Review & Giveaway: THE INFLUENCER by Frankie Bow

As part of a tour organized by Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours, I recently read the most recent release from Frankie Bow – The Influencer, A Professor Molly Mystery. A nice choice for fans of cozy mysteries.

About the Book

In Which Professor Molly Learns There Is, In Fact, Such a Thing as Bad Publicity

It’s spring break. Donnie’s taken the baby to visit relatives on the mainland, and Professor Molly finally has time to catch up on the assessment paperwork she owes the Student Retention Office.

Molly’s new renter is a social media star seeking privacy in remote Mahina. The arrangement seems to be working out–until her celebrity renter disappears. Molly and her best friend Emma dutifully call in the Mahina PD and try to stay out of the way. But when fame creates its own reality distortion field, everyone has an angle and nothing is as it seems.

My Review

In this latest installment in the series, Professor Molly and best friend and partner-in-crime, Emma, are eager to help figure out what happened to a prominent social media influencer. Helped out by Pat and his new sidekick, Howdy, the team comes up with theories, which inevitable require revisions, as new details are revealed en route to the mystery’s revolution. The characters are well-defined, and include Molly’s old nemesis from the Student Retention Office. That said, I was at times distracted from the story by Emma’s frequent use of local dialect. The plot moved along at a steady pace, with just enough twists to keep curious readers on their toes.
Overall, this is a pleasant and well-written read for cozy mystery fans.

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

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win a copy of The Influencer (Professor Molly Mysteries) by Frankie Bow. 

About the Author

AuthorPhoto

Like Professor Molly, Frankie Bow teaches at a public university. Unlike her protagonist, she is blessed with delightful students, sane colleagues, and a perfectly nice office chair. She believes if life isn’t fair, at least it can be entertaining. In addition to writing murder mysteries, she publishes in scholarly journals under her real name. Her experience with academic publishing has taught her to take nothing personally.

Author Links 

Purchase Links:
Amazon     B&N      Rakuten/Kobo      Angus & Robertson      Apple 

For more reviews, guest posts, and more, visit the tour page.

Review, Series Spotlight & Giveaway: SUGAR MOUNTAIN BOOKS by Kirsten Fullmer

As part of a blog tour organized by Silver Dagger Book Tours to mark the release of Problems at the Pub by Kirsten Fullmer, today’s post spotlights a mystery series set in a cozy mountain town – Sugar Mountain – featuring a charming, yet devious, secret society of women.

Based on reading the first book in the series this past week, this author’s work is likely to please bookworms who are looking for squeaky clean mystery and a touch of sweet romance, with no graphic violence.

About the Series

With the recent release of Problems at the Pub, there are currently four books in this series.

Problems at the Pub (Sugar Mountain Book 4)

It’s another charming and madcap mystery! The enchanting tourist town of Sugar Mountain, NC is rewriting its tax codes, and no one knows why. Mayor Winslow is up to no good, and he doesn’t seem to care what happens to the local business owners; at least that’s how it feels to Monique Brewer, the local tavern owner. She’s proud of making her own way in the world, and messing with her business is a sure way to get her riled.

Sounds like another job for The Sugar Mountain Ladies Historical Society! When Monique brings her concerns to the table, chaos erupts. The women don’t trust anyone, especially not the Mayor or his peculiar new assistant, Anthony Tidwell.

Will the group be able to come up with a solution to keep local businesses safe, or will the mayor finally get his way? Come along for the ride as the residents of Sugar Mountain learn they may be in for more trouble than anyone suspects.

**Only .99 cents!!**
Goodreads * Amazon

Shadows in the Salon (Sugar Mountain Book 3)

A spooky mystery, a promising romance, and a secret society of scheming women…

The cozy town of Sugar Mountain, NC harbors a secret society of women. The society itself is not secret—it’s the devious work of the group that is mysterious.

Michelle owns the Salon, Shear Genius, on Sugar Mountain Main Street, a favorite with the tourists and locals alike. Lately she’s dealing with mysterious problems. She’s being plagued by spooky and unexplained goings-on. Is it a sign from beyond that she should rethink her life choices?

