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. Check out our sister site KRL News & Reviews for even more articles every week.

Previous post:

Next post:

Reindeer Roundup By Kathi Daley: Review/Giveaway/Guest Post

IN THE December 16 ISSUE

FROM THE 2017 Articles,
andKathleen Costa,
andMysteryrat's Maze

by Kathleen Costa
& Kathi Daley

This week we have 3 more Christmas mysteries by Kathi Daley-Fourth Victim: A Writers’ Retreat Mystery and The Christmas Letter: A Tess and Tilly Mystery in another post, and Reindeer Roundup in this post along with a Christmas guest post by Kathi. Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win either a print or kindle copy of Reindeer Roundup, and a link to purchase it from Amazon.

Reindeer Roundup: A Zoe Donovan Mystery by Kathi Daley
Review by Kathleen Costa

It wouldn’t be Christmas without a delightful cozy mystery from Kathi Daley! The first of five Christmases in Ashton Falls was in 2013 with Christmas Crazy which sent Zoe and friends off to uncover the killer of a Santa Claus. In 2014 Christmas Cozy has victim Holly Jolly, a local history teacher, found at the high school’s Christmas Tree lot. Santa Sleuth in 2015 threatens to put Christmas celebrations on hold when a body is found in Zoe’s BFF’s restaurant. In 2016 Zoe finds bakery owner Candy Cane dead in the Candy Cane Caper. This year Reindeer Roundup sends us on another entertaining holiday mystery. Whether there is snow falling, tree trimming, gift wrapping, or baking the family favorite desserts, Kathi Daley always gives us a clever mystery to challenge our minds and a delightful family to capture our hearts.

bookI knew shopping could be dangerous, but Santa and his elves? Zoe has so much on her mind from her soon-to-arrrive little girl to her mother-in-law injured in Paris to Zak out of the country helping said mother-in-law, and preparing for the Christmas holidays that she doesn’t see the elf…crash, boom, and bang on the head. Everything is all right, baby and all, but she was very curious about finding several messages left on her phone by a former high school classmate wanting her to call immediately. Something about strange emails, and the voice messages seemed very ominous. Ominous is right…deadly right! If only Zoe had been able to reach out, she might still be alive. So, now it is personal.

Fans, like me, greatly enjoy the realistic, yet very entertaining, style of Kathi Daley’s stories set up with marvelous ‘Oh, my’ beginnings, “I didn’t see that coming!” endings, and in between, a reasonable and methodical investigation with the clues slowly revealing connections, various motives and opportunities, and along the way we readers have fun trying to figure it out. Dating sites? Alarming emails? Curious behaviors? Murder! All excellent and intriguing subjects. However, Kathi’s well-written stories are more character driven than action-packed, although someone always winds up in peril. Zoe is defined by her family, and the connections are key to her existence. We are allowed into her family as she raises teenagers and opens her heart to friends and family. Although she may not be the law, she knows its importance and works alongside, not circumvent, the sheriff to uncover the truth. There’s always a little danger involved, but it’s the people who make this series popular.

Reindeer Roundup
earns 5+/5 Reindeer Rescues and Christmas Cheer!

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 a 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 her retirement revitalizing hobbies along with exploring writing, reading for pleasure, and spending 24/7 with her husband.

Zoe’s Traditions
By Kathi Daley

I grew up as an only child in a household without a mother. Dad did his best to create traditions that would see me into adulthood. Every year we’d head down to Main Street to look at the window displays and have dinner. And every year my grandmother would make potato cheese soup, and we’d get together to share a meal, tell stories, and sing carols.

The traditions my dad created during my childhood have stood the test of time, but as life has evolved and the people I share my life with have come and gone, I find that the ‘must do’ activities I focus on each year have changed as well.

My husband Zak came into my life four years ago. He is Mr. Decoration. Not only does he love to decorate but each year he tries to outdo himself. This year we even have reindeer.

Then three years ago my family increased again when our honorary children Alex and Scooter came into our lives. Alex loves to go ice skating during Hometown Christmas, and Scooter enjoys spending time on the sledding hill. As I did when I was a child, the family continues to view the windows on Main Street and enjoy a family meal.

Each addition to my family has come with new traditions. This year I am preparing to welcome the newest member of our family, baby Catherine, who will bring a new element to our lives and new traditions as well.

