Mar 232019
 


This is one of my favorite series!
I am a little bit behind but doing my best to get caught up 🙂

I am thrilled to shine the spotlight on
Chocolate Cream Pie Murder and thankful
for Kensington sponsoring the giveaway and providing the recipe for me to share!

Chocolate Cream Pie Murder (A Hannah Swensen Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
24th in Series
Setting – Minnesota
Kensington (February 26, 2019)
Hardcover: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 1496718860
ISBN-13: 978-1496718860
Kindle ASIN: B07DBQYT2W

Not even Lake Eden’s nosiest residents suspected Hannah Swensen would go from idealistic newlywed to betrayed wife in a matter of weeks. But as a deadly mystery unfolds in town, the proof is in the pudding . . .

When The Cookie Jar becomes the setting of a star-studded TV special about movies filmed in Minnesota, Hannah hopes to shine the spotlight on her bakery—not the unsavory scandal swirling around her personal life. But that’s practically impossible with a disturbing visit from the shifty character she once believed was her one and only love, a group of bodyguards following her every move, and a murder victim in her bedroom. Now, swapping the crime scene in her condo for her mother Delores’s penthouse, Hannah and an old flame team up to solve a case that’s messier than an upended chocolate cream pie. As suspects emerge and secrets hit close to home, Hannah must serve a hefty helping of justice to an unnamed killer prowling around Lake Eden . . . before someone takes a slice out of her!

Chocolate Cream Pie

This pie is a pudding pie with whipped cream and does not bake in the oven.

The Crust:

8-inch or 9-inch prepared crushed chocolate wafer or crushed Oreo pie crust.

Hannah’s 1st Note: You can also use a prepared crushed cookie pie crust, a graham cracker pie crust, or a shortbread pie crust.  You can even use a regular pie crust as long as you bake and cool it first.

The Chocolate Filling:

6 large egg yolks (save the whites to make your favorite meringue cookies)

3/4 cup white (granulated) sugar

2 tablespoons cornstarch

3 cups light cream (Half n’ Half)

1 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, finely chopped (measure AFTER chopping)

1/2 stick (4 Tablespoons, 1/4 cup, 1/8 pound) salted butter

The Whipped Cream Topping:

1 and 1/2 cups heavy cream

1/4 cup powdered (confectioners’) sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Decorations: (optional)

shaved chocolate

chocolate curls

maraschino cherry halves

butterscotch or caramel ice cream topping to drizzle on top

____

Place the egg yolks in a medium-size saucepan, off the heat.

Whisk the egg yolks until they are well combined.

Add the white, granulated sugar and the cornstarch.  Whisk everything together, off the heat, until the ingredients are well incorporated.

Turn the stovetop burner on MEDIUM-HIGH heat and add the 3 cups of light cream (half and half) SLOWLY, whisking continuously while the mixture is heating.

Whisk and cook until the mixture is slightly thickened.  (This will take from 3 to 4 minutes.)

Stirring constantly, boil mixture for 3 minutes.

Hannah’s 2nd Note: This is much easier to do if you have a hand mixer turned to LOW speed, but you’ll have to make sure that all areas of the saucepan are being mixed.  If you miss an area, your chocolate filling may scorch and you’ll have to start over!

Whisk in the finely chopped mini chocolate chips and the half-stick of salted butter.  Keep your whisk moving the entire time!

Lower the temperature of the burner to LOW and continue to whisk until the mixture is as thick as pudding. This should take about 5 to 6 minutes.

When the chocolate mixture has thickened, remove the saucepan to a cold stovetop burner and let it sit for five minutes.

Use a heat-resistant rubber spatula to transfer the contents of your saucepan to the pie crust of your choice and smooth the top with the heat-resistant spatula.

Cover the surface of the chocolate layer with plastic wrap and place your partially completed Chocolate Cream Pie in the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours.  (Overnight is even better, too.)

To Make the Whipped Cream Topping:

Hannah’s 3rd Note: If you’re tired or in a hurry and want a shortcut, simply thaw a small tub of Original Cool Whip and stir in butterscotch ice cream topping or caramel ice cream topping. It will hold its shape better than homemade whipped cream and you can put it on your chilled filling an hour or so before your guests arrive, rather than whipping the cream at the last minute!

Using an electric mixer, whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form.

Turn the mixer off and sprinkle the powdered sugar on top of the whipped cream.

Mix on HIGH until the powdered sugar is mixed in.

With the mixer running on HIGH, sprinkle in the half-teaspoon of vanilla extract and mix it in.

When everything has been thoroughly incorporated, shut off the mixer and take out the bowl with the whipped cream topping.  Give it a final stir with a rubber spatula and set it on the kitchen counter.

Get the pie crust with its chocolate filling out of the refrigerator and set it next to the mixer bowl with the whipped cream topping.

Peel the plastic wrap off the chocolate filling and use the rubber spatula to transfer mounds of whipped cream to the surface of the chocolate filling.

Work quickly to dot the entire surface of the chocolate filling with whipped cream.  Continue transferring the whipped cream until the mixer bowl has been emptied.

Using the rubber spatula, spread the mounds of whipped cream together to cover the entire surface of your Chocolate Cream Pie.  Make sure the whipped cream topping goes all the way out to the edge of the pie crust.

Using the flat edge of the rubber spatula, press it against the surface of the whipped cream topping and pull it up quickly.  This should cause the whipped cream to form a point on top.  Make “points” over the entire surface of your Chocolate Cream Pie.

Choose the decorating topping you wish to use on top of the whipped cream.  You can use more than one topping to really make it look fancy.

If you choose shaved chocolate, use a sharp knife to “shave” the edge of a bar of sweet chocolate.  Place the shaved pieces in a bowl and, using your impeccably clean fingers, sprinkle the shaved chocolate over the surface of your pie.

If you choose chocolate curls to decorate the top of your pie, simply run a sharp knife down the long edge of a bar of sweet chocolate.  If you don’t lift the knife blade, it will form a curl of chocolate.  Use these chocolate curls to decorate the top of your Chocolate Cream Pie.

Maraschino cherries are always colorful on top of a pie.  Cut the Maraschino cherries in half vertically and transfer the halves to the surface of the whipped cream topping, rounded side up.  Make a large circle of cherry halves around the edge or a design of your own making using the cherry halves.

If you choose butterscotch or caramel ice cream topping, simply drizzle it all over the surface of your pie in a pretty design.

Refrigerate your Chocolate Cream Pie for at least 2 hours before serving.

To serve, cut your Chocolate Cream Pie into 8 pieces and remove the pieces with a triangle-shaped spatula.  Place each piece on a dessert plate and serve with a carafe of strong, hot coffee or tall glasses of milk.

Yield: This pie will serve 8 people . . . or 7 if you invite Mother.  She’ll tell you she couldn’t possibly eat more of something so rich, but you won’t have to twist her arm to get her to agree to a second helping.

________

About the Author

JOANNE FLUKE is the New York Times bestselling author of the Hannah Swensen mysteries, which include Double Fudge Brownie Murder, Blackberry Pie MurderCinnamon Roll Murder, and the book that started it all, Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder. That first installment in the series premiered as Murder, She Baked:  A Chocolate Chip Cookie Mystery on the Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Channel. Like Hannah Swensen, Joanne Fluke was born and raised in a small town in rural Minnesota but now lives in Southern California. Please visit her online at www.JoanneFluke.com.

Thanks to the publisher I have 3 copies to give away!

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

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

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

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Follow Kensington Books on Twitter for 2 Bonus Entries!

LIKE Kensington Publishing on Facebook for 2 Bonus Entries!

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 April 5, 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

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Mar 212019
 


Criminally Cocoa (An Amish Candy Shop Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3.5 in Series
Setting – New York
Kensington (February 26, 2019)
Print Length: 86 pages
ASIN: B07KNT89SN

A taste for trouble . . .

As if being in New York City for Easter isn’t exciting enough, Charlotte Weaver has another reason to be thrilled. She’s helping her cousin, Bailey, on the set of her first cable TV show, Bailey’s Amish Sweets. Bailey will even be re-creating the delectable hand-woven chocolate Easter baskets she once crafted for the city’s world-famous JP Chocolates. But once things start rolling, Charlotte starts to notice odd things happening—things that seem intended to make Bailey look bad . . .

With Bailey feeling extra nervous about being on camera, Charlotte decides to keep her suspicion of sabotage to herself. But she knows that among Bailey’s fans at the Gourmet Television network lurks a dangerously jealous rival. Now Charlotte will have to find out who that person is—before sour grapes turns one of the sweetest times of the year fatally bitter . . .

Dollycas’s Thoughts

This delightful novella picks up where the last book leaves off, Bailey and Charlotte travel to New York to film Bailey’s Amish Sweets. Both are thrilled to be part of the Gourmet Television Network. Anxious and nervous for everything to go smoothly Bailey tries to do her best but a bunch of freaky things happen. It seems the show may never get off the ground. Charlotte makes some keen observations proving the mishaps are not accidents and she is determined to find out who is trying to keep Bailey off the air. She just needs to keep herself safe in the process.

I loved that this story was told from Charlotte’s point of view. She has a huge decision to make soon and spending part of her rumspringa in New York may help her to make her decision. Seeing New York through her eyes was wonderful, that city is awestriking whether you are Amish or English. I am sure I would have reactions similar to hers.

