Today, I am so excited to be a part of the Cozy Blog Tour with some incredible features! The newest book in the Cookbook Nook mystery series, PRESSING THE ISSUE by Daryl Wood Gerber, is now available and to celebrate its release, the author has graciously answered a few questions as well as providing two chances for you to win some awesome bookish swag!
The Agatha Award–winning author of GRILLING THE SUBJECT returns to the Cookbook Nook in Crystal Cove, where the annual Renaissance Fair serves up a helping of crafty courtiers, damsels in distress, and medieval murder.
As the annual Renaissance Fair comes to Crystal Cove, Jenna Hart’s Cookbook Nook is packed with tasty treats and all things medieval, while her pal Bailey is ready to swoon over her upcoming nuptials at a local vineyard. But when the two friends discover the body of the vineyard’s owner bludgeoned by a wine press, all their merriment fades, along with their hopes for a vintage year.
Which churlish varlet did the deed? Was it the victim’s errant brother, who stood to inherit the vineyards? Or the owner’s crestfallen ex-girlfriend? Mayhap it was the newly arrived lusty wench, or her jealous husband. Fie on them all! Verily, Jenna can’t rest until justice is served, and she vows to track down the killer. But can she sniff out the truth before the villainous culprit strikes again?
You can order your copy on Amazon HERE.
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Publication Date: January 2018
I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest and thoughtful review.
I recently had the pleasure of reading the author’s previous release A DEADLY ECLAIR and really enjoyed it. You can check out my review HERE
. As I had mentioned in that review, I was interested in reading more of her books, so I was so excited to receive the chance to review PRESSING THE ISSUE
. While this was my first experience reading the Cookbook Nook series, I’m definitely looking forward to picking up the others to learn more about Crystal Cove and its residents from the very beginning.
Although this is the sixth book in the series, the characters are so well developed and the story flowed so consistently without feeling any loss of continuity. Jenna is another feisty protagonist that truly holds her own within this vast and eclectic cast of characters who are just quirky enough to keep you guessing until the very end. Jenna’s investigative skills can come across as overly confident, but this could easily feel that way simply because the actual law enforcement officials appear so aloof. They may in fact be doing much more, but because it obviously happens apart from Jenna, they seem uninterested and uninvolved, yet overly antagonistic towards Jenna’s participation.
Given that the Renaissance Fair is the primary setting and focal point for the characters, it was understandable that very little attention is given to the book store and its inner workings; however, it was certainly fun to watch everyone play along and dress up for all the activities. It would be quite entertaining to work and live in a community that becomes that involved in creating such an engaging atmosphere for residents and guests alike. The provided recipes at the end will certainly help bring this quaint place a little closer to your own home!
This delightful read is the perfect addition for fans of bookish or culinary cozies and I look forward to spending some more time with Jenna at her nook!
Where does your inspiration as a writer come from?
I allow my mind to think “what if” all the time. I read the newspaper and use that as a launching type of question. What if this happened in my book? What if this person existed in my book? What if that food (honestly, yes, from the food section on Sundays) were the theme of my next book? I try never to close my mind down to a new idea. I have pages and pages of ideas written in my computer with ideas. Sometimes I browse through them, although once I’ve written them down, they do seem to stick somewhere in my psyche. My kids gave me an inspirational idea notebook for Christmas so I can write down ideas if I’m on the road and not near my computer. I love observing people. Sometimes I’ll make up scenarios for couples I see at coffee shops or on the street. Who are they? Where are they from? What do they do? When did they meet? I find that kind of story building a great way to keep my mind working creatively at all times.
What was your favorite book growing up? Did that book help in inspiring you to become a writer?
I loved A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle, but no, it did not inspire me to become a writer. I loved the fantasy of it, but I don’t typically read fantasy. Although I did read the entire Dragons of Pern series by Anne McCaffrey and adored them, and I did write a children’s fiction screenplay about dragons because of that. I had no luck selling it, and I’m saddened by that, because it was a real war of the worlds story. It was reading Nancy Drew that got me started writing. I wanted to write mystery. Then I graduated to Agatha Christie and knew that was what I had to write. Then I read a bunch of thrillers and knew that was where my passion lay. You see, I have a lot of interests, which is why I write in multiple genres. My audience, though, is primarily cozy mystery readers, so I will have a tough time finding a broader audience for my other work. Therefore, I write those for “me,” and if others wish to read them, great. PS A Wrinkle in Time is coming out as a movie this year, and I can’t wait to see it. I hope it doesn’t ruin the book for me. LOL
Why did you pick to write about the Renaissance Fair in PRESSING THE ISSUE? Was it based on some event in your life?
Yes. I went to my first Renaissance Fair back in college, and the event made a huge impression on me. I loved the costume-play or cosplay action. I went with a group and we all dressed up. One of my friends was really into interacting with the players at the fair. Though I loved acting, I was not yet a professional actress, so I was a bit intimidated by his free spirit. Since then, however, I’ve become much more bold. I’ve attended a number of fairs, and I always interact—with a British accent. I thought it would be fun to bring a fair to Crystal Cove, on a small scale. The man who is the king of the fair (he also owns the vineyard where Bailey intends to get married) is loosely based on my gregarious friend, may he rest in peace.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Agatha Award-winning Daryl Wood Gerber writes the brand new French Bistro Mysteries as well as the nationally bestselling Cookbook Nook Mysteries. As Avery Aames, she pens the popular Cheese Shop Mysteries. A DEADLY ÊCLAIR, the first French Bistro Mystery, comes out November 2017. Daryl also writes stand-alone suspense: DAY OF SECRETS and GIRL ON THE RUN. Fun tidbit: as an actress, Daryl appeared in “Murder, She Wrote.” She loves to cook, and she has a frisky Goldendoodle named Sparky who keeps her in line!
You can connect with her on:
To enter, please comment below and leave your email address in the safe format using [at] and [dot] such as thatswhatshesreading[at]gmail[dot]com. You can also CLICK THIS LINK to comment and share my Facebook post. The giveaway will run through the end of the tour and closes at midnight PST on February 26. Winner will be randomly chosen and contacted through the email provided. Eligible to US residents only.
GRAND PRIZE GIVEAWAY
If the commenter visits ALL the blogs on the Cozy Blog Tour (there are 7 in a row), he or she can be entered for the big prize. This is not a rafflecopter. Just drop in and visit them all and leave a comment. The links are below. What’s the prize? A Cookbook Nook Mystery, A Cheese Shop Mystery, a darling cat tea towel, a darling plush Tigger, and a Medieval Tapestries coloring book to honor the Renaissance theme in the book.
COZY BLOG TOUR:
I hope that you enjoyed this post and will be picking up this book and series soon! Many thanks to Daryl and Great Escapes Book Tours for this unique opportunity! It was an absolute pleasure hosting and providing a review. And be sure to visit the other stops on the tour for more author extras and chances to win!