Posted in Cozy Mystery, Spotlight

Spotlight and Blog Tour for Death at Fairhavens by Maria Mankin and Maren C. Tirabassi


Death at Fair Havens
by Maria Mankin & Maren C. Tirabassi

About Death at Fair Havens

Death at Fair Havens
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Massachusetts
Brain Mill Press (April 26, 2022)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 318 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 194855965X
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1948559652
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09NCJDRCS

Wanda Duff is an unconventional New England clergywoman, addicted to chicken wings, high-octane ice cream, and saying yes to anyone in need of a prayer, even the folks her town might think don’t deserve one.

When parishioner Niels Pond dies unexpectedly at the Fair Havens assisted living facility, Wanda’s duty to minister to his family is beset by her suspicions about the circumstances of his abrupt passing. Wanda finds an unexpected co-detective in high school vice principal Prudence Rye, who fled town on graduation night a decade ago and returned only recently.

Rye puts her job on the line to investigate the mourning Ponds with the surprisingly edgy Wanda. As they expose difficult family truths and uncover a dangerous conspiracy operating out of Fair Havens, Rye and Wanda discover curiosity has an unanticipated cost.

Comfortably gossipy, with a fresh take on the characters and ethos cozy mystery fans will love, Maria Mankin and Maren C. Tirabassi’s Death at Fair Havens launches a series that celebrates intergenerational women’s friendship and the power of inclusion, curiosity, and love.

“Here’s small town life portrayed with humor and affection, peopled with quirky characters you’ll care about.”
—James Patrick Kelly, winner of the Hugo, Nebula and Locus awards

About the Authors

After teaching and working in early education for a decade, Maria Mankin has published six books with Pilgrim Press and has contributed to several anthologies. She is also a co-author of Circ, a mystery set in Skegness England, published by Pigeon Park Press, and Pitching Our Tents: Poetry of Hospitality. She is a regular contributor to Living Psalms, a collection in which the Psalms are reinterpreted in poetry and art as a reflection of God’s work of justice and compassion. She is currently working on a book of poetry and the third novel in the Rev and Rye Cozy Mysteries.

After trouping the country in the 70s as assistant manager of theatrical tours for choreographer Agnes de Mille, The National Theatre of Great Britain, The Royal Shakespeare Company and the Black Broadway production of ‘Guys and Dolls,’ Maren Tirabassi changed careers, to the surprise of everyone, to study at Union Theological Seminary in New York City and later Harvard Divinity School. Ordained in the United Church of Christ, she served as a bi-vocational pastor to seven churches in Massachusetts and New Hampshire while developing her writing career. Maren is the author of twenty-two books, fiction, non-fiction and poetry, the majority published by The Pilgrim Press.

A former Poet Laureate of Portsmouth, NH, and LAMDA Prize nominee for Transgendering Faith, Identity, Sexuality and Spirituality she currently facilitates programs for the NH Humanities Council with New Americans and people with cognitive difference and leads poetry and memoir workshops in prisons, recovery groups, churches and synagogues, hospice and survivor groups. She blogs at giftsinopenhands@wordpress.com.

With frequent writing collaborator, Maria Mankin, she is currently editing Death in the Woods, the sequel to Death at Fair Havens, as well as plotting the third novel.

Author Links

Website https://callingallcharacters.com/

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

Twitter https://twitter.com/marenandmankin

Purchase Links

Brian Mill PressPowell’sAmazonBarnes and NobleIndieboundIndigo

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

June 21 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT

June 21 – Cozy Up With Kathy -AUTHOR INTERVIEW

June 22 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

June 22 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

June 23 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER GUEST POST

June 23 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

June 24 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT WITH EXCERPT

June 24 – Readeropolis – GUEST POST

June 25 – Baroness Book Trove – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

June 26 – Lady Hawkeye – SPOTLIGHT WITH EXCERPT

June 26 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

June 27 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

June 27 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 28 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

June 28 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – CHARACTER GUEST POST

June 29 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – GUEST POST

June 30 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

June 30 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?
Click Here to Find Details and Sign Up Today!

Posted in Blog Tour, Cozy Mystery, Spotlight

Spotlight and Blog Tour for A Hint of Mischief: A Fairy Garden Mystery by Daryl Wood Gerber


A Hint of Mischief (A Fairy Garden Mystery)
by Daryl Wood Gerber

About A Hint of Mischief

A Hint of Mischief (A Fairy Garden Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Setting – California
Kensington Cozies(June 28, 2022)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 368 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1496736044
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1496736048
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09HRDQZH5

The proprietor of a fairy garden and tea shop in Carmel-by-the-Sea, Courtney Kelly has an occasional side gig as a sleuth—with a sprinkling of magical assistance. . . .

Courtney has thrown a few fairy garden parties—for kids. But if a local socialite is willing to dip into her trust fund for an old sorority sister’s fortieth birthday bash, Courtney will be there with bells on. To make the job even more appealing, a famous actress, Farrah Lawson, is flying in for the occasion, and there’s nothing like a celebrity cameo to raise a business’s profile.

