Monday, November 3, 2014

Cozy Mystery Blog Tour: Author Guest Post, Review & Giveaway: No Mallets Intended (Vintage Kitchen #4) by Victoria Hamilton


The Queensville Heritage Society is restoring the once-grand Dumpe Manor. While Dumpe relatives and society members use the occasion to dust off old grudges, Jaymie Leighton prefers to adorn the kitchen with authentic Depression Era furnishings. A collection of vintage wooden mallets found in the house is a perfect addition to her display, but one also offers a late-night intruder the perfect weapon to knock Jaymie unconscious before escaping.

Though the attack has everyone on edge, nothing is missing from the house. Perhaps it was merely a vagrant who thought the place was still abandoned. But when Dumpe Manor’s resident historian is murdered with a mallet from the same collection, it’s time for Jaymie to turn up the heat on the investigation before someone else becomes history.

Includes recipes!

Love and Mystery
By: Victoria Hamilton

I started out my writing career as a romance author. Did pretty good, too! I wrote Regency romances, paranormal historicals, and historical mysteries that were actually labeled as romances. But my true love has always been mystery novels. That’s what I read, and now what I write.

Having read hundreds of mysteries and yet as a writer of both romance and mysteries, I’m hyper aware of romance elements in mystery fiction. Particularly in so called ‘cozy’ or ‘traditional’ mystery, it almost seems that there has to be some romantic element. Most cozy protagonists are women, and they are usually single, widowed, or divorced.

Even the ones where the main character is happily married, the marriage is often the result of romance in the first few books of the series. The protagonist may start out single, widowed or divorced, but she met, fell in love with and married her significant other in the course of the series. A couple of my favorites are Diane Mott Davidson’s Goldy Schulz mysteries, and the Mary Daheim bed-and-breakfast series, and both started that way.

But then there are those who carry on the romance phase for quite a time. The ones I’m thinking of are Joanne Fluke’s Hannah Swenson mysteries, where the triangle has been carrying on for many many books. She’s making it work, though I know Fluke has experienced a lot of criticism for the extended romantic triangle.

In my Vintage Kitchen Mysteries I was wary of that. Jaymie has a steady boyfriend, Daniel. She has a crush on Detective Zack, who makes her pulse race. She has recovered from the broken heart that Joel’s desertion left her with, and she is growing in so many ways, finally figuring out what she wants in her life. But… as a reader of romance, Jaymie is aware that she is often criticized as being unrealistic to want both the steadiness of a good fellow and the heart racing appeal of the sexy stud.

So with two good men in her life, what’s a girl to do? You may just be surprised.

I can confidently say, with books 4 (No Mallets Intended; November 4th, 2014) and Book 5, (White Colander Crime, November 2015) I will be breaking free of any worry about a love triangle, which I feel is unsustainable over the long run. How many men would put up with it? None that I know of, or at least none who are self respecting. A woman has got to choose at some point.

And Jaymie will. In writing No Mallets Intended I was as surprised as anyone at some of what happens, but it all fits now. I get Jaymie; she’s really not wishy washy in the slightest, she was just looking for that perfect match of reliable and sexy. I just hope – and I am nervous about this – that readers are going to be happy with the direction I go in. I trust that readers will let me know one way or the other!

Victoria Hamilton is the author of three nationally bestselling series, the Vintage Kitchen Mysteries and Merry Muffin Mysteries as Victoria, and the Teapot Collector Mysteries as Amanda Cooper. She is also the bestselling author of Regency and historical romance as Donna Lea Simpson.

Victoria loves to cook and collects vintage kitchen paraphernalia, teacups and teapots, and almost anything that catches her fancy!  She loves to read, especially mystery novels, and enjoys good tea and cheap wine, the company of friends, and has a new found appreciation for opera.  She enjoys crocheting and beading, but a good book can tempt her away from almost anything... except writing! 

What a creative story!  When I think of potential murder weapons in a kitchen, a mallet is not one of them.  Not because it wouldn't be... efficient... but because knives always seem like the obvious choice.  Right?  But mallets... brilliant!  

Jaymie has always been a character I just love to spend time with.  I can appreciate her taste in all things vintage.  So when she gets herself tangled up in a murder mystery involving a vintage kitchen utensil, you know she can't resist trying to get to the bottom of it.  It's a clever story with all of the usual charm this series has to offer.  The characters (including Jaymie) are fabulously written, and the mystery itself is wonderful.  

This was yet another brilliant addition to a greatly loved series.  I can't wait to see what Ms. Hamilton has in store next! 

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 No Mallets Intended by Victoria Hamilton 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


Karen B said...

I can't find where to LIKE her on her FB page but I am a follower! I don't like to FRIEND because then they get all the stuff I send to family.

NoraA said...

Love Victoria's books and would love to add this one to my collection.

Anonymous said...

I adore this series as a fan of vintage kitchen's its a favorite of mine. Thank you for the opportunity

Kim said...

LOVED the guest post Victoria!

I can't wait until the next book!!!

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