Posted in Cozy Wednesday Giveaways Guest Posts Reviews 2013

Cozy Wednesday with Author Chrystle Fiedler (Giveaway too!)

cozy wednesdayWelcome to Cozy Wednesday!

I am so excited to welcome Chrystle here today.  Her books pack a punch with clever mysteries and so much information about Natural Remedies. Check out her post, then brew yourself a cup of tea and escape into a cozy mystery!


By Chrystle Fiedler

Nothing warms the body and soul like holding a fragrant steaming cup of herbal tea, inhaling its subtle scents as you slowly sip, while you enter the world of a cozy mystery. Not only does tea bring you flavor, variety, and easily digested nutrients, it also provides numerous health benefits from soothing a sore throat with fennel to easing anxiety and stress with chamomile. Making herbal tea is a unique way to use the benefits of aromatherapy, the theme of my latest cozy Scent to Kill: A Natural Remedies Mystery.

I like to brew a nice cup of tea in the late afternoon, what the Brits call “tea time” and drink it as I am writing my cozy mysteries. Use this guide to make the perfect cup of tea the next time you’re planning on reading one!
Here’s how:

iStock_000004128612XSmallMaking the Perfect Cup of Tea

Herbal tea is an infusion of leaves, seeds, roots or bark, whose goodness is extracted in hot water and sipped for its benefits, both mental and physical. To begin, use pure water, distilled, spring filtered, or well water. Use one heaping teaspoon of dry herbs per cup of hot water. Dried herbs available in loose bulk form are often less expensive and offer a wider variety of flavors. Health food stores offer muslin tea bags and tea balls, which can be filled with herbs and used to steep to make herbal tea.
You can also try using a conventional teapot. Here’s how:

Teapot Method

Fill a china or porcelain tea pot with hot water and allow it to stand for a minute or so. This warms the pot so that the tea you pour into it will not cool down quickly because of a cold pot and impede the steeping process.
Then pour off the water, add loose herbs (1 heaping teaspoon for each cup plus one extra one ‘for the pot’) and fill the pot with boiling water. Cover and allow the herbs and water to steep for ten to fifteen minutes. This also allows the herbs to cool to a comfortable drinking temperature. To serve the tea, simply hold a strainer over each cup as you pour.

The Infusion Method

The Infusion method is ideal for herbal leaves, flowers and seeds and even roots (such as ginger, osha, and valerian) that have delicate essential oils that would be diminished if boiled. The best way to prepare this type of tea is to lightly bruise seeds with a mortar and pestle to help release their flavor and properties.

Next, simply boil a cup of water and remove it from the heat. Add one heaping teaspoon of herb, cover (to prevent the delicate essential oils from
evaporating) and allow it to steep for ten to twenty minutes.

Scent to kill (2)French Press

A French press is a glass pot, a gadget beloved by coffee drinkers, but works great for herbal tea. Simply add the herb to the press, cover with hot water and allow it to steep for ten minutes. The press automatically strains out the herbs, and you can give it a squeeze to further release therapeutic value.

Sun Tea

Sun teas work best with leaves and flowers. Add one cup of herb or herb mixture or twelve tea bags and allow the herbs to sit in sunlight for four to six hours. Cover the jar to prevent leaves from blowing into the jar.
Strain before drinking.

Cold Water Infusion

Cold water infusions retain more vitamin C, and a brighter color than hot infusions. Fill a glass pitcher with fresh picked herbs from the list below and cover with spring water. Allow to steep in the refrigerator for several hours (8-12) or overnight.

death dropsThese herbs are good choices for cold infusion:

Bee Balm
Lemon Balm
Lemon Verbena

Add Flavor to Your Tea

Make your tea even more flavorful by adding a touch of honey, agave nectar, apple juice, maple syrup, raw sugar, cinnamon extract, a squeeze of fresh lemon, lime or orange. I like to add Truvia which is a kind of stevia. You can keep tea up to four days in the refrigerator.

Types of Tea You Might Like to Try:

Chamomile tea is a soothing and sedative herb that’s effective at relieving stress and anxiety and easing insomnia. Valerian tea also helps you to relax.

Ginger tea soothes tummy and digestive troubles like nausea and an upset stomach.

Milk Thistle tea is a gentle liver cleanser that helps this important organ to regenerate and work more efficiently.

Lemon Balm tea can help you see the glass half-full so it’s good for the winter blues. It can also help you concentrate better.

Rosehip tea is bursting with Vitamin C, so it’s good for your immune system and can help to ward off colds and flu. Green tea is also packed with polyphenols, a type of antioxidant that helps boost health.


