Spotlight on Sublime Karma

I’m happy to welcome Soul Mate author Peyton Garver. Today, Peyton shares her new release, Sublime Karma.

When Brie’s stepfather moves the family for what he calls a new beginning, it’s not the new beginning the beautiful, yet guarded, senior would have hoped for. Brie is instantly targeted by jealous girls at her new school, and the only available seat on her bus is next to the school’s star wide receiver, Jake, who for some reason, finds her offensive. After a humiliating article and picture of Brie is posted in the online school journal, a demon she thought she’d overcome resurfaces, and her life unravels. A newly compassionate Jake has finally taken an interest in her, but can Brie learn to trust her heart, or will she miss out on the best thing that ever happened to her?

Jake has his own secrets and has built his own walls, but eventually his curiosity about the new girl gets the best of him. Unfortunately, now there is competition: the captain of her cross-country team. Jake’s romantic histories with the girl next door and the school’s queen bee, adds tension to a simmering tempest when all he wants is Brie. Is he strong enough to help the one he loves weave sense into her crumbling new reality while overcoming his own tainted past?

The bus snaked its way through the country roads and then to the lavish development that backed up to the woods behind his house. Upperclassmen from this neighborhood had their own cars. This bus collected the underclassmen: those few who weren’t chauffeured to school, as minions of the privileged.

Jake leaned back in his seat and folded his arms across his chest, not looking at the kids coming down the aisle. None dared to ask if they could sit in the empty space next to him. They’d sit three to a seat rather than make that request. Just the way he wanted it.

The over-filled bus pulled to a stop midway down Belmont Circle. New stop? Jake looked out his window at the estate with a circular drive. Huh. It finally sold. He watched as a single figure headed toward the bus. What, so now they get door-to-door service? He rolled his eyes.

Seconds later, she stood in the aisle waiting. From his seat, his eyes skimmed up passed her faded jeans and plain, loose sweater, and his breath caught in his throat. Her long blond hair was pulled to the side in a loose braid. Her face? Ethereal. But then, his flustered gaze became an annoyed glare.

Her bleak gray eyes seemed to look right through him before they darted to the space next to him. Did she even register his indignation? She must have. Yet, she stood there in the aisle twisting the loose adjustment strap on her backpack tightly around her fingers.

“May I sit here?” her meek voice broke the silence that had fallen around them.

Noticing the hush of conversation, Jake’s eyes skimmed the crowded bus. There was no doubt he and this new girl had an audience. Not something he relished.

His eyes swept back to her. He could tell she was nervous. He heard it in her quavering voice and saw it in the way she avoided his eyes. He could just say no. But so long as she was standing, the bus wouldn’t budge.

Peyton is a secondary ed teacher in Maryland and an author of young adult fiction. Her newest novel, Sublime Karma, is an edgy contemporary YA story with diverse characters that addresses real teen issues such as fitting in, cliques, bullying, self harm, and suicide. Sublime Karma has themes that may not be appropriate for tweens and younger teens.

The Sublime Karma manuscript won third place in the Young Adult category of 2015 Lone Star Writing Contest – Northwest Houston Romance Writers of America.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Amazon | Goodreads

Peyton Garver will be awarding signed copies of Sublime Karma–one to a randomly drawn winner and one to the winner’s high school of choice–via Rafflecopter during the tour. Enter here.

Follow Peyton on the rest of her Silver Dagger tour. You can find out more here.


Free on Kindle *** Sublime Karma *** December 16, 17, 18


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10 Interesting Facts about Mary Allerton Cushman

I’m happy to welcome author Noelle Granger to the Power of 10 series. Today, Noelle shares interesting facts about Mary Allerton Cushman.

Here’s Noelle!

Many of you know I am writing a historical novel called The Last Pilgrim, about the life of Mary Allerton Cushman. She was the oldest survivor of the passengers on the Mayflower, who became known as the Old Comers. I have become truly lost in the history of the Pilgrims (not given this name until a very late and passing reference in William Bradford’s Of Plymouth Plantation, 1620-1647.) The Old Comers and many who followed were Separatists from the Church of England.

So here are some facts, of which there are very few as it turns out, about Mary.

She was born while the Separatists were living in Leiden, in 1616, daughter of Mary Norris and Isaac Allerton.

She sailed on the Mayflower with her parents, a sister named Remember, two years older, and a brother, Barthomew, eight years older.

