Wednesday, June 28, 2017

"A Crime of Passion Fruit" by Ellie Alexander

A Crime of Passion Fruit
(A Bakeshop Mystery Book 6)
by Ellie Alexander

A Crime of Passion Fruit (A Bakeshop Mystery Book 6) by Ellie Alexander

A Crime of Passion Fruit is currently on tour with Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours. The tour stops here today for a guest post by the author, an excerpt, and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.

Torte - everybody’s favorite small-town family bakeshop - is headed for the high seas, where murder is about to make a splash ...
Jules Capshaw is trying to keep her cool as Torte gets set to make its transformation from quaint, local confectionary café to royal pastry palace. Meanwhile, Jules’s estranged husband Carlos is making a desperate plea for her to come aboard his cruise ship and dazzle everyone with her signature sweets. She may be skeptical about returning to her former nautical life with Carlos but Jules can’t resist an all-expense-paid trip, either. If only she knew that a dead body would find its way onto the itinerary.
Now, instead of enjoying tropical drinks on deck between whipping up batches of sea-salted chocolates and flambéing fresh pineapple slices in the kitchen, Jules is plunged into dangerous waters. Her investigation leaves her with more questions than answers: Why can’t anyone on board identify the young woman? And how can she help Carlos keep passengers at ease with a killer in their midst? Jules feels like she’s ready to jump ship. Can she solve this case without getting in too deep?

Click below to read an excerpt.

Praise for the Book
"A warm and inviting atmosphere, friendly and likable main characters, and a nasty murder mystery to solve!" ~ Fresh Fiction
"A perfect mix for fans of Jenn McKinlay, Leslie Budewitz, or Jessica Beck." ~ Library Journal
"A Crime of Passion Fruit was a fantastic, fast paced story that had me flying through the pages. Not only was it a compelling mystery that had more twists than waves in the ocean, it was a feel good cozy that made me smile (and shed a few tears). To top it all off, stomach growling recipes that you are going to want to make soon as you close the book!" ~ Lisa Ks Book Reviews
"This book is well plotted and the characters are well developed. The author provides enough background information that each book in this series can be read as a standalone. Ms. Alexander’s descriptions of the cruise ship and sea, and food and beverages available to the passengers are descriptive and vivid [...] I recommend A Crime of Passion Fruit to anyone who enjoys reading well-crafted cozy mysteries." ~ RO G'ma
"I've always enjoyed this series and A Crime of Passion Fruit is an excellent addition to the cozy mystery family. [...] It was interesting to read about the inner workings of the kitchens on the ship and the intriguing mystery made it even more enjoyable." ~ Between the Pages

Guest Post by the Author
An Introduction to the Bakeshop Mysteries
Thanks so much for having me on as a guest today. I’m thrilled to get a chance to introduce readers to the Bakeshop Mysteries. The series is set in Ashland, Oregon, which is a real town in the southernmost corner of Oregon. Ashland is best known for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Theater lovers of all kinds visit Ashland during the season (which runs from February through October) to catch a production of Hamlet or The Merry Wives of Windsor under the stars. What makes Ashland even more unique is that the entire town is themed like an old Elizabethan village. Every shop and storefront in the downtown plaza is designed in Tudor style with turrets, wood carvings, and Shakespearean-inspired names like Oberon’s Tavern.
Setting fictional murders in a real location is equally fun and challenging. Every time I visit Ashland, residents like to remind me that their town is quite safe and has not seen a murder in decades. I really enjoy getting to weave in real world details about the inner-workings of a major theater company, touches of life in a small town, and of course, since my protagonist (Jules) is a pastry chef, lots of delectable sweet and savory treats. I spend hours and hours interviewing pastry chefs and hanging out behind the scenes in busy kitchens. I’m definitely someone who has to write what I know. Getting a chance to watch a sous chef cut out dainty hand-pressed cookies or painstakingly pipe buttercream onto a cake really breathes life into the books. Plus, sometimes if I’m lucky I get to taste their magnificent creations.
I also spend a lot of time in my home kitchen testing recipes. Every book in the series includes original recipes. I joke that I’m not sure if I’m going to run out of recipes of ways to kill people off first. Usually I start with a very rough draft of the manuscript, mainly to rough out the plot. Once I have a first draft complete, I let the book marinate so to speak, and I get to work in my kitchen. Actually kneading bread dough, listening to the sound of butter browning on the stove, and soaking in the scent of cinnamon scones baking in the oven helps me layer in the food writing when I go back to the second and third drafts.
In the sixth book, A Crime of Passion Fruit, Jules is taking a brief hiatus from her Shakespeare hometown and returning to the boutique cruise ship where she spent a decade working as a pastry chef. Her life at sea was quite magical. She saw dozens of ports of call and sample cuisine from all over the world while sailing the globe. However, once she returned to Ashland and put down firm roots at her family bakeshop, Torte, she hasn’t looked back. That changes when her estranged husband calls and begs her to come fill in for a week when the ship’s pastry chef leaves in a huff. Jules is initially excited to be back on crystal blue waters and eager to try her hand at new tropical recipes. However, much like in Ashland, she stumbles upon a body floating in the pool and suddenly finds herself immersed in a murder investigation.
I hope you’ll give it a read and test out one of Jules’s summer Caribbean cookies. If nothing else you should have something sweet to accompany your read.
Happy reading and baking!

About the Author
Ellie Alexander is a Pacific Northwest native who spends ample time testing pastry recipes in her home kitchen or at one of the many famed coffeehouses nearby. When she’s not coated in flour, you’ll find her outside exploring hiking trails and trying to burn off calories consumed in the name of research.

Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win an Ellie Alexander prize package (US only).


Tuesday, June 27, 2017

"Path of Thieves" by Sunniva Dee

Path of Thieves
by Sunniva Dee

Path of Thieves by Sunniva Dee

Path of Thieves by Sunniva Dee has just been released and is available for only $0.99 for a limited time. This book blitz and giveaway is brought to you by Xpresso Book Tours.

For more books by this author, check out Shattering Halos (read my blog post), Leon's Way (read my blog post), Adrenaline Crush (read my blog post), Cat Love (read my blog post), Walking Heartbreak (read my blog post), Dodging Trains (read my blog post), In the Absence of You (read my blog post), and The Fighter and the Baroness (read my blog post).

Football hero by day and thief by night, Charles "Cugs" McConnely leads a double life in the small town of Newbark, Florida. At sundown, the seventeen-year-old turns burglar, forced into the business by the man who should be teaching him the difference between right and wrong: his father.
Cugs is a pro at both games, but only one can secure him a college scholarship. It should be an easy decision, a no-brainer - if Newbark hadn’t proffered the only life he knows.
After run-ins with Nadine Paganelli, his accidental victim and the sole person to have caught him in the act, Cugs starts to realize that hearts can be stolen too.
When his long-lost sister makes contact, lies are uncovered and truths revealed. Suddenly, Cugs finds himself questioning both plans and loyalties. Because sometimes the only way to move forward is by pulling the bottom out of the past.

“I can’t.”
“But please, Cugs.”
Is this what all boyfriends go through? Either way, I feel like my reasons to evade Nadine’s house are damn valid compared to most. For me, it’s not just about meeting the parents. It’s about returning to the scene of the crime. Not any old crime either, but a pivotal one, because I pulled Nadine down with me.
She could’ve returned to her law-abiding puppy-love guy with an awesome future if it weren’t for me being “it” to her. Yes, I feel bad sometimes. And no, I don’t always feel bad. Because most of the time I’m an asshole who thinks that I’m a lucky bastard for meeting her.
“Just come,” she says now, on the phone. “I get that you don’t want to meet my parents. But they’re nice and you’re nice too, and you guys would totally hit it off.”
“I shopped from them.”
“Stole. You didn’t shop.”
“Right.” Same difference.
“But that’s over and done with. We’ve got great insurance, and you actually made them a few bucks.”
“Wow. That makes shopping better in your world?”
“It’s not shopping, Cugs. And nope, it’s messed up, but you always bottle stuff up, and I need you to at least let this go.”
I thump to the mattress of my bed.
“Cugs? You there?”
“Uh-huh. How about fight night instead?”
She huffs. “I want to show you something. I wanted it to be a surprise too, until you could see it in person, but you’re making it freaking hard.”
I groan and press two fingers against my forehead. “When were you thinking?”
“You’re free tomorrow during the day, right?”
I hesitate.
“Hmm. Not sure.”
“You said you were.”
“Fine! I’m free tomorrow. Happy?”
I get no reply. Crap, I should have Face-timed her. “Cute” expressions go a long way when it comes to appeasing girlfriends. “Nadine.”
She exhales into the phone.
“Come on. Talk to me.”
Damn silence.
“I’m sorry, okay? It’s just—I love you, and I hate it when we don’t agree.”
Her breath hits the receiver first. “Come tomorrow at lunch, then. No one’ll be at home. Can you do that? For me?”
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]

