I’m so excited to be a stop on the blog tour for author Karen C. Whalen and her new book A Stewed Observation. This is the fourth book in her A Dinner Club Murder Mysteries Cozy series.
A Stewed Observation (A Dinner Club Murder Mysteries)
4th in Series
The Wild Rose Press, Inc (August 6, 2018)
Print Length: 214 pages
Digital ASIN: B07DYVWHFY
This was a fabulous read with characters that were well developed. I definitely want to read more of this series.
~A Chick Who Reads
Readers will get a taste of Ireland, literal and figurative . . . A good read . . .
~Here’s How It Happened
The Gourmet Dinner Club travels to Ireland to enjoy Irish cuisine while staying at a medieval, ivy-covered castle. Jane Marsh hopes Dale Capricorn will ask her to marry him at this romantic dream destination. But her plans are put on hold when the elderly castle owner becomes violent, a club member restrains him, and he collapses and dies.
The police believe the mysterious death is murder and begin to suspect one of the club’s members. Dale leaves for home on a business emergency, and as the lone single gal in the club full of couples, Jane is thrown into the company of Griffin O’Doherty, the handsome Irishman who stands to inherit the castle.
Jane must prove her friend’s innocence by solving the crime. Which of the sweet-tempered Irish could be a callous killer?
Karen C. Whalen is the author of a culinary cozy series, the “dinner club murder mysteries.” The first four in the series are: Everything Bundt the Truth, Not According to Flan, No Grater Evil, and A Stewed Observation. The first book in the series tied for First Place in the Suspense Novel category of the 2017 IDA Contest sponsored by Oklahoma Romance Writers of America. Her books are similar to those written by cozy authors Jessica Beck and Joanne Fluke. She worked for many years as a paralegal at a law firm in Denver, Colorado and has been a columnist and regular contributor to The National Paralegal Reporter magazine. She believes that it’s never too late to try something new. She loves to host dinner clubs, entertain friends, ride bicycles, hike in the mountains, and read cozy murder mysteries.
Website – http://karencwhalen.com
Pinterest – https://www.pinterest.com/whalenkarenc
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/whalenkarenc
Twitter – https://twitter.com/whalenkc
When did you know that you wanted to be an author? What things, if any, influenced that decision?
I wanted to become a writer at about the same time I learned to read. Most writers will say they’ve always wanted to write because of their love for reading and books. Nothing original about it. That’s always how I’ve felt, too.
With so many cozies being written today, what makes your books stand out from the crowd?
A lot of lawyers are writers because people working in the legal field work with words. I was a paralegal, so my protagonist is a paralegal with a little different perspective than a lawyer. I bring the investigative skills of a paralegal into the story. Also, the plots revolve around a dinner club group. There are many culinary cozies with a professional baker, such as the donut shop mysteries, the cookie shop mysteries, and the wine and cheese shop mysteries, but my cozies are for people who are not professional cooks. So, I guess my cozies are for the layman, the one who isn’t an attorney or an expert baker. Anyone can imagine themselves in the shoes of my protagonist.
Do you work from an outline or plot or do you just see where the characters take you?
A little of both. I use a plot board and a ten-to-twelve page outline, and then the characters take it from there. The parts of the story I love the most are the ones written by my characters—the scenes that are created off the board and those that depart from the outline.
Do you read your reviews? Do you respond to them, good or bad? Do you do anything special to get those reviews?
I don’t read all the reviews. I usually read the first ones when the books are released and I rarely respond to them. I do send out ARCs (advanced reader copies) in order to generate reviews.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Don’t settle for less. Go for what you want.
Do you think that the cover plays an important part in someone buying your book(s)? Who designs your book covers?
Yes. My covers are designed by Kim Mendoza, one of the artists who designs covers for The Wild Rose Press.
Please give us an insight into your main characters. What do you think makes them special?
In the dinner club series, amateur sleuth Jane Marsh is always game to try new things now that she’s in the empty nest stage of her life, including joining an exclusive dinner club. Stumbling across dead bodies has also developed into one of her hobbies. Using paralegal skills honed at her job in a Denver law firm, she knows how to conduct an investigation. But her suspicious mind collides with her trusting nature as she stirs up trouble while serving up one dinner party after another.
What have you learned about yourself since becoming an author?
I have a creative side that is clamoring to show itself. My mind takes off into this other world I’ve created and I enjoy spending time there.
Do you write full-time or part-time?
What do your plans for future projects include?
The idea for a new series is brewing in the back of my mind, but it’s still in the conceptual stage.
What do you think the hardest part of writing is? What is the easiest?
Finding the time is the hardest. Distractions are a time-suck. The easiest thing is to imagine what my main character is doing at any given moment and how she would react to situations if she were in my shoes. The characters can dominate my thoughts at times.
What type of books do you like to read? Who are some of your favorite authors?
Cozy mysteries, of course. Jessica Beck, Joanne Fluke, M.C. Beaton, Leslie Meier, and the all-time queen of cozies, Agatha Christie.
What is the one thing you would like your readers to know about you?
I’m married to a wonderful, supportive man. We have two grown sons, daughters-in-law, and grandchildren who are my world.
Do you have anything specific you would like to say to your readers?
I love to hear from my readers and I especially love the recipes they share with me. Those recipes often find their way into my books.
How can readers discover more about you and your work?
Amazon Author Page:
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