Tuesday, April 16, 2019

"Magickal Mystery Lore" by Sharon Pape

Magickal Mystery Lore
(An Abracadabra Mystery Book 4)
by Sharon Pape

Magickal Mystery Lore (An Abracadabra Mystery Book 4) by Sharon Pape

Magickal Mystery Lore is the fourth book in the Abracadabra Mystery series by Sharon Pape. Also available: Magick and Mayhem (read my blog post), That Olde White Magick, and Magick Run Amok (read my blog post).

An Abracadabra Mystery by Sharon Pape

Magickal Mystery Lore is currently on tour with Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours. The tour stops here today for an excerpt and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.

This spells trouble ...
The New Camel Day Fair is a fun-filled event for residents of this upstate New York town. Kailyn Wilde, a modern-day witch of ancient lineage, leaves her potion shop, Abracadabra - and her feline familiar, Sashkatu - to attend with her fortune-telling Aunt Tilly. Joining them is legendary wizard Merlin, who’s discovering new pleasures of time-traveling to the modern world, including curly fries and kettle corn - but the appeal of the Tilt-a-Wheel is beyond his mystical imagination.
The real wild ride begins later, when neighboring sweet shop owner Lolly rushes into Abracadabra with news about a dead body. The victim has one of Lolly’s fudge knives stuck in her back, but in spite of the sticky evidence, Lolly is only one of several suspects with ample motive and opportunity. Meanwhile, Merlin’s research into old family scrolls and electromagnetic ley lines is causing some unusual mix-ups. As the two investigations collide, Kailyn will have to do everything in her power to prevent disaster …

Travis dropped me off at home in the early afternoon and headed back to the Glen to anchor the evening news. All the cats but Sashkatu came to greet me. He was lying on the top ridge of the living room couch, regarding me with an expression that said Well look who’s here.
I walked up to him. “Would your Highness like to accompany me to the shop?” He seemed to be deliberating. I gave him a minute before adding, “The offer expires in fifteen seconds. If you want to go with me, you’d better hustle your bustle.” He got to his feet, stretched, yawned and took his sweet time descending the couch to his personal steps that he took to the floor. He could out-diva the best of them.
When we reached the shop, I went through the connecting door to Tea and Empathy to thank my aunt for helping out with the cats. Her shop was locked and dark. She rarely took off on the weekend. I called and found her at home. Her hello was rattled.
“What’s wrong?”
“We’re fine,” she said sounding anything but fine. “Of course I’d be a lot finer if our wizard friend would lay off the spells.” I heard Merlin protesting in the background that he didn’t know it was a spell.
“It sounds like you could use some help – I’ll be right over.”
“That won’t be necessary,” Tilly said. “I’ve got everything under control.” A loud crash punctuated her words. “On a related matter, I may have to kill Merlin.”
“I’m coming.”
“Hold it,” she said firmly, “You need to open your shop for at least part of the day. I’ve made up my mind. This can wait until you close.” But what if I couldn’t wait until I closed? What new trouble had Merlin wrought? Should I ignore my aunt’s wishes and run over there? Lately she got her back up if she thought I was trying to baby her. Pride was a big deal in my family. I decided I’d do my best to wait.
As it happened, I didn’t have long to dwell on those matters. Customers kept me hopping for the next three hours. It was a good thing I’d left a sign on the shop’s door and a message on the phone that I was away until Saturday afternoon. Most of the people who came in were locals, but there was a smattering of day trippers who were out for a ride and needed a destination.
Every last person who entered my shop wanted to know why Lolly’s place was shuttered and strung with police tape. And they wanted to know when she would reopen. Many a sweet tooth left disappointed.
I closed my shop at four thirty, a compromise between Tilly’s edict and my need to know what was going on at her house. I carried the sleepy Sashkatu home and fed the gang, before calling to let her know I was on my way.
She opened her door for me, her curly red hair limp and her face shiny with perspiration. “Brace yourself,” she warned me as I stepped into the foyer. Brace myself? Was I about to see something that horrific? A moment later her meaning became clear. I was thrown back against the wall by an invisible force that hit my chest with such momentum that it knocked the air out of my lungs. My face was slathered in sticky, foaming moisture. My hands flew out to fend off my attacker and my fingers sank into... fur?
Merlin ran into the foyer yelling, “Off beast – off I say. It took Merlin and Tilly pulling and me pushing to finally remove my assailant.
“What is that?” I was bent over, trying to catch my breath.
“A common mongrel,” Merlin said. “A cur, a mutt – take your pick.”
“A very large one,” Tilly added. “It’s best if we sit down. That way we won’t have as far to fall if he launches himself at us.” She and I took the couch in the family room and Merlin settled into an armchair across from us. They both seemed to be coping better than I was, but then they’d had more time to adjust to the situation. I kept scanning the room for the invisible dog, which made no sense and yet I couldn’t help myself.
Tilly understood what I was doing. “If he’s running at you, you can feel the air he displaces a few seconds before he’s on you. It helps to remember that he’s not vicious, just big and exuberant.” I had no problem with big exuberant dogs. I loved dogs of all sizes, shaggy and short-haired, enthusiastic and reserved. In fact before Sashkatu and I bonded, I’d been summoning a dog to be my familiar. It was that very spell that had plucked Merlin from his time and dropped him into my storeroom, highlighting the difficulty we Wildes were having with our magick.
I looked from Tilly to Merlin. “I need some answers, like why is he here? And why is he invisible?”
“Merlin was deep into reading the family scrolls again,” Tilly said. “He’s determined to figure out what’s playing havoc with our magick. It seemed like a safe enough activity for him to pursue, but I was wrong. Really wrong. He was reading a paragraph aloud, trying to make sense of its meaning, when this mountain of a dog appeared.”
“What Tilly dear is trying to say is that I didn’t realize I was reading a spell. And that spell inadvertently summoned a dog. A huge dog. An enormous dog. A — “
“Yes,” I interrupted, “that much I’m clear on. But why is he invisible?”
“I was trying to send the beast back from whence he came, but instead I somehow rendered him invisible.”
“Have you tried the spell to reverse spells?” I asked.
Tilly sighed. “It seems you can’t reverse spells when they’re layered as in this case,”
“So we have to make him visible before we can reverse the spell that brought him here?”
“Yes,” they said in unison. I felt a sudden rush of air, as if a high powered fan was blowing in my direction. I scooted back against the couch pillows to brace for the attack. A second later he was on me. Slobbery tongue, nails that needed clipping, fur up my nose and in my mouth. By the time he moved on to Tilly, I felt like I’d been tarred and feathered. I told myself things could be worse. He could have been ferocious, hungry for human flesh.
Isenbale, my aunt’s Maine Coon, yowled. I’d forgotten about him in the confusion. I followed the sound and spotted him on the top shelf of the built-ins that framed the fireplace. Tilly had set a bowl of water up there for him, and he appeared none the worse for his unhappy circumstances.
“My poor baby,” Tilly lamented.
“What of me?” Merlin said, disgruntled. “Am I not to be afforded sympathy? I had to carry him to the litter box – twice.”
“You’re the only one tall enough to keep him out of the dog’s reach,” she said.
“Do either of you remember the spell that made him invisible?” I asked.
“I do,” Merlin said. “Send —. Tilly and I yelled for him to stop.
“Please write it down for me,” I said more calmly. “Do not say it aloud.”
“Ah yes, I see your point.” He reached for the pad and pen on the table next to his chair, scribbled the few lines, and handed it to me. I read it silently.
Send this dog back where he’s from.
Spare no time; do not delay.
Keep him safe, let no harm come.
Take him from our sight today.
That was it – the last line of the spell was the culprit. Or rather Merlin was for not properly vetting the words before casting it. My mother and grandmother had drummed into me how important it was not to use words that could mean more than one thing. When I told Tilly that I’d discovered the problem, she was thrilled.  She wanted to go bake something for a celebration. I pointed out it would be easier to accomplish if she waited until the dog was no longer there to trample her. Merlin was understandably less thrilled. He didn’t like being told that he created the problem.
Now I just had to devise a spell to make the dog visible again. After that we should be able to send him back with the reversal spell. It took me more time than I expected and it wasn’t the most elegant of spells. In my defense, it was hard to be creative when I had to keep defending myself from the invisible beast. I repeated the words three times.
There’s a dog within this house
That nobody can see.
Make him visible again,
And safe we all will be.
I didn’t realize I was holding my breath, until it exploded from my lungs the moment the dog appeared before me. Tilly and Merlin had not been exaggerating. He was one of the largest dogs I’d ever seen. He had long white fur that would have benefitted from a bath. His black eyes in all that whiteness reminded me of a snowman. I told him it was great to see him, while fending off another slobbery attack.
I was about to reverse the spell that had brought him there, when Tilly jumped up and insisted on saying a proper goodbye by planting a kiss on his long snout. Merlin said a more formal farewell and apologized for having dog-knapped him in the first place with the ancient incantation.
I recited the reversal spell ten times and as the last word cleared my mouth, he disappeared. None of us dared move until we were positive he’d left and wasn’t merely invisible again. Then Merlin rescued Isenbale from the shelf. Tilly went off to the kitchen to bake away her stress, and Merlin followed her, throwing out suggestions. I went home to collapse on the couch with a pint of Rum Raisin ice cream.

