Tag Archive | Escape with Dollycas

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 Masquerading Magician: A Review

Gigi Pandian headshot 38 b&w vertical crop

Gigi Pandian     Author of the Accidental Alchemist Series


I have the great opportunity to welcome Gigi Pandian with her second book in her Accidental Alchemist Series, The Masquerading Magician. There are magical elements to the story as Zoe Faust must find the solution in alchemy for her best friend Dorian who just happens to be a gargoyle. A gargoyle who cooks and rips off French phrases all the time.  You will need a snack when you read the book because the story involves descriptions of so many tasty dishes, but good news, the author included recipes in the back. Now I just need a little stone guy to cook it for me.

The Masquerading Magician has a giveaway for you to enter so scroll down and find the prize guy!

Here is my review of the Masquerading Magician:

Masquerading Magician by Gigi Pandian COVER webres4 Stars

I am not someone who normally reads about alchemy, but  a mystery combined with a shady magician and a desperate search for a cure for a friend, I found it very engaging. I loved the characters of Dorian the gargoyle, Max the cop and of course, Zoe. It was fun getting into the head of a person who had been around for centuries, although her wardrobe choices were questionable.  Gigi Pandian creates a mystery complete with red herrings and colorful cast while we enter into the world of alchemy and backward alchemy. Enjoyable Read!

Click on Me for Signed copies of both books in the series (The Accidental Alchemist and The Masquerading Magician), an Accidental Alchemist mug, and a set of recipe postcards.

Click on Me for Signed copies of both books in the series (The Accidental Alchemist and The Masquerading Magician), an Accidental Alchemist mug, and a set of recipe postcards.

Second to Nun Author Alice Loweecey Visiting Today!

I am so happy to have author Alice Loweecey visiting us today to talk about her writing and her new book Second to Nun.  I’ll admit it. I love books about nuns and priests, even former nuns!  I don’t know why I find these kinds of characters so fascinating. I used to love the old Father Brown series. I think I am particularly intrigued by a character who makes decisions based on faith.

Alice sat down an answered some questions for me. One thing I learned? She’s a middle school teacher! She needs prayers just for that alone.Loweecey author pic 2015 cropped

Tell us a little about yourself.

Thanks, Teresa. I’m an Italian mom from a long line of Italian moms. We cook! We grow our own veggies and make homemade sauce. I have an Italian cheesecake recipe that I make only once every few years because it’s death by sweet, gooey goodness. 

I do have a Day Job, so I block out very early mornings and after supper in the evenings for writing. I have a degree in English Lit and have been a middle-school teacher, but I really use my degree and skills in freelance copyediting and my own writing. 

Like many writers, I have trunked books in addition to my Giulia Driscoll series (five and counting, whee!). One of them, The Redeemers, was published this past August with Dark Recesses Press. I use the pen name of Kate Morgan for it to separate it from my mystery brand.

I loved your Ouija board session in the story, the lighthouse and the woman in white. This is a great combination! How did you research this?

I have a vague recollection of fooling around with a Ouija board in grade school with a friend. Two Catholic school girls deliberately disobeying the nuns, oh my! Nothing came of it but much giggling and disappointment. I’ve seen many movies with psychics and demons, both real and fake (within the plots), so I knew when I created the haunted lighthouse I had to have a Ouija session. I do have to give credit to the TV show Supernatural for giving me the idea for the Woman in White. She wasn’t high up on my haunting list at first, but her multi-country legend fit my plot so well.

Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?

Stone’s Throw B&B was inspired by an actual historic lighthouse B&B my husband and I stayed at one summer. It was a fabulous place, filled with antiques and with a spectacular view. I knew when we walked in that a book opportunity had dropped in my lap, so I took dozens of pictures. When the time to outline Second To Nun arrived, I saw that folder of pictures and the bones of the plot followed a moment later.

Who is your favorite character to create scenes for in the book?

SECOND TO NUN cover I have so many colorful characters in Second To Nun, but my favorites are Solana and Cedar. They’re enigmas: Are they for real? Are they shysters? Just because they know how to run their psychic business doesn’t necessarily mean they’re not for real. I love characters who reveal layer after layer as I get deeper into the story. Cedar also has one of my favorite lines in the book: “I picked the wrong day to quit heroin.” 

Running a close second in the whole series is The Scoop, the local TMZ wannabees. They’re opportunistic, amoral, and indefatigable, and I visit so much deserved humiliation upon them.

How can readers find your books and are there more coming in this series?

My books are on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iTunes, Kobo, and Google Play. They’re also in Barnes and Noble stores across the country, and in libraries as far away as New Zealand. Someday I want to visit all the places that have my books!


The next book in the Giulia Driscoll series is Nun But The Brave. Giulia’s been hired to locate a missing twin, and gets involved with Doomsday Preppers and The Scoop. It gets bumpy!





Ebook Winner From Cozy Wednesdays

DSCN7051Congratulations go out to Lisa who won her choice of books from the Pecan Bayou Series at my guest post giveaway at Escape with Dollycas.  Her choice?

Pecan Bayou Series #3

Pecan Bayou Series #3

                      Doggone Dead (howwwl!)

Thank you to everyone who entered and if you didn’t win, don’t fret. I’ll be on tour in late November for Murder for a Rainy Day where there will be more prizes in store for you.



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