Tuesday, September 2, 2014

First Tuesday = New Cozy Mysteries!

Okay, I admit it -- I took most of the summer off from blogging.  I hope to get back into the swing of things as the weather turns colder and I'm inside more.

In the meantime, it's the first Tuesday of the month and two of my Cozy Chick blog sisters have new books out.

My good pal Mary Jane Maffini is one half of the mother-daughter writing team of Victoria Abbott. Today, the third book in their Book Collector Mystery series, THE WOLFE WIDOW, is officially released.

As Thanksgiving approaches, Jordan Bingham is grateful for her job researching rare books for Vera Van Alst, the infamous curmudgeon of Harrison Falls, New York. But when an uninvited guest makes an appearance, much more than dinner is disrupted—and Jordan is thankful just to be alive…

Vera Van Alst doesn’t normally receive visitors without appointment, but she agrees to see the imperious Muriel Delgado upon arrival. Shortly thereafter, Jordan is told that her position is being terminated. Evicted from the Van Alst House, Jordan is determined to find out what hold Muriel has over her erstwhile employer.

Amazon  |  Kindle |US  |  Kindle Worldwide

Barnes & Noble   |  Nook

Indigo  |  Chapters

Kobo  |  iBooks

Mary Kennedy is a psychologist who just happens to write mysteries, and NIGHTMARES CAN BE MURDER is the first in her new Dream Club Mystery Series.

Business consultant Taylor Blake has eturned to Savannah, Georgia, to help her sister Allison turn her dream of running an old-fashioned candy store into a reality. Allison is also interested in dream interpretation and invites Taylor to her Friday night Dream Club, where members meet once a week to share and analyze their dreams.

When a local dance instructor, Chico Hernandez, is found dead in his studio, and the murder scene has an eerie resemblance to one of the dreams shared at their meeting, Taylor can’t help but be intrigued. And when her sister, who was briefly involved with the dance teacher, becomes the prime suspect, Taylor and their fellow club members can’t be caught napping. It’s up to them to dream up a solution to the murder before Allison faces a real-life nightmare.

Amazon  |  Kindle US  |  Kindle Worldwide

Barnes & Noble   |  Nook

Kobo  | iBooks

I hope you'll enjoy both of these wonderful mysteries as much as me!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Happy Labor Day!


That sounds like the perfect (un)Labor Day to me.  What are you up to today?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Happy Day for The Cozy Chicks

It's a great day for the Cozy Chicks.  Not only did our own Ellery Adams hit the New York Times Best Sellers list at #1 for her debut novel in the Book Resort Mystery series, MURDER IN THE MYSTERY SUITE ...

Mystery murder suite-sm

Not only that, but Leann Sweeney hit the list at #25 with The Cat, The Vagabond and the Victim!

Vagabond-sm

But we've got a brand new video.  Watch it -- and please, share your comments with us.  Thanks!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Don't miss these two new great books!

I love the first Tuesday of the month because that means NEW BOOKS!

This month, two of my best friends have books out:

VagaBond-smNew from Leann Sweeney:  The Cat, The Vagabond and the Victim
When Clyde the cat travels two hundred miles back home only to find his former owner dead, the story makes national news. While everyone seems eager to tell Clyde’s incredible tale, someone needs to step up to care for him. Because the media attention is creating chaos at the local shelter, cat quilter Jillian Hart agrees to foster the loyal orange tabby, hoping his location is kept secret.

But while the media circus around Clyde continues, Jillian learns the real story behind his owner’s death—he was murdered. Why would an eldery man already dying from a serious illness become a murder victim? As the local police search for an answer, Clyde makes another escape. Jillian is drawn into the case when she finds Clyde has returned to his home again—and he’s found another body. When the motive behind these murders is finally revealed, Jillian understands Clyde is in danger of becoming the next victim, and she must help find the killer before the claws really come out.…

Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Kindle | Nook | iBooks

Mystery murder suite-smFirst in a new series by Ellery Adams
Tucked away in the rolling hills of rural western Virginia is the storybook resort of Storyton Hall, catering to book lovers who want to get away from it all. To increase her number of bookings, resort manager Jane Steward has decided to host a Murder and Mayhem week so that fans of the mystery genre can gather together for some role-playing and fantasy crime solving.

But when the winner of the scavenger hunt, Felix Hampden, is found dead in the Mystery Suite, and the valuable book he won as his prize is missing, Jane realizes one of her guests is an actual murderer. Amid a resort full of fake detectives, Jane is bound and determined to find a real-life killer. There’s no room for error as Jane tries to unlock this mystery before another vacancy opens up…

Amazon  |  Barnes & Noble
Kindle  |  Nook  |  iBooks

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

It's a PANTY RAID!

Get it's while it's HOT!

Panty_Raid_medTori Cannon and her BFF, Kathy Grant, get together for a girl’s weekend of wine, cookies, and laughter, but there’s also the specter of a panty pincher hanging around the laundry room of the complex where Tori lives. Kathy thinks they can catch the culprit red-handed in a panty raid!

Kindle | Kindle Worldwide | Nook | Kobo | Smashwords

(coming soon to iBooks!)

This mini mystery introduces the two main characters of the upcoming Lotus Bay Mysteries. With Baited Breath arrives Fall 2014.

Monday, July 21, 2014

I've got a new cozy mystery series coming soon!

by Lorraine Bartlett / Lorna Barrett / L.L. Bartlett

Writers write, but not always in a logical sequence.

Before I finished the first Jeff Resnick Mystery, Murder on the Mind, I'd already started Room At The Inn (what later became the third book in the series). Before I'd finished Room At The inn, I was already writing Cheated By Death (#4 in the series). Bound By Suggestion (#5 in the series) was written before Murder On The Mind (#1) ever saw print. (And Murder on the Mind is FREE for all e formats.)  Confused?  Yeah, me, too!

In between all those Jeff books (written under the name L.L. Bartlett), I started writing the Victoria Square Mysteries. A Craft Killing (then called A Matter of Murder, and I still prefer that title) and The Walled Flower were already written (under the name Lorraine Bartlett) before I wrote one word of Murder is Binding (and under another name--Lorna Barrett).

Confused yet?

In the past couple of weeks, I've been working on the first story in a new cozy mystery series that will be called the Lotus Bay Mysteries. The thing is, the idea for it came to me more than nine years ago. Poor Tori Cannon has been toasting her buns on the back burner for all those years! Now, finally, I'm beginning to tell her story. Tori is going to solve a number (and I hope a GREAT number) of crimes with the help of her BFF Kathy Blake. And they've got new friends, too. (I haven't written their parts yet, but I know that Noreen and Anissa will be very important to them WHEN I FINALLY GET TO WRITE THEM).

So, what am I trying to tell you?

I've written a prequel to the Lotus Bay Mysteries, which I've sat on for more than a year because during that time I wrote my short story, Blue Christmas (which I only sat on for about four months), and then Dark Waters (Jeff Resnick #6) and Evolution (a collection of Jeff Resnick short stories which took place BEFORE the first Jeff Resnick Mystery, except -- most of them were written DURING the course of writing the first four books).  Still, Tori kept poking my brain and saying, "Hey, START WRITING ABOUT KATHY AND ME NOW!"

(And what about Sabina, who's been sitting around even LONGER than Tori waiting for her story to be told.  And then there's Lee, a cozy male protagonist (which my 4th agent said would never sell ... but NEVER say NEVER to me).)

So, I'm almost ready to release Tori's and Kathy's first (mini) mystery. It's called PANTY RAID and I hope it will be available by next week. It's currently being copy edited. (Sorry, but it's short, so will only be available in e format.)

So, when will the first book in the Lotus Bay series (in e and print formats) be available?  I'm shooting for early October.

Meanwhile, I've got plans for a new Jeff Resnick short story (the next book is still percolating on the back burner), and a new paranormal series (like Jeff, it'll be edgier than my cozies), and I'm already plotting Booktown #10 (#9 will be published next June ... and oh, poor Tricia ... she needs a break).

Gosh, I feel exhausted just thinking of all the work I need to do in the next few months/years ... but you know what? I anticipate it all being a LOT of FUN, too!  And I hope my readers feel the same way.

I'll be announcing the availability of PANTY RAID next week on my Facebook pages and on my website. Oh, and it will come out under my Lorraine Bartlett name.

Stay tuned!


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Mailing list?

Lorna newsletter sign up

You can sign up right here on my blog, or on my websites.

Don't miss out on the news and fun contests I run!

Monday, July 14, 2014

My friend C.J. Lyons decided it would be great if readers could find new-to-them authors.  To do that, she set up a website called Digital Book Day. On it, she would list all the free books she could come up with on a multitude of genres that are absolutely FREE ... and guess what?  She's included mine -- MURDER ON THE MIND.  The link is for Amazon worldwide, but the book is FREE for all e formats.
Digital book day
Hope you find lots of great books.  Here's the link again:  http://www.digitalbookday.com/

Remember -- don't just download the books -- PLEASE READ THEM, and then leave these authors a review, too.  

Thank you!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

From Storytellers Unlimited ....

Bundle now available

Whoo-hoo! The Storytellers Unlimited boxed set of DANGEROUS SECRETS is now available! Four great novels for only 99¢ How can you miss! (Hey, Room at the Inn, my coziest of the The Jeff Resnick Mysteries is in there, too along with books my friends Kelly McClymer, Shirley Hailstock, and C.B. Pratt.)

The stories range from suspense, to thriller, to romance, and fantasy.  What a great multi-genre bundle and for only 99¢


Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Just 7 more days!!!


OMG -- just a week until BOOK CLUBBED comes out!!! If you haven't already pre-ordered, I'll hope you'll consider doing so. I'm selfish, I would dearly love to hit the NY Times list with this one. Thanks.

Amazon  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Indiebound  |  Chapters/Indigo  |  Books A Million




Kindle US  |   Kindle Worldwide  |  Nook  |  iBooks

Audible  |  Amazon Audio  |  Tantor Audio







Have you seen the video booktrailer?


Tuesday, June 17, 2014

VIDEO: BOOK CLUBBED

Ellery Adams and I have been at it again, producing a book trailer for my upcoming release (July 1st) BOOK CLUBBED. 

What do you think?



2 weeks and counting

If you plan to buy the book but haven't already pre-ordered, I hope you'll consider doing so. Pre-sales help a book hit the bestsellers lists. Thank you!

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books A Million | Chapters | IndieBound 

Kindle US | Kindle Worldwide | Nook | iBooks  (Coming soon to Kobo)

Amazon Audio | Tantor Audio (Coming soon to Audible!)


Monday, June 9, 2014

CONTEST: Win an ARC of BOOK CLUBBED

Do your pets like to read as much as you do?

How would you like to win an advance review copy of BOOK CLUBBED, the 8th Booktown Mystery? Send me picture of your pet reading any of my books along with your snail mail address to Lorna@ LornaBarrett.com (don't forget to close up the space).

Below is my cat Fred reading Not The Killing Type. Okay, he sort of fell asleep, but it was because he was TIRED, not because he was bored.



The winner will be announced next Monday (June 16th).
=========================================
UPDATE:  It was too hard to choose, so everyone who entered the contest will receive a copy of one of my books.  Stay tuned.  Pictures of pets reading coming soon!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Two new cozy mysteries for you to enjoy!

Don't you just love the first Tuesday of the month when the new books are released?
Today two friends of mine have new releases.  They are from my friend and fellow Cozy Chick Maggie Sefton, and Karen Rose Smith:

Close Knit Killer-smKelly Flynn—accountant by day, sleuth by . . . well, anytime there’s a murder in Fort Connor, Colorado—is once again drawn in by a death near her favorite knit shop, Lambspun. A financial advisor who bilked half the town of its savings is found dead in his sports car. This entry, the first of a two-parter, seems a little tired. There’s less knitting, and seemingly less sleuthing. Much of the focus is on preteen Cassie, who has come to live with Kelly’s friends. When the book ends, a forest fire is raging, so the sequel will hop right into an inferno. For series fans. Includes a recipe and a knitting pattern. (From Booklist.)

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Kindle    | Nook



Deadly decor-karenrosesmith-smBook 2 in Karen Rose Smith's Caprice De Luca cozy mystery series.
Quiet Kismet, Pennsylvania, may look like any other small town, but as a home stager, Caprice De Luca can see behind closed doors--and it seems someone has designs on murder. . .Life is a full house for Caprice these days. She's dating, she's rescuing adorable cocker spaniels, and she's decorating the roomy interiors of Kismet's most well-heeled residents with fun fantasy themes. But she's worried about her pregnant sister. Bella's marriage is coming apart like a bad wallpaper job, and to make matters worse, she's decided to meet up with a former flame Bob Preston, a house painter Caprice frequently employs. When he's found dead in a pool of green paint swirling with blood, it's time for Caprice to stage an investigation. With all eyes trained on Bella's husband, Caprice shifts her attention from finding the perfect curtains to finding the perfect culprit.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Kindle    | Nook

Amazon100In addition, Karen is having a great giveaway -- books (including one of mine) and a $100 Amazon Gift Card!  To enter, go to her Facebook Author Page.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Foodie Friday: Ruminations on Rhubarb

Hot_Dawg-smallI had a load of fun putting together y little cookbook RECIPES TO DIE FOR: A Victoria Square Cookbook together. The odd thing is, most of the recipes are ones I really do use over and over again. (It's kind of nice to have them all in one place.)

RhubarbIt's springtime and for me that means fresh rhubarb. What an odd vegetable.  I never thought about it as a vegetable, since the only thing I use it for is desserts and chutney, but it really is a veggie, and the leaves are very, very poisonous.  (If you value your liver, never, EVER eat them.)  But the stalks are just fine to eat--and EXTEMELY tart! We've got rhubarb up the wazoo and I've been even tossing it in my green smoothies.  (Yes, VERY TART indeed.)

Mr. L is partial to rhubarb crisp. Here's my favorite recipe

Rhubarb cristpIngredients:
1 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup quick cooking rolled oats
½ cup melted butter
1 teaspoon cinnamon
4 cups sliced rhubarb
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350°. In mixing bowl, combine the brown sugar, flour, oats, butter, and cinnamon; mix together until crumbly. Press half of the brown sugar and oats mixture into a buttered 8-inch square baking dish. Top with the sliced rhubarb. In a saucepan combine 1 cup granulated sugar, cornstarch, and the 1 cup of water and vanilla. Cook together until the liquid is clear, then pour over the rhubarb. Top the rhubarb with remaining crumb mixture and bake for 45 to 55 minutes. Serve warm, and if desired, with a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream.

Yield:  4-6 servings.

Mmm-mmm good!

To_Die_For.smAnd in case you are interested in RECIPES TO DIE FOR, here are a few links.

Watch the video!  (Made by Ellery Adams and me!)

Trade PaperbackKindle US
Kindle Worldwide
Nook
iBooks
Kobo
Smashwords

P.S.  New recipe up on my Lorna Barrett Website from Bookmarked for DeathFind it here!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Teacup Tuesday: Readers share their beautiful teacups and dishes

Pink Teacup Tuesday
Well, I missed a week.  Then I thought I had written the blog post and would just post it this week.  Hello, I got the pictures ready, but forgot to write the post.  Oy.  (My excuse:  I've been writing up a storm!)

Last time out, I invited readers to submit pictures of their own china cabinets.  Two readers took me up on the challenge.  First up, is Diane L. from Manchester, CT submitted two pictures.  Here's her curio cabinet.

Diane's curio cabinet

and here's a view of her dining room.  Just lovely, Diane!

Diane's dining room

Suzann F. from Bethlehem, PA is a collector after my own heart.  She has a lot of really neat collectibles she keeps in a number of cabinets and shelves.

Image(1)

Look at the detail on that drawer!  Beautiful.

Image(3)

Don't you just love those turkey plates?  I have a turkey platter with a similar design.

Image(4)

Pretty, pretty, pretty!

Image

Thanks Diane and Suzann for sharing your lovely cups and plates with us.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Foodie Friday: Stealing the Moon & Stars while making Chicken Cordon Bleu

Hot_Dawg-small
By guest bloggers Sally J Smith and Jean Steffens


While working on Stealing the Moon & Stars, a Jordan Welsh and Eddie Marino novel, recently released from Camel Press, we needed to research a gourmet dish for a dinner hosted by our culinary-challenged heroine. Chicken Cordon Bleu was the winner.

It’s a dish that originated in Switzerland in the 1940’s. There are dozens of ways to prepare it. All versions include a cutlet--either chicken or veal; cheese--Swiss, Muenster or Gruyere; and pork--ham or prosciutto. You can panfry, deep fry or bake it. It’s tasty by itself, but divine served with a creamy sauce.

Jean_and_Sally_flipped_webAn author is obligated to bring authenticity to her work. We set out to do just that. No problem with grocery shopping. Cooking chicken rolls? Again, easy-peezy.  The white sauce? Mucho problemos.

We stirred and stirred, until our wrists gave out. Fruitless. The sauce was lumpier than an old mattress and about as appetizing. Not to be foiled, we tried again. Our next effort came out perfectly because that time we used canned white sauce, not from scratch. Below, you’ll find our recipe for Chicken Cordon Bleu modified for those with little time and even less cooking skill. See what you think.

Also, take a look at how PI Jordan Welsh dealt with the dish when she invited her foodie family to dinner.

Excerpt: Stealing the Moon & Stars (Jordan Welsh and Eddie Marino, Scottsdale PIs, are hired to find out who’s stealing the from the Moon & Stars Children’s Foundation. Foundation employees are suspected, but just as the pieces start falling into place, Jordan discovers a hidden agenda that puts her in the crosshairs of a crime lord. Who can she trust? Everyone has a dangerous secret, and the bodies are piling up. Even her partner, Eddie Marino, has a dark and mysterious past. The two have landed in a hornet’s nest—nothing to do but stir it up.)

The doorbell rang at three. She opened the front door to Gabe Penner, a family friend and sometimes client, also the owner and head chef at Gabriel’s Bistro in Paradise Valley. He carried two large insulated bags, one in each hand.

“Here I come to save the day…” he sang in his lilting voice, a fair imitation of Andy Kaufman.

“Gabe.” He always made her smile.

She swung the door open wide and he came in, set down the bags, and bowed. “Your order, Miss Welsh.”

“Get in here, you nut. We’ve only got an hour before everyone arrives, and I have a jillion things left to do.”

“No worries.” He picked up the bags and headed straight for the kitchen. “It will only take a few minutes to show you how to reheat like a pro.”

“You’ve saved my bacon on more than one occasion.”

“Har dee har.” He began to unpack the bags on the counter. “Very funny.”

A dozen containers came out of the bags. Gabe assembled them into an elegant meal so quickly you’d have thought he learned to cook at Hogwarts.

“On the menu tonight is Chicken Cordon Bleu with white wine sauce, baby red potatoes sautéed in extra virgin olive oil with garlic and onion, steamed asparagus, and a spinach salad with poppy seed dressing. I brought fresh baked herb bread from the Bistro and honey butter. There’s cheesecake if anyone has room after all the other food.”

Gabe talked while he worked, navigating the kitchen as if every move had been choreographed in advance.

“Zester.” With one-word commands, he sent Jordan scurrying around the kitchen to find this pan or that utensil, some of which she didn’t even know she had.

“Zester?” She wrinkled her nose. “What the heck is a zester?” She peered into the pan on the burner. “So tell me what you’re doing there, kind sir.”

“I’m making a roux.”

“You can make those? I thought they came in a can.”

Gabe spoke over his shoulder. “Equal parts clarified butter and flour. Whisk, whisk, whisk until thickened, add a splash or two of white wine.” He splashed first and then drank from the open bottle. “Broth. Seasoning. You’ll spoon this over the Cordon Bleu the last ten minutes.”

Gabe put together a gorgeous salad of spinach, toasted almonds, and orange zest and gave her strict instructions not to toss in the dressing until just before mealtime.

After providing further details as to how she should finish off everything else, he spread his arms. “Voilà. Your gourmet meal. If you do exactly as I’ve told you, I don’t think even you can screw it up, my sweet.”


Chicken_cordon_bleuChicken Cordon Bleu, Quick & Easy
Ingredients
6 servings
6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - pounded thin
6 slices Swiss cheese
6 slices thin, sweet ham
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 cup seasoned dry bread crumbs
 toothpicks
  
1 can White Sauce or made from mix (Knorr’s/McCormick, etc.)
splash (or two or three or more) white wine – we used Chardonnay
juice squeezed from ½ a fresh lemon
salt & pepper to taste

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Lay out the pounded chicken breasts on a clean surface. Place a slice of ham on each piece, then one slice of cheese. Roll the chicken up around the cheese and ham, and secure with toothpicks. Dip each roll in melted butter, then roll in bread crumbs. Place in a shallow baking dish. For those with an aversion to post-dinner cleanup, a sheet of aluminum foil lining the pan is a bonus.

Bake for 30-40 minutes in the preheated oven, or until chicken is browned and juices run clear.

While the chicken is baking, heat the canned sauce, add lemon juice and wine to taste, and drink the rest of the wine. Voila, Chicken Cordon Bleu a la Jean and Sally, Time Deprived Authors
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Stealing_moon_cover_webSally J. Smith and Jean Steffens are the co-authors of Stealing the Moon & Stars, the first Jordan Welsh and Eddie Marino Novel from Camel Press. The two Arizona writers began working together when they figured out two heads are better (and faster) than one. "We work together side-by-side, word-by-word, literally finishing each others’ sentences. Laughter and sarcasm abound during writing sessions, with an odd disagreement here and there that may or may not involve the occasional right cross or karate/ninja move. Partners in crime have never had it so good." Their hometown of Scottsdale, Arizona, home of the rich and famous as well as the calculating and criminal, is the perfect setting for this series. The detective team in their novels, Jordan Welsh, maverick heiress, and Eddie Marino, a graduate from the school of hard knocks, are ideally suited to the Scottsdale lifestyle and to each other.