Posted in Cozy Wednesday Craving For Cozies Cruisin Thru Cozies Giveaways Guest Posts Reviews 2016 What An Animal Reading Challenge You Read How Many Books Challenge

Cozy Wednesday with Laura Bradford – Author of A Churn for the Worse – #Giveaway too!

cozy wednesday 2013 640

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!

I am so happy when Laura Bradford stops by for a visit! 

laura_new_400x400

 

Magic Beans
By Laura Bradford
(Post provided by Publicist)

When I was a little girl, I was mesmerized by the power of the magic beans in Jack and the Beanstalk. I even remember imagining what it would be like to have magic beans in my pocket.

a churn for the worseSo it’s kind of ironic that not too many years later, I’d be bitten by the writing bug. You see for me, writing books is a lot like having a pocketful of magic beans. When you pull them out and look at them, they look like regular ordinary beans. But when you plant them in the ground, they become so much more.

Looking back at the twenty plus novels I’ve written, each one has been born from a single bean—something that I heard or saw or learned that perked up my ears. Sometimes, that bean is really small—a quick fact gleamed on a tour, or a character quirk observed while out and about in everyday life. But small or not, it always sets my plotting wheels in motion.

That’s what happened when, in the fall of 2014, I headed to Lancaster County, PA for my annual research trip. I was exploring the Amish countryside as I always do—taking tours, visiting Amish-owned shops, and chatting with the Amish, when I stumbled across a new-to-me fact I’d not learned during my previous trips…

When it comes time for the Amish to purchases a horse, more times than not they look to retired Standardbred racehorses. Trotters are particularly appealing to the Amish because of the horse’s experience pulling a sulky. These horses are disciplined and can transition well to pulling the family’s buggy.

Suddenly, I had a bean that I wanted in my pocket. I didn’t yet know if it would prove to be magic or not, but I knew it was worth exploring.

Armed with that single bean, I reached out to a reader I know who also happens to own racehorses. Over the next week or so, I fired countless racehorse-related questions at this woman. I didn’t know what I was looking for, specifically, but I knew that as I broadened my knowledge, there was potential to add to that original bean.

The next thing I knew, I had a grieving racehorse owner, a dead farmer, missing money, and an unknown person preying on Heavenly, Pennsylvania’s Amish community for the latest installment in my Amish Mysteries, A CHURN FOR THE WORSE.

Trust me when I say this is a “beanstalk” worth climbing!

~Laura
***
About This Author

Laura Bradford (aka Elizabeth Lynn Casey) is the author of several mystery series and a handful of romance novels. She is a former Agatha Award nominee and the recipient of an RT Reviewer’s Choice Award. In her free time, Laura enjoys making memories with her family, baking, playing games, and catching up with friends. In addition to the Amish Mysteries, Laura also writes the Jenkins & Burns mysteries, the Southern Sewing Circle Mysteries (as Elizabeth Lynn Casey), and the upcoming Emergency Dessert Squad Mysteries (Éclair and Present Danger, Book # 1, will debut in June).

For more information, visit Laura’s website: www.laurabradford.com or get to know her even better on Facebook, and on Twitter: @bradfordauthor

***

a churn for the worseA Churn for the Worse:
An Amish Mystery

Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Berkley Prime Crime (March 1, 2016)
An Imprint of Penguin Random House LLC
Cover Illustration by Mary Anne Lasher
Cover Design by Sarah Oberrender
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425273036
E-Book ASIN: B00Z8VTJ8U
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The national bestselling author of Suspendered Sentence returns to Heavenly, Pennsylvania, where shop owner Claire Weatherly and Detective Jakob Fisher must put on their thinking kapps to solve a string of robberies and a murder in the Amish community…

When an Amish farmer is found dead in his barn, his family accepts his death as God’s will. But Detective Jakob Fisher knows the farmer didn’t hit himself in the head with the shovel lying beside his body. And when it comes to light that a stranger appeared at the farmer’s home and now money is missing from their milk can, Fisher suspects robbery as the motive—especially when another Amish family is victimized.

Getting to the truth proves difficult, however, since Fisher has two strikes against him in the eyes of the Amish—his chosen career, and the Amish roots he left behind. Desperate to stop a murderous thief, Fisher turns to Heavenly Treasures shop owner Claire Weatherly for help. The trust she’s earned from the Amish community enables her to go where the detective cannot—straight into the path of a killer…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Another Heavenly trip to Heavenly! Laura Bradford continues to give us wonderful stories starring some of the most engaging cozy characters. When I pick up one of her mysteries it is like wrapping myself in a warm cozy blanket.

