I am excited to welcome Susannah Hardy to Escape With Dollycas!
Her new A Greek to Me Mystery Series is off to an excellent start!
You can read my review below her post.
I love mysteries! You’re here visiting this blog because you do too. Did you ever solve a real mystery? Not ones like what that smell is emanating from your teenager’s bedroom, or who put the toilet paper on the roll backwards. Not that those aren’t important or that you shouldn’t get credit for your detective skills, LOL! But I’ve solved a couple of family mysteries, and I’ll tell you about one here today.
Genealogy is one of my hobbies, and there is a genealogical element to Feta Attraction, one that will become more important in Book Two (sorry, I don’t have an official title or a release date on that yet!). My heroine, Georgie, will find out some very interesting things about who she is and where she came from and why murders keep happening around her in Bonaparte Bay.
My real-life family, and I suspect just about everyone else’s too, has its own mystery. Family legend says that my great-great grandfather was a Native American (Mohawk), that he and my white great-great grandmother had an affair, then he ran off when she found out she was pregnant. She left the baby with her widowed mother, and ran off herself. I’ve always taken that story with a grain of salt.
Now, thanks to the Internet and some digitized old newspapers, it turns out I was right to be skeptical.
The real story, which I pieced together from old newspaper articles and online census records—did I mention, I LOVE research?—is rather more Downton Abbey or Upstairs, Downstairs. Not nearly as romantic or interesting as having a Mohawk ancestor! The documentation proves that Great-Great-Grandma was a servant in the home of a wealthy shopkeeper, and they had a relationship, which resulted in a baby, my Great-Grandfather. A lawsuit was brought by the girl’s mother for loss of the girl’s services due to the pregnancy, and damages were awarded against the shopkeeper. My Great-Grandfather either never knew the real story, or deliberately lied about who his parents were on his marriage certificate, which other members of my family have taken as truth. Even though I’ve presented my proof, most still cling to the legend rather than the reality.
Not that I can blame them. Stories are often so much better than real life, aren’t they? Which is why we keep reading novels, and especially cozy mysteries with their familiar characters and satisfying endings. I hope you enjoy Feta Attraction!
Wishing each and every one of you peace and prosperity in the New Year,
About This Author
Susannah Hardy thinks she has the best job in the world: making up stories and inventing recipes to go along with them. A native of northern New York, where she attended St. Lawrence University, Susannah now lives in Connecticut with her husband, teenaged son, and Elvira the Wonder Cat.
(A Greek to Me Mystery)
New Cozy Series
Setting: New York
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
The Berkley Publishing Group (January 6, 2015)
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Bill Bruning
Cover Design by Diane Kolsky
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
E-Book ASIN: B00KWG5W1Y
Georgie Nikolopatos manages the Bonaparte House, a Greek restaurant and historic landmark in beautiful upstate New York rumored to possess ghosts and hidden treasure. But when her husband disappears and her main competitor is found dead, it’s up to Georgie to solve a big fat Greek murder.
With her husband, Spiro, inexplicably gone for days, Georgie has her hands full running the restaurant and dealing with the crew of the TV show Ghost Squad, called in by Spiro to inspect the house for haunting. So when she has a chance to take a boating excursion on the St. Lawrence River with her friend Keith Morgan, she jumps on it. But their idyll is quickly ruined when they discover the body of rival restaurant owner Domenic “Big Dom” DiTomasso floating in the water.
When the police start asking questions, it doesn’t help that Spiro can’t be found—and with Georgie on their suspect list, it’s up to her to find her missing husband and find out who killed Big Dom before someone else’s order is up.
Includes delicious Greek recipes!
As soon as I read that the Bonaparte House was an Octagon House I was so excited to keep reading. I was amazed by an Octagon House back in elementary school when we took a field trip to the Octagon House Museum in Watertown, Wisconsin. Many years later I learned of another Octagon House in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin and that one has been said to haunted! There is said to be another in Hudson, Wisconsin. These house were popular in the 1850’s thanks to amateur architect and lifestyle pundit Orson Squire Fowler*. Because of knowledge of these homes I had a very good idea about how this mystery may play out.
