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VALENTINES DAY SCAVENGER HUNT

Karen and Norm danced the Jive and neither are the killer.

CLUE #4

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You have your clue from me, now where and when can you find other clues? Here are the blogs and the days they will post clues. I hope you are a good sleuth…

9-Book Babble – https://www.facebook.com/teresasbookbabble/?

9-Booth Talks Books – https://www.facebook.com/BoothTalksBooks/?

10-Chatting About Cozies – https://www.facebook.com/chatcozy/?

10-Christy’s Cozy Corners – https://www.facebook.com/ChristysCozyCorners/?

11-Cinnamon, Sugar, and a Little Bit of Murder – https://www.facebook.com/Cinnamon-Sugar-and-a-Little-Bit-of-Murder-187400864778608/?

11-Bibliophile Reviews – https://www.facebook.com/BibliophileReviews/?

12-MJB Reviewers – https://www.facebook.com/MJB-Reviewers-674225486045646/?

12-Lisa Ks Book Reviews – https://www.facebook.com/lisaksbookreview/?

13-Girl With Book Lungs – https://www.facebook.com/girlwithbooklungs/?

13-A Cup Of Tea and a Cozy Mystery – https://www.facebook.com/acupofteaandacozymystery/?

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Valentine’s Day Scavenger Hunt

If you read this blog, then you love mysteries and solving them along with the various characters that are so brilliantly woven throughout the many books that I blog about.  Kathi Daley is hosting a Valentine’s Day Scavenger Hunt and someone has been murdered!  It is up to you, the readers, to solve the mystery this time.  And, the prizes are fantastic. 

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Find all the clues which will be listed on the Facebook pages listed above and figure out who the killer is, who the victim is, and which type of dance they were participating in when the murder occurred.

How does one survive this?  Well, Kathi has written a handy guide right here.  Make sure to read and study it before the dance.  It might be the only thing that keeps you alive…

One grand prize winner will receive a $50 Amazon gift card and 5 second place winners will receive their choice of Kathi Daley ebook.

The clues will be provided February 8 – 13 and the winner will be announced on February 14. The rules and links to the clues will be posted on my main author page on February 7 at https://www.facebook.com/kathidaleybooks/ 

Kathi Daley Book GIVEAWAY

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Thanks for joining Booth Talks books as we celebrate the release of Kathi Daley‘s 7th Whales and Tails Mystery, “A Tale of Two Tabbies.”

Grab your favorite drink, enter the contest, and while, you’re at it, why not order a copy for a friend or relative?  Nothing is more cozy than cats, a book and a murder!

 

In the 7th book in the series, Cait finds a cat locked in the confessional at Saint Patrick’s Catholic Church, which leads to the discovery of a body locked in the trunk of a car. Cody is dealing with a life changing decision of his own, and Finn has multiple crimes to deal with, so Cait enlists Tara’s help to track down a killer.

CLICK for a chance to win, “A Tale of Two Tabbies.

Or…Order a copy NOW!

Shards of Murder by Cheryl Hollon (Review)

 

12705216_238955896436873_7007483064192358888_nSavannah Webb has just inherited Webb’s Glass Shop after the death of her father, the pioneer and founder. This unfortunate twist of his death, assisting to solve his murder and new role as a shop owner takes her away from the dream of becoming a care-free glass artist and holds her down to the small town she has always known. Not exactly the way she had seen her life heading. As her former teacher, Keith Irvin states, “The transition from student to master requires tremendous personal growth.” Savannah does so much of that and more in “Shards of Murder.”

We encounter Savannah as she is coping with her recent loss and beginning to get the shop settled. To aid her, she hires several high-spirited workers to make the transition easier; Amanda Blake and her father’s former apprentice, Jacob Underwood. She starts to understand how tough it is to manage a studio business. In addition, she finds out more about her father’s life in the community when she is requested as the new glass judge at the Spinnaker Art Festival, taking her father’s place.

Savannah’s days leading up to the festival are busy with situating the schedules and agenda for glass making classes and meeting the new students. On the day of the festival, she explores exhibits, ready to score the pieces, but is floored by one particular piece, a ruby red glass dress by glass artist Megan Loyola. Upon meeting Megan, she is spoken to hostilely and is told that she is driven by unbridled passion to make her pieces. She then abruptly storms off, leaving Savannah actually wanting to know more about Megan and fascinated.

I love the descriptions given about the glass piece of Megan’s. Noting being a glass artist or a person who is around many pieces of glass art, I could truly understand the intensity in the piece. I love the way Cheryl gives life to the art though her choice of words in this section.

We get to meet others in Savannah’s life; most important I believe is Rooney, who had been her father’s dog. We get to spend time with Savannah and Rooney in agility practice and on walks, getting to see a side of the character we could only see with this hyper pet. I enjoyed these sections she spends with the Rooney as through his training and learning discipline, she is learning to work though and understand her own feeling pertaining to her dad’s death; a disciplining of her emotions and learning to heal.

Savannah chooses the winner of the glass competition, Megan, but she is nowhere to be found. Megan’s entire exhibition at the art show has been packed up. After the presentations, Savannah starts probing around the show and then calling but Megan is not to be found.

It’s not until the next day that we begin to understand why Megan did not claim her prize at the art show. On Savannah and Rooney’s morning walk, they find her body floating in the river. Savannah calls the police as she holds on to the bobbing corpse of the girl. When they arrive, and unfortunate turn of events sends the body back into the water where it is lost until authorities find it later that day. Savannah is put at the top of the murder suspect list and a story of twisted intent, scorned love and jealousy start from there. But, even with classes, an upcoming dog show and being the number one suspect, Savannah, along with her employees are on the track of this ruthless killer to clear her name and keep Webb’s Glass’ reputation streak free.

This book was full of beautiful descriptions. During the classroom scenes, I felt like I was actually learning along with the students to the point of where I now want to find a fused glass studio and give it a go myself.

Cheryl not only made me feel like part of the crime-solving posse, but also introduced me

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to two thinks I have never been a part of before. Those being, glass art and dog agility training. Anyone can write about a dead body, but it takes a special gift of writing to be able to get a reader to actually want to participate in something in the real world outside of the book. Kudos!

Shards of Murder” is a fun cozy, mystery that the reader will enjoy for not only the murder but for the characters, the family feel of non-relation family and how well the whole piece works together to become one fantastic book. If only all friends were like “The Posse.”

 

Order, “Shards Of Murder” on Amazon!

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 I was sent this book in exchange for a fair review

Shh… don’t tell the cat! The Ninth Life by Clea Simon

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I am so excited to have author,  Clea Simon as a guest blogger here today at Booth Talks Books.  I was thrilled to be able to chat along with Clea after I received the book to read and as I journeyed through the dark world of Blackie and Care.  Before I tell you what I thought about “The Ninth Life”, Clea has some fun information that led up to the formation of Blackie.


 

Don’t tell Blackie. He’s the narrator of my new “The Ninth Life” mystery, the first in a new series for me. But for a few hours there, it was all about the squirrel.

I should explain. I have a complicated history with squirrels. Unlike my (real-life) kitty lg_26172-ARMusetta, I generally think they’re cute. While she sits by the window, muttering and lashing her tail and generally having homicidal (squirrel-cidal?) fantasies, I like seeing their fat white bellies when they sit up to eat and their bright eyes as they run up and down the trees in my yard. But when I find my bulbs dug up in the fall – and the heads bitten off my tulips in spring? Then they’re not so cute. And the one summer I tried to grow eggplant and each time one grew to be almost ready … and then I’d find it on the patio table with one bite taken out of it? I was almost ready to side with Musetta then!

But that all changed when I went for my new author photo. Now, you have to understand, author photos are challenging – probably for all of us. We’re writers, not movie stars, and we spend most of our days living more in our heads than on treadmills or in malls. So when it comes time to be photographed, well, let’s just say that the reality doesn’t often match up with the fantasy. And while maybe some authors can pay for the full-bore glamour treatment, the rest of us are just hoping that makeup (a lot) and lighting (a little) will produce something that will make us recognizable at conferences but won’t scare small children.

“Make me look friendly,” I told my photographer friend Naomi. “If you can also make me not too baggy and saggy, that would be great.”

“You are friendly,” she replied. “And don’t worry about the rest.” That wasn’t quite the encouragement I had hoped for.

But the real problem came when she started shooting. “Look over here,” she’d tell me – pointing to some distant spot. “Then move your eyes back to the camera.”

Well, I’m not the most coordinated person in the first place (I’m a writer, right? Not a pro athlete). Also, to make a portrait that would be timeless – or at least be good for a few years – Naomi had insisted that I take my glasses off. The glasses that I put on my nightstand last thing at night and grab for first thing in the morning. The latest version of what I’ve been wearing since third grade….

You can see where this is heading. Between my inability to see and my inability to follow directions, I was looking at the camera and moving my eyes away, or staring off at some vague movement – one of Naomi’s two cats? – when I should have been focusing in.

And then Naomi had a brainstorm. “Be right back,” she said, leaving me in her studio blinded by the million degree lights and the lack of my glasses. “Here,” she said, a minute later, and held out to me a fluffy plush squirrel – fake, of course – but with the same bright eyes as the little fellows in my yard. “You can see him, right?”

“Yes,” I confirmed. I could. And from then on, it was “Squirrel!!” “Look at the squirrel!” “Oh my, it’s a squirrel!”

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The Ninth Life by Clea Simon

It worked. Which makes sense, when you think about it. As any readers of my books probably know by now, I relate more to animals than I do to most people. After all, there’s a reason why a cat narrates my latest mystery. Once Naomi brought the squirrel into it, not only was I laughing, but I moved as she wanted me to, looking where and when I was supposed to. And if the photos aren’t beautiful, they are honestly relaxed and happy. Musetta, I think, would be proud.


Review of “The Ninth Life” by Booth Talks Books

We know nothing of Blackie when we meet him and when we meet Care, the ragged, pink-haired street rat that soon becomes his favored companion. His memory picks up from where she picks him up and their adventure seems to begin there. Blackie feels an unusual connection with this Care girl and chalks it up to the fact that she saved him from what he can only remember as three foggy shadows of what he assumes are men from their shapes.

 

Through Blackie, his eyes, his observations, his smells and cat-senses we get a look at the world in a different way. We go on a journey with his newfound companions to find out who murdered her former friend and father-like figure whom she refers to as “The Old Man.” Through this journey we are introduced to a boy, Tick, who used to share a foster home with her and who also is now on the street. He, a younger brother-like figure to Care.  Only, this boy is tied up in the world of drug smuggling, and other illegal trades, unable to shake their hold. Having escaped this life, Care had been taken under the wing of The Old Man and learned how to become a detective of sorts, taking down men such as those who Tick was now working for. Only a young boy, Care hopes to save him from this life of crime and need for drugs that are now becoming a life-style. Being a cat, Blackie has a heightened sense of smell, location and knowledge of people. He doesn’t know how, but he just seems to know what to do, how to go about it and that this girl, this Care has been well-trained and that he must stick with her and help her as best he can. Again, you become aware of how human-like Blackie is in his way of dealing with issues. Even though the people around him can’t hear his thoughts, we as readers are treated to his genius schemes and insights all through the book. If all cats think like this, I will never look at another cat the same again.

