Posted in Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies Giveaways Read The Printed Word Challenge Reviews 2019 You Read How Many Books Challenge

Can’t Judge a Book By Its Murder (Main Street Book Club Mysteries) by Amy Lillard #Review / #Giveaway @PPPress @AmyWritesRomance

Available Today!


Can’t Judge a Book By Its Murder (Main Street Book Club Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Mississippi
Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press (October 29, 2019)
Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
ISBN-10: 1492687774
ISBN-13: 978-1492687771
Kindle ASIN: B07VVT2LFF

Not every murder is by the book…

As Sugar Springs gears up for its all-class high school reunion, Mississippi bookstore owner Arlo Stanley prepares to launch her largest event: a book-signing with the town’s legendary alum and bestselling author, Wally Harrison. That’s when Wally is discovered dead outside of Arlo’s front door and her best friend is questioned for the crime.

When the elderly ladies of Arlo’s Friday Night Book Club start to investigate, Arlo has no choice but to follow behind to keep them out of trouble. Yet with Wally’s reputation, the suspect list only grows longer—his betrayed wife, his disgruntled assistant, even the local man who holds a grudge from a long-ago accident.

Between running interference with the book club and otherwise keeping it all together, Arlo anxiously works to get Chloe out of jail. And amidst it all, her one-time boyfriend-turned-private-eye returns to town, just another distraction while she digs to uncover the truth around Wally’s death and just what Sugar Springs secret could have led to his murder.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Arlo and Chloe’s Books & More is set for a book signing for bestselling author Wally Harrison as part of the Tenth Annual All Class Reunion. Then Arlo receives a phone call that will bring that event to a screeching halt. Arlo has been summoned to the store because a dead body has been found on the sidewalk directly in front of the bookstore. The man has been identified as Wally Harrison and the death is classified as suspicious.  Suicide? Murder? It looks like Arlo’s best friend and business partner Chloe may be involved.

It isn’t long before the ladies of the Friday Night Book Club decide to start their own investigation. Unable to stop them Arlo finds herself investigating too if only to keep the book club members safe. When Chloe is arrested, Arlo is given ten days to prove someone else did the job or Chloe will be transferred to a bigger jail until her trial. Arlo hopes to get a little help from an old boyfriend who is now a P.I. but he may be working the case for another client. All she knows is Chloe didn’t do it and she is going to make sure the right person is booked for murder.

______________

Sugar Springs, Mississippi is full of the requisite quirky characters. We are introduced to a fantastic group of core characters in this first Main Street Book Club Mystery. Arlo and Chloe own and operate the bookstore. Arlo takes care of the books and Chloe takes care of the coffee. Chloe is the mother of the deceased Wally Harrison’s son. We also meet Camille, Fern, and Helen, an elderly group of friends and the original members of the Friday Night Book Club. A spunky group of women who are ready for whatever comes their way. Then there is Chief Matthew “Mads” Keller, Officer Jason Rodgers, and Private Investigator Sam Tucker. Sam and Mads both make Arlo’s heart race. I can’t forget Faulkner, the very vocal Amazon parrot that resides at Arlo and Chloe’s Books & More. All the characters nicely fleshed out for the first book in a series but are left with plenty of room to grow as the series continues.

Like most first books in the series, the murder mystery was interesting but not as complex due to the time needed to introduce readers to the characters and setting. That being said there were some nice twists. Chloe does have motive but Arlo quickly finds others with motive too. I was able to solve this one before Arlo and Mads but found myself very entertained from beginning to end.

I love the small-town ways and feeling. The fact that the book clubbers were able to provide the meals for Chloe reminded me of Mayberry from the Andy Griffth Show. Sugar Springs is full of Southern charm and appealing residents.

This series is off to a terrific start. I see a lot of potential for these characters and the mysteries they could get involved in. Can’t wait for book #2.

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:


Cozies also by Amy Lillard

Find more books by Amy Lillard here.


I am giving away my Advance 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.

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 Poisoned Pen Press on Facebook for 2 Bonus Entries.

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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 November 12, 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.”

Posted in Giveaways Reviews 2019 You Read How Many Books Challenge

T-Rex Tries Again: Return of the King by Hugh Murphy #Review / #Giveaway

Available Tomorrow!


T-Rex Tries Again: Return of the King
Animal Humor
3rd in Series
Plume (October 29, 2019)
Hardcover: 112 pages
ISBN-10: 0593188551
ISBN-13: 978-0593188552
Kindle ASIN: B07TQKL65J

A hilarious gift and perfect stocking stuffer, the third installment of the T-Rex Trying series features simple, charming, and hilarious illustrations depicting the hapless T-Rex and family doing their best in a world made for creatures with smaller heads and longer arms.

For the last six years, the lovable, hilarious T-Rex family–T-Rex himself, his partner She-Rex, and their adorable child, Wee-Rex–have charmed readers and dinosaur lovers throughout the nation. With a sweetly funny tone and truly adorable illustrations, the new collection will include all-new material, featuring T-Rex and family in situations like these:

T-Rex trying to hail a cab…
T-Rex trying to shear a flock of sheep…
T-Rex trying to grab the toys at the bottom of his pool…
T-Rex trying to put a comforter inside a duvet cover…
T-Rex trying to play the bagpipes…
T-Rex trying to cut down a tree with a two-person saw…
T-Rex trying to feed a horse through an electric fence…
T-Rex trying to plug in a lamp behind the bed…

This book will leave you applauding (like T-Rex can’t) and wiping tears from your eyes (like T-Rex wishes he could), but most of all, it will leave you wondering how on earth this animal survived a day, let alone the entire Cretaceous Period.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

When I saw this book I thought it would be a fun book to read with my grandson who is learning to read but the font of the text was hard for him to do on his own. He did think the illustrations were pretty funny. After we had finished our read I left the book in the bathroom to see what adults would pick it up. It just seemed like that kind of book. during the next few days I heard a variety of comments:

  • “Where did you get that dinosaur book?”
  • “That T-Rex book was funny.”
  • “Interesting book, but it went on for too long.”
  • “Liked the drawings but it got kinda boring.”
  • “Good for several visits got repetitive for me.”
  • “That book is really funny, that poor dinosaur.”

The bathroom readers were age 11 – 62, male and female. The men seemed to like it better than the women.

The illustrations are cute pencil-like drawings and the verse is very basic. There is a nice message in that the T-Rex doesn’t give up, doing his best with that great big body and tiny little arms.

