Release Spotlight & Giveaway: LONG ISLAND ICED TINA by Maria DiRico

As part of a blog tour organized by Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours to celebrate the release of Long Island Iced Tina (A Catering Hall Mystery), a recent release by Maria DiRico.

About the Book

Mia Carina is back in the borough of Queens—in charge of the family catering hall, Belle View Banquet Manor, and keeping her nonna company. But some events—like murder—are not the kind you can schedule . . .

Mia’s newly pregnant friend Nicole plans to hold a shower at Belle View—but Nicole also has to attend one that her competitive (and mysteriously rich) stepmother, Tina, is throwing at the fanciest place in Queens. It’s a good chance for Mia to snoop on a competitor, especially since doing a search for “how to run a catering hall” can get you only so far.

Mia tags along at the lavish party, but the ambience suffers at Nicole’s Belle View shower when a fight breaks out—and then, oddly, a long-missing and valuable stolen painting is unwrapped by the mom-to-be. Tina is clearly shocked to see it. But not as shocked as Mia is when, soon afterward, she spots the lifeless body of a party guest floating in the marina . . .

Italian recipes included!

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win a print copy of Long Island Iced Tina.

About the Author

Maria DiRico is the pseudonym for Ellen Byron, author of the award winning, USA Today bestselling Cajun Country Mysteries. Born in Queens, New York, she is first-generation Italian-American on her mother’s side and the granddaughter of a low-level Jewish mobster on her father’s side. She grew up visiting the Astoria Manor and Grand Bay Marina catering halls, which were run by her Italian mother’s family in Queens and have become the inspiration for her Catering Hall Mystery Series. DiRico has been a writer-producer for hit television series like Wings and Just Shoot Me, and her first play, Graceland, appears in the Best Short Plays collection. She’s a freelance journalist, with over 200 articles published in national magazines, and previously worked as a cater-waiter for Martha Stewart, a credit she never tires of sharing. A native New Yorker who attended Tulane University, Ellen lives in Los Angeles with her husband, daughter, and two rescue dogs.

Spotlight & Giveaway: THE KEY LIME CRIME by Lucy Burdette

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As part of a blog tour organized by Great Escapes Virtual Book tours, today’s post introduces The Key Lime Crime, the  recently released 10th book in  Lucy Burdette’s Key West Food Critic mystery series.

About the Book

THE-KEY-LIME-CRIMENational bestselling author Lucy Burdette’s tenth Key West Food Critic mystery is piping hot with pie-enthusiasts and murder suspects.

When a fierce rivalry between key lime pie bakers leads to a pastry chef’s murder, food critic Hayley Snow is fit to be pied.

During the week between Christmas and New Year’s, the year-round population of Key West, Florida, faces a tsunami of tourists and snowbirds. It doesn’t help that outrageously wealthy key lime pie aficionado David Sloan has persuaded the city to host his pie-baking contest. Every pie purveyor on the island is out to win the coveted Key Lime Key to the City and Key Zest food critic Hayley Snow is on the scene to report it.

Meanwhile, Hayley’s home life is turning more tart than sweet. Hayley’s new hubby, police detective Nathan Bransford, announces that her intimidating mother-in-law is bearing down on the island for a surprise visit. Hayley offers to escort Nathan’s crusty mom on the iconic Conch Train Tour of the island’s holiday lights, but it becomes a recipe for disaster when they find a corpse among the glittering palm trees and fantastic flamingos. The victim–Au Citron Vert’s controversial new pastry chef–was a frontrunner in Sloan’s contest.

It’s bad enough that Hayley’s too-curious mother-in-law is cooking up trouble. Now, the murderer is out to take a slice out of Hayley. Can she handle the heat of a killer’s kitchen?

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win a print copy of The Key Lime Crime (US only).

About the Author

Lucy-Burdette-author-photoClinical 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 Writersand 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.

Author Links:

Visit the tour page to view additional stops on this tour, including reviews and interviews.

Review & Giveaway: VANGIE VALE AND THE LARCENOUS LAVA CAKE by R.L. Syme

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As part of a blog tour organized by Great Escapes Virtual Book tours, today’s post introduces Vangie Vale and the Larcenous Lava Cake, the fourth book in The Matchbaker Mysteries  by R.L. Syme.

About the BVANGIE-VALE-AND-THE-LARCENOUS-LAVA-CAKEook

I never thought Edward would come back…

When the court case against my ex was finished, I thought we were finished, too. But it turns out, it was only the beginning.

The Larcenous Lava Cake is book four in The Matchbaker Mysteries, a new cozy culinary mystery series from USA Today Bestselling Author, R.L. Syme.

RECIPE INCLUDED: The Larcenous Lava Cake

My Review

I liked Vangie. She’s different. She is a part-time pastor and baker – definitely a unique combination in an amateur sleuth.  (I haven’t read the earlier books in the series so I was caught by surprise.) She’s a good person who has made mistakes in the past and is determined not to repeat them.  Especially  not with Edward.   His sudden appearance and the chain of events, including a murder, lead to Vangie’s involvement in an investigation that has more than its fair share of twists.   Although Vangie’s actions were sometimes ill-advised and the plot a bit far-fetched, the surprise twists kept the pages turning.

