Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Thanksgiving Escape
Cozy Corner / November 20, 2017

You know it’s going to happen. You’re going to need to escape. Because on Thursday afternoon, Uncle Bill will be deep in the eggnog—except he won’t be drinking the same eggnog everyone else will be enjoying. Uncle Bill’s special blend will come from the flask in his pocket, and the more he drinks, the louder his political jokes will get. If he was the only one you had to worry about this Thanksgiving, you’d survive. Except he isn’t. Your cousin Lori will be flirting with your brother-in-law, and your sister will be close to murder if he even acknowledges Lori’s presence. Which will exclude your right hand helper from any of the meal preparations—the last thing you need is your sister in vicinity of a kitchen full of knives. Don’t forget the football games. There are three to contend with this year, so unless you’re having a Thanksgiving Day brunch, you better be prepared for your mother-in-law to be very unhappy when you time the meal to coincide with her team’s kick-off. Not that she has a ‘team’ who she loyally keeps up with. She only watches football on the holidays you’ve drawn the unlucky straw to host the holiday…

Fall Back and Get Cozy
Cozy Corner / November 7, 2017

The week of Readers & ritas is always a busy one in North Texas. Games to prepare, baskets to put together, and the dreaded hunts through closets for clothes that still fit. To top that off, I have edits to complete—Yikes! Needless to say, my thoughts are racing at night and going to sleep can be a chore. To relax and get my mind off my to-do list, I’ve decided to turn off all electronics and stop everything I’m doing at nine o’clock; which is technically ten o’clock if you’re having trouble adjusting to day light savings time like me. Sunday, I made a list of books to read in the next two weeks and started on book number one, which has proven to be a wonderful distraction. I hope you’ll join me on my quest for a good night’s sleep with a few entertaining reads that will make the rest of your busy life take a back seat for a few blessed hours of relaxation. A ROOM WITH A BREW by Joyce Tremel Brewing Trouble #3 Disaster is on tap in this all-new mystery from the author of Tangled Up in Brew. It’s Oktoberfest in Pittsburgh, and brewpub owner…

Fall into a Cozy
Cozy Corner / October 9, 2017

The cozy temps of fall are just starting to reach Texas, bringing with them one of my guilty pleasures—snuggling up with a fuzzy blanket and a good mystery in front of the fire pit in my back yard. The thought of sitting in my comfy lounge chair with the fresh scent of a fire wafting through the air has allured me away from my desk the last couple nights. Once the fire was lit, and the crackle of the sap mixed with the mysterious calls of the night birds down near the creek, I forgot about the work awaiting me. Experiencing the artistic paintbrush of the setting sun on beautiful night canvas while sipping rich hot chocolate, has been as important to my soul, as work is to my mind. Don’t resist the temptation. Take a couple hours away and relax with one of these cozy mysteries in your hands. DIAL MEOW FOR MURDER by Bethany Blake Lucky Paws Petsitting mystery #2 Even an experienced pet sitter like Daphne Templeton can be fooled by animal behavior: how can an adorably tiny fuzz ball named Tinkleston be capable of sudden flying leaps with cat claws bared? But human behavior remains even…

It’s Raining Cats & Sofie Kelly
Cozy Corner / September 13, 2017

This week I had the pleasure of interviewing the author of A Magical Cat Mystery series, Sofie Kelly. Her latest mystery, A TALE OF TWO KITTIES, scratched my funny bone on the very first page and I had to get the scoop on her adorable felines. I know some of our grammar junkies may be caught off-guard by the lack of capital letters in her title, but let me assure you, it’s just one more creative way the author will capture your attention. (Especially if your typing out the title and your fingers refuse to use lower case for that first letter!) About Sofie Kelly Sofie Kelly is the pseudonym of young adult writer and mixed-media artist, Darlene Ryan. Sofie/Darlene lives on the east coast with her husband and daughter. In her spare time she practices Wu style tai chi and likes to prowl around thrift stores. And she admits to having a small crush on Matt Lauer. Magical Cats | WEBSITE Kym: Hi Sofie, welcome to the Cozy Corner! Sofie: Hi Kym. Thanks for inviting me. Kym: Congratulations on your new Magical Cats Mystery release, A TALE OF TWO KITTIES! I love Hercules and Owen, can you tell readers…

A Puniful Name
Cozy Corner / August 28, 2017

This week I’m featuring three cozies that caught my attention with their titles. I love a good, quirky title. To be specific, one that can make me smile or release an inner snicker at the puniful twist the author used. Not only does it give a good sense of what the book is about, but it also gives the reader a taste of the author’s sense of humor. I dare you not to see the humor in these three mysteries;) MUFFIN TO FEAR by Victoria Hamilton Merry Muffin In the latest from the national bestselling author of Much Ado About Muffin, newlywed baker Merry Wynter has some unwanted guests looking for ghosts at Wynter Castle… While Merry is distracted by her quickly planned marriage to Virgil Grace and a blissful honeymoon in New York, her friend Pish invites the ghost-hunting crew from the TV show Haunt Hunt to investigate Merry’s home, Wynter Castle. Merry soon discovers that not only is the crew out of sync, there are so many feuds and squabbles, it’s a miracle they get a show produced at all. It all goes from bad to worse when the show’s psychics claim to have contact with people murdered…

An Instrumental Interview with Alexia Gordon
Cozy Corner / August 14, 2017

It’s time to travel across the pond with author Alexia Gordon to the land of shamrocks and leprechauns. Actually, we won’t be visiting any leprechauns, but ghosts and symphonies are another story. Alexia’s fictional world may not be magical, but her research and writing will happily engage cozy mystery readers from beginning to end in her Gethsemane Brown Mystery series. About Alexia Gordon A writer since childhood, Alexia Gordon continued writing through college but put literary endeavors on hold to finish medical school and Family Medicine residency training. Her medical career established, she returned to writing fiction. She won a Lefty Award, was nominated for an Agatha Award, and was chosen one of Suspense Magazine‘s best debuts of 2016. Raised in the southeast and schooled in the northeast, Gordon migrated to the southwest after a three-year stint in Alaska reminded her how much she needed sunlight and warm weather. After a time in the desert, she missed deciduous trees so she headed northeast to the Chicago area. She completed Southern Methodist University’s Writer’s Path program in Dallas, Texas. If pushed, she will admit Texas brisket is as good as Carolina pulled pork. Gordon enjoys classical music, fine whiskey, art, travel,…

Getting Cozy in the Heat
Cozy Corner / August 7, 2017

The best way to deal with the heat of summer is to find a place in the shade, or the air conditioning;), and read an incredible mystery. Mysteries full of spunky characters who act as spies, and everyday Janes who aren’t about to let the wrong person be accused of murder. Read about a woman who loves her fiancee beyond any claim to the thrown, and a woman who will do what it takes to restore the historical clock tower in the center of town. Get lost in a heroine’s traveling nightmares on her trip to Italy for her queen, and another’s determination to keep love in the air despite the danger lurking in town. Enjoy these mysteries—they’re sure to keep you intrigued! ON HER MAJESTY’S FRIGHTFULLY SECRET SERVICE by Rhys Bowen Royal Spyness Mystery #11 In the new Royal Spyness Mystery from the New York Times bestselling author of Crowned and Dangerous, Lady Georgiana Rannoch juggles secret missions from the Queen, Darcy, and her mother. But it’s all in a day’s work when you’re thirty-fifth in line to the British Crown. When Darcy runs off on another secret assignment, I am left to figure out how to travel to…

Women’s History in Mystery
Cozy Corner / August 3, 2017

For Women’s History Month, I felt it was only fitting to pay homage to the female authors of the past who continue to captivate mystery readers across generations. With their boundary-breaking literature, these women have influenced and motivated a multitude of incredible female authors who continue to expand upon their foremother’s legacy. To celebrate their achievements, I asked a few women currently making history in the mystery genre about the female inspirations behind their writing. From a few eloquent words, to heartfelt memories, I hope you enjoy the history of mystery through the eyes of a few women I admire and respect. Susan Wittig Albert , author of THE LAST CHANCE OLIVE RANCH “My father loved to read British mysteries, and from him I learned an early love of Agatha Christie (of course), but also of Ngaio Marsh, Patricia Wentworth, Margery Allingham, and Dorothy Sayers. They taught me a great respect for the classical mystery plot: for the way stories hang together (or don’t) from the beginning, through a confusing middle, all the way to the inevitable end. They also taught me that plot absolutely develops from character, and not the other way around.” Winnie Archer, author of KNEADED TO…

Getting Cozy in the Shade
Cozy Corner / July 24, 2017

Is it hotter than Hades everywhere? Sweltering heat that makes the pools feel like bathwater, and the lakes a petrie dish for bacteria? We’ve had blistering heat that won’t relent, so this week I decided to step into the shade and enjoy what the shadows bring. I wanted to test the darkest corners and see what little monsters I could find—embrace every deadly kiss the shadow man delivered. And boy did he deliver! For a taste that will chill the blood flowing through your veins, check out these four mysteries this summer. THE DARKEST CORNERS by Kara Thomas There are secrets around every corner in Fayette, Pennsylvania. Tessa left when she was nine and has been trying ever since not to think about what happened there that last summer. She and her childhood best friend Callie never talked about what they saw. Not before the trial. And certainly not after. But ever since she left, Tessa has had questions. Things have never quite added up. And now she has to go back to Fayette—to Wyatt Stokes, sitting on death row; to Lori Cawley, Callie’s dead cousin; and to the one other person who may be hiding the truth. Only the…

Summer Mysteries
Cozy Corner / June 26, 2017

Whether you like to sit on the porch with a hardback book in your hands, or with your Kindle or Nook on your lap, this week I’ve chosen four mystery must-reads to enjoy during your summer nights. Pour a glass of iced tea and join these great heroines and their quirky sidekicks in a cozy corner—each one is a treat not to be missed! ONLY SKEIN DEEP by Maggie Sefton Knitting Mystery In the latest novel from The New York Times bestselling author of Knit to Be Tied, Kelly Flynn and The Lambspun Knitters are eagerly awaiting a bundle of joy but find themselves heaped with trouble instead… Kelly Flynn and her boyfriend, Steve, couldn’t be happier as they await the birth of their bouncing baby boy. Kelly’s got a built-in group of fiber arts specialists, the Lambspun Knitters, who are working away on blankets and booties. As they sit around the table crafting their keepsakes, the story of Giselle Callahan is a popular topic of conversation. Giselle is the young wife of Henry Callahan, a Fort Connor banking scion, who traded in his previous wife of forty years for a newer model. Giselle’s prowess as a skilled country club…