Posted in Reviews

Review for Wrong Place, Wrong Time by Gillian McAllister

*Note: This book was an advanced reader’s copy from Net Galley. It was published on August 2, 2022, and is available for order on Amazon at


Jen is a mama bear. She lives to protect her son, Todd. So when she witnesses him killing a strange man, she rightly freaks. But when she wakes up a day before it happens, she freaks even more. With a spin on Ground Hog’s Day, she continues to go back in time a day, several days, a month, even a year. It all seems to be random until she consults with a friend who has studied time travel and comes to the conclusion that the days she’s visiting aren’t random at all. They’re connected to the event she witnessed of her son killing a man named Joseph Jones. But where are they leading her, and what must she learn from this strange experience?

As Jen travels back in time, she learns more about her son, husband, and the man called Joseph Jones. More importantly, she faces her fears of not having been the best mother to Todd which believes has resulted in his becoming a killer. She also discovers some things about her husband that make her question their entire relationship.

Without giving spoilers, I have to say that the twists in this book were well done, even though I guessed two out of three. This was more than a time-travel story. It was a relationship and family story. Do you ever wonder what you’ve missed over the years that you would see differently if viewing them from your current perspective? There are some great points made here. You will find this book hard to put down.

Posted in Reviews

Review for A Dark and Stormy Tea, A Tea Shop Mystery by Laura Childs

*Note: This book was an advanced reader’s copy from Net Galley. It was published on August 9, 2022, and is available for order on Amazon at


This is the first mystery I’ve read by Laura Childs, and I can’t believe what I’ve missed. She has several series. This one, the Tea Shop Mysteries, takes place in Charleston, South Carolina and features Theodosia Browning who owns the Indigo Tea Shop and has a knack for solving crimes as well as brewing tea.

In A Dark and Stormy Tea, the 24th Tea Shop Mystery, Theodosia witnesses the murder of a bookstore owner’s daughter in a cemetery but, because of the rain, she was unable to see the face of the killer. Could he be Fogheel Jack, the name given to a murderer who has strangled women in the past in foggy weather?

The victim’s mother, a friend of Theodosia, asks for her help catching the killer. Against her Detective boyfriend’s wishes and despite her tea sommelier, Drayton’s discouragement, she pursues her own investigation and is nearly killed after a successful mystery tea at her shop.

I found this a charming cozy. The characters and atmosphere were great, and there was an interesting twist. A big plus are the recipes at the end of the book for tea and other yummy goodies. You will devour this story. Highly recommended.

Posted in Blog Tour, Cozy Mystery, Spotlight

Spotlight and Blog Tour for Inheriting Murder: the first Bobwhite Mountain Cozy Mystery by Jamie Rutland Gillespie

Inheriting Murder: A Bobwhite Mountain Cozy Mystery
by Jamie Rutland Gillespie

About Inheriting Murder

Inheriting Murder: A Bobwhite Mountain Cozy Mystery
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Tennessee
Independently Published (May 1, 2022)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 287 pages
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 979-8814800398
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09Z9889D4

When Landry Burke’s favorite Aunt Tildie passes away, Landry inherits the entire estate. It includes a five story apartment building named Magnolia Place, as well as a bookstore across the street named Jasmine Bloom Books, both located in Bobwhite Mountain, Tennessee.

Landry packs up and leaves Bent Branch, SC for the hills of Tennessee. On her very first day there, she and her aunt’s attorney, Adam Wilcox, find the body of one of Magnolia Place’s employees. Between her panic attacks, anxiety and trying to adjust to her new surroundings, Landry wants this murder solved and fast.

Sheriff Wyatt Collins and his deputies are on the case. Now, if they can just keep Landry from trying to help and causing danger to herself.

And Jasmine Bloom’s manager, and late Aunt Tildie’s best friend, Ms. Millie, is convinced that Landry is trying to get her killed because of all the zany situations they find themselves in.

Take a visit to Bobwhite Mountain and find out what all of the fuss is about.

About Jamie Rutland Gillespie

Jamie Rutland Gillespie was born and raised in a tiny, country town in South Carolina. At the age of 18, she moved to a slightly larger town in the same state and still lives there. She spent much of her youth visiting the beaches of the low country and taking trips to the mountains of North Carolina and Tennessee. The mountains were always her “happy place” and she still visits every chance she gets.

Jamie has always loved to read; she got her library card at the small library of her hometown at the young age of 6. She has a vivid imagination and has always made-up stories of places, people and situations that only exist in her head.

She currently lives in South Carolina with her husband, daughter and 17-year-old Yorkie Pom, who is her baby and shadow. She loves college football and has been a South Carolina Gamecock fan since birth. She also loves MLB and has been a Braves fan since she was a little girl, watching the games and going to games with her Dad. She is still an avid reader and enjoys writing, crossword puzzles, baking, and spending time with her family.

Author Links


Purchase Link – Amazon


August 1 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

August 1 – Christa Reads and Writes – SPOTLIGHT

August 2 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW

August 2 – Lady Hawkeye – SPOTLIGHT


August 3 – I Read What You Write – SPOTLIGHT

August 4 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – RECIPE POST

August 4 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

August 5 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

August 5 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

August 6 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

August 7 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

August 8 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

August 8 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

August 9 – Novels Alive – RECIPE POST

August 10 – Novels Alive – REVIEW

August 10 – Hearts & Scribbles – SPOTLIGHT

August 11 – Baroness Book Trove – SPOTLIGHT

August 12 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

August 13 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW

August 13 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

August 14 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT

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Spotlight and Blog Tour for A Killing in Costumes, the first Hollywood Treasures Cozy Mystery by Zac Bissonnette

A Killing in Costumes (A Hollywood Treasures Mystery)
by Zac Bissonnette

About A Killing in Costumes

A Killing in Costumes (A Hollywood Treasures Mystery)
Cozy Mystery – LBGT
1st in Series
Setting – California
Crooked Lane Books (August 9, 2022)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 320 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1639100865
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1639100866
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09LH99ZCM

Stardom fades fast when you’re on the line for murder, in this debut cozy mystery perfect for fans of Richard Osman and Jenn McKinlay.

Jay Allan and Cindy Cooper were soap opera stars in the late ’90s, a wholesome young husband-and-wife duo who combined musical talent with humor and charisma. When the truth about their sexual orientations came to light, their marriage and TV careers ended, but decades later they have remained friends. Together, they open Palm Springs’ chicest movie memorabilia store, Hooray for Hollywood–but no customers and dwindling finances spell trouble.

A Hail Mary arrives in the form of Yana Tosh, a ninety-year-old diva of the silver screen who has amassed a valuable collection of costumes and props and is looking to sell. But first, Jay and Cindy have to beat their competition, a vice president from a mega-auction house with ten times their resources. And when he winds up dead, they become prime suspects in the murder.

With their freedom and livelihoods on the line, Jay and Cindy desperately need to clear their names. There are plenty of other potential suspects, but they’ll have to solve it soon before they’re forced to trade in their vintage costume collection for two orange jumpsuits.

About Zac Bissonnette

Zac Bissonnette is the New York Times bestselling author of several nonfiction books, including The Great Beanie Baby Bubble: Mass Delusion and the Dark Side of Cute.

His favorite singer is Perry Como. His favorite author is Agatha Christie. His favorite tea is Harney & Sons Hot Cinnamon Spice.

Author Links – WebsiteTwitterBookBubGoodReads

Purchase Links – AmazonB&NKoboGoogle PlayIndieBound


August 3 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

August 3 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

August 3 – I Read What You Write – SPOTLIGHT


August 4 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

August 5 – The Editing Pen – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

August 5 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

August 6 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW

August 6 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

August 7 – Lady Hawkeye – SPOTLIGHT

August 7 – Books Blog – SPOTLIGHT

August 8 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

August 8 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW

August 9 – Literary Gold – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

August 9 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

August 10 – Ascroft, eh? – GUEST POST

August 10 – Novels Alive – REVIEW

August 10 – Novels Alive – SPOTLIGHT

August 11 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT

August 12 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

August 12 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT

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Posted in Blog Tour, Romantic Suspense, Spotlight

Spotlight and Blog Tour for Shielding Her Son, a West Investigations Romantic Suspense Novel by K.D. Richards

Shielding Her Son (West Investigations)
by K.D. Richards

About Shielding Her Son

Shielding Her Son (West Investigations)
Romantic Suspense
4th in Series
Harlequin Intrigue (July 26, 2022)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 256 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1335582088
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1335582089
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09N1PY2PH

She thought she’d escaped her past…

Has it caught up with her?

Erika Powell has lived in hiding for years to protect her son from his wealthy, tyrannical grandfather. Wary of strangers, she’s suspicious of James West, who’s renting a neighboring cabin, despite their sizzling chemistry. But when attempts are made on Erika’s life, James fears he may have endangered her—because the undercover PI’s investigation of Erika may have led someone dangerous right to her.

From Harlequin Intrigue: Seek thrills. Solve crimes. Justice served.

Discover more action-packed stories in the West Investigations series. All books are stand-alone with uplifting endings but were published in the following order:

Book 1: Pursuit of the Truth
Book 2: Missing at Christmas
Book 3: Christmas Data Breach
Book 4: Shielding Her Son

About K.D. Richards

K.D. Richards was born and raised in the Maryland suburbs just outside of Washington, D.C. A writer since a young age, after college Kia earned a law degree and worked as an attorney and legal instructor for fifteen years but never stopped writing fiction. She currently splits her time between Toronto and Maryland with her husband and two sons.

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July 25 – The Mystery of Writing – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

July 25 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

July 25 – fundinmental – SPOTLIGHT

July 26 – Read Your Writes Book Reviews – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

July 26 – My Journey Back – SPOTLIGHT

July 26 – Novels Alive – SPOTLIGHT

July 26 – Novels Alive – REVIEW

July 27 – The Book Diva’s Reads – SPOTLIGHT

July 27 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW

July 27 – Lady Hawkeye – SPOTLIGHT

July 27 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 28 – Hearts & Scribbles – SPOTLIGHT

July 28 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

July 28 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 29 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

July 29 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

July 29 – Baroness Book Trove – SPOTLIGHT

July 30 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 30 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – AUTHOR INTERVIEW


July 31 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 31 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

July 31 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

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Posted in Blog Tour, Interview

Interview with Author Mary Keliikoa and Blog Tour for Deceived, her new Kelly Pruett Mystery

It’s my pleasure to welcome Mary Keliikoa to Ruff Drafts. Mary is the author of Deceived, the third Kelly Pruett Mystery. She hails from Ridgefield, Washington.

Hi, Mary. How long have you been published? What titles and/or series have you published and with which publisher? Please give details.

My first publication was in 1996 with a short mystery that appeared in Woman’s World. In 2021, Untreed Reads published my short story as part of an anthology Peace, Love, Crime: Crime Fiction Inspired by Songs of the Sixties.

As far as novel length, I debuted in 2020 at Camel Press with DERAILED, the first book in the Kelly Pruett mystery series. I followed up with DENIED in 2021 and DECEIVED came out on May 10, 2022.

Great! Please tell us a little bit about your books.

My current series features a PI who is a single mom to a deaf daughter, and who has inherited her father’s detective agency. She also lives next door to her ex-mother-in-law and is co-parenting with her ex-husband. So you can imagine there’s all kinds of conflict that can arise from that! The series starts with her first case shortly after her dad’s death and as she goes through a stiff learning curve, she improves as an investigator and a mom throughout the books.

I also have a new series beginning October 25, 2022, with Level Best Books that I’m quite excited about! HIDDEN PIECES is set at the Oregon coast and straddles psychological suspense and mystery. It features a former Portland homicide detective turned small town sheriff. Jax Turner has been struggling to function after the death of his daughter from cancer and his marriage, but the case of a missing teenage girl brings him back to life. And when he finds ties to a 25-year-old cold case, he seeks redemption vowing to get it right this time. 

Good news. I just started a new series myself. I’ve heard nice things about Level Best Books. One day, I may consider querying them. Both of my series are with Indie publishers. I assume Level Best Books is traditional publisher and require an agent. I’m still looking for one.

Describe your goals as a writer. What do you hope to achieve in the next few years? What are you planning to do to reach these goals?

Continuing to write of course is priority one! My agent has a stand-alone domestic suspense that she’s pitching, and I’m busy working on edits for Jax Turner’s Book 2 (Deadly Tides) and a new stand-alone domestic suspense! My goal long term is really to just continue to write and to publish. And hope to continuously grow my audience as I do that.

But I also want to continue to improve my craft. I regularly attend conference workshops, read books, and attend classes. I also seek out experienced writers who edit my work. It’s fun to learn in the classroom, but nothing beats getting words on the page and having them critiqued to know if it’s sinking in.

