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Welcome, Booklovers!
It's Wednesday, time for book talk. Meet this week's guest, cozy mystery writer, Amity Allen.

Good morning, Amity. What may I get you to drink?

AMITY: 
I don’t drink coffee because I don’t like hot liquids – drinks or soups – really anything hot, but I drink a lot of diet coke.

Ally:  Then we'll pull you a coke from the fridge. While I collect our drinks, please introduce yourself to readers.



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About the Author:

Amity grew up reading every mystery she could get her hands on, burning through everything by Agatha Christie in record time and wanting to be Nancy Drew when she grew up. After writing books in other genres for the past few years, she's finally come home to her true love - cozy mysteries.

Amity and her husband live in L.A. (lower Alabama) with a houseful of teenagers and a half dozen pets. Besides books, Amity's favorite things are March Madness, needlepoint, fried shrimp, and sweet tea.

Something unique/unusual that isn't in your regular bio. "My husband and I have two sets of twins, and he has the same birthday as the girl twins. So three members of my family all have their birthday on the same day."

Contacts:
Email signup: http://madmimi.com/signups/388635/join
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Amity_Allen
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AmityAllen/
Facebook Reader Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1453632118012687/
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Amity-Allen/e/B01N95LQK7/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16080362.Amity_Allen
Website: http://www.amityallen.com  
Text MYSTERY to 24587 for new release alerts from Amity Allen.



INTERVIEW:

Ally: Before we get into the interview, tell us what kind of book you brought with you today.

AMITY: Poison, My Pretty is a cozy, murder mystery with paranormal elements. Definitely PG-13 with no profanity, no sex, and no graphic violence.

Ally: Do you have a typical writing process?

AMITY:  I wish I could be disciplined enough to write every day, but I write more in spurts. Deadlines really help me get things done so I set self-imposed ones for each project. Sometimes I use dictation to get through a rough draft.

Also, I put on calm, peaceful videos on my TV as “background noise” and especially while dictating I watch fireplaces, deserts, underwater scenes, forests, etc. I’m very visual so this inspires me. Netflix has a great series called “Moving Art.” I watch all of those while I write.

Ally:  What was your journey to first publication, including bumps and missteps?

AMITY:  I’ve written romance for three years under a different pen name, but my road to getting published had some bumps for sure. The first time I sent a manuscript to a publisher, I received an automated “we’ve received your book, and we’ll get back to you” response. So I waited. And waited. And waited.

After the anthology I was submitting for was released, I contacted them and told them I never heard back. Apparently my submission had gotten lost in cyberspace because they said they never received it and invited me to re-submit the book as a stand-alone title. So I did, and then after another long waiting game, I realized their acceptance letter was in my spam email box. Now I always check my spam inbox if I’m expecting an important email.

Ally: Can you walk use through your typical editing methods, from first draft through read- to-buy?

AMITY:  After several years of being with small publishers, I branched out on my own last year into self-publishing which I adore. I’m a bit of a control freak when it comes to my work so I love working with a cover artist and choosing my team.

Each project is a little different, but for Poison My Pretty I used two different editors and a proofreader. The first editor is a tough cookie who has no problem telling me what she thinks and is great at whipping my manuscript into shape. My second editor helps me more with nuances and always has lovely ideas for how to make my words a bit prettier. And my proofreader is a genius at picking up typos and other mistakes.

For this book I also used an interior designer to format it so that the inside is as well-styled as the outside. She incorporated cute little black cats throughout the book which adds a certain charm to the series.

Ally:  What is your next writing project?

AMITY:  I’m working on the second Poppy Parker mystery right now. It’s called Gunshots, My Girl. Here’s a brief description:

When Aunt Cricket goes on vacation leaving Poppy in charge of the B&B, the situation explodes in a flash of blue police lights after a priceless vase is stolen and the new pool boy turns up dead.

On her quest to find the culprit, Poppy will have to sort through angry exes, casino kings, alligator attack victims, and arrogant personal trainers. But can she uncover a killer, recover the stolen antique, and find a new pool service all before Cricket returns?

Ally: Let's finish with a few short answer questions.
  • a. color of nail polish you have on – I almost never do my nails, but I love hot pink nail polish on my toenails. This time it’s OPI’s Kiss Me I’m Brazilian.
  • b. What comes to you first - character or plot? For me it’s “the big idea” that comes first. Then everything around it starts to fill in. So maybe that’s plot.
  • c. Last book that made you laugh – You by Caroline Kepnes.
  • d. Your pets – Dogs – Mitzi (Duck tolling retriever), Sebastian, and Delta (Cavalier King Charles Spaniels). Cats – Tabitha (Calico) and JoJo (Siamese). Pig – Petunia (500+ lbs. She’s an outside pig.)
  • e. What are your hobbies? I’m a rabid basketball mom. Think stage mom and insert basketball. Momma has #hoopdreams.
Ally: Thanks for visiting the blog. Before you go, we'd love to hear your blurb for Poison, My Pretty...

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POISON, MY PRETTY


When Poppy Parker turns 21, the popular TV witch detective discovers she has supernatural powers off the set as well as on. The show gets canceled and she returns home to figure out how to harness the magic brewing inside her. 

Freaked out by these recent paranormal gifts, Poppy just wants to fit in, so when she’s asked to serve as a judge for the annual Bloomin’ Belles youth beauty competition she readily agrees. 

But when the pageant’s snooty director drops dead and Poppy’s friend is arrested, the former TV sleuth sets out to uncover the real killer, only to find…

                 the business of beauty can be deadly.

*Recipes Included* 

Amazon: http://smarturl.it/PoisonZon
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32978338-poison-my-pretty

Giveaway: ($50 Amazon GC and 3 signed print copies of
                            Poison My Pretty: http://gvwy.io/wtkms3f )



 
 
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NICHOLAS (A Historical Romance)

BLURB:

Nicholas is a young man with no last name. He hardly ever sees his family. One day he goes by the name Laurence Fleur, another day Matthew Copperpenny or Eustace Grimpken. Nicholas’s best friends are a girl who often wears a false beard and a man who robs via the Thames. Nicholas, needless to say, does not live an ordinary life. He is a thief, reputed to be the best in London. But no one—no one—has ever broken into Westminster Palace.

No
one except Nicholas, of course, who’s visited every few nights for months and months in order to steal—not crown jewels, nor secrets—but stories. The crown princess spins yarns in a tower study and Nicholas sits atop the roof; he listens through the chimney flute until one night, when things go wrong and Nicholas finds himself in the palace and knowing things he should not know. Someone loathes the idea that the King of England is planning to step down for his female heir, and will go to horrendous lengths to ensure this does not occur.

The way Nicholas entered Westminster is impossible as an exit. He must exit Westminster as something…someone, else. Suddenly, Nicholas wants to do the exact opposite of the thief’s code: helping to save a princess, instead of stealing one.  



