Homicide in Hollywood SHADOW OF DOUBT by Nancy Cole Silverman

The Price of Fame…

SHADOW OF DOUBTRoll out the red carpet for SHADOW OF DOUBT. The first Carol Childs mystery has enough star-studded scandals  and malicious murders to keep you guessing until the very end. Premiere day is December 2, 2014!

When a top Hollywood Agent is found poisoned in the bathtub of her home, suspicion quickly turns to one of her two nieces. But Carol Childs, a reporter for a local talk radio station, doesn’t believe it. The suspect is her neighbor and friend, and also her primary source for insider industry news. When a media frenzy pits one niece against the other—and the body count starts to rise—Carol knows she must save her friend from being tried in courts of public opinion.

But even the most seasoned reporter can be surprised, and when a Hollywood psychic shows up in Carol’s studio one night and warns her there will be more deaths, things take an unexpected turn. Suddenly nobody is above suspicion. Carol must challenge both her friendship and the facts, and the only thing she knows for certain is the killer is still out there and the closer she gets to the truth, the more danger she’s in.
As always, feel free to reach out if you have questions or comments – to the Hen House or Nancy.  We’d love to hear from you.
Cheers!
Hen House Staff

Happy Release Day, FIT TO BE DEAD!

FIT TO BE DEADJoin us in chatting with author Nancy G. West about her ever-hilarious amateur sleuth, Aggie Mundeen, the key to creating tension in a romance, and her personal favorite mysteries.

When you first jumped back into writing, you authored a book with Aggie as a secondary character and her friend Meredith as the lead. What did you love so much about Aggie that made you realize she needed her own series?  

Meredith, twenty-four, is smart, trusting, and a bit naïve. When she faces a life-threatening dilemma in Nine Days to Evil, she has to dredge up courage she didn’t know she had.

At thirty-nine, Aggie has gained enough perspective not to take the roller coaster of life, or herself, too seriously. With her wry humor and insatiable curiosity, she’s apt to jump into situations that intrigue her because she ignores that still, small voice that tells her to be cautious. Which makes her unpredictable and fun.

And a follow-up: Why did you decide to make Aggie Mundeen an advice columnist?  

Single and approaching forty, Aggie fears nothing but the black hole of decrepitude, otherwise known as middle-age. She knows her time to find a soul mate is limited, so she’s obsessed with shaping up and staying young. She continuously studies about ways to postpone aging, so she’s the perfect person to share what she learns with readers.

The “Stay Young With Aggie” column is all about helping readers feel healthy and youthful. What are a few of your favorite bits of Aggie wisdom?  

“If you can’t breathe, you can’t exercise. Send those spandex pinchers back.”

“Those Thermatone Pills that promise to flush toxins from your aching joints and muscles after you exercise were probably smuggled in from Hongotovia. Stick with aspirin.”

“I’m not big on massage products, but Nuvoface seems to work: ‘Massaged over face and neck, battery-operated NuvoFace micro-currents lift and tone within minutes.’ Instructions say to add Moisturizing Mist and Conductivity Cream. I don’t recommend it. You might get startling results.”

Aggie gives serious answers, too.

FIT TO BE DEAD is set in San Antonio, after Aggie moved to Texas from Chicago, and you do such a great job of staying accurate to the city. Do you think it’s more difficult using a real city setting rather than making your own fictional town? (And what kind of research goes into it?)  

I know San Antonio so well, it’s easier for me to depict it. But I still have to check streets, locations, and mindsets in 1997. I’d rather use my energy creating characters because that’s the most fun. My characters, screwball as they may be, exhibit traits I’ve actually witnessed. Exaggerated, of course.

Aggie has complicated romantic feelings (and a huge hidden secret!) regarding her feelings for Sam, her close friend. Does this page-turning tension come from the experience of you or someone you know?  

