Saturday, April 30, 2016

Blog Tour: MEDDLING WITH MURDER by Ellie Campbell



Crouch End Confidential, the agency started by housewife and mother, Cathy O’Farrell, with ex-cleaner, Pimple is failing badly. Hardly surprising when Cathy’s too soft-hearted to charge their only clients, little old ladies seeking lost pets and a school kid searching for his stolen bike.
A new case involving a teenager in possession of an unexplained Glock pistol promises to change all that. Quickly Cathy’s deep in waters over her head, forced with hilarious results to pose as a mathematics tutor, a subject of which she’s truly clueless. There’s also the tricky situation of best friend and new mother Rosa hiring her to investigate her fiancĂ©, Alec, plus the mysterious sabotage of Cathy’s friends’ cycle shop and a gang of yobbos dealing drugs at her children’s primary school.

Worst of all, an ill-fated trip to rural Norfolk has Cathy’s husband, Declan, intent on buying a post office and transplanting the family to safer climes, threatening to tear Cathy permanently from her beloved North London home.

Pretty soon Cathy’s risking her friendships, her marriage and even her life untangling all these messes. But that’s what you get for meddling in murder…


Cathy is trying to puzzle her way out of several sticky situations and get her investigating business off the ground - but Crouch Confidential wasn't supposed to be dangerous or strain her friendships. Of course, the idea was also to bring in some money and Cathy's not real good at making people pay up. With each turn, there are more twists and questions - even a weekend with friends of Declan proves anything but refreshing. 

Readers who like British settings and such will enjoy this novel. Even if the reader isn't familiar with some of the terms, there's no problem following the story line as Cathy meddles in murder and other sorts of issues. There is some profanity so reader beware.

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

Ellie Campbell is a pseudonym for sister writing team, Pam Burks and Lorraine Campbell. Running wild as tomboys in Scotland, playing imagination games, they couldn’t dream that one day they’d co-author novels despite an ocean between them. From boring clerical jobs in London to a varied life of backpacking and adventure travel, both started almost accidentally as short story writers, Lorraine when working in publishing, Pam as a fun hobby while an at-home mother of three.

By the time each had 70 short stories published internationally, Pam was settled in Surrey, England, and Lorraine had finally taken root in Boulder, Colorado. Long telephone chats about life and fiction led to their current collaboration. They have produced five acclaimed novels – How To Survive Your Sisters, When Good Friends Go Bad, Looking For La La, To Catch A Creeper and Million Dollar Question. They write contemporary women’s fiction laced with humour, romance, and mystery.

When not hunched over computers, Lorraine, a certified ROTH ‘horse whisperer’, can usually be found messing about with her four rescue horses and Pam on a fund raising bike ride, madly cycling over mountains to Paris, Barcelona or Gibraltar on the back of her husband’s bone-shaking tandem.

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Giveaway!!! Leave a comment with preferred e-format and email - 1 winner of a copy of the Meddling with Murder will be selected!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Spotlight: A PORTRAIT TO DIE FOR by Radine Trees Nehring


What A Writer Thinks

by Radine Trees Nehring

In 2016, established authors, many of them multi-published, are full of gratitude (or should be) for what they have accomplished. But these days, even for the well-established, there can be self doubt and a long list of questions disturbing assurance and wrecking dreams.on. Why?

These days there is so much that's negative flying around out there.

I began selling short non-fiction in 1986, but, in 2002, I became a published mystery author, with strong roots in the support connections offered to those of us in the mystery field--we who write a wide array of stories ranging from cozy, and perhaps religious, to tales more dark and violent. Our groups, clubs, and conferences were created to give support and share ideas in what can be a lonely profession for any writer. (After all, working alone at a computer, and pondering ideas silently is necessary for our product production, isn't it?)

But, these days, many of our favorite groups are full of anguished wails: "Publishers in NY are cutting mid-list authors," "We need to spend hours on social media without knowing which avenue for promotion is most effective," and much more. Discussions also include questions like "Are mystery novels less popular today? "Does offering my work free pay off ultimately?" "Will poorly edited self-published books discourage all readers?"--on and on.

Well then . . . what's a serious writer to do?

It depends on our needs, and how each of us views our profession. What are we looking for? What does anyone creating a quilt, a cake, a painting, or a book look for?

Not wealth or fame--these days that can't be a goal, though it may come to a few. Well, what about loving the act of creating? That's what got me started. I put words and sentences on paper (yes, paper back then) and was surprised how wonderful they sometimes seemed. "Did I really write that?" I thought little about publication. But, on a whim, I submitted an essay about the Ozarks and it sold. Oh! Seeing it in print stunned me. That was 1986.

