Wednesday, May 9, 2018

"Magick Run Amok" by Sharon Pape

Magick Run Amok
(An Abracadabra Mystery Book 3)
by Sharon Pape

Magick Run Amok (An Abracadabra Mystery Book 3) by Sharon Pape

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

That Olde White Magick by Sharon Pape

Magick Run Amok 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.

The answer to whodunit may lie beyond the veil …
November in upstate New York can be chilly, but Kailyn Wilde’s shop, Abracadabra, is a cozy respite where you can find lotions, potions, and plenty of warm, feline company. But what customers don’t know is that the proprietor has some unusual powers—and unusual friends, including the renowned magician Merlin, who’s been transported into the modern world. All of which comes in handy when there’s a murder to be solved …
Investigative journalist Ryan Cutler has perished in a car accident in New Camel, and his friend, Travis, suspects foul play - especially when the reporter’s notes reveal a mysterious list of dead men’s names. Kailyn wants to help, but she’s also got her hands full with the curmudgeonly Merlin, who’s not exactly maintaining a low profile. Between keeping the wizard under wraps and mixing up cold remedies that work like magic, she’ll have to tap into her many talents to figure out a killer’s fatal formula ...

In the hours that remained, only one more person came in. He was big and broad shouldered, wearing a battered leather jacket open over a tee shirt with a skull motif. Tattoos peeked out of both sleeves of his jacket and from the neck of his tee. He was wearing jeans and combat boots and carrying a biker’s helmet under his left arm. His hair was spiked and the stubble on his cheeks had the look of a permanent two day growth. Tilly referred to men like him as biker dudes.
“How you doin’?” he asked before I could greet him.
“I’m well, thanks. How are you?”
“Good, good,” he said nodding like a bobble-head doll as he gave the shop the once over. He turned back to me. “I was just passing through, you know? And the name of your shop hooked me in.”
“Are you interested in magick?” I asked him.
“If you’re talkin’ magic like in magic shows, nah, except for when I was kid. Now if there was such a thing as real magick, sure - I’d be all over it, who wouldn’t be?”
I laughed. “True enough.”
“So what is it you have goin’ on here exactly?” he asked as he started browsing down the first aisle.
I raised my voice so he could hear me. “Natural products for what ails you, beauty aids for the skin and hair, candles for aroma therapy....”
He exited the aisle at the other end and instead of going down the next one, he headed back to me, clearly not interested enough to finish his self-tour. “It’s quirky, cute” he said, words that sounded odd coming from a biker dude’s mouth.
He shifted the helmet from his left arm to his right like he was settling in for a while. “New Camel’s definitely small-town America. I’ll bet you know every soul and every rumor makin’ the rounds.” 
If I’d been a dog, my ears would have pricked. For someone just passing through, someone who’d walked into my shop on a whim, why was he so interested in my acquaintances?” It might be idle conversation, but I was investigating a potential string of murders and I couldn’t afford to dismiss any offhand remark by a stranger. “You’d be surprised,” I said, morphing out of casual shopkeeper mode and into wary investigator in a split second. “My shop and this whole town are geared to the tourist trade. I do know many of the locals, but certainly not all of them. And if you’re talking about Watkins Glen, I probably know less than thirty percent of the residents there. Are you from a big city like New York?” Two can play the question game.
“I travel a lot,” he said, his eyes flitting around me for someplace to land other than my face. He spotted Sashkatu on the window ledge and grinned, showing off perfect white teeth. A man of the highways and byways who flossed and brushed regularly. “Cool detail - the cat,” he said. “What do they call the cats that help witches?”
“I think you mean ‘familiars.’”
“Yeah, that’s it.” He picked up a candle from one of the little display tables near the counter, turned it over, sniffed it and put it back down. “I stopped in Watkin’s Glen to grab a burger for lunch. Everyone was talkin’ about the guy who was found dead in his mobile home. I heard some folks say he deserved whatever he got. Guess he wasn’t liked much.”
I shrugged. “I wouldn’t know.”
“You don’t expect to hear stuff like that up here. In a city, yeah, but here in quiet-ville?”
“There are bad people everywhere. For all we know, the killer was just some guy passing through,” I said pointedly. He looked me squarely in the eye, and I had a smile all ready for him.
“A waitress was makin’ a wager with the guy at the next table,” he continued after a moment. “She bet the “Wilde girl” in New Camel would catch the killer before the cops again. You know who that is?”
“I’m Kailyn Wilde,” I said, pretty sure he already knew that, since he was standing in my shop.
“So – you really that good at findin’ criminal types?”
I shrugged. “People like to exaggerate.  I’ve probably just been lucky. Right time, right place - you know.” If he was involved in crime, murder specifically, there was no sense in giving him reason to eliminate me first.
“Nah, I’m mostly in the wrong place at the worst time,” he said chuckling at his own wit. He glanced at his watch. “I gotta hit the road. Good talkin’ to you, Miss Wilde. You stay safe.”
“I intend to,” I said. Over the years, my family and I had dealt with every sort of person, but not one of them had left me feeling as unsettled as this guy. I breathed a whole lot easier after he walked out and I heard the rumble of his motorcycle fade into the distance.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]

Praise for the Book
“We get to follow Kailyn, her aunt, Merlin, and the cats on yet another murder investigation that will have you laughing and gasping along the way.” ~ Books a Plenty Book Reviews
“I felt this read was full of lighthearted fun with plenty of twists and turns to draw me into the mystery. I like the cross-genre that mixes the mystery with paranormal fun!” ~ Ms.Cat’s Honest World
“With humor and investigative daring, along with some other worldly intervention, this adventure is a welcome addition to a delightful series. You can never predict what will happen next or who will save the day!” ~ Laura’s Interests
“This story not only turns about the mystery but the curious family of Kailyn, with her ghost mother lecturing her when she is not acting correctly, her ‘mysterious’ friend Merlin, that could be coming from the past … or of course the cats she has in her life …! But let me say that it makes the story funny and interesting, of course.” ~ Varietats

Guest Post by the Author
Will the Real Killer Please stand Up
I generally don’t start writing a book, until I’ve decided on the victim, the killer and the motive. Until recently, I’d only changed the killer once. It was late in the story, which makes any major change difficult to pull off and still make the book’s deadline. When the character who wanted to become the killer first popped into my head, I brushed them off. But they kept popping up, refusing to be ignored. “It makes more sense if I’m the killer,” they insisted. “Think about it and you’ll see that I’m right.”
That character was right. I thought about how hard it would be to make the change. As it turned out, it wasn’t that difficult, probably because the original killer and the new killer were related. I did have to add a few paragraphs and pages here and there to support the change, and I had to go through the manuscript carefully to remove anything that wouldn’t jibe with the new killer. If my character hadn’t been relentless, the book would not have been as good or as surprising as it turned out.
Five years later, when another character stopped in to have a similar chat, I was much more open to the prospect of change. This time it was a different one of my suspects who was campaigning to become the killer. They pointed out that I’d provided them with a better motive than the original killer as well as a reasonable opportunity to commit the murder. Why hadn’t I realized it myself? The manuscript would require some adjustments, but nothing all that difficult. As a writer, it can definitely be worthwhile to listen to those voices in your head.

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 ever condensed. Then life brought her an unexpected challenge, by the name of breast cancer. After treatment, she and her oncologist started a not-for-profit to provide information and peer support to breast cancer patients. With the organization up and running, she returned to her first love – writing. This time around she’s been writing cozy mysteries with a paranormal twist.

Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win one of five ebook copies of Magick Run Amok by Sharon Pape.