Matt Hopkins moved to Sugar Mountain after losing his business, but thanks to the lovely and talented Michelle, he is now building an amphitheater in town. It looks like things are finally going his way until Michelle is threatened by an eerie aggressor and the Mayor’s involvement spells trouble for his project. Will Matt be able to complete the Amphitheater and help Michelle, or will things with her fall apart as well?

Facing puzzling complications at every turn, The Sugar Mountain Ladies Historical Society go undercover to figure out who is threatening Michelle and the new amphitheater. If they’re not careful, the society may fall apart and Michelle and Matt might end a promising romance. Come along for the ride on this zany, enchanting, romantic cozy mystery!

**Only .99 cents!!**
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Where There’s Smoke (Sugar Mountain Book 2)

Sugar Mountain is a sleepy town bursting with tourists. If you like quirky shops and original artwork, you’ll want to visit. But the local kindergarten teacher, Sarah, has a mystery on her hands. All she did was try to help the fire department and now she’s receiving threatening notes. Of course, she takes the frightening messages to her friends in the Sugar Mountain Ladies Historical Society, but even their investigative skills fall short. How will they be able to find the person intent on holding back the fire department and frightening Sarah?

Hugh Brockman, the second in command at the firehouse, is taking extra shifts to cope with the shortage of firefighters. When he visits Sarah’s classroom to talk to her students about fire safety, he gets caught up with the lovely teacher and her cryptic mystery. He’s not happy that someone in town is threatening her with bodily harm, and he intends to find out who it is.

With every lead shot down and tensions running high, it’s up to the ladies of the society to go undercover in their own town to flush out the culprit. If they’re not successful, the fire department will continue to be undermanned, leaving Sugar Mountain is in danger and Sarah in peril.

Join in the continuing antics of the Sugar Mountain Ladies Historical Society and fall in love along with Hugh and Sarah in this heartfelt and comical romantic mystery.

**Only .99 cents!!**
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Trouble on Main Street (Sugar Mountain Book 1)

A cozy mountain town, a sweet romance, and a secret society of sneaky women…

The sleepy hamlet of Sugar Mountain harbors a secret society of women. Don’t misunderstand—the society itself is not secret—it’s the true nature of the group that is hush-hush.

Sugar Mountain is the kind of charming village that tourists adore. If you like small-town charm, quirky shops, and local art, this is the place for you. But when a blood smeared package shows up at the post office and it appears to be linked to a scheme that threatens Heidi Collinsworth’s historic home, the town takes on a sinister vibe. Heidi would lay odds that slimy Mayor Winslow is involved, but even with the enquiring skills of The Sugar Mountain Ladies Historical Society at work, proof is scarce.

The new guy in town, Adam Williams, is determined not to get involved in Sugar Mountain’s business. His last job in a big city planning office ruined his life, but Heidi needs his help. No matter how hard he tries to stay detached, Adam finds himself eyeball deep in Heidi’s problems, as well as the needs of her teenage son and a homeless dog.

With conflicting theories abound and tensions running high, it’s up to the ladies of the society to don disguises and go undercover. If they’re not careful, the town may fall to a wrecking ball, Heidi may fall for Adam, and the secret society will be exposed.

Meet the cast of colorful characters in this charming and zany introduction to a whole new series of romantic, cozy mysteries!

**Only .99 cents!!**
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My Review – Trouble on Main Street

I was tempted to read this book by the series’ unique premise – a secret society of sneaky women who practically run a quaint touristy town. The women are an interesting bunch – different backgrounds, different ages, and different occupations. What they have in common is their love of Sugar Mountain and their determination to do whatever they can to ensure it stays just the way they like it. Even if their actions defy logic and common sense, and the women take unnecessary risks.

The story took a while to pick up speed. As a reader of both cozy and thrillers, this reader kept expecting somebody to find a body. After all, most cozies are murder mysteries. About half way through I recognized that wasn’t the case here. Although the plot of the underlying mystery was light on suspense, the story’s bevy of spunky, quirky characters provided a pleasant, low-key diversion on a cold wintry day.

