Load Up (Lark Davis Mysteries) by Annabelle Hunter
Load Up has the best murder victim ever! Who hasn’t wanted to kill their HOA President? And Gerald is worse than most. The only person he recently argued with is single mother Lark Davis over the spacing of her fairy garden from her house. Lark is just beginning a relationship with hunky Detective Bracken Wilson when both the murder investigation and their relationship start moving at light speed.
Load Up is a humorous cozy mystery with a lot of romance, gossip, and motives floating around the neighborhood. And what a neighborhood it is! The local coffee shop is owned by a successful drag queen who is totally beloved by Lark’s seven-year-old daughter, Hailey. There is a town blog that seems to know what has occurred before even the people involved have processed the events. The romance between ditzy Lark and the Detective is slow-moving and sweet. The swearing is kept to a minimum with Snickerdoodles and Fudge substituting in for the real words. This book would be great for young teens and up. Overall, Load Up is a great fun-filled way to spend a lazy afternoon and is highly recommended. 4 stars!
Thanks to the author for providing a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway below for a free copy of the book!
Too many suspects can be as bad as no suspects at all…
Lark Davis, horse trainer and reluctant amateur sleuth, is sure that her crime-solving days are behind her. At least that’s what she told her grandmother. However, when her Homeowners Association President and owner of the local hardware store is found dead the day after she had a public fight with him, Lark is back in the last place she wants to be — the middle of a murder case.
But this is Barrow Bay, and things are never as they seem. Gerald Pratchett had a list of enemies a mile long, and each one had a very real reason for wanting to see him gone. When the police get overwhelmed with too many suspects, including herself, Lark realizes that it is up to her to bring his killer to justice.
Nothing can stop Lark from finding out the truth — and getting her man.
About the Annabelle Hunter
Annabelle Hunter is a stay-at-home mom and an avid fan of classic mystery shows and dressage. She lives in Southern California with her husband, two children, and too many animals. Visit her Amazon Author Page here.
Death by Proxy: A DIY Diva Mystery by Paula Darnell
Pets and Cozies
Cozy mystery authors face a bit of a dilemma when writing their books because these novels have a completely different vibe than hard-boiled, noir, gory, or forensic-oriented mysteries do. Like other books in the mystery genre, the crime in a cozy is almost always a murder. (There are a few exceptions; recently I read a cozy that centered around a kidnapping, but that’s rare.) At the same time, the author has the task of creating a setting that feels homey and a protagonist whom readers like. Casting the main character as a pet parent as well as an amateur sleuth adds to the coziness in these books and can often provide a touch of humor, too.
Roles of dogs and cats in cozy mysteries include such over-the-top portrayals as paranormal pets and pets as story narrators. However, I suspect that many, if not most, of the pet characters that appear in cozy mysteries are based on their authors’ own pets. That’s certainly the case for my DIY Diva cozy mysteries, in which Bear, Laurel McMillan’s lovable chocolate Labrador retriever, is a member of the family. In Death by Proxy, Laurel’s boyfriend Wes even tells Bear that he will “always be part of our family,” right after the curious dog runs to the newly engaged couple while Wes is still on bended knee.
Bear’s been with Laurel right from the beginning of the DIY Diva series. In fact, the first words in the first book, Death by Association, were “Bear, no,” as Laurel held the eager Lab back from chasing a bunny as she took him for his daily walk. Bear acts like a real dog because he’s inspired by two of my own dogs: Teddy Bear, a yellow Labrador retriever and Rocky Boy, a Pyrador (half Lab and half Great Pyrenees). Bear’s daily walks, love of treats, dancing for dinner, nudging Laurel when she works too long at the computer, chasing the neighbor’s cat, guilt tripping her when she leaves him home alone, and many more canine antics all come from real life. Several readers have commented that Bear and his antics seem authentic and lifelike, which has been very gratifying to me.
Rocky Boymodeling a reversible dog scarf. Instructions for making the scarf appear in the first DIY Diva mystery Death by Association, which also includes four dog treat recipes and instructions for making a no-sew dog bed.
I’ve included a couple of extras for dog lovers in Death by Proxy, too: a tuna-rice dog treat recipe and project instructions for making a dog’s bow tie.
About Death by Proxy
Death by Proxy: A DIY Diva Mystery Cozy Mystery 3rd in Series Cozy Cat Press (November 2019) Print Length ~220 Pages
With preparations for her upcoming wedding to handsome Wes Wesson, a Center City police lieutenant, on track and her DIY Bridal Crafts class at Hawkeye Haven’s community center wrapped up, DIY Diva Laurel McMillan looks forward to a calm pre-nuptial week to finalize her wedding plans. There’s only one problem: the week turns out to be anything but calm. Laurel and Wes narrowly escape being run down in the parking lot of their favorite restaurant. Laurel’s bridal shower is interrupted by a mysterious stranger who sends Laurel’s lovable chocolate Labrador retriever Bear into a frenzy, and when Laurel and Wes go to meet Lisa, their real estate agent, at a house she promised to show them, they discover Lisa’s sister’s body floating in the pool. Strangely, Lisa seems more concerned with selling houses than she does with her sister’s death. After Lisa’s mother inadvertently reveals family secrets, Laurel wonders whether Lisa could have killed her own sister. Will the mayhem and murder stop before Laurel discovers the key to the killer’s game plan?
About Paula Darnell
An instructor at five colleges over the years, Paula Darnell most often taught the dreaded first-year English composition classes, but she’s also been happy to teach some fun classes, such as fashion design, sewing, and jewelry making. Paula has a Bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Iowa, Iowa City, and a Master’s degree in English from the University of Nevada, Reno.
Like Laurel, the main character in Death by Association, Paula enjoys all kinds of arts and crafts. Some of her memorable projects include making a hat and a cape to wear to Royal Ascot, sewing wedding gowns for both her daughters, exhibiting her textile and mixed-media artwork in juried art shows, and having one of her jewelry projects accepted for inclusion in Leather Jewelry, published by Lark Books. She sells some of her jewelry and hair accessories in her Etsy shop: www.etsy.com/shop/PaulaDJewelry.
Paula’s interest in DIY craft projects and fashion led to her writing hundreds of articles for print and online national publications.
Living in a guard-gated community governed by a homeowners’ association gave Paula the idea for the setting of Death byAssociation. She finds that residing in an HOA community can be both a blessing and a curse. A Happy-New-Year greeting from her community association called on residents to “start the new year by reviewing your Rules and Regulations booklet,” something unlikely to top anyone’s list of New Year’s resolutions.
Paula lives in Las Vegas, Nevada, with her husband Gary and their 110-pound dog Rocky, whose favorite pastime is lurking in the kitchen, hoping for a handout.
