Thursday, January 28, 2016

Blog Tour Spotlight: PLAIN DEAD by Emma Miller


When a newspaperman is murdered in the Amish community of Stone Mill, Pennsylvania, Rachel Mast digs up the dirt to find out who wanted to bury the lead…

Although she left her Old Order Amish ways in her youth, Rachel discovered corporate life in the English world to be complicated and unfulfilling. Having returned to Stone Mill, she’s happy to be running her own B&B. But she’s also learning—in more ways than one—that the past is not always so easily left behind.

After local newspaperman Bill Billingsly is found gagged and tied to his front porch, left to freeze overnight in a snowstorm, Detective Evan Parks—Rachel’s beau—uncovers a file of scandalous information Billingsly intended to publish, including a record of Rachel pleading no contest to charges of corporate misconduct. Though Evan is certain of her innocence, it’s up to Rachel to find the real killer. A closer examination of the victim’s unpublished report leads Rachel to believe the Amish community is far from sinless. But if she’s not careful her obituary might be the next to appear in print…

About The Author

Emma Miller is the author of Redeeming Grace and Anna’s Gift. She lives with her family in Kent County, Delaware

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Sunday, January 24, 2016

Blog Tour: DEATH OF A BROOKLYN LANDLORD by Susan Russo Anderson

A Mystery, A Kidnapping, A Missing Mom … The First Book in a NEW Spinoff Series!

When newly widowed Lorraine McDuffy gets a call in the middle of the night, it’s not the ghost of her dead husband on the line, but the trembling voice of an old flame, Frank Rizzo, a local butcher. He’s found the battered body of rent-gouging Brooklyn landlord Viktor Charnov. Felled by blunt trauma to the back of his head, the victim lies in the fetal position in the back of Frank’s shop, a pork chop clenched between his teeth. The distraught butcher asks Lorraine to investigate.

As the story moves through the entangled web left behind by the landlord’s evil dealings, Lorraine searches for Viktor’s estranged wife as well as a missing teen with ties to the landlord, believed to have jumped in despair from the Brooklyn Bridge two months earlier. Along the way, Lorraine spars with Detective First Grade Jane Templeton and cares for the victim’s ten-year-old son, baseball-loving Joey Charnov, while she searches for his mother. And despite her guilt, Lorraine and Frank deepen their relationship in fits and starts.

If you’re a fan of Fina Fitzgibbons and her crew, you’ll recognize the main characters in this new series—Lorraine McDuffy, Fina’s mother-in-law and protagonist in charge of the Fina Fitzgibbons Detective Agency while Fina and Denny are on their honeymoon; detectives Jane Templeton and Willoughby, her partner Minnie, admin assistant at Lucy’s and now taking on a greater role in the agency; Cookie and her husband, Clancy; and a newcomer, Fina’s estranged father, Paddy Fitzgibbons, who creates his own boozy havoc as he tangles with Lorraine and Cookie.


Lorraine is in charge of Fina's investigating business and a novice at it, but determined to solve the murder of Viktor and possibly solve the disapearance of Nati, and find Joey's mother at the same time. The three mysteries - the murder, Nati, and Joey's mother - are intricately entwined with not so subtle innuendo of possible dark motives for Viktor's murder. The detectives on the job are perturbed by Lorraine and Cookie's actions, yet reluctantly grateful for all they find out. Paddy's drinking and the whirlwind "romance" between Lorraine and Frank add to the complexity. 

I liked Lorraine and her persistence on all three of the threads that are woven through the story, even if it means angering Jane and Willoughby.  Viktor is despicable to say the least and there are many reasons to celebrate his murder. I stayed up to finish it - the story is compelling, especially with regard to Nati. That said, this portrays the darker side of human behavior and may offend some. This is my first read by Anderson and I will check out her other series.

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

About the Author

Susan Russo Anderson is a writer, a mother, a member of Sisters in Crime, a graduate of Marquette University. She’s taught language arts and creative writing, worked for a publisher, an airline, an opera company. Like Faulkner’s Dilsey, she’s seen the best and the worst, the first and the last. Through it all, and to understand it somewhat, she writes. Too Quiet in Brooklyn, the first book in the Fina Fitzgibbons Brooklyn mystery series, published December 2013. The second book in the series, Missing Brandy, about a missing teen, published September 2014, and Whiskey’s Gone, about the abduction of a single mom, completes a trilogy. The working title of the fourth is Dead in Brooklyn.
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Twitter @SusanRussoAnder

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Thursday, January 21, 2016


Today, it is my pleasure to have D. E. Haggerty as my guest...

Molly’s Misadventures Blog Tour

D.E. Haggerty

Guest Post
Why Molly’s Misadventures was an Adventure to Write

I think I’m pretty well-rounded as a writer. I’ve written military suspense, historical mysteries, and cozy mysteries. All of my books have one thing in common – there is always a puzzle to be solved. From figuring out what happened to Skylar’s grandfather in Buried Appearances to clearing Dee of murder in Love in the Time of Murder, I’ve always included some type of mystery in my novels. Sure, there is romance, laughter, and suspense as well, but the main point of the story is the resolution of the mystery.

Molly’s Misadventures is different – there’s no mystery to solve. The novel is primarily a love story and that scared the pants off of me for several reasons. In the first place, I don’t do sex scenes. I’m more of a fade to black type of writer. Not that I don’t read erotica. P-lease. I love erotica. But every time I write a kissing scene I’m looking around in my home office to see if anyone can see what I’m writing. And gosh, I can’t imagine my dad – who reads everything I write, mostly because I send him free copies – reading a sex scene I’ve written. Gross. Just gross.

And although I love me some hot and steamy graphic sex scenes. The scenes are often tiresome. How many ways are there to describe making love? How many times can a writer use the words ‘his hot rod’ or – my personal favorite – ‘his silk covered steel shaft’? Although sex is an important part of life and often an essential development in a story, how often do characters need to get it on in a book anyway?

Romance stories themselves are also repetitive. It’s almost as if there is a strict set of rules to follow. Boy meets girl. They fall in love. Boy does something stupid to break girl’s heart. They reconcile. The end. BOR-ING. And how many hot stepbrothers exist anyway? And – trust me – not all men in the military are hot! I was convinced I couldn’t write a novel, which was strictly a romance, as it’s all been done before.

So why did I write Molly’s book if it scared the beejezus out of me? Well, first of all, I’m not one to not do something just because I’m scared. I’m absolutely terrified of heights, but that doesn’t stop me from rappelling. I also didn’t want to anger my muse. My muse gave me this awesome idea and I fell in love with the idea. Who am I to tell my muse she needs to come up with something else?

I also realized that a romance doesn’t have to be only about romance. There’s character development to consider and what about self-development? And, of course, there’s laughter. There has to be laughter. I also played around with the format of the novel for fun. I added blog posts and Facebook updates to mix things up. Before I knew it, the story was finished and it didn’t kill me. In fact, I really enjoyed writing Molly’s story. So much so that I’m having a hard time starting my next manuscript. I never would have predicted that when I chewed off all my fingernails while writing up my ideas for Molly’s story!

I’m having the suckiest day ever. First, my father, aka Mr. Grumpy Pants, calls to say his nurse just walked out on him. Likely story. I rush home to pack only to walk in on my husband getting it on with his younger, skanky secretary. Unfortunately, my quick weekend trip home to fix Dad’s problems turns into a stay of a few weeks. Luckily, I’ve got Danny, the neighbor boy I had a crush on when I was a dorky, braces-wearing, nose-buried-in-a-book teenager, and a brand-spanking new blog to keep my mind off things. Before I know it, I’m writing product reviews of vibrators and getting questioned by a store rent-a-cop at the world’s worst date ever. All while trying to figure out how to take things with Danny to the next level. Not to complicate things or anything but my boss decides to give me an ultimatum – come back in four weeks or don’t come back at all. How in the world did my life get so complicated?

About The Author
I grew up reading everything I could get my hands on from my mom’s Harlequin romances to Nancy Drew to Little Women. When I wasn’t flipping pages in a library book, I was penning horrendous poems, writing songs no one should ever sing, or drafting stories which have thankfully been destroyed. College and a stint in the U.S. Army came along, robbing me of free time to write and read, although I did manage every once in a while to sneak a book into my rucksack between rolled up socks, MRIs, t-shirts, and cold weather gear. A few years into my legal career, I was exhausted, fed up, and just plain done. I quit my job and sat down to write a manuscript, which I promptly hid in the attic after returning to the law. Another job change, this time from lawyer to B&B owner and I was again fed up and ready to scream I quit, which is incredibly difficult when you own the business. Thus, I shut the B&B during the week and in the off-season and started writing. Several books later I find myself in Istanbul writing full-time.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Spotlight: JORDAN WELSH and EDDIE MARINO SERIES by Sally J Smith and Jean Steffens

Jordan Welsh and Eddie Marino Series
Stealing the Moon & Stars ~ Book 1
Stealing the Golden Dream ~ Book 2
Sally J. Smith & Jean Steffens

Stealing the Moon & Stars, A Jordan Welsh and Eddie Marino Novel by Sally J. Smith and Jean Steffens
Scottsdale, Arizona, where the Wild West meets Beverly Hills--home of the rich and famous as well as the calculating and criminal. PIs Jordan Welsh, maverick heiress, and Eddie Marino, a graduate from the school of hard knocks, are hired to find out who’s embezzling from the Moon & Stars Children’s Foundation and stop him. But the two have stumbled onto an agenda darker and more complicated than they ever suspected. The bodies are piling up, and there’s no one Jordan can trust, not even her mysterious partner, Eddie, who’s hotter than a chili pepper and may be a killer.

Buy Links:   Amazon    Camel Press    B&N

He hadn’t said a word since they got in the car. Jordan
hated the silence between them.

When she couldn’t take it anymore, she turned to him. “You

“No.” It was very matter-of-fact. “Can’t be mad at you.”

“I’m sorry.” She laid her hand on his thigh. “I just—”

“Don’t be sorry, love.” He gave her hand a gentle squeeze. “It
is what it is. In the end, it’s all good.”

She leaned her head against the headrest and relaxed, letting
the mellow haze of the evening’s liquor woo her. Chet Baker
crooned “Someone to Watch Over Me,” his voice low, sexy, and
as intimate as a Sunday morning snuggle in bed.

A thrilling sensation blossomed until it was all around
her, everywhere. Seduction. The romantic lure of the song,
Eddie’s virile presence so close beside her, the way his hands
slid smoothly over the wheel, his strong profile in the subdued
light, his tongue moistening his lower lip, and the rhythm of
his shallow, even breathing. Something stirred inside her and
uncoiled like a slithering serpent.

Stop the car, Eddie. Pull over. Make love to me. Right here.
Right now. She was suddenly so filled with desire, she caught
her breath.

I need you. I can hardly stand it. She couldn’t bring herself
to say it. Why not? What stopped her? It wasn’t as if she were
a virgin. Maybe she was expecting too much from sex with
Eddie. But what if he let her down? What if she let him down?
That’s dumb. It would just be another sexual encounter. Wrong.

With Eddie Marino, it would never be just another anything.
Maybe she was afraid of going full throttle. Maybe she was
afraid of him. Yes? No? Ah, hell.

*    *    *    *    *

Stealing the Golden Dream is second in the Jordan Welsh and Eddie Marino series, which began with Stealing the Moon & Stars.

Scottsdale PIs Jordan Welsh and Eddie Marino of Shea Investigations are hired to guard the multi-million dollar Dahlonega Golden Dream Coin Collection. The collection is stolen out from under them. A loved and trusted colleague is murdered. Eddie is being framed to take the fall for both crimes. His freedom’s at stake, their business is on the line, and the lives of their loved ones are in deadly peril.

How far to the dark side is Jordan Welsh, society girl, willing to go to save Eddie from his own criminal past? Will the scheme she concocts with family and colleagues find the golden coins? Restore the reputation of Shea Investigations? And will she be in time to stop the killer from murdering the man she loves?

Buy Links:   Amazon    Camel Press    B&N

Excerpt: Stealing the Golden Dream

The image of Eddie with Sofia Vercelli was imprinted on her brain. But she had it in mind to put it aside until Eddie was in better shape. Piling more stress on top of all he was already dealing with would not only be cruel and insensitive, it would also be stupid. He was much better at a good rousing argument than she. Better to wait until things had settled down to bring up the subject—but it was definitely a matter she intended to learn more about.

Jordan made her way through the house, opened the patio door, and followed Sadie outside. She stood by the pool staring at the half-moon mirrored in the inky water. Jordan shivered in the cool breeze that rippled the reflection. March days in Scottsdale were perfect—warm, in the upper seventies, low eighties. But the evenings cooled down to the low fifties. The desert air was clean, seasoned with the faint scent of mesquite, creosote, and the chlorine in the pool.

She rubbed her bare arms. Eddie moved up behind her, slipped off his jacket and draped it around her shoulders.

He put his arms around her. “You know I wasn’t with her that night.”

“Why would she say it if it wasn’t true?”

“I’m pretty sure she figures if she does this I might take her back.”

Jordan looked up, trying to see his face, but it was cloaked in darkness.

“It’s never going to happen. I told her I’m with you now. While I don’t want anything to do with her, if her story gets me off the hook, I’ll run with it. I can’t revenge Muggs if I’m sitting in a jail cell.”

“You think I don’t know that?” Jordan said. “She’s willing to lie for you? To the cops?
 She must want you back real bad.”

Eddie moved his hands to her shoulders and turned her around. “It’s all one-sided. Don’t pretend you don’t know that.” He pulled her close and kissed her hard, long, and smoking hot as Louisiana pepper sauce. It burned all the way to her toes.

Eddie, the man she was born to love. She threw herself into the kiss, and before she really knew what was happening, they’d made their way into the house and were pulling at each other’s clothes.

He took hold of one of her legs behind the knee and lifted it. She wrapped it around him as he reached under the dress and caught the edge of her panties with the curl of a finger.

*    *    *    *    *

Sally J. Smith and Jean Steffens Author Info

Sally J. Smith and Jean Steffens, are partners in crime—crime writing, that is. They live in the Valley of the Sun in Arizona, awesome for eight months out of the year, an inferno the other four. They write bloody murder, flirty romance, and wicked humor all in one package.
Stealing the Moon & Stars Youtube:
Stealing the Golden Dream Youtube:

*   *   *   *   *

To celebrate the New Year and the Camel Press promotion of STEALING THE MOON & STARS, 
Jean and Sally's January giveaway is an Arizona gift basket containing Sonoran Desert Honey, 
an adorable flour-sack tea towel with Arizona quail & cactus design, two yummy flavors of tea 
bags to brew in your bright & shiny ceramic Scottsdale mug.
Sign up for drawing before the end of January!Visit and use the form on the 
Giveaway page!

$25 Amazon GC
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Monday, January 18, 2016

Blog tour and Review: GUNFIGHT AT GRACE GULCH (A Dressed for Death Mystery Book 1) by Darlene Franklin

Forget Me Not Romances
A Division of Winged Publications (February 28, 2015)
Paperback: 216 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1508946991
The feud between the Graces and the Gaynors is still going strong more than a century after its inception in the 1891 Oklahoma land run. Newspaper editor Penn Hardy is murdered during the reenactment of the most famous gunfight in the history of Grace Gulch, Oklahoma. Cici Wilde, owner of a vintage clothing store, feels compelled to investigate when police suspect people close to her. She soon discovers her talent for sleuthing equals her flare for wearing period clothing. Theater director Audie Howe never expected the reenactment to end in a real murder. He cares too much for the future of the Magda Grace Mallory Theater – and the charming Cici Wilde – to let her face danger alone. Cici and Audie take a dangerous gamble to nail the killer – and lay their lives on the line.

Historical re-enactment of a feud between two families turns deadly during the shoot-out. Cici's involvement starts out as the vendor for the costumes, but she is determined to solve the crime when her sister Dina or special friend Cord are the prime suspects. Audie gets involved, hoping to win Cici's heart.

Readers who enjoy historical contexts will enjoy this cozy mystery. Not only does the mystery have a historical bent, but Franklin supplements the story line with letters from the 1890s to help set the stage and provide the "history" for this community and the feud. This book will also appeal to those who like a Christian theme.

This is the first of three in the Dressed for Death Series. The other two are A STRING OF MURDERS and PAINT ME A MURDER.
FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in the hopes that I would post an honest review as part of this blog tour. This has not affected the content of my review in any way.

About the Author
Best-selling author Darlene Franklin’s greatest claim to fame is that she writes full-time from a nursing home. She lives in Oklahoma, near her son and his family, and continues her interests in playing the piano and singing, books, good fellowship, and reality TV in addition to writing. She is an active member of Oklahoma City Christian Fiction Writers, American Christian Fiction Writers, and the Christian Authors Network. She has written over forty books and has written more than 250 devotionals. Her historical fiction ranges from the Revolutionary War to World War II, from Texas to Vermont.

Author Links

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A Book Excerpt

The gigantic black hands on the town clock atop our municipal building inched toward twelve o’clock. Audie put a cell phone to his ear.

Cord and Penn, reprising their roles as Bob Grace and Dick Gaynor, burst through the saloon doors, shouting insults.

My heart stuttered a bit, worried for Cord. Penn sounded really angry.

“You can’t get away with it. You’re a scoundrel and a cheat.” Penn’s face was set into deep lines, hatred aging him prematurely.

“I’m not a cheat. I arrived first, fair and square. You have to accept it.”

Tension twisted my shoulders. I held my breath.

“That’s what you think!” Penn pulled out a Colt and fired.

A flash of light—popping sounds—two men fell to the ground.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Blog Tour and Review: THREAD AND GONE (A Mainely Needlepoint Mystery) by Lea Wait

3rd in Series
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Kensington (December 29, 2015)
ISBN-13: 978-1617730085

When a priceless antique is stolen, murder unravels the peaceful seaside town of Haven Harbor, Maine…

Angie Curtis and her fellow Mainely Needlepointers know how to enjoy their holidays. But nothing grabs their attention like tying up loose threads. So when Mary Clough drops in on the group’s Fourth of July supper with a question about antique needlepoint she’s discovered in her family Colonial-era home, Angie and her ravelers are happy to look into the matter.

Their best guess is that the mystery piece may have been stitched by Mary, Queen of Scots, famous not just for losing her head, but also for her needlepointing. If they’re right, the piece would be extremely valuable. For safekeeping, Angie turns the piece over to her family lawyer, who places it in her office safe. But when the lawyer is found dead with the safe open and ransacked, the real mystery begins. . .

Angie grew up in Haven Harbor and returned to the quiet town and take up needlepoint, but she is no stranger to investigating murders. Needless to say, the local and not-so-local police are quick to discourage her part. In THREAD AND GONE, Angie reasons that she is not investigating the murder, but trying to find the possibly valuable needlepoint piece that was stolen from the safe. At the same time, the Mainely Needlepoint members are searching to find the provenance of the piece and solve the mystery of the Mary's for Mary Clough. 

History buffs, particularly those interested in Mary Queen of Scotts and Marie Antoinette will like the historical bent as Angie, Mary, and others search through the historical documents Mary has to determine how the needlepoint made it from France to Haven Harbor. Wait's two plots move forward in parallel and intersect nicely at the end. Although this is the third in the series, it can be read as a stand alone.  For those who like to start at the beginning, the first in the series is THREADS OF EVIDENCE with Angie's return to Haven Harbor, followed by TWISTED THREADS.

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

About The Author

Lea Wait lives on the coast of Maine. A fourth generation antique dealer, and author of the Agatha-nominated Shadows Antique Print mystery series, she loves all things antiques and Maine, and she’s learning to do needlepoint. She also writes historical novels for young people set in (where else?) nineteenth-century Maine. Lea adopted her four daughters when she was single; she’s now the grandmother of eight, and married to artist Bob Thomas.

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Saturday, January 9, 2016

Spotlight: SKIING IS MURDER by Carolyn Arnold

Cozy Mystery
10th in Series
Print Length: 116 pages
Hibbert & Stiles Publishing Inc. (January 28, 2016)


They’re ready to hit the slopes when things go downhill…

Sean and Sara were supposed to have a relaxing vacation in Vail, but it all goes up in a puff of powder when there’s a suspicious death on the mountain. And the deceased is not just anyone; it’s Adrian Blackwell, a two-time Olympic skiing gold medalist.

Rumor has it that Adrian died in a skiing accident, but he was too skilled for Sara to accept it as fact. Though she’s convinced Adrian was murdered and she’s itching to find the killer, she doesn’t want to disappoint Sean by ruining his ski trip.

Sean has never had the ability to say no to Sara before, but this time he comes close. It takes a call from their PI firm back in Albany to change his mind. A job’s come in to investigate Adrian’s death, and his agent is the one footing the bill, leaving Sean with more questions than answers.

Yet one major problem remains: their New York State PI licenses hold no legal authority in Colorado. But they still can’t help but look into Adrian’s death on the sly. This case will definitely involve some underhanded tactics, all while trying to dodge the local police during the course of the investigation.

CAROLYN ARNOLD is the international bestselling and award-winning author of the Madison Knight, Brandon Fisher, and McKinley Mystery series. She is the only author with POLICE PROCEDURALS RESPECTED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT™.

Carolyn was born in a small town, but that never kept her from dreaming big. On par with her large dreams is her overactive imagination that conjures up killers and cases to solve. She currently lives outside Toronto with her husband and two beagles, Max and Chelsea. She is also a member of Crime Writers of Canada.

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Yes, the TBR list just keeps growing!