Monday, June 18, 2018

Sometimes Practicality Wins

by Dr. Reed Storme, veterinarian at the Knobcone Heights Veterinary Clinic, featured in the Barkery & Biscuits Mysteries by Linda O. Johnston

Hi, everyone.  This is Dr. Reed Storme again.  I don't blog here very often but felt I had to this month.

You see, last time I was here I expressed my concerns about Carrie Kennersly, a veterinary technician who works part-time at the Knobcone Heights Veterinary Clinic, where I'm a veterinarian.  She also owns two bake shops here in town, Icing on the Cake, where she sells baked goods for people, and Barkery and Biscuits next door, where she sells dog treats made from recipes she mostly developed while at our clinic.

She loves dogs, as I do.  She's also very special to me.  Which is why, in my last post here which was quite a while ago, I let everyone know about my concerns for her.  You see, she's also solved several murders in our small town of Knobcone Heights, which means she sometimes puts herself into danger.  That worries me.  I really do care about her.

I've even told her, more than once, to stay away from attempting to figure out who the murderers have been, for her own safety.  Does she listen?  She never appears to, but that doesn't keep me from trying.

But... well, in the latest book about her, Pick and Chews... I wound up being the person the cops suspect most as the killer.  

Did I do it?  No, of course not. My telling the authorities that doesn't help, though, so this time, when Carrie gets involved, I tell her to be careful, but I don't tell her not to try to figure it out.  At least that's not what I tell her at first.  That's not practical under the circumstances.  I get very concerned about her safety, though, as time, and her investigation, continues.

Carrie is very smart, fortunately, and she is somewhat careful.  Even so...

Well, I'm not going to tell you what happens. 

PICK AND CHEWS, the fourth Barkery & Biscuits Mystery by Linda O. Johnston, was a May 2018 release from Midnight Ink. 

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Happy Father's Day!

By Chloe Ellefson

Historic Site Curator

From the Chloe Ellefson Mysteries

by Kathleen Ernst

Happy Dad's Day to all the father figures out there! Since my sister and I are enjoying a road trip visiting all of the Laura Ingalls Wilder homesites, we just called our dad to wish him well.

(Actually, we're not totally enjoying our road trip. Someone seems to have figured out that we're carrying an incredibly rare quilt that once belonged to Laura herself....and they may be willing to kill to get their hands on it. But that's another story.)

I've also been thinking a lot about Charles Ingalls, Laura's Pa from the Little House books.  When I read the books as a kid, I focused only on Laura's stories. These days, I give Charles a whole lot more credit. Yes, he hopped around a lot, and made some mistakes. But he managed to keep the family together through some pretty daunting times.

Laura's parents, Caroline and Charles Ingalls.
What do you think?  Was Charles a good dad in the famous books?  Or do you have another favorite literary father?

* * *
Kathleen Ernst is the author of thirty-six books, including the Chloe Ellefson Mysteries, mysteries for young readers, historical fiction, and two nonfiction books. Before becoming a full time writer she worked as a curator at Old World Wisconsin.

To learn more about the award-winning Chloe Ellefson series---including the latest, Mining For Justice, see Kathleen's website.

Kathleen is celebrating the series with an eight-month-long retrospective, and it's Death on the Prairie month! Stop by her blog to learn more about the book, and watch her Facebook Author Page for a Giveaway.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Hiding in Plain Sight

Evie Bloomfield here and it’s been a great summer on Mackinac Island...if you don’t mind a dead body or two. The thing with dead bodies id no that they’re dead, none of us are that fond of that particular person anyway. The problem is that a dead body scares off the tourists!
If there’s one thing all of here on the island do not want to happen is that! Our little island that’s a time warp back to the 1800s really relies on the tourists who we affectionately...or maybe not so much... call fudgies.
So our problem is where can we get rid of that pesky old body? I have a few suggestions and you can tell me which one appeals to you. Keep in mind all of these suggestions require strapping the body to a bike or renting a horse and buggy as Mackinac is without cars!
First we can hide the body in Arch Rock. There’re enough bushes to hide the corpse and if anyone goes snooping they’ll have to snoop really hard.
Or we shove the body back in Skull Cave. That place sounds a lot scarier then it is and the cave is actually too small for much stuffing. And there’s the likelihood that the fudgies will think it’s an island attraction.
Then there’s Fort Mackinac. I saw a pit up at the fort where they put the bad soldier guys back in the day when such things were done. Maybe we can dump the body in there...till it started to stink.
Saint Ann’s Cemetery is a good choice for body dumping. Another body just fits right in. What’s one dead guy more or less?
The Grand Hotel might work as a place to stash a body. Just prop it up in one of those rocking chairs on that really looooong front porch they have. Be part of the Halloween d├ęcor or put a drink in his hand and he’ll look like a guy fallen asleep.
Or just push the body off the East Bluff and into Lake Huron. Weight it down with some rocks. Glug, glug, glug.
Or maybe we can just push the body off Shepler’s dock or off the ferry on the ride back to the mainland.
Mackinac Island is a great place for more than eating fudge. Some people have a drop-dead good time here and wait till you see where I actually hid the body in Geared for the Grave, the first book in my Cycle Path mysteries.
Hugs, Duffy Brown

Geared For the Grave
First book in Cycle Path mysteries
Berkley Prime Crime

Friday, June 15, 2018

What next?

I’m just shaking my head.  What a time for a murder to happen!  The universe is a really strange place.  Just when everything’s coming together for me and the band.  I mean, I’m not crazy about slaving away at my day job at Meyers Dade & Schultz LLP but it pays the bills.  I don’t mind it.  The attorneys are pretty much jerks, but at least I have money to buy the musical equipment I need for my real career.  

I'm Dani by the way.  Dani Nichols.  See, I play bass.  A lot of guys don’t appreciate women who keep a solid rhythm in a band, but I love my instrument and I’m a really good player. 
So . . . our band finally gets a gig at Stoned, one of the hottest clubs in North Beach, especially for our kind of music.  And what happens?  We find a dead attorney on Monday morning!  How’s that for a good start to the week . . . NOT!

That’s not what I need to focus on now.  My career could really take off.  Instead, I’m being questioned by the police and I’m not so sure there might not be more bad stuff coming down the pike.  I need to practice our stuff and get ready for the big gig.  We have a really good following.  Fans that show up at every gig.  And it’s important they show up now ‘cause we want to look good for the people who book the club.  
Anyway . . . gotta go now.  I’m getting a new tattoo today.  It’ll look really good, with flowing vines crawling up my arms, they’ll match the flowers on my hands and wrists.  

See you this Thursday at Stoned, I hope.  Oh, our band is Hoarse by the way.  Be there!  You’ll be sorry if you’re not.

You can read all about me and all of us suspects in Tail of Dragon, coming soon (August 8, 2018)

And you can visit our author, 
Connie di Marco at her website, at Facebook and Twitter @AskZodia.  

Stay tuned for Connie's upcoming tours and giveaways at Great Escapes (starting June 14th), Partners in Crime (July and August) and Goddess Fish too!  

Thursday, June 14, 2018


FROM:    Magnolia Jensen

OF:       The Bad Luck Cat Mysteries

BY:       Kay Finch

I’m the local veterinarian in Lavender, Texas, and you might say that ninety-nine percent of my life is devoted to animals. Of course, I have many patients. I’m also involved in pet rescue groups, pet emergency situations, searching for lost pets, searching for owners of found pets – you get the picture. Sabrina Tate and her black cat Hitchcock are favorites of mine. Sabrina works tirelessly to publicize pet adoption events and to collect funds for needy animals. She’s especially interested in promoting the adoption of black cats.
Unfortunately, there are too many superstitious folks who believe that black cats bring bad luck. With Hitchcock, Sabrina’s cat, nothing is further from the truth. Even so, there’s a decades-old bad luck cat legend around here, and I’ve heard from more than one person who believes Hitchcock is that bad luck cat.

Give me a break! I've never known a cat to live for many decades. While my heart breaks for the poor feline who was around when that ridiculous legend began, I'm equally concerned for Sabrina’s Hitchcock. There have been some unfortunate deaths around here, and it seems he’s become a scapegoat of sorts. We must turn this bad luck story around and make people realize that Hitchcock is not only a sweet and adorable pet – he’s a darn good sidekick when it comes to solving a mystery.


And folks – if you’re looking for a new kitty cat in your life, please consider adopting a black cat or cats – they will be a joy to you and yours.
Kay Finch is the National Best-Selling author of the Bad Luck Cat Mysteries by Berkley Prime Crime.  Though her character, Sabrina Tate, has left the paralegal profession behind to move to the Texas Hill Country, Kay still works as a paralegal at a Houston, Texas law firm. She resides in a Houston suburb with her husband and pets where she is working on Bad Luck Cat Mystery #4 – The Black Cat Steps On a Crack. Visit her at



Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Glamping is a thing, insists Mae West.