 

As “The Ninth Life” progresses, Care and Tick come in and out of each others lives and danger envelopes them both many times. Blackie is able to help them with various warnings and even searching out places beforehand. By the end, we are invested in the characters. I, for one, wanted Care to triumph in her journey and accomplish what she had been trying to do through the entire book. I also wanted Blackie to figure out the dream that continued to haunt him; the dream of the three shadow men.  Care is a brilliant sleuth with Blackie. A most shocking reveal is made at the end that changes all you think about Blackie and the future of Care. The second book cannot come soon enough.

Clea Simon has twisted my brain with this book.  I have been taken to the dark, damp underbelly of a drug infested, money greedy, mob-like world.  My tour-guide, a cat.  Normally, this would sound silly to me, but Blackie is amazing.  Anyone else telling the story would be all wrong.  We would know nothing like we know had she written in a different narrator.  My mind is blown by this angle and I love it.  Brilliant Clea, just brilliant.

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 Want to win your own hard-cover copy of Blackie and Care’s first meeting and find out what happens?  Believe me, you DO! Click below to be entered in the Rafflecopter giveaway!

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Review: Murder On Wheels by Lynn Cahoon

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This book is a one in a series of many.  I was in love with the cover and the premise of it. A murder, a squabble over a food truck, geocaching and a café; how in the world can all that work in one book?  Honestly, I was skeptical at first.  I thought it would be flying all over the place with too many themes and too many settings.  Thank goodness she did.  This made for well-rounded characters with not only jobs but hobbies, friends and acquaintances.  Yes, they actually had believable lives.  They could have been my group of friends I hung out with.

 

I loved the fact that Jill, the main character, got into believable relationships and believable arguments along the way of solving a murder. I haven’t read any of the other books in the “Tourist Trap Mystery” series and I got to know her and her boyfriend and friends just fine. This is always a good thing for me, as I don’t always have a chance to read an entire series.

 

Jill is pulled into many directions on many different occasions. There is the issue with her Aunt Jackie, the murder case her boyfriend is working on as well as the scuffle that occurs with her best friend.   I love to see how a character handles different situations. She isn’t hyper-focused on this death that occurs. It’s a tragedy that has happened that she wants to solve, but it doesn’t consume her unrealistically. It’s a nice balance.

 

Lynn takes us through different scenarios with Jill, Greg, Amy, the Geocache Club friends as well as the co-workers at the shop Jill owns and her dog, Emma. You see how each interact with each other over the death of Kacey and it’s at that point when you realize that any of Jill’s friends could have committed the murder. Each character also develops in their own way.  You see them come into their own right before your eyes.  It isn’t until the very end, a very surprising end mind you, that you finally find out who the murderer is. It was a great way to find out who the culprit was too. I loved the reveal!

 

This is an easy read for someone who wants a mystery to solve over the weekend. Lynn’s descriptions and writing making reading a breeze and keep the reader engaged. And, not having to have to have read the previous books, one can jump right in to this particular book.

Order “Murder On Wheels”

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I was sent this book in exchange for a fair review.

Murder On Wheels by Lynn Cahoon

Lynn is one of the most delightful authors you could ever talk to virtually. I have never met her in person, but her personality shines through in her correspondence.  This is a big deal for me as a reader.  I love, love, LOVE authors who are real people with their readers and that is Lynn through and through.

Before we get to the review of her newest book, Murder on Wheels, let’s get to know a little about Lynn.  I for one, wanted to know what got her up and going, full of inspiration every morning.

“I owe, I owe… the whole American Dream catch 22. I’m currently working a day job and writing so any time I have, I try to squeak out a few words or a blog post.  When I’m writing, it’s a matter of keeping myself in the story so I stay involved. I’m writing the beginnings of a different series now, and last night, a new character just drove onto the set, introducing himself. Not sure what’s going on with him yet, but he feels a little

creepy.”

 

Writers become writers…when?  Lynn considered herself a writer from the beginning.

“I’ve always considered myself a writer. I started writing essays and getting paid for them in 2007, the year of cancer. I had several stories in my head, knew where I wanted to send them, and once I sent them off, I sold all three ideas. I want to be able to do the same thing with my fiction writing sooner, than later. I have a plan to be a full time writer/author in 2017. I’m hoping I’ll be able to reach that goal date.”

Okay, now, let’s talk about “Murder on Wheels.”  This book is a one in a series of many.  I was in love with the cover and the premise of it. A murder, a squabble over a food truck, geocaching and a cafe.  How in the world can all that work in one book?  Honestly, I was skeptical at first.  I thought it would be flying all over the place with too many themes and too many settings.  Thank goodness she did.  This made for well-rounded characters with not only jobs but hobbies, friends and acquaintances.  Yes, they actually had believable lives.  They could have been my group of friends I hung out with.  So, what was her inspiration for this group of people in South Cove?

“Murder on Wheels” is the sixth book in the Tourist Trap Mysteries. I always leave a hanging thread or a clue at the end of the book before, reminding me what I want the next book to be about. My first idea was something to do with the food truck. I think Jill was actually kind of glad they didn’t get to purchase it at the end of Killer Run. Running a food truck and a business is a lot of work. And Jill’s figuring out she needs a little more background into the business side of her coffee shop/book store. So she’s on a mission to go back to school and get that MBA. Which I think will be fun to play with in book #8 and onward.”

And I guess we aren’t the only ones who think these people in the books are real.  Lynn writes the books as a form of visiting them.  I love that!

“Mostly, I write the Tourist Trap series because I want to find out what’s going on in my imaginary friends lives. And as I’m sitting here thinking about #8, I can see the opening scene…”

Not only does she visit the characters by writing about them, but apparently, she went geocaching with Jill and the gang in the latest book as she was writing it.

Murder on Wheels”actually had a lot of hands on research, not travel exactly, but we did a little geocaching before I wrote the book. Let’s just say I was the one to find the first cache and the first snake in real life. I did research local parks in the South Cove area that the Coastal California Geocache club would use. That was computer based research.”

One of the biggest elements (besides the dead beauty) in the book is the exploration of Jill bringing gluten-free products into the shop. This was a real-life situation she brought into the story because of a chance meeting that turned to friendship.

“I met one of my best friends during the writing. She’s gluten free, so I was able to use her expertise in the diet restrictions to learn more about Kacey and why she would make those changes in her meal plans.”

Questions surround weather Kacey was murdered for recipes, the food truck she was fixing up or because she found out about a dark secret about someone close to her or something completely different.  Let us know, however, that Jill is keeping it all writing down.  I love her.  She kept cracking me up at her cheekiness.  I honestly had no idea until the end.  And oh boy, is the ending good.  It comes to show that sometimes you just don’t know what crazy things people will do.  When you read it, look at everything as a clue. Lynn is a sneaky writer.

Surprising, it only took Lynn three months to write “Murder on Wheels” which is mind-blowing due to the detail.  I wondered if this was a normal time span.

“Yes, I’d say two to three months. It depends on what else is going on in my life that keeps me from getting my daily words in. But I love writing and returning to South Cove, so it’s not hard to get me involved in the stories.”

I would like to thank Lynn for taking the time to talk with Booth Talks Books and talking about Murder on Wheels.  What an amazing book!  What else has Ms. Cahoon got coming up you ask?

“Thank you so much for having me over and enjoying the Tourist Trap series. I’m launching a new series in September, The Cat Latimer series. Set in Aspen Hills, CO, a small college town, my heroine runs a writer’s retreat in an old house her ex husband left her when he died unexpectedly.  A STORY TO KILL starts Cat out, back in her home town and the house she never thought she’d step foot in again. Cat and crew are up next in my writing schedule and I’m loving being able to write winter in Colorado.”

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 Oh look….a giveaway link is below!  How fun.  You should click it.

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 Recieved book in return for a fair review..