Buy Links:

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N4PFRNN/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1484776341&sr=8-1&keywords=nicholas+rachael+kosinski
B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/nicholas-rachael-kosinski/1125503713;jsessionid=64670FB64A0EFBEA24D0A208CA0C3D09.prodny_store01-atgap01?ean=2940154165836
Amazon UK:  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Nicholas-Rachael-Kosinski-ebook/dp/B01N4PFRNN/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1485393836&sr=8-1&keywords=MuseItUp+Publishing+nicholas
Kobo:  https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/nicholas-8 


EXCERPT:

The first time the boy had stepped foot here, he had paused a perilously long amount of time to admire the splendor, the cathedral-like façades, the glass glittering like frozen ice. Now he simply slipped into the shadows of the palace wall and sprinted for the relief of a bowing angel. Crossing himself, the boy leapt again, soft boots finding purchase on the stone angel’s head and, with all the dexterity of an acrobat, began climbing the architecture.

 What was on his mind? The Crown Jewels? Documents of import? Secrets? Golden china, clothes?

 Unknown to the guards making their rounds, the boy climbed higher and higher, until he reached the steepled roof. Arms out in a pantomime of a tightrope walker, he laughed, a low, happy sound. He traipsed his way past the countless slim turrets topped with crosses to a tower of grand scale. This too he climbed, slipping a little in his excitement. A hiss broke from him and for a moment his right hand shot inward to his chest. Then he climbed on, more gingerly 'til he mounted the top. The crown of the tower flattened out in a plateau about five feet square, boxed in by intricate fencing. The four sides sloped downward, a squat chimney protruded. No smoke escaped, and the young man put his face to it and caught a glow at the far bottom. Turning his ear to the opening, he shut his eyes and listened.

 “If I may be so bold,” a tremulous voice wavered up to him, “my lady promised.”

 “Oh, did I?”

The voice echoed up the chimney deep and teasing, feigning confusion. Not for the first time, the boy tried to imagine what the princess looked like.

  “We shan’t tell, mistress. Please—could you do it in the voices?” asked another voice, an old woman’s.

 “It makes the nights quicken so,” the tremulous voice chimed in. “Winter nights have been brighter since you started!”

 “Oh….”

 The boy on the rooftop made a face, eyes shut to hear the reply.

 “I suppose.”

 He could hear the smile in her voice.

 A secretive cheer went up among the—servants, no, ladies-in-waiting, most like.

 The boy on the roof hoped the crown princess would start exactly where she left off; two nights ago she’d completely forgotten about the pirate set to be hanged, and one of the maids had had to remind her.

 “Níl mé léi! cried the Empress of the Emerald Isle!”

 The women applauded as the captive Irish queen, who’d been stolen by the pirate set to be hanged, threw off her forced disguise as a lowly servant and revealed herself to the Welsh king she’d been set to marry. The pirate had sent an imposter in her place, who now tried to run, but the Irish queen drew a sword from a guard’s hip and cornered her before she had a chance to flee.


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About the Author:

When she was little, Rachael Kosinski wanted to be a paleontologist, an astronaut, a nature photographer, and the next Jane Goodall. Instead of being a new link between man and chimp, or discovering a planet suitable for sustained human life, or maybe even winning renowned fame by stumbling across an undiscovered dinosaur, Rachael finally decided that, if she never became a writer, she would simply die. Nearly a decade later, she now possesses a quirky knowledge of world mythology, an addiction to coffee, and a penchant for making over-expressive faces at her laptop.

CONTACT LINKS:

email: rachaelkosinski@yahoo.com
* http://the-girl-who-draws-with-wrds.tumblr.com
* https://www.instagram.com/rekosinski/
* https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/9856335.Rachael_Kosinski 



 
 
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Happy Wednesday, Booklovers!

Are you ready for a little ghostly murder? Join me in welcoming mystery writer Fran Stewart, who brought her latest book, A Wee Homicide in the Hotel.

What do you prefer to drink, Fran?

FRAN: The only time I drink coffee (decaf) is in a restaurant so I can warm my hands on the cup. Otherwise, I like hot tea or hot chocolate (even in the summertime)

Ally: A spot of tea it is. Meanwhile, please introduce yourself to readers.


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Bio: 

Fran Stewart is the author of the ScotShop Mysteries, including A Wee Dose of Death and A Wee Murder in My Shop, and the Biscuit McKee Mysteries (seven books so far), as well as a standalone mystery A Slaying Song Tonight and the non-fiction From the Tip of My Pen: a workbook for writers. She is a member of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, the Atlanta Writers Club, and the National League of American Pen Women, and lives simply in a quiet house beside a creek on the other side of Hog Mountain, Georgia, with various rescued cats. She reads, knits, gardens, volunteers in her grandchildren’s school library, and manages quite happily without a television set.

Something unique/unusual that isn't in your regular bio: "I’m addicted to Sudoku, and the harder they are, the better I like them."

Visit her online at http://franstewart.com 
http://facebook.com/FranStewartAuthor    or  email: franstewartauthor@gmail.com



INTERVIEW:

Ally: What kind of books do you write?

FRAN:  Traditional mysteries. Definitely PG-13 with no overt anything!

Ally: Discuss your writing process, your schedule, and goals.

FRAN:  You can tell I’m balanced between my left brain and my right brain. I love spreadsheets and use them in multiple ways, not just for finances, but for to-do lists, gas mileage, book club selections, book character lists, and daily writing goals.

I generally start my writing early each morning. I have my manuscript on the left side of my screen and my spreadsheet on the right. It tells me how many days I have left until my deadline, how many words I’ve written so far, how many words left until I meet the word-count goal for the entire book, how many words I need to write each day in order to meet my deadline.

After I’ve written a bunch of words, I plug the word count into my spreadsheet, and it tells me how I’ve done. If I haven’t met the goal, I just keep writing. If I pass it, I can either choose to keep going (which is almost always my choice, especially if I’m on a roll, or stop for the day and do something else (which I choose if the writing seems to be lagging).

I have another section of the spreadsheet where I list the chapters as I write them, along with a short reminder of what’s in the chapter. If the chapter line is highlighted in green, it means I’ve actually written it. If the row is gray, that means this is a chapter I’m considering or simply haven’t written yet. Sometimes I skip those gray rows and go back and write them later, depending on how my brain is working that day. There have been times when I’ve written the last chapter (green) before I’ve written the first (gray), although I don’t recommend that as a usual way to write a book.

Ally:  Do you have a writer's cave? Describe where and under what conditions you do most of your writing.

FRAN:  I have a wonderful office off the den, but I hardly ever use it. I prefer to write at my dining room table where I can watch birds fluttering around the multiple feeders in my front yard, and keep an eye out for the two cats who found that I’d feed them (sucker lives here!) if they peered in through the front window. I never have music playing or anything electronic plugged in (except for my laptop). I haven’t had a TV for 24 years, and silence is by far the best inspiration for me. That said, I am also quite capable of blocking out all conversations around me and writing in a noisy coffee shop. When story ideas pop up, I try always to listen, even if it’s just to jot down the general gist of what I’ve thought of, no matter where I am.

Ally:  Do you prefer to read standalones or series? Which do you prefer to write?