******GIVEAWAY IS OVER*******

Smores, no judging! 

Yes. You read the headline correctly. My name is Mae West, not the actress. It just so happened I married a man, Paul, last name West. He was a smidgen older than me, like thirty years. Some said I was a gold digger, but I wasn't. He was a wealthy business man that just so happened let me quit my job as a flight attendant and enjoy long days at the spa, mall, and our home in the Hamptons.

The closest thing to camping Paul ever took me was to the Ritz Carlton and even then we ordered room service.

Then...the FBI raid in the middle of the night made me think I shouldn't've stayed at the spa or the mall all day. Paul's little business ended up swindling millions of dollars out of people in a ponzi scheme. Everything was taken. . .everything but a campground. . .in Kentucky!

Neither sounded good to me.

Apparently, Paul had won a bet when he was in college. His winning was Happy Trails Campground. It was explained to me, Paul had put the campground deed in my name. It also came with a camper. No joke! Me driving a camper?

I wanted to refuse and keep my cute convertible, but that was seized too.

Long story short, I found myself driving to Kentucky in a big ole RV that I knew nothing about. On the way, I'd gotten into a mean fight with a toilet plunger and it didn't turn out to pretty. So, going to a campground where the brochure showed photos of the amazing Kentucky Bluegrass, the backdrop of the Daniel Boone National Park, and a crystal lake to dip my toes, started to sound like a semi vacation until my lawyer could find a buyer.

I finally made it to Kentucky and you could just imagine my surprise when the beautiful Kentucky bluegrass was brunt, there was a slime film on the lake and let's just say the copyright on the brochure was from the 60's!

And if that wasn't bad enough, Paul...remember him? Well, he broke out of prison and was floating in the Happy Trails Campground lake. . .DEAD!

There are some amazing recipes and cleaning hacks in the back of the book! You can check out this amazing s'more dip that is the hit of any campground! Check out the recipe by clicking here!



A Camper and Criminals #CozyMystery Series 
Book One 



What is a food you like to eat when you go camping? 

Leave a comment to be entered to win an IT'S A SOUTHERN MYSTERY, Y'ALL TOTE AND GOODIES!

the fun doesn't stop here at Killer Characters!
Head on over to Tonya Kappes Books Facebook page for weekly themes and a pinned giveaway on the page. Click here to join the fun!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Special of the Day: Pimento Cheese

by Amy Flowers of Honey-Baked Homicide by Gayle Leeson

The special of the day is pimento cheese. I can't take credit for the recipe, though. This one comes from my friend Kimber from The Pinning Mama blog. Please check out her blog, and tell her Amy sent you.

Homemade Pimento Cheese


16 oz sharp cheddar cheese, grated – Make sure to get sharp or extra sharp cheddar for the best flavor.  You will want to use yellow cheese so that you will get the signature color.  Also, you can use pre-grated cheese or grate your own.  Both work great in this recipe.
8 oz Philadelphia cream cheese– Make sure the cream cheese is softened so that it combines well.  If you don’t have time to let it sit out, you can microwave it for a few seconds to soften it up.
1/2 cup mayonnaise- Use real mayonnaise in this recipe for the best results.  It won’t have the same taste without it!
4 oz chopped pimentos- Find these in your grocery store near the olives, in the vegetable section near the artichokes, or in the specialty food section.  I use the ones that are already diced, but if you can only find whole, just dice it up yourself with a knife or food chopper.
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp dried onion flakes
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl. You can just dump them in, in any order. With an electric hand or stand mixer mix the cheese on low to combine and then on high for 1 minute. If you don’t have an electric mixer you can also combine by hand, but it takes a bit of elbow grease. Also if you hand mix, you will probably want to let it chill for a while longer and then mix it up again to really get the flavors combined well.
Place the cheese in an airtight container and refrigerate for at least two hours so the flavors can meld. This stuff will be good as soon as it is mixed but the garlic and onion flavor really distributes well when you let it sit a little bit. You can keep it in the fridge for up to a week, so you can make it in advance for a party or just snack on it all week long.
Serve with crackers, chips, as a sandwich, or on veggies. Most importantly… Enjoy!

Kimber has a spicier version of this recipe too. Do you like your cheese spreads spicy or mild?

Be sure and check out Hightail It to Kinsey Falls, Gayle Leeson's first book in a new chick-lit series. Read an excerpt here.