Jan 182019
 

 

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.

This book was supposed to be read at the end of last month but real life got in the way so I am so happy to share it with you today. 

Yule Be Dead (Victoria Square Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Setting – New York
Berkley (November 27, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 0425266001
ISBN-13: 978-0425266007
Kindle ASIN: B07BD22MJ6

A Christmas crime shocks the merchants of a quaint shopping district in this latest installment of The New York Times bestselling Victoria Square series.

It’s Christmastime, but not everyone is jolly–especially not Vonne Barnett. Her dead body has been found in Victoria Square. Katie Bonner, the manager of Artisan’s Alley, happens to be at the tea shop Vonne’s mother, Francine, owns when the news is delivered.

Vonne left a trail of men behind her so the suspects are many–but the clues are few. A broken teacup leads Katie to one of the suspects, but before she can investigate, she’s attacked. Katie may be closing in on a murderer, but time is ticking because the murderer is definitely closing in on her.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Gayle Leeson joins Lorraine Bartlett in penning this fifth Victoria Square Mystery. Set just before the Christmas holidays Vonne Barnett is found dead. Vonne and her mother, Francine, own Afternoon Tea in Victoria Square. Artisan’s Alley manager Kate Bonner is at the tea shop when Francine finds out about her daughter’s death. There are plenty of suspects as Vonne was not herself when she passed. She was dating or flirting with every man she came in contact with but does that make one of them a killer. Katie is just starting to “help” with the case when she is struck down. Down but not out she doesn’t give up but the killer seems to have made her his new target. Can she catch him before he wipes her out?

The long awaited 5th installment to this series has finally arrived and Kate finds herself right in the middle of another murder mystery. This while she is busy at Artisan’s Alley with holiday sales, a bunch of mischievous ballerinas, a visit from her ex-mother-in-law, a possible new business venture, and trying to find time to spend with her boyfriend, Andy.

The authors have packed this book with so much goodness it was truly impossible to put down. There was always something happening.

All the character we love are back and I must say I really enjoyed the direction that was taken with several main characters. I loved the visit by Chad’s mother. The new dynamic between her and Katie was really heartwarming. Katie’s attack was a scary twist and brought everyone together as they strived to protect her. The friendships that have been built over the course of this series continue to drive these stories.

The varied subplots mesh effortlessly into the murder mystery. The pace is excellent and there are many twists and unexpected turns as clue after clue is followed. I did tune in on the real culprit a bit before it was revealed but it was fun to see how everything fell into place.

This has become my favorite book in this series. It has everything I look for in a grand cozy mystery. I am excited about the next book. I just hope the authors do make us wait as long 🙂 These are characters I will always love to visit.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 About The Authors

Lorraine Bartlett

The immensely popular Booktown Mystery series is what put Lorraine Bartlett‘s pen name Lorna Barrett on the New York Times Bestseller list, but it’s her talent — whether writing as Lorna, or L.L. Bartlett, or Lorraine Bartlett — that keeps her there. This multi-published, Agatha-nominated author pens the exciting Jeff Resnick Mysteries as well as the acclaimed Victoria Square Mystery series and has many short stories and novellas to her name(s). Check out the links to all her works here: http://www.lorrainebartlett.com

Gayle Leeson

Gayle Leeson is a pseudonym for Gayle Trent. Gayle has also written as Amanda Lee. She is currently writing the Kinsey Falls chick-lit/women’s fiction series, the Down South Cafe cozy mystery series, and the Ghostly Fashionista cozy mystery series. Her book KILLER WEDDING CAKE won the Bronze Medal in the 20th Anniversary IPPY Awards. Gayle lives in Southwest Virginia with her family and enjoys hearing from readers. Find her books on Amazon here.    Website     Facebook    Twitter    Pinterest     Instagram

 

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.