FRAN:  I prefer to read series, definitely. Louise Penny’s Inspector Gamache, Donna Leon’s Commissario Brunetti, Julia Spencer-Fleming’s Claire Ferguson, Elizabeth Peters’ Amelia Peabody are all people who intrigue me, as I have watched them and their friends and families grow through the years. It shouldn’t be surprising then, that I love to write series. Years ago, when I finished my first published book, ORANGE AS MARMALADE, several of the characters stood up and said, “I have more to say for myself. You’d better get busy writing it down.” So I did.

Ally:  Does your real life show up in your writing? In what ways?

FRAN:  Definitely, although I certainly hope it’s not too obvious. There are a number of experiences that are just too good or too important not to share. In my Biscuit McKee mysteries, for instance, I created a character who was bipolar and used my experiences growing up with my sister, whose bipolar disorder had not then been diagnosed. I see it as part of my responsibility as a writer to educate gently about such issues, so I include suicide prevention, long-term effects of abuse, and other such social issues in each of my Biscuit McKee mysteries. I also give toll-free numbers and websites in a resource list at the end of each book.

In the ScotShop mysteries, I drew heavily on my experiences having seen three ghosts (the first when I was in my early twenties and the next two when I visited London in my thirties). The way in which Peggy is able to see through the otherwise substantial Dirk is a direct description of how I saw a wall in the Tower of London through the green dress of a female ghost.

Peggy’s almost juvenile anger at Dirk’s constant proximity in the second ScotShop book, A WEE DOSE OF DEATH, is based on a very low time of my life, while the almost lyrical death scene of the elderly Wallace Masters in INDIGO AS AN IRIS, my 5th Biscuit McKee mystery, nearly duplicates the gentle death of my father as I experienced it sitting beside him.

Ally: What is your next writing project and when will it be available?

FRANWHITE AS ICE, summer 2017

All seven of my Biscuit McKee mysteries so far have been set in the fictional town of Martinsville, which was founded in 1745. Everybody knows Homer Martin was the founder, but nobody knows the real story -- until the biggest ice storm of the century hits Martinsville and 20 people take refuge in Biscuit and Bob’s big old rambling house, which is heated by a woodstove. The men all stay in the kitchen playing cards, while the women head up to the crowded attic and begin going through old trunks and hatboxes, exploring dim corners, and searching through armoires. When they find a diary written by Mary Frances, whom everyone knows was the wife of Homer Martin, they uncover the biggest mystery of them all. And of course, as with any mystery, there are a few dead bodies strewn here and there.

Ally:  Let's try a few short answer questions.
  • a. Book you're currently reading:  Cronkite’s War: His World War II Letters Home by Walter Cronkite Jr. (living room book); Wild Girl by Kate Forsyth (reading nook book); The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George (book club selection for this month—audio book in car) and Seeing a Large Cat by Elizabeth Peters (bedtime book) – Yes. I generally have four books going at once, and yes, I can keep them all straight in my mind.
  • b. An author (living or dead) you'd love to take to lunch: Dorothy L Sayers, although I’d have to brush up on my Latin and French first. 
  • c. Favorite quote: from Louisa May Alcott – “I am no longer afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my own ship.” (Little Women, chapter 44)
  • d. Your pets: I am owned by three cats, all rescues. Callie (strictly indoors) - tortoiseshell; Fuzzy Britches (outside, although she comes in to eat twice a day. Sleeps under my porch usually) – champagne and white tabby; BeeCeeAyTee (accent on the third syllable) – black, which is how she got her name “B for black-C-A-T” (outside, sleeps in the soft cat bed on my front porch bench)
  • e. Favorite after-five drink: Glenfiddich single malt Scotch, although I imbibe only once or twice a month, since I love the anticipation almost as much as the drink itself.

Ally: It's been terrific getting to know you. Good luck with your writing. Before you go, please tell us a little about A Wee Homicide in the Hotel... 


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A Wee Homicide in the Hotel

Book Blurb from Back Cover:

The annual Highland Festival in Hamelin, Vermont, means caber tossing, sword dancing, and just a spot of murder...

Hamelin is overflowing with tourists enjoying the Scottish-themed games—and most of them are donning tartans from Peggy Winn’s ScotShop. And her fourteenth-century ghostly companion, Dirk, has been indispensable, keeping an eye out for shoplifters and matching customer’s family names to their clan plaid.

Adding to the chaos is Big Willie, a longtime champion of the games, but not everyone is happy to have him in town. So when he misses the first event of the weekend, Peggy senses something is awry. After Willie is discovered dead in his hotel room, the victim of a bagpipe-related crime, Peggy decides it’s up to her and Dirk to suss out a murderer—because another death would really blow...

Buy links :

Amazon
AmazonSmile
Barnes & Noble
iBooks
Books a Million  



Thanks for spending time with us. Happy reading, & come back soon!

 
 
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Welcome, booklovers!

Join me in welcoming author Liese Sherwood-Fabre. In a departure from our usual fiction discussion, Liese has brought a non-fiction collection of essays on Sherlock Holmes. Enjoy it as a terrific peek into history or a companion piece to any Sherlock story.

Good morning, Liese! How do you drink your coffee?

LIESE: 
I start with a dark roast and add milk/cream and artificial sweetener.

Ally: While I get our mugs ready, please introduce yourself to readers.



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BIO: Liese Sherwood-Fabre, PhD

Award-winning author Liese Sherwood-Fabre grew up in Dallas, Texas and knew she was destined to write when she got an A+ in the second grade for her story about Dick, Jane, and Sally’s ruined picnic. After obtaining her PhD from Indiana University, she joined the federal government and had the opportunity to work and live internationally for more than fifteen years. After returning to the states, she seriously pursued her writing career and has had numerous pieces appear in both print and electronically. She is currently a member of three Sherlockian societies (The Crew of the Barque Lone Star, the Napoleons of Crime, and the Studious Scarlets Society) and contributes regularly to Sherlockian newsletters across the world.

Something unusual not in your regular bio: "I collect pressed pennies. You know, the machines where you put in two quarters and a penny, select an image, and turn a crank to get an elongated penny with an image on it. I started when I would get them for a friend’s daughter and thought, “I should get these for myself as well.” My latest: from Grand Cayman Islands. It has a stingray on it. The oddest: from Buc-ee’s (a Texas-based gas stop with everything you can imagine to want to eat while on the road.)"

Contacts:

You can follow her upcoming releases and other events by joining her newsletter at www.liesesherwoodfabre.com. All new subscribers receive a link for a free short story.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/liese.sherwoodfabre/
Twitter: @lsfabre
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Liese-Sherwood-Fabre/e/B00810INE6/
Email: mailto:liese@liesesherwoodfabre.com



INTERVIEW:

Ally: Let's start by talking about the book you brought today.

LIESE: It's non-fiction. I have a book with an agent about Sherlock Holmes at age 13. In researching for that book, I realized I had a lot of information that might be interesting to other readers of Sherlock Holmes. I contacted various Sherlock Holmes societies (called scions) and offered to share these essays with them for publication in their newsletters. This has been going on now for more than two years, and I’ve made a great number of friends (not to mention membership in several of these groups). Each essay starts with some aspect of Victorian life from one of the original stories and then explores it more deeply. It’s very G/PG, suitable for all readers.

