions including the famous Love Potion #9, but I had never heard of a Love Chemist. Becca Fox has an interesting little business but she has hasn’t had it easy since her mother died. She believes her father killed her mother and she has not had anything to do with him since. She has a brother but he does not hold the same beliefs about their father. Megan is drawn to her and so was I. Becca is a complicated character and Ms. Tyson has really brought her to life in this story.

Bibi, Megan’s grandmother, reminds me so much of my own grandmother and mother. A hard working woman determined to get to the truth no matter what. She is also one to not hold her tongue. She will tell you her opinions and thoughts on virtually any subject as woman of that generation tends to do. She warms my heart.

I also love Scottish vet, Daniel “Denver” Finn and the direction of his relationship with Megan. It is fun to see this relationship grow.

The pacing of this book is different. I felt the story was unfolding at a comfortable pace, the clues were being uncovered and I was right there with Megan the entire way, engaged and captivated. The ending was a total surprise. Then I looked up and realized I had read the entire book in one sitting and faster than I had read a book in a very long time. Truly is was a fast pace story but not once did anything feel rushed or glossed over. The author delivered a truly fantastic read.  I never once looked for a stopping place or even thought about putting the book down.

The characters are well defined and the mystery was exceptional. A cozy mystery with a bit of an edge and I loved it!! It was a trip to Paradise, a chilly escape in the winter but Paradise nonetheless.

You will want to start this series from the beginning and get to know the characters from the start. I am anxiously awaiting and excited for my next trip to Winsome.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

wendy

About The Author

Wendy Tyson is an author, lawyer and former therapist whose background has inspired her mysteries and thrillers. Wendy’s latest novel, DYING BRAND, the third Allison Campbell mystery, was released in May 2015. The first Campbell novel, KILLER IMAGE, was named a best mystery for book clubs in 2014 by Examiner.com. Wendy is also the author of The Greenhouse Mystery Series, the first, A MUDDIED MURDER, was released last year, Bitter Harvest was released today. Wendy and her husband are passionate organic gardeners. They live with their three boys and three dogs on a micro-farm just outside of Philadelphia.

 

Author Links

Author website    Facebook     Goodreads 

Twitter: @WendyTyson    Pinterest: Greenhouse Mystery Series


Also by Wendy Tyson

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Oct 112017
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!! 

I am very excited to welcome Bethany Blake to Escape With Dollycas!

Hi Everyone,

Ever since I was a child, I’ve loved three things: pets, books and cozy stuff.

For my 10-year-old self, the perfect day was rainy or snowy, just right for creating a blanket tent in the attic and retreating with a Nancy Drew novel and my dachshund, Greta.

Some things never change. As an adult, my house is filled with animals and books, and I recently traded my master bedroom for my daughter’s smaller room, even though I have to smoosh all my clothes into one tiny closet, while she gained a walk-in for her wardrobe.

Why did I make what seems like such a bad bargain?

Because small spaces are awesome – and my new room has a secluded alcove that I’m transforming into the adult version of that blanket tent.

My addiction to the warm and fuzzy feeling you get from being in the perfect, snug spot with your furry friends and your favorite stuff is why I started reading, and ultimately writing, cozy mysteries. I dreamed of creating a town filled with charming shops, cute cafés, and quirky characters. I suppose, when I set out to write the first Lucky Paws Petsitting Mystery – Death by Chocolate Lab – I was conjuring up a vacation spot for my imagination.

If you open my books and “visit” Sylvan Creek – the pet-friendly setting for the Lucky Paws stories – you’ll find yourself spending time at Winding Hill, a lovely, restored 1800s farmhouse, complete with a tiny caretaker’s cottage. You’ll also visit Espresso Pronto, purveyor of hot coffee and homemade biscotti. And, while the locals crack crabs at the Lakeside – a dive bar on a rickety pier in Lake Wallapawakee – there’s fine dining at the Wolf Hollow Mill, a Revolutionary-War-era building with two fireplaces and a working mill wheel that spins against a stone wall.

The second book in the series, Dial Meow for Murder, is set during one of my favorite times of year: Halloween. You can probably guess that there will be autumn leaves, pumpkins, chilly nights spent by blazing fires, and maybe even a costumed pet parade through town.

 

Moxie’s Apartment

Lewisburg Hotel

 

 

The funny thing is, the “escape” I created is actually based upon my hometown of Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. I used to live in the Victorian house that is the setting for Moxie Bloom’s garret apartment. The fictional pet boutique, Fetch!, is based upon a real shop. And the haunted mansion in Dial Meow is modeled after a spooky, hilltop estate called the Slifer House.

Slifer House

If you’re a fan of all things cozy, I hope you’ll join me in Sylvan Creek as pet sitter and amateur sleuth Daphne Templeton tries to solve a mystery in the mansion with the help of her sidekick, a taciturn basset hound named Socrates. (Daphne will also be navigating an increasingly complicated relationship with handsome, enigmatic Detective Jonathan Black.) So grab a copy of the book, put on your favorite toasty warm socks and pj’s, and curl up in your comfiest chair with your furry friend. We’re never too old to recreate that blanket tent we loved when we were 10 years old, right?

