Can you guess this month’s mystery writer? This would be a great opener for your book club! Print out the puzzle and good luck!
In my Piney Woods Series, I write about a historic hotel, which was inspired by the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado. I grew up not too far from the Stanley and it is also the hotel that was featured in The Shining. Check out this bear coming in the window at three in the morning!
Hmmm, I wonder if he used Expedia or Priceline for his reservation?
If you love reading about hotels, may I recommend Murder of a Good Man?
A bear free establishment.
Sipped (The Penningtons Investigate)
3rd in Series
Asdee Press (June 11, 2018)
The Penningtons are back in book three of The Pennington’s Investigate Series by C.T. Collier. Have you ever gone into someone else’s desk drawer to find something? Uh, yeh. Me either. Looks like there’s some snooping and little bit of gossip going on in this one.
Be sure to look for the Prize Guy for your chance at a copy of Sipped.
After a rough semester, Professor Lyssa Pennington just wants to post her grades and join her husband, Kyle, in Cornwall for Christmas. First, though, she’s expected to host an elegant dinner for Emile Duval, the soon-to-be Chair of Languages at Tompkins College.
Too bad no one told Lyssa murder is on the menu. And, by the way, Emile Duval is an imposter.
Who is he really? And who wanted him dead? Without those answers, the Penningtons can kiss Christmas in Cornwall goodbye.
You can find Sipped at these online retailers!
How did you come with an idea for your book?
While the overarching framework, setting, and main characters for Sipped come from its series, The Penningtons Investigate, the concept and plot for Sipped grew from a rumor—a rather salacious one, to be honest. I’d heard the tale whispered in the hallways at one of my old workplaces, a college whose identity will not be revealed. It wasn’t a story I would use as is (did I mention it was salacious?). Gossip like that doesn’t appeal to me and doesn’t fit with the clean upbeat tone of the Pennington books.
Still, there was something at the heart of the rumor that made for a good mystery. That something was the notion of two people sneaking around someone’s old office looking for evidence left behind, to keep it from falling into the wrong hands. Who might those two people be? One was a person completely unfamiliar with the campus; and that person would need a savvy guide to find the right office, break in, and make off with the goods … all the while evading security.
And what if someone else—someone providing a distraction for the theft—was bumped off during the robbery but the thief didn’t know it? Confused? So are the police! There are almost no clues to the motive for the murder or to the identity of the murderer, but there’s an abundance of red herrings. Who but the Penningtons could possibly sort through the mess to find the real killer?
What scene do you hope your readers enjoy the most?
I love every scene in Sipped, of course, but the one I choose to read aloud at book signings comes early in the book, when Lyssa and her friend Natalie are celebrating the official end of fall semester at Tompkins College. They’re fixing dinner in Natalie’s kitchen and Natalie is going on and on about having met her idol, a supermodel named Vivienne. Lyssa thinks Natalie is pulling her leg … or maybe someone is pulling Natalie’s leg. It’s all good fun, but Lyssa’s skepticism is blinding her to some serious clues the author is setting up for attentive readers to discern.
What other things have you written or what projects might we see in the future?
I do have a completed romance series, Lakeside Porches, that is actually the entire backstory for the main characters of The Penningtons Investigate, including Lyssa and Kyle Pennington’s love story (Waking Up to Love, written as Katie O’Boyle, released by Soulmate Publishing, Inc.).
There are several spinoff series on the drawing board, including one romantic suspense series. Right now, though, my focus is on The Penningtons Investigate. I’m currently writing book 4, Chugged, and there will be at least two more after Chugged.
If you could write any other genre what would that be?
I love a good romance and a gripping romantic suspense!
My favorite romance series is Mariah Stewart’s Chesapeake Diaries. Every book in the series is a gem, and I love watching Grace’s story unfold through the diary entries she writes with each book. For romantic suspense, Carla Neggers is my idol. I started with Declan’s Cross, one of the Sharpe and Donovan series; now my book buddies and I eagerly await each new book in the series. Every one of Neggers’ series—some are romance, some romantic suspense—has its own flavor, and I enjoy many of them. Of her romance series, I especially like the Swift River books.
Is there a giveaway or promotion with this book?
