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DEATH OF A BEAUTY QUEEN by Barbara Jean Coast (and a giveaway!)

Death of a Beauty Queen: A Poppy Cove Mystery

(Poppy Cove Mystery Series Book 2)
Paperback: 220 pages
Publisher: Cozy Cat Press (May 9, 2014)
ISBN-13: 978-1939816436
E-Book File Size: 353 KB
ASIN: B00LBDLZ8Q
SYNOPSIS

It’s the 1950’s in Santa Lucia, California, and the height of the social season. Time for the new Miss Santa Lucia, Nora Burbank, to display her loveliness at a high society fashion show produced by the city’s own fashionistas–Margot and Daphne, owners of Poppy Cove, the most elegant and “in” little dress shop in the county.

Nora steals the show in her designer gown and custom-made necklace created by local jeweler Isaac Mendelson, and used on the sly by his apprentice son-in-law, Efrem Goldberg. At the conclusion of the show, the young queen is allowed to keep her dress and a replica of the necklace for her own. But Monday morning, Efrem arrives in a panic at Poppy Cove to beg Margot and Daphne’s assistance in tracking down the real necklace, which he believes was inadvertently switched for the replica backstage. The girls get involved in Efrem’s dilemma and try to help him before Isaac’s any the wiser. But before that can happen, Miss Santa Lucia is found dead in her bed and the necklace is missing.

Who killed Nora Burbank? Is it someone jealous of her new royal position and all of its perks? Or did she just happen to be in the way when a thief attempted to steal her diamond-studded necklace? Did Nora have the real or the fake necklace, and how much did the thief and murderer know about it? But, of course, before the girls can find the killer, they’ll have to create several beautiful ensembles, calm numerous irate clients, and flirt with their ever-so-attentive boyfriends, before solving this mystery.

ABOUT THESE AUTHORS

Barbara Jean Coast is the pen name of authors Andrea Taylor and Heather Shkuratoff, both of whom reside in Kelowna, BC, Canada.  Barbara Jean, however, is a resident of Santa Lucia, California (eerily similar to Santa Barbara), where she enjoys long lunches, cocktail parties, fancy dinner dates with attractive and attentive gentlemen.  Her interests include Alfred Hitchcock movies, reading Carolyn Keene, music by popular musicians, such Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett, shopping for new dresses, attending society events and always looking fabulous in kitten heels.  DEATH OF A BEAUTY QUEEN is her second novel in the Poppy Cove Mystery Series.

Andrea Taylor

Andrea always imagined herself being a supersleuth girl detective and writing adventurous stories, full of mystery and intrigue since she was old enough to hold a pencil.  She resides in Kelowna, BC, Canada, where she writes under the pen name of Barbara Jean Coast with her co-author friend, Heather Shkuratoff, and travels often to California to further develop the stories and escapades of the Poppy Cove Mystery Series.  Andrea has also published freelance articles about fashion, current events, and childcare, and is currently blogging on WordPress about creativity and poetry, as well as researching for her own literary novels.

Heather Shkuratoff

As an avid mystery reader, Heather joined lifelong friend Andrea Taylor to create the Poppy Cove Mystery Series, written under the pen name of Barbara Jean Coast.  Growing up in a family of talented crafters and sewers, Heather developed her own skills to become a dressmaker and designer, which helps to give rich detail and character to their stories.  She lives in Kelowna, BC, Canada, but spends much time in California, researching for the novels and doing her best to live like Barbara Jean.

MY REVIEW

This is a fun new (2nd book) series. And if you are a fan and follow the authors online, it is even more fun. I can’t fathom working with another person to write, it must be so hard. But these two talented ladies not only write together, they manage to maintain a third person – Barbara Jean Coast. Barbara Jean stays in her proper but fun 1950’s persona at all times. She’s almost as fun as the books! And the books are fun. Lots of fifties fashion, lots of flirting, and most importantly of all, a very well crafted mystery at the heart of it all that will keep you guessing and reading until the end. Another ♥♥♥♥♥

Leave a comment for Heather or Andrea and a fifties related question, perhaps, for Barbara Jean herself for a chance to win an e-copy of DEATH OF A BEAUTY QUEEN.

AUTHOR LINKS

Webpage: http://barbarajeancoast.com/

Blog:  http://welcometopoppycove.wordpress.com/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/BarbaraJCoast

Pinterest:  http://pinterest.com/bjcoast/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/barbarajean.coast &https://www.facebook.com/pages/Poppy-Cove-Mysteries/375180072578350

Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/BJCoast

Amazon Kindle: Death of a Beauty Queen: A Poppy Cove Mystery (Poppy Cove Mystery Series Book 2) – Kindle edition by Barbara Jean Coast. Mystery, Thriller & Suspense Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.

Smashwords: Smashwords – Death of a Beauty Queen – a book by Barbara Jean Coast

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/death-of-a-beauty-queen-1

B&N, Nook:   http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/death-of-a-beauty-queen-barbara-jean-coast/1120687392?ean=2940046386165

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

February 2 – Tea and A Book – Review, Giveaway

February 3 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – Review

February 4 – Back Porchervations – Review

February 5 – rantin’ ravin’ and reading – Review, Guest Post, Giveaway

February 6 – EditingPen/Latte’ Da – Interview, Giveaway

February 7 – Queen of All She Reads – Spotlight

February 8 – Christa Reads and Writes – Review

February 9 – Jane Reads – Review, Interview

February 10 – Shelley’s Book Case – Review

February 11 – A Blue Million Books – Interview, Giveaway

February 12 – readalot – Review

February 13 – Melina’s Book Blog – Review, Guest Post

February 14 – EditingPen – Review

February 15 – Cozy Up With Kathy – Guest Post

 

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Release Day Spotlight: THE BULLET CATCH by John Gaspard

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GASPARD-pic-236x300John Gaspard was here a year ago (be sure and read the interview) for his first book, THE AMBITIOUS CARD, so I am thrilled to let you know his second book, THE BULLET CATCH, is out today.

In real life, John’s not a magician, but he has directed six low-budget features that cost very little and made even less – that’s no small trick. He’s also written multiple books on the subject of low-budget filmmaking. Ironically, they’ve made more than the films.

His blog, “Fast, Cheap Movie Thoughts” has been named “One of the 50 Best Blogs for Moviemakers” and “One of The 100 Best Blogs For Film and Theater Students.” He’s also written for TV and the stage.

John lives in Minnesota and shares his home with his lovely wife, several dogs, a few cats and a handful of pet allergies.

JOHN’S LINKS

WEBSITE

BLOG

TWITTER 

FACEBOOK

EMAIL

gaspard coverSYNOPSIS

Newly-single magician Eli Marks reluctantly attends his high school reunion against his better judgment, only to become entangled in two deadly encounters with his former classmates. The first is the fatal mugging of an old crush’s husband, followed by the suspicious deaths of the victim’s business associates.

At the same time, Eli also comes to the aid of a classmate-turned-movie-star who fears that attempting The Bullet Catch in an upcoming movie may be his last performance. As the bodies begin to pile up, Eli comes to the realization that juggling these murderous situations — while saving his own neck — may be the greatest trick he’s ever performed.

MY REVIEW

I loved the first book, THE AMBITIOUS CARD (which happen to be on sale for 99¢ right now! be sure and grab it to start you off), and this second book did not disappoint. I love mysteries that teach me something new and as I know nothing about magic tricks, these books are a delight. This book opens with first time therapy patient Eli at a session. He’s having “uncontrolled panic, an intense physical reaction, suicidal ideation, and a sense he is losing control and might harm himself if he can’t get away from a high location”. After hearing about recent events, book one in other words, the therapist decides he needs therapy two or three times a week, LOL. Of course, Eli has more important matters to take care of. Someone is trying to kill his friend, actor Jake North, either because he is making a movie about magician Terry Alexander who died trying to perform the magic trick known as The Bullet Catch, or because Jake used to be “The Cloaked Conjurer”, exposing how magic tricks are done. Jake is sure he will die in the last scene so Eli is along to see that he doesn’t. A book you will want to read and a series you will follow, this one is ♥♥♥♥♥

BUY THE BOOK

Amazon Kindle

Amazon Paperback

And for those of you who are curious, here is a magician doing the bullet catch. A female, mind you.

 

A CRAFTY CHRISTMAS by Mollie Cox Bryan (and a giveaway!)

Mollie Cox Bryan writes the Cumberland Creek Mysteries, published by Kensington. The first book, Scrapbook of Secrets, was nominated for an Agatha Award for Best First Novel of 2012; the next one Scrapped, was published in January 2013. Death of an Irish Diva was the third in the series. Plans for the series include two more novels and two novellas—the first one Scrappy Summer will be available in summer 2014. She writes, gardens, runs, and scrapbooks in Waynesboro, Va. with her husband and two daughters. Today is the third stop on Mollie’s tour with Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours for A CRAFTY CHRISTMAS. Read about it below and to enter to win a copy, just go HERE.