Fast forward thirty years. I still love making sentences that please me. Yes, I do the on-line promotion and marketing plans and on and on. But, honestly? If nothing sold, I probably couldn't stop making stories, though it is very nice when others tell me they enjoy reading what I write. But, do they enjoy reading as much as I enjoyed visiting special places, doing research, and writing a mystery adventure in that location? I doubt it.

As in all the creative arts, no matter which--shouldn't the joy of creation be the best reward?

Thank you Radine.  and now to hear about A PORTRAIT TO DIE FOR...

A Portrait to Die For


Radine Trees Nehring

ISBN-10: 1610092228
ISBN-13: 978-1610092227
Dark Oak Mysteries
Paperback: 284 pages
April 22, 2016, $16.00
Genre: Mystery


Carrie McCrite, a volunteer librarian at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas, discovers two versions of a portrait on loan to the museum. When a reporter writing about that portrait disappears, Carrie must choose between honoring Henry's request that she stop jumping into danger on behalf of people in trouble--or work to find the woman who was a college friend of her son's. 

“A charming marriage of love and mystery.”

—Nancy Pickard, author of The Virgin Of Small Plains

“A delightfully clever novel that I thoroughly enjoyed. Radine Trees Nehring's warm and believable characters are like good friends that I am happy to see again. The Civil War history, train ride, antiques and diner food were icing on the cake! I look forward to Carrie and Henry's next adventure.”

—Earlene Fowler, author of Love Mercy and State Fair

“What a great mix for Carrie’s latest adventure! She and Henry have their hands full with suspicious characters aboard an excursion train, switched identities, Civil War treasures, stolen jewelry, rifled rooms, and a “safe house” incident. Did I mention a dead body? Radine Trees 
Nehring has given us another ‘can’t put it down’ read.”

—Joe David Rice, Arkansas Tourism Director

About Radine Trees Nehring

For more than twenty years, Radine Trees Nehring's magazine features, essays, newspaper articles, and radio broadcasts have shared colorful stories about the people, places, events, and natural world near her Arkansas home.

In 2002, Radine's first mystery novel, A VALLEY TO DIE FOR, was published and, in 2003 became a Macavity Award Nominee. Since that time she has continued to earn writing awards as she enthralls her original fans and attracts new ones with her signature blend of down-home Arkansas sightseeing and cozy amateur sleuthing by active retirees Henry King and Carrie McCrite King.

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Thursday, April 21, 2016

Blog Tour : Interview with Annette Dashofy, Author of WITH A VENGEANCE

Today I am pleased to have Annette Dashofy as my guest to talk about writing the Zoe Chambers mystery series and WITH A VENGEANCE...

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk? Do you always write in the same place or have to have specific objects or food/drink handy?

I’m afraid I’m notoriously boring in this department. I don’t have any real “quirks” but I do have a routine. I get up, shoo my husband off to work, grab a cup of coffee and some breakfast and then take my second cup of coffee into my home office where I write for two or three hours.

When writing this book what was the hardest thing about it? Easiest?

The hardest part was the research. And the easiest part was…the research! There was a lot of police procedure in WITH A VENGEANCE, and often I’d mistakenly think I knew what I was talking about! I’d write a scene the way I thought it would happen. But then I had a long chat with our local police chief who talked me through how the situation would really play out. The “easy” part was—the more accurate version was so much better! The rewriting was a blast! Later, rather than write the scene I envisioned first, I took the set-up to a cop friend of mine and said, “Okay, what would Pete do?” He gave me a long detailed account of different ways to handle it. My response was WOW. He just wrote the end of my story for me! Well, not quite, but he sure contributed a lot.

When did you first come up with the idea for the Zoe Chambers series?

Zoe and Pete first appeared in a short story in Mysterical-e back in 2006 (I think) and was a finalist for the Derringer Award of 2007. About that time, the series I’d been working on failed to find a publisher, and I wanted to start something new. A reader asked if we would ever see more of Zoe and Pete, so I thought I’d toy with fleshing them out a bit. I guess it worked!

This is book four in the series. How much have your main characters grown?

Zoe has definitely matured and overcome some obstacles in her life and in her career. After Bridges Burned, the previous book in the series, she was faced with a brand new devastating problem. I won’t say what in case you haven’t read it yet. But she continues to struggle with it in this book and will for the next couple as well. Also, her rocky romance with Pete is progressing slowly, but definitely progressing. 

