Posted in 2021 Reviews Cloak and Dagger Challenge E-Book Challenge Wisconsin Author Wisconsin Setting You Read How Many Books Challenge

Mystery in the Hill by Aaron Qualio #Review


Mystery in the Hill
Mystery/Thriller Short Read
Setting – Wisconsin
Dorrance Publishing Co. Inc. (March 13, 2021)
Print length ‏ : ‎ 79 pages
ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08YXG27JG

A small Wisconsin town is shaken to its core when four high school boys stumble upon an unexpected discovery. As past and present secrets are exposed, more unsolved mysteries are revealed, leading to more danger than anyone could have ever imagined.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Set in 1997 four teenagers uncover quite a find. A find that will rock their world and change their lives forever as the past and present collide in a heartwrenching way. Ashbelle Wisconsin will now have a deadly history that started in 1944 and culminated in 1997.


I was contacted to read and review this book by a publicist who saw I like to support and feature Wisconsin authors. She told me this book was written during the pandemic by a man who was reflecting on his small-town life and how it affected him in big ways. I have to say that really came through in this story. His descriptions took me back to a simpler life in a small town. While I was older in 1997 than the teenagers in this book I could relate to their high school lives. Their friendships, actions, interactions, and curiosities were very familiar. I had a much harder time relating to the people from the past. Their choices and actions gave me chills.  Because of the emotions invoked by both time periods, I would say the author did a fine job of telling this story.

Reading the first chapter 1 was unsure if this was a story for me but by the end of chapter 2, my own curiosity was building, and mid-way through chapter 3 I was completely engaged. With each subsequent chapter, my reading pace increased. I liked that the chapters went back and forth between time periods wrapping up with the final chapter set in 2015. It gave the story a good rhythm and pace.

Mr. Qualio’s Mystery in the Hill introduced very interesting characters and stunning situations. The short novella length suited the story very well giving a true, ripped from the headlines kind of story feel. This appears to be his first novel and it has piqued my interest and has me wondering what he will write next. Reading his book was a great way to spend an evening. I look forward to more from this author.

*Does include some explicit language.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

About the Author 

Aaron Qualio is the author of ‘Mystery in the Hill’, rated a #1 Amazon best-selling book. Aaron is a husband and a stay-at-home dad to two girls. He resides in Green Bay, WI, and grew up in a small Wisconsin town, where much of his inspirations come from.

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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Alphabet Soup - A - Z Reading Challenge Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Killer Comfort Food (A Farm-to-Fork Mystery) by Lynn Cahoon #Review / #Giveaway @LynnCahoon @dollycas

On Flashback Fridays I will share with you
the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.


Killer Comfort Food (A Farm-to-Fork Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Setting – Idaho
Lyrical Underground (January 5, 2021)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 186 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1516109929
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1516109920
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B086Z7KRFC

Angie Turner’s Idaho restaurant, the County Seat, is known and loved for its fresh food. For Angie, it’s also meant a fresh start. But when big agriculture comes to town—along with whispers of foul play—Angie could lose more than the farm . . .

A soybean processing plant is trying to buy up the land around the small farm Angie’s beloved Nona left her. If Angie doesn’t sell, she’ll be surrounded by the plant and the congestion that comes with it. On the other hand, it’s Nona’s farmhouse. What is Angie supposed to do without it?  Move into a condo in town with Precious, Mabel, and Dom—respectively, a goat, chicken, and dog. Worse, a troubling rumor is circulating about the lawyer who’s heading up the development: His socialite wife seems to be missing. When Barb, owner of the local bar, asks Angie to look into the woman’s disappearance, she’s hesitant—until Barb reveals her surprising connection. Now it’s up to Angie to find the woman, uncover a shady plot, and hang onto her home—before she becomes a criminal’s final course . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Angie Turner’s main focus should be her farm-to-table restaurant, The County Seat, but the impending chance of losing her home has grasped almost all of her attention. A company is trying to bring a soybean processing plant to the area and they are buying up all the land around her farm but she is holding out. It was her Nona’s farm and she is determined to keep what she has inherited. Adding to her full plate is the death of a young woman and a missing woman who may be connected to the soybean development through her lawyer husband. She knows there is some shady business going on and finding the missing woman may be the key.


I have to start this review by saying I love the book cover. Nothing better than a St. Bernard getting into a bit of mischief.

Ms. Cahoon has her main character juggling a lot of balls in the air in this 5th Farm to Fork Mystery. Thankfully she receives some help from the supporting cast. What I love about these characters is that they are so true to life. People you would meet in any small town. Most with generous hearts and a willingness to help anyone they possibly can. Of course, you have a few bad apples out to line their own pockets and at least one that has resorted to murder but you need those dastardly characters to round out a killer cozy mystery. I really enjoyed how more of that supporting cast played larger roles in this story. It really adds to the development of the series as a whole. Nancy was one of those people and the way the people rallied to help her especially warmed my heart.

The author has written a complicated story with several mysteries to solve within these pages. She intertwines all of them together with a measured hand allowing each the time necessary to evolve and solve. A variety of suspects, drama, and suspense all draw the reader deeper into the story.  I was entertained by the wonderful twists and surprised by some of the outcomes too.

Killer Comfort Food takes readers on quite a journey. I was kept engaged from the first page to the last. Family is the strong theme that prevailed throughout the book and I love reading books like this. In addition to a great mystery, there is a positive affirmation. I can’t wait to visit these characters again to see what happens next in A Fatal Family Feast.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

ABOUT LYNN CAHOON:

New York Times and USA Today best-selling author, Lynn Cahoon is an Idaho native. If you’d visit the town where she grew up, you’d understand why her mysteries and romance novels focus around the depth and experience of small-town life. Currently, she’s living in a small historic town on the banks of the Mississippi river where her imagination tends to wander. She lives with her husband and two fur babies.

Author Links

Goodreads – Twitter –Facebook Website –Amazon Author Page

 



Coming January 4, 2022

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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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Nightmare On The Bike Trail (A Southwest Exposure Mystery) by Jodi Linton #Review / #Givaway – Great Escapes Book Tour


Nightmare On The Bike Trail (A Southwest Exposure Mystery)
by Jodi Linton

About Nightmare On The Bike Trail


Nightmare On The Bike Trail (A Southwest Exposure Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
4th in Series
Setting – New Mexico
Independently Published (November 9, 2021)
~158 Pages
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08L2JFWDW

Welcome to Bushwhack, New Mexico: home to tourists, the great outdoors, and murder…

Andie Sullivan, adventure guide in the mountain community of Bushwhack, NM, is gearing up for the annual bicycle race hosted by her tour company. When a ghost from her and sheriff Zac Mars’ past registers to participate—her suspicions are raised.

And then a gun goes off deep in the wooded forest along the trail, leaving her and Zac to fight for their future by revisiting past grievances. With lives at stake and secrets opening old wounds, Andie must piece together the clues to solve a decade old case she thought was closed.

But time isn’t on her side and sometimes even the best sleuth can miss a piece to the puzzle. Especially a cold case clouded with jealously and pain. Will she spot the clue this time or is it too late to make amends?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Bushwhack, bikes, and bullets never go together but that is what happens when an annual bike race sponsored by Sullivan’s Adventure Company kicks off. Zac’s Florida past has come to New Mexico with an ax to grind. An ax that includes Andie. She and Zac could both wind up dead unless Andie can cycle through all the clues for that big missing piece. Her quest has her reexamining the past to find out what led to this present tragic situation. If she doesn’t more bullets are going to fly.


Wow! This story starts out with a not very cozy bang and takes us readers on an exciting trail.

Ms. Linton has put her star characters in a very precarious situation but then using flashbacks shows us the backstory of Andie and Zac. From the time they first met, there was an attraction but there were many obstacles in their path. There were some dicey times when she visited him in Florida at college that sets up the premise for this story. I loved the little snippets of their past. I was invested in these characters from the first 3 books but I care even more now.

This book really had a speedy pace. Tension was at a high level the entire time. I think this is the fastest I have ever read a book. All 158 pages flew! There should have been steam coming out of my Kindle.  In addition to learning how the lead characters came to the point where they are now the author treated us to a heck of a mystery. Some nice twists, a keen observation, and a pushy woman, (Andie), lead up to a surprising and thrilling ending.

I should have learned my lesson after reading the prior books in this series but I started this late one evening planning to read just a couple of chapters but I read it straight to the end. It was like time stood still but the clock told me otherwise. I did feel it the next day but it was so worth it.

While I feel this story may not be entirely cozy due to some scenes, I loved every minute of it. The characters are well crafted and the small town setting is an outdoor lover’s paradise. I have been entertained by every book in this series, so much so that my husband has started reading The Killer Outdoors after me telling him about this book. Like me, he is a stickler for reading series in order.

I have to give this book my Paradise Rating. It was just so darn good and has me impatiently tapping my foot for February when the next book in this series, Kayaker, It’s Cold Outside is scheduled to be released.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About Jodi Linton

Jodi Linton is the author of several romance novels and cozy mysteries. She pens funny, romantic, whodunnits during her days in between being a carpool mom. She lives in Texas with her husband, with who she runs the family day business with, and two kids. When she isn’t writing her next page-turner, she likes to delve into her hobby of finding all the cool, new makeup products to buy.

Author Links 

Facebook     Website   Twitter    BookBub

Youtube   Instagram  Jodi’s Book Corner   Newsletter

Purchase Link: Amazon  B&N    Kobo     iBooks


Coming in February 2022

a Rafflecopter giveaway

TOUR PARTICIPANTS
November 10 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT
November 11 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT
November 12 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT
November 13 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT
November 14 – I Read What You Write – REVIEW
November 15 – Nellie’s Book Nook – REVIEW
November 16 – Ascroft, eh? – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
November 17 – Novels Alive – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
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November 18 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
November 19 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW
November 20 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
November 21 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
November 22 – The Ninja Librarian – SPOTLIGHT
November 23 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT  

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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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Cozy Wednesday Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours Interviews New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Cozy Wednesday with Victoria Tait – Author of Wild Dog Revenge (A Kenya Kanga Mystery) #AuthorInterview / #Review / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour


Wild Dog Revenge (A Kenya Kanga Mystery)
by Victoria Tait

I am so happy to have Victoria Tait visit today!


Hi Victoria,

Hi Lori,

First, I’d like to thank you for all your hard work helping cozy mystery writers like myself.

Your help to organise book tours, especially for new authors, is invaluable, as visibility is becoming harder as more and more books are released.

Thank you so much!

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I had no intention of becoming a writer, but in January 2019, I found myself sitting in a sparsely furnished house, during a UK winter, dreaming of the warmth and life in Kenya, which I had just left.

I started listening to author podcasts, which is when the idea of writing about the 8 years I’d spent in Kenya came to me.  It may have been, in part, because of a version of homesickness and, in part, wanting to convey the extraordinary life my family and I’d spent in such a fascinating country.

I began writing Fowl Murder in May 2019 and published it in July 2020, as the first book in my Kenya Kanga Mystery series.  Wild Dog Revenge completes a six-book series.

My husband is in the British Military, and his job takes him, and our family, around the UK, and the world.  We are currently based in Sarajevo, in Bosnia and Herzegovina.  It is another fascinating country, as is neighbouring Croatia and I’m sure I’ll use them as settings for a future book series.

On a personal note, I’ve not been able to do much in the pandemic except try to maintain my mental health and juggle various different tasks and calls upon my time and emotions.

I’ve started exercising again and I’m up to 25 minutes continuous running, longer with some walking, and I swim twice a week.

What kind of research do you do, and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book?

I spend about a week undertaking research, character development, and plot ideas.  As I’m still a relatively new writer, the process keeps changing.

Wild Dog Revenge needed less research as I was familiar with the main characters and the locations, and I know about horses and have an overview of polo, around which the book is set.

My new series has required a lot more research and development, particularly of the characters.  I had to return to the UK recently, as my youngest son was suspected of having Covid, so I used the opportunity to visit the area where my series is set, and I discovered villages I’d lived close to but never visited.