Happy fall, everyone!

~Bethany

Thank you Bethany for stopping by today! 

 


Dial Meow for Murder (Lucky Paws Petsitting Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Kensington (September 26, 2017)
Mass Market Paperback: 342 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1496707406
Kindle ASIN: B01MR1SVWX

 

 

Even an experienced pet sitter like Daphne Templeton can be fooled by animal behavior: how can an adorably tiny fuzz ball named Tinkleston be capable of sudden flying leaps with cat claws bared? But human behavior remains even more mysterious, especially when Tinkleston’s owner is murdered on the night of a gala fundraiser for Fur-ever Friends Pet Rescue.

Accompanied by her unflappable basset hound, Socrates, Daphne plans to take charge of Tinks the Terror and leave the crime-solving to handsome detective Jonathan Black. But while luring the prickly Persian out of hiding, she uncovers clues that might take suspicion off her own mother. Maeve Templeton already has a reputation as a killer—in real estate. How far would she go to bag Sylvan Creek’s most coveted property, the Flynt Mansion?

To expose the truth, Daphne finds herself donning a deranged clown costume on an autumnal adventure that might just be crazy enough to work—if it doesn’t get her killed.

Includes recipes for homemade pet treats!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Daphne Templeton arrives at Flynt Mansion just a little late to set up for the Fur-ever Friends Pet Rescue fundraiser but she and Socrates look darn good in their costumes. Wait, why isn’t anyone else wearing costumes? Daphne is going to kill  her sister, Piper, okay not actually kill her but scream at her maybe.

Some screaming does occur and there is a dead body, but it is not Piper. It is Lillian Flynt, owner of the mansion where the fundraiser is taking place. It is also a property their mother, Maeve, is trying to sell and she has a client willing the pay the huge asking price. Will the owner’s death halt the sale? Who killed the Lillian Flynt? The only witness appears to be a Persian cat named Tinkleston, and he is the crankiest cat Daphne has ever met. He definitely is not going to help Detective Jonathan Black find a killer. Heck! the detective even puts Maeve on the list of suspects. Daphne tries to stay out of the investigation but while trying to corral the kitty she uncovers an important clue and ends up in another costume to try to catch the mansion murderer.

Daphne is an excellent protagonist. She is a strong willed woman and not shy about getting her point across with the good detective. Her relationship with her mother is another story but Daphne is getting stronger at getting her point across with her too. Maeve is a pushy woman, that is what makes her a successful realtor, but she does get on both her daughter’s nerves. I get a kick of of Daphne’s BFF and her homages to actresses in classic films too.

Ms. Blake has written a twisty mystery with surprising developments. A family connection turns the case in a whole new direction. The deceased’s will provides more questions than answers and even included Daphne. Another surprise early in the story is the potential buyer of Flynt Mansion. Plenty of action to keep us readers entertained.

The author has given readers a first class story. Her descriptive details bring it to life. The characters are well fleshed out. The pace of the story builds throughout to an exciting ending. I found everything I want to find in a cozy mystery within the pages of this book. I am really excited Pawprints & Predicaments coming in February 2018. 

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

 

 

ABOUT BETHANY BLAKE:

Bethany Blake lives in a small, quaint town in Pennsylvania with her husband and three daughters. When she’s not writing or riding horses, she’s wrangling a menagerie of furry family members that includes a nervous pit bull, a fearsome feline, a blind goldfish, and an attack cardinal named Robert.

Next time Bethany visits I want to hear all about her pets 🙂 

Website – Twitter  – Facebook

Subscribe to Bethany’s Newsletter here.

Coming February 27, 2018


Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US mailing address.

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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.”

Oct 042017
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I just love it when Joyce drops by for a visit today! 

Thanks so much to Lori for hosting me a third time and setting up the tour. Last year, I was terrified to do a tour but Lori made it painless. I didn’t hesitate to ask her to set up another one this year.

Writing the three books in the Brewing Trouble series has been a blast. I love my characters and they’ve become like family to me. I have a feeling everyone who writes a cozy series feels the same way about their imaginary friends. For those who haven’t read the series, I decided I’d introduce some of my friends to “yinz guys” as we say in Pittsburgh.

Maxine “Max” O’Hara is the protagonist in the series. She’s a brewmaster who opens a brewpub in the Lawrenceville neighborhood of the City of Pittsburgh. She’s kind-hearted and usually sees the best in people. She’s the youngest (and the only girl) in a large Irish family. Her dad is a homicide detective, and her oldest brother is a Catholic priest. The family—at least the ones who live in Pittsburgh—gather for dinner every Sunday at her parents’ house and there’s almost always a pick-up football game in the backyard.

Jake Lambert is Max’s chef and also her boyfriend. He’s an ex-professional hockey player who had to quit the game early. He is one of her older brother’s best friends so she’s known him all her life. Max has had a crush on him for almost as long. Jake loves to tease her and often ruffles her hair like he did when they were kids. He has chocolate brown hair and eyes, and a dimple. A reader once told me, “I need more of Jake in my life.”

Candy Sczypinski owns Cupcakes N’at, the bakery next door to the Allegheny Brew House. Candy looks like Mrs. Santa Claus except she wears the black and gold colors of her beloved Pittsburgh Steelers. Candy has an interesting past. She seems to know everything about everyone and Max constantly speculates how she manages to know so much. Her questions are answered in the third book, A Room With a Brew, when Candy’s background is revealed.

Kristie Brinkley is the owner and barista at Jump, Jive & Java, the coffee shop across the street. Kristie doesn’t look anything like the former supermodel with almost the same name. She resembles Halle Berry, if Ms. Berry had multi-colored hair.

Daisy Hart owns Beautiful Blooms, the flower shop. She wears her blonde hair in braids which makes her look much younger than she is.

Elmer Fairbanks. What can I say about Elmer? He’s my favorite character. He’s in his nineties and fought with the 101st Airborne in World War II. Elmer tells it like it is. He’s cranky, but belovedly so. I think he has a soft spot for Max, and vice versa. He and Candy often verbally spar, but it’s all good-natured. Most of the time anyway. I always have fun writing scenes with Elmer in them. It’s even better when I get to write Elmer and Candy insulting each other! Elmer looks out for Max. In the first book, To Brew or Not to Brew, he even offers to be her bodyguard. Max is pretty sure she doesn’t need a ninety-year-old bodyguard.

If you read the books, I hope you come to love them as much as I do. And I would love to hear what you think!

~Joyce

Thank you Joyce, I love these characters! 

 


A Room with a Brew (A Brewing Trouble Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
Setting – Pennsylvania
3rd in Series
Berkley (October 3, 2017)
Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425277713
E-Book ASIN: B01NCUHX14

It’s Oktoberfest in Pittsburgh, and brewpub owner Maxine “Max” O’Hara is prepping for a busy month at the Allegheny Brew House. To create the perfect atmosphere for the boozy celebration, Max hires an oompah band. But when one of the members from the band turns up dead, it’s up to Max to solve the murder before the festivities are ruined.

Adding to the brewing trouble, Candy, Max’s friend, is acting suspicious… Secrets from her past are fermenting under the surface, and Max must uncover the truth to prove her friend’s innocence. To make matters worse, Jake’s snooty ex-fiancée shows up in town for an art gallery opening, and she’ll be nothing but a barrel of trouble for Max.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I get so excited every time Joyce Tremel releases a new book!

Readers arrive in town just as the Allegheny Brew House is getting ready for Oktoberfest complete with an “oompah” band. But when one of the group is murdered and her friend Candy is hiding something. Max can’t help herself from doing some investigating on her own.

Max and Jake are such a great couple. She knows beer and he knows food. They are both strong and independent and devoted to each other. Especially when Jake’s ex comes to town, we see he only has eyes for Max no matter how hard Victoria tries to drag him away.

The mystery this time was very complex. There are several twists to untangle as connections are discovered among many of the suspects. Some come from the past, things Max had no idea about, and those involved hesitate to let her in on the whole story.

Living in Wisconsin we have our share of German descendants, including me. I absolutely loved that every recipe included in the back of the book and mentioned in the story are for foods that graced out table growing up and many still do today. The pretzel salad is one of my faves! Max may be from a big Irish family but the girl knows how to celebrate Oktoberfest even if she has to catch a killer first.

I love these characters. I love the mystery. And love everything about the Brew Pub theme. Ms. Tremel has created a great cozy series. I just wish the place was real because I would love to actually visit 🙂

Each story can be read on its own but I recommend you read them all for maximum enjoyment.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

JOYCE TREMEL

About The Author

Joyce Tremel was a police secretary for ten years and more than once envisioned the demise of certain co-workers, but settled on writing as a way to keep herself out of jail. She is a native Pittsburgher and lives in a suburb of the city with her husband.

Her debut mystery, To Brew Or Not To Brew was nominated for the 2015 Reviewers’ Choice award for Best Amateur Sleuth by RT Book Reviews. The second book in the series, Tangled Up In Brew was released in October 2016 and chosen as a “Top Pick” by RT Book Reviews. It was the winner of the 2016 Reviewers’ Choice Award for Best Amateur Sleuth. It was also named one of the Best Books of 2016 by Kings River Life Magazine.

Author Links –Webpage – Facebook – Twitter – GoodReads 

 

Purchase Links

Amazon   B&N  kobo   GooglePlay


Thanks to the publisher 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.

Click the Like Button at the top of this post for a Bonus Entry.

Leave a comment for the author for 5 Bonus Entries.
Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

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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.”

Mar 142017
 

Death by Chocolate Lab (Lucky Paws Petsitting Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
New Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Kensington (February 28, 2017)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1496707383
E-Book ASIN: B01GBAG2T0

Pet sitter Daphne Templeton has a soft spot for every stray and misfit who wanders into the quaint, lakeside village of Sylvan Creek. But even Daphne doesn’t like arrogant, womanizing Steve Beamus, the controversial owner of Blue Ribbon K-9 Academy. When Steve turns up dead during a dog agility trial, Daphne can think of a long list of people with motives for homicide, and so can the police. Unfortunately, at the top of the list is Daphne’s sister, Piper—Steve’s latest wronged girlfriend.

Certain that Piper is innocent, in spite of mounting evidence to the contrary, Daphne sets out to clear her sister’s name—and find Axis, Steve’s prize-winning chocolate Labrador, who went missing the night of Steve’s death. Aided by Socrates, her taciturn basset hound, and a hyperactive one-eared Chihuahua named Artie, Daphne quickly runs afoul of Detective Jonathan Black, a handsome and enigmatic newcomer to town, who has no appreciation for Daphne’s unorthodox sleuthing.

Can a free-spirited pet sitter, armed only with a Ph.D. in Philosophy and her two incompatible dogs, find the real killer before she becomes the next victim?

Includes recipes for homemade dog treats!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

A Chocolate Lab names Axis, a Chihuahua named Artie, 3 huge rottweilers named Macduff, Iago and Hamlet and a Basset Hound named Socrates are all on a walk with pet sitter, Daphne Templeton and her sister Piper as the book starts out. Piper is a veterinarian and with the exception of her love life things are going well for her. Daphne lives with her rent free as she tries to get her new pet sitting business started. Piper’s ex Steve Beamus, is also part of this animal world in Sylvan Creek. He runs the Blue Ribbon K-9 Academy. They are all going to be together for a dog agility event at Piper’s farm. But when Steve is found dead in a unlikely place on Piper’s property, the event come to a barking halt and Piper is the first name on the list of prime suspects. Plus Steve’s dog Axis is missing. Daphne has no choice. She needs to find that dog and prove to Detective Jonathan Black that her sister had nothing to do with Steve’s murder. But she may be biting off a little more than she can chew.

As a dog lover I was in love with the canine characters well before the end of chapter one. Socrates belongs to Daphne and she is fostering little Artie in hope of finding this unusual little dog a forever home. The rottweilers belong to a very well to do client. Axis, the victims dog is missing throughout most of the story and I was as anxious as Daphne to know that he was safe.

In addition to the 4 legged characters the story is filled with an great and unique cast of human characters. In addition to the sisters and the deceased, we meet Detective Jonathan Black. He is new in town, easy on the eyes and really doesn’t think Piper is guilty. Daphne, if she is honest with herself, would like to get to know the man better. Virginia Lockhart, owns the rottweilers with her politician husband but I think she loves those dogs more than she loves him. Mr. Peachy lives in a cottage on the farm and is sort of like a grandfather figure to the girls and helps out around the farm. We also meet some Sylvan Creek merchants. All the characters are well fleshed out and believable.

The story starts out at a good clip. The murder happens in the early chapters. Then the pace slows down almost too much but does pick up again. I usually read a book in two evenings. The slower pace gave me a good stopping point the first night and then I quickly finished it up on night two.

The mystery itself had plenty of suspects and when we reached the big reveal it just knocked my socks off. I was absolutely, and totally surprised. The story also reached a happy place at the end for two of the doggies and that made the reader very happy.

These characters were very engaging so I am excited for their next story. The Lucky Paws Petsitting Mysteries are off to an excellent start!

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent


About The Author

Bethany Blake lives in a small, quaint town in Pennsylvania with her husband and three daughters. When she’s not writing or riding horses, she’s wrangling a menagerie of furry family members that includes a nervous pit bull, a fearsome feline, a blind goldfish, and an attack cardinal named Robert. Like Daphne Templeton, the heroine of her Lucky Paws Mysteries, Bethany holds a Ph.D. and operates a pet sitting business called Barkley’s Premium Pet Care.

Author Links 

Coming September 26, 2017


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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.”

Mar 072017
 

Bitter Harvest (A Greenhouse Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Henery Press (March 7, 2017)
Paperback: 264 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1635111736
Kindle ASIN: B01NAH6U8Y

 

 

Megan Sawyer should be shouting from the barn roof. Washington Acres survived its first year, the café has become a hotspot for locals, and Winsome’s sexy Scottish veterinarian is making house calls—only not for the animals. But as summer slips into fall and Winsome prepares for its grand Oktoberfest celebration, beer isn’t the only thing brewing.