AUTHOR LINKS

SYNOPSIS

A Crafty Christmas
(Cumberland Creek)

Publisher: Kensington (October 7, 2014)
Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0758293565

Christmas is just around the corner, and the ladies of the Cumberland Creek Scrapbook Crop are thrilled when Sheila wins the first place prize in a scrapbooking design contest: a ten-day scrapbook-themed cruise in the Caribbean. Vera and Paige decide to tag along, which should pose the perfect opportunity to learn some new techniques, mingle with fellow croppers, and get in some rest and relaxation before the chaos of Christmas. But when Sheila finds a famous crafter dead, and investigators determine she was poisoned, the luxury cruise veers toward disaster as Sheila becomes the number one suspect – or was she really the intended victim? Just as the croppers begin un-wrapping the truth, a storm strands them at sea, and they’ll find it’s harder than ever to survive the holidays with a killer on deck…

MY REVIEW

I really enjoyed this book. From its arrival – a book, not an ebook, and one with such a lovely cover, it got me right into the Christmas spirit! I did spend some time wondering who the protagonist was. It seemed to be Sheila but then when Annie was called to consult, I wondered could it be her and she just couldn’t make this cruise. Then I decided it didn’t matter. Perhaps the “protagonist” was actually an ensemble cast – all the members of the scrapping group. A clever idea. I also wondered a bit about background that was mentioned but I didn’t fully get, not having read the previous books. But it didn’t hurt the current story – just made me want to go back and read the earlier ones. At the back of the book is a very handy glossary of scrapbooking terms, tips on scrapbooking your holidays, scrapbooking essentials for the beginner and the first chapter of DEATH OF AN IRISH DIVA.  A CRAFTY CHRISTMAS is a great way to start getting into the holiday spirit and I think you should go right out get it and let the season begin! ♥♥♥♥♥

PURCHASE LINKS
Amazon B&N

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

October 7 – Brooke Blogs – Review, Guest Post

October 7 – Chloe Gets A Clue – Interview

October 8 – Booklady’s Booknotes – Review

October 9 – rantinravin’ and reading – Review

October10 – Griperang’s Bookmarks – Review

October 11 – A Chick Who Reads – Review

October 12 – Books Are Life – Vita Libri – Review

October 13 – Shelley’s Book Case – Review

October 14 – Thoughts in Progress – Review

October 14 – Cozy Up With Kathy – Interview

October 15 – fuonlyknew ~ Laura’s ramblins and reviews – Review

October 16 – Mystery Playground – Guest Post*

October 17 – Mochas, Mysteries and Meows – Review, Guest Post

October 18 – Cicero’s Children – Interview

October 19 – Melina’s Book Blog – Review

October 20 – Dalene’s Book Reviews – Review

RELEASE DAY!!: GOING FOR KONA by Pamela Fagan Hutchins

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Pamela and friend (Pamela is the one with the hat)

Pamela and friend (Pamela is the one with the hat)

Pamela Fagan Hutchins writes award-winning and bestselling romantic mysteries and hilarious nonfiction, and moonlights as a workplace investigator and employment attorney. She is passionate about great writing, smart authorpreneurship, and her two household hunks, husband Eric and one-eyed Boston terrier Petey. She also leaps medium-tall buildings in a single bound, if she gets a good running start.

If you like Sandra Brown or Janet Evanovich for fiction or Erma Bombeck for nonfiction, you’re going to love Pamela.

2014 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Quarter-Finalist
2013 USA Best Books Business: Writing & Publishing Contest
2012 Houston Writers Guild Ghost Story Contest
2012 USA Best Books Parenting/Divorce
2011 Houston Writers Guild Novel Contest
2010 Writers League of Texas Romance Contest

Visit her website http://pamelahutchins.com , or follow her on Twitter (@PamelotH) or Facebook http://facebook.com/pamela.fagan.hutchins.author or buy the book here.

konaSYNOPSIS

When her husband is killed in a hit-and-run bicycling accident, it takes all of Michele Lopez Hanson’s strength not to burrow into their bed for the rest of her life. But their kids need her, and she promised herself she’d do the Kona Ironman Triathlon in Adrian’s honor, and someone seems to be stalking her family, so she slogs through the pain to keep herself on track. Her dangerously delirious training sessions become a link between her and Adrian, and she discovers that if she keeps moving fast enough to fly, she can hold onto her husband—even as she loses her grip on herself and faces her biggest danger yet.

