A Summer Facebook Party

A Summer Facebook Party
Mattie Hatter and the Gilded Gauge

Saturday, October 31, 2015


DEATH TAKES PRIORITY by Jean Flowers
THE CHOCOLATE CLOWN CORPSE by JoAnna Carl

DEATH TAKES PRIORITY 
Book 1 in the Postmistress Mystery series 
by Jean Flowers


Introducing a murder mystery that really delivers!

After caring for her dying aunt and being dumped by her fiancé, Cassie Miller decides to return to her small hometown in the Berkshires to lick her wounds and live in the house where she was raised. Leaving behind her managerial position in the Boston main postal office, Cassie trades in her tailored suits and high heels for the comfortable blue shirt and red, white, and blue striped scarf of the Postmaster for North Ashcot, Massachusetts.

Everything is business as usual until Cassie arrives at work one day to find that someone has broken into the post office building. The only items stolen: stacks of telephone books. Who steals phone books? Two days later, the body of an unidentified man is found in the woods. And when the handsome antiques dealer she just had lunch with is taken into custody, Cassie is suddenly drawn into the case. With a crime enveloped in mystery, she needs to track the killer—before another victim’s fate is sealed in the dead letter office…

MY REVIEW


Author Jean Flowers has made a wonderful start to her Postmistress Mystery series. DEATH TAKES A PRIORITY should be a priority on everyone’s reading list.

Congratulations to author Flowers for creating a fresh subject for this cozy mystery. A lead character who is a postmistress is a nice change of pace as far as occupations go for a series protagonist. And Cassie Miller is quite a character. She’s intelligent, kind hearted, and a joy to read. All of the residents of Ashcot, Massachusetts are fun and/or quirky. I loved getting to know all of them and look forward to spending time learning even more about them in future installments.

DEATH TAKES PRIORITY is a well written, fast moving story that had me captivated. A solid mystery with plenty of situations and suspect to keep the read guessing. I couldn’t wait to turn each page in this book to see what would happen next, and I was never disappointed. The reveal was surprising and action filled. The ending of the book made me wish there was already a second in the series to read right away.

This series has been long overdue. DEATH TAKES PRIORITY has me stuck to the Postmistress Mystery series like a stamp is stuck to a letter!

Make sure to check out the back of the book for some fun tidbits about the post office.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


THE CHOCOLATE CLOWN CORPSE
Book 14 in the Chocoholic Mystery series
by JoAnna Carl


Warner Pier’s most hated clown meets a bitter end in the latest from the national bestselling author of The Chocolate Falcon Fraud...

It’s been a month since a complete stranger was accused of murdering Moe Davidson, the miserable shop owner of Clowning Around. Everybody’s moving on, including Lee Woodyard. Her chocolate shop, TenHuis Chocolade, is next door to Moe’s shuttered tourist trap, and it’s giving her ideas to expand.

But when Lee tours the building, she finds Moe’s widow, Emma, unconscious. Now Lee wonders whether Moe’s real killer is still at large and is taking care of unfinished business. Unfortunately, since the town is celebrating Clown Week, there are so many potential suspects in grease paint and floppy shoes it’s not even funny.

For Lee, protecting Emma, freeing an innocent man, and rolling out hundreds of her clown-themed chocolates is a pretty tall order. But so is staying alive long enough to find out which one of her neighbors is a killer in disguise.

With Tasty Chocolate Trivia!

MY REVIEW


I’m not clowning around. THE CHOCOLATE CLOWN CORPSE is as rich and tasty as the finest Swiss chocolate.

Author Joanna Carl has kept fans captivated with this series for many years. Being a relative new comer to the series, I can see why! I’ve read the last two books of this series out of order. I read THE CHOCOLATE FALCON FRAUD first and really enjoyed it. But having just read THE CHOCOLATE CLOWN CORPSE, I like this one even better.

I really enjoyed protagonist, Lee Woodward and her chocolate shop, TenHuis Chocolade. What a delight place to have in your hometown. Whenever a scene took place in the chocolate shop, I could smell the different chocolates and sweet aromas. And the town of Warner Pier is the perfect backdrop for this series.

This book was all the way around, a wonderfully written, well plotted story that had me so entertained I didn’t want it to end. From the first page until the thrilling end, I was on the edge of my seat. Simply a wonderful cozy whodunit.

Settle in with your favor chocolates and a copy of THE COCOLATE CLOWN CORPSE. I can’t think of a sweeter way to spend the day.

Both of these great titles are 
available for pre-order

Release date: 
November 3, 2015


As always, please leave a comment and 
let me know what you think!

Follow my blog by 
clicking on the link in the 
upper right hand corner of this page.

Friday, October 30, 2015


It's
Cozy Food Friday!

That means it's time to share a recipe from 
another great cozy mystery!

Today I'm featuring a recipe from
FLIPPED FOR MURDER
Book 1 in the Country Store Mystery series
by
Maddie Day


In this freshly baked series, author Maddie Day lifts the lid on a small town in southern Indiana, where a newcomer is cooking up a new start--until a murderer muddles the recipe...

Nursing a broken heart, Robbie Jordan is trading in her life on the West Coast for the rolling hills of southern Indiana. After paying a visit to her Aunt Adele, she fell in love with the tiny town of South Lick. And when she spots a For Sale sign on a rundown country store, she decides to snap it up and put her skills as a cook and a carpenter to use. Everyone in town shows up for the grand re-opening of Pans ‘n Pancakes, but when the mayor's disagreeable assistant is found dead, Robbie realizes that not all press is good press. With all eyes on her, she'll have to summon her puzzle-solving skills to clear her name, unscramble the town's darkest secrets, and track down a cold-blooded killer--before she's the next to die...

MY REVIEW


FLIPPED FOR MURDER, book one in the Country Store Mystery series by Maddie Day was everything I hoped it would be and more! This delicious new mystery won me on page one. The rest of the story was a full course meal that left me happily satiated.

I adored lead character, Robbie Jordan right away. Her character is filled with kindness, enthusiasm, and determination. She was a joy to read and get to know. I look forward to spending more time with her in future installments. The entire supporting cast of characters were a delight. Multi-layered, real, and some of them, just plain fun!

FLIPPED FOR MURDER is a first rate mystery with a wonderfully imagined plot. Author Maddie Day kept this story going at an excellent fast pace, with edge of your seat, page turning writing that held me entranced. Truly a tasty whodunit with a menu packed full of suspects. I chewed on the possible outcome, drinking it all in right up until the shocking reveal!

If you’re limited to the amount of new series you can start, you must add FLIPPED FOR MURDER to your list. It is by far one of the best cozy mysteries I’ve read this year!

Check out the back of the book for mouth-watering recipes, and an excerpt of book two, GRILLED FOR MURDER!

And now for a yummy recipe!

CHEESY BISCUITS


(With thanks to The Tassajara Bread Book for inspiration) 

Ingredients 

1 cup wheat flour, plus extra for kneading 
1 cup unbleached white flour 
1 tablespoon baking soda 
½ teaspoon salt 
½ cup butter, cut in half-inch cubes 
2 eggs 
½ cup milk 
1 cup grated pepper jack or sharp cheddar cheese


Directions 

Preheat oven at 450 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Mix dry ingredients. 

Cut butter into the flower mix, until mostly pea-sized pieces. Make a well in the middle and add the eggs and milk, mixing with a fork in the well. Add cheese and stir all with a fork, until liquid and cheese are just blended with the flour.  Do not overmix. 

Sprinkle some flour on a flat surface and on the dough. Scrape the dough out of the bowl onto the surface, rubbing flour around the inside of the bowl until clean. 

Lightly knead the dough until it comes together. 

Flour a rolling pin. Roll the dough to a half-inch thickness. Fold in thirds. Roll, fold, and repeat several time. 


Cut with a 2-inch biscuit cutter or drinking glass and position on a baking sheet. You don't need more than an inch in between. 

Bake for about ten minutes or until risen and golden brown on top. 

Serve warm with miso (vegan) or meat gravy, apple butter, or honey. 

(Food photos are from Google Images. Your finished product may vary in appearance.)

I don't know about you, but biscuits are one of my favorite foods. I never turn one down. And goodness, these sure do sound tasty!

Please keep reading and check out my 
installments of 
Book Beginnings on Fridays
and
The Friday 56

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

My Book Beginnings and Friday 56
 for this week are also from
FLIPPED FOR MURDER



Book Beginnings on Fridays is a meme hosted by Rose City Reader
Share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading

My Book Beginnings...

My heart beat something fierce as the bell on the door jangled. It was make-or-break time. I'd been preparing for this day for weeks. I thought I was ready, but if I slipped up, I'd be in major hot water, or financial ruin, 
as the case may be. 

The Friday 56 is a meme hosted by Freda's Voice
Rules: *Grab a book, any book. *Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader (If you have to improvise, that's okay.) *Find any sentence, (or few, just don't spoil it) that grab you. *Post it.

My Friday 56...

I stood for a moment with my back to the door. 
Something felt out of place. 


Maddie Day



Thursday, October 29, 2015


REST YE MURDERED GENTLEMEN by Vicki Delany 
PLOT BOILER by Ali Brandon

REST YE MURDERED GENTLEMEN 
Book 1 in the Year-Round Christmas Mystery series 
by Vicki Delany


FIRST IN A NEW SERIES!

In Rudolph, New York, it’s Christmastime all year long. But this December, while the snow-lined streets seem merry and bright, a murder is about to ruin everyone’s holiday cheer…


As the owner of Mrs. Claus’s Treasures, Merry Wilkinson knows how to decorate homes for the holidays. That’s why she thinks her float in the semi-annual Santa Claus parade is a shoe-in for best in show. But when the tractor pulling Merry’s float is sabotaged, she has to face facts: there’s a Scrooge in Christmas Town.

Merry isn’t ready to point fingers, especially with a journalist in town writing a puff piece about Rudolph’s Christmas spirit. But when she stumbles upon the reporter’s body on a late night dog walk—and police suspect he was poisoned by a gingerbread cookie crafted by her best friend, Vicky—Merry will have to put down the jingle bells and figure out who’s really been grinching about town, before Vicky ends up on Santa’s naughty list…

MY REVIEW


A year round Christmas mystery? Yes, please!

Christmas is my favorite holiday, so to say I’ve been looking forward to author Vicki Delany’s new, Year-Round Christmas Mystery series would be an understatement. And Ms. Delany is off to a strong start with REST YE MURDERED GENTLEMEN.

The town of Rudolph, New York, also known as Christmas Town, seems like such a magical please. Well, if you don’t count murder. Lead character, Merry Wilkinson is fun and scrappy, which leads to some truly hysterical situations. All the characters in this book are very well written, as is the extremely well plotted mystery itself.

This was a real page turner, full of intrigue, action and fun. There were as many twists and turns as twinkle lights on a Christmas tree. I was guessing right up until the exciting reveal and still got it wrong! 

REST YE MURDERED GENTELMEN is a yuletide treat that readers are sure to enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

PLOT BOILER 
Book 5 in the Black Cat Bookshop Mystery series 
by Ali Brandon 


The New York Times bestselling author of Literally Murder returns to Pettistone’s Fine Books, where the silence of Hamlet the cat speaks volumes about two mysterious deaths…

It’s almost Fourth of July, and to boost customer traffic in their Brooklyn neighborhood, bookseller Darla Pettistone decides to throw a block party. All the local shop owners are thrilled—except the proprietor of Perky’s Coffee Shop, who thinks Darla is trying to poach his customers by selling her own caffeinated brew in her new bookshop café.

But when Hamlet comes upon the owner’s not-so-perky wife, it’s clear a killer has crashed the party. And when a second local business owner shuffles off this mortal coil—as Hamlet’s namesake would say—Darla and her curious cat must perform some fancy footwork to shine a spotlight on a secret worth killing for… 

MY REVIEW


PLOT BOILER is an example of how a series can get better and better with each installment.

I’ll admit that the first Black Cat mystery, DOUBLE BOOKED FOR DEATH, was not my favorite book. Therefore I wondered if I’d ever care for the series. Author Ali Brandon has really grown this series into a solid one.  I just love the addition of the coffee bar to the bookstore. It’s exactly what was needed. PLOT BOILER is the best installment to date.

Ms. Brandon keeps the action going in this story with not one, but multiple deaths. The story is fast paced and wonderfully plotted. A whodunit that will kept me guessing, and a finale that I never saw coming.

I’m looking forward to the next tome author Brandon has brewing for us!

Both of these great titles are available for pre-order

Release date: 
November 3, 2015


As always, please leave a comment and 
let me know what you think!

Follow my blog by 
clicking on the link in the 
upper right hand corner of this page.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015


FLIPPED FOR MURDER by Maddie Day 
PANE AND SUFFERING by Cheryl Hollon

FLIPPED FOR MURDER 
Book 1 in the Country Store Mystery series 
by Maddie Day


In this freshly baked series, author Maddie Day lifts the lid on a small town in southern Indiana, where a newcomer is cooking up a new start--until a murderer muddles the recipe...

Nursing a broken heart, Robbie Jordan is trading in her life on the West Coast for the rolling hills of southern Indiana. After paying a visit to her Aunt Adele, she fell in love with the tiny town of South Lick. And when she spots a For Sale sign on a rundown country store, she decides to snap it up and put her skills as a cook and a carpenter to use. Everyone in town shows up for the grand re-opening of Pans ‘n Pancakes, but when the mayor's disagreeable assistant is found dead, Robbie realizes that not all press is good press. With all eyes on her, she'll have to summon her puzzle-solving skills to clear her name, unscramble the town's darkest secrets, and track down a cold-blooded killer--before she's the next to die...

MY REVIEW


FLIPPED FOR MURDER, book one in the Country Store Mystery series by Maddie Day was everything I hoped it would be and more! This delicious new mystery won me on page one. The rest of the story was a full course meal that left me happily satiated.

I adored lead character, Robbie Jordan right away. Her character is filled with kindness, enthusiasm, and determination. She was a joy to read and get to know. I look forward to spending more time with her in future installments. The entire supporting cast of characters were a delight. Multi-layered, real, and some of them, just plain fun!

FLIPPED FOR MURDER is a first rate mystery with a wonderfully imagined plot. Author Maddie Day kept this story going at an excellent fast pace, with edge of your seat, page turning writing that held me entranced. Truly a tasty whodunit with a menu packed full of suspects. I chewed on the possible outcome, drinking it all in right up until the shocking reveal!

If you’re limited to the amount of new series you can start, you must add FLIPPED FOR MURDER to your list. It is by far one of the best coxy mysteries I’ve read this year!

Check out the back of the book for mouth-watering recipes, and an excerpt of book two, GRILLED FOR MURDER!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

PANE AND SUFFERING 
Book 1 in the Webb's Glass Shop Mystery series 
by Cheryl Hollon



To solve her father's murder and save the family-owned glass shop, Savannah Webb must shatter a killer's carefully constructed façade. . .

After Savannah's father dies unexpectedly of a heart attack, she drops everything to return home to St. Petersburg, Florida, to settle his affairs--including the fate of the beloved, family-owned glass shop. Savannah intends to hand over ownership to her father's trusted assistant and fellow glass expert, Hugh Trevor, but soon discovers the master craftsman also dead of an apparent heart attack. 

As if the coincidence of the two deaths wasn't suspicious enough, Savannah discovers a note her father left for her in his shop, warning her that she is in danger. With the local police unconvinced, it's up to Savannah to piece together the encoded clues left behind by her father. And when her father's apprentice is accused of the murders, Savannah is more desperate than ever to crack the case before the killer seizes a window of opportunity to cut her out of the picture. . .

MY REVIEW




I can assure I endured no pain and suffering while reading this brilliantly crafted mystery by author Cheryl Hollon.

One of the things I adore about cozy mysteries is learning about different crafts and professions featured and taught to us by the characters within. PANE AND SUFFERING starts with a stained glass class. I was so fascinated with the information being relayed by protagonist Savannah Webb, I forgot for a moment that I was reading a mystery. But author Hollon cured that real quickly with the arrival of a body.

As intricately crafted as a stained glass window, this first book in the Webb’s Glass Shop Mystery series is a wonderful story with an intriguing plot filled with action and mystery. The investigation into not one, but two deaths, is wonderfully penned by the author. She had me second guessing myself more than once!

With a beautiful setting, a great cast of characters, and an entertaining storyline, Ms. Hollon has a masterpiece on her hands. I eagerly look forward to the next installment!

Make sure to check out the back of the book for a glossary of stained glass terms, and information on stained glass instruction. 

Both of these great titles 
are now available!


As always, please leave a comment and 
let me know what you think!

Follow my blog by 
clicking on the link in the 
upper right hand corner of this page.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015


CROWNED AND MOLDERING by Kate Carlisle 
WHITE COLANDER CRIME by Victoria Hamilton

CROWNED AND MOLDERING
Book 3 in the Fixer-Upper Mystery series 
by Kate Carlisle 


In the New York Times bestselling Fixer-Upper mysteries, contractor Shannon Hammer can repair even the most distressed building. But clearing out the cobwebs from her current project may distress her… to death.

When Mac Sullivan—famous thriller writer and Shannon’s new beau—first moved to Lighthouse Cove, California, he bought the historic lighthouse mansion that the town is named after. Mac needs help cleaning up the place, and Shannon is more than happy to get her handywoman hands on the run-down Victorian.

But during demolition, a grisly discovery is made among the debris—the bones of a teenage girl who went missing fifteen years ago. Locals had always assumed Lily Brogan ran away from her difficult life, but it seems her troubles followed her to the grave. If Shannon has any chance of getting her renovation back on track, she’ll need to tackle the cold case. But with new suspects coming out of the woodwork every day, she’ll have to be careful to pry the right secrets and clues from the poor girl’s problematic past…

MY REVIEW


Cozy mysteries seem to get a bad reputation at times for not being “real books”. Anyone who has read a book by author Kate Carlisle will tell you, that’s an extremely false statement. Ms. Carlisle is a talented writer and I’m grateful every time I read a new cozy by her. And I’m thankful she shares that talent through the cozy genre.

The Fixer-Upper Mystery series is a fun, creative series that makes me wish I had the talent in my body that protagonist Shannon Hammer has in her little finger.

CROWNED AND MOLDERING is my favorite story in this series so far. With an exciting plot, combined with mystery and wit, author Carlisle has penned an edge of your seat, don’t want to put it down story that will really draw readers in and have them working hard at hammering out the answers. With more twists than a spiral staircase, I never did nail whodunit.

If you haven’t read anything by Kate Carlisle before, start building your collection with CROWNED AND MOLDERING, and the make additions with the rest of the Fixer-Upper series.

Don’t miss the excerpt in the back of the book from, BOOKS OF A FEATHER, the June 2016 release in Kate Carlisle’s Bibliophile Mystery series! 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

WHITE COLANDER CRIME
Book 5 in the Vintage Kitchen Mystery series 
by Victoria Hamilton


In the new Vintage Kitchen Mystery from the author of No Mallets Intended, the Heritage Society is re-creating a perfect Victorian Christmas—until good tidings go bad...
 
Queensville has great expectations for their Dickens Days festival. A tourist-trade boon boom means a big turnout for the opening of Queensville Historic Manor and for Jaymie Leighton, food columnist and vintage cookware collector, a chance to promote the manor and give away homemade goodies.  At the end of a long day of festival fun, Jaymie discovers the battered body of local woman Shelby Fretter.

Shelby predicted her own murder in journal entries—and all clues point to Cody Wainwright, the troubled son of Jaymie’s beleaguered newspaper editor. But considering the entire Fretter family had its share of dirty secrets, Jaymie’s not convinced  by the case against Cody. With twists all over, she’s going to have to work like the Dickens to wrap up this investigation before Christmas—especially with the real killer ready to kill again.
 
INCLUDES RECIPES!

MY REVIEW


Author Victoria Hamilton write wonderful series both under this name and Amanda Cooper. While I love each and every one of them, the Vintage Kitchen Mystery series is my very favorite. And WHITE COLANDER CRIME is a perfect example of why.

I connected with character Jamie Leighton in the first book of this series, A DEADLY GRIND. I liked her immediately from page one of that book, and my fondness for her and her vintage way just continues to grow.

WHITE COLANDER CRIME is a delightful addition to this wonderful collection of books. This story showcases Ms. Hamilton’s talent as an author and her inspiring skill of creating a story that draws the reader in and holds them transfixed until the last page is turned. I know I for one could not put this book down until the exciting reveal and the heartwarming ending.

Do yourself a favor and add WHITE COLANDER CRIME to your TBR list. If you haven’t read this series, you can start with this one and not feel too lost, but don’t cheat yourself out of reading the entire series to date. You’re going to love it!

Make sure to check out the back of the book for a traditional Christmas recipe!

Both of these great titles are available for pre-order

Release date: 
November 3, 2015


As always, please leave a comment and 
let me know what you think!

Follow my blog by 
clicking on the link in the 
upper right hand corner of this page.