I enjoyed that Juliet Brody and her comfort pig, Jethro make a surprise appearance to help Bailey out. That Jethro shakes things up wherever he goes.

For a book of this length, there was a good number of suspects and Ms. Flower twisted the clues up nicely. There were some tense moments as everything came to a head. I was partially right in my deductions, I just didn’t get the extra little skewering twist.  Well-plotted Ms. Flower.

This was a nice little interlude as fans wait for Toxic Toffee to be released June 25.

Oh, and there are recipes too!

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Check out my review of Assaulted Caramel here and Lethal Licorice here
and Premeditated Peppermint here.

About This Author

Amanda Flower, a two-time Agatha Award-nominated mystery author, started her writing career in elementary school when she read a story she wrote to her sixth-grade class and had the class in stitches with her description of being stuck on the top of a Ferris wheel. She knew at that moment she’d found her calling of making people laugh with her words. She also writes mysteries as national bestselling author Isabella Alan. In addition to being an author, Amanda is an academic librarian for a small college near Cleveland.

Author Links:

Website  Pen Name Website     Facebook    Twitter    Goodreads    Pinterest

Amish Quilt Shop Mystery Series (writing as Isabella Alan)

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

The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

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

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Subscribe to Amanda’s Newsletter for 5 Bonus Entries.

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

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

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

Contest Will End April 4, 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.”

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Mar 112019
 

Welcome to My Reading Itinerary Monday!

Where are your books taking you this week?

I am crossing all over the U.S. this week! 

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

Escapes Completed


Run Away
by Harlan Coben
Release Date – March 19, 2019
Setting – New York
My Review will be up tomorrow!


Something Read, Something Dead: A Lighthouse Library Mystery
by Eva Gates
Release Date – March 13, 2019
Setting – North Carolina
I will feature this book on Cozy Wednesday this week!


Cat Got Your Crown: A Kitty Couture Mystery
by Julie Chase
Release Date – March 13, 2019
Setting – Louisiana
My review will be up Thursday!

Scheduled Escapes


Assault and Pepper (A Spice Shop Mystery)
by Leslie Budewitz
Release Date – March 3, 2015
Setting – Washington
My Flashback Friday Read!

An Au Pair to Remember: A Male Housekeeper Mystery
by Stephen Kaminski
Release Date – February 1, 2019
Setting – Michigan
The Great Escapes Book Tour stops here next Tuesday!


Murder on the Wind (Rock Shop Cozy Mystery)
by Cheryl F Taylor
Release Date – February 2, 2019
Setting – Arizona
Cheryl will be my guest next week for Cozy Wednesday!


Criminally Cocoa (An Amish Candy Shop Mystery)
by Amanda Flower
Release Date – February 26, 2019
Setting – Charlotte travels to New York
For Review

Future Escapes

Releasing March 11 – 17, 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

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Mar 082019
 


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.

I was unable to get a Flashback Friday book read last week. I think missing my Sunday evening read time to watch and live tweet the new Chronicle Mysteries the past 3 weeks caught up with me. I really enjoyed the movies though. If you missed them they are going to be on again Friday, March 15 on the Hallmark Movie and Mysteries Channel

So that means this week will just be a Spotlight with a Giveaway.
I have plucked a book from my To-Be-Read bookcase.
My lost could be your gain! 


A Not So Model Home (An Amanda Thorne Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Kensington (December 3, 2013)
Mass Market Paperback: 256 pages
ISBN-10: 0758206410
ISBN-13: 978-0758206411
Kindle ASIN: B00FQRO6R0

Open House for Murder

The real estate market is tanking, even in posh Palm Springs. So when Ian Forbes, the eccentric head of an international hair care empire, offers luxury realtor Amanda Thorne a chance to list his palatial Spanish style pad, she reluctantly agrees–even if it means appearing on the bizarre reality dating show he’s starring in.

With so much at stake, a throng of attractive contestants descend on the mansion in hopes of winning Ian’s heart–and his fortune. The competition is fast and fierce, and it’s almost no surprise when two of Ian’s prospective lovers turn up dead. Amanda quickly discovers that everyone has a conceivable motive for murder. And now that there are two more realtors competing with her for the lucrative listing, it seems the killer won’t be the only one who’s out for blood. . .

“The fun part of this mystery is James’ snarky, sneaky sense of humor that keeps his lively cast of characters believable.” –Mystery Scene

“Once again, James charms.” –Kirkus Reviews

About the Author

Mildly celebrated author David James divides his time between L.A. and Palm Springs handling sales of mid-century and modern homes by day, while working on spec TV scripts at night. He is extremely accomplished at folding fitted sheets.

The entire time this book sat on my shelf I thought it was the 1st book in the series. While creating this post I learned it was the 2nd and last book in the series. The first book is available digitally for $1.99 and through secondary sellers in mass market paperback. 


