Oct 062016
 

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Putting on the Witch
by Joyce and Jim Lavene

I have been awaiting this book with a little trepidation. These were some of the last words written by these amazing authors. We lost Joyce almost a year ago and then Jim back in May, but a single day does not pass that I don’t think of them. At first I was unsure about these paranormal stories they were writing. Ghosts and zombies were just not my thing, but Joyce convinced to give her Ren Faire Mysteries a try and I loved them. Soon she had me head over heels for a ghostly fire chief in the Sweet Pepper Fire Brigade Mysteries, and she almost had me convinced to try their Purple Door Detective Agency books, which I will probably still do because I have loved everything they have written.  I am so thankful that we have all these fantastic stories to read because that way they will always live on and when I need my Lavene book fix they will always be nearby. Also with all these paranormal things I am thinking maybe there are a couple of ghostly mystery writers floating among us with just a little mischief in their eyes. 

PUTTING ON THE WITCHPutting on the Witch (Retired Witches Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Setting – North Carolina
Berkley (October 4, 2016)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425268278
E-Book – ASIN: B01AHKXHTS
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Synopsis

With their coven’s spell book still missing, Molly and Elsie—along with their ghostly friend Olivia, her daughter Dorothy, and her boyfriend Brian—are all on edge, especially now that Dorothy’s infamously wicked father is back in the picture. So when they receive an invitation to an exclusive Witches Ball, the ladies jump at the chance to dress up and have some fun.

The castle locale is spectacular and the party is hopping, but the festivities come to a swift end when a member of the Grand Council of Witches is murdered. With the whole place on lock down, the coven is determined to find the cunning killer, even with an angry council and a real Spanish Inquisitor breathing down their necks…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Joyce and Jim Lavene had imaginations that were truly out of this world and it was in full force in this 3rd installment of the Retired Witch Mysteries.

Molly, Elsie, Dorothy, Brian and Olivia are all back and we meet Drago, Dorothy’s father. The coven is invited to Brian’s birthday party, a party even Brian doesn’t usually attend but the other witches all convince him to go. They all need a little fun especially with the wicked Drago lurking around. The event is at a very special castle and the whole Grand Council of Witches are in attendance. In fact, one of the council ends up dead and it gets crazy…

This was a book I truly escaped right into, a world of make believe had me leave reality in the dust within seconds after opening the cover.

The castle setting was both enchanting and eerie – an immense space where stairs and hallways appear and disappear, filled with hidden rooms and spaces, a wonderful library and more. The drinks were flowing and there was fine food to eat. The place was packed with witches of all kinds, water witches, fire witches, air and earth witches. It would have been a fabulous party if that darn murder hadn’t occurred.

I have loved the main characters from the moment we met, just 3 witches wanting to retire and hand their spellbook off to a new set of witches and since then so much has happened. Retiring is always a huge change but for these witches it is no simple feat and we were allowed to travel with them all along the way.

This story is so much more than a cozy mystery. It is about friendship and family and all the dedication and devotion that goes along with that. Each character is unique. Every place from their shop, Smuggler’s Arcane, to the enormous castle is vividly described.  The plots and subplots are more than well written, they are MAGICAL times infinity.

I believe Jim finished this story on his own, something he hadn’t done since they started writing together. He dedicates the book to Joyce and you can tell he worked hard to get everything just right. I could feel his heart beating in these words, he may have had a little spiritual assistance too, but I know it was probably one of the hardest things to do after she passed away. The cozy community was truly blessed by their presence and they will always live on through their stories. I hope they are looking down upon us and see the joy their writing has brought to so many.

paradise 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

 

About The Authors

Joyce and Jim Lavene wrote award-winning, bestselling mystery fiction as themselves, J.J. Cook, and Ellie Grant. They had written and published more than 70 novels for Harlequin, Berkley, Amazon, and Gallery Books along with hundreds of non-fiction articles for national and regional publications. Joyce passed away October 20, 2015 and Jim passed on May 5, 2016. They are missed by family, friends and their many fans.

 


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Tour Participants

October 3 – Back Porchervations – REVIEW
October 3 – Queen of All She Reads – SPOTLIGHT
October 3 – Blogger Nicole – SPOTLIGHT
October 4 – Sleuth Cafe – REVIEW, SPOTLIGHT
October 4 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – REVIEW
October 4 – The Angry Grey Cat Reads – REVIEW
October 5 – The Book’s the Thing – REVIEW
October 5 – I Read What You Write – REVIEW (Interview)
October 6 – Book Babble – REVIEW
October 6 – Cozy Up With Kathy – SPOTLIGHT
October 6 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
October 7 – Mallory Heart’s Cozies – REVIEW, SPOTLIGHT
October 7 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – REVIEW
October 8 – Texas Book-aholic – REVIEW
October 8 – Community Bookstop – REVIEW
October 9 – Shelley’s Book Case – REVIEW
October 9 – fuonlyknew – REVIEW
October 10 – Socrates’ Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
October 10 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy, Too! – REVIEW
October 10 – Cassidy Salem Reads & Writes – SPOTLIGHT
October 11 – A Holland Reads – REVIEW, SPOTLIGHT
October 11 – Deal Sharing Aunt – REVIEW
October 12 – A Chick Who Reads – REVIEW
October 12 – A Blue Million Books – SPOTLIGHT
October 13 – Booth Talks Books – REVIEW
October 13 – The Cozy Mystery Journal – REVIEW
October 14 – Brooke Blogs – REVIEW, SPOTLIGHT
October 15 – Paranormal and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
October 16 – Bibliophile Reviews – REVIEW  
October 16 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT
October 17 – LibriAmoriMiei – REVIEW
October 17 – MysteriesEtc – REVIEW
October 18 – Kathy Loves 2 Read – REVIEW
October 19 – ChristyMystery – REVIEW
October 20 – My Interdimensional Chaos – REVIEW
October 21 – Murder, Mystery & More… – REVIEW
October 22 – centraleast2 – REVIEW
October 23 – Lori’s Reading Corner – SPOTLIGHT
October 24 – The Girl with Book Lungs – SPOTLIGHT
October 24 – Polished Nails and Puppy Dog Tales – REVIEW

