Blossoms, Barbeques, & Blackmail By Tonya Kappes: Review/Giveaway

Aug 14, 2021 | 2021 Articles, Kathleen Costa, Mysteryrat's Maze

by Kathleen Costa

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win an ebook copy of Blossoms, Barbeques, & Blackmail, and a link to purchase it from Amazon.

Southern Karma
In a previous life, Mae West was married, living in New York, and enjoying a pampered lifestyle. However, all of that was destroyed when her now late ex-husband was arrested for egregious financial crimes leaving her with only a camper and a “much need of repairs” campground in Normal, Kentucky, a few miles away from the home she escaped from and vowed never to return. Fast forward a few years and we find Mae the proud owner of a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, surrounded by wonderful and supportive friends, and enjoying a rekindled relationship with her adoptive mother and foster brother. Life couldn’t be better…now if only her love life hadn’t tanked and dead bodies would stop showing up in her path. But, with the assistance of the Laundry Club ladies, quirky and she has found she has the talent for uncovering clues and bringing about some justice.

Blossoms, Barbeques, & Blackmail Earns 5/5 Secrets…Engaging & Clever!
The Blossom Festival is the weekend’s big event in Normal, Kentucky, but having both Dottie Swaggert, the camp manager, and Mary Elizabeth, Mae’s adoptive mother, vying for Ms. Blossom, sixty and up category, might at best add some fun, but at worst challenge everyone’s sanity. Mae tries to be impartial, but does offer her adoptive mother some fashion advice. Nevertheless, she decides to take refuge among the tourists enjoying the festival booths set up in downtown Normal. Unfortunately, there she and others witness a disturbing confrontation: Carrie Patillo verbally, then physically, attacks Jason Dresser, “I’ll kill you! I’ll kill you!” Jason is out on bail and soon will be on trial for the death of Carrie’s daughter, Monica. A hunting…accident? But, it seems not to be an accident when Jason is found dead. The local sheriff is reporting it a homicide as result of a botched robbery, but could revenge be a more likely motive? Carrie is arrested. Mae and her Laundry Club ladies are intrigued, afraid their friend Carrie may have invoked “eye for an eye” justice, but so much is called into question, including whether Jason may not have been guilty of Monica’s death.

Southern Gem! Tonya Kappes has released the twentieth book in her Camper & Criminals Cozy, but don’t worry. The book is as fresh, as clever, and as engaging as the beginning, and always topped off with a surprise ending. The drama kept me very interested encompasses some compelling dilemmas—grief and innocence, and how far one will go with either motivation. The characters maintained close relationships showing growth and natural ups and downs as the issue of birth mothers and adoptive mothers comes into play. And sharing her own delightful southern flair, Kappes uses phrases, innuendos, and behaviors that adds humor and brings my own grandma to mind. Mae, a favorite literary character, struggles in the aftermath of her break-up with Hank Sharp, and his moving on, literally across the state, put a punctuation on that part of her life. But, it’s how the community pulls together midst adversity whether personal or criminal that makes this series a favorite.

Bonus! Adding to the delightful experience with this series is the unique Camper Hacks and Recipes from Happy Trails Campground. Whether camping in the woods or in your backyard start with easy-to-follow recipes: BIG Cast-iron Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie, Campfire Skillet Mexican Potatoes, and Skillet Spaghetti and Meat Sauce Supper. Included are Camping Hacks to make life less complicated: (1) uses for empty egg cartons, (2) suggestion for cleaning a “gross” grill, and (3) a clever way to cook bushels of corn on the cob.

Alert! A Camper and Criminals Cozy books have several books set for release now thru early 2022. Keep an eye out for the next books and check out the series on Amazon HERE to review all the dates.

Facebook – Author Tonya Kappes
Join the “Cozy Krew”
Become a Member at the Website – Tonya Kappes
YouTube — Tonya Kappes

Be a Big Tonya Kappes Fan!
USA Today bestselling author Tonya Kappes pens a variety of series. along with this eighteen-book Camper & Criminals Cozy series, she also has a six-book Mail Carrier Cozy Mystery along with exciting ghostly-, magical-, and caffeinated-themed series. For ghosts, she has an eight-book Ghostly Southern Mystery and seven-book Kenni Lowry series. Add some magic with a twelve-book Magical Cures Mystery and three-book Spies and Spells series. And finally, get a little caffeinated with her eight-book Killer Coffee Mystery. She also has an enjoyable online presence and various events enticing fans to gather to talk, share, and partake in the fun!

To enter to win an ebook of Blossoms, Barbeques, & Blackmail, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “blowssoms,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen August 21, 2021. US only, and must be 18 or older to enter. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

Check out the first chapter of Tonya’s book Dead to the Last Drop which was featured in a past podcast episode. You can listen here, or in the player below:

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. Be sure to check out our new mystery podcast too with mystery short stories, and first chapters read by local actors.

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

Kathleen Costa is a long-time resident of the Central Valley, and although born in Idaho, she considers herself a “California Girl.” Graduating from CSU-Sacramento, she is 35+ year veteran teacher having taught in grades 1-8 in schools from Sacramento to Los Angeles to Stockton to Lodi. Currently Kathleen is enjoying year 2 of retirement revitalizing hobbies along with exploring writing, reading for pleasure, and spending 24/7 with her husband of 26+ years.

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.


  1. Sounds interesting! Count me in!

  2. You can always count on Tonya for a fun read. Thanks for the chance.

  3. Thank you for the chance to win your wonderful giveaway!!!

  4. Love this series, Tonya has some of the best characters around.

    • sounds fantastic. have loved other books Tonya has written.

  5. Great post. I would love a chance to win!

  6. Tonya’s books are such good read s. Her characters are so interesting and well developed. The stories are fine and will keep you coming back for more!

  7. Likes like a fun book to read. Love the opportunity to win.

  8. Love this series !

  9. I would love to win a copy. Thanks for the chance.

  10. I love this series of books and have read many. I do love a feisty old woman smoker or not. Dottie is something like me without the smoking. I would love to have it.

  11. One can NEVER have too many books!!!

  12. Your books are so entertaining and each one is such a fun read.
    Please enter my name at a chance to win a copy. Oh also once you start to read one of your books you cannot put it down until you have finished it and then you still want more.

  13. We love Tanya Kappes books. Thank you for your giveaway and a chance to win.

  14. Awesome book from an awesome author!!

  15. Thanks for this chance!

  16. I love this series!!! I just finished book 4 and loved it! Thank you for the chance?

  17. I’d love to win a copy of this book. Tonya is hilarious. I’m a fan. I’m on her mailing list. That’s how I knew about this article/contest. Also, I live in Kentucky like the characters in the book (and Tonya). These are my people.

  18. What a fun adventure and a cozy mystery to boot.

  19. We have a winner!


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