Victoria Thompson | They Do Strange Things in the Bowery
Author Guest / May 1, 2017

“The Bowery, the Bowery! They say such things, And they do strange things On the Bowery! The Bowery! I’ll never go there anymore!” The words to the popular song from the 1891 musical A Trip to Chinatown tell you everything you need to know about the Bowery, which is both a street and a neighborhood in Manhattan. In turn of the century New York City, many neighborhoods had bad reputations, and the Bowery was among the worst. Originally, however, it was actually several miles outside of town. “Bowery” is an Anglicization of the Dutch word bouwerji which means “farm”, as the area contained many large farms in the 17th Century. When the City grew, it spread northward, and the farms gave way to residential lots where elite citizens built mansions. By the mid-1800s, those citizens had moved farther north, and Bowery became the eastern border of the notorious “Five Points” slum where all manner of evil flourished. To make matters worse, the Third Avenue Elevated Train ran above Bowery, turning the street dark even at midday. The neighborhood housed cheap bars, dance houses, brothels, and flophouses. So what was a Society debutant doing there? That’s what Private Investigator Frank Malloy…

Kathleen Bridge | The Seeds Planted before a Book Blooms
Author Guest / May 1, 2017

As a mystery writer, I’m always ripping out newspaper or magazine articles and copying/pasting links that might someday become an inspiration for a future book. The premise for the first book in my Hamptons Home and Garden Mystery series came from a magazine article I read about writer Sally Quinn purchasing the falling-in-ruin Grey Gardens in East Hampton, New York. In the article, Ms. Quinn talked about the items she’d discovered in the mansion’s attic and how she restored the interior of the house, based on old photographs, to its original splendor. I tore out the article and filed it under, “Story Ideas.” A few years later, I went to my file and found the article. As an antiques dealer and fixer-upper, the thought of treasure in an old attic at an estate where the rich and famous live and die, gave me the idea for BETTER HOMES AND CORPSES. BETTER HOMES AND CORPSES by Kathleen Bridge Hamptons Home & Garden #1 After Meg Barrett found her fiancé still had designs on his ex-wife, she decided it was time to refurbish her life. Leaving her glamorous job at a top home and garden magazine, she fled Manhattan for Montauk, only…

May 2017 New Releases from ACFW Fiction Finder
News / May 1, 2017

  More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website. Contemporary Romance: Amish Brides by Jennifer Beckstrand, Molly Jebber, Amy Lillard — Under bright blue skies, wedding bells ring–fulfilling sweet dreams, impossible wishes, and joyous new beginnings among these three new stories. (Contemporary Romance from Kensington Publishers) Sprouts of Love by Valerie Comer — An overzealous community garden manager delivers more than the food bank manager can handle. Can love sprout amid the tsunami of vegetables? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published) Summer Dreams by Delia Latham — God’s love…reflected in the waters of the Pacific, and in the eyes of a young couple who walk its moonstone shores. (Contemporary Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican]) Right Where We Belong by Deborah Raney, Melissa Tagg, Courtney Walsh — Three sweet stories of small-town romance by three tried-and-true authors. Whether in a quaint home bakery in Langhorne, Missouri, a cozy boho coffee shop in Maple Valley, Iowa, or a charming lakeside cottage in Sweethaven, Michigan, love grows best in small towns just like this! (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published) A Spring of Weddings by Toni Shiloh and Melissa Wardwell — Two Spring wedding novellas, “A Proxy Wedding,” and…

Interview with Winnie Archer
Cozy Corner / May 1, 2017

Kym: Welcome to The Cozy Corner, Winnie! Kym: Many readers may not know that Winnie Archer is a pen name for your new series, and that you’re actually Melissa Bourbon, Misa Ramirez, and Melissa Bourbon Ramirez. What challenges have your new name brought you as an author? Winnie: I have trouble keeping things straight myself! Different publishers like you to have different names on your books. I’ve migrated everything to either Winnie Archer or Melissa Ramirez. The challenges are maintaining the different websites for each author, finding time to do everything that needs doing, etc. But I love both series and the other books I’ve written, so the challenges are worth it! Kym: Your new series, A Bread Shop Mystery, is set in Santa Sofia, California. Can you tell our readers how this series ties together your life from California to Texas? Winnie: My Magical Dressmaking Mystery series is set in the small town of Bliss, Texas. We moved to Texas from California 8 years ago and I really wanted to set that series here, but when it came time to write the Bread Shop mysteries, I wanted to set it in my home state. I think it was the…