Food and cozy mysteries often go hand in hand, or should I say fork in hand?

bookKathi Daley likes to provide an all-around experience for her fans, and therefore, she has a recipe exchange group on Facebook, and in several of her series, she includes recipes submitted by her fans. Connected to this Zoe Donovan series and writing as Zoe herself, she penned cute introductions about Christmas and compiled easy-to-follow recipes in her Ashton Falls Cozy Cookbook. This cookbook is an absolute must for Kathi Daley and Zoe Donovan fans. She includes over fifty recipes with several already my family’s favorites: Appetizers (Crab and Artichoke Dip); Muffins and Sweet Breads (Zak’s Easy Sticky Buns); Soups, Stews, Chili, and Chowder (Mountain Man Beef Stew); Mains and Sides (Ellie’s Ground Beef Stroganoff); and included below from Desserts and Sweets two favorites (Zoe’s Snowball Cookies, Zoe’s Pumpkin Snickerdoodles). This cookbook has everything needed for any holiday menu from a Christmas morning brunch to a book club afternoon tea to a big family holiday dinner.

Do you have your own cookie exchange party to attend like Zoe and Ellie? Try these easy-to-follow delicious treats, but make sure to bake extra for family and the friends that will undoubtedly make their holiday appearance.

Zoe’s Snowball Cookies
Mix thoroughly:
2 cups softened butter
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tsp. vanilla

Stir in:
4-1/2 cups flour
1 tsp. salt

2 cups chopped walnuts

Refrigerate at least 1 hour.
Roll into 1-inch balls and place on ungreased baking sheet.
Bake at 400 degrees until set but not brown.
While still warm, roll in powdered sugar.
Let cool and roll in powdered sugar a second time.

Zoe’s Pumpkin Snickerdoodles
1 cup butter at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
3/4 cup canned pumpkin
1 large egg
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3-3/4 cups flour
1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
For the coating:
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
Dash of allspice

Whip together butter and sugars until creamy. Add pumpkin, egg, and vanilla. Mix well. Add dry ingredients and mix well. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. In a separate bowl, mix the sugar and spices for the coating. Roll chilled dough into 1-inch balls. Roll in coating. Bake on ungreased cookie sheet at 400 degrees until lightly brown (around 12 minutes).

Daley, Kathi. Ashton Falls Cozy Cookbook (Kindle Locations 656-665; 679-695). Kathi Daley Books. Kindle Edition.

Be a Big Kathi Daley Fan!
Are you a fan of Zoe Donovan, too? Through the twenty-seven books, Kathi Daley has developed her characters well showing growth, maturity, and a strengthening of the relationships between Zoe and her friends, family, and her love, Zak. It is like revisiting family with each and every new book. The series is set mainly in Ashton Falls and the surrounding Washington State area, but fans have been whisked to the tropics in Maui Madness (2014), up north in Alaskan Alliance (2014), across the ocean to Ireland in Shamrock Shenanigans (2015), and to the Canadian Rockies in Holiday Hangover (2017). Although exploring the different settings is entertaining and adds to the nuances of the mystery, it is the characters that make this series a delight to read.

Be a Fan!
Facebook – Kathi Daley Books
Join the Club Kathi Daley Book Club
On the Web Kathi Daley Website
Join the Group Kathi Daley Books Recipe Exchange

To enter to win either a print or kindle copy of Reindeer Roundup, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “reindeer,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen December 23, 2017. U.S. residents only for the print copy. If entering via email please include your mailing address, and if via comment please include your email address. PLEASE STATE IN ENTRY WHETHER YOU WANT PRINT OR KINDLE.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & short stories in our mystery section.

You can use this link to purchase the 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 a 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 her retirement revitalizing hobbies along with exploring writing, reading for pleasure, and spending 24/7 with her husband.

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.

{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Christy Maurer
Twitter: @christy41970
December 16, 2017 at 9:30am

I love Kathi’s books! My favorite series is her Whales and Tails series.
A recent post from Christy Maurer: LipSense Gloss Giveaway Have Yourself a Merry Little Giveaway Hop US 12/31My Profile


2 sally December 16, 2017 at 9:58am

Great blog post. I loved this book. One of my favorites so far. I already have it on Kindle but would love to have it in print. Best cover! nerdsrgood AT msn DOT com Thanks!


3 Teresa O'Connor December 16, 2017 at 10:10am

I love Cozies so much and these sound wonderful! A gorgeous cover always draws me in. Thanks for the opportunity!


4 Tammie Browning December 16, 2017 at 11:35am

I would love to win an ecopy. Thank you for the chance.
Merry Christmas


5 donamae December 16, 2017 at 12:13pm

I do want the cookbook and I want to read reindeer roundup, it sounds like so much fun to read!donamaekutska7@gmail.com


6 Gloria Browning December 16, 2017 at 12:46pm

I like the Christmas cozies.