Joining us with Reviews/Spotlights
Nicole G.
Linda L.
Kendrea P.
Robin C.
Daniele K.
Lisa C.
Stacie A.
Karen K.
Brittany A.
Kathy D.

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.”

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May 022016
 

I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

This year Jim Lavene is re-releasing the first series he and Joyce wrote together.

In January, Last Dance, the first Sharyn Howard Mystery was released again.

When the prom queen is found brutally murdered, Sheriff Sharyn Howard recalls that a similar murder occurred on the night of her prom ten years ago. Her father was the sheriff of Diamond Springs, and the man he sent to prison for the murder now sits on death row awaiting his execution. But Sharyn’s convinced there are too many similarities between the two murders and that the true killer is still at large.

Her move to reopen the first case pits her against the community and her mother, who feels she’ll destroy her father’s reputation in the process. But Sharyn is determined to discover the truth and catch the real killer before he can strike again.

Last Month, Book 2 – One Last Goodbye – returned.
Sheriff Sharyn Howard has her hands full. The county commission wants to cut her staff. Colonel John Metzger wants his brother’s killer yesterday. And the Navy wants to be sure she comes up with the “right” answers to the town’s new mystery.

Add to that a lovesick deputy and her mother dating Senator Caison Talbot, one of Sharyn’s least favorite people.

But what really has her puzzled is the mystery everyone in town is talking about. Someone shot WWII Navy Captain William “Billy” Bost as he dipped his plane’s wings to his sweetheart. The secret’s been hidden for over half a century. Is it possible that the person who killed Billy Bost, Diamond Springs’ most famous hero, is also the same person who killed the Pulitzer prize-winning author looking for the truth?

Tomorrow Book 3 – The Last To Remember – Will land on e-readers everywhere.
On one of the stormiest, busiest night of the year, a prominent businessman stumbles into the sheriff’s office, confessing to a 40-year-old murder. Just a few hours later he’s found hanging from the ceiling of the conference room. The district attorney is soon on the warpath and all the clues point to one man.

Sheriff Sharyn Howard begins to search for the key to unlock a secret shared by three men for forty years. A district court judge, a prominent businessman, and her own deputy, Ernie Watkins, believe that they were responsible for a child’s death at the old Jefferson Training School for Boys when they were just teenagers.

But now someone is after all the men, and it’s up to Sheriff Howard to unravel 40 years of cover-ups, blackmail, lies, and guilt. But with so many suspects and such little time, can she find the real killer before an innocent man is convicted of murder or before the real killer can stalk and kill his prey?

joyceI was so honored to have Joyce Lavene as a friend. We never met in person but our lives met through the computer screens. It is a wonderful tribute to both her and Jim to have these stories released again. I know Joyce is smiling in heaven as we enjoy her stories. It brings her close to us that knew her and introduces her work to so many new fans. If you haven’t read this series, now is the perfect time to start. If you are like me you will be reading them again for pure enjoyment. Just click on the covers to order.

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

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Mar 192016
 

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THOSE WHO WALK IN DARKNESS
Those Who Walk In Darkness
(Jacks Jackson Mystery Book 1)

Historical Mystery
Print Length: 266 pages
Publisher: J. Lavene (March 8, 2016)
ASIN: B01AS8NN6Q
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Synopsis

Three years ago, Julia Jackson was a well to do young woman from Boston whose fiancé, Jonathon, was killed right before her eyes. Obsessed with finding the killer, a man whose face she saw only in a flash as he walked up and shot Jonathon, she leaves her family and her life behind. She starts a new life as ‘Jacks’ Jackson—a cigar smoking, dead eye, female Pinkerton agent…pretending to be a man.

Now Allan Pinkerton needs Jacks to find the man who kidnapped the wife and son of a railroad official, David Boyd. Their only clues are the severed finger from the man’s wife, complete with wedding ring, and a map of the Qualla boundary, the Cherokee reservation in North Carolina.

Jacks doesn’t like the way the whole thing sounds from the beginning. David Boyd isn’t important enough to target for a kidnapping. And why travel so far with two hostages?