When the town’s pub owner is killed in a freak accident, Megan suspects something sinister is afoot in Winsome—but no one is listening. As nights grow longer and temperatures chill, Megan must plow through Winsome’s fixation with autumn festivities to harvest the truth—before another dead body marks the season.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

This is our second visit to Winsome, Pennsylvania and we are just in time the Oktoberfest celebration.  The whole town wants their farm, store, pub or restaurant to be a main sponsor for the celebration and some feathers get ruffled when the select spots go to unsuspected places. In fact, when a pub owner is killed Megan doesn’t think it was truly an accident, but would someone actually kill because they weren’t chosen? So while getting the family farm and store ready for the celebration she is also trying to pick the killer and it isn’t as easy as picking a pepper or a pumpkin.

This was a pretty complex mystery with several suspects, means, and motives.

Megan has gotten through her first year and both the café and the farm are doing very well. She has even found time to spend with a certain veterinarian. That is until she gets wrapped up in this investigation. I knew she was a strong woman in the first story but she seems much more confident now as she has settled in. Her grandmother, another strong woman reminds me a lot of my mother. Determined, respected and not afraid to speak her mind. Dr. Denver Finn was extremely busy throughout the story taking care of a sick horse and other emergencies but he was still able to carve out time for Megan. All the characters a very believable and appealing. Their dialogue rings true, including Denver’s Scottish accent.

As I said the mystery is complex, in fact there are two mysteries to solve. Ms. Tyson entangles the plots together so well, weaving them together with deception, secrets, and untruths. I enjoyed doing my best to figure it all out before Megan but the ending was a complete surprise.

This one will grab you from the start and you will have a very hard time putting down.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

wendy

About The Author

Wendy Tyson is an author, lawyer and former therapist whose background has inspired her mysteries and thrillers. Wendy’s latest novel, DYING BRAND, the third Allison Campbell mystery, was released in May 2015. The first Campbell novel, KILLER IMAGE, was named a best mystery for book clubs in 2014 by Examiner.com. Wendy is also the author of The Greenhouse Mystery Series, the first, A MUDDIED MURDER, was released last year, Bitter Harvest was released today. Wendy and her husband are passionate organic gardeners. They live with their three boys and three dogs on a micro-farm just outside of Philadelphia.

 

Author Links

Author website    Facebook     Goodreads 

Twitter: @WendyTyson    Pinterest: Greenhouse Mystery Series:


Also by Wendy Tyson

I am giving away 1 e-copy of Bitter Harvest.
It will be sent directly to your email from Amazon.

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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.”

Mar 022017
 

No Way Home
by Annette Dashofy

No Way Home (A Zoe Chambers Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania/New Mexico
Henery Press (March 14, 2017)
Paperback: 256 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1635111774
Kindle 9781635111798

 
 
 
 
 

Synopsis

A relaxing trail ride turns tragic when Paramedic and Deputy Coroner Zoe Chambers discovers the body of a popular county commissioner in her Pennsylvania woods. Inconsistencies surround the horrible accident, but before she can investigate further, she’s pried away by a plea for help from her best friend whose son has been deemed a person of interest in a homicide over a thousand miles away. When he vanishes without a trace, his mother begs Zoe to help clear him and bring him safely home. The task takes Zoe out of her comfort zone in a frantic trip to the desolate canyons and bluffs of New Mexico where she joins forces with the missing boy’s sister and a mysterious young Navajo.

Back at home, Vance Township’s Chief of Police Pete Adams must deal not only with the commissioner’s homicide, but with an influx of meth and a subsequent rash of drug overdoses in his rural community. Bodies keep turning up while suspects keep disappearing. However little else matters when he learns that half a continent away, a brutal killer has Zoe in his sights.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

First,  Paramedic and Deputy Coroner Zoe Chambers finds a dead body near her home in Pennsylvania. Before she even has time to get in  the middle of the investigation she is on a plane to New Mexico to find the son of her best friend. He isn’t answering his cell phone and his girlfriend body has been found near a canyon outside of Aztec. She has left Chief of Police and her boyfriend, Pete Adams,  to handle the death at home as she gets in way over her head in New Mexico.

I am a huge fan of this series. This author continues to amaze me with each story topping the last. Every time I reach the end I find myself saying “WOW”.

In this installment the pace is quick, a lot is packed into 256 pages. There are two mysteries to solve 1000 miles apart from each other. Zoe and Pete stay connected with daily phone calls until Zoe stops answering her phone and definitely not by her choice. Ms. Dashofy edges right up to the cozy/thriller line that will have her readers glued to the page. This makes for a very exciting read.

Zoe is a strong intelligent woman and she needs both if she is going to survive the trouble she has landed smack in the middle of. She and Pete usually have each other’s back. Where Zoe is more impulsive, he is more measured. They both have the determination for justice to prevail. Separated this time they are dependent on others. But Pete is working with other professionals and Zoe is working with the sister of the guy she is trying to find and one of her friends. So many things could go wrong and do.

