Posted in Cozy Mystery, Reviews

Review: Mrs. Peabody’s Party Line: A Honeyspoon Murder Mystery by Marianna Heusler

*****5 stars

Mrs. Peabody is a character you’ll enjoy meeting. Living in the 1950’s and being connected to her neighbors through a party line, she can’t help but listen in to all the conversations through which she becomes privy to secrets, adulterous affairs, and other matters some people would’ve preferred kept private.

When a murder occurs in the town library, she takes it upon herself to investigate. Teaming up with a cute little dog who joins her later in the book, she faces danger but also helps solve the mystery.

I loved the period setting of this quaint town and all the quirky characters including the nun who isn’t happy following her vows and some of the kids who are smarter than their parents. It was a perfect cozy and one that gets this fun series off to a great start.

Posted in Blog Tour, Cozy Mystery, Guest Post

Guest Post and Blog Tour for Murder Most Pemberly, An Eliza Darcy Mystery by Jessica Berg

Top Ten Ways Romance Authors Lie to You

As a contemporary romance author and a cozy author who loves to add romance to my mystery plots, writing the title hurt a little bit. Okay, it hurt quite a bit. If you are in a serious relationship or married, you know what kind of pretty half-truths we writers employ to get you to melt into your chair and never leave until gorgeous guy kisses beautiful girl in front of a glorious sunset. Just like the Masked Magician in the television show The Masked Magician threw his fellow magicians under the proverbial bus by exposing the secrets of illusions, I’m about to reveal the top 10 “lies” writers use to make you swoon. So, play along while the Wrapped Writer (not so clever, but I don’t have time to come up with something else with fitting alliteration) exposes the illusion of fictional love.

#1: Man must be gorgeous.

Newsflash: not all men are hot; some aren’t even good-looking; some have a face only a mother could love. However, looks really are inconsequential when it comes to finding the guy that will make you happy. Looks fade away; personality does not.

#2: Every kiss tastes of something besides real life.

This one is my favorite, both to exploit readers and to be exploited by. But, if you have ever been kissed, you know the truth. Kisses, unless both kissers are prepared and have either brushed their teeth or chewed gum, taste nothing like romance books’ puckers. Here is a taste of real-life kisses: garlic, coffee, anything eaten for lunch (like tacos or salty fries), wine, and the mother of all tastes: morning breath.

#3: Two people must overcome battles to find each other.

I met my future husband on a smoke break. Nothing romantic, nothing dangerous (unless you count smoking as dangerous), no spies trying to kill us, no ex-lover trying to win back my or his affection. We just met, liked each other, and the rest is history. You, too, can have this simple, albeit boring romantic adventure. If your relationship requires high level of espionage or unpacked baggage, you might be in for a world of hurt when the relationship settles around “Hey, will you pick up some lettuce on your way home from work?”

#4: Female protagonist is petite and pretty.

This is a “lie” I try not to partake in as an author, but many romance writers succumb to this characterization ploy. Women come in all shapes and sizes and colors; a real man will look at personality and not the size on the label in a pair of jeans or the cup size of a bra.

#5: Female protagonist is outspoken and may occasionally throw something.

So, I sin with this lie. Here’s why. Because part of me, and I’m assuming other romance writers feel the same, wishes I could be like my female characters. I wish I could speak my mind when angry instead of stew in silence. I wish I could be brave enough to smash a vase against the wall to show my frustration at times. And because I can’t/won’t/shouldn’t do these things, my characters sometimes do. Bye-bye sheepish author lady, hello sexy vixen who knows just the right words to say just the right things.

#6: Muscles are in.

The only six pack worth having, ladies, is a six pack of your favorite beverage. Six packs are difficult to attain and even tougher to maintain, so unless your main squeeze spends all his time in the gym and eats a very specific diet, you will have to deal with some pudge and a slight love handle or two.

#7: Every time lovers touch, electricity happens.

Um…no. Just a plain, big, old, fat no. It may happen that when you hold your significant other’s hand, jolts of hormones and pheromones and whatever else race up your skin. But if this phenomenon does not happen, please, please, please don’t freak out. You are not falling out of love; you are simply being human holding another human’s hand. Don’t expect butterflies, lighting bolts, or whatever other metaphor we authors throw at you every time you touch your lover.

#8: Weather as a barometer of The Love Journey.

Authors use weather as a symbolic device. You will not experience rebirth or rejuvenation every time it rains; you will simply get wet.

#9: The end is the end.

The end is only the beginning. Where the author leaves the couple in a passionate embrace is where real life takes over. Oil changes, spit-up, diaper duty, household chores, honey-do lists, and life begin at “the kiss.”

#10: Romance is huge, planned events.