This is the third book featuring this persistent dinosaur and his family.  The previous two released back in 2014. Seeing that the author is a dentist makes me think this is the kind of book you may find at the dentist’s or doctor’s offices to read while you are waiting. They would also make a fun stocking stuffer for the dinosaur lovers on your list.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

Dr. Hugh Murphy is a Prosthodontist living and practicing in Raleigh, NC.  He created T-Rex Trying while in dental school and enjoys seeing all of the laughter and amusement his books bring to his readers.  He loves drawing, painting, fly-fishing, nature and most of all, spending time with his family.


I AM GIVING MY REVIEW AWAY!
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.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

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Contest Will End November 11, 2019, at 11:59 PM CST
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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 Giveaways Spotlights

The Bodies in the Library (A First Edition Library Mystery) by Marty Wingate #Spotlight / #Giveaway @BerkleyMystery @martywingate

I am excited to shine my spotlight on the start of a new series from Marty Wingate!


The Bodies in the Library (A First Edition Library Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Publisher: Berkley (October 8, 2019)
Hardcover: 336 pages
ISBN-10: 1984804103
ISBN-13: 978-1984804105
Kindle ASIN: B07MCRHSSM

Hayley Burke’s fresh start as the curator of The First Edition Society’s library in Bath, England, is about to take a rotten turn in this charming new mystery series from USA Today bestselling author Marty Wingate.

Hayley Burke has landed a dream job. She is the new curator of Lady Georgiana Fowling’s First Edition library. The library is kept at Middlebank House, a lovely Georgian home in Bath, England. Hayley lives on the premises and works with the finicky Glynis Woolgar, Lady Fowling’s former secretary.

Mrs. Woolgar does not like Hayley’s ideas to modernize The First Edition Society and bring in fresh blood. And she is not even aware of the fact that Hayley does not know the first thing about the Golden Age of Mysteries. Hayley is faking it till she makes it, and one of her plans to breathe new life into the Society is actually taking flight–an Agatha Christie fan fiction writers group is paying dues to meet up at Middlebank House.

But when one of the group is found dead in the venerable stacks of the library, Hayley has to catch the killer to save the Society and her new job.

About Marty Wingate

Marty Wingate is a Seattle-based writer and speaker who shares her love of Britain in her two mystery series. The Potting Shed books feature Pru Parke, a middle-aged American gardener transplanted from Texas to England, and Birds of a Feather follows Julia Lanchester, bird lover, who runs a tourist office in a Suffolk village. Marty writes garden articles for magazines including Country Gardens and the American Gardener. She is a member of the Royal Horticultural Society, Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and the Crime Writers Association. She leads garden tours to England, Scotland, and Ireland, spending free moments deep in research for her books. Or in pubs.

Marty Wingate’s captivating mysteries can be enjoyed together or separately, in any order:

The Birds of a Feather seriesTHE RHYME OF THE MAGPIE | EMPTY NEST | EVERY TRICK IN THE ROOK | FAREWELL, MY CUCKOO

The Potting Shed series: THE GARDEN PLOT THE RED BOOK OF PRIMROSE HOUSE | BETWEEN A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE | THE SKELETON GARDEN | THE BLUEBONNET BETRAYAL | BEST-LAID PLANTSMIDSUMMER MURDER

Author Links  – Facebook    Twitter    Goodreads    Website     Pinterest    Amazon Author Page

Also by Marty Wingate



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.

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 November 9, 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

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent
Posted in Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours Interviews

#SpecialGuest – Lois Winston – Author of Handmade Ho-Ho Homicide (An Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery) – Great Escapes Book Tour @Anasleuth

Handmade Ho-Ho Homicide
(An Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery)
by Lois Winston

About Handmade Ho-Ho Homicide


Handmade Ho-Ho Homicide (An Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
8th in Series
Independently Published
Print Length: 212 pages
Digital ASIN: B07VG2QZXV

Two and a half weeks ago magazine crafts editor Anastasia Pollack arrived home to find Ira Pollack, her half-brother-in-law, had blinged out her home with enough Christmas lights to rival Rockefeller Center. Now he’s crammed her small yard with enormous cavorting inflatable characters. She and photojournalist boyfriend (and possible spy) Zack Barnes pack up the unwanted lawn decorations to return to Ira. They arrive to find his yard the scene of an over-the-top Christmas extravaganza. His neighbors are not happy with the animatronics, laser light show, and blaring music creating traffic jams on their normally quiet street. One of them expresses his displeasure with his fists before running off.

In the excitement, the deflated lawn ornaments are never returned to Ira. The next morning Anastasia once again heads to his house before work to drop them off. When she arrives, she discovers Ira’s attacker dead in Santa’s sleigh. Ira becomes the prime suspect in the man’s murder and begs Anastasia to help clear his name. But Anastasia has promised her sons she’ll keep her nose out of police business. What’s a reluctant amateur sleuth to do?

Christmas craft projects included.

Author Interview

I am excited to have Lois visit today! 

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I have a degree in graphic design and illustration from back in the pre-computer dinosaur era and worked for decades as a designer and editor in the consumer crafts industry. Now I’m a bestselling and award-winning author of 17 adult novels, 1 middle-grade novel, 5 novellas, one nonfiction book, and several short stories. I began my writing career penning romances and romantic suspense before switching over to cozy mysteries. I now write two cozy series—The Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mysteries, featuring reluctant amateur sleuth and crafts editor Anastasia Pollack, and The Empty Nest Mysteries, which is my homage to the classic Thin Man movies but with a modern twist.

What are three things most people dont know about you?

  1. I can play Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon in two degrees. Not that I’ve ever met Kevin Bacon, but his father and I attended the same church when I lived in Philadelphia.
  2. I wanted to be an astronaut, but NASA isn’t interested in vertically challenged astronauts who suffer from motion sickness.
  3. I’m one of a select few people in the world (or so it seems) who hate peanut butter. I can’t even stomach the smell of the stuff. I used to hold my breath when I made PB&J sandwiches for my kids.

What is the first book you remember reading?

Fun with Dick and Jane. Does that show my age?

What are you reading now?

The Girl Who Saved the King of Sweden by Jonas Jonasson

What books have most inspired you?

This is one of those questions I find really hard to answer because there are so many ways to be inspired by books. I love books that make me laugh, and I love books that pull on my heartstrings. There are some books that have stayed with me even though I read them years ago because the plots and characters were so fabulous and the writing so gripping. Have they inspired my own writing? I’m sure everything I’ve ever read has inspired me in one way or another. It’s very hard for a writer not to be inspired by everything she reads, sees, and experiences.

What made you decide you wanted to write mysteries?