Dashofy’s No Way Home is off the charts fantastic! Fantastic characters, fantastic mysteries, fantastic book!! Get your copy and hold on tight, it is going to be a bumpy ride as you find out if everyone make their way home.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Books in the Zoe Chambers Mystery Series:

CIRCLE OF INFLUENCE (#1)
LOST LEGACY (#2)
BRIDGES BURNED (#3)
WITH A VENGEANCE (#4)
NO WAY HOME (#5)

Dashofy-1559 (534x800)About The Author –

Annette Dashofy is the USA Today best-selling author of the Zoe Chambers mystery series about a paramedic and deputy coroner in rural Pennsylvania’s tight-knit Vance Township. CIRCLE OF INFLUENCE, published by Henery Press, was a finalist for the Agatha Award for Best First Novel and for the David Award for Best Mystery of 2014. LOST LEGACY, was released in September 2014 followed in April 2015 by BRIDGES BURNED, which has been nominated for the Agatha for Best Contemporary Novel. WITH A VENGEANCE, the fourth in the series, was released May 3, 2016.

Author Links

Website— Blog— Facebook— Twitter– @Annette_Dashofy 

Purchase Links

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS

March 1 – Lori’s Reading Corner – SPOTLIGHT
March 2 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
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March 8 – Bibliophile Reviews – REVIEW
March 9 – Texas Book-aholic – REVIEW
March 10 – Island Confidential – GUEST POST
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March 12 – Community Bookstop – REVIEW  
March 13 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – INTERVIEW
March 14 – Classy Cheapskate – REVIEW

 

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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.”

Feb 022017
 


Murder Wears White (A Wedding Planner Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Kensington (January 31, 2017)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1496704801
Kindle ASIN: B01FBZXPKA

 

 

Mallory Shepard’s wedding planning business is off to a shaky start when a member of the bridal family drops dead at a food tasting . . .

Mallory hopes to unveil her new B&B just in time for her first ceremony as a wedding planner. The renovations to Thistle Park—the mansion she inherited in small-town Port Quincy, Pennsylvania—are almost complete. But what Mallory didn’t plan on is the bride’s aunt being poisoned at the wedding tasting and her perfect venue becoming a crime scene.

Adding to the mystery is the discovery that this is not the first murder in the bridal family, and as Mallory becomes engaged in her own investigation she learns the man convicted of the crime may not be guilty. Now she has two crimes to solve before the bride walks down the aisle—but a killer has other plans to ensure that Mallory forever holds her peace . . .

 

Dollycas’s Thoughts

In this 2nd installment Mallory and Rachel have moved in to Thistle Park while it is being renovated. They have plans to make the old mansion into a wedding venue and B&B, if they can get the permits. The timetable for their plans been pushed in a major way. A bride has asked to move her wedding up to just a few weeks away after she finds her father is dying. Mallory probably should have checked with her contractor but she gives the bride the o.k. and pushes full speed ahead with all the plans. But then the place and wedding seems to be plagued with problems. Stair railing falling, a floor being destroyed, a wedding dress in tatters, and then an aunt to the bride dies at the food tasting. Subsequently Mallory finds this is not the first murder for this family and the first death is connected to her backyard neighbor and close friend, (she wants it to be closer) Garrett. So Mallory has a couple of deaths to investigate, plus get the mansion ready for its first wedding, oh I can’t forget to mention, Thistle Park may be haunted…

There is so much happening in this story but this author keeps all the balls in the air, never dropping one.

First, her writing style is very descriptive, which is good, I loved learning about all the rooms in Thistle Park and it gave me the knowledge I needed to understand how it could handle weddings for up to 200 people. The outside space sounds like it will be amazing as well.

She also introduces us to several new characters, the bridal family, the construction crews, Port Quincy residents, and even some wonderful canines. Each character was distinct and well written, very easy to picture in my mind.

The story is very fast paced with plots and subplots converging and intermingling together all while standing out on their own and there is more than one mystery to solve. It never became too much or confusing, except I was sure kept guessing right up until the very end about who did what. She included humor in the right places, the romantic element is moving a pleasing pace, and the drama was the star as it should be but normal life events played their parts as well.

This book has everything I look for in a cozy mystery. Cozy lovers, I highly recommend this one. I am very excited for the next book in this series too!

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About The Author

A native Pittsburgher, Stephanie Blackmoore now lives in Missouri, with her husband, son and two spirited cats. She was an attorney in Pittsburgh and a librarian in Florida before becoming a writer. Stephanie is a fan of everything black-and- yellow. She is hard at work on her next Wedding Planner mystery. Connect with Stephanie at the links below.

Social Media Links:  Website    Facebook    Twitter

Kindle Copy of Engaged in Death just $1.99 on Amazon.

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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.”

Oct 052016
 

cozy wednesday 2013 640

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!! 

I am so excited to welcome Joyce back to Escape With Dollycas! 