Romance is the opposite. It’s the little moments, the insignificant moments that add up to colossal romance. Late night grocery store missions, snuggling on the couch, a back rub just because, loading/unloading the dishwasher, getting the kids out of the house make up a true relationship. Don’t lose that for an ideal that literally only exists in fiction.

So, in closing, please remember that fictional romance is exactly what it is: fictional. Read it, enjoy it, find escape in it, but then leave it and enjoy real-life romance as well. The real-life stuff is better anyway!


Murder Most Pemberley (Eliza Darcy Mysteries)
by Jessica Berg

About Murder Most Pemberley

Murder Most Pemberley (Eliza Darcy Mysteries)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Publisher: Red Adept Publishing (March 8, 2021)
Paperback: 288 pages
ISBN-10: 1948051656
ISBN-13: 978-1948051651
Digital
Publisher: Red Adept Publishing, LLC (February 16, 2021)
ASIN: B08TKJ73L1

Eat a crumpet. Check. Say “bloody hell” in an English pub. Check. Solve three murders and fall in love? Definitely not on the list. But when England dishes up murder, even an American girl knows it’s time to channel her inner Agatha Christie.

American Eliza Darcy travels to Merry Old England to partake in a Darcy/Bennet family reunion for one reason: to solve the estrangement between her father and uncle. Not long after Eliza’s arrival and exploration of the vast estate of her ancestors, a dead body surfaces. Murder and mayhem replace afternoon teas and flirting with her British heartthrob. Eliza has every intention of keeping her snoot out of official Scotland Yard business, but when clues to the murder begin to merge with her investigation into her family’s rift, her inner wannabe sleuth self-activates.

With the help of her batty great-aunt and the sexy Heath Tilney, Eliza hurries to untangle the web of lies and secrets. As corpses start to pile up faster than the clues, Eliza fears the estate’s family graveyard will swallow another body: hers.

About Jessica Berg

Jessica Berg, a child of the Dakotas and the prairie, grew up amongst hard-working men and women and learned at an early early age to “put some effort into it.” Following that wise adage, she has put effort into teaching high school English for over a decade, being a mother to four children (she finds herself surprised at this number, too), basking in the love of her husband of more than fifteen years and losing herself in the imaginary worlds she creates.

Author Links

Purchase Links – AmazonKoboB&NBooks2Read

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS

June 21 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT

June 21 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

June 22 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author Blog – SPOTLIGHT

June 22 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

June 23 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 23 – Novels Alive – GUEST POST

June 24 – Diane Reviews Books – GUEST POST

June 24 – I Read What You Write – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW

June 25 – Book Club Librarian – REVIEW

June 26 – Ruff Drafts – GUEST POST

June 26 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

June 27 – Literary Gold – CHARACTER GUEST POST

June 27 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 28 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 28 – My Journey Back the Journey Back – CHARACTER GUEST POST

June 29 – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW

June 29 – Thoughts in Progress – SPOTLIGHT

June 30 – Ascroft, eh? – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

June 30 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

July 1 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT

July 2 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

July 2 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW

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Posted in Book Sales

June Sales on 3 Mysteries and Price Drops on eBook Cozies

Check out the sale for my new time-travel release, Time’s Relative, and the upcoming sales for last summer’s medical thrillerMemory Makers, and my award-winning psychological mystery, Sea Scope.

Pick up your sales copy of TIME’S RELATIVE through June 21.

Purchase Link: http://mybook.to/timesrelative

Have you seen my article in Mystery Scene Magazine about TIME’S RELATIVE? 

Pick up your sales copy of MEMORY MAKERS from June 23- June 27.
(note: because of time differences and Amazon delays, the sale may not be up in the morning on the first day. If it hasn’t been discounted when you check, please try again later or the next day.)

Purchase Link: mybook.to/memorymakers

Pick up your sales copy of Sea Scope from June 30 – July 4.
(note: because of time differences and Amazon delays, the sale may not be up in the morning on the first day. If it hasn’t been discounted when you check, please try again later or the next day.)

Purchase Link: mybook.to/SeaScope

Cozy fans, the eBooks of all my Cobble Cove mysteries have dropped in price nearly 50 per cent. Check them all out here: mybook.to/CCseries

Posted in Freebies and Special Offers

99 Cents Sale for TIME’S RELATIVE

My apologies, but yesterday’s blog post had the wrong dates for the 99 cent sale for TIME’S RELATIVE. The sale will start on June 17 and run until June 21. I guess time got ahead of me. No pun intended. Sorry for the confusion. 

It’s the fall of 1998, and librarian Samantha Stewart is looking for a new job. After seeing an ad for a high-paying position at a company called Virtual Software that entails research and travel, Sam investigates the company and learns that its president has gone missing, and that it’s currently being run by the vice-president Greg Parsons.

