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Cozy Prizes Friday: Interview with Joanne Guidoccio Author of Too Many Women in the Room

Buongiorno readers! Joanne Guidoccio visits us today to talk about her newest book, Too Many Women in the Room. She is a prolific writer so after you check out this book, take a look at some of her other work.  Be sure to look for the prize guy and enter to win a $10 Amazon Gift Card!

Joanne Guidoccio

How did you come with an idea for your book?

After completing A Season for Killing Blondes, Book 1 in the Gilda Greco Mystery Series, I started imagining different storylines for Book 2. I knew that Gilda and her love interest, Carlo Fantin, would be returning. In keeping with the Italian flavor of the series, I decided to continue with the foodie/non-foodie theme and feature more scenes with Maria and Rosa, two busybodies who provided comic relief. I also wanted to give photographer Michael Taylor his comeuppance. These disparate elements came together in the following scenario: What if a non-foodie invests in a Greek restaurant only to find herself and her closest friends embroiled in a murder investigation.

What scene do you hope your readers enjoy the most?

When Gilda Greco invites her closest friends to a VIP dinner, she plans to share David Korba’s signature dishes and launch their joint venture—Xenia, an innovative Greek restaurant near Sudbury, Ontario. Unknown to Gilda, David has also invited Michael Taylor, a lecherous photographer who has throughout the past three decades managed to annoy all the women in the room. One woman follows Michael to a deserted field for his midnight run and stabs him in the jugular.

I hope my readers will enjoy the malocchio (evil eye) scenes that involve the well-meaning but misguided interference of the older Italian women in Gilda’s circle.

What other things have you written or what projects might we see in the future?

A Season for Killing Blondes and Too Many Women in the Room, Books 1 and 2 of the Gilda Greco Mystery Series, were released by The Wild Rose Press in 2015 and 2017. A Different Kind of Reunion, Book 3, will be released in 2018.

I also write paranormal romance about a middle-aged, ex-mermaid who was abandoned on the fog-drenched shores of southwest England and forced to reinvent herself. Between Land and Sea and The Coming of Arabella, Books 1 and 2 of the Mediterranean Trilogy, were released by Soul Mate Publishing in 2013 and 2015. Ideas are percolating for Book 3, The Making of a Psychic Mermaid.

If you could write any other genre what would that be?

I have great admiration for writers of historical fiction. I am most impressed by their ability to expertly weave fact and fiction. At some point, I would like to dabble in that genre. Perhaps, explore my own roots and write an immigration story (Italy/Canada circa 1950s).

Is there a giveaway or promotion with this book?

Yes. I hope everyone will enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway for a $10 Amazon gift card.

Where can readers leave reviews of your book?

Readers can leave reviews of my book on Amazon, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, and Goodreads.

 

Add  Too Many Women in the Room to your Goodreads Reading Shelf!

 

 

Click Here to Enter Joanne’s Giveaway for a $10 Amazon Gift Card

 

Cozy Prizes Friday: Dead Air and Double Dares

I’d like to welcome my guest today, Crystal Cropper. She is the main character in the new book by Janis Thornton, Dead Air and Double Dares and agreed to answer a few of my questions.  Crystal is a spunky reporter who is trying to knock something off her bucket list!  Don’t forget to look for the Prize Guy! Enter to win a free copy of Dead Air and Double Dares in print or ebook form.

 

And now, Crystal tells all…

Crystal Cropper, editor of the Elmwood Gazette, has added incentive in finding out who killed Horace Q. Ogilvie, owner of the local radio station and the most reviled man in town. Horace turns up dead minutes before he is supposed to broadcast his next malicious editorial, designed to destroy yet another Elmwood luminary. Fortunately for the police department, Horace’s list of future targets provides an abundant pool of suspects. Unfortunately for Crystal, her name is at the top!

Please tell us about your latest adventure.
The only “adventure” I had planned for Memorial Day was a quick ride in a powered-parachute, so I could (1) fulfill a double dare, and (2) cross it off my bucket list. Unfortunately, plans went terribly awry when the pilot crash-landed on the courthouse lawn in the middle of the Memorial Day ceremony, slightly injuring Horace Q. Ogilvie, the most detested man in town. By the next morning, he was dead — murdered! Ogilvie, owner of the local radio station, had made a game of ruining the lives of Elmwood luminaries by revealing their secrets in his on-air editorials. As editor of the Elmwood Gazette, I naturally wanted to “help” the sheriff determine the identity Ogilvie’s killer, which shouldn’t have been difficult, considering his editorials had wrought no shortage of suspects. But the problem was, I was one of them.