Now Courtney has less than two weeks to paint a mural, hang up tinkling windchimes, plan party games, and conjure up all the details. While she works her magic, the hostess and her girlfriends head off for an indulgent spa day—which leads to a fateful facial for Farrah, followed by her mysterious death. Could the kindhearted eyebrow waxer who Farrah berated in public really be the killer, as the police suspect? Courtney thinks otherwise, and with the help of her imaginative sleuth fairy, sets out to dig up the truth behind this puzzling murder . . .

About Daryl Wood Gerber

Agatha Award-winning author Daryl Wood Gerber is best known for her nationally bestselling Fairy Garden Mysteries, Cookbook Nook Mysteries, and French Bistro Mysteries. As Avery Aames, she penned the popular Cheese Shop Mysteries. In addition, Daryl writes the Aspen Adams Novels of Suspense as well as stand-alone suspense. Daryl loves to cook, fairy garden, and read. She has a frisky Goldendoodle who keeps her in line. And she has been known to jump out of a perfectly good airplane and hitch-hike around Ireland alone. You can learn more on her website: httsp://darylwoodgerber.com

Author Links

WEBSITE: https://darylwoodgerber.com

FACEBOOK: https://facebook.com/darylwoodgerber

TWITTER: https://twitter.com/darylwoodgerber

BOOKBUB: https://bookbub.com/authors/daryl-wood-gerber

YOUTUBE: https://youtube.com/woodgerb1

INSTAGRAM: https//instagram.com/darylwoodgerber

PINTEREST: https://pinterest.com/darylwoodgerber

GOODREADS: https://goodreads.com/darylwoodgerber

GOODREADS BOOK: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/59120614-a-hint-of-mischief

AMAZON: https://bit.ly/Daryl_Wood_Gerber_page

NEWSLETTER: https://darylwoodgerber.com/contact-media/

Purchase Links – AmazonB&NKoboBookshopMurder by BookMysterious Galaxy

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

June 21 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

June 21 – Read Your Writes Book Reviews – GUEST POST WITH RECIPE

June 21 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

June 22 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – REVIEW

June 22 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 22 – Angel’s Guilty Pleasures – SPOTLIGHT, INDIVIDUAL GIVEAWAY

June 23 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 23 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

June 23 – This Is My Truth Now – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW

June 24 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

June 24 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, GUEST POST WITH RECIPE

June 24 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – REVIEW

June 24 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW

June 25 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT, INDIVIDUAL GIVEAWAY

June 25 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW, INDIVIDUAL GIVEAWAY

June 25 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

June 25 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

June 26 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

June 26 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW

June 27 – Diane Reviews Books – REVIEW, INDIVIDUAL GIVEAWAY

June 27 – I Read What You Write – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

June 27 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

June 28 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

June 28 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW

June 28 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?

Click Here to Find Details and Sign Up Today!

Posted in Blog Tour, Cozy Mystery

Spotlight and Blog Tour for Bayou Book Thief: A Vintage Cookbook Mystery by Ellen Byron


Bayou Book Thief (A Vintage Cookbook Mystery)
by Ellen Byron

About Bayou Book Thief


Bayou Book Thief (A Vintage Cookbook Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – New Orleans Louisiana
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Berkley (June 7, 2022)
Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 304 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0593437616
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0593437612
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09FPJHVGK

A fantastic new cozy mystery series with a vintage flair from USA Today bestselling and Agatha Award–winning author Ellen Byron.

Twenty-eight-year-old widow Ricki James leaves Los Angeles to start a new life in New Orleans after her showboating actor husband perishes doing a stupid internet stunt. The Big Easy is where she was born and adopted by the NICU nurse who cared for her after Ricki’s teen mother disappeared from the hospital.

Ricki’s dream comes true when she joins the quirky staff of Bon Vee Culinary House Museum, the spectacular former Garden District home of late bon vivant Genevieve “Vee” Charbonnet, the city’s legendary restauranteur. Ricki is excited about turning her avocation – collecting vintage cookbooks – into a vocation by launching the museum’s gift shop, Miss Vee’s Vintage Cookbooks and Kitchenware. Then she discovers that a box of donated vintage cookbooks contains the body of a cantankerous Bon Vee employee who was fired after being exposed as a book thief.

The skills Ricki has developed ferreting out hidden vintage treasures come in handy for investigations. But both her business and Bon Vee could wind up as deadstock when Ricki’s past as curator of a billionaire’s first edition collection comes back to haunt her.

Will Miss Vee’s Vintage Cookbooks and Kitchenware be a success … or a recipe for disaster?

About Ellen Byron

Ellen’s Cajun Country Mysteries have won the Agatha Award for Best Contemporary Novel and multiple Lefty Awards for Best Humorous Mystery. Bayou Book Thief will be the first book in her new Vintage Cookbook Mysteries. She also writes the Catering Hall Mystery series under the name Maria DiRico.

