A California Magazine with Local Focus and Global Appeal:
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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.


Cynthia Chow

by Sandra Murphy
& Cynthia Chow


This week we have reviews & giveaways of a bunch of fun food mysteries-Cold Pressed Murder: An Olive Grove Mystery by Kelly Lane, Kneaded to Death: A Bread Shop Mystery By Winnie Archer, Roux the Day: A Dinner Club Mystery by Linda Wiken, and When the Grits Hit the Fan: A Country Store Mystery by Maddie Day. Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of all 4 books, along with links you can use to purchase them.

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by Cynthia Chow


This week we are part of the Wedding’s To Die For blog tour with Maggie McDonnon & Marla Cooper. We have reviews and giveaways of their latest books-Bel of the Brawl: A Belfast McGrath Mystery and Dying on the Vine: Kelsey McKenna Destination Wedding Mysteries, along with interviews with both of them.

{ 17 comments }

by Cynthia Chow


Although a drastic hike in rent forced Winnie Johnson to give up her beloved bakery, an unexpected inheritance allowed her to create the Emergency Dessert Squad, where on-demand customized delicacies are delivered by a vintage ambulance. Less welcome is the gift that came in the form of hissing feline Lovey, who seems to love everyone except Winnie. Otherwise, prospects for the business look to be on an upswing; at least right until the recipient of one of the Emergency Dessert Squad’s latest deliveries is found poisoned to death by pastry.

{ 22 comments }

by Cynthia Chow
& VIcki Delany


Five years ago, Gemma Doyle moved to New England from actual England to take over half of her Uncle Arthur’s Sherlock Holmes Bookshop. Her uncle claimed to have a genealogical tie to the famous author, leading to a fanaticism that led to the purchase of a store on 222 Baker Street, West London, Massachusetts, for a bookstore devoted to all things Sherlockian.

{ 24 comments }

by Cynthia Chow


When Pasadena Homicide/Assault Police Detective Nan Vining is called to the scene of a drowning at the Casa de las Ventanas estate, she immediately knows something is hinky. Not only is the blind owner of the home, Teddy Sexton, making inappropriate jokes and not taking the crime seriously, he is acting flirtatious and a little too touchy with Nan. Teddy’s assistant/brother-in-law as well has Nan are on full alert, as the ex-con Floyd Johansing is so twitchy and ready to flee that he practically oozes guilt.

{ 7 comments }

by Cynthia Chow



When a worn rubber washer results in a flood that damages the priceless library collection of Chellingworth Hall, Duke Henry Devereaux Twyst requests the aid of book specialist Bryn Jenkins. Mr. Jenkins has a concern of his own, and it is Henry’s mother who prods him into revealing it. It seems that an inexplicable number of books have disconcertedly and continually been added to his bookstore’s stock, and Bryn worries that it is for nefarious means.

{ 26 comments }

by Cynthia Chow


The morning after a book launch where alcohol was the only real requirement, London book editor Samantha Clair was still recovering as she began her Saturday morning errand-running and marketing. As the go-between for her reclusive neighbor and another gardener, Sam is unprepared to resist the plea from Viv to check on her own missing upstairs neighbor.

{ 9 comments }

by Cynthia Chow


If Cut ‘N Dye hair salon owner Marla Vail was hoping for a quiet holiday season, she’s in for a disappointment. Instead, it’s going to be a Hanukkah and Christmas season of murder, secrets, a hidden treasure, and family expectations. It begins with shrieks from the adjoining spa aesthetician Rosana Hernandez alerting Marla of the death of client Valerie Weston.

{ 30 comments }

by Cynthia Chow


Despite the dire warnings of her protective parents, Emmy Adler is thrilled for the Grand Opening of her own kite shop in Rock Point, Oregon. Combining her art schooling and store management experience, Emmy is fulfilling her dream of owning a store of customized, hand crafted kites designed for a more artistic crowd. The first cloud over her dream appears when Emmy discovers a body washed up on the beach, one later identified as being Miles Logan, a local celebrity chef and the ex-boyfriend of her best friend and new roommate, Avery Cook.

