Bells, Spells, and Murders By Carol J. Perry: Review/Giveaway

Oct 27, 2018 | 2018 Articles, Cynthia Chow, Mysteryrat's Maze

by Cynthia Chow

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of Bells, Spells, and Murders along with a link to purchase the book from Amazon, and an indie bookstore where a portion of the sale goes to help support KRL.

Halloween isn’t the only holiday exuberantly celebrated in Salem, Massachusetts. In fact, the town is embracing the Christmas season with the theme of “Ring in the Holidays in Salem,” with Santas ringing on every street corner, bells decorating every store, and a musical bell performance by the Christmas Belles ladies. Even cat O’Ryan is adorned with a bell collar. WICH-TV investigative and new field reporter Lee Barrett has spent the day covering holiday community and charity events, with her next appointment set to interview the chairman of the Holiday Walk committee. It looks as though the rigidly punctual Executive Director of Historical Charities will be indefinitely late, though, as Lee has just found Mr. Albert Eldridge slumped over dead in his office.

mystery book coverImmediately on the case is Lee’s boyfriend, Detective Pete Mondello, but when he goes into serious “cop mode,” he is focused on tactile evidence and forensics. He is not entirely comfortable with Lee’s recently developed skills as a gazer, which gives her the ability to see portentous visions on the surface of shiny objects. The difficulty comes in deciphering the meaning of what appears, especially when they occur at unpredictable and inconvenient times. Lee and her young driver/photographer Francine are determined to follow the murder investigation through, despite Pete’s admonishments and a rival reporter standing by ready to scoop the story. Interviews with those involved in Mr. Eldridge’s proposed Heritage Village are instrumental in tracking down who may have had reason for wanting him dead, but just as important are the clues presented through Lee’s visions and her undeniably psychic cat. If only they could figure out what the reappearing images of doors and the Christmas Carol actually mean…

This is lucky number seven in the always entertaining Witch City Mystery series, as it seamlessly weaves paranormal aspects into what is definitely a novel for the Christmas season. There is even a snowy blizzard predicted by WICH-TV’s highly qualified if bosomy weathergirl to create the perfect frosty holiday setting. O’Ryan’s mischievous clue-dropping and Lee’s eerie mystical visions will please those who enjoy Wiccan elements, but what proves to be even more fascinating are the details of Lee’s investigative journalism. The nuances of crafting a timed-to-the-second video news shoot are genuinely compelling, as are the on-the-spot live broadcasts that must sound practiced but natural.

The former late-night television “fake” psychic has finally come into her own, able to use her otherworldly gifts to enhance investigative reports while squeezing into a little Christmas shopping on the side. Completely irresistible is Lee’s Aunt Ibby, who before jetting off to London utilizes her librarian superpowers to research witnesses and track down suspects. Who could resist a mystery where home libraries are organized by the Dewey Decimal System, an Agatha Christie novel provides critical clues, and Gremlins is the holiday movie of the night?

Don’t forget the delicious bonus! Carol Perry includes the recipe for Aunt Ibby’s Never-Fail Meringue that “cuts beautifully and never gets sticky.”

To enter to win a copy of Bells, Spells, and Murders, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “bels,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen November 3, 2018. U.S. residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address (so if you win we can get the book sent right out to you), and if via comment please include your email address. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

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. Also listen to our new mystery podcast where mystery short stories and first chapters are read by actors! They are also available on iTunes and Google Play. The latest episodes are perfect for your Halloween listening!

Use this link to purchase the book & a portion goes to help support KRL & indie bookstore Mysterious Galaxy:

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

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).

Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases using those links. 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. I have all the other books in this series and this one also sounds great. Thanks for the chance to win!

  2. I’d love to win this book.

  3. Oh my goodness, I love this book cover!
    Thank you for the giveaway!

  4. Love this series, thanks for the chance to win.

  5. I own most of the books in this series and would definitely put a spell on you to add this one to my collection. Having the public library copy isn’t enough.

  6. This is a new series for me! Thanks for all the info and the chance to win this book! lindaherold999(at)gmail(dot)com

  7. This looks like a fun read. Thanks for this chance!

  8. new to me author. Thanks for the review.
    kckendler at gmail dot com

  9. Being able to see visions on the surface of shiny objects would be an interesting gift.

  10. This book sounds enthralling and a wonderful series. Thanks.

  11. Sounds like a fascinating book. Would really like to read.

  12. This series is new to me. I’d love to win a copy of Bells, Spells, and Murder!!!
    CocoIhle@ gmail(dot)com

  13. I love the cat on the cover! I’d love to win!

  14. Sounds like a fun read. Haven’t
    read any of this series. Always
    ready to try something new.
    thanks for the chance

  15. We have a winner!


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