Ellen is an award-winning playwright, and non-award-winning TV writer of comedies like Wings, Just Shoot Me, and Fairly Odd Parents. She has written over two hundred articles for national magazines but considers her most impressive credit working as a cater-waiter for Martha Stewart. An alum of New Orleans’ Tulane University, she blogs with Chicks on the Case, is a lifetime member of the Writers Guild of America and will be the 2023 Left Coast Crime Toastmaster. Please visit her at https://www.ellenbyron.com/

Author Links

Newsletter: https://www.ellenbyron.com/

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/ellenbyronauthor/

https://www.facebook.com/CateringHallMysteries/

Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/ellenbyronmariadirico/

Bookbub:

https://www.bookbub.com/profile/ellen-byron

https://www.bookbub.com/authors/maria-dirico

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/23234.Ellen_Byron

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19130966.Maria_DiRico

Purchase Links

AmazonB&NKoboGoogle BooksAlibrisIndieBoundPenguinRandomHouse

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

June 8 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW

June 8 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

June 8 – Island Confidential – REVIEW

June 9 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – REVIEW

June 9 – I Read What You Write – CHARACTER GUEST POST

June 10 – Books to the Ceiling – SPOTLIGHT

June 10 – Carla Loves To Read – REVIEW

June 11 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW

June 11 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

June 12 – The Mystery of Writing – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

June 12 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW

June 13 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

June 13 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

June 14 – Rosepoint Publishing – REVIEW

June 14 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

June 15 – Socrates Book Reviews – REVIEW

June 15 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

June 16 – The Mystery Section – RECIPE

June 16 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

June 17 – View from the Birdhouse – REVIEW

June 17 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW

June 18 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

June 19 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – GUEST POST

June 19 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW

June 20 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW

June 20 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 21 – Novels Alive – REVIEW – SPOTLIGHT

June 21 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?
Click Here to Find Details and Sign Up Today!

Posted in Blog Tour, Cozy Mystery

Blog Tour and Podcast for THE CASE OF THE CAT CRAZY LADY

My new cozy mystery, The Case of the Cat Crazy Lady, the first Buttercup Bend Mystery, will be on tour with Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours from June 14 to June 27. The tour schedule is below. Please follow the tour for excerpts, guest posts, and giveaways.

THE CASE OF THE CAT CRAZY LADY TOUR PARTICIPANTS

June 14 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

June 15 – Mochas, Mysteries and Meows – GUEST POST

June 16 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 16 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

June 17 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT WITH EXCERPT

June 18 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT WITH EXCERPT

June 19 – Lady Hawkeye – SPOTLIGHT WITH EXCERPT

June 20 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

June 21 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

June 22 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

June 22 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW (Cozy Wednesday)

June 23 – I Read What You Write – GUEST POST

June 24 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

June 25 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 26 – Cozy Up With Kathy – CHARACTER GUEST POST

June 26 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW

June 27 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT

I was also featured on the Once and Future Authors podcast where I spoke about my cozy mysteries and other books. Check the show out here:

 

Posted in Blog Tour, Cozy Mystery

Review and Blog Tour for Old Bones and Ice Cream Cones: Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic Book 6 by Elizabeth Pantley

*****5-stars

Another fun and absorbing tale in the Destiny Falls Mystery and Magic cozy mystery series by Elizabeth Pantley. I can’t get enough of this series and even though I’ve only read three of the six books so far, I’m hoping to catch up with all of them soon.

What I like most about this series is the vivid descriptions of the magical island as well as the interesting characters and, of course, the magical library and the cats. In this installment, Latifa again steals the show with the other felines from the Secret Cat Society. Hayden and Han’s relationship undergoes a trial when Han disappears periodically and returns in an upsized model. While this is nice, it’s also an indication of black magic and that something sinister is being planned for him.

Without giving away the details of the story, which includes two mysteries, Hayden needs to obtain an antidote from an enemy to destroy the spell on her boyfriend. She also needs to travel to the mysterious island of Gladstone where she is not allowed to go.

The second mystery involves a murder from over thirty years ago that is discovered when Hayden finds a body in a boat. The women of the Destiny Falls knitting club may know something about the murder, as they went to high school with two of the women who disappeared at that time and whose body may be one of them.

It was fun to read about the 1950’s ice cream social that took place in the story and all the preparations that went into it including the costumes.

I highly recommend this book as a must read for fans of the Destiny Falls mysteries and also those new to the series. While some back story information is revealed, it’s still possible to read this one as a standalone and will also make one curious to read the past novels.

Check out the blog tour below and also my previous posts about the Destiny Falls series.

