Thursday, April 2, 2020

Looking for the perfect corn dog!

by Angie Turner from DEEP FRIED REVENGE by Lynn Cahoon.

OMG, I love the state fair. I feel like a little girl as we finally arrive at the parking lot. I note our row and the closest section marker up on the light poles. When I was a kid, it was my job to remember section 24, row D. Now, I key it into my phone note app just in case I forget. 

The parking lot is dirt and now crushed grass that had been cut probably a few weeks ago in preparation for the thousands(?) of cars that will be parked here for the next week and two days. I can smell the fryers setting up, getting ready for the crowds and my mouth waters for a freshly made corn dog. Slathered with plain yellow mustard.

The best food ever. 

When I went to California for a few years, I tried to find a corn dog that matched the ones I devour during Fair week. No luck. Either the hot dog was off, or they used frozen corn dogs and re-heated them in the fryer. Just not the same.

Yes, I'm a corn dog purist. 

There are other foods that I must eat while I'm here. Fudge from one of the vendors in the exhibition hall. A hamburger covered in onions fried on a flat top. And for dessert? A baked potato made out of ice cream.

This is the Idaho State Fair after all.

This year, I'll be working during the fair. Felicia signed us up for restaurant wars. Mostly it's a marketing thing. Good for business. And it gets our name out there. I have to say, winning against some of the more established local restaurants wouldn't hurt my feelings any. Being the 'country' farm to fork place is sometimes challenging to get respect out of the culinary community.

I'm not totally looking for respect. I'll be happy if we have a good showing. It's about the bottom line and keeping The County Seat in the green.

But I'd love it if we won.

I've got to get going and figure out the game plan here. First up? Date night with Ian. It's time to let my inner child play a little. I'll work tomorrow. 

What's your favorite memory of a local fair?

Angie

DEEP FRIED REVENGE releases April 7th, 2020

Angie Turner is all prepped to face Boise’s culinary best when she enters her restaurant, The County Seat, into a big State Fair challenge. Instead, she gets dunked into a new murder investigation after a killer starts scrapping her competition . . .

The Idaho State Fair is in full swing and chefs are lining up to enter Boise’s Best Restaurant contest, including Angie and her County Seat crew. They might be the hometown favorite, but the competition is steeper than a funhouse floor. And when a top contender is felled following a heated confrontation over a corn dog recipe, winning suddenly becomes a matter of life or death. With a foul foodie on the prowl, it’s up to Angie to dig into the case and put a murderer on ice.

NYT and USA Today bestselling author, Lynn Cahoon, writes the Tourist Trap, Cat Latimer and Farm-to-Fork mystery series. 2020 she'll release the first novella in the Kitchen Witch series. No matter where the mystery is set, readers can expect a fun ride Sign up for her newsletter at www.lynncahoon.com

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

New Releases for April

Could it be that spring is finally on it’s way? Whether it is or not, we have some good reading for you in April




Krista Davis
The Diva Spices It Up
Domestic Diva Mysteries #13
Kensington
ISBN-13: 978-1496714749


She's a young Martha Stewart...in Old Town Virginia!

New York Times bestselling author Krista Davis delights with the 13th in her enormously popular and completely charming Domestic Diva Mystery series. When a celebrity ghostwriter dies on the job, it's up to Sophie Winston, Old Town, Virginia's favorite entertaining expert and sporadic sleuth, to whip up an impromptu investigation...

Sophie never considered ghostwriting as a side gig, until former actress and aspiring lifestyle guru, Tilly Stratford, trophy wife of Wesley Winthrope, needs someone to write her celebrity cookbook. Sophie agrees, hoping she'll earn enough bread on this assignment to finish her bathroom renovations. But as it turns out, Sophie isn't the first foodie to get a taste for recipe ghostwriting, and if the marginalia are any indication, this project could be a killer...
Wesley claims professional ghostwriter, Abby Bergeron, suddenly abandoned Tilly's cookbook with no warning. But Sophie quickly discovers that Abby may be more ghost than writer now...and her disappearance was no accident. So Sophie cracks open a fresh investigation but sifting the seasoned murderer from this sampling of salty suspects won't be easy. Will Sophie savor another case closed or will the culprit simply melt away?




Lynn Cahoon
Deep Fried Revenge
Farm to Fork series - book 4
Lyrical Underground - Kensington
ISBN - ASIN B07Z5NFN5T (not in print, yet.)


Angie Turner is all prepped to face Boise’s culinary best when she enters her restaurant, The County Seat, into a big State Fair challenge. Instead, she gets dunked into a new murder investigation after a killer starts scrapping her competition . . . 

The Idaho State Fair is in full swing and chefs are lining up to enter Boise’s Best Restaurant contest, including Angie and her County Seat crew. They might be the hometown favorite, but the competition is steeper than a funhouse floor. And when a top contender is felled following a heated confrontation over a corn dog recipe, winning suddenly becomes a matter of life or death. With a foul foodie on the prowl, it’s up to Angie to dig into the case and put a murderer on ice.  




Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Up to No Good




Sophie Winston blogs 
for the Domestic Diva Mysteries 
by Krista Davis 
 
 

 
Have you ever met someone whom you just didn't trust? Sometimes I wonder if we have built-in radars. Something that was handed down in our genes from our ancestors. I've read that things like that happen.
The fellow in question is actually fairly attractive. He's friendly and engaging.
The thing is that I caught him doing something very odd. I won't go into details, but it was right out in public and no one else even noticed! I keep running into him. Old Town isn't very big, so I guess that's to be expected. He always smiles at me.
I'm suspicious, no matter how nice everyone else thinks he is. Have you ever gotten the feeling that someone is up to no good?

Krista is giving away an advance reader copy of THE DIVA SPICES IT UP. Leave a comment with your email address to enter the giveaway! 
 
KristaDavis.com
mysteryloverskitchen.com
www.facebook.com/KristaDavisAuthor
pinterest.com/kristadavisbook
twitter.com/kristadavis

Monday, March 30, 2020

Stress Baking and a Book Giveaway


By Lily Roberts from the Tea by the Sea mysteries by Vicki Delany

When I’m stressed, I bake. When I’m bored, I bake. When I’m busy, I bake. I bake for a living, so it’s a good thing I still enjoy it.
Like many of you I’m under lockdown right now. For some reason, the powers that be don’t consider afternoon tea to be an essential service.  ????, I know.

I’m doing some catering, so that’s good. My assistants are driving all over the Outer Cape dropping off scones, cookies, macarons, cupcakes, tea sandwiches, packets of tea, and other goodies, so people can have a tea party by themselves or with their family.  It helps to keep the spirits up and I’m happy to keep working.
I’m sure we’ll all be back to normal soon and I can throw open the doors to Tea by the Sea, my tea room, and invite you all for afternoon tea.

In the meantime, other than baking, I like to read.  I bet you do too, so I’d like to offer one lucky commentator an advance copy of TEA AND TREACHERY, the first book in the Tea by the Sea series from Kensington.  All you have to do to enter is leave a comment telling me your special place to go for afternoon tea. Never been? That’s okay too. Even if you’re a coffee drinker and your favourite place is your house, let us know.




Contest open to US and Canada residents. Contest closes Thursday April 2.

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Stay at Home Game Ideas


Characters: Liz and Hank McCall
Series: Vintage Toyshop Mysteries
Author: Barbara Early

Liz: Hi, Liz McCall here.

Hank: I’m here too.

Liz: We’re all hunkered down here in our apartment above Well Played, our Vintage Toyshop.

Hank: Our very empty Vintage Toyshop…

Liz: Earlier this month, we were delivering puzzles and games, or running pre-paid orders out to cars, but now we are closed. While we’re following the governor’s stay-at-home orders, we thought it might be a good time to share some ideas on games you can play at home.

Hank: It’s a great time to pull out the old favorites. Especially the ones that nobody ever seems to have time to finish, like Risk and Monopoly.



Liz: I hate playing Monopoly with you, Dad.

Hank: Only because you always lose, Betsy.

Liz: And stop calling me Betsy. (Glares at him) You can also play many of these games with friends and family you might be separated from in online versions. Many even have a chat window, so you can catch up while you play, which might be especially pleasant for those sheltering home alone. Here are some ideas: https://www.thegamer.com/popular-board-games-play-online/

Hank: Families might be looking for games to keep the kiddos busy.

Liz: True. And if they should tire of the collection of games they have at home, we gathered a few ideas for games that can be played with common items around the house.

Hank: Pen and pencil games are always good.

Liz: And they go far beyond Tic Tac Toe.  Here are a link we’ve found with great ideas for games you can play with just pens and paper: https://icebreakerideas.com/pen-and-paper-games/

Hank: Other games can be made with common items that might already be in your own house. Games like Mancala or Cat’s Cradle. Here’s more: https://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-toys-and-games-you-can-make-at-home

Liz: Active kids might need games that keep their little bodies moving. I remember back when I had the chicken pox, Dad blew up a balloon and strung a clothesline to use as a net, and we played volleyball in the living room.

Hank: You remember that?

Liz: One of my favorite childhood memories, actually. Except it still makes me itch when I think about it.

Hank: Here are more active games to play inside. https://www.playworks.org/resource/six-active-indoor-games-for-kids/
Liz: And if you’re teaching your kids at home, don’t forget educational games to help break up the day. My favorite teacher used to help us review for tests by making up her own questions for Trivial Pursuit and Jeopardy.

Hank: Teachers are always looking for good educational games. Many can be used at home, too. Here are a few to get you started: https://www.thoughtco.com/games-for-test-prep-31244

Liz: These days can be long and difficult for many of us. A little play makes the days go faster.

Hank: Kids especially may need to be sheltered from the scary news and kept busy with more normal activities. Games are perfect for that.

Liz: We’re all in this together. Let’s have a little fun, while we’re at it.

Hank: Um…

Liz: No, still not playing Monopoly with you…


You can spend more time with Liz and Hank in the Vintage Toyshop Mysteries.


Prayers and well wishes for all those essential workers. You're our heroes!

For those staying at home, play any fun games lately?









Saturday, March 28, 2020

Cows are Cute, too! (Plus a giveaway!)


A Buttermilk Creek Mystery
Book #1
Brynn MacAlister

By Mollie Cox Bryan

Here at Buttermilk Creek we love cats, sure. We have one and we love her. But we're bit head over heels in love with cows. And we think cows are just as cute. Well, they are very cute in their own way, right?

Here some happy cows delighting in spring.

A funny compilation of cow escapades.




A rescued calf. SO SWEET!

You know how I am about cows with dogs, right?

Okay so I'm a little crazy about cows. How about you?

Respond  and be entered to win a copy of Christmas Cow Bells!


Mollie Cox Bryan  is the author of the Buttermilk Creek Mysteries, Cora Crafts Mysteries and the Cumberland Creek Mysteries. Her books have been selected as finalists for an Agatha Award and a Daphne du Maurier Award and as a Top 10 Beach Reads by Woman's World. She has also been short-listed for the Virginia Library People's Choice Award. She lives in Waynesboro, Va.





Friday, March 27, 2020

Spring? You call this Spring?



by Erin Murphy
from the Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries by Leslie Budewitz

I hear it’s spring. By the calendar, yes, and by all the emails I’m getting from the Merc’s suppliers advertising spring specials and urging me to stock up on everything from bottles and jars for our pasta sauces and jams to shipping labels and packing tape.

Spring. Bah. You can call it that if you’d like, but here in Northwest Montana – or Montuna, as my brother Nick’s taken to calling it – it’s Mud Season.

And it doesn’t seem to matter how big the door mats are, or whether I put one outside as well as in. It’s as if no one knows how to use them. My great-grandfather built this building, home to Murphy’s Mercantile, in 1910, and the floors are wide planks well-worn with the feet of time. Who knows how many times they’ve been sanded and varnished? I just hope I don’t wear them clean away, with all the mopping we’ve had to do the last couple of weeks.

Whatever brings you to Jewel Bay, do stop by the Merc to see what’s new. Cherry jam. Bunny-shaped soaps. Pots of daffodils, and all the wonderful new products our vendors have been cooking up over the long, cold winter. We welcome you. We really do.

Just wipe your feet.

How is the season changing where you are? 

During this difficult time, I'm celebrating independent booksellers. Order a book from an indie -- online or locally -- then pop over to my Facebook Author page and tell me about it. When the chaos ends and bookstores reopen, I'll choose a winner of a book of mine or a bookstore gift card.  




Leslie Budewitz is the author of the Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries and the Spice Shop Mysteries, and the winner of Agatha Awards in three categories.  Death al Dente, the first Food Lovers' Village Mystery, won Best First Novel in 2013, following her 2011 win in Best Nonfiction. Her first historical short story, "All God's Sparrows," won the 2018 Agatha Award for Best Short Story. A past president of Sisters in Crime and a current board member of Mystery Writers of America, she lives in northwest Montana with her husband, a musician and doctor of natural medicine, and their cat, an avid bird-watcher.

Swing by my website and join the mailing list for my seasonal newsletter. And join me on Facebook where I announce lots of giveaways from my cozy writer friends.