Feb 132019
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!

V.M. Burns has become one of my favorite authors.
I am so excited to share with you this second Dog Club Mystery today
as part of her Great Escapes Tour!

 

About the Book


The Puppy Who Knew Too Much (A Dog Club Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Lyrical Underground (February 12, 2019)
Paperback: 190 pages
ISBN-10: 1516107918
ISBN-13: 978-1516107919
Digital ASIN: B07D233MVK

Lilly Echosby and her toy poodle Aggie find a fresh start in Chattanooga, Tennessee, spoiled by the scent of murder . . .

Having solved the shooting death of her cheating husband, Lilly’s left behind the drama of Lighthouse Dunes, Indiana, to start over in the hometown of her best friend, Scarlett “Dixie” Jefferson. As she gets settled in her new rented house, Lilly gives Aggie, short for Agatha Christie, her own fresh start by enrolling her in the Eastern Tennessee Dog Club, where Dixie is a trainer.

But drama seems to hound Lilly like a persistent stray. Her cranky new neighbor appears unfamiliar with Southern hospitality and complains that Aggie barks too much and digs up his prized tulips. But what the poodle actually unearths is the buried body of a mysterious man who claimed ownership of the lost golden retriever Lilly recently rescued. Now it’s up to Lilly and Dixie to try to muzzle another murderer . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Lilly Echosby has left Indiana behind and followed her best friend Scarlett “Dixie” Jefferson to Tennessee. It took a while but a chance encounter helped Lilly finds not only a job but a house to rent that was in her budget and allowed her adorable toy poodle, Aggie. She is excited her daughter Stephanie is coming to visit to help her get settled. Lilly finds it refreshing how friendly everyone is until she meets her new neighbor. He is not happy about having another dog in the neighborhood. Her daughter also falls hard for a golden retriever found under Lilly’s deck. After rushing it to the vet and getting its injuries cared for she declares she won’t be giving it up without a fight.

When dear sweet Aggie digs up a body instead of a bone the neighbor is apoplectic and Lilly finds herself back on a suspect list. Stephanie calls in the cavalry, aka Joe, her new boyfriend, the one that helped clear her mom in Lighthouse Dunes. He, in turn, calls in a friend and they along with Dixie are all determined to find the real killer, especially after another body is found.

First, the cover is a little deceiving. The two standard poodles owned by Dixie and Lilly’s Aggie return in this story where they all make a new friend. Aggie does start obedience classes with Dixie where a variety of dogs come together.

Lilly can’t catch a break but she has the perseverance to keep moving forward. New house, new job, new people in her life, and another murderer on the loose. She quickly finds new friends at her job and they are so supportive. I loved her new boss, Linda Kay, and love that we have something in common. The author does such an excellent job with all the characters. They have depth and something about them that draws the reader in and pushes us to want to know them better. Even the cantankerous neighbor and the man that used to have Lilly’s job.

Moving Lilly to Tennessee adds a very interesting twist. She was used to the flatlands of Indiana and Dixie lives on a mountain top with a fantastic view. The road to get there was winding and narrow and made Lily very nervous with its huge dropoffs. She is also very unfamiliar with the area and dependent on her GPS. Each place was nicely described as we readers saw it through Lilly’s eyes for the first time right along with her.

The mystery was not easy to solve with the requisite twists and turns. What I love and what makes this story unique in the part the canines play in solving it all. The motives were very unclear and the clues weren’t falling into place either until the wonderful, surprising, and exciting ending.

Well-plotted and written this story was hard to put down. A complex mystery with its share of Southern charm and humor. Right in Chapter 1 Lilly experiences her first “Bless Your Heart” which she learned was “Southern-speak for “You’re an idiot.” I really enjoy the way V.M. Burns tells a story. The care she takes with her characters is commendable and her love of dogs glows within the pages.

I highly recommend this series. I can’t wait for book #3!

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Check out my review of In The Dog House here.

 

About the Author

V.M. Burns was born in Northwestern Indiana and spent many years in Southwestern Michigan on the Lake Michigan shoreline. She is a lover of dogs, British historic cozies, and scones with clotted cream. After many years in the Midwest, she went in search of milder winters and currently lives in Eastern Tennessee with her poodles. Her debut novel, The Plot is Murder was nominated for a 2017 Agatha Award for Best First Novel. Valerie is a member of Mystery Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, and a lifetime member of  Sisters in Crime. Readers can learn more by visiting her website at vmburns.com

Author Links:  Website   Facebook  Twitter:  @vmburns

Purchase Links – Amazon –  Barnes & Noble – IndieBound:  – Books-A-Million – Kobo


Also by V.M. Burns

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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.”

Feb 062019
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I am so excited to share this book with you today! It will be released on February 26! 


No Good Tea Goes Unpunished (Seaside Café Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – North Carolina
Sourcebooks Landmark (February 26, 2019)
Hardcover: 288 pages
ISBN-10: 1492671576
ISBN-13: 978-1492671572
Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
ISBN-10: 1492664782
ISBN-13: 978-1492664789
Kindle ASIN: B07HJRTJ7Q

Don’t marry into murder…

Catering her childhood friend’s beachfront wedding was a dream come true for Everly Swan—and, with hundreds of guests in attendance, great exposure for her new iced tea shop and café. But when the well-to-do groom is found floating facedown in the surf, the locals of Charm, North Carolina, turn their suspicions to his new bride. Could she have been so desperate to lay her hands on his fortune that she arranged for his murder before they even set off on their honeymoon?

Everly knows her love-struck friend couldn’t be behind the murder, but with clues pointing in several directions, she can’t decide which wedding guest is the most likely culprit. Meanwhile, the frustratingly handsome Detective Hays has made it clear that Everly should stay out of the investigation altogether. But with a killer on the loose and a feeling that someone is watching her café very closely, Everly knows that if she can’t solve this murder soon, her cake might be iced for good.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Everly Swan is back and catering the wedding a wedding right outside her new tea shop on the beach. The party is off to a great start until the groom goes missing. He is found dead bobbing in the surf. The first suspect is the new bride, a childhood friend of Everly’s. The groom had a very successful business and now what was his is now hers. When his business partner is attacked she comes under greater scrutiny. Everly sees many other suspects on and off the guest list, but she soon becomes the target of the killer who is sending her clear messages to butt out or she could be next. Hunky Detective Hays begs her to leave the investigating to him as he does everything he can to keep her safe. She just can’t help herself though, it seems each glass of tea comes with a little bit of snooping until the killer gets too close.

Another fine story from Bree Baker.

We escape to Charm, North Carolina. A town that has completely charmed me with its beach, sand, sun, iced tea, a bookstore, little libraries, and delightful residents. Bree is finding her place back in town running her own business. Her aunts are right down the beach at the Blessed Bee honey shop. They have enlisted Bree’s help to make a honey education video for an online contest and they have some extreme plans for the 3-minute piece. (Seriously Laugh Out Loud Funny.) She also has a blast from her past in cowboy boots hot on her flip-flops. All that on top of the wedding reception she is in charge of already had her glass already full to the brim and now she has a murder to investigate and a killer on her tail.

This was such a fun read. I loved traveling along the beach with Everly either on a nice stroll or tooling around in her golf cart. She opens her home to her friend in her grief, but all of the wedding guests have been detained in Charm until the killer is caught. Everly’s iced tea shop becomes the place to gather which gives readers a chance to know the most important visitors better. The author does an excellent job of bringing these characters to life. I really identified with the groom’s mother as she deals with the loss of her son. Losing a child is so hard. I really liked her plans for the memorial service even though the city council would not approve them.

The story has a rapid pace and I was totally captivated from start to finish. I loved the way the story was told, mayhem and humor in the exact right amounts. Twists and turns lead to a very exciting conclusion.

Wonderful characters with great dialogue and a well-plotted mystery come together to give readers a splendid story to enjoy. Just like when I finished book 1, Live and Let Chai, I want more!! More Bree, more Aunt Clara, and Aunt Fran, more Detective Hays, and more of the charming life in Charm, North Carolina! I can’t wait for my next trip.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

Bree Baker is a Midwestern writer, obsessed with small-town high jinks, sweet tea, and the sea. She’s been telling stories to her family, friends, and strangers for as long as she can remember, and more often than not, those stories feature a warm ocean breeze and a recipe she’s sure to ruin. Now, she’s working on those fancy cooking skills and dreaming up adventures for the Seaside Cafe mysteries. Bree is a member of Sisters in Crime, International Thriller Writers and the Romance Writers of America. She is represented by Jill Marsal of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.

Find out more on her website here. 


I am giving away my paperback review copy!

The 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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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.”

Jan 302019
 


Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!
I am so happy to Welcome Sherry Harris to Escape With Dollycas today!

Hi Sherry,

Tell us a little bit about yourself. I write the Agatha Award nominated Sarah Winston Garage Sale mysteries and the upcoming Chloe Jackson Redneck Riviera mysteries set on the beautiful beaches of the panhandle of Florida. The sixth book in the series, The Gun Also Rises, that was released yesterday.

What are three things most people don’t know about you? I was on Romper Room when I was four – yep I’m that old. I’ve lived in ten different cities/towns. I was the editor in chief of my high school year book.

What is the first book you remember reading? Betsy Tacy by Maud Hart Lovelace

What are you reading now? I just finished Dear Mrs. Bird by A. J. Pearce. A wonderful story that made me cry.

What made you decide you want to write? I’ve always loved reading and writing stories. One of my early influences were the books by Maud Hart Lovelace. Her protagonist Betsy wanted to be a writer. I wanted to be Betsy so I too wanted to write.

Do you have a special place you like to write? I usually write in my office on the second story of our house. One window looks out at my neighbor’s house and the other at a patch of woods.

Do you write at the same day every day? I usually write in the afternoon because I’m not a morning person. However, the closer I am to a deadline the more you’ll find me writing in the morning too.

Where do the ideas for your books come from? All different places. The plot for the second book, The Longest Yard Sale, is based on a crime that was committed when we were stationed at F.E.Warren Air Force Base in Cheyenne, Wyoming.

What books have most inspired you? As I mentioned above the books by Maud Hart Lovelace, Jackdaws by Ken Follett, and anything by Julia Spencer Fleming.

Is there anything about writing you find most challenging? Getting over the fear that someday I’m going to sit at my computer and no words will come out. It’s never happened, but the possibility makes me shudder.

What do you think makes a good story? It starts with the characters—writing interesting people who readers will want to root for and against. Then comes the plot and finding a fresh creative way to write a mystery.

Which, of all your characters, do you think is the most like you? It has to be my protagonist Sarah Winston. We both love garage sales and were both military spouses. Fortunately, unlike Sarah, I’ve never stumbled across a dead body.

Why did you pick your particular genre? Growing up my house was filled with mysteries, thrillers, and romantic suspense. Now that I think about it my house is still filled with all three!

What makes your books different from others out there in this genre? Sarah Winston has ties to the military base which is right next to the town of Ellington, Massachusetts. Part of the action of each book takes place on the military base. It’s a way to give a bit of insight on what it’s like to be a military spouse and also life on a base.

What’s next on the horizon for you? I’m currently writing the first book in a new series—the Chloe Jackson Redneck Riviera mysteries which are set on the beautiful, sandy beaches along the Gulf coast of Florida. Then it is back to writing the ninth book in the Sarah Winston series.

Thank you so much for visiting today, Sherry. I really appreciate it. I am looking forward to your new series and more Sarah! 

Keep reading for my thoughts on The Gun Also Rises.


The Gun Also Rises
(A Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery)
by Sherry Harris

 

About the Book

 

The Gun Also Rises (A Sarah W. Garage Sale Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
Setting – Massachusetts
Kensington (January 29, 2019)
Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
ISBN-10: 1496716965
ISBN-13: 978-1496716965
Digital ASIN: B07CWF942Q

TO RECOVER A PRICELESS MANUSCRIPT . . .

A wealthy widow has asked Sarah Winston to sell her massive collection of mysteries through her garage sale business. While sorting through piles of books stashed in the woman’s attic, Sarah is amazed to discover a case of lost Hemingway stories, stolen from a train in Paris back in 1922. How did they end up in Belle Winthrop Granville’s attic in Ellington, Massachusetts, almost one hundred years later?

WILL SARAH HAVE TO PAY WITH HER LIFE?

Before Sarah can get any answers, Belle is assaulted, the case is stolen, a maid is killed, and Sarah herself is dodging bullets. And when rumors spread that Belle has a limited edition of The Sun Also Rises in her house, Sarah is soon mixed up with a mobster, the fanatical League of Literary Treasure Hunters, and a hard-to-read rare book dealer. With someone willing to kill for the Hemingway, Sarah has to race to catch the culprit—or the bell may toll for her . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

History and mystery collide as Sherry Harris gives her spin on the missing papers of Ernest Hemingway lost in 1922. Garage Sale pro Sarah Winston is hired to help get Belle Winthrop Granville book collection ready for sale. As she is cataloging the vast collection she makes a shocking discovery. A case filled with what appears to be Hemingway’s lost manuscripts. Before the papers can be verified they are stolen and Granville’s maid is killed and shots are fired at Sarah.

The events lead to rumors that a rare edition of The Sun Also Rises is also hidden on the premises bringing the League of Literary Treasure Hunters, a rare book dealer, and the press to Ellington, Massachusetts. Sarah is forced out of her home and knows the only way for things to get back to normal is to find the killer before more bodies fall including hers.

This has become one of my favorite cozy mystery series. I love spending time with Sarah as she chases all around town for her garage sales and murder investigations. Her life has been in flux with her divorce, moving off the base, getting her business off the ground and trying to start life over as a single woman. He ex has now left the state so her personal life can move forward with Seth and that made me very happy.

In addition to her huge project for Belle Winthrop Granville and finding a thief and a killer, Sarah is organizing a fundraiser to help a soldier bring a dog he adopted in Afghanistan to the states. He has been suffering PTSD since his last deployment and his friends and family feel bringing this dog home may make things easier. The connection of Sarah to the Air Force Base and the awareness the author brings to military life and strife is a treasured part of all the books in this series. As a military wife herself her depictions are believable.

The characters Ms. Harris brings to life leap off the pages. She gives us people to root for along with the questionable suspects. Sarah and her friends are all engaging and relatable. They have a camaraderie that is refreshing. They always have her back.