Georgie has an interesting life. She is married to a gay man and now that their daughter is grown it may be the right time for her to make some changes. The problem is that her mother-in-law and her husband own the restaurant she manages and she can’t imagine doing anything else. She is also very close to her mother-in-law. They all live above the restaurant too.
Georgie is not really shocked her husband has disappeared, he’s done it before but always comes back within one one two days. When he doesn’t return and she finds he left his cell phone behind she knows something is terribly wrong. She also starts receiving some strange messages. She doesn’t want to worry her mother-in-law so she starts to do a little investigating on her own.
Add to this a “Ghost Squad” looking for paranormal activity at Bonaparte House and a dead restaurant owner floating in the river and you have everything you need for a fantastic cozy mystery.
There is a lot going on in this first installment of the A Greek to Me Mystery series. I may have figured out part of the mystery early but the huge twist near the end was totally unexpected. To say more would give too much away.
I can say that Ms. Hardy has created some excellent characters. We really get to know Georgie and Sophie. Spiro not so much but I am confident he will be just as engaging. I believe the author has just scratched the surface of where she can take these characters. She has all the ingredients needed to whip up several tasty mysteries. I am really excited for book #2. “Opa!” pass the Ouzo!
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.
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Leave a comment for Susannah for 5 Bonus Entries.
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5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.
Contest Will End January 23, 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.”
Comments on “Special Guest – Susannah Hardy – Author of Feta Attraction – Giveaway too!”
Wow! Ghosts and feta cheese. I can just taste that ouzo. Thanks for the great giveaway.
I can’t tell you the number of ouzo drinks I had to test out before I created the Cherry Ouzotini in the back of Feta Attraction. My job is very difficult.
Sounds like a winner to me. Eager to read.
Thanks, Barbara! Let me know if you like it!
The book sounds wonderful. I also am into genealogy and looking forward to that aspect of the books.
Ooh, I wonder if we’re related, Lisa! The genealogy comes into play in book 2, which will release on November 3–and some of the events that happened in book 1 will look a little different once you read book 2! Was that cryptic enough, LOL?
Sounds like a great book! It’s going on my TBR list!
Thanks, Betty. I hope you like it!
Sounds like a good start to what will be a fun series for readers.
I hope so, Gram! It was a lot of fun to write, too!
I loved FETA ATTRACTION, the characters were great (come on, Cpt Jack -what’s not to love), but it’s really the story that pulled me in and held on tight until the very end. I know above it mentioned that there was a lot going on in the story, but that is one of the things I really loved. Never a dull moment. Can’t wait for book two and to try out some of these recipes.
I did try to keep the pacing up, Gail. Georgie’s life needed a big shakeup so she could move forward! And thanks!
Looks like I have another series to add to my list!
Thanks, Alicia! Book 2 will be out in November. Hope you enjoy Feta!
This book sounds like my kind of cozy mystery. It is going on my TBR list!
Thanks, Loretta! If your TBR pile is anything like mine, it could be a while before you get to it, LOL! Mine’s stacked pretty high. But you could always put Feta Attraction on top 🙂
A great twist for a mystery. Can’t wait to read it.
Thanks! As far as I know this is the only cozy mystery series with a Greek theme (if you know of another, let me know!). I hope you like it.
This book sounds captivating and wonderful. thanks.
Thanks, Sharon, and good luck with the giveaway!
Sounds like a great read.
Thanks, Rita! I hope 2015 is treating you well so far and you’ve got lots of lovely books lined up to read!
When food is involved I’M IN!!!!!
Ha-ha! Yup! Life is just better with great food and great company.
greek food and a mystery – yeah!
Hi, bobntoni! Hope you like it, and good luck with the giveaway!
This sounds like a fun new food cozy mystery!
Thanks, anaj95. I had such fun writing it!
I’m pretty sure we have an interesting family mystery on my mom’s side but it will take a lot of research because all of the family members are dead and there aren’t many sources I know to check. I think it’s great that Susannah found her family’s history – pretty impressive. Feta Attraction sounds like a fun book and I would love to read a copy!
Ooh, research! I love to do research. Now that so much information is digitized, it’s easier than ever to find things online. But sometimes you do have to go to the original source, not always easy. Hope you like Feta Attraction!
I can’t wait to read this. I’ve been into genealogy since I retired and I can’t believe how fascinating it is. (Plus I LOVE Greek food!)