I think most people, when they’re dating, withhold some part of themselves, wanting to show the other person their best side. It’s like a mating dance: get closer—but not too close. Not everyone’s secrets are as life-changing as Aggie’s, but withholding one’s true self creates tension. Will each discover what the other is really like? Will truth destroy the relationship? Can both overcome the barriers? Stay tuned…

Finally, tell us your favorite mystery novel and what draws you to that particular author and the genre as a whole.  

Mysteries appeal to me because they illustrate how wrongs are made right. My favorite novels show characters reacting to upheaval: John Grisham’s A Time to Kill; Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird; Michael Connelly’s Blood Work; Markus Zusak’s The Book Thief; William Kent Krueger’s Ordinary Grace. And so many others. Some of these books are not classified as mysteries. But they are. The mystery is whose spirit, in the midst of chaos, will rise to the highest human level.

Happy Book Birthday! FIT TO BE DEAD by Nancy G. West

Stay Young or Stay Alive?

FIT TO BE DEADThrow on some tennis shoes and run to the bookstore, because Nancy G. West’s FIT TO BE DEAD releases today! We can’t get enough of Aggie Mundeen’s health club misadventures. Exercise has never been so fun… order your copy today.

“Fit to be Dead has it all: intriguing characters that point to romance, an engrossing plot, a compelling puzzle and well-disguised clues–a fun read.” – L.C. Hayden, Award-Winning Author of the Harry Bronson Mystery Series

“West’s fine writing and clever plot reveal her mad sense of humor…She has produced a beautifully written book, brimming with wry humor, and a cleverly woven mystery. Highly recommended!” – Diana Hockley, International Reviewer for NetGalley and Kings River Life Magazine

“Joining a health club has never been so dangerous…or so amusing.” - Karen McCullough, Author of Shadow of a Doubt and A Question of Fire

As always, feel free to reach out if you have questions or comments – to the Hen House or Nancy.  We’d love to hear from you.

Cheers!

 Hen House Staff

Lassos, Lies, & Love Triangles

DANG NEAR DEAD by Nancy G. West

DANG NEAR DEAD by Nancy G. WestDude Ranch Disaster

Saddle up for a wild ride–Nancy G. West’s DANG NEAR DEAD is a blue-ribbon sequel.  Aggie Mundeen returns in her second mystery, and we can’t get enough of her saucy wit and sleuthing.  Look for the second in the series when it releases on September 30!

Aggie vacations with Sam and Meredith at a Texas Hill Country dude ranch with plans to advise her column readers how to stay young and fresh in summer.  Except for wranglers, dudes, heat, snakes, and poison ivy, what could go wrong?

When an expert rider is thrown from a horse and lies in a coma, Aggie is convinced somebody caused the fall. Despite Sam’s warnings, Aggie is determined to expose the assailant. She concocts ingenious sleuthing methods that strain their dicey relationship as she probes secrets of the ranch and its inhabitants.  After she scatters a hornet’s next of cowboys, she discovers more than one hombre in the bunch would like to slit her throat.

As always, feel free to reach out if you have questions or comments – to the Hen House or Nancy.  We’d love to hear from you.

Cheers!

Henery Press Interview of Wendy Tyson

DEADLY ASSETSTo celebrate the release of her second Allison Campbell mystery, Wendy Tyson stopped by to chat about being named one of Examiner.com’s ten best mysteries for book clubs, her DEADLY ASSETS launch party plans, and Allison’s top three pieces of image advice.

HP:  KILLER IMAGE, the first in the Allison Campbell Mystery Series, was included on Examiner.com’s 2014 list of the ten best mysteries for book clubs. Congratulations!! How did you celebrate the news (and are you personally a book-clubber)?  

WT:  Thank you! I was pretty excited—and very honored. I absolutely love book clubs. I’ve been a book-clubber in the past, although I’m not one now. I meet with book clubs fairly frequently, though, and it’s one of my favorite ways of connecting with readers—whether in person or through Skype. I’ve met some fabulous people that way and am always amazed and inspired by the bonds that develop between members.

As for celebrating…with wine and chocolate, of course! My husband brought home a bottle of French Chardonnay (my favorite) and we broke out the good dark chocolate. We toasted to book clubs that night.

HP:  In DEADLY ASSETS, Allison doesn’t know who to trust. Fantastic tension, by the way! You kept us guessing until the very end. Did you outline the plot before you wrote the first draft, or did the plot develop during the writing process itself?  

WT:  I don’t typically outline before a first draft. I usually have a vague idea for a story, and I write free-hand in notebooks, developing the threads and making connections in a stream-of-conscious manner. That’s how I started DEADLY ASSETS—I had a concept (two disappearances) and I had to figure out whether there was a connection and, if so, what it was. Once I had a basic idea for the overall story, I started typing. The plot developed as I wrote. In fact, I wasn’t even sure whodunit until the end! After I finished the first draft, I went back and created a general outline to be sure all the pieces had come together in a logical fashion.  Then I edited…again and again.

HP:  Despite her past dislike for dogs, Brutus has become a part of the family since Allison rescued him in KILLER IMAGE. Do you and your family have pets you share that same bond with?  

WT:  We sure do! I’m a dog fanatic. I love all animals (in fact, for most of my youth, I wanted to be two things: a writer and a veterinarian), but dogs are particularly special to me and my family. My husband and I adoptedTyson Q&A Dog Pic July 2014 our first dog before we were married, and we’ve never been dog-less. We’re now the proud parents of two Labradors—Molly and Driggs. Molly will be thirteen on Friday. Last fall, she was diagnosed with cancer and sent home to the equivalent of hospice. The prognosis didn’t sit right with us, though, and we sought a second opinion with a local specialist. We didn’t want to put her through anything traumatic, but after some tests, the specialist said she thought she could stop the spread—and maybe even cure her—through surgery. Molly’s still with us, and we’re grateful for every extra day together. The baby, Driggs, is two. He’s a love, although I don’t think Molly has ever quite forgiven us for bringing him home.

By the way—the launch party for DEADLY ASSETS will celebrate dogs with Allison-inspired raffles (including a Kindle Paperwhite!) to benefit Home At Last Dog Rescue, a local charity that fosters homeless dogs and finds them forever homes. I hope readers in the Philadelphia area will join us!

HP:  One of the things we love about your books is that almost all of your characters (even the bad guys) are well-developed and three-dimensional. There is always more to them than meets the eye. Where do you get your inspiration for such complex and mysterious characters?  

WT:  The real world. While I obviously don’t write about real people, I’m a student in the sense that I watch and study how people behave and react to situations. I have a background in psychology, and the field has always fascinated me (as it fascinates Allison).  People are complex and often contradictory—and the choices we make are not always logical or in our own best interest.

KILLER IMAGEAt one point in KILLER IMAGE, Jason says, “Wake up, Al. People don’t come all neatly packaged. You’ve spent your whole adult life trying to force people into these tidy little boxes. Things don’t work that way. People mess up. They get scared. They change their minds. What’s under the surface comes out, and you know what? It’s not always pretty. That’s okay. It’s called life.” I think Jason’s words capture my own view of the world. People are complicated. That very fact can cause life to be messy—but it sure makes for interesting fiction.

HP:  As a skilled image consultant on Philadelphia’s Main Line, Allison has the opportunity to work with various types of clients. What would be her top three pieces of advice to someone looking to improve their image?

WT:  Great question! Allison would say:

 1)  Develop gratitude for your body. A good image starts with positive feelings about your body. So often we compare ourselves to others and judge ourselves by what we are not rather than what we are. Learn to love and appreciate the inherent beauty of your own body and treat yourself well. When we stop to appreciate all the wonderful things our bodies can do, we cultivate positive feelings of gratitude. So rather than criticizing yourself for perceived flaws related to the way you look, concentrate on the things you and your body can accomplish—and nurture yourself. Take care of your body and that care will show. Eat healthy food, drink plenty of water, and exercise. While it’s practically impossible to avoid stress, learn techniques for handling stress in healthy ways—walk the dog, write in a journal, talk to a friend or counselor, meditate, take a relaxing bath, get a massage. The key is finding what works for you.

2)  Wear clothes that make you feel good. Comfort is important—avoid anything too restrictive or tight that could make you feel self-conscious. Think about the style you want to project, and then choose clothes that fit you well and make you feel good while projecting the look you want. Invest in a few good pieces and pay attention to the details (like accessories). Don’t feel that you need to be a slave to the latest trends, though. It’s more important that you choose clothes that give you confidence. Confidence is incredibly alluring.

3)  Do things you love. When your mind and body are engaged in activities you feel passionate about, the enthusiasm shows in the way you express and carry yourself. So remember to keep the joy in your life and have fun!

Now if only I can follow Allison’s advice!

Book Release Day – DEADLY ASSETS by Wendy Tyson

Dark and Edgy DEADLY ASSETS by Wendy Tyson

Sinister Family Secrets…

DEADLY ASSETSFind a quiet corner, because you’ll want to savor every intriguing word of Wendy Tyson’s latest novel, DEADLY ASSETS. The second book in the Allison Campbell Mystery Series is a compelling page-turner you won’t want to miss. Download or order your copy today.

“The book is well-crafted and hard to put down… The characters leap out of the pages and wring your emotions as you follow them through the intricate web of family secrets, corporate transgressions, and rivalries that have lasted generations. Take a trip to the bookstore and pick this one up. You won’t regret it.” – The Big Thrill, International Thriller Writers

“No sophomore slump for Wendy Tyson. Two total different clients, two mysterious disappearances, two sets of suspects, and lots of possibilities all make for a tightly woven mystery with lots of twists and turns.” – Fiction Addiction Books

As always, feel free to reach out if you have questions or comments – to the Hen House or Wendy.  We’d love to hear from you.

Cheers!

Hen House Staff

Strike It Rich! DOUBLE STRIKE by Gretchen Archer

Is Lady Luck on Her Side?

DOUBLE STRIKEIt’s a safe bet that you’ll love Gretchen Archer’s DOUBLE STRIKE! Davis Way is back with a vengeance (and a Twitter account) in her third hilarious Crime Caper. Get your copy October 21! #WinBig!

Bellissimo Resort and Casino Super Spy Davis Way knows three things: Cooking isn’t a prerequisite for a happy marriage, don’t trust men who look like David Hasselhoff, and money doesn’t grow on Christmas trees. None of which help when a storm hits the Gulf a week before the most anticipated event in Bellissimo history: the Strike It Rich Sweepstakes. Securing the guests, staff, and property might take a stray bullet. Or two.

Davis Way has three problems: She’s desperate to change her marital status, she has a new boss who speaks in hashtags, and Bianca Sanders has confiscated her clothes. All of which bring on a headache hot enough to spark a fire. Solving her problems means stealing a car. From a dingbat lawyer.

Davis Way has three goals: Keep the Sanders family out of prison, regain her footing in her relationship, and find the genius who wrote the software for futureGaming. One of which, the manhunt one, is iffy. Because when Alabama hides someone, they hide them good.

DOUBLE STRIKE. A VIP invite to an extraordinary high-stakes gaming event, as thieves, feds, dance instructors, shady bankers, kidnappers, and gold waiters go all in. #Don’tMissIt

As always, feel free to reach out if you have questions or comments – to the Hen House or Gretchen. We’d love to hear from you.

Cheers!

Hen House Staff

Happy Release Day! DEATH IN PERSPECTIVE

Bringing Sass to the Stage

DEATH IN PERSPECTIVE set webOpening night is finally here! We’re celebrating DEATH IN PERSPECTIVE’s release with an early after-party (because we love it that much!). Cherry Tucker’s hilarious theatrical debