Friday, December 14, 2018

Happy Holidays!

Hi all!

Abby and I are taking a blog break until after the New Year.   Wishing you and yours the happiest of holidays -- Merry Christmas to all!


Dear Abby -- Merry Christmas!

Dear friends,

Just a short and sweet note today to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a happy holiday season!   I am going to take a blogging break until after the New Year.  

Today I would like to share a few of my past Christmas photos (I'll post my 2018 photo when I return -- I want it to be a surprise for friends who are receiving it in Christmas cards this year).   Momma says it is an adventure to take Christmas pictures with me.  I am not sure what that means!

Here are a few Christmas links from my blog as well:

Vintage Christmas Dog Photos
Merry Christmas with Vintage Dog Illustrations
My Christmas Wish List
Vintage Christmas Dachshunds
Dachshund Christmas Videos
Video:  A Dachshund Decorates a Christmas Tree
Video:  Dachshund Santa and Reindeer

I hope you enjoy these links.  Wishing you and your loved ones a very Merry Christmas!  I look forward to chatting again in 2019.

Abby xoxoxo

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Product Review - AuCuTee S5 Sleep Therapy White Noise Machine

Product Specifics

AuCuTee S5 Portable Sound Machine (White), 20 Soothing Sleep Therapy White Noise Machine with Timer Option, Sleeping and Relaxation Machine for Baby, Adult or Traveler.
    • 20 Soothing sounds for Sleep
    • 【Built in Battery】
    • 【Headphone Function】
    • 【Portable & Lightweight】
    • One Year Warranty
    Package includes:
    • 1 X sleep therapy machine
    • 1 X Charging Adapter & Cable
    • 1 X Instruction Manual
    Links to the White Noise Machine:

    My Review

    I received a white noise machine from AuCuTee to try.  I've wanted to try a white noise machine for quite a while.  I live in the city, and there are times when I find it hard to get to sleep because of normal city noises (traffic, sirens, people outside).   

    The S5 Sleep Therapy white noise machine from AuCuTee is surprisingly small!  I photographed it in my bookshelf headboard, above, to give you an idea of the proportion and size.  I like that it is small and doesn't take up a lot of room.  I am sure there are people who travel with a white noise machine, and this one would be easy to pack.

    The machine is battery operated and is rechargeable.  (Charging cord included.)  After charging the battery life is 10 hours.  

    There is a small instruction card included, but the machine is very easy to use.  There is an on/off switch and a charging slot in the back of the machine.  You'll also find a headphone jack in case you want to listen on a flight or when needing to shut out noise (i.e. studying).

    The front of the machine has a timer button.  You can set the timer for 30, 60, or 90 minutes.  I did this during a short nap and it worked great!

    There are forward and back buttons that let you switch sounds.  The sounds included are:

    • Lullaby 1
    • White Noise
    • Pink Noise
    • Gray Noise
    • Brown Noise
    • Fan
    • Cracking fire
    • Clock ticking
    • Train
    • Crickets
    • Frogs
    • Birds
    • Rain
    • Thunderstorm
    • Stream
    • Ocean
    • Shush
    • Womb Sound
    • Lullaby 2
    • Lullaby 3

    I like the nature sounds the best, particularly Crackling fire, Crickets, Rain, Thunderstorm, and Ocean.  I do wish there was a legend on the actual machine (maybe a decal on the base of the machine?) that listed the sounds in order.  Several of the sounds are similar and a listing in order would be helpful.  They are listed on the instruction card, but it would be easier if they were on the actual machine.

    The sound quality is great!  There are 7 volume settings and I picked one in the mid-level.  It worked really well at masking "city noise" and I fell asleep much quicker than usual with the machine.

    I have already recommended the machine to a friend who likes to sleep with a fan on, and I will recommend it to other friends who have a hard time getting to sleep.  I can see lots of uses for the machine -- including nap time (for adult or child), soothing a baby to sleep, sleeping with noise outside, sleeping when traveling.  It's a neat product, and I will enjoy using it on nights when I have a hard time sleeping.