Long story short—one day an editor told my agent she was looking for a cozy series featuring crafts. Knowing my background in the crafts industry, my agent suggested I try writing one. It turned out to be love at first tap of the computer keys. I never went back to writing romance.

Do you have a special place you like to write?

I have a dedicated office for my writing. There’s a large, L-shaped desk, lots of bookcases, and two large windows.

Where do the ideas for your books come from?

I’m a news junkie. Just about all of my plots have been inspired by what I’ve read in the newspaper or seen on the local or national news. For instance, the plot of Handmade Ho-Ho Homicide was inspired by a murder that took place last year about twenty miles from where I live.

Is there anything about writing you find most challenging?

Some writers plot out every scene of every chapter before they ever begin writing the first sentence. If I did that, I’d find writing the actual book too much like drudge work because I’d already know everything that was going to happen. The most I’ll ever do in the way of plotting is write a couple of paragraphs of a general idea for the story. So sometimes I wind up writing myself into a corner, and it takes a few days of mulling things over in my head and brainstorming with my critique partner before I can figure out a way to move forward. It’s frustrating when it happens, but it always works out in the end.

What do you think makes a good story?

A book has to hook me from the very beginning with interesting characters and well-written prose. If it doesn’t, I toss it aside and move on to the next book. Life is too short to spend any time with mediocre writing and boring characters.

Which, of all your characters, do you think is the most like you?

I think I subconsciously instilled much of my personality into Anastasia. We’ve also had similar careers and communist mothers-in-law.

What makes your books different from others out there in this genre?

When I was asked to write a crafting cozy, I did a lot of research into the sub-genre and found they all centered round a crafter who worked in one specific craft or who owned a specific type of craft shop. I wanted to do something different rather than compete with what was already out there. Writing about a protagonist who works as the crafts editor of a women’s magazine enables me to feature different crafts in each book.

In addition, most cozies take place in small towns. Mine takes place in a suburb of New York City.

Whats next on the horizon for you?

I’m already thinking about the next book in my Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery Series and am mulling over a few different plot ideas.

Thank you Lois for dropping by today!

 

More About Lois Winston

 

USA Today bestselling and award-winning author Lois Winston writes mystery, romance, romantic suspense, chick-lit, women’s fiction, children’s chapter books, and nonfiction under her own name and her Emma Carlyle pen name. Kirkus Reviews dubbed her critically acclaimed Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, “North Jersey’s more mature answer to Stephanie Plum.” In addition, Lois is a former literary agent and an award-winning craft and needlework designer who often draws much of her source material for both her characters and plots from her experiences in the crafts industry.

Author Links – Website     Blog     Pinterest     Twitter     Goodreads     Newsletter sign-up

Purchase Links – Amazon  –  Kobo  –  iTunes    –   Nook


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Posted in E-Book Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways Netgalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge Reviews 2019 TBR Pile Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Unleashed (A Hamilton Christmas Novella) by Donna Kauffman #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.


Unleashed (A Hamilton Christmas Novella)
Holiday Romance
1st in Series
Setting – Virginia
Publisher: Zebra Books (October 1, 2018)
Print Length: 118 pages
ASIN: B079R7PZ94

A raging winter storm and a holiday spent pet-sitting reveals there’s more than one kind of animal in the house …

When Emma Lafferty is hired by a billionaire CEO to watch his pets over the holidays, she expects to enjoy a quiet Christmas in opulent surroundings. What she doesn’t expect is to spend the week trapped in the mansion with Trevor Hamilton, the CEO’s sexy great-nephew—and heir—whose motives are as shady as his desire is crystal clear …

Dollycas’s Thoughts

In need of a little pick me up with a holiday theme? This novella may be just what you need to read!

Emma Lafferty meets Trevor Hamilton amidst a blizzard. With no power and zero visibility, they make the best of their situation while watching the lovable pets of Trevor’s billionaire uncle.

Emma has opened a pet care business and she couldn’t down this job even with it being over the holidays. Trevor knows his uncle is away for the holidays and sneaks into his house to try to uncover a family secret not knowing that a pet sitter has been hired.

I really liked these characters. The novella-length suits this situation as readers get to know the characters as they get to know each other. I loved the pets, especially the parrot but the dogs were great too. The best thing for me was that Emma was a strong, independent woman. She asked questions and expected answers. Even with her attraction to Trevor, she was never a damsel in distress.

The setting was ideal. A huge mansion with plenty of rooms to get lost in. While the snowstorm made it hard for the dogs to do their business I bet it was beautiful. Losing power was handled with fireplaces and candles which plays right into the romantic theme.

I was intrigued by the important family mystery Trevor was trying to reveal. Mysteries are just my thing. While Trevor’s sleuthing brought some funny moments to the story I was a little disappointed with the way his investigation wrapped up.

This is my first experience with this author and it definitely won’t be my last.

Unleashed is a fast-paced romantic romp.  Heartwarming and entertaining. A great romance to escape into on a wintry afternoon.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

Donna Kauffman is the USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of over 70 novels, translated and sold in more than 26 countries around the world. The recipient of multiple RT Book Awards, she is also a National Readers Choice Award and PRISM Award winner and a RITA finalist. Born into the maelstrom of Washington, D.C., politics, she now lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, where she is surrounded by a completely different kind of wildlife. A contributing blogger for USAToday.com, she is also a DIYer, a baker, a gardener and a volunteer transporter for the Wildlife Center of Virginia and Rockfish Sanctuary. Please visit her online at www.DonnaKauffman.com.

The Hamilton Christmas Novella Series

Find more books by Donna Kaufman here.


I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy!
The book will be sent directly from Amazon.

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.

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 November 8, 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.”

Posted in Cozy Wednesday Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways Reviews 2019 You Read How Many Books Challenge

Cozy Wednesday featuring Fudge Bites (A Candy-Coated Mystery) by Nancy Coco #Review / #Giveaway @KensingtonBooks @nancy_coco

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I am happy to feature Fudge Bites by Nancy Coco today!


Fudge Bites (A Candy-Coated Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
7th in Series
Setting – Michigan
Kensington (September 24, 2019)
Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
ISBN-10: 1496716086
ISBN-13: 978-1496716088
Kindle ASIN: B07MH9XDNQ

Halloween on Mackinac Island is a season of fun tricks, but finding a corpse is no treat for fudge shop owner Allie McMurphy . . .