Excellent goals. I have similar ones. I also enjoy alternating my cozy mysteries with standalone psychological mysteries. I like writing and reading both of those types of books.

What type of reader are you hoping to attract?  Who do you believe would be most interested in reading your books?

Mystery and suspense lovers, of course! But also people who gravitate to character driven novels versus plot only. I believe my novels in general have broad appeal. They aren’t too graphic, and I really work to create worlds where people are relatable, and justice is served in the end.

You should have a nice-sized audience. I also feel that characters are as important as plots in books.

What advice would you give other authors or those still trying to get published?

Find your tribe and continue to improve on your craft. Both are so important during the process. There are days when the story doesn’t flow, or the plot isn’t working, and it’s wonderful to have writing friends to reach out to. They get you on a level that no one else can. Of course, always improving as a writer is key, but don’t let the amount of classes and books distract you from doing the actual writing. And whatever you do, don’t give up! It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Every day you dedicate to your passion, is a day well spent.

That sounds like great advice.

What particular challenges and struggles did you face before first becoming published?

Just that overwhelming feeling that it was never going to be good enough. I had over 100 rejections on my first Kelly Pruett novel, DERAILED, before I got an agent. And then a year after that to get the book deal. But then it went on to receive 4 nominations for best debut.

You really have to shut down the naysayers and keep writing—keep editing—keep believing. I won’t say it was easy. I had dark days, but I also tried to put it into perspective. I have a very full productive life with a wonderful husband and family, and so I focused on the one thing I could control in the process—writing.

It’s true that persistence pays off. I know there’s at least one of my books that I should’ve queried further to agents because I don’t think I sent out even a quarter as many as you did before you landed one, but I’m glad that I can keep writing and publishing.

Do you belong to any writing groups? Which ones?

I do—I think community is so important and you definitely find that in writing groups. I’m the VP of my local Sisters in Crime chapter. I’m also an active member of Mystery Writers of America, Private Eye Writers of America, and Willamette Writers.

I’m also a Sisters-in-Crime member. Although I don’t have a local chapter, I belong to others that I can attend virtually. I’m considering joining Mystery Writers of America. Even though my publishers aren’t recognized by them, I could probably join as an Associate Member because I’m also a librarian. I’ve never heard of Private Eye Writers of America but will check them out.

What are your hobbies and interests besides writing?

Of course, I’m an avid reader. Mystery and suspense are my main genres, but I also enjoy some Women’s Fiction, and an occasional fantasy or Sci-fi as well. In addition, I love to travel. I recently purchased a map of the world so I could keep track of all the places I’ve been, and where I want to go. And the list is long! I also love to golf, take cooking and baking classes, and spend time with my family. With 10 grandchildren, there’s never a dull moment.

Ten grandchildren, wow! The only grandkids I have are my two grandcats who belong to my seventeen-year-old daughter. We have similar reading interests. I like to try different authors, both well-known and lesser known. I also like to travel, but I’m still working full-time and worry about finding someone to catsit my cats if I go away with my husband and daughter.

What do you like most and least about being an author? What is your toughest challenge?

I love connecting with readers and talking story in general. That is my favorite part hands down. The toughest challenge for me is marketing my work. I’m not alone in this, I know. Us introverts and authors are happiest behind the keyboard, creating in our own little worlds. But sometimes we have to come out and say – hey – maybe check out my book? And that’s just not a natural thing for me.

I agree completely about the challenge of marketing and promoting. I also love connecting with readers. It’s always a thrill to hear from people all over the country through email or Facebook who are reading my books.

What do you like about writing cozy mysteries?

I love the community, the family feeling, and the lack of violence on the page. I think you can tune into the nightly news for that, and I like to write stories that focus in on solving of the crime, and the relationships, versus the graphic imagery of a crime.

I agree completely. I also like writing cozies because, as the series continues, the characters develop and almost become like friends, whether you’re reading or writing about them.

Can you share a short excerpt from your latest title or upcoming release?

You can actually go to my website here and read the first chapter of DECEIVED!

 Thanks. I’ll check it out, and I hope my readers will, too.

Is there anything else you’d like our readers to know about you or your books?

Only that I think they’re a fun read. I really work to marry plot with character and create characters that are both relatable and those to be rooted for. I also like to say I make sure justice is served in the end, and I think readers can trust that will always be the case.