Claire Weatherly is in love and not only with Jakob Fisher. She loves this town, her work, and all the heartwarming people of Heavenly. Her greatest wish is to bring Jakob and his family together again after they have shunned him when he decided to become a law enforcement officer after he had been baptized.  She pushes the boundaries to help him have contact with them while trying not break the rules of the Amish.

This time an Amish farmer has been killed and no one calls the authorities. “God’s Will”. Money goes missing, no one reports it. The man seemed “kind”. Well word gets back to Claire and she is sure to let Jakob knows what is going on. But will he be able to help if none of the Amish will talk to him? Claire does her best to keep her ears open and Jakob tries to get the Amish to understand he just wants to help. There is also a strong subplot that ties together a missing racehorse and the horses the Amish purchase to pull their buggies.

I love the way Claire and Jakob’s relationship is evolving. The pace has been perfect. They have built a trust working together, become friends and have now moved to courting. The author continues to nurture these characters in a delightful way.

I enjoyed learning about the horses too. I never really thought about the horses pulling the buggies and now it makes perfect sense.  It is easy to see Ms. Bradford thoroughly researched this aspect to her story.

They main mystery in the story has someone preying on the local Amish community.  It has to be someone familiar with their ways and traditions. We are given several suspects and a lot of different diversions as we try to solve the mystery right along with Jakob and Claire. I was totally wrong and surprised.

I loved this story and I love this series. Laura Bradford has churned up another captivating cozy for us to enjoy. Don’t hold your horses, race right out to get this one today.

perfect 2016

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.

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

Leave a comment for Laura 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 March 23, 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.”

Posted in Reviews 2015

Need A Little Christmas – Part 2 – A Christmas Mourning by Laura Bradford

CHRISTMAS mOURNINGA Christmas Mourning:
An Amish Mystery Short Story

Cozy Mystery
Setting – Pennsylvania
Beyond the Page (November 12, 2015)
Print Length: 63 pages
ASIN: B017Y41LIY
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Claire Weatherly has come to respect how the Amish of Heavenly, Pennsylvania, value tradition. But not all traditions are necessarily quaint. When a decades-old mystery threatens the well-being of local police detective Jakob Fisher, she’ll pit herself against a community rooted in the past so that he can get on with his future.

When Claire decides to visit the one-room schoolhouse Jakob attended as a young Amish boy, she’s puzzled by his refusal to go along too. As Jakob tells his story, Claire is stunned and saddened by the heartbreaking tale of a childhood mistake that led to the mysterious disappearance of a precious family artifact—and signaled the first break between Jakob and his mother, made all the more painful now that he’s been shunned by the family and community he loves.

Knowing there’s only one way to help heal the irreparable wound that continues to haunt Jakob, Claire sets off to follow the trail of the missing heirloom, never suspecting that it will lead her to Jakob’s oldest friend, a long-ago Christmas secret, and an enduring truth about family, love, and the power of forgiveness.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

A perfect story for the season even though it takes place in the summer. Scratching your head, well let me explain.

We all have Christmas traditions but way back when a young Jakob Fisher was in school something happened that changed one of his family’s Christmas traditions.  All these years later Claire is trying to heal that hole that was created.

I like this brief little visit to Heavenly. Claire’s love for Jakob just glows. She hates that he is shunned by his family and will do anything to bring them closer.

A heartwarming story that will stick with you. The story may be a short one but my emotions were all over the place.

We only have to wait 2 months for out next visit as A Churn for the Worse releases March 1. I can’t wait!

a perfect escape5 STARFISH

Dollycas
Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Find out more about Laura Bradford and her alter ego Elizabeth Lynn Casey on her webpage here.


New Series Coming June 7, 2016

Click Here for more books by Laura Bradford
Click here for her books as Elizabeth Lynn Casey

*This book is from my personal library.

Posted in It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You ReadingIt’s Monday! What Are You Reading?
Hosted by Book Date

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week.  It’s a great post to organize yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment, and er… add to that ever growing TBR pile!

great escape button160Hi Everyone,
It looks like a great year ahead for for Great Escapes Book Tours and we need more bloggers to join our group. We are branching out to genres besides mysteries in 2016 and will be hosting more Book Blasts and Cover Reveals. Click Here to get more information and to signup!!! Please pass the word and tell your friends!

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

FINISHED

The Rise of the Red Queen (A Red Solaris Mystery) (Volume 2)

Release Date – December 1, 2015
My Review
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The Conspiring Woman (A Victorian Bookshop Mystery) (Volume 4)

Release Date – October 4, 2015
Kate will be my Special Guest on tomorrow!
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Dorothy Parker Drank Here

Paperback Release Date – December 15, 2015
Review will be up Thursday! 
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Engaged in Danger: A Jamie Quinn Mystery (Jamie Quinn Mysteries Book 4)

Release Date – September 11, 2015
Review will be up Friday! 
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X Out Of Wonderland

Release Date – July 1, 2005
Read for my Alphabet Challenge.
Review will be up Saturday!

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ON DECK THIS WEEK

Revenge of the Sea (The Captain Shelby Trilogy) (Volume 3)

Release Date – November 26, 2015
For Review
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Here Today, Gone Tamale: A Taste of Texas Mystery

Release Date – December 1, 2015
Rebecca will be my guest for Cozy Wednesday next week!
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T’is the Season

Release Date – November 26, 2015
For Review
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A Christmas Mourning: An Amish Mystery Short Story

Release Date – November 12, 2015
For Review
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A Vision of Sugarplums

Release Date – November 11, 2011
To complete my Alphabet Soup Challenge.
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escape

Click Here To See All My Current Giveaways!!

Happy Reading!!
Dollycas
Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent
Posted in Cozy Wednesday Cruisin Thru Cozies Giveaways Guest Posts Reviews 2015 You Read How Many Books Challenge

Cozy Wednesday with Laura Bradford – Author of Suspendered Sentence – Giveaway too!

cozy wednesday 2013 640Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!

I am so happy that Laura Bradford is visiting today. Shunned and Dangerous made my Best Reads of 2014 list, Hearse and Buggy won the Best New Cozy Series Ribbon in 2012, and I gave Assaulted Pretzel 5 Starfish too! I love this series!!

buggy1 - laura

The Chill That Started It All
By Laura Bradford

Nineteen years ago, Sadie Lehman simply up and disappeared during her Rumspringa in the Amish community of Heavenly, Pennsylvania. Led to believe her daughter had gotten caught up in the English world by the girl’s peers, Waneta clung to hope that one day Sadie would come back.

Yet while Waneta prayed for a reunion, Sadie’s friends hoped for something very different—that Sadie’s body would never be discovered.

It’s funny how an entire story can grow from just one thought, but that’s exactly how the plot for Suspendered Sentence (the 4th book in my Amish Mysteries) was born—on that very premise I just shared with you.

And from that one thought, came consternation (how could Sadie’s friends say nothing for nineteen long years?), anger (Waneta was left to hope for something that would never be!), a quest for answers (how did Sadie die?), and a desire for justice (for Sadie, for Waneta, and for…well, I’ll let you read the book to find that out).

I love it when a plot line fires me up the way this one did. I love the way my research of the law for this particular crime left me stunned. And I love the way those two emotions came together into a story that ends up affecting the lives of so many people in Heavenly. In fact, it’s safe to say, that some lives in this quiet, picturesque community will never be the same.

Because of a secret…

A secret that didn’t need to be kept…

A secret that ultimately cost someone their life, and another person their wife

Honestly, I’m getting goose bumps just thinking about this story all over again. So if you’ve been waiting to try one of my Amish Mysteries, I hope you give Suspendered Sentence a try.  If you’re already a fan of the series, then fasten your cozy seatbelt and enjoy the ride!

~Laura

 About This Author

Laura Bradford is the national bestselling author of the Amish Mysteries. The fourth book in the series, Suspendered Sentence, just released. You can learn more about Laura and her books by visiting her website: www.laurabradford.com.  Laura is also on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/laurabradfordauthor, and occasionally tweets @bradfordauthor.

cover suspendered sentence
Suspendered Sentence
(An Amish Mystery)

Cozy Mystery
4th in Series
Setting – Pensylvania
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
The Berkley Publishing Group (March 3, 2015)
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Mary Ann Lasher
Cover Design by Sarah Oberrender
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425273029
E-Book ASIN: B00LMGK6L4
goodreads-badge-add-plus

 

The national bestselling author of Shunned and Dangerous returns to the Amish community of Heavenly, Pennsylvania, where shop owner Claire Weatherly has come to appreciate a simpler, more peaceful way of life. But dark secrets are about to complicate things—and lead to murder…

After the Stoltzfus barn catches fire, Claire is awed by the response of the community. Hundreds of Amish men gather together to raise a new barn for the family in a matter of days. But in the midst of the work, a human skeleton is unearthed. Found with the remains is half of a friendship bracelet last seen on Sadie Lehman, an Amish teen long believed to have left her strict upbringing for the allure of English ways.

Now Detective Jakob Fisher—once a member of the Amish community himself—is determined to solve the young woman’s murder. With Claire’s help, he must dig into the past and bring to light long-buried secrets—secrets that someone is willing to kill to protect…

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Laura Bradford continues top herself again and again.

In this story Clare is awed by the Amish community as the all turn out to replace a barn in just a few days. I am in awe of the way Bradford makes these characters so real, so genuine, so inspiring and heartwarming. The Amish community is rocked when a the remains of a girl are found. You can’t help grieving for her parents. Claire and Jakob try so hard to figure out what happened and it takes them right into the heart of the community that has shunned Jakob.

The author continues to go delve into a culture most people don’t know much about and she does it in almost a loving way. Like her character Claire she is looking in from the outside and her fascination shines through each and every page.

Like all of her stories the mystery is thought out and well plotted. The reader almost hangs on every word. The twists this time are take a very troubling path and to me were heart wrenching. My emotions ran the gambit. That to me that is the true determination of a great story.  I was moved by this story and it will stick with me.

In addition to the main plot there is also a subplot where Jakob and Claire are exploring or starting more of a romantic relationship. I was delighted by this.

Suspendered Sentence can be read as a stand alone by why deprive yourself from the reading this fantastic series from the start. This one will be on my Best Reads of 2015 list like Shunned and Dangerous was a Best Read last year. Every book in this series is outstanding!

 paradise5 STARFISH5 STARFISH

Dollycas
Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

GIVEAWAYBecause Mary is the Fan of the Month she gets a copy of this book!

I have my review copy yet to giveaway!

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 Laura 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 March 18, 2015 at 11:59 PM CST
Winners Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winners Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted in Cozy Wednesday Giveaways Guest Posts Literary Escapes Reviews 2014 Thoughts You Read How Many Books Challenge

Cozy Wednesday with Laura Bradford – Author of Shunned and Dangerous (Giveaway too!)

cozy wednesday 2013 640

 

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!!

I am so excited to welcome my friend Laura Bradford here today!!

I will post my review at the bottom for this book but I just have to tell you know this story is amazing!!

elizabeth lynn casey

 

From the Fringes to my Heart

By Laura Bradford

Looking back through my life, I think I always liked the people on the fringes, best. I never fell for the popular jocks, or the boy everyone in class thought was so amazing. I guess, even then, I could see past the sparkle and glare to what mattered most.

So I have to wonder if some of that is why, in both my mystery series, my favorite character is found among the secondary line-up. Sure, I love Claire, my main character in my Amish Mysteries, and Tori in my Southern Sewing Circle Mysteries…but it’s the folks around them that really make me smile.

shunned and dangerousIn Shunned and Dangerous, the third book in my Amish Mysteries, Detective Jakob Fisher (one of my favorites) gets a lot of page time and that couldn’t thrill me more. You see, Jakob has an interesting past—one that’s responsible for a lot of heartache and tension in his present, and it allows me, as the writer, to really delve into the concept of excommunication among the Amish.

Jakob Fisher spent the first nineteen years of his life being Amish. He lived it, and he embraced it. That said, he developed a curiosity about police as he entered his teen years and opted to spend his brief Rumspringa learning more about the profession before he returned to the life he fully intended to lead. So sure was he about his future, he cut his Rumspringa short in order to be baptized.

Once a member of the Amish community is baptized, there is no going back. If they opt to leave before baptism, they can still have a relationship with their family. However, if they opt to leave after baptism, they are ex-communicated from their home, their community, their family. This ex-communication holds true even if the Amish person in question leaves for an otherwise noble reason—like wanting to join the police force to help solve a crime against his brethren…

Today, Jakob is a detective in Heavenly, Pennsylvania, the same town in which he grew up. He took the job to be closer to his family, to see them walking down the street or working in the fields. It’s his way of making sure they’re okay, even though he knows he can’t be part of their lives ever again—not as a son, brother, or uncle, anyway.

