The first time I visited New Orleans, I fell head over heels in love with the
city. And because this fanciful city was introduced to me by friends who lived
there, friends who actually belonged to the famed Rex and Comus krewes, I had
the rare privilege of being invited into the giant float dens, meeting the float
builders, marching in one of the Fat Tuesday parades, and attending the white
tie (not just black tie) Rex Ball.
New Orleans truly is The Big Easy and The City That Care Forgot. Itâ€™s also a
city that been mythologized and derided, and is filled with contradictions. Itâ€™s
eccentric, overindulgent, and just naturally possesses a dark side. And I just
knew that New Orleans would provide the perfect setting and backdrop for my
The tricky thing, of course, is how to capture the essence of New Orleans. How
to bottle the magic and then spill it out onto the pages of my mysteries.
Well, Iâ€™ve tried very hard to do just that. Because at its heart, New Orleans is
a spooky, highly atmospheric place that lends itself to a mystery novel setting.
Think about it â€“ you have the crumbling French Quarter with grande dame
architecture, above-ground cemeteries, elegant Garden District homes, live oaks
dripping with Spanish moss, massive Mississippi River, and fog-shrouded bayous.
A setting like New Orleans makes it exciting to create a total â€śsense of placeâ€ť
for readers. To depict the smell of chicory coffee at the CafĂ© du Monde, the
aroma of fried oysters, and the sweet scent of magnolias at midnight. As a feast
for the eyes, I focus on taut descriptions of narrow cobblestone streets with
gaslights flickering overhead and dark blue-black bayous that stretch to the Gulf.
As a counterpoint to my spooky aura, my main character, Carmela Bertrand, is a
savvy, focused, amateur sleuth who doesnâ€™t rely on â€ścoincidencesâ€ť or inept
police work to solve crimes. She dives headfirst into New Orleans society and
digs for information. In Parchment and Old Lace, Carmela gets pulled
from a dinner at Commanders Palace to the murder of a bride-to-be in St. Louis
Cemetery. As Carmela digs deep, she realizes the killer could be the conflicted
groom, stalker attorney, jealous bridesmaid, or crazy mother-in-law to be. And
as Carmela sorts through this dysfunctional group of suspects, snippets of
antique lace and parchment become critical clues. It all comes to a head at a
raucous casino party and ends with a frantic chase through an abandoned theme park.
PARCHMENT AND OLD LACE
delivers a gripping story in a realistic, yes-you-will-feel-it setting. There
are also scrapbook tips and recipes for Pecan Pie Muffins, Sweet Potato
Casserole, and Big Easy Butter Chicken.
But just when youâ€™ve settled back and assumed everything is safe in Carmelaâ€™s
world, footsteps sound behind you and the lonely toot of a tugboat whistle
floats in from the Mississippi.
Gosh, I picked a fun career!
All my best,
Halfway between a cozy
and a thriller â€“ a thrillzy!
Laura Childs is the USA Today and New York Times
bestselling author of the Tea Shop Mysteries, Scrapbooking Mysteries, and
Cackleberry Club Mysteries. In her previous life she was CEO of her own
marketing firm, authored several screenplays, and produced a reality TV show.
She is married to Dr. Bob, a professor of Chinese art history, enjoys travel,
and has two Chinese Shar-Pei dogs.
Scrapbooking Mystery #13
The New York Times bestselling author of Gossamer Ghost
returns to the Big Easy and the historic Garden District, where scrapbook shop
owner Carmela Bertrand discovers a bride-to-be murdered in the legendary
Carmela couldnâ€™t imagine a finer evening than dinner at Commanderâ€™s Palace
with her beau, Detective Edgar Babcock. The food and the company are equally
divineâ€”with the exception of Isabelle Black stopping by to brag about her
upcoming wedding. Resuming the romance with a walk in the evening air, the
couple is interrupted once againâ€”this time by a terrifying scream from inside
Having just seen Isabelle, Carmela and Edgar now find her lying across an
aboveground tomb, strangled to death with a piece of vintage lace. Carmela would
rather leave the investigating to Edgar, but she canâ€™t say no to Isabelleâ€™s
sister Ellie, the tarot card reader at Juju Voodoo, when she asks her to help.
As she untangles the enemies of Isabelleâ€™s past, Carmela hopes she can draw out
the killer before someone else gets cold feet.
INCLUDES SCRAPBOOKING TIPS
Mystery Cozy [Berkley
Prime Crime, On Sale: October 4, 2016, Mass
Market Paperback / e-Book (reprint), ISBN: 9780425266694 / eISBN:
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