Guest Post: Tonya Kappes, author of A GHOSTLY MORTALITY

The Book Diva’s Reads is incredibly honored to host a return visit from Tonya Kappes, author of the Divorced Diva Mystery series, the Laurel London Mystery series, the Magical Cures Mystery series, the Olivia Davis Mystery series, the Kenni Lowry Mystery series, the Killer Coffee Mystery series, the Ghostly Southern Mystery series, and more. Today Ms. Kappes will be discussing the value and importance of the reader from one author’s perspective. Read her thoughts on this matter, then read an excerpt from the latest addition to the Ghostly Southern Mystery series, A Ghostly Mortality, and finally enter to win a set of the Ghostly Southern Mystery series print books.





I’ll never forget the very first email I had received from a reader. She was telling me how much my books helped her through a very difficult time in her life. That is when I sat back and really took notice of how important a reader is. 

You see, I started writing for myself. And when I decided to pursue publishing I still had myself in mind. I wanted to see my book on Amazon or on the shelf at the book store. It had become a dream of mine. BUT I never took into consideration who was going to buy my book. . .outside of my family. 

And her email really touched me. Her words filled my soul with gratitude and joy. After her email, it was like the floodgates opened. One after the other, more and more reader mail popped up in my email. Each one had something different to say about my stories. 

The more I heard from them, the more they fed my muse. I wanted to give them more. It wasn’t about me selling more books, it was about pleasing the readers that I had gained. I wanted to make them feel good and continue to feel good. 

Sometimes I think that authors forget about the reader. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not putting any authors down or saying that I’m the right one here, but I see readers different than most writers. 

I started a TONYA KAPPES STREET TEAM. This is a Facebook page where my readers have gathered and we talk about everyday life, what they are reading, or just a quick hello. It’s not a place for my readers to praise me. It’s the place where I PRAISE them! 

Here is what it’s all about:

This is a team that I have assembled because you have been so supportive and an instrumental part of my success. I’m creating this group to help spread the word about my books. The best sell for an author is personal recommendation. The best way for me to do that is for you, my friends, to spread the word through email or word of mouth would be a great big help.

There isn’t much to it. As a member, you will join my online yahoo group which is a yes to the street team invite. And in return you get a chance to:

  • Have a character named after you in my books
  • Win monthly drawing for Street Team Members only – you are automatically entered. (this includes gift cards, books, and other fun stuff)
  • In the month of my releases, you have a chance to win a $25 Visa Gift card
  • Fun tips about my characters
  • Extra more things!



What do you have to do to be a COZY KREW STREET TEAM MEMBER? You only have to do none or all of these:)

  • Spread the word to family and friends about the books of mine that you really liked
  • Take promo materials to local writers groups, conventions, etc…
  • Be my friend
  • Pick one of my books for your book club
  • Skype me into your book club or google plus is fine too
  • If you have a blog, feature my new book trailer, review my book, interview me
  • Post reviews for my books on all the reader-centric sites like Goodreads, Shelfari, Amazon, Barnes and Noble etc…



I can’t take credit for the street team concept. It was coined in the 70’s with music executives working on spreading the word about new artists, and making them bigger names. But as authors, we have to find inventive ways with the explosion of social media to reach readers other than book signings. 

Good luck!


A Ghostly Mortality


by Tonya Kappes


on Tour February 28 – March 30, 2017




Synopsis:



A Ghostly Mortality

That ghost sure looks . . . familiar


 

Only a handful of people know that Emma Lee Raines, proprietor of a small-town Kentucky funeral home, is a “Betweener.” She helps ghosts stuck between here and the ever-after—murdered ghosts. Once Emma Lee gets them justice they can cross over to the great beyond.

But Emma Lee’s own sister refuses to believe in her special ability. In fact, the Raines sisters have barely gotten along since Charlotte Rae left the family business for the competition. After a doozy of an argument, Emma Lee is relieved to see Charlotte Rae back home to make nice. Until she realizes her usually snorting, sarcastic, family-ditching sister is a… ghost.

Charlotte Rae has no earthly idea who murdered her or why. With her heart in tatters, Emma Lee relies more than ever on her sexy beau, Sheriff Jack Henry Ross…because this time, catching a killer means the Raines sisters will have to make peace with each other first.





Book Details:



Genre: Cozy Mystery, Paranormal

Published by: Witness

Publication Date: February 28th 2017

Number of Pages: 336

ISBN: 0062466976 (ISBN13: 9780062466976)

Series: Ghostly Southern Mysteries #6

Purchase Links: Amazon  | Barnes & Noble  | Goodreads 


Read an excerpt:




“Lawdy bee.” Granny scooted to the edge of the chair and lifted her arms in the air like she was worshiping in the Sunday morning service at Sleepy Hollow Baptist and the spirit just got put in her.

I sucked in a deep breath, preparing myself for whatever was going to come out of Zula Fae Raines Payne’s mouth, my granny. She was a ball of southern spitfire in her five-foot-four-inch frame topped off with bright red hair that I wasn’t sure was real or out of a L’Oréal bottle she’d gotten down at the Buy-N-Fly.

“Please, please, please,” she begged.  “Let me die before anything happens to Emma Lee.” Her body slid down the fancy, high-back mahogany leather chair as she fell to her knees with her hands clasped together, bringing them back up in the air as she pleaded to the Big Guy in the sky. “I’m begging you.”

“Are you nuts?” My voice faded to a hushed stillness. I glanced back at the closed door of my sister’s new office, in fear she was going to walk in and see Granny acting up. I sat in the other fancy, high-back mahogany leather chair next to Granny’s and grabbed her by the loose skin of her underarm. “Get back up on this chair before Charlotte Rae gets back in here and sees you acting like a fool.”

“What?” Granny quirked her eyebrows questioningly as if her behavior was normal. My head dropped along with my jaw in the “are you kidding me” look.

“Well, I ain’t lying!” She spat, “I do hope and pray you are the granddaughter that will be doing my funeral, unless you get a flare up of the ‘Funeral Trauma.’ ” She sucked in a deep breath and got up off her knees. She ran her bony fingers down the front of her cream sweater to smooth out any wrinkles so she’d be presentable like a good southern woman, forgetting she was just on her knees begging for mercy.

“Flare up?” I sighed with exasperation. “It’s not like arthritis.”

The “Funeral Trauma.” It was true. I was diagnosed with the “Funeral Trauma” after a decorative plastic Santa fell off the roof of Artie’s Meat and Deli, knocking me flat out cold and now I could see dead people. I had told Doc Clyde I was having some sort of hallucinations and seeing dead people, but he insisted I had been in the funeral business a little too long and seeing corpses all of my life had brought on the trauma. Truthfully, the Santa had given me a gift. Not a gift you’d expect Santa to give you, but it was the gift of seeing clients of Eternal Slumber, my family’s funeral home business where I was the undertaker. Some family business. Anyway, a psychic told me I was now a Betweener. I helped people who were stuck between here and the ever after. The Great Beyond. The Big Guy in the sky. One catch . . . the dead people I saw were murdered and they needed me to help them solve their murder before they could cross over.

“I’m fine,” I huffed and took the pamphlet off of Charlotte Rae’s desk, keeping my gift to myself. The only people who knew were me, the psychic and Sheriff Jack Henry Ross, my hot, hunky and sexy boyfriend. He was as handy as a pocket on a shirt when it came time for me to find a killer when a ghost was following me around. “We are here to get her to sign my papers and talk about this sideboard issue once and for all.” Granny stared at me.

My head slid forward like a turtle and I popped my eyes open.

“I’m fine,” I said through closed teeth.

“You are not fine.” Granny rolled her eyes so big, I swear she probably hurt herself. “People are still going around talking about how you talk to yourself.” She shook her finger at me. “If you don’t watch it, you are going to be committed. Surrounded by padded walls. Then—She jabbed her finger on my arm. I swatted her away with the pamphlet.

“Charlotte Rae will have full control over my dead body and I don’t want someone celebrating a wedding while I lay corpse in the next room. Lawdy bee,” Granny griped. I opened the pamphlet and tried to ignore Granny as best I could.

“Do you hear me, Emma Lee?” Granny asked. I could feel her beady eyes boring into me.

“Don’t you be disrespecting your elders. I asked you a question,” she warned when I didn’t immediately answer her question.

“Granny.” I placed the brochure in my lap and reminded myself to remain calm. Something I did often when it came to my granny. “I hear you. Don’t you worry about a thing. By the time you get ready to die, they will have you in the nut-house alongside me,” I joked, knowing it would get her goat. The door flung open and the click of Charlotte Rae’s high-dollar heels tapped the hardwood floor as she sashayed her way back into her office. The soft linen green suit complemented Charlotte’s sparkly green eyes and the chocolate scarf that was neatly tied around her neck. It was the perfect shade of brown to go with her long red hair and pale skin.

“I’m so sorry about that.” She stopped next to our chairs and looked between me and Granny. She shook the long, loose curls over her shoulders. “What? What is wrong, now?”

“Granny is all worried I’m going to get sent away to the nuthouse and you are going to lay her out here.” The words tumbled out of my mouth before I could stop them. Or did my subconscious take over my mouth? It was always a competition between me and Charlotte, only it was one-sided. Mine. Charlotte never viewed me as competition because she railroaded me all my life. Like now. She’d left Eternal Slumber with zero guilt, leaving me in charge so she could make more money at Hardgrove’s Legacy Center, formerly known as Hardgrove’s Funeral Homes until they got too big for their britches and decided to host every life event possible just to make more money.


Excerpt from A Ghostly Mortality by Tonya Kappes.  
Copyright © 2017 by Tonya Kappes. 
Reproduced with permission from Witness. All rights reserved.



Author Bio:



Tonya Kappes

Tonya Kappes has written more than fifteen novels and four novellas, all of which have graced numerous bestseller lists including USA Today. Best known for stories charged with emotion and humor and filled with flawed characters, her novels have garnered reader praise and glowing critical reviews. She lives with her husband, two very spoiled schnauzers, and one ex-stray cat in northern Kentucky. Now that her boys are teenagers, Tonya writes full-time but can be found at all of her guys’ high school games with a pencil and paper in hand.



Catch Up with Tonya Kappes on her Website , Twitter , &  Facebook 





Tour Participants:











Giveaway:



This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours for Tonya Kappes and Witness Impulse. There will be 1 US winner of one PRINTED set of The Ghostly Southern Mysteries #1-6 by Tonya Kappes. The giveaway begins on February 27th and runs through April 2nd, 2017.


a Rafflecopter giveaway




Guest Post: Tonya Kappes, author of GHOSTLY REUNION

The Book Diva’s Reads is pleased to host a visit today from the USA Today best-selling author Tonya Kappes. Ms. Kappes is the author of 40+ books, including the Magical Cure Mystery series, the Laurel London Mystery series, The Divorced Divas Mystery series, the Grandberry Falls series, the Kenni Lowry series, the Olivia Davis Paranormal Mystery series, the Bluegrass Romance series, and the ever-popular Ghostly Southern Mysteries series. Today Ms. Kappes will be discussing cozy mysteries (who better to discuss this topic?). Without further adieu, I give you Ms. Kappes.



Why not a cozy?

When people find out I’m a writer and ask me what genre. I respond with cozy mystery. You can probably guess the next question. Cozy? What is a cozy?

Trust me, I’ve been around long enough (26 novels) to know that cozy mystery genre doesn’t get the same hats off, Baptist nod, and thumbs up that thriller mystery or even just mystery writers get.

And if it’s not bad enough, I have to tell them that I write paranormal cozy mystery.That really gets the quizzical looks that make me feels as if I have two heads. THEN when I say it’s a witch mystery, I get the OMG, you believe in witches?

My explanation generally goes like this: Cozy mystery is kinda just that. Cozy. More along the lines of Murder She Wrote where the sleuth of my novels has a job that is in a craft or a special talent. She stumbles on a murder that is somehow tied to her life and she has to solve the murder/crime on her own.

There is no blood, guts, or gore and cozies are centered on the sleuth’s craft or gift. In my case with A Ghostly Reunion, the sleuth is an undertaker who lives in the small southern town in Kentucky.

Emma Lee Raines, my cozy sleuth, owns Eternal Slumber, the only funeral home in Sleepy Hollow, Kentucky. She has an unfortunate mishap with a plastic snowman falling on her head and now she sees dead people…dead murdered people who need to find their killer to make it to the other side or Emma risks to be haunted forever.

Cozies have relatable characters set in small towns with a cozy setting. Even though romance takes a back seat in the mystery, there is still a love interest to sweet the pot.

By the time I’ve given my spiel, the person who asked me about what a cozy was, is spouting off movies or television shows that fit the cozy mystery genre.




Author Bio:


Tonya Kappes

Tonya has written over 40 novels and 4 novellas, all of which have graced numerous bestseller lists including USA Today. Best known for stories charged with emotion and humor, and filled with flawed characters, her novels have garnered reader praise and glowing critical reviews. She lives with her husband, two very spoiled schnauzers and grew up in the small southern Kentucky town of Nicholasville. Now that her four boys are grown boys, Tonya writes full time.



Catch Up with Tonya Kappes on her Website , Twitter , &  Facebook 





A Ghostly Reunion


by Tonya Kappes


on Tour January 16 – February 17, 2017





Synopsis:


A Ghostly Reunion by Tonya Kappes

A Ghostly Reunion



Proprietor of the Eternal Slumber Funeral Home, Emma Lee can see, hear, and talk to ghosts of murdered folks. And when her high school nemesis is found dead, Jade Lee Peel is the same old mean girl—trying to come between Emma Lee and her hot boyfriend, Sheriff Jack Henry Ross, all over again.

There’s only one way for Emma Lee to be free of the trash-talking ghost—solve the murder so the former prom queen can cross over.

But the last thing Jade Lee wants is to leave the town where she had her glory days. And the more Emma Lee investigates on her own, the more complicated Miss Popularity turns out to be. Now Emma Lee will have to work extra closely with her hunky lawman to get to the twisty truth.



Book Details:


Genre: Cozy Mystery, Paranormal
Published by: HarperCollins / Witness
Publication Date: December 27th 2016
Number of Pages: 352
ISBN: 006246695X (ISBN13: 9780062466952)
Series: Ghostly Southern Mysteries #5
Purchase Links: Amazon  | Barnes & Noble  | Goodreads 





Tour Participants:








Giveaway:



This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours for Tonya Kappes and Witness Impulse. There will be 1 US winner of one PRINTED set of The Ghostly Southern Mysteries #1-5 by Tonya Kappes. The giveaway begins on January 15th and runs through February 18th, 2017.



a Rafflecopter giveaway




Book Showcase: A GHOSTLY REUNION by Tonya Kappes


A Ghostly Reunion


by Tonya Kappes


on Tour January 16 – February 17, 2017





Synopsis:


A Ghostly Reunion by Tonya Kappes

A Ghostly Reunion



Proprietor of the Eternal Slumber Funeral Home, Emma Lee can see, hear, and talk to ghosts of murdered folks. And when her high school nemesis is found dead, Jade Lee Peel is the same old mean girl—trying to come between Emma Lee and her hot boyfriend, Sheriff Jack Henry Ross, all over again.

There’s only one way for Emma Lee to be free of the trash-talking ghost—solve the murder so the former prom queen can cross over.

But the last thing Jade Lee wants is to leave the town where she had her glory days. And the more Emma Lee investigates on her own, the more complicated Miss Popularity turns out to be. Now Emma Lee will have to work extra closely with her hunky lawman to get to the twisty truth.





Book Details:


Genre: Cozy Mystery, Paranormal
Published by: HarperCollins / Witness
Publication Date: December 27th 2016
Number of Pages: 352
ISBN: 006246695X (ISBN13: 9780062466952)
Series: Ghostly Southern Mysteries #5
Purchase Links: Amazon  | Barnes & Noble  | Goodreads 


Read an excerpt:

Sexy isn’t a firm fanny in a thong, ladies.”

Hettie Bell didn’t seem so sexy in her hot pink leggings and matching top as she gasped for breath in her downward dog position in the middle of Sleepy Hollow, Kentucky. Her butt stuck straight up in the air, right there on display for everyone to see. Her black, chin-length bob was falling out of the small ponytail on both sides and her bangs hung down in her eyes.

“Sexy is confidence and self-acceptance. It’s exactly what yoga provides.”

Hettie Bell curled up on her tiptoes with her palms planted on one of the mats she provided for us. The rickety old floor of the gazebo, in the middle of the town square, groaned as we all tried to mimic her pose. “Yes!” Beulah Paige Bellefry hollered out like we were in the first pew of the Sleepy Hollow Baptist Church getting a good Bible beating from Pastor Brown himself.

“Amen to a good pose!”

Beulah continued to adjust her feet and hands each time she started to slip. If she wasn’t a bit overweight, I’d say it was her eighties silk sweat suit that was slicker than cat’s guts giving her problems. Or it could’ve been those pearls around her wrist, neck and ears weighing her down. Beulah never took off those pearls. She said pearls were a staple for a Southern gal.

“You said it, sister,” Mary Anna Hardy gasped. She teetered side to side, nearly knocking into Granny. Her sweat left streaks down her makeup. Who on earth got up this early and put makeup on to do yoga? Mary Anna Hardy, that’s who.

“God help us!”

“That’s it.”

I pushed back off my heels and crossed my legs, staring at all the Auxiliary women’s derrieres at my eye level.

“I’m here to do some relaxing, not Sunday school.”

Sleepy Hollow was smack-dab in the middle of the Bible Belt and if God wasn’t thrown in our conversations, then we weren’t breathing. But the last thing I wanted to think about was my butt stuck up to the high heavens and everyone up in the Great Beyond looking down upon me.



Author Bio:


Tonya Kappes

Tonya Kappes has written more than fifteen novels and four novellas, all of which have graced numerous bestseller lists including USA Today. Best known for stories charged with emotion and humor and filled with flawed characters, her novels have garnered reader praise and glowing critical reviews. She lives with her husband, two very spoiled schnauzers, and one ex-stray cat in northern Kentucky. Now that her boys are teenagers, Tonya writes full-time but can be found at all of her guys’ high school games with a pencil and paper in hand.


Catch Up with Tonya Kappes on her Website , Twitter , &  Facebook 





Tour Participants:








Giveaway:



This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours for Tonya Kappes and Witness Impulse. There will be 1 US winner of one PRINTED set of The Ghostly Southern Mysteries #1-5 by Tonya Kappes. The giveaway begins on January 15th and runs through February 18th, 2017.



a Rafflecopter giveaway