But Pinkerton tells her that he believes the man responsible for the kidnapping worked with Jonathon’s murderer in a train robbery five years ago. Jacks agrees to go after the kidnapper with hopes of catching him before he can reach his home grounds.

Pinkerton insists that Jacks bring three men with her—Boyd, her new partner, and a Cherokee guide named Running Wolf, who’s always watching her, like he’s trying to figure it out.

Can Jacks catch the kidnapper with her secret—and her life—intact?

Praise for Those Who Walk in Darkness
by Joyce and Jim Lavene

Team Lavene has the Midas touch for fiction!
~Back Porchervations

A great cast of characters and a gripping story line. You will be hooked from the start.
~Shelley’s Book Case

Another great new series from my favorite, most prolific mystery writers…The book is fast-paced and full of surprises.
~Book Babble

The story jumped right into action and kept my interest to the end. I enjoyed the characters, the mystery and the good movement of the story. The writing flows well and is an easy read.
~Reviews by Martha’s Bookshelf

It has been a while since I have read a good old fashioned western. Though this is foremost a mystery, it is a great old fashioned western.
~I Read What You Write

Fantastic writing and I would highly recommend Those Who Walk in Darkness by the Lavene’s for a great combination of multiple genres.
~fundinmental

joycejim

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Joyce and Jim Lavene write award-winning, bestselling mystery fiction as themselves, J.J. Cook, and Ellie Grant. They have written and published more than 70 novels for Harlequin, Berkley, Amazon, and Gallery Books along with hundreds of non-fiction articles for national and regional publications. They live in rural North Carolina with their family.

 
 
 
Author Links:
Webpage – www.joyceandjimlavene.com

Facebook – www.facebook.com/joyceandjimlavene

Amazon – http://amazon.com/author/jlavene

Twitter – https://twitter.com/AuthorJLavene

Purchase Link

Amazon

Click here for more books by Joyce and Jim Lavene.
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Tour Participants

March 8 – Back Porchervations – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST

March 9 – A. Holland Reads – INTERVIEW

March 10 – Shelley’s Book Case – REVIEW

March 11 – Author Annette Drake’s Blog – INTERVIEW

March 12 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

March 13 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

March 14 – Book Babble – REVIEW

March 15 – Reviews by Martha’s Bookshelf – REVIEW

March 16 – I Read What You Write – REVIEW, INTERVIEW

March 17 – fundinmental – REVIEW

March 18 – Cozy Up With Kathy – CHARACTER GUEST POST

March 19 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

March 20 – Deal Sharing Aunt – SPOTLIGHT

March 21 – fuonlyknew – REVIEW

March 22 – Community Bookstop – EXCERPT

 

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Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

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Feb 062016
 

I am so happy to be a part of this tour!
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Gone by Midnight
by Joyce and Jim Lavene

Gone by Midnight - front only
Gone by Midnight
Genre – Cozy Mystery
Print Length: 149 pages
Publisher: J. Lavene (February 2, 2016)
ASIN: B019AJC1XU
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Fans of Joyce and Jim Lavene will thrill at this collection of thirteen short stories—many are set in the worlds of their national bestselling mystery series, including the Missing Pieces Mysteries, the Renaissance Faire Mysteries, the Retired Witches Mysteries, and an upcoming mystery novel!

These stories contain the elements of mystery and fantasy the Lavenes are famous for, as well as some new things their readers have never seen. Several stories feature characters interacting with ghosts, magic, and the supernatural—the healing woman in “Courtship;” the Civil War widow in “One with the Darkness;” the city girl who summons a wizard from the past in “The Magician and the Sorceress/Accountant;” and the young introvert in “Aunt Edna” who finds her calling with help from a ghostly visitor.

Poignant, charming, and captivating, Joyce and Jim Lavene bring their characteristic wit and heart to these stories and introduce each one with a passage about its origin or how it ties into the universe they’ve created. Gone by Midnight is a treasury of tales that will delight the mind and touch the heart from one of the most prolific writing duos of our time.

joycejimAbout The Authors

Joyce and Jim Lavene write award-winning, bestselling mystery fiction as themselves, J.J. Cook, and Ellie Grant. They have written and published more than 70 novels for Harlequin, Berkley, Amazon, and Gallery Books along with hundreds of non-fiction articles for national and regional publications. They live in rural North Carolina with their family.

 Webpage Facebook – Twitter  – Amazon Author Page

Click the link for more books by Joyce and Jim!

 

 

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Tour Participants

February 5 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, &, Sissy, Too! – SPOTLIGHT
February 6 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT
February 7 – Shelley’s Book Case – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW
February 8 – deal sharing aunt – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
February 9 – Cozy Up With Kathy – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
February 10 – A Chick Who Reads – REVIEW
February 11 – fuonlyknew – REVIEW
February 12 – Lisa Ks  book Reviews – REVIEW
February 13 – LibriAmoriMiei – REVIEW
February 14 – Author Annette Drake’s blog – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
February 15 – The Book’s the Thing – REVIEW, GIVEAWAY
February 16 – Booklady’s Booknotes – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
February 17 – Brooke Blogs – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
February 18 – Tea and A Book – REVIEW
February 19 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

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Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

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Jan 262016
 

sweet peppet heroSweet Pepper Hero: A Sweet Pepper Fire Brigade Mystery
Cozy Mystery
Setting – Tennessee
4th in Series
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
Published by Penguin Random House, LLC.
Release Date: January 5, 2016
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425279236
E-Book ASIN: B00W2ZKNZ8
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Old rivalries heat up in the fourth Sweet Pepper Fire Brigade mystery from the national bestselling author of In Hot Water.