NIGHT OF THE REALLY DEAD

It’s late October, off-season for tourists, but locals are up and lurching for the annual zombie walk charity event. Though everyone’s living it up, trouble is just a few pawprints away. Allie follows the bloody tracks of her calico cat, Carmella, to a body in the alley behind the Historic McMurphy Hotel and Fudge Shop. Unlike the island’s other walking dead, this one’s flatlined for good. It seems that someone is using the zombie fest as the perfect backdrop for murder. Now amateur sleuth Allie and dreamboat officer Rex Manning must use every trick in their treat bag to unmask a killer in disguise.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

What happens on Mackinac Island in the off-season for Halloween? A Zombie Walk! It’s for charity and a lot of fun until one of the “zombies” is found dead. Allie’s calico cat, Carmella appears to have been the first at the scene because she is all bloody when she is found in the alley behind the Historic McMurphy Hotel and Fudge Shop. Everyone knows Allie McMurphy is on the case but an unexpected visitor has returned to the island with a proposition. Can she stayed focused and catch the killer?

This time Nancy Coco has pulled out all the stops and blown up a mystery everyone will love.

Allie wants to be a year-round resident of the island but with her friend Liz off living in Chicago, she is a little lonely and missing her sleuthing buddy. She has contracted the renovation of one of the floors of the hotel and the addition of a rooftop deck this offseason.  Newlyweds Frances and  Mr. Devaney are there to help her out as she comes up with a few ideas on how to investigate the murder without venturing too far from the hotel. I really enjoyed the way the community came together throughout the story. A little peek into those people the stay on the island the full year or until the snow starts to fly was nice too.

Ms. Coco has filled these pages with action and drama and a huge moment that brought tears to my eyes. The mystery ties into the past in a surprising way. There is even a second body found. A plethora of twists and turns distract and lead both Allie and readers along before the real story comes into focus. A subplot opens a door for Allie and I was cheering as she made her choice.

You will want to take a BIG bite of Fudge Bites! It has fantastic characters, a well-written mystery with suspense, drama, humor, a little bit of romance, and a whole lot of FUDGE. Like Allie, I did miss Liz, With the way to book ends, I think Allie is going to need her friend even more in the next book in the series. I truly can’t wait to see what happens next.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

Find out more about Nancy Coco/Nancy J. Parra and her books on her webpage here

Written as Nancy J. Parra

GIVEAWAY
Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to giveaway!  
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.

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
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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 Giveaways Spotlights

A Merry Murder (A Special Pennyfoot Hotel Mystery) by Kate Kingsbury #Spotlight / #Excerpt / #Giveaway / @BerkleyMystery


A Merry Murder (A Special Pennyfoot Hotel Mystery)
Historical Holiday Cozy Mystery
10th in Series
Publisher: Berkley (October 1, 2019)
Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 1984805924
ISBN-13: 978-1984805928
Kindle ASIN: B07PLFH8BJ

It is an Edwardian Christmas, and the Pennyfoot Hotel is all dressed up. But when one of the guests turns up dead, owner Cecily Sinclair Baxter realizes it is not only the Pennyfoot that is back in business—the hotel’s Christmas curse is, too…

The Pennyfoot halls are decked with boughs of holly, a magnificently decorated tree graces the lobby, and the hotel’s bookings are finally looking up. Owner of the Pennyfoot, Cecily Sinclair Baxter is in high holiday spirits until disaster strikes, threatening to ruin yet another Yuletide. Her chief housemaid Gertie McBride has found a man’s body in the hotel laundry room—with a woman’s scarf wrapped around his neck and a note in his pocket from the hotel’s new maid.

Cecily is determined to track down the culprit, but with multiple suspects icing her out of crucial clues, she realizes this killer may be more slippery than most. With Christmas right around the corner, it is up to Cecily to prevent this holiday season at the Pennyfoot from turning out more fatal than festive.

Excerpt – A Merry Murder (A Special Pennyfoot Hotel Mystery)

Chapter 1

Pausing to catch her breath at the top of the backstairs, Gertie McBride shifted the pile of linens she carried higher in her arms. From the kitchen below, she could hear the clatter of pots and pans, and Michel’s strident voice bitterly complaining in his stupid French accent that didn’t fool anyone.

The volatile chef always got frantic at Christmastime, and today was no exception. Mrs. Chubb could be heard screeching at him to shut up. Shaking her head, Gertie thanked the heavens that, for a change, she wasn’t the one on the business end of the housekeeper’s wrath.

Breakfast had been served over an hour ago, but already the midday meal was being prepared. Gertie could detect a faint whiff of onions, but the smell was overwhelmed by the fragrant aroma of pine and cedar that wafted across the hotel lobby.

In just a few days it would be Christmas Eve. She cast a glance at the grand curving staircase leading to the upper floors, where huge boughs of evergreens hung on the railings. Bright red ribbons decorated the wreaths as well as little silver bells that tinkled when Gertie’s skirts brushed against them on the way down from the guest rooms.

In the far corner, the magnificent Christmas tree glowed a welcome to the arriving visitors. Gold and silver stars covered the branches, while little white angels with silvery gowns and red and green balls sparkled in the light from the massive chandelier above. A couple of guests passed by the tree, pausing to admire the decorations before strolling on toward the staircase.

Heaving a sigh, Gertie stomped down the stairs. The sooner she got the linens down to the laundry room the better. Mrs. Baxter, or madam as everyone called her, would get testy if she saw her chief housemaid carrying dirty washing across the foyer.

The Pennyfoot’s owner was always kind and considerate to the downstairs staff, as long as they obeyed the rules and minded their manners. She could be an ogre, however, if one of them did something to upset the hotel guests.

Normally the sheets and pillowcases would be sent down the chute to the downstairs hallway, but the upstairs door was stuck again and Archie would have to mend it. Thinking about the new handyman reminded Gertie of Clive, who used to have the job.

She tried not to think about Clive these days.

She had always loved this time of year. Besides the housekeeping, Mrs. Chubb also baked, and nothing spelled “Christmas” like the enticing smell of her mince pies and plum puddings. Unless it was the sound of Phoebe Fortescue’s dance group practicing their horrible out-of-tune singing in the ballroom, or the decorations brightening the halls of the Pennyfoot, or the excitement in her own twins’ faces as they eagerly awaited the visit from Father Christmas.

This year, however, was different. It didn’t seem possible that it had been a whole year since Clive had proposed. She’d been so excited and happy. She’s accepted on the spot, and by rights she should be celebrating the season with a new husband and father to her twins.

It was only three months later when everything fell apart. Clive-the gentle, considerate man she’d fallen in love with-had turned into a domineering, selfish bugger.