How would you describe the audience who will most enjoy reading the Zoe Chambers series?

I’ve had my books compared to Julia Spencer Fleming’s and Louise Penny’s series, which I find immensely flattering. But I think if you like a good mystery with a strong sense of setting, but something not too fluffy, you’ll enjoy my series. Hank Phillippi Ryan once called them “not-quite-cozies” and I like that!

Can these be read as stand-alones or should readers start with the Book 1?

If you pick up the fourth book and read it first, you won’t be lost. But if you do start with Book 1 (Circle of Influence) and read them in order, you’ll pick up little tidbits that won’t mean anything to you otherwise.

Have you started the next in the series? What’s in store for Zoe and Pete?

Yes! I’m finishing up Book #5 in the series, which is due to my editor June first (cue hysterical screaming!), and it takes Zoe out of her comfort zone and into the wild west of New Mexico. It’s definitely a fish-out-of-water tale involving three homicides, two states, and some very hot topic issues. Don’t worry, though. Zoe comes home to Pennsylvania by the end!

Who are your favorite authors (any genre)?

This is always a dangerous question because I have so many and can’t list them all! I adore Julia Spencer Fleming, Craig Johnson, Hank Phillippi Ryan, Nancy Martin, and Margaret Maron, just to name a few. And I’m an Agatha nominee this year for Best Contemporary Novel with two of those ladies! (Squee!) And I love the other nominees (Louise Penny and Catriona McPherson), too! (Double squee!)

What else would you like to share about yourself and your books with your readers?

I love to meet my readers, so please check out my list of appearances on my website and come say hello!

Or track me down on Facebook (where I spend way too much time).

Books in the Zoe Chambers Mystery Series



Paramedic Zoe Chambers and the rest of rural Monongahela County’s EMS and fire personnel are used to wading into the middle of trouble to rescue the sick and the injured. But when someone with an ax to grind seeks retribution by staging accident scenes and gunning down the first responders, Zoe finds herself forced to not only treat her own brethren of the front lines, but also, in her role as deputy coroner, seek out whoever is killing her friends.

At the same time, Vance Township Police Chief Pete Adams races to track down a gun, a mysterious all-terrain vehicle, and the sniper before Zoe goes back on duty, placing herself—and Pete—firmly in the gunman’s crosshairs.

Related subjects include: cozy mysteries, women sleuths, murder mystery series, whodunit mysteries (whodunnit), book club recommendations, audio books for download, police procedurals series, amateur sleuth books.

About The Author 

Annette Dashofy is the USA Today best-selling author of the Zoe Chambers mystery series about a paramedic and deputy coroner in rural Pennsylvania’s tight-knit Vance Township. CIRCLE OF INFLUENCE, published by Henery Press, was a finalist for the Agatha Award for Best First Novel and for the David Award for Best Mystery of 2014. LOST LEGACY, was released in September 2014 followed in April 2015 by BRIDGES BURNED, which has been nominated for the Agatha for Best Contemporary Novel. WITH A VENGEANCE, the fourth in the series, will be available May 3.

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Monday, April 18, 2016


Cozy Mystery
Publication Date: April 11, 2016
Print Length: 155 pages


A cozy mystery with a heap of laughs, a generous portion of romance, and just a smidgen of suspense.

Callie’s life is rather awesome. She owns a successful bakery and teaches German literature at the local university. There’s just one tiny problem. She has no self-confidence when it comes to her body. And then there’s the little matter of her being accused of murdering her pole dancing instructor. There’s no way Callie’s going to risk losing her teaching position and thus she embarks, with her best baker bud Anna, on a journey to discover the real killer. Between stripper auditions and a detective who insists Callie is the woman of his dreams, it’s a roller coast adventure. Cupcakes not included.


I’m really hoping that Anna changes her mind before closing time but no such luck. She doesn’t give me a chance to balk and rushes me out the back door pushing me towards the gym once the bakery is shut down. Just before we enter the gym, my phone vibrates in my pocket. It’s Ben wondering where I am. Shoot! He must be at the bakery to walk me to my apartment. I quickly type that I’m at the gym. There. That should satisfy him.

Anna and I walk into the gym, and she heads directly to the receptionist while I hang back. Access to the gym is via a gate for which you need a pass card. The receptionist sits at a curved desk next to the gate and can buzz people in if necessary. There’s a small seating area before the entry. I grab a magazine from the table and hide behind it while Anna talks to the receptionist.