Fire chief Stella Griffin has been put in charge of judging the annual recipe contest, but Eric—her resident ghost and true culinary genius—has vanished. Before she can track down his latest haunt, she’s called in to investigate a local moonshine distillery that was set ablaze, making her realize there’s more than pies and cakes cooking in Sweet Pepper.

As rumors of a revived whiskey war ignite, Stella turns to the town’s elders to help her find answers. The past might have some clues as to what has sparked the present fires. But when following a lead lands her in buried rubble, Stella realizes she must extinguish this case fast or she might be going down in flames.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Is that a beautiful cover or what? Kudos to Mary Ann Lasher and George Long!

I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this book. The authors left us with a cliffhanger at the end of In Hot Water and these characters are some of my all-time favorites. Chief Eric or his ghost is near and dear to my heart because he reminds me so much of my dad. The cliffhanger was resolved but not in a way I ever expected. Pretty dramatic but it had me laughing too.

Aside from the cliffhanger, in this installment, the police have orders from the ATF to investigate stills in the area. It seems that even today people are brewing moonshine illegally. When a still explodes and a man dies it is time for Stella to step in. Then when another still starts on fire along with the house it is hidden in, Stella starts to think it is not a coincidence so she starts her on investigation. But before she can even sort through the evidence she finds herself in peril.

I love the way Stella and Eric work together to solve the mystery. This story is filled with fires, explosions, whiskey wars and other drama. We also meet a few more ghosts that are nothing like Chief Eric. They have their own issues. More members of the community are joining the fire department and the fires and training sessions are quite interesting as all the personnel kinks are worked out.  But in my opinion fire dog Hero, lives up to his name and is the star of the story as the title implies. He is such a smart dog. with keen instincts. The people of Sweet Pepper are fortunate to have him as part of the brigade.

These authors continue to give us absolutely awesome stories time and time again. They can have us on the edge of our seat one moment, laughing out loud the next and even occasionally reaching for a tissue. So much happens in these pages that it truly boggles my mind and everything just flows right together perfectly. The ending was a real surprise and the teaser for the next book has me so anxious that waiting a year is just plain mean 🙂

Sweet Pepper, Tennessee is know for its peppers so of course there are recipes in the back of the book.

This is a great addition to this wonderful series! Start a fire (in your fireplace) and curl up with it as soon as you can.

perfect 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

About The Authors

J. J. Cook is a pseudonym for a married couple who writes mysteries, mostly set in the South, with a touch of paranormal and romance.

Author Links:

Webpage       Facebook      Twitter

GIVEAWAY
Thanks to the people at Penguin I have 1 copy to give away!
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.

This year I am trying to build my Twitter following so for this giveaway 4 Bonus Entries will be awarded by following me on Twitter. @dollycas

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

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

Contest Will End February 9, 2016 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.”

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Dec 042015
 

There really are no words to express how much I miss Joyce. Her picture continues to pop up all over the blogosphere with her wonderful smile. Each time I see it I stop and think how blessed I was to call her my friend. Last weekend I had the pleasure of escaping into the pages of Murder Fir Christmas. I am so thrilled that her voice will live on and touch us forever with stories like this. 

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Murder Fir Christmas
by Joyce and Jim Lavene

MURDER FIR CHRISTMASMurder Fir Christmas
(Christmas Tree Valley Mysteries)

Cozy Mystery
New Series
Setting – Tennessee
Print Length: 208 pages
Publisher: J. Lavene (December 1, 2015)
ASIN: B016APS2PI
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Synopsis:

Down the mountain from Sweet Pepper, Tennessee is Christmas Tree Valley, a place filled with hundreds of Christmas tree farms where generations of growers have made people’s lives brighter. Yet even here in this quiet, postcard-perfect corner of the world, darkness and murder can still stalk the night.

Federal Wildlife Agent Bonnie Tuttle has always had a special gift with wild animals. It was one of the reasons she decided to train with the wildlife agency. She’s spent the last ten years in Alabama working, but her mother needs her home and she’s back despite all the bad parts of her life she hoped to leave behind.

Her first day home begins with a fire on the island in Sweet Pepper Lake and the death of Harvey Shelton, the wildlife agent she’s supposed to replace. Bonnie manages to rescue dozens of animals from the fire – including a wolf pup that was shot with the same bullet that killed Harvey.

Now she’s hot on the trail of Harvey’s killer and trying to reintegrate the wolf back into the wild even though he seems to want to stay with her. Yet old memories persist in the small community where she grew up, and the killer now seems to believe that she has what he killed Harvey for. All she has to do is figure out what that is before it’s too late.