When she’d told him that after she was married she still wanted to work at the Pennyfoot, he’d thrown a bleeding fit. He’d told her no wife of his would be anyone’s maid, and that her place was in the home, taking care of him and her children. He’d made it sound as if her work was too blinking beneath him to be worth anything. As if she wasn’t worth anything.

Well, that did it. Just because he’d left his job as the Pennyfoot’s handyman and bought that flipping toy shop didn’t make him bleeding royalty. He was no better than she was, and she’d wasted no time in telling him that. They’d had a good old blowup and she’d told that snot to shove off.

Reaching the floor, she closed her eyes for a moment to picture the scene, as she had done so many times since the spring. She’d missed him at first, but she’d kept reminding herself that she’d had a lucky escape. He would have dominated her whole life, and no one dominated Gertie Brown McBride. Still, the memories kept coming back to taunt her, making her wonder what might have been if she’d done what he asked.

In the next instant, she heard a grunt of pain as she smacked into something soft.

Opening her eyes, she stared into the gaunt face of Lilly Green, one of the latest maids to have been hired at the Pennyfoot. Lilly was almost as tall as Gertie, who towered over the rest of the staff with the exception of Michel. While Lilly was as skinny as a rake, however, Gertie was fighting a tendency to balloon out of her clothes.

She was built like a bloody bull to begin with, but had always managed to keep everything in proportion until this last year. No matter how little she ate now, it all seemed to end up on her blinking hips. She’d soon be as plump as Altheda Chubb. The bossy housekeeper was always complaining that her corset was pinching her.

“You smacked me in the stomach with those,” Lilly said, frowning at the linens in Gertie’s arms.

“Sorry, luv. I wasn’t looking where I was flipping going, was I.” Gertie paused for a moment, silently chiding herself. She’d promised herself so many times that she’d try to stop the curse words that seemed to explode from her lips with no way to stop them.

She’d grown up hearing that language from her dad all day long, and sometimes all night, too, and it had become so much part of her speech, she didn’t even know she was doing it until someone said something. Usually Mrs. Chubb, who was always on at her to talk like a lady. Some bleeding hope of that.

“Why weren’t you?” Lilly seemed about to cry. Then again, Lilly looked like that much of the time. She’d been working at the Pennyfoot for over a year, and she still acted like she’d wandered into a house of mirrors and couldn’t escape.

There was an air of desperation about her that Gertie simply couldn’t understand. It had taken Lilly months to get used to the work, and at times she still turned her nose up at some of the tasks, as if the whole thing was beneath her. She was finicky about everything, and went out of her way to avoid contact with the guests. Especially the men.

Gertie tried to get along with her, but was irritated by such a lack of gumption. As for herself, she would tackle anyone or anything that got in her bloody way. Besides, it irked her that Lilly always had her cap on straight and the straps of her apron sitting firmly on her shoulders. Gertie, on the other hand, rarely accomplished either. “Why wasn’t I what?”

“Looking where you were going.”

“Oh!” Gertie frowned. “I was thinking about something, that’s why. Where are you off to anyway? Aren’t you supposed to be cleaning the silver?”

Lilly raised her hand to tuck her hair more securely beneath her cap. “Mrs. Chubb sent me to tell madam that she’s baking the Christmas puddings. She wants to know how many madam wants her to make.”

“Then you’d better get on with it, hadn’t you.” Gertie stepped past her, adding over her shoulder, “You don’t want Chubby after you for loitering. She’ll have your bloody guts for garters.” Bugger it, she thought. She was swearing again.

She could hear Lilly’s black patent leather shoes clicking on the stairs as she hurried up them. Shaking her head, Gertie headed for the laundry room. If she didn’t get back to the kitchen right away, it would be her guts turning into bloody garters.

Mrs. Chubb was like a mother to her, and to the rest of the maids. Her sharp tongue, however, would give them all a lashing if they got behind in their work. Gertie grinned as she shoved the door open with her shoulder. Chubby didn’t take no nonsense from anyone. Not even madam, or Mr. Baxter. Gertie liked that. You knew where you was with her.

Stepping inside the empty room, she marched over to one of the sinks and dumped the linens into it. Three of the ironing boards were stacked against the wall, while a fourth stood a few feet from the window. One of the maids had forgotten to put it away.

Gertie was tempted to leave it there and get back to the kitchen. She had actually turned toward the door when habit, engrained by years of following the strict rules of the Pennyfoot Hotel, forced her to turn back and fold up the ironing board.

As she carried it over to its place against the wall, something caught her attention in the dark corner by the sinks. A bundle of dirty clothes. Someone must have been in a hurry, chucked them at the sink, and missed. She probably hadn’t even noticed that they’d landed on the floor. Most likely it was the same bloody twit who’d left the ironing board in the middle of the room.

Cursing under her breath, Gertie stomped across the room to pick up the bundle. As she drew closer, however, cold shock slammed into her chest. It wasn’t a bundle of clothes after all. It was a man, lying curled up on his side, his eyes open and staring blankly into space.

“Here!” Gertie demanded, backing up a step or two. “What the bloody hell are you doing in here? You’d better get out of here before I call the copper and have you thrown in the bloody clink.”

The man didn’t even twitch, and looking at the bloodless face, Gertie thought she knew why. This man wasn’t getting up again. He was bleeding dead.

Upstairs in the lavish suite overlooking the bowling greens, Cecily Sinclair Baxter watched her husband settle into his comfortable armchair with the latest edition of the Illustrated London News.

It had been almost a year since a bout of pneumonia had come close to taking Baxter’s life. Every time she looked at him, she felt again the anxiety and dread that had filled her very soul when Dr. Kevin Prestwick had turned to her in that dim, candlelit room, his face grave with concern. She had lost her first husband in that same room. She could not bear to lose another.

Baxter had survived, thank the good Lord, but the illness had left him weak and depressed for months. So much so that he had officially declined the position offered to him as a director of overseas acquisitions-work that would have taken them to all four corners of the world.

Baxter had declared one evening over dinner that he had come to the conclusion he was too old to be taking on such a monumental task. “I am much more suited to managing one hotel in one place, rather than chasing all over the world taking on one headache after another,” he’d told her.

She’d pretended to be dismayed, but had fallen to her knees later that night and given thanks for this reprieve. The only reason she’d agreed to the opportunity in the first place was because Baxter had come close to being seriously hurt while aiding her in a murder investigation. She had decided they would both be on safer ground away from the Pennyfoot and her penchant for tangling with villains. The possibility of seeing her sons again, both of whom lived abroad, was also an incentive.