Praise for the Book
"Path of Thieves is another Sunniva-winner. She makes a beautiful first jump into the Young Adult category with Cugs' story. His problems are hard and real and, from his view, insurmountable. He is surrounded by friends who support him and love him unconditionally, and a family that leaves him conflicted about their love. Somehow, somehow, he finds his path. I highly recommend Path of Thieves. Read on!" ~ Dina Littner
"Like all Sunniva's writing, Path of Thieves follows characters you can relate with. This is Sunniva Dee's first YA read, and because she is such an amazing writer, you wouldn't know that." ~ Hadassah H.
"Sunniva Dee does it again, crafting characters that breathe and lodge themselves in my heart. My affection for Cugs ran so deep it hurt to watch him fight for the life he deserves in a reality he doesn’t. I wanted to reach through the pages and shine a light toward hope, possibilities. But since I couldn’t, thank god for Nadine. I don't read a lot of YA but I devoured this is one, which felt relatable for mature readers as well." ~ Alyson Santos
"If you’re like me and YA is your jam or even your bread and butter, then I suggest you give this book a chance and hopefully you’ll enjoy it as much, if not more, than I did." ~ Melyssa Winchester
"Even though this is a YA book you'll still get the punch and strength that Sunniva is so good at just much cleaner. Her writing flows perfectly and every word is believable." ~ Dani C

About the Author
Between studies, teaching, and advising, Sunniva has spent her entire adult life in a college environment. Most of her novels are new adult romance geared toward smart, passionate readers with a love for eclectic language and engaging their brain as well as their heart while reading.
Born in the Land of the Midnight Sun, the author spent her early twenties making the world her playground: Southern Europe (Spain, Italy, Greece), Argentina (Buenos Aires, in particular). The United States finally kept her interest, and after half a decade in Los Angeles, she now lounges in the beautiful city of Savannah.
Sometimes, Sunniva writes with a paranormal twist (Shattering Halos, Stargazer, and Cat Love). At other times, it's contemporary (Pandora Wild Child, Leon's Way, Adrenaline Crush, Walking Heartbreak, Dodging Trains, In the Absence of You, and Path of Thieves).
This author is the happiest when her characters let their emotions run off with them, shaping her stories in ways she never foresaw. She loves bad-boys and good-boys run amok, and like in real life, her goal is to keep the reader on her toes until the end of each story.

Enter the blitz-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card or winner's choice of one ebook by Sunniva Dee.


"Indigo Bay Sweet Romance Series"

Indigo Bay Sweet Romance Series
by Stacy Claflin, Jean Oram, Kay Correll, Jeanette Lewis, Jennifer Peel, and Danielle Stewart

Indigo Bay Sweet Romance Series by Stacy Claflin, Jean Oram, Kay Correll, Jeanette Lewis, Jennifer Peel, and Danielle Stewart

Escape to Indigo Bay ... Six authors. Six Sweet Romances. One small South Carolina beach town. This book blitz and giveaway for the Indigo Bay Sweet Romance Series is brought to you by I Am A Reader.

Sweet Dreams
by Stacy Claflin

Ever since her twin became a singing sensation, Sky Hampton has struggled to be appreciated for who she is - apart from her sister. She wards off Aspen’s fans, who beg for autographs and selfies everywhere Sky goes. She can’t even find a guy who likes her for her. Sky flees to the small coastal town of Indigo Bay in hopes of blending in and building her blossoming career.
Jace Fisher is the textbook definition of the strong silent type - nobody can break through his tough exterior. He has suffered more than his fair share of tragedies, and to protect his shattered heart, he pushes everyone away. Jace spends his days fixing the Indigo Bay cottages, and his nights ... nobody really knows. He keeps to himself.
When Jace shows up to fix Sky’s AC, he barely notices her and she’s distracted with settling in. It takes an emergency situation to get them talking, and when they do, the two find they have more in common than first appeared. As their attraction grows, defenses soar. Will they be able to risk love when they’ve both been burned in the past?