Christmas Recipes included!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I am a huge fan of the Sweet Pepper Fire Brigade Mysteries by J.J. Cook, aka Joyce and Jim Lavene, so when I heard they were spinning off another series set nearby in Christmas Tree Valley I was over the moon!

We first met Bonnie Tuttle in the Biscuit Bowl Mystery Series. Now the Federal Wildlife Agent comes home to the valley after being away in Alabama for years. Her mother is starting to show signs of Alzheimers and her brother has taken a new job in Germany. Bonnie is taking Harvey Shelton’s place as wildlife agent and will also be running the family’s Christmas tree farm. Maybe everyone has forgotten why she left or she will be too busy to care if they do remember.

She is thrust right into her new job when there is a fire and several animals need to be rescued. She heads to the scene with Harvey. Shorty after they arrive gunshots ring out and Harvey is hit and killed. A wolf pup is also shot and Bonnie finds herself with a new friend as she takes care of him. Who would want to kill Harvey? Bonnie tries to see the forest through the trees to catch the killer before she or anyone else is fired upon.

What an amazing story!

All our favorite characters from Sweet Pepper welcome Bonnie to the area.  Fire Chief, Stella Griffin, the ghost of former Fire Chief Eric Gamlyn and Police Chief Don Rogers throw out the welcome mat and then chaos erupts as the fire call comes in and the mayhem continues. These characters are already near and dear to my heart. They are wonderfully written and spring right from the pages.

Winter in Christmas Tree Valley is dangerous because the road can snow shut or be covered with ice or both. The road was closed before Bonnie could even get home the first day. The Lavene’s paint pictures of the scenery so clear with their words. The blustery wind, the frigid cold, I was almost shivering myself. They also brought the valley to life. I could envision the tree farms, Harvey’s cabin office, and all the beautiful sites as we traveled down the hill from Sweet Pepper.

The mystery itself played out in a way I never suspected. Such good twists and turns. I can’t say more because I am afraid I will say too much.

An awesome cozy story! Mystery with just a flake of folklore and a touch of paranormal and a little romance too. These authors have imaginations that are truly off the charts. They have blended these series together is a wondrous way yet given them the footings to stand on their own. I really like Bonnie and I truly hope Jim and the family keep this series going. I want to visit this area as often as possible.

Note – You do not need to read any of the other books to enjoy this story. It stands alone perfectly.paradise

5 STARFISH5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

 

About The Authors –

Joyce and Jim Lavene write award-winning, bestselling mystery fiction as themselves, J.J. Cook, and Ellie Grant. They have written and published more than 70 novels for Harlequin, Berkley, Amazon, and Gallery Books along with hundreds of non-fiction articles for national and regional publications. They live in rural North Carolina with their family.

 

Author Links

Webpage    Facebook   Amazon  Twitter

 



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Tour Participants

December 2 – Back Porchervations – Review 
December 3 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – Review
December 3 – readalot – Review
December 4 – Community Bookstop – Review
December 4 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – Review
December 5 – Babs Book Bistro – Review
December 6 – Moonlight Rendezvous – Review
December 7 – Bubble Bath Books – Review
December 8 – Cozy Up With Kathy – Review
December 8 – Mochas, Mysteries and Meows – Review
December 9 – fuonlyknew – Review
December 10 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy,  &, Sissy, Too ! – Review
December 10 – fundinmental – Review
December 11 – Mallory Heart Reviews – Review
December 12 – Shelley’s Book Case – Review
December 13 – Laura’s Interests – Review
December 14 – Jersey Girl Book Reviews – Review
December 14 – Socrates’ Book Reviews – Review
December 15 – View from the Birdhouse – Review
December 15 – Book Babble – Review

Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?

Click Here Find Details and Sign Up Today!
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.”

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Nov 082015
 

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A Dickens of a Murder
by Joyce and Jim Lavene

A DICKENS OF A MURDER by authors Joyce and Jim Lavene, is one of their most fun and original books to date!
~Lisa K’s Book Reviews

First in a brand-new series, the popular cozy authors Joyce and Jim Lavene bring life to a small and quiet community as eccentric bibliophile Simon Canterville and business partner, long-time librarian Lisa Wellman…
~Mallory Heart Reviews

Interesting cozy mystery with a paranormal element. Well written with a good story
~MysteriesEtc

I’m hooked on this new series.
~Cozy Up With Kathy

A Dickens of A Murder is a charming whodunnit that will please the bibliophile that lives in all of us.
~Moonlight Rendezvous

I was so captivated by this book. Lisa Wellman and Simon Canterville are strong characters that really pull you in to the story.
~Shelley’s Book Case

I loved the book. It has so many of the story elements that I truly enjoy: mystery, a book store, and a struggling author who just happens to be a former librarian. It’s one of my dream worlds.
~Booklady’s Booknotes

book concept 2.1A Dickens of a Murder
(Canterville Book Shop Mystery 1)

Cozy Mystery
Print Length: 208 pages
Publisher: J. Lavene (November 3, 2015)
ASIN: B015269QSI
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Synopsis:

Christmas at Canterville!

