Review & Giveaway: PURLS BEFORE SWINE by Rebecca McKinnon

This week, Rebecca McKinnon is celebrating the release of Purls Before Swine and I was lucky enough to received an ARC of this cozy mystery. Although this is the third book in the Clear Creek Mystery series, it can be read as a standalone (I haven’t read the previous books yet).

About the Book

Autumn has arrived in the Rocky Mountains. The resort that was almost the death of the small town of Clear Creek is trying to mend relations by hosting a local artisan show.

Jemma has been asked to create a display showing beginner projects all the way up to expert. Hoping to knit up attention for the shops in Clear Creek, she agrees. The last thing she expects is to trip over a body in the middle of the exhibits.

Curiosity piqued, she wants to know how someone was killed under the watchful eyes of the resort’s security staff — headed by the man she loves.

Even though her past experiences have taught Jemma she doesn’t want to be anywhere near a killer, when Deputy Chase surprises everyone by asking for her help she can’t bring herself to say no. Because if the killer isn’t bound off before the resort guests leave, someone will get away with murder.

My Review

Set in a small town in Colorado, where everyone knows each other’s buisiness (or at least thinks they do), this mystery follows Jemma as she investigates another murder in Clear Creek.

Jemma is smart, likeable, and easy to identify with. She does a good job rooting out the truth, with help from her friends. One quirky character in particular, Granny (not her grandmother) adds a bit of spice and humor to the character mix. And the charming man in her life is, of course, ready and willing to help in any way he can – as long as it doesn’t mean a conflict of interest, given his job at the resort.

The story is well written and the plot unravels at a nice pace, with twists and turns along the way. The closeknit community and light-writing style make this a good choice for cozy mystery lovers. BTW, if you are on the fence about reading a knitting-themed mystery, don’t be. Unlike some craft-themed cozies, there is just enough detail to appreciate the craft without getting tedious.

FTC Disclosure: I received an advance review copy from the publisher. This has not affected the content of my review.

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win a $20 Amazon gift card from the author.

About the Author

Rebecca McKinnon enjoys playing with her imaginary friends and introducing them to others through her writing. She dreams of living in the middle of nowhere, but has been unable to find an acceptable location that wouldn’t require crossing an ocean.

Website/Social Media Links:

Purchase Link – Amazon

Spotlight & Giveaway: TUESDAY TRASH AND TROUBLE by Joanna Campbell Slan

Joanna Campbell Slan’s Tuesday Trash and Trouble features a down-on-her-luck divorcée whose passion for solving crimes lands her in the arms of a secretive cowboy–and the cross-hairs of a vengeful killer. Tuesday Trash and Trouble is the third book in the Friday Night Mystery Club Series by Joanna Campbell Slan.

About the Book

The year is 1986, the place is…pitiful. It’s Decatur, Illinois, known for high unemployment, striking unions, the pervasive stink of soybean processing, and seven railroad crossings at one intersection.

A wrong turn along life’s marital highway has left Catherine “Cragan” Collins stuck in Decatur. With a mountain of post-divorce bills to pay, Cragan takes a job selling high-priced newspaper advertising. If she’s lucky, her commissions will cover the cost of her grandmother’s stay in a nearby retirement home.

After the divorce, Cragan swears off men, but she’s a sucker for a guy in a nice suit. She falls hard for a man who publicly snubs her. On the rebound, she accepts an invitation from Ross Gentry, a quiet hunk who favors pearl snaps and cowboy boots. Cragan reasons that her heart is safe, because she and Ross come from two different worlds. But one night in his arms might be enough to prove her wrong.

Without warning, everything blows up in Cragan’s face. Her boss threatens to take away her accounts, a friend’s little sister is kidnapped, and an overnight guest is shot. Cragan’s best friend, Pru, is accused of attempted murder. After all, Pru’s gun was used in the crime.

Cragan calls an emergency meeting of the Friday Night Mystery Club. These mystery-loving career women are a group of smart cookies. Can their combined talents prove that Pru is innocent? And will they find an answer in time to save Cragan from the wrath of a vengeful shooter?

It takes a club to solve a mystery!