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Winner Will Be Notified By Email
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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 172019
 

About the Book

 

Grimoires, Spas & Chocolate Straws (A Spells & Caramels Cozy Witch Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
8th in Series
Self Published (December 29, 2018)
Paperback: 332 pages
ISBN-10: 1792728727
ISBN-13: 978-1792728723
Digital ASIN: B07LB49VBR

Sandy slaughter. An enchanting suspect. Can a magical baker protect her friends from a dangerous paradise?

Stranded on Badlands Island, Imogen Banks is driving herself crazy looking for her brother. So when the spell-casting baker’s friends suggest they escape for a luxurious dragon spa treatment, she doesn’t need a second invitation. But her hopes for coastal romance with Hank fall flat when a resort guest turns up roasted in the sand.

Suspecting murder, Imogen zeroes in on the town’s rumored “black widow” as a possible culprit. But when her friend falls for the beautiful woman despite the deadly track record, Imogen fears he’ll be the next victim to stay buried.

Can Imogen sift through the clues before the killer gives her one final treatment?

Grimoires, Spas and Chocolate Straws is the eighth book in the Spells and Caramels delightful paranormal cozy mystery series. If you like endearing heroines, a touch of romance, and unexpected twists, then you’ll love Erin Johnson’s magical whodunit.

Buy Grimoires, Spas & Chocolate Straws to massage a new mystery today!

Praise for Grimoires, Spas & Chocolate Straws
(A Spells & Caramels Cozy Witch Mystery)
By Erin Johnson

The characters are still the ones that I’ve come to love. They’re quirky and funny and a joy to have around. Being around Imogen, Hank, Iggy, Maple, and the rest always brighten up a day.
~Valerie’s Musings

. . . once you have been introduced to the characters you will be hooked . . . Become immersed in the magical fun and uncertainty as you worry about your new friends and wonder what could happen next.
~Laura’s Interests

The continued world building describes scenes very well and the continues character development helps the reader develop deeper connections with the characters.
~Sapphyria’s Books

Erin Johnson has a vivid imagination. She has created whimsical worlds with quirky characters and plenty of humor.
~The Avid Reader

Part paranormal adventure, part mystery, these books whisk you away to a world like no other.
~This Is My Truth Now

If readers are looking for a strong mystery with unique and charming characters then this is the book for them. I couldn’t put it down and finished it so fast that now I am eagerly waiting for the next one.
~Bibliophile Reviews

Amazing world building, quirky details, and a wide group of eclectic characters to give everyone someone to love such as Izzy the hilarious talking flame.
~Books a Plenty Book Reviews

It is part paranormal, part fantasy, a bit of romance and some adventure. The setting of the book is in an amazing fantasy land with monsters, witches, vampires, seers and more.
~Carla Loves To Read

Erin crafts an amazing story, filled with larger than life characters that I want to be friends with! Especially Iggy…I seriously want that snarky flame as my BFF!
~The Montana Bookaholic

About the Author

Erin Johnson is a native of Tempe, Arizona, Erin spends her time crafting mysterious, magical, romance-filled stories that’ll hopefully make you laugh. In between, she’s traveling, napping with her dogs, eating with her friends and family, and teaching Pilates (to allow her to eat more).

Website   Facebook     Twitter:@EJohnsonWrites

Purchase Link – Amazon

 

The author is giving away 1 E-Copy of Grimoires, Spas, and Chocolate Straws!

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

 

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

January 8 – Valerie’s Musings – REVIEW

January 8 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT

January 9 – Laura`s Interests – REVIEW

January 9 – Paranormal and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

January 10 – Sapphyria’s Books – REVIEW

January 10 – Readeropolis – SPOTLIGHT

January 11 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW

January 11 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT

January 12 – This Is My Truth Now – REVIEW

January 12 – Bibliophile Reviews – REVIEW

January 13 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

January 14 – Carla Loves To Read – REVIEW

January 14 – Cozy Up With Kathy – SPOTLIGHT

January 15 – The Montana Bookaholic – REVIEW

January 15 – Devilishly Delicious Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

January 16 – A Chick Who Reads – REVIEW

January 16 – Celticlady’s Reviews  – SPOTLIGHT

January 17 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT  

January 17 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

 

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Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

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 – Pennsyvania
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)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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 122019
 

I am excited to welcome Frances Metzman to Escape With Dollycas today!