MY REVIEW

I thought I was going to be reading another installment in the fantastic Annalise series so GOING FOR KONA was a surprise. A very pleasant surprise. Michele is not a funny character like Katie but she is one you will grow just as fond of. She is dealing with a lot. Her husband dies in a hit and run. Her step-daughter goes away to live with her grandparents. And her son is a suspect of the cops in the hit and run. She deals with this more like you or I than a mystery heroine. She buries herself in training for a triathalon. At the 48% point, even though her son is a suspect she doesn’t go looking for the real killer. She keeps on training. It wasn’t until the 60% point that Michele decides the cops aren’t cutting it so she calls a PI (Katie no less, making a cameo) to get advice about investigating herself. You are going to love this one, its ♥♥♥♥♥

 

 

FALLING IN LOVE WITH THE FALLS

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You may or may not know this about me, but I have a serious addiction. Well, a couple. I’m addicted to Days of Our Lives, Downton Abbey, Dallas and Hell on Wheels. But I can survive without TV (except for DOOL). I cannot however survive without books. There are a lot of books and series that I like, but there is only one series I am addicted to, THE FALLS by George Jackson. It is my crack. And lucky for me, Mr. Jackson is a most prolific writer and puts out books at a rate most authors would envy. His latest, The Falls: Boneyard (The Falls small town mystery series Book 16), has been out since August so I am long overdue mentioning it on the blog. Once again this is a ♥♥♥♥♥ outing so if you have been following this series and didn’t know 16 was out, rush and get it because I am sure that 17, The Falls: Coldblooded, will be out soon. There is a good setup for us at the end of 16 but I won’t say anything more…  And if you haven’t been following The Falls, I suggest you start at the beginning, THE FALLS: IN THE DEAD OF WINTER. I’ve never given any thought to whether or not the books work as stand alones, I can’t imagine not following the series from the beginning. Why I have watched Jeremy grow up and I want to keep peeking in on his life! There is a scene in this book where Jeremy and his sister, Lorraine, discuss deciding to stay in The Falls after Jeremy has finished college that just tore me up. You really come to feel you know these characters. The mystery is very secondary. It is the lives of the people in this town you will follow. It’s kind of like a soap opera. Like I am wondering what will happen to Cash and Yamoto. Will there ever be a romance between the two or would that be jumping the shark? Whether it is time for you to catch up or time for you to start, The Falls is a series you want to be following. But be warned, it is highly addictive!

COVERSYNOPSIS

It’s the beginning of summer and old Brutus the coon hound finds a bone in the recently renovated landfill. Brutus loves bones, but this one just happens to be human. As the bones pile up, it brings to town a world famous forensic pathologist and anthropologist. There’s also a terrible accident on the mountain involving two of The Falls’ best liked citizens and a sneak peek at the beginning plot for the 17th Falls novel, The Falls: Coldblooded, is exposed. A twenty year old cold case is unearthed, with a victim that’s closely tied to Sheriff Cash Green. Return to the Falls with Cash Green, Yamato, Horace, Doc and Meg Monroe. Pour yourself an iced tea and put your feet up while you enjoy the colorful characters and heartwarming stories of a small town in Vermont!

ABOUT THE AUTHORGeorge jackson

George spent 40 years in education as a teacher (11 years) and a principal (29 years) in both Vermont and New Mexico. He and his wife Carolyn, who taught for 30 years, have five children, eight grandchildren and three great grandchildren in their combined family. He is also an artist in oils and loves reading, video games, fishing and the ocean. George and his wife now live in Tradition, Florida. Besides THE FALLS series he writes dragonrider fantasies and humorous short stories about kids and schools. He has even written a children’s book, The Twilight Tea Party, also at the Kindle store.

AUTHOR LINKS

Capture

 

 

DEADLY ASSETS (An Allison Campbell Mystery Book 2)  by Wendy Tyson

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bio picABOUT THE AUTHOR

Wendy Tyson’s background in law and psychology has provided inspiration for her mysteries and thrillers.  Wendy lives near Philadelphia with her husband, three sons and two muses, Labs Molly and Driggs.
Killer Image (Henery Press, October 1, 2013) is Wendy’s first novel in the Allison Campbell mystery series.  Her mystery The Seduction of Miriam Cross was published this past fall and is also the first in a series.

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SYNOPSIS

An eccentric Italian heiress from the Finger Lakes. An eighteen-year-old pop star from Scranton, Pennsylvania. Allison Campbell’s latest clients seem worlds apart in every respect, except one: Both women disappear on the same day. And Allison’s colleague Vaughn is the last to have seen each.

Allison’s search for a connection uncovers an intricate web of family secrets, corporate transgressions and an age-old rivalry that crosses continents. The closer Allison gets to the truth, the deadlier her quest becomes. All paths lead back to a sinister Finger Lakes estate and the suicide of a woman thirty years earlier. Allison soon realizes the lives of her clients and the safety of those closest to her aren’t the only things at stake.

MY REVIEW

I loved the first book in this series, KILLER IMAGE, and the second outing for Allison, DEADLY ASSETS, did not disappoint. Two, unrelated, clients disappear and Vaughn is a suspect So Allison must get involved. Wendy Tyson’s other series is a cozy (that leans to a bit more hardcore mystery in my opinion) but there is nothing cozy about this series. It is a bit different from the more hardcore mysteries written by women though. Sue Grafton or Patricia Cornwall’s protagonists have jobs (OI, medical examiner) that give them a reason to be involved in investigations. Allison is an image consultant. Not a job you would expect to have a criminal investigation component to it. Not unlike cozy protagonists. But once again, make no mistake, this is not a cozy. For those who read the first book, Allison is trying to work on a reconciliation with Jason but her investigating puts a strain on the relationship. And Mia is questioning her relationship with the much younger Vaughn. If you haven’t read the first book, DEADLY ASSETS stands well on its own but I would read the first book as well anyway because they are both ♥♥♥♥♥

AUTHOR LINKS

Website

Facebook

BUY THE BOOK

 

 

GRANNY IS BACK IN “GRANNY SKEWERS A SCOUNDREL”!!!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

julieJulie Seedorf is a Minnesotan. She calls dinner, supper, and lunch, dinner. She has had many careers over her life time but her favorite career was that as mother to her children. In later life she became a computer technician, opening her own business. In 2012 Julie signed a contract with Cozy Cat Press. Julie writes a column for southern Minnesota area newspapers called “Something About Nothing. “Granny Hooks A Crook” her first Cozy Mystery for Cozy Press takes place in the fictional town of Fuchsia, Minnesota. The Fuchsia Minnesota Series and other writings such as her children’s book “Whatchamacallit, Thingamajig” follow her theory that we all take ourselves too seriously and we need to have a little fun. Her second book, Granny Skewers A Scoundrel, highlights the fact that in the midst of life we have to find the humor in bad situations to keep us going. Julie secretly yearns to be like the Granny characters in her books. Visit her website at http://www.julieseedorf.com. Her blog Sprinkled Notes is a little scattered like Granny but lends itself to wisdom and occasional flip flops about life. http://sprinklednotes.com. Follow her on twitter @julieseedorf. Learn more about her books.

granny scoundrelSYNOPSIS

  • Print Length: 227 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1939816386
  • Publisher: Cozy Cat Press (March 20, 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00J5MYD84

Granny has a new addition to her arsenal of crime fighting weapons as Fuchsia, Minnesota’s most colorful detective. Now, along with her famous crook-hooking umbrella, she’s acquired a scoundrel-skewering knitting needle. And just in time! Residents of Fuchsia seem to be dropping dead like flies! First, it’s Granny’s neighbor Sally (who gives up the ghost in her weed-filled front yard), followed by Esmeralda Periwinkle (the squirrel lover on Main Street), and then, Mr. Nail, owner of the local hardware store (who is squashed when dozens of bags of fertilizer fall on top of him). Granny is baffled. Who is behind this murder spree?

Granny enlists the help of her sort of boyfriend franklin Gatsby, the town’s police chief Cornelius Stricknine (or “The Big Guy”), her reality-show loving neighbor Mavis, and her own son Thor. And, of course, the special assistance of her menagerie of pets — including Mr. Bleaty, the goat. Soon Granny is hot on the trail of this dastardly murderer. Unfortunately, when Granny herself is poisoned, everyone insists that she cool her crime solving ways and stay indoors and out of harms way. Of course, that’s never going to happen! Not when Granny knows all the secret passageways and tunnels that run underneath Fuchsia. Out she goes–and watch out, you evil doers! Granny will solve this mystery–you can bet your pink undies, she will!

MY REVIEW

Granny… Granny is… Well, Granny is different. I can just see a classroom full of college students analyzing Granny. (Which would have Granny in stitches!) 1) Granny is elderly and halfway senile but still enough there to let her be on her own and handle minor tasks – which is why her sleuthing would not sit well with her children. 2) Granny is actually a fifty something hot mama who disguises herself as an elderly grandmother to fight crime. Excuse me, that ‘fight crime’ had me guffawing all over the place, as it would Granny, I am sure. Kinda makes me picture Granny in tights and a cape. I call this series Lemony Snicket for adults. (Of course I read Lemony Snicket even though I profess to be an adult.) Start with the first book, Granny Hooks A Crook (Fuchsia, Minnesota Book 1), so you have a real feel for the town and all the characters. Then it is on to Granny Skewers A Scoundrel (Fuchsia, Minnesota Book 2) which will leave you floored when you discover who the villain is. So if you still have a sense of whimsy about you and you love a bit of slightly silly fun, with a well structured mystery at the core, it is time to take a trip to Fuchsia, Minnesota and meet Granny. These reads are ♥♥♥♥♥

AUTHOR LINKS

thankfuljoy.com   

justalittlefluff.com

sprinklednotes.com

 

HOT TUB OF DEATH: A Sunshine Valley Mystery by Rita Strombeck

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

authorRita Strombeck has a Ph.D. in Scandinavian Studies and M.A. in French from the University of Chicago.   Like her heroine, Eve Iverson, she taught languages for several years and enjoys painting. In 1982, she started her own business.  Over the years, she has developed more than 50  education books and programs for health care professionals and the general public.  Rita also received 12 grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and has written successful grant proposals for various nonprofit organizations.   She currently lives in Palm Springs and recently wrote an article for Palm Springs Life magazine on the city’s early women entrepreneurs  – “Women With Vision.”

Ever since discovering Nancy Drew in 5th grade, Rita has been a fan of mysteries and now has decided to focus on this first love.  She has written a children’s book  based on Sherlock Holmes. HOT TUB OF DEATH is her first cozy mystery.

SYNOPSIS

 

  • Paperback: 220 pages
  • Publisher: Cozy Cat Press (March 16, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1939816394
  • ISBN-13: 978-1939816399

hotcvrOn the surface, Sunshine Valley appears to be an idyllic small town in Arizona’s picturesque Sonoran desert. When Adam and Eve Iverson, a retired married couple, move to this seemingly peaceful community, they have every intention of pursuing their individual passions. Then, one day, their plans are disrupted when they discover the body of Olive Howell, the most disliked and feared woman in the valley, floating in the community hot tub. In the days that follow, the main topic of conversation in Sunshine Valley revolves around the death of Olive Howell. At first, her death is ruled accidental, but this pronouncement doesn’t sit well with the Iversons. Driven by her intuition and keen perceptiveness, Eve begins to sort through a series of clues that indicate murder, and soon discovers that several people had strong motives and opportunities to kill Olive. Based on his own reasoning, Adam begins a separate investigation. Following their individual instincts and hunches, and by cleverly sorting through all the facts, Adam and Eve work together to ferret out who among the seemingly harmless residents of Sunshine Valley could have created the HOT TUB OF DEATH.

MY REVIEW

The story started slow… no, I quickly realized, that was just the pace the author wanted us to feel. No cell phones, no computers, no Jimmy Choos or Manolo Blahnik high heels. Were it not for the fact that in the 1940s hot tubs began to appear in the USA so we know the story happens since then, the story could have taken place at any time. I thought naming the protagonist Eve and her husband Adam was just that little bit too twee but I came to like it – it is cute and they are cute. Eve decides an accidental death is murder and rather than warn her off investigating, like most cozy husbands, Adam also investigates. Not really with Eve, more like it is a competition which one of them will solve the mystery first. And that was really kind of amusing. Despite feeling it was slow at first, I really enjoyed this one. The style is not unlike the traditional British cozies set in a small village that we saw so many of a few years back – timeless. ♥♥♥♥

AUTHOR’S LINKS

Website

BUY THE BOOK

AmazonBarnes   & Noble

 

 

 

 

UNDERTAKING IRENE by Pamela Burford (and a giveaway!)

 

Pamela Burford is on tour with Great Escapes Virtual Book Tour with her new release UNDERTAKING IRENE. Read my review and be sure to leave a comment below and go HERE for a chance to win a copy.

UNDERTAKING IRENE by Pamela Burford
Cozy Mystery – 250 Pages

Synopsis

Jane Delaney does things her paying customers can’t do, don’t want to do, don’t want to be seen doing, can’t bring themselves to do, and/or don’t want it to be known they’d paid someone to do. To dead people. Life gets complicated for Jane and her Death Diva business when she’s hired to liberate a gaudy mermaid brooch from the corpse during a wake. Well, a girl’s got to make a living, and this assignment pays better than scattering ashes, placing flowers on graves, or bawling her eyes out as a hired mourner. Unfortunately for Jane, someone else is just as eager to get his hands on that brooch, and he’s even sneakier than she is. Just when she thinks her biggest problem is grand theft mermaid, things take a murderous turn. But hey, when you’ve teamed up with a neurotic seven-pound poodle named Sexy Beast, how can you lose?

pam-burfordAbout This Author

Pamela Burford is the best-selling author of 15 works of mystery, contemporary romance, and romantic suspense. She has received four RITA and Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Award nominations and is a frequent speaker at writers’ conferences and workshops. Her books have sold millions of copies, received outstanding reviews, and been translated into more than a dozen languages. Pamela is the founder and past president of Long Island Romance Writers, a chapter of Romance Writers of America. Fun fact: her twin sister Patricia Ryan, a.k.a. P.B. Ryan, is also a published novelist