    Wednesday, December 12, 2018

    Book Review - Tony's Wife by Adriana Trigiani

    Book Synopsis
    Love, ambition, and the consequences of both lie at the heart of this spellbinding epic of two working-class kids who become a successful singing act during the big band era of the 1940s.
    Chi Chi Donatelli and Saverio Armandonada meet one summer on the Jersey shore before World War II. Chi Chi is a talented and ambitious singer-songwriter working in a local blouse factory looking for her big break, while Saverio, a singer already on the rise, is fronting a touring band and has the good looks and smooth vocals that make success seem assured. It isn’t long before Saverio becomes Tony Arma and  he and Chi Chi form a duo; together they navigate the glamorous worlds of nightclubs, radio, and television. Soon they’re married and all goes well until it becomes clear that they must make a choice: Which of them will put ambition aside to build a family and which will pursue a career? What compromises will they make to achieve their dreams? And on the road to fame and fortune, how will they cope with the impact these compromises have on their marriage, family, and themselves?
    From the Jersey shore to Hollywood, New York City to Las Vegas, the hills of northern Italy and the exuberant hayride of the big band circuit in between: Tony’s Wife tells the story of the twentieth century in song, as Tony & Chi Chi make studio recordings and promote them with appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show and The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. As they juggle the demands of their public lives, secrets are revealed, promises are broken, and loyalty is tested as the Armas attempt to keep the music playing and their family together.
    Tony’s Wife is a richly layered novel that explores how a traditional Italian-American family grapples with the seismic shifts they face in a rapidly changing world. Replete with a pageant of vivid, complex characters, this deeply human saga of love and sacrifice showcases Adriana Trigiani’s gifts as a captivating storyteller and reveals her understanding that there are many different kinds of families: that over time love can evolve in ways that nobody can predict, especially when the hearts involved are open to forgiveness, the sweet reprise of redemption.

    Purchase Links

    HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

    My Review
    Tony's Wife tells the story of Chi Chi Donatelli and Saverio Armandonada (Tony Arma).  They are both young aspiring singers when they meet and their careers wind around together and separately a bit before they come together.  This historical novel begins in the 1930's and spans over 50 years.

    I absolutely loved this novel.  It is a big read (almost 500 pages) but I just could not put it down.  I love historical fiction and found the time span of this novel particularly interesting.  The 1940's are a special interest of mine and the depiction of the wartime years in this novel was absolute perfection.  (I loved the scene with Chi Chi and Tony -- along with Linda Darnell and Margaret Whiting! -- at the Hollywood Canteen).

    I also love music and loved the many musical details of this story, starting with the chapter titles all based on musical terms - i.e. Volante (Flying Fast), Cantabile (In a sugary style).  The Big Band years were fascinating, and so was the work that Chi Chi put in to be taken seriously as a songwriter.  I found the early years of her career, recording at times in her father's garage recording studio, especially interesting.  There was so much fun and creativity in the descriptions of their music, like the songs that Chi Chi wrote, "Mama's Rolling Pin" and Jelly Bean Beach" (complete with mason jars of jelly beans used as maracas!).

    Chi Chi and Saverio (Tony) were compelling characters.  Adriana Trigiani did a masterful job developing their characters over a period of many years.  I loved the back and forth glimpses of their lives.

    Ms. Trigiani is one of my favorite authors.  Her descriptions are always so beautiful and evocative.  I always feel like I am seeing the story like a movie, not just reading it -- her descriptions are that vivid.  

    One example of the beautiful descriptions in this novel:

    "Severio stood on the sidewalk and surveyed the Donatellis' Cape Cod with its weathered gray shingles and freshly painted yellow trim, and wondered what it must be like to live inside. ... The matching patches of grass on either side of the walkway in the front yard were neatly mowed;  the seagrass hedges that hemmed the porch ruffled in the breeze, as wind chimes, small white glass discs that resembled communion hosts, clinked a tune.  It was a fine house for a good family" (p. 95).

    I cannot recommend Tony's Wife highly enough for fans of historical fiction, and especially for anyone interested in Mid-Century America, music, and engrossing storytelling about characters you will care about.

    Author Bio
    Adriana Trigiani is the bestselling author of 17 books, which have been published in 36 countries around the world. She is a playwright, television writer/producer and filmmaker. She wrote and directed the film version of her novel Big Stone Gap, which was shot entirely on location in her Virginia hometown. She is co-founder of the Origin Project, an in-school writing program that serves more than a thousand students in Appalachia. She lives in Greenwich Village with her family.
    Find out more about Adriana at her website, and connect with her on Facebook and Instagram.
    I received a copy of this book from Harper Collins and TLC Book Tours.

    Friday, December 7, 2018

    Dear Abby - Videos Abby Likes: Dachshund Decorates a Christmas Tree

    Dear Friends,

    I hope you are having a good week and a fun holiday season.  I am behind (as always!) and still need to take my Christmas card photos. 

    With that in mind, I'll share a short and silly video with you today.  Doxie Din (one of my favorite famous doxies) has a video where he decorates the Christmas tree.  He's very creative -- carries the tree in on a skateboard!  He does a great job with the tree, but the video ends with a surprise!

    I hope you enjoyed this little video as much as I did!  If you put a tree up, what does your dog or kitty think of it?  Do they help decorate (or un-decorate, as the case may be)?

    Have a great weekend!


    Abby xoxoxo

    Review - The Lady Travelers Guide to Deception With an Unlikely Earl by Victoria Alexander

    Book Synopsis
    Harry Armstrong has spent years in Egypt, recovering relics and disregarding rules. Now he’s back in England with a new title and a new purpose: penning his exploits. But his efforts are overshadowed by London’s favorite writer about Egypt—a woman they call The Queen of the Desert, of all things. Worse, her stories—serialized in newspapers and reprinted in books—are complete rubbish.

    Miss Sidney Honeywell didn’t set out to deceive anyone. It’s not her fault readers assumed her Tales of a Lady Adventurer in Egypt were real! Admitting her inadvertent deception now would destroy her reputation and her livelihood. But when the Earl of Brenton challenges her to travel to Egypt to prove her expertise, accompanied by his dashing, arrogant nephew, what choice does she have but to pack her bags?

    With the matchmaking founders of the Lady Travelers Society in tow, Harry is determined to expose Sidney’s secret. But the truth might not be as great a revelation as discovering that love can strike even the most stubborn of hearts.


    Purchase Links

    My Review
    The Lady Travelers Guide to Deception With an Unlikely Earl is a historical novel that tells the story of Sidney Honeywell.  Although she is the author of a popular book set in Egypt, her readers do not realize she has never visited Egypt or even traveled outside England.   On the other hand, Harry Armstrong has a wealth of experience in Egyptology, but his writing is dull and dry.   He challenges Sidney to travel to Egypt and prove that she is really who she pretends to be.  This adventure really picks up speed as Harry, Sidney, and her dear elderly lady friends from the Lady Travelers Society all journey to Egypt together.  Adventure ensues and sparks fly!

    I absolutely love the Lady Travelers Society series of books.  They are so smart and well written and just so much fun to read.  I always think of them as romps.  (Now how many books can be described that way?!)  Although this book would work as a standalone, I highly recommend reading the entire series.

    I loved the interplay between Sidney and Harry, with lots of verbal sparring and a battle of wits ... as well as a slow building attraction.  They are my very favorite couple in the Lady Travelers Society series.

    The Egyptian setting was fascinating.  I know very little about this historical setting and really enjoyed the details like the marketplace, and Sidney and Harry's visit to the Great Pyramid.  The descriptions were amazing ... so many little intriguing details, and a real sense of time and place.  

    Just one example of the fascinating descriptions in this book:

    "Massive stone columns topped with capitals carved to look like palm fronds soared to a ceiling a good two stories overhead.  A grand stairway swept upward to the next level guarded by bronze, life-size statues of dancing girls.  With potted palms in ornate urns, patterned carpets and intricately tiled floors, it was the epitome of the Egypt she had long seen in her mind's eye" (location 1189).

    I also enjoyed seeing the older ladies from the Ladies Travelers Society having an adventure in Egypt ... that was another highlight of this delightful book for me.

    I recommend The Lady Travelers Guide to Deception With an Unlikely Earl highly to fans of historical fiction, and especially for readers who enjoy a smart, well written, and light hearted read.  Five stars!

    Author Bio
    New York Times bestselling author Victoria Alexander was an award winning television reporter until she discovered fiction was much more fun than real life. She turned to writing full time and is still shocked it worked out.

    Since the publication of her first book in 1995, she has written thirty-one full length novels and six novellas. Find a complete list on her website and chat with her on Facebook.


    Connect with Victoria

    Website | Facebook | Twitter

    I received a copy of this book from Netgalley and TLC Book Tours.

    Friday, November 30, 2018

    Dear Abby - Videos Abby Likes: Dachshund Santa and Reindeer

    Dear Friends,

    I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  I had a great day with lots of love and good food. 

    I look forward to sharing some fun holiday posts the next few weeks.  I looked for dachshund videos for the holidays and found one that I love ... I hope you enjoy it too.  It is by famous dachshund Crusoe and his buddy Oakley.   Oakley wears reindeer ears ("wiendeer") and pulls Crusoe, who is dressed as Santa.  There is even a chimney ... and treats for Santa!  I am very impressed at Oakley's ability to act as a reindeer!

    Here is the video:

    I hope you enjoyed this short video as much as I did.   Have a wonderful weekend!


    Abby xoxoxo

    Book Review - The Secret Language of Cats by Susanne Schotz

    Book Synopsis
    Have you ever wondered what your cat is saying?

    Cats do not meow randomly, nor do they growl or hiss because they have nothing better to do. Cat sounds have a purpose, and they can carry important messages, whether for us or other cats.

    Susanne Schotz is hard at work on breaking the cat code. She is a professor at Lund University in Sweden, where a long-standing research program is proving that cats do actually use vocal communication—with each other and with their human caretakers. Understanding the vocal strategies used in human-cat communication will have profound implications for how we communicate with our pets, and has the potential to improve the relationship between animals and humans within several fields, including animal therapy, veterinary medicine and animal sheltering.

    In The Secret Language of Cats, Schotz offers a crash course in the phonetic study of cat sounds. She introduces us to the full range of feline vocalizations and explains what they can mean in different situations, and she gives practical tips to help us understand our cats better.


    Purchase Links

    Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

    My Review
    The Secret Language of Cats is a unique book that discusses cat sounds from a phonetic perspective, and gives cat owners new ways to understand what their cats are communicating.

    I was intrigued by The Secret Language of Cats from the cover with the adorable kitty, and from the description.  I am a lifelong animal lover and grew up in a cat family.  Although I have a dog now, I also love cats and am interested in reading about them.  I find animal behavior in general fascinating.

    Susanne Schotz is a professor of phonetics in Sweden.  She has studied phonetics as they apply to cat sounds and communication, and in this book she discusses these sounds in detail.  She breaks down the sounds into:
    • Sounds produced with an open mouth (purr, trill, etc.)
    • Sounds made while the mouth is first opening and then closing (meow, moan, howl, etc.)
    • Sounds that are produced with an open, tense mouth (growl, hiss, snarl, etc.)
    She also discusses other ways cats communicate -- touch, movement, spraying.

    The phonetic details were discussed in depth and from a scientific angle.   Many are discussed with both the sound and corresponding body language.

    My favorite part of the book was the fond way that Susanne Schotz wrote about her own history with cats and discussed different cats she has loved.  I found it very moving when she discussed older cats who passed on, and how she decided she couldn't go through that again ... but there was always another kitty (or kitties!) waiting for her.

    I also liked the practical chapters where she talked about specific cat questions and practical behavioral answers, i.e. Why does my cat not say anything? My cat wakes me up at night.  My cat only comes to other family members, not to me.

    I think The Secret Language of Cats will be of great interest to cat people, and especially to anyone who wants to read about cat sounds from a detailed perspective.

    I received a copy of this book from TLC Book Tours.

    Thursday, November 29, 2018

    Book Review and Giveaway - A Midwinter’s Tail (Lucky Paws Petsitting Mystery) by Bethany Blake

    Book Synopsis
    To bark or not to bark . . .

    Professional pet sitter Daphne Templeton loves the holidays in Sylvan Creek, Pennsylvania. And nothing gets her into the spirit more than the town’s annual Bark the Halls Ball. The whole community will be there to wag their tails, especially this year’s special guest—Celeste “CeeCee” French, founder of a national chain of pet care franchises, who’s returning home to announce plans for a bright new flagship store.

    But not everyone’s celebrating CeeCee’s homecoming. Daphne’s friend Moxie Bloom, owner of Spa and Paw, a unique salon for people and their pets, has plenty to growl about. So when CeeCee is found face down under Sylvan Creek’s town Christmas tree, stabbed with a distinctive pair of professional-grade pet shears, suspicion lands squarely on Moxie. Despite Daphne’s promises to Detective Jonathan Black, she quickly reprises her role as amateur sleuth. Ably assisted by her basset hound sidekick, Socrates, she must hurry to prove her friend’s innocence before a killer barks again . . .

    Includes recipes for homemade pet treats!

    My Review
    A Midwinter's Tail is a cozy mystery set in a small town in Pennsylvania.  Daphne Templeton has a pet sitting business and a reputation for solving mysteries.  When one of her old high school classmates returns and ends up dead, Daphne becomes involved in solving the mystery.

    This is my first read in the Lucky Paws Petsitting Mystery series.  I have been missing a really fun series!   I've put the other books on my reading list at Goodreads.  After a chapter or so, I felt caught up with the characters and enjoyed this novel as a standalone read.

    There was so much that I particularly enjoyed about A Midwinter's Tail:

    The author, Bethany Blake, loves animals and does such a great job writing about them.  A Midwinter's Tail features a basset hound, a spoiled poodle, a cat, a playful chihuahua, a lab, a naughty pug, and a pet rat.  The animals in this book absolutely stole the show for me -- great fun!

    There is a wonderful small town setting.  Sylvan Creek, Pennsylvania was depicted in detail and was such a cozy small town.

    There was a fun romantic triangle.  Daphne has two single men interested in her -- police detective Jonathan and small town newspaper writer Gabriel.  I enjoyed seeing this triangle play out.

    There is an emphasis on friends and even a flashback to their high school years.   Since much of the storyline involves the murder of CeeCee, who returns to Sylvan Creek after many years away, part of Daphne's detection involves researching old high school yearbooks.

    A Midwinter's Tail is such an enjoyable cozy holiday mystery.  I recommend it highly to other cozy fans, and especially to anyone who loves pets.

    Author Bio
    Bethany Blake lives in a small, quaint town in Pennsylvania with her husband and three daughters. When she’s not writing or riding horses, she’s wrangling a menagerie of furry family members that includes a nervous pit bull, a fearsome feline, a blind goldfish, and an attack cardinal named Robert. Like Daphne Templeton, the heroine of her Lucky Paws Mysteries, Bethany holds a Ph.D. and operates a pet sitting business called Barkley’s Premium Pet Care.

    Author Links 
    Webpage  BookBub    Twitter    Facebook

    Purchase Links
    Amazon  B&N  Kobo    Google Play   IndieBound   BookBub 

    a Rafflecopter giveaway
    I received a copy of this book from Netgalley and Great Escapes Book Tours. 

    Guest Post, Book Spotlight, and Giveaway - Slay Bells (A Christmas Village Mystery) by T.C. Wescott

    Book Synopsis
    Twas the week before Christmas and all through the village, the night settled in over swirling-smoke chimneys; the air was alive with pine and holly, with sugar and cinnamon and cider, by golly!

    Along snowy lanes and through shadows it crept, past windows behind which each villager slept, where sleeping dogs lie and cats rest a’purring—
    Tonight, in Christmas Village, a killer is stirring.

    Welcome to Christmas Village, a magical hamlet where even in December the roses hold their luster and bees buzz among the bluebells. You’re just in time for the week-long Christmas Festival, and nowhere is Christmas celebrated with such unrestrained merriment as the village which bears its name. Mayor Cobblestone and Sheriff Fell will be somewhere nearby, doing all they can to make sure you’re safe during your stay.

    Provided you haven’t booked a room at Plum Cottage.

    Nestled betwixt an opulent garden with meandering footpaths and an ancient grove of plum trees, Rose Willoughby’s boarding house is plum-full with lodgers. There are no vacancies, but just wait. Soon there will be one…and another…and another.

    Presently lodging at the cottage are: the juggler, the acrobat, the magician, the psychic, the strongman, the manager, and the pretty assistant. In town as festival entertainment they’ve each brought their own bag of tricks. And a closetful of skeletons.

    When the entertainers begin dying in inexplicable ways, some villagers believe a beast from old village lore is the culprit. The sheriff knows better, but he’s just as helpless to catch the invisible killer as are the town folk with their eyes to the sky in search of a flying creature. But our mysterious murderer hasn’t counted on yet another lodger coming to the cottage: Maribel Claus.

    Short as a stump, round as a wheel, sweet as a candy cane, and a sharp as a whip, Maribel loves a good puzzle. But has she finally met her match at Plum Cottage?

    Can you figure out whodunit before Maribel does? If you’re up to the challenge, here’s your first clue—the key to unlocking the secret of the murderer’s identity lies in figuring out how the murders were committed. Good luck!

    Guest Post:   Why I Started Writing Cozy Mysteries & Why I’ll Keep Writing Them by T.C. Wescott  

    Slay Bells, the first of my Christmas Village Mystery series, is being released this month. Last July my first cozy mystery book, Running from Scissors, came out and its sequel, Running from Arrows, will be unleashed in January. These two are part of the Running Store Mystery series. All the books are full-length and were written back to back which means I’ve been very busy this last year. And I wouldn’t change a moment of it!  

    Slay Bells introduces us to Maribel Claus who has lived her whole life in the magical village of Christmas. It’s the week of the annual grand Christmas Festival and all energy is devoted to the village’s legendary week-long celebration. Maribel’s friend, Rose, owns and runs Plum Cottage, a country inn, which is booked up by a circus troupe in town as entertainment. But when the guests start dying in inexplicable ways the village leaders realize that either a diabolical criminal is in their midst or a village legend – the Glockenvogel – has come to life and is terrorizing the village. It’s up to Maribel and her friends to figure out how the murders were committed so they can learn who is behind them. A howdunit and a whodunit!

    I’ve been a reader since I was a small child and although I didn’t realize it until I was much older, I’d always been a writer. As a five-year-old I wrote my own version of Dracula, complete with crayon illustration. While I’d like to think I’ve improved as a writer since kindergarten, my drawing skills still look like a blind mind trying to draw with his toes. In my twenties I tried writing again, this time it was young adult horror novels, but it was just for fun. This was the late 1990s and I’d bought into the dictum that it was impossible to break into publishing unless you knew somebody. I knew nobody. But I became interested in studying true crime and began writing articles for specialist journals. This led to the publication of my first history/true crime book in 2014. I self-published the book, expecting it might sell 300 copies over the course of a year or two. It sold that in a month and went on to win three awards and continues to sell steadily, as did the follow-up book I published in 2017. This led me to consider self-publishing fiction.  