Review for Falling into Magic: Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic #1 by Elizabeth Pantley

Review of THE GHOST CAMPER’S TALL TALES, A Destiny Falls Mystery and Magic Cozy Mystery, by Elizabeth Pantley

Interview with Elizabeth Pantley, Author of The Disappearance of Emily, A Destiny Falls Mystery and Magic Novel

Sneaky Interviews Chanel from The Disappearance of Emily by Elizabeth Pantley

Sneaky Interviews Latifa from Falling Into Magic, A Destiny Falls Magic and Mystery Cozy Mystery by Elizabeth Pantley

 


Old Bones and Ice Cream Cones: Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic Series
by Elizabeth Pantley

About Old Bones and Ice Cream Cones

Old Bones and Ice Cream Cones: Destiny Falls Mystery & Magic Series
Paranormal Cozy Mystery
6th in Series
Better Beginnings, Inc. (May 20, 2022)
Print length ‏ : ‎328 Pages
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09W42KVV1

A boyfriend who’s missing. Or was. . . Or is. . . A boat full of old bones. A community ice cream social. A friend in trouble, a spiteful witch, and an angry villain. The mysteries and fun abound in Destiny Falls. Hayden, Latifa, and their family and friends are up for the excitement and adventure.

Old Bones and Ice Cream Cones follows the series format of combining two stories that blend into one. A murder mystery and the island mystery.

The Island Mystery: Hayden’s boyfriend Han is missing. But she swears she saw him zoom by in his car. She’d thought it was a surprise, and that he was home early from his secret service case. She was wrong. The surprise is that his signal isn’t pinging, and no one knows where he is. There appears to be black magic behind his disappearance. Can they learn who’s responsible and bring Han safely home?

The Murder Mystery: A pile of old bones is found in an ancient fishing boat. They could be tied to the disappearance of two young women years ago, back when many of the Destiny Falls people where in high school. Many of the citizens had bad history with the missing students. Do the bones belong to them, and what happened? Were the they murdered? And could the murderer be living among them?

Hayden and Latifa’s many adventures in Destiny Falls will keep you guessing with each book in this fun and intriguing series.

About Elizabeth Pantley

Elizabeth Pantley says that writing the Destiny Falls Mystery and Magic book series is the most fun she’s ever had at work. Fans of the series say her joy is evident through the stories she tells. Elizabeth is also the internationally bestselling author of The No-Cry Sleep Solution and twelve other books for parents. Her books have been published in over twenty languages. She lives in the Pacific Northwest, the beautiful inspiration for the enchanted Destiny Falls world.

Author Links

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/24811.Elizabeth_Pantley
Website: https://www.nocrysolution.com/books/
Newsletter Sign-up: https://www.nocrysolution.com/mailing-list/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DestinyFallsMysteryandMagic
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/elizabethpantley/
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/nocrysolution/_saved/
Blog: https://elizabethpantley.com/
Audiobook: https://www.amazon.com/Falling-into-Magic-Destiny-Mystery/dp/B09DTF3Y15
Series link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08MCSN2KD

Purchase Link – Amazon

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

May 20 – I Read What You Write – REVIEW, GUEST POST

May 21 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT

May 22 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW

May 22 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

May 23 – Novels Alive – SPOTLIGHT

May 24 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 24 – Baroness Book Trove – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

May 25 – Angel’s Guilty Pleasures – SPOTLIGHT

May 25 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST

May 26 – Ascroft, eh? – GUEST POST

May 27 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST

May 28 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

May 28 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

May 29 – eBook Addicts – SPOTLIGHT

May 30 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

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

June 1 – Ruff Drafts – REVIEW

June 2 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 2 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?

Click Here to Find Details and Sign Up Today!

Posted in Cozy Mystery, New Releases

Sharing Good and Bad News Including a New Release

As some of you might know, I lost my handsome 14-year old cat, Stripey, to cancer on Friday, May 13. He’d been sick for some time, losing weight rapidly and becoming very weak. We tried a prednisone shot which only helped briefly but got him through Mother’s Day, my birthday, and my husband’s birthday. We made the decision to send him to Rainbow Bridge because his quality of life was deteriorating. He could hardly walk, eat, or do any of the things he once enjoyed. It was so sad to see him that way. He is now with his friend, Oliver, the Siamese I lost four years ago. Even though I still have two cats, there’s someone missing in my house. The three “mouseketeers” are down to two. It hurts, but I know it was our only choice.

They say when it rains, it pours. After putting Stripey to sleep, my daughter and I tested positive for COVID. We had ignored some earlier symptoms thinking they were allergy-related and having other things on our minds. But once we starting running fevers, we took tests to check. They were positive. My husband tested positive the next day, so the whole family had caught it. We are on the mend but still have symptoms and are quarantining.

But when it pours, a rainbow sometimes appears afterwards. I’m happy to announce that the first book of my new cozy series, The Case of the Cat Crazy Lady, has been published by Next Chapter. This book will be available in several formats including paperback, hardcover, large print, eBook, eventually audio, and it may also be translated. It will be distributed on several platforms including Barnes and Noble, Amazon, Kobo, Scribd, Overdrive, and many others. For now, I have the universal link to the Amazon purchase page. When I receive the universal link to all the places that sell it, I will update this post. If you have a favorite online booksite, just check and see if it’s available there yet.

Purchase Link:  mybook.to/cclady

Without sharing any spoilers, I’d like to introduce a few of the characters in the book.