Hi Frances,

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

 I believe I’ve gone the distance to develop my characters as much as the plot. It’s important to reveal my character’s upbringing as well as how they get through the hurdles and conflicts in their particular situation. How do they resolve overwhelming issues? What choices do they make and how does it reflect on their upbringing. How do they handle resolution and look to the future.

  1. What’s next on the horizon for you?

I have a sequel in progress to The Cha-Cha Babes of Pelican Way and an outline of a 3rd book.

  1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Formally, I was a sculptor and a social worker. I always wanted to write and 30 years – ago set out to do just that. But I knew structure was of the utmost importance. So, my quest included conferences, workshops, writing groups, individual lessons and wherever I could seek out information. They were given in tidbits, slivers or nonexistent. It was frustrating. I then devised my own standards of basic writing structure by piecing it together and lots of reading. I live by that framework and can manipulate the structure now without losing balance in writing. I liken it to the abstract painter who actually knows realistic work prior to experimenting. I teach that structure and occasionally meet resistance. Nonetheless, I will never divert and water it down.

  1. What are three things most people don’t know about you?

I hike/walk a lot, entertain to look like complex but try to use one pot, AND, I wanted to be a furniture maker but it won’t happen in this life.

  1. What is the first book you remember reading?

See Dick and Jane. I remember elements that were shocking to me. The dad going to work in a suit and briefcase, Mom kissing her children goodbye and conversations between parent and children – I came from a family of 5 children.

  1. What are you reading now?

The Gentleman from Moscow, Ian McEwan– Saturday, Alice Munro-Dear Life, Anne Tyler-St. Maybe, (I’m not always up-to-date)

  1. What made you decide you want to write?

I’m pretty sure it started as a healing process to re-arrange history and establish a resolution with my mother which I didn’t do in real life. Writing gave me the opportunity to manage the chaos in life so that conflicts are resolved and inner depths are examined. The process actually did help in my real life. 

  1. Do you have a special place you like to write?

I do. I write in my office.

  1. Do you write at the same day every day?

I try to write from 10 AM till 5 or 6 PM. If I start later in the day I try to work later – that is if my brain hasn’t gone numb.

  1. Where do the ideas for your books come from?

I think much of my ideas come from researching white collar crime. I read those types of crime in newspapers and from those who I have known.

  1. What books have most inspired you?

I think Cynthia Ozick for plotting and characterization early on and I admire Ian McEwan very much for his fastidious researching and characterization.

  1. Is there anything about writing you find most challenging?

Editing especially cutting my best pages.

  1. What do you think makes a good story?

 I believe in plotting even in literary books where there is a sense of a story. We have had stories – beginning, middle and ending from the earliest times of our lives. It doesn’t have to be obvious. It can be very subtle, even in literary books, but there nonetheless. Call me old-fashioned, it’s okay. Also, character development is equally if not more important.

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

That’s tough. Maybe a bit of them all, but Celia perhaps a tad more than others.

  1. Why did you pick your particular genre?

I’ve mentioned my fascination with white collar crimes committed by people I’ve known who are economically comfortable. Also, my need to bring about order and understand why people behave the way they do.

Thank you, Frances, for visiting today!

_________________________________________________________

About the Book

The Cha-Cha Babes of Pelican Way
Cozy Mystery
Wild River Consulting & Publishing, LLC (June 21, 2018)
Paperback: 506 pages
ISBN-10: 9781941948064
ISBN-13: 978-1941948064
Digital ASIN: B07CV2GP9Z

Would you move a dead body for the sake of your best friend? Ask cha-cha babe Celia Ewing, a sixty-five-year-old widow who has just settled into Boca Pelicano Palms, the Florida retirement community of her dreams. When Celia’s best friend Marcy calls her and their friend Deb for help in the middle of the night, they find a naked Marcy trapped under the body of her beau, the community’s board president, Melvin. And he’s dead. The three friends secretly move Melvin back to his apartment setting off a chain of events that will threaten to tear their community apart and send them to jail. Melvin is one of a number of residents who are dying under suspicious circumstances; and soon Celia becomes an amateur sleuth in an attempt to identify what she suspects is a serial murderer.