My Review

This is a book that reads easy and quick – because it is so much fun. Definitely gets the award for “Most Unusual Profession In A Cozy”. Jane does anything regarding a funeral that you don’t want to do yourself. Don’t want to get caught doing yourself is more like it. LOL Her very first job was stuffing the ashes of the departed into shotgun shells. Some of the things are so hysterical and I won’t spoil it by telling you – but think what you would like to be your ‘parting shot’, good or bad, as it were. The victim in this book is Jane’s best customer so carrying on in this profession may be more difficult in future books. The ending is one that keeps on giving – it’s not over til it’s over! I hope Martin is along for the ride in book 2, and I can’t wait for it because this one is definitely ♥♥♥♥♥

Author Links 

http://www.pamelaburford.com

http://www.facebook.com/pamelaburford

https://twitter.com/PamelaBurford

https://www.goodreads.com/PamelaBurford

http://pinterest.com/pamelaburford

 

Purchase Links:
Amazon
B&N
KOBO 
iTunes

 

Tour Participants

August 18 – readalot blog – Review

August 19 – Cozy Up With Kathy – Interview

August 20 – Queen of All She Reads – Review

August 21 – Kelly P’s Blog – Interview

August 22 – StoreyBook Reviews – Review

August 23 – Mystery Playground – Interview

August 24 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – Review 

August 25 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, &, Sissy, Too! – Interview

August 26 – Shelley’s Book Case – Review

August 27 – rantinravin’ and reading – Review

August 28 – Mochas, Mysteries and Meows – Interview

August 29 – Brooke Blogs – Review, Interview

August 30 – deal sharing aunt – Spotlight

August 31 – Dalene’s Book Reviews – Review

DEATH IN PERSPECTIVE by Larissa Reinhart (and a giveaway!)

A relatively new favorite author, Larissa Reinhart may hold the record for visits to the blog and I am thrilled she is here again today. After teaching in the US and Japan, Larissa enjoys writing, particularly sassy female characters with a penchant for trouble. She lives near Atlanta with her family and Cairn Terrier, Biscuit. Visit her website or you can find her chatting on Facebook. Death in Perspective is the fourth book in the best selling Cherry Tucker Mystery series. The first, Portrait of a Dead Guy, is a Daphne du Maurier finalist, Emily finalist, and Dixie Kane Memorial winner. Larissa recently returned from a vacation in Japan. You know how some people absolutely hate hearing about peoples vacations? Well not me! I love it! So lets all vicariously visit Japan today. Be sure to leave a comment for Larissa, one of you will win an e-copy of any book from the series that you choose and if you go HERE you have a chance to win a Barnes & Noble gift card and some swag. Welcome,  Larissa.

Hey Kate! Thanks for having me on again and I’m so glad you didn’t get bored with my reports from Japan!

How long has it been since you visited Japan prior to this visit?

For my girls and I, it’s been three and a half years since we moved back. My husband (lucky guy) gets to travel there a lot on business. I think he was there six times last fall and winter!

What part(s) of the country did you visit?

We were mainly visiting friends on this trip, so we spent most of our time in Nagoya, which was the city we previously lived in. We took a side trip to Kyoto and Nara with the girls for three nights for some family time. My husband and I used to live near Kyoto (ages ago), so it’s always fun for us to revisit old haunts and see the changes. Japanese cities are constantly evolving, although Kyoto and Nara have preserved a lot of their own neighborhoods as well as the historic sites. They were two of the few cities not bombed during WWII, so it’s hard to find those medieval and pre-modern homes and shops in other parts of Japan.

Did you find a lot had changed and particularly, did you notice the effects of the world wide recession or are they over it?

Our neighborhood had changed a lot (to us). A spaghetti shop we used to visit was gone. It was pretty decrepit, but had really great spaghetti. And only spaghetti on the menu, all kinds. Not even a salad (if you ask for a salad, you’re offered vegetable juice). I digress… But all the new construction was a good sign for economic recovery. Japan was in an economic depression last time we lived there. And of course, the Tohoku earthquake hit the economy really hard. We moved just before that happened.

I have read about the Japan cultures love of ‘cuteness. Is it really as over the top as some press makes it seem or confined to small segments of society?

OH MY GOODNESS. Japan’s cuteness is so over the top adorable. The newest trend in cuteness is hamster butts. Yes, you read that right. If you look at a hamster butt, they are quite cute. We saw a whole section in a bookstore dedicated to books with photos of cute hamster butts. There’s always something trending and that trend is constantly changing. Krispy Kreme is also trending. I was happy to see that. They’re almost as popular as Starbucks. But not quite. Hello Kitty also still reigns supreme, which will make a lot of people happy. But there, she is Kitty-Chan.

Speaking of cute, did you bring back a bento box or kimono for your dog?