Death on the Danube: A New Year’s Murder in Budapest (Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery Series) by Jennifer S. Alderson
Lana is having a horrid decade. She is fired from her dream investigative journalist job after her confidential informant refuses to testify in the lawsuit against her paper. Her husband of nine years informs her that he is divorcing her by text. Her current kayak tour guide job hasn’t paid her in two months. So, there is really nothing holding her back from accepting her landlady Dotty’s tour guide job offer. Being a tour guide in exotic Budapest Hungary for six days in return for forgiveness of her two months of unpaid rent and credit for one month going forward? It’s almost time for the new year to begin so getting away from her problems in old-world Budapest sounds perfect.
Unfortunately, Lana’s tour group has the snobby Helen and her henpecked husband, Tom, for her to contend with. And what is the story between the other tour guide Carl and guest Jess? Dotty’s friend Sally has just announced her and Carl’s engagement so why does Carl look so unhappy? When Carl ends up dead and a guest is suspected by the police, Lana decides to use her investigative skills to uncover the real killer.
I love travel memoirs like Eat, Pray, Love so I snapped this book up. There are great descriptions of Budapest along with a character-driven cozy mystery within Death on the Danube. I enjoyed Lana’s determination to push past any obstacles in her way. Dotty’s Christmas dog sweaters make me want to crochet something creative for my dogs (I bought a couple online instead). Overall, I’m looking forward to the next in the Travel can be Murder series so I can revisit Dotty and Lana. 4 stars!
Thanks to the author and Great Escapes Book Tours for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
Don’t forget to enter the prize package giveaway below!
Who knew a New Year’s trip to Budapest could be so deadly? The tour must go on – even with a killer in their midst…
Recent divorcee Lana Hansen needs a break. Her luck has run sour for going on a decade, ever since she got fired from her favorite job as an investigative reporter. When her fresh start in Seattle doesn’t work out as planned, Lana ends up unemployed and penniless on Christmas Eve.
Dotty Thompson, her landlord and the owner of Wanderlust Tours, is also in a tight spot after one of her tour guides ends up in the hospital, leaving her a guide short on Christmas Day.
When Dotty offers her a job leading the tour group through Budapest, Hungary, Lana jumps at the chance. It’s the perfect way to ring in the new year and pay her rent!
What starts off as the adventure of a lifetime quickly turns into a nightmare when Carl, her fellow tour guide, is found floating in the Danube River. Was it murder or accidental death? Suspects abound when Lana discovers almost everyone on the tour had a bone to pick with Carl.
But Dotty insists the tour must go on, so Lana finds herself trapped with nine murder suspects. When another guest turns up dead, Lana has to figure out who the killer is before she too ends up floating in the Danube…
Introducing Lana Hansen, tour guide, reluctant amateur sleuth, and star of the Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery Series. Join Lana as she leads tourists and readers to fascinating cities around the globe on intriguing adventures that, unfortunately for Lana, often turn deadly.
Feel-good stories about friendship, travel, and celebrating new experiences. Coming soon: Books 2 and 3 in the Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery Series!
About Jennifer S. Alderson
Jennifer S. Alderson was born in San Francisco, raised in Seattle, and currently lives in Amsterdam. After traveling extensively around Asia, Oceania, and Central America, she moved to Darwin, Australia, before settling in the Netherlands. Her background in journalism, multimedia development, and art history enriches her novels. When not writing, she can be found in a museum, biking around Amsterdam, or enjoying a coffee along the canal while planning her next research trip.
Jennifer’s love of travel, art, and culture inspires her award-winning mystery series—the Zelda Richardson Mysteries and Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mysteries—and standalone stories.
In the Heart of Windy Pines Holly Tierney-Bedord
Publication date: November 24th 2019
Genres: Adult, Cozy Mystery
From the author of Kindle Unlimited All-Star winner Sweet Hollow Women comes a new novella featuring characters from Murder at Mistletoe Manor, Carnage at the Christmas Party, and The Port Elspeth Jewelry Making Club!
Klarinda Snow is the innkeeper of Mistletoe Manor in beautiful, remote, Windy Pines, Idaho, where she brings her unique brand of hospitality to the tiny mountain town.
When she finds her inn unexpectedly fully booked on a snowy Tuesday night in November, it brings back memories of a tragedy years before. Before she knows what hit her, she and her trusty team of employees (Myrtle, Pierre, and her new night manager, Josephine), have found themselves back at the task of solving another mystery at Mistletoe Manor!
While this book can be enjoyed as a stand-alone novella, if you plan to read the books in the Windy Pines Mystery series or The Port Elspeth Jewelry Making Club, it’s highly recommended you read those first, as this book contains spoilers that could affect your ability to enjoy them.
In all his life, the man in the Mercedes had never had a car break down on him. Plenty of other catastrophes had befallen him, but a failing automobile was a problem he had no experience with. Lately, however, his life had been full of firsts.
Just as the three-year-old Mercedes-Benz GLS he was driving began slowing and lurching like some old junker, a series of four small, weathered, peeling billboards, each lit up in the failing twilight by a single yellow bulb, came into view.
You’re just two miles from a good night’s sleep!
Stay with us at Mistletoe Manor!@Holly
Best dinner in town is at Mistletoe Manor!
Take your next right to Mistletoe Manor. Closed Mondays.
“It’s a… Tuesday!” he decided. Funny how the days ran together now that he was retired.
He put on his blinker and veered off the highway onto Pine Lookout Road. It was a narrow road and only the center of it had been plowed. It swooped down a bit and then rounded a corner, and then went up, up, up. It would have been plenty for any vehicle to take, but his malfunctioning automobile was hardly having it. It sputtered and lurched even more violently. A low guardrail and the chunks of snow and ice on the side of the road were all that separated him from the steeply cascading mountainside on his right. His hands gripped the steering wheel in white-knuckled fear, as he pressed the gas pedal to the floor.
“Come on, you can make it,” he told his vehicle, just as it shot ahead and began behaving normally again. “Thank you. You’ve got this,” he told it, in the same tone he’d used years ago when his kids were little and they were playing soccer or field hockey. “Good job, good job. Keep it up.”
Holly Tierney-Bedord is the author of over twenty novels and novellas including Kindle Unlimited All-Star winner Sweet Hollow Women. Her books feature quirky, flawed characters and the kind of crazy scenarios that could only happen to someone you probably know. Count on her stories to have unexpected twists and turns, dark secrets, and lots of laughs.
Holly is also an artist and miniaturist, creator of the mid-century dollhouse restoration blog flipthisminihouse.com, and the author of several non-fiction books about creating miniatures.