Even so, she’d hated the very thought of leaving her home and the staff who had become as close as family to her. She had become even more overjoyed when Baxter had surprised her later with a suggestion.

“I think we should purchase the Pennyfoot from your cousin,” he’d said, and for a long moment Cecily had stared at him, afraid to believe what she was hearing in case she was mistaken.

When she didn’t answer him, Baxter had added, “We could turn it from a country club back into a hotel. The memberships have been dwindling in the last year or so, and with a hotel we would attract a more diverse and hopefully a more abundant clientele.”

She had leapt at the idea with so much enthusiasm, Baxter had told her he wished he’d thought of the idea sooner.

So now that they were once again the owners of the Pennyfoot Hotel, Baxter seemed happy and content and, more important, healthy again. He had maintained his business in London, though he had cut back a good deal of it and now did most of the work at home.

Christmas was less than a week away, and the aroma of seasonings and spice from the kitchen, blending with the fragrance of fresh greenery from the woods, filled the halls.

It was her favorite time of the year, and Cecily was so overjoyed, she felt a strong urge to hug her husband. She had actually stretched out her arms to do just that when a sharp rap on the door halted her.

Baxter sighed and rattled his newspaper as she turned toward the door.

“Come in!” Cecily seated herself on her gold Queen Anne armchair as the door opened and Gertie edged into the room.

“I’m sorry, m’m,” she said, dropping a slight curtsey. “I got some bad news.”

Baxter groaned, and lowered his newspaper. “What now?”

Gertie’s gaze seemed to fix on Cecily’s face. “I was in the laundry room and I thought it were a bundle of clothes lying on the floor, but it weren’t.” She appeared to have something to add, but apparently had trouble getting it out.

Cecily was already getting a nasty feeling in her stomach. Every year at this time they seemed to have some kind of disaster. She called it the Christmas Curse, and for years the name had been whispered among the downstairs staff with the same dread that she felt right now.

She tried to sound calm as she gave Gertie an encouraging smile. “So, what is it, Gertie?”

Baxter, who had none of his wife’s patience and restraint, growled, “Come on, girl. Spit it out.”

Gertie swallowed, heaved air into her lungs, and announced in a voice hoarse with anxiety, “It were a dead body, m’m. Mr. Baxter. Mrs. Chubb has already sent for the police constable.”

“Oh, Lord,” Baxter muttered, folding his newspaper.

Cecily could feel her heart pumping. Not again. Not now. Just when they were beginning to see a large increase in bookings. They were already taking reservations for next year. They didn’t need another calamity to frighten off prospective guests, or the ones still due to arrive for the holidays, for that matter. “Who is it, Gertie? Is it one of the staff? A footman? Could you tell how he’d died?”

~From Amazon

Find about more about Kate and her books here.

Find More Kate Kingsbury Mysteries Here.

Thanks to the people at Penguin 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.

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Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent
Posted in Challenges Cloak and Dagger Challenge E-Book Challenge Flashback Friday Giveaways Literary Escapes TBR Pile Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

#FlashbackFriday – Malice in Maggody (The Arly Hanks Mysteries) by Joan Hess #Review / #Giveaway


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.


Malice in Maggody (The Arly Hanks Mysteries)
Humorous Mystery (Explicit Language)
1st in Series
Setting – Arkansas
Originally Released (February 5, 1991)
MysteriousPress.com/Open Road – Reprint edition (February 14, 2017)
Print Length: 260 pages
Kindle ASIN: B01N4RHNLC

After a crossbow killing at a cheap roadside motel, Ozarks police chief Arly Hanks finds herself investigating her first murder case.

Her marriage over and career gone bust, Arly Hanks flees Manhattan for her hometown: Maggody, Arkansas. In a town this size, nothing much ever happens, so Arly figures she’s safe as the town’s first female chief of police—until the husband of one of the local barmaids escapes from state prison and heads for town. And that’s not all. An EPA official with ties to polluting the local fishing hole has suddenly vanished off the face of the earth.

As if two manhunts aren’t enough to contend with, a body has been discovered at the pay-by-the-hour Flamingo Motel, shot clean through the neck with an arrow. For some reason, Maggody’s residents—all 755 of them—have gone tight-lipped, stonewalling Arly’s investigations, and Arly hasn’t a soul to trust but her half-wit deputy. Now, as Maggody’s finest, she’ll have to show a little muscle and a lot of cunning to curtail the inhospitable mountain malice that’s overtaken her town. And she’ll have to watch her own back every step of the way.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Arly Hanks returns to Maggody, Arkansas, population 755, after her career and marriage blows up and lands the job of Chief of Police. The crime in Maggody is virtually non-existent and writing traffic tickets is the major concern. But then a prison escape puts everyone on guard. The man who escaped is the husband of Jaylee Withers, a barmaid at Ruby Dee’s Bar and Grill. The residents of Maggody are also dealing with the EPA who has given the go-ahead for a sewage treatment plant that will feed into the beloved Boone Creek. The man sent to get all the I’s dotted and the T’s crossed made it to town but hasn’t been seen since.

So the crime rate in Maggody has taken a huge spike with two manhunts. But that’s not all … Arly now has to add a murder to her list when a body outside the pay-by-the-hour Flamingo Motel and she isn’t getting any help anyone in town, not even her mother. Thankfully Arly isn’t on her own and I don’t mean her Barney Fife deputy, she gets a much-needed assist from the State Police even though she isn’t happy to accept it.

___

This book is listed on many sites as a “cozy mystery” so I was completely caught off guard when the first line of the book is “It’s sh*t – pure and simple sh*t, no matter what they call it in those g*ddamn reports” (asterisks added by me.) While the language may be authentic and I have no problem with that language in almost any other genre, I just don’t believe it should be found in a cozy mystery.  I did keep reading and did enjoy the book but I refuse to classify it as a cozy mystery.

Joan Hess has created larger than life characters and placed them in a quirky small town. Almost everyone we meet is hiding something or keeping a secret or involved in nefarious activities and sometimes all three. While I found most of them to be pretty stereotypical and could be offensive to some readers I did find them entertaining.

The mystery plotlines were interesting even with readers knowing many things Arly didn’t. The story was well-plotted and the final reveal was surprising but made perfect sense. The author leans heavily on humor and some scenes were pretty hilarious.

Colorful characters in a Southern small-town, Malice in Maggody was an unusual and stirring mystery. I do plan to read more of this series.