Do you have any friends/sidekicks helping you out?
I have the most wonderful friends — Auggie Stillwater, the Elm County Superior Court judge; Shay Nichols, director of the Elmwood Chamber of Commerce; and Richelle Evers, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church. They’re the best, and we’ll do anything for one another. In addition, there’s Gertie Tyroo, Elmwood’s premier freelance cleaning lady and my most trusted, confidential informant. Even at 80-something (she won’t tell me her exact age), she’s the best, most experienced crime-buster I’ve ever known. I have reason to suspect she’s been in the FBI’s witness protection program since 1963, but she won’t tell me that either.
Do you have any special skills to fight crime?
I spent several years as the crime beat reporter for the Los Angeles News-Tribune, I have a certificate of completion in a ladies’ self-defense course, but most useful of all, I’m persistent.

Are you a full-time detective or do you do something else?
Oh, yes, I’m definitely “something else.” My buddy, Sheriff Verlin Wallace, huffs that at me all the time. But in answer to your question, no, I’m not a full-time detective; yes, I do something else. As previously noted, I’m a full-time newspaper reporter and editor, and inherent in that job is a host of skills, including good instincts for news and a nose made to sniff out crime.

What are you most frightened of in this story?
To tell you the truth, there is a revelation in this story that utterly terrifies me, and it has nothing to do with the murder of Horace Ogilvie. Without giving away too much, I will say only that is has to do with the unexpected appearance of a person I never knew existed and never would have believed I could love so completely and so unconditionally.

Is there anything funny that happens to you or another character in this story?

You might think it’s funny, but I don’t find crash-landing on the courthouse lawn amid 500 men, women and children, the community band, and the American Legion firing squad particularly amusing.

If I were to choose an actor or actress to play your part in a movie, who would that be? Do you see any other characters in your story as actors or actresses that our readers might know?
As you know, I am a Boomer-aged woman, who is strong, independent, intelligent, confident, fun loving, a tad snarky, somewhat attractive, and infinitely humble. I’ve always considered myself a cross between Meryl Streep, Helen Mirran, and Cher. As for my spunky sidekick, Gertie Tyroo, I think of her as a hybrid of Ruth Gordon and “The Golden Girls’” Estelle Getty. And finally, if J.K. Simmons (of Farmers Insurance fame) would pack on a hundred pounds, he’d be a perfect Verlin Wallace.

Do you have other mysteries you would like to tell us about? Is this the first book in the series, or have you cracked a few other cases?
“Dead Air & Double Dares” is Book 2 in the Elmwood Confidential series. Book 1, “Dust Bunnies & Dead Bodies,” was released in the fall of 2014. Crime solving is second nature to me, and I will continue to “crack cases” for as long as I am breathing. So, stay tuned. Book 3 is as near as Elmwood’s next homicide.

Do you have any final words you would like to leave with our readers?
Well, yes… There’s one lesson I took away from this case, and it’s this: Give people a chance, even those who seem beyond redemption, as did the despicable Horace Q. Ogilvie. Life is complicated, and it may be impossible to know what another person has been forced to endure or what dwells at the core of their soul. Oftentimes, when you take a moment to look deeper, you will find that all they need is a little understanding and forgiveness.

Janis Thornton

Let’s give your author a chance to speak. Anything you would like to add?

Yes … Thank you, Teresa, for inviting Crystal and me to stop by. We are thrilled about our new cozy and enormously grateful for this opportunity to tell you and your readers a bit about it. We hope you all enjoy it. Thanks again!

 

Click Here to Enter the Giveaway for a free copy of Dead Air and Double Dares. Print or Ebook. You Choose! 

The Winners Have Been Named for the Cozy Mystery Giveaway

Congratulations to Deb, Ryan and Shirley, winners of the AXP Cozy Mystery Giveaway.  Deb won a copy of Till Dirt Do Us Part, and Ryan and Shirley won all 32 books!  That’s a lot of cozy.

If you are looking for a Fourth of July mystery, check out Doggone Dead! It’s full of fireworks…and exploding port-a-potties. Writing is so much fun!

Give me land lots of land….and a puppy on the loose. When Betsy Livingston’s puppy runs away, she has no idea it will lead her to a murder on a movie cowboy star’s estate. Not only has there been a murder, but the town reports sightings of the dead cowboy himself. He’s out to seek revenge on all who wronged his daughter who became the victim of her own money-loving butler. Enjoy a little time on the Fourth of July in the tiny town of Pecan Bayou Texas where old cowboys never die…

 

 

Cozy Prizes Friday: Enter to Win 32+ Cozy Mysteries!

Need to fill that summer reading shelf? Here is a terrific giveaway for 32+ Cozy Mysteries, MINE INCLUDED! The giveaway runs until June 26 so enter today 🙂

Win up to 32+ Cozy/Funny Mystery eBooks!

(2) Grand Prize “Gift Baskets” of ALL eBooks!
(32+) Winners of Individual eBooks (randomly selected titles)

Book Blast Tuesday: Iced

Welcome to a new feature on my blog. Sometimes Authors want to shout out to the world they have a new book that they want to share with readers. Most of these books will be through Partners in Crime Book Tours and they will give us all a chance to find out about new releases and new authors that might just turn into favorites!  There is a giveaway for the Iced Book Blast so scroll down and find the Prize Guy. He’ll give you a chance to enter for a $15 Amazon Gift Card and 5 Ebook Winners. Ends June 28.

Without further ado, I introduce Iced by Avery Daniels. 

Julienne has her ideal job as an event planner at a prestigious resort. During a luncheon event she coordinated, a renowned celebrity pastor is killed next to the buffet. All eyes turn to her as the suspect. If she wants to stay out of jail or even keep her job, Julienne needs all the help she can get to solve the crime.

She has her work cut out for her with a vengeful high school rival now reporter, the public demanding she be fired, plus family who know what’s best for her, and a boyfriend who doesn’t understand her. She turns to friends and a new ally to uncover who wanted to put the pastor on ice.

Julienne goes undercover and investigates a local swingers group as she follows the trail of clues before they go cold. Can she gather enough suspects and motives to convince the police to her widen their investigation? Can she do it before the killer sets his murderous sights on her? Will her personal life ever be as simple as unveiling a murderer?

Book Details:
Purchase Links: Amazon 🔗 | Kindle Unlimited 🔗 | Goodreads 🔗

Enter for the chance to win a $15 gift card from Amazon or be one of the 5 winners of the ebook, Iced.

Excerpt from ICED

Today everything in my life changed.

I’m the events coordinator and membership manager, in training that is, at a five star resort in Colorado. Some days, like today, it feels like I was sacrificed to some sadistic little idol somewhere. Coordination of conferences and meetings of all sizes in the resort’s convention center facility was part of my training. But this particular event, a Leadership Luncheon that brought together the town’s community leaders to network, was a challenge from the first minutes this morning.

“Julienne, this event must be executed with precision and perfection.” Those are the favorite words of my boss, Chad. This particular event is a daylong exercise in patience.

Every job has its great parts and it’s not so great. Today encompassed one of the more unpleasant aspects of my job. Occasionally, okay usually, the hardest part of my job is the customer relations and today was particularly difficult. Some customers just can’t be satisfied and some events are riddled with issues.

We were only serving a modest seventy-five attendees, but I had already been assailed with special requests and numerous complaints. Picky doesn’t begin to cover it.

“How hard would it be to setup for a video presentation with a large screen and surround sound?”

“There are windows. It’s too distracting, people will be watching the hotel guests walking around.”

“Can we change the setup of room C from an L configuration to a U shape? But only for that one session, then move it back.”

“Can we get the Lobster for the buffet flown in that morning? Scallops are out….Can we have the scallops after all?”

“Music piped in during the breaks?”

“No music piped in at all.”

“Red tablecloths with white napkins.”

“Royal blue tablecloths with white napkins.”

“White tablecloths with yellow napkins.”

“Candles on mirrors for lunch centerpieces.”

“Fresh flowers for centerpieces.”

The changes continued even after the event started.

The Convention Center, with its classic European décor had a small lobby area with a few potted trees and plants on column stands. The rest extended down a hallway with two large areas on each side that could be divided into smaller rooms via partitions that extend from the walls as needed. The space could be up to eight small rooms, four on each side, or any combination from one to four rooms per side of the hallway.

The hallway was wide with several half-circle console tables including marble tops holding large dried floral arrangements and a few elegant chairs. The walls displayed large paintings of the Italian countryside and vineyards with carved gold gilt frames.

I was in a partitioned room overseeing the set up of the lunch buffet. The Italian Renaissance architecture was accentuated with interior details and décor that created a European elegance, all lit with the warm glow of a massive amber glass chandelier.

The room was a rectangle with the entrance from the hallway to one end and the door to the catering staging area at the opposite end. The buffet table was along the wall next to the staging door so wait staff could easy restock food items. The six-person round tables covered in rich golden linens were scattered strategically throughout the room to allow easy traffic flow. The thick carpet felt plush and cloud-like under foot.

I was surveying the buffet table with a critical eye. The five foot long ice sculpture of a swordfish occupied the center of the table and looked as though it was caught in mid leap, frolicking in a wave and ready to dive back into an unseen ocean. My stomach growled as the succulent smells of seafood teased my nose. The attendees would be returning to this room for their lunch and keynote speaker shortly.

“Brad, where are the crab leg metal crackers and little forks? Can you grab a few dozen and bring them right away?” Brad, slim and serious, had joined the team only two months ago and was picking up extra hours at every opportunity. He had asked to work this event as soon as I blocked out the time on the schedule. This would give him a good paycheck. He was lanky and took off with an easy loping stride to the staging area through the back door.

The door to the staging area had barely closed when I felt a hand grab hold of my derriere with an iron hard grip.

“This is more like it honey. I haven’t had any fun today.”

I whirled around and stumbled back. “Don’t touch the staff. That includes me Pastor Tom.” I practically shouted. Pastor Tom Drake was well known around town, and getting national attention lately with his mega church. He was included in the luncheon due to his influence, but he was just Pastor Tom since he was a local guy who started his church and radio ministry from his garage.

I had contended with bad behavior before, but never this grabby. I think I was going to have a bruise left from his vicious hand.

“You’re not being very fri…friendly.” I noticed his eyes were droopy and then I caught a whiff of the scotch he must have gotten at the Gilded Hornet pub next to the convention center building.

I decided to alert security we needed a person to monitor the rest of the event and turned to go. His iron hand grabbed hold of my arm and yanked me to him. Without a thought I took my knee to his groin and enjoyed watching his mouth form an “O” as his breath whooshed out. I broke free and backed away. I wasn’t turning my back on him again.

“I will see you fired for that you bitch.” He whispered with a jagged voice.

He couldn’t do that, at least I was pretty sure he couldn’t. I guess I’d find out. I rubbed my still smarting arm where he grabbed it. Brad would be back or the event participants would start to wander in so he couldn’t do much more, but I didn’t want to stay and find out. I backed out the door to the hallway toward the lobby and took my cell phone from my pants pocket.

“Hey Ron, we have a person under the influence at the luncheon in Convention Center. Can you spare someone for the afternoon?”

“I’ll make sure somebody’s there immediately Julienne. How bad is this guy?”

“Well, I’ll probably have a black-and-blue handprint on my arm and …my backside.” I took a deep breath.

“Son of a … I’ll be right there. You stay away from him.” Like I would go near that Neanderthal again, pastor or not.

The other participants were starting to exit the smaller break out session rooms and meander to the banquet room and bathrooms. The noise level began to creep upward from multiple conversations competing to be heard.

There was a loud crash of metal from the banquet room and a participant jerked open the door and froze in place. “Oh sh…” The participant’s mouth gaped and his eyes were large circles.

I ran over to the open door and saw Pastor Tom impaled through the chest with the sharp end of the Swordfish ice sculpture, from his back right through to the front. His head was forward against his chest. Blood, running down the swordfish tip that jutted from his chest, dripping to the carpet. Drip, drip, drip in a macabre but surreal scene.

***

Excerpt from Iced by Avery Daniels. Copyright © 2017 by Avery Daniels. Reproduced with permission from Avery Daniels. All rights reserved

Author Bio:

Avery Daniels was born and raised in Colorado, graduated from college with a degree in business administration and has worked in fortune 500 companies and Department of Defense her entire life. Her most eventful job was apartment management for 352 units. She still resides in Colorado with two brother black cats as her spirited companions. She volunteers for a cat shelter, enjoys scrapbooking and card making, photography, and painting in watercolor and acrylic. She inherited a love for reading from her mother and grandmother and grew up talking about books at the dinner table.

Catch Up With Avery On: Website 🔗, Goodreads 🔗, Twitter 🔗, & Facebook 🔗!

Click here to view the Iced by Avery Daniels Book Blast Participants

Cozy Prizes Friday: Treble at the Jam Fest

 

Today we welcome Leslie Budewitz’s new book Treble at the Jam Fest!    Be sure to enter Leslie’s giveaway for a chance at a print copy of this brand new cozy mystery.  Scroll down to find Prize Guy to enter.

All About Treble at the Jam Fest

Erin Murphy, manager of Murphy’s Mercantile (aka the Merc), is tuning up for Jewel Bay’s annual Jazz Festival. Between keeping the Merc’s shelves stocked with Montana’s tastiest local fare and hosting the festival’s kick-off concert, Erin has her hands full.

Discord erupts when jazz guitarist Gerry Martin is found dead on the rocks above the Jewel River. The one-time international sensation had fallen out of sync with festival organizers, students, and performers. Was his death an accident—or did someone even the score?

Despite the warning signs to not get involved, Erin investigates. And when the killer attacks, she orchestrates her efforts into one last crescendo, hoping to avoid a deadly finale.

Check out Treble at the Jam Fest on Amazon

 

 

About Leslie Budewitz

Leslie Budewitz is the author of the Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries and the Spice Shop Mysteries—and the first author to win Agatha Awards for both fiction and nonfiction. She lives in northwest Montana with her husband, a musician and doctor of natural medicine, and their cat Ruff, a cover model and avid bird-watcher.

Connect with her on her website, http://www.LeslieBudewitz.com, on Facebook, or on Twitter.

 

 

Click Here to Enter for the Chance to Win a Paperback Copy of  TREBLE AT THE JAM FEST

Cozy Spotlight: Marriage is Pure Murder

Today I am happy to be spotlighting a new cozy mystery, Marriage is Pure Murder by Staci McLaughlin.  After you read all about her new book, be sure to scroll down and find the Prize Guy so you can enter for your chance at a print copy of this brand new cozy!

Find Marriage is Pure Murder on Amazon

Wedding bells are ringing at the O’Connell Organic Farm and Spa in California’s postcard-perfect Blossom Valley. The entire staff is pitching in to send one of their own down the aisle. But no one knew the nuptials could turn up so many secrets—or that marriage and murder could go hand in hand . . .

Dana Lewis is marrying Jason Forrester, a talented reporter and the love of her life. She couldn’t dream of a better venue than the farm where she works, and her friends are determined to give her the wedding of her dreams. Even her florist, Bethany Lancaster, is making sure she has just the right flowers. But Dana’s happiness wilts when she finds Bethany shot dead—and discovers her friend was a busybody with a blackmail list longer than a cathedral veil. With so many enemies, finding Bethany’s killer seems all but impossible. And when Dana herself is eyed as a suspect, she’ll have to chase down the culprit faster than she can say, “I do”—or she’ll be trading in her wedding dress for prison stripes . .

 

Click Here for Your Chance to Win a Print Copy of Marriage is Pure Murder

 

 

About The Author

Staci McLaughlin graduated from the California State University, East Bay before becoming a technical writer for a number of years. Now she is a stay-at-home mom and a cozy mystery writer in my spare time (Ha!). Once she can wrangle the kids into bed, my husband and I enjoy watching scary movies and playing both board games and video games.

She is currently a member of Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime, as well as a contributor to the LadyKillers blog at http://www.theladykillers.typepad.com/. She lives with my family in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Where to Find Staci

Webpage – http://stacimclaughlin.com/home

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/Staci-McLaughlin-161577987251041/