Filled with humorous, witty observations about retirement communities, the realities of getting older, and the promise of new love, the Cha-Cha Babes of Pelican Way celebrates the deep bonds of female friendships, the desire for companionship at any age, and shows us that it’s never too late to learn how to cha-cha through life.

About the Author

 

Frances Metzman, a graduate of Moore College of Art and a Masters degree from the University of Pennsylvania, co-authored a novel, Ugly Cookies, by Pella Press. Her short story collection, The Hungry Heart: Stories, was published by Wilderness House Press, February 1, 2012. In 2009 she won a nomination for a Dzanc Books award, “Best of the Web.” In addition to publishing numerous (25) short stories in various literary journals, she has a novel published by Wild River Books, 2018, The Cha-Cha Babes of Pelican Way. Her teaching credits include Adjunct professor at Rosemont College to graduate school, Temple University at OLLI (creative writing and memoir). Other writing workshops, memoir/creative writing, have been given at universities and colleges such as Bryn Mawr, Penn State, Delaware, University of Pennsylvania, Widener, etc. As fiction editor for a literary journal, Schuylkill Valley Journal, she selects and edits the submissions. Many articles, essays, and stories she writes deal with aspects of society that influences relationships for all ages, including the mature set (sometimes tongue in cheek). Many articles are dedicated to improving attitudes toward the mature folks and address myths about “age appropriate” thinking.

Author Links

Twitter Facebook GoodReads – 

FrancesMetzman.com

Purchase Links –

AmazonB&N – Kobo 

Praise for The Cha-Cha Babes of Pelican Way
by Frances Metzman

What a page-turner. Honestly once I got into the story it was hard to put down!
~My Reading Journeys

This heartwarming cozy mystery is surprising uplifting; it certainly raised my spirits.
~Mallory Heart’s Cozies

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS

January 7 – Books, Dreams, Life – SPOTLIGHT
January 7 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST
January 8 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
January 8 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT
January 9 – Babs Book Bistro – SPOTLIGHT
January 9 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT
January 10 – Mallory Heart’s Cozies – REVIEW
January 11 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT  
January 12 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
January 13 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT
January 13 – Cozy Up With Kathy – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
January 14 – Handcrafted Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
January 15 – StoreyBook Reviews – GUEST POST
January 16 – Ruff Drafts – GUEST POST
January 17 – MJB Reviewers – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
January 18 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
January 19 – Socrates Book Reviews – REVIEW 
January 20 – A Wytch’s Book Review Blog – CHARACTER GUEST POST

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Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Jan 112019
 


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.

Nipped in the Bud (An Orchard Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
12th in Series
Setting – Massachusetts
Beyond the Page Publishing (October 24, 2018)
Paperback: 212 pages
ISBN-10: 1946069876
ISBN-13: 978-1946069870
Kindle ASIN: B07JFP1BQ4

The New York Times bestselling author of A Late Frost returns with orchard owner Meg Chapin trying to stem the tide of crime . . .

Winter still has a firm stranglehold on the small town of Granford, and newly married orchard owner Meg Chapin is restless to begin her spring pruning and planting, while Seth busies himself with a new project of his own. But their relative peace is shattered when a gunshot breaks the winter silence and they discover the body of a dead woman on their land. What’s just as troubling is that the state police have hushed up the murder and are warning Meg not to investigate.

Never one to sit by idly with a killer on the loose, Meg starts digging for clues and probing for answers as discreetly as she can. When the victim turns out to have been an undercover reporter doing a story on the blossoming trade in illegal drugs in the area, Meg’s stunned to learn that this very modern crime has come to sleepy Granford. Unwilling to accept that the nasty business has put down roots so close to home—and led to a murder that occurred literally in her own backyard—Meg is determined to nip it in the bud before the town she knows and loves turns rotten . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

It is always good to catch up with Meg and Seth. The newly married couple is trying to fill their days as they anxiously await Spring to come to Granford, Massachusetts. Meg has a new orchard manager and he and Seth are building him a “tiny house” to give him and the couple their privacy.

Seth and Meg are out for a walk with their dog Max when they hear a gunshot and Max takes off to investigate. Seth is not far behind. He is stunned when he finds Max standing near a woman’s body. He notifies police, and they first decide it must have been a hunting accident. The warn Meg to stay out of their investigation, but with all the free time on her hands and the fact that the woman was killed on her property, there is no way she is going to sit this one out. She is going to nip this death in the bud come hell or high water.

I am thrilled this series has found a new home!

This is such a comfortable cozy. The characters are friendly, believable, and genuine. Meg and Seth going about their lives, still sorting things out now that they are married and dealing with the downtime of winter. They are still getting to know Larry the new orchard manager. He does not live in their house as Bree did. He is renting a room in Seth’s house along with a few other guys until his tiny house is built. I love that they are using the foundation of the old chicken coop to build the house on.

Not so cozy is finding another dead body. Ms. Connolly has produced a delightful mystery for her readers to enjoy. With this one happening so close to Meg and Seth’s home, it keeps the characters and us readers on high alert. The state police add to the intrigue by trying to keep the murder under wraps but Meg is keen to follow each twist and turn herself. What she finds opens several sets of eyes about things happening in the sweet little town of Granford. The story is so well-written and thought-provoking too.

The story was perfectly paced. I liked that it took place in the offseason for the orchard. It gave Meg plenty of time to snoop, but with Bree gone and Larry being so quiet, she worried a lot about things that needed to get done.

Strong characters and a great mystery. A grand addition to this series. Fill up your bushel basket and enjoy them all!

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

 

About the Author

Sheila Connolly, Anthony and Agatha Award-nominated and New York Times bestselling author, writes mystery series set in Philadelphia (the Museum Mysteries), rural Massachusetts (the Orchard Mysteries), and Ireland (the County Cork Mysteries), as well as a paranormal romance series (the Relatively Dead series). She will introduce a new Victorian Village series set in Maryland in 2018. In addition, her short stories have appeared in multiple anthologies. Formerly a professional genealogist, she lives in Massachusetts, surrounded by many, many departed ancestors, with her husband and three cats, and owns a cottage in West Cork in Ireland, where her father’s family came from.

Author Links

Website Facebook Twitter


GIVEAWAY
I am giving away 1 Kindle Copy sent directly from Amazon. 

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.

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

Contest Will End January 25, 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 102019
 


The Lost Traveller: A County Cork Mystery
Cozy Mystery
7th in Series
Setting – Ireland
Crooked Lane Books (January 8, 2019)
Hardcover: 336 pages
ISBN-10: 1683318900
ISBN-13: 978-1683318903
Kindle ASIN: B07D2J14S8

Danger comes to Cork in the seventh County Cork mystery from New York Times bestselling author Sheila Connolly, and it’s up to Maura Donovan to find a way to protect all she’s worked for.

Pub owner Maura Donovan is settling into a charmed life in Ireland—until a mutilated body on her property ends her lucky streak.

Boston expat Maura Donovan came to Ireland to honor her grandmother’s last wish, but she never expected to stay in provincial County Cork—much less to inherit a house and a pub, Sullivan’s, in the small village of Leap. After a year-long struggle to stay in the black, Sullivan’s is finally thriving, and Maura has even brought back traditional Irish music to the pub. With a crop of new friends and a budding relationship with handsome Mick Nolan, Maura’s life seems rosier than ever—but even in Ireland, you can’t always trust your luck.