After a week, I usually begin a book, writing in the mornings, and undertaking any additional research in the afternoons.

Do you ever suffer from Writer’s Block?

I certainly look at the first blank page and think, “New book, where do I start?”  So, I look to my main character and ask what is her motive and journey in the story?  Or it may be that a particular theme comes to me which I want to develop further.  I follow the threads, and characters and plot ideas develop, although I always leave room for development as I write.

In the mornings, I write for one to two hours until I reach a point where the words are hard to find and my concentration lapses.  Then I take a break and do some exercise, housework or cooking.

If I continue to wonder what happens next in my story, I sleep on it and usually find a solution in the morning.  And if I’m really struggling, I put the story to one side and read, or listen to audio books, to re-fill the ‘creative well’.

What advice do you have for someone who would like to become a published writer?

I’ve learned so much on my writing journey.  I have so many tips and resources for those wanting to write and publish their first, and subsequent, books that I’ve started a blog on my website, www.ShoestringPublishing.com In particular, I’m focusing on budget and not spending the family savings, or the weekly grocery budget to publish a book.

A smaller and smaller percentage of writers, particularly aspiring ones, are given traditional publishing deals but it is still possible to publish a book via a small press, or as an independent author.  And the good news is that there is an ever-increasing number of resources to help self-published authors, as well as a very supportive author community.

When you are not writing what do you like to do?

It’s more of a case of what I have to do rather than what I want to do.  My husband and I both caught Covid in March, and he had complications, including pneumonia.  I felt drained for a time and now I’m trying to re-energise through exercise and healthy living.  But things keep knocking me sideways, and I’m struggling to find a rhythm. Fingers crossed the world will start to open up so I can explore more of Sarajevo, Bosnia and the Balkans.

How has the COVID pandemic affected you and you’re writing?

I finished editing my first book as the pandemic started and quickly wrote my second.  I managed to write, even with home schooling, by getting up each morning at 5.30 am and sitting at the computer for a couple of hours.

But what affected me most was packing up the house and moving to a new country, where we had to settle in without personal contact with anyone.  As my boys are at school in the UK, I’ve continued to travel, which has been extremely stressful.

As I don’t know what the publishing world was like pre-Covid it’s difficult for me to comment further.  What did affect me was not having my summer job in 2020, so I didn’t have the money I needed for publishing and marketing, and I found myself in debt.  I’m continuing to write but I’ve cut back my costs and found alternative ways to do things.

If you could travel anywhere in the world where would you go and why?

At the moment, I’d love to return to Kenya to catch up with friends and visit the glorious white sandy beaches of Diani.

After that, I’d like to visit the countries close to Bosnia such as Romania, Hungary and my boys would love to visit Venice and Florence in Italy.  Fingers crossed we will have a chance next year.

What is next on the horizon for you?

I have started a new cozy mystery series set in the scenic Cotswolds of England, close to where I lived in 2019/2020.  I really enjoyed visiting and attending local auctions as I furnished our house, so the series begins at an auction house, with the strange and eccentric characters that are found in the antiques world.

I’m also developing my Shoestring Publishing brand with advice and resources for new writers and those who are published but can’t afford to keep going unless they find a method to publish on a budget.

I’ll continue marketing my Kenya Kanga Mystery series, targeting readers interested in Africa and wildlife.

What a wonderful interview! Thank you, Victoria for spending some time with us today! 


Keep reading for my thoughts about Wild Dog Revenge.

About Wild Dog Revenge 


Wild Dog Revenge: A Page-Turning Cozy Murder Mystery (A Kenya Kanga Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
Setting – Kenya
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Kanga Press (November 12, 2021)
Print length ‏ : ‎ 237 pages
ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09B66WXJ4

A high-stakes match. An inexplicable death. As the players take their positions, can an amateur sleuth solve the mystery before the final whistle blows?

Mama Rose just wants to enjoy a local polo tournament and care for any injured horses. But when a polo player is found dead in a stable, there’s all to play for if our silver-haired investigator is to discover the deadly truth.

Intrigued by tales from a late-night party, Rose unearths multiple suspects all with motives to harm the victim. But when her enquires lead to dead ends, she begins to doubt her intuition that there’s been foul play.

With the tournament drawing to a close, and the dead man’s influential father demanding answers, the police are on the losing side.

Can Rose unravel the clues before the umpire calls full time?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I couldn’t wait to get back to Kenya and Mama Rose. In this final book of this series, Mama Rose takes us to a local polo match where she will tend to any injured horses and find herself in the middle of another murder investigation. One of the prominent polo players is found dead in the stable. With all the people attending the matches there is a vast number of suspects. This is a tough case for Mama Rose and she even second-guesses herself but she doesn’t give up.


I have enjoyed this series so much. Ms. Tait has created such diverse characters. Mama Rose is a unique character. She is such a strong woman, very intuitive, will do anything to help an animal or person in need. She is also an awesome amateur sleuth. Her husband Craig was a great character too. Everyone that Rose meets is vividly described. The core characters we have met over the course of the series developed naturally and the characters introduced are given plenty of background. This book had a large cast with all the polo players and those attending the matches. Each was easy to keep straight and all had a purpose within the story.

I also enjoy the setting of the series. I will never travel to Kenya so these little virtual trips excite me. She describes each place so well, I picture everything so clearly. I feel like I am right there on the scene witnessing all the happenings.  I also learn about the animals of the region. Ms. Tait piques my interest and I always find myself doing just a little more research.

On top of the great characters and the amazing setting, she gives her readers a fantastic mystery to really escape into.  So many suspects and situations that tug on your heartstrings grab your attention and hold on tight.

Again, I am amazed how the author packs this all into less than 250 pages.

I am sad this series is ending because I have grown to be very interested in the lives of these characters. That being said I am thrilled Victoria Tait is working on a new series. Her travels must give her a font of ideas. I am looking forward to reading anything and everything she writes.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

More About Victoria Tait

Victoria Tait is the author of the enchanting Kenya Kanga Mystery series.  She’s drawn on 8 years’ experience of living in rural Kenya, with her family, to write vivid and evocative books.  Her readers feel the heat, taste the dryness and smell the dust of Africa.  Her silver-haired sleuth, “Mama Rose” Hardie, is Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple reincarnated and living in Kenya.

Like all good military wives, Victoria follows the beat of the drum and currently lives in Sarajevo, in Bosnia and Herzegovina.  She has two fast-growing teenage boys and enjoys horse riding and mountain biking.

You can find Victoria at VictoriaTait.com, on Bookbub and in her readers’ Facebook group, Victoria’s Voracious Readers (with her cat Izzy)

Author Links – Website  –  Facebook  – Blog/News  – GoodReads – Pinterest – BookBub – Twitter – 

Purchase Links:
Amazon – Kobo – Barnes & Noble – Apple  Google Play – Books2Read –


TOUR PARTICIPANTS – Please visit all the stops. 
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November 18 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT  
November 18 – Mysteries with Character – GUEST POST

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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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Styled for Murder (Bad Hair Day Mysteries) by Nancy J. Cohen #AuthorInterview / #Review / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour @nancyjcohen


Styled for Murder (Bad Hair Day Mysteries)
by Nancy J. Cohen

I am excited to welcome Nancy J. Cohen to Escape With Dollycas today!

Hi Nancy,

Please tell us a little bit about yourself.

I wrote my first novel when I was attending grad school to become a Clinical Nurse Specialist. I retired from nursing to write full-time when our kids were born and haven’t looked back since. My professional writing career started with sci-fi romance published by Dorchester and Wild Rose Press. Then I switched to mysteries when Kensington signed me on for the Bad Hair Day mystery series featuring hairstylist and salon owner Marla Vail.

Besides tending to her clients, Marla has a knack for teasing the truth from suspects. Styled for Murder is book #17 in this series. In total, I’ve published 25 full-length novels, a novella, a short story, a cookbook, and a writing guide. My latest works have been published independently as I wanted to take control of the book production process.

I write full-time in a dedicated home office in Central Florida where I live with my retired husband. We moved here fairly recently to be near our children and grandson. I like to explore the area and write about it on my blog. As for what I like to read, I enjoy genre fiction – historical romance, cozy and historical mystery, and sci-fi/fantasy. I look for stories with humor and romance, which are the elements I try to include in my books. My aim is to entertain. As reading is my escape, I hope to bring the same experience to you.

What kind of research do you do, and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book?

I enjoy researching a new book. I’ll start by doing whatever preliminary research I need to do online to formulate the background setting and get started on the plot. Then I’ll look for interesting items that catch my eye so I can learn about them and incorporate these factoids into my stories. For Styled for Murder, this included such eclectic topics as edible gold, propane gas, copper thefts, home remodel scams, origins of bone china, and health benefits of garlic. I love learning something new with each book. This gives me the spark of inspiration to write the story and makes it exciting for me.

Do you ever suffer from Writer’s Block?

I’ve been stuck when I feel I’ll finish the book too early. That’s when I go back and reread what I’ve written to see what threads could be expanded. I’ll also discuss the possibilities with my critique group who are always helpful. Otherwise, I write a synopsis before I begin the story, so I have a definite direction to follow. Outside distractions are the biggest cause of writer’s block. When we moved last December, I didn’t write for about six months.

 What advice do you have for someone who would like to become a published writer?

Join the professional writing community. Take webinars and online classes, attend meetings when available, participate in a critique group. Set daily and weekly writing goals and stick to them. Give yourself permission to write a draft that will need work but at least get it done. Then don’t give up through the submission process. Learn all you can about the business aspects of writing from other authors and keep learning. Follow the 3 P’s – Persistence, Practice, and Professionalism.

When you are not writing what do you like to do?

I like to read, dine out, explore the area, cruise to the Caribbean, and visit Disney World. I love Florida living and enjoy the varied ecosystems, attractions and cultures in this diverse state. And I’m a fan of the Hallmark channel movies and mysteries. That’s what I watch on TV, along with some superhero shows.

How has the COVID pandemic affected you and your writing?

All my in-person events have been cancelled. I’ve been doing a lot of online workshops and the good thing is that this brings in more attendees. People can come from anywhere. I really miss seeing my writer friends, though. As for staying home, I would be doing that anyway. So the pandemic hasn’t affected my writing routine.

If you could travel anywhere in the world where would you go and why?

I’ve never been to Greece, so that would be my first choice. I’ve traveled to Europe, the British Isles, the South Pacific, and the Orient. I’d also like to see St. Petersburg in Russia. These days, I’m content to plan my next Caribbean cruise.

What is next on the horizon for you?

I have another Bad Hair Day mystery I’d like to do and then we’ll see. I also have a fully written whodunit set in Central Florida. It needs more work and I’ve been dabbling with it in my spare time. Plus, I hope to do another audiobook. So far, the first four titles in my series are in audiobook format and I need to do more. As for pub dates, Box Set 5 in my series will come out in early 2022.

Thank you Nancy so much for visiting today.


Keep reading for my thoughts about Styled for Murder.

About Styled for Murder


Styled for Murder (Bad Hair Day Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
17th in Series
Setting – Florida
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Orange Grove Press (November 16, 2021)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 286 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1952886228
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1952886225
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09DYN9YG6

Hairstylist Marla Vail flushes out a killer when murder disrupts her mother’s home renovation plans in this stylish cozy mystery.

When hairstylist and savvy sleuth, Marla Vail, gets a frantic call from her mother that there’s a dead body in her shower, Marla realizes this wasn’t part of the home renovation plans. The victim turns out to be the project manager, who had an untrustworthy reputation in town. Disgruntled customers, unpaid suppliers, and the design company’s staff are among the suspects. Which one of them wanted the foreman to pipe down about their shady dealings?

Meanwhile, the lead investigator sets his sights on Marla’s stepfather, Reed, who’s keeping secrets from his family. Reed has a past connection to the victim and won’t come clean about what he knows. As Marla drills deeper, she’s showered with suspicions, but nobody’s willing to leak any information. She needs to hammer down the prospects, or time will drain away and the murderer will strike again.

To flush out the culprit, Marla taps into her pipeline of resources. Can she assemble the clues and demolish the alibis to nail a killer? Or has someone designed the perfect murder?

Recipes Included!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Home renovations are murder in this latest installment of the Bad Hair Day Mystery Series. Marla Vail’s mother has a hair-raising experience when she finds a dead contractor in her remodeled shower. It turns out the man had built quite a reputation for himself, a bad one. The police have added Marla’s stepfather to the long list that may want to remove the unscrupulous individual from the earth – perm-antly. Sadly, the murder is out of Marla’s detective husband Dalton’s jurisdiction but that is not going to stop her from showering her sleuthing talents on the case, mainly because her mother won’t let her but also her stepdad Reed is hiding something. He may not have killed the man but maybe he knows who did.


Marla and Dalton are settling into their lives with the addition of a new baby to their family but both have full-time jobs and Ms. Cohen has portrayed their lives so realistically. Brianna is old enough to be of help but a baby takes over your life. Then grandma calls and throws a monkey wrench into their lives with a dead body. I knew Marla would have a hard time saying no to another murder investigation, even with her best intentions to stop getting involved but this one hits family and there is no way to say no to family. I really liked this as it really makes sense for Marla to get involved. I really had sympathy for her as she truly was burning the candle at both ends throughout the story. It is hard to find balance with a new baby in the house without the addition of a dead body.

Ms. Cohen finds a nice balance herself in Styled for Murder. She blends the daily life of her characters with a challenging mystery to solve.  I did like that there was a plethora of suspects and the way Marla worked her way through them. She wasn’t able to figure things out though before more deaths occurred. Those deaths depleted her suspect list but WOW! that final twist was absolutely killer. The guilty party was a total surprise. I know I probably missed an important clue somewhere but I love when a book ends with a shocking twist.

I have read this series from the start. Marla has evolved so wonderfully over the course of those books. She was a great stepmom to Brianna after marrying Dalton but I am so happy that they now have this little bundle of joy. She made some adjustments to her sleuthing with her son Ryder in mind. Dalton also made changes. I am excited to see how this continues in future stories especially after the final chapter in this book.

Styled for Murder is filled with complex characters, has a great family feel, and a captivating mystery. Don’t let the depth of this series hold you back. This book can be read all on its own but to really get to know Marla I encourage you to read the entire series.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

More About Nancy J. Cohen

Nancy J. Cohen writes the Bad Hair Day Mysteries featuring South Florida hairstylist Marla Vail. Titles in this series have been named Best Cozy Mystery by Suspense Magazine, won a Readers’ Favorite gold medal and a RONE Award, placed first in the Chanticleer International Book Awards and third in the Arizona Literary Awards. Her nonfiction titles, Writing the Cozy Mystery and A Bad Hair Day Cookbook, have also garnered numerous awards, including the FAPA President’s Book Award and the Royal Palm Literary Award. Active in the writing community, Nancy is a past president of Florida Romance Writers and Mystery Writers of America, Florida Chapter. When not busy writing, she enjoys reading, fine dining, cruising, and visiting Disney World.



 

TOUR PARTICIPANTS – Please visit all the stops.
November 15 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT
November 15 – My Journey Back – RECIPE POST
November 16 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
November 17 – Novels Alive – GUEST POST
November 17 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
November 18 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
November 19 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT
November 20 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW, GUEST POST
November 20 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT
November 21 – Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers – GUEST POST
November 22 – Literary Gold – CHARACTER GUEST POST
November 23 – Mysteries with Character – REVIEW
November 24 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT  
November 24 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
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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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Crafty Cozy Challenge Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Finish The Series Challenge Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

A Murder Between the Pages: A Book Shop Cozy Mystery (Main Street Book Club Mysteries) by Amy Lillard #Review @PPPress @AmyWritesRomance

I apologize for my delay in posting this review.

A Murder Between the Pages: A Book Shop Cozy Mystery
(Main Street Book Club Mysteries)

Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Mississippi
Poisoned Pen Press (November 24, 2020)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 320 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1492687804
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1492687801
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B0861BGZGR

This murder will have to be solved by the book…

It was only a few months ago that the ladies of Arlo’s Friday Night Book Club—Fern, Camille, and Helen—solved the murder of the renowned author, Wally Harrison. So when they select Wally’s bestseller, Missing Girl, for their next discussion, Arlo is hopeful it will be the end of their mystery hunt.

But since their recent success as sleuths the crew officially see themselves as a women’s mystery club, and they’re convinced Missing Girl was inspired by a 50-year-old cold case. It’s a case from their own Sugar Springs, Mississippi—the disappearance of Mary Kennedy—and Arlo can do little to stop the book club ladies from investigating.

But what starts out as a fun hunch quickly turns into a very real cold case murder mystery when a young girl is murdered in the exact place the women believe Mary went missing all those years ago. It’s clear the two cases are connected—and the mystery book club is determined to find answers. With Arlo’s help, they may just be able to crack the case.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

We return to Arlo and Chloe’s Books & More in this second book in the Main Street Book Club Mysteries where the Friday Night Book Club, which meets each day at noon are discussing Missing Girl by the now-deceased Wally Harrison. (Can’t Judge A Book by Its Murder) The elderly members of the group, Fern, Camille, and Helen, are sure the book was derived from a 50-year-old-case when piano teacher Mary Kennedy went missing after giving a lesson to the son of a wealthy family.

When the ladies travel to the very manor where the disappearance occurred to pick up a book donation they witness another murder. They are convinced the two murders are connected and no matter how hard Arlo tries to direct their attention elsewhere they are intent on investigating both murders come hill or high water.


I will confess when I started this book I stopped to be sure I hadn’t already read it because the young woman’s death was very similar to something I had remembered reading before. I had not read this book and as I got further into it the similarity faded away.

Arlo is a terrific character. Her book club plan did not come together as planned but she rolled with it and accepted that she ended up with Fern, Camille, and Helen. It sure turned out to be a lot more work especially now that the ladies see themselves as amateur sleuths instead of book club members. It tests Arlo’s patience but I enjoyed tagging along to see what kind of mischief they were going to get into much to Arlo’s dismay. Arlo also has man trouble, personally and tangentially. With both Sam and Mads back in her life, she is dealing with old feelings and new. Plus Camille is dating a very interesting man that no one knows anything about. Ms. Lillard has created a wonderful group of characters. They make me laugh and a bit nervous at times but all are characters I want to follow through their adventures.

As I said the new mystery felt familiar but the way the author twisted it to encompass the old cold case caught my interest. While nosing around a certain event got the ladies all twitterpated. They were all in on solving both mysteries. I was nicely entertained by the way the drama all played out. Ms. Lillard threw in some wonderful twists and turns that really muddied my thinking. I really enjoyed the subplot about Chole and her son too.

There is plenty of humor sprinkled through this story including the antics of some spry octogenarians but also from a certain parrot named Faulkner. His quips and one-liners had me in stitches.

A Murder Between the Pages was a delightful trip back to Sugar Springs, Mississippi. I am excited to know I will be returning in just a couple of weeks when I read and review A Murder Like No Author.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

About Amy Lillard

Amy Lillard is the award-winning author of more than twenty novels, including the Wells Landing series, The Quilting Circle novels, the Sugarcreek Amish Mysteries and the Kappy King Mysteries. Born and raised in Mississippi, she now lives with her husband and son in Oklahoma. Please visit her online at www.AmyWritesRomance.com.

Author Links:

Coming November 30, 2021

Cozies also by Amy Lillard

Find more books by Amy Lillard here.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Finish The Series Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways Literary Escapes TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge Wisconsin Author Wisconsin Setting You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Last Call (Mack’s Bar Mysteries) by Allyson K. Abbott #Review / #Giveaway @KensingtonBooks

On Flashback Fridays I will share with you
the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.

Last Call (Mack’s Bar Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
Setting – Wisconsin
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Kensington (July 31, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 368 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496701747
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496701749
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B0776GL23W

A bar owner taps into her special sleuthing talents when a businessman is shot in this top-shelf mystery with drink recipes included.

Fresh off solving a murder that hit too close to home, Mack’s trust is shattered. But when Milwaukee police detective Duncan Albright asks for her help with a shooting, she can’t resist using her extra-perceptive senses to benefit others. It turns out the victim was the ruthless businessman their friend Mal was investigating undercover. And now Mal is missing—and his fingerprints are on the gun. Was his cover blown, forcing him into hiding? Or could he be a straight-up killer on the run? Mack doesn’t know what to believe anymore—except her own gut, which leads her to secret rooms, shocking revelations . . . and the fear that this could be her final round.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Bar owner Mackenzie “Mack” Dalton is brought into her first authorized case as a consultant for the Milwaukee Police. With Detective Duncan Albright by her side, they arrive at the scene of a shooting. The victim is a man undercover cop Mal O’Reilly has been investigating. Now Mal isn’t answering his phone and they have no idea where he is but his fingerprints are on the murder weapon. Mack and Duncan know they need to find their friend fast because his cover could be blown. Also, his family is in town to install an elevator in Mack’s Bar and they are going to want answers. Duncan and Mack can’t believe Mal killed a man and fled the scene.  But then Mack’s special talents lead her to something very surprising in the house where the shooting occurred that could blow the case wide open.


I have really enjoyed this series. Ms. Abbott’s characters are so realistic. Mack’s Synesthesia may be a little bit out there but it is a real condition which she has really fined tuned to give her the ability to help the police. Her romantic relationship with Duncan is heating up, but darn, I was team Mal, especially after we met his family in A Toast to Murder. I loved that their visit continued into this book. The bartenders, servers, and customers are all like Mack’s family and I know that feeling because my parents bought a bar when I was in Junior High and we lived in the apartment upstairs. Like Mack, I spent a lot of time downstairs helping in any way I could and got to know the regulars pretty darn well. We didn’t have a Capone Club but we did have some epic Euchre tournaments. Sadly, Mack had to deal with a lot of tragic events over the course of the series, and each helped to shape her into the fantastic person she is now.

The mystery in this book was marvelous. I am not going into a lot of details because I do not want to spoil anything. I will say Mack uses her gentle soul, her synesthesia, and her own history to get a witness to open up to help solve the case. I really liked that Mack really played a key role in her first case as a consultant and that she changes a lot of minds. I had thought Mack would take an incredible step, but she didn’t. She did take another step that I thought was a bit too soon, but there was a reason for that.

Sadly Last Call is truly the last call. This is the final book in this series that took place over a very traumatic year in Mack’s life.  It was a pleasure to meet her and everyone connected to her life, great people, and even the unsavory ones. I was late to the party on this series but I am so happy I found it and was able to read all six books and was able to share my reviews with you.

The author gave plenty of background in this book so new readers can read this book as a stand-alone, but I really encourage you to read the series from the start so you can get to know the people in Mack’s world from the start.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

 

 

Allyson K. Abbott is a pseudonym used by suspense writer Beth Amos. Beth has enjoyed a varied writing career that included a stint as a book reviewer and several years of nonfiction freelancing. Now she writes only fiction, and in stark contrast to her “day job” as an ER nurse, where she gets to save lives, the one common factor in her fiction, no matter what name it’s written under, is that someone always dies. Allyson K. Abbott is my little insider joke at having to pick yet another pseudonym. It’s not a coincidence the initials are what they are.  Check out her webpage here and on Facebook here. Allyson also writes as Annelise Ryan.

Kindle copies of these books go on sale quite often.
As I write this the first book is on sale for $1.99. 

I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy!

The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf
on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive 5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End November 26, 2021, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
The 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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Alphabet Soup A -Z Author Edition Challenge Cozy Wednesday Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways You Read How Many Books Challenge

Cozy Wednesday featuring Death at the Salon (A Daisy Thorne Mystery) by Louise R. Innes #Review / #Giveaway @KensingtonBooks @LouiseRoseInnes

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I am delighted to feature Death at the Salon by Louise R. Innes today!


Death at the Salon (A Daisy Thorne Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Surrey, England
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Kensington (March 30, 2021)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 256 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 149672982X
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496729828
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08CBM34BZ

After hairdresser Daisy Thorne finds her missing scissors in a customer’s back, she becomes the prime suspect in a murder . . .

When Ooh La La regular Mel Haverstock left the hair salon that morning, no one expected it would be her final parting. But when Daisy closes shop Saturday night, she finds her client dead as the mullet cut. Homicide is back in style in the quiet village of Edgemead in Surrey, England. But who would want to harm a hair on poor Mel’s head?

Suspicions higher than a beehive pile on Daisy when it’s revealed that she and Mel had tangled back in high school, and DNA evidence seems to color her guilty. Handsome DCI Paul McGuinness gives the hairstylist new accessories—a lovely pair of silver handcuffs. To clear her name, Daisy must highlight the real backstabber, or she’ll end up shaving heads in the prison barbershop.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Finding a dead client is harrowing. Finding a dead client with YOUR scissors in their back is murder! And you become the prime suspect! That is exactly what happened to hairdresser Daisy Thorne. The victim, Mel Haverstock, and Daisy have some old history that some people think gives her motive. That and some questionable DNA findings earn her a pair of shiny new bracelets. But Daisy is determined to wash DCI McGuinness right out of her hair and style the real killer off to prison herself or dye trying!


Daisy Thorne is an admirable protagonist. She is intelligent and can think on her feet. She took clearing her name seriously and she came up with a list of suspects and worked her way through them. Ms. Innes also surrounds her with a nice supporting cast. Her friends/employees all have their own little quirks and histories. The banter between them is fun and true to life. What I loved was the way they pulled together and followed Daisy’s lead. The bit of romantic tension between Daisy and Detective McGuiness is interesting and entertaining especially when he has to do his job. All the characters are cleverly written with plenty of room for growth.

The mystery was well-plotted, filled with twists, and set a very comfortable pace. The murder happens early in the story giving plenty of time for a thorough inquiry. I love the way it came to an end. Daisy came up with a great idea to flush out a killer and the good detective was on board and present as her plan played out.

The salon setting really works. It is something relatable to everyone here or across the pond. My son’s girlfriend is working to complete her cosmetology degree and I recently went to the salon attached to the school. My first haircut since the pandemic and my cancer treatments. It was almost exactly what Ms. Innes describes in this book, as were other salons I have visited over the years.

This second Daisy Thore Mystery was very entertaining. I am excited that the third, Death at Holly Lodge has been released. With its Christmas theme, it is perfect reading for this time of year. I hope to read and review it soon.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

Louise R. Innis writes contemporary romance, romantic suspense, and cozy mysteries. She lives in leafy Surrey in the United Kingdom with her family, and when she’s not writing, she can be found traipsing through the countryside or kayaking on the River Thames. Visit her on Facebook or Twitter or at louiseroseinnes.com.

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I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy!
The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old

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.

Follow Kensington Books on Twitter for 2 Bonus Entries!

LIKE Kensington Publishing on Facebook for 2 Bonus Entries!

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you share the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End November 24, 2021, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
The 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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Finish The Series Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways TBR Pile Challenge The Backlist Reader Challenge Wisconsin Author Wisconsin Setting You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – A Toast to Murder (Mack’s Bar Mysteries) by Allyson K. Abbott #Review / #Giveaway @KensingtonBooks

On Flashback Fridays I will share with you
the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.


A Toast to Murder (Mack’s Bar Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Kensington (July 25, 2017)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 352 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496701720
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496701725
Kindle ASIN ‏ : ‎ B01M6AOYKL

As the champagne flows on New Year’s Eve, a bar owner and her buddies try to solve a bouncer’s murder in a sparkling mystery with drink recipes included.

As Milwaukee counts down to New Year’s Eve, bar owner Mackenzie “Mack” Dalton has but one resolution—unmask the dangerous mastermind who has been taunting her and killed bouncer Gary Gunderson. Mack and her fellow barflies have fleshed out a suspect and arranged an invite-only party to put a cork in the murderer’s game for good. But when the clock strikes midnight and their suspect is found cold and stiff on the basement stairs, it seems the celebration may have come too soon. Now Mack must rely on her special talents to find the real criminal among the crowd of revelers—or someone won’t survive until last call . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

With New Year’s Day approaching bar owner Mackenzie “Mack” Dalton has decided she has just one New Year’s resolution . . . to get her life back! Two people close to her have been killed and she knows she is next. This dastardly letter writer has threatened her and her friends long enough. She has a plan to nab the killer right after the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s and put an end to the race against time she has been on long enough.

What could possibly go wrong?


Ms. Abbott has created a large dynamic and diverse cast of characters over the course of this series. I find them very easy to keep track of because of the excellent character development that has taken place. The cool thing is there is still room for them to grow. I love the Capone Club and its endeavors to solve mysteries. Mack has kept her personal case from most of them to try to keep them safe. She really does put everyone else first. Still on crutches she and the undercover cop pretending to be her boyfriend Mal work hard to chase down clues before the time runs out staving off another death.

What I really enjoy is virtually traveling with these characters to Milwaukee’s wonderful tourist attractions. In this book, we visit the Mitchell Domes, the Pabst Mansion, and the Milwaukee Museum all decked out in their holiday finery. They are all places I love to take my family. They also have perfect little nooks and crannies and dirt for Mack and Mal to look for clues. It was fun the last few books to go everywhere with them but being tied to a possible murder made things intense.

In past installments, there was always a primary mystery with the letter-writer mystery holding the secondary place. This time it had to be the main mystery to enable it to reach its satisfying conclusion. The author added plenty of twists and turns. Many involved Mack’s special Synaesthesia gift and others good old-fashioned legwork. With a long list of suspects, they had a quagmire of details to work through.

Also wrapped up at the end of this story was the romantic triangle of Mack, Duncan, and Mal, but I was pretty unhappy with the choice she made. I am curious to see how the relationship she has chosen works.

A Toast to Murder is a complex mystery with genuine characters. Having it set close to where I live and have traveled and the fact that I grew up in a bar environment too makes this series extra special for me. It was a Perfect Escape.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

Allyson K. Abbott is a pseudonym used by suspense writer Beth Amos. Beth has enjoyed a varied writing career that included a stint as a book reviewer and several years of nonfiction freelancing. Now she writes only fiction, and in stark contrast to her “day job” as an ER nurse, where she gets to save lives, the one common factor in her fiction, no matter what name it’s written under, is that someone always dies. Allyson K. Abbott is my little insider joke at having to pick yet another pseudonym. It’s not a coincidence the initials are what they are.  Check out her webpage here and on Facebook here. Allyson also writes as Annelise Ryan.

I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy!

The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf
on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive 5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End November 19, 2021, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
The 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.”

Posted in 2021 Reviews Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours New Release Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

An Eggnog to Die For (A Cape Cod Foodie Mystery) by Amy Pershing #Review / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour

Day 2
I apologize for not getting my review posted yesterday.
Doctor’s appointments have really been cutting into my days.
For more details be sure to read my Sunday Salon/Post post on Sunday.


An Eggnog to Die For (A Cape Cod Foodie Mystery)
by Amy Pershing

About An Eggnog to Die For

An Eggnog to Die For (A Cape Cod Foodie Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Cape Cod, Massachusetts
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Berkley (November 9, 2021)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 320 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0593199162
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0593199169
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08VRGNFST

Professional foodie Samantha Barnes has a simple Christmas list: a quiet holiday at home with her dog and a certain handsome harbormaster; no embarrassing viral videos; and no finding dead bodies. Unfortunately, she’s got family visiting, she’s spending a lot of time in front of the camera, and she’s just stumbled over the lifeless body of the town’s Santa Claus.

Plus, Sam’s plans for Christmas Eve are getting complicated. There’s the great eggnog debate among her very opinionated guests. There’s the “all edible” Christmas tree to decorate. And there’s her Feast of the Five Fishes prepare. Nonetheless, Sam finds herself once again in the role of sleuth. She needs to find out who slayed this Santa—but can she pull off a perfect feast and nab a killer?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

To say professional foodie Samantha Barnes has a lot on her list is an understatement this Christmas season. Her parents have arrived unexpectedly reporting Christmas in Florida is just not the same. Without a rental car, Sam becomes their chauffeur. She has articles to write and videos to make for her job at the Clarion. She also has a Christmas Eve dinner planned, a Feast of the Five Fishes, including eggnog for her family and friends. All that plus a Santa’s Seashore Selebration happening complete with a 5K Santa Stroll and Santa Trolley and Santa arriving at the harbor on Sam’s boyfriend’s boat with Jason decked out in an elf costume.

She wants to check the video for a new restaurant, The Ginger Jar, off her list, so they agree to do it after Santa’s big arrival. The taping went great but Sam finds a terrible gift on her way to the bathroom, a very shiny black boot, a hand clutching a manilla folder, all attached to a very dead Santa. She quickly realizes her Christmas List has gotten suddenly longer. She may need a miracle but she is going to get everything on her list checked off and track down the killer that struck down Santa Claus.


I fell hard for Samantha Barnes in the first book, A Side of Murder. She is such a smart sleuth and she has a terrific sense of humor. She is tall in stature and uses that trait wisely. In An Eggnog to Die For, we see where she gets her drive from. Her mother is like a steamroller when she gets an idea. It is best to get on board to get out of the way. She falls into her old reporter’s shoes quickly to help solve the murder even if it means questioning some dark individuals. Her father is more laid back, a real teddy bear. A man that brings balance to any situation is his own quiet way. I really enjoyed meeting Sam’s parents and am so glad they arrived for the holidays. Of course, the wonderful Diogi returns. Such a great doggie.

The other characters we met in the first book return but there are a couple of newcomers. Julie and Martin Bruni, the brother and sister are the owners of The Ginger Jar. a small plates and craft cocktail restaurant that has been a big hit with the younger crowd of Fair Harbor. Martin is the brains behind drinks like Caribbean Christmas Eggnog and Santa Clausmopolitan. Julie is a terrific chef serving up yummy oyster stew and peekytoe crab dip with wonton chips. I would love a place like that but sadly both owners are on the suspect list.

The author has reeled in a bunch of red herrings to distract and misdirect. Sam is an awesome multitasker juggling her dinner plans, work, and the murder. I really like the way she discusses her findings and theories with Jason. She does notice things other people miss. It was fun following the clues with Sam. The culprit was on my radar for a second or two but was dismissed only to circle back around as the clues really fell into place.

The setting of this series is something that really resonates with me. Sam inherited a wonderful home from her Aunt Ida. There is an ell where she lived her last days but the main part of the house needs work and in this story, we found it holds some treasures. It also has a spectacular view. The descriptions of the wonderful home made me so happy. Years ago when I was just starting my married life I would have loved to find a home like this and bring it back to its glory. Now I can get a taste of the renovations by slipping into Sam’s world.

Ms. Pershing has written a story that will get you in the Christmas spirit. The characters are well crafted and all feel like they could be neighbors and friends we could meet anywhere. The mystery was entertaining and fun. And the food . . . oh! the food! There are recipes for a delightful dinner at the end of the book and I plan to try them all as soon as my own personal chef/husband prepares them. Be sure to add An Eggnog To Die For to your Christmas reading lists.

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About Amy Pershing 


Amy Pershing, who spent every summer of her childhood on Cape Cod, was an editor, a restaurant reviewer and a journalist before leading employee communications at a global bank. A few years ago she waved goodbye to Wall Street to write full time. An Eggnog to Die For is the second of the Cape Cod Foodie mysteries featuring Samantha Barnes, a disgraced but resilient ex-chef who retreats home to Cape Cod where she finds herself juggling a new job as the local paper’s “Cape Cod Foodie,” a complicated love life, a posse of just-slightly-odd friends, a falling-down house, a ginormous puppy and a propensity for falling over dead bodies. Kirkus Reviews gave An Eggnog to Die For a starred review, saying, “A delightful sleuth, a complex mystery, and lovingly described cuisine: a winner for both foodies and mystery mavens.” A Side of Murder, the first of the Cape Cod Foodie mysteries, which Elizabeth Gilbert called “the freshest, funniest mystery I have ever read,” was the first book in the series.  The third, Murder Is No Picnic, will be published in May 2022.

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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.”