JOYCE TREMEL

 

THE TOP FIVE THINGS I’VE LEARNED WRITING A COZY SERIES

5. It’s not as easy as it looks. Believe it or not, there are readers out there who think that cozy mysteries are inferior to other mysteries. Obviously, they’ve never tried to write one. I’ve found it takes quite a bit of skill to kill someone and not gross out the reader. The cozy writer has to get the horror of the murder across without showing much in the way of blood, guts, and the like. You have to describe what happened without actually describing what happened. This also applies to any sexy scenes. I’m perfectly content with not having to write those kinds of scenes. Banter, innuendo, and an occasional kiss that leaves the character’s knees weak is enough for me. I like to leave the rest up to imagination.

TANGLED UP IN BREW4. It’s sometimes hard to find adequate substitutes for swear words. I worked as a police secretary for ten years. Believe me, cops swear. I learned a whole new vocabulary when I worked for the police department. When you have officers talking in a cozy, you can’t very well have them use what must be their favorite word in the whole world because they say it three times in every sentence. And you can’t have them say gosh, darn, or golly either. Andy Griffith could get away with it, but that’s about it. My protagonist’s dad is a homicide detective and in one scene I have Max say something like, “My dad rarely swore but I could tell he held back a string of words that would have turned the air blue.” I do throw in an occasional damn and have used the letters S.O.B. Sometimes I’ll interrupt the dialogue just before the swear word would be uttered. So far, it works. I think.

3. There’s a fine line between educating the reader on the character’s craft or occupation and boring them to death. No one wants to read page after page of how your character does something. My protagonist Max is a craft brewer and there’s a lot of chemistry involved in brewing beer. If I started rambling on about how to calculate the specific gravity of a certain brew in order to calculate the alcohol by volume, I don’ t think readers would be too happy. In the best case scenario, they’d skip those pages; in the worst case, they’d throw the book against the wall. It’s a mystery novel, not a textbook. Information like that must be sprinkled in lightly.

to brew or not to brew

2. Recipes are hard to come up with. I’m usually thinking more about the plot and what the characters are doing than about what they’re eating or cooking. I’ve had to train myself to actually stop and describe certain foods and then search for a recipe to include. That’s probably why the first book, To Brew or Not to Brew only had two recipes. I did a little better with books two and three. Tangled Up in Brew has four, and next year’s A Room With a Brew will have five.

1. Write everything down. When I was about halfway through writing the first book, I realized I was NOT going to remember which character had blue eyes, who had brown eyes, how tall a certain someone was, etc. I started what we call a Character Bible. I jotted down each character, what they looked like, and anything else I thought might be important. I did the same with each shop and location in the series. I even drew a little map so I’d remember which store/shop/restaurant was where. And thank goodness I did. I refer to it constantly. Between that and the style sheet (which has even more detailed info on it) from my copy editor, I’ve saved hours that would have been spent searching through previous manuscripts for one tiny tidbit of information. All because I couldn’t remember something I thought I would.

These are the top five things I’ve learned writing a cozy series. Readers, what have you learned reading one?

~Joyce

About The Author

Joyce Tremel was a police secretary for ten years and more than once envisioned the demise of certain co-workers, but settled on writing as a way to keep herself out of jail. She is a native Pittsburgher and lives in a suburb of the city with her husband and a spoiled cat.

Her debut mystery, To Brew Or Not To Brew has been nominated for the 2015 Reviewers’ Choice award for best amateur sleuth by RT Book Reviews. The second book in the series, Tangled Up In Brew has just been released.

Author Links

Webpage Facebook Twitter GoodReads 

TANGLED UP IN BREWTangled Up in Brew (A Brewing Trouble Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Berkley (October 4, 2016)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425277706
E-Book ASIN: B01AHKXIAQ
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Synopsis

Another intoxicating mystery featuring brew pub owner Maxine “Max” O’Hara—from the author of To Brew or Not to Brew.

BEER TODAY, GONE TOMORROW…

Brew pub owner Maxine “Max” O’Hara and her chef/boyfriend, Jake Lambert, are excited to be participating in the Three Rivers Brews and Burgers Festival. Max hopes to win the coveted Golden Stein for best craft beer—but even if she doesn’t, the festival will be great publicity for her Allegheny Brew House.

Or will it? When notoriously nasty food and beverage critic Reginald Mobley is drafted as a last-minute replacement judge, Max dreads a punishing review. Her fears are confirmed when Mobley literally spits out her beer, but things get even worse when the cranky critic drops dead right after trying one of Jake’s burgers. Now an ambitious new police detective is determined to pin Mobley’s murder on Max and Jake, who must pore over the clues to protect their freedom and reputations—and to find the self-appointed judge, jury, and executioner.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Belly up to the bar and try one of Max’s new brews.