She lives in Madison, Wisconsin. When she’s not writing or decorating her real house or mini houses, she’s traveling. Visit her website at www.hollytierneybedord.com where you can connect to her blogs and subscribe to her newsletter.
Charleston Buzz Kill Tom Turner
(Nick Janzek Charleston Mysteries, #2)
Publication date: December 1st, 2019
Genres: Adult, Mystery
About the Book
When one of the stars of the boozy, risqué reality show, Charleston Buzz, takes a bullet to the head in mid-tryst, homicide cops Nick Janzek and Delvin Rhett swing into action. Within twenty-four hours they have five suspects…problem is all of them have solid alibis.
Meanwhile, across town, is that a clandestine brothel being run by the fat cats of Charleston?
And what’s with all those college girls hanging out there?
As new partners Janzek and Rhett stumble along looking for a break, it becomes clear that some of Charleston’s most prominent citizens are up to their eyeballs in it all.
Vermelle LeGare had one of the oldest, most prominent surnames in Charleston. Fact is, the nicest street in Charleston was LeGare Street—pronounced Le-gree, as in Simon. Close seconds being Tradd and Church Streets.
Vermelle, though, was black and poor, a fifth-generation cleaning lady. Her husband, Willie, had just dropped her off at the corner of Broad and Church—a ten-minute walk to the house on Stoll’s Alley where Vermelle was working that day. Willie’d dropped her there because he had a big roofing job that day and didn’t want to be late. Vermelle didn’t point out to Willie that his being on time would make her late for Mr. David.
Mr. David was David Wayne Marion, a rich, handsome fifty-year-old man. Vermelle knew just how rich he was because his net worth had been published in an article in the Post & Courier when he took an ill-fated run at becoming governor. Seventy-five million, mostly in real estate, she recalled.
After he lost in his bid to become governor, Mr. David veered off in a whole different direction and—of all crazy things—ended up becoming the star of a TV reality show. He had money, looks, and success, so fame was all that was left. But Vermelle had seen the show and… well, she intended to keep her opinion to herself.
She walked down Church Street and marveled once again at the beautiful houses on the street shaded by live oak trees with their wide, majestic canopies. Her favorite was a four-story brick Georgian with a dark mahogany door and antique glass fanlight above it. The house had graceful pediments above the windows and a perfectly proportioned wall to its right. On the second floor was a classic piazza where she imagined the husband and wife sipped their sloe-gin fizzes as soon as the clock struck five. Maybe earlier.
On the next block, she passed the garage door of an elegant Federalist-style house and chuckled to herself at the angry red letters stenciled onto its garage: Do not block driveway. Violators will be persecuted to the full extent of the law.
Did that mean hanged, she wondered, or merely tarred-and- feathered? And wasn’t it… prosecuted? White people didn’t make mistakes like that… did they?
Her favorite wall in Charleston was on the next block. Its surface was dirty concrete with patches of green lichen making it look a thousand years old. The highlight of the wall was the most intricately detailed wrought iron gate she had ever seen. She wondered if it had been crafted by Philip Simmons, a blacksmith by trade and a black man by birth whose work, she had heard, had ended up in the Smithsonian Museum.
Then she passed the decrepit house with a severe lean to one side, that always caught her attention. It was a stately colonial with imposing columns but was run-down and neglected. Like the owner couldn’t afford to keep it up. She had heard Mr. David on the phone once making fun of a woman who was, “house-rich and checkbook poor” and wondered if this was her place. Mr. David went on about how the woman was from an old Charleston family but had been spotted using food stamps on the down-low at the local Harris Teeter food market.
Vermelle turned left on Stolls Alley and walked over the bumpy, broken-brick pavement. The roads were in far better shape up on Nunan Street—in the heart of the ’hood—where she lived in her two-bedroom freedman’s cottage. She had observed how the well-to-do south of Broad Street folks leaned toward the old, worn, distressed look. She had heard the word ‘quaint’ used a lot but just couldn’t see it.
At number 5 Stoll’s Alley, she rang the bell and waited.
David Marion’s Greek Revival featured grey stucco over brick— the brick peeking through in several places. Vermelle had heard how at one point in history brick had lost favor with the rich folk so they had simply stuccoed over it. As she fumbled for her key, she looked over at the bulky two-inch-thick shutters with cut-outs of palmetto trees and the flickering gas lanterns that David Marion kept on at all times.
After a minute or so, she knocked and waited. Nothing.
She knocked again.
Out of options, she tried the doorknob. To her surprise, it opened. That was odd. She pushed it open and stuck her head in.“Mr. David, it’s me, Vermelle.”
She walked into the hallway, the rare herring-bone heart-of-pine floor at her feet. “Mr. David,” she said again a little louder, “it’s Vermelle.”
She walked into the living room recently decorated by Madeline Littleworth Mortimer herself. “Mr. David?”
She figured he must have hurried off to shoot a scene for his dopey TV show and had forgotten to lock the house. It had happened before. She went down the hallway to his bedroom to get the sheets, towels, and his dirty clothes; the first thing she always did. The bedroom door was open, and she went in.
And there, sprawled atop the 1000-count Egyptian sheets of his king-size bed, lay David Wayne Marion buck naked and with a bullet hole in his forehead.
First, Vermelle screamed, scaring the hell out of Mr. David’s Labrador retriever, napping at the side of the bed. Then she called the cops.
Finally, she fled the house and headed straight to the AME Church up on Calhoun. All she could do now was pray for the soul of poor Mr. David.
A native New Englander, Tom Turner dropped out of college and ran a Vermont bar…into the ground. After limping back to college to get his diploma, Tom became an advertising copywriter, first in Boston then New York. After ten years of post-Mad Men life, he made a radical change and got a job in commercial real estate. Not long after that he ended up in Palm Beach, buying, renovating and selling houses along with collecting raw material for his novels. On the side, he wrote Palm Beach Nasty, its sequel, Palm Beach Poison, and a screenplay called Blood Red Sea. While at a wedding a few years later, he fell for the charm of Charleston, South Carolina, and moved there. Recently, wandering Tom moved again. This time, just down the road to Skidaway Island, outside of Savannah, where he’s writing a novel about passion and murder among his neighbors.
Fire, Fog and Water (Sgt. Windflower Mysteries) by Mike Martin
Author Guest Post
Enjoy the Story
In fiction, you have to suspend belief in order to follow the story. That means things like pretending to be in a different location with people that you don’t know in order to experience the full effect. Those who can’t do that often claim that they don’t like fiction books or stories, but I think it may be that they just don’t know how to let themselves go and be captured by the story or the characters. I also think they are missing out on a great deal of fun!!