I am giving 1 copy away! 
The contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US or Canadian mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

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

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

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

Contest Will End March 22, 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

GOOD LUCK!

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

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Mar 062019
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I am excited to feature Pie Hard by Kirsten Weiss this week!


Pie Hard (A Pie Town Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Setting – California
Kensington (February 26, 2019)
Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
ISBN-10: 1496708989
ISBN-13: 978-1496708984
Kindle ASIN: B07DBR4SRF

Will Val pie hard on national TV?

Business at the bakery may have slowed down, but Val Harris isn’t about to eat humble pie—not until a reality cooking show decides to whip the struggling Pie Town into shape. If Val can tolerate criticism from an abrasive pastry chef during filming, the free publicity might turn the unusual opportunity into the sweetest deal she didn’t know she needed.

Except no one in San Nicholas has an appetite for dessert once murder steals the spotlight. When the show’s bossy producer gets pushed to her death, Val and her flaky, septuagenarian pie crust expert, Charlene, follow crumbs in hopes of finding the killer. But with cameras still rolling and the shocking identity of the victim’s replacement a guaranteed recipe for disaster, Val needs to stay cool long enough to solve the crime and keep Pie Town from falling apart—or else she just might go up in smoke before she ever graces the small screen.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Pie Hard, a reality cooking show has come to Pie Town courtesy of Charlene and as a complete surprise to Val. The camera and crew arrive along with Regina Katz, the show’s producer. Val is nervous because she knows what type of show this is. They will bash her shop and everything she does to get the high ratings. The show’s pastry chef, Ilsa Fueder, is already muttering “don’t like” about every pie she looks at.

After the first day of taping Val gets a call from Ray, one of the gaming regulars telling her that show’s producer has died in an “accident” he sees more like murder. Soon the Baker Street Bakers are into a full-blown investigation with Ray as an associate member, (he is not a baker). Shocked that show is continuing Val uses the opportunity to get to know all the suspects on her list. She also has a connection to the show’s new producer. The death has again slowed Pie Town’s business to a crawl. Hard to be a success when Val keeps finding dead bodies. She just knows she needs to find the killer before she is bankrupt and baked to a crisp.

This is a fun series and this is a great addition. Murder with a lot of mayhem fills these pages. Charlene is quite the instigator and to start with Val just has to go with the flow. Right from the beginning when a yurt is dropped within feet of Val’s tiny storage container house and the “goddesses” arrive for their yearly retreat. Something Charlene forgot to mention to Val. Then continuing when Val arrives at Pie Town to see her shop filled with strangers, holding cameras and tacking a microphone to her shirt. And on to Charlene’s several unbelievable and impossible theories about who killed the producer and why. It takes a little time, but Val gets her bearings and juggles all these balls in the air while trying to find out more about a certain new member of the crew. The author has done so well developing the recurring characters and introducing the new batch as well. Charlene’s cat, Frederick continues to make his appearances and is always good for a giggle.

I really enjoyed all the facets of the mysteries within this story. Val has plenty of clues to sift through along with plenty of suspects. The story is expertly plotted in a way that had me guessing right up until the big reveal. The family dynamic that was woven into the murder part of the story really added depth. It will be interesting to see how it impacts future stories. I was intrigued about how the goddesses were going to evolve into the story. I will say I was surprised at the role one of them played, but it was absolutely perfect.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

You can read my review of The Quiche and the Dead here and Bleeding Tarts here.

About the Author

Based in San Mateo, California, Kirsten Weiss writes genre-blending novels: urban fantasy/mystery, steampunk/suspense, and cozy mysteries. Kirsten has never met a dessert she didn’t like, and her guilty pleasures are watching Ghost Whisperer reruns and drinking red wine.
Visit her at kirstenweiss.com.


Also by this Author


Find more books by Kirsten Weiss here.

Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to giveaway

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

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

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

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Sign up for Kirsten’s newsletter for 5 Bonus Entries.

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

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

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

Contest Will End March 20, 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.”

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Mar 052019
 

One Feta in the Grave
(A Kebab Kitchen Mystery)
by Tina Kashian

About the Book


One Feta in the Grave (A Kebab Kitchen Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Kensington (February 26, 2019)
Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
ISBN-10: 1496713516
ISBN-13: 978-1496713513
Digital ASIN: B07DBPQQFJ

As summer comes to an end in her Jersey Shore town, Lucy Berberian continues to manage her family’s Mediterranean restaurant. The Kebab Kitchen also has a food tent at this year’s beach festival. But now a local businessman is under the boardwalk—dead by the sea …

With a sand castle contest and live music, Ocean Crest bids a bittersweet farewell to tourist season. Summer will return next year … but Archie Kincaid won’t. The full-of-himself store owner has been fatally shot, soon after a screaming match with Lucy’s best friend. Katie’s far from the only suspect, though, since Archie had some bitter rivals—as well as some relationships no one knew about. It’s up to Lucy to look into some seedy characters and solve the case before the wrong person gets skewered …

Recipes included!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Tourist season is wrapping up in Ocean Crest and the beach festival is underway with music, contests, and plenty of food. Things get a little heated when Archie Kincaid was forced to step down as a judge of the sand castles because his nephew was participating in the contest. After Lucy finishes her judging duties and makes sure all the food vendors have everything they need she takes a walk on the beach. She notices something under the boardwalk. That something turns out to be a dead Archie Kincaid. The man wasn’t well liked and have public arguments with several people, including the one with her best friend Katie, when she eliminated him as a judge.

Detective Clemmons arrives on the scene and is not surprised that Lucy has found another body, but everyone is surprised when Katie lands on his list of suspects. This means her husband, Officer Bill Watson is unable to be part of the case. He knows Lucy’s reputation for solving cases and asks her to keep her ears open and ask a few questions to help clear Katie’s name. Lucy takes the request and runs with it, sometimes with Katie by her side, going much further than Bill intended. Now they just need to catch the killer before anyone else ends up dead.

Lucy Berberian is a fun protagonist and I like it when Katie tags along. This time Katie’s is the one who needs to be cleared. These ladies go to some dangerous lengths to do just that. Lucy is also learning to cook traditional Armenian dishes while taking over managing duties at the restaurant. At the same time, she is trying to rekindle her romance with chef Azad Zakarian while having a friendship with Michael, who runs the bike shop next to the restaurant. Michael and Lucy seem to make a better pair right now, at least in my opinion. With each story, the characters become more fleshed out and relatable.

Ms. Kashian has cooked up a great mystery. A first I thought the arguments between Archie and others were typical business things but as we get deeper in the story we see that isn’t the case. The author sets a nice pace and I enjoyed the way Lucy didn’t give up. There was a point where any amateur sleuth would have quit but not Lucy. It is pointed out to her more than once that she is not a cop and needs to back off, but she will run herself ragged to catch the killer. I had honed in the right party a bit before Lucy but the ending was both exciting and funny. I wish I had half of Lucy’s energy.

I do love the Jersey shore setting. The boardwalk, shops, and restaurants. All the touristy places and food. Yes, the food, again my mouth was watering.

Another fun and entertaining story from Tina Kashian. I look forward to visiting Ocean Crest again soon!

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

You can read my review of Hummus and Homicide here and Stabbed in the Baklava here.

 

About the Author

Tina Kashian spent her childhood summers at the New Jersey shore, building sand castles, boogie boarding, and riding the boardwalk Ferris wheel. She also grew up in the restaurant business where her Armenian parents owned a restaurant for thirty years. She worked almost every job—rolling silverware and wiping down tables as a tween, to hosting and waitressing as a teenager.

After college, Tina worked as a NJ Deputy Attorney General, a patent attorney, and a mechanical engineer. Her law cases inspired an inquiring mind of crime, and since then, Tina has been hooked on mysteries. The Kebab Kitchen Cozy Mystery series launches with Hummus and Homicide, followed by Stabbed in the Baklava and One Feta in the Grave by Kensington Books. Tina still lives in New Jersey with her supportive husband and two young daughters. Please visit www.tinakashian.com and join her Newsletter to enter free contests to win books, get delicious recipes, and to learn when her books will be released.

Author Links  Website   Facebook  Twitter  Instagram   Goodreads

Praise for One Feta in the Grave
(A Kebab Kitchen Mystery)
by Tina Kashian

Hot men, dangerous liaisons, and a town in trouble when their main money making event is canceled due to murder, all contribute to a fast-paced and twisty murder investigation.
~Laura’s Interests

One Feta in the Grave is a fun, light cozy mystery that will have you longing for a sunny day at the beach.
~The Avid Reader

One Feta in the Grave will have you craving the Berberian family recipes so make sure you have a Mediterranean restaurant close by 😉 The plot is well-layered and it’s not readily apparent whodunit . . .
~Reading Is My SuperPower

ONE FETA IN THE GRAVE is great fun keeping me not only entertained but filled with happiness from this big happy Kebab Kitchen family.
~Cozy Up With Kathy

I love the way Ms. Kashian uses words to paint vivid pictures of both her settings and her characters. She wraps the theme of family and friendship into the story with heartwarming results.
~Cinnamon, Sugar and a Little Bit of Murder

From the characters to the tantalizing dishes, everything falls into place and makes this a fantastic read.
~Storeybook Reviews

ONE FETA IN THE GRAVE, it was top notch! There were plenty of suspects to keep me twisted like a boardwalk funnel cake in my guessing.
~Lisa Ks Book Reviews

Purchase Links

Amazon –   iBooks –  Barnes & Noble –  Kobo –   Google Books

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS
February 26 – Laura`s Interests – REVIEW
February 26 – The Book Diva’s Reads – CHARACTER GUEST POST  
February 26 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT
February 27 – Babs Book Bistro – REVIEW
February 27 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – GUEST POST
February 27 – My Reading Journeys – SPOTLIGHT
February 28 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT
February 28 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW
February 28 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW
March 1 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW
March 1 – Christa Reads and Writes – GUEST POST
March 2 – Cinnamon, Sugar and a Little Bit of Murder – REVIEW
March 2 – Cassidy’s Bookshelves – SPOTLIGHT
March 2 – Brooke Blogs – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
March 3 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW
March 3 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
March 4 – Here’s How It Happened – SPOTLIGHT
March 4 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW
March 4 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
March 5 – Rosepoint Publishing – REVIEW
March 5 – A Wytch’s Book Review Blog – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW
March 5 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
March 6 – I’m All About Books – CHARACTER GUEST POST
March 6 – Readeropolis – SPOTLIGHT
March 7 – The Montana Bookaholic – REVIEW
March 7 – The Cozy Pages – REVIEW
March 8 – A Chick Who Reads – REVIEW
March 8 – MJB Reviewers – REVIEW
March 9 – Socrates Book Reviews – REVIEW
March 9 – Melina’s Book Blog – 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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Mar 042019
 

Welcome to My Reading Itinerary Monday!

Where are your books taking you this week?

This week I am traveling to New York, North Carolina, and Louisiana! 

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

Escapes Completed


Chardonnayed to Rest (The Wine Trail Mysteries)
by J.C. Eaton

Release Date – September 25, 2018
Setting – New York
My Flashback Friday Read! – My Review


One Feta in the Grave (A Kebab Kitchen Mystery)
by Tina Kashian
Release Date – February 26, 2019
Setting – New Jersey
The Great Escapes Tour stops here tomorrow!


Pie Hard (A Pie Town Mystery)
by Kirsten Weiss
Release Date – February 26, 2019
Setting – California
I will feature this book for Cozy Wednesday this week!


As Directed (A Maggie O’Malley Mystery)
by Kathleen Valenti
Release Date – March 12, 2019
Setting – U.S. Midwest
The Great Escapes Tour stops here this Thursday!

Scheduled Escapes


Run Away
by Harlan Coben
Release Date – March 19, 2019
Setting – New York
For Review


Something Read, Something Dead: A Lighthouse Library Mystery
by Eva Gates
Release Date – March 13, 2019
Setting – North Carolina


Cat Got Your Crown: A Kitty Couture Mystery
by Julie Chase
Release Date – March 13, 2019
Setting – Louisiana

Future Escapes

March 4 – 10, 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

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Feb 272019
 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday! 

I am excited to share my thoughts with you today about the latest Poppy McAllister Mystery!

 

About the Book


Restaurant Weeks Are Murder (A Poppy McAllister Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Setting – New Jersey
Kensington (February 26, 2019)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 1496713079
ISBN-13: 978-1496713070
Digital ASIN: B07DBQBVYJ

Cape May, New Jersey, is the site of a big culinary competition—and the knives are out . . .

Poppy McAllister is happy about opening a Jersey Shore B&B—but working in a professional kitchen has always been her real dream. Now it’s coming true, at least briefly, as she teams up with her former fiancée, Tim—and his condescending partner, Gigi—during the high-profile Restaurant Week challenge. Poppy’s specialty is pastries, despite her devotion to a Paleo diet. But if anyone can make glorious gluten-free goodies, it’s Poppy.

Things get heated quickly—especially when some ingredients get switched and Tim’s accused of sabotage. Relatively harmless pranks soon escalate into real hazards, including an exploding deep fryer. And now one of the judges has died after taking a bite of Poppy’s cannoli—making her the chef suspect . . .

Includes Seven Recipes from Poppy’s Kitchen!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Poppy McAllister is so excited. Her ex, Tim and his partner Gigi are representing his restaurant in the upcoming Restaurant Week Challenge for a local television station, think Chopped, but crazier :), and Tim as asked her to be their pastry chef. It will be tough spending that much time with Gigi, but cooking in a professional kitchen and showing her talents with desserts has been her dream, so she quickly accepts.

The “Challenge” is not creating awesome appetizers, entrees, and desserts from the crazy basket ingredients, it is making it through the week. Less Chopped – More Survivor. Pranks like the labels being switched on ingredients escalates to machinery malfunctions including an exploding deep fryer, to one of the judges being poisoned. The chaos in the kitchen is getting out of control so Poppy does it again. She starts her own investigation. If she isn’t careful she may find herself cooking her very last dessert and chopped down before any of her dreams come true.