FTC disclosure: I received a review copy of this book as part of this blog tour. This has not affected the content of this review in any way.

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win a $50 Amazon gift card from this generous author.
Follow the tour HERE for additional reviews and special content.

About the Author

Kirsten is a writer with a love of art and design. She worked in the engineering field, taught college, and consulted free lance. Due to health problems, she retired in 2012 to travel with her husband. They live and work full time in a 40′ travel trailer with their little dog Bingo. Besides writing romance novels, she enjoys selling art on Etsy and spoiling their three grandchildren.

As a writer, Kirsten’s goal is to create strong female characters who face challenging, painful, and sometimes comical situations. She believes that the best way to deal with struggle, is through friendship and women helping women. She knows good stories are based on interesting and relatable characters.

Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram * Bookbub * Amazon * Goodreads

Spotlight & Giveaway: OPEN FOR MURDER by Mary Angela

As part of a blog tour organized by Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours, today’s post features a new release from Mary Angela – Open for Murder (A Happy Camper Mystery), the first book in her new cozy mystery series.

About the Book

Deep in the heart of touristy small-town Spirit Canyon, South Dakota, former journalist Zo Jones runs the Happy Camper gift shop, where she sells everything from locally made souvenirs to memorabilia. She even rents out mountain bikes, and dabbles in the adventure industry—and sleuthing . . .

It’s Memorial Day weekend in Spirit Canyon, and for Zo that means the return of summer shoppers. It also means the return of her good friend Beth, who’s moved back to the area to reopen her family’s premier hotel, Spirit Canyon Lodge. Beth and Zo spent many childhood summers there and Zo can’t wait to reconnect and celebrate the Grand Opening. But the festivities go from bad to worse when a power outage knocks out the lights—and morning reveals a competitor’s dead body found on the premises . . .

Soon enough, Beth is the prime suspect in the suspicious death. Fortunately, Zo isn’t afraid to put her investigative skills to work and prove her friend’s innocence. To start digging for information, she appeals to Max Harrington, a local Forest Ranger and unlikely ally. Though they’ve argued about Happy Camper’s tours, in this case they agree on one thing: Beth isn’t a murderer. Stranger things have happened than their collaboration. After all, this is Spirit Canyon. But as the list of suspects grows, Zo will have to keep her guard up if she doesn’t want to be the next lodge guest to check out . . .

About the Author

Mary Angela is the author of the Professor Prather and Happy Camper cozy mystery series. When Mary isn’t penning heartwarming whodunits, she’s teaching, reading, traveling, or spending time with her family. She lives in South Dakota with her husband, daughters, and spoiled pets. You can find out more about her loves, including her writing, at MaryAngelaBooks.com.

Author Links 

Purchase Links  – Amazon – Apple – Google – Kobo – B&N

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card from the author.

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

Book Blast: THE SINISTER SUPERYACHT by Ana T. Drew

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions to showcase Ana T. Drew’s upcoming release – The Sinister Superyacht, the third book in her Julie Cavallo Investigates series. And, set in France, this new cozy mystery promises the chance to travel without leaving the comfort of your home.

About the Book

French tycoon Jean-Louis Ponsard is having a bad year.
Unwise investments, canceled orders, deals falling through…
In the thick of it, his yacht becomes the scene of a suspicious death, and his year of misfortune hits the bed of the Mediterranean Sea.
To make matters worse, the victim isn’t just anybody.
She’s his much-hated mother-in-law.This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is bookcover_the-sinister-superyacht.jpg

Onboard, caterer Julie Cavallo and her quirky grandma Rose do some poking around.
But every luxury cabin hides a secret.
Every passenger has an alibi or no reason to want the victim dead.
Discretion rules. The crew keeps mum.
So do the marble countertops, gem-incrusted walls, and gold sinks.
When the cops take charge, things go to pieces, and not only for the Ponsard family.

Can Julie dive to the murky bottom of the sea, unravel the case, and come back up still breathing?

About the Author

Ana T. Drew is the evil mastermind behind the recent series of murders in the fictional French town of Beldoc. This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is authorphoto_thesinistersuperyacht.jpgWhen she is not writing cozy mysteries or doing mom-and-wife things, she can be found watching “The Rookie” to help her get over “Castle”. She lives in Paris but her heart is in Provence.