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

Giveaway

Enter a Rafflecopter giveaway for your chance to win  full set of paperbacks of the Vangie Vale series, and a $100 Amazon gift card.

About the Author

R.L. Syme is a writer of sleuths worth loving and villains worth hating. Lover of fancy cheese, binge-watching, strawberries, and hope. A foodie and baker of yummy delights, Becca grew up reading Nancy Drew mysteries passed on by her grandmother. A Tweeter and Pinner of things.

Author Links:R.LSyme

  • Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/rlsymeauthor/
  • Facebook Fan Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/BeccaNation/
  • Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/rlsyme/
  • Twitter: @beck_a_tron
  • Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/2xux8Ii
  • Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6878258.R_L_Syme

Purchase Link: Amazon 

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

Spotlight & Giveaway: A BAD HAIR DAY COOKBOOK by Nancy J. Cohen

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As part of a blog tour organized by Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours, today the spotlight shines on  A Bad Hair Day Cookbook – a collection of recipes from  Nancy J. Cohen’s culinary cozy mystery series.

About the Book

Cookbook-eBook-coverAre you having a bad hair day? Whip out your whisk, snatch up your spoon, and prepare your palate. Inside the pages of this cookbook are recipes that will bring you good cheer.

Enjoy 160+ tasty recipes from Nancy J. Cohen’s popular Bad Hair Day cozy mystery series. Included in this cookbook are excerpts, cooking tips, and anecdotes written by hairstylist and savvy sleuth Marla Vail. From appetizers to desserts, Marla offers cooking tips and tricks along with commentary about the dishes she prepares for her family. Whether you’re a skilled cook or an eager novice, this cookbook will unravel the mystery of cooking. Put on your apron and plan to make some killer recipes. Bonuses Include:

  • Meet the Sleuth
  • Introduction by Marla Vail
  • Cooking Tips
  • Excerpts from Series Titles
  • Themed Menu Suggestions
  • “A Sabbath Dinner” by Nancy’s Mother

For Home Cooks, Food Lovers, Mystery Fans and Cookbook Collectors.

Purchase Links –  Amazon Kindle   Amazon Print   Apple Books    Nook    Kobo    Books2Read    BookBub   Goodreads

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter giveaway for your chance to win a lovely kitchen gift basket from the author.

About the Author

PubPinkNancy J. Cohen writes the Bad Hair Day Mysteries featuring South Florida hairstylist Marla Vail. Titles in this series have been named Best Cozy Mystery by Suspense Magazine, won a Readers’ Favorite gold medal, placed first in the Chanticleer International Book Awards and third in the Arizona Literary Awards. Nancy’s instructional guide, Writing the Cozy Mystery, was nominated for an Agatha Award and won a gold medal at the President’s Book Awards from the Florida Authors and Publishers Association. When not busy writing, Nancy enjoys cooking, fine dining, cruising, visiting Disney World, and shopping.

Author Links

Release Spotlight: CROQUEMBOUCHE MURDER by Sandi Scott

Today it’s time to shine a light on a new mystery release from Sandi Scott — Croquembouche Murder, the latest addition to the Seagrass Sweets Cozy Series.   I have to say the covers of the books in this series look yummy. Of course, given a choice between a main course and dessert, this reader’s sweeet tooth wins out every time.

About the Book

Croqueembouche Cover.jpgAn extravagant destination wedding job brings Ashley, Patty and Dizzy to a millionaire’s remote horse ranch in the mountains of Wyoming where a mysterious death and disabled commuter plane leave everyone stranded until the murder is solved. Another guess-along mystery by
USA & Wall Street Journal Best Selling Author Sandi Scott.

Being hired to cater a wedding is exciting and when that wedding is at a horse ranch, things couldn’t be much better for Seagrass Sweets and The Southern Bird. Ashley, Patty and even Dizzy fly to a remote ranch
located high in the mountains of Wyoming, ready to wow wedding guests with sumptuous meals and decadent desserts.

All is not well at the ranch however. Horses are falling sick with a virus and one of them, a mare named Cocoa, seems bent on ruining everything—from Ashley’s desserts to the wedding itself. Then a body is found in Cocoa’s stall, and the wedding is postponed. Ashley can’t decide which is worse, being at the scene of yet another murder, or not being able to make it home in time to go on a dream cruise with Ryan.

An impassible road and a plane that has been disabled means there is no way off the ranch and the police are unable to get up the mountain, so it is up to Ashley and Patty to keep their eyes and ears open to find the killer. With some help from Dizzy’s new friends, Cocoa, and a farm cat called Bébé, Ashley closes in on the killer.

Will she solve it before the police get involved in order to make it to her dream vacation with her sweetheart?

This is a cozy mystery featuring a strong female protagonist and a mystery that will keep you guessing. It has no graphic violence, bad language or sex. It is Book 6 of the Seagrass Sweets Cozy Series but can be read as a standalone.

About the Author

Sandi Scott is a USA Today & Wall Street Journal Best Selling Author of cozy mysteries who is finally living her dream of being able to write what I love, thanks to her loyal readers. She fell in love with mystery books when she first started reading Agatha Christie and the Bobsey Twins eons ago. It only took her a few decades to gather the courage to try her hand at writing them. Sandi loves connecting with her readers who share many of her passions:  reading, baking, and fur babies!  Every cozy Sandi writes includes a pet and a sweet (at least one!)

Connect with Sandi:

Buy links: 

 

 

Spotlight & Recipe: RISKY BISCUITS by Mary Lee Ashford

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As part of a blog tour  organized by Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours, today’s post introduces Risky Biscuits, A Sugar and Spice Mystery, the first book in a new culinary cozy series by Mary Lee Ashford.

About the Book

Risky-Biscuits-HighResFormer magazine editor “Sugar” Calloway’s life has taken a delicious twist since she launched a community cookbook publishing business with blue-ribbon baker Dixie Spicer. Now these amateur sleuths must solve a small-town murder—without getting burned . .

Sugar and Spice Cookbooks’ newest project is a fundraiser organized by the St. Ignatius Crack of Dawn Breakfast Club, famous for their all-you-can-eat biscuits and gravy events. But when a group member is found dead, Sugar and Spice’s priorities change from raising dough to figuring out who put murder on the menu.

The return of former badboy Nick Marchant has stirred the town’s gossips too. Add a few grudges and some old-fashioned greed over a land deal into the mix, and it’s a recipe for mayhem. And when someone serves up a second helping of murder, Sugar and Spice need to sift the guilty from the blameless, or their next breakfast may be their last . . .

* Includes delicious recipes! *

Scroll down for a recipe for Biscuits and Gravy from Mary Lee Ashford

About the Author

Mary Lee Ashford is a lifelong bibliophile, and avid reader, and supporter of public libraries. In addition to writing the Sugar & Spice mystery series for Kensington Books, she also writes as half of the writing team of Sparkle Abbey, author of the national bestselling Pampered Pets mystery series from Bell Bridge Books.

Mary-Lee-Ashford-PhotoPrior to publishing Mary Lee won first place in the Daphne du Maurier contest, sponsored by the Kiss of Death chapter of RWA, and was a finalist in Murder in the Grove’s mystery contest, as well as Killer Nashville’s Claymore Dagger contest.

She is the founding president of Sisters in Crime – Iowa and a current board member of the Mystery Writers of America Midwest chapter, as well as a member of Novelists, Inc., Romance Writers of America, Kiss of Death the RWA Mystery Suspense chapter, Sisters in Crime, and the SinC internet group Guppies.

Mary Lee has a passionate interest in creativity and teaches a university level course in Creative Management to MPA candidates, as well as presenting workshops and blogging about creativity. She loves encouraging other writers and is a frequent presenter on a variety of topics at workshops, conferences, and writers’ groups.

In her day job, Mary Lee is a Deputy Chief Information Officer. She currently resides in the Midwest with her husband, Tim, and Sparkle, the rescue cat namesake of the Sparkle Abbey pseudonym. Her delights are reading and enjoying her family and especially her six grandchildren.

Author Links

Purchase Links:  Amazon    Barnes & Noble     Kobo    iBooks

Biscuits and Gravy Recipe from Mary Lee Ashford

 

“Mind your own biscuits and life will be gravy.” – a saying from Sugar’s Aunt Crickett

Making your own made-from-scratch biscuits are so easy. Some people prefer drop biscuits, especially if they are going to be covered with tasty gravy. A few ingredients stirred together, drop them by the spoonful and pop them in the oven. Here’s a very simple recipe with basic ingredients you may already have in your kitchen.

Biscuits

Ingredients:
2 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter
¾ cup whole milk

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 425 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Combine the dry ingredients and set aside.
Cut the butter into the flour mixture either with a pastry cutter or a knife. You can also use a cheese shredder to get small pieces.
Add the milk and stir until the ingredients are combined. Be careful not to overwork the mixture.
If you’re going to cut the biscuits, transfer your dough to a well-floured surface and fold the dough over several times. Use more flour, if you need to, in order to keep the dough from being sticky. And then flatten to about one-inch thick and cut with a biscuit cutter.
If you’d prefer to drop the biscuits, use a spoon to drop the biscuits onto the parchment paper. You may have to add a little more milk to keep the dough the right consistency for dropping, but don’t add too much.
Bake at 425 degrees for 12 minutes or until they are golden brown.

Gravy

Ingredients:
1 lb. pork sausage
¼ cup flour
2 cups milk

Instructions:
Cook sausage in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook thoroughly, stirring frequently.
Stir in flour.
Gradually add milk.
Cook until the mixture bubbles and thickens, stirring constantly so it doesn’t burn.
Reduce heat and simmer a couple of minutes.
Season lightly with salt and pepper.
Spoon over biscuits and eat.

For more biscuit recipes, check out the Risky Biscuits section on Mary Lee Ashford’s Pinterest page.  https://www.pinterest.com/maryleeashford/risky-biscuits-book-2/