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win a $10 gift card from the author.

About the Author

Joanna is a New York Times Bestselling, USA Today Bestselling, and Amazon Bestselling author as well as a woman prone to frequent bursts of crafting frenzy, leaving her with burns from her hot glue gun and paint on her clothes. And the mess? Let’s not even go there.

Otherwise, Joanna’s a productive author with more than 80 written projects to her credit. Her non-fiction work includes how to books, a college textbook for public speakers, and books of personal essays (think Chicken Soup for the Soul).

Currently, she writes six fiction series: The Kiki Lowenstein Mystery Series (Agatha Award Finalist, contemporary, St. Louis setting, crafting), the Cara Mia Delgatto Mystery Series (contemporary, Florida setting, DIY, and recycling), the Jane Eyre Chronicles (Daphne du Maurier Award Winner, 1830s England, based on Charlotte Brontë’s classic), the Sherlock Holmes Fantasy Thrillers (late 1800s, based on Arthur Conan Doyle’s books), the Tai Chi Mystery Series (featuring a mature female amateur sleuth!) and the Friday Night Mystery Series (set in Decatur, IL in 1986 with a spunky female heroine.)

A former TV talk show host, college teacher, and public relations specialist, Joanna was one of the early Chicken Soup for the Soul contributors. She won a Silver Anvil for her work on the original FarmAid concert to benefit farmers.

In her ongoing quest never to see snow again, Joanna lives with her husband and their Havanese puppy, Jax, on an island off the coast of Florida. You can email her at jcslan@joannaslan.com or visit her website at https://linktr.ee/jcslan

Author Links 

Purchase Link – Amazon 

Release Spotlight: MARRIAGE, MALICE & MURDER by Christa Nardi

I can honestly say I have read and enjoyed all of the books in the Stacie Maroni mystery series by Christa Nardi, which features a strong woman at a crossroads in her life who works with victims of domestic violence. And the eighth book in the series is now available.

About the Book

Love is in the air on what should have been the perfect day for a wedding, that is, until someone offs the wedding planner.

The wedding planner had done a great job. Predictably, he did his best to jack up the price with extras to please the mother of the bride who insisted on a traditional, monochromatic wedding. Even so, the bride prevailed and Trina and Bill’s wedding burst with color.

The victim also worked as event planner at the local country club, where he was popular with the men for his organizational skills and with the ladies for other reasons. Due to special circumstances, a detective is called in from county to run the investigation. Everyone is treated as a suspect – including Stacie, momzilla, the wedding party, and all the guests. With happy and less happy clients, an ex-wife, and more, the suspect pool seems endless.

As the investigation goes sideways, Stacie’s instincts kick in as she tries to identify the killer on her own. As a result, a series of suspicious incidents ensue with Stacie as the target. Can she figure out who killed the wedding planner?

The book is currently available on Amazon for just $0.99.

About the Author

Christa Nardi is an accomplished author of cozy mysteries. She has always loved mysteries – reading them, writing them, and solving them Christa’s background is in higher education and psychology, much as her protagonist, Sheridan Hendley in the Cold Creek mystery series. Christa also authors the Stacie Maroni Myseries and the Izzie Di Sante mysterries. She is a member of Sisters in Crime. When not writing or reading, Christa and her husband enjoy travel, three grandchildren, and their dogs.

Spotlight & Giveaway: DUMPSTER DYING by Michelle Bennington

Today’s post showcases the first book in a new cozy mystery series by an accomplished author – Michelle Bennington. I haen’t had a chance to read Dumpster Dying: A Hazardous Hoarder Mystery yet, but it sounds like a fun read to me.

About the Book

Birdie Harper is a widowed hoarder who lives with her husband’s ghost. The only thing she enjoys more than a good yard sale is a good dumpster dive. When she finds her latest treasure—a ceramic angel— she knows just who to bring it to.

Jenna Lawson is a cashier at the Blue Market convenience store where Birdie often shops. The two women have formed a strong bond to assuage the losses in their lives, and Birdie thinks of Jenna like the daughter she lost long ago. So, when Jenna goes missing, Birdie is determined to find out what happened to her.

