Literary Friday ya’ll….

Friday- end of the month. Tomorrow is December 1- which means 24 days till Christmas day. So line up those pictures with Santa, listen to some Christmas music, and enjoy the holiday season.

1. Deep South Magazine took last week off from their #literayfriday post due to the holidays-but is back up and running for this week. Included in today’s #literaryfriday is how to donate a new or used book to victims of Hurricane Sandy, a review of The Cutting Season (a book on DSM Fall/Winter Reading List), links to the “Best of 2012” book lists, and news that Robin O’Bryant’s Ketchup is a Vegetable: And Other Lies Moms Tell Themselves is 99 cents for November 30, 2012 (TODAY Only!)

2.Robin O’Bryant– author of Ketchup Is A Vegetable has been hosting giveaways all week to say “Happy Birthday, Ketchup!” If you haven’t won a giveaway, have rotten luck, dislike Facebook- whatever the reason-do not despair- Robin’s book Ketchup is 99 cents today! Sit back with a copy of Ketchup is Vegetable, a glass of wine and prepare to laugh until you cry!

3. Tomorrow, December 1, at Lemuria Books- Peggy Sweeney-McDonald will be signing copies of Meanwhile, Back at Cafe Du Monde: Life Stories about Food. I plan on attending and will be doing a blog post about the event later next week.

4. What are you reading for #fridayreads? I’m reading Peach of a Murder by Livia J. Washburn. Not just loving it, but attempting to give it a fair shake!

5. I just finished Broken Harbor by Tana French- and while from the jacket cover description I expected to LOVE it, I was at times not loving it. It took some turns that I wasn’t digging. But, it was still a pretty good book. If you’ve read Broken Harbor, let’s discuss!

6.December 1-8 is Cozy Mystery Week! If cozy mysteries are your type of books- then join Jenn’s Bookshelves for Cozy Mystery Week! Cozy Mystery Reviews will also be celebrating Cozy Mystery Week- giveaways, recipes, authors dropping by!

7. If you’re a fan of Cleo Coyle Coffeehouse Mystery Books (like I am!) the wait for the newest book in the series is not much longer! December 4 Holiday Buzz will be released! Yay!

8. Be sure and stop by She Reads today- Man in the Blue Moon is being discussed all day over there!

9. Oh and if you love Pinterest (and come on- who doesn’t?) check out Deep South Mag’s Pinterest page!

Happy Reading!

 

 

Village Blend…..

Village Blend- the home of Clare Cosi (also her workplace!) Village Blend has been home to many people over the years- artists, writers and more- it’s a landmark in the Coffehouse Mystery series.

Cleo Coyle uses the letters in the alphabet to make beautifuly descriptive sentences to not only describe Village Blend, but to make the reader practically see Village Blend in their minds. After reading a book of hers, I always wish I could go to a place like Village Blend for coffee and treats.

Village Blend is not only a landmark in the Coffeehouse Mystery series- it’s essentially as much as a character as Clare. It’s the place where the characters gather for work, for investigating, for hanging out- it’s the kind of place that a cozy needs in the series. Familiar, comfortable, enjoyable.

Now if there was only a Village Blend close to me- I could be so happy reading books and drinking coffee!

 

Thankfulness…..

I’m not doing the whole Facebook “Day #: I’m thankful for these things”- not because I don’t believe that it’s a good idea, but mainly because the people who really know me already know the things that I’m thankful for. But for the people who read my blog- you may not know some of the things I’m thankful for- so here goes:

1. Books- without books (whether it’s real books or e-books) a world without books would be a sad place.

2. Photos- I’m the girl with the camera. Always. I take tons of pictures. Why? Because one day- when I’m sitting around in elderly years I want to be able to look back and see the proof that life rocked. Maybe it wasn’t always all glittery and sunshine, rainbows and unicorns- but hopefully the pics will show that life was good more than it wasn’t.

3. Journals- I don’t keep one in particular, I have a few different that I write in. 99% of what I blog, tweet, facebook, etc about is ME. The real me. The me that I want to be recognized, understood, loved, etc- however; there are times when I need a place to write that only I’ll see. Maybe self-doubt is creeping in, maybe I’m unsure if anyone will understand- but mostly I worry that someone will dismiss my thoughts/worries. This is when a journal comes in handy.

