Monday, August 18, 2014

Cozy Mystery Blog Tour: Author Guest Post, Review & Giveaway: Book Fair and Foul (Ashton Corners Book Club Mystery #4) by Erika Chase

For the mystery book lovers of Ashton Corners,
burial plots tell the most intriguing stories.

The members of the Ashton Corners Mystery Readers and Cheese Straws Society are all chipping in as Molly Mathews, now owner of the bookstore the Book Nook, prepares the first annual Mystery Book Fair. While gossip circulates about the guest authors, club member Lizzie Turner is unpleasantly surprised to see a certain book publicist make an appearance. It seems Lizzie has a history with Ashley Dixon—a chapter of her life she’d rather leave closed.

But when someone gives Ashley a death sentence, Lizzie becomes the prime suspect in a murder mystery she can’t put down. Now Lizzie and her fellow book buffs have to read between the lines of the publicist’s past and catch the real killer before Lizzie is written off for good.

I can't believe that book #4 in the Ashton Corners Book Club Mysteries has been born.  It seems like just yesterday I was thrilled to hold the advance reading copy of the first book, A Killer Read in my hands.  That was quite a journey getting to that spot, something that has now been repeated three more times. 

Writers often say that the process is similar to giving birth.  It's true, especially if you're on a nine month cycle, as many are.  That's nine months to produce a completed manuscript, ready to go and in the hands of your editor on the appointed date.  

Those nine months are filled with highs and lows.  Starting with anticipation at producing something new, going on a journey with old friends and new motives.  You feel exhilarated.  Anything is possible and the future looks bright.  

Then come the lows, those times you think you won't be a good "mother", you're unable to grab onto that bright future, often called the time of writer's block.  This doesn't have to be a major occurrence of months like is often touted on writer's rescue sites.  Even one day of being unable to pick up the thread of your story and re-immerse your creative side can cause great trauma.  But this too will pass.  

So, you're back on track.  Eating healthy, getting enough sleep and proper exercise.  The creative juices are flowing and the end is within sight.  In fact, wait for it - you've finished the first draft.  Great excitement and relief.  However, that's the equivalent to false labor pains.  Get back to work.  It's not ready for the world.  

But, trust me, it does happen.  Several more drafts and the birthing process is complete.  Congratulations, it's a manuscript.  And this one you'll feel proud to send to your editor.  

And, just like giving birth, as soon as you've calmed down a bit and settled into a routine, you'll be wanting to start all over again.  And like any good mom, you'll have enough love all your output.  

Each book has held a special place in my heart.  While writing them, I've been drawn into a community of friends, now my friends, in a town that although fictitious, has also become real to me.  I look forward every time to revisiting this place, these people, and helping them sort through their lives.  And of course, the latest murder.  

My deepest wish is that the reader enjoys this journey as much as I do.  

Erika writes the Ashton Corners Book Club mysteries for Penguin/Berkley Prime Crime. In a parallel life Erika Chase is also known as Linda Wiken. A former mystery bookstore owner (Prime Crime Books in Ottawa, ON, Canada), Linda is also a short story writer. She is a member of those dangerous dames, The Ladies' Killing Circle.

Her short stories have appeared in the seven Ladies’ Killing Circle anthologies (three of which she co-edited), and in the magazines Mysterious Intent and Over My Dead Body. She has been short-listed for an Arthur Ellis Award, Best Short Story, from Crime Writers of Canada.

Before life in the world of mystery, she worked as an advertising copywriter, radio producer, journalist and community education worker. Besides writing and reading mysteries, her other passion is choral singing and she is a member of two choirs.

She shares her house with Keesha and Mojo, her two Siamese cats. Actually, they allow her to live there.

Lizzie and her supporting cast of characters are just wonderful.  I love being able to sit in with their little group each time I pick up one of these books.  They're just... awesome.  

The story in Book Fair and Foul is fantastic.  It's the perfect storyline that readers can easily relate to, and it's quick pacing makes it exciting and fun!  The mystery is superb.  From the moment Lizzie gets herself caught up in the middle of the murder investigation of one of her old nemesis', it's impossible to put this book down! 

You can read this book as a stand-alone, but you'll want to treat yourself to the rest of the Ashton Corners Book Club series.  They're books that are simply to die for! :)  

Rating: 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.  All conclusions reached are my own.  

Thanks to the awesome ladies at Penguin, I have 1 paperback copy of Book Fair and Foul by Erika Chase to give away to one of my lucky readers!  Just enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win, and be sure to keep checking back for more awesome giveaways!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway


Unknown said...

Book four already--congratulations!! Another murder for us to enjoy reading!!ronnalord(at)msn(dot)com

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