Brew pub owner Maxine “Max” O’Hara and her chef/boyfriend, Jake Lambert, are 2 awesome characters. Working with your significant other can be tough but these two compliment each other nicely and each have their own strengths. Max knows beer and Jake knows food and the Three Rivers Brews and Burgers Festival is the perfect place so show everyone their talents. But cranky critic Reginald Mobley is not a fan of the Allegheny Brew House fare and delvers a scathing review. It puts them in the police’s cross hairs when he dies in front of a crowd of people while eating Jake’s burger. Max’s dad is also on the case but his partner has his mind made up. It may be time to call on a higher being, Max’s brother is a priest so he will be praying but Max is determined to save Jake, herself, and their pub any way she can.

The characters in this series are very interesting. Setting the story at a festival draws an eclectic group of people too. They are also very well crafted. The lead characters are both strong and independent, equals and very supportive of each other. They lean on each other but are not dependent on each other. They have known each other most of their lives and that gave them a strong bond before they even started dating.

The author also gives us a very strong plot with plenty twists. Reading the first book in this series, I figured out the culprit before Max, this time I was right there with her and figured it out at the same time. My early suspicions were totally wrong. She also gives us enough depth into the world of micro-brews with overwhelming the reader. I love learning new things.

I enjoyed the setting of the festival and could easily picture the booths and their layout. Ms. Tremel’s descriptions were so rich I could almost taste the beer and those burgers,

This is a fantastic addition to this series and I am really looking forward to the next installment, A Room With A Brew.  Now if I could just have a glass or two of Max’s citrus ale to hold me over until then…

perfect 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

GIVEAWAY

Thanks to the publisher 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.
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Click the Like Button at the top of this post for a Bonus Entry.

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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.”

Aug 262016
 

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.

the quilt ripper
The Quilt Ripper (Miranda Hathaway Adventures)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
devlinsbooks (December 31, 2015)
Paperback: 190 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0692616611
E-Book ASIN: B01A2BL8AM
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Miranda Hathaway is the town librarian and a member of Cutler Quilt Guild Number One. She likes to read mysteries, especially Sherlock Holmes. When someone breaks into the house of another guild member, rips apart an heirloom quilted skirt, and leaves the torn pieces behind, everyone in Cutler, Pennsylvania thinks Miranda can solve the mystery!

Gabe Downing, a retired FBI agent from Boston, has recently joined the quilt guild as its first and only male member.Coincidence? Miranda doubts it but she finds herself attracted to this new man in town. He asks her to dinner and she’s flattered at first, but then her suspicious mind wanders.

Does he know more about the break-in than he’s saying? Is he trying to find out what information she might have? Well, two can play that game!
Can Miranda and Gabe find the “Quilt Ripper” before another vintage piece is destroyed? Gabe may have experience on his side but she has her own secret weapon. The ladies of Quilt Guild Number One are on the case!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I snapped up this book when is was free on Amazon because I knew I would need a “Q” book for my Alphabet Soup Challenge.

The story starts with a letter being written in 1759 as a wife, Hannah, who is sending a trunk of her belongings ahead to her husband in the new world across the ocean. Then moves to present time with Miranda Hathaway’s story and the members of her quilt guild. A mystery arises when one of a member’s house is broken into and the only thing she can find wrong is an heirloom skirt has been ripped apart. Miranda notices that it has been carefully ripped, using a seam ripper and determines the damage was done by someone who knows how to sew. One member of the guild, the only male member, is hiding something, is he involved in this ripping situation?

I don’t know if I just wasn’t in the right frame of mind or if the constant changes in the points of view just confused me but this story and I were just not a good fit. Before I hit schedule on this post I checked out some other reviews and there are several good ones so I am going to assume it was me.

I liked the idea of something from the past making it so far into the future without being discovered but also thought this item had been passed down from generation to generation and probably should have been in a museum. It was so well kept and in fantastic shape that no one ever had an appraisal or an expert look at it. No, just stored in a box on the top shelf of a closet.

The characters were engaging but some were not that realistic. I did enjoy meeting “Queenie”, the quilt shop owner and president of the Cutler Quilt Guild Number One. Her shop sounds delightful and I do love that the guild devotes 1 meeting per month making things for charity. Gabe to me seemed all over the place, a private investigator with a couple of cases.  I would have loved more about Hannah’s story, I was drawn in my her letter immediately.

The mystery itself just didn’t hold my interest. I found myself putting the book down several times, only picking it up again because I knew I had to finish it for this review.  The reader knows who the “ripper” is pretty early in the story. I like mysteries that keep us guessing right up until the end. The ending itself did nothing for me.

I am wavering between 2 and 3 stars for this book. According to My Rating Chart with 2 being “A Dreadful Detour” and 3 being “A Satisfactory Excursion”. I will have to go with the 3 stars because I did finish the book and it wasn’t dreadful. It just wasn’t my Blue Hawaii (cup of tea).

satisfactory 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

*Book was from my private collection.

 

 

 

The Drawing Game (A Sketch in Crime Mystery) by Deirdre Verne Get Your Copy Today!
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