I have loved these characters since book 1, Class Reunions are Murder. Aunt Ginny always has me laughing out loud. This time her antics were a little tamer but they still cracked me up. Poppy is growing stronger. Her confidence is shaky at first but she gets some nice feedback that by the end helps her to really move forward. I am excited about the opening of her B&B because I think she will really shine, depending of course what kind of obstacles Aunt Ginny throws in her path. I loved every scene when Poppy and Gia were together. I could feel the heat right through the pages. Don’t worry the author keeps it cozy and G-rated. I can’t forget Figaro, that naughty, naughty, kitty. A cat with a mission and he was hilarious.

As a huge fan of Chopped, I really enjoy the Restaurant Week challenge with its own little twist of a points system. The themed baskets and what the chefs did with them was fun even with all the struggles they had along the way. The author shares some of the recipes at the end of the story.

The mystery was very developed. Secrets, grudges, innuendo, revenge, all play into this captivating whodunit. With plenty of suspects, the author set a blazing pace with the twists. The last one almost gave me whiplash. The ending was edge of my seat exciting. I was totally surprised.

Ms. Klein has found the perfect recipe for a marvelous cozy mystery. Wonderful characters mixed in a sensational story with a dash a romance and sprinkled liberally with humor. A delectable treat for every cozy lover.

This is an extraordinary series and while each can stand on its own, they are best read in order for maximum enjoyment.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

You can read my review of Class Reunions are Murder here.

You can read my review of Midnight Snacks Are Murder here. 

Praise for Restaurant Weeks Are Murder
(A Poppy McAllister Mystery)
by Libby Klein

There is a cast of quirky characters that liven up the storyline and of course, we can’t forget Aunt Ginny and her antics along with the rest of her Senior friends. She knows how to liven up this book with her shenanigans.
~Storeybook Reviews

About the Author

Libby Klein dabbles in the position of Vice President of a technology company which mostly involves bossing other people around, making spreadsheets, and taking out the trash. She writes culinary cozy mysteries from her Northern Virginia office while trying to keep her cat Figaro off her keyboard.
Author Links – Webpage – Facebook – Twitter – Pinterest  – Cozy Mystery Crew  – GoodReads –  BookBub – Instagram –  Amazon 

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS
February 25 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW
February 25 – Here’s How It Happened – SPOTLIGHT
February 26 – The Montana Bookaholic – REVIEW
February 26 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
February 27 – Mythical Books – GUEST POST
February 27 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
February 28 – MJB Reviewers – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
February 28 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT
March 1 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT  
March 1 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW
March 2 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT
March 2 – The Power of Words – REVIEW
March 3 – That’s What She’s Reading – CHARACTER GUEST POST
March 3 – Cozy Up With Kathy – GUEST POST
March 4 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
March 5 – FUONLYKNEW – REVIEW
March 5 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT
March 6 – Laura`s Interests – REVIEW
March 6 – Sapphyria’s Books – SPOTLIGHT
March 7 – A Wytch’s Book Review Blog – REVIEW
March 7 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
March 8 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – REVIEW, RECIPE
March 8 – Devilishly Delicious Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
March 9 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
March 9 – A Blue Million Books – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
March 10 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEWHave 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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Feb 252019
 

Welcome to My Reading Itinerary Monday!

Where are your books taking you this week?

Piling on the literary travel miles this week
East Coast – West Coast – Midwest! 

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

Escapes Completed


A Riesling to Die (The Wine Trail Mysteries)
by J.C. Eaton
Release Date – March 27, 2018
Setting – New York
My Flashback Friday Read!
My Review


Broken Heart Attack (Braxton Campus Mysteries)
by James J. Cudney
Release Date – November 25, 2018
Setting – Pennsylvania
My Review will be up tomorrow! 


Restaurant Weeks Are Murder (A Poppy McAllister Mystery)
by Libby Klein
Release Date – February 26, 2018
Setting – New Jersey
I will be featuring this book as part of its
Great Escapes Book Tour on Cozy Wednesday this week!


Fields’ Guide to Voodoo (The Poppy Fields Adventures)
by Julie Mulhern
Release Date – February 28, 2019
Setting – Louisiana
My review will be up on Thursday!

Scheduled Escapes


Chardonnayed to Rest (The Wine Trail Mysteries)
by J.C. Eaton

Release Date – September 25, 2018
Setting – New York
My Flashback Friday Read!


One Feta in the Grave (A Kebab Kitchen Mystery)
by Tina Kashian
Release Date – February 26, 2019
Setting – New Jersey
The Great Escapes Tour stops here next Tuesday!


