Tag Archives: cozy mystery

An Author Interview with Karen Chino ~ New Release: New Beginnings

Please help me welcome Karen Chino who is sharing about herself and her fun new book!

 

Please tell us a little about yourself, where are you from? Where do you live now? Family? Pets?

I’m from Staten Island, New York and am presently living on the Jersey Shore in Barnegat.

 

Where did you get the idea for New Beginnings?

I came up with the idea when I move into a 55 and over community.

 

Why did you choose this genre (is it something you’ve written in before)?

I’ve never written a cozy mystery before. But there was something about this genre that I knew I could incorporate in my new living conditions.

 

Was there anything unusual, any anecdote about this book, the characters, title, process, etc, you’d like to share?  

When I realized that the drama in a 55 and over community could be compared to high school, I knew I found a new genre to tell my story.

 

What is the most difficult thing about writing a book?

Finding the time and being able to get into the zone is the most difficult part of writing any book. I find writing the outline to be difficult too. With an outline, I can keep the flow going.

 

What was the most difficult thing about this one in particular?

Since the book takes place in the community I live in, I had to make sure that the scenery and props were all in sync. When the color of the lobby changed, I had to rewrite my descriptions.

 

Do you collect anything?

Yes! Books, of course.

 

What’s your favorite book of all time and why? What’s your favorite childhood book? Lovers and Gamblers by Jackie Collins. After reading it, I knew my genre was going to be Women’s Fiction. As a kid, I read Nancy Drew Mysteries.

 

What do you want readers to come away with after they read New Beginnings?

I want the reader to know that no matter what the situation is, there is always a way to get out of it or deal with it in a positive manner.

 

What genre have you never written that you’d like to write?

Time Travel

 

Have you written any other books that are not published?

Yes. I have four books.

 

Are your characters based off real people or did they all come entirely from your imagination?

 

My characters are based on acquaintances but take on a life of their own.

What do your friends and family think of your writing?

My family has given me 100% support. Of course my family loves my books, but it’s the support that they give me that is priceless.

 

How much of the book is realistic? 

I write about realistic situations that women deal with everyday. In my cozy mysteries, I have more room to use my imagination.

 

How did your interest in writing originate? 

I started writing poems and short stories when I was fourteen. By junior year of high school I knew it was time to write longer pieces. (I still have all the notebooks with the story I had written.)

 

Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work? 

Janet Evanovich. Her books are quick reads, laugh out loud with quirky characters. I love the mystery along with the relationship Stephanie Plum is having with two gorgeous men.
Your favorite…

Movie:  Saturday Night Fever

Music: Classic Disco, The Beatles, Paul McCarntey

Place you’ve visited: Sicily

Place you’d like to visit: Hawaii

TV show from childhood: American Bandstand

TV show from adulthood: This is Us

Food: Pizza and Chicken

Sports team: New York Mets

Which do you prefer: Board games/card games or television? Television

 

Question for readers:

I’m always open for new ideas. Is there anything out there that you would like to read about that has yet to make the bookshelves?

 

BIO

Karen Cino has been writing since she was fourteen years old. She started her career by writing poetry, short stories and writing articles for her high school newspaper. Her daily walks down at the boardwalk are what gets her muse going. It clears her mind and helps her find realistic plot ideas and the characters boosting up her muse. Karen loves writing about local places that people can relate to.

Karen loves the summer, loves the beach. Her previous books were written and take place in various places across Staten Island. Karen relocated to Barnegat, New Jersey in 2015. She traded in the Staten Island Boardwalk for the shoreline in Long Beach Island. Her Camp Mirage Series takes place in Barnegat, NJ.

Karen is a member of Romance Writers of America, Women’s Fiction Writing Association and Liberty States Fiction Writers. She is also busy writing newsletters and newspaper articles for the 55 and over community she resides at.

Karen has two adult children, Michael Giordano who’s a singer, songwriter and producer and Nicole Giordano who works in Retail Management and is also a photographer. In 2014 Karen married John Gatti. Her husband is an actor, teacher and attorney.

BLURB

After a traumatic event in her life, Connie Acosta heads down to the Jersey Shore to stay with her friend, Sara Mazza, who lives in a fifty-five and over community. For Connie, this is a temporary stop until she figures out what she wants to do.
Connie and Sara have a brief discussion and decide to start the baking business they had spoken about decades before. But things take a dramatic turn when Sara gets Connie involved in a mysterious adventure at the clubhouse.

BUY LINK

EXCERPT

“Hey, what happened to your cell phone?” Sara asked.

“I left it in the car and I’m too lazy to walk out to get it,” she said, sitting down at the kitchen table with a mug of coffee in her hand.

“What’s going on up there?

“You can’t even imagine. I’ve been shunned by my friends. Teddy made a mess of things. He turned our lives upside down.” Connie lifted the mug to her lips taking a sip. “I can’t even go into Starbucks without people staring at me.”

“Screw everyone. Pack your suitcase and come stay with me for a couple of weeks while you figure out what you want to do.”

“That sounds great. But I don’t want people to think I’m running away.”

“You aren’t running away from anything. You did nothing. Teddy’s the one that caused this backlash, leaving you to pick up the pieces.”

“I agree.”

“Come on down. I promise you if you stay here long enough you’ll be looking to stay. Whenever you come here, you’re only here for a couple of days and we’re usually out gallivanting, not giving you enough time to see what’s down here.”

“It’s an adult community. I guess it’s safe to say we’re not going to get ourselves into trouble.”

“You’ll be surprised.” Sara giggled. “I’m going to run food shopping to pick up a few things. Do you still eat that hummus crap?”

“Of course I do. But don’t go crazy. When I get there, we’ll go stock up.”

“Should I expect to see you in a couple of hours?” Sara excitedly asked.

“Let me pack a couple of things. I plan on going shopping in the boutiques in Long Beach Island.”

“Be careful.”

“I always am.”

 

CONTACT LINKS

Karencino.com

karencino@aol.com

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Filed under Author Blog Post, New Release

A Fun Mystery by M.S. Spencer ~ The Pit and the Passion: Murder at the Ghost Hotel

Please help me welcome today’s guest, M.S. Spencer, with her new release…

Thanks so much, Alicia, for letting me talk to your readers about my new mystery romance The Pit and the Passion: Murder at the Ghost Hotel. Set on Longboat Key, Florida, it features an unexpected skeleton, a quirky romance between an arrogant though talented writer and a beautiful reporter, and a complicated set of clues that lead to a deadly secret long hidden by the most famous circus family in the world.

Blurb:

At midnight, in the darkness of a deserted hotel, comes a scream and a splash. Eighty-five years later, workmen uncover a skeleton in an old elevator shaft. Who is it, and how did it get there? To find out, Charity Snow, ace reporter for the Longboat Key Planet, teams up with Rancor Bass, best-selling author. A college ring they find at the dig site may prove to be their best clue.