Ally:  What was your journey to publication, including bumps and missteps?

LIESE:  I started writing more than twenty years ago. Like many novice writers, I was reading a story in a magazine, and thought “I could do that.” I finished it and sent it off and was quickly rejected (and rightly so). Undetered, I continued my efforts with other works (including novels), took classes at the local community college, joined the Romance Writers of America and my local chapter, and continued to improve and submit. I was nominated for the Golden Heart in 2008, but still haven’t sold that book. I continue to write and submit—as well as indie publish—because there are too many stories in my head begging to be written.

Ally:  How did you select your main genre? What about it intrigues you and readers?

LIESE:  I’m drawn to mysteries—ever since I read my first Nancy Drew in the fourth grade. I like solving puzzles, and I view the story as a type of puzzle with the clues being pieces of the puzzle.

Ally:  What author would you like to meet? What would you say to him or her?

LIESE:  I *loved* the Harry Potter series, and would love to know how much JK Rowling knew from the beginning about the overarching plot and how much evolved as she wrote each book. I read every once in a while about something she wished she’d done differently or kept from readers (like Dumbledore’s orientation). When did she get that insight?

Ally:  How much research do you do?  When? Where?

LIESE:  You can’t write historical fiction without research. I have a number of books on Sherlock Holmes, Victorian England, and other aspects of life back then (the police, spies in India, medicine of the day). When those fail me, there’s always the Internet. While I’m writing, if it’s a quick answer (who was the prime minister that year?), I’ll stop and find the name. If it’s more extensive, I’ll make a note and continue on with my writing. There’s nothing that will eat up your writing time than searching on the Internet and winding up down a rabbit hole filled with cat videos or funny baby videos.

Ally: What is your next writing project?

LIESE:  My young Sherlock Holmes books. I have one with an agent and a sequel in draft form. In addition, I’m toying with a contemporary young adult sleuth set in west Texas—along the line of Veronica Mars (only younger). 

Ally:  Let's wind down with  a few short answer questions:
  • a. Book you're currently reading:  A Study in Scarlet Women by Sherry Thomas
  • b. An item on your bucket list:  Seeing the penguins in Antarctica
  • c. High heels or sneakers:  Sneakers or flats.  EVERYTHING hurts my feet these days. The more comfy, the better.
  • d. Favorite TV program:  Big Bang Theory (I’m a real Sheldon fan)
  • e. Your Pets:  At the moment, one dog—a border collie mix. He’s not even really ours. He belongs to my son, but when he moved about nine years ago, he left him with us and has yet to return to pick him up.

Ally: It's nice to talk with an author who has put all that extra research to work for them. Before you go, please give us an idea what we'd find in your collection of essays.


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The Life and Times of Sherlock Holmes: Essays on Victorian England, Volume 1


Genre: Non-Fiction, collection of articles

Step back to London, 1895.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's stories are full of references to everyday activities and events from Victorian times that make the twenty-first century reader run to the reference shelf. Few, for example, are intimately acquainted with the responsibilities of a country squire, the importance of gentlemen's clubs, or the intricacies of the Victorian monetary system.

These twenty-four short essays explore various aspects of life mentioned in the original tales of Sherlock Holmes, providing modern-day insight into the nineteenth century world. Originally shared with Sherlockians around the world, they are gathered here for the first time and bring deeper meaning and color to the adventures of the world’s most famous consulting detective.

Buy: https://www.amazon.com/Life-Times-Sherlock-Holmes-Victorian/dp/0998411205




Sherwood-Fabre was a contributor to the following Sherlockian fiction anthology

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Curious Incidents (More Improbable Adventures)

Welcome back to Baker Street! Holmes and Watson are here to greet you once more spinning amazing tales of murder, mayhem, and mystery with a supernatural twist. This time the great detective and his stalwart companion will venture into alternate universes, histories, and futures to solve puzzling cases of the paranormal far beyond the bounds of imagination.

An Old West town plagued by a legendary beast, a dystopian future where black snow falls on Baker Street, a cyborg Holmes engaged in a psychological game with an ancient enemy, a world-weary Holmes and Watson who must choose between vampiric immortality and oblivion, and a classic noir with dames to kill for are just a few of the strange adventures that await you in Curious Incidents.

Grab your deerstalker and hold on tight! The game is afoot!

BUY:  https://www.amazon.com/Curious-Incidents-More-Improbable-Adventures-ebook/dp/B01MUEELMA

Thanks for joining us for coffee! Come back soon.

 
 
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Good Morning, booklovers!

Welcome to this week's Coffee Chat with women's fiction writer, Patricia Preston, and her romance novel, Everything His Heart Desires.

What may I offer you to drink, Patricia?

PP
I don’t drink coffee. But I do drink sweet tea every day.

Ally: Tea it is. While I fix our drinks, please introduce yourself to readers.




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Author Bio:

Patricia Preston loves writing single-title women’s fiction where love matters most. She also writes short stories and historicals. She won William Faulkner Award for Short Fiction, the Lone Star Writing Competition for Historical Romance, and Harlequin’s World’s Best Romances Short Story Competition. She’s a hybrid author who has published traditionally and independently. She’s repped by the Seymour Agency. Besides writing, she’s also worked as a librarian, medical office manager, and in a cosmetic department where she played with makeup all day. Her favorite place to hang out is her writing cave where must-haves are iced tea and epic music. She also enjoys photography, movies, and research trips to New Orleans.

Something unusual not in your regular bio: "I make the Best-Ever Pecan Pie!"

For info on new releases and contests, sign up for her newsletter

Check out her Blog  Follow her on Twitter    Facebook   Amazon Author Page



INTERVIEW:

Ally:  What type of book did you bring with you today?

PP:  The genre for the Love Heals Alls series is single-title romance/women’s fiction. Heat rating is warm, kinda like cable channel movies, so I’d go with over-18.

Ally:  Every writer has their own style and writing process. How would you describe yours?

PP:  It is part pantser and plotter. I usually do a bare bones outline to start with and flesh out the characters. Once I’m writing the book, I work all day at the computer and at night, I will sketch out the next day’s scenes and dialogue in longhand. I don’t set word count goals. I think more along the lines of completing a chapter or a scene.

Ally:  Did someone or something inspire you to write? If so, what effect did it have and why?

PP:  The first person who actually encouraged me to write was my seventh grade English teacher. I never forgot that and I don’t think I would have ever been a writer had it not been for her.

Ally:
Do you have a writer's cave? Describe it or tell us where you do most of your writing. Does it have to be quiet or do you write with music or white noise (tv, etc)?

PP: Yes, I do have a writing cave. It’s actually a bedroom that I converted into an office. I do all my writing at a desktop in this room. I have two computers. One for online stuff and the other for writing only. It definitely looks like a working room as I have corkboards on the walls, file cabinets and bookcases. There is a smaller room that is attached to this room and it is sorta my little den area with a recliner, more bookcases and it is where I sketch out plot lines and scenes on art paper. I always listen to music when I write. Never the TV. The only time the TV is on is when I am watching it.

Ally:  What is your favorite social media?