Haha! You saw my pictures! No, Biscuit would not appreciate a bento or a kimono. In fact, Biscuit got nothing. Poor dog. But he’s not much on treats and a kimono would really drive him insane. He was very happy to see us, though. Our return was his gift.

I am always interested in the book reading habits of other countries. The American style cozies are rare in Ireland for example but they were making a big splash in China (in English, mind you) for a while. The Swedish mysteries seem big in America at the moment. Did you visit any book stores on your trip? Do they read cozies? What does seem popular?

Bookstores are really popular in Japan. You find them all over the place. Japanese readers still prefer books to e-readers and they read a lot on trains and subways, so the books have always been paperback and kind of hand sized. And because of the writing, the books are very slim. Anyway, Japanese readers love mysteries and Agatha Christie is still a favorite. In fact, their public broadcasting channel, NHK, did an animated Agatha Christie series starring Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple, and a girl named Mabel with a duck. Besides Mabel and the duck, the mysteries were pretty true to the original stories. You also see a lot of mysteries on TV, particularly detective stories. I think there is a love of crime drama because there’s not a lot of crime, so it’s very entertaining. That’s just a hypothesis though.

Can I just say, Mabel and the duck. Does it get any better?

Before you go, what can we expect next after Death in Perspective ?

I’m writing The Body in the Landscape now (#5), which will come out sometime next year. Cherry’s hired to do a “kill portrait” for a Hogzilla hunting contest at Big Rack Lodge and finds a body while painting a landscape in the first line (hence the title). I’m so thrilled for the chance to write about Hogzilla. They are something of a true legend around here. A 1,000+ pound feral hog was killed close to where I live a few years ago. And of course, there’s Cherry and the mystery. Seven bow hunters trapped in a bunkhouse in the middle of a hunting preserve during a November storm. Which one will die next and which one’s the killer? Fun, fun.

BLURB

A Cherry Tucker Mystery #4
Cozy Mystery
Paperback: 250 pages
Publisher: Henery Press; First edition (June 24, 2014)
ISBN-13: 978-1940976181
E-book File Size: 594 KB
ASIN: B00L5Q7AYW

The curtain rises on Cherry Tucker’s debut as a high school set designer at the posh Peerless Day Academy. Cherry’s been hired for an adaptation of Romeo and Juliet, but the drama director is hoping Cherry can also turn the spotlight on a malicious social media bully who’s sending poisonous texts to the faculty. The director’s got his own drama to hide, and the phantom texter seems eager to spill school secrets. When the principal’s secretary commits suicide, Cherry suspects foul play.

Deputy Luke Harper is ready to return as Cherry’s leading man. He’s eager to assist in finding the phantom culprit, but Cherry fears family secrets offstage may doom them to the role as star-crossed lovers. With the bully waiting for a murderous encore and her own family skeletons to hide, Cherry scrambles to find her brother and the mysterious texter before the phantom decides it’s curtains for Cherry and forces her to take a final bow.

MY REVIEW

Fun. Fun. Fun. Cherry is like Lucy and Ethel all rolled into one Southern package. Rather timely, this deals with bullying. I enjoyed the whole Tara storyline (Luke’s ex/stalker). Shawna is busy giving Cherry you know what on Facebook. Cherry is a bit down in this installment. Her love life with Luke is a continuing problem. As anyone who reads this blog knows, I haven’t liked Luke from the beginning. I see Cherry with Max. The whole Branson connection (and Cody) is heating up and should be interesting in upcoming books. Oh yeah, the mystery is top notch too but I just read this series for the characters LOL! If you haven’t started yet, go right now and get the first in the series and catch up with the rest of us! ♥♥♥♥♥

Author Links:

Website: http://larissareinhart.com/

Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/1qMwr29

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

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/RisWrites

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5806614.Larissa_Reinhart

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

Purchase Links
Amazon B&N

Tour Participants

June 24 – Mommasez… – Review, Interview, Giveaway
June 25 – readalot blog – Review, Giveaway
June 26 – Chloe Gets A Clue – Interview
June 27 – Shelley’s Book Case – Review, Giveaway
June 28 – Carole’s Book Corner – Review
June 29 – off
June 30 – deal sharing aunt – Interview, Giveaway
July 1 – Traci Andrighetti’s blog – Review
July 2 – A Chick Who Reads – Review
July 3 – Michelle’s Romantic Tangle – Review, Interview
July 4 – off
July 5 – rantinravin’ and reading – Review, Interview, Giveaway
July 6 – Back Porchervations – Review
July 7 – Traveling With T – Review, Interview, Giveaway
July 8 – Melina’s Book Blog – Review, Giveaway
July 9 – Community Bookstop – Review