Guest Post: Tina Kashian – ONE FETA IN THE GRAVE




Good day, my fellow book lovers. As I’ve said before, and will probably say again and again, I’m always excited to host visits from authors, fellow bloggers, and other book people. Today’s bookish person is another character, and she’s stepping off the pages from the Kebab Kitchen Mystery series, including the latest One Feta in the Grave by Tina Kashian, Lucy Berberian. Lucy is the manager of the Kebab Kitchen restaurant and the featured amateur sleuth in this series. This morning, Ms. Berberian will be introducing herself to us via a little Q&A. Thank you, Ms. Berberian, for stopping by and I’ll turn the blog over to you.





First, I’d like to thank The Book Diva’s Reads for inviting me as a guest today to celebrate the release of One Feta in the Grave. I’m happy to be here!


What is your name?

 

Lucy Anahid Berberian

How old are you?
I’m thirty-two.

What is your occupation?
I’m the manager of my family’s Mediterranean restaurant, Kebab Kitchen, at the Jersey Shore.

How did you come to be a restaurant manager?
I didn’t plan to be a restaurant manager. I’m a refugee of a Philadelphia law firm. I returned home only to find myself sucked back into my family’s Mediterranean restaurant. But after realizing the business isn’t so bad and my true friends are in Ocean Crest, I stepped up and decided to manage the restaurant so my parents could ease into retirement. It’s been challenging work, but I love it. 

Tell us about your Jersey Shore town.
Ocean Crest is a small town that triples in population during the summer season. It’s quaint and has a mile-long boardwalk that brags a pier with an old-fashioned wooden roller coaster and Ferris wheel. It’s a perfect place to vacation with your family—minus any murders.

Tell us more about that famous boardwalk.
The Jersey Shore boardwalk is iconic! The first boardwalk was created by Andrew Boardman in 1870 in Atlantic City, NJ. Over the years, the boardwalk spread to the neighboring Jersey Shore beach towns. These sprawling boardwalks with dozens of eateries, shops, and amusement piers have become famous. 

 I jog the Ocean Crest boardwalk three times a week. Working with food all day makes exercise a necessity. It’s an eclectic mix of shops and eateries. I love the frozen custard, perusing the T-shirt and novelty shops, and riding the Ferris wheel. Also, my encounters with boardwalk shop owners, tattoo parlors, and a psychic medium all make for interesting witnesses and suspects.

Amateur sleuth of profession?
Amateur! The word sleuth makes me nervous. I didn’t set out to solve crime, but I have an inquisitive mind. Other’s say I’m nosy. I blame it on my law school education.

Who’s your sleuthing partner?
Katie Watson has been my best friend since grade school. She is also married to an Ocean Crest beat cop and I’ve been living in their guest bedroom in their cozy rancher since returning home. She’s also my sleuthing partner and we investigate crimes together.

Do you have a significant other?
I’ve recently started dating my head chef, Azad. We have a long history, and he broke my heart after college, but since I’ve returned home, he’s convinced me to give him a second chance. Azad has shown he has changed and he even quit his fancy Atlantic City job as a sous chef to help me and work as a head chef for Kebab Kitchen. At first, things were as sticky as baklava syrup between us, and I wasn’t sure mixing business with pleasure was a good idea. But so far, things have been heating up between us in and out of the kitchen…

I also have to mention Kebab Kitchen’s business neighbor. Michael Citteroni runs the bicycle rental shop next door, and he is one of my close confidants. Even though he could grace the cover of a men’s fashion magazine, I feel a kinship with him. Just like me, he has an overbearing ethnic father. Michael owns a Harley-Davidson, and against better judgment, I rode with him for the first time a month ago. Turns out, I loved it and we have gone on more than one ride to the boardwalk. Michael and Azad don’t see eye-to-eye, but they have managed to co-exist as business neighbors. 

Are there any four-legged animals in your life?
Yes! My family has adopted an outdoor restaurant cat named Gadoo, which means cat in Armenian. Not very original, I know. Gadoo is orange and black and feisty, and I always stock his favorite treats from the local grocery store. 

Who are the other people in your life?
My parents, Angela and Raffi Berberian, play an important role in my life. We are a tight-knit Armenian, Lebanese and Greek family. That also means that everyone is in everyone else’s business. My matchmaking mama has been driving me nuts.

Kebab Kitchen’s waitresses are my older sister, Emma, and a long-time restaurant employee, Sally. Then there’s Investigator Calvin Clemmons. We haven’t always gotten along and he hasn’t been encouraging of my sleuthing.

Favorite Food?
Shish kebab, hummus, and baklava. I did grow up in a Mediterranean restaurant and manage it now.

Favorite pastime?
Jogging the Ocean Crest Boardwalk.

What’s going on in your life right now?
Well, things haven’t gone exactly as I’ve planned. To celebrate a successful summer season, the town plans a beach festival. I feel indebted to Ocean Crest and I volunteered to run the wine and food portion of the festival on the boardwalk. But things take a turn for the worse when an arrogant businessman, Archie, gets in a screaming match with my best friend, Katie, over judging a sand castle contest. And when Archie is found shot dead under the boardwalk, things don’t look good for Katie. I know Katie’s innocent and I won’t let my friend take the fall for murder. It’s up to us to investigate before another person gets skewered.


Thank you for letting me chat with you today!





One Feta in the Grave

(A Kebab Kitchen Mystery)
by Tina Kashian


About the Book


One Feta in the Grave (A Kebab Kitchen Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Kensington (February 26, 2019)
Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
ISBN-10: 1496713516
ISBN-13: 978-1496713513
Digital ASIN: B07DBPQQFJ




As summer comes to an end in her Jersey Shore town, Lucy Berberian continues to manage her family’s Mediterranean restaurant. The Kebab Kitchen also has a food tent at this year’s beach festival. But now a local businessman is under the boardwalk—dead by the sea …

 

With a sand castle contest and live music, Ocean Crest bids a bittersweet farewell to tourist season. Summer will return next year … but Archie Kincaid won’t. The full-of-himself store owner has been fatally shot, soon after a screaming match with Lucy’s best friend. Katie’s far from the only suspect, though, since Archie had some bitter rivals—as well as some relationships no one knew about. It’s up to Lucy to look into some seedy characters and solve the case before the wrong person gets skewered …

Recipes included!


Purchase Links

Amazon –   iBooks –  Barnes & Noble –  Kobo –   Google Books




About the Author


Tina Kashian spent her childhood summers at the New Jersey shore, building sand castles, boogie boarding, and riding the boardwalk Ferris wheel. She also grew up in the restaurant business where her Armenian parents owned a restaurant for thirty years. She worked almost every job—rolling silverware and wiping down tables as a tween, to hosting and waitressing as a teenager.


After college, Tina worked as an NJ Deputy Attorney General, a patent attorney, and a mechanical engineer. Her law cases inspired an inquiring mind of crime, and since then, Tina has been hooked on mysteries. The Kebab Kitchen Cozy Mystery series launches with Hummus and Homicide, followed by Stabbed in the Baklava and One Feta in the Grave by Kensington Books. Tina still lives in New Jersey with her supportive husband and two young daughters. Please visit www.tinakashian.com and join her Newsletter to enter free contests to win books, get delicious recipes, and to learn when her books will be released.


Author Links


     

  • Website: tinakashian.com

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  • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TinaKashianAuthor/

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  • Twitter: https://twitter.com/TinaKashian1

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  • Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tinakashian/

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  • Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16902011.Tina_Kashian




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    Character Guest Post: PAST DUE FOR MURDER by Victoria Gilbert


    Good day, my book people. I’m always happy to welcome fellow book people to my blog and today I’m happy to announce a nice change of pace as I’m hosting a visit by the character Zelda Shoemaker from the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series, including the latest Past Due for Murder. I hope you’ll enjoy hearing about Taylorsford, Virginia from the one and only Zelda Shoemaker. Thank you, Ms. Shoemaker, for enlightening us all about your town and it’s residents. 






    Hello everyone! It looks like I finally get my own guest post. It’s about time, I have to say. Honestly, I’m the person who really knows what’s going on in Taylorsford, but I rarely get the opportunity to share everything I know.

    Now my significant other, Walt Adams, would tell you that I do plenty of talking. Maybe he’s right—I am a very social person. Well, I had to be, didn’t I, when I was postmistress for the town for all those years? I had to know everyone, and where they lived, and who lived with them, and that sort of thing. It helped me to do my job. 

    Now that I’m retired, I still like to keep up with the latest news. (Walt would call it “gossip,” but I don’t consider it as such). Taylorsford remains a fairly small town, and even though there’s been a lot of growth on the outskirts over the years, I still know almost everyone. Not by name, maybe, but I do recognize who’s a resident and who’s not. Now, don’t think I discriminate against newcomers or anything. I try to be friendly to all our new residents and visitors, which is not something everyone in town appreciates. There’s a few, like that snooty Elspeth Blackstone, the current mayor’s wife, who thinks that we should restrict who moves into Taylorsford, so that the “wrong sort,” as she calls it, don’t “bring down the tone” of the town. I say that’s a lot of nonsense. Even if those Blackstones have lived here forever, I’d take a whole boatload of new folks over them. In fact, I’m currently acting as the campaign manager for a fine young lady called Sunshine Fields, who’s running for mayor of Taylorsford. Honestly, I’d support anyone opposing Bob Blackstone, but I also think Sunny would make a fantastic leader.