As she works to unravel the mystery, a man at church, Neville Miller, shows interest in Birdie, leading her to wonder if the lonely days are finally coming to an end. But her ghostly husband, Walter, sure isn’t going to like it.

Birdie is on a hunt that may claim the ultimate price—her own life.

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win an amazing prize package from the author: A mug, a paperback, candy, pen, and a home-made candle!

About the Author

Born and raised in the beautiful Bluegrass state of Kentucky, Michelle Bennington developed a passion for books early on that has progressed into a mild hoarding situation and an ever-growing to-read pile. She delights in spinning mysteries and histories. Find out more on her website: www.michellebennington.com

Author Links

Purchase Link – Amazon 

Spotlight & Giveaway: A CHRISTMAS CANDY KILLING by Christina Romeril

Yes, the holiday season is still a bit far off, but it’s never to soon to indulge in sweets – especially chocolates. In fact, this recently released cozy mystery by Christina Romeril features some killer chocolates.

About the Book

Their chocolates are to die for—but things aren’t so sweet when a real killer comes to town, in this debut mystery perfect for fans of Joanne Fluke and Laura Childs.

Identical twin sisters Alex and Hannah are the owners of Murder and Mayhem, a mystery bookshop that sells their famous poison-themed Killer Chocolates. But now, there’s a real killer in their midst. Shortly before Christmas, their septuagenarian neighbor, Jane, confides to Alex that a murderer from a true-crime show has taken up residence in the village. Unfortunately, she’s also shared her suspicions with town gossip Netta. The next morning, Alex shows up at Jane’s house to watch the show, but instead discovers Jane’s body, with a box of Killer Chocolates nearby.

The sheriff quickly zeroes in on two suspects: Alex, a beneficiary in Jane’s will, and Zack, a handyman who was seen leaving the crime scene. But Alex maintains her innocence and sets out to draft a list of other potential suspects—townsfolk who’d recently been seen arguing with Jane.

When Alex gets hold of Jane’s journal, she begins to understand the truth. But a bearer of ill tidings is arriving early this year—and Alex just might not make it to Christmas.

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter to win a lovely gift package from the author, including a hard copy edition of the book, chocolate, and more.

About the Author

Christina Romeril loves to plot murders, especially by poisoning. When she’s not plotting how to kill one of her characters she’s coming up with ways to dispose of the body. Since writing her debut novel her husband’s friends have been regularly checking on his well-being.

Christina also loves to read, eat chocolates, and travel when she’s not in her she shed writing. She grew up in Southern Ontario and spent most of her summers in Muskoka swimming, boating, and generally getting into mischief. She’s lived on both coasts of Canada and has a love of being near the water and close to a forest. Thus, it makes perfect sense that she moved to the prairies of Southern Alberta over twenty years ago.

During the warmer months you’ll find her escaping to nearby Waterton Lakes National Park with her cooler stocked full of chocolate and pastries. Occasionally, the once avid hiker will even set out on one of the many hiking trails and hope she doesn’t run into a hungry bear. 

Christina is a member of Sisters in Crime and enjoys interacting on social media.

Author Links:

 Purchase Links – Amazon – B&N – Kobo 

Review: SUMMER CAMP CULPRIT by C.K. Fyfe

For those of us who went to summer camp, it is easy to look back at those days through rose-colored glasses. Nostalgia for times gone by and sweet memories. But not all memories are sweet, as soon becomes apparent in Summer Camp Culprit, a romantic cozy mystery novella by C.K. Fyfe.

About the Book

Camp Starfall is closing. But that doesn’t mean the past is going with it.

Despite her misgivings, Lindsey returns to the campground she last left as a broken-hearted teen. She’s determined to spend Camp Starfall’s farewell weekend focusing on the good memories she has of her time as a camper. But fate has other plans.

Lindsey’s teenage sweetheart Tyler shows up, stirring up feelings in her that had long lain dormant. Too bad she doesn’t have time to dwell on him. Someone is breaking into the cabins, and if she doesn’t find the culprit, more than her heart will be at stake.