PPTwitter. I like it because tweets are short and easy, plus I love the memes. I go to Twitter for instant news, to find new books, recipes, etc. All you have to do is search by a hashtag like #NewRelease and all the tweets with that hashtag appears in your feed. Also you can create a list and add members, then all you have to do is go to your list to see their tweets. You can find me @pat_preston  Also I love my blog where I do a lot of different posts and have guests.

Ally: I love to hear where other writers live. Tell us about your home.

PPI live in a small town of about 15,000. I do live in an older home in the downtown area which is only a few blocks from the post office, library and downtown area and I like that. I definitely get around in my Honda. There’s no other means of transportation locally, other than a small cab service. At times I wished I lived in a larger city where there would be more things to do but then we don’t have any traffic issues. I can be at restaurant or store in less than 5 minutes. I have been in rush-hour traffic in some major cities and that would drive me nuts. 

Ally:  What is your next writing project?

PPThe next book is
Not Through Loving You, which is due to be released on June 20th by Kensington/Lyrical Press. It’s a single title romance involving a pediatrician, Dr. Aaron Kendall, who is planning to adopt an unwanted preemie when the baby’s aunt, a Nashville songwriter, shows up and complicates things for Aaron. This year I am going to write another book in this series which involves Kayla, who has been in all the other books. Plus I really hope to get to finish the second historical in my Indie series, French Quarter Brides.

Ally:  Here's a few get-to-know-you short answer questions:
  • a. Favorite tv program: Supernatural
  • b. High heels or sneakers:  Sneakers
  • c. Favorite book boyfriend:  Rhett Butler
  • d. What are your hobbies?  Photography
  • e. If you couldn't write anymore, what would you want to do? Die. lol

Ally: Thanks for visiting with us, Patricia. Before you go, please tell us more about your novel, Everything His Heart Desires...


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EVERYTHING HIS HEART DESIRES
(Rated R)

The man most likely to drive her crazy…

Growing up in Lafayette Falls, senator’s daughter Natalie Layton hid her sorrows behind a bright smile that charmed everyone in high school—except Brett Harris. Hardworking and highly motivated, Brett dismissed Natalie as a slacker. Instead, she’s become an acclaimed photographer. And when Brett, now a successful cardiologist, needs her family’s help to secure a coveted position, Natalie’s more than happy to prescribe a little payback…

Hailing from the wrong side of the tracks, Brett believed he could never win the school’s popular princess. Now he’s intrigued by the complex and compassionate woman Natalie’s become. Gaining her grandmother’s goodwill is the key to becoming chief cardiologist—and Natalie has no intention of making it easy. But as mutual mistrust gives way to pure chemistry, there’s more at stake than either ever expected—and much more to learn about matters of the heart…

Buy Links:  Amazon   Nook   Kobo  Google Play  iTunes


Thanks for stopping. Come back soon!

 
 
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NIGHTS AROSE by Andrea Roche
R-rated

I
n a time and place where women are bred to be lambs, Arose has the soul of a tigress.


It is 1693 on the isle of Jamaica, and twenty-one-year-old, Arose Du Mouchelle, is the mixed-race heir to a sprawling sugar plantation. From an old gypsy, she receives a matriarchal heirloom: the Gem of the Red Spirit. She spends years in exile, learning its secrets and mysteries, the most important of which is the ability to enter the Astral Plane. In exchange for her powers, Arose must act as the sentry between this dimension and her world, forcing back the creatures held captive there.

Morel, a voodoo Priestess, covets the Gem. Taking hostage Arose’s family and the port town, she attempts to force Arose to give up the powerful amulet. Morel’s plan is to rule over the evil creatures imprisoned in the Astral Plane, unleashing them upon the rest of humanity.

While evading Morel’s henchmen Arose collides with Captain St. James a notorious pirate, whom she has already met in a vision. Leary of him at first, he gains her trust after he aids in her escape. She is knocked unconscious and wakes to find she has been had – both he and the opal gone. However, even if she recovers the opal she’ll have a bigger decision to make: keep the opal and doom her family, or give it to Morel and let the world fall into a demonic wasteland.

EXCERPT:

She crouched on the ledge of a dune. The dying sun’s embers lit the sky just before the night arose.

     The previous hours of her day were difficult and tiresome. She wasn’t sure if her queasy stomach came from her boiling blood or the fact she hadn’t eaten since morning. The day’s close did give her some relief from the evil Voodoo and treachery, which followed her since that afternoon. Still her troubles would not simply end because the day did. In the guise of her alter ego, Evan, she could fool anyone. She had perfected a manly swagger. But, no matter how drunk she got in the pub, her troubles would remain. “He” would be on the hunt for her, ready to pounce, like a feral animal on his prey.

     Arose held a polished dagger up to the sunlight, to inspect the blade’s oily sheen. A jewel-encrusted fleur-delis adorned the pommel, glinted in the late evening sun. The same symbol of French royal heraldry decorated her family’s coat of arms.

     With a flick of her wrist, the perfectly balanced blade spun from her hand, flipped once, and pierced the sand between her feet. She retrieved the dagger and pursed her lips. Specks of sand flew from the swirling calligraphy of the monogram engraved on the shaft: NDM—Nessarose Du Mouchelle. The “N” made her shake her head. She preferred instead the name “Arose,” as her father called her, or even “Rosie” reserved for those who knew her well enough. Her youth had consisted of tussles with those who played on her name, giving her cruel nicknames like “Nessy” or “Pesty.” She’d grown to hate it.

     She traced the monogram with the tip of her finger and clucked her tongue when she saw the smudges left behind. Her breath came out as a steamy puff on the cold steel. Arose wiped off the droplets with her sleeve and checked the razor-fine edge for nicks. 

    With a gentle whoosh, she slipped the blade back into its sheath built into her thigh-high leather boot. Swollen eyes from earlier tears prickled, tempting her fingers to rub them until their yearning was happily satisfied. She would be much happier staying in her room with a cool cloth rinsed in lavender water, but the entity invading her home made it impossible.

   She had to search for the man who could help her save her family and the dragon who taught her everything. Never having met the man, seeing him only in a vision, she would know him by his aura and his scent, consisting of iron, cedar and citrus fruit and she knew his name: St. James, Captain St. James.

Youtube trailer link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TXlkkOPaGjY&t=63s

BUY: Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N1G9MPC

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About the Author:

Andrea is a dreamer and scribbler, whose work embraces her strong matriarchal heritage. She hopes her writing will instill in her readers the idea that a woman can find their independence while keeping homegrown values.
Still living in her childhood home, Andrea can hear the voices of her past. She has relied on them to tell her stories. “My mother always said I would find my way. I never knew what she meant until after she passed. Then her voice came loud and clear, and I used it to write this book,” she says.

As a child, Andrea was a fervent closet reader. She would take her readings and write her own versions of how the book should have ended, most times being happier with her alternate ending. In the fourth grade, her teacher assigned a book report to the class. Andrea gave her the report and included various alternate endings. Her teacher immediately enrolled her in a creative writing class. Thinking this was a punishment she asked her teacher why. Her teacher explained that if she did not like how the stories ended, she should make up her own. Andrea’s mind, now given permission to take flight, began a lifelong love of writing.