Praise for the Book
“Sharon Pape crafts an enchanting story that is so engaging and easy to enjoy the reader may overlook the skill required to create this captivating read.” ~ Book
“I didn't read any of the previous books in the series but I still managed to follow along with the characters and their interests. The storyline was complex enough to keep me guessing until the end. There are surprises throughout the story too.” ~ Margie
“… magic is used both to advance the plot and for comedic effect. The spells that are shared in the text could easily be used as affirmations in the real world. Pape has created an engaging modern protagonist. I look forward to reading more of Kailyn's adventures.” ~ Coralee Hicks
“This is a delightfully funny witch cozy! […] Come along for the crazy adventure filled ride!” ~ Saundra Wright
“The mystery was very good and it kept me guessing till the end. A very enjoyable and entertaining book. Highly recommended!” ~ Annarella

About the Author
Sharon Pape
Sharon Pape describes her writing career as having two stages. Back in the dark ages, before computers were in every household, she had three paranormal books published. The first one was condensed by Redbook Magazine, the first paperback original they had ever condensed. Around the same time, Redbook published her first short story.
Then life brought her an unexpected challenge that went by the name of breast cancer. When her treatment was over, she became a volunteer for the American Cancer Society’s Reach to Recovery Program and went on to be the program’s coordinator for Nassau and Suffolk Counties on Long Island. Several years later, with the help of her surgical oncologist and two other survivors, she started her own not-for-profit organization to provide information and peer support to newly diagnosed breast cancer patients.
Once the organization was running smoothly and didn’t require as much of her time, she returned to her first love – writing. During this second stage of her career, she’s been writing cozy mysteries with a paranormal twist and a splash of humor.

Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win one of three ebook copies of Magickal Mystery Lore by Sharon Pape.


Featured in this post: