Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!
I am so excited to have Jodi Rath visit today!
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m a wife, cat lover with nine cats in our home, educator, writer, artist, and kickboxer who is obsessed with Tom Waits.
What are three things most people don’t know about you?
I have a brown belt in kickboxing;
I have curly hair that I perm in my kitchen every three months;
I would never leave the house if I could realistically make that happen—and I very rarely leave my house.
What is the first book you remember reading?
Any of the Choose Your Own Adventure books—those were my favorites!
What are you reading now?
Death Al Dente by Leslie Budewitz
What books have most inspired you?
Anything Agatha Christie, Sweet Valley High Series when I was a teen, Judy Blume books as a pre-teen, poetry of all sorts—I used to check out as many poetry books as the librarian allowed me too in 5th through 9th grade.
What made you decide you wanted to write mysteries?
I believe it all began with the Choose Your Own Adventure books. I liked picking an ending then trying them all and guessing what the other endings would be.
Do you have a special place you like to write?
Any room in my house, on my screened-in porch or on my deck overlooking our woods.
Where do the ideas for your books come from?
From my community, my family, the news, songs, movies, TV shows, art, people I don’t like—LOL.
Is there anything about writing you find most challenging?
I really do love all parts of the writing process. I was a HS English teacher and taught the process regularly. For me as a writer, the first draft is fun—the revision can be cruel at times—especially when I think I got something right and my editor is like, “Um, wow, that really sucks!” LOL—she doesn’t say that—but you get the drift!
What do you think makes a good story?
It has to be universal—things everyone can relate too. There needs to be someone to root for and someone to hate and someone to feel sorry for and someone who we love to hate—characters are important.
Which, of all your characters, do you think is the most like you?
The protagonist, Jolie Tucker.
What makes your books different from others out there in this genre?
There aren’t many Cast Iron Skillet culinary cozies out there. I only know of one other cast iron mystery series.
What’s next on the horizon for you?
Currently working on book 2.5 a Thanksgiving holiday book called Turkey Basted to Death that comes out 11/18/19. In 2020, I will begin two spin-off series to The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series—one is Peggy’s Purse Boutique series set in Tri-City (which comes up a lot in The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series)—the second series is Gemma’s Bohemian Gems Series that is a spin-off as well.
Thank you, Jodi, so much for dropping by today!
Keep reading for my thoughts about Jalapeño Cheddar Cornbread Murder.
About the Book
Jalapeño Cheddar Cornbread Murder (The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series)
2nd in the Series
Setting – Ohio
MYS ED LLC (June 21, 2019)
Print Length – 185 Pages
Digital ASIN: B07Q1K4DN3
Financial fraud of elderly villagers in Leavensport, an urban sprawl threat to the community, disastrous dates, cross-sell marketing gone wrong, and another murder? Jolie Tucker is ready to try dating again. Well, she has no choice—since her family auctioned her off to the highest bidder. Her best friend, Ava, has agreed to a double date, but both friends find out hidden secrets about their partners as well as deception by one of the village’s own, who will soon be found dead. This plot is sure to be spicy!
We are back in Ohio at Cast Iron Creations where things are getting jalapeno hot!! A new restaurant has opened and Jolie hopes to work a cross-promotion deal as she has with other businesses, she also is finally going to go on her auction date with Detective Meiser, (her family auctioned off at a fundraiser in the last book), residents are worried about urban sprawl, oh, and there is another dead body.
Ms. Rath’s characters are fun and entertaining. Again, there is a large cast but I was very comfortable after getting to know most of them in the first book. I enjoyed the continued character development. The new characters were all key to the new mystery. The interactions were all realistic and the dialogue was crisp.
I continue to be amazed by how much drama and action this author brings a reader in less than 200 pages. She does a fabulous job of blending intrigue and everyday life. The daily grind plus secrets, twists, turns, and a surprising ending are all baked together wonderfully by the time we reach the last page. It is a quick read and impossible to put down.
I am not a fan of peppers especially jalapenos but I loved the way that ingredient was incorporated into the story. I also appreciate that cast iron skillet recipes are included for readers to try.
Together Pineapple Upside Down Murder and Jalapeño Cheddar Cornbread Murder equal the length of 1 standard cozy mystery, so I do recommend reading both in order so you can really get to know the characters. I am really looking forward to more books in this series.
More About Jodi Rath
Moving into her second decade working in education, Jodi Rath has decided to begin a life of crime in her The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series. Her passion for both mysteries and education led her to combine the two to create her business MYS ED, where she splits her time between working as an adjunct for Ohio teachers and creating mischief in her fictional writing. She currently resides in a small, cozy village in Ohio with her husband and her seven cats.
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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.”