Mary’s mother was pregnant aboard the Mayflower and gave birth to a stillborn son. She died, still aboard the Mayflower, in January of 1621, before suitable housing was built on the site of chosen for their settlement.

Bartholomew returned to England around 1630 and insofar as is known, Mary never saw him again.

Her father married to Fear Brewster, daughter of Elder Brewster, the religious leader of the colony, in 1627. Her half-sister, Sarah, daughter of Isaac and Fear, died as a child. Her half-brother Isaac graduated from Harvard.

Around 1636, she married Thomas Cushman, who had come to Plymouth in 1621 at the age of thirteen on the ship Fortune with father Robert Cushman. Robert Cushman was a prominent member of the Separatist congregation in Leiden.

Thomas and Mary had a prosperous family; seven of their eight children survived to adulthood and married.

She had at least fifty grandchildren!

Her husband, Thomas, took over the position of Elder of their church when Elder Brewster died.

She lived in the Plymouth Colony until her death in 1699, and was buried on Burial Hill in Plymouth. The site of her grave is unknown, but she is mentioned on the memorial erected to the Cushman family.

Burial Hill, Plymouth, MA

Cushman Memorial

One side of the Cushman Memorial

Side of the Memorial mentioning Mary

This is basically most of what is known of Mary Allerton Cushman, with the exception of the names and dates of births, marriages and deaths of her children. I don’t know what she looked like, because there are only a few portraits, painted largely from imagination, of the colony’s male leaders. Thus I’ve had to create her from whole cloth, but I want her life set against the real background of everything that is known of the Plimoth Plantation history and life there. Much of this comes from Bradford’s book – how much poorer we would be without it, but it is hard to read and understand! I also glean from information provided by the Plimoth Plantation historical recreation in Plymouth. This venue is about four doors down from the house where I grew up and I was a tour guide there when it first opened. I also use records, online sources and other books. The latter two have to be vetted for their veracity, since there is a lot of misinformation floating around!

Statue of Elizabeth Tilley Howland, who came on the Mayflower at age 13. She had 88 grandchildren. The Pilgrim women were prolific. I played her in a Pilgrim’s Progress when I was a teen.

I recognize that women in the early colonial days were basically servants – did you know they were not allowed to speak in church except for singing psalms? – but you know they had thoughts, memories and opinions of their own, and I am trying to give life to them.

Wish me luck!

Noelle’s Books

Where to find Noelle…

Blog | Book Site | Twitter | Facebook


Growing Up

Welcome to my Second Acts Series!

Today, we have Soul Mate author Carly Jordynn sharing the transformational journey she has taken with her daughter and her new release, Forest of the Mist: Guardians.

Here’s Carly!

Growing Up may sound like a weird title for somebody in my age group, but that is how I am looking at my life right now. I am a single mom to a daughter that I adopted fourteen years ago. Back then I was immature for my age. I had freedom to do what I wanted when I wanted. I traveled. I went out on dates or with friends. If I wanted to stay home all weekend and binge watch Harry Potter, I could do that. Then I became a mom.

When my daughter came into my life it became a game changer. Don’t get me wrong, I still had fun, but I had to cut back on traveling and I limited my going out time. When she started school, it was like going through school again with her. My daughter has ADD so I have to help her with homework a lot. On any given day you could hear me say as I left work, “I don’t want to go home and do my homework!” We finally got out of elementary school and entered middle school. Oh my gosh! I hated middle school the first time around and I can assure you I am not enjoying it much this time either.

I hear myself all the time saying, “I can’t wait until we’re in high school.” That’s coming up next year and has opened a whole other can of worms. The questions! The endless questions about boys, dating, college, dances, did I mention boys? I’m beginning to think middle school may not be too bad.

So, how does this change me you ask? In several ways I get to relive the best memories I have of those times. I’m getting a refresher course in all subjects. I’ve discovered some of the classes I detested in my day; I am enjoying now. Maybe it’s because my daughter and I do it together and that makes the difference. I’m sure the fact that I’m not being graded this time around helps too  I am more patient, I find humor in some of the silliest things, I enjoy hearing her talk about her friends. I like watching her grow and mature into a beautiful young lady. We are closer now. We not only have a mother/daughter relationship, but we are also friends. I like this new dynamic to the traditional relationship.

Another way I have changed during this time is I am growing as a person. I am definitely smarter with all the classes I’ve been through…again. I find that my opinions are not as hardcore as they once were. I am more flexible in my outlook on life and towards people. I have been overweight most of my life and now I am on the path to a healthier me. I feel better than I have in a long time. My writing career is starting to really take off and that provides me with deep satisfaction. I keep telling my daughter she can do or be anything she wants to be and now I actually believe that. I have more confidence to chase my dreams as I watch my daughter chase hers.

Reinvention, it can happen at any age and proves it’s never too late to capture your dreams.

Blurb

Davy Kyle is in a ton of trouble. That’s really nothing new for Davy as he has been in trouble his whole life. Davy was born in the alternate realm, Paradise Valley. As a result, he has some freakish powers such as rapid growth in body and intelligence, the ability to create portals to transport to the alternate realms, and the ability to know what others are thinking.

During his last adventure, Davy learned he would one day have a co-ruler in the realms and her name would be Kelly. Through a bit of impromptu eavesdropping, he learned that his friends from Paradise Valley, Connor and Lily O’Brien, would name their young daughter Kelly. Shocked at this coincidence, Davy sets out to determine how Kelly will arrive in Paradise since you have to be in a coma to enter the alternate worlds.

Kelly O’Brien was a spoiled six-year-old when family friend and confidant Davy Kyle kidnapped her through a portal to an alternate reality. While there, Davy aged her to sixteen and explained that one day she would be his co-ruler there. While she understood and looked forward to that day, she asked Davy to return her to six and her parents. He did as she asked, but invoked his powers to start accelerated aging and maturity. The alternate realms recognized Kelly and helped with that aging process.

Now Kelly’s parents have enrolled her in high school in the hope she will meet somebody else, fall in love, and forget about Davy and Paradise Valley. What they don’t know is Kelly’s determination to be with Davy no matter the cost.

What Davy does to ensure Kelly’s arrival in Paradise is sooner rather than later will test the ties of his family and friends in reality and may cost him the love of his life.

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Bio and Links

Carly Jordynn is a writer from Northern Kentucky who loves to weave tales of fantasy, paranormal, and romance. When she isn’t writing a book, she enjoys reading, going out with friends, hanging out with her daughter, and living life to the fullest.

Carly loves to travel. You can find her at various conferences and other author events throughout the year. Her hobbies include: travel, photography, reading, and party planning.

Carly is a member of the Romance Writers of America.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Blog



Today, tomorrow, and Sunday–December 7, 8, and 9–Travelers, Book 1 in the Forest of the Mist series is free on Kindle. Find out more here.

Joanne here!

Carly, Thank you for sharing your reinvention story. All the best to you and your daughter as you continue on this journey. Congrats on your new release.


Five Times Two—Elephants & Meerkats Share This Billing

I’m happy to welcome author Missye K. Clarke to the Power of 10 series. Today, Missye shares interesting facts about elephants and meerkaats and her novel, Jersey Dogs.

Here’s Missye!

The McGuinness cousins, Casper and Logan, have Andrea Pedregon and Katherine “Rocket Dog” Jones in their hearts they’d lay their loves down for. Part of a solid supporting cast in the Casebook series, you’ll learn how Andrea adores elephants and Katherine, mother to twin daughters, discovered she shares a nickname with a lead meerkat family a documentary series followed for four years. Read on . . . and you may grow to love elephants and meerkats as I do.

5. This Ain’t Your Granny’s Trunk! The elephant’s trunk, when full grown, alone weighs 400-500 pounds, contains around 100,000 different muscles to move, and has finger-like appendages at its tip, making it possible, if need, to hold a single blade of grass.

4. Two Knees Good, Four Knees Better. The elephant is the only mammal on the planet with four working and forward-bending knees. Unlike us, however, if one’s blown out, we can get it replaced, but they can’t, and will die, since the other three cannot support the animal’s weight to move properly with their herds and constantly seeking a fresh water source.

3. Go, Southpaws! Like you prefer using one hand over the other—Casper McGuinness and I write and play acoustic left-handed, but I digress :)—elephants are “righties,” “lefties” or “ambies” (ambidextrous) with their tusks. Whether fighting other elephants, picking things up, or bark-stripping of trees, like you prefer doing tasks with one tusk over the other. This is why, in seeing photos of these grand animals, one tusk is shorter than its twin over time.

2. Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow. Baby elephants, called calves, have hair fuzzies covering their bodies when they’re first born, but diminishes as they age. The hair acts like a cooling aid to their forms, which is suitable for the severe hot climates of Africa and Asia, even when sparse in an elder elephant’s years.

1. Move Over, Puss-Puss and Fluffy! In addition to the trumpeting sounds we’ve all familiar with in elephants, they purr much like big and domestic cats do.

In Memorandum. When an elephant crosses the great rainbow bridge, the living mammal pay homage to the bones of their dead by touching the skulls and tusks with their trunks and feet. If an elephant is walking by a dead elephant, it’ll stop in its tracks especially if a loved one had died. This silent respect for their own goes on for several minutes to as long as an hour.

Many thanks for Andrea Pedregon giving me these incredible elephant facts. And mark your calendars for every August 12th—that’s known as World Elephant Day. I don’t usually offer a pitch for anything else but shamelessly plugging JERSEY DOGS, but if you could find a worthy elephant conservation charity to donate your time and funds to, that would make my day, restore severely endangered African and Asian elephant numbers, and Andrea’s heart soar. We both thank you so much.

Onto the meerkats!

5. “Hey . . . I Thought I Heard You Calling Me!” Know how you’d recognize your friend’s and loved ones voices in a minute? Like emperor penguins and elephants, meerkats can recognize their friends’, siblings, and children’s cries, calls, and shouts, too. But unlike meerkats, who can hear these sounds upwards to a mile out, or emperor penguins, which can pick out a specific call from over 100,000 birds strong, I’ll bet you can only know your friend’s and loved ones voices from a much shorter distance and in a far smaller crowd.

4. Strength In Numbers. Sometimes referred to as “mobs” or “gangs,” meerkat clans hunt in a collaborative effect. Several spy for the prey as another section of the mob act as lookout for natural predators to meerkats: vultures, owls, another enemy clan—or some within their own with a grudge to settle. When danger’s been spotted, the lookouts either release a bark or a whistle.

3. Meet Donna “Rocket Dog.” Slightly larger than their counterpart males, meerkat clans are matriarchal, and alpha females don’t co-lead their spots, even in direct lines (mother-daughter, sister-sister, aunt-niece). Generally the mob’s built around the couple, but it’s the alpha female to whom that mob’s meerkats, male and female, answer to. If another female within the clan becomes or is pregnant, she’s either exiled or plays wet nurse to the alpha female to get back into her good graces—ifshe or her pups aren’t killed first.

2. “It’s a Bird . . . It’s a Plane . . . Take Cover!” Meerkat pups are so frightened of birds, if they even see a plane or a bat, they’ll run for the safety of their burrows.

1. More Murderous Than Humans? Depends on Motive. According to a 2005 study in Live Science, meerkats are the most “murderous” mammal known to science. Considering they kill prey in mob fashion in clans some 30-60 strong, that’s not out of bounds.

Bonus: While streaming Netflix over a decade ago—and roughly the lifespan of a meerkat in the wild—I came across Animal Planet’s ratings blockbuster documentary series, Meerkat Manor. One of the top females in the two clans being followed, tracked, and documented, was an alpha female named Flower. Her daughter was Rocket Dog. At the time when I drafting my 2ndCasebook mystery, I knew Logan’s love interest would be a strong supporting cast member, but I had no idea what her name would be. While watching an episode of Manor, if memory serves, “Rocket Dog’s Day,” I knew that nickname was perfect for Katherine Jones. If it’s good enough for another mammal, it’s good enough for a human :).

I hope you liked this “Power of 10” segment. Thank you to Miss Joanne for graciously permitting me to share this post. Please reach out via email to maroonsclue@gmail.com for questions, personal notes, or just to say hey. And please enjoy this chapter of JERSEY DOGS. For your own copy, it’s available at a fine e-retailer near your favorite reading device.

The following contains mature content and is not suitable for younger readers. Discretion is advised.

You can read the full chapter here. An excerpt is provided below:

Excerpt

“You guys know it’s almost nine,” Bobby admonished when we arrived home.

After hugs and assuring us she’d make her calls, Nana Grace loaned her Mazda3 to Jay Vincent. He let the other McGuinness drive to decompress, especially when headlights tailed us five minutes after we’d left Nana Grace’s and losing them within an hour of maneuvering Borough Park’s maze of streets. We said maybe ten words during the ride. The bomb my cousin dropped dampened his driving thrill and our moods, and despite my blooming unease, I somehow catnapped across the backseats.

The following contains mature content and is not suitable for younger readers. Discretion is advised.

“Upstairs for a few, Gramps,” Logan said, his tired tone hinting not to alert the de Franciscis of our discovery.

“Right.”

Bobby inspected his hair in the hall’s oval wall mirror. “Meant to ask you, how’d the first day go? Did you know Idrove the truck home when I couldn’t find you for the keys? You weren’t answering your phone, so Triple A had to rescue me with a spare set. Pops is epic pissed.”

The urge to tell Enzo Senior and Bobby to fuck off waned when I considered the littlest de Franciscis might be in earshot, so I settled on “Not now, runt” while I leaned on the hall closet’s doorjamb to toe off my boots. How did Logan learn our biologic mothers had been murdered? How would westay alive if the text wasn’t a sick threat? Both worries were hamsters on a wheel in my thoughts, and yet I noticed an inconsequential thing like an ogre’s morning breath unable to compete with my reeking, urine-stained socks.

“Pops knows about the fight, too. He was gonna figure it out anyway, given that ink stain on your eye and your shredded clothes.” A broad smirk scrunched Bobby’s eyes half-closed after he locked the front door. “Just sayin’.”

Mitchell called it. The second boot hit the closet’s back wall with a muted thunk. “One guess I know who the stool pigeon is.”

“Aw, that hurts, McGuinness.” Bobby feigned devastation. “I mean, shoot, Mom blew up my phone looking for you two. Especially with news about some loser tits up on campus? Pops and Junior are on a new gig in Jersey City, it’s dirty, they’re tired, and you know how Mom gets when they’re in vicious GWB traffic . . .”

I’d deal with this ass-kissing weasel later. “Ever the conscientious one, aren’t ya, Giovanni?”

Bobby’s cheeks shone bright pink through the stubble. “Take that back!”

“Sucks to be you being named after your moonshine-swillin’ granddude.” I patted his face once before he yanked himself away. “You’re overdue for a Paul Mitchell treatment, soy-boy, your five o’clock’s on the rise.”

“CASPER! LOGAN!”

Bobby smirked fresh at his father’s bellow. He saluted me with a single finger and whistled as he strolled from the entryway.

No chance for a pee break or to change clothes, I walked through the living room-dining room, past the kitchen, a right turn down the short hall, and entered Pops de Francisci’s home office. Logan in my wake, Mom shut the door behind us.

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Bio and Links

An imagination too vast for conventional media and fueled by her father’s cold case homicide, Missye K. Clarke loves mapping her Casebooks and Threesome of Magic Mysteries, drafting haikus, and finding rare, original plots and storylines to craft flash fiction. The transplanted New Yorker, and creator of Maroon The Sleuth Books LLC imprint, resides in central Pennsylvania with her husband and son, a senior-but-still-rumbustious Australian cattle dog, a “Jackson 5” clutch of cats, and an occasional groundhog drop-in. JERSEY DOGS is available on Amazon, BN, iTunes, Kobo, Scribd, and most fine e-retailers near you.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Email


A Mid-Life Revelation

Welcome to my Second Acts Series!

Today, we have educator and author Jodi Rath sharing her multi-act life and debut novel, Pineapple Upside Down Murder.

Here’s Jodi!

As a five-year-old, I used to “play” magazine by using my stuffed animals and my dolls as my staff while taking my mom’s old magazines and cutting them up and pasting them back together. At seven, I signed up to win a set of encyclopedias and won! I used to randomly pick an encyclopedia and a page and read the article on a topic then write a summary and pretend I was a journalist. I knew back then I wanted to be a writer.

Life happened, and I ended up married at age eighteen to my first husband. I took any jobs I could get to pay the bills at the time while pursuing an undergrad degree in English Literature. I still had dreams to write! Again, life took over, and I went from working in insurance to advertising to a vice president of a credit union. I was never fulfilled. I needed a job that paid money too. So, I pursued my M.A. in education and became a high school English teacher. I’ve been in education for twenty years now. I’ve loved every minute of teaching!

Recently, I moved from teaching high school to entering higher education on more my terms. I work for a university teaching online, self-paced courses to Ohio teachers. I found that left time for writing. I began writing for educational affiliations, and that has turned to write a book on Social and Emotional Learning titled Voices, Ghosts, Residue, Revolution: Using SEL to Breakthrough Trauma with America’s Students.

August of 2017, I began to play around with the thought of starting my own business combining education and mysteries—my two passions. As of February 2018, MYS ED LLC (Mysteries and Education) was formed. I now have the rights to the courses I create and can expand to teach to multiple universities if I’d like to do so. I write for different educational affiliations, blogs, and publishers.

My latest venture has been writing a mystery series. For Christmas in 2017, my grandma gave me her cast iron skillet that was 70-years-old, and she’s only ever made pineapple upside down cake in it. I shared it on Facebook, and it got so many likes and comments. I decided to write the cozy mystery series The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series. There will be fourteen books in the series, and book one comes out this November 23, 2018, and is titled Pineapple Upside Down Murder. I’m currently working on two flash fiction pieces to offer as freebies for the book; they are based on the characters as kids and as teenagers leading into book one.

Currently, I’m 45 years old. I’m married to my second husband who is my soul mate, the man of my dreams. We have the most amazing kitty family, with seven cats. I am fulfilled in my personal life and my career. I love my business. I work hard at it, but it is all fun! I’ve heard horror stories about the mid-life crisis at this age. This is not my experience at all. I find myself going through a mid-life revelation.

Blurb

Introducing Jolie Tucker, an introverted yet passionate restaurant co-owner of Cast Iron Creations, who, at her best friend Ava’s request, steps out of her comfort zone which leads her into the shade of a killer in the small, cozy village of Leavensport, Ohio. The victim is the villages beloved Ellie Siler who runs the village sweet spot, Chocolate Capers. Jolie finds her grandma Opal is a prime suspect and goes on a search for answers only to find out that her families secret recipes may not belong to the Tucker family at all. Jolie’s job, family, and livelihood are all on the line. The answers are assuredly lethal.

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Bio

Moving into her second decade working in education, Jodi Rath has decided to begin a life of crime in her The Cast Iron Skillet Mystery Series. Her passion for both mysteries and education led her to combine the two to create her business MYS ED, where she splits her time between working as an adjunct for Ohio teachers and creating mischief in her fictional writing. She currently resides in a small, cozy village in Ohio with her husband and her seven cats.

Where to find Jodi…

Website | Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn | Instagram

Joanne here!

Jodi, I love welcoming fellow teachers to this blog. Thanks for sharing your inspiring reinvention story. Best of luck with Pineapple Upside Down Murder.


Spotlight on To Fetch a Thief

I’m happy to welcome four authors–Teresa Inge, Heather Weidner, Jayne Ormerod, Rosemary Shomaker–to my blog. Today, they share their latest release, To Fetch a Thief, and in the Power of 10 segment, they disclose ten interesting facts about the anthology.

Blurb

To Fetch a Thief, the first Mutt Mysteries collection, features four novellas that have gone to the dogs. In this howlingly good read, canine companions help their owners solve crimes and right wrongs. These sleuths may be furry and low to the ground, but their keen senses are on high alert when it comes to sniffing out clues and digging up the truth. Make no bones about it, these pup heroes will steal your heart as they conquer ruff villains. The collection includes the following stories:

“Hounding the Pavement” by Teresa Inge
Catt Ramsey has three things on her mind: grow her dog walking service in Virginia Beach, solve the theft of a client’s vintage necklace, and hire her sister Emma as a dog walker. But when Catt finds her model client dead after walking her precious dogs Bella and Beau, she and her own dogs Cagney and Lacey are hot on the trail to clear her name after being accused of murder.

“Diggin’ up Dirt” by Heather Weidner
Amy Reynolds and her Jack Russell Terrier Darby find some strange things in her new house. Normally, she would have trashed the forgotten junk, but Amy’s imagination kicks into high gear when her nosy neighbors dish the dirt about the previous owners who disappeared, letting the house fall into foreclosure. Convinced that something nefarious happened, Amy and her canine sidekick uncover more abandoned clues in their search for the previous owners.

“Dog Gone it All” by Jayne Ormerod
Meg Gordon and her tawny terrier Cannoli are hot on the trail of a thief, a heartless one who steals rocks commemorating neighborhood dogs who have crossed the Rainbow Bridge. But sniffing out clues leads them to something even more merciless…a dead body! There’s danger afoot as the two become entangled in the criminality infesting their small bayside community. And, dog gone it all, Meg is determined to get to the bottom of things.