After a few moments of speaking Anna shakes her head and swipes her card for access to the gym. What’s she doing? My phone rings. It’s Anna.

“What are you doing?” I whisper.

“She wouldn’t give me Dolly’s address. We need to create a diversion, and then you can snoop in her computer.”

“Me?” I shout and then remember I’m supposed to be incognito. “Why can’t you snoop?”

“Because you can’t make a scene when you’re not supposed to be here. Duh. Don’t swipe your card either. They probably make records of that.”

I start to protest but Anna’s already hung up. Typical. And then I hear her screaming. “Oh my God. Somebody help! I think this lady in the locker room is having a heart attack!” And then she’s next to the receptionist pulling her to the locker room. “You’ve got to help me!” They turn a corner, and Anna looks back at me and winks before pointing to the desk and mouthing, GO.

It looks like I don’t have a choice. This is beyond stupid. Not that that stops me or anything. I walk to the desk and try to reach the computer, but I’m too short. Bugger. What now? Thinking I can climb over the desk, I jump up. But I miscalculate and end up flying over the desk. Somehow I manage to not crack my skull and land on my butt. Thanking my lucky stars, I rub my sore bottom for a second before grabbing the keyboard and starting to search. There’s an icon on the home page titled ‘employee contact information’. I click on it and scroll through until I find Dolly’s information. I grab a sticky note and scribble down her address.

I need to get out of here. I shove the sticky note in my back pocket and put the keyboard back. I get to my knees and slowly peek out from behind the desk. Fiddlesticks! Ben is standing there with his arms crossed over his chest staring down at me. He shakes his head before reaching over and hauling me over the desk. He places me on my feet before asking, “Where’s Anna?”

“I think she’s in the locker room.”

“No doubt causing trouble.” 

About D. E. Haggerty

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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Friday, April 15, 2016

Book Review: UNSCRUPULOUS (Circle City Mystery Series Book 5) by M. E. May


Christmas is only a week away, but not all is merry and bright for Sergeant Brent Freeman and his partner, newly promoted Detective Anne Samuels. They find themselves facing more than a homicide when they discover the victim’s five-year-old daughter, Maricella, is missing. When suspicion moves to human trafficking and gang involvement, the FBI sends in two of their best to assist in the investigation.

In the meantime, two people who insist her mother didn’t want her anymore have transported a terrified little Maricella out of state. Fortunately, she finds solace in two older children. These two soon realize their captors are prepping Maricella for organ harvesting. Their main goal becomes to protect her at any cost, even if it means running away in the snow and bitter cold temperatures of December without any knowledge of the area where they’re being held.

Can Maricella’s newfound protectors get her out of the house and to safety before the doctor decides she’s a transplant match? Will Brent discover where these unscrupulous persons are hiding the children before it’s too late?


The murder of the mother and abduction of 5 year old Maricella set Brent and others in the Police Department on a gripping journey along with members of the FBI Human Trafficking unit and local Gang Units. They soon identify a string of missing children. The stakes continue to rise as their only leads as the death count rises. 

May depicts the plight of children kidnapped, the stories they might be told, and the intended outcomes. May also portrays the tensions and potential issues of police procedurals including the potential toll on personal levels.  This is the second of the Circle City Mystery series I've read.  These can easily be read as stand alones. My only warning: Plan ahead as you won't want to put the book down.

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

About the Author

M. E. May (Michele) lives in the Far Northwest Suburbs of Chicago. The fourth of five children, she was born in Indianapolis, Indiana, and lived in central Indiana for the majority of her life. It is no wonder she chose the capital city of Indiana as the setting for the Circle City Mystery Series. She attended classes at Indiana University in Kokomo, Indiana, studying Social and Behavioral Sciences. Her interest in the psychology of humans sparked the curiosity to ask why they commit such heinous acts upon one another. Other interests in such areas as criminology and forensics have moved her to put her vast imagination to work writing fiction that is as accurate as possible. In doing so, she depicts societal struggles that pit those who understand humanity with those who are lost in a strange and dangerous world of their own making. Michele belongs to several organizations such as Chicago Writers Association, Mystery Writers of America, and Sisters in Crime. She is currently the Vice President and Program Chair for Sisters in Crime Chicagoland and will graduate to President in 2016. The first novel in the Circle City Mystery Series, Perfidy, won the 2013 Lovey Award for Best First Novel at the Love is Murder Conference in Chicago. Michele was approached by a representative of Harlequin in February 2014 about this series and six months later signed her first Worldwide Mystery contract for Perfidy, which was published in July 2015. She has since written three more novels in the series which will be published in mass paperback starting with Inconspicuous in October 2015. She was also one of the featured authors in the anthology Hoosier Hoops and Hijinx with her short story “Uncle Vito and the Cheerleader.”