    Oh, you want to know more about me? Well, all right, I’ll tell you, although it’s not a very exciting story. The truth is, I’ve lived in Taylorsford all my life. I’ve even had the same best friend since childhood— Lydia Litton Talbot. She and Walt and I all rode the same bus to elementary school, and have been friends ever since. Of course, since Walt was one of the few African-Americans living in the area when we were young (that’s changed since then, thank goodness) he and I couldn’t date when we were in our teens, even though we wanted to. I mean, you have to understand—that was back in the sixties when there was a lot of racial tension in our county high school. I guess we could’ve stood up to the prejudice back then, but we were both too concerned about how our families would feel, or how they might be affected by the stupid behavior of others, to fight against that taboo.

    So we both ended up marrying other people. It wasn’t a tragedy, by any means—he loved his wife just like I loved my husband—and we always remained friends. Then, after his kids were grown (I couldn’t have any, sadly) and his wife died, we started dating. Of course, I was a widow by that point. We kept our relationship secret for a while. Just out of habit, I guess. But then Sunny and her friend, Amy Webber—who’s Lydia’s niece, by that way—convinced us to go public. And I must say, much to our surprise, no one seems to have a problem with our relationship. Which just goes to show that sometimes the “good old days” weren’t quite as rosy as some people seem to think. Today is better, in a lot of ways.

    Now I spend my time taking care of my house and garden, dating Walt, and spending time with Lydia and some other friends. I also volunteer at the public library where Amy works. She’s the library director in Taylorsford, you know. A smart girl, and quite sweet, although she does seem to have a nose for trouble. I mean, she’s always stumbling over dead bodies—can you imagine? I’m just happy she’s escaped some of the dangerous situations she’s gotten herself into, and found herself a good man along the way. That Richard of hers is as nice as he is good-looking, and that’s a rare combination, let me tell you. Now, if we could just find Sunny someone just as fine. I mean, even Lydia is dating again, and she seems to have lucked out and hooked quite a catch later in life, just like I did with Walt. So now there’s just Sunny. Poor lamb, she tends to date a lot of people but it never seems to work out. But she’s such a dear, beautiful, girl I’m sure she’ll meet someone special someday. 

    Anyway, that’s enough chatter from me. I don’t want to prove Walt right about all that talking. I’ll just wish you a great day, and remind you to tell everyone who’s eligible to vote for Sunny for mayor! I really believe she’ll bring some wonderful, and much-needed, change to my lovely old town.

    Oh, and if you hear or see anything interesting when you’re visiting Taylorsford, please share! I’m always happy to hear all the latest news. 







    About  the Author





    Raised in a historic small town in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Victoria Gilbert turned her early obsession with books into a dual career as an author and librarian.


    Victoria’s first cozy mystery series, the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series, garnered her a three-book deal with Crooked Lane Books, which has since been expanded to five books. The first two books in the series have been optioned by Sony Pictures Television, and the first three were or will be produced in audiobook by Tantor Media.


    Victoria also just inked a 2-book deal with Crooked Lane for a new cozy series, the Booklovers B & B series, set in historic Beaufort, NC.


    A member of Mystery Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, and Sisters in Crime, Victoria is represented by Frances Black at Literary Counsel.


    Author Links:

    Website/blog: http://victoriagilbertmysteries.com/

    Facebook author page:  https://www.facebook.com/VictoriaGilbertMysteryAuthor/

    Twitter: https://twitter.com/VGilbertauthor

    Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/VictoriaGilbert

    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/victoriagilbertauthor/





    Past Due for Murder:
    A Blue Ridge Library Mystery
    by Victoria Gilbert


    About the Book



    Past Due for Murder: A Blue Ridge Library Mystery
    Cozy Mystery
    3rd in Series
    Crooked Lane Books (February 12, 2019)
    Hardcover: 304 pages
    ISBN-10: 1683318749
    ISBN-13: 978-1683318743
    Digital ASIN: B07D2GYM25


    Has a curse fallen on the small town of Taylorsford, Virginia? After a young woman goes missing during a spring bonfire, library director Amy Webber must wade through the web of lies only to find a truth that she may not want to untangle.


    Spring has sprung in quaint Taylorsford, Virginia, and the mayor has revived the town’s long-defunct May Day celebration to boost tourism. As part of the festivities, library director Amy Webber is helping to organize a research project and presentation by a local folklore expert. All seems well at first—but spring takes on a sudden chill when a university student inexplicably vanishes during a bonfire.


    The local police cast a wide net to find the missing woman, but in a shocking turn of events, Amy’s swoon-worthy neighbor Richard Muir becomes a person of interest in the case. Not only is Richard the woman’s dance instructor, he also doesn’t have an alibi for the night the student vanished—or at least not one he’ll divulge, even to Amy.


    When the missing student is finally discovered lost in the mountains, with no memory of recent events—and a dead body lying nearby—an already disturbing mystery takes on a sinister new hue. Blessed with her innate curiosity and a librarian’s gift for research, Amy may be the only one who can learn the truth in Past Due for Murder, Victoria Gilbert’s third charming Blue Ridge Library mystery.


    Purchase Links:

    Amazon     B&N    Kobo    Indie Bound   GooglePlay



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    Guest Post: Eva Gates THE SPOOK IN THE STACKS



    Good day my fellow book divas and divos. I’m in a lot of book groups, seriously, I’m currently in five local book groups and two online book groups so when I heard that today’s guest character was someone from a book group I had a serious fangirl moment. A character talking about a book group and it’s set in a library? Ideal character and setting in my not so humble opinion. Ladies and Gentleman I present to you Josie O’Malley from the Lighthouse Library series by Eva Gates and a member of the Bodie Island Lighthouse Library Classic Novel Reading Club.



    Bodie Island Lighthouse Library Classic Novel Reading Club
    By Josie O’Malley from the Lighthouse Library Series by Eva Gates


    May 2018

    I must say I was initially a bit reluctant to join the Bodie Island Lighthouse Library Classic Novel Reading Club. Classic books aren’t exactly my thing. Give me a good bodice ripper any day. 

    But I’ve come to love it. I love the company, of course, Lucy, Grace, Butch, and Connor in particular. It’s a nice excuse just to get together with friends on a regular basis. Our lives get so busy that it’s easy to lose contact, even with the people you love.

    I’m really enjoying reading the books. I never thought I’d like old books so much. The writing can be very dense, and sometimes they seem to drag on and on, and sometimes it’s hard to figure out what the characters are talking about, particularly when the author writes in accents. I really hate that! 

    But I’ve found that once you get into the book, they can be marvelous. I loved Pride and Prejudice with Lizzy and her crazy sisters. Poor, tragic Tess of the D’Ubervilles. Or the rip-roaring Kidnapped

    The book for tonight is The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving. I read that story back in school, but I didn’t appreciate it at the time (who does when they’re a teenager?). But I was charmed by it this time. A true American classic.

    And perfect for tonight. It’s coming up to Halloween, and the group wanted to read something seasonally appropriate. What better than the spooky tale of the Headless Horseman and poor hapless Ichabod Crane and his vain pursuit of the wealthy heiress. 

    I suspect our own Teddy is in somewhat the same pickle. He seems to be quite smitten with Julia Ruddle, also a wealthy heiress. But Julia doesn’t seem to go anywhere without her grandfather’s assistant, the handsome charming Greg, tagging along. 

    I can only hope our Halloween festivities don’t turn to murder. Not again.  





    The Spook in the Stacks: A Lighthouse Library Mystery

    by Eva Gates

    About the Book

    Cozy Mystery
    4th in Series
    Crooked Lane Books (June 12, 2018)
    Hardcover: 250 Pages
    ISBN-13: 978-1683315803
    Digital ASIN: B075QJ59PX


    Halloween in North Carolina’s Outer Banks becomes seriously tricky when librarian Lucy Richardson stumbles across something extra unusual in the rare books section: a dead body.

    Wealthy businessman Jay Ruddle is considering donating his extensive collection of North Carolina historical documents to the Bodie Island Lighthouse Library, but the competition for the collection is fierce. Unfortunately, while the library is hosting a lecture on ghostly legends, Jay becomes one of the dearly departed in the rare books section. Now, it’s up to Lucy Richardson and her fellow librarians to bone up on their detective skills and discover who is responsible for this wicked Halloween homicide.

    Meanwhile, very strange things are happening at the library―haunted horses are materializing in the marsh, the lights seem to have an eerie life of their own, and the tiny crew of a model ship appears to move around when no one is watching. Is Lucy at her wit’s end? Or can it be that the Bodie Island Lighthouse really is haunted?

    With The Legend of Sleepy Hollow on everyone’s minds and ghoulish gossip on everyone’s lips, Lucy will need to separate the clues from the boos if she wants to crack this case without losing her head in The Spook in the Stacks, the delightful fourth in national bestseller Eva Gates’ Lighthouse Library mysteries.


    About the Author


    Vicki Delany is one of Canada’s most prolific and varied crime writers and a national bestseller in the U.S. She has written more than twenty-five books: clever cozies to Gothic thrillers to gritty police procedurals, to historical fiction and novellas for adult literacy. She is currently writing three cozy mystery series: the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop series for Crooked Lane, the Year Round Christmas mysteries for Penguin Random House and, under the pen name of Eva Gates, the Lighthouse Library series, for Crooked Lane Books.

    Vicki lives and writes in bucolic Prince Edward County, Ontario. She is the past president of the Crime Writers of Canada. Her work has been nominated for the Derringer, the Bony Blithe, the Ontario Library Association Golden Oak, and the Arthur Ellis Awards.


    Visit Vicki at www.vickidelany.com. On Facebook at www.facebook.com/evagatesauthor. Twitter @vickidelany @evagatesauthor

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    Guest Post: Larissa Reinhart – THE CUPID CAPER



    Hello, my fellow bookish peeps. Most of you know how I excited I get when an author visits, but this year has seen a host of characters step off the pages of the book and provide us insight. Today, we get a glimpse into the mind (and heart) of Finley Goodhart, the main character in The Cupid Caper by Larissa Reinhart. Thank you, Finley for joining us this morning.



    Finley Goodhart, ex-con artist and amateur sleuth

    Recently, I’ve been thinking a lot about the way my life’s gone. Even though I’m only twenty-seven. A long time ago, I resolved myself to thinking that happiness and contentment were ideals for other people. About the time Mother died, when I was seventeen. Actually before that, when I realized the law could be bought for the right price and by the right people. I learned that from carefully observing my father. And concluding my private school education and big house with the pool did not come from a regular cop’s salary. 

    He’s sheriff now.

    But before I’d bitten off a big hunk from the fruit of that terrible tree of knowledge, I’d been happy. But that’s why they say ignorance is bliss. 

    They also say a sucker is born every minute. Seeing how the world worked, I found it pretty easy to fall into the grift. A life of non-violent crime where I was no longer the sucker, but the swindler. Mostly I hustled pool. Penny taught me short cons. Lex turned me onto the art of the long con. I had good teachers. Our marks were mostly folks with money to burn who fell for the scam through their own greed. 

    Although I loved Lex and my friendship with Penny, I wasn’t happy. No matter how good it felt sticking it to the man, I still felt guilty. Even if Daddy was crooked, Mother raised me better. And though teenage me might’ve wanted to get back at my father for what he did, adult me wanted to please Mother more. Even posthumously. 

    So I gave it up. Mostly. I broke up with Lex and hid from Penny, thinking once I figured out how to really go straight I’d come clean to them. Show them another way of life. Hopefully a better one. And maybe convince them to get on the square with me. 

    But today I learned I was too late. Today Lex found me. And broke the news about Penny’s death. A death that the police should have been called suspicious. But wasn’t.

    As I mourn my only friend, I’m really starting over. After ten years of living in the criminal underworld, I’m going to use those skills and connections to find out who murdered Penny and why. And I hope Lex will help me. Before it’s too late for him, too.






    The Cupid Caper (A Finley Goodhart Crime Caper)

    by Larissa Reinhart

    About the Book

    Crime Caper
    New Series
    Past Perfect Press (April 24, 2018)
    320 Pages


    Sassy, Sexy, Southern Suspense

    She uses her criminal past to catch crooks. He wants her back. In the grift. And in his life. Can Finley Goodhart convince Lex that doing good is the greatest hustle of all?

    Ex-grifter Finley Goodhart may try to stay on the straight and narrow, but walking that thin line becomes wobbly when she believes her friend Penny was murdered. The last thing she wants is to work with her ex-partner (and ex-boyfriend), the brilliant (brilliantly frustrating) British con artist, Lex Leopold. However, when it appears Penny’s demise might be related to an exclusive matchmaking service for millionaires, Fin needs Lex’s help to pull a long con to get the goods on Penny.

    Romance is in the air for hustlers, gangsters, and their marks. Unfortunately for Fin and Lex, infiltrating the racket doesn’t make for a match made in heaven. This Valentine swindle could stop their hearts for good.


    Purchase Links

    Amazon: http://smarturl.it/CCKindle

    Barnes & Noble: http://smarturl.it/CCNook

    iBooks: http://smarturl.it/CCiBooks

    Kobo: http://smarturl.it/CCKobo

    GooglePlay: http://smarturl.it/CupidGplay

    Universal link: https://www.books2read.com/cupidcaper




    About the Author




    Wall Street Journal bestselling author, Larissa Reinhart writes humorous mysteries and romantic comedies including the critically acclaimed Maizie Albright Star Detective, Finley Goodhart Crime Capers, and Cherry Tucker Mystery series. Larissa’s a contributor to the 2017 Silver Falchion Reader’s Choice winner, was the 2015 Georgia Author of the Year finalist, 2012 Daphne du Maurier finalist, 2012 The Emily finalist, and 2011 Dixie Kane Memorial winner. Larissa’s family and dog, Biscuit, had been living in Japan, but once again call Georgia home. See them on HGTV’s House Hunters International “Living for the Weekend in Nagoya” episode. Visit her website, LarissaReinhart.com, and join her newsletter for a free short story.


    Author Links

    Website: http://larissareinhart.com/

    Official Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorLarissaReinhart/

    Instagram: http://instagram.com/larissareinhart

    Goodreads: http://smarturl.it/LarissaGoodreads

    Newsletter: http://smarturl.it/larissanewsletter

    Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/larissa-reinhart

    Amazon: http://smarturl.it/LarissaReinhart


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    Guest Post: HONOR KILLS by Nanci Rathbun



    Hello, my fellow bookish peeps. I’m excited to reveal that we have another character stopping by as a guest (I know, twice in one week). Today’s special guest is Detective Wukowski from the book Honor Kills by Nanci Rathbun, part of the Angelina Bonaparte Mysteries series. The detective will be sharing with us how his relationship with private investigator Angelina Bonaparte began.




    A Place of Final Justice

    I met private investigator Angelina Bonaparte–and you better pronounce it like the Sicilians do, Boe-nah-par-tay, because she’s pretty down on Napoleon’s version–about nine months ago. Funny, it seems like we’ve always known each other. Back then, I was the lead homicide detective on the Elisa Morano case, and Angie worked for a Mafia lawyer who represented the accused, Tony Baloney. Okay, his real name is Anthony Belloni, but I’m not cutting the local crime boss slack.

    Tony was cheating on his wife with Elisa. A wife pregnant with their fifth child. Scum. But as the five-three dynamo pointed out to me, “But the last I heard, running around on your wife isn’t a crime. It’s dishonest and lowdown and immoral, but if I had to report everyone I knew who cheated, the streets would be pretty empty.” She had me there.

    I’m a hard-nosed guy. Too many years in the force, seeing the pain one human being can inflict on another, thickened my hide, I guess. It made things a lot worse when my partner, Liz White, was tortured and killed by a drug ring. Hardest thing I ever did was to hold my salute at her funeral.

    Somehow, Angie got past my tough hide. She’s a darned attractive ball of determination, though, and we were on opposite sides. I admit to giving her a hard time about leaving the investigation to the police, but she forged ahead and discovered the perp. Got herself shot, too, which set off all my alarms. I had to man up and face the fear of losing another woman who meant something to me. Not just Liz. My younger sister was a teenage victim of gang fire. I decided that having Angie in my life was worth the risk of losing her, and we’ve been together since then.

    She had another close call that fall, dealing with a guy who made it out of Bosnia with other people’s money and artifacts. Damnedest escape I’ve ever seen, but you’ll have to read the story, ’cause I don’t want to spoil it for you.

    Through the months we’ve been a couple, I’ve faced more than the usual teasing about dating a former Mafia boss’s daughter. The Milwaukee Police Department keeps close track of those who associate with the mob. Internal Affairs put me through the wringer more than once, but there was never anything pinned on me, because I’m too good a cop to cross the line. But this last time … well, let’s just say they gave me an ultimatum about being with Angie.

    I’m not giving her up, though. How could I walk away from the toughest, smartest, sexiest woman I know? I’m not that big a dope.






    Honor Kills (Angelina Bonaparte Mysteries)

    by Nanci Rathbun

    About the Book

    Hard Boiled Mystery
    3rd in Series
    Dark Chocolate Press LLC (March 14, 2018)
    Paperback: 284 pages
    ISBN-13: 978-0998755748
    Digital ASIN: B07BH61872


    Did honor force him to abandon his wife and kids? Or is he just a weasel?

    Six years ago, Marcy Wagner hired PI Angelina Bonaparte to find her missing husband Hank, who cleaned out their bank accounts and disappeared. Then Angie finds his obituary in an upstate newspaper. Marcy wants to know what why he abandoned her and the kids. Angie does, too!

    She embarks on a mission that will blow the lid off Hank’s hidden life and reveal the reasons he ran. Was he a lowdown skunk? Or did he do the honorable thing when he left? Angie follows a twisted path to the truth and discovers that it lies perilously close to her own family life.



    About the Author




    Nanci Rathbun is a lifelong reader of mysteries – historical, contemporary, futuristic, paranormal, hard-boiled, cozy … you can find them all on her bookshelves.  She brings logic and planning to her writing from a background as an IT project manager, and attention to characters and dialog from her second career as a Congregationalist minister.

    Nanci grew up an Army brat, living in Germany, France, and Korea, as well as several states in the U.S. After her dad retired from the service, the family settled in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. There, Nanci raised her daughter and son, while working at AT&T. She never expected to move, but when her second grandchild was on the way, she wanted to be closer. One of her greatest joys is hearing her three granddaughters shout ‘Nana’ when she comes in their front door in Fort Collins, Colorado.

    Nanci’s Maltipoo, Teeny, and she now live in Wellington, Colorado. No matter where she makes her home, she will always be a Packers fan.

    Author Links

    Website: https://nancirathbun.com

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Author-Nanci-Rathbun-162077650631803/

    Twitter: @nancirathbun

    Purchase Link: Amazon


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    Guest Post: BARNABAS TEW AND THE CASE OF THE MISSING SCARAB



    Good day my fellow book lovers. I’m always excited when a guest agrees to stop by and share some bookish wisdom with us all. Normally these visitors are authors, but today’s special guest is a character, the ancient Egyptian goddess Hathor, from the book Barnabas Tew and The Case of The Missing Scarab by Columbkill Noonan. So without further adieu, I give you Hathor!



    Hello, everyone, I’m Hathor, and I played an important role in saving the world (again!) in Barnabas Tew and the Case of the Missing Scarab. Really, he couldn’t have done it without me, although I’m sure he’ll get all the glory. Isn’t that just the way of things?

    For those of you who don’t know who I am, I’m one of the oldest goddesses around. I was mostly worshipped in Ancient Egypt but I really come from the land formerly known as Punt. Ra (perhaps you’ve heard of him?) is my son. And my father. And my husband. Wrap your head around that, and perhaps you’ll see why I get so cranky from time to time.

    For the most part, my goddess-ly duties consist of, well, pretty much everything. I’m the goddess of the Milky Way, meaning that I have control over the very heavens themselves. I know everyone’s fate from the moment they’re born until the moment they die, and then beyond! I help the dead on their final journey to the afterlife. I’m responsible for fertility and beauty and motherhood, and in my spare time, I’m the patron goddess of dancers and music. I have a hand in so many pies, as it were, that it can be a bit stressful at times, and I can feel a bit resentful when my efforts are unappreciated. 

    So you can see why I was a bit put out when Mr. Tew showed up at my temple, asking for help. Our first meeting hadn’t gone so very well; he’s a terribly nervous little fellow, and a bit silly, if you ask me. Plus he seemed a bit afraid of me, which I always find a bit annoying. I mean, yes, I know I went a bit crazy that one time, rampaging around and killing people and drinking their blood, but does that mean that’s ALL I’m to be remembered for? The people completely deserved it, besides.  

    They insulted my son, er, husband, Ra, and they weren’t venerating anyone properly, really. Do they not realize how much work it is to take care of the entire universe, and help everyone and everything be fertile, and help them get their dead selves to the afterlife? Is it too much to ask for a bit of gratitude? It doesn’t take a lot of effort to drop a few fruits off at my temple, is all I’m saying. So yes, I suppose I may have overreacted a bit, but it was completely provoked. And it’s pretty terrible that you can do all these things for people, and then you go on one silly rampage and that’s all anyone can talk about. So unfair.

    Anyway, I digress. We were talking about Barnabas Tew, and how I saved the world. Again. And all the credit goes to this funny little detective-man from Victorian England. Am I upset that he’s got all the credit? Not really; I have more important things to do and, besides, it wasn’t really his fault. It’s Anubis who should have thanked me, since it was his hide I saved, really, if you think about it. Still, I don’t think I’m angry enough to go on another rampage. I don’t really have time, anyway. There’s a dance recital that I’ve got to get to.

    And I do suppose that Barnabas helped, just a little. But he really couldn’t have done it without me. So if you wouldn’t mind dropping off a nice apple or a few grapes next time you pass my temple, that would be great. A bit of gratitude goes a long way, you know?





    Barnabas Tew and The Case Of The Missing Scarab

    by Columbkill Noonan

    About the Book

    Cozy Mystery
    1st in Series
    Crooked Cat Books
    Release Date – June 3, 2017
    Paperback: 274 pages
    ISBN-13: 978-1546786078
    Digital ASIN: B072JMJV1F



    Barnabas Tew is a private detective struggling to survive in his trade in Victorian London. Fearing that he is not as clever as he had hoped to be, he is plagued by a lack of confidence brought on in no small part by his failure to prevent the untimely deaths of several of his clients.


    Matters only get worse when Anubis, the Egyptian God of the Dead, is referred to Barnabas by a former client (who perished in a terribly unfortunate incident which was almost certainly not Barnabas’ fault). Anubis sends for Barnabas (in a most uncivilized manner) and tells him that the scarab beetle in charge of rolling the sun across the sky every day has been kidnapped, and perhaps dismembered entirely.


    The Land of the Dead is in chaos, which will soon spill over into the Land of the Living if Barnabas – together with his trusty assistant, Wilfred – cannot set matters to right. Pulled from his predictable (if unremarkable) life in Marylebone, Barnabas must match his wits against the capricious and dangerous Egyptian gods in order to unravel the mystery of the missing beetle and thereby save the world.




    About the Author




    Columbkill Noonan has an M.S. in Biology (she has, in turn, been a field biologist, an environmental compliance inspector, and a lecturer of Anatomy and Physiology).

    When she’s not teaching or writing, she can usually be found riding her rescue horse, Mittens, practicing yoga (on the ground, in an aerial silk, on a SUP board, and sometimes even on Mittens), or spending far too much time at the local organic, vegan market.

    Author Links

    Blog – https://columbkill.weebly.com/

    Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/ColumbkillNoonan/

    Purchase Link

    Amazon

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    Character Guest Post: CAKE AND PUNISHMENT by Maymee Bell



    Good morning, my bookish peeps. As always, it’s an honor to welcome guests to the Book Diva’s Reads, but this morning instead of a guest author we’re welcoming a guest character, Sophia Cummings from the new Southern Cake Baker Mystery series by Maymee Bell. Sit back, relax with your favorite beverage (and might I suggest some cake), and read what Sophia has to say about Sophia.


    A Day in the Life of Sophia Cummings

    If you were to ask Bitsy, that’d be my mama, why I became a pastry chef, she’d say that it was to make her life all doom and gloom. I’m not going to lie, it was a little satisfying seeing her cringe on the inside when I strategically told her ten years ago in front of her friend at the Rumford Country Club, RCC for short, that I wasn’t going to college and heading to pastry school. 

    Seriously, you would too if your mama had you call her by her nickname, Bitsy, instead of calling her mom, mama, or mother. Yes. Bitsy is as southern as you can get. 

    Now, do you blame me for getting out of our small southern town of Rumford, Kentucky right out of high school? 

    Becoming a pastry chef was really a dream of mine. I’d spent the better part of the past ten years going to school and moving up in my industry. Can you imagine my joy and excitement when I hired as the head pastry chef at The Manhattan, the fanciest restaurant in New York City. 

    It was all mine. All my creations. Then…he walked in as the head chef. I can’t even bring myself to say his name because I swore that after dating him for years and then moving in together and then finding him doing more than cooking food in the kitchen of the Manhattan with the hostess, I’d never let his name cross my lips. 

    This was how Bitsy got back into my life. She might be a hard pill to swallow, but she’s a southern mama and no matter what, she’s loyal to me to the end. With my tail tucked and a couple of weeks off work to get my head on straight, I found myself right back in Rumford where I’d tried to escape ten years ago and in my old bedroom. 

    Oh, don’t get me wrong, Bitsy definitely dragged me all over Rumford to all her clubs for the first few days. 

    “Put on some lipstick and put on some more,” she says before we walk out the door. I had to keep up the appearance even though my heart was broken, and I didn’t have an ounce of creative baking in me. 

    That is until Charlotte, my high school best friend who was getting married over the weekend, cake baker had quit, and she asked me to do her wedding cake. What an honor! I was all over it. 

    The kitchen at the Rumford Country Club seems perfect until Chef Emile’s body is discovered, sprawled near the stove, a cast iron skillet on the floor close by and Charlotte was the number one suspect. 

    Charlotte can be a bit of a southern pill, but she’s not a murderer. I sure hope I can help her figure out who is framing her so her wedding can go off without a hitch and before I head back to my life in New York. 

    Besides, I can’t wait to get out of Rumford, like I was ten years ago, because Bitsy keeps telling everyone that I’m staying…forever!






    Cake and Punishment: A Southern Cake Baker Mystery


    by Maymee Bell

    About the Book



    Cake and Punishment: A Southern Cake Baker Mystery
    Cozy Mystery
    1st in Series
    Setting – Kentucky
    Crooked Lane Books (May 8, 2018)
    Hardcover 257 Pages
    ISBN-13: 978-1683315711
    Digital ASIN: B075QJM2W8


    In the first of a delectable new Southern-set baking cozy series, Sophia Cummings, pastry chef extraordinaire, must craft the perfect cake for an old friend’s wedding while sifting through the suspects in a murder.

    Bucolic Rumford, Kentucky has glowing fields of bluegrass, a fine selection of bourbons, and now a professional pastry chef. Broken-hearted Sophia Cummings has come home from New York City. She’s not there a minute before she’s charmed into making her high school friend Charlotte’s wedding cake. The kitchen at the Rumford Country Club seems perfect until Chef Emile’s body is discovered, sprawled near the stove, a cast iron skillet on the floor close by.

    With one look at the shiny, new frying pan, Sophia knows it’s not Emile’s. She offers her knowledge to Sheriff Carter and her talents to Evelyn, the manager, who needs an interim chef. The mood in the country club is grim: Emile’s peppery personality had burned members and staff alike. Sophia wonders which one of them burned him?


    About the Author



    Maymee Bell is the pen name of USA Today Bestselling author Tonya Kappes. She lives in Kentucky with her family and her two schnauzers. She likes strong coffee, slow-country days, and fresh-baked cookies – but she like telling stores best of all. This is her first SOUTHERN BAKER MYSTERY.


    Visit Tonya:
    Facebook at Author Tonya Kappes,
    https://www.facebook.com/authortonyakappes

    Kappes Krew Street Team
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/208579765929709/

    Website
    tonyakappes.com

    Goodreads
    https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4423580.Tonya_Kappes

    Twitter
    https://twitter.com/tonyakappes11

    Pinterest
    https://www.pinterest.com/tonyakappes/

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