It begins with Maura’s discovery of a body in the ravine behind the pub. And then, the Irish gardaí reveal that the victim’s face has been battered beyond recognition. Who is the faceless victim? Who wanted him dead? And why was his body dumped in the backyard of Sullivan’s Pub? Even after the dead man is finally given a name, nobody admits to knowing him. In the tight-knit world of Leap, no one is talking—and now it’s up to Maura to uncover the dark secrets that lurk beneath the seemingly quiet town.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

After less than a year in Ireland Maura has been involved in solving several murders. This time the body is found in the ravine behind the pub and the man is unrecognizable due to his face being beaten to a pulp. It is hard to find a killer when you can’t identify the victim but that doesn’t keep Maura from trying.

I love this series, but this installment had a couple of issues for me. First, Maura is a smart woman, she was brave enough to travel to Ireland and take over the pub she inherited, but in this story, she surprised me.  Things she should have known like where her employees live and where Indiana is located within the U.S. were just two examples. Leap is not that big of a town to know where people reside, especially a man she is romantically involved with, and the majority of high school graduates should be able to visualize a map of the country they grew up in. She also seemed muddled about where she wanted to take her business, whether to add a kitchen or not, even though her employee, Rose, is in training to be a cook for the pub.

I love Rose, seventeen and going places. She is filled with ideas, confident, willing to learn, and such a hard worker. I think she has grown so much over this series while Maura seems to be going backward.

I really enjoyed learning about The Travellers and the way they are different from gypsies. A very interesting life, I wish we would have met more Travellers and learned their stories.

The mystery was hard to solve even after the man was identified, virtually no suspects. Maura’s theory kind of came out of blue along with the theme the ran throughout the book. She kept talking about it to everyone, so at times it got a little repetitious, but she didn’t give up and soon all the matters fell into place for a  very unusual ending that I really appreciated. The theme is a current hot topic in the states and it was interesting to learn about it with an Irish twist.

My issues with Maura’s character development aside, this was an entertaining story that kept my attention. It was unique in several ways and I enjoyed that.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Note – The first four of this series were published by Berkley Prime Crime.
The series continues with books 5, 6 and 7 published by Crooked Lane Books.

 About The Author

Sheila is the author of many fantastic reads. She not only writes County Cork Mysteries but the Orchard Mysteries and the Museum Mysteries too. Visit Sheila’s webpage here to find out more about her and her books.

 



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 Crooked Lane on Twitter on Twitter for 2 Bonus Entries!

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

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

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

Contest Will End January 24, 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 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.”

Jan 072019
 

Welcome to My Reading Itinerary Monday!

I apologize for missing last week due to my computer’s crash and burn!

Where are your books taking you this week?

I will be visiting Deleware, Pennsylvania, and Wales this week! 

Here’s what I read and what I have planned for this week.

Escapes Completed


Do No Harm: A Dr. Katie LeClair Mystery
by Dawn Eastman
Release Date – December 11, 2018
Setting – Michigan
Review will be up tomorrow!


Murder Likes It Hot (A Downward Dog Mystery)
by Tracy Weber
Release Date – January 8, 2019
Setting – Washington State
Tracy Weber will be my guest this week for Cozy Wednesday!


The Lost Traveller: A County Cork Mystery
by Sheila Connolly
Release Date – January 8, 2019
Setting – Ireland
Review will be up Thursday!


Nipped in the Bud (An Orchard Mystery)
by Sheila Connolly
Release Date – October 29, 2018
Setting – Massachusetts
My Flashback Friday Read

Scheduled Escapes


In Dog We Trust
by Beth Kendrick
Release Date – January 8, 2019
Setting – Deleware
For Review


Academic Curveball (Braxton Campus Mysteries)
by James J. Cudney
Release Date – October 15, 2018
Setting – Pennsylvania
The Great Escapes Book Tour stops here next week for Cozy Wednesday!


The Wrong Boy
by Cathy Ace
Release Date – January 9, 2019
Setting – Wales
The Great Escapes Tour stops here next Thursday!

Future Escapes

January 7 – 13, 2019


Click Here to check out my Current Giveaways!

Please Share Your Reading Itinerary in the Comments below!
Happy Reading!!

Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent

Jan 032019
 


Gown with the Wind (A Wedding Planner Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
4th in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Kensington (December 18, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback: 336 pages
ISBN-10: 1496717511
ISBN-13: 978-1496717511
Digital ASIN: B07BV3K4N8

Professional wedding planner Mallory Shepard knows her job is challenging under any circumstances. But when the groom is your ex and someone invites murder, there may never be another tomorrow . . .

Mallory’s fine—really—handling the wedding arrangements for her ex, Keith. But his fiancée, Becca, has at the last minute decided to switch from a Japanese-cherry-blossom theme to a Gone with the Wind theme. She wants to honor her ailing grandmother, who owns an impressive collection of GWTW memorabilia—and who is fiercely at odds with the groom’s mother over the nuptial plans.

But among other complications, Becca gets into a fight with an old childhood rival over a replica Scarlett O’Hara wedding gown. She wins the dress—but soon becomes a murder suspect when the other woman is found dead in Becca’s swimming pool. And it’s up to Mallory to solve the mystery behind this unhappy occasion, before a different kind of civil war breaks out . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Juggling should be listed as a key talent for a wedding planner.  Mallory Shepard has many balls in the air, two weddings, a Mother’s Day tea, a partner that wants to book more non-wedding events. All that before the murder.

Becca, her ex’s new bride has planned a Japanese Cherry Blossom wedding but then the groom’s mother steps in to put her own spin on the festivities. Becca finally decides she wants a Gone With the Wind theme to honor her grandmother and tells Mallory to plan accordingly. She even finds the perfect dress. Until a fight breaks out in the bridal salon with a childhood friend/enemy. She wins the dress but loses the war when the other bride is found floating in Becca’s pool. Of course, she is the prime suspect. Becca and her grandmother come to depend on Mallory to not only clear Becca but also handle another event.

This was a delightfully fast-paced read.

Mallory Shepard is a great protagonist. With all that is thrown at her she rarely gets rattled. I mean dealing with the wedding of an ex is tough but have to plan it and go with the flow of all the changes is beyond hard and she keeps it together for the sake of her business. Her sister Rachel also seems to always be pushing her buttons and the envelope with a more, more, more attitude when it comes to their business. Strong women that do make a good team but they need to be aware of their limits.

Again this installment brings in a batch of new characters that were very well developed. The author gave us great descriptions that easily brought them to life within the story. With the theme of this series, new characters are a must and really keeps each edition fresh. It also gives new readers to jump in to this series anywhere.

The mystery is very well plotted and written with many twists and turns. The subplots were entangled perfectly into the mystery. The story completely held my interest, making it a difficult book to put down.

I have enjoyed each visit Thistle Park B&B and look forward many more.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

 

About the Author

A native Pittsburgher, Stephanie Blackmoore now lives in Missouri, with her husband, son and two-spirited cats. She was an attorney in Pittsburgh and a librarian in Florida before becoming a writer. Stephanie is a fan of everything black-and-yellow. She is hard at work on her next Wedding Planner mystery. Connect with Stephanie at the links below.

Social Media Links:  Website    Facebook    Twitter


Coming September 24, 2019
Marry Christmas Murder (A Wedding Planner Mystery Book 5)

GIVEAWAY

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.

Click the Like Button at the top of this post for a Bonus Entry.

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

 Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

Follow Kensington Books on Twitter for 2 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 17, 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 022019
 

Escape With Dollycas Is 10 Years Old – Blogoversary #Giveaway – Day #3 @KensingtonBooks

Today the fantastic people at Kensington are featuring the books of
Amy Lillard’s Amish Mystery Series. 

3 winners will receive a copy of
Kappy King and the Puppy Kaper and a copy of Kappy King and the Pie Kaper

 

This giveaway is sponsored by Kensington Books!

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 Kensington Books on Twitter for 2 Bonus Entries!

LIKE Kensington Publishing on Facebook for 2 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 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

Pineapple Upside Down Murder (The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series) by Jodi Rath Order Your Copy Today! Kindle 99 cents
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