>>> Visit ana-drew.com for a free cookbook and a game!

Amazon Pre-order/Buy Link: https://www.amazon.com/Sinister-Superyacht-Provence-Mystery-Investigates-ebook/dp/B0882J3652/ref=sr_1_1

Giveaway

Enter a Rafflecopter giveaway for your chance to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card from the author.

Review & Giveaway: SLIGHTLY MURDEROUS INTENT by Lisa Sideris

As part of a blog tour organized by Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours, I recently had the opportunity to read an advance copy of Slightly Murderous Intent. This new release by Lida Sideris is the fourth book in her Southern California Mystery series.

About the Book

There’s a shooter on the loose who keeps missing his target. But that doesn’t stop him from trying again…and again. It’s up to Corrie Locke, rookie lawyer and spunky sleuth, to find the gunman before he hits his mark, Assistant Deputy D.A. James Zachary, Corrie’s hunky and complicated frenemy.

When Corrie is stuck with more questions than answers, she enlists a team with various strengths, from weapons to cooking skills, to help her find the shooter. Her computer whiz boyfriend Michael is onboard. So is former security guard Veera. Toss in an over-the-hill informant and a couple of feuding celebrity chefs and Corrie’s got her very own A-Team. Okay, maybe it’s more like a B-Team.

Can Team Corrie hunt down the shooter before he scores a bulls-eye?

My Review

In this fun read, Corrie continues to vacillate between what should be a somewhat conventional job as a lawyer and her sense of adventure and aptitude for investigation.  As a witness to the would-be assassin’s initial attempt to kill a member of the D.A. Office’s team, it is only natural she would insert herself into the investigation. After all, the potential targets include people she cares about.

She is aided in her search for the truth by Michael, her amazingly supportive boyfriend, and her uniquely skilled co-worker, Veera. Together they manage to figure out who did it what and why – and keep their friends alive. Of course, it’s not that simple, they face a variety of hurdles, near misses, false leads, and twists along the way. Narrated in a light conversational tone, this well written, fast-paced mystery made for an entertaining read.

FTC Disclosure:   I received a complimentary copy of this book as part of this blog tour.  This has not affected the content of my review in any way. 

Giveaway

Enter the rafflecopter for your chance to win one of three copies of Slightly Murderous Intent: A Southern California Mystery from the author.

About the Author

Lida Sideris is an author, lawyer, and all-around book enthusiast. She writes soft-boiled mysteries and was a recipient of the Helen McCloy Mystery Writers of America scholarship award. Slightly Murderous Intent is #4 in her Southern California Mystery series, published by Level Best Books. Lida lives in the northern tip of SoCal with her family, rescue dogs and a flock of uppity chickens.  To learn more, please visit: www.LidaSideris.com

Author Links

Purchase Link – Amazon 

Click here to visit the tour page for more reviews, guest posts, and more.

Review & Giveaway: CASTING CALL FOR A CORPSE by Heather Haven

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As part of a blog tour organized by Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours,  today’s post introduces the Casting Call for a Corpse, a recent addition to the Alvarez Family Murder Mysteries series by Heather Haven.  

About the Book

CASTING-CALL-FOR-A-CORPSEA DETECTIVE AGENCY WITH HEART.
AND A WEDDING ANNIVERSARY!

Super sleuth, Lee Alvarez, finds a dead man wearing a tuxedo in a friend’s bathtub during a soiree for San Francisco’s VIPs. And not just any friend, but an internationally acclaimed actress who recently came to live in San Francisco. And not just any bathtub, but a bathtub residing inside one of Alamo Square’s famed Painted Ladies, recently bought by said actress.

The police believe it’s the actress friend who done the man in. After all, it’s her house and her tub. And another man died under suspicious circumstances around her recently. Both romantic encounters, doncha know. The actress must be guilty.

Or is she?

For ace detective Lee Alvarez, the timing couldn’t be worse. She is supposed to go off in celebration of her 6-month wedding anniversary with her hunky hubby. Paris is calling!

Or is it?

Her long-time friend, plus her mother – She Who Must Be Obeyed – thinks she should stick around and find out who the real killer is. So Lee, family, handsome hubby, and Tugger, the cat, are on the job. But Lee’s nose is itching. Which means not one of the suspects is telling the truth.

Or not all of it. Lee soon uncovers threatening letters, sullen playwrights, dead bodies, and a criminal web of jewel thieves, all treading the boards of her friend’s latest musical. This is showbiz?

Author Haven pulls out all the stops in a cozy fan’s delight about a charming, and unconventional Palo Alto detective family who get their man or woman, as the case may be. Book Seven follows its tradition of the Bay Area’s favorite PI, who rolls over with all four paw in the air when it comes to her darn near perfect mother. But with the help of her computer geek brother and handsome hubby, Lee works to solve the case in time to celebrate her own 6-month wedding anniversary.

My Review

Told from the candid perspective of Lee Alvarez, the narrative has a natural, conversation feel to it, which soon made Lee seem like an old friend (even though I hadn’t read previous books in the series).   She is spunky and impulsive, a good friend and a loving wife, with a sense of humor.  And she is complemented by an interesting cast of family and friends.  

There was never a dull moment in this entertaining cozy mystery, which includes plenty of action,  a well balanced range of  twists and turns, and even a few laugh out loud moments. The 7th in a series – it can easily be enjoyed as a standalone.  I might have to go back and read the others when I get a chance. 

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

Giveaway

To celebrate the release, the author is giving a handmade, one of a kind purse (U.S. ONLY).  Click here to enter the rafflecopter. 

About the Author

Heather_115114102_stdHeather moved to the Bay Area and studied creative writing at Stanford University. Previously, several of her comedy acts and plays were performed in NYC. Her novels include the humorous Silicon Valley-based Alvarez Family Murder Mysteries, Manhattan-based Persephone Cole Vintage Mysteries, Love Can Be Murder Novellas, Snow Lake Romantic Suspense Series and standalone mystery noir, Murder under the Big Top, based upon her mother’s stint as a performer with Ringling Brothers’ Circus. There is also her anthology, Corliss and Other Award-Winning Stories. Her favorite protagonist is in Corliss, one of the featured short stories, but don’t tell anyone!

Author Links  

Purchase Link – Amazon 

Visit the tour page to check out the other stops on this tour for more reviews, interviews and guest  posts. 

Blurb Blitz & Giveaway: MIMI TAKES PARIS by Elizabeth Cooke

TourBanner_Mimi Takes Paris

As part of a Virtual Blurb Blitz Tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions  for Mimi Takes Paris,  today’s post introduces a new cozy mystery from Elizabeth Cooke.

About the Book

Cooke_MTP_coverIt is the start of the adventures of a small black poodle, escapee from a cruel puppy mill, who is rescued by Nicole Marcel, a pretty girl singer in the City of Paris. The two become inseparable.

The little dog has an animal intelligence and a tremendous sense of smell, and proceeds to solve a murder, and other crimes by nasal prowess. Mimi gains celebrity status, as does her PERSON, Nicole.

It is a Cozy Mystery like no other!

In book two, titled “Mimi’s Paris Dilemma,” Mimi’s reputation, (and that of Nicole’s), is sullied by an unfair assessment by the public. The little dog slowly regains status by solving other crimes.

 

Read an excerpt:

Mimi was fortunate enough to live in Paris, and she knew it. She, and her ‘person’ resided in a petite hotel on the Left Bank. That ‘person’ was young and pretty and would leash Mimi for walks.

In winter, Mimi wore a pink wool coat with a tiny, white handkerchief peeking out from a pocket on the back. It was so handsome against her jet -black toy-poodle hair. Of course, in warm weather, she only sported the leash.

How proud was Mimi to parade along the rues and boulevards. All of 12 inches long and perhaps 10 inches high, she walked with such elan, that people noticed her. She liked that. But most of all, Mimi reveled in the fact that she had been lucky enough to be endowed with a moist, black muzzle with two intense nostrils that provided her with a world of sensuality.