I just love genealogy too! Someday I will join the DAR, maybe, when I have more time to devote to their service projects. Interestingly, I had ancestors who were Patriots and ancestors who were Loyalists in the Revolutionary War, and I can trace my lineage back to the Mayflower, as well as to the earliest Dutch settlers of New York.
i have a very mixed up genetic background but I also suspect the stories may not be as romantic as I’ve heard.
I, too, am fascinated with round barns and Octagonal houses and haunted things.
And of course cozy mysteries
Ooh, do you know about the octagon houses too? You and Dollycas are the only people I’ve ever met who know about them. Someday, I’d like to tour one. Super history nerd, here, fascinated by old houses. I tried to bring some gothic elements (the strange old house, the haunting, rumors of hidden treasure) into Feta Attraction, because I love those kind of stories.
My oldest sister has been trying to track down any kind of family history, she keeps hitting dead ends, she loves the searching though. This book sounds great, I don’t think I’ve had too many Greek recipes, except baklava, I loovvveeee baklava. Thanks for the chance to win.
It’s true, the search is more than half the fun. I love baklava too! Good luck!
Sometimes the “truth” needs to step aside and get out of the way of a good story!
Exactly, Libby! I played around with some real history and local legends as I was writing Feta. In fact, all the Greek to Me Mysteries will have some elements of history and legend. As well as delicious food!
Congrats to Susannah on the new release, it looks great! I think learning the history of Bonaparte House and how Georgie will maneuver through the book looks very interesting! Thanks for the chance to win.
Thanks, holdenj! It might seem a little strange to associate the Bonapartes with a Greek restaurant, but I promise it will all make sense by the end 🙂 Good luck!
GOOD LUCK WITH YOUR NEW SERIES AND BOOK! THANKS FOR THE GIVEAWAY!
Thanks, Shelley! Good luck!
This looks like the start of a fun series.
I know I had fun writing it! Hope you enjoy!
I love finding new cozy series to read, even though my TBR pile is getting a bit much. Congratulations on the new book and I look forward to reading it.
Oh, the TBR pile! I have one of those too. It’s more like a mountain, really 🙂
Sounds like a great new series. Looking forward to reading it.
Thanks, Dotty! Let me know if you try any of the recipes.
Ghost and Greek food—what fun! I’m looking forward to those recipes, too.
You can make a whole meal out of the recipes in Feta Attraction, including a cocktail. No dessert though, this time. 🙂
New series to add to my list
I am so excited to read this series – I seem to have a bit in common with the lead character since my son’s father is gay! I ‘ve never had that in common with a lead character in a book before!
I hope I got Georgie right! I’ve known a couple of women in real life who went through this experience, and each came out stronger on the other side.
I love genealogy and Greek food. :O) Catchy title. On my TBR now.
Thanks, kentuckygal! I have always wanted to visit Kentucky, btw. It looks beautiful!
Feta Attraction sounds like a great book. I can’t wait to read it. 🙂
sounds like its going to be a fun read.
This sounds like a great start to a new series! I love getting to experience other cultures when I read cozies.
I do love cozy mysteries and ghost stories. And I love chilled ouzo. Enough of it and I start seeing those ghosts. LOL
This sounds like a book I NEED to read. Fits my favorite genre perfectly.
Ghost stories and genealogy are a logical combination. A relative on my mother’s side of the family more than 50 years ago traced that half of the tree back to the mid-1500s. I was surprised to see that there were records still remaining for ordinary folks way back them. I’d love to meet some of the ghosts of those ancestors even though some were apparently rather disreputable.
Ouzo is oh-so good.
this book sounds like a good read to me.
I love the sound of this book. I don’t know what page I was in but I finally found this…
Oh my gosh, this book sounds good. I love books which have recipes inside. Though I’m not a cook and I can honestly say I probably wouldn’t try to cook the Greek recipes. I know when I’m in over my head. 🙁
I am definitely adding this book to my reading list.
congrats to Susannah!!!
love, love, LOVE 1st books in a new cozy series!!!
thank you for the giveaway!!
The book sound like a great start for a series! If I’m lucky enough to win a copy, I know I’ll be watching for the next book to come out. Love getting to know new characters!
I’m feta’d to read this series and have been working on my family tree since 2008.
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