Wife of 25 years and mother of three children, she had dedicated her early life to helping her family business grow. She now works for the city of New York. Five years ago, she found herself in the hospital with an injury after a simple trip home from work went awry.  Not used to being idle, six months in a wheelchair gave her the time to write. It was there her mind was once again allowed to wander.

Starting with her vivid imagination she scrolled through pictures of her honeymoon in Jamaica, her mind went back into the past. Not her past, but the past of others who could have lived in a large mansion at the top of a hill covered in sugar cane. She stepped into a world with vivid colors and magic. Having already developed a polish to her writing abilities while gaining a B.A. degree with a dual major in Marketing and English Literature, she wrote what she saw and what she heard as if someone whispered in her

Andrea’s hard work and long hours has paid off. Upon completion of her manuscript, she described feeling the same whoosh she felt when she delivered her children into the world. She is thankful she can bring her work to her readers.

Contact the Author:

 www.twitter.com/Rose121562
www.andrearoachauthor.blogspot.com 
www.facebook.com/NightsArose 



 
 
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Hey, booklovers!
Join me in welcoming this week's author guest, Beth Barany, with her YA fantasy, Henrietta and the Battle of Horse Mesa.
 How do you take your coffee, Beth?

BETH: 
I love Starbucks tall cappuccino. At home I make a half-n-half, have strong coffee and half coconut milk with a dash of half-n-half.

Ally:  Since we always have Starbucks around here, I'll serve that up right away. In the meantime, please introduce yourself.


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BIO:

Award winning author, Beth Barany writes in several genres including young adult adventure fantasy and fantasy romance. Inspired by living abroad in France and Quebec, she loves creating magical tales of romance and adventure to empower women and girls to jump into life with both feet and be the heroes in their own lives.

In her off hours, Beth enjoys walking her neighborhood, gardening on her patio, and watching movies and traveling with her husband, author Ezra Barany. They live in Oakland, California with their cat named Leo, a piano, and over 1,000 books.

Something unusual that isn't in your regular bio: "I’ve run 4 sprint triathlons (swim, bike, run) and finished each one."

Author Contacts:

Site: http://author.bethbarany.com/
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/beth_barany
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bethbarany
Instagram: http://instagram.com/bethbarany



INTERVIEW:

Ally:   Let's jump right into the writing process. How do you choose and name your characters?

BETH:  My character names come to me all kinds of ways. When Henrietta The Dragon Slayer came to me, I thought it was hilarious to pair an old-fashioned name with a kickass heroine. Jaxter, the jester, came to me because he was inspired by the comical character. Joxer, in Xena, The Warrior Princess TV show. Franc came to me because I wanted a name that sounded masculine and was a short name, to act as a counterpoint to Henrietta’s three-syllable name. I choose Paulette, because like Henrietta’s name, I wanted a female name that could be shortened to a boy’s name. With my heroines’ names, I wanted to play with images and stereotypes of masculine and feminine.

Ally:  If you could have a supernatural power, what would it be and why?

BETH:  I’ve always wanted to fly and to have telekinesis. The flying part would be a given, like a skill lots of superheroes have. But my wow factor would be the ability to move objects with my mind. Ever since I read a story as a child where the main character learns how to do this, I wanted it. I just thought it was the ultimate in having a powerful mind. (Sorry, I can’t find the title of that book. If I do, I’ll add it to the comments.)

Ally:  Have you thought about one of your books being made into a movie? Who would play the parts, if you could choose?

BETH:  OMG, of course. From the start, I’ve seen Henrietta The Dragon Slayer as a movie, or even a series of movies. When people see the book cover, they often say they see the story as a movie!

Who wouldn’t want to see another kick ass heroine on screen? As for who would play what… I already have an actress who wants to play Henrietta. That’s under wraps for now.

Here’s my wish list for the other three main characters: Maybe Jaxter could be played by Andrew Garfield or Grant Gustin. He needs to be wiry and funny.

A rough and tough knight, Franc could be played by Chris Pratt, Taylor Kitsch, Armie Hammer, Liam Hemsworth, Lee Byung-hun, John Abraham, or Luke Pasqualino.

The young witch Paulette could be played by Cara Delevingne, Hailee Steinfeld, Dakota Johnson, Shailene Woodley, Alicia Vikander, or Maika Monroe.

Ally:   Do you have a writer's cave? Describe it or tell us where you do most of your writing. Does it have to be quiet or do you write with music or white noise (tv, etc)?

BETH:  I love writing to pop music, though I edit usually to Baroque or to Celtic music, especially Julie Fowlis. As for my writer’s cave or environment, I write all my first drafts at a café, usually Starbucks, a local bakery called La Farine, or the local diner (Piedmont Café & Diner), at the counter, or at a local co-working space, Oakland’s ImpactHub downtown. I love sitting at the counter or a tall table, perched, like in a treehouse, separate from the world, yet connected. I love the activity of these public environments, the buzz of conversation in the background, music overhead, and the humming of the espresso machine or people chatting.

Ally:  Answer these five short answer questions:
  • a. an item on your bucket list: Live and travel in Ireland.
  • b. favorite movie: The Fifth Element
  • c. favorite accessory (jewelry, scarves, shoes, etc.): Pink scarf
  • d. What are your hobbies? Watching TV and movies; running; gardening; travelling to new places.
  • e.  typical breakfast: Two fried eggs and kale with coffee

Ally: Thanks so much for spending time with us today. Before you go, tell us about your latest book.

BETH:  I’m excited to announce the third book in my YA fantasy series, Henrietta and the Battle of the Horse Mesa.


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HENRIETTA AND THE BATTLE OF THE HORSE MESA (Book 3)

Finally, the sweeping conclusion to the Henrietta The Dragon Slayer trilogy! Parted by destiny, the four friends struggle to rejoin forces and face for a final time, the ruthless sorcerer intent on destroying them all.

In the biggest challenge of her life, Henrietta the legendary Dragon Slayer of Bleuve must lead her people into a battle that may end life as they know it. For they face no ordinary army, but the dark forces of a powerful sorcerer bent on overtaking all five kingdoms. And unless she can rescue her dauntless knight Franc, she must do it without his support.

Franc will follow Henrietta anywhere. But on a mission to find allies among the Horse People, he is kidnapped and taken by minions of the evil sorcerer Eyvindir. Will he find the strength and courage to survive, and fight again at Henrietta’s side?

Paulette, the young fire witch, must stand trial for a murder committed out of desperation. In despair at her imprisonment by forces acting against her dearest friend, Jaxter, she escapes and flees to the frigid, forbidden land of Varangia to find a witch powerful enough to help her finally master fire. But what must she give up to gain the power to aid her friends?

Jaxter, now a king, must come to terms with the heavy responsibilities of ruling the Oro Islands, newly emerged from over 75 years of evil rule. This means doing right, even when it means going against ancient customs and protocols. Worse, the marauding Varangians press at his borders. He must find a way to defend his home, or none of them will survive.