I loved the way the author brought Hemingway history into the story. The League of Literary Treasure Hunters were an interesting crew that didn’t give up. They truly took over the town and made Sarah’s life miserable. I really felt bad for her. I loved her unstoppable energy though in her quest to find the papers and the killer. Her perseverance had no bounds.

Sarah Winston is a fantastic protagonist. This story is a wonderful addition to the series. I can’t wait for the next installment. Let’s Fake A Deal will be released July 30.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

About the Author

 

Agatha Award-nominated author, Sherry Harris, started bargain hunting in second grade at her best friend’s yard sale. She honed her bartering skills as she moved around the country while her husband served in the Air Force. Sherry uses her love of garage sales, her life as a military spouse, and her time living in Massachusetts as inspiration for the Sarah Winston Garage Sale series.

Author Links

Webpage – Facebook – Twitter – GoodReads  – Pinterest 

Purchase Links – Amazon    B&NKoboGoogle Play IndieBound


Praise for The Gun Also Rises
(A Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery)
by Sherry Harris

Buckle your seatbelt for a humorous and fast-paced romp with Sarah in The Gun Also Rises.
~The Avid Reader

The Gun Also Rises is a fantastic cozy mystery that is full of twists, turns, distractions, and red herrings. There are suspenseful, humorous, and heartbreaking moments that are sure to keep the reader engaged.
~Sapphyria’s Books

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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.”

Jan 232019
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I am excited to share with you the 1st book
in this new cozy series from Sarah Fox today!


Wine and Punishment (A Literary Pub Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Vermont
Kensington (December 18, 2018)
Hardcover: 352 pages
ISBN-10: 1496718682
ISBN-13: 978-1496718686
Kindle ASIN: B07BVDVNT8

In the first in an engaging new mystery series from USA Today bestselling author Sarah Fox, the owner of a charming literary pub finds her fresh start on the rocks thanks to a case of murder.

Booklover Sadie Coleman knows that in life, as in fiction, the right setting can make a world of difference. The small town of Shady Creek, Vermont, seems like the perfect place to start over after losing her Boston job to a merger and her relationship to her ex’s gambling addiction. She’s bought and redecorated the old grist mill pub, transforming the Inkwell into a cozy spot where tourists and regulars alike can enjoy a pint or a literary-themed cocktail, or join one of several book clubs.

Little by little, Sadie is adjusting to the rhythms of her new home. Fall in Shady Creek is bookmarked by the much-anticipated Autumn Festival, complete with a pumpkin catapult competition and pie bake-off. Unfortunately, the season also brings an unwelcome visitor—Sadie’s ex, Eric, who’s angling for a second chance . . .

Before Sadie can tell Eric to leave, he’s found dead near the Inkwell. When the local antique shop catches fire on the same night, it’s clear the town is harboring at least one unsavory character. Now, with her Aunt Gilda, her friend Shontelle, and the pub’s patrons all in the mix, Sadie must uncover the truth . . . before a killer declares last call.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

It’s Autumn in Shady Creek, Vermont and Sadie Coleman is excited to take part in the yearly festival. You see, she is new in town and has turned the old grist mill pub into a book lover’s delight. The Inkwell is the perfect place to relax with friends or hold your book club meeting. Sadie pushed out by a merger in her old job and moving on after breaking up with her gambling lying ex is ready to make herself at home in this wonderful little town. Her literary-themed cocktails have been well received and she is anxious to feature them in her booth at the festival.

Happily shelving her past she has made herself at home. Then she is shocked to learn Eric, he ex, is in town. She avoids him the first night and goes to a birthday party for her Aunt Gilda. On the way home, she is diverted by a huge fire at the local antique shop. She almost forgets about Eric being in town. But before they can meet he is found dead in a culvert near the pub. Is his death connected to the fire? What would he come all this way to see her now? With more questions than answers, she decides to keep her ears open and her eyes peeled in hopes of catching the killer and throwing the book at them.

I absolutely love the setting of this book. A pub full of books in Vermont. The pub is unique, its little footbridge charming and Shady Creek sounds absolutely delightful. Sans the fire and the murder, of course.

I really like Sadie. She has a great vision and the determination to see it through. She is surrounded by a great cast. Her Aunt Gilda is totally supportive and willing to help Sadie in any way she can. The same with her friend Shontelle. Her two employees, Damien and Melanie, are familiar with the area and the festival and want Sadie to succeed. Then there is Grayson Blake, owner of the Spirit Hill Brewery. He and Sadie get off to a very rocky start. Everyone thinks he is a wonderful man, Sadie just doesn’t see it. In fact, she believes he is responsible for some dastardly deeds like slashing her tires and egging the pub. Sadie also has a frisky feline named Wimsey. I feel Ms. Fox has barely opened the books on these characters. She has left them plenty of room to grow.

I enjoyed the way the author penned this mystery. Twists galore. I loved that the lead detective was a woman and that while she questioned Sadie thoroughly, she didn’t zero in on Sadie as her main suspect. I will say the killer was so far off my radar they were never even considered. BAM, I was right there with Sadie, completely surprised and scared for our new protagonist. Great job, Sarah Fox!

This series is off to an excellent start. I want to get to know these characters better and I definitely want to spend more time at the book filled Inkwell pub. I know there is a mystery book club starting there soon and I can’t wait to see if that plays into this author’s next mystery.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

Sarah Fox is the author of the Music Lover’s Mystery series and the USA Today bestselling Pancake House Mystery series. When not writing novels or working as a legal writer, she can often be found reading her way through a stack of books or spending time outdoors with her English Springer Spaniel. Sarah lives in British Columbia and is a member of Crime Writers of Canada. Visit her online at AuthorSarahFox.com.

Also by Sarah Fox


Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to give away!
The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US mailing address.

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!

Sign Up for Sarah Fox’s Newsletter for 5 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 receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 6, 2019, 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.”

Jan 162019
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!

Today I am happy to feature James J. Cudney’s Academic Curveball
as part of his Great Escapes Virtual Book Tour!

Academic Curveball (Braxton Campus Mysteries)
by James J. Cudney

About the Book


Academic Curveball (Braxton Campus Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Independently Published (October 14, 2018)
Paperback: 281 pages
ISBN-10: 172877876X
ISBN-13: 978-1728778761
Digital ASIN: B07HMYSQFH

When Kellan Ayrwick returns home for his father’s retirement, he finds a dead body in Diamond Hall’s stairwell.

Unfortunately, Kellan has a connection to the victim, and so do several members of his family. Soon after, the college’s athletic program receives mysterious donations, a nasty blog denounces his father and someone attempts to change students’ grades.

Someone is playing games on campus, but none of the facts add up.

With the help of his eccentric and trouble-making nana, Kellan tries to stay out of the sheriff’s way. But who is behind the murder?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

We meet Kellan Ayrwick, who works on true crime dramas in Hollywood. He has come home to attend his father’s retirement party and meet with a woman who has done some research for an upcoming season on his television show. Near the end of the party, Kellan makes a tragic discovery. One of the professors appears to have fallen to her death down a flight of stairs. Evidence quickly points to murder and the top suspects include people close to Kellan. Kellan is encouraged to do a little investigating and the finds one curve after another before he hits it out of the park and uncovers whodunit.