Hi, I’m Cathy Carter, and the main character of The Case of the Cat Crazy Lady. I live in Buttercup Bend which is a lovely small town in the Catskills. I live with my grandmother, Florence and Siamese cat, Oliver. I co-own a pet cemetery and rescue center with my brother, Doug, who lives next door with his pregnant wife, Becky. Doug and I are orphans. We lost our parents five years ago in a car accident. I was injured in the accident and have a scar on my cheek. It wasn’t the only scar I received. I became very shy and withdrawn and found it easier to be around animals. Opening the pet business helped me, as did my friend, Nancy and my work as a photographer for the Buttercup Bugle, the town newspaper. You’ll learn more about me in the book. I hope you enjoy it.

Here are a few of the other characters you’ll meet in The Case of the Cat Crazy Lady:

Florence Wilson, my grandmother, a self-reliant widow who meets a strange yet charismatic man named Howard Hunt at a church square dance. She enjoys needlework and gardening.

Douglas Carter, my brother, who works at the Buttercup Bend Post Office and is married to Becky and has two dogs, Max and Millie.

Maggie Broom, the murder victim, who was known in the town as “The Cat Crazy Lady.” She enjoyed playing BINGO but kept to herself and the dozens of indoor and outdoor cats that she cared for. Relatively new in town, she arrived two years ago and had not made many friends before she was found murdered.

Nancy Meyers, my best friend, who convinces me to join her in investigating Maggie Broom’s murder. Nancy is outgoing and likes to flirt. She has her eye on the town’s vet and the deputy sheriff, while I’m interested in my gardener.

Brody Broom, Maggie’s brother, who is the prime suspect in the murder. After the will is read, he and his sister aren’t happy with what they are left. Brody has been in trouble with the law since he was 15, Sheriff Miller believes he is guilty of his sister’s murder, but I learn some things about him that make me believe in his innocence.

Keep an eye out for more updates on the book and its upcoming blog tour with Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours in June.

 

Posted in Cozy Mystery, Guest Post

Guest Post, Recipe, and Blog Tour for Cover Art

Why is Death by Chocolate a Favourite Fantasy?

Vanessa Westermann

In my family, we have a number of self-confessed chocoholics. There’s something about the complex, roasted flavours, the melt-in-your-mouth texture that’s addictive.

Studies have shown that chocolate can induce euphoria and have a calming effect. In fact, European pharmacies in the past used to dispense chocolate as a medicinal drug. Chocolate really can make you feel better (unless you eat an entire bag of Hershey’s Chocolate Kisses in one road trip).

But, if chocolate can be medicinal, can it also be toxic? Both sweet and bitter, delicious and deadly?

Death by chocolate may be a favourite fantasy, but death by poisoned chocolate is another matter entirely.

In Cover Art, Charley Scott is thrilled to be running a summer pop-up art gallery in cottage country. But, beneath the surface of this peaceful lakeside village, darkness lurks. Local chocolatier, Matt Thorn, is struggling with his father’s death and his legacy of deception. As Matt plans to expose his father’s secrets, a man is found dead, the result of eating Matt’s chocolates. Charley will have to see past the obvious, to find the killer.

The idea of writing a mystery, involving death by chocolate, was sparked years ago. My mom took part in a workshop run by a local chocolatier about how to make truffles and Belgian pralines. She came home with recipes covered in hand-written notes, samples, a chocolate-stained apron and a ‘behind the scenes’ glimpse into a chocolatier’s workshop. We tried out the recipes in our own kitchen, chopping blocks of chocolate and tempering it to a glossy sheen.

I still savour that moment. And isn’t that an interesting turn of the phrase?

Taste, emotion and memory are intertwined. A familiar flavour can recall a positive, or negative, experience and take you right back to that time and place. That’s why writers use sensory descriptions — taste, touch, scent and sound — to bring their settings to life.

In Cover Art, Matt’s workroom is at the back of his shop, called Chocoholic’s. You’ll see copper pots suspended from the track lighting. A twenty-pound crate of oranges, ready to be hand sliced and candied, shoved to one side. You’ll feel the air, chilled to a brisk eighteen degrees Celsius, kept constant by the PVC strip curtains hanging over the door. You might hear the crackle of tempered chocolate shrinking and releasing in the molds as it cools or the riff-heavy leads and gravelly vocals of vintage BTO, blasting through the overhead speakers. You’ll breathe in the scent of single origin Guittard chocolate — a spicy, heady aroma of tobacco, plums, and black cherries.

To be able to add those sensory details to my story, I read cookbooks, like David Lebovitz’s The Great Book of Chocolate: The Chocolate Lover’s Guide and Gale Gand’s Chocolate and Vanilla. I browsed confectioners’ websites and visited artisan chocolate shops.

Before writing Cover Art, I would have said that my favourite chocolate was dark. The darker, the better. I did not like white chocolate, at all. Then I visited Warkworth, Ontario’s Centre & Maine Chocolate Company and tried their Gin & Tonic bar. White chocolate and lime zest, laced with juniper essential oil, and coriander. It’s incredible. I infused this flavour into Cover Art — it’s the first chocolate Charley samples in Matt’s store. If you want to try the Gin & Tonic for yourself, you can order it online from Centre & Maine (https://centreandmainchocolate.com/ ).

Besides reading cookbooks and eating chocolate, I also tried my hand at some practical research. Below is my recipe for chocolate espresso truffles, combining both dark chocolate and white chocolate, along with that shot of caffeine that fuels my writing process.

Chocolate Espresso Truffles

Makes c. 70 truffles

Ingredients:
300 g. white chocolate
300 g. bittersweet couverture or good quality bittersweet chocolate (70%)
1 tbsp espresso powder (or to taste)
3 tbsp cocoa powder

  1. Using a serrated knife, cut the white chocolate and bittersweet couverture into pieces, as small as possible (no larger than 1 ½ cm chunks). Place the chocolate and couverture pieces in a heatproof bowl. Set the bowl in a saucepan of simmering water and gently melt the chocolate, stirring with a spatula. Once melted, stir in the espresso powder.
  2. Line a loaf pan with baking paper. Pour the melted chocolate-couverture mixture into the loaf form and let cool at room temperature for 5-6 hours.
  3. Carefully remove the now firm chocolate from the loaf pan, by holding the edges of the baking paper. Remove the baking paper from the chocolate. Using a large, sharp kitchen knife cut the chocolate into rows, 2 cm thick. Then cut those rows into 2cm squares.
  4. Sift the cocoa powder into a small bowl. Use a fork to dip the chocolate squares into the cocoa powder, coating them evenly. Then place the enrobed chocolate squares into a strainer to shake off the excess cocoa.
  5. The chocolate truffles can be filled into plastic bags or stored in a tin—perhaps an empty coffee tin, for a fun twist.

These chocolate truffles will keep for 2-4 weeks in the fridge. If you can resist them!

Whip up a batch, grab a copy of Cover Art and indulge in murder and chocolate

Cover Art (A Charley Scott Mystery)
by Vanessa Westermann

About Cover Art


Cover Art (A Charley Scott Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Kawartha Lakes, Ontario, Canada
Cormorant Books (May 17, 2022)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 440 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1770866426
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1770866423

Charley Scott is thrilled to be running a summer pop-up gallery in cottage country. Returning to the lakeside village, not on vacation but as an artist, she’s determined to turn her hobby into a career.

But, beneath the surface of this peaceful town, darkness lurks. There’s a history.

Local chocolatier, Matt Thorn, is struggling with his father’s death and his legacy of deception. As Matt plans to expose his father’s secrets, a local is found dead, the result of eating Matt’s chocolates.

Luckily, art is all about perspective and Charley’s always had a keen eye. Can she see past the obvious and find the killer?

 

About Vanessa Westermann

An avid reader of mysteries, Vanessa Westermann is a former Arthur Ellis Awards judge, holds an M.A. in English Literature, as well as a Bachelor of Education, and has taught creative writing. Her debut mystery, An Excuse for Murder, was published in 2019. At the heart of all of Westermann’s stories are strong female protagonists inspired by the heroines in her own life. She currently lives in Ontario.

Social media links:

Blog: https://www.vanessa-westermann.info/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/VanessasPicks

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

GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18861715.Vanessa_Westermann

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/vanessa-westermann

Purchase Links – AmazonB&NIndigo

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

May 13 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

May 13 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

May 14 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

May 15 – Cozy Up With Kathy – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 15 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 16 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 17 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 17 – The Mystery Section – SPOTLIGHT

May 18 – Ruff Drafts – GUEST POST

May 19 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 20 – Baroness’ Book Trove – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

May 21 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

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

May 23 – I Read What You Write – CHARACTER GUEST POST

May 24 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW, GUEST POST

May 25 – Lady Hawkeye – SPOTLIGHT

May 25 – Drink Coffee and Read Books – REVIEW

May 26 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT

May 26 – Novels Alive – REVIEW

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?

Click Here to Find Details and Sign Up Today!

Posted in Cozy Mystery, Spotlight

Spotlight, Blog Tour, and Giveaway for Margaritas, Mayhem, and Murder: An Andi Anna Jones Mystery by Mary Cunningham


Margaritas, Mayhem & Murder (An Andi Anna Jones Mystery)
by Mary Cunningham

About Margaritas, Mayhem & Murder


Margaritas, Mayhem & Murder (An Andi Anna Jones Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Florida/Cancun/Las Vegas
Wild Rose Press (April 27, 2022)
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 224 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1509241086
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1509241088
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09QXR7WKX

Andi Anna Jones, so-so travel agent and amateur sleuth, puts aside her resentment of her father’s widow and books a sixtieth birthday cruise to Cancun for Ruby and three friends. Never does Andi imagine the cruise will include the murder of a has-been lounge singer—or that Ruby might be the main suspect.

Flirting with more than danger after arriving in Mexico, Andi connects with charming local sheriff, Manual Gonzales. An embarrassing night involving the sheriff, too many margaritas, and a Mariachi band, can’t quell her determination to clear the name of her ex-stepmother.