It’s a heartbreaking aspect to write, at times, but the dynamic is wrought with opportunities for tension, emotion, and, at times, even hope.

Is it painful to see the rejection Jakob faces from his family at times as this series progresses? Sure. But, at the same time, it makes his triumphant moments all the more powerful.

If you haven’t read my Amish Mysteries yet, I hope you’ll give them a chance.

~Laura

 

About This Author

Laura Bradford is the national best-selling author of the Amish Mysteries (Berkley Prime Crime). The third title in the series—Shunned and Dangerous—is now available. To learn more about Laura and the Amish Mysteries, you can visit her website: www.laurabradford.com. If you’d like to say up to date on Laura and her series beyond her website, you can “like” her page on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Laura-Bradford/316744455035472?ref=hl, or follow her on Twitter @Bradfordauthor.

shunned and dangerous
Shunned and Dangerous
(An Amish Mystery)

3rd in Series
Cozy Mystery
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
The Berkley Publishing Group (March 4, 2014)
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Mary Ann Lasher
Cover Design by Sarah Oberrender
Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425252437
E-Book File Size: 1980 KB
ASIN: B00EOAS01I
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Living in the small town of Heavenly, Pennsylvania, Claire Weatherly has come to admire the Amish for their wholesome, honest way of life. But she also knows that nothing is as simple as it seems—especially when murder disturbs the peace.

It is harvest time in Heavenly and Claire is excited to try out one of Mose Fisher’s famous corn mazes. Her excitement quckly turns to terror and she rounds a corner and comes face to face with a very dead Harley Zook. Harley was a local Amish dairy farmer and handyman.

This investigation is going to be difficult for Detective Jakob Fisher. Mose Fisher is his father and because Jakob has been shunned by the Amish Community he has not had any recent contact with the man. When the evidence starts to point directly at Mose things get even tougher. Claire feels she has to step in and find the real killer before someone else turns up dead.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Cozy mysteries are my favorites and Laura Bradford (aka Elizabeth Lynn Casey) is one of my favorite cozy authors. She is an amazing storyteller so I always know the book is going to be a great read but with this story she absolutely blew me away!!

When an author writes a series each book brings a new adventure and the characters continue to evolve. This has to be extremely difficult. You have to tell the reader enough to get them engaged but you can’t “spill all the beans” too soon. In the first 2 books of this series we were introduced to Jakob Fisher and knew he had been shunned by his Amish Family. In this story Jakob takes center stage and we find out more details but also see the pain he must endure for the choice he made.

Most of us know the Amish live a simple life. They do not have telephones or electricity and travel by horse and buggy.  Personally there is an Amish community near here and my daughter visits often. She shops in their stores and bring me the most delicious baked goods. I have also witnessed some of their excellent building and woodworking skills. But I never really think of those that have been shunned for choices they have made. How they can forgive someone who may have committed a terrible crime against them but when a member of their family makes a choice after baptism to leave the community they cannot be forgiven. They are ex-communicated (shunned) forever.  Even if they have left to protect and serve others. The way Jakob has to deal with this just breaks my heart.  Claire is trying to understand the workings of the Amish too, just as I was and this really added to my relationship with this story.

In addition to this character study Bradford creates an outstanding mystery that she weaves right into this heartbreaking situation. There were so many twists and turns it was hard to believe this story took place in just 288 pages. She packed the drama and emotions into this story, it left me reeling.

I love my cozies and with no disrespect intended at all. This was so much more than a cozy mystery. This is a story that is going to stick with me longer than any story I have read in a long time. It was so eye-opening and thought provoking.

Laura you really hit a home run with this one. You get my first Paradise rating of the year.  I can’t wait to travel back to Heavenly again soon.

paradise5 STARFISH5 STARFISH

Dollycas
Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

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.

Leave a comment for Laura for 5 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 March19, 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.”

Posted in Literary Escapes Reviews 2013

Review: Assaulted Pretzel by Laura Bradford

ASSAULTED PRETZEL - MARCH

Assaulted Pretzel
(An Amish Mystery)

2nd in Series
Cozy Mystery
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
The Berkley Publishing Group (March 5, 2013)
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Mary Ann Lasher
Cover Design by Sarah Oberrender
Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0425252000
E-Book File Size: 680 KB
ASIN: B0099CUEH4

Assaulted Pretzel (An Amish Mystery, #2)

Claire Weatherly found the simple life she always wanted when she opened a gift shop in Heavenly, Pennsylvania—a small town in the heart of Amish country.

It is time for the Amish Food Festival and Sleep Heavenly has some very special guests. Rob and Ann Karble have come to town not just enjoy the delightful Amish food creations but to add their own excitement to the quiet little town. Rob is the president of Karble Toys and he has plans to add a line of toys designed and created by the Amish. Daniel Lapp and Issac Schrock have been making toys and selling them through a catalog and out of their shop to tourists so this news means they will be able to employ more Amish as their sales catapult.

Then a memo is passed around at the festival from Karble Toys. It states the new line will no longer be made in Heavenly but at one of their factories. This drives someone to commit murder. Rob Karble has been sent to his final reward. No one wants to believe anyone from the Amish community would kill someone but Detective Fisher and Claire have learned the no one is above sin or suspicion. They need to track down the killer before anyone else becomes heaven bound.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Amazing! Laura Bradford in an amazing author!

Heavenly, Pennsylvania is right in the heart of an Amish Community. Tourists come to the little town for a glimpse of their simpler way of life and stop into the shops along Lighted Way owned by both English and Amish residents.

Clare Weatherly has come to Heavenly to get away from the rushed life she was living and a man she realized was completely wrong for her. She has opened up Heavenly Treasures where she sells items crafted by her Amish neighbors. She has quickly made herself at home in Heavenly.

Bradford blends a clever mystery with a little romance to captivate cozy readers. There are two men that make Clare “tingle” but one is totally off limits and the other has his mind on other things, like solving a murder.

Fantastic characters, a delightful setting, and a whodunit that will keep you guessing until the very end. The first book in this series, Hearse and Buggy, was one of my favorite cozies in 2012 and this one is even better. Both books are Heavenly Treasures and get my highest recommendation. I can’t wait for the next installment of this wonderful series!

a perfect escape 5 STARFISH 5 STARFISH

Dollycas
Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

To Find Out More About Laura And Her Books Visit Her Webpage Here.

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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Posted in Cozy Wednesday Giveaways Guest Posts Reviews 2012

Cozy Wednesday With Laura Bradford (Giveaway too!)

Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!

Today’s guest is one of my favorite authors! She creates rich characters and friendships in her stories that draw you in and make you care for each of them. She is a truly gifted writer and I am so excited to welcome her here today. The first book in her new Amish Mystery series was released yesterday. Hearse and Buggy is an awesome story. She is here to give us a little insight on how the new series was born. Ruth from the Shoo Fly Bake Shoppe in Heavenly, Pennsylvania has sent us some virtual sweets to eat, so relax, help yourself and help me welcome Laura Bradford.

Welcome Laura!!

Thanks Lori! Hi Everyone!

For as far back as I can remember, I’ve always loved the smell of all things new—new cars, the first few drops of a spring rain, new erasers, new babies…

If I stop and think about it though, it’s not the smell of new that appeals to me as much as the new beginning part…

New car = new places to travel.

First few drops of a spring rain = new flowers to smell and new puddles to splash in.

New erasers = fixing mistakes that come from having the courage to try.

New babies = vast potential and the comfort of hope.

So I guess it’s really no surprise that I’ve been beside myself with excitement over the launch of my brand new endeavor, the Amish Mysteries. Hearse and Buggy, the first title in the series, released this week and I couldn’t be any happier.

Fantastic Cover!

As a little girl, I remember being fascinated by the rare sighting of an Amish child—their clothes, their shoes, their life so different that mine. But unlike the momentary gawking you’d expect from most kids when faced with someone or something so different than their norm, my fascination was one I was eager to explore. Why did they wear those hats? Why didn’t they wear a pretty necklace? I mean, they look just like us, but they dress, they behave, they live so differently.

Little did I know, at that time, that one day I’d not only be in a position to find those answers, but also live that life…at least by way of my writing.

My work on the Amish Mysteries allows me both opportunities.

Two different times over the past year, I’ve traveled down to Lancaster County, Pennsylvania to learn everything I can about the old world Amish in that area. I’ve toured homes, read books, observed their comings and goings, and listened as those far more knowledgeable than me share their wisdom. Along the way, I’ve learned a lot. And I want to learn more.

My series’ protagonist, Claire Weatherly, enables me to live alongside the Amish just as she does—learning their ways, and drawing them close as I do.

I’ve been excited about every book I’ve ever written for one reason or another—a particular plot, a favorite character, a picturesque setting. But Hearse and Buggy (and all of the Amish Mysteries) have jettisoned that first-book excitement into a different stratosphere altogether.

I love the world I’ve created inside Heavenly, PA. I want to work in Claire’s gift shop. I want to be nearby when she and her Amish employee, Esther, are talking. I want to catch my breath along with Claire when Detective Jakob Fisher (former Amish) and his long ago childhood friend, Benjamin Miller, walk by. I want to try Ruth Miller’s Shoo Fly Pie.

And I want to see where these characters take me—and my readers—in the books to come.

I hope you’ll take the journey with me.

~Laura

About This Author
Laura Bradford is the author of the new Amish Mysteries (Berkley/Penguin). Hearse and Buggy, the first book in the series, is now available. For more information about Laura (and her work on this series as well as the Southern Sewing Circle Mysteries as Elizabeth Lynn Casey), visit her website:  www.laurabradford.com. There, you can read chapter one of  Hearse and Buggy and stay apprised of Laura’s events and all news pertinent to the series (including some fun Amish facts on the “extras” page).

2012 best new cozy series

Hearse and Buggy
(An Amish Mystery)

Brand New Series
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
Published by The Penguin Group
Cover Illustration by Mary Ann Lasher
Cover Design by Sarah Oberrender

Hearse and Buggy

 

Heavenly, Pennsylvania has become home to Claire Weatherly. She lives with her aunt Diane who runs Sleep Heavenly Bed & Breakfast. She has left behind her old life in Manhattan and find herself the owner of Heavenly Treasures on Lighted Way where she sells Amish crafted items.  Her store is right next to the Shoo Fly Bake Shoppe where Ruth Miller bakes up and sells her tasty treats.

Ruth is a Amish woman with two very protective brothers, Eli and Benjamin. They try to keep a close eye on both her and her business and they are very upset when she seems to be the target of someone doing their best to frighten her by leaving notes and breaking milk bottles on her porch.

The town is shocked when the former owner of Claire’s shop is found murdered in the alley between the two stores. He was not liked by many and had been accused cheating the Amish artists who consigned their works with him to sell. The accusation was made loudly and heard by many. The accuser was none other than Ruth’s brother Eli.

The detective on the case is Jakob Fisher. Jakob was brought up Amish and after his Rumspringa returned and was baptized.  Then he decided her really wanted to work in law enforcement so he left his Amish roots behind. Because he was baptized and then left he was shunned by his family. The family that is part of the Heavenly Amish Community. He hits several roadblocks as he tries to investigate the murder because the Amish won’t talk to him. Clare has made friends with many in the Amish Community and offers to be his go-between.

The peaceful town of Heavenly is not very peaceful as Clare finds out much more than she wanted about her neighbors. There is much more going on here than just a few bottles of spilled milk and she is determined to get to the bottom of it!

Dollycas’s Thoughts
Laura Bradford is an amazing author! She has created captivating characters in an unique setting that I just know you will love. The Simple Life of the Amish is fascinating to many as we wonder how these people who look just like us live the way we do. Laura is giving us a chance to see how the Amish and the English live and work side by side.

Clare has a young Amish woman working for her and she sells the treasures crafted by her Amish neighbors. The Amish have shops up and down the way. Lighted Way connects the two ways of life. Tourists come to Heavenly to learn about the Amish culture and purchased their goods. Heavenly, Pennsylvania sounds like a little slice of heaven, well except for the dead body and a bit of vandalism.  

A wonderful complex mystery with a variety of suspects!!

The author has also laid the groundwork for a little romance. The men that send tingles through Claire and Esther has a crush. 

We also need to see what happens between Jakob and his family. Sixteen years have past and there is a great divide.

Think is now my favorite cozy so far this year! If you love cozies like I do you will love this book and like me you will eagerly waiting for the next book in the Amish Mystery Series as soon as you finish this one. Hearse and Buggy is a Heavenly Treasure!!!


Dollycas
Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Thanks to the people at Berkley Prime Crime
I have 2 copies to giveaway!!

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

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

Leave a comment for Laura for 5 Bonus Entries !

If you publicize the giveaway anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End June 20, 2012 at 11:59 PM CST
Winners Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winners Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here.

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.”