One note: I think formatting this book for digital devices made transitions hard to follow at times. Storyline transitions were blurred due to the flow of the text. Spaces for setting changes or time changes within the chapters would be appreciated.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Author

I was sad to learn while researching this series that the author passed away in November 2017. Joan Hess was an American mystery writer, a member of Sisters in Crime, and a former president of the American Crime Writers League. She wrote two popular mystery series: The Claire Malloy Mysteries and The Maggody Mysteries (also called The Arly Hanks Mysteries), and has contributed to multiple anthologies and book series, including: Crosswinds, Deadly Allies, Malice Domestic, Sisters in Crime, and The Year’s 25 Finest Crime and Mystery Stories. She also wrote the Theo Bloomer mystery series, under the pseudonym Joan Hadley.


I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy!
It will be sent directly from Amazon.
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.

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

Contest Will End November 1, 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

*This book was from my private collection.

Posted in Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours Guest Posts Interviews Spotlights

Serf and Turf: A Silicon Valley Mystery by Marc Jedel – Character Interview – #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour

Serf and Turf: A Silicon Valley Mystery
by Marc Jedel

About Serf and Turf


Serf and Turf: A Silicon Valley Mystery
BGM Press (October 9, 2019)
Paperback: 213 pages
ISBN-10: 1732716420
ISBN-13: 978-1732716421
Digital ASIN: B07YF2CN1B

He’s afraid of losing his girlfriend. But maybe he should be more concerned about the dead body she’s crying over?

Marty Golden can barely string a voicemail message together, let alone keep up with his new love. This quirky uncle’s hectic Silicon Valley lifestyle needs a reboot when a youth league soccer game becomes a murder scene. And nothing can stop him from donning his amateur sleuth uniform when he discovers his sweetheart used to have quite a thing for the dead guy …

With a not-so-helpful paw from Buddy the Labrador,  he does his best to sniff out a long list of possible suspects. But between gossipy soccer moms and the costume-clad members of a Renaissance Faire, Marty’s theories fall harder than a jousted knight.

Can Marty solve the case before the trail and his new flame grow cold?

Serf and Turf is the third book in the zany, Silicon Valley cozy mystery series. If you like laugh-out-loud comedy, dorky sleuths, and a festival of old-world fun, then you’ll love Marc Jedel’s humorous murder mystery.

Buy Serf and Turf to sign in to a great mystery today!

Character Interview 

Character Interview with Giovanni Quince, dead guy discovered at the beginning of Serf and Turf.

Interviewer: If you’re dead, then you’re a ghost, right?

Giovanni: No, the author doesn’t believe in ghosts.

Interviewer: So, what are you?

Giovanni: I’m not really sure what I am right now, but since the characters in Serf and Turf spend so much time trying to figure out how I died, I suppose someone thought it would be interesting for me to do this interview.

Interviewer: Are you in Surf and Turf?

Giovanni: Only in spirit. Heh, heh. Get it? “In spirit”—that’s a ghost joke. Seriously, I don’t make any appearances in the book—astral or otherwise. You’d think the author would have been more clever with this book coming out in October and ghosts and witches so popular these days. But no, he’s not very smart.

Interviewer: I see what you think of the author, what about Marty, the guy who spends most of the book figuring out how you died?

Giovanni: Eh, he’s ok.

Interviewer: Only ok? Why would you say that?

Giovanni: I just think Meghan can do better. After she dated me, I don’t understand how she can find him attractive after leaving me?

Interviewer: Did you hear Marty has his own secret codeword with the police?

Giovanni: Sure, but did you hear what it was?

Interviewer: Let’s not get into that and just focus on the book. Do you know who killed you?

Giovanni: Are you nuts? I can’t answer that. It might ruin the whole book for people. You know that’s really a ridiculous question to ask someone in a mystery book. I mean, do you go around telling people how a movie ends?

Interviewer: Ok, ok. No need to get so worked up. I’m starting to understand the rumor I heard about people disliking you. Was that true?

Giovanni: Well, not the ladies …

Interviewer: Yeah, so I guess the answer is Yes.

Interviewer: It seems like you had lots of different adventures in your life. Were you ever a criminal?

Giovanni: I shouldn’t go into too much detail, but there was a time I was hitchhiking through Columbia on my way to the Amazon basin when …

Interviewer [interrupting]: On second thought, that’s enough of that. Why don’t I ask, “What’s your favorite part of the book?”

Giovanni: It was hard to enjoy it too much since it was all about my death. But, I did laugh at the scenes with Buddy the Labrador and also Marty’s niece, Megan. But, talk about characters who can be hard to like, what’s up with that school secretary, Mrs. Quarles?

Interviewer: I find her funny. Well, thanks Giovanni for the time today. Of course, I suppose you have nothing but time now …

Giovanni: Sure, make fun of the dead guy.

My books, Serf and Turf, Chutes and Ladder and Uncle and Ants, are humorous murder mysteries. Silicon Valley is not your typical cozy mystery locale and Marty Golden doesn’t fit the normal profile of a mystery protagonist. Despite finding himself thrust into challenging situations, Marty isn’t exactly hero material. He combines wit, irreverent humor and sarcasm mixed in with nerdy insecurities, absent-mindedness, and fumbling but effective amateur sleuthing skills. With an active inner voice and not a lot of advanced planning, he throws himself into solving problems. Sometimes, he even succeeds.

 

About Marc Jedel 

For most of my life, I’ve been inventing stories. Some, especially when I was young, involved my sister as the villain. As my sister’s brother for her entire life, I’m highly qualified to tell the tale of this evolving, quirky sibling relationship.

My writing skills were honed in years of marketing leadership positions in Silicon Valley. While my high tech marketing roles involved crafting plenty of fiction, we called these marketing collateral, emails and ads.

The publication of my first novel, Uncle and Ants, gave me permission to claim “author” as my job. And achieving Amazon Best Seller status gave me even better adjectives to use in front of “author.” This has led to way more interesting discussions than answering “marketing.”

My family would tell you that Marty’s character isn’t much of a stretch of the imagination for me, but I’m comfortable with that situation.

Like Marty, I live in Silicon Valley and can’t believe that otherwise normal people would willingly jump out of an airplane and call it fun. Unlike Marty, I have a wonderful wife and a neurotic but sweet, small dog, who is often the first to weigh in on the humor in my writing.

