I am super excited to welcome Bailey Cates to Escapes With Dollycas today!
Her new Magical Bakery Mystery, Spells and Scones, was just released this week!
Spells and Scones is the sixth in the Magical Bakery Mystery Series featuring Katie Lightfoot. Along with her aunt Lucy and uncle Ben, she owns the Honeybee Bakery in Savannah, Georgia, which has been welcomed into the community with rave reviews from locals and tourists alike.
Soon after Katie moved to Savannah, Lucy delivered the bombshell that hedgewitchery ran in their family. The term comes from the women who used to cross the literal hedges that surrounded many villages. They would go out into the surrounding fields and forests to collect plants and herbs, which they then used to heal others. The women in Katie’s family also had access to another “hedge,” the veil between this plane and the next, which gives them unusual intuition, especially in relation to their skills with herbs.
Once Katie accepted this information, Lucy began to train her in kitchen and garden magic. Their new apprentice, Iris Grant, is also learning the Craft, and now almost everything baked at the Honeybee features sprinkles of positive, supernatural intention mixed in with the sweet and savory flavors of their rotating selection of pastries. At the same time, the members of the spellbook club – Katie and Lucy’s informal coven – continue to train Katie in their own magical specialties.
In Spells and Scones, Savannah’s own celebrity psychologist is going to be signing her new book at the Fox and Hound Bookshop next door to the Honeybee. Katie and her aunt and uncle have gladly agreed to cater the event for the bookstore’s owner, Croft Barrow. Katie doesn’t know much about Dr. Dana Dobbs, but her next door neighbor, Margie Coopersmith, is over the moon about getting to meet her idol.
Not everyone cares for the brand of advice Dr. Dana offers. In her most recent book, How to Do Marriage Right, the relationship guru touts the concept of Radical Trust – which turns out to be the exact opposite of what it sounds like. She advises everything from tracking your loved one’s whereabouts via GPS to reading their email. Katie and her boyfriend, Declan McCarthy, have been together for a year now, and they’re horrified at Dr. Dana’s ideas.
At the author event, a couple of people in the audience challenge Dr. Dana, and Katie senses an uncomfortable undercurrent in the air. Still, it’s a shock when Dr. Dana is found poisoned in the back of the bookstore at the end of the evening. The woman who is Detective Peter Quinn’s prime suspect had a history of conflict with the psychologist, and, as she gets more information, Katie develops personal reasons for not wanting to get involved. But when Katie’s adorable familiar, a black Cairn terrier named Mungo the Magnificent, makes it clear that he wants her to investigate the crime, Katie agrees to do her best.
As she sifts through the array of suspects and their motives, Katie is juggling her own relationship with Declan. It doesn’t help that Steve Dawes has returned to town after what happened in Magic and Macaroons. And then there’s her relationship with Mungo, which turns out to be more complicated than she ever expected.
Authors are inevitably avid readers, so it’s not uncommon for us to want to write about other writers, books, and bookstores. From the beginning, books have always played a significant role in the Magical Bakery Mysteries. Even before the grand opening of the Honeybee Bakery in Brownies and Broomsticks, Katie met Lucy’s book club. It turned out to be a spellbook club which was also a coven, but the members do meet to talk about books. The bakery also boasts a comfy reading area, and those witchy ladies select and supply the library with a strange and eclectic mix of volumes that frequently end up being exactly what a customer needs. Katie herself has benefited more than once from titles she discovered on those shelves.
The owner of the Fox and Hound, Croft Barrow has appeared briefly throughout the series, but this time I was happy to showcase him and his bookstore. Plus, I got to kill an author! (I don’t know why this is delightful to me – I adore other authors, and I certainly wouldn’t want to be poisoned after a reading. Perhaps it’s the irony of the idea that appeals to me.)
One of the recipes in the back of Spells and Scones is for scones – of course! Savory Greek scones with feta cheese, sundried tomatoes, Kalamata olives and rosemary. The second recipe is for pumpkin spice softies. Mmm.
Spells and Scones (A Magical Bakery Mystery)
6th in Series
An Obsidian Mystery (July 26, 2016)
An Imprint of New American Library
Published by Penguin Random House LLC
Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
E-Book ASIN: B016JPTJYC
There’s a body in the bookshop in this latest novel from the New York Times bestselling author of the Magical Bakery mysteries…
When the bookshop next to the Honeybee Bakery hosts a signing for a Savannah radio celebrity’s new self-help book, magical baker Katie Lightfoot is happy to provide some delectable desserts. A big crowd has turned out for the event, curious about the book (and maybe to sample some goodies), but the final chapter comes too soon for the author when she is found dead at the event.
The prime suspect is Angie Kissel, a former witch whose familiar was once Katie’s own terrier, Mungo. Katie is at first hesitant to help, afraid of losing the little dog who has become so important to her. But after a little nudge from Mungo himself, Katie decides to try to conjure up the real killer—before Angie gets served…
About The Author
Bailey Cates believes magic is all around us if we only look for it. She studied philosophy, English and history and has held a variety of positions ranging from driver’s license examiner to soap maker. She traveled the world as a localization program manager for Microsoft, but now sticks close to home where she writes two mystery series, tends to a dozen garden beds, bakes up a storm and plays the occasional round of golf.
Having apprenticed with a master herbalist for a year, she’s prone to concocting teas and tinctures for family and friends from the stash of herbs stored in the corner cabinet in her office. She owns a working spinning wheel and is on a first name basis with several alpacas and two sheep with questionable dispositions.
Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to give away!
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