Guest Blog Post – Meet Harry the Wonder Cat By Denise Brixey

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Harry the Wonder Cat is a cozy mystery series that deals with murder, revenge and a magical cat who saves the day. In each book, Harry is challenged with mysteries that perplex the humans around him until Harry steps in and lends a helping paw.

“The Legend of the Pink Diamond” is the first book of the series. In it, we meet Harry and find out what makes him so special. He introduces us to his gang of cats who work alongside him to find the killer of his guardian.

The most important thing when writing a book (besides figuring out what your plot will be) is your characters. I created cat characters, as well as humans and found that creating the personalities of the cats were easier to write.

When it came to “casting” the felines, I had only to look as far as my Facebook community page, Kitty Tales. I opened up auditions for the cat stars to the cats of my followers. They quickly sent photos along with a few personality quirks and voila… I had Harry’s gang.

Creating the human characters, that was most difficult. My process is to go online and get pictures of all of my characters and then assign physical and personality traits to them. I give them all backstories; what it is that makes them who they are today.

Their goals are very important to the storyline. For instance, the sheriff in my book has a hatred for my protagonist’s family that goes way back to when he and Nikki’s father were in high school, vying for the same girl’s heart. The sheriff lost and has been trying to get revenge on the Johnson family ever since. He thinks he finally found the opportunity when it appears that Nikki killed her aunt for the family money.

I’m working on the second book now. In this one, Harry, his new guardian, Nikki, and their roommate go on a vacation to Jamaica and land in the middle of a 90-year-old murder mystery. It promises to be an exciting sequel to “The Legend of the Pink Diamond.”

The series is written for an audience of readers that are ages 13+.

The “Legend of the Pink Diamond” is available on Amazon.

You can follow Harry on his blog.

Look for the second book of The Harry the wonder Cat Series, “Harry’s Ghostly Vacation, soon.

Denise Brixey

 

 

 

 

 

Guest Blog Post: The Joy of Tomatoes by Vicki Delany

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Originally written August 2019

It’s late summer in Ontario.  And for me that means good eating.

When I retired from my job as a systems analyst at a major bank and took up a full time writing career I moved to a small property in the country. I’ve since become a real locovore. I love to eat as locally as I can, and this time of year, I’m pretty much on a ten mile diet.  The farmer’s gate stands are bursting with potatoes (I loooove fingerlings), squash, bok choy, Swiss chard, apples, onions, garlic, zucchini. I could go on and on.  I make sauces and soups and muffins which I pop into the freezer for the winter.

But of all the wonderful produce, one stands out.

Tomatoes.

I love tomatoes, but I truly believe a tomato has to be freshly picked to be worth eating. In the winter and spring I might buy a tomato or two from the supermarket but only if they are going to be put into a stew or soup. They’re just not good enough to eat raw or lightly cooked.

I believe in the pleasure of anticipation. I’ll wait ten months in order to really enjoy a fresh local tomato. I believe we’ve lost a lot when we’ve given up the pleasure of anticipation. In the world today we want what we want when we want it and that when is usually now. But you can’t grow a tomato in November in the north and you can’t pick it fresh from the vine in January. You have to wait.

And wait I will do.

I have the great fortune of living in Prince Edward County, Ontario, one of the best agricultural areas in Canada. When I first moved here I started a vegetable patch, but I quickly decided that was too much like work.  I keep a few tomato plants on the deck so I can nip off a warmed-from-the-sun cherry tomato and pop it right into my mouth.  For tomatoes in quantity, all I have to do is walk up the road to a farm gate stand or stop in at another one on the way into town and I can buy tomatoes they grew themselves.

Nothing better than that.

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One of the things I do with all those tomatoes is make soup. This soup freezes beautifully so I can enjoy it in the bleak midwinter and remember summer.

Vicki Delany’s Tomato and Red Pepper Soup

5 LBS. FRESH TOMATOES

3 MEDIUM RED BELL PEPPERS

2 TBSP. EXTRA-VIRGIN OLIVE OIL

1 TABLESPOON CHOPPED FRESH SEEDED RED CHILI

SALT AND FRESHLY GROUND BLACK PEPPER

1 CLOVE OF GARLIC, FINELY CHOPPED

1 TABLESPOON BALSAMIC VINEGAR

2 1/2 CUPS VEGETABLE OR CHICKEN STOCK

  1. Place tomatoes in a large pot of boiling water for about 60 seconds. Transfer them immediately to a large bowl of water. Cool, then peel off the skins and remove seeds.
  2. Broil peppers (turning regularly) until the skins are charred. Place them in a covered bowl until they’re cool enough to handle. Then peel and finely chop.
  3. Heat olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat.
  4. Add the chilli peppers, chopped red peppers and a pinch of salt. Cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Add garlic, and cook for 2 minutes.
  6. Add chopped tomatoes, another pinch of salt, and vinegar. Cook for another 10 minutes.
  7. Add the stock, bring to boil and simmer for 15 minutes.
  8. Cool slightly.
  9. Using an immersion blender, tabletop blender or food processor, blend the soup to a smooth consistency. Can be served immediately or frozen.

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It may be late summer in Ontario, but in Silent Night Deadly Night, the latest in the Year Round Christmas series from Penguin Random House, its Thanksgiving and everyone’s preparing for the feast. But a pot luck dinner for Merry Wilkinson’s mother’s college reunion doesn’t exactly go as planned, and Thanksgiving itself is threatened.

Guest Blog Post – Did I scare you? Good! A guest post from Laura Childs, author of “Mumbo Gumbo Murder”

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For me, there’s nothing better than cozying up in bed and cracking open a brand new spooky, scary mystery. Okay, yes, I’ll admit that I even love to read thrillers, dystopian novels, and the occasional vampire story. Reason being, I’m hooked on being scared. Ever since my very first Nancy Drew Mystery – the Inn of the Twisted Candles, I think it was – I’ve been addicted to that little blip of adrenaline that courses through my veins when the plot shifts. You know what I’m talking about – when the story suddenly lurches from bad to worse, when the threat level rises, or some sort of specter, human or otherwise, suddenly appears.

And that, of course, is why I love to write mysteries as well. For one thing, I have a long history of dabbling in the mysterious. I was the kid who slipped into the cemetery Halloween night on a dare. I told hair-raising ghost stories around the campfire at Girl Scout camp. And in college I snuck a Ouija board into the dorm and scared the pants off everybody with my otherworldly predictions.

It only stands to reason then that the New Orleans setting in my new book Mumbo Gumbo Murder is near and dear to my heart. The Big Easy is an amazingly spooky place. It’s old, slightly tawdry, and loaded with history. The pirate Jean Lafitte tipped back flagons of rum here and, more recently, so did a whole slew of writers that included Tennessee Williams and William Faulkner. There are above-ground cemeteries, haunted hotels, and bayous iridescent with swamp gas. The Mississippi snakes through the city while, a few blocks away, Bourbon Street beckons with all manner of drink and exotic entertainment. And then there’s Mardi Gras, that raucous celebration where just about everyone loses their mind, and Jazz Fest, which serves as one of the main events in Mumbo Gumbo Murder.

In fact, here’s a quick synopsis for you: It’s Jazz Fest in New Orleans and the giant puppets from the Beastmaster Theater are parading through the French Quarter. But as Carmela Bertrand and her best friend, Ava, enjoy the parade, a terrible crash echoes from Devon Dowling’s antique shop. Rushing inside they find Devon collapsed with the only witness his small dog Mimi. Has he been shot? Stabbed? When the police arrive they realize he was stabbed with an ice pick. Running her own shadow investigation, Carmela works behind the scenes to catch Devon’s killer. Was it the greedy landlord, young assistant, fat cat art collector, or mysterious president of the Vampire Society? Mumbo Gumbo Murder offers drama, outrageous humor, mischief, fun craft tips, and delicious recipes. And because New Orleans is a top go-to spot, you’ll also enjoy the descriptions of food and landmarks.

Best of all, Mumbo Gumbo Murder was published on October 1, just in time for you to get your ghost on!

Happy hauntings,

Laura Childs

About the author

Laura Childs is the author of the Scrapbook Mysteries, Tea Shop Mysteries, and Cackleberry Club Mysteries. All have been on the New York Times, USA Today, and Publisher’s Weekly bestseller lists. Recently, Book Riot named her mysteries to their list of “25 of the All Time Best Cozy Mystery Series.” In her previous life Laura was CEO of her own marketing firm, authored several screenplays, and produced a reality TV show. She is married to Dr. Bob, a professor of Chinese art history, and has a new Chinese Shar-Pei puppy.

Buy it today on Amazon:

 

Guest Blog Post – When Characters Grab Hold By Laura Bradford,

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9781984805904As a reader, I love nothing more than characters I connect with as I delve deeper and deeper into their story, their world. It’s as if I know them; I worry when they’re in danger, feel their pain when they hit a dead end in life, cheer them on when they’re gaining courage, and celebrate when something goes their way.

That’s why, as an author, I try to give my readers that same experience, to give them characters they can connect with, characters they grow to care about with each turning page. Yes, I need to tell a story—that’s paramount. But the story is so much richer if you live it through a character you feel.

When I sat down to create the world inside my An Amish Mystery series, I felt as if I was in a room with my main character, Claire Weatherly. Here was this woman who, just as most people her age were settling down, was essentially starting her life over again after a painful relationship and a resulting change of address. I felt her excitement and her apprehension as she found the courage to embark on a new life—a life where her dreams matters, where people wanted to get to know her and cared about what she had to say… I felt Detective Jakob Fisher’s pain as he returned to a town and a people who wanted nothing to do with him… I felt Martha King’s shock when she laid eyes on the brother she hadn’t seen in well over a decade—the brother her set of beliefs demanded she ignore… I felt Aunt Diane’s love for her niece, Claire, and her determination to help Claire put down lasting roots in her beloved town…

I could see these people and all the rest of the folks who inhabited this quaint little town becoming more and more real inside my head with each passing day. My fingers flew across my laptop’s keyboard as their story, their world took shape and, by the time I’d written The End on the first book in the series, I knew I’d found a cast of characters my readers would grow to love as much as I had. And, sure enough, within days of each new book being released, emails would start coming in from readers asking when the next one would be out (a wonderful question for a writer, for sure). One, two, three, four, five, six; each new book in the series revealed another nuance, another key to these characters. Claire was not only settling in to her new life but thriving… Detective Fisher still wrestled with the rejection of his family, but there were glimmers of hope, moments when the pain abated for just a little while… Side characters like Esther and Eli, Ruth and Annie, and the seemingly steady Benjamin struggled and grew, learned and healed… Book by book, these people who visited me in my sleep and while I was driving and showering became people my readers and I cared about enough to want to know what comes next in their life the way they/I might a family member or close friend.

Now, thanks to the release of A Killer Carol, the 7th book in the series, it’s time for my readers to find out “what’s next.” And let me just say—as the one who found that out during the writing process—they’re in for some fun surprises.

***

About A Killer Carol by Laura Bradford:

Heavenly, PA has been transformed into a Christmas wonderland, and Claire is delighted to celebrate the season…but a fiendish killer has other plans in this all-new installment in the national bestselling series.

As the owner of Heavenly Treasures, the local gift shop, Claire is busier than ever helping her English customers (and even a few of her Amish friends, like Esther and Ben) find the perfect gift for the special people on their shopping list.

Claire makes sure she has time for her boyfriend, Detective Jakob Fisher. But the man, who was raised and then shunned by the Amish over his choice of career, has been unusually secretive lately. She tries not to worry, to trust their relationship, but trying and doing aren’t exactly matching up.

Before she can figure out what’s going on with Jakob, word comes that Ruth and Samuel Yoder are being questioned in the death of an elderly Amish couple, found murdered not long after the newlyweds were seen leaving the victims’ farm. Ruth, in turn, seeks Claire’s help in convincing the police that she and Samuel had nothing to do with what happened. But when Claire comes across a cryptic note tucked inside the wedding gift the victims had given the newlyweds no more than an hour before their murder, she finds herself in dire need of a little convincing as well.

Can Claire get to the bottom of things in time to ensure a merry Christmas for all?

***

Laura Bradford is the national bestselling author of An Amish Mystery series, as well as the Emergency Dessert Squad Mysteries, and the Southern Sewing Circle Mysteries (the latter written as Elizabeth Lynn Casey). In addition to her work in mysteries, Laura also pens women’s fiction novels. Her latest, A Daughter’s Truth, released in May and is a Fall 2019 Book Club Pick for Mary Janes Farm Magazine. To learn more about Laura and her books, visit her website: laurabradford.com.  On Facebook? So is Laura: https://www.facebook.com/laurabradfordauthor/.

 

 

Guest Blog Post – Imagine That! By Kate Kingsbury

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9781984805928Imagine if you were invited to spend the Christmas holidays at a hotel overlooking the ocean on the southeast coast of England, complete with excellent French cuisine served in a stately dining room, dancing in a magnificent ballroom and relaxing in a well-stocked library.  Sounds like a memorable way to spend a vacation, right?

If you were to pay a visit to the Pennyfoot Hotel, however, you might find a few drawbacks. Your first impression upon entering the majestic foyer will likely be pleasurable. There will be wreaths everywhere—on the walls, hanging from the bannisters of the grand curving staircase, and pinned to every door.  The fragrance of pine and cedar will fill the air.

There will be a Christmas tree decorated with figurines and glass balls.  The candles on the tree will be lit at night for a short time, and heavily monitored.  There is always a danger of the tree catching fire.

A uniformed footman will greet you at your carriage and escort you to the reception desk.  You might have to wake up Philip, the reception clerk. He tends to doze, but I assure you, he will take good care of you once he’s awake.

You may climb three flights of stairs to your room.  Since there is only one bathroom to each floor, a chamber pot is provided for emergencies.  A maid will bring you a wash bowl and a jug of hot water each morning.  She may wake you up a tad early, as she has many wash bowls to deliver, and carrying each one up four floors from the kitchen takes time.

The maid will also light the fire for you in the fireplace.  I would suggest that you stay under the covers until the room warms up, or you could suffer mild frostbite.  Of course, if you do that, the hot water in the jug will be quite cool.

You will be expected to dress formally for breakfast in the dining room.  You will be served whatever the chef decides to prepare.  Perhaps steamed finnan haddie with a poached egg, followed by a plate loaded with scrambled eggs, sausage, ham, bacon, fried tomatoes, fried mushrooms and toast.   They eat well at the seaside.

The morning is yours to explore the hotel, visit the nearby town or simply rest in the library.  Just be sure to return to the dining room by one p.m., since your midday meal will be served, consisting, perhaps, of fresh grapefruit, mulligatawny soup, followed by roast pork and apple sauce, with trifle for dessert.

You will have just an hour or so to rest before afternoon tea is served.  You will enjoy tiny crustless sandwiches of fish paste and watercress, scones with strawberry jam and Devonshire cream, and an assortment of pastries.

Your evening meal will be served at seven p.m., after which some form of entertainment will be available. Many of the gentlemen enjoy a game of chance in the card rooms below stairs next to the wine cellar.  Care has to be taken, however, not to mention the fact, since gambling in hotels is illegal.

You will spend your Christmas with British aristocracy, influential businessmen and the downstairs members of the staff.  You may meet Cecily Baxter, the owner of the Pennyfoot.  She is a shrewd, tenacious lady, with an eagle eye and a penchant for solving the most intricate murders.  Which is fortunate, since dead bodies appear with alarming frequency in the hotel.

Her husband, Baxter, has a gruff manner and a soft heart.  You might be served by Gertie, the head housemaid.  She’s tough, forthright, and peppers her conversation with curse words.

Michel is an excellent chef, though his French accent is completely fake.  Mrs. Chubb, the housekeeper, also bakes, while keeping a strict eye on her unruly maids.

If you would like to meet all of the diverse and occasional eccentric inhabitants, I suggest you go back in time this Christmas season to the Edwardian era and visit the Pennyfoot Hotel in A MERRY MURDER.  I promise you a memorable trip.  Happy Holidays!

ABOUT KATE KINGSBURY

Kate Kingsbury is a full-time writer and the author of the Pennyfoot Hotel Mysteries, set in Edwardian England; the Manor House Mysteries, set in an English village during World War 2; and the Merry Ghost Inn Mysteries, a contemporary series set at a bed and breakfast on the Oregon coast. Born in London, England, she now lives in the United States.

Guest Blog Post – Shamanism in Cookies and Clairvoyance by Bailey Cates

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Cookies and Clairvoyance9780399587016 is the eighth book in the Magical Bakery Mystery Series featuring Katie Lightfoot and the ladies of the spellbook club – another name for her informal coven of witches. Katie, her aunt Lucy, and uncle Ben own the Honeybee Bakery in Savannah, Georgia. Katie and Lucy are both hereditary hedgewitches, also known as green or natural witches, and add magically enhanced herbs and spices to their baked goods to benefit their customers.

Kensington Bosworth drops in to pick up a loaf of Katie’s sourdough bread in the afternoon. Hours later, Katie receives a call from Detective Peter Quinn. Kensington has been murdered in his home, surrounded by his bizarre collection of occult items. Quinn now knows Katie is a witch and hopes she can help with the possible magical connection in this homicide. However, his suspicions quickly narrow to firefighter Randy Post, who had recently argued with the victim.

Randy’s not only a co-worker of Katie’s fiancé, Declan McCarthy, but he’s in a serious relationship with spellbook-club member Bianca Devereaux. Katie’s sure he’s innocent, and her witchy instincts tell her there really is something magical behind Kensington’s murder. So, between juggling renovations of her carriage house, planning her wedding, and keeping up with her work at the bakery, Katie tracks down suspects and follows the clues to find the real killer.

I’m so happy to finally introduce Sky Lightfoot in this book. He’s made appearances in previous books in the series, but only on the other end of phone calls. I’ve been itching to bring him onto the page, but it didn’t feel organic to Katie’s story until now.

Sky, which was shortened from Skylark when he was a child, is a shaman. He has Shawnee blood, and is descended from a long line of shamans, but his father passed when he was only four years old. His father’s best friend trained him. “Uncle” Sosa was a Cree medicine man and shaman as well as an anthropologist who studied not only shamanic rituals of different Native American tribes but also those of indigenous peoples of Australia, South America, Mexico, and the Celtic traditions of Britain. All of these are a little different in practice but aim toward the same result.

Katie asks Sky about the difference between a medicine man (or woman) and a shaman. Medicine men and women are healers that use more traditional techniques like herbs and sweating. A shaman mediates between this world and the next. They are still healers, but on a different level. Finally, Katie is able to witness her father’s unique magical talents, to see how he journeys onto other planes to retrieve the things people have lost – including pieces of their souls. In the process, Katie goes on a shamanic journey of her own.

Of course, both the recipes in the back of Cookies and Clairvoyance are for…cookies! Namely, Magical Chocolate Peppermint Cookies and Honeybee Spice Cookies. You can find those and all the other recipes from the books, as well as information about the Magical Bakery Mysteries and the Enchanted Garden Mysteries I write as Bailey Cattrell, at http://www.baileycates.com.

ABOUT BAILEY CATES

Bailey Cates believes magic is all around us if we only look for it. She is the New York Times bestselling author of the Magical Bakery Mysteries. Writing as Bailey Cattrell, she is also the author of the Enchanted Garden Mysteries.

PRODUCT DETAILS

Mass Market Paperback | $7.99
Published by Berkley
Aug 27, 2019 | 320 Pages | 4-3/16 x 6-3/4| ISBN 97803995

New Title: Mrs. Jeffries and the Alms of the Angel By Emily Brightwell

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ABOUT MRS. JEFFRIES AND THE ALMS OF THE ANGEL

When a wealthy widow is murdered, Mrs. Jeffries investigates what happens when money can’t buy your life in this all-new installment in the beloved Victorian Mystery series.

9780451492241Margaret Starling wasn’t the sort of woman anyone expected to be murdered. She was on the advisory board of the London Angel Alms Society, she was an active member of St. Peter’s Church, and, best of all, she was always willing to lend a hand to a friend or a neighbor in need of advice. She was also a wealthy upper-class widow. But money alone won’t protect you when someone decides it’s high time you met your maker.

Margaret’s next-door neighbor considered her an odious busybody, the Reverend Reginald Pontefract wished she’d never set foot in St. Peter’s, and half the advisory board of the London Angel Alms Society heartily hoped she’d come down with pneumonia before the next quarterly meeting.

All in all, Margaret wasn’t as well regarded as she’d always thought she was. But Mrs. Jeffries and Inspector Witherspoon know that justice isn’t a popularity contest, and they won’t rest until they sift through the suspects to catch a sinister scrooge.

ABOUT EMILY BRIGHTWELL

Emily Brightwell is the New York Times bestselling author of the Victorian Mysteries featuring Inspector Witherspoon and Mrs. Jeffries.

New Title – A Word to the Wise by Jenn McKinlay

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ABOUT WORD TO THE WISE

It’s no-holds-barred murder, in the latest page-turning Library Lover’s Mystery from the New York Times bestselling author of Hitting the Books.

Lindsey Norris is finally getting married to the man of her dreams—but it’s not all roses for Briar Creek’s beloved library director, as gardening enthusiast and town newcomer Aaron Grady gives the term “book lover” a whole new meaning. Inappropriate looks and unwelcome late-night visits to Lindsey’s house have everyone from the crafternooners to Lindsey’s fiancé, Sully, on edge.

When Grady’s dead body is found staged outside the library and all the clues point to Sully, Lindsey knows it’s up to her to dig through the hidden chapters of Grady’s previous life to find the real culprit and clear Sully’s name. But becoming a thorn in the killer’s side is not without its consequences, and the closer Lindsey gets to the truth, the more determined the murderer is to make her just a footnote.236264

ABOUT JENN MCKINLAY

Former librarian Jenn McKinlay is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Bluff Point Romances, including Every Dog Has His Day, Barking Up the Wrong Tree, and About a Dog, as well as the Library Lover’s Mysteries, the Cupcake Bakery Mysteries, and the Hat Shop… More about Jenn McKinlay

Blour Tour – Characters Finding the Right Match by Bestselling Author Kat Martin

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When it comes to Romantic Suspense, one of the most important and often the hardest thing to do is to find the right match for the hero or heroine who is the primary character in the book.  In THE DECEPTION, Hawk Maddox is a former Marine, a strong, tough, sometimes reckless, chance-taker.  I needed a woman who was equally strong, tough-yet-feminine woman who could handle his reckless nature.

And because Hawk was an extremely virile male, a passionate woman, as well.

Kate Gallagher was all of those things.  She also strongly believes in justice, which means finding the killer who murdered her sister takes precedence over a relationship with Hawk.

As the two are thrown together in their search for a killer, Hawk and Kate begin to appreciate the strengths they find in each other.

And there is the sexuality that vibrates between them. Though Hawk wants Kate from the moment he spots her on the dance floor of the Sagebrush Saloon, he understands her grief and her resolve.  Though the time isn’t right, Hawk comes to believe Kate Gallagher is a woman worth waiting for.

Working to make them a couple was fun, and of course sending them on a dangerous, desperate adventure added to the excitement of writing the book.

I hope you’ll look for THE DECEPTION, and if you haven’t read Chase Garrett’s story, THE CONSPIRACY, I hope you’ll give it a try.

Until next time, all best and happy reading.

Kat

Cover (The Deception) 300x450

THE DECEPTION, by Kat Martin

Excerpt #2 of 5

After her meltdown at the bar, which still embarrassed her, Kate spent the following week hounding the Dallas Police Department.

Chrissy’s case had been assigned to a homicide detective named Roger Benson, an older guy with thinning brown hair and a bad attitude. She’d done a little digging, found out he had previously worked in the sex crimes division, an unabashed misogynist who acted as if he believed all women were whores and was completely the wrong person to be handling cases in that department–which was probably why he now worked in homicide.

She tried to give him the benefit of the doubt, figuring the crimes he had worked had changed him into the man he had become. Or maybe he had always been like that. Either way, Kate didn’t like him.

“Your sister was using the name Tina Galen,” he told her when she appeared in his office demanding answers for the fourth day in a row.  “She was a heroin addict and a known prostitute.”

Her heart squeezed, though the police had already told her those things.  “She was murdered, Detective.  Her killer needs to face justice.”

“I’m sorry for your loss, Ms. Gallagher.  We’re doing everything we can to locate the person who killed her, but in circumstances like these, the odds of finding him aren’t good.”

“The killer must have left evidence. Fingerprints or DNA.  Something.”

“We’re working on it.  We believe Tina hooked up with a john who liked rough sex.  That night, he got carried away, beat her worse than he meant to, and killed her.  If that’s the case, he may have assaulted women before.”

“So you’ll be able to find him.”

“Like I said, we’re working on it.  You need to let us do our job, Ms. Gallagher.  Coming down here every day and badgering us isn’t going to help.  Now if you don’t mind, I’ve got things I need to do.  Your sister’s case isn’t the only one on my desk.”

She glanced over at the stack of files on the detective’s desk and bit back a sharp retort.  “Yes, I can see that.”  And clearly, arguing with Benson wasn’t going to get her anywhere.

As she left the police station, it occurred to her there was a good chance nothing she said or did was going to get the answers she was determined to get in regard to Chrissy’s death.

She needed someone to help her.  A detective who worked directly for her and strictly on her sister’s murder case.

At twenty-nine, she was the owner of Gallagher and Company Consulting, an up-and-coming management consulting firm. And though there were only two other analysts in the office so far, plus a receptionist who acted as her personal assistant, she had built a solid reputation during the time she’d been working in Dallas, and the company was making money.

She could afford to hire a private investigator.

Arriving in the lobby of the five-story building on North Akard near McKinney where the office was located, she waved at one of the security guards, a big guy named Clay, as she passed.

Kate’s stomach tightened.  Clay didn’t have the thick dark hair and gorgeous blue eyes of the man she had nearly had sex with in the parking lot of the Sagebrush Saloon, but he was almost as tall, with the same rock-solid body.  Every time she saw Clay, who was older and not nearly as good-looking, she thought of Jason “Hawk” Maddox and felt a combination of embarrassment and a ridiculous rush of heat.

Dear God, she had never been more turned on in her life.  When he’d hauled her out on the dance floor and pulled her into his big, powerful arms, it occurred to her for the first time, she might really go through with the hookup she had only imagined.

Maddox really knew how to dance.  And he could he kiss.  She could have kissed him for hours.

Thank God, she had come to her senses before it was too late.  She didn’t do hookups, especially with hot, muscle-jocks in jeans and scuffed boots. She didn’t have sex with strangers.

But after she’d left the morgue, she had gone a little crazy.  Crying hadn’t done a lick of good and eventually she had managed to pull herself together, but the terrible feelings of guilt and failure would not go away.

It didn’t matter that she and Chrissy, an accidental baby eleven years younger, had never been close, that by the time Chrissy was in high school, Kate had moved from the small Texas town of Rockdale to Dallas.

She was working full time for Bain Consulting as a junior member of one of their teams when Chrissy began having problems with drugs and alcohol, and behaving promiscuously with boys.  Kate had gone back to Rockdale to talk to her but it hadn’t done any good.  A few months later, her sister had run away from home, and though the police had done everything in their power to find her, Kate had never seen her again.

Not until the police had called with the terrible news of her murder and Kate had gone to the morgue.

How she’d wound up half drunk at the Sagebrush Saloon still wasn’t completely clear.  She’d just been desperate to get the image of Chrissy’s battered and bludgeoned body out of her head, and for a while in the backseat with Jason, it had actually worked.

It was impossible to think of anything but those big hands on her breasts and the thick ridge beneath the fly of his jeans. God, she had never known that kind of want before.

THE DECEPTION

PURCHASE LINKS

AMAZON

Kindle https://www.amazon.com/Deception-Maximum-Security-Book-ebook/dp/B07N42GTRB

Hardcover https://www.amazon.com/Deception-Maximum-Security-Kat-Martin/dp/1335007695

Barnes & Noble

Nook https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/deception-dwayne-t-martin/1125448252?ean=9781488054327#/

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ITUNES

https://books.apple.com/us/book/the-deception/id1450623296

INDIEBOUND

Hardcover https://www.indiebound.org/book/9781335007698

Publishers Weekly Review

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Guest Blog Post – Coffee Facts by Sofie Kelly, Author of ‘A Night’s Tail’

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Kathleen Paulson, from the Magical Cats mysteries, loves coffee about as much as her cats, Hercules and Owen, love sardine crackers. She first got to know the very handsome Detective Marcus Gordon over coffee. She’s had coffee with the big breakfast at Fern’s Diner. She’s enjoyed hundred of cups in the staff room at the library. Over the years, I’ve learned some interesting trivia about coffee drinking and the history of one of our favorite beverages. Here are ten coffee facts.

  1. Did you know that coffee beans are technically seeds? They’re referred to as beans because that’s what they look like.
  2. World-wide, more than two billion cups of coffee are consumed every day.
  3. Robusta coffee beans contain more caffeine than Arabica.
  4. Both lattes and cappuccinos are espresso-based drinks. A cappuccino contains more espresso. A latte has more milk.
  5. Coffee is the second most popular drink in the world. Water is number one.
  6. After the Boston Tea Party, drinking coffee was seen as an act of patriotism.
  7. A cup of generic brewed coffee has more caffeine than a can of Red Bull.
  8. More than half of American adults drink coffee every day. And on average they consume slightly more than 3 cups.
  9. People who drink coffee regularly often consume calorie-heavy extras like cream, sugar and flavoured syrups with their coffee.
  10. Legend has it that coffee was discovered by an Ethiopian goat herder who noticed his goats became restless when they ate the leaves and beans of an unfamiliar plant.

ABOUT A NIGHT’S TAIL

9780440001133In the charming town of Mayville Heights, librarian Kathleen Paulson and her two cats pounce on clues to catch a killer, in the eleventh installment of this New York Times bestselling series.

Spring is coming to Mayville Heights, and Kathleen’s brother, Ethan, has arrived in town with his band, The Flaming Gerbils. But not everything goes as scheduled when one of Ethan’s bandmates gets into a fight with a man interested in investing in the town. When the businessman’s body is later found, Ethan’s friend is implicated in the crime.

Kathleen wants to help her brother by solving the case, but she has no shortage of suspects from which to choose. Prior to his death, the investor was fighting like cats and dogs with lots of people. If this librarian wants more than a whisker’s chance of solving the case, she will need to rely on her trusty feline sidekicks, Owen and Hercules.

BOUT SOFIE KELLY

Sofie Kelly is a New York Times bestselling author and mixed-media artist who lives on the East Coast with her husband and daughter. She writes the New York Times bestselling Magical Cats mysteries and, as Sofie Ryan, writes the New York Times bestselling Second Chance Cat mysteries.

PRODUCT DETAILS

Hardcover | $25.00
Published by Berkley
Sep 03, 2019 | 288 Pages | 5-1/8 x 8| ISBN 9780440001133