4. Erin from Deep South Mag. Ever since she started following me tweets from my first SPQ wkend, a great twitter friendship has formed. When I finally got to meet her over the summer- it was so weird putting a face to a person that I’ve “known” for over 2 years. Erin- thank you for all you have done- the encouragement with my blog, book recommendations, and more. xoxo

5. Robin O’Bryant- could be considered at the center of much good news. Through her, I found out about Joshilyn Jackson coming to Turnrow Books for luncheon book signing. So I went- got to meet Joshilyn Jackson and Robin O’Bryant- then the girl sitting beside me started talking- her name was Keetha and surprise- we live in neighboring towns. Finding someone that lived near me to talk books with was nice- then joining Keetha and her book club worked out even better. Keetha introduced me to Books on the Nightstand podcasts, and told me about Booktopia in Oxford. So I signed up and met even more ladies who rock: Dawn, Michelle, Jana, Cathy, Jennifer, and Suzanne (these are just a few of the wonderful Booktopia people I met). Not to mention the Booktopia authors- Susan Gregg Gilmore and Ellen F. Brown are tops in my book for how they acted towards me and the sweet gift they gave me! But back to Robin being at the epicenter of this- after seeing Robin rave about Kimberly Brock’s book The River Witch- I knew I had to read it-and we started following each other on Twitter. Which led to me getting to know her and becoming part of She Reads Blog Network- and finding another group of people to talk books with.

5. Various authors such as Erika Marks, Erika Robuck,Nichole Bernier Jenn McKinlay, Lucy Burdette, Cleo Coyle, and Alison Pace. xoxo to all you ladies for responding to social media, for writing great books- books that make you think, transport you to another time, a book that is like a warm and cozy sweater- just makes you feel good and happy.

6. Deidre (aka Yankeefan2975) a Twitter friend that is up to date on Days of Our Lives, books and movies. She makes the Twitter fun!

7. Naturally,  family and true friends 🙂 They make life good!

8. Zeke, my beautiful dog. He was great, he loved me and he instinctively knew when a hug or doggy grin was needed to brighten the day. I still miss him every day; but at least not as much as I did when he first passed away.

xoxo

Giveaway and Review: Holiday Buzz by Cleo Coyle

Ya’ll know I love cozy books, Cleo Coyle, and coffee. And I’m beyond excited for Holiday Buzz to be released on December 4th! But here’s a chance to win the book before it’s released.

Cozy Mystery Reviews has reviewed Holiday Buzz and Cleo Coyle is giving away a copy to one lucky reader! Here are the links for the review and for the giveaway:

Holiday Buzz by Cleo Coyle- a review by Cozy Mystery Reviews

Holiday Buzz Giveaway

Good luck! And happy reading!

Pay it Forward with a Cozy Mystery: Cleo Coyle

I adore cozy mysteries. Absolutely adore them. Have been reading them for YEARS. Joanne Fluke was probably my first cozy mystery. So deciding my favorite cozy author to talk about was pretty hard.

What tipped me in the favor of Cleo Coyle was this fact: my brother picked these books out for me. About four Christmases ago, he gave me the first book in her series. It was love at first read while enjoying my mug of hot chocolate.

While most cozy books take me to a magical place, Cleo Coyle and her mysteries (along with her coffee recipes!) makes my days brighter.

In Praise of the “Cozy”

According to Wikipedia a “cozy” is this: A Cozy is a subgenre of crime fiction in which sex and violence are downplayed or treated humorously, and the crime and detection take place in a small, socially intimate community. Or as my brother calls them: Books about women who are coffee-shop owners, bakers, or flower shop owners who solve mysteries.

A cozy is not high-literary reading; it’s not a book with a title that you throw around in conversation to impress book-friends (or book-snobs). A cozy is not a type of book that will generally take the world by storm (Think Twilight, The Hunger Games, Fifty Shades of Grey, Harry Potter, etc).

However, a cozy is still good reading. I like that the books have a small community, a good cast of characters, and are generally likeable.  I like that reading a cozy is like visiting with old friends.  Curling up on the couch, with a cup of hot chocolate and a cozy is my ideal way to spend a lazy day with nothing to do.

If a cozy book sounds good to you, look over this list of “cozies”- maybe you’ll find something to read!

1. Joanne Fluke– Hannah Swensen Series

2. Denise Swanson– Scumble River Mysteries

3. Kate Collins– Flower Shop Mysteries

4. Ellen Byerrum– A Crime of Fashion Series

5. Cleo Coyle– Coffeehouse Mysteries

6. Diane Mott Davidson– Goldy Schulz Mysteries

These are just a few of the cozy books I enjoy- there are many more. You don’t have to begin the books from the beginning of series, either (although I highly recommend beginning the Hannah Swensen from the beginning- as the last few have not been as good as the first several, in my opinion.)

Reading, no matter what the form, whether it’s cozy, mystery/suspense, fiction, or many other genres- Reading is cool. Reading makes you part of a special group of people. Reading is a pleasure and one a person should enjoy as often as possible.

Happy Reading!