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Two Christmas Mystery Reviews & Book Giveaways

IN THE December 4 ISSUE

FROM THE 2010 Articles,
andMarilyn Meredith,
andMysteryrat's Maze

by Marilyn Meredith

During this Christmas season we at KRL decided it would be fun to review some Christmas mysteries! These books by Judith K. Ivie & Carola Dunn are the first two! At the end of these reviews you will find instructions on how to enter to win a copy of both books for your Christmas reading!

Drowning in Christmas by Judith K. Ivie

Definitely a cozy but with so much more: great descriptions of wonderful settings, believable characters, and a plot filled with some holiday dilemmas that most readers can actually relate to.

Kate Lawrence has promised to do far too much this Christmas season—and it isn’t even her favorite time of year. Besides helping out with a charity fund-raiser, she’s roped into hosting a wedding in her home for her nephew, and her daughter has coaxed her into cooking a Christmas Eve dinner for the boyfriend Kate can’t stand.

Despite a lot of planning, nothing goes right, from a dead body, to missing persons, friends who promised to help, coming down with the flu. Ms. Ivie has written a delightful tale, a fun read that is laugh-out-loud at times, perfect for the holidays.

Mistletoe and Murder by Carola Dunn

Though I’ve met Carola and heard her speak on panels at mystery conventions, I’d never read one of her books before. Mistletoe and Murder is set in England in 1923. Daisy, the heroine, is quite modern for her time.

When she is cajoled by her mother into spending Christmas at Brochdene, a most isolated and ancient estate, she decides to write an article about the place for Tour and Country magazine. What she finds upon her arrival is a nearly destitute family who seldom speak to one another, along with rather insolent servants who run the place.

Secret passageways, a ghost, hidden treasure, candle-lit hallways, and a body in a deserted chapel are some of the ingredients of this most unusual mystery. Ms. Dunn cleverly takes the reader on a delightful jaunt through this wonderful gothic setting filled with unusual characters.

Though this was my first Carola Dunn mystery, it won’t be my last. I was enchanted by her heroine and the wonderful way she brought the time and place to life.

Editors note: This contest has now ended. Thanks to all who entered and be sure and watch for more book giveaways!

To enter to win a copy of each of these Christmas mysteries, simply email KRL at life@kingsriverlife.com with the subject line “Christmas books”, or comment on this article. U.S. residents only please. A winner will be chosen next Saturday.

{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Pattie @ Olla-Podrida
Twitter: @pattietierney
December 4, 2010 at 10:24am

When it comes to Christmas mysteries I just can’t get enough of them. I have a collection that is edging toward 100. I can’t thank authors enough for adding a holiday mystery (or two) to their repertoire. They are SO enjoyable to have Christmas night when everything is all over and all that is left are a few burning embers of the fire, peace, quiet, and a time to read.
A recent post from Pattie @ Olla-Podrida: A Warming Winter BreakfastMy Profile


2 Kari Wainwright December 4, 2010 at 11:24am

Both books look like they would be terrific seasonal reads. Thanks for the opportunity to win a copy.


3 Brian Brady
Twitter: @brian_brady
December 4, 2010 at 11:46am

Thanks KRL for the book reviews and the chance to win the books. First off, I love Daisy Dalrymple, and I think it should be noted that this Christmas story is the 11th Daisy Dalrymple book, they are so well written, you could start at #11 and still enjoy it. I think the 19th book will be publish in 2011. I’m only up to book 7, but I’m crazy, and need to read them in order (and I can’t afford 18 new paperbacks at one time). I hate Christmas, so the 4th ‘Kate Lawrence Mysteries’ book by Judith K. Ivie sounds like something I would love, and it’s a hardcover book ! currently $26.95 on
Thanks again KRL, great reviews.


4 JOYE December 4, 2010 at 11:58am

Thanks for the heads-up on these 2 books. They sound really good.


5 Book Bird Dog
Twitter: @BookDilettante
December 4, 2010 at 1:26pm

Christmas mysteries! What fun! Would love to enter!

harvee44 at yahoo dot com
A recent post from Book Bird Dog: Book Review- Busy Body by MC BeatonMy Profile


6 Helen Kiker December 4, 2010 at 4:18pm

Having Christmas mysteries would add to my joy during the holiday season. I have read many Carola Dunn mysteries but this would be my first time reading Judith Ivie. It is great to find a new author to read.

Helen Kiker


7 Diana Driver December 4, 2010 at 5:22pm

I would love to read either of these books!


8 Prentiss Garner December 4, 2010 at 9:42pm

I love Christmas mysteries. Happy Holidays.

Prentiss Gsarner
3047 Winston Dr #170
Burlington Nc 2715


9 June Shaw
Twitter: @juneshaw
December 5, 2010 at 7:39am

These books both sound like great fun. What wonderful reading right after the hectic pace of Christmas. I’m hoping to read both.


10 Penny Tuttle December 5, 2010 at 8:28am

I love to read mysteries and always try to read at least one Christmas themed one at this time of year. Thanks for the chance to win one!!


11 shirley nienkark December 5, 2010 at 1:39pm

Both books sound like fun for the holidays. Thanks for the opportunity to enter.


12 Sherry December 5, 2010 at 3:10pm

I love the Daisy books and would love to also read a new-to-me author. It’d be a great Christmas present if I were to win!


13 Lorie Ham, KRL Publisher
Twitter: @mysteryrat
December 5, 2010 at 4:48pm

I’m so glad everyone has enjoyed the reviews and thanks for entering the drawing! Keep coming back for chances to win more prizes!


14 Carola December 6, 2010 at 9:59am

Always happy to hear from Daisy-lovers 🙂
A recent post from Carola: Win a signed Christmas mystery!My Profile


15 Molly MacRae
Twitter: @mysterymacrae
December 6, 2010 at 6:31pm

Both books sound right up my alley. Thanks for reviewing them in time to add them to my Christmas wish list!


16 Joyce K. December 8, 2010 at 10:20am

I enjoyed reading the reviews. Both books sound like delightful reads for Christmas! I would love to win!


17 Carol M December 8, 2010 at 5:27pm

I’ve never read either of these authors. Both books sound good and I would love to win them! Thank you for the giveaway!


18 Becky
Twitter: @beckybooks
December 8, 2010 at 9:40pm

I just finished reading “Blood, Money, Power” by Michele Marie Tate -another great mystery/suspense book, and am dying for another great read!
A recent post from Becky: beckybooks- So excited to be finished with Christmas shopping! I dont think that I have ever finished my shopping this early in the season- EVER! YeahMy Profile


19 Caffey
Twitter: @CaffeyCathie
December 10, 2010 at 6:22am

Thrilled to be here! I have enjoyed reading historical mysteries that I discovered so far and always looking for more! And I don’t find much set at Christmas or holidays (so far) so this is a huge treat! Both sound fab!! Would love to be in the contest.

cathiecaffey @ gmail.com
A recent post from Caffey: Review- HER HEARTS DIVIDE by Kathleen DienneMy Profile


20 Mary Chamberlain December 10, 2010 at 11:44am

I can second the recommendation for Mistletoe & Murder by Carola Dunn. I’ve read all the Daisy mysteries and loved them all! The one by Judith Ivie is new to me, and sounds interesting – I’d love to have it to read this holiday. Thanks for posting the reviews!


21 Susan Pober December 10, 2010 at 11:50am

Both books sound great. I’ve read other Carola Dunn books & Judith K Ivie’s book sounds like something to put on my tbr list.


22 Marilynne December 10, 2010 at 7:08pm

It’s always fun to see how other people deal with Christmas. I’d like to win one of the books.

A recent post from Marilynne: TGIO or Thank God it’s over!My Profile


23 Barbra Annino December 12, 2010 at 6:56am

Both sound like fantastic read!! I’ve ever read a Christmas mystery myself.


24 Lorie Ham, KRL Publisher
Twitter: @mysteryrat
December 14, 2010 at 10:20am

Thanks to all who entered. Barbra Annino is our lucky winner!


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