What most people don’t realize is that writers have to do the same thing. Suspend our belief in the ordinary and escape to another reality, inside our heads. In my Sgt. Windflower Mystery series I use the very real town of Grand Bank, Newfoundland, as a backdrop for my stories. It settles the stories in a solid foundation of place that many people who have read the series now think they know. I hope so. But the setting is truly just the beginning. Because, with the exception of a few historical facts and bread crumbs, the rest is all imagination.
The main character, Sgt. Windflower, came out of the fog one night in Grand Bank and started telling me his story. All I did was write it down. Once I did that, all these other characters came along and I started writing their stories too. My main job today is to try and keep them all happy and allow each of them the appropriate time to tell their part.
If that’s not enough to stretch your imagination, there’s more. Two of Windflower’s family, his aunt and uncle, turn out to be dream weavers. They can interpret dreams, their own and others. Windflower learns how to do that too, and soon he is awake while he is dreaming and understanding the messages that come to him. I know it sounds crazy, but it really happens, at least to Windflower. He uses it to access the spirit world, the other side.
At first, Windflower appears skeptical about this whole spirit and dreaming thing. Until he starts to realize that there might actually be messages and information about himself that he can learn. That’s when he decides to ask his relatives to teach him how to do it. After a while, he comes to see that reality might be more than just what we can see in front of him. Once he accesses this power, his life becomes richer, and of course, the story gets better.
Now dreams and dream interpretation have become a central part of both Windflower and the series. In the latest book, Fire, Fog and Water, Windflower uses them to figure out what’s wrong with him, and of course, to help solve the mystery. But he has to let go of his old thinking in order to get there.
This all gets me back to the first point. You have to suspend your belief in order to enjoy the story. That is true in all fiction, and more particularly in mystery fiction. It works for Sgt. Windflower.
Royal Canadian Mounted Police Sergeant Winston Windflower is having a bad day. First, he has a fight with his wife. Then, he discovers that the roof on his B&B needs replacing. Finally, the weather in his hometown in Grand Banks, Newfoundland is foggy and wet. The ground still maintains its melting snow, now brown after mixing with the underlying dirt. At least, it’s not snowing. It is hard to realize that spring has sprung in Canada’s northernmost territory. It is March after all.
Attempting to forget his troubles by running on a nearby trail with his dog named Lady, Windflower accidentally falls and slides off the path into a snow-covered boulder. The incident seems to fit perfectly into his bad no-good day (and mood). However, when Lady begins digging at the boulder, Windflower quickly realizes his day is infinitely better than the day of the dead man that slowly emerges from the snow…
It is snowing outside as I read Fire, Fog and Water. This wouldn’t be remarkable if I lived in Michigan. However, I live 65 miles from Los Angeles in the desert. It was 79 degrees outside four days ago. However, this is the perfect book for winter weather. The descriptions of the scenery are so vivid that I feel like I should see snowflakes when I glance up from my Kindle.
With a dead man, an intentional hit-and-run, and an arson, there is plenty of plot running through Fire, Fog and Water. The Sergeant sets out trying to find the perps thinking that the crimes must be related. Since the murder victim was a low-level drug dealer, could all the crimes be related to the wave of purple fentanyl recently killing people in Canada?
The characters within Fire, Fog and Water were my favorite part of the story. There are no paper-thin characterizations here. The Sergeant seems like a real person dealing with getting older and becoming a father with depression and muted feelings. His interest in great literature and his indigenous peoples’ roots make him truly unique as a detective and a man.
I also loved the seamless merging of social issues into this Canadian police procedural. Drugs and depression are common in real life but are seldom shown so realistically in mystery fiction.
Because of the exquisite atmosphere, in-depth characterizations of rarely represented sub-cultures, and delicious food descriptions, Fire, Fog and Water definitely deserves five stars! It is highly recommended to police procedural fans! 5 stars!
Good luck in winning one of three print copies of the book
Sergeant Winston Windflower and his trusty crew at the Grand Bank detachment of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police have more than a few mysteries on their hands. Windflower suspects that the three cases—a homicide, a near-homicide and a fire on Coronation Street—are somehow connected, but how is proving difficult to determine, especially now that he must battle his unusually cranky mood, the never-ending winter that has gripped the coastal region of Newfoundland and his new, power-hungry boss.
In Fire, Fog and Water, award-winning author Mike Martin is true to form, retaining the light crime genre for which he is known while delving into the most perplexing social issues of our time, including mental health, addictions and workplace harassment. Windflower must not only solve the drug-and-death crimes that threaten the otherwise tranquil lives of Grand Bank’s residents, he must resolve his own internal conflicts before they consume him as surely as the blaze that engulfed the house on Coronation Street
About Mike Martin
Mike Martin was born in Newfoundland, Canada. He is the author of the Sgt. Windflower Mystery series. Fire, Fog and Water is the 8th book in the series. A Long Ways from Home, was shortlisted for the Bony Blithe Light Mystery Award as the best light mystery of the year and Darkest Before the Dawn won for the 2018 Bony Blithe Award. Mike is currently Chair of the Board of Crime Writers of Canada, a national organization promoting Canadian crime and mystery writers.
If you want to have a more active and pain-free life even though you hate exercise and sit down all day at work (like me so no judging here), you need to read Stretching for Beginners.
The book is filled with sixty-seven easy stretching exercises with easy-to-follow colorful illustrations and instructions targeted at individual areas of the body. Each exercise has sections explaining what the exercise is good for, hints to follow, and how to level up the stretch when you become acclimatized to the basic level. At the back of the book, there are routines of exercises focused on everyday stretches, stretches for aches and pains, and stretches to strengthen the ability to play specific sports. My favorite routine is the 10-15 minute office stretches, which is perfect for a single break time. No laying on the dirty office carpeting. Everything is done standing up. There are only five stretches, which even the couch potato inside of me can commit to. Kudos to the authors for calling “Driving” a sport. I’m an athlete and I didn’t even know it!
Overall, if you aren’t active Stretching for Beginners is a good starting point for a New Year’s Resolution. The speed and simplicity of the stretches will motivate all but the most unmotivated to continue the program. 5 stars!
Thanks to Rockridge Press and Callisto Publishing for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
The Plant-based Diet Guide for Beginners is a combination of a health guide, diet book, and cookbook. It provides a brief overview of all of the modern diets even the meat-based ones like Atkins and Keto. It also describes what diseases each have been reported to prevent, cure, or maintain (without worsening the condition) along with warnings for potential health issues with some of the diets.
The fifty recipes are the stars here. Many are unusual—in the US at least. Miso and Sweet Potato Soup, Spicy Sweet Potato Enchiladas, Lemongrass Pumpkin Soup, Chickpea-free Falafel with Coriander, and Peanut Coconut Curry with Eggplant and Zucchini all contain new and innovative flavor combinations. However, the raw bread and crackers made from gluten-free ingredients in a slow low oven or dehydrator are what set my taste buds on fire. I have never tried raw bread or crackers before but it sounds delicious. I can’t wait until I can try it.