Will Henrietta and her friends be able to stop the ruthless sorcerer from obliterating her, claiming the Dragon Stone, and ruling over the Five Kingdoms?

Buy Links:

Amazon: http://bit.ly/Henrietta-DragonSlayer-Kindle
B&N: http://search.barnesandnoble.com/Henrietta-The-Dragon-Slayer/Beth-Barany/e/2940012228222/
Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/henrietta-the-dragon-slayer
iBooks: http://bethb.net/HEN1pg
Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/46068
Indiebound: http://www.indiebound.org/book/http://www.indiebound.org/book/9780983296041?aff=bethbarany
Bookdepository: http://www.bookdepository.com/Henrietta-Dragon-Slayer-Beth-Barany/9780983296041?b=-3&t=-20

**NOTE**  Like many fantasy series, you do need to read the books in order. So start with Henrietta The Dragon Slayer (Book 1) here: http://author.bethbarany.com/books/the-five-kingdom-series/. Link includes a sign-up for a free prequel!


Happy Reading. Please stop by again!

 
 
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Welcome to the Wednesday Coffee Chat!

This week's guest is paranormal mystery writer, Jordaina Syndney Robinson. It's nice to meet you, Jordaina. What may I get you to drink?

JSR
I drink tea. I make what my mum calls ‘builder’s tea’ which just means it’s really strong. I have two sugars in it but I’m trying to cut down to one.

Ally: Tea it is! We like to indulge our guests, but I don't want to undermine your dietary efforts, so I just won't reveal how many sugars I added. :) While I fix our drinks, please introduce yourself to readers.


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Bio

Jordaina Sydney Robinson grew up and, despite many adventures further afield, still lives in the North West of England. For fun she buys notebooks, gets walked by her husky puppy and sings really loudly and really badly whilst driving her trusty old Seat, Roger.

Something usual that's not in your regular bio: "I have to walk my husky puppy, Mr Wolf, before he lets me write or he sits next to me and howls. I think that means he’s spoiled!"

Author contact links

Website | Facebook | Goodreads | Instagram | Twitter  



INTERVIEW:

Ally: Let's start by talking about what type of books you write.

JSR:  Beyond Dead is a paranormal cosy mystery. As for it’s romantic heat rating, I would say it was cold, maybe tepid at a push! There’s not even any hand holding!

Ally:   So you have your genre and probably a story idea, how do you choose and name your characters?

JSR:  I don’t really know how or if I choose my characters – they just sort of come fully formed and named. That said, Bridget (the heroine in Beyond Dead) is actually named after a (sort-of) ex-boyfriend’s best friend’s ex-girlfriend. She looks like her too though I didn’t actually realise until I was halfway through the second book.

Ally:  We're big on the paranormal and magic around here.  If you could have a supernatural power, what would it be and why?

JSR:  To fly. Which is weird, really, because I get motion sickness on escalators! I always have to take the stairs. But something about flying makes me think of freedom. You could go anywhere you wanted any time you wanted to. You wouldn’t have to spend hours at the airport – totally the best superpower!

Ally:  What is your favorite social media? Why do you like it? How often can readers find you there?

JSR:  Honestly, I’m a bit patchy with social media. I joined Twitter and Instagram not so long ago so I’m still getting to grips with how they work. Facebook is always a trusty favourite, though, so I’m probably more active on there and that’s because more people use that to talk to me. My favourite way to talk to readers, though, is through my email list. I send out an email a month and so many people reply I just find it a much more gratifying way to keep in touch with them.

Ally:  I'm always interested in where authors come from. Can you tell us about your home?

JSR:  I live in a Roman town in the North West of England. It’s classed as a walled city because we still have the walls circling the city that were built by the Romans. There’s a walkway on top of them so you can walk all the way around them. Obviously the city has expanded since Roman times so half the city is inside and half is outside but it’s still pretty cool.

We also have an amphitheatre and there are Roman tours around the city which are lead by guys dressed as Roman soldiers – always an interesting sight!   (Ally Note: Wow, am I envious! You have a home most of us just dream about.)

Ally:  What is your next writing project? Title, short description, anticipated release

JSR:  The third book in the Bridget Sway series, A Little More Dead, will be released for pre-order mid-January. I’m also working on a new series about a reporter called Aurora North who investigates spooky happenings which I’m super excited about. The first book in that series will be available in summer 2017.

Ally: I'd like to wind up the interview with a few short answer questions.
  • a. Favorite tv program:  Genuinely any type of murder mystery.
  • b. High heels or sneakers:  Dr Martens! I’ll slip over on anything and they have the best grip of any boot around! I’m all about comfort (and personal safety!) over fashion.
  • c. Do you believe in love at first sight?  I do!
  • d. Favorite song:  Eye of the Tiger (although I’ve never seen the Rocky films).
  • e. Favorite quote: “An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is only an adventure wrongly considered.”  ― G.K. Chesterton

Ally: Thank you for visiting, Jordaina. I've enjoyed our chat. Before you go, please tell us more about Beyond Dead...


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Blurb

Dead less than twenty-four hours, with a job that doesn’t pay, a fashion disaster for a uniform and more afterlife rules than she can shake a stick at, Bridget Sway thinks it’s as bad as it can get. And then she finds a dead ghost stuffed in her locker.

Since the police are desperate to arrest her for murder, Bridget’s new best friend convinces her the only way to save herself from an eternity in prison is to solve the murder themselves.

With a handsome parole officer watching her every move, an outlaw ghost befriending her and two persistent mediums demanding her attention, solving the murder is not quite as easy as it sounds. And when “murder” turns into “murders” Bridget needs to solve the case … before she becomes the next dead body stuffed in her locker.

Buy link to all formats:

https://www.books2read.com/JordainaSydneyRobinson-BeyondDead



Thanks for visiting my blog. Please come back soon!

 
 
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ADRIFT
by Micki Browning


Blurb:
In this breathtaking mystery debut, marine biologist–turned-divemaster Meredith Cavallo stands accused of a chilling crime after a dive gone wrong. But do the murky circumstances point to an accident, a murder, or a supernatural encounter?

Mer thought adjusting to a laid-back life in the Florida Keys would be a breeze. But when she rescues a floundering diver who claims to have seen a ghost, she’s caught in a storm of intrigue. News of the encounter explodes on social media, attracting a team of ghost hunters who want to capture proof that a greenish ghoul haunts Key Largo’s famed USS Spiegel Grove shipwreck.

Meredith knows the wreck inside and out, and agrees to act as their safety diver. When Ishmael, the charismatic leader of the group, vanishes during a midnight dive, everyone except Mer is convinced the ghost has claimed another victim. Topside, the tenacious detective in charge of the investigation finds Mer’s involvement in both incidents suspicious, and her enigmatic neighbor resurrects ghosts from her past.

Determined to find a rational explanation, Mer approaches Ishmael’s disappearance as any scientist would—by asking questions, gathering data, and deducing the truth. But the victim’s life is as shrouded in mystery as his disappearance. Still, something happened under the water and before long, she’s in over her head. When someone tries to kill her, she knows the truth is about to surface. Maybe dead men do tell tales.