My Review

A visit to the summer camp she attended in her youth gives Lindsey the chance to reconnect with friends from her past, as well as get closure with respect to a painful memory from her last summer at the camp. I found it easy to identify with Lindsey and her misgivings. The story is sprinkled with a mixture of reminiscing, humor, and flashbacks to antics and events of the past. But something sinister is going on and Lindsey seizes on the opportunity to out the culprit, put her own demons to rest, and lay the foundation for new beginnings. This well written novella was ideal for a quick escape while travelling.

FTC disclosure: I received an advance review copy from the publisher. This has not affected the content of my review in any way.

About the Author

C.K. Fyfe has always enjoyed a good mystery. Fyfe’s childhood love of Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys led to a grown-up love of writing cozy mysteries with quirky, funny, and kindhearted characters. Fyfe lives in “The Wolverine State.” Much like wolverines, Fyfe’s villains have vicious dispositions, but the clever sleuths know how to tame their foes’ tempers.

Author Links

Guest Post, New Release & Giveaway: THE MYSTERY OF THE TEA CUP QUILT by Jodi Allen Brice

Just wanted to let you know about a new series from romance author Jodi Allen Brice. Set in a small town, the Mystery of the Tea Cup Quilt is the first installment in the Harland Creek Mystery Quilters cozy mystery series.

Description

Hi! I’m Dove Agnew, former successful dress designer who was living the high life in New York, until my sleazy business partner used my business to move his drugs, leaving me to pack my ruined reputation and move back home to the tiny town of Harland Creek.

Despite the setback, all was going relatively well until I found Gertrude Brown’s body on the floor of my mom’s quilt shop. Now, rumors are flying and all eyes are on me. I’m a murder suspect! Even my ex-boyfriend, the current chief of police, is suspicious of me.

Now, it’s up to me to clear my name and find out who the real killer is before someone else gets hurt. But I’m going to need help, and the Harland Creek Quilters, and a goat named Petunia, are just the group to get things done.

Welcome to the new series set in the beloved town of Harland Creek. With the quilting club ladies and a sidekick, which happens to be a goat, this book will keep you guessing and laughing out loud!

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win one of three copies of The Mystery of the Tea Cup Quilt provided by and signed by the author.

About the Author

Jodi Allen Brice has written numerous books under different pen names. Under Jodi Allen Brice she writes women’s fiction, small town clean sweet romance, and cozy mysteries.

She transitioned away from paranormal romance in the year 2020 when the virus hit. She still writes about lovable characters who overcome the impossible to get what they want. You’ll find yourself laughing and crying when you are reading her books. She is also an avid quilter and loves camping. Sometimes she does both at the same time!

Author Links – Website,  Facebook
Purchase Links – Amazon, Kobo,  GoogleNook 

Release Spotlight: THE ITCH OF MURDER by Christa Nardi

Christa Nardi is at it again. She recently released a new book in her Izze Di Sante Mystery series, which features an investigative journalist turned restauranteer as she tackles interesting mysteries in her home town.

About the Book

A well-dressed man killed at a demolition site, at night in a snow storm.

Izzie Di Sante loves a challenge and Chance Corcoran’s murder sparks her curiosity. While managing the day-to-day business of the family restaurant, she searches for some connection between the victim and the site of the future Elite Townhomes. A co-worker of the victim disappears, the foreperson of the construction site is injured, and someone’s after Izzie. As her sister, Chloe, prepares for an Easter buffet like none other, Izzie needs to put the pieces together before it’s too late.

You’ll find the book on Amazon. As of this posting, only $0.99 for Kindle.

About the Author

Christa Nardi is an accomplished author of cozy mysteries. Christa’s background is in higher education and psychology, much as her protagonist, Sheridan Hendley in the Cold Creek mystery series. She has always loved mysteries – reading them, writing them, and solving them. Christa is a member of Sisters in Crime. When not writing or reading, Christa and her husband enjoy travel, three grandchildren, and their dogs.

Murder at Cold Creek College is the first in the Cold Creek series, set in a small, fictitious town in Virginia and Sheridan is an accidental sleuth called on to assist the detective in charge of a colleague’s murder. The fifth and last in the series, Murder and a Wedding, was released on August 10, 2017. Sheridan may be moving, but she still gets involved in mysteries with the Sheridan Hendley series.

Christa also authors the Stacie Maroni Myseries. Stacie is a strong female at a crossroads in her life who works with victims of domestic violence. Going back to memories of the Dana Girls,

In addition, Christa collaborates with Cassidy Salem on a YA mystery series featuring teen sisters.

You can contact Christa via twitter @ChristaN7777 or via email: cccnardi@gmail.com or on her blog christanardi.blogspot.com Visit her website at https://cccnardi.wixsite.com/mysite. Sign up for her monthly newsletter at https://cccnardi.wixsite.com/mysite/contact.

Release Spotlight & Giveaway: DEATH ON THE SET by Rose Kerr

Today’s spotlight shines on the first book in a new cozy mystery series Rose Kerr – Death on the Set (A Brenna Flynn Mystery).

About the Book

Former high school guidance counselor turns amateur sleuth to save herself from murder charge on reality show.

Brenna Flynn, returns home to Bayview City after the sudden death of her husband. Unable to find work in her field, she signs up with a temp agency to find employment. Sent on an interview for a cooking reality show, she aces it and gets the job of a production assistant.

On her second day at work, Brenna discovers a body in the studio. She soon learns she’s the police’s primary suspect. Determined to clear her name, she uses some skills she’s honed as a guidance counselor to learn more about the victim. Drawing people out comes naturally to Brenna, and she becomes a confidante to cast and crew on the show.

The stakes are raised with threatening notes, poisonings, and blackmail. Can Brenna uncover who the killer is before someone else dies?

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win a special prize package from the author.

About the Author

Rose Kerr grew up in a small community in Nova Scotia. A graduate of Acadia University’s Bachelor of Arts Degree, Recreation and Physical Education, Rose worked for several organizations: Nova Scotia Figure Skating Association, Synchro Swim Nova Scotia, Northern Options for Women, and Contact North|Contact Nord. She traveled from Newfoundland to British Columbia and most provinces in between for work.

Rose and her husband settled in a small town, on the shores of Lake Superior in Northern Ontario to raise their family. A strong believer in lifelong learning, Rose took creative writing courses and began writing mysteries.
More recently, Rose, her husband, and their dog Jake have moved to Southern Ontario. When she isn’t writing, Rose and her husband enjoy exploring the new region.

Rose is a member of Sisters in Crime, the Guppy Online Chapter of Sisters in Crime, and Crime Writers of Canada. For more info visit www.rosekerr.com

Author Links:

Purchase Links – Amazon – Amazon Canada – Kobo – B&N

Visit the tour page for additional stops on the tour for reviews, interviews, and more.

Spotlight & Giveaway: JOUSTING AND JUSTICE by Elizabeth Pantley

Today the spotlight shines on Jousting and Justice, the 5th paranormal cozy mystery in Elizabeth Pantley’s Destiny Falls Mystery and Magic series. I have yet to read it myself, however it sounds interesting. I read and enjoyed a previous book in this series.

About the Book

An invitation to a medieval festival. A ferry ride to a mysterious island. A scheming, inept witch. An office break-in, an unidentified body, and a string of suspects. Can Hayden, her brave, sassy cat, Latifa, and the people of Destiny Falls solve the mystery and enjoy the festival?

Jousting and Justice follows the series format of combining two stories that blend into one. A murder mystery and the island mystery.

The Island Mystery: Hayden and all her friends get an invitation to a medieval festival – but it’s on “the forbidden island.” It’s too enticing to pass up. Of course, strange things will happen once they get there! . . . You’ll also learn the truth about the witch’s sister!

The Murder Mystery: A dead body shows up in the most shocking place. First, they need to figure out who this dead guy is. Then, who killed him and why. There are so many twists and turns on the way to the answers! But we know that Hayden, Latifa, and their family and friends will figure it out and justice will be served.

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

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win two books plus a journal from the author.

Deal Alert

The second book in this series, The Disappearance of Emily, is on sale for a limited time – only 99 cents.

About the Author

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

Author Links

Purchase Link – Amazon

Visit additional stops on the tour for reviews, interviews, and more.