Lisa Wellman and Simon Canterville are surprised to find a dead man on their roof in the midst of rushing to open the Canterville Book Shop in time for the holidays. And not just any dead man – Ebenezer Hart – the man who opposed the book shop opening in Olde Town, Portsmouth, Virginia.
What might be more surprising is when Daniel Fairhaven – Lisa’s ex – turns up at the door of the three-story Victorian house to head the police investigation. She hasn’t seen him in years but the sparks start to fly as soon as they are in the same room together.

Simon and Lisa are obviously the best suspects for the murder. Each of them had something to gain by Hart’s death. Then an attempt on Simon’s life throws that theory into a tailspin.
But the biggest surprise yet comes when the ghost of Charles Dickens turns up to help Lisa with the murder investigation – and writing the mystery novel she has been working on for years.
Without a doubt, Daniel and Dickens in Lisa’s life means trouble. And there’s still the matter of trying to get the book shop open with a killer on their heels.

I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

About The Authors –

Joyce and Jim Lavene write award-winning, bestselling mystery fiction as themselves, J.J. Cook, and Ellie Grant. They have written and published more than 70 novels for Harlequin, Berkley, Amazon, and Gallery Books along with hundreds of non-fiction articles for national and regional publications. They live in rural North Carolina with their family.

 

Author Links

www.joyceandjimlavene.com 
www.facebook.com/joyceandjimlavene 
http://amazon.com/author/jlavene 
https://twitter.com/AuthorJLavene

Purchase Link


Coming Soon

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Tour Participants

November 3 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – Review
November 3 – The Mysterious Ink Spot – Guest Post
November 4 – Mallory Heart Reviews – Review
November 4 – Frankie Bow  Interview
November 5 – MysteriesEtc – Review
November 5 – Mythical Books – Guest Post
November 6 – Moonlight Rendezvous – Review
November 6 – Cozy Up With Kathy – Review, Interview
November 7 – Shelley’s Book Case – Review
November 7 – Booklady’s Booknotes – Guest Post
November 8 – LibriAmoriMiei – Review
November 8 – Tea and A Book – Review
November 9 – StoreyBook Reviews – Review
November 9 – readalot – Review
November 10 – fuonlyknew – Review
November 10 – Socrates’ Book Reviews – Review
November 11 – Christa Reads and Writes – Review
November 12 – Mochas, Mysteries and Meows – Review, Interview
November 12 – THE SELF-TAUGHT COOK – Review
November 13 – Back Porchervations – Review
November 13 – Melina’s Book Blog – Review
November 14 – Community Bookstop – Review
November 15 – Brooke Blogs – Review
November 16 – View from the Birdhouse – Review
November 16 – Student of Opinions – Review

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Dollycas

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Oct 022015
 

looking for mr. good witchLooking for Mr. Good Witch
(Retired Witches Mysteries)

2nd in Series
Paranormal Cozy Mystery
Setting – North Carolina
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
The Berkley Publishing Group (October 6, 2015)
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Mary Ann Lasher
Cover Design by Lesley Worrell
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425268261
E-Book ASIN: B00SI0279Q
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Everyone’s favorite retired witches from Spell Booked have returned and are diving into troubled waters to find a sinister sea witch…

WITCHY WOMAN

A sea witch has been leaving bodies in her wake up and down the Carolina coast, baffling authorities who are finding drowning victims with no water in their lungs. The fin-icky female will continue to kill young male witches until she finds her perfect man—the one who survives her mating ritual—so she can live for another hundred years. And now coven hopeful Brian Fuller is about to be ensnared in her net.

Retired witches Molly and Elsie, along with the ghost of Olivia and her daughter Dorothy, need all the help they can get to stop the sea witch. Aided by a selkie and a crème puff–craving mermaid, they’re determined to keep Brian out of her murky clutches. But are they all about to get in over their heads?

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Molly, Elise Olivia, and Dorothy are back and trouble is brewing. Their spell book is still missing, Olivia is not happy as a ghost, and young male witches are dying at the hands of a very feisty witch. Even their own Brian may not be immune. The elderly witches are still hoping to retire and were hoping that with Brian and Dorothy they only needed to recruit just one more witch to join their coven. They need to free the coast from this wet witch and hang her out to dry but they may seal their own fate in the process.

Fantasy has never been my genre and things like werewolves and selkies would usually have me running for the hills but Joyce and Jim Lavene eased me into their paranormal stories slow and easy, a ghost or two here, then a witch or two there, then Larry the werewolf in this series, how could you not like a werewolf named Larry.  The witches in this story are charming as well. They are like Samantha and Endora on the old Bewitched television show. Living and even working in the world among us mere mortals. There powers are to be kept secret but with a shop like Smuggler’s Arcane and all the events taking place it is easy to forget to keep their abilities on the Q.T.

This story was fun and entertaining. I must say my favorite character was a mermaid named Muriel who is quite fond of pastry, even her sharp little teeth didn’t scare me away. But Muriel is just one of many amazing characters the Lavene’s bring to life on these pages, even though a few of them are dead 🙂 or living their second or third or more lives in other bodies.

