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Frosty the Dead Man By Christine Husom: Review/Giveaway/Interview

IN THE December 10 ISSUE

FROM THE 2016 Articles,
andCynthia Chow,
andMysteryrat's Maze
SECTIONS

by Cynthia Chow

This week we have another fun Christmas mystery, Frosty the Dead Man by Christine Husom, and an interesting interview with Christine. Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of Frosty the Dead Man. We also have a link to order it from Amazon, and from an indie bookstore where a portion goes to help support KRL.

Frosty the Dead Man: A Snow Globe Shop Mystery by Christine Husom
Review by Cynthia Chow

Camryn Brooks’ experience as the former legal affairs director for a senator in Washington, D.C., has accustomed her to the precarious and convoluted world of politics. Even she was caught off guard, when the hostilities stirred up by a small-town Minnesota City Council meeting continue to the point of her nearly calling the police the following day. Mayor Lewis “Frosty” Frost’s proposal to bring in both a microbrewery and a clothing manufacturing business to Brooks Landing has more than one resident up in arms, and they all seem to express their opposition in the Brew-Ha coffee shop. Connected through a walkway to the snow globe and specialty items boutique, Curio Finds, owner Camryn can’t help but overhear and be concerned. So when Mayor Frosty suggests that Camryn apply for a vacant city council seat when a disgusted council member resigns, she would have had second thoughts even if it wasn’t just three weeks before Christmas. book

Specializing in unique snow globes from around the world, Camryn was hard pressed to see the appeal in a recent shipment of globes featuring rather ominous scenes. Despite the sinister depictions of an armed hunter facing off three bears, Camryn is unexpectedly visited by several customers interested in purchasing the globe. They are too late, as it is Mayor Frosty who purchases the first globe, and he whom Camryn finds bludgeoned to death with it in his office. An unaccountable diamond found at the scene adds yet another layer of confusion, and Camryn’s need to fix things and make things right compel her to discover how Curio Finds may have played a role in the death. A needy waif fortuitously—perhaps too fortuitously—arrives to provide some clerical and decorating assistance, allowing Camryn and her two best friends to investigate; all the while, Assistant Chief Clint Lionsbury warns her to stay safe and out of the investigation.

Just in time for the holidays, this Snow Globe Shop Mystery series, that highlights the nostalgic and iconic snow globes, entertains with the warm friendships and relationships of Brooks Landing. Camryn’s parents continue to be a beacon of loving support, her best friend and Brew-Ha owner Pinky Nelson is in the giggly bliss of a new relationship, and Camryn lends a sympathetic ear to Mayor Frosty’s son. What truly warms Camryn’s heart is seeing the joy in her customers’ eyes as they pick out the perfect snow globe, ones that remind them of their fondest memories. Experienced mystery readers may spot glimpses of the scheme being veiled by a nefarious leader, but the fun comes in watching Camryn attempt to maneuver her way through local politicians without offending or jeopardizing her business. Pennies that may actually be from heaven, as well as a possible beneficent ghost gifted with timely electrical talents, add on to the charm. A heartwarming conclusion delivers everything one could ask for in Christmas cozy mystery, gifting readers with the ideal book for the holidays.

Cynthia Chow is the branch manager of Kaneohe Public Library on the island of Oahu. She balances a librarian lifestyle of cardigans and hair buns with a passion for motorcycle riding and regrettable tattoos (sorry, Mom).

Interview with Christine Husom:

KRL: How long have you been writing?

Christine: I was creating stories before I could read, and was very excited when I learned to read and write because then I was able to put my stories on paper. As a young girl into my teens I enjoyed writing plays and poetry. I didn’t think I had the patience to write a whole book, so I was tickled to find out I did.

KRL: When did your first novel come out and what was it called? Can you tell us a little about it?

Christine: Murder in Winnebago County, first in the Winnebago County Mystery Series, launched in 2008. It was loosely based on my father’s strange death that had been ruled an accident. The circumstances of his death were so bizarre, nineteen years later we still wonder what really happened. I was haunted by that, and one day I asked myself, “What if it wasn’t an accident, what if someone did that to him? Who would that person be, what would be his/her motivation?” The tragedy gave birth, first to the antagonist and her quest for vengeance, and then to the Winnebago County Sheriff’s Department characters. My experiences working for Wright County, thinly disguised as Winnebago County, rewarded me with lots of ideas for books.

author

Christine Husom

KRL: Have you always written mysteries/suspense and if not, what else have you written?

Christine: I wrote two romance novels years ago that were never published, and I’ve started a number of more mainstream fiction novels, that I may finish someday. I love mysteries, and writing about them is one of my passions.

KRL: What brought you to choose the setting and characters in your latest book/series? Please tell us a little about the setting and main character for your most recent book.

Christine: A New York agent was looking for a Minnesota author to write a cozy mystery series. It was his idea to set it in a snow globe shop and it was easy for me to imagine a shop called Curio Finds, housed in a sturdy 1924 brick building on Central Avenue in my hometown. The shop specializes in snow globes from around the world, but also carries a variety of unique items. Plus, it has an adjoining coffee shop.

I love creating characters, and protagonist Camryn Brooks was the first one I developed for the series. She had reluctantly returned to Brooks Landing after serving as a legislative director in Washington D.C. and is helping her parents manage Curio Finds. It’s not where she planned to be at that point in her career, but she’s accepted it’s where she needs to be. The bonus is she’s back with her family and friends. Cami’s biological parents died when she was five, and she was adopted by her aunt and uncle, and brought into their large family. Cami finds pennies at odd times and believes her mother is sending from heaven. She has a natural curiosity and strong sense of justice, so when she stumbles over bodies, she needs to find out what happened and why.

KRL: Do you write to entertain or is there something more you want the readers to take away from your work?

Christine: My hope is that readers will be captured by the stories, and feel like they are walking alongside the characters, and sharing their experiences. I also hope they can learn, or think about, something new.

KRL: Do you have a schedule for your writing or just write whenever you can?

Christine: I write when I can. When I’m on deadline, or really caught up in my story, I carve out as much time as possible for writing, and sometimes feel a little crabby about the other things in life I need to take care of.

KRL: Do you outline? If not, do you have some other interesting way that you keep track of what’s going on, or what needs to happen in your book when you are writing it?

Christine: I have tried to both outline and storyboard, but I haven’t been able to pull either one off. For my Snow Globe Shop Mysteries, I needed a synopsis for the first three books, so that was handy when I sat down to write them. My process is I come up with a storyline, some sort of criminal activity and the characters involved, both good guys and bad guys. I mentally work out the basic plot, some key points, and the ending. When I start writing the books, I don’t yet know all of the characters that might show up along the line, or all the details of what will move the story along. It keeps me on my toes. As I get deeper into the story, I take notes of what’s happened, and often re-read what I’ve written, checking for any inconsistencies.

KRL: If you had your ideal, what time of day would you prefer to write?

Christine: I’d start in the morning, after my routine, and write as long as possible.

KRL: Did you find it difficult to get published in the beginning?

Christine: Yes. I finished Murder in Winnebago County in 2003, and searched for willing agents and publishers. It was my part-time job for a few years. Then I entered an online “Search for the next best crime writer” contest in 2007, and met the man who became the publisher of my Winnebagos.

KRL: Do you have a great rejection/critique or acceptance story you’d like to share?

Christine: I’d turned in a proposal for the Snow Globe Shop Mysteries to my agent in December, 2012. I’d been newly elected as a Wright County Commissioner the month before. As I was walking into the courthouse for my first board meeting in January, I got a call from my agent saying he’d sold the series to Penguin. I went in to the board room thinking, “This is a really big day!”

KRL: Most interesting book signing story-in a bookstore or other venue?

Christine: One of my books got delayed with the printer, and my publisher sent the books directly to the bookstore. They arrived the afternoon of the signing and the first time I saw the finished product was when the bookstore owner opened the box. I was a bit on edge!

KRL: Future writing goals?

Christine: I’ll continue writing the Winnebago County Mysteries, and hope to keep going with the Snow Globe Shop Mysteries. I’d love to write a mainstream novel someday. And maybe some fun or inspirational children’s books for my grandchildren.

KRL: Writing heroes?

Christine: Shakespeare and Charles Dickens are my top two, but there’s a long list.

KRL: What kind of research do you do?

Christine: I scour the internet or a variety of books for details on anything from diving apparatus, to the difference between and psychopath and a sociopath, to adipocere (grave wax), to Arabian Horse disorders, to Dissociative Identity Disorder. I also interview people who have expertise in different areas. Another thing I find helpful is when I imagine a place in my county where a fictional crime has taken place, I’ll go there and sit for a while, for added inspiration.

KRL: What do you read?

Christine: Mostly mysteries, especially by authors I’ve met through Sisters in Crime, or at conventions. But I appreciate a wide variety of works; basically what I feel is a good story, or something I want to learn about.

KRL: Favorite TV or movies?

Christine: I’m a sucker for Hallmark movies and pretty much all musicals. Feel good stuff. But one of my favorite movies was the frightening thriller, In the Line of Fire with Clint Eastwood, John Malkovich, and Rene Russo.

KRL: Any advice for aspiring or beginning writers?

Christine: Write about things you’re interested in, or want to learn about. Do your homework, interview people in the know, and get to know who your characters are. Hear their voices. Be patient and appreciate that it takes diligence to finish a work, but it’s worth all the sweat and tears.

KRL: Anything you would like to add?

Christine: I’m very grateful to readers, fellow writers, friends, and especially my family for supporting me in this wonderful world of writing and marketing and publishing.

KRL: What is something people would be surprised to know about you?

Christine: I already gave that away that I’m a county commissioner, now in my second term. There are three cities and five townships in my district, and I sit on twenty different committees from Emergency
Medical Services to Clearwater River Watershed District: a wide variety of organizations, committees, and issues to deal with. I learn something new every day, and hopefully help people in the process.

KRL: Wow you are a busy person! Website? Twitter? Facebook?

Christine: www.christinehusom.webs.com, twitter.com/christinehusom, www.facebook.com/christine.husom.

To enter to win a copy of Frosty the Dead Man, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “frosty,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen December 17, 2016. U.S. residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address, and if via comment please include your email address.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & short stories in our mystery section.

Click on this link to purchase this book & a portion goes to help support KRL & an indie bookstore Mysterious Galaxy:

You can use this link to purchase the book on Amazon. If you have ad blocker on you may not see the link:

Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.

{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Bertha HammondNo Gravatar December 10, 2016 at 7:56am

I love snow globes. I would love to win a copy of Frosty The Dead Man.
bah195@yahoo.com

Reply

2 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 1:51pm

Thank you, Bertha, and all the best to you!

Reply

3 LynnNo Gravatar December 10, 2016 at 10:14am

I just adore Frosty so the title really caught my attention – have to see if my library has the book – or can get it for me (just in case I don’t win). Thanks!

Reply

4 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 14, 2016 at 5:05pm

Many thanks, Lynn. Good luck in the contest!

Reply

5 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 10, 2016 at 11:34am

Thanks so much for interviewing me and including me on your wonderful blog!

Reply

6 Donamae KutskaNo Gravatar
Twitter: @donamaekutska
December 10, 2016 at 4:37pm

Thank you for the chance! The book sounds good!

Reply

7 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 1:53pm

I appreciate that, Donamae, and good luck in the contest!

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8 Brittany AbbottNo Gravatar
Twitter: @ilovefinnegan
December 10, 2016 at 6:53pm

This is such a wonderful series and I am looking forward to reading this.

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9 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 1:54pm

Many thanks, Brittany, and all the best in the contest!

Reply

10 DebbieNo Gravatar December 10, 2016 at 7:45pm

I live in the state next door to MN! (Wisconsin) I love reading books that feature the upper Midwest! DElholm@prodigy.net

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11 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 1:56pm

Hey, neighbor. Thanks so much!

Reply

12 Judy WeaverNo Gravatar December 11, 2016 at 7:46am

Poor Frosty! I also love snow globes.

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13 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 1:57pm

You are so right about Frosty, Judy, and I love snow globes too!

Reply

14 Valerie HoynackiNo Gravatar December 11, 2016 at 8:12am

Deadly snow globes – hmmmmmmm!

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15 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 1:58pm

Valerie, you are right, who’d have thought?

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16 Kristi GilbertNo Gravatar December 11, 2016 at 8:52am

I’ve always loved snow globes! hannah03@bellsouth.net

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17 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 14, 2016 at 5:07pm

Thank you, Kristi, and I have too!

Reply

18 BarbaraNo Gravatar December 11, 2016 at 9:02am

A fun new author to me sounds good

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19 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 14, 2016 at 5:08pm

I appreciate that, Barbara!

Reply

20 Amanda B.No Gravatar December 11, 2016 at 10:00am

Sounds great! Thanks for the chance! 2boys4me (at) gmail (dot) com.

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21 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 1:59pm

Thank you, Amanda, and good luck with the contest!

Reply

22 Brian FrauenknechtNo Gravatar
Twitter: @BFrauenb
December 11, 2016 at 10:46am

This is a great series and I wold love to win this latest in the series. Thanks for the chance to win.

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23 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 14, 2016 at 5:09pm

Many thanks for the kind words, Brian. I wish you good luck!

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24 PamNo Gravatar December 11, 2016 at 11:50am

Clever title and cute cover!

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25 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 2:00pm

Thank you, Pam, I appreciate that!

Reply

26 Kristina M. AndersonNo Gravatar
Twitter: @booklover43
December 11, 2016 at 4:40pm

Thank you for your review and interview. I am looking forward to reading Frosty the Dead Man. It looks like it will be delightful! Doodlesink@hotmail.com
A recent post from Kristina M. Anderson: Days Like TheseMy Profile

Reply

27 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 2:02pm

I appreciate that, Kristina, thank you!

Reply

28 Karin ANo Gravatar December 11, 2016 at 8:35pm

The cover is appealing as is the MN setting.

karin56381 (at) gmail.com

Reply

29 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 5:06pm

Many thanks, Karen!

Reply

30 Donamae KutskaNo Gravatar
Twitter: @donamaekutska
December 11, 2016 at 9:39pm

I enjoy books from the Midwest I live in Wisconsin. I love snow globes and want to read this book!

Reply

31 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 5:07pm

Hello neighbor, thank you, and I love snow globes too!

Reply

32 Linda MoffittNo Gravatar
Twitter: @LindaMoffitt02
December 12, 2016 at 11:48am

I Love the title of this book, and it looks good. Thanks so much for the chance to win iamabho (at) gmail (dot) com

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33 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 2:03pm

Many thanks, Linda, and I wish you the best in the contest!

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34 Doward WilsonNo Gravatar December 12, 2016 at 2:29pm

I loved the first book & have to get caught up on this series. Thanks for the great interview & chance to win.

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35 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 12, 2016 at 5:03pm

Thank you so much, and good luck in the contest!

Reply

36 Karen BNo Gravatar December 13, 2016 at 4:07am

Love books set in my state of MN! The Iced Princess was a terrific read. Looking forward to book 1 and the latest in this series.

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37 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 14, 2016 at 5:11pm

Hello, fellow Minnesotan! Thank you much.

Reply

38 Diane T WicklesNo Gravatar
Twitter: @ddominikwickles
December 15, 2016 at 6:58am

I would love to visit her snow globe store in real life. They must be beautiful. I’d love to win a copy of the book. Thanks

Reply

39 Elaine FaberNo Gravatar December 16, 2016 at 1:46pm

Great to write a holiday mystery. I’ve written holiday short stories but not a novel. This one sounds like a doosie! congrats.

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40 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 17, 2016 at 11:07am

Thank you, Elaine!

Reply

41 LorieNo Gravatar
Twitter: @mysteryrat
December 19, 2016 at 10:36am

We have a winner!

Reply

42 Christine HusomNo Gravatar
Twitter: @christinehusom
December 19, 2016 at 2:40pm

That’s great! When I get the name and address, I’ll get the book sent off. Merry Christmas, everyone 🙂

Reply

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