While gathering clues and interviewing witnesses, however, she suspects dear old step-mom isn’t the only one in jeopardy.

About Mary Cunningham

Author, Mary Cunningham, grew up on the northern side of the Ohio River in Corydon, Indiana. Her first memories are of her dad’s original bedtime stories that no doubt inspired her imagination and love of a well-spun “yarn.”

Through the author’s horrifying stint as a travel agent, Andi Anna Jones sprang to life. The adult/mystery series gives extra meaning to the phrase, “Write what you know.” Cunningham has several books published, including Cynthia’s Attic, a five-book middle-grade fantasy, women’s lifestyle/humor book, WOOF: Women Only Over Fifty, Ebooks, Christmas With Daisy and Ghost Light. A biography of an army brat, turned UConn and WNBA basketball player, will be published in the spring of 2022.

She is a member of Sisters In Crime, Sisters In Crime-Atlanta Chapter, International Thriller Writers, Inc., and the Carrollton Writers Guild.

When she gives her fingers a break from the keyboard, Mary enjoys golf, swimming, and exploring the mountains of West Georgia where she makes her home with her husband and adopted, four-legged, furry daughter, Lucy.

Author Links

Purchase Link – AmazonB&N

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

May 5 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – CHARACTER GUEST POST

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

May 6 – Baroness’ Book Trove – SPOTLIGHT

May 6 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

May 7 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

May 7 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

May 8 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

May 8 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW

May 9 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT, EXCERPT

May 9 – I Read What You Write – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 10 – The Mystery Section – GUEST POST

May 10 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 11 – Hearts & Scribbles – SPOTLIGHT

May 11 – Lady Hawkeye – SPOTLIGHT, EXCERPT

May 12 – Socrates Book Reviews – REVIEW

May 12 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 13 – fundinmental – SPOTLIGHT

May 14 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

May 14 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

May 15 – Drink Coffee and Read Books – REVIEW

May 15 – Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers – SPOTLIGHT, EXCERPT

May 16 – Novels Alive – GUEST POST

May 17 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

May 17 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT

May 18 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?

Click Here to Find Details and Sign Up Today!

 

Posted in Blog Tour, Cozy Mystery, Guest Post

Guest Post and Blog Tour for Bear Witness, an Alaska Untamed Mystery by Lark O. Jensen

Guest Blog Post, by Linda O. Johnston, who wrote Bear Witness, the first Alaska Untamed Mystery, under the pseudonym Lark O. Jensen:

Whodunnits and Wildlife

What do writers who love animals, and also love to read and write cozy mysteries, do for fun?

Well, at least some of them, like me, write cozy mysteries that contain animals!  Are you surprised? 😊

That has been the case with all the various cozy mystery series I’ve written, from the Kendra Ballantyne Mysteries to the Pet Rescue Mysteries, the Barkery and Biscuits Mysteries, and even the Superstition Mysteries. They all contain dogs, my favorite animals.

And now? More animals, including wildlife! My new book BEAR WITNESS is an Alaska Untamed mystery, the first in a series. Does it contain a dog? Of course! It’s Sasha, a husky, whose name means “defender,” and in addition to being a wonderful companion, that’s what Sasha does: defend people.

Sasha belongs to Stacie Calder, the series protagonist. Stacie is a naturalist, by education and vocation, and because of her love of animals. Right now, she lives in Alaska and provides tours during the warmest seasons on a tour boat owned by a family with an entire fleet of tour boats. Yes, she points out animals, some wonderful wildlife, while Sasha comes along with her

Stacie loves to show tourists the seal mamas and babies on ice floes in the waterways where they travel, as well as birds in the sky and wolves and bears along the shore. She likes the people she works with, too, including the captain and assistant captain of her boat and the staff in addition to herself, as well as most of the tourists she helps to watch all those wonderful animals.

You note I said most of the tourists. Some who take sightseeing trips with them aren’t particularly nice, especially a few who are snooping and trying to learn all they can about running that kind of tour boat, since they want to buy their own and go into competition. They even talk about it, to each other, and to those who work on the tour boat.

Not exactly a good way to make friends onboard, at least not with those who are in charge.

And one of those passengers who says he wants to become a competitor winds up dead. He disappears one day, and his body is found in the water when they take the same journey the next day. Who finds him? Sasha, with her wonderful sense of scent, discovers him off the side of the boat, along the shore.

It turns out he was murdered.

As I said, Stacie is a naturalist and doesn’t consider herself any kind of detective. But when one of her favorite people, the captain of her tour boat, winds up being considered the main suspect, she has to try to find the answer. There are other suspects too. Stacie herself even argued with the murder victim, so to some extent she has to investigate to protect herself.

She’s not the only one investigating, of course. Among other authorities, Officer Liam Amaruq of a new wing of the Alaska State Troopers winds up officially looking into it. Stacie likes Liam. They even start developing a bit of a relationship, although he doesn’t really want her snooping.