So much happens in this story but the pace isn’t rushed. I usually spread a book over 2 evenings but I couldn’t do that with this one. I kept thinking, just one more chapter, just one more and soon it was way past my bedtime but I couldn’t stop until I reached the end. To say I was totally engaged would be an understatement. This story had me spellbound.

Kudos to Joyce and Jim, they had me completely captivated!

paradise

5 STARFISH5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

I just love this picture of Joyce and Jim

About The Authors –

Joyce and Jim Lavene write award-winning, bestselling mystery fiction as themselves, J.J. Cook, and Ellie Grant. They have written and published more than 70 novels for Harlequin, Berkley, Amazon, and Gallery Books along with hundreds of non-fiction articles for national and regional publications. They live in rural North Carolina with their family.

Author Links

www.joyceandjimlavene.com 

www.facebook.com/joyceandjimlavene 

http://amazon.com/author/jlavene 

https://twitter.com/AuthorJLavene

GIVEAWAY
Our Fan of the Month receives a copy of this book
so I have one more copy to give away!

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.

Following the new Google+ Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book Fan Page
will earn you 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

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

Contest Will End October 16, 2015 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.”

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Jul 142015
 

Fatal Fairies large banner640

FATAL FAIRIES
by Joyce and Jim Lavene

 

FATAL FAIRIESFatal Fairies
(Renaissance Faire Mystery Book 8)

Cozy Mystery
Release Date: July 7, 2015
Print Length: 181 pages
ASIN: B00X8DUQ3W
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Synopsis:
When a fairy named Apple Blossom is found dead in the Good Luck Fountain at Renaissance Faire Village, Jessie Morton makes a wish she lives to regret–that her husband, Chase Manhattan, is no longer the Village Bailiff. She doesn’t want him to look for the fairy’s killer and ruin their plans to go away for their first wedding anniversary.

Trapped in a timeless ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ experience, Jessie is transported to a different Village to face the consequences of her wish where Chase isn’t the Bailiff, and he’s not married to her.

Jessie’s fairy godmother who granted the wish tells her that she must find a way to make Chase fall in love with her again, and they must discover who killed Apple Blossom, if she ever wants to go back to the life she knew.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

A fairy tale at the Renaissance Faire complete with a fairy godmother! Be careful what you wish for!

Jessie and Chase are getting ready to take a honeymoon when a fairy is killed and throws a kink into their plans. Jessie wished Chase was not the Bailiff at the Renaissance Faire Village and her wish was granted. Sadly that one wish had very adverse effects even erasing their whole relationship their marriage. The fairy that granted wish, Jessie’s fairy godmother, quickly explains that she has to make Chase fall in love with her again and solve the murder of the fairy to have things go back to the way they were.

Another fabulous story from Jim and Joyce Lavene. I must admit I started out being a little mad at this twist at first. I love Jessie and Chase together and I really hate the things that keep them apart. But I really became intrigued by parts of the new village Jessie was in.  Some characters that had died were brought back and at the same time had some of the new shops and characters from the last story. It really was a village in limbo that let us see a different side to some of the characters we are familiar with from previous installments and how their lives would have changed had they not met Jessie. The authors label it as an It’s a Wonderful Life experience and it is very easy to see their inspiration play out on the pages.

The Laveve’s have written a charming story that is so much fun to read.  Great characters, wonderful mystery, idyllic setting, with humor, romance, and a bit of make believe too.

The entire series is absolutely delightful. Start at the beginning or start with this one. You are going to want to read them all.

a perfect escape5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

joycejimAbout These Authors

Joyce and Jim Lavene write award-winning, bestselling mystery fiction as themselves, J.J. Cook, and Ellie Grant. They have written and published more than 70 novels for Harlequin, Berkley, Amazon, and Gallery Books along with hundreds of non-fiction articles for national and regional publications. They live in rural North Carolina with their family.

 

Author Links

www.joyceandjimlavene.com
www.facebook.com/joyceandjimlavene
http://amazon.com/author/jlavene
https://twitter.com/AuthorJLavene

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Tour Participants

July 7- Cozy Up With Kathy – Interview
July 8 – fuonlyknew – Review
July 9 – Books-n-Kisses – Review
July 10 – Melina’s Book Blog – Review, Guest Post
July 11 – dru’s book musings – Guest Post
July 11 – Community Bookstop – Review
July 12 – deal sharing aunt – Interview
July 13 – A Chick Who Reads – Review
July 14 – Escape With Dollycas – 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.”

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Dec 162014
 

special guest blueTwo of my favorite authors on this planet are Joyce and Jim Lavene. I have loved their books and organized book tours for them and rarely ever steal a spot for myself. When their publicist offered me a chance at a guest post for this book I jumped at it. I am so excited to have Joyce drop by today!

joyce and jimWriting about witches
By Joyce Lavene

When my husband and I first thought about writing the Retired Witches Mysteries we considered what kind of witches we wanted our ladies to be. Obviously they each needed a distinct personality and lifestyle.

We knew they would be good witches, of course, but a big question was that of magic. What kind of magic would they have? Were we thinking Bewitched or something a little more realistic?

