Posted in Cozy Mystery

Spotlight, Blog Tour, and Giveaway for Old Friends and New, Another Murder, A Sheridan Hendley Mystery by Christa Nardi

Old Friends and New, Another Murder
(Sheridan Hendley Mystery)
by Christa Nardi

About Old Friends and New, Another Murder


Old Friends and New, Another Murder (Sheridan Hendley Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Independently published (December 12, 2019)
Paperback: 206 pages
ISBN-10: 1670487709
ISBN-13: 978-1670487704
Digital ASIN: B08276QVPR

A touch of nostalgia, a murder, and good friends.

When a former colleague is implicated in his neighbor’s demise, Sheridan Hendley returns to Cold Creek to prove his innocence. Annoying as Max can be, she can’t imagine the quirky professor is capable of murder. Unfortunately, not everyone shares her opinion. Of course, it doesn’t help that Max threatened his neighbor in a public place soon before the man was murdered. Or that the victim’s drug shipments had a habit of turning up on Max’s doorstep.

About Christa Nardi

Christa Nardi is an accomplished writer and an avid reader. Her favorite authors have shifted from Carolyn Keene and Earl Stanley Gardner to more contemporary mystery crime authors over time, but she still loves a good mystery. Christa has authored the Cold Creek Cozy Mystery Series, the spinoff Sheridan Hendley Mystery Series, and the Stacie Maroni Mystery Series. She co-authors the Hannah and Tamar Mystery Series. When not reading or writing, Christa enjoys travel with her husband and playing with three dogs and three grand-daughters.

Author Links:

Amazon – https://amazon.com/author/christanardi

GoodReads – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7257539.Christa_Nardi

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/christa.nardi.5

Twitter – https://twitter.com/ChristaN7777

BookBub – https://www.bookbub.com/authors/christa-nardi

Pinterest – https://www.pinterest.com/cccnardi/

Website – https://cccnardi.wixsite.com/mysite

Purchase Link – Amazon

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April 20 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

April 20 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

April 21 – Cozy Up With Kathy – SPOTLIGHT

April 21 – eBook addicts – SPOTLIGHT

April 21 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

April 22 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW

April 22 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

April 23 – Here’s How It Happened – REVIEW

April 24 – View from the Birdhouse – SPOTLIGHT

April 24 – A Blue Million Books – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

April 25 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – REVIEW

April 25 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

April 26 – fundinmental – SPOTLIGHT

April 27 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

April 28 – T’s Stuff – SPOTLIGHT

April 29 – Baroness’ Book Trove – SPOTLIGHT

April 29 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

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Posted in Bookblast

Book Blast for When It’s Time For Leaving: A Mystery Novel by Ang Pompano, Agatha Nominee for Best First Novel

Book Blast – When It’s Time for Leaving
by Ang Pompano

About When It’s Time For Leaving


When It’s Time for Leaving
Traditional Mystery
1st in Series
Encircle Publications, LLC (October 1, 2019)
Paperback: 274 pages
ISBN-10: 1948338920
ISBN-13: 978-1948338929
Digital ASIN: B07TYQ8PDL

When his girlfriend dumps him and a dealer nearly rams him off a bridge, Al DeSantis quits the New Haven Police Department. Just as he plans to head for LA, he finds out the father who left when he was a kid has deeded him the Blue PalmettoDetective Agency in Georgia.

Al goes down to Savannah intending to sell fast and go west, but before he can, he discovers a strong, attractive detective named Maxine, a dead body on the dock—and his father, alive, suffering from dementia, and determined to help his “new partner Al” solve the crime. Al has a lot of adjusting to do when his traditional ideas are challenged as he has to act as his father’s caretaker, and finds that Maxine is his superior in the agency that he “owns.” When his father goes missing, Al and Max must team up to save his father–and capture the murderer.