“This is Not a Dog Park” by Rosemary Shomaker
“Coyotes and burglaries? That’s an odd pairing of troubles.” Such are Adam Moreland’s reactions to a subdivision’s meeting announcement. He has no idea. Trouble comes his way in spades, featuring a coyote . . . burglaries . . . and a dead body! A dog, death investigation, and new female acquaintance kick start Adam’s listless life frozen by a failed relationship, an unfulfilling job, and a judgmental mother. Events shift Adam’s perspective and push him to act.

Social Media Links for To Fetch a Thief

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Buy Links

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10 Interesting Facts About To Fetch a Thief

1. Darby, the Jack Russell Terrier in “Digging’ up Dirt,” is based on one of Heather Weidner’s JRTs. Darby and Disney share the same brown and white markings, and both dogs love going for walks, napping, snacking, and digging in the backyard.

2. Cannoli, the tawny terrier featured in “It’s a Dog Gone Shame!” is so named because his fur reminds Meg, the main character, of her Grandmother’s cannoli. (Jayne Ormerod got the idea from her son who had mentioned he thought it would be a great name for a dog. She had to agree. And she loves Cannoli!)

3. Whether sheprador ears “stand” is determined by genetics. Will the standing ears of the German shepherd or the floppy ears of the Labrador retriever prevail? In Adam’s pet, her ears do “perk” into a half-stand and are smaller than Labrador ears. Her acute canine hearing draws Adam toward danger in Rosemary Shomaker’s “This is Not a Dog Park.”

4. Teresa Inge’s own dogs, Luke and Lena, appear in her story, “Hounding the Pavement.”

5. Heather Weidner is enamored with pop culture, and she always includes references in her books and short stories. The Jack Russell Terrier is named for John Grisham’s character in The Pelican Brief, and the chatty neighbors’ surname is homage to characters in “Bewitched.”

6. Cannoli loves his daily walks to the Dog Gone garden to visit the commemorative rock of his BDF (Best Dog Friend) Scruffles. The trips become more frequent as he and Meg investigate a murder in the garden.

7. The sheprador in Rosemary Shomaker’s “This is Not a Dog Park” is Adam Moreland’s unofficial emotional support animal, as most of our pets are to many of us. Without a pet, Adam’s isolation and unhappiness would grow. Adam’s dog has a human name, and you’ll learn why as you read the story.

8. Cannoli loves having his picture taken. He’s developed quite a following on Instagram. Can any of those photos help solve a mystery?

9. Teresa Inge based two of the dogs in her story on Yorkshire Terriers named Cagney and Lacey. They helped solve a theft in “Hounding the Pavement.”

10. Heather Weidner’s story is set in Chesterfield County (west of the capital Richmond). She lives in the Winterpock area, and the references in the story to its history are true.

The Authors

Teresa Inge grew up reading Nancy Drew mysteries. Today, she doesn’t carry a rod like her idol, but she hotrods. She is president of Sister’s in Crime Mystery by the Sea Chapter and author of short mysteries in Virginia is for Mysteries and 50 Shades of Cabernet.

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Heather Weidner, a member of SinC – Central Virginia and Guppies, is the author of the Delanie Fitzgerald Mysteries, Secret Lives and Private Eyes and The Tulip Shirt Murders. Her short stories appear in the Virginia is for Mysteries series and 50 Shades of Cabernet. Heather lives in Virginia with her husband and a pair of Jack Russell terriers, Disney and Riley. She’s been a mystery fan since Scooby Doo and Nancy Drew. Some of her life experience comes from being a technical writer, editor, college professor, software tester, IT manager, and cop’s kid. She blogs at Pens, Paws, and Claws.

Website/Blog | Pens, Paws, and Claws Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads | Amazon | Pinterest | LinkedIn | BookBub | AllAuthor | YouTube


Jayne Ormerod grew up in a small Ohio town then went on to a small-town Ohio college. Upon earning her degree in accountancy, she became a CIA (that’s not a sexy spy thing, but a Certified Internal Auditor.) She married a naval officer and off they sailed to see the world. After nineteen moves, they, along with their two rescue dogs Tiller and Scout, have settled into a cozy cottage by the sea. Jayne is the author of the Blonds at the Beach Mysteries, The Blond Leading the Blond, and Blond Luck. She has contributed seven short mysteries to various anthologies to include joining with the other To Fetch a Thief authors in Virginia is for Mysteries, Volumes I and II, and 50 Shades of Cabernet.

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Rosemary Shomaker writes about the unexpected in everyday life. She’s the woman you don’t notice in the grocery store or at church but whom you do notice at estate sales and wandering vacant lots. In all these places she’s collecting story ideas. Rosemary writes women’s fiction, paranormal, and mystery short stories, and she’s taking her first steps toward longer fiction, so stay tuned. She’s an urban planner by education, a government policy analyst by trade, and a fiction writer at heart. Rosemary credits Sisters in Crime with developing her craft and applauds the organization’s mission of promoting the ongoing advancement, recognition, and professional development of women crime writers.

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Spotlight on Judge Debra H. Goldstein and One Taste Too Many

I’m happy to welcome Judge Debra H. Goldstein. Today, Debra shares her author journey and new release, One Taste Too Many, the first book of the new Sarah Blair Cozy Series from Kensington.

Here’s Debra!

Six months after my first book, Maze in Blue, a mystery set on the University of Michigan’s campus in the 1970’s, was published by a small publisher, I was on cloud nine. Maze had received an Independent Publisher Book Award (IPPY), I had speaking engagements planned for the next year, and I had just appeared on my first conference panel. My euphoric mood ended when I received an e-mail telling me the publisher was going out of business.

Not ready to accept my series was one and done, I sought advice from authors and agents about what to do next. Everyone told me the same thing: “Write something new.”

Although it wasn’t what I wanted to hear, I began a new work in progress. In 2016, a larger publisher released Should Have Played Poker: a Carrie Martin and the Mah Jongg Players Mystery. Once again, I was flying high dreaming about the books I’d write in my new series. At least, I was until the publisher announced it was dropping its mystery line.

Orphaned twice, there was no question what I needed to do: “Write something new.”

I focused on writing short stories and the first book of a third potential series. In 2017, Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine published by short story, “The Night They Burned Ms. Dixie’s Place” and Kensington offered me a three-book contract for the Sarah Blair cozy mystery series. I didn’t think I could get any happier — but I did. “The Night They Burned Ms. Dixie’s Place” was named an Anthony and Agatha short story finalist and I received a cover for One Taste Too Many, the first book in the Sarah Blair series, that I absolutely love. One Taste Too Many will be released on December 18, but it already is available for pre-order. In fact, as you can tell from the cover, One Taste Too Many is a perfect gift or stocking stuffer for people who love cats, are cooks of convenience (it has recipes like Jell-O in a Can and Sarah’s Spinach Pie which is made with Stouffer’s spinach souffle), or simply want to be rewarded for surviving the holiday season.

One Taste Too Many Blurb

For culinary challenged Sarah Blair, there’s only one thing scarier than cooking from scratch—murder!

Married at eighteen, divorced at twenty eight, Sarah Blair reluctantly swaps her luxury lifestyle for a cramped studio apartment and a law firm receptionist job in the tired town she never left. With nothing much to show for the last decade but her feisty Siamese cat, RahRah, and some clumsy domestic skills, she’s the polar opposite of her bubbly twin, Emily—an ambitious chef determined to take her culinary ambitions to the top at a local gourmet restaurant . . .

Sarah knew starting over would be messy. But things fall apart completely when her ex drops dead, seemingly poisoned by Emily’s award-winning rhubarb crisp. Now, with RahRah wanted by the woman who broke up her marriage and Emily wanted by the police for murder, Sarah needs to figure out the right recipe to crack the case before time runs out. Unfortunately, for a gal whose idea of good china is floral paper plates, catching the real killer and living to tell about it could mean facing a fate worse than death—being in the kitchen!

Bio

Judge Debra H. Goldstein is the author of Kensington’s new Sarah Blair cozy mystery series. Its first book, One Taste Too Many, debuts in January 2019, but is available for pre-order. She also wrote Should Have Played Poker and 2012 IPPY Award winning Maze in Blue. Her short stories, including Anthony and Agatha nominated “The Night They Burned Ms. Dixie’s Place,” have appeared in numerous periodicals and anthologies including Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine, Black Cat Mystery Magazine, and Mystery Weekly. Debra is president of Sisters in Crime’s Guppy Chapter, serves on SinC’s national board, and is vice-president of the Southeast Chapter of Mystery Writers of America.

Contact Debra

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Buy Links

One Taste Too Many is available in print and e-book from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books a Million, Hudson Booksellers, Target, Walmart, Indiebound and local indie bookstores. One Taste Too Many will also be published in a large print edition in 2019.