{ 23 comments }

by Kathleen Costa


Is there any better way to celebrate the new year than with hundreds of thousands standing by the Thames awaiting the midnight fireworks extravaganza? Then you are surprised by an amorous New Year’s kiss from a surprise visitor, hit in the jaw by an errant fist and ? unannounced ? a direct link to the criminal mastermind you are seeking shows up!

{ 25 comments }

by Cynthia Chow


It’s been a busy summer for tourists on the Gulf of Maine, and the Gray Whale Inn is completely booked for the entire week. Ten Northern Spirit Tours guests are staying for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and owner Natalie Barnes is thrilled to be able to join them for one of their whale-watching ventures. The glimpse of majestic Humpback whales “bubble netting” and leaping out of the water is soured by the sight of one tangled in dangerous fishing gear, not to mention the boat captain’s too-close and illegal approach.

{ 19 comments }

by Cynthia Chow


After inheriting a run-down historical mansion in Port Quincy, Pennsylvania, from her ex-fiancé’s aunt, Mallory Shepard planned to renovate it into a Bed and Breakfast where she would base her new business as a wedding planner. With her first ceremony moved up eight months and rezoning permits caught in Planning Commission hell, the chances of the B&B being ready in just a month look bleak. Mallory just couldn’t resist the pleas from her first bride, as the last wish of Whitney Scanlon’s dying father is to walk her down the aisle.

{ 19 comments }

by Sandra Murphy
& Cynthia Chow



This week we have reviews & giveaways of 2 food related mysteries perfect for your Valentine’s Day reading-A Measure of Murder: A Sally Solari Mystery by Leslie Karst, and War and Peach: A Georgia Peach Mystery by Susan Furlong. Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy both books, along with links you can use to purchase them.

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by Cynthia Chow


Newly engaged, the only thing Galveston’s Tara Holloway loves more than her fiancé—fellow IRS criminal investigator Nick Prat—is tracking down tax cheaters and bringing them to justice. Wielding both a briefcase and a sidearm, Tara is a crack shot with more than her own share of broken bones, head injuries, and bullet wounds. Although one of her two latest assignments would seem more probable of again putting her life at risk, nothing’s guaranteed when the threat of the IRS is at one’s door.

{ 15 comments }

by Cynthia Chow
& Krista Davis


Holly Miller is spending her first summer since childhood in Wagtail, Virginia, where she has taken up her grandmother Oma’s offer to become a partner in the Sugar Maple Inn. Now that the resort town has rebranded itself as a pet-centric and very pet-loving tourist destination, they are hosting Wagtail’s first Animal Attraction matchmaking event. Singles who have been luckier finding love with pets will be bringing them along to hopefully increase the chances of meeting the perfect (human) partner.

{ 55 comments }

by Cynthia Chow


After a year of murder, ex-husband drama, and time separated from her boyfriend due to his new job with Homeland Security, Laurel McKay is more than ready for her post-Christmas wedding and honeymoon cruise. Although Laurel’s initial wish was a simple one for no dead bodies, perhaps she should also have requested that her honeymoon not be on the same Nordic American as her mother, stepfather, Gran, and grandmother’s best friend.

{ 15 comments }

by Cynthia Chow


When Kate Davidson agreed to train and become her best friend’s doula, Kate thought that witnessing a twenty-one hour labor would be the most disturbing sight of the night. Instead, that honor goes to the vision of the aptly named Doctor Dick making out with a nurse in the hallway of A Better Birth Associates’ birthing center. Kate sees him all too soon in her own Serenity Yoga studio, where she learns that Doctor Richard Jones is the husband of one of her students.

{ 11 comments }

by Cynthia Chow
& Kate Kingsburg


Unhappy with her job in Portland as a financial analyst and even more unsettled by her recent divorce, Melanie West is starting over by helping her grandmother renovate a bed-and-breakfast in Oregon’s Sully’s Landing. Melanie and Liza Harris have barely begun to peel off the wallpaper before discovering a skeleton hidden in a wall’s secret compartment. It seems that not only did Angela Morelli never make it to New Jersey after leaving her husband seven years ago, an autopsy reveals that she was pregnant at the time.

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