Each of the recipes includes nutritional information, preparation and cooking time, which diets it works with, what ingredients are necessary, and clear instructions on how to prepare it. The book also offers five different seven-day meal plans following a specific diet goal: paleo/vegan, high-protein, weight loss, anti-inflammatory, and child-friendly. My only complaint is the lack of pictures of most of the completed foods.
Overall, the Plant-based Diet Guide for Beginners is a good entry point for someone who wants to be healthier through the food they eat. It has both book and documentary references in case you want more information about a particular diet. After all, you may not be able to control your genetics but you can control what you put in your mouth. 4 stars!
Thanks to the author for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
Becoming kinder to animals is much easier with the 30-minute Vegetarian Cookbook. Whether you are a full-time vegetarian or just looking for some innovative ideas for Meatless Mondays, this book will show you how with its impressive collection of both fast and easy recipes.
From breakfast to dessert and every meal in between, the 30-minute Vegetarian Cookbook clearly labels each recipe when they are gluten-free, soy-free, oil-free, vegan, dairy-free, and nut-free. There is also nutritional information for each dish. Most recipes come with some substitution ideas adding variety to the recipes. The ingredient lists are simple and don’t include many expensive “vegetarian” products. Most of the items are found in any kitchen pantry.
This is an excellent cookbook. I just wish it had a picture of each of the recipes. But other than that one qualm, the recipes are yummy and budget-friendly. I’ve been gluten-free for years and even the recipes that are not labeled gluten-free can easily be made so by using non-wheat-based flours, breads, and tortillas. The recipes are mostly low-calorie and are perfect for those watching their weight. Many of the ingredients are zero point foods on the MyWW (Weight Watchers) blue plan. Finally, the recipes come from many cuisines like Italian, Indian, Middle-Eastern, Greek, Chinese, Japanese, and American. Overall, it’s a great cookbook to save some money, time, and animals’ lives. 5 stars!
Thanks to Rockridge Press and Callisto Publishing Club for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
Murder at First Pitch: Ball Park Mysteries by Nicole Asselin
Guest Post by the Author
This book is a bit of wish fulfillment for me. A dream would be to work for some sort of baseball team in some sort of facility. Unfortunately, I never got the chance, but I have had some awesome jobs throughout the years including swim teacher, grocery store clerk, and now technical writer for the past 10 years.
One such job that I LOVED was working at my college library all four years of school. Curry College Levin Library was my home away from home during that time. I started out doing work study but ended up working as weekend circulation manager and Interlibrary loan assistant. I remember vividly after one big snowstorm the library was still open and I made the trek across an unplowed school to make sure the library was open for students. It was super quiet (no pun intended), but it was open. My dream was to continue to work in the library field, but unfortunately real life got in the way (and real life bills). I still dream of working at a library or a bookstore. I think most authors have that secret dream.
I recently went back to my old stomping grounds for Homecoming weekend. I returned to my roots at Curry College and brought my newly released book baby on a little field trip to my old stomping grounds. I introduced her to the places I knew and loved during my time there. It wasn’t always peaches and cream, but the library was my safe zone.
The campus itself has undergone MASSIVE changes since I competed my English degree there, but it still feels memorable when I walk across the green. I spent many afternoons and weekends in the library and returned to the circulation desk. I probably scared the poor kids working by asking if I could take a picture of my book there, but I’m a weird debut author. So I hope they understood.
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway for five copies of the eBook below!
32-year-old Madeline Boucher’s Grandfather instilled a love in the Boston Red Sox into her from an early age and increased that love by purchasing a local Independent League Baseball team, the Abington Armadillos.
After losing her corporate job in Boston, Madeline realizes her best option is to join the family baseball business. As the new “Social Media Director” for the team, Madeline attends her first business function and witnesses an argument between her brother Ben, and a strange man.
A few days later when walking the ballpark during her early morning hours, she finds the body of a man beaten to death with a baseball bat in the Visitor’s Dugout. It was the man her brother was arguing with at the party. Madeline is concerned that her brother would be considered a suspect. Through the local Detectives and Davis – the head of security for the ballpark she learns the victim is Christopher Dailey, a local baseball scout and prior felon.
When her brother is arrested and taken to the police station, she realizes she needs to figure out who the real culprit is, so her brother doesn’t take the fall for something she knows he didn’t do.
About Nicole Asselin
Nicole Asselin grew up a Navy Brat, and spent her formative high school years in the middle of Pennsylvania but always identified with her New England roots. Nicole’s family is originally from Connecticut, and her Grandpa Asselin introduced her into the Red Sox nation where she has been a member for her whole life and her Grandma Asselin introduced her to the world of mystery novels.
Nicole graduated from Curry College in Milton Mass with a degree in English/Creative Writing, minoring in Dance in 2004. She also attended George Mason University and received a Master’s in Arts Management… Now working just outside of Boston as a Technical Writer, she lives on the South Shore of Massachusetts with her three cats Julia, Jacques, and Madeline (no relation to the main character of her book).
Nicole is a current member of Sisters in Crime (National and New England) and the Mystery Writers of America. She sits on the Board of Directors for the NE branches of both groups as Social Media Liaison.
Serf and Turf: A Silicon Valley Mystery by Marc Jedel
How did you get started writing cozy mysteries?
I’ve wanted to write a book forever. For the longest time, it seemed I couldn’t come up with a good plot. Unfortunately for my prospective writing career, I had learned that having a plot is critical for a successful book. One day, I received this awesome birthday drawing from my nieces. And my kids, or nieces, or one of our friends’ kids had done some crazy things. Probably all of the above.
One thing led to another and the idea formed to loosely base a mystery with a self-absorbed, fashion-backward software engineer, his sister, and his nieces on my life. It’s clearly fiction. I mean, I’m not a software engineer. Check out the drawing on my blog (www.marcjedel.com/blog).
After that, the ideas kept flowing so I had characters, plot points, and concepts for more books. Although the books can be read standalone, they share many of the same characters. Serf and Turf, starts the day after Chutes and Ladder ends. And that book took place only about six weeks after book 1, Uncle and Ants, ended.
How do you flesh out the ideas for your books?
Much dog walking is involved. Well, the dog doesn’t seem to contribute all that much dialogue but he’s a good listener. My wife is amazing. She’s taken on an unpaid role as brainstormer-in-chief, but she doesn’t complain often. I also do a lot of outlining. That keeps me from forgetting who killed whom.
Are the anecdotes in the book autobiographical?
A frightening number are based on truth. The escapades of Buddy the Labrador are based on a family friend’s dog. The cat scene in Serf and Turf comes from another friend. And the ice cream truck story that finishes chapter two in Uncle and Ants is completely true, believe it or not. As for the rest, it’s loosely based on reality except where I’ve exaggerated, made it up or falsified my memories to fit the story.
Do you tell a lot of dad jokes?
Well I’ve been a dad myself for a long time so I’ll plead the fifth. Also, it’s not my fault that I did grow up with a master dad joke teller. But, don’t worry about too many stupid jokes in the book. That’s the best part about editors — they keep writers honest. Mine kept saying “that’s funny, but put more focus on the mystery.” Hearing that she thought my writing was funny sure felt good. After the warm and fuzzy feeling wore off, I followed her advice and made sure the story balanced humor with a crisp pace and an interesting mystery.
What’s different about your book from other cozy mysteries?
Besides the author? Well, my book doesn’t take place in a small, seaside town where the main protagonist runs a bakery, bookshop, or bed & breakfast. While I like those cozies as much as the next reader, I find myself getting bored by similar settings and characters over and over. Setting my novel in Silicon Valley allowed me to show a little more of its unique people and environment without delving into boring techno-babble. Many readers write me to tell me which characters they like best and I love that. Some of the recurring and other wacky side characters help and some hinder the protagonist’s progress in solving the cases.
Any last comments?
Serf and Turf, book 3 in the Silicon Valley Mystery series, can be read standalone. All of the books in the series are free for Kindle Unlimited readers. Buy them on Amazon at: amazon.com/gp/product/B07PHNT7XM and watch for the audiobooks of the whole series from Recorded Books coming later this year. For more about my books or me and to sign up to hear about special offers and free chapters, please visit www.marcjedel.com.
For another author interview with the same author for an earlier book in this series, go here.
The third zany mystery in the Silicon Valley Mystery series, Serf and Turf, is here!
Bumbling amateur detective, Marty, once again tries to juggle family, relationships, and work with determining who murdered girls’ soccer coach Gio. It appears that everyone who wasn’t sleeping with Gio hated him. So why does Marty’s girlfriend, Meghan, admire him so much?
The books in the Silicon Valley Mystery series just keep getting better. Serf and Turf is the best so far! It reminds me of early Stephanie Plum mysteries. First, start out with a seemingly simple idea. In this book, it is for Marty to help his girlfriend investigate Gio’s death. After all, Marty is convinced that he is almost a police consultant. Unfortunately, the police don’t appear to agree with him. Second, mix in several odd settings and top with a witty sense of humor. The investigation involves many of Gio’s side hustles—from a science camp to a Renaissance Faire. Both are shown with humor and moments of pure hilarity. Reading this book’s description of the RenFaire inspired me personally to dress as an Irish maiden for Halloween—that is how far into this book I got! Finally, add an unusual family known for their eccentricities. Marty’s sister, two nieces, and their dog are uproariously human–yes, even the dog that has a sweet tooth.
Everyone who loves funny cozy mysteries should pick up this book. It promises to be a great series and this book is a fun ride. 5 stars!
Thanks to the author and Great Escape Book Tours for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
About Serf and Turf
Serf and Turf: A Silicon Valley Mystery Release Date – October 7, 2019
Print Length – Approximately 200 pages
He’s afraid of losing his girlfriend. But maybe he should be more concerned about the dead body she’s crying over?
Marty Golden can barely string a voicemail message together, let alone keep up with his new love. This quirky uncle’s hectic Silicon Valley lifestyle needs a reboot when a youth league soccer game becomes a murder scene. And nothing can stop him from donning his amateur sleuth uniform when he discovers his sweetheart used to have quite a thing for the dead guy …
With a not-so-helpful paw from Buddy the Labrador, he does his best to sniff out a long list of possible suspects. But between gossipy soccer moms and the costume-clad members of a Renaissance Faire, Marty’s theories fall harder than a jousted knight.
Can Marty solve the case before the trail and his new flame grow cold?
Serf and Turf is the third book in the zany, Silicon Valley cozy mystery series. If you like laugh-out-loud comedy, dorky sleuths, and a festival of old-world fun, then you’ll love Marc Jedel’s humorous murder mystery.
Buy Serf and Turf to sign in to a great mystery today!
About Marc Jedel
For most of my life, I’ve been inventing stories. Some, especially when I was young, involved my sister as the villain. As my sister’s brother for her entire life, I’m highly qualified to tell the tale of this evolving, quirky sibling relationship.
My writing skills were honed in years of marketing leadership positions in Silicon Valley. While my high tech marketing roles involved crafting plenty of fiction, we called these marketing collateral, emails and ads.
The publication of my first novel, Uncle and Ants, gave me permission to claim “author” as my job. And achieving Amazon Best Seller status gave me even better adjectives to use in front of “author.” This has led to way more interesting discussions than answering “marketing.”
My family would tell you that Marty’s character isn’t much of a stretch of the imagination for me, but I’m comfortable with that situation.
Like Marty, I live in Silicon Valley and can’t believe that otherwise normal people would willingly jump out of an airplane and call it fun. Unlike Marty, I have a wonderful wife and a neurotic but sweet, small dog, who is often the first to weigh in on the humor in my writing.
It’s the day before her one-year wedding anniversary and Elise has a problem in the new gaslight-esque thriller, Poison Garden.
When Elise arrives home one day early from a trip, she finds her husband, Kieran, in their marital bed with another woman. He swears it was a one-time fling, but her neighbor, Chantal, tells her she has seen the woman sneaking into the house once before.
Elise also finds her herb store unlocked and in disorder. Did she really sleepwalk into the store the night before she left on her trip? Or is Kieran plotting to kill her with the poisonous plants kept in her shop? And what did he and his lover’s pillow talk about patience and playing the long game really mean?
The cat and mouse game between Elise and Kieran is the best part of the Poison Garden. You feel Elise’s shock at her husband’s betrayal deeply. You want to see her succeed in getting herself and her money away from him. Neighbor Chantal’s story is intriguing and adds depth to the plot.
Overall, the genuineness of the characters and the compelling plot forced me to stay up late to finish this book in one sitting. 4 stars!
Thanks to Lake Union Publishing and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
A Very Vegan Halloween: The Witch’s Cauldron Cookbook
The Vegan Holiday Cookbook Collection #1
With thirteen snacks, eight main dishes, seventeen desserts, and four drinks, A Very Vegan Halloween allows you to share Halloween with your friends and family without giving up your values.