We rarely have male protagonists in cozy mysteries and I liked Kellan right away. A single dad living and working in California. He is clearly not happy with his boss. His relationship with his parents is complicated, they are a unique pair, but he sure loves his Nana and their relationship was so heartwarming. Kellan is smart, funny and sarcastic is a delightful way. He comes across as very laid back and confident. His arrival home and the subsequent murder lands him right in the middle of everything going on at the college.

The author has written a mystery that encompasses a wide variety of people. Professors, students, and staff of the Braxton Campus are all entangled in the murder investigation. Another death hits close to Kellan and his family and I was heartbroken when he found the body. All of the characters feel real and believable. Campus life is truly portrayed with an emphasis on the athletic department. Twists and turns kept me guessing right up until the end.

The pace was good but it was wordy in places and that bogged it down a bit. I think a little tightening up would make it fly. The character development was great and left plenty of room for growth. I hope to get to know Kellan’s daughter better in future stories. The world building clearly gave me a sense of time and place.

This series is off to a wonderful start. I found the story entertaining and enjoyable. I look forward to future installments.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

James is my given name, but most folks call me Jay. I live in New York City, grew up on Long Island, and graduated from Moravian College with a degree in English literature. I spent fifteen years building a technology career in the retail, sports, media, and entertainment industries. I enjoyed my job, but a passion for books and stories had been missing for far too long. I’m a voracious reader in my favorite genres (thriller, suspense, contemporary, mystery, and historical fiction), as books transport me to a different world where I can immerse myself in so many fantastic cultures and places. I’m an avid genealogist who hopes to visit all the German, Scottish, Irish, and British villages my ancestors emigrated from in the 18th and 19th centuries. I frequently blog and publish book reviews on everything I read at ThisIsMyTruthNow via WordPress.

Writing has been a part of my life as much as my heart, my mind, and my body. I decided to pursue my passion by dusting off the creativity inside my head and drafting outlines for several novels. I quickly realized I was back in my element growing happier and more excited with life each day. My goal in writing is to connect with readers who want to be part of great stories and who enjoy interacting with authors. To get a strong picture of who I am, check out my author website or my blog. It’s full of humor and eccentricity, sharing connections with everyone I follow—all in the hope of building a network of friends across the world.

When I completed the first book, Watching Glass Shatter, I knew I’d stumbled upon my passion again, suddenly dreaming up characters, plots, and settings all day long. I chose my second novel, Father Figure, through a poll on my blog where I let everyone vote for their favorite plot and character summaries. It is with my third book, Academic Curveball,, the first in the Braxton Campus Mysteries, where I immersed myself in a college campus full of so much activity, I could hardly stop thinking about new murder scenes or character relationships to finish writing the current story. Come join in the fun!

Praise for Academic Curveball (Braxton Campus Mysteries)
by James J. Cudney

. . . a nice, significant mutation in the main character stereotype and succeed to give us a very, very nice and original piece of cozy mystery.
~Mythical Books

The main characters are a lot of fun. They’re well-rounded, well-thought-out, complex, and full of personality. I just love Nana D!
~Valerie’s Musings

The mystery is plausible, with twists and turns galore. The multiple red herrings kept me guessing, and I was surprised by whodunit.
~Jane Reads

This book had a little bit of everything. There was humor, tension, suspense, sarcasm, and family drama all rolled into a great book.
~MJB Reviewers

I enjoyed the college setting of Academic Curveball, and it was a nice change of pace to read a cozy featuring a male sleuth.
~The Book’s the Thing

Author Links

Website    Blog

Amazon    Twitter    Author Facebook    Series Facebook

Bookbub    Instagram    Goodreads    LinkedIn    Pinterest

 

Purchase Links

List of Books

Watching Glass Shatter (October 2017)

Father Figure (April 2018)

Braxton Campus Mysteries

Academic Curveball – #1 (October 2018)

Broken Heart Attack – #2 (November 2018)

Flower Power Trip – #3 (Early 2019)

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ACADEMIC CURVEBALL TOUR PARTICIPANTS
January 7 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – GUEST POST
January 7 – Mythical Books – REVIEW
January 7 – Here’s How It Happened – SPOTLIGHT
January 8 – Books,Dreams,Life – SPOTLIGHT (No Post)
January 8 – Teresa Trent Author Blog – SPOTLIGHT
January 9 – Valerie’s Musings – REVIEW
January 9 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
January 9 – Bobo’s Book Bank – SPOTLIGHT
January 10 – Jane Reads – REVIEW
January 10 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT
January 11 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
January 12 – MJB Reviewers – REVIEW
January 12 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT
January 13 – Mallory Heart’s Cozies – REVIEW
January 14 – Carla Loves To Read – CHARACTER GUEST POST
January 14 – The Book’s the Thing – REVIEW
January 15 – My Reading Journeys – SPOTLIGHT
January 15 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
January 15 – Ruff Drafts – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
January 16 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

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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.”

Jan 092019
 

I am thrilled to welcome Tracy Weber back to Escape With Dollycas
for the first Cozy Wednesday of 2019! 

She is sharing news and wants our input!

Hi Everyone,

I have to admit, the launch of my sixth Downward Dog Mystery is bittersweet.  I’m delighted in every way possible with Murder Likes It Hot.  The cover is fantastic, I’ve wanted to use the title forever, and Kate finally finds the maturity and contentment I always hoped she would.  Plus, I got to name two characters—rats, no less!—after two of my favorite people, Ed and Lonnie.

But even as I celebrate the birth of my newest written child, I’m preparing to say goodbye to the series, at least for now.

I was about to start the final revisions of Murder Likes It Hot when I received some surprising news: My publisher, Midnight Ink, is closing its doors this summer.  To be honest, I’m luckier than many of my Inker brothers and sisters.  Since I was at the end of my second three-book contract, I was well aware that this might be the final installment of the series. So I closed with an ending meant to satisfy readers. No cliffhangers here! 😉

Readers who have read the entire series know how much Kate has changed since her beard-phobic, commitment-averse, serenity-impaired beginning.  She’s still not a perfect yogi, and she struggles to live up to her ideals every day. But Bella, her German shepherd sidekick, has mellowed her. Michael, her partner, has given her stability. And finding justice for a half-dozen murder victims has helped her discover her life’s purpose. I hope my readers will cheer her on and miss her antics as much as I will.

Many of my readers have asked me, what will happen next, both for my writing career and for Kate?

Answer? I honestly don’t know.

My agent is trying to get the rights back to earlier books in the series. If she’s successful, I’ll self-publish them and—if there’s enough reader interest—get started writing Book 7 in the series.  If not, I have an idea for a new series that I plan to start working on soon.

My life lately has been filled with change. Last year I sold my yoga studio, Whole Life Yoga. This past December, I graduated from the Northwest School of Canine Studies.  I’m a third of the way through a certificate program in applied animal behavior at the University of Washington.  Why wouldn’t my new interests find their way to a new series?

I think it would be a total kick to write a series starring an animal behaviorist, and Rainbow, a new character introduced in Murder Likes It Hot, would be a fabulous sleuth. She’s whispering story ideas in my ear, just like Kate did eight years ago.  The question is, should I write them down?

So, dear readers, what do you think?  Is this an end, or simply a new beginning?  I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

And don’t forget to give Murder Likes It Hot a read.  I hope you love it!

~Tracy

Thank you, Tracy, for visiting today. I am very excited about where your future may take you. 

Now let me give you my thoughts on Murder Likes It Hot.

Murder Likes It Hot (A Downward Dog Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
Setting – Washington State
Midnight Ink (January 8, 2019)
Paperback: 288 pages
ISBN-10: 0738750697
ISBN-13: 978-0738750699
Kindle ASIN: B07HL1HPJ5

Yogini and amateur sleuth Kate Davidson will need more than Warrior Pose to solve a murder and help homeless teens

Newly married yoga instructor Kate Davidson feels stuck in low-energy limbo, despite her high-energy life. She’s trying to conceive a child, keep her studio afloat now that the ultra-cheap Some Like It Hot Yoga studio has opened across the street, and start a yoga program at a local resource center for homeless youth.

When a center employee is found dead, Kate sets aside her fertility and financial woes to delve into the world of teenage homelessness. While digging for clues with her German shepherd Bella, Kate discovers that family can be formed by bonds stronger than shared DNA, and she must defend it at all costs.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Kate and Michael’s wedded bliss is facing a tough time. They both want a child so much but have been unable to conceive and fertility treatments are so expensive. Add to that, there is a new yoga studio opening up right across the street from Kate’s studio, so she is worried about keeping her clients and her classes full. She has been asked to teach yoga at a local youth center that gives homeless teens a place to spend their days and to get help and education to get them off the streets. She accepts to add some extra cash to their baby fund.

After only 2 classes the director of the center is killed and one of her teenage students is the prime suspect. Kate has only just met the girl and knows just a snippet of the home life she ran away from, but a killer, there is just no way. With a little bit of help from best friend Rene and hubby Michael, Kate sets out to uncover the real killer.

Deep breaths, this story is more than a cozy mystery. It is an emotional story not only for our amateur sleuth but a teenager who goes by the name of Rainbow.

Tracy Weber really took a hold of my heart with this story just like she did the last. (If you have read Pre-Meditated Murder, you absolutely must.) Her recurring characters were already fleshed out and real, yet with each new installment, I grow to love them even more. They face real everyday problems just like you and me or people we all know, and then they add murder to the mix. German shepherd Bella always is a shining star no matter what her people are dealing with too.

This time Weber also introduces readers to some incredible new characters.  The homeless teens and the staff at the center and even two unusual pets. These characters, flawed and complex, are very well written and easily draw us in.

Kate throws herself into this mystery not only to solve it but to try to take her mind off her personal situations. The author really twists things up to not only drop the clues necessary but also showing us a side of Kate we are not used to seeing. I was totally captured by this story from the first page to the last.

I was reaching for the tissues at the superb ending. An ending not only for this book but probably the series. I feel these characters have been left in a good place, but my fingers are crossed that it will not be the last we see of them.

I have loved this series from the beginning. The books really need to be read in order to see the journey Kate has taken over the entire series. I highly recommend each and every one.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Read my review of Pre-Meditated Murder here

Tracy Weber is a certified yoga therapist, the director of Whole Life Yoga Teacher Training, and the author of the award-winning Downward Dog Mysteries series.  She loves sharing her passions for yoga and animals in any way possible.

Tracy and her husband Marc live in Seattle with their precocious German shepherd, Ana. When she’s not writing, Tracy spends her time teaching yoga, trying to corral Ana, and sipping Blackthorn cider at her favorite ale house.

For more information on Tracy’s writing, visit her author website: http://TracyWeberAuthor.com/.


Thanks to the author I have 1 copy to give away!

The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US mailing address.

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.

.Leave a comment for the author for 5 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 receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End January 23, 2019, 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.”

Dec 192018
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I am excited to share my thoughts on the latest Maine Clambake Mystery today!


Steamed Open (A Maine Clambake Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
7th in Series
Setting – Maine
Kensington (December 18, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 1496717945
ISBN-13: 978-1496717948
Kindle ASIN: B07BV3RCDG

It’s summertime in Busman’s Harbor, Maine, and the clamming is easy—or it was until a mysterious new neighbor blocks access to the beach, cutting off the Snowden Family Clambake’s supply. Julia Snowden is just one of many townspeople angered by Bartholomew Frick’s decision. But which one of them was angry enough to kill?

Beachcombers, lighthouse buffs, and clammers are outraged after Frick puts up a gate in front of his newly inherited mansion. When Julia urges him to reconsider, she’s the last to see him alive—except the person who stabs him in the neck with a clam rake. As she pores through a long list of suspects, Julia meets disgruntled employees, rival heirs, and a pair of tourists determined to visit every lighthouse in America. They all have secrets, and Julia will have to work fast to expose the guilty party—or see this season’s clam harvest dry up for good.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Busman’s Harbor, Maine is in an uproar as Bartholomew Frick shuts down Sea Glass Beach access on a property he is set to inherit from the much-beloved resident Heloise “Lou” Herrickson. Julia is worried about having enough crabs for their Snowden Family Clambake’s and about the clammers that are losing their income. The tourists aren’t happy either especially a couple that was booked to spend a few nights in the nearby lighthouse. Soon after Julia tries to meet with the man to try to come up a plan to reopen the beach he is found dead. There are plenty of suspects as he had angered plenty of people. Just who was mad enough to commit murder? Julia plans to find out.

It was so nice to escape to Maine in the summertime as the cold weather here tries to chill us to the bone.

This time in addition to the beach being closed off preliminary plans have been drawn for repairing and renovating Windsholme, the mansion on Morrow Island that been empty since the 1920s. The mansion on the beach that Bartholomew Frick was inheriting was built by the same builder so the architect and designer are anxious to get a peek as they continue to finalize the plan. Julia and her boyfriend Chris are having some issues but she opens her will finally open up and tell her more about the secret she knows he is keeping.

This was a really fast read for me. The death of “Lou” Herrickson sets off a chain of events that had my pages absolutely flying. Her family tree and her will designations were very surprising to the people of Busman’s Harbor.

All my favorite characters were back and some new characters that definitely fit the “quirky” definition were introduced. One couple traveling by RV is trying to see or sleep in all the lighthouses in the U.S. What a fun idea!

I liked that we delve into Chris’ past in this story and start to understand him better. He has had a complicated life and the author is finally allowing Julia and us readers in on his past.

The entire story is very well-written with subplots the blend perfectly into the main plot. Twists, turns, and some exciting moments take place as Julia does her best to solve this mystery.  There is a clear “edge of your seat” moment near the end that had my heart racing.

I love the way Barbara Ross tells a story. She drew me in, set a brisk pace, and took me on a wonderful little trip complete with delicious food descriptions (with recipes) and a top-shelf mystery.

Each book in this series can be read on its own but for maximum enjoyment, I recommend reading them in order.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent


About The Author

Barbara Ross is the author of the Maine Clambake Mysteries, including the Agatha-nominated Best Contemporary Novel Clammed Up, as well as Boiled Over, Musseled Out, Fogged Inn, Iced Under and Stowed Away Steamed Open is the latest book in this series. Her story “Nogged Off” appears in the holiday novella collection Eggnog Murder along with stories by Leslie Meier and Lee Hollis. Barbara blogs with the Wicked Cozy Authors and Maine Crime Writers. In the summer, she writes on her big front porch overlooking the water in Boothbay Harbor, Maine. You can visit her website at http://www.maineclambakemysteries.com


 


Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to give away!
The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US mailing address.