We decided we didn’t want nose-twitching or magic that appeared too stereotypically on TV and in movies. We wanted to stay within certain bounds of witches who took their power from the elements—earth, fire, air and water. Olivia, Elsie, Dorothy, and Molly get their abilities from a natural side of them. They know their magic comes from inside and is then expressed outwardly.

They don’t pop in and out of rooms or snap their fingers to create magic. There are some witches who can do that in these books, but not these ladies. Their spells come from their thoughts and emotions. Dorothy is a little on the emotional side and sometimes indulges in magic that gets out of hand. Elsie’s magic is spontaneous with sometimes laughable ineffectiveness.

Molly is our storyteller through the books. Her voice is the one you hear. She is down-to-earth, careful, and modest. Her magic is the same. She is a water witch in a small area nestled between the Cape Fear River and the Atlantic Ocean so her magic is stronger than her friends’ magic. She is influenced by her family and her lifelong friends as well as by the water. The closer she is to water, the stronger she is.

It’s the same with Olivia, an air witch, Dorothy, an earth witch, and Elsie, a fire witch. Each is strongest in their element with the magic tool they possess. Molly’s magic tool is the cauldron. She wears a small replica of one around her neck and has a large cauldron in the basement of their shop, Smuggler’s Arcane.

Olivia’s tool is a runed staff. Elsie’s tool is a sword, and Dorothy’s is an emerald cull. Each tool represents the forces at work in them that they use for good in their lives.

Our witches have had some difficulty getting their magic to work in recent years. As they’ve aged, their magic has too. Sometimes they’re hesitant to use magic at all for fear of what will happen. They are women who lead normal lives with jobs and obligations to their community. They just have a little something extra that has always been there for them since they were born.

It was fun writing this series that begins with Spell Booked. We look forward to writing about our witches in the future!

~Joyce

About Joyce and Jim Lavene

Joyce and Jim Lavene write award-winning, bestselling mystery fiction as themselves, J.J. Cook, and Ellie Grant. They have written and published more than 70 novels for Harlequin, Berkley, Amazon, and Gallery Books along with hundreds of non-fiction articles for national and regional publications. They live in rural North Carolina with their family.

Fina Joyce and Jim around the internet:

www.joyceandjimlavene.com 

www.facebook.com/joyceandjimlavene 

http://amazon.com/author/jlavene 

https://twitter.com/AuthorJLavene

sb_final.inddSpell Booked
(Retired Witches Mysteries)

Brand New Series
Cozy Mystery
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
The Berkley Publishing Group (December 2, 2014)
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Art by Mary Ann Lasher
Cover Design by Lesley Worrell
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425268254
E-Book File Size: 2640 KB
ASIN: B00JJXV1AM
goodreads-badge-add-plus

 

Once upon a time in Wilmington, North Carolina, three witches ran a curio shop named Smuggler’s Arcane. But as the years passed, their magical powers started to fade—leaving them no choice but to conjure up a retirement package…  

Before they could blink their eyes or twitch their noses, Molly, Elsie, and Olivia somehow became eligible for AARP. But they can’t fly off to Boca Raton just yet. First they must give up their magic, recruit and train three new witches, and pass on their cherished spellbook.

They’ve barely begun to consider potential practitioners when Olivia winds up dead and their spellbook is stolen. To honor their friend and reclaim their spells, Molly and Elsie are about to go wand-to-wand with a dangerous young witch more powerful than the trio was in their prime. And this time they’re going to need more than magic up their sleeves…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Jim and Joyce Lavene have magnificent imaginations! They continue to surprise me. With those imaginations they bring us extraordinary characters and their words paint vivid images in my mind.

In this case the characters are a group of witches whose magic is waning and all they want to do is retire to Boca. Before they can do that the Grand Council of Witches tells them they need to find replacements and to pass along their spell book, since no one in their families has the gift of magic. They barely start their search and one of them is brutality killed and the spell book is stolen. So now  they are not only looking for replacement witches they are hunting down a murderer, a murderer than could be a very powerful witch.

We meet Molly, Elise and Olivia and their first recruit Dorothy, plus Molly’s husband, Joe, a police detective.  Joe has no idea Molly is a witch. We also meet 4 feline characters that are all extra special. These characters are all engaging and fascinating in their own ways. I don’t want to over share and spoil any of their enchanting ways for anyone.

The story takes place in North Carolina and the ladies run a shop, Smuggler’s Arcane, that sells supplies to other witches and those interested in witchcraft. It is quite an amazing place and has some secrets all its own. The town has another group of paranormal residents that I am usually not to fond of but the Lavene’s have written them in a fun and not too scary way that I didn’t mind their presence.

This cozy mystery has everything a good cozy requires and more. The plot really has a spark and I was totally caught off guard as to how the whole mystery played out. That final twist was a doozy!

Spell Booked will keep you Spellbound!!

a perfect escape5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

GIVEAWAY

Thanks to the people at Penguin I have 2 copies to give away!
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.

Following the new Google+ Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book Fan Page will earn you 3 Bonus Entries.

Leave a comment for Joyce for 5 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

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

Contest Will End December 30, 2014 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.”

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Jalapeño Cheddar Cornbread Murder (The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series) by Jodi Rath Get Your Copy Today!
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