Pie Hard (A Pie Town Mystery)
by Kirsten Weiss
Release Date – February 26, 2019
Setting – California
I will feature this book for Cozy Wednesday next week!


As Directed (A Maggie O’Malley Mystery)
by Kathleen Valenti
Release Date – March 12, 2019
Setting – U.S. Midwest
The Great Escapes Tour stops here next Thursday!

Future Escapes

In addition to the new books above these books will be released this week!
February 25 – March 3, 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

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Feb 192019
 

Hot Fudge Murder (A Lickety Splits Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
2nd Book in Series
Setting – New York
Kensington (January 29, 2019)
Hardcover: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 1496714156
ISBN-13: 978-1496714152
Kindle ASIN: B07CWDT76Q

Just six weeks after the grand opening of Lickety Splits Ice Cream Shoppe, owner Kate McKay has been enlisted to whip up sundaes at the most decadent soiree in the Hudson Valley. If only Kate knew how deadly sticky her sweet deal will turn out . . .

Once Kate arrives at a glamorous gala hosted by world-famous fashion designer Omar DeVane, she’s instantly intimidated by the mogul’s luxurious mansion and the frosty personalities of his handlers. But the party completely loses its flavor when guests follow screams to a room that’s eerily empty—except for Omar’s freshly murdered body . . .

While the headline-grabbing crime brings a steady stream of journalists to the sleepy village of Wolfert’s Roost, Kate knows things won’t return to normal until Omar’s killer is brought to justice. And with the scandalous case driving customers away from Lickety Splits, she has no choice but to put down the ice cream scooper and expose the culprit on her own . . .

As Kate crashes high-profile photo shoots and mingles with fashion’s biggest influencers in search of clues, the puzzling truth about Omar’s fame and fortune rises to the surface—and with it, the key to his killer’s twisted motive. Kate will have to navigate the celebrity lifestyle to save her fledgling business, but her attempts to freeze cold-hearted criminals in their tracks could lead to a double scoop of deadly trouble . . .

Includes mouthwatering ice cream recipes from the Lickety Splits Ice Cream Shoppe!

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Kate McKay is thrilled that after only being in business a short time people are booking her to cater ice cream desserts for their parties. She can’t believe she has been asked to serve sundaes at Omar DeVane’s gala. The prominent fashion designer will have many celebrities at his event and she hopes they will love the sweet treats she will be serving. She has been told Mr. DeVane loves hot fudge sundae’s, she hopes his guests will too.

When she arrives at the mansion with her best friend, Willow, her niece Emma, and Emma’s boyfriend Ethan, they are awed by the place but set up their Lickety Split Ice Cream Shoppe station and get ready to serve the guests. Things get really sticky when the housekeeper screams and Omar Devane’s body is found. Murdered by one of his guests? That has to be the answer, but who?

Sadly, the public draws the line between the murder and Kate’s shop. The press has camped out in front of her shop and isn’t there for the ice cream. Could this murder thaw her right out of business? Leaving her shop in Emma’s care she embarks down the path to find the killer herself, making Wolfert’s Roost’s Detective Stoltz very unhappy.

Cindy Baxter delivers another delicious mystery for her readers to enjoy.

Our protagonist Kate McKay is one busy woman. Running her shop, developing new and unique flavors, and tracking down a murderer. Her old high-school boyfriend Jake seems to be quite jealous when Hudson Valley Adventure Tours opens across the street from Lickety Splits and its owner seems to be interested in Kate. A good old fashioned romantic triangle in the making. Kate’s grandmother is getting a little restless at home and has started visiting the Senior Center and having some grand ideas. I really enjoy the way Kate and her Grams evolved from the first story and throughout this one. It is a natural progression and not forced.

The murderer has to be someone at the party which could mean a lot of suspects but the focus quickly narrows down to just a few. There were some wonderful twists but I made my decision of whodunit early on, I just needed the motivation to fall better into place. I did enjoy all the work Kate put in to investigate and had fun following along.

As in the first book in this series, Ms. Baxter’s descriptive writing style drew me in. Not only the people and the places but the ice cream. Being allergic to nuts I was sad to see all the recipes with almonds but love the direction she is going with Lickety Lite. If you don’t have ice cream in the freezer when you start reading this book, put the book down and go get some. You will be wanting a scoop or two before you get through the first couple of chapters.

I really enjoyed this story. I am excited about the next story with both Kate and Grams having some bright ideas.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Read my review of Murder with a Cherry On Top here. 

About the Author

Cynthia Baxter is the author of fifty-three novels. Her books have been translated into German, Swedish, and Danish. Born and raised on Long Island, she currently resides there. Her favorite ice cream flavors are peach, coconut, and chocolate hazelnut. For more information, visit www.cynthiabaxter.com.

Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to give away!
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with a US mailing address.

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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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