Slay Bells (A Christmas Village Mystery)
by T.C. Wescott
About the Book
Slay Bells (A Christmas Village Mystery)
Brand New Series
Better Mousetrap Books (November 23, 2018)
Print Length: 273 pages
Digital ASIN: B07HGG7ZFR
‘Twas the week before Christmas and all through the village, the night settled in over swirling-smoke chimneys; the air was alive with pine and holly, with sugar and cinnamon and cider, by golly!
Along snowy lanes and through shadows it crept, past windows behind which each villager slept, where sleeping dogs lie and cats rest a’purring—
Tonight, in Christmas Village, a killer is stirring.
Welcome to Christmas Village, a magical hamlet where even in December the roses hold their luster and bees buzz among the bluebells. You’re just in time for the week-long Christmas Festival, and nowhere is Christmas celebrated with such unrestrained merriment as the village which bears its name. Mayor Cobblestone and Sheriff Fell will be somewhere nearby, doing all they can to make sure you’re safe during your stay.
Provided you haven’t booked a room at Plum Cottage.
Nestled betwixt an opulent garden with meandering footpaths and an ancient grove of plum trees, Rose Willoughby’s boarding house is plum-full with lodgers. There are no vacancies, but just wait. Soon there will be one…and another…and another.
Presently lodging at the cottage are: the juggler, the acrobat, the magician, the psychic, the strongman, the manager, and the pretty assistant. In town as festival entertainment they’ve each brought their own bag of tricks. And a closetful of skeletons.
When the entertainers begin dying in inexplicable ways, some villagers believe a beast from old village lore is the culprit. The sheriff knows better, but he’s just as helpless to catch the invisible killer as are the town folk with their eyes to the sky in search of a flying creature. But our mysterious murderer hasn’t counted on yet another lodger coming to the cottage: Maribel Claus.
Short as a stump, round as a wheel, sweet as a candy cane, and a sharp as a whip, Maribel loves a good puzzle. But has she finally met her match at Plum Cottage?
Can you figure out whodunit before Maribel does? If you’re up to the challenge, here’s your first clue—the key to unlocking the secret of the murderer’s identity lies in figuring out how the murders were committed. Good luck!
Praise for Slay Bells (A Christmas Village Mystery)
by T.C. Wescott
The author provides detailed descriptions of the village, Plum Cottage and the characters which will allow readers to envision the story in their mind. Slay Bells has eccentric characters, small-town magic, a perplexing whodunit, and Christmas spirit.
~The Avid Reader
This nifty little Christmastide cozy is A Christmas Village Mystery #1. Christmas Village is a very magical place, where special snow and beautiful flowers exist year-round, villagers are kind and loving, visitors are in awe; and where Mr. and Mrs. Claus live.
~Mallory Heart’s Cozies
Slay Bells was a delightfully charming whodunnit with a quirky cast of characters that kept me guessing and in stitches until the very end.
Many Christmas novels focus on Santa and the elves. This time it is Mrs. Claus taking the spotlight . . . (it) keeps you interested in what could possibly happen next.
I was thoroughly enchanted with the characters in the book, and the mystery was one that continued to keep me guessing.
~My Devotional Thoughts
Christmas and murder – two such different things but they go so well together in the hands of a talented writer. Slay Bells certainly delivers the best of both and has the feel of a golden age classic mystery while still having a thoroughly modern setting and sleuth. I really enjoyed this story. . .
~The Book’s the Thing
This is the first novel in a new series, and I already can’t wait to read more. Maribel Claus is a fun character, as are the other residents of Christmas Village.
About the Author
T.C. Wescott was born in Missouri but has lived in Oklahoma most of his life. Like pretty much every author who has ever breathed, he is an avid reader. His favorites are classic mysteries from the Golden Age, as well as just before or just after that period (which is widely considered the period between the two World Wars). His first mystery novel, Running from Scissors, was published in July 2018 and will be the first of at least three books in the Running Store Mystery series.
The Christmas Village Mystery series will launch in November of the same year with the debut title Slay Bells. The formula for his books is simple – mixing the classic, traditional detective fiction standards with all the trappings of the modern cozy mystery.
Wescott is also (under another name) the author of two award-winning non-fiction books as well as a slew of essays and articles.
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