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!

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

Sign Up for Barbara’s Newsletter for 5 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 January 2, 2019, 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.”

Dec 122018
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I am so excited to have Debra H. Goldstein drop by for a visit!

Writers – Creatures of Habit or Not? by Debra H. Goldstein

Writers often claim to be creatures of habit. Their habits may be tied to the means of writing – on a computer, legal pad with special pens, or via dictation; the location where the writing takes place – at the beach, the mountains, in a dark room, or in a room with wide open windows; and, whether there is absolute silence or blaring music. Some writers, the planners, can’t produce a word until every nuance of a piece is outlined while others, known as pantsters, write strictly from the seat of their pants. I wish I could tell you that I am a creature of habit, but I’m not. I write like I cook. Differently, every time even if I am recreating the same dish.

One would think as a former litigator and judge, my writing habits would be unimaginative. That I would outline every word and idea, much like Jeffrey Deaver does. I outlined the beginning and ending of my first book, 2012 IPPY award-winning Maze in Blue, a mystery set on the University of Michigan in the 1970’s, but the middle flowed, like magic, through my fingers to the keys of a computer sitting on a desk in my home office. I attributed my writing to the character’s voices leading me through their story. The only thing necessary for the words to pour out of me was playing the soundtracks from 1776 and They’re Playing Our Song repetitively in the background.

The same songs and physical location didn’t work for my second book. To write Should Have Played Poker: a Carrie Martin and the Mah Jongg Players Mystery, I took my laptop and sat in an oversized chair in my living room. Century old furniture, which once belonged to my parents or grandparents, interspersed with modern cherry wood floors and an orange, gold, and blue carpet brought me a sense of peace that allowed me to bring new life to the characters from a short story published in 2010. I occasionally played folk songs and soft rock hits from the 60’s and 70’s, but for the most part, I wrote and rewrote in silence. It was the ambiance of the room that enabled me to find and contrast the voices of the Sunshine Village Retirement Home Mah Jongg players with the twenty-nine-year-old corporate attorney protagonist and her former lover, the detective assigned to her murdered mother’s case.

One Taste Too Many represents a hybrid of the habits that produced my first two books. Because the book is set in the present and the protagonist, Sarah Blair, is a twin, I drew on my experience as a mother of twins when I outlined the basic story premise. Unlike Poker, that I wrote and edited only on a laptop, One Taste Too Many was drafted and revised in two locations. For the first version, I sat in an easy chair in my bedroom with my laptop perched on my knees. When I finished the draft, I mailed it to myself and revised it upstairs in my office on my stand-alone computer. In both locations, I kept the score from Frozen playing constantly. Why Frozen for a book set in a small Southern town? I don’t know, but it worked. The music kept me typing at a nice even clip with a sunny disposition.

The other motivational trick I used for One Taste Too Many was keeping a picture of a friend’s Siamese cat where I could always see it. Growing up, we had dogs, but I knew bonding with a cat was different. That’s why I reached out to my friend and she was so helpful, I modeled RahRah after her cat, Suri. As you can see from the cover, RahRah and I successfully bonded.

For some, being a creature of habit is the only means to write. For me, a willingness to try different techniques and practices is what stimulates the muse and helps me avoid stale ruts. What about you? What does it take to prompt you to write effectively?

~Debra

Thank you, Debra, for visiting today!

Now keep reading for my thought about One Taste Too Many.

One Taste Too Many (A Sarah Blair Mystery)
by Debra H. Goldstein

 

About the Book


One Taste Too Many (A Sarah Blair Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Kensington (December 18, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 1496719476
ISBN-13: 978-1496719478
Digital ASIN: B07CDCZXLP

For culinary challenged Sarah Blair, there’s only one thing scarier than cooking from scratch—murder!

Married at eighteen, divorced at twenty‑eight, Sarah Blair reluctantly swaps her luxury lifestyle for a cramped studio apartment and a law firm receptionist job in the tired hometown she never left. With nothing much to show for the last decade but her feisty Siamese cat, RahRah, and some clumsy domestic skills, she’s the polar opposite of her bubbly twin, Emily—an ambitious chef determined to take her culinary ambitions to the top at a local gourmet restaurant . . .

Sarah knew starting over would be messy. But things fall apart completely when her ex drops dead, seemingly poisoned by Emily’s award-winning rhubarb crisp. Now, with RahRah wanted by the woman who broke up her marriage and Emily wanted by the police for murder, Sarah needs to figure out the right recipe to crack the case before time runs out. Unfortunately, for a gal whose idea of good china is floral paper plates, catching the real killer and living to tell about it could mean facing a fate worse than death—being in the kitchen!

Includes quick and easy recipes!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Sarah and Emily Blair are twins and as different as night and day. Emily is a fabulous chef with plans to make it to the top of her field. Sarah married young and divorced 10 years later. She is starting over and has taken a receptionist job at a local law office and lives in a studio apartment with her cat, RahRah.

The restaurant where Emily works has a booth at the Food Expo and the staff will be giving demonstrations and sharing tasty treats. Emily will be making her special rhubarb crisp.

But tragedy strikes when Sarah’s ex is found dead at the convention center before the event even begins. Covered in rhubarb, it is quickly determined he was poisoned, by Emily! Also, with his death, it seems Sarah’s cat RahRah no longer belongs to her. A chef that works with Emily has laid claim to the feline.

As someone that hates to cook, Sarah knows she needs to hang around the expo to try to catch the real killer, even if it means filling in for her talented sister. That is if the killer doesn’t get to her first. She also needs to find a way to keep her cat.

This series is off to a stellar start and I am head over heels with the wonderful cat, RahRah. The cat was rescued during Hurricane Katrina my Sarah’s ex-mother-in-law who loved Sarah, so of course, she took the cat when the woman passed away. Her ex left out some key details about his mother’s will. Now, with him dead the secrets are revealed. Let’s just say he was a first-class a**, and I was happy he was the first victim. Yes, first, because the killing didn’t stop with him.

Ms. Goldstein has created a pair of sisters, twins, that are truly each other’s half. They are smart and fun. Best friends that take care of each other. Sarah is an interesting protagonist. I hope she continues to team up with her sister. I believe we have barely scratched the surface on when the author can take these sisters.

The story has a little bit more of an edge than a typical cozy but doesn’t go too far. It is exciting and fresh with plenty of twists and corkscrew turns. The author drops in the clues with such precision. I was up in the air about the killer right up until the big reveal. Someone on my radar but not at the top of my list. The motives were unclear until all the last clues slid into place.

This was a very entertaining story. A great mystery with characters I want to visit again. I am excited to see where the author takes this series. This one was A Perfect Escape!