Nice. Thank you so much for the interview. Please list your social media links, website, blog, etc. I’ll also be sharing your blog tour for Deceived. I wish you the best on your new release and upcoming books.






Deceived (A Kelly Pruett Mystery)
by Mary Keliikoa

About Deceived

Deceived (A Kelly Pruett Mystery)
Cozy Mystery – Woman Sleuths
3rd in Series
Setting – Oregon
Camel Press (May 10, 2022)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 218 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1603818650
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1603818650
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09Q7SG18K

In the third thrilling book in the Kelly Pruett mystery series–Her world was falling into place. Then women started dropping off the map.

PI Kelly Pruett finally feels like she’s coming into her own. With her personal life well on track, a gig uncovering what drove a client’s granddaughter underground could be good for business. But after her undercover operation at the homeless shelter reveals rampant drug dealing, she’s suddenly kicked off the case… just as another girl goes missing.

Vowing to expose the truth even if it means pro-bono work, Kelly is taken aback when her half-sister helps her hunt down answers in a tent city brimming with distrust. When her investigation doesn’t move quickly enough to save a second woman from a vicious murder, Kelly doubles her efforts unwilling to accept defeat.

About Mary Keliikoa

Mary Keliikoa is the Shamus finalist and Lefty, Agatha and Anthony nominated author of the PI Kelly Pruett mystery series, and the Misty Pines mystery series featuring former Portland homicide detective turned small-town sheriff. Her short stories have appeared in Woman’s World and in the anthology Peace, Love and Crime.

A Pacific NW native, she spent years working around lawyers and admits to being that person who gets excited when called for jury duty. When not in Washington, you can find Mary on the beach in Hawaii. But even under the palm trees and blazing sun, she’s plotting her next murder—novel that is.

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July 20 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

July 20 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW

July 21 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

July 21 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – REVIEW

July 22 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

July 22 – Baroness Book Trove – SPOTLIGHT

July 23 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

July 23 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW

July 24 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

July 25 – Literary Gold – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

July 25 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – REVIEW

July 26 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW


July 27 – I Read What You Write – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

July 28 – Mysteries with Character – REVIEW

July 29 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 29 – fundinmental – SPOTLIGHT

July 30 – Ruff Drafts – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

July 30 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 31 – ebook addicts – REVIEW

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Posted in Blog Tour, Guest Post

Blog Tour and Guest Post for Fragrance of Death, A Sally Solari Mystery by Leslie Karst

The Fragrance of Death (A Sally Solari Mystery)
by Leslie Karst

About The Fragrance of Death

The Fragrance of Death (A Sally Solari Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Setting – California
Severn House; Main edition (August 2, 2022)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 224 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1448309034
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1448309030
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09V878YNB

Restaurateur Sally Solari has a nose for trouble, but when her sense of smell goes missing, it’s not just her career on the line . . . it’s her life.

Restaurateur Sally Solari is a champion, both in the kitchen and on the case, but after getting mixed up in one too many murders, she’s noticed her nonna’s friends have now taken to crossing themselves when they see her in the street. Adding to her woes, a sinus infection has knocked out her sense of smell, making cooking on the hot line difficult, indeed. Nevertheless, Sally is determined to stay out of trouble and focus on her work.

But then her old acquaintance Neil Lerici is murdered at the annual Santa Cruz Artichoke Cook-Off, and her powers of investigation are called into action once more. Could Neil have been killed by the local restaurant owner who took his winning spot at the competition? Or maybe by one of his siblings, who were desperate to sell the family farm to a real estate developer?

Sally plunges headfirst into the case, risking alienating everyone she knows – including the dapper Detective Vargas, who finds her sleuthing both infuriating and endearing. And soon it’s not only her restaurant and tentative new relationship that are on the line – it’s her life . . .

The Fragrance of Death is a non-stop fun cozy mystery that will keep your mind buzzing and your mouth watering, and contains a selection of delicious recipes to cook at home.

Guest Post: Stop and Smell the Coffee—If You Can

The Fragrance of Death, the brand new book in my Sally Solari culinary mystery series, opens with a horror story. Or at least that’s how it feels to Sally, who wakes up on page one to discover she’s completely lost her sense of smell. And I mean completely: not even the stink of a thousand cloves of garlic would be enough to set her olfactory nerves alight.

Since Sally is the owner and sous chef at Gauguin, a trendy French-Polynesian eatery in Santa Cruz, California, having no sense of smell—which translates to having no sense of taste, either—spells disaster for her as a restaurateur. Not to mention as a human being, because there’s nothing she loves more than the flavor of a roast chicken scented with tarragon and butter, or the fragrance of a vine-ripened peach served atop a dollop of raspberry-spiked crème fraîche.

And to make matters even worse, this is the day she’s competing in the annual artichoke cook-off—at which she’d vowed to best her beloved but highly competitive father, who owns Solari’s, a traditional Italian seafood place out on the town’s historic fisherman’s wharf. How on earth can Sally be expected to prepare Artichoke Salad with Lemon Aïoli for two hundred people with no ability to smell or taste a thing?

You may suspect that this plot device is based on the plight of the myriad people who lost their sense of smell as a result of Covid. But no. It was actually inspired by personal experience, something completely unrelated to the pandemic. For I suffered through my own horror story when, some years back, after having a particularly vicious sinus infection, I thought I’d recovered—only to wake up one morning unable to smell a thing.

It’s an exceedingly bizarre experience to brew your morning pot of coffee and then suddenly realize you can’t detect any aroma whatsoever from those beans you’re grinding. And then to bite into the half a hamburger you’ve reheated for breakfast and have your tastebuds register nothing whatsoever—even after you douse the thing with a tablespoon of of Sriracha sauce. (Which is exactly what happened to me that dire morning.)

And then to have my ENT inform me that my sense of smell may never ever return? That it all depended on whether or not the nerves regenerated on their own? Horror of horrors!

I almost balked at throwing such a horrendous experience at my protagonist. After four books, I’d grown quite fond of her, and it seemed somehow, well…mean to saddle her with such a plight. But it is a murder mystery, after all, so I figured she could take it. Sally is a tough gal.

And, after all, my sense of smell did thank goodness eventually return—though not for six long, miserable and excruciating weeks. But you’ll just have to read the book to see what happens with Sally….

About Leslie Karst

Leslie Karst is the author of the Lefty Award-nominated Sally Solari culinary mystery series. The daughter of a law professor and a potter, she waited tables and sang in a new wave rock band before deciding she was ready for “real” job and ending up at Stanford Law School. It was during her career as a research and appellate attorney in Santa Cruz, California, that Leslie rediscovered her youthful passion for food and cooking and once more returned to school—this time to earn a degree in culinary arts.

Now retired from the law, Leslie spends her time cooking, cycling, gardening, singing alto in her local community chorus, and of course writing. She and her wife and their Jack Russell mix split their time between Santa Cruz and Hilo, Hawai‘i.

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July 28 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT

July 28 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

July 29 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

July 29 – Ruff Drafts – GUEST POST

July 30 – Lady Hawkeye – SPOTLIGHT

July 30 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT


July 31 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

July 31 – I Read What You Write – REVIEW

August 1 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

August 1 – Novels Alive – RECIPE POST

August 2 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

August 2 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

August 2 – Diane Reviews Books – SPOTLIGHT

August 3 – fundinmental – SPOTLIGHT

August 3 – Island Confidential – REVIEW, GUEST POST

August 4 – The Mystery Section – SPOTLIGHT

August 4 – Baroness Book Trove – SPOTLIGHT

August 5 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

August 5 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

August 6 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT

August 6 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

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Posted in Blog Tour, Interview

A Conversation with Author Debbie De Louise

Check out my author interview on I Read What You Write. It’s part of the blog tour for my new cozy mystery, Sneaky’s Supernatural Mystery and Other Cobble Cove Stories.



I Read What You Write!

Giveaway Ends 7/25

What does it mean to you to be called an author?

It’s a title I’ve wanted all my life. As a child, I admired authors. I wanted to be one. It was a dream of mine that came true.

Can you tell us a bit about the story and its main characters?

This is a collection of five short stories featuring the characters from the Cobble Cove cozy mystery series. Four of the stories were previously published as eBooks only. The title story is a new story. Each story features a note about it. One of the stories, “Sneaky’s Christmas Mystery” won the highest award from the Cat Writers’ Association.

What was the most surprising thing you learned in writing this book?

Although it helped to have read the five Cobble Cove books, it isn’t necessary to understand the five stories in the collection. Most of them…

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Posted in Blog Tour

Blog Tour and Takeover Reminder

I want to remind everyone that my new cozy mystery short story collection, Sneaky’s Supernatural Mystery and Other Cobble Cove Stories, will be on tour with Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours from Monday, July 18 to July 25. There will be excerpts, guest posts, spotlights, and a giveaway. Follow the tour on the following blogs or directly from the tour page:

July 18 – Maureen’s Musings – REVIEW

July 18 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

July 19 – Cozy Up With Kathy – CHARACTER GUEST POST

July 19 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT WITH EXCERPT

July 20 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT WITH EXCERPT

July 20 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – GUEST POST

July 21 – I Read What You Write – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

July 21 – Baroness Book Trove – SPOTLIGHT

July 22 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

July 22 – Nellie’s Book Nook – REVIEW

July 23 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT


July 24 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

July 25 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT I’ll be doing another takeover for the Cozy Mystery Party Facebook group on Saturday, July 23, at 11 a.m. There’ll be contests and giveaways. Everyone is invited. Join the party on the Cozy Mystery Party Facebook Page:

I’m also hard at work on the next Buttercup Bend cozy mystery, The Case of the Parrot-Loving Professor. Have you had a chance to get your copy of the first one, The Case of the Cat Crazy Lady?

Posted in Guest Post, Spotlight

Guest Post and Spotlight for The Dead Betray None (A Viscount Ware Mystery) by J.L. Buck

The Dead Betray None (A Viscount Ware Mystery)

Genre: Historical (Regency) Mystery

Author: JL Buck

An aristocratic spy and a highborn lady cross paths over a dead body.

1811 England seethes with discontent. A self-indulgent prince regent sits on the throne of a country at war with France, on the brink of war with America, and facing growing rebellion at home.

Lucien, Viscount Ware, recently home after four years on the Continent as a spy for England, finds life in the haute ton tedious. He secretly agrees to handle a few delicate matters for the Crown’s private spy unit at Whitehall. A housebreaking at a country houseparty seems a strange assignment until he discovers that a French cipher, the key to Napoleon’s war codes, was among the stolen items. As he follows its trail to London’s notorious rookeries and into its glittering ballrooms, he faces a growing threat of treachery from more than one direction.

Lady Anne Ashburn missed her London season while caring for her invalid mother in the north country. A new nurse allows her to visit relatives, where she becomes embroiled in a blackmail plot. To avoid a terrible scandal, she goes to London to face down the scoundrel threatening her family.

The night of the elegant Christmastide Ball, Lucien finds Lady Anne standing over a corpse. What happens after that—the risks they take, the intrusion of a notorious crime lord, society gossip, and good intentions gone awry—sends them spiraling into danger and potential disaster for England’s war effort.

An ever-twisting plot sure to keep you turning the pages.

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GUEST POST; Anything for a Bet!

One of the enjoyable things about writing historical fiction is the interesting tidbits of history you discover during research. One such item was the cricket match at Ball Pond in October 1811.

The Regency period in England was gambling mad. Some men—and women—would bet on anything from the outcome of a sporting event to whether a courtship would last or how long it would take a snake to cross the road.

On this particular occasion—defying society’s belief at the time that women were too delicate for sports—a 500 guinea bet (approx. $17,000 in today’s market) led to the first recorded match of two all-women cricket teams. The match between Hampshire and Surrey counties lasted three days with Hampshire finally winning by fifteen notches. Referred to as a “bawdy” event (see a sketch of the match for sale), the gentlemen organizers immediately arranged for a rematch!

About the Author:

J L Buck began writing full-time after she retired from a legal career with the Juvenile Court System. Over the next few years, she published sixteen urban fantasy/paranormal novels under the pen name of Ally Shields. In 2019, she decided to fulfill a childhood wish to write mysteries, chose a period in history that fascinated her—and began work on the Viscount Ware Mystery series set in Regency England.

Ms. Buck lives in the Midwest with Latte, a mischievous Siamese cat, who attempts to co-author her writing by taking over the keyboard. When not writing or running two blogs, J L Buck enjoys her eight grandchildren (and a great-grandson), reading (preferably on a sunny deck), travel (USA and abroad), and binge-watching any sub-genre of mystery shows.

She can be contacted through her website, her Ally Shields fantasy website, or other social media


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