BUY LINKS:

www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/546962/adrift-by-micki-browning/9780425286418/

https://www.amazon.com/Adrift-Cavallo-Mystery-Micki-Browning-ebook/dp/B01CBLUS7A/

EXCERPT:

Mer fought to keep the unconscious diver on the surface, and they bobbed in the water just beyond the back of the LunaSea. She’d get only one chance to get him on the boat without injury.

She imagined carrying him like a sleepy child, his arms draped over her shoulders. Only she had to grab the ladder, find her footing and wedge her leg between his, or the force of the rocking boat would slam them back into the ocean.

“Here it comes, Cavallo,” Leroy, the captain, said. “Get ready.”

Mer inhaled and felt the power of the water swell beneath her. As the wave ebbed, she swam toward the boat, planted her foot, and drew her arms in to pin the diver against the ladder. Another wave hit, raising the LunaSea’s stern into the air. Gravity pulled at Mer, doing its best to drag her back into the sea. She gripped the ladder. Her biceps strained until Leroy seized the diver under the armpits and hauled him onto the deck like a gaffed fish.

Before Mer could readjust, the swim step plummeted and hit the water with a teeth-jarring thud. She held tight as the boat righted itself, and then clambered up the ladder.

Emergency equipment littered the deck like flotsam. Mer dropped her gear on the bench.

Leroy leaned over the now conscious diver. His tense face made Mer’s pulse race.

The diver clawed at the oxygen mask on his face. “Tell her!”

Mer brushed the man’s hand aside and resettled the mask. “Tell me what?” she asked her captain.

“He says he was diving the Spiegel Grove shipwreck.”

“Impossible,” she said. “We’re five miles away, and the current’s going in the wrong direction.”

“That he was diving the Spiegel and there was a—” Leroy struggled to find the right word. “Presence.”

“A presence? You mean like a ghost? Please.” She pursed her lips.

He shook his head. “I know. Except just after you went in the Sea Dragon radioed they’re missing a diver off the Spiegel.” He nodded toward the diver. “This one.”

MEET THE AUTHOR:

Award-winning author Micki Browning worked in municipal law enforcement for more than two decades and is an FBI National Academy graduate. She retired as a division commander – wonderful fodder for her current career as a full-time writer.

Her mystery, Adrift, set in the Florida Keys, won the 2015 Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence and the Royal Palm Literary Award for best unpublished mystery and unpublished book of the year.

Micki resides in Southern Florida with her partner in crime and a vast array of scuba equipment. She’s currently working on Beached, the second Mer Cavallo Mystery. Learn more at www.MickiBrowning.com

Contact Micki:
www.mickibrowning.com
www.facebook.com/MickiBrowningAuthor
https://twitter.com/MickiBrowning


 
 
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Good Morning, Booklovers!

Our Coffee Chat author guest this week is Miguelina Perez with her debut novel, The Vicar's Deadly Sin.

Welcome, Lina, What may I get you to drink?

LINA: 
I love coffee with lots of milk. Caffe Latte.

Ally: The magic pot is yours to command. While I pour, please introduce yourself.



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BIO:

Ms. Miguelina Perez is a writer, and jewelry artist. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of the District of Columbia. As a jewelry artist one of her lariats was showcased in the San Antonio Express-News. She has won several awards including a critical Writing award for an essay on the gender roles of Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn and Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women.

She finished her first book, The Vicar’s Deadly Sin – a Regency romance mystery, the first of a seven-part serial based on the Seven Deadly Sins. Currently, she is working the sequel to the Vicar’s Deadly Sin, “Angel’s Lust” and will start on “A Hero of Her Own” a contemporary romance thriller, about a serial killer terrorizing New York.

Originally from Brooklyn, NY, Ms. Perez resides in Gaithersburg, Maryland.

Something about you that's not in your bio: "I believe in love at first sight...
I also believe love conquers all.

Contact the author:

Website:

Website: miguelinaperezauthor.com
Twitter: @regencyinkwell
Email: mperezauthor@gmail.com



INTERVIEW:

Ally: What type of book is The Vicar's Deadly Sin?

LINA:  It is a regency romance mystery.
PG-13 and up. No sex. Sort of Jane Austen meets Nancy Drew..

Ally: 
How do you choose and name your characters?

LINA
Sometimes I take a name from someone I know and give them the last name of someone else.

Ally:  Do you have a book trailer or will you? Are they worth the time and money?

LINA:  Yes, I have one, and 
I think they are worth it. But if you do not have the money, you can learn to make your own.  I have made my own. And hope to continue to make them. I have even made them for friends.
(Ally note: I've made all but one of mine. It's rather fun if you have the time. I use Movie Maker.)

Ally:  How do you spend your non-writing/editing time?

LINA
I spend my time reading, watching television and knitting. But that is after I know the place is cleaned and all of my chores are done. Lol…

Ally:  Does your real life show up in your writing? In what ways?

LINA: 
In the contemporary romance I hope to write,  I will be adding some real life in it. Lots of it will be the main heroine and her relationship with her family.

Ally:  What is your next writing project?

LINA:  I am almost done with the first draft of the sequel for The Vicar’s Deadly Sin called Angel’s Lust and it is about the lust for youth and beauty and how young maidens are being sacrificed to a fictitious god by an Italian Count. Here is the blurb:

      Lady Jane Bartholomew and Miss Margaret Renard are back and this time they are out to catch a murderer targeting young maidens for sacrifices.
      Believing that having come close to getting themselves killed in their last investigation, Sir Hugh, now engaged to Lady Jane Bartholomew and Mr Latham, solicitor to Miss Margaret Renard, are distressed to learn that the young ladies are once again up to their old tricks.
      Believing they can solve the murders, the young ladies may well fall prey and become sacrificial lambs, unless Sir Hugh and Mr Latham protect them while trying not to fall victims themselves to the unseen evil walking among them leaving a pile of corpses in its wake?

Ally: Let's finish our chat with a few short answer questions.

  • a. favorite book – Pride and Prejudice
  • b. book you're currently reading – The Houseguest: A Pride and Prejudice Vagary
  • c. favorite tv program – Grimm, sadly it has been canceled.
  • d. favorite quote – In Love I am but a mere reflection – M. Perez
  • e. A guilty pleasure – Vanilla Shake
Ally:  It was a pleasure visiting with you today, Lina. Good luck with your books. Before you go, please show readers more about The Vicar's Deadly Sin...

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The Vicar's Deadly Sin

A Touch of Romance…A Touch of Regency…A Touch of Murder… Lady Jane Bartholomew and Miss Margaret Renard have been friends since the age of twelve. Together they share their dreams, hopes and a love for reading. However, it is their wild imagination and a penchant for solving mysteries that will test their abilities when the Vicar of Dover is found murdered. The young ladies are joined by two gentlemen, also eager to find the murderer in order to prove to the ladies that detecting is a man's job, though the gentlemen find their beauty, wit, and pride more troublesome than solving a murder. The Vicar's Deadly Sin is a delightful and witty Regency romance mystery about two friends and their love for solving crimes, while keeping society and its rules at bay.

Buy On Amazon: http://amzn.to/2iRrA0f

Book Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ab4U2lgacqg



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