Before Sam makes it to the interview, she’s visited by a strange woman who introduces herself as Jane Oldsfield: a time traveler whose mission Greg Parsons is trying to prevent.

Sam ignores the woman and goes on the job interview anyway. Soon, she finds herself involved not only with Greg Parsons, but also Philip Montmart, a chain-smoking detective with a vendetta for his wife’s killer, and the time-traveling Oldsfield and her feline accomplice.

Witnessing world events that have yet to happen in her lifetime, including 9/11, Hurricane Sandy, Y2K hysteria and the COVID pandemic, can Samantha figure out Oldsfield’s plans?

Get your sales copy here: http://mybook.to/timesrelative

Posted in Reviews, Romantic Suspense

Review: Her Dark Lies by J.T. Ellison

**** 4 stars

This book reminded me of a gothic novel. Taking place on an island in Italy during a storm and including a villa and family crypt, it was very atmospheric. I received an advanced reader’s copy and couldn’t stop reading, even though the key to the mystery was revealed early in the book. When Claire Hunter meets the rich Jack Compton, her life changes. Having led a tough teenage life and becoming involved with a criminal, she still feels guilt about the night her father was killed in a car accident that she caused.

When Jack arranges their wedding on the island where his family owns a villa, she’s excited but somewhat overwhelmed. It doesn’t help that the night before they leave for Italy, someone breaks into the house, and Claire kills the intruder in self defense. Her actions are covered up by the bodyguard who was meant to protect her and Jack. Trouble continues to follow them to the island as they prepare for their wedding, and the incoming storm adds to the mystery. Claire learns that many of the Compton wives died accidentally, including Jack’s first wife, Morgan. The only difference is that Morgan’s body has never been found, although when Jack and Claire arrive on the island, a body is discovered.

Secrets are revealed about Jack’s family, but Claire, with her own secrets, still wants to marry Jack. After her wedding gown is ruined and people start being killed by unexplained accidents at the villa, Jack’s mother moves up the wedding in the hope that whoever is trying to prevent it will stop after it has taken place. Unfortunately, the person behind the incidents has other plans.

Although I wasn’t surprised at the ending, there was a twist. I really enjoyed this book, but I found it a bit too dark for my taste. The changing point of views, even of the person behind everything, added interest and insight to the characters. For those who enjoy dark fiction with a gothic feel, I would recommend this read.

Posted in Blog Tour, Guest Post

Guest Post by Rita Moreau, Author of Wheeler Dealer, the First Ghost and Camper Kooky Cozy Mystery

Guest Post by Rita Moreau

One of the questions I have been asked – well in the past when we did book launches in real life – was how do you write a book? I would like to do that, but I don’t know where to start.

I responded you write one word at a time. Not the magic answer they were looking for but it’s the truth because the bottom line is you must write, and you have to write every day and consistently.

In today’s climate writers are writing at a fast pace. Books are done in a month. Why? Readers in today’s climate will not wait a year unless you are a very well-known author.  I have tried to write at a faster clip but its not easy. The pandemic in a way was helpful in that regard because I had no other distractions. I taught group fitness classes and for me it was my socialization. Writing is solitary and lonely and hard. When that went away, I was like all of us in lockdown and I sat and wrote.  Last year I started a new series and have two books in the series complete and working on the third one.  I have it down to about 4 months to finish a book taking into time for editing and formatting and book covers.

The other question or answer to questions I have given new authors or those who want to write is that you must hire a professional editor. You must take the time to learn about editing. For example, do you know there are different types of editing? When I first realized I needed an editor I asked an author who was speaking at an event about editing and how to go about finding an editor. I was floored with the answer – “I have three editors”. Well now I have three editors or have worked with three, a developmental, a copy and line editor and a proofreader.  Not to mention beta readers who seem to catch issues your editors may have missed.  I also have found reading the manuscript out loud to be extremely helpful.  You will catch so much if you take the time to read your work out loud. Sometimes writing in longhand is helpful. I use it when I’m first sitting down to write a new novel. It helps me with my outline. I am more of a plotter but not detailed. I have a outline but use it more as a guide. Recently I have found I can write the ending before I reach the end. It helps me because I know where I am going. It may not turn out to be the end but it gets me past any writers block.

Finally, if you can accept the fact that more than likely you are not going to sell your book to Netflix or you are not going to make a bundle or you are not going to make the best seller list you will finally relax and take that pressure off your shoulders. And then who knows – you might write that book that makes it to the big or little screen. But still when I read a review and the reader tells me my words made them laugh and gave them a break from what they were going through in their everyday life than that is more than making a million dollars off the sale of your books.  That’s the real joy on paper.

Wheeler-Dealer Ghost & Camper Kooky Mystery
by Rita Moreau

About Wheeler- Dealer


Wheeler-Dealer Ghost & Camper Kooky Mystery
Paranormal Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Independently published (April 1, 2021)
Paperback: 332 pages
ISBN-13: 979-8676266394
Digital ASIN: B08YP5NJNV

Solving a murder might raise her spirits. But will it spring her spectral friend from Purgatory?

Mabel Gold still isn’t sure what happened. Traded by her husband for a busty bimbo the same age as their youngest daughter, the feisty sixty-something rejects the retirement community and heads west in a vintage camper. But the RV comes complete with a ghost who needs a good deed to get into Heaven, and cracking open a homicide at their first stop in Savannah could give them both a new lease on life.

Determined to dig up the dirt on the dead wheeler-dealer, Mabel and her phantom companion tackle the crime. But with two rich dudes from Dubai, a Willie Nelson lookalike mobster, and a widow nicknamed The Barracuda all on the suspect list, conjuring up the truth could take a real live miracle.

Can Mabel catch the killer before she’s the next soul crashing the Pearly Gates?

Wheeler-Dealer is the high-spirited first book in the hilarious Ghost & the Camper kooky mystery series. If you like golden-girl sleuths, zany characters, and sardonic humor, then you’ll love Rita Moreau’s witty whodunit.

About Rita Moreau

Rita Moreau is the author of the Mary Catherine Mahoney Mystery series and the Ghost & Camper Kooky Mystery series.

A workaholic by nature, upon retirement, Rita Moreau began work on her bucket list, writing a book. Traveling the national parks with her husband George in a vintage Bluebird motor home, (on George’s list), Rita completed her first novel Bribing Saint Anthony. Back home she completed Nuns! Psychics! & Gypsies! OH! NO, Feisty Nuns and The Russian & Aunt Sophia and The House on Xenia. Last year when we entered the Twilight Zone Rita wrote the first two new novels in the Ghost & the Camper series. Rita and her husband live in a postcard called Florida where he has fun telling everyone he is the author’s husband. When not writing she joins PatZi Gil on the Joy on Paper radio program with Book Buzz Mysteries, or you can find her teaching SilverSneakers fitness classes and doing her best to keep busy. She loves connecting with readers. Visit her at http://www.RitaMoreau.com or find her on Facebook at facebook.com/RitaMoreauAuthor. She would love to hear from you.

Author Links

Website – http://www.ritamoreau.com

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/RitaMoreauAuthor/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/RitaMoreau

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/ritamoreau4996/

Radio – http://www.radio-joyonpaper.com

GoodReads – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6587803.Rita_Moreau

Purchase Link – Amazon

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS

May 24 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT, RECIPE

May 24 – Literary Gold – CHARACTER GUEST POST

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

May 25 – Baroness’ Book Trove – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

May 25 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 25 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

May 26 – Novels Alive – GUEST POST

May 26 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – CHARACTER GUEST POST

May 26 – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW

May 27 – Ruff Drafts – GUEST POST

May 27 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW

May 27 – MJB Reviewer – REVIEW

May 28 – Angel’s Guilty Pleasures – SPOTLIGHT

May 28 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 28 – I Read What You Write – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 29 – CelticLady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 29 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

May 29 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

May 30 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT

May 30 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

May 30 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

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Posted in Blog Tour, Cozy Mystery, Interview

Interview with Debra H. Goldstein, Author of Four Cuts Too Many, A Sarah Blair Cozy Mystery.

I’m honored to have author Debra H. Goldstein from Birmingham, Alabama as a guest on Ruff Drafts for her blog tour with her new Sarah Blair release, Four Cuts Too Many.

Hi, Debra. How long have you been published? What titles and/or series have you published and with which publisher? Have you self-published any titles? Please give details.:Drafts.

Although I had legal articles published during my legal career, I didn’t begin writing fiction until a conference competition in 2010. During the past eleven years, I have written six published novels, one that will come out in 2022, and more than forty short stories. My works have been recognized with an IPPY award, as well as being named Agatha, Anthony, Derringer and Silver Falchion finalists.

Maze in Blue – a mystery set on the University of Michigan’s campus in the 1970’s – was published by Chalet, LLC (2011). When they went out of business in 2012, they gave me all files, including the artwork, so I could put it up on CreateSpace and fulfill my speaking obligations. Harlequin Worldwide Mystery bought its mass market rights, but I retain and still have it available in trade paperback and e-book.

Should Have Played Poker: a Carrie Martin and the Mah Jongg Players Mystery – published in 2016 by Five Star. Mass Market rights were later sold to Harlequin Worldwide Mystery. Five Star is no longer publishing mysteries.

One Taste Too Many – Kensington’s Sarah Blair cozy mystery series – January 2019-available in mass market, e-book, large print, and audio book.

Two Bites Too Many – Kensington’s Sarah Blair cozy mystery series – October 2019 – available in mass market, e-book, large print, and audio book.

Three Treats Too Many – Kensington’s Sarah Blair cozy mystery series – August 2020 – available in mass market, e-book, large print, and audio book.

Four Cuts Too Many – Kensington’s Sarah Blair cozy mystery series – May 2021 – available in mass market and e-book.

Five Belles Too Many – Kensington’s Sarah Blair cozy mystery series – (2022)

That’s quite impressive. Tell us a little bit about your books — if you write a series, any upcoming releases or your current work-in-progress. If you have an upcoming release, please specify the release date.

Four Cuts Too Many, the fourth book in Kensington’s Sarah Blair mystery series, releases on May 25, 2021. Set in a small Southern town, Sarah, who finds kitchens more frightening than murder, gets an education in slicing and dicing when someone in the culinary school where her friend teaches serves up a main corpse. Sarah soon finds that there’s no time to mince words when it comes to finding the real killer.

Sounds interesting, and I love the cover.

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?

I write because it is a passion. Just before my second book was released, I walked away from my lifetime judicial appointment to write. My goals as a writer are simple: enjoy what I’m doing (I’m in my second childhood) and give readers an entertaining experience the fun of which allows them to escape the real world.  

Those are great goals and a win win for you and your readers.

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

The Sarah Blair books appeal to cozy readers ages twenty to infinity. They are fast fun reads, but with a slight edge grounded in real life.

I’m sure they attract a wide audience.

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

Follow your dream. I wish I had done it sooner. Remember to read other people’s works, take classes, read how-to-books, network, and most of all – write. Publication doesn’t necessarily happen overnight, but improvement in your skills can happen daily.

As an author still hoping to find an agent, I appreciate that advice. I’m aware it can take time, and I’m thankful to my two Indie publishers who publish both my cozy series and my standalone mysteries.

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

My biggest challenge was believing I could write and making the time to write. I was a master talking about how I wanted to write, but also in finding ways to avoid it.

I can relate to that. After self publishing my first book that didn’t sell well because I had no experience with marketing and promotion,, I stopped writing for some time until a patron at the library where I work who’d read my book told me that I shouldn’t give up my dream and that if I really wanted to write, I would find the time. Even though I still find marketing and promotion challenging, I now have 11 published books and, despite my full-time job, am still writing.

Do you belong to any writing groups? Which ones?

I belong to several chapters of Sisters in Crime and previously served as the president of its largest chapter, the Guppies, as well as being on the national board for five years. Presently, I am president of the Southeast region of Mystery Writers of America and sit on their national board. I also am a member of the Atlanta Writers Group.

Sisters in Crime and their Guppies group are wonderful associations for mystery authors. I’m also a member of both groups as well as International Thriller Writers and the Cat Writers’ Association. I’m hoping to join Mystery Writers of America soon.

  1. What are your hobbies and interests besides writing?

Reading, Broadway shows, family & friends.

Nice. Hopefully Broadway shows will resume soon.

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

I love interacting with people and getting in the zone where words flow into stories and novels. My toughest challenge is balancing life, writing, and promotion – and sometimes coming up with a good idea.

I have trouble balancing writing time with my other obligations, too. I have lots of ideas but not the time to implement them all, so I have to pick and choose.

What do you like about writing cozy mysteries?

Writing cozy mysteries are a challenge to create a solid whodunit that readers enjoy and can potentially figure out without giving the ending away. It’s like creating a puzzle or a maze for people to walk through, with fair clues. If the writing works, I provide a reader with moments of escape and fun, while challenging myself to make each book or story better than the last one.

Yes, it’s important that readers are given clues but ones that don’t make the mystery too easy to solve. That’s another balancing act for cozy as well as other mystery writers.

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

Four Cuts Too Many Excerpt:

“There’s something obviously still bothering you. You’ve laid out lots of theories, but you don’t sound convinced about any of them. From what you’ve said, besides Grace, you’ve got lots of possible suspects for Harlan and Chief Gerard to look at. Right?”

“In a sense.” Sarah held up her fingers as she ticked them off. “They should consider anyone who was on the floor when Grace and I got there. That would be Wanda, Franklin, Chef Bernardi, Fern, Nancy, Dr. Williams, and the people who waited to be interviewed in their offices who I don’t even know. The same holds true on the tenure issue, because most of the faculty is working its way toward tenure.”

Sarah put her hands back on the table. “I don’t think I have enough fingers to count everyone. When I add in family, there’s Wanda, but also Wanda’s biological mom, Dr. Martin’s new wife, Lynn, and Kait. There might also be someone at the retirement home who has a connection to Dr. Martin that I haven’t discovered yet. Someone mentioned that because of Kait, they considered Dr. Martin to be part of the Sunshine Retirement Home family.”

“That a long list of potential suspects. Surely Harlan can find enough motivation for most of them to raise doubt if Grace is arrested or tried. What’s really bothering you? What’s going on in your head?”

“I have to admit that if I were Chief Gerard and I was committed to following the money and the blood, Grace would be my primary suspect too . . .”

What a tantalizing excerpt. Thanks for sharing.

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

I’d like your readers to know how appreciative I am for them. Without them, Sarah couldn’t exist nor could I be having the time of my life. Thank you for having me today and to your readers for supporting my dream.

My pleasure. Readers are the best.

Thanks so much for chatting with me today. I’m sharing your blog tour and giveaway. Best wishes on the tour and your new release.


Four Cuts Too Many (A Sarah Blair Mystery)
by Debra H. Goldstein

About Four Cuts Too Many

Four Cuts Too Many (A Sarah Blair Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
4th in Series
Publisher: Kensington (May 25, 2021)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
ISBN-10: 1496732219
ISBN-13: 978-1496732217
Digital ASIN: B08GY52GS6

Sarah Blair gets an education in slicing and dicing when someone in culinary school serves up a main corpse in Wheaton, Alabama . . .

Between working as a law firm receptionist, reluctantly pitching in as co-owner of her twin sister’s restaurant, and caretaking for her regal Siamese RahRah and rescue dog Fluffy, Sarah has no time to enjoy life’s finer things. Divorced and sort-of dating, she’s considering going back to school. But as a somewhat competent sleuth, Sarah’s more suited for criminal justice than learning how many ways she can burn a meal.

Although she wouldn’t mind learning some knife skills from her sous chef, Grace Winston. An adjunct instructor who teaches cutlery expertise in cooking college, Grace is considering accepting an executive chef’s position offered by Jane Clark, Sarah’s business rival—and her late ex-husband’s lover. But Grace’s future lands in hot water when the school’s director is found dead with one of her knives in his back. To clear her friend’s name, Sarah must sharpen her own skills at uncovering an elusive killer . . .

Includes quick and easy recipes!

About Debra H. Goldstein

Judge Debra H. Goldstein writes Kensington’s Sarah Blair mystery series (Three Treats Too Many, Two Bites Too Many, One Taste Too Many). She also authored Should Have Played Poker and IPPY Award-winning Maze in Blue. Her short stories have been named Agatha, Anthony, Derringer finalists. Debra serves on the national boards of Mystery Writers of America and is president of SEMWA. She previously was on Sisters in Crime’s national board and president of SinC’s Guppy Chapter.

Find out more about Debra and sign up for her newsletter at https://www.DebraHGoldstein.com. Follow her on Twitter (@DebraHGoldstein), Bookbub (https://www.bookbub.com/profile/debra-h-goldstein), and Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/DebraHGoldsteinAuthor/).

Purchase Links: AmazonB&NKoboGoogle PlayIndieBound

a Rafflecopter giveaway

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

May 23 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT

May 23 – Diane Reviews Books – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST

May 24 – Ruff Drafts – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 24 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 25 – Novels Alive – GUEST POST

May 25 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

May 26 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

May 26 – Mochas, Mysteries and Meows – CHARACTER GUEST POST

May 27 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW

May 27 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – GUEST POST

May 28 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, RECIPE

May 28 – Ascroft, eh? – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 28 – View from the Birdhouse – SPOTLIGHT

May 29 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST

May 29 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

May 30 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

June 1 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

June 1 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW, GUEST POST

June 2 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW

June 2 – Island Confidential – SPOTLIGHT

June 3 – Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic – SPOTLIGHT

June 3 – Mysteries with Character – REVIEW

June 4 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 4 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

June 5 – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW

June 5 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

June 6 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT

June 6 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

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Posted in Blog Tour, Guest Post

Guest Post, Blog Tour, and Giveaway for Death by Donut, A Pismawallops PTA Cozy Mystery by Rebecca M. Douglass

Where on Earth is Pismawallops Island, and how did it get there?

For those new to my PTA mystery series, the setting is a fairly small island in Puget Sound (Washington State), way up nearly in Canada. So how did it get there, and what made me chose an island? Aside from the obvious answer (“why not?”), I actually have several good reasons, even not considering the pleasures of owning an entire island. Okay, I admit that Pismawallops doesn’t actually exist outside of my books and my imagination, but it’s still mine.