About This Author

Chrystle Fiedler is the author of Scent to Kill: A Natural Remedies Mystery, (Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster) the second in the NATURAL REMEDIES MYSTERY series, Death Drops: A Natural Remedies Mystery, the non-fiction title THE The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Natural Remedies (Alpha, 2009), co-author of Beat Sugar Addiction Now!: The Cutting-Edge Program That Cures Your Type of Sugar Addiction and Puts You on the Road to Feeling Great – and Losing Weight!(Fairwinds Press, 2010), currently in its fourth printing, the Beat Sugar Addiction Now! Cookbook: Recipes That Cure Your Type of Sugar Addiction and Help You Lose Weight and Feel Great!The Country Almanac of Home Remedies: Time-Tested & Almost Forgotten Wisdom for Treating Hundreds of Common Ailments, Aches & Pains Quickly and Naturally (Fairwinds, 2011). Chrystle’s magazine articles featuring natural remedies have appeared in many national publications including Natural Health, Vegetarian Times, Better Homes & Gardens and Remedy. Visit

Scent to kill (2)

Scent to Kill:
A Natural Remedies Mystery

2nd in Series
Cozy Mystery
Gallery Books(February 26, 2013)
A Division of Simon & Schuster Inc.
Trade Paperback: 320 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1451643619
E-Book File Size: 968 KB

Scent to Kill (A Natural Remedies Mystery #2)

Willow McQuade, naturopathic doctor, along with her hunky ex-cop boyfriend Jackson Spade, attend a party for a psychic TV show that is filming on Long Island’s idyllic East End. However, Willow is much more interested in visiting the estate’s lavender farm, seeking inspiration for the new aromatherapy workshops she’ll be holding at her store, Nature’s Way Market & Café.

Before the party is over, Roger Bixby one of the producers is dead and the police suspect murder. Roger was working on the show, MJ’s Mind, with Carly Bixby, his ex-wife and the new girlfriend of Willow’s ex from L.A., TV writer/producer Simon Lewis.

After Willow leaves the party, she gets a frantic text from Simon asking for her help. Since Simon had a fight with Roger earlier in the evening, and because of his death is now the primary shareholder in Galaxy films, Willow’s ex becomes the prime suspect. Simon begs her to crack the case and clear him of the murder. MJ McClellan, the psychic and star of the show also asks Willow for help. She hires Willow to provide natural remedies, including aromatherapy, massage, acupuncture and yoga to soothe the agitated crew of her show.

To find the killer, Willow has to deal with ghosts in a haunted mansion, a truly dysfunctional family, death threats and “accidents,” while trying to untangle a homicide identical to one committed during prohibition.

Thankfully, Jackson has been hired to provide security and is there to watch her back and help Willow solve this spooky mystery. As a bonus, you’ll find dozens of natural aromatherapy cures throughout the book that can improve your health in mind, body and spirit!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I was fortunate to be able to read the two book back to back and really enjoyed both.

Scent to Kill focuses on aromatherapy and essential oils and I could almost smell the lavender fields while reading. As soon as I finished the book I went online to check out diffusers and oils.

Willow McQuade uses her knowledge of herbal remedies to put herself right in the middle of the action. Helping the crew through the stresses of their jobs and the added stress of knowing there may be a murderer among them. She also keeps the door open to a more supernatural solution that could solve this murder and those that took place decades earlier. She and retired cop Jackson Spade make a great team. Their romance is also growing at a perfect pace.

Strong characters and setting made this a fun whodunit.  The ghosts  and the spooky mansion really added great elements to the story.

I can’t wait for my next trip to Nature’ s Way.  I will need an appointment with both Hector and Allie. I once had a doctor tell me to do yoga for my back pain. Maybe Nick can explain how someone like me, paralyzed on one side could do yoga 🙂 while I enjoy the nice healthy smoothie. I am sure the author will have a wonderful mystery to solve too!

just you and a friend


Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Would you like to win a copy of this wonderful book?

There are two copies available plus 1 lucky winner
will receive a copy of Death Drops: A Natural Remedies Mystery.

To win a copy of Scent to Kill: A Natural Remedies Mystery directly from the author
just leave a comment telling Chrystle your favorite cup of tea!
The winner will be randomly selected from the comments.

To win my review copy of both books
fill out the entry form. (Link Below)

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

Contest Will End April 17, 2013 at 11:59 PM CST
Winners Will Be Chosen By
Winners Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.