7 Linda May December 16, 2017 at 12:52pm

I love Kathi’s books & I would be so excited to win this one, Thanks for your generosity.


8 Pat Walker Pinkston December 16, 2017 at 1:20pm

am a big fan of Kathi’s books. Would love a print copy of Reindeer Roundup. Thanks so much for the opportunity to win.


9 Denise Austin
Twitter: @deniseaustin59
December 16, 2017 at 3:10pm

I love her Kathi’s books and would really like it in print if I am lucky enough to win. deniseaustin59@yahoo.com Thank you for the chance.


10 Dianne B. December 16, 2017 at 3:32pm

I really enjoy seasonal themed mysteries and the title would definitely make me pick it up. I have read the previous Zoe Donovan mysteries and have enjoyed them a great deal. If I would win, I would prefer a print copy.


11 Laura Wollam
Twitter: @Laura Wollam
December 16, 2017 at 5:54pm

Great article and review. I would love to win a print copy!



12 Kara Vaughan Marks December 16, 2017 at 8:44pm

I would love to win an ebook of this! legallyblonde1961@yahoo.com


13 Jeanine Carlson December 16, 2017 at 10:09pm

I’d love a print copy! My email is somesmartcookle @ aol.com. cookle has an L, not an i
Thanks for the chance!


14 Sheryl Jeffries December 17, 2017 at 8:44am

I would love to win a Kindle version of this book, it sounds great!


15 Carl December 17, 2017 at 11:06am

This sounds like a fun holiday book. I’d love to win a print copy, thanks for the chance. crs(at)codedivasites(dot)com


16 Sherry Wehmeyer December 17, 2017 at 9:33pm

I’d love a print copy. Looks like a good book.


17 KarenM December 18, 2017 at 9:42am

I am about to start baking for the holidays. Thank you for these two new recipes.
No, I don’t have a cookie exchange to attend. Maybe I can get one going for Valentine’s Day.
karen94066 at aol dot com


18 johnna smith
Twitter: @johnnabooks135
December 18, 2017 at 12:27pm

Kathi is always a fun read. Thank you for the chance to win these titles!!


19 Dianne Casey December 18, 2017 at 3:03pm

Love Kathi’s books. Would love to read “Reindeer Roundup”.


20 Marilyn
Twitter: @MarilynWatson18
December 18, 2017 at 11:12pm

I love Christmas Cozies and an ebook would be wonderful…thank you for the chance.
Marilyn ewatvess@yahoo.com


21 Doward Wilson December 19, 2017 at 6:49pm

I love this author & all her books.


22 Carolyn Theriot December 20, 2017 at 11:28am

Can’t remember if I commented already but do not see the post so I guess I didn’t. I would love to win this!


23 Kim Templeton
Twitter: @musiqmom
December 20, 2017 at 11:41am

I love this series and would love a kindle copy. musiqmom(at)yahoo(dot)com


24 Jeanie Dannheim
Twitter: @JeanieDannheim
December 20, 2017 at 11:54am

I would love to win this latest Christmas mystery! Thank you for the opportunity to win!


25 Arletta December 20, 2017 at 7:58pm

I have participated in cookie exchanges in other years but opted out this year. I scaled back and only baked the cookies that my own family loves. Other years we’ve eaten Christmas cookies until May so just decided we didn’t need as many varieties this year.



26 Diane December 21, 2017 at 4:18am

Would love to win


27 Jill Broussard December 21, 2017 at 4:39am

I’d love to own a kindle copy of Reindeer Roundup. That pumpkin snickerdoodle recipe looks delicious.
Thankyou for the opportunity!


28 Sharon Braswell
Twitter: @SharonBraswell1
December 21, 2017 at 2:40pm

Wonderful post!! Love this family in the Zoe Donovan series and I’m excited about baby Catherine!! I’d love a kindle copy! Thank you!!


29 Karina Thibodeau
Twitter: @ThibodeauKarina
December 22, 2017 at 6:01pm

I usedto belong to a cookie exchange but since I moved from NY to MN I have not participated. I would love Kto win Kathi’s book. Thank you for the chance. Lamonicaks at gmail dot com


30 Lorie
Twitter: @mysteryrat
December 23, 2017 at 3:29pm

We have a winner!


Leave a Comment

Twitter ID
(ID only; No links or "@" symbols)

CommentLuv badge

Previous post:

Next post:

  • Arts & Entertainment

  • Books & Tales

  • Community

  • Education

  • Food Fun

  • Helping Hands

  • Hometown History

  • Pets

  • Teens

  • Terrific Tales