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

 

About the Author

 

Judge Debra H. Goldstein’s new Sarah Blair cozy mystery series debuts from Kensington Press with One Taste Too Many. She also is the author of Should Have Played Poker: a Carrie Martin and the Mah Jongg Players Mystery and the 2012 IPPY Award-winning Maze in Blue. Besides novels, Debra writes short stories. Her short story, The Night They Burned Ms. Dixie’s Place, Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine (May/June 2017) is an Agatha Award Short Story Nominee. In addition to being the Sisters in Crime Guppy President, Debra serves on the national Sisters in Crime board and is Vice-President of the Southeast Region of Mystery Writers of America.

Website    Blog    Facebook    Twitter @DebraHGoldstein      GoodReads

Purchase Links

Amazon  B&N  Kobo  Google Play 

Praise for One Taste Too Many (A Sarah Blair Mystery)
by Debra H. Goldstein

ONE TASTE TOO MANY is a “different,” slightly edgy, cozy from an author with extensive knowledge of legal procedure.
~Mallory Heart’s Cozies

This one was a fun ride. A few twists that will keep you turning the pages may be a little slower to keep up.
~My Reading Journeys

What a fun engaging start to a new series!
~Cozy Up With Kathy

I kept changing who I suspected but when the real murderer is revealed, I was shocked! I did not see that one coming at all.
~Storeybook Reviews

The story was well-written and enjoyable to read.

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS
December 3 – Book Babble – SPOTLIGHT
December 3 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT
December 4 – Mallory Heart’s Cozies – REVIEW, GUEST POST  
December 5 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – CHARACTER GUEST POST
December 6 – Sneaky the Library Cat’s Blog – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
December 6 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
December 7 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW
December 7 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
December 8 – A Blue Million Books – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 8 – Here’s How It Happened – SPOTLIGHT
December 9 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 9 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
December 10 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW
December 10 – Readeropolis – SPOTLIGHT
December 11 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT
December 11 –A Wytch’s Book Review Blog – CHARACTER GUEST POST
December 12 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW, GUEST POST
December 12 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW, GUEST POST 
December 13 – MJB Reviewers – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 13 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT
December 14 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW
December 14 – Cinnamon, Sugar and a Little Bit of Murder – REVIEW, RECIPE
December 15 – Cassidy’s Bookshelves – REVIEW
December 15 – Socrates’ Book Reviews – REVIEW
December 16 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW
December 16 – Bibliophile Reviews – REVIEW, 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.”

Nov 282018
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!

I am thrilled to share my thoughts with you about Slay In Character today!


Slay in Character (A Cat Latimer Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
4th in Series
Setting – Colorado
Kensington (November 27, 2018)
ISBN-10: 1496716817
ISBN-13: 978-1496716811
Digital ASIN: B07B7C9LNS

Staying in character can be murder when Cat Latimer and the members of her writers’ retreat head for a ghost town . . .

Cat and the members of her writers’ retreat have just arrived in Outlaw, Colorado, an “Old West” tourist town complete with inhabitants dressed up as famous figures from history. But this authentic slice of Americana takes a murderous turn when a college student masquerading as a 19th-century saloon girl becomes history herself.

Was she the intended target? Or did she take a hit meant for someone else? With a cast of suspects to choose from—including some notorious gunslingers and the sleazy town founders—Cat must unhorse the real culprit before a real-life ghost story is given a killer twist . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Who knew a little trip to a ghost town would lead to murder? The latest group of writers have arrived for their week-long retreat and a day out to Outlaw, Colorado, a tourist attraction dedicated to the Old West is the destination for a day trip. One of the writers, Jessi, a college student, works there along with her roommate for extra cash.

The next day the roommate is missing. She is later found dead in one of the rooms at the ghost town saloon. She went missing while working one of Jessi’s shifts – so was the killer after Jessi? or her friend? Cat tries to stay out of the investigation but her guests have other ideas and lie to her about where they are going. Twice she gets them out of hot water with police. She soon finds herself trying to solve the case to help Jessi, but also to keep her guests out of trouble. What she uncovers changes the course of the investigation and reveals a shady side of certain individuals.

Cat actually had a few months go well, no murders or police investigations, so this book takes place in the following summer after the last book. Shauna is still getting over Kevin’s death but is doing better, Cat and Seth’s relationship is moving along nicely. Uncle Pete and Shirley are handling a long distance relationship. Dante is still popping up unexpectedly. The writers for this retreat all belong to the same writing group and are historical romance writers with the exception of college student Jessi, but they quickly pull her into the group. If it wasn’t for that doggone murder things would be great.

One of the things I like about this series is that for each story we add a new group of characters to the core cast we have come to know so well over these four books. Ms. Cahoon does an excellent job at introducing this new group with great detail so readers can quickly grasp who they are, how they fit together, their similarities and differences. The character development of both the old characters and new is stellar. I appreciate the dialogues too, whether a quick quip or a full conversation. I also loved the writing drills, a little behind the scenes look at how writers get the word count in every day.

The mystery plot line was full of twists and I found it to be very interesting the way old cases that were similar were brought to light. Having Cat stay out of the investigation at first was a fun twist. Seeing her tell her guests how dangerous it is to get involved in police matters almost made me laugh out loud. This group of retreaters was absolutely delightful. I loved the way the wanted to snoop to help their new friend.

A subplot throughout the story was a project Seth was working on. A secret project. Almost every day he went out the back door and through the woods to the back of the property. He asked Cat and Shauna to not venture back there until he was finished. Both women were curious and had their own ideas what he what doing out there but stayed away until the big reveal. What a reveal it was, special, moving, heartwarming and perfect. I will not give any more details, it is a surprise you need to read about all on your own. Seth truly is a great friend and boyfriend.

Until this story, I would have said each of the books in this series could be read as stand-alone, but I believe I enjoyed this one so much because I had read the others first and got to experience the characters growth in quick succession. The things they dealt with, the way the handled the previous murders, the relationships that grew stronger. Because I was behind on this series I read the last three books in this series almost back-to-back. I remembered little details without having to tax my memory. The character’s progression was vivid in my mind. It is not often I am able to do that with a series.  I am usually a stickler about reading series in order so I was so happy I could catch up before jumping into this book. That being said don’t be afraid to grab this book and start reading. You can always go back and catch up too, just like I did, and be ready for Sconed to Death coming in May 2019.  😀

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

You can read my review of A Story to Kill here and my review of Fatality by Firelight here
and my review for Of Murder and Men here.

About The Author

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Lynn Cahoon is an Idaho expat. She grew up living the small town life she now loves to write about. Currently, she’s living with her husband and two fur babies in a small historic town on the banks of the Mississippi River where her imagination tends to wander. Guidebook to Murder, Book 1 of the Tourist Trap series, won the 2015 Reader’s Crown award for Mystery Fiction. Visit her at www.lynncahoon.com.Sign up for her newsletter at www.lynncahoon.com

Also by Lynn Cahoon


Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to give away!

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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.”

Nov 212018
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I am so happy to have Terry Ambrose stop by today as part of his Great Escapes Book Tour! 


Photos and Writing
by Terry Ambrose

If you’re “of a certain age,” you probably remember your family having friends over on a Saturday night to share photos of the most recent family vacation. In our house, I was the one who took hundreds of 35mm slides and then proudly showed off an endless array of shots from wherever we’d been. In the age of digital photography, we’ve moved those Saturday night get-togethers online. The nice thing about social media for a viewer is you only have to actually look at as many (or few) photos as you want.

Some photographers seem to have a knack for creating the wow factor. Whether their subject is as mind-boggling as the Milky Way or as basic as a slice of apple pie, I’m always amazed at how they get those wow-factor shots.

I love the blue hour — that point where the sky is still blue and the stars are just starting to come out. None in this photo, but not bad for a first attempt at a long exposure.

One of the things I love about photography is how it forces you to look differently at the world. Whether the photo is of food, people, or a sunset, composition is critical to ensuring that particular creation isn’t just another ho-hum series of bit and bytes.

When we visited San Clemente in January, we were lucky enough to catch the sunset.

I’ve spent three decades practicing the craft of writing, and during that time I let my photography skills lie dormant. Two years ago I decided to fix that, so I bought a new camera and began taking photos of many different things. Only recently did I realize my main interest was light, not necessarily any type of subject. It probably should have been more obvious to me that I was a light junkie, because I always seem to be on a quest to find new and different ways to paint the picture of light for readers.

What I’ve come to realize recently is that the common thread in my favorite photos is how the light plays in the scene. Describing this in words may not make tremendous sense, but perhaps a few examples will make it clear. I still consider myself a newbie at night and light photography, but I hope you enjoy these photos (and don’t fall asleep on the couch watching them!).

~Terry

Thank you, Terry, for visiting today!

The Killer Christmas Sweater Club (A Seaside Cove Bed & Breakfast Mystery)
by Terry Ambrose

About the Book

The Killer Christmas Sweater Club (A Seaside Cove Bed & Breakfast Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Setting – California
Publisher: Satori
Print Length: 342 pages
Digital ASIN: B07H27NCP4

All ten-year-old Alexandra Atwood wants for Christmas is to get her dad and the B&B’s cook Marquetta under the mistletoe. After all, how can they get married if they don’t kiss first?

When murder strikes in Seaside Cove, bed-and-breakfast owner Rick Atwood is asked to help find the killer. But this will not be an easy case to crack. Not only did the killer contaminate the crime scene, but there are suspects all over town. And they all received the same Christmas sweater from the victim.

Alex hears rumors about the murder and decides that since she’s on Christmas break, she has time for a little multitasking. She launches her own investigation even as she continues her efforts to get her dad and Marquetta together.

Just when Rick thinks he’s identified all the suspects, he discovers a new one—his estranged wife. With the days until Christmas ticking down, Rick feels pressured from all sides. He needs to solve the case. He needs to send his wife back to New York. But the one thing he doesn’t need is for his daughter to be one step ahead of him and the cops.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

First I must say, that cover is gorgeous!! Every cover in this series has been beautiful and inviting.

We arrive back at the Seaside Cove Bed & Breakfast right before Christmas. Rick and Marquetta discover boxes of decorations in the attic including a Christmas train, Captain Jack and her father had a lot of fun with. Ten-year-old Alex is focused on moving her dad’s relationship along. She enlists a little help to hang some mistletoe, now she just needs to get them under it at the same time.

Rick’s focus is on the latest murder. While at The Crooked Mast for an Ugly Sweater Contest, Deputy Cunningham arrives sans ugly sweater to ask for Rick’s help. Local lawyer, Thorne Waldorf has been murdered. He just happened to send out a bunch of ugly sweaters to certain people he has wronged. The sweaters included an apology of sorts but Rick thinks the killer is among those who received Thorne’s gifts. Word around the party shows people were not happy with the man for several reasons. Even Alex hears some interesting stories. The one thing Rick never expected was for Alex’s mother to be in town, involved with Thorne Waldorf, and on the suspect list.

Christmas is right around the corner so this case needs to be wrapped up as fast as possible. He knows Alex wants to help and maybe with guidance from Marquetta that is possible. He just hopes he figures out whodunit before she does.

These characters quickly found their way into my heart right away in book 1, A Treasure To Die For. It is a joy to visit them for the holidays. I am almost as invested in Rick and Marquetta’s relationship as Alex.  Alex is a phenomenal character, she is smart and thinks well are her feet for someone so young. Rick struggles to be sure he is giving her the best life he can and with Marquetta’s help, he truly is. Having her mother arrive back on the scene in this story could have gone many ways but the way it plays out shows just how good of job he is doing.

If you haven’t read previous books in this series, Marguetta gave Alex a journal as soon as she arrived at the B&B. The story goes back and forth between Rick’s point of view and Alex’s along with her journal. Seeing a 10-year-olds perspective to the crime and her theories is so much fun. Her efforts to bring the two most important people in her life together had me smiling ear to ear.

Mr. Ambrose delivers another extraordinary mystery. Multifaceted with plenty of suspects made this a hard one to solve. It was all twisted up until a key clue was solved and all the pieces fell into place. I was totally surprised when all was revealed.

The author sets a wonderful scene too. I can imagine the B&B in all its finery right down to the train village, the lights on the stairway, the wreath, the mistletoe, and all of the ugly sweaters too. A real treasure of a story to get you into the Christmas spirit.

I loved this story and I just can’t get enough of these characters. I can’t wait for my next visit!

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Check out my review of A Treasure To Die For here and Clues in the Sand here.

 

About the Author

Terry Ambrose is a former skip tracer who tracked down deadbeats for a living. He’s long since turned his talents to writing mysteries and thrillers. Several of his books have been award finalists and in 2014 his thriller, “Con Game,” won the San Diego Book Awards for Best Action-Thriller. He likes cool photography, funny mysteries, and finding the oddest things while walking on the beach.

Author Links:   Website   Facebook   Goodreads

Praise for The Killer Christmas Sweater Club (A Seaside Cove Bed & Breakfast Mystery)
by Terry Ambrose

Another 5 stars for Terry Ambrose and the Seaside Cove B&B Mystery Series. I am really enjoying this series and all the characters.
~My Reading Journeys

The Killer Christmas Sweater Club is a fun cozy mystery with a great Christmas theme.
~The Power of Words

The Killer Christmas Sweater Club is a charming story. There are engaging characters, a quaint setting and Christmas merriment . . . (it) can easily be read by a younger audience . . . (and it) has a heartwarming ending that will have you smiling.
~The Avid Reader

I am completely smitten with everything about this mystery book, and if Hallmark is looking for a cozy mystery to turn into their next best-selling series of films, look no further!
~My Devotional Thoughts

What an adorable Christmas cozy mystery . . .Great for cozy fans.
~Books a Plenty Book Reviews

Purchase Link – Amazon




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TOUR PARTICIPANTS – Please visit all the stops.
November 9 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW  
November 9 – Paranormal and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
November 10 – The Montana Bookaholic – CHARACTER GUEST POST
November 11 – My Devotional Thoughts – REVIEW 
November 12 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT
November 13 – Island Confidential – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
November 13 – The Power of Words – REVIEW, GIVEAWAY
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November 14 – Babs Book Bistro – GUEST POST
November 14 –  A Blue Million Books – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
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November 16 – View from the Birdhouse – SPOTLIGHT
November 17 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
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November 19 – Mallory Heart’s Cozies – REVIEW
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November 20 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT, GIVEAWAY
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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.”

A Body on Fitzgerald's Bluff - Seaview Cottages Cozy Mystery #1 by Anna Celeste Burke Order Your Copy Today!
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