Sweet Matchmaker
by Jean Oram

Ginger McGinty hates liars. And she just married a spy.
Bridal shop owner Ginger McGinty excels at matchmaking unless it’s for herself. That is, until she meets the dreamy Aussie who helps her get into an event meant for engaged couples. Logan Stone is sweet, caring, thoughtful and fun - everything she desires in a man. But it turns out, her new fake fiancé could use a bit more than just a pretend engagement to get him into parties - he needs a quick marriage keep him in the country so he can be with his adopted special needs daughter.
With a marriage of convenience pro-con list longer than the average wedding veil, Ginger puts her faith in romance and offers Logan her hand in return for one thing - no lies.
But little does she know, almost everything she knows about her new husband is based on a lie.
Everything except his kisses and the way he accidentally spills his soul whenever they meet. And that’s quickly becoming a problem for Logan Stone who depends on distance and deceit to keep civilians such as Ginger safe from his enemy’s clutches.
Will the two find love in their marriage of convenience, or will everything break apart when the truth rises to the surface, shattering everything, including their trust?


Sweet Sunrise
by Kay Correll

Sometimes life has a way of teaching lessons whether you’re ready to learn them or not ...
The last place on earth Will Layton wants to be is Indigo Bay, but his younger sister needs him and he’s never been able to say no to her. But she left out a few details ... like their father staying with her and the girl who dumped him years ago is living right next door.
The last person Dr. Ashley Harden thought she’d see in Indigo Bay is Will Layton, but he’s back in town and just as irresistible as when they were young. Seeing Will again is a complication that isn’t on her carefully mapped out life plan.
In spite of Ashley’s best intentions, she starts falling for Will again, but nothing has changed. She’s still focused on getting the townspeople to accept her and see her as more than the girl from the wrong side of town, while Will is determined to guard his heart at any cost.
Not the easiest road to true love ... especially when secrets from the past are revealed and history threatens to repeat itself.


Sweet Illusions
by Jeanette Lewis

Eva Malone was very young when her mother forced the family to join a violent doomsday cult, but she remembers a little about how normal life used to be. As a young woman, she escapes the cult and relocates to Indigo Bay, South Carolina to pursue her dream of peaceful anonymity.
After several tumultuous years as a policeman in Atlanta, Ben Andrews has had enough. He returns home to Indigo Bay and joins the Indigo Bay PD, where the most exciting part of the job is getting a kitten out of a tree or rescuing tourists who lose their keys at the beach.
Eva and Ben are immediately drawn to each other. But as the prophesied date of the apocalypse draws near and the cult steps up its efforts to find her, Eva realizes she can’t maintain her sweet illusion forever.


Sweet Regrets
by Jennifer Peel

Melanie Dixon never thought she would find herself divorced, pregnant, and living back with her parents in Indigo Bay. Not one to let misfortune get the best of her, she picks up the broken pieces of her life and bit by bit puts them back together. She’s determined to go it alone, but her loving and equally determined family and friends have another idea.
Enter Declan Shaw, the boy next door from long ago. The boy she wasn’t quite ready to commit forever to at eighteen. Back in Indigo Bay due to a recent job promotion, Declan sees this as a second chance to reunite with the girl who has owned his heart since the day they met in their junior year of high school. But Melanie is a tougher sell on the idea than he thought she would be. Now it’s up to him to prove to Melanie that she can trust him with her heart and that he’s the man she and her baby deserve.
Will the regret and hurt of the past win out? Or will love prevail?


Sweet Rendezvous
by Danielle Stewart

On her last tank of gas Elaine Mathews drives South. Spontaneity had never been her strength, but there was something about being publicly fired that had a way of changing things. An empty bank account, broken heart, and enough humiliation to last a life time was all Elaine could claim as her own. Her car choked to a stop in the quiet beach town of Indigo Bay and all she could do was sit on the curb and wait for the sun to set on her misery.
Davis Mills has a routine. Wake. Work. Eat. Sleep. Repeat. It hadn’t always been that way. He’d left indigo bay once and returned a broken man. Now he kept his dreams small and his schedule tight. If there was no room in his life for anything new then he’d never repeat his mistakes.
When fate has them, quite literally colliding Elaine and Davis are faced with an important question. Can you live a full life if you never take a risk? Or is life made up of every mistake, miracle and chance that comes with being in love?


Enter the blast-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $100 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash.