A California Magazine with Local Focus and Global Appeal:
Community - Entertainment - Human Interest


Weekly issues every Saturday morning and other special articles throughout the week — there's something for everyone. If you love mysteries — explore Mysteryrat’s Maze — and check out our sister site on Blogger for bonus articles.


All articles published in 2015.

Fresno Bully Rescue: Chaz Finds A Home

IN THE December 19 ISSUE

FROM THE 2015 Articles,
andAnimal Rescue Adventures
SECTIONS

by Becky Holly


The holiday season is all about connections—connections with family, friends and community. Earlier this year a beautiful, young, large male entered our lives at Fresno Bully Rescue. We named him Cass (now Chaz). At about one year old, he had puppy energy in spades and weighed approximately 85 pounds. Our wonderful volunteer, Jennifer Andrew, chose Chaz and worked with him to teach him valuable skills. Chaz quickly blossomed and showed just how much love he had to give his future forever family.

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by Lee Juslin


Fannie at three and Farley at five were two beautiful Scotties that were living the good life. They lived with a couple who doted on them and even after the wife developed some health problems, her husband was able to walk and exercise them. Then the husband died rather suddenly and the wife was left with the difficult decision of what was best for Fannie and Farley.

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by Mallory Moad




Of all the days I’ve spent watching parades this year, December 5 was the most challenging – it was a Christmas parade double-header! That’s right, I attended two very different parades in one day and lived to tell you all about it.

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by Cynthia Chow


Now that Holly Miller’s grandmother is taking a much-needed cruise to Hong Kong, Holly is excited and anxious to be left in charge of their Sugar Maple Inn. It may be the slowest time of the year for tourists, but Wagtail, Virginia, is hosting its first Murder Most Howl, a combination murder-mystery weekend and scavenger hunt. In this pet-friendly and animal-themed town, local businesses will be housing guests and assisting in hiding clues that lead towards the game’s final solution.

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by Sandra Murphy


Rose had made up her mind to move to Little Rock with her boyfriend Joe, a state cop. That was until her sister, Violet, and brother-in-law, Mike, split up. Violet proposed a plan where she and Rose would take over a defunct plant nursery and go into business. It seems Violet had this idea for some time which kind of makes Rose wonder if the breakup was all that sudden. The more she thought about it, the more Rose liked it—except for the part about not moving in with Joe.

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by Cynthia Chow


A former music major with a degree in vocal performance, Juliet Langley has become accustomed to changing careers and starting over. Although she may be a talented singer, paralyzing stage fright has her working in her second-favorite passion, the food and restaurant industry. The café she owned failed, not because of her stellar professional skills, but as a result of her poor personal judgment in trusting the fiancé who stole all of her savings.

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by Cynthia Chow


After dropping out of Yale, Hannah Doran fully immersed herself into the lifestyle of a “Hangover Hannah,” the Poor Little Rich Girl Celebrity. The daughter of a famously beautiful heiress and a powerful Hollywood producer, Hannah had everything she could have wanted; except the love of Warren Doran.

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by Cathy Ace


“John Evans is dead. It’s in the newspaper. It must be true.” Gladys Pritchard waved the South Wales Evening Post in front of her husband.
“Good riddance,” muttered her spouse.

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by Tom Sims


This week, Fresno Interdenominational Refugee Ministries wrapped hundreds of presents for neighborhood children in preparation for its annual Christmas party. During the same week, Christmas came a little early for the residents of Summerset Village across the street. After weeks without heat or the ability to cook, the gas came back on for over 1000 people.

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by Alicia Lieu



I have very limited memories of pie from my childhood. In my family, fruit was mostly consumed as a dessert or snack, always in its raw form, and never cooked. Pie was something I associated with my Strawberry Shortcake Atari game where I had to avoid the bad guy, the Purple Pie Man. I discovered Marie Callender’s pies sometime during high school and I became addicted to their Fresh Strawberry pie.

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by Sarah Peterson


Classic holiday tunes like “Santa, Baby” and “White Christmas” wafted through the cold, bright air, mingling with the mouth-watering aromas of Gerardo’s Tacos, Top Dogs, and the Meltdown Bistro.

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Season Memories

IN THE December 19 ISSUE

FROM THE 2015 Articles,
andHometown History,
andMaria Ruiz
SECTIONS

by Maria Ruiz



The holiday season starts early for children; Halloween is the unofficial start for a three-year-old. Accompanying their moms, they notice Christmas lights on a tree at the local department store. There are packages—boxes trimmed in gold—and twinkling lights around the doors and windows. Moms may say, “Christmas is still two months away,” but the Santa on his sleigh in the store window calls, “Christmas is coming.”

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by Margaret S. Hamilton



“Lizzie Christopher, you haven’t returned my calls!”
Lizzie was on her hands and knees on the floor of the local food market, perusing the bottom shelf. She saw two poison-green duck shoes and looked up to red corduroy slacks embroidered with candy canes, topped with a Christmas sweater festooned with gold rope trim and hung with small ornaments and tree lights. She grabbed a package of rice off the shelf and struggled to her feet. “Patricia, what a nice surprise and what a pretty sweater!”

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by Mallory Moad



There are three more parades on my schedule – let the countdown begin! On December 12 I headed south on 99 once again, this time to the tiny town of London. If you’re confused, it’s London, California I’m talking about. I’d be willing to bet most Central Californians have never heard of this community of 2500, located 20 miles southeast of Kingsburg and nestled in the middle of acres of vineyards, peach and nectarine orchards and citrus groves.

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by Maria Ramos


It has been nearly 20 years since the last time a Star Wars trilogy was kicked off and on December 17, we will be treated to The Force Awakens. Despite general disappointment with the prequel trilogy, the hype for Episode VII is at a fever pitch, not least because it promises a blending of what worked about the original series and some incredible new ideas and characters—many of which (like BB-8) are already beloved.

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by Lorie Lewis Ham
& Cleo Coyle



Dead to the Last Drop is the latest in Cleo Coyle’s coffeehouse mystery series featuring Clare Cosi, who manages the Village Blend Coffee Shop in New York. This series is a favorite of mine–every time I “walk” into the Village Blend through one of these books I can almost smell the coffee!

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by Lorie Lewis Ham


A Gift from Bob: How a Street Cat Helped One Man Learn the Meaning of Christmas, is the latest Bob the Cat book from James Bowen. A Street Cat Named Bob and The World According to Bob, along with various children’s and youth versions of the story, have topped best seller lists all over the world.

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by Sandra Murphy
& Cyntha Chow


Enjoy some more Penguin mysteries with a food related twist this holiday season-Fat Tuesday Fricasee by J. J. Cook, Claws for Alarm by T. C. LoTiempo, Here Today, Gone Tamale by Rebecca Adler, and Bun For Your Life by Karoline Barrett (this one is in ebook only). Details at the end of this post on how to win copies of all 4 books, and a link that can be used to purchase them.

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