Why else an island? I grew up on one. An island, in fact, not radically different from Pismawallops Island. So there’s an obvious attraction there—it’s easy to set a book in your hometown, and even easier if you make it a fictional version of your town. Pismawallops isn’t Vashon Island, but there are influences.

My childhood island is about 14 miles long, 6 miles wide, and when I was a kid had about 10,000 year-round residents. When my mom grew up there in the 1930s and 40s they had a lot of summer people, but by my time the summer cottages had mostly been refurbished for year-round use (or just moved into and occupants left to shiver through the winters). Vashon provided a couple of key elements I knew my fictional island had to have. For one thing, it has its own school district. I didn’t want some big-city administrators interfering with the operations of my little island, so I borrowed that element even though Pismawallops is probably too small to get away with it in the real world.

The second really key element was limited access. Pismawallops, like Vashon, is accessible only by ferry. I like islands that *are* islands. Some of my favorite childhood stories are set on islands of one sort or another, and the more remote the better. The limited access also lets me treat the island more like the isolated British country house of a different era of mystery writers. I honestly don’t know how mystery writers manage urban settings, where to me it feels like the suspects are infinite.

So what other islands have I known, besides the one I grew up on? Pismawallops is influenced by the San Juan Islands, also in Puget Sound. I never got to live there, but I did several bicycle trips there in my younger years, and somehow even to this girl from an island not so far off, they felt exotic. I borrowed heavily from the feeling of isolation and sparseness of population I got cycling on Lopez Island and even San Juan Island.

Other favorite islands are less apparent in the genesis of Pismawallops: Wizard Island, in the middle of Crater Lake. Alcatraz. Angel Island, where you can camp out and admire the San Francisco skyline all night. Every single little island off the Maine coast (even though I haven’t visited any, they have appeared in so many books I’ve read that just looking at them from the shore evokes adventure). Prince Edward Island, of course. I haven’t visited it, either, but Anne of Green Gables was a fixture of my childhood.

Of course, if we want to get a little larger, there’s Great Britain, and finally, ever and always the islands of my heart, New Zealand. With all that love of islands, can you wonder any longer that when I decided to invest in some imaginary real estate, I invented an island?

Death By Donut (A Pismawallops PTA Mystery)
by Rebecca M. Douglass

About Death by Donut


Death By Donut (A Pismawallops PTA Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
5th In Series
Independently Published (May 16, 2021)
~200 Pages
Digital ASIN: B08VKSZV2D

Election day’s almost here, and the island’s new pool is on the line. JJ should be all in with the campaign, but when a prominent Island businessman drops dead at her feet in the Have-A-Bite Bakery, someone has a mystery to solve. JJ’s fiancé—police chief Ron Karlson—is out of town. Who else is there?

JJ is missing her sweetheart, tired of the winter rains, and distracted by everybody’s questions about when the wedding’s happening. Even more worrying, her foster-daughter’s father has failed to show up on schedule. No wonder JJ’s struggling to wrap this one up before someone else bites into the wrong donut. There’s no time to lose, because something truly essential is on the line: saving the bakery—and JJ’s favorite espresso brownies!

About Rebecca M. Douglass

Rebecca M. Douglass was raised in Washington State on an island only a little bigger than Pismawallops. Though she has lived most of her adult life in California, the salt waters of Puget Sound continue to call to her and she enjoys owning an island in the Salish Sea, even if she had to invent one to do so! Rebecca has written a number of children’s books as well as her Pismawallops PTA mysteries and has had short stories published in several anthologies. When she isn’t writing, she likes to spend her free time hiking and biking, and her vacations exploring the outdoor world by camping, hiking, and backpacking.

Author Links

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

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Rebecca-M-Douglass/e/B0078SLT2A/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_2?qid=1502128942&sr=8-2

Smashwords Page: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/NinjaLibrarian

Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5755891.Rebecca_M_Douglass

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Douglass_RM

Purchase Links – AmazonSmashwords B&N iTunes Kobo

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS

May 17 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT

May 17 – Laura’s Interests – SPOTLIGHT

May 18 – Novels Alive – GUEST POST

May 18 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT

May 19 – Hearts & Scribbles – SPOTLIGHT

May 19 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 20 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

May 21 – Books to the Ceiling – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 21 – Diane Reviews Books – SPOTLIGHT

May 22 – Ruff Drafts – GUEST POST

May 22 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

May 23 – Author Elena Taylor’s Blog – REVIEW

May 24 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 24 – My Journey Back the Journey Back – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 25 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – GUEST POST

May 25 – Brianne’s Book Reviews – REVIEW

May 26 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

May 26 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

May 27 – Baroness’ Book Trove – SPOTLIGHT

May 27 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

May 28 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT

May 28 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

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Posted in Uncategorized

Recipe and Blog Tour for The Body in the Beaver Pond, The First Keri Isles Event Planner Cozy Mystery, by Cathy Perkins

Keri Isles is the first to admit she can’t cook, but she’s desperate for something to eat besides eggs and canned soup. She asks (okay, begs) her friend CoCo Anderson, the owner of a local café, for cooking lessons. Although CoCo would prefer Keri start with a non-cooking recipe, like a salad, she suggests a simple, hearty, soup recipe.

You’ll have to read the story to find out why it’s so important that Keri remember to:

SOAK THE BEANS!

Eleven Bean Frontier Soup

Serves 8

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Mixed Beans (1 lb bag)
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 cup Onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves Minced Garlic
  • 1 tsp Chili Powder 
  • 1 tsp Smoked Paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 1 tsp dried Parsley
  • 1/2 tsp dried Thyme
  • 1/4 tsp Cayenne
  • 8 cups Water (or chicken broth if omitting ham hock)
  • 1 Ham Hock
  • 2 15-oz cans diced Tomatoes
  • 4 cups sliced Kale (or Spinach)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Rinse the beans, then place in a bowl with enough water to cover by an inch. Soak overnight.
  2. The next day, drain the beans into a colander and rinse them well.
  3. In a soup pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, herbs and spices and sauté until onion is soft, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the beans to the soup pot with 2 1/2 quarts of water and ham hock; bring to a boil.
  5. Reduce heat and simmer until beans are soft, 3-3 1/2 hours. Add water or broth if soup becomes too dry or thick. Adjust to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. Add tomatoes and kale. Simmer for 20 minutes.

Options!

Replace the ham hock and kale with 2 cups carrots and/or 2 cups butternut squash.

Add 4 strips of bacon, cut into ½ inch wide pieces. If using bacon, cook the bacon over medium low heat, stirring it occasionally until the fat has rendered and the bacon is crisp, about 8 minutes. (Be patient; low and slow is the name of the game here!) With a slotted spoon, remove the bacon to a plate and set aside, leaving the drippings in the pot. If using olive oil instead, simply warm the oil in the pot.

The Body in the Beaver Pond: A Keri Isles Event Planner Mystery
by Cathy Perkins

About The Body in the Beaver Pond

The Body in the Beaver Pond: A Keri Isles Event Planner Mystery
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Publisher: Red Mountain Publishing (May 15, 2021)
Number of Pages: 325
Digital ASIN : B08ZYWWSY4

Even an event planner doesn’t plan on murder . . .

Keri Isles desperately needs to sell the Christmas Tree farm her cheating, rotten ex convinced his buddy, the judge, to saddle her with in the divorce settlement. Stuck in the Cascade Mountains, she’s lost her Seattle-based job and local job prospects are as scarce as internet service. When she finds the arrogant professor in charge of the local archeology dig floating face down in her beaver pond, however, unloading the property becomes secondary to staying out of prison.

A savvy—and scheming—attorney may be able to keep her head above water, but the personal price of his retainer may be too high. It’s up to Keri to use her mad networking skills and deploy a team of archaeology students, a bad boy photographer, and assorted eccentric neighbors to find the killer and clear her name.

About Cathy Perkins

Cathy Perkins’s suspense writing lurks behind a financial day-job, where she learned firsthand the camouflage, hide-in-plain-sight skills employed by her villains. A member of Sisters in Crime and International Thriller Writers, she has coordinated conferences, contests and debut author programs, and is a contributing editor for The Big Thrill.

When not writing, she can be found doing battle with the beavers over the pond height or setting off on another travel adventure. Born and raised in South Carolina, she now lives in Washington with her husband, children, several dogs and the resident deer herd.

Author Links

Social Media

Facebook http://www.facebook.com/CathyPerkinsAuthor

Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCathyPerkins

Twitter @cperkinswrites https://twitter.com/cperkinswrites

BookBub – follow me! https://www.bookbub.com/profile/cathy-perkins

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/cathyperkinswrites/

Goodreads http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5367341.Cathy_Perkins

Amazon Author Page http://www.amazon.com/Cathy-Perkins/e/B006K0IKUQ

Website https://cperkinswrites.com

Purchase Links

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS

May 14 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

May 14 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

May 15 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 15 – Author Elena Taylor’s Blog – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 16 – Diane Reviews Books – SPOTLIGHT

May 16 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

May 17 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

May 18 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

May 18 – Cozy Up With Kathy – SPOTLIGHT

May 19 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT

May 19 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – GUEST POST, INDIVIDUAL GIVEAWAY

May 20 – Novels Alive – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

May 20 – Ruff Drafts – RECIPE POST

May 21 – View from the Birdhouse – SPOTLIGHT

May 21 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

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May 22 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW

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