    I researched the field. This wasn’t hard to do since I was already a die-hard mystery reader. I knew mystery was the field I wanted to publish in. And I love the idea of the cozy mystery. However, I’m a huge fan of the classic mysteries of the Golden Age. I decided to write two different series: The Running Store Mystery series would be a contemporary cozy set in a small town with many of the popular tropes of the cozy genre. There was no series on the market devoted to running, so I decided that would be way to go so as not to be derivative. The Christmas Village Mystery series, which had lived in my head for years, is my attempt to take mysteries to the coziest place they’ve ever been while also offering an added level of mystery by resurrecting the ‘Locked Room’ mysteries made popular in the 1940s and onward by John Dickson Carr and, later, Ed Hoch. The series are also different in that the Running Store books are written in the first person and Christmas Village in third person. I can’t tell you how many paragraphs I’ve had to rewrite because I forgot which tense I was supposed to be writing in!  

    It was important to me that my books compete with the big publishers on their own terms. This means good cover art. It turns out there are a lot of talented cover artists out there for independent publishers. It’s an expense, but a necessary one if you take your work seriously and expect readers to as well. I was also blessed to have an English professor in my circle and she agreed to work as copyeditor and proofreader on the books. And believe me, she has her work cut out for her!

    I dipped my toe into the audiobook market for Running from Scissors and will again for its sequel, which is a Valentine’s Day book and therefore a mystery cross-pollinated with romance, which I hope will expose me to a new market. Having learned a thing or two through this experience, I’m not diving into an audiobook with Slay Bells. Instead, I’m going to let the Kindle and paperback editions pay for themselves and then put the profits towards an audiobook edition next year or the year after. By then, the series should be three books strong and they can all be recorded and released at once. 

    One of the best things that’s come from publishing Running from Scissors is the feedback I’ve received from fellow mystery readers. They totally ‘got’ what I was going for in doing a mash-up between the modern cozy and the more Golden Age style of storytelling. Most not only ‘got’ it but said they wanted more of that, so I know I’m onto something. The publishing label I’ve set up for myself, Better Mousetrap Books, will someday be expanded to find and publish other authors with a similar goal in mind – to elevate and advance the cozy mystery into its next phase. Sometimes to go forward you need to look back. By asking myself what made me fall in love with the mystery genre I’ve learned what elements are important to me to include in my books. To see others reacting in the same way to my material is a dream come true.  

    Whether you’re a budding writer like myself or simply someone who loves a good mystery well told, I invite you to stop by Better Mousetrap Books’ Facebook page or head over to Amazon to pick up Slay Bells and Running from Scissors. Then let me know what you think and what YOU’D like to see happen to the cozy mystery genre over the next few years. It’s readers who decide the market, not writers and publishers, so what are things you’d like to see change, improve, or stay exactly as they are?

    Author Bio
    T.C. Wescott was born in Missouri but has lived in Oklahoma most of his life. Like pretty much every author who has ever breathed, he is an avid reader. His favorites are classic mysteries from the Golden Age, as well as just before or just after that period (which is widely considered the period between the two World Wars). His first mystery novel, Running from Scissors, was published in July 2018 and will be the first of at least three books in the Running Store Mystery series.

    The Christmas Village Mystery series will launch in November of the same year with the debut title Slay Bells. The formula for his books is simple – mixing the classic, traditional detective fiction standards with all the trappings of the modern cozy mystery.

    Wescott is also (under another name) the author of two award-winning non-fiction books as well as a slew of essays and articles.

    Follow on GoodReads –

    Purchase Link – Amazon

    a Rafflecopter giveaway