Wednesday, March 18, 2020

In ROCCO's hot seat - author S.C. Perkins!



MEOW!  On our last interview/blog before our move to Phoenix, AZ, my guest is author S.C. Perkins!!!!

S.C. PERKINS is a fifth-generation Texan who grew up hearing fascinating stories of her ancestry and eating lots of great Tex-Mex. Her first book, Murder Once Removed, was the winner of the 2017 Malice Domestic Best First Traditional Mystery competition, and an Agatha Award nominee. She resides in Houston and, when she’s not writing, she’s likely outside in the sun or on the beach. 


R:  Tell us a bit about yourself and how you became interested in writing.

Hi! I’m S.C. Perkins and I write the Ancestry Detective series, about a professional genealogist named Lucy Lancaster.

I’ve been a writer—in journalism, mostly—since high school and I’ve never wanted to be anything else. I’ve worked at several journalism-related jobs in my career, but finally decided to start my dream of writing novels back in 2005.

Before writing my debut cozy mystery, Murder Once Removed, I’d written one mystery that is as yet unpublished and then I self-published a romance novel. It was at a writers’ conference in Austin, Texas, in 2013 where I first got the idea for my cozy mystery series about a professional genealogist, and Lucy was born.

After much editing and rewriting, I submitted Murder Once Removed to the Malice Domestic Best First Traditional Novel Contest in 2016. I was just about to start querying agents in early 2017 when I got the call that Murder Once Removed won, and with it came a publishing contract! Murder Once Removed officially debuted in March of 2019.

R:  Tell us about your latest release

My next release is titled Lineage Most Lethal, and it’s book two in the Ancestry Detective series. I’m so excited about this one because the genealogy is centered around World War II and espionage, which are two things that never fail to fascinate me. In Lineage Most Lethal we also get to meet Lucy’s favorite person in the whole world:  her grandfather, who is a World War II veteran and may or may not be harboring a secret!


R: What’s a must have for you when you are writing? What aids the creative process?

My writing must-haves are tea—usually Darjeeling and/or Earl Grey—snacks (a lot of them), and a level of quiet. I can work in public places, so I don’t need complete silence, but I’m distracted by too much noise, and, unfortunately, by music—basically because I love music and I generally end up singing instead of writing!


R: If you had access to a time machine, which historical moment would you travel to and why?

While I don’t romanticize war and would never want to have another war again if at all possible, I would still want to go back to the World War II era and work for the Office of Strategic Services. I think I would have been an excellent codebreaker—back when code breaking was done by humans and not computers, of course. I doubt if I’d make a good codebreaker in today’s world, but back during the wartime years? Heck, yeah, I would!

R: What genre do you generally write and have you considered other genres?
I generally write cozy and/or traditional mysteries, and I absolutely love them. I also like thrillers, historical mysteries, and historical fiction, all of which I would definitely consider writing.
R: Are you a plotter or a pantser?
I’m a pantser, big time. However, since I’m still new to the publishing game, I’ve had to learn to write a detailed synopsis for other books I’m pitching to my agents and publisher, so I have a mild plotter side to me now as well.
R: Where can we find out more about you and your work?
You can find me at www.scperkins.com and at @SCPerkinsWriter on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Pinterest.
R: Do you have any advice for beginning writers?

Write what makes you happy! But also go to writing conferences, submit to contests, get critiques (and learn to accept them with good grace), and, most of all, hire a qualified editor who deals with your book’s genre to do a thorough edit for your book. This can cost a lot of money, but it’s worth it—and it’s tax deductible to one level or another (ask your CPA for sure). Regardless, hire a good editor, trust them, and get used to being edited.

Get used to revising, too, sometimes even to the point of pulling apart whole scenes to your entire book. Learn to be as good of a rewriter as you are a writer and that will help you immensely.

R: If you weren’t a writer, what would you be doing?

I think I’d like to be a historian, antiques dealer, or an archeologist.

R: Are there any writers  in particular that have influenced your style of writing?

Of recent authors, Rhys Bowen, Kate Carlisle, and Carolyn Haines have all influenced my writing. The late Dick Francis was also a huge influence and his books are still some of my favorites.


Just for Fun:
Night or Day?  DAY

Dog or Cat? (answer carefully)  CAT, but I love dogs too!  R: Good answer, heh heh

Beach or Pool?   BEACH

Steak or salad?  STEAK

Favorite Drink?  TEA, iced or hot

Favorite Book?  THE DANGER by Dick Francis

Favorite TV Series?  THE BIG BANG THEORY and DOWNTON ABBEY

Favorite Movie?  WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING

Favorite Actor: CHRIS EVANS

Favorite Actress: KEELEY HAWES

Dirty Martini or Pina Colada? DIRTY MARTINI

Hawaii or Alaska? HAWAII

Finish this sentence:  If I could meet anyone in the world, past or present, it would be TINA FEY

If I had one wish it would be: My wish would be to help our world be cleaner by reducing unneeded plastic creation and usage.

If I could trade places with anyone in the world, it would be:  I’m happy with myself and can’t say there’s anyone I’d trade with for more than a day, but there’s several actors, performers, and athletes I’d trade places with for 24 hours, just to enjoy being able to do what they do, at their level.

This list includes Tina Fey, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Dame Maggie Smith, a couple of ballet dancers, several show jumpers, and many Olympic athletes.

You can find S.C. at www.scperkins.com and at @SCPerkinsWriter on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Pinterest.


SC will give away a paperback copy of Murder Once Removed, my debut Ancestry Detective mystery!  To enter, leave your name and  email address in our comments column. Winner will be chosen at random by Maxx on Friday, March 27th.

Due to the human’s move to Phoenix the last week of March, we will resume our blog reviews and interviews in mid to late April!   Watch the human’s newsletter and Facebook for announcement!

See you soon,meow!!!!!!


Sunday, March 1, 2020

ROCCO'S MARCH COZY REVIEWS!

Merow!  Since the human will be offsite in Arizona most of the month, we wanted to get the cozy reviews in early!!!!!!!

First up:  AL DENTE'S INFERNO
A Tuscan Cooking School Mystery
Stephanie Cole
Berkley Mass Market Paperback
On sale 2/25/20
Four Stars




An American chef will have to serve up more than good eats if she wants to establish a successful farm-to-table cooking school in Tuscany, in this charming first installment in a new cozy mystery series set in Italy. 

When Nell Valenti is offered a chance to move to Tuscany to help transform an aging villa into a farm-to-table cooking school, she eagerly accepts. After all, both her job and her love life in America have been feeling stale. Plus, she'll get the chance to work under the acclaimed Italian Chef Claudio Orlandini.

But Nell gets more than she bargained for when she arrives. With only a day to go until the launch dinner for the cooking school, the villa is in shambles, and Chef O is blissfully oblivious of the work that needs to be done before a group of local dignitaries arrive, along with a filmmaker sent to showcase and advertise the new school. The situation only worsens when Nell discovers that the filmmaker is an ex-boyfriend, and he’s found murdered later that night. Even worse, Chef O has disappeared, and accusations of murder could shut the school down for good.

As tensions reach a boiling point at the villa, Nell must throw her chef's hat into the ring, and investigate the murder herself. Because if she fails to solve the case, her career, or even her life, could be next on the chopping block.  If you are a cooking fan, this one's for you.


DEATH WITH A DARK RED ROSE
Julia Buckley
Writer's Apprentice Mystery
Berkley Mass Market Paperback
On sale 2/25/20
Four Stars

Fifth in the Writer's Apprentice series!

Writer's apprentice Lena London is enjoying life in Blue Lake and being newly engaged, but is soon drawn into the terrifying disappearance of one of her closest friends....

Lena is starting to feel like having it all may actually be possible! She and suspense novelist Camilla Graham are busily plotting their next novel and she's got a brand-new diamond ring on her finger thanks to her fiancé, Sam West. The only blot on her Blue Lake life is a strange new corporation that has come to town called Plastisource. They seem to be intent on gobbling up prime real estate and changing the landscape of Lena's lovely adopted home.

When she and Sam get a call from their good friend (and Blue Lake detective) Doug saying that his girlfriend--and Lena's pal Belinda--isn't answering her phone and missed a date with him, they all head out to her home. The trio is shocked to discover that Belinda's purse and phone are at her house, along with a single red rose on her countertop--but Belinda herself is missing. Has she been abucted? Could the strange new corporation play a role in her disappearance? Lena is determined to find out and rescue her friend because she knows that the truth can be stranger and much more deadly than fiction....

MIMI LEE GETS A CLUE
A Sassy Cat Mystery
Jennifer J. Chow
Berkley Prime Crime
On Sale 3/3/20
Four and 1/2 Stars

Mimi Lee is in over her head. There's her new Los Angeles pet grooming shop to run, her matchmaking mother to thwart, her talking cat Marshmallow to tend to—oh, and the murder of a local breeder to solve...now if only Mimi hadn't landed herself on top of the suspect list. 

Mimi Lee hoped to give Los Angeles animal lovers something to talk about with her pet grooming shop, Hollywoof. She never imagined that the first cat she said hello to would talk back or be quite so, well, catty—especially about those disastrous dates Mimi's mother keeps setting up. 

When Marshmallow exposes local breeder Russ Nolan for mistreating Chihuahuas, Mimi steals some of her cat's attitude to tell Russ off. The next day the police show up at Hollywoof. Russ has been found dead, and Mimi's shouting match with him has secured her top billing as the main suspect. 

Hoping to clear her name and save the pups Russ left behind, Mimi enlists help from her dreamy lawyer neighbor Josh. But even with Josh on board, it'll take Mimi and Marshmallow a lot of sleuthing and more than a little sass to get back to the pet-grooming life—and off the murder scene.

A FATAL YARN
Knit and Nibble Mystery
Peggy Ehrhardt
Kensington, MMP
March 31, 2020
Four Stars

Pamela Paterson and her Knit and Nibble club must clear the name of one of their knitters when he's accused of murdering the mayor . . .

The trees in Arborville, New Jersey, have started sporting sweaters. Part of the trend of public knitting art? Not exactly. An anonymous activist has been wrapping trunks in yarn to cover red X's that mark certain trees for removal by the town so they don't interfere with power lines. When the town's mayor—who supports cutting down the trees—is murdered, Pamela wonders if the tree hugger committed homicide to prevent arborcide. A knitter is arrested, but it's one of Knit and Nibble's own—the harmless Roland DeCamp, who was seen arguing with the mayor. Pamela is sure the police are barking up the wrong tree. With the help of her reporter friend Bettina, she branches off on her own investigation to root out the real killer . . .


LAVENDER BLUE MURDER
LAURA CHILDS
A TEA SHOP MYSTERY
HARDCOVER; BERKLEY
ON SALE 3/3/20
FIVE STARS





Tea-Maven Theodosia Browning brews up trouble in the latest Tea Shop Mystery from New York Times bestselling author Laura Childs.

Tea maven Theodosia Browning and her tea sommelier Drayton Conneley are guests at a bird hunt styled in the precise manner of an English shooting party. When gunshots explode like a riff of Black Cat firecrackers, another shot sounds too close for comfort to Theodosia and Drayton. Intrigued but worried, Theodosia wanders into the neighbor's lavender field where she discovers their host, Reginald Doyle, bleeding to death.

As Theodosia investigates, fingers are pointed, secrets are uncovered, Theodosia worries if she's made a mistake in inviting a prime suspect to her upscale Lavender Lady Tea.

Who can resist Theodosia!  One of the best yet.  Watch for an in-depth review and giveaway on our Celebrate Spring March 20th blog!

Want to win one of ROCCO's review copies?  Leave your name and email address in our comments section.  Winner will be selected at random March 19.


Thursday, February 13, 2020

ROCCO's guest...author Jennifer J. Chow!


Hello Folks!  I’m back with another author interview!  My guest this week is author Jennifer J. Chow.

Jennifer J. Chow writes multicultural mysteries and fantastical YA. Her Asian-American novels include Dragonfly Dreams (Teen Vogue pick), The 228 Legacy, and the Winston Wong cozy mystery series.
Her short fiction has most recently appeared in the STEM anthology, Brave New Girls: Tales of Heroines who Hack, Hyphen Magazine, and Yay! LA Magazine.



    Welome Jennifer!  Tell us a little about your background!

I write multicultural mysteries. My dad has Chinese heritage but was born and raised in Malaysia. My mom grew up in Hong Kong. I have a professional background in geriatric social work, so don’t be surprised if you see older characters in my stories!

     Tell us a bit about your latest book

MIMI LEE GETS A CLUE is about a Los Angeles pet groomer who ends up being the prime suspect in the murder of a local dog breeder. She’ll need help from her sassy talking cat and her dreamy lawyer neighbor if she wants to get off the suspect list.
     How do you “get to know” your characters before and while you’re writing the books?
I like compiling character profiles. These lists describe the goals, quirks, and traits of each individual. While I’m writing, I find that their personalities will unfold on the page.

     How do you construct your plots? Do you outline or do you write “by the seat of your       pants”?

 I start with a general outline for the story and also use bullet points for each chapter. As I work, though, I’ll also let the characters act organically. 

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a writer and what inspires you and keeps you motivated?

Getting published is a marathon. It’s hard to persevere when receiving rejections and pressure from well-meaning friends and family. Motivation comes from seeing the success of other writers as they pursue their passion. For me, looking up to and following established Asian American authors is especially rewarding. 

    What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done?

I’m really risk-averse, but my most recent adventure involved petting a hedgehog.  (ROCCO: Sounds like an interview for another day, meow)

    What’s one thing your readers would be surprised to find out about you?

    Unlike most writers, I can’t operate on coffee—it makes me too jittery. I prefer tea.


Just for Fun:
Night or Day?  Night.

Dog or Cat? (answer carefully)  Both! I like all things furry.  (ROCCO:  Good answer, meow)

Beach or Pool?   Beach.

Steak or salad?  Steak salad?

Favorite Drink?  Jasmine green tea. 

Favorite Book?  It changes every year! A few weeks ago, though, I read The Bookish Life of Nina Hill and really enjoyed it. 

Favorite TV Series?  TV? I don’t have time for television. 

Favorite Movie?  Beauty and the Beast

Favorite Actor: I think Tom Hanks is very talented. 

Favorite Actress: Jennifer Lawrence (and it’s not because we share the same first name!). 

Dirty Martini or Pina Colada? Neither, but I do like those cute cocktail umbrellas. 

Hawaii or Alaska? Hawaii.

Finish this sentence:  If I could meet anyone in the world, past or present, it would be Emily Dickinson.

If I had just one wish, it would be increased appreciation and compassion in the world. 

If I could trade places with anyone in the world, it would be Reese Witherspoon (and getting to run her women-empowering book club).

Thanks for a great interview, Jennifer!
Folks you can connect with Jennifer at the below:

Jennifer will give away an ARC of MIMI LEE GETS A CLUE to one lucky commenter. Leave your name and email address in our comments section below to enter. US entries only, please!  The winner will be selected at random on February 28.



Thursday, February 6, 2020

ROCCO's February Cozy Reviews!

Ma-Row!

This month we have two repeats, as they belonged on the February schedule for Berkley. We reviewed them last  month, but in case you missed it, here they are again along with some others:

CLAW ENFORCEMENT
SOFIE RYAN
BERKLEY, JANUARY 7 2020
SECOND CHANCE CAT MSYTERY
FOUR AND A HALF PAWS




Sarah Grayson and her feline ally, Elvis, are hot on the tail of a crafty killer in the newest installment of the New York Times bestselling Second Chance Cat mysteries.

Sarah Grayson owns a delightful secondhand shop in the small town of North Harbor, Maine, where she and her rescue cat, Elvis, are always finding themselves up to their whiskers in trouble. With the help of a quirky group of senior citizens—who call themselves Charlotte’s Angels and work out of the store—they solve crimes both new and vintage.

Local squabbles about property development have the town in quite a state of drama—and it seems like someone may even be upset enough to kill. When a local man involved in the real estate quagmire falls over dead at a reception to celebrate the harbor front’s redevelopment, Sarah gets roped in to investigate by her own IT expert, Mr. P., who has long known the victim’s stepfather. Between Sarah, Elvis and Charlotte’s Angels, the killer is sure to have claws for concern

Another good entryin this series. Four and a half paws!!!!!

BURIED TO THE BRIM
HAT SHOP MYSTERY
JENN  MCKINLAY
JANUARY 28, 2020
FOUR PAWS





New York Times bestselling author Jenn McKinlay's beloved Hat Shop duo Scarlett Parker and Vivian Tremont return to don their sleuthing caps and solve a murder that's death in show.

London's most refined canines and their humans are gearing up for the Pets and Wellness Society's annual dog show--and Betty Wentworth, favorite aunt to Scarlett's fiancé Harrison and proud owner of corgi front-runner Freddy, knows that this could be their year with the right edge. Never one to turn away a corgi in need, Scarlett convinces her milliner cousin, Vivian, to design matching hats for dream team Betty and Freddy as they compete for Best in Show.

It's a tail wagging good time until the dog-food sponsor of the event is found dead and Betty is the prime suspect. Vivian and Scarlett agree to enter the competition in Betty's place and help Harrison catch the real killer before Betty is collared for a crime she didn't commit.

DEATH IN THE FAMILY
A Shana Merchant Novel
Berkley
Tessa Wegert
Hardcover/Feb 18, 2020
Four Paws



A storm-struck island. A blood-soaked bed. A missing man. Senior Investigator Shana Merchant believes it all adds up to a killer in their midst—and that murder is a family affair.

Thirteen months ago, former NYPD detective Shana Merchant barely survived being abducted by a serial killer. Now hoping to leave grisly murder cases behind, she's taken a job in her fiancé's sleepy hometown in the Thousand Islands region of Upstate New York.

But as a nor'easter bears down on her new territory, Shana and fellow investigator Tim Wellington receive a call about a man missing on a private island. Shana and Tim travel to the isolated island owned by the wealthy Sinclair family to question the witnesses. They arrive to find blood on the scene and a house full of Sinclair family and friends on edge.

While Tim guesses they're dealing with a runaway case, Shana is convinced that they have a murder on their hands. As the gale intensifies outside, she starts conducting interviews and discovers the Sinclairs and their guests are crawling with dark and dangerous secrets.

Trapped on the island by the raging storm with only Tim whose reliability is thrown into question, the increasingly restless suspects, and her own trauma-fueled flashbacks for company, Shana will have to trust the one person her abduction destroyed her faith in—herself. 


An excellent first in what looks to be a thriilling new series.  Definitely a notch up from a cozy.  four paws.



COCONUT LAYER CAKE MURDER
JOANNE FLUKE
KENSINGTON; HARDCOVER
HANNAH SWENSON SERIES, #25
FOUR PAWS




Bakery owner Hannah Swensen is leaving Lake Eden to help a friend in sunny California. But an unexpected phone call swiftly brings her back to a cold Minnesota winter . . . and murder . . .
 
When Hannah learns that her sister Michelle’s boyfriend, Detective Lonnie Murphy, is the prime suspect in a murder case, she goes straight from a movie studio sound stage to the Los Angeles airport.
 
Back in frigid Minnesota, she discovers that proving Lonnie’s innocence will be harder than figuring out what went wrong with a recipe. Lonnie remembers only parts of the night he went out to a local bar and ended up driving a very impaired woman home. He knows he helped her to her bedroom, but he doesn’t recall anything else until he woke up on her couch the following morning. When he went to the bedroom to check on her, he was shocked to discover she was dead.
 
Hannah doesn’t know what to believe—only that exonerating a suspect who can’t remember is almost impossible, especially since Lonnie’s brother, Detective Rick Murphy, and Lonnie’s partner, Chief Detective Mike Kingston, have been taken off the case. Before everything comes crashing down on Lonnie like a heaping slice of coconut layer cake, it’ll be up to Hannah to rack up enough clues to cat[ch the killer.


Cmon who doesn't love Hannah? and her recipes???????  25th volume!!!!!!!!!


PIES BEFORE GUYS
A PIETOWN MYSTERY
KENSINGTON
MARCH 1, 2020
FOUR PAWS




A poetry slam at a bakery? Why not! Even though Pie Town proprietor Val Harris would rather be spending time with her newfound half-brother, she knows her employee Abril is beyond excited to be hosting the event. Especially since it stars the apple pie of Abril’s eye, poet and professor Michael Starke. But the evening ends on a sour note when Professor Starke is found murdered mere moments after being accused of plagiarism.
 
Just like that, Pie Town is at the center of another criminal inquiry. At Abril’s request—and much to Detective Carmichael’s consternation—Val and Charlene decide to investigate Starke’s death. But the case is as tough as an overworked crust and the Baker Street Bakers are only coming up with scraps. If they don’t pinch the cultured killer soon, Pie Town’s reputation could crumble



BROKEN BONE CHINA
A TEA SHOP MYSTERY
LAURA CHILDS
PAPERBACK EDITION; BERKLEY
JANUARY 28, 2020
FIVE PAWS




It is Sunday afternoon, and Theodosia and Drayton are catering a formal tea at a hot-air balloon rally. The view aloft is not only stunning, they are also surrounded by a dozen other colorful hot-air balloons. But as the sky turns gray and the clouds start to boil up, a strange object zooms out of nowhere. It is a drone, and it appears to be buzzing around the balloons, checking them out. 

As Theodosia and Drayton watch, the drone, hovering like some angry, mechanized insect, deliberately crashes into the balloon next to them. An enormous, fiery explosion erupts, and everyone watches in horror as the balloon plummets to the earth, killing all three of its passengers.

Sirens scream, first responders arrive, and Theodosia is interviewed by the police. During the interview she learns that one of the downed occupants was Don Kingsley, the CEO of a local software company, SyncSoft. Not only do the police suspect Kingsley as the primary target, they learn that he possessed a rare Revolutionary War Union Jack flag that several people were rabidly bidding on.
Intrigued, Theodosia begins her own investigation. Was it the CEO's soon-to-be ex-wife, who is restoring an enormous mansion at no expense? The CEO's personal assistant, who also functioned as curator of his prized collection of Americana? Two rival antiques' dealers known for dirty dealing? Or was the killer the fiancée of one of Theodosia's dear friends, who turns out to be an employee—and whistle-blower—at SyncSoft?

Anoter winner in this great series!  Inever tire of watching Theodosia, assisted by Drayton, ferret out clues and catch a killer, often at great peril to her wardrobe. Five Paws.



YOU COULD WIN ONE OF ROCCO'S REVIEW COPIES!

Just leave your name and email address in the comments section.  Maxx will choose a winner at random!
US entries only, please. Contest ends Feb. 21


Tuesday, January 7, 2020

ROCCO's January Reivews!

Ma-Row! Starting out with a favorite series!

CARELESS WHISKERS
ACAT IN THE STACKS MYSTERY
MIRANDA JAMES
BERKLEY, JAN 21ST HARDCOVER
FIVE STARS


Charlie Harris has sworn off investigating murder and mayhem after a recent close call. Instead, he's delighted to cheer on his daughter, Laura, who's starring in a production of Careless Whispers. The theater department at Athena College is debuting the play written by a fledgling playwright with local connections and Charlie's son-in-law, Frank Salisbury, will be calling the directorial shots.  

Laura is upset to learn that Luke Lombardi, an overbearing actor she knew from her time in Hollywood will also be taking part in the production as a guest artist. Lombardi arrives with an entourage in tow and promptly proceeds to annoy everyone involved with the production. When he collapses and dies on stage, after drinking from a glass Laura handed him, she becomes the chief suspect in his murder.  

Charlie knows his daughter is innocent, and  he’s not going to let anyone railroad his little girl. So,  despite his intentions to put his amateur sleuthing days behind him, Charlie has to take center stage, and with Diesel’s help, shine a  spotlight on the real killer.

We all knew Charlie Harris and Diesel would not swear off solivng mysteries and we are glad they did not!  Another entertaining entry in this fine series that should please fans old and new alike.  Five paws!

MURDER INK
VICTORIA SQUARE MYSTERY
LORRAINE BARTLETT AND GAYLE LEESON
BERKLEY, DEC 31, MM PAPERBACK
FOURSTARS




The charm of Victoria Square may prove to be only skin deep when murder follows the arrival of a tattoo parlor in town in this latest installment of the New York Times bestselling series.

A tattoo parlor on Victoria Square? Some of the merchants get hot under the collar at the proposal, but could they be driven to kill to stop it? That's what the sheriff's office and Katie Bonner want to know when the building's owner is electrocuted with his own saw.

Meanwhile, tensions rise when a hot chef takes over the square's tea shop. Will Katie have three men vying for her affections, or will her rival take the tea cake?



THERE'S A MURDER AFOOT
VICKI DELANEY
SHERLOCK HOLMES BOOKSHOP MYSTERIES
CROOKED LANE
JANUARY 7
FOUR AN A HALF PAWS

Just in time for Sherlock Holmes's 166th birthday, the fifth installment in national bestselling author Vicki Delany's Sherlock Holmes Bookshop mystery takes Sherlockania to the max with a Holmes convention and historic 221 Baker Street.

Gemma Doyle and her friends travel to London for a Sherlock Holmes convention--but will Gemma's father take the fall for a felonious forger's fatality?

The 6th of January is Sherlock Holmes's birthday, and lucky for Gemma Doyle, January is also the slowest time of the year at both the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop and Emporium, and Mrs. Hudson's Tea Room. It's a good time for Gemma and her friends to travel to England for a Holmes Convention. For Gemma, the trip provides an opportunity to visit her parents, Jayne Wilson is excited about seeing all the sites London has to offer, and Ryan Ashburton just wants to spend some time with Gemma. But the trip is immediately derailed when Gemma's father Henry recognizes his brother-in-law Randolph Denhaugh, who disappeared more than thirty years ago on the night he stole a valuable painting from his own parents.

Henry, a retired detective with Scotland Yard, has been keeping tabs on the man's career as a forger of Old Masters and he warns Randy to stay away from his family. It's up to Gemma, with the help of her friends, to plunge into the "lowest and vilest alleys" of London to save her father from prison.

Another good entry in this series!  (and did you notice Sherlock Holmes and Elvis have the same birthdy?


CLAW ENFORCEMENT
SOFIE RYAN
BERKLEY, JANUARY 7 2020
SECOND CHANCE CAT MSYTERY
FOUR AND A HALF PAWS




Sarah Grayson and her feline ally, Elvis, are hot on the tail of a crafty killer in the newest installment of the New York Times bestselling Second Chance Cat mysteries.

Sarah Grayson owns a delightful secondhand shop in the small town of North Harbor, Maine, where she and her rescue cat, Elvis, are always finding themselves up to their whiskers in trouble. With the help of a quirky group of senior citizens—who call themselves Charlotte’s Angels and work out of the store—they solve crimes both new and vintage.

Local squabbles about property development have the town in quite a state of drama—and it seems like someone may even be upset enough to kill. When a local man involved in the real estate quagmire falls over dead at a reception to celebrate the harbor front’s redevelopment, Sarah gets roped in to investigate by her own IT expert, Mr. P., who has long known the victim’s stepfather. Between Sarah, Elvis and Charlotte’s Angels, the killer is sure to have claws for concern

Another good entryin this series. Four and a half paws!!!!!

BURIED TO THE BRIM
HAT SHOP MYSTERY
JENN  MCKINLAY
JANUARY 28, 2020
FOUR PAWS





New York Times bestselling author Jenn McKinlay's beloved Hat Shop duo Scarlett Parker and Vivian Tremont return to don their sleuthing caps and solve a murder that's death in show.

London's most refined canines and their humans are gearing up for the Pets and Wellness Society's annual dog show--and Betty Wentworth, favorite aunt to Scarlett's fiancé Harrison and proud owner of corgi front-runner Freddy, knows that this could be their year with the right edge. Never one to turn away a corgi in need, Scarlett convinces her milliner cousin, Vivian, to design matching hats for dream team Betty and Freddy as they compete for Best in Show.

It's a tail wagging good time until the dog-food sponsor of the event is found dead and Betty is the prime suspect. Vivian and Scarlett agree to enter the competition in Betty's place and help Harrison catch the real killer before Betty is collared for a crime she didn't commit.




WIN ONE OF ROCCO'S REVIEW COPIES!

To enter, just leave your name and email addrss n our comments section below.  Winner will be chosen at random!  US entries only please. Contest ends January 24.