Author Links –   Website  FaceBook   LinkedIn   GoodReads   BookBub 

Purchase Link – Amazon

TOUR PARTICIPANTS – Please visit all the stops. 
October 14 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT
October 14 – Carla Loves To Read – REVIEW
October 15 – Cozy Up With Kathy – CHARACTER GUEST POST
October 15 – A Chick Who Reads – REVIEW
October 16 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT – Reading Is My SuperPower
October 16 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
October 17 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – CHARACTER GUEST POST
October 18 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
October 19 – MJB Reviewers – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
October 20 – Literary Gold – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST
October 21 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW
October 21 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – GUEST POST
October 22 – The Book Decoder – REVIEW
October 22 – I Read What You Write  – CHARACTER GUEST POST
October 23 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
October 24 – Here’s How It Happened – REVIEW
October 24 – Mysteries with Character – REVIEW
October 25 – Brooke Blogs – GUEST POST
October 26 – A Blue Million Books – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
October 27 – Diane Reviews Books – REVIEW, GUEST POST

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Posted in Cozy Wednesday Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies E-Book Challenge Giveaways Great Escapes Book Tours Reviews 2019 You Read How Many Books Challenge

Cozy Wednesday featuring Molded 4 Murder (Sophie Kimball Mystery) by J.C. Eaton – #Review / #Giveaway – Great Escapes Book Tour – @KensingtonBooks

Welcome To Cozy Wednesday! 

I am so happy to feature Molded 4 Murder today! 

Molded 4 Murder (Sophie Kimball Mystery)
by J.C. Eaton

About Molded 4 Murder


Molded 4 Murder (Sophie Kimball Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Kensington (August 27, 2019)
Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
ISBN-10: 1496719905
ISBN-13: 978-1496719904
Digital ASIN: B07L2FJ1PN

A view to a kiln …

Sophie “Phee” Kimball enjoys working as a bookkeeper for a private investigator. If only her mother Harriet could enjoy her retirement at Sun City West in Arizona—instead of constantly getting involved with retirees being prematurely put out to pasture. This time Quentin Dussler, a prominent member of the clay sculpting club, was found dead, clutching a piece of paper scrawled with Phee’s mother’s name.

Terrified she’s been targeted by assassins, Harriet begs Phee to investigate. What Phee uncovers is a complicated scheme that only the most diabolical of murderers would ever devise. And as she chisels away at confusing clues and potential suspects, Phee unearths something far more precious and valuable than she could imagine. Eager for answers, she takes a bold step—placing herself in the crosshairs of a stonefaced killer …

Dollycas’s Thoughts

The Gertrudes return with a hot case for Sophie “Phee” Kimball. Items are going missing from resident’s rooms at The Lillian, a luxury senior residence, and they want her to investigate. After receiving a list of the “stolen” items, Phee decides it is a case she can handle without bothering Marshall or Nate. They are busy with a new case that may involve her mother, Harriet. Harriet has joined the ceramics group at Sun City West and one of the instructors has been murdered and was found holding a slip of paper that bore Harriet’s name. When Harriet finds out she demands Phee join the investigation and find the killer immediately. That is not going to be easy but  Phee goes to great lengths to fulfill her mother’s wishes.

This was a very captivating cozy.

Phee again is pulled away from bookkeeping duties for two investigations that may tie together. She finds herself trekking around in the desert looking for clues with her Aunt Ina as her sidekick along with trips to The Lillian, and always at her mother’s beck and call, all in a quest to find who killed Quentin Dussler and why.

I really enjoy catching up with these characters. The crew at Williams Investigations is really starting to gel. Augusta keeps the office running and adds her own two cents when necessary. Phee handles the books and jumps in to investigate as needed, more often than not, as this series continues. Nate and Marshall, the actual licensed investigators, handle the cases but know they couldn’t do it without the ladies’ help. I love that the relationship between Marshall and Phee is progressing nicely. Then we have Harriet. She is a treasure. She tries to micromanage Phee’s life but Phee and now Marshall have figured out how to handle Harriet. Gertie, Trudy, and the other seniors bring their own shenanigans to the story too. The authors have created characters with depth and unique making it very easy to keep everyone straight.

Speaking of unique, the mystery this time was full of twists and took a very unexpected path as the motivation for the murder was delved into. Our sleuths really had to dig deep to find out what was going on. Red herrings, yes, there are a few. We are also treated to some very exciting moments. I really liked that Aunt Ina played a bigger role. The story was so well-plotted. I never would have solved this one on my own. It was a complete surprise. These authors also know where to add the humor in perfect amounts. Laughter in all the right places to keep things cozy while letting the drama shine to give readers a great mystery.

These characters are relatable, their journey this time was so entertaining. I also loved that we traveled to more places in Arizona. Molded 4 Murder is a terrific addition to this series. Each new book in this series becomes my new favorite.  J.C. Eaton never disappoints.  I am excited by the little cliffhanger – Dressed Up 4 Murder comes out on February 25, 2020.

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

About the Authors

Ann I. Goldfarb

New York native Ann I. Goldfarb spent most of her life in education, first as a classroom teacher and later as a middle school principal and professional staff developer. Writing as J. C. Eaton, along with her husband, James Clapp, she has authored the Sophie Kimball Mysteries (Kensington) was released in June 2017. In addition, Ann has nine published YA time travel mysteries under her own name. Visit the websites at www.jceatonauthor.com and www.timetravelmysteries.com

James E. Clapp

When James E. Clapp retired as the tasting room manager for a large upstate New York winery, he never imagined he’d be co-authoring cozy mysteries with his wife, Ann I. Goldfarb. His first novel, Booked 4 Murder (Kensington) was released in June 2017. Non-fiction in the form of informational brochures and workshop materials treating the winery industry were his forte along with an extensive background and experience in construction that started with his service in the U.S. Navy and included vocational school classroom teaching.

Visit their website at www.jceatonauthor.com and Like and Follow on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/JCEatonauthor/

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS – Please visit all the stops. 
October 15 – I Read What You Write – CHARACTER GUEST POST
October 15 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – SPOTLIGHT
October 16 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
October 16 – Reading Is My SuperPower – SPOTLIGHT, EXCERPT
October 16 – A Wytch’s Book Review Blog – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
October 16 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT
October 17 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW
October 17 – Books, Movies, Reviews. Oh my! – GUEST POST
October 18 – Rosepoint Publishing – REVIEW
October 18 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT
October 18 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW, GUEST POST
October 19 – Diane Reviews Books – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW 
October 19 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT
October 19 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT
October 20 – A Blue Million Books – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
October 20 – Laura’s Interests – SPOTLIGHT
October 20 – Hearts & Scribbles – SPOTLIGHT, EXCERPT
October 21 – Diary of a Book Fiend – REVIEW
October 21 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT, EXCERPT
October 22 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
October 22 – Cozy Up With Kathy – CHARACTER GUEST POST
October 22 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense 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.”