Just because they are vegan doesn’t mean that these recipes can’t be fun and on theme. Some examples that I liked are:
Hocus Pocus Jack-O’-Lanterns made with stuffed bell peppers imitating carved pumpkins
Perfect Party Cutie Pumpkins, which are clementines with celery stems (and so cute!)
Poltergeist Party Mashed Potatoes made with potatoes and non-dairy milk.
All are made with plain fruits and vegetables. Nothing expensive or hard to locate.
If you are vegan or just want some new ideas for Halloween munchies (while saving a few animals in the process), pick up A Very Vegan Halloween. I am removing one star for not having nutritional information or number of servings. Still, the ideas are charming. 4 stars!
Thanks to the author and Silver Dagger Book Tours for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
Halloween has always been an important holiday in my home and a time for food
and parties. This book contains traditional, bootiful Halloween
recipes prepared from nondairy and cruelty-free ingredients.
With 41 bewitching recipes to chose from, you will have a spooktacular
selection of recipes to inspire your little ghost or goblins to
gobble up their plates! Being a mom of two, and so no stranger to
hosting Halloween parties for little ones, I understand the
importance of presentation. If the food is fun and engaging, children
and adults alike will want to try vegan options. The recipes come
with creative decorating ideas, party suggestions, and terribly
terrifying recipe names, to get your cute little ghouls eager to bake
with you in the kitchen.
Best-selling Amazon Author of Hybrid: Adapt or Die. Her debut novel was
The Lady Raven: A Dark Cinderella Tale, which was published in 2017.
The Lady Raven is for those who have an infinity for fairy tales
retold with a link to witches, magic and the macabre. Rebecca’s
second novel, Louisiana Latte, a chick-lit comedy was released
February 28th, 2019. Louisiana Latte is a feel-good comedy that
focuses on the bonds of sisters, and how audacious life can be when
you have a diva for one! Rebecca’s third novel Hybrid: Adapt or Die,
is a sci-fi, horror, romance novel. It takes the reader on a wild
ride of government conspiracy theories, ancient aliens but also
touches your heart with a tender love story. Hybrid was released
on August 1st, 2019. Her fourth novel Conjure Lake, a young adult, dark fantasy,
horror novel will be released in 2020. The entire first chapter is
included at the end of Hybrid first edition copies. You can find all
of Rebecca’s books on Amazon.
Rebecca Henry is a world traveler living abroad in England. Besides being an
author, Rebecca is also a podcast talk host on the show The Latte
Talk. The podcast was inspired by her latest novel, Louisiana Latte
and her diva sister Deb. She is a serious vegan, gardener, crafter,
wife, and mom who practices yoga. She loves to laugh, her drug of
choice and loves all things witchy with a hint of the macabre. Her
favorite holiday is Halloween and her favorite movie of all time is
Haunted House Ghost: Death At The Fall Festival (Braxton Campus Mysteries) by James J. Cudney
It’s Halloween and Professor Kellan is renovating his newly purchased rundown mansion in the Haunted House Ghost.
A current mystery and a historic one compete for Kellan and his potential girlfriend, Sheriff April’s attention. Between that, a Fall Festival, a ghost, home renovations, a psychic, and a skeleton, no wonder Kellan and April can’t even find the time to go out on a date!
Good thing there is a guide to Who’s Who in the front of the book. This book has the largest cast of any tale shorter than a 19th-century Russian novel. Luckily, you don’t need to memorize them all. The Haunted House Ghost quickly narrows down to a handful of suspects. Kudos to the author for making me second guess my thought on who was the murderer—multiple times right up to the reveal. Overall, an enjoyable cozy mystery. 4 stars!
Thanks to the author and Great Escapes Blog Tours for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
Don’t forget about entering the giveaway shown below!
It’s Halloween, and excitement is brewing in Braxton to carve jack-o’-lanterns, go on haunted hayrides, and race through the spooky corn maze at the Fall Festival.
Despite the former occupant’s warnings, Kellan renovates and moves into a mysterious old house. When a ruthless ghost promises retribution, our fearless professor turns to the eccentric town historian and an eerie psychic to communicate with the apparition. Meanwhile, construction workers discover a fifty-year-old skeleton after breaking ground on the new Memorial Library wing.
While Kellan and April dance around the chemistry sparking between them, a suspicious accident occurs at the Fall Festival. Soon, Kellan discovers the true history and dastardly connections of the Grey family. But can he capture the elusive killer – and placate the revenge-seeking ghost.
About James J. Cudney
James is my given name; most call me Jay. I grew up on Long Island and currently live in New York City, but I’ve traveled all across the US (and various parts of the world). After college, I spent 15 years working in technology and business operations in the sports, entertainment and media industries. Although I enjoyed my job, I left in 2016 to focus on my passion: telling stories and connecting people through words. My debut novel is ‘Watching Glass Shatter,’ a contemporary fiction family drama with elements of mystery, suspense, humor and romance. To see samples or receive news from my current and upcoming books, please subscribe with your email address at my website: https://jamesjcudney.com
What do I do outside of writing: I’m an avid genealogist (discovered 2K family members going back about 250 years) and cook (I find it so hard to follow a recipe). I love to read; between Goodreads and my blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, I have over 900 book reviews which will give you a full flavor for my voice and style. On my blog, there is humor, tears, love, friendship, advice and bloopers. Lots of bloopers where I poke fun at myself all the time. Even my dogs have segments where they complain about me. All these things make up who I am; none of them are very fancy or magnanimous, but they are real and show how I live every day.
Their Last Breath is an engrossing British police procedural where nothing is as you expect.
Gillian Lane is running for her life down a quiet English lane from a masked assailant when she is hit by a taxi and taken to hospital. When the police investigate, they find her husband and another woman tortured and strangled in her kitchen.
Meanwhile, retired detective Warren is called back to duty to investigate a mass death scene that appears to implicate one of the police’s own. An abandoned hospital is the site of a horrific fire where six women are found chained to their room’s wall. Five are dead when the firefighters arrive but one is clinging precariously to life. Could the name scratched on the floor, Hayat, be the same woman telling her tale of being a Syrian refugee in alternate chapters?
It doesn’t take a Mensa ID to figure out the dead woman is the refugee. But how the cases are connected and especially the thrilling twist at the end makes Their Last Breath a great read for police procedural fans. 4 stars!
Thanks to Amazon Publishing UK and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
Marc: Chutes and Ladder is the second book in the Silicon Valley Mystery series, but can be read standalone. Marty Golden is not your typical, cozy mystery protagonist. As a male sleuth who doesn’t own a bakery, bookstore, or bed & breakfast, or live by the beach, he stands out from the crowd of cozy protagonists. Marty does bumble his way through the investigations, armed with nothing but an eye for detail and powers of self-delusion.
In Chutes and Ladder, Marty discovers the dead body of his friend while failing as chaperone for a Girl Scouts camping trip. After the police rule it an accidental death, he disagrees and decides to investigate because friends don’t let their friend’s death go unsolved.
One reviewer called it “a gem with its great plotting and unusual cast.”
Q: Where do you get your ideas for your stories?
Marc: I tend to pay attention to the strange stories in the newspaper, especially about unusual deaths or bizarre situations. This became a lot more socially acceptable once I become a published mystery author. Almost like a puzzle, I enjoy trying to merge together multiple situations into a coherent plot and trick the reader.
Q: Is there a theme in your story?
Marc: In a rare moment of introspection, I decided that the book should be about more than just humor wrapped in a mystery. A literary scholar, if one ever were foolish enough to select my novels for their dissertation, might say they’re about a search for family life, friends and happiness. However, Marty typically doesn’t realize this is what he wants out of life, so he tries hard to return to the quiet, simple and peaceful life that he had before his sister and his nieces moved to town.
Marty frequently mentions advice and etiquette lessons that his parents gave him when he was young. He’s often dismayed that their lessons didn’t cover the unusual predicaments that he finds himself in.
Q: How do you create your characters and do you have a favorite?
Marc: I’m obviously partial to the protagonist, Marty, since the novel is told in first person. My friends and family believe this fashion-backward, self-absorbed software engineer is not exactly a huge stretch of the imagination for me to write. But it’s fiction. I mean, I’m not a software engineer. I enjoy writing Marty’s nieces, especially young Megan. They’re loosely based on my own nieces and kids, exaggerated and merged with other kids that I’ve known. Perhaps my favorite side character is Mrs. Quarles, the school secretary. Marty struggles mightily to deal with her, and I always laugh as I’m writing her scenes. A surprising number of readers tell me she’s one of their favorite characters too. I’d love to hear from your readers which characters or scenes they like best.
Q: How do you bring to life the place you are writing about?
Marc: I’ve lived a long time in Silicon Valley, working in high-tech, marketing roles. A lot of interesting characters work in big, high-tech companies. While I haven’t based any character directly off someone I’ve known, let’s just say that certain people influenced some of my characters more than others—especially the nuttier or more villainous characters.
If Silicon Valley is portrayed in fiction, it tends to be a very one-sided and biased view. I wanted to highlight more of the diversity and unusual personalities that I’ve encountered in my novels.
Q: What research do you do?
Marc: I’ve found that writing has made me more willing to talk to strangers in different situations and more observant and patient in lines and crowded situations, as I’m looking for material. I’m normally more of an introvert. Who’d have thought that the solitary occupation of being an author would make me more socially outgoing?
Most of my detailed mystery research is done via the internet. I’m hopeful that no law enforcement agencies are watching my searches and wondering what I may be up to. Not to be paranoid or anything, but I’ll use this space to remind them: “Marc Jedel is a fiction writer of humorous murder mysteries. Fiction!”
Q: Anything else you’d like to tell readers about the book?
Marc: I’ll quote a reviewer: “I enjoyed this fast-paced humorous mystery just as much as Uncle and Ants. His writing is clever, and the plotting is meticulous and exceptionally well-executed.” And I swear that reviewer wasn’t related or a friend.
Chutes and Ladder, book 2 in the Silicon Valley Mystery series, can be read standalone. It and Uncle and Ants are free to Kindle Unlimited readers. Serf and Turf, book 3 in the series, will be released in mid-October 2019 so this is a perfect time to catch up. Buy them on Amazon at amazon.com/gp/product/B07PHNT7XM. For more about my books or me, please visit www.marcjedel.com.
the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!
a camping trip uncovers a murder, this amateur sleuth is stuck
putting out the fire …
Golden enjoys time with his nieces, but he wanted to spend the
weekend with his new girlfriend — not chaperone a Girl Scout
camping trip. Once he stumbles upon the corpse of a friend in the
woods, the outdoors adventure becomes an open-air disaster. When the
police label it an accidental death, the meticulous Marty vows to
investigate the murder. After all, it’s poor manners to let your
friend’s death go unsolved.
the hunt for clues the cops ignored, Marty uncovers a disturbing
connection to himself. And as he digs deeper, a misbehaving pup, a
kooky cousin, and a maniacal ninja put his survival skills to the
Marty unravel the mystery before the killer, or his imagination, gets
and Ladder is
the side-splitting second novel in the Silicon Valley cozy mystery
series. If you like quirky sleuths, wacky side characters, and
laugh-out-loud moments, you’ll love this offbeat whodunit.
and Ladder to
decode a great mystery today!
attacks. Mischievous nieces.Can
a clueless uncle catch a tech-savvy killer … and be home before
a freak accident hospitalizes Marty
Golden’s sister and condemns him to
babysitter duty, he thinks it’s just another case of hardwired bad
luck in Silicon Valley.
Until a suspicious murder suggests the mishap was no mere
coincidence. Something must be done.
bad this quirky, fashion-backward
uncle isn’t exactly hero material.
his sister is in mortal danger, this
amateur sleuth follows clues to an
oddball array of suspects. Armed with nothing but an eye for detail
and powers of self-delusion, Marty
tangles with gangsters, a cantankerous school secretary, and a
perplexing woman he can’t help but fall for. Glitches in his
investigation seem like a piece of cake compared to dinner-prep and
bedtime stories with his two precocious, pre-teen nieces.
Marty catch the culprit, save his sister, and get his life back in
order before he gets unplugged?
and Ants is the first novel in
a refreshingly modern mystery series set in Silicon Valley. If you
like clever humor, sassy side characters, and average Joes facing
extraordinary circumstances, then you’ll love this twisty mystery.
and Ants to login to a fresh,
funny mystery today!
Jedel writes humorous murder mysteries. In his high-tech marketing
roles, he’s also written fiction. These are just called emails, ads,
and marketing collateral.
his family, Marc was born first — a fact his sister never lets him
forget, no matter what milestone age she hits. For most of Marc’s
life, he’s been inventing stories. Some, especially when he was
young, involved his sister as the villain. As his sister’s brother
for her entire life, he feels highly qualified to tell tales of the
evolving, quirky sibling relationship in the Silicon Valley Mystery
and friends would tell you that the protagonist in his stories, Marty
Golden, isn’t much of a stretch of the imagination for Marc, but he
proudly resembles that remark.
Marty, Marc lives in San Jose, the heart of Silicon Valley, where he
writes within earshot of the doppler effect of the local ice cream
truck. Unlike Marty, Marc has a wonderful wife and a neurotic but
sweet, small dog, who much prefers the walks resulting from writer’s
block than his writing.
his website, marcjedel.com, for free chapters of upcoming novels,
news and more.