Yes, it’s a cozy mystery.

I got the idea of this kind of mystery series while I was on an Alaskan cruise a few years ago. No, my dogs weren’t with me, but I took one of those boat tours in the Juneau area and was highly impressed with the wonderful wildlife pointed out by the tour guides on that boat. Seals and whales and porpoises in the water, various birds in the air, and bears and wolves on the shoreline landscape.

My animal-lover writer mind got into business and started brainstorming about how I could use what I saw in a story, even a series.

The Alaska Untamed Mysteries are the result!

By the way, I also write Harlequin Romantic Suspense novels, and most of them also contain—what else?—dogs.

Bear Witness (An Alaska Untamed Mystery)
by Lark O. Jensen

About Bear Witness


Bear Witness (An Alaska Untamed Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Alaska
Crooked Lane Books (May 10, 2022)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 320 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1643858963
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1643858968
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09CD3RWVD

Alaska tour boat guide Stacie Calder faces the deep freeze in this scenic cozy series debut perfect for fans of Paige Shelton.

No nine-to-five cubicle career will suit Stacie Calder—the naturalist much prefers working in the great outdoors. Specifically, the spacious and spectacular Alaskan wilderness, whose rugged charms she shares with sightseers on the top deck of the tour boat where she works. But one May afternoon, Stacie’s passengers see more than glittering glaciers, frolicking harbor seals, climbing bears and soaring seabirds…they also witness a man lying dead in the frigid Alaskan waters. And it seems likely that someone gave him a fatal push.

Stacie didn’t know the unfortunate victim, but he sure wanted to know a lot about her. He spent most of his final afternoon bombarding her with questions quite awkward to answer. And when he wasn’t in her hair, he was arguing incessantly with the boat’s beleaguered crew. Which makes for a suspect list about as long as the passenger manifest. Furthermore, as police helicopters relentlessly circle her boat in search of any clues, Stacie is shaken to find herself on that suspect list.

Before the tour boat reaches shore Stacie—accompanied by her beautiful blue-eyed husky, Sasha—must deduce just who sent the testy tourist tumbling into the turgid waters and have the authorities take custody. Because if she can’t, then the killer might aim a fatal ice-cold stare at Stacie.

About Lark O. Jensen

Lark O. Jensen is the pseudonym of Linda O. Johnston, a former lawyer who is now a full-time writer. Lark has written Bear Witness, the first Alaska Untamed mystery for Crooked Lane. Linda has written the Barkery & Biscuits Mystery series and the Superstition Mysteries for Midnight Ink and the Pet Rescue Mysteries and Kendra Ballantyne, Pet-Sitter mysteries for Berkley Prime Crime. Linda also writes for Harlequin Romantic Suspense, and her stories often involve dogs.

Author Links

Website: www.LindaOJohnston.com

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

Purchase Links

Amazon Barnes & Noble

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

May 9 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 9 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 9 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 10 – Diane Reviews Books – REVIEW, GUEST POST

May 10 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

May 10 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

May 10 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW

May 11 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

May 11 – Ruff Drafts – GUEST POST

May 11 – Mochas, Mysteries and Meows – CHARACTER GUEST POST

May 11 – I Read What You Write – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 11 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT

May 12 – Mysteries with Character – GUEST POST

May 12 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW

May 12 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 12 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – REVIEW

May 13 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 13 – Novels Alive – REVIEW

May 13 – Novels Alive – SPOTLIGHT

May 13 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

May 14 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

May 14 – Carla Loves To Read – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST

May 14 – Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers – SPOTLIGHT

May 14 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW

May 15 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

May 15 – fundinmental – SPOTLIGHT

May 15 – Cassidy’s Bookshelves – SPOTLIGHT

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?
Click Here to Find Details and Sign Up Today!

Posted in Birthdays, Cozy Mystery, Freebies and Special Offers, holidays

Mother’s Day/Birthday Sale and Two New Book Cover Reveals

A Stone’s Throw, the first book of my Cobble Cove cozy mystery series, is on sale for Mother’s Day weekend, Friday, May 6 through my birthday on Monday, May 9.

Check out the reviews:

*****5-stars “A Stone’s Throw is an engaging mystery and I was hooked from page one. At first, the ease and flow of the writing and the well-rounded characters kept my interest. Soon, the suspense took over and drew me in completely.”

*****5-stars “There are twists and turns which will throw you off–the ending will astonish you!”

*****5-stars “Just loved this story and characters.”

*****5-stars “Superb read that I highly recommend. Looking forward to continuing the books.”

*****5-stars “I read this book in a little over 2 days because I had to get answers. I simply couldn’t put it down. I just know you will love this book as much as I did.”

Pick up your free copy here: mybook.to/Stonesthrow2

Keep an eye out for updates on my two upcoming new releases, Sneaky’s Supernatural Mystery and Other Cobble Cove Stories, and The Case of the Cat Crazy Lady, the first book of my Buttercup Bend cozy mystery series.

Have a great Mother’s Day weekend!