Yes, several of the blogs on the “Escape With Dollycas Into a Good Book” tour for Sipped include giveaways, and there is a giveaway that spans all the blogs on the tour. Prize is the reader choice’s: Kindle, Nook, or print copy of Sipped (US only for print, please).
Where can readers leave reviews of your book?
I would love for readers to post a review to Amazon or Barnes & Noble, their choice. Here are some helpful links:
Amazon Paperback: https://tinyurl.com/y8rkglpe
Barnes & Noble paperback: https://tinyurl.com/y8thfleb
And here’s the link for readers to add Sipped to their Goodreads! https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40607107-sipped
C. T. Collier was born to solve logic puzzles, wear tweed, and drink Earl Grey tea. Her professional experience in cutthroat high tech and backstabbing higher education gave her endless opportunity to study intrigue. Add to that her longtime love of mysteries, and it’s no wonder she writes academic mysteries that draw inspiration from traditional whodunits. Her setting is entirely fictional: Tompkins College is no college and any college, and Tompkins Falls is a blend of several Finger Lakes towns, including her hometown, Seneca Falls, NY (AKA Bedford Falls from It’s a Wonderful Life).
Twitter: @Tompkins Falls
Heading off to my class reunion this weekend so no Cozy Friday, but I’ll be back next week.
Here I am in a class photo, desperately waiting for big hair to come out in the 80’s.
That’s it! I’m going to the first to acknowledge the elephant in the room. Banjos are dangerous. At least they’re dangerous in Maddie Day’s latest Country Store Mystery, Death Over Easy. (Cue the Deliverance theme song in the background…)
Be sure to look for the Prize Guy for your chance at a print copy of Death Over Easy.
Death Over Easy (A Country Store Mystery)
5th in Series
Kensington (July 31, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
Digital ASIN: B0776H5T7B
Restaurateur Robbie Jordan is ready for the boost in business a local music festival brings to South Lick, Indiana, but the beloved event strikes a sour note when one of the musicians is murdered . . .
June’s annual Brown County Bluegrass Festival at the Bill Monroe Music Park in neighboring Beanblossom is always a hit for Robbie’s country store and café, Pans ‘N Pancakes. This year, Robbie is even more excited, because she’s launching a new bed and breakfast above her shop. A few festival musicians will be among Robbie’s first guests, along with her father, Roberto, and his wife, Maria. But the celebration is cut short when a performer is found choked to death by a banjo string. Now all the banjo players are featured in a different kind of lineup. To clear their names, Robbie must pair up with an unexpected partner to pick at the clues and find the plucky killer before he can conduct an encore performance . . .
Includes Recipes for You to Try!
You can find Death Over Easy at these online retailers.
Maddie Day is a talented amateur chef and holds a Ph.D. in linguistics from Indiana University. An Agatha Award-nominated author, she is a member of Sisters in Crime and Mystery Writers of America and also writes award-winning short crime fiction. She lives with her beau and three cats in Massachusetts.
As Edith Maxwell, she writes the Local Foods Mysteries (Kensington Publishing) and the Quaker Midwife Mysteries (Midnight Ink).
You can find all Maddie’s/Edith’s identities at www.edithmaxwell.com. She blogs every weekday with the other Wicked Cozy Authors at wickedcozyauthors.com. Look for her as Edith M. Maxwell and Maddie Day on Facebook and @edithmaxwell and @maddiedayauthor on Twitter.
Happy Flan Time Day! Seriously, Death on the Menu takes place around Flan Time. If you didn’t know this already, a flan is a type of baked custard. So let’s head to Key West for Lucy Burdette’s latest mystery. Oh, and I’ll take a little of that flan, too!
Death on the Menu: A Key West Food Critic Mystery
8th in Series
Crooked Lane Books (August 7, 2018)
Hardcover: 295 Pages
Digital ASIN: B078MBKH95
When a killer strikes just before flan time, beloved food critic Hayley Snow is forced to sniff out the killer before someone else bites the dust.
Hayley Snow, fiery food critic for Key Zest magazine, has just landed a ticket to one of the most prestigious events in Key West: a high-brow three-day conference at the Harry Truman Little White House. Even though she’ll be working the event helping her mother’s fledgling catering business, there’s plenty of spicy gossip to go around. But just before her mother’s decadent flan is put to the test, Key West’s most prized possession, Hemingway’s Nobel prize gold medal for The Old Man and the Sea, is discovered stolen from its case.
Unsavory suspicions point to Gabriel, a family friend and one of the new busboys working the event, who mysteriously goes missing moments later. Anxious to clear his name, Gabriel’s family enlists Hayley to help find him, but right as they begin their search, his body is found stabbed to death in the storeroom.
Hayley has no shortage of suspects to interrogate and very little time before the killer adds another victim to the menu in national bestselling author Lucy Burdette’s delectable eighth Key West Food Critic mystery, Death on the Menu.
You can find Death on the Menu at these retailers:
Clinical psychologist Lucy Burdette (aka Roberta Isleib) has published 16 mysteries, including the latest in the Key West food critic series, DEATH ON THE MENU (Crooked Lane Books, August 2018.) Her books and stories have been short-listed for Agatha, Anthony, and Macavity awards. She’s a member of Mystery Writers of America and a past president of Sisters in Crime. She blogs at Jungle Red Writers and shares her love for food with the culinary writers at Mystery Lovers Kitchen She lives in Madison CT and Key West FL. Read more at www.lucyburdette.com.
Pass me that Pina Colada because we’re back in paradise with Terry Ambrose and his Trouble in Paradise Series. We are also honored to be visited by his sleuth, Wilson McKenna who fills us in on life on the island. He tells us he resembles George Clooney-maybe-sort of. Close enough for me, McKenna!
Be sure to look for Prize Guy because today he gives you a chance at a print or digital copy of The Scent of Waikiki and a $10 Starbucks gift card.
The Scent of Waikiki (Trouble in Paradise)
9th in Series
Satori (July 19, 2018)
Print Length: 330 pages
Honolulu landlord Wilson McKenna can smell a scam from across the room. So when one of his tenants loses everything in a work-at-home scam involving a new perfume, he’s shocked. With his wedding just weeks away, McKenna has to make a tough decision. Does he evict a woman who’s down on her luck? Or take time out from wedding planning to help his tenant?
Turning the case over to his PI-in-training friend Chance Logan seems like the perfect solution—until Chance tells McKenna he needs a wingman for a visit to fragrance entrepreneur Skye Pilkington-Winchester. McKenna’s sure he can keep everyone happy by helping Chance this one time. But nothing is ever as easy as it seems, and soon McKenna’s up to his board shorts in hot water. His tenant’s simple fragrance scam might involve industrial espionage, Skye’s assistant is murdered, and McKenna’s bride-to-be accuses him of having cold feet.
As McKenna and Chance dig deeper, it seems so much of what they’re being told doesn’t pass the sniff test. And the only way to get his life back is to find the dead girl’s missing boyfriend, unmask a killer, and finish up in time for the wedding. Other than that, it’s just another day in paradise.
You can find The Scent of Waikiki at These Online Retailers
Please tell us about your latest adventure.
I assume you’re talking about the whole debacle with my tenant Grace Takahashi and how she lost money to a scammer, not about my upcoming nuptials. That’s certainly going to be an adventure, but the real action came about when Grace told me she’d been cleaned out in one of those work-from-home scams.
Things got ugly when my buddy Chance Logan and I started following up on a lead. One thing led to another and the next thing you know we were investigating some girl’s murder. That all happened because Grace got a little greedy and thought she could make some quick bucks.
Do you have any friends/sidekicks helping you out?
Chance Logan is my sidekick in this adventure, as he has been in the last few. We also got an able assist from our girlfriends. Benni Kapono is my bride-to-be and she’s good friends with Chance’s girlfriend Lexie. When they put their heads together, they’re a formidable team.
Do you have any special skills to fight crime?
I’m a former skip tracer, so I was used to finding people who didn’t want to be found. But my strongest skill is my unwillingness to let things go. Some people say I’m like a dog with a bone. The problem with that analogy is that I can’t bark.
Are you a full-time detective or do you do something else?
I’m only a part-time sleuth. Although you’d never know it from the number of murders my friends and I keep stumbling across. My real job is being the apartment manager for the Sunsetter Apartments in Honolulu. It’s a sweet little gig that doesn’t take a lot of time—please don’t tell the owners I said that!
What are you most frightened of in this story?
The thing that scares me most in this story is Skye Pilkington-Winchester. You see, Skye’s a bit of a barracuda when it comes to men and really likes my friend Chance. If she sinks her teeth into him and he does something stupid, his girlfriend Lexie will be crushed, Benni will go ballistic, and I might as well go sit on a volcano and wait for the fires to settle down.
Is there anything funny that happens to you or another character in this story?
There’s always something funny going on in these adventures. I don’t plan it that way—well, maybe my writer does. Anyway, at one point I get kidnapped by an old geezer named Steward Johnson. He takes me on a wild ride through the streets of Honolulu as we’re trying to track down a bad guy. Personally, I wasn’t happy about the whole thing. And that’s why I’m planning a little revenge trip on my writer. I’m looking for drivers. The crazier the better.
If I were to choose an actor or actress to play your part in a movie, who would that be? Do you see any other characters in your story as actors or actresses that our readers might know?
You’d probably want to choose George Clooney for my part. That’s not because of any physical resemblance—well, there is a vague one. He’s male, so am I. We’ve both got some gray hair. And he’s…nope, that’s about it. Anyway, I like his timing, the way he knows how to deliver a line and make the audience laugh.
Do you have other mysteries you would like to tell us about? Is this the first book in the series, or have you cracked a few other cases?
I’ve had a number of other cases. Things began with Photo Finish. That was a low point in my life and I was pretty grumpy. Things were turning around for me by the time Chance and I jumped on the Honolulu Hottie case. That was where we first met Skye and Chance nearly—well, you know.
Do you have any final words you would like to leave with our readers?
Final words? You mean like a parting shot? And here I thought I’d been on my best behavior. Let’s try this—my writer can be a real slave driver at times. He keeps me busy with solving all these murders when I should be sitting back and enjoying life. But since I have to solve so many crimes, why shouldn’t my fans enjoy them? Imagine that—me, with fans.
Let’s give your author a chance to speak. Anything you would like to add?
McKenna seems to have forgotten who created him. However, I can understand a guy who’s living in paradise getting a bit testy over having to fight crime so often. And while I’ve got a moment, I’d like to mention that I also write the Seaside Cove Bed & Breakfast Mystery series featuring B&B owner Rick Atwood and his precocious ten-year-old daughter Alex—who also likes sticking her nose where it doesn’t belong (murder cases!).
Terry Ambrose is a former skip tracer who tracked down deadbeats for a living. He’s long since turned his talents to writing mysteries and thrillers. Several of his books have been award finalists and in 2014 his thriller, “Con Game,” won the San Diego Book Awards for Best Action-Thriller. He likes cool photography, funny mysteries, and finding the oddest things while walking on the beach.
Welcome to Book Blast Tuesday for our featured book, Knot My Sister’s Keeper! I am honored to have Mary visit on the opening day of her latest cozy mystery! Are you a quilter? I was one until I had children and then…where does the time go? I still love to look at beautiful quilts and greatly admire all the hard work and artistry you see in them. Be sure to look for the Prize Guy because today he is offering you the chance at a print copy of Knot My Sister’s Keeper.
Knot My Sister’s Keeper (A Quilting Mystery)
6th in Series
Kensington (July 31, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
Digital ASIN: B0776GV62J
In tracing her ancestry, quilter Martha Rose discovers a ritzy half-sister, a stash of family secrets, and a decades-old mystery that only she can unravel . . .
Martha Rose is shocked to find she has a half-sister, especially one so different from her. Giselle Cole is wealthy, widowed, and lives a glamorous life in West Los Angeles. At least her grandmother was a quilter! But Giselle can’t answer Martha’s many questions about their father—he disappeared when she was only a child and the few clues left behind indicate he may have been murdered. So Martha and Giselle team up on an investigation that weaves them through the streets of L.A., their father’s hidden love affairs, and into some mysterious unfinished Cole family business . . .
You can find Knot My Sister’s Keeper at these online outlets!
About the Author
Born and raised in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area, Mary Marks earned a B.A. in Anthropology from UCLA and an M.A. in Public Administration from the American Jewish University in Los Angeles. In 2004 she enrolled in the UCLA Extension Writers Program. Her first novel, Forget Me Knot, was a finalist in a national writing competition in 2011. She is currently a reviewer of cozy mysteries for The New York Journal of Books at www.nyjournalofbooks.com.
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