Praise

Ang Pompano’s debut novel, WHEN IT’S TIME FOR LEAVING, is a corker. Thoroughly likable former cop, Al DeSantis, wants to get out of the crime business but inherits one that, fortunately for readers, won’t let him go. — Hallie Ephron, New York Times bestselling author CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR

In When It’s Time for Leaving, debut mystery author Ang Pompano has created the most unusual and appealing duo of detectives since Holmes and Watson. —Lucy Burdette, national bestselling author of A DEADLY FEAST

Author Ang Pompano serves up the PI for the double 20s. Al DeSantis is a classic, damaged gumshoe but with a youthful energy that pulls you through the pages. —Barbara Ross, author of the Maine Clambake Mysteries and winner 2019 Maine Literary Award for Crime Fiction

Crime fiction has boasted some famous fathers and sons, from Inspector Richard Queen and his son Ellery to Jim Rockford and his dad Rocky. Add to that list the unforgettable duo of Al DeSantis and Big Al—building on that tradition but with some provocative twists. Ang Pompano’s first novel proves tough-minded and warm-hearted in equal measure. A fine, multi-layered debut.—Art Taylor 2019 Edgar, Anthony, Agatha, Macavity, and Derringer Award winner

When it’s Time for Leaving is a crime thriller that delivers an atmospheric tale packed with action, suspense and some surprising twists. Pompano is a skilled storyteller who offers readers a complex mystery of chases, confrontation and introspection. The tale he weaves is, indeed a well-crafted murder mystery, set in a turbulent sea of emotions and populated with multifaceted characters. ­­­ —James Terry reviewer The Paladin Project

I like mystery/thrillers. This one is heavy on the mystery and very little thriller aspect. It is an enjoyable sometimes snarky read that made me smile. The main characters were so well written I felt like I knew them. The mystery itself was wrapped in mystery as we got to know the individuals and the hidden nuances of small towns. It was almost like watching (albeit reading) a 50/60 movie. I personally wanted the ending to share with everyone who was guilty. Have to leave it there, no spoilers. Thank you for the arc! All thoughts and opinions are my own and were unsolicited. —Cheryl M, Net Galley Reviewer

A really good and surprising mystery. The characters are great and feel like friends. I loved the snarky humor. I will definitely read more by this author. —Leah H, Net Galley Reviewer

Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours Praise

. . . a compelling detective mystery, with a bit of romance and lots of action and suspense. It is very well written, the plot is well intertwined and the pace is flowing.
~LibriAmoriMiei

This was a good mystery, with rough around edges characters . . . I really enjoyed this mystery . . .
~eBook Addicts

Pompano’s flawed detective is fun to watch. He’s tough with the bad guys, but when dealing with his father and the gal next store, he’s totally lost. There are moments of humor; others of sadness.
~Here’s How It Happened

When It’s Time for Leaving by Ang Pompano is a traditional PI mystery that had me intrigued from the first page . . . I enjoyed the mystery and thought it was a good debut novel.
~Brooke Blogs

 

About Ang Pompano

Ang Pompano has been writing mysteries for more than twenty years. His mystery novel, WHEN IT’S TIME FOR LEAVING will be published on October 1, 2019, by Encircle Publications. His short stories have been published in many award-winning anthologies, including the 2019 Malice Domestic Anthology, PARNELL HALL PRESENTS MALICE DOMESTIC: MURDER MOST EDIBLE. His newest story, “Stringer” will appear in SEASCAPE: THE BEST NEW ENGLAND CRIME STORIES 2019. In addition, he has written many academic pieces including one on teaching detective fiction. A member of Mystery Writers of America, he is a past recipient of the Helen McCloy/Mystery Writers of America Scholarship for a novel in progress. He has been on the New England Crime Bake Planning Committee for fourteen years and is a long-time board member of Sisters in Crime New England. He lives in Connecticut with his wife, Annette, an artist, and his two rescue dogs, Quincy and Dexter.

 

Author Links:

Website – http://angpompano.com
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/A.J.Pompano/
Twitter – https://twitter.com/AngPompano
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/angpompano/

Purchase Links

Posted in libraries

National Library Week and Why I’m Proud to be a Librarian


This past weekend, I was asked by the Public Information Director at our library if I’d like to participate in a social media campaign for #NationalLibraryWeek. This campaign involved taking a photo holding a specific word. Each staff member who volunteered received a different word and these words and photos were assembled to create a collage. I thought this was a great idea, and I submitted a photo of me holding the word “for” in front of my black cat, Harry. Two other members featured pets in their photos and two featured one of their kids.


After seeing this wonderful, creative tribute to the faces behind our library, I wanted to get involved in another way to promote National Library Week. I read an email by NYLA (New York Library Association) that offered some suggestions. One of them was for librarians to create and post a video on social media about why they became a librarian. It took some thinking and several attempts before I recorded something suitable with my iPhone. Since I had to keep it short, a maximum of one minute, I couldn’t say all the things I wanted to, so I figured I’d write a blog post that would share the video and also my additional feelings about being a librarian and how proud I am of how my library and others across the country are dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic and finding alternate ways to serve patrons.

My library already offered many online services, but if you check the website, you’ll see that we have ramped these up. As a response to the COVID-19 pandemic that caused us to temporarily close our physical doors to the public, we have opened virtual ones by adding links to information about Coronavirus and our free digital resources that include research databases, downloadable ebooks and audiobooks through Overdrive; downloadable magazines through RB Digital; downloadable movies through Kanopy; online classes through Gale Courses, and more. We have also made it simple for patrons to obtain digital library cards, so they can use our online services. Another new addition is a chat line manned Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. by a reference librarian. As a notary public, I will also soon be offering e-notarizations. Further details will be posted on our website.

Checking our Facebook page, you will find listings of many of our regular programs that are now being offered remotely through Zoom and taught by some of the regular instructors. This page also lists other online resources and articles as well as staff picks book reviews, all of which are available free through Overdrive.

Since I work full-time at the library and am also a Hicksville patron, I’ve been happy to contribute to as well as take advantage of these online offerings that I normally couldn’t during my regular work hours. For instance, I recently attended Fran Cohen’s wonderful book discussion on Where the Crawdads Sing. It was a nice coincidence that I had read this book as an ebook I’d downloaded from Overdrive during my time home and submitted a staff pick for it. I also hope to attend Linda Cafiero’s Virtual Meditation program on Friday, May 1.

I know that other libraries across the country are doing many of the same things as mine, and it makes me even more proud of being a librarian. When I graduated from the Palmer School of Library and Information Science in 1989, the Internet was in its infancy. There were no smart phones or programs such as Zoom or Skype where people could see one another when they connected. Library Indexes were huge volumes that took up precious space. We’ve come a long way and even though we are all suffering during this pandemic, we are blessed with the technology that affords us the ability to keep in touch with one another and with the world. We applaud the frontline health workers who are dealing with this crisis by risking their lives, but librarians are on a front line of a different kind by their responsibility to provide information and resources to help people cope with the challenges that the Coronavirus has posed – the feelings of isolation, boredom, and fear.

We hope to be serving patrons in person again soon when the country opens up and things are safe. For now, we will use the new tools of our profession to keep our virtual doors open.

Posted in Blog Tour, Spotlight

Spotlight for 18 Caliber: A Maizie Albright Star Detective Mystery by Larissa Reinhart

18 CALIBER, Maizie Albright Star Detective Mystery
by Larissa Reinhart

About 18 Caliber


18 CALIBER, Maizie Albright Star Detective Mystery
Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
Past Perfect Press (April 14, 2020)
Print Length: 395 pages
Digital ASIN: B085HGGBW2

LUCKY IN LOVE AND LUCKY TO BE ALIVE. UNTIL NOW.

Maizie’s mixing with international stars, spies, and her mother’s dark past in her sixth case in The Wall Street Journal bestselling series.

“Hollywood glitz meets backwoods grit in this fast-paced ride on D-list celeb Maizie Albright’s waning star. Sassy, Sexy, and Fun.” — Phoebe Fox, author of the Breakup Doctor series.