Sunday, April 10, 2016

BLOG TOUR: DEATH BY TROMBONE (Pismawallops PTA Mysteries Book 2) by Rebecca Douglass


JJ MacGregor's very bad day has just gotten a lot worse. JJ thought starting the day without coffee was a disaster, but now there's a dead musician behind the Pismawallops High School gym. His trombone is missing, and something about the scene is off key. JJ and Police Chief Ron Karlson are determined to get to the bottom of the mystery, but will they be able to work harmoniously or will discord ruin the investigation? With the music teacher as the prime suspect, JJ could be left to conduct the band, and then Graduation might truly end in a death by trombone, or at least the murder of Pomp and Circumstance!


JJ's barely holding on between her PTA responsibilities, her jerk and soon to be ex-husband trying to gain custody of their son Brian, and the re-awakening of her hormones. Stressed to the max she stumbles over a dead musician and hopes it's not murder. Sparks fly - good ones and bad ones - as she fights her attraction to Ron and he tries to tell her what to do. 

Douglass has a great series here. JJ's a colorful and complex character, well-developed and likable. She has to deal with her son's dating at the same time as her own potential new relationship. I enjoyed the first in the series, DEATH BY ICE CREAM, but this one made me laugh out loud! Great writing! It can be read as a stand alone, but I'd recommend starting with the first in the 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:

Rebecca Douglass was raised on an Island in Puget Sound only a little bigger than Pismawallops. She now lives and writes in the San Francisco Bay Area, and can be found on-line at and on Facebook as The Ninja Librarian. Her books include the tall tales for all ages, The Ninja Librarian and Return to Skunk Corners, middle-grade fantasy Halitor the Hero, and the first Pismawallops PTA mystery, Death By Ice Cream. Rebecca likes to spend her time outdoors, when not writing or working to make the schools the best they can be. She spends her free time bicycling and running, and her vacations hiking, camping and backpacking.

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Saturday, April 9, 2016

Spotlight: MURDER DANCING by Lesley Cookman

Cozy/Crime Mystery
16th in Series
Publisher: Accent Press (March 24, 2016)
Kindle Edition, 243 pages


Max Tobin brings his all-male dance company to Steeple Martin, with his new ballet Pendle, based on the infamous Pendle Witch Trials, due to be performed at the Oast Theatre. There have been unpleasant incidents during rehearsals in London, and Max asks Libby Sarjeant and her friend Fran Wolfe to look into them. To everyone’s surprise, the seriousness of the incidents escalates until, inevitably, someone is murdered.

While the police look into the murder, Libby and Fran wonder why someone seemed so set against the ballet. Were occult forces at work, or was there a more worldly, personal motive?

About the Author

A former actor, model and freelance journalist, Lesley Cookman lives on the Kent coast in the UK, has four musicians as children, two small grandchildren and two cats, Lady Godiva and Gloria. All 14 of her Libby Sarjeant books have reached number one in their genre charts on Amazon UK.

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One (1) ebook to randomly selected person who leaves a comment with their email and choice of format!

Monday, April 4, 2016

Spotlight New Release: OLD CRIMES AND NURSERY RHYMES (A White Mountain Romantic Mystery Book 2) by Jane Firebaugh


There was an old woman who lived in a shoe… Olivia Mckenna, antique finder, turned amateur detective, never dreamed that an old nursery rhyme would lead her and her fiance, Lieutenant Detective Josh Abrams into another murder investigation, much less a kidnapping, and the discovery of a crime, long forgotten by all except the remaining victims and the sociopath who was responsible. Can Olivia and Josh find the killer and solve the mysteries of the past before they too become victims, or are some things better left forgotten?

Link for ANTIQUES AND AVARICE (The White Mountain Romantic Mystery Book One):

    About Jane Firebaugh
      Jane Firebaugh was born and raised in eastern Tennessee. She's had numerous interests in life, from antique collecting to jewelry design. When she isn't in front of her computer writing, Jane can usually be found hiking with her dogs in the White Mountains of New Hampshire during temperate weather seasons, skiing there during cold ones or occasionally melting in the Florida sun.  

      Contact Jane at twitter: @Author_Jane_F
or via email at 
Her website is: