by Gail Farrelly
“Don’t ask!” I scream at the radio when that song is played for about the tenth time today.
It’s about 8 p.m. New Year’s Eve and I’m up to my elbows in dirty water, fixing the industrial sink at Carl’s Car Repair Shop. I give the radio a dirty look.
by Cynthia Chow
Rest assured.Star Wars: The Force Awakens was made for those of us who loved the original Star Wars Trilogy but prefer to pretend the Prequels never existed. Almost more of a soft reboot than a continuation (which it is, taking place thirty years after the events of Return of the Jedi), J.J. Abrams plays homage to everything we loved about the first movies without hitting us over the head with the references (as he frequently did in Star Trek Into the Darkness).
by C. L. Wilkinson
His headlights picked up the pendular sway of her long blonde hair; otherwise he might not have seen her at all. And even as he braked hard and swerved, he had the sinking feeling he would hit her. Throughout, she remained motionless, watching as he skidded toward her as if waiting for the blow, expecting it even.
by Jackie Dale
Well, I must say that 2015 has been a very busy year for Jackie Dale, Cat Trapper! I enjoy telling people I am a cat trapper, just to see the looks on their faces as they try to make sense of what I just told them. This usually leads into a spiel from me about TNR, as well as the benefits of spay and neuter. Occasionally it leads to a donation, which is always a good thing! Sometimes it leads to a debate because some people don’t understand what I do or why I do it.
by Sandra Murphy
Maxine (Max) O’Hara traveled to Germany to get her brewmaster’s certification and then spent months finding just the right spot for her brewpub in a revitalized section of Pittsburgh. Kurt, technically her assistant but more of a right hand guy, knows all about brewing beer. His father was one of Max’s instructors. He’s also a great cook and will take care of the food side of the pub. A stickler for perfection, he works continuously to achieve a unique taste for familiar foods like kirschtorte (chocolate cherry cake).
by Cynthia Chow
It may only be October, but as the manager of Smeaton-under-Lyme’s Tourist Information Center, Julia Lanchester already has her hands full planning the English village’s Christmas Market, Cider Day, and Boxing Day Bird Count. A toxic mold situation in her cottage has forced her to move temporarily into Lord Fotheringill’s estate home, a situation compounded not only by his crush on her but by the unexpected arrival of Linus Fotheringill’s son, Cecil.
by Kara Cerise
Sneaking into her sister’s hotel room to search for stolen jewelry was not how Valencia Lancaster had planned to celebrate New Year’s Eve. Val turned her head left then right to make sure she was alone in the hallway. She inserted the keycard she had swiped from Sienna’s purse into the slot and heard a click. As she turned the door handle, she noticed that her hands were dry from the winter weather. With grim humor, she thought that the night began innocently enough when she borrowed a jar of hand cream from her sister’s purse. What she found inside the jar had changed everything.
by Sunny Frazier
Start the New Year off with some mouth-watering mysteries, a few ghosts, and a curse or two!
It’s the early 1900s and twenty-four-year-old heiress Charlotte Demerayes lives in the Fanaman mansion with a few ghosts and the mother from hell.
by Sandra Murphy
To end 2015 with a bang, here are a few more mysteries from Penguin & Kensington authors-The Scottie Barked at Midnight by Kaitlyn Dunnett, Yarned and Dangerous by Sadie Hartwell, and Death on the High Lonesome by Frank Hayes. Details at the end of this post on how to win a copy of all 3 books & a link to purchase them.
by Diana Hockley
Margo Power, publisher of Murderous Intent Mystery Magazine founded a Short Story Mystery Fiction Society in 1996. The magazine, Mysterical-e was a spin-off from this and resulted in the Derringer Awards for stories up to twenty thousand words. The society has now grown to around one thousand six hundred members.
by Terrance Mc Arthur
Here we are at the end of 2015, a time for making resolutions and doing new things. This edition of The Great Food Search is dedicated to restaurants that have made changes in 2015. I’ve already featured the $25,000 makeover at Kikku Japanese Food in downtown Fresno, but I have some more transformed eateries to share with you.
by Maria Ruiz
Another holiday season, and the shops were full of gifts and magnificent candies or cookies. We were driving in southern Italy and crossed to Sicily on a ferry, two days before Christmas.
by Laura Sidsworth
I was educated early in life on proper nutrition, health and fitness by my Aunt Mary, who holds a degree in Physical Science/Nutrition. She gave me my first job at her health club, The Executive Health Spa, in McAllen, Texas. I’ve been a yoga and calisthenics teacher, weight-trainer, swim instructor, and giver of racquetball lessons – since the age of twelve.