by Thea Green
from the Haunted Yarn Shop Mysteries by Molly MacRae
Hi, Thea Green, here. If you’re a friend of Kath Rutledge who owns the Weaver’s Cat in Blue Plum, Tennessee, then you probably know I’m the director of the Blue Plum Public Library. I’ve also helped Kath and our group, TGIF (Thank Goodness It’s Fiber), solve a few murders. Not to brag, but what librarians don’t already know, they know how to find out. Remember that the next time you don’t know where to turn. Your librarian might not know where you should turn, either, but she’ll help you find out.
But enough of not bragging. Blue Plum is a small town, but there’s nothing small about the town’s love – or mine – for the library. I’m the first to arrive most mornings, and when I do, I stop inside the front door to listen. You might think the place would be silent or hushed or waiting. But I hear the rustle of pages and the murmur of voices – Charlotte and Wilbur making plans, Miss Marple greeting a neighbor in St. Mary Mead, Lizzie Bennet laughing with her sisters. You might be laughing at that notion, but meet me at the door some morning and we’ll go in together.
In the meantime, let me do something else I love. Let tell you about some of the mysteries on our new arrivals shelf and then I’ll tell you about a stupendous giveaway.
First up is A Dream of Death by Connie Berry. Set on a Hebridean island, off the west coast of Scotland, this book has it all―atmosphere, suspense, a cracking-good mystery, and characters I want to meet again soon. I can’t imagine a better way to spend an afternoon than with antiques dealer Kate Hamilton as she tries find the truth behind a murder staged to look like an unsolved murder from 200 years ago. This is Berry’s first book, but you’d never know it. She’s a born storyteller.
J.A. Kellman is another debut author. The Snake took me on a tense, twisting trek from the American Midwest into the Mesoamerican jungles to solve a shocking crime. Talk about gripping suspense! Like her main character, Kellman is a retired professor with a background in art and anthropology. She spent four summers in Guatemala doing research and falling in love with Maya culture. From what I hear, Kellman is working on a second book, and I’m glad.
A Death at Tippitt Pond, by Susan Van Kirk, is a tale of long-buried secrets that begin to smolder when Beth Russell arrives in Sweet Iron, Illinois. Suddenly everything she knew about her life was wrong—and the truth was better but also shockingly worse. Van Kirk knows how to ratchet up the suspense. This is the first in her new Sweet Iron mystery series. If you like it, you should look for her Endurance Mysteries. Good stuff. Fun fact: Van Kirk wrote the CliffsNotes for Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men, Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, Remarque’s All Quiet on the Western Front, and Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter. (Librarians love trivia like that.)
This last book isn’t on our new arrivals shelf yet, so I’m kind of cheating. Librarians get to do that, though, because we get to read advance copies. The Botticelli Caper is the third book in Sarah Wisseman’s Flora Garibaldi Art History Mysteries. It’s another fast-paced mystery set in Italy that had me ready to hop on a plane to join Flora in foiling forgers, art thieves, and killers. Look for The Botticelli Caper in September. Wisseman also writes the Lisa Donohue Archaeological Mysteries set in Boston and Israel.
Did you notice that I told you about those books in alphabetical order by their authors? Librarian!
Now for the stupendous giveaway. These four authors are each giving away a signed copy of their book. Wisseman’s book will be mailed after it’s released in September. And just for fun, because I know the author, I’ll toss in a signed copy of Crewel and Unusual, the latest Haunted Yarn Shop Mystery, and Scones and Scoundrels, book 2 in the Highland Bookshop Mysteries. I’ll choose five lucky winners, at random, from among those who leave comments on this post. The catch? In your comment, recommend a book you like. Title and author is enough, but you can tell us why you like them, if you want. Remember to leave your email address.
Contest runs through noon, central time, Sunday 8/25. (U.S. only – sorry about that.)
In libraries and bookstores now.
Available for pre-order in bookstores now, and available in libraries and bookstores in January 2020!
Molly MacRae writes the award-winning, national bestselling Haunted Yarn Shop Mysteries and the Highland Bookshop Mysteries. Visit Molly on Facebook and Pinterest, connect with her on Twitter @mysteryMacRae.