The scent of companion dogs with messages left behind, greeted her at every corner. The odor of soupe a l’oignon or boeuf, simmering in wine, emerged from the bistros as the two passed by, one two legged, the other on four. Oh, and to pass a fromagerie, was a special delight. The smell of the pungent cheeses from across the country within the little store could not be contained, and all of France was laid before Mimi’s hungry little nose.

Occasionally, Mimi was lucky enough to find a morsel of crepe au sucre on the rue Cler, inadvertently dropped by a hungry tourist who had been munching while he walked. Ah, life was good. What a lucky dog am I, was her constant thought.

Mimi knew she was smart, and she knew her sense of smell was extraordinary, even for a dog. She could define with her nose every herbal addition to a stew of veal with sage, or rosemary in a gigot d’agneau. Oh, the herbal names meant nothing, but the specific tingle in her nostrils made everything so clear, distinct and utterly delicious.

But not this time. This was a dark odor. It was the smell of blood.

Giveaway

Enter to win a $25 Amazon/BN GC – a Rafflecopter giveaway.

About the Author

The daughter of the Dean of Medicine at Columbia University, Elizabeth Cooke was raised in Manhattan, graduating from The Brearley School, and Vassar College, with a major in Drama, and minor in Art. As a young woman, she worked in theater and as a casting consultant, briefly served on the board of MoMA, before moving to Paris for three years, after her marriage ended. There, she immersed herself in the museums, studied at the Sorbonne, cooked at The Cordon Bleu, and traveled all over Europe. Until recently, Elizabeth Cooke resided on the East End of Long Island. For 10 years, she was the Chairman of The Bide-A-Wee Home, a prestigious animal shelter complex in New York City and Long Island. She also served on the Executive Committee of the Westhampton Free Library for 30 years.

Paris In “Eye of the Beholder,” completed after the memoir, Elizabeth Cooke writes in rather irreverent terms, of the lives of six artists and the most compelling muse in each of their lives: next came, “A Shadow Romance,” an odyssey of an unfulfilled love affair between a mature New York City couple: then, the four “Hotel” books. She has just completed “How To Game People Without Even Trying,” the true story (fictionalized) of the murder of her second husband in his Paris apartment. A fifth ‘hotel’ book, titled “Rendezvous at a Small Hotel” has just been released. The sixth hotel book, “Intrigue at a Small Hotel” has received top honors from The Paris Book Festival for 2016. The seventh and final in the hotel series, “The Hotel Marcel Dining Club” is currently available.

For her, there is great joy in having the gift of expression that writing provides, and this is reflected in her rather prolific output.

Get the book:

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

VANGIE-VALE-AND-THE-LARCENOUS-LAVA-CAKE-BANNER-184

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, Guest Post & Giveaway: CAST IRON STAKE THROUGH THE HEART by Jodi Rath & Rebecca Grubb

CAST-IRON-STAKE-THROUGH-THE-HEART-BANNER-184

Today as part of a blog tour organized by Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours, I am please to have as my guest, Jodi Rath, co-author of Cast Iron Stake Through the Heart (A Cast Iron Skillet Mystery, Book Four)In her guest post, Jodi relates a bit of her experience collaborating with Rebecca Grubb and their co-authoring experience.


When Besties Co-Write a  Mystery by Jodi Rath

61nOLLFwNtL._US230_Cast Iron Stake Through the Heart is the fourth installment in The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series, although it’s the sixth story with two other holiday stories. As usual, life happens, and I found myself behind on my deadline for the first draft. My BFF and editor, Rebecca Grubb, and I have been in writing groups together, and I’ve seen the stories she has created. Plus, she knows all of the books in the series and has been there to save my tush on many occasions—so, naturally, I called her, put her on the spot, and asked if she’d co-write this book with me. Being true to the wonderful human being she is, she didn’t let me down. 

While Rebecca is an excellent editor and writer, she’s never been published before, so this was all new to her. She was used to me texting, emailing, and calling all hours of the day as I pulled my wild curls out while trying to meet deadlines and to bounce ideas off of her—but, she wasn’t used to being on said deadline to produce the story and come up with ideas. You have to understand our friendship—it looks a lot like Jolie’s and Ava’s friendship in the books, but we aren’t nearly as clean and proper at all times! And let’s face it, that’s a beautiful thing to have in a bestie—one who you know you can show your best and worst parts of yourself and they will still be there after all is said and done. And let me tell you all—I am flawed, baby—seriously flawed! 

So, off we are on our new journey into co-writing. What a beautiful yellow-brick road we saw before us—like Dorothy—many twists and turns followed that path. Yes, there were times we wanted to strangle each other, and times we said to each other, “YOU ARE BRILLIANT MY DEAR!” And in the end, we created a gold nugget of suspense, mystery, and adventure that will surely take you on a wild ride. Enjoy!


About the Book

CAST-IRON-STAKE-THROUGH-THE-HEARTOn again, off again, ON AGAIN–Jolie Tucker and Mick Meiser are giving their relationship another try. Things seem to be working out for them so far, and love is on the menu all over Leavensport! An unexpected pregnancy with a surprising partner, a therapist pairs off with the chief of police, and the mayor of Leavensport falls for Jolie’s Aunt Fern!

Although Leavensport is serving up affairs of the heart, there are a lot of mysterious activities lurking in the air. The townspeople awake to find freshly dug empty holes throughout the fields that were recently up for sale under suspicious circumstances. Jolie and Ava believe they are taking a break from solving murders when they start teaching an online cooking course–until they witness one of their students take a stake through the heart!

Welcome to Leavensport, OH, where DEATH takes a DELICIOUS turn!

Purchase Links – Amazon – B&N – Kobo

Giveaway

Enter a rafflecopter for your chance to win a copy of Cast Iron Stake Through the Heart.

About the Authors

Jodi Rath

Moving into her second decade working in education, Jodi Rath has decided to begin a life of crime in her Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series. Her passion for both mysteries and education led her to combine the two to create her business MYS ED, where she splits her time between working as an adjunct for Ohio teachers and creating mischief in her fictional writing. She currently resides in a small, cozy village in Ohio with her husband and her nine cats.

Author Links:

  • Webpage: https://www.jodirath.com/
  • FB: https://www.facebook.com/jodirath
  • FB Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/authorjodirath
  • Twitter @jodirath
  • Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18363719.Jodi_Rath Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/jodi-rath
  • Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/jodirath/
  • Monthly Newsletter Link: http://eepurl.com/dIfXdb Get  Short Story “Sweet Retreat” for free by subscribing to my monthly newsletter. Subscribe to my newsletter to receive free flash fiction, A Mystery a Month, serial scenes from series, and deleted scenes).

RgurbbRebecca Grubb

Rebecca Grubb utilizes her experience in the high school English classroom and her decades as a bookworm to coach writers and edit fiction and creative non-fiction. She enjoys reading and writing books, particularly mysteries and science fiction. She lives in a small town in Ohio with her husband and the three mischievous children.

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Guest Post, Spotlight & Giveaway: KILLER DEADLINE by Lauren Carr

Tour Banner KILLER DEADLINE

As part of a blog tour organized by iRead Book Tours, I am honored to have Lauren Carr as my guest as she celebrates the release of her latest book – Killer Deadline.   Enjoy!


How Editors Are Like Hair Stylists 
by Lauren Carr

When you get too old to learn new things, then you’re old. That’s why I am always open to learning new things. I don’t want to be old.

My most recent discovery: Editors are like hair stylists.

Lauren & Muse AdjustedWhen you find a good one, never let him or her go. If forced to choose—keep your editor and divorce your spouse. My mother used to say men are like buses. Another one will come by in ten minutes. Good hair stylists whose touch makes your hair quiver and give in to their every demand—not so frequent.

It’s the same with editors who know just what to fix in your writing to make it sing to the reader.

I lost the editor I had used for several of my last books to a big publisher, who made her sign an exclusivity agreement. Since then, I’ve been having flashbacks to when I moved from the northern panhandle of West Virginia to Washington—leaving my first hair stylist behind.

Leslie found me wandering aimlessly into her shop after having been used and abused by another hairdresser who thought he could toy with my locks. Up until then, I confess, I played around—roaming from salon to salon—looking for style in all the wrong places. I was so young and naïve. Every time a stylist would whisper sweet nothings in my ear, promising to give me a look that would turn other women green with envy—I’d believe them.

After so many bad haircuts—I became hardened and cynical—believing that I had a head of hair that only a mother could love.

I still remember that last session I had with Leslie. It was raining—just like a scene in the movies—when I told Leslie that I was leaving—I cried bitter tears of heartache and swore that I’d never forget her. Still, to this day, I remember the look in her eyes when she said to me, “Do you want hair spray?”

God got me for leaving Leslie high and dry like that. I’d suffered the shame of bad haircuts for five long miserable years.

When my editor left me, I once again felt that sense of loss. Whatever shall I do? Wherever shall I go?

To which she replied, “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn. They’re giving me full benefits, including a 401K and healthcare.”

I bit my knuckle and collapsed to the floor.

When the edited manuscript for my latest mystery came back from my new editor, I once again suffered horrible memories of when those cheap stylists had their way with my hair—leaving it dry, with all the life sucked out of it.

Tears came to my eyes as I stroked the screen of my laptop, whispering comforting words to my book. “That’s okay. I still love you. We’ll get this mess sorted out. This horrid experience will be nothing but a distant memory—eventually.”

It’s been a growing experience. Just because someone has lovely hair, that doesn’t mean they’re a hair stylist. Likewise, just because someone reads a lot and picks up mistakes in books, does not make them an editor.

Also, in the same way that not all good hair stylists are a good fit for every client, not all good editors are a good fit for every writer. I have worked with many editors—even some very good ones, who just weren’t a good fit for me—for whatever reason. My previous editor (sob) grew to know my style. Her strengths complemented my weaknesses and she knew exactly how far to go and what to leave.

Once again, I was out there— wishin’ and hopin’ and thinkin’ and prayin’. Plannin’ and dreamin’—that Santa Claus will bring me an editor for Christmas.

Note: Before everyone sends me names of their neighbor’s nephew who happens to be available for editing, I do have a new one lined up for my next Mac Faraday. But, if this relationship doesn’t pan out, then maybe I can meet him for happy hour.


About the Book

killer deadline eBook coverFolks in Pine Grove, Pennsylvania, claim that where Nikki Bryant goes, trouble is not far behind. Her refusal to back down from a challenge has made Nikki Bryant a top investigative journalist.

When an online friend nudges her to join him in a pact to reconnect with their first loves, Nikki and her boxer dog Elmo leave the bright lights of Las Vegas for the charming town of Pine Grove. There, she must face the biggest challenges in her career and life—the first love she had left behind and her father’s unsolved murder.

But before she has time to unpack her car, Nikki stumbles upon the dead body of local news anchor, Ashleigh Addison, her childhood rival. Could Ashleigh’s death be connected to an explosive news story that she had teased about airing live? Did that explosive story have anything to do with the murder of Nikki’s father?With the clues in her father’s cold case hot again, Nikki intends to  chase down the story of her life until she catches his killer—no matter what it takes.

Buy link:  Amazon.com

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Giveaway

Enter the giveaway for your chance to win a $50 Amazon gift card: a Rafflecopter giveaway.

About the Author

Lauren Carr is the international best-selling author of the Mac Faraday, Lovers in Crime, Chris Matheson Cold Case, and Thorny Rose Mysteries—over twenty-five titles across
three fast-paced mystery series filled with twists and turns!

Killer Deadline marks Lauren’s first venture into mystery’s purely cozy sub-genre with a female protagonist.

Book reviewers and readers alike rave about how Lauren Carr’s seamlessly crosses genres to include mystery, suspense, crime fiction, police procedurals, romance, and
humor.

​A popular speaker, Lauren is also the owner of Acorn Book Service, the umbrella under which falls iRead Book Tours. She lives with her husband and two spoiled rotten German Shepherds on a mountain in Harpers Ferry, WV.

Connect with the author: Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Instagram ~ Pinterest