#WannabeDetectiving While ex-celebrity Maizie Albright’s dreams of becoming a for-real private investigator have not exactly been dashed, they have been slightly thwarted. Her ex-manager and still-mother, Vicki Albright, has taken the helm of Nash Security Services while rebuilding her entertainment management company. Sometimes with the same clients. Like Chinese action star, Lili Liang, who’s making the film Unlucky 18 in Georgia.

Thus far, Lili’s living up to her movie title. Her kung fu coach is missing. Her boyfriend’s disappeared. And her director, who gambled on her with the part, might be gambling with her life.

Maizie’s luck is also running out. Maizie and Nash find themselves struggling to balance a new partnership and new relationship between missing persons’ cases, wild goose chases, and tracking a bullet into dangerous places. Sometimes it’s enough to make a girl NOT want to put a ring on it. When it comes to facing an 18-caliber killer, what will Maizie put up as the target? Her heart or her life?

Books in the Maizie Albright Star Detective series:
15 MINUTES
16 MILLIMETERS
NC-17
A VIEW TO A CHILL
17.5 CARTRIDGES IN A PEAR TREE
18 CALIBER

Other Series by Larissa Reinhart:
A Cherry Tucker Mystery
Finley Goodhart Crime Capers

A Wall Street Journal bestselling author, Larissa writes the Cherry Tucker Mystery, Maizie Albright Star Detective, and Finley Goodhart Crime Caper series as well as romantic comedies and women’s fiction. She loves to tell funny stories about Southern women looking for love (and sometimes dead bodies) in all the wrong places. You might have seen Larissa and family with their little dog, Biscuit, on HGTV’s House Hunters International “Living for the Weekend in Nagoya” episode, but they’re back in Georgia now. Visit LarissaReinhart.com to learn more.

FREE DURING PANDEMIC

Social Media Links:

Website: http://larissareinhart.com/

VIP Readers: https://www.larissareinhart.com/larissasreaders

Official Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorLarissaReinhart/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/larissareinhartwriter

Fan group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/mysteryminions/

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/larissa-reinhart

Goodreads: http://smarturl.it/LarissaGoodreads

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/LarissaReinhart/

Purchase links: (Not live yet)

Amazon: http://smarturl.it/kindle18

Barnes & Noble: http://smarturl.it/Nook18

Kobo: http://smarturl.it/Kobo18

Apple Books: http://smarturl.it/iBooks18

https://books2read.com/18Caliber

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April 14 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

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April 15 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT

April 16 – Mysteries with Character – REVIEW

April 16 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – SPOTLIGHT

April 17 – Read Your Writes Book Reviews – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

April 18 – Devilishly Delicious Book Reviews – REVIEW

April 19 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – GUEST POST

April 20 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW

April 21 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

April 22 – Ascroft, eh? – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

April 22 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

April 23 – Literary Gold – CHARACTER GUEST POST

April 24 – Diane Reviews Books – SPOTLIGHT

April 24 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT

April 25 – fundinmental – SPOTLIGHT

April 26 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

April 27 – TBR Book Blog – REVIEW

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Posted in Reviews

Review of Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

*****5-stars

At the library where I work, this book has been requested on a long waiting list. I decided to find out why. Now I know. The story follows nature lover, Catherine “Kya,” who grows up alone in the 1950’s in the North Carolina Marshland after her siblings and mother leave, and her father, the cause of their departure, eventually disappears.

Avoiding the townspeople and the truant officer who tries to take her to school after she’s taunted and teased by the other children, she makes one friend, Tate, who teaches her to read and shares her love of nature. As the two grow, they fall in love, but Tate leaves to go to college. The events that occur when he doesn’t keep his promise to return to her, set off a chain of events that result with Kya accused of the murder of a man whose family is well known in the town.

There is much more to this story that features themes of prejudice and abuse but also the beauty of nature and the enduring quality of love and friendship. One addition that I especially enjoyed was the brief appearance of the court cat, Sunday Justice.

Don’t miss this read that will keep you turning the pages and also has a surprising twist at the end.

About the Author (information and photo from her website)

Delia Owens is the co-author of three internationally bestselling nonfiction books about her life as a wildlife scientist in Africa including Cry of the Kalahari.

She has won the John Burroughs Award for Nature Writing and has been published in NatureThe African Journal of Ecology, and many others.

She currently lives in Idaho. Where the Crawdads Sing is her first novel.

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Posted in Spotlight

Spotlight, Blog Tour, and Giveaway for This Magick Marmot, An Abracadabra Mystery, by Sharon Pape

This Magick Marmot (An Abracadabra Mystery)
by Sharon Pape

About This Magick Marmot


This Magick Marmot (An Abracadabra Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Publisher: Lyrical Press (April 7, 2020)
Paperback: Pages: 200
ISBN-10: 1516108752
ISBN-13: 978-1516108756
Digital ASIN: B083TXHJLH

A fatal case of school spirit . . .

Kailyn Wilde, owner of the Abracadabra potion shop, feels some dread anticipating her ten-year high school reunion at the new hotel in New Camel—but it turns out even worse than she feared. Running into her very first boyfriend is pleasant enough. Chatting with Ashley—who still can’t let go of a tragedy that happened on prom night—is a bit more uncomfortable. But the worst part comes when one of Kailyn’s oldest friends is found dead in the ladies’ room.

Soon this upstate New York town is in an uproar. And with some help from time-traveling wizard Merlin—who has adopted an unusual and alluring creature as his familiar—it’s up to Kailyn to identify the alumnus most likely to commit murder . . .

EXCERPT

“If the killer had access to the bar,” I said, “he could have made Genna’s drink himself.”

            Blake took exception to my theory. “It doesn’t matter how busy we were, we would have noticed if some stranger was suddenly working the bar with us.”

            Joey fixed his friend with a sly smile. “Not so fast.” 

            Blake rounded on him. “What’s that supposed to mean?”

            “There was a guy who came behind the bar that night. He said he was there to spell us if we needed the restroom. I figured Humphrey arranged –

            “I did no such thing,” the manager interrupted. “There was no need for restroom breaks when the cocktail hour was just an hour.” He didn’t have a great way with words.

             Joey gave a quick roll of his eyes for my benefit. When he was a kid, he must have spent a lot of time in the principal’s office. “I didn’t take the guy up on the offer anyway.  And I didn’t think about it again, until Ms. Wilde brought it up.”

            Blake laughed. “Hey Joey, I know someone who’s got a bridge for sale.”

            There was no humor in Joey’s expression. “Really? And what would you have done if that guy came over to you?”

            “I would have told him he to get out, he didn’t belong back there.  And if Humphrey sent him, he could tell me himself.”

            Anger flashed in Joey’s eyes. “Yeah right, your hindsight is twenty-twenty, but you wouldn’t have done anything different from me. You talk big, but you back down from real confrontations.” I don’t know if Humphrey or Blake understood what was happening, but I sure did. Joey didn’t like being the one who may have let a killer get past him without even questioning his unlikely story.

            Blake grabbed a Waverly brochure off Humphrey’s desk, rolled it up and bopped Joey on the head with it.

            “Cut it out,” Joey snarled, pulling the brochure out of Blake’s hand and tossing it behind him.

            Humphrey opened his mouth, but nothing came out. He tugged at the knot in his tie. Beads of sweat blossomed on his upper lip. He’d be out two good bartenders if fists started flying, not to mention the potential for breakage. He glared at me as if it were my fault for demanding the meeting.

            “Boys, boys,” he cajoled, “there’s no reason for animosity here. We’re all on the same side. Fighting among ourselves won’t help Ms. Wilde find the killer.”

              “Joey,” I said, hauling the conversation back on track, “did you see that man again during the night?”

            He combed his hair back in place with his fingers. “Matter of fact, I did. He was wandering around the room with a glass in his hand. I thought maybe he was working security too.”

            A mocking smile lit Blake’s face. “Yeah I’m sure his resumé reads security guard slash relief bartender.”

            “It’s called blending in with the crowd.”

            Listening to them, reminded me of the way Elise’s kids bickered. I suspected these two had been friends for years. “Did you see this guy doing anything suspicious?” I asked.

            Joey shrugged. “I was busy and it wasn’t like I was told to keep track of him. It was before that woman was killed. And it’s not like he was wearing a blinking sign that said KILLER.”

            Blake laughed. “Now that would have made for an interesting resumé.” Humphrey tried to contain himself, but a chuckle got away from him. He covered his mouth and swallowed hard, trying to regain control.

            I ignored him. “Joey, can you describe the man?”

            He scratched his head. “Five-ten, gray hair, between fifty and sixty – that‘s all I got.” It wasn’t much. He could have been describing more than half the population of the country.          I thanked everyone for their time and handed out my card with the usual request to call if they thought of anything else related to that night.

            I’d left my car at home and walked the mile or so to the Waverly. With the temperature in the mid-seventies it was a perfect day to be outside, and I needed the exercise. On the way there I’d hustled, because I didn’t want to be late. Going home, I took my time. Tilly would have called if she needed me sooner.

            I replayed the meeting in my head, trying to tease more information from what Joey and Blake said. The man who went behind the bar may well have been the one who poisoned Genna. He might have taken a cocktail glass and poured the poison into it, waiting for the perfect moment to add it to her drink. But even if he had been the instrument of Genna’s death, whoever paid for his services was the real killer.

            Halfway home I forced myself to put the case on a back burner and focus on the simple pleasures of walking when there were no appointments to keep. A lawn mower growled in the distance, birds sang their unique melodies, tea roses sweetened the air, and sunlight sparkled off a freshly washed red convertible that made me think of open roads and wind in my hair. I didn’t hear the soft footfalls behind me, until it was too late.

About the Author

Sharon Pape describes her writing career as having two stages. Back in the dark ages, before computers were in every household, she had three paranormal books published. The first one was condensed by Redbook Magazine, the first paperback original they had ever condensed. Around the same time, Redbook published her first short story.

Then life brought her an unexpected challenge that went by the name of breast cancer. When her treatment was over, she became a volunteer for the American Cancer Society’s Reach to Recovery Program and went on to be the program’s coordinator for Nassau and Suffolk Counties on Long Island. Several years later, with the help of her surgical oncologist and two other survivors, she started her own not-for-profit organization to provide information and peer support to newly diagnosed breast cancer patients.

Once the organization was running smoothly and didn’t require as much of her time, she returned to her first love – writing. During this second stage of her career, she’s been writing cozy mysteries with a paranormal twist and a splash of humor.

Author Links

Website – http://sharonpape.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sharon.pape.94

Twitter: https://twitter.com/sbpape

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/641079.Sharon_Pape

Purchase Links – AmazonB & N



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TOUR PARTICIPANTS

April 6 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT

April 6 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

April 7 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – SPOTLIGHT

April 7 – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW

April 8 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – GUEST POST

April 8 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

April 9 – MJB Reviewers – REVIEW

April 9 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW

April 10 – Literary Gold – CHARACTER GUEST POST

April 10 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT

April 11 – Nadaness In Motion – SPOTLIGHT

April 11 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

April 12 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW

April 12 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW

April 13 – ebook addicts – REVIEW

April 13 – Paranormal and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

April 14 – Ascroft, eh? – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

April 14 – I Read What You Write – REVIEW

April 14 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

April 15 – A Wytch’s Book Review Blog – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

April 15 – Rosepoint Publishing – REVIEW

April 15 – Dee-Scoveries – SPOTLIGHT

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Posted in Cozy Mystery, Guest Post

Guest Post and Blog Tour for Why Me?: Chimeras, Conundrums, and Dead Goldfish by Charlotte Stuart

Charlotte Stuart – WHY ME? CHIMERAS, CONUNDRUMS AND DEAD GOLDFISH

The Controversy Over Chimera Research

In Greek mythology the Chimera was a creature with the physical traits of several animals – usually a lion, a goat and a dragon. Today, chimera research involves inserting the genetic material of a human into an animal. Not to produce a monster, but to advance medicine and improve or save lives.

The inspiration for the serious theme of my otherwise lighthearted mystery came from an article I read on one form of chimera research that is taking place in medical research centers around the world. These scientists are implanting human genes into animals such a pigs and sheep to grow organs that can in turn be harvested for transplant. Sadly, it is estimated that 20 people die each day in the United States due to a lack of donor organs. Scientists involved in this research hope to meet the growing need for organs and, at the same time, stop illegal organ trafficking.

It should come as no surprise that many bioethicists are concerned about the far-reaching implications of chimera research. They fear we may somehow cross a line by creating interspecies chimeric animals with human cells. For example, there were protests about experiments done by a Chinese researcher who implanted human genes into the brains of rhesus monkeys to improve their cognitive function. For many, me included, that conjured up visions of the Planet of the Apes movies in which intelligent primates threatened the existence of humans. It definitely makes you worry about what happens if we humanize animals. What kind of lives can they anticipate? Can we all live in harmony? And, at what point do they attain rights similar to those of humans?

As I point out in the forward to my book, the international community is divided on what types of chimera research should be legal. From my limited knowledge of how biomedical research is conducted, it seems like it should be possible to provide safety guidelines while allowing potentially life-saving research to take place. Yet, even with good controls in place, there is always the possibility that while growing a much-needed organ, a few cells could find their way to the animal’s brain. And even if some countries impose regulations on research, enforcement on a global scale may be problematic.

Another issue that many are concerned with is the treatment of animals used in these experiments. I don’t want animals to suffer. But I’m torn between not wanting to put animals through unnecessary pain and the desire to save human lives. Obviously it would be ideal if scientists could come up with solutions without using animals as test subjects. But I also don’t have the expertise to say whether this is possible or not. And the people I know in the science field are doing their best to help people; they take no satisfaction in hurting any living creature. At the same time, I believe it is a good thing that protesters keep ethical issues in front of governments and scientists. Whatever decisions are made, there needs to be a thorough consideration of potential consequences.

When I pitched my book I referred to “pigs that play chess, sheep that talk and chimpanzees with 120 IQs.” Some thought I had made this research issue up. Unfortunately, trafficking in illegal organs, protests that sometimes turn violent, and the possibility that some scientist will create a genetically altered species are all very real. Although I admit that one goal was to bring the issue of chimera research to the attention of readers, I primarily just wanted to tell a good story. Hopefully, I succeeded in doing that. And hopefully there will be a happy ending in real life as there almost always is in a cozy mystery.

Why Me?: Chimeras, Conundrums, and Dead Goldfish
by Charlotte Stuart

About Why Me?:
Chimeras, Conundrums, and Dead Goldfish


Why Me?: Chimeras, Conundrums, and Dead Goldfish
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Taylor and Seale Publishing LLC (November 18, 2019)
Paperback: 255 pages
ISBN-10: 1950613321
ISBN-13: 978-1950613328
Digital Print Length: 194 pages
ASIN: B083JN3TK8

In ancient Greece, the chimera was a bad omen. In WHY ME?, it’s a motive for murder. Bryn Baczek, a Seattle consultant, is vacationing in Scotland, hiking alone in a downpour, surrounded by midges, when she sees a body at the bottom of a ravine. Before she can return to the scene with the mountain rescue team, the body disappears. She learns that he was a scientist and that his laptop containing his cutting-edge research has disappeared. Rumors that Bryn has the laptop make her a target.

About Charlotte Stuart

In a world filled with uncertainty and too little chocolate, Charlotte Stuart, PhD, has taught college courses in communication, gone commercial fishing in Alaska, and was the VP of HR and Training for a large credit union. Her current passion is for writing lighthearted mysteries with a pinch of adventure and a dollop of humor. She is the VP for the Puget Sound Sisters in Crime. When she isn’t writing, she enjoys watching herons, eagles, seals and other sea life from her Vashon Island home office.

Social Media Links:

Website: www.charlottestuart.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/quirkymysteries

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/charlotte.stuart.mysterywriter

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19305587.Charlotte_Stuart

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