Although his arrogance nearly exceeds his talent, Charity soon discovers a warm heart beating under Rancor’s handsome exterior. While dealing with a drop-dead gorgeous editor who may or may not be a villain, a publisher with a dark secret, and an irascible forensic specialist, Charity and Rancor unearth an unexpected link to the most famous circus family in the world.

The Pit and the Passion: Murder at the Ghost Hotel

The Wild Rose Press, January 22, 2018 (Crimson Rose)

Mystery, Humorous/Romantic Comedy

Rating: PG13

418 p.; 97370 words

Rancor has many hidden talents, as Charity discovers in this excerpt.

Excerpt (G): The Frog Prince

As she trudged up the stairs, rain began to fall, sparking a chorus of cheeps from the tiny native treefrogs. It seemed to grow louder and louder. When she reached her door, she found out why. A huge green bullfrog sat in a small wooden cage on the mat. A tag attached to it said, “Kiss Me.” When she picked up the cage, a guttural voice croaked, “If you don’t kiss me, you won’t get your present.” She looked around but couldn’t see anyone. The voice came again. “Down here.”

The frog regarded her solemnly, its large eyes unblinking. She spoke to the air. “I am not going to kiss a frog.”

“Ah, but I’m a special frog. A prince of a frog. Kiss me.”

She had to admit she was tempted. “If I let you out, you’ll hop away.” Why the hell am I talking to an amphibian?

“Then you’d better kiss me quick.”

She shrugged. The rain turned into a downpour, and she moved under the shelter of the overhang. With hesitant fingers, she opened the little door. The frog hopped out. Quick as a flash, she bent down and touched her lips to its back. Surprisingly, it was neither slimy nor wet. She resisted the urge to wipe her mouth. The frog croaked once but remained crouched on its haunches, gazing at her. She shook her head. “No sense in asking. I’m only doing it once.”

“Wait.”

“Wait for what?”

“Wait for it…” There was a flash of purple smoke. When it cleared, the frog was gone, and Rancor sat on the step. “Your prince. As ordered.”

“How did you do that?”

“A magician never divulges his secrets.” He opened his palms to reveal a bouquet of gardenias. “For you. Will you be my valentine?”

She held the flowers and inhaled deeply. “They’re my favorite—how did you know?”

“I made inquiries. Jane is delightful by the way. Didn’t care much for Darryl.”

“Find out why he only sees her once a month, and she’ll be your slave for life.”

“That would make a refreshing change.”

“More than you deserve. Coming in?”

“Yes. I have to watch you change into something more suitable for Michael’s on East.”

“Rancor! I can’t afford that.”

“You don’t have to—I have secured a source of funding.”

“I don’t want to know.”

“No. You don’t.” He closed the door behind him. “Now, you haven’t answered my question.”

Busy with the flowers, Charity didn’t reply. He took the vase from her and set it down. Then he took her in his arms. “Will you be my valentine?”

At that, something broke inside her, and the tears flowed.

He dried them. “Should I take that as a ‘yes,’ or a ‘get out of my sight, you ogre’?” She kissed him, unable to talk. “Go then. Put on that pearly white dress you wore in Paris. And leave your hair down this once.”

She obeyed, savoring the prospect of a Valentine’s Day that just might turn out to be the best ever.

Buy Links:

Wild Rose Press: https://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/all-titles/5533-the-pit-and-the-passion-murder-at-the-ghost-hotel.html

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Pit-Passion-Murder-Ghost-Hotel-ebook/dp/B078JY8RLY

ITunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-pit-and-the-passion-murder-at-the-ghost-hotel/id1332026896?mt=11

Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-pit-and-the-passion-m-s-spencer/1127750685?ean=2940158925351

KOBO: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-pit-and-the-passion-murder-at-the-ghost-hotel

Google: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/M_S_Spencer_The_Pit_and_the_Passion_Murder_at_the?id=F-tGDwAAQBAJ

 

About the Author:

Although M. S. Spencer has lived or traveled in five of the seven continents, the last thirty years were spent mostly in Washington, D.C. as a librarian, Congressional staff assistant, speechwriter, editor, birdwatcher, policy wonk, non-profit director, and parent. After many years in academia, she worked for the U.S. Senate, the U.S. Department of the Interior, in several library systems, both public and academic, and at the Torpedo Factory Art Center.

Ms. Spencer has published eleven romantic suspense novels, and has two more in utero. She has two fabulous grown children and an incredible granddaughter. She divides her time between the Gulf Coast of Florida and a tiny village in Maine.

Contacts:

Blog: http://msspencertalespinner.blogspot.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/msspencerromance

Twitter: www.twitter.com/msspencerauthor

Google +: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+MSSpencerauthor

GoodReads: http://www.goodreads.com/msspencer
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/msspencerauthor/

Linked in: www.linkedin.com/in/msspencerauthor

 

 

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Filed under Author Blog Post, New Release

A Look Inside Private Eyes by Diane Burton ~ New Release: The Case of the Meddling Mama

Happy World Book Day!! What a perfect day to host my friend and fellow author Diane Burton. Diane is sharing an article about Private Eyes AND her fabulous new release!

 

Private Eyes

When I started writing the Alex O’Hara mystery series, I pictured my heroine as a grownup Nancy Drew. Alex (short for Alexandra) got into the investigation business through her father. He and his business partner started an investigation agency back in the 1960s. Alex went to work for them in high school, doing menial chores first then rising to junior detective and finally promoted to detective. Along the way, she graduated from college with a degree in criminal justice. When her father and his partner decided to retire, they sold the business to her.

Private Eyes appear to have a glamorous profession, at least in movies and on TV. Remember Rockford? In real life, a detective spends most of his/her time on the internet not in the field. That wasn’t the way it was when Allan Pinkerton started up the first detective agency in America.

Allan Pinkerton Photo credit: Library of Congress

Pinkerton got into the detecting business by accident. He’d opened a barrel-making business in 1842. One day while he was scrounging for lumber, he came across a band of counterfeiters. After he set up a surveillance, he helped the police arrest the band. Pretty soon, people were asking him to help the police find and arrest other criminals.

Alex O’Hara is a licensed private investigator. She helped the police arrest an international assassin, a Black Widower gang, and a major drug dealer—all by accident. The assassin underestimated Alex. The Black Widower, who preyed on older women, married them then killed them for their money, didn’t expect his prey to hire Alex to check him out. Alex didn’t set out to find these dastardly villains. She came upon them by accident.

Possibly Kate Warne (holding pole) stands in front of Pinkerton Photo credit: PI Mall

When Allan Pinkerton hired Kate Warne in 1856, she became America’s first female detective. She was able to ferret out secrets that men couldn’t—for example, she became friends of a villain’s wife thereby learning the location of the stolen loot. She even pretended to be a fortune teller and got the criminal to confirm his guilt. Allan Pinkerton claimed Kate was one of his best investigators and had her buried in his family plot.

Even though women have been detectives for over 160 years, the investigation business is still an “old boys club.” Consequently, Alex O’Hara deliberately chose a masculine nickname so as not to be prejudged.

I found several similarities between Allan Pinkerton and Alex O’Hara, after the fact. I didn’t intend for fictional Alex to be like the famous detective. Pinkerton’s agency still does some detecting, though they mostly leave that to the police and the FBI. Today, the agency does risk management assessment along with private security and guard service. Alex hasn’t guarded anyone. Yet.

Interestingly, both the Pinkertons and Alex do employment screening, what Alex calls her bread-and-butter cases. Lately, she’s taking her agency in a new direction—checking out potential mates found on the internet.

Private investigation hasn’t gone too far from its roots, over 160 years ago. Like the Pinkerton Agency, Alex has to be flexible, to see opportunities, like online dating, and move with the times.

In the third book in the Alex O’Hara Novels, Alex is up to her ears in mysteries. After surviving an attempted murder, all she wants is R&R time with Nick Palzetti. But his mother leaving his father (“that horse’s patoot”) and moving in with Alex put a crimp in their plans. Then Nick leaves on assignment and the teen she rescued from an abusive father believes his buddy is doing drugs. Meanwhile, Alex has two easy cases to take her mind off her shaky relationship with Nick—a philandering husband and a background check on a client’s boyfriend. Piece of cake.

Here’s an excerpt:

When two women entered the exclusive dress shop, Ellie left to greet them while her assistant chivvied me to put on the shoes. White socks, black strappy heels, and the gorgeous emerald green bridesmaid dress—I made such a fashion statement as I stood on the platform. Call Vogue.

I so didn’t want to be there, especially when I recognized one of the women. I’d been the bearer of bad news to Nora Finley last week—her Mr. Perfect turned out to be a Black Widower. He and his cohorts had the perfect plan, a plan I thwarted just in time.

“Oh, you’re here,” Nora cried out when she spotted me and tugged on her companion’s wrist, practically dragging her over. “Ginnie, this is the PI that saved my life, Alex O’Hara!”

I cringed while heat bloomed in my cheeks.

Nora looked up at me. “I’ve been telling Ginnie here that she absolutely must hire you to check out her boyfriend—she met him on one of those online dating sites.”

Ginnie winced, like she wanted the floor to open up and swallow her. I knew the feeling.

Amazon US ~ Amazon UK ~ Kobo ~ Barnes & Noble ~ iTunes ~ Smashwords

About the Author:

Diane Burton combines her love of mystery, adventure, science fiction and romance into writing romantic fiction. Besides the science fiction romance Switched and Outer Rim series, she is the author of One Red Shoe, a romantic suspense, and the Alex O’Hara PI mystery series. She is also a contributor to two anthologies: Portals, Volume 2 and How I Met My Husband. Diane and her husband live in West Michigan. They have two children and three grandchildren.

For more info and excerpts from her books, visit Diane’s website: http://www.dianeburton.com

Connect with Diane Burton online

Blog:  http://dianeburton.blogspot.com/

Twitter:  http://twitter.com/dmburton72

Facebook:  http://facebook.com/dianeburtonauthor

Goodreads: Diane Burton Author

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/dmburton72/

Sign up for Diane’s new release alert: http://eepurl.com/bdHtYf

 

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Filed under Author Blog Post, New Release

Author Interview with Maggie West and New Release: Picked to Death

Please help me welcome today’s guest, Maggie West…

Good morning, Maggie. Thank you for joining me today. Please tell us a little about yourself.

I’m originally from the Midwest but now live in the Southwest in a small mountain town. My cat and I live in a tiny house surrounded by tall pines. He likes to watch the squirrel or bird channels but also loves the rare chipmunk shows as well.

Where did you get the idea for Picked to Death? 

I decided to write the Antique Pickers in Paradise Cozy Mystery series because I’m lover of vintage and antique things as well as mysteries! I sell some vintage things to local shops and online, so it’s been fun creating these characters, who seem to always come across a dead body in their hunt for treasures.

What book have you read that you wish you had written?

I adore John Irving’s writing and would love to write something even half as good as The Cider House Rules. It’s my favorite book and I’ve read it at least three times. In fact, I’m about due to enjoy it again soon!

Do you have another occupation, other than writer?

I’m also a copyeditor and have worked fixing other writers’ grammar and spelling and such for most of my adult life. I prefer writing though!

What do you dislike that most people wouldn’t understand?

I have a totally irrational fear of lizards.

Do you collect anything?

The better question might be, do you not collect anything? No, seriously, I don’t collect everything but I do collect a lot of stuff. I’ve had collections of pigs; vintage kitchen utensils like aluminum measuring cups and spoons, funnels, cookie cutters; old advertising yardsticks and wooden rulers. I could go on and on.

What’s your favorite book of all time and why? What’s your favorite childhood book?

As I mentioned in the first question, my favorite book of all time is The Cider House Rules by John Irving. It is a great story, is well written, and cracks me up and makes me cry. It has everything! My favorite childhood book? Let’s see. I loved Charlie the Tramp by Russell and Lillian Hoban. Charlie is a beaver who runs away from home, every child’s dream. Right!?

What is your favorite quote?

May your troubles be less and your blessings be more and nothing but happiness come through your door. It’s an Irish blessing or quote that my mom wrote on a scrap of paper and sent to me years ago. I have it taped to my computer monitor still.

Have you written any other books that are not published?

Of course! I’ve written several novels that I tried to get published via traditional publishers. I had a little interest but nothing came of it. I might dust them off one of these days and publish them myself.

Your favorite…

Movie:  Love Actually

Music:  Leonard Cohen

Food:  Yes! I love to eat and would say my favorite meal is anything spicy and delicious (Mexican, Thai, Vietnamese, Italian, and on and on) and for dessert is my homemade carrot cake.

Sports team: none, seriously, no thank you

Which do you prefer: Board games/card games or television? I love them all at different times. I love a good game of Scrabble or Wits and Wagers or Blokus. I love to play poker but still need the rules and rank explained to me nearly every hand. And I watch way too much TV! A couple of my favorite shows are The Americans and Detectorists.

Thank you, Maggie…what fun getting to know you! Now, please tell us about your book…

pickedtodeathcover

Blurb: Antique pickers Sherri Green and her bff, lovable town gossip Carol O’Brien, search for treasure amid the trash in their small midwestern town of Paradise.

What they find is more than they bargained for.

When they score a box of antique vases at a local auction in nearby Round Bottom, it sets off a chain of events that makes a competing picker see red. But that’s not the worst of it. Someone in the tight-knit picking community ends up dead.

Can Sherri and Carol discover the murderer from a treasure trove of suspects before the crime gets buried along with the the town’s most hated victim?

Picked to Death is a clean, short read. It’s perfect for lovers of cozy mysteries that feature an amateur sleuth.

Be sure to check out book 2, Cotton Picking Murder, and book 3, Picked On, in the Antique Pickers in Paradise cozy mystery series for more small town fun and crime solving in the close-knit community of Paradise.

Excerpt: From the corner of her eye, Sherri watched Kathy Vaughn talking to Al Blandon, both fellow pickers. The sixty-something year old woman was gesturing in their direction, maybe even at the box Carol was rummaging through. Then Kathy began inching forward till her face was inches from Al’s. Sherri shivered at the exchange, glad Al was the one on the receiving end of Kathy’s scheme this time.

Sherri nudged Carol. “Look. I wonder what Crabby Kathy’s up to.”

Kathy Vaughn was a fellow picker, a member of the Pope County Pickers Club, and a pain in the rear end. She was rude, greedy, and most of all unethical. Once at a flea market where the pickers from the club had rented a large space to try to unload some rejects, Crabby Kathy had shown up early. She backed her car in at an angle taking up the entire space behind the booth. Normally three cars or a couple of trucks could have squeezed in to make unloading their wares easier. And since no one ever carpooled with Kathy, seeing that she was downright horrible, she had done as she pleased. As usual. When the other two truckloads of pickers had arrived, they had to park in the lot a good quarter mile away and haul their stuff to the space on foot. All because Crabby Kathy had refused to move her car.

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01KQZ330C?tag=books2read02-20

iBooks/iTunes:  https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1163571015

Nook:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/picked-to-death-maggie-west/1124804926;jsessionid=716146DBE917FB9F7044AE1085EE426B.prodny_store02-atgap04?ean=2940153527673

Kobo:    https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/picked-to-death

 img_4277

Bio: Maggie West is the author of the Antique Pickers in Paradise cozy mystery series and the Lily Thistle cozy mystery series, the Doorways to the Past time travel series, and several romance books. When she’s not reading or writing, she loves to craft and sew, keep her kitten out of trouble (oh boy, good luck with that!), and take walks where she dreams up new stories.

Check out the cozy bundle 25 Mysteries to Die For available now. Hook, Line and Stinker is available in this box set along with 24 more great full-length cozies. More murder than you can shake a stick at!

Contact links:

FB author page:  https://www.facebook.com/MaggieWestAuthor/

Website:  http://maggiewestbooks.com/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/MaggieWestBooks

 

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Filed under Author Blog Post, New Release, Uncategorized

Nobody Knows – New Southern Gothic Mystery by Susan Coryell

Please help me welcome an author friend, Susan Coryell, with her latest release from The Wild Rose Press. I had the pleasure of being her editor for the entire Overhome Trilogy, and enjoyed each novel immensely. What better time of year for a spooky, Southern Gothic Mystery? 

TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOU: I am a retired career English teacher now living at Smith Mt. Lake in Southern Virginia. My writer’s loft overlooks a pristine cove surrounded by hills and foliage. I have three grown children and seven grand-kids—no pets as my hubs and I often travel.

For my new release, the title, Nobody Knows, derives from an old Negro spiritual by that name. The hymn springs up in connection with some Civil War ghosts in an historic cottage on the property of Overhome Estate, the setting for the novel.

Nobody Knows is a cozy mystery/Southern Gothic, the third novel in the Overhome Trilogy. A Red, Red Rose is the first in the series and Beneath the Stones is second. In book one, the protagonist, Ashby Overton is twenty. In book two she is twenty-five and in book three she is thirty, but each novel may also be read as a stand-alone. The books are set at Moore Mt. Lake, a fictionalization of my current home.

With an historic estate as the setting, each novel carries a history-based theme involving Southern Virginia and the Civil War involvement there. Nobody Knows deals with the post-war neo-slavery imposed on slaves freed by Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, inspired by a documentary I viewed at a local museum.

The most difficult thing about writing this series was knowing when to stop with the extensive research required to authenticate the background. I have been fascinated by what I have learned!

WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST JOB? It’s a bit surprising, even to me, that at the age of nine, once a month during the summer, I would ride into work with my father, who owned his own business, and using the adding machine, I would make up bills for his credit card customers. Work-life began early in those days!

WHAT DO YOU WANT READERS TO COME AWAY WITH AFTER THEY READ NOBODY KNOWS? I feel theme is an important element for my fiction. My novels are all multi-themed; some of the strongest underlying ideas include the value of family; the role of history in our present and future lives; finding self; and the awareness that the South still deals with long-held, deeply-felt beliefs that battle with modernity—our ghosts of the past. If my readers can identify with any or all of these themes I am a happy writer!

WHAT ACTORS WOULD YOU LIKE IN THE MAIN ROLES IF YOUR BOOK WERE MADE INTO A MOVIE? Love this question! A reader recently said, “You know, your mystery-Gothics would make a wonderful movie.” While I am gratified to hear that, I think a television mini-series would work best with my growing, evolving and dynamic characters. Emma Stone would make a wonderful Ashby Overton—just the right combination of “gee-whiz” and no-nonsense.

WHAT CELEBRITY WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO BE STANDED ON AN ISLAND WITH? This one’s easy. William Shakespeare, for sure. While waving a palm-frond fan over him, I’d drill him endlessly about Hamlet’s affair with Ophelia, Romeo’s relationship with Mercutio and whether Lady MacBeth was based on a real person. Who was the person, really, that he adored so much in his sonnets?  Then, I’d grill him for writing tips!

HAVE YOU WRITTEN ANY OTHER BOOKS THAT ARE NOT PUBLISHED? Sure. Hasn’t every published writer? Doubleheader, my first effort was probably not fit for publication, but it taught me that I could write a whole novel-length story with a beginning, middle and end. Also, a later “true” story about a sniper snagged a NY publisher but I had to renege when I discovered the subject of the book had lied about some of the “facts.” When the sniper dies, I intend to revisit the manuscript and re-tell it as “based on a true story” and try again to publish it. I have to wait for his demise because he’s a crack shot and he might come after me with an assault rifle.

WHAT IS THE TOUGHEST CRITICISM GIVEN TO YOU AS AN AUTHOR? WHAT HAS BEEN THE BEST COMPLIMENT? Compliment first: My sister read my anti-bully YA novel EAGLEBAIT and informed me, “I was so immersed in the story, I completely forgot it was my sister who wrote the book.”  Toughest criticism came from a national review medium that considered that same book beneath them in every way. I think they disliked books for and about troubled teenagers. Interestingly, EAGLEBAIT won several awards, including the International Reading Association’s “Young Adult Choice,” and the NY Public Library’s “Books for the Teenage.”

HOW MUCH OF NOBODY KNOWS IS REALISTIC? All of the history in the Overhome Trilogy is real. I also searched until I found an old plantation that survived the filling of the lake as a prototype for Overhome Estate. Horse farm life depicted is realistic, as is the daily life of a contemporary rural upper-income family. I based Luke’s large animal veterinary practice on books and interviews about the topic. Whether or not a reader believes in the reality of an invisible spirit world is, of course, subjective. At the very least, I hope for suspended disbelief while readers turn the pages of my books.

HOW DID YOUR INTEREST IN WRITING ORIGINATE? My standard answer: Writers know who we are; writers have to write. Quick example: When I was in third grade, I wrote letters and, with Mom’s help, addressed and sent them to my friends and classmates. Each recipient would call and thank me for her letter. I turned to my mother with, “What is the matter with these people? I wrote them a letter. They are supposed to write back to me. NOT call me.” Mom laughed. “Susan, not everyone is a writer like you.”

A FAVORITE PLACE I VISIT: Has to be Hawaii. Our youngest son and his family live there and we visit every winter. Smart boy to marry a Hawaiian, eh? We’ve explored every island in the chain except Lanai and each is magical in its own unique way. The Hawaiian folks are warm, hospitable and generous; we’ve made many friends there and our Hawaiian extended family is delightfully thoughtful and loving.

Thank you, Susan! I enjoyed getting to know you better. I could definitely see Emma Stone as Ashby.

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BLURB:

Why do ancient spirits hover at the crossroads between two worlds: the living and the dead? 

With a successful writing career and blissful marriage, Ashby Overton is fulfilled and content at historic Overhome Estate in Southern Virginia’until a stranger walks into her life. The arrival of Professor Ellis O. Grady coincides with a violent and bizarre turbulence emanating from the dark world of Overhome’s ancient spirits.

As paranormal events build into chaos, Ashby must use her sixth sense to sort out the real from the imagined in both the visible and the invisible worlds as, stirred into fury, the souls of Civil War slaves engage in a dangerous battle destined to reveal long-held secrets of the past.

What is the connection between the enigmatic professor, a slave-built chapel and a restored overseer’s cottage on Overhome Estate? Ashby struggles to find the answers before the spirits destroy her family’s heritage, and the lives of those she loves.

EXCERPT

     Walking over the weedy ground, I felt the desolate abandonment of those long-dead. A few tilting gravestones, so blurred with time that their epitaphs were illegible, listed toward the ground as if sheltering from a punishing wind. Scattered among the patchwork grasses were small, thin stone markers set in the dirt, little more than raw rocks, though several bore the faint outline of initials which had been chiseled into them so long ago. Ellis and I surveyed the bleak cemetery, each harboring our own thoughts.  I don’t know how long we stood there breathing in the silence. Then, I heard the voice.—so clear, so distinct, that I startled and almost fell back. Did my companion hear it, too? I darted a look at him. He stood with eyes closed, evidently completely lost in his own reverie. I held my breath and listened with all my senses on alert. The voice wavered this time, as though trailing away, but its repeated message was identical to the one I had first heard at the Overseer’s Cottage when the candlestick went missing. I had thought, then, that I heard “red apple,” which made no sense. Now I understood. “Jared Chapel,” the voice warned. Yes, its tone was severe. Demanding. “Jared Chapel.”

     I touched Ellis’s arm. “It’s here, Ellis. I know it is.” And when he blinked uncomprehendingly, I added, “You wondered if Jared Chapel offers anything in your search for your ancestry. It’s here—there’s something here. I feel it and I…I know it.”

     He blinked several times, a serious expression on his face. “You know because…”

     “Sometimes the past speaks to me. I can’t explain it, but I have to trust the voice that tells me things.”

     He rubbed his chin. “You know…this is odd. Really odd.”

     I raised my eyebrows in a silent question and he continued. “Because I thought I heard something. I definitely felt…a presence I can’t explain. Someone trying to get my attention. Someone very, very seriously trying to make me understand.” He shook his head. “Understand what? I confess, I’m baffled.”

     “It’s a sign,” I said. “Something I’ve learned over my years at Overhome. We ignore the signs at our own peril.”

Nobody Knows Buy Link

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Bio: A career educator, Susan has taught students from 7th grade through college-level. She earned a BA degree in English from Carson-Newman College and a Masters from George Mason University. She is listed in several different volumes of Who’s Who in Education and Who’s Who in Teaching.  Susan belongs to Author’s Guild, Virginia Writers, and Lake Writers. She loves to talk with budding writers at schools, writers’ conferences and workshops. Her young adult anti-bully novel EAGLEBAIT is in its third edition for print and e-book, updated with cyber-bullying. EAGLEBAIT won the NY Public Library’s “Books for the Teen Age,” and the International Reading Association’s “Young Adult Choice.”

A RED, RED ROSE, first in a cozy mystery/Southern Gothic series, was nominated for a literary award with the Library of Virginia. BENEATH THE STONES, the sequel, was released in April of 2015; it also was nominated for a literary award by the Library of Virginia. NOBODY KNOWS, third novel in the Overhome Trilogy, released October, 2016. All three novels were published by The Wild Rose Press in NY.

When not writing, Susan enjoys boating, kayaking, golf and yoga. She and her husband, Ned, love to travel, especially when any of their seven grandchildren are involved.

Please visit Susan Coryell’s website: www.susancoryellauthor.com and her blog: www.susancoryellauthor.blogspot.com or contact her on Facebook and Twitter.

A final word: Don’t forget that Halloween is upon us. What better way to celebrate than with a great series of ghost stories in the Overhome Trilogy!

(For a limited time, Amazon Prime members can get A Red, Red Rose for free!!)

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A Red, Red Rose Buy Link

Beneath the Stones Buy Link

Thanks to Alicia for hosting me on her wonderful blog!

My pleasure, Susan…thank you for sharing your fabulous stories and a great interview with us today. Susan would love visitors and comments, but she might not answer right away as she’s out for the day. She’ll check in as soon as she can, though!

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Filed under Author Blog Post, New Release

INTERVIEW WITH JOE COSENTINO author of CHINA DOLL, a Jana Lane mystery, published by The Wild Rose Press

 

Please help me welcome Joe Cosentino. He is sharing an interview about his new release, the fourth installment of the Jana Lane Mystery series:

Interviewer: What inspired you to become a mystery romance writer? 

 Joe:        I have always been a mystery fanatic. As a child I read three mystery novels a week, watched The Alfred Hitchcock mysteries on television, and saw every mystery movie possible. This passion continued throughout my teen and young adult years. Eventually I became an actor in film, television, and theatre, working opposite stars like Bruce Willis, Nathan Lane, Rosie O’Donnell, Holland Taylor, and Jason Robards. One of my jobs was playing Ross (I mean Ross not Hercule) Poirot in a murder mystery dinner theatre show. Since a great deal of that show was improvisation, it occurred to me that acting is storytelling in the same way that writing is storytelling, so I decided to give writing a try. After writing some plays, I knew my novels would include show business in some way, since show business has always been such a huge part of my life. As an avid mystery reader, it was clear to me that my novels would also be page-turning mysteries with clever plot twists, engaging characters, romance, and lots of clues leading to a surprising conclusion a la Agatha Christie. Since coming from a funny Italian-American family, I also knew humor would play a role in my novels. 

Interviewer:  Can you tell us readers a little bit about creating the Jana Lane mystery series? 

 Joe:   As a child I loved child stars like Shirley Temple, Hayley Mills, and Patty Duke, seeing their movies over and over. So I created a heroine who was the biggest child star ever until she was attacked on the studio lot at eighteen years old. Through the course of the books, Jana not only solves the mysteries, but also reclaims the courage and fortitude she had as a child. This is an important message for all of us. As one reviewer wrote, she starts out as a wounded bird, and ends as tiger.

In PAPER DOLL Jana at thirty-eight lives with her family in a mansion in picturesque Hudson Valley, New York. Her flashbacks from the past become murder attempts in her future. Forced to summon up the lost courage she had as a child, Jana ventures back to Hollywood, which helps her uncover a web of secrets about everyone she loves. She also embarks on a romance with the devilishly handsome son of her old producer, Rocco Cavoto.

            In PORCELAIN DOLL (The Wild Rose Press), Jana makes a comeback film and uncovers who is being murdered on the set and why. Her heart is set aflutter by her incredibly gorgeous co-star, America’s heartthrob Jason Apollo. The other suspects include Jana’s James Dean type young co-star, her older John Wayne type co-star, her children’s Eve Harrington type nanny, the film’s gossipy makeup and hair artist, a local reverend trying to stop the film’s production, and Jason’s agent.

            In SATIN DOLL (The Wild Rose Press), Jana and family head to Washington, DC, where Jana plays a US senator in a new film, and becomes embroiled in a murder and corruption at the senate chamber. She also embarks on a romance with Chris Bruno, the muscular detective. Jana rubs elbows with senators on both sides of the aisle, a lobbyist, and a Washington reporter. Her husband also goes through a personal crisis. 

Interviewer:  How have the reviews been for the series so far? 

 Joe:   Amazing. Here are a few examples:

“A book that will captivate any reader! A page turner that won’t let you go! This is one author you can always depend on to publish a good read!!” Stormy Nights Reviewing 

“Joe Cosentino is a brilliant mastermind when creating the perfect mystery series. In each novel in this intriguing series of his, Jana Lane Mysteries, readers are blown away by his writing. The instant readers jump into Joe Cosentino’s fictional world, the danger feels real, the suspense is killing, and the plot moves so fast. Action, lights, camera!”  “A fast-paced murder mystery that readers will easily fall in love with…and one they can’t live without. Overall, I highly recommend this new title in the Jana Lane Mysteries and look forward to the next best adventure from Joe Cosentino.” Danielle Urban, Universal Creativity Inc.

“Beautifully written and intensely detailed, Porcelain Doll is one not to be missed. Flirtatiously decadent with a strong moral undertone, set in a decade of extraordinary social change this is a story of its period that is as poignant today as it was then. Joe Cosentino controlled the emotions that the book encouraged with a deft but delicate touch. Suspenseful and mysterious, Porcelain Doll is a masterful creation, one that was impossible not to be affected by.” Carol Fenton, BooksLaidBare Reviews

Paper Doll is a superbly crafted mystery with an eclectic cast of characters that will engage you and elicit some very emotional responses as you are completely caught up in the events that unfold in these pages. Everyone has secrets and the people in Paper Doll have them in spades!” Fresh Fiction

“Mr. Cosentino has produced a masterpiece of mystery (Paper Doll)” “The story gripped me from the start and there were enough twists and turns, with a bit of romance thrown in for good measure, to keep hold of me until the end of the book.” “Great book, can’t wait for book 2.” Readers’ Favorite 

Interviewer:  Tell us about the current release, CHINA DOLL. 

 Joe:   In CHINA DOLL (The Wild Rose Press), Jana heads to New York City to star in a Broadway play, enchanted by her gorgeous co-star Peter Stevens, and faced with murder on stage and off. It is old home week and nepotism in action as the play is produced and written by the same producer (Stanley Rothman) and author (Katrina Wright) who produced and wrote Jana’s first Broadway play when she was five years old, Sweet Nothings. Jana’s co-star from Sweet Nothings, the aging but still gorgeous and mysterious Savannah Stevens, is co-starring in China Doll, along with Savannah’s incredibly handsome and muscular son, Peter Stevens, in his Broadway debut. Rounding out the cast are Rothman’s granddaughter Bella, Jana’s nephew Brad, and Jana’s youngest son B.J. And the play is directed by Katrina’s new and much younger husband, the studly Tony Cuccioli. Also in the cast are Sally Chen a recent Tony Award winning actress, and Tate Moonglow a transplant from Off-Broadway.

During rehearsals, attractions come to the surface between Tony and Sally, Brad and Bella, Tate and Gary (B.J.’s new nanny), and even Jana and Peter.

Art imitates life as members of the production team of China Doll are murdered, personal secrets are revealed, and Jana once again uses the skills she learned as a child star to solve the crime.

Also, Jana and her husband go through a personal crisis, however, her son B.J. is bitten by the acting bug and has the time of his life. 

Interviewer:  Who is your favorite character in CHINA DOLL? And why? 

 Joe:   I really enjoyed writing the comically neurotic Gary Royale, B.J.’s (Jana’s youngest son) new nanny, and of course the Broadway musical buff Detective Douglas was great fun. 

Interviewer:  Which one of your characters was the hardest one to write? And why?

 Joe:   Savannah Stevens is an aging beauty with fond memories from her past on Broadway and as a movie star in Hollywood, yet she carries the burden of an aging actress in a youth-oriented society. 

Interviewer:  With her gorgeous violet eyes, is Savannah based on Elizabeth Taylor? 

   Joe:   Savannah is a smart, strong, talented woman like Elizabeth Taylor, however, she doesn’t have anywhere near as many husbands or such a troubled life. 

Interviewer:  Is Katrina Wright the highly successful mystery writer supposed to be Agatha Christie? 

 Joe:   They are both very successful, older female writers, but Agatha Christie wrote many novels and a few plays, Katrina has written many many plays and no novels. Also unlike Agatha Christie, Katrina has a young stud husband. 

Interviewer:  David Mamet wrote a play on Broadway in 2015 called CHINA DOLL. Any connection to your novel. 

 Joe:   None. I think it’s fascinating that there really was a play on Broadway called CHINA DOLL, though Jana wouldn’t know about it since my novel takes place in 1984. 

Interviewer:  You acted onstage with Bruce Willis in A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM and Nathan Lane in THE ROAR OF THE GREASEPAINT. Were you able to use your theatre background in writing CHINA DOLL?

 Joe:   I wrote, directed, and acted in a number of plays. I used my experiences many times in CHINA DOLL when writing about the role of the playwright, director, stage manager, producer, actors, designers, and technicians. I know first-hand what it’s like to do a read through, a blocking rehearsal, rehearsals, dress rehearsals, and performances. Though thankfully nobody was murdered in any of my plays. 

Interviewer:  How amazing that Jana’s youngest son B.J. takes so well to the stage. 

 Joe:   Like mother like son—and grandfather and uncle. 

Interviewer:  In the novel Katrina and Stanley use their religious beliefs as a weapon to try to fire one of the cast members. Do you think people of faith will be offended by that?   

 Joe:   I sure hope not. Jana is a Christian who prays and goes to church on Sundays. She seems like a true Christian to me since she tries to love her neighbor as herself, not judge others, and help the downtrodden and outcasts. Jana stands up to Katrina and Stanley because she believes any kind of discrimination is wrong, and that freedom of religion is far different from the freedom to discriminate. I assume Jana would defend Katrina or Stanley if someone tried to discriminate against them as well. 

As in the first three Jana Lane mysteries, Jana is tempted by a gorgeous man, this time the heartthrob younger actor, Peter Stevens. 

I can’t imagine anyone not being enticed by Peter Stevens. He’s what used to be a called a matinee idol. 

And Jana goes through a major personal event. 

I love that part of the story. It still brings tears to my eyes when I read it. 

And Jana is reconnected with her nephew. 

Who has changed his name and become a hungry for fame actor. Jana tries to give him advice, but like many young people. He doesn’t take it. 

Interviewer:  I find it fascinating how Jana uses the skills she learned as a child star to solve the crime. How do you remember all of Jana Lane’s old movie titles and storylines? 

 Joe:   I keep really good notes on Jana’s old movies, and on each room in her Hyde Park, New York mansion. I also enjoyed writing about Jana’s gorgeous penthouse hotel suite. 

Interviewer:  Since the book takes place in 1984, you included a great deal of history, music, and fashion from the era. 

 Joe:   Though China Doll is a fictitious play, I was able to place the theatre between the marquees of real shows playing at the time: Hurlyburly starring William Hurt and Christopher Walken and The Rink starring Chita Rivera and Liza Minelli. Since the book takes place in 1984, I included a great deal of history, music, and fashion from my favorite era. Layered hair, parachute pants, shoulder pads, lace gloves, leggings, and scrunchies are all there along with music like Bruce Springstein’s “Cover Me.” New York City is prominently featured in the novel with its luxury hotels, Central Park, Washington Square Park, Little Italy, and of course the theatre district. I was also able to include, the still new AIDS epidemic and the devastation it caused when ignored by our political representatives, as once again Jana sponsors a benefit for AIDS research. 

Interviewer:  Which scene in the novel did you enjoy writing the most? And why? 

 Joe:   I loved writing the hospital scene the most. It’s so touching. 

Interviewer:  Many of the men in the series are strapping, muscular, good looking guys. Did you do that intentionally? 

 Joe:   You mean since I’m not? Hah. Many of the women are gorgeous too. I’m enjoying exploring how the other half lives and loves. However, in CHINA DOLL, I have characters like Katrina, Gary, and of course Simon and Cornelius who don’t fit that mold. 

Interviewer:  Everyone in CHINA DOLL seems to have a secret. Thank you for revealing them by the book’s end. 

 Joe:   Yes, each Jana Lane mystery is its own story. Readers get a complete mystery with each novel, as you said, full of revealed secrets. 

Interviewer:  You play fair in your mysteries, meaning the clues are there, and so are the plot twists and turns, and white knuckle shocking ending. 

 Joe:   I don’t like mysteries where characters are introduced and the writer arbitrarily picks the murderer at the end. The readers feel cheated. At the end of a mystery, the readers should say, “Of course! How did I not see that?” I agree about the ending. It still makes my heart race when I read it—and I’m still surprised. 

Interviewer:  Do you see the Jana Lane mysteries as a TV show? 

 Joe:   Totally! I want to play Simon Huckby! 

Interviewer:  Who do you see as Jana Lane? 

 Joe:   I’m not sure. I hope the readers will send me some ideas! 

Interviewer:  Do you have another mystery series besides the Jana Lane mysteries? 

 Joe:   Yes, the Nicky and Noah comedy mysteries published by Lethe Press. Each novel is loaded with wacky humor and romance in a fast-paced whodunit. Since I am a college theatre professor/department head, and theatre departments are havens of mystery, secrets, romance, and high humor; the series takes place at an Edwardian style New England college. In DRAMA QUEEN theatre college professors are dropping like stage curtains. With the inept local detectives, it is up to Directing professor, Nicky Abbondanza to use his theatre skills (including playing other people) to solve the murders, while he directs a murder mystery onstage. Complicating matters is Nicky’s intense crush on Assistant Professor of Acting, handsome Noah Oliver, the prime suspect in the murder. In DRAMA MUSCLE Nicky and Noah have to use their theatre skills to find out why musclemen are dropping like weights in the Physical Education department while Nicky directs the Student Bodybuilding Competition. In DRAMA CRUISE (not released yet), Nicky and Noah go on a cruise to Alaska, and discover why college theatre professors are going overboard like lifeboats while Nicky directs a murder mystery dinner theatre show onboard ship. 

Interviewer:  Have you written other books besides mysteries? 

 Joe:   My MM romance novellas are published by Dreamspinner Press. They are AN INFATUATION, A SHOOTING STAR, A HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS, and THE NAKED PRINCE AND OTHER TALES FROM FAIRYLAND.

I also have an MM series COZZI COVE: BOUNCING BACK and COZZI COVE: MOVING FORWARD taking place on the Jersey Shore and published by Nine Star Press. 

Interviewer:  Is writing an MF series different from writing an MM series? 

 Joe:   Not at all. People are people. Love is love. Mystery is mystery. We’re all connected. 

Interviewer:  As a college professor/department head, how do you have the time to write? 

 Joe:        I write at night after my spouse has gone to bed. I have a beautiful cherry wood study with a fireplace, huge desk, bookcases, and window seat. My mother asked me, “How do you think up all those stories?” I told her I had a colorful childhood. Hah. 

Interviewer:  How long does it generally take you to write a book? 

 Joe:   About three months working evenings and weekends. When I complain about my time, my mother says, “Just think how hard you’d have to work if you had a real job like your cousins” (lawyers).

Interviewer: Who is your ideal reader of your books?

     Joe:  My ideal reader is a lover of mystery, romance, and Hollywood. Someone who craves being swept away by a story and becoming part of the novel. My reader loves clues, suspects, and plotlines that zigzag with numerous surprises leading to a shocking yet totally justified conclusion. Finally, my reader relishes in beautiful, lush locations and captivating characters as she/he enters the portal of my book.

Interviewer:  What are you writing now? 

Joe:  The next Jana Lane mystery of course: RAG DOLL, where Jana is offered the leading role in a TV pilot about an amateur sleuth. Of course murder and romance ensue.

 

How can your readers contact you?

 

I love hearing from readers! They can contact me at: http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com

 

CHINA DOLL, a Jana Lane mystery

by Joe Cosentino

published by The Wild Rose Press

 

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http://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/all-titles/3830-china-doll.html?search_query=china+doll&results=2

http://amzn.com/B01E2UD4HY

Jana Lane is back on Broadway in 1984—starring in a murder mystery. Life imitates art when members of the company are murdered. As Jana investigates, it’s clear she may be the next victim. Complicating matters is Jana’s uncontrollable infatuation with her leading man, gorgeous and muscular Off-Broadway actor Peter Stevens. Will Jana find the murderer before the curtain comes down on her?

Excerpt of CHINA DOLL, the fourth Jana Lane mystery, by Joe Cosentino, published by The Wild Rose Press

Tall, muscular, aristocratic-looking with dark hair and blushed cheeks, Peter shook Jana’s hand. “It’s a pleasure to meet you, Miss Lane.”

Feeling the warmth and smoothness of his strong hand, Jana felt like a shut-in at a blind date with Mr America. “It’s Miss Otley…rather Mrs. Lane…Mrs. Otley, but please call me Peter.” Jana turned the color of her avocado dress.

He seemed to enjoy her attraction to him. Amazing dimples emerged as Peter said, “I thought I was Peter.”

Jana giggled in spite of herself. “You are. I’m Nana. I mean…I’m Jana.”

Peter’s peaches and cream complexion complimented his white pants, coral T-shirt, and marigold blazer. He whispered in her ear, and she smelled fresh mint. “I’m nervous too. Everyone’s thinking I got this role because I’m Savannah Stevens’ son. They’re probably right.”

I have to stop gawking at him. “I’m sure you’ll be fine.”

Peter seemed genuinely touched. “That means a lot to me, coming from such a fine actress. I hope you’ll give me a few tips in rehearsals.”

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Author’s Bio:

Bestselling author Joe Cosentino won Divine Magazine’s awards for best mystery novel, best humorous novel, and best contemporary novel of 2015. He is the author of the Jana Lane mysteries: Paper Doll, Porcelain Doll, Satin Doll, and China Doll and the upcoming Rag Doll (The Wild Rose Press); the Nicky and Noah mysteries: Drama Queen, Drama Muscle, and the upcoming Drama Cruise (Lethe Press); the Cozzi Cove beach series: Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back and Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward (NineStar Press); and the romance novellas: In My Heart anthology (An Infatuation & A Shooting Star), A Home for the Holidays, and The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Dreamspinner Press); and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King (Eldridge Plays and Musicals). As an actor, he has appeared in principal roles in film, television, and theatre opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, and Jason Robards. Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com

 

Web site: http://www.JoeCosentino.weebly.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/JoeCosentinoauthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JoeCosen

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4071647.Joe_Cosentino

Amazon: Author.to/JoeCosentino

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Author Blog Post, New Release

“Ten Moments that Changed My Life” by Diane Burton – PLUS, her new release: “The Case of the Fabulous Fiancé”

I am pleased to host my  author friend, the awesome, talented Diane Burton, on today’s blog.  Diane is sharing the 10 moments that changed her life, as well as  her latest release. Please help me welcome Diane, and be sure to check out her fabulous book, “The Case of the Fabulous Fiance,” an excellent blend of humor and mystery.

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Thanks for having me here today, Alicia. Preparing for this post, I took many trips down Memory Lane. Side trips, too. Things I hadn’t thought of in years came forward. So many events to choose from. Here’s my top ten.

  1. Accepting my friend’s offer to fix me up with a guy. That blind date led to . . .
  2. . . . marrying the man I loved who became my best friend and the father of . . .
  3. . . . our children. Our daughter, who was an easy baby, came first, followed 13 months later by her brother, who wasn’t (undiagnosed asthma and other health problems).
  4. Hubs’ job changes and moves. At first adventurous, then upsetting, always stressful. But the moves gave us all new opportunities and new friends. A lot of lemonade out of those lemons.
  5. Our daughter’s, very traditional, brought a loving son into our family. Our son’s, on a beach, gave us a wonderful daughter. Those unions gave us . . .
  6. The best de-stressor in the world is rocking a snuggling newborn. No worries about household chores or writing deadlines when visiting. Having fun with them is more important. Teaching them our skills, learning from them.
  7. The release of my first book in 2001. Seeing my name on the cover of a book was such a high. Only to come crashing down with the Twin Towers two weeks later.
  8. Self-publishing. Wow, I actually got money for my books. Every month.
  9. Lingering deaths. Our parents. A blessing when they died. Each time more difficult, until you realize you’re the oldest in the family. Sad that our grandchildren will never know them except through stories and pictures.
  10. Freedom to do what we want, go where and when we want. Realizing that penny pinching paid off.

In my latest release, The Case of the Fabulous Fiancé, the heroine’s top two moments are 1) when The Pops turned over the detective agency to her and 2) the return of her old flame, Nick Palzetti.

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Blurb:

Alex O’Hara wants to take her detective agency in a new direction—background checks for potential spouses. She hopes this new case will do the trick when a high-powered executive asks for info on her new boyfriend. Is the man she met on a cruise her Mr. Right or is he too good to be true? On the same day, Alex gets another case—finding a deadbeat dad. And both women want to double her rates so she’ll give them highest priority. She can’t believe her luck. Her finances are on the upswing. If only Nick Palzetti were around to share her good news. He disappeared on Christmas Eve, and she hasn’t heard from him in almost three months. Then no internet and glitchy phones bring everything to a screeching halt.

Excerpt:

I read somewhere that men think about sex ninety-four percent of the time, maybe more. Women were more evolved and thought about other things. Around Nick Palzetti, my evolution took a nose dive. I remembered how good things had been between us. Not my doing, of course. When it came to lovemaking, he was the pro. I still had amateur status. And if I didn’t watch my step, I’d make a fool of myself again.

“Why are you back, Nick? Did you really think I would fall into your arms?” As if I hadn’t done just that.

He perched on the corner of my desk, again, then swung his foot in a lazy manner. “I’d hoped so.”

“Why? I’m not some bimbo you can jump into bed with and then say ‘I’ll be right back’. Right back does not mean no word for over two frelling months.”

I’d just done a “Farscape” marathon, for the third time, so frelling was my word of choice when I really wanted to say the other F-word.

His foot stopped swinging. Every muscle in his body tightened. The effect was fascinating and a little scary. His lips, which had been soft and caressing moments ago, thinned. His face became all sharp edges.

“What do you mean no word?” he asked in a voice that was too soft. Like I said, a little scary.

 

The Case of the Fabulous Fiancé is available at:

Amazon: http://amzn.com/B0195K8F6G

Kobo: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/the-case-of-the-fabulous-fiance-an-alex-o-hara-novel

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/nz/book/case-fabulous-fiance-alex/id1066537800?mt=11

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-case-of-the-fabulous-fiance-diane-burton/1123120297?ean=2940157702533

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/599181

DianeBurton

Author Info:

Diane Burton combines her love of mystery, adventure, science fiction and romance into writing romantic fiction. Besides the science fiction romance Switched and Outer Rim series, she is the author of One Red Shoe, a romantic suspense, and The Case of the Bygone Brother, a PI mystery. She is also a contributor to the anthology How I Met My Husband. Diane and her husband live in Michigan. They have two children and three grandchildren.

For more info and excerpts from her books, visit Diane’s website: http://www.dianeburton.com

Connect with Diane Burton online

Blog:  http://dianeburton.blogspot.com/

Twitter:  http://twitter.com/dmburton72

Facebook:  http://facebook.com/dianeburtonauthor

Goodreads: Diane Burton Author

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/dmburton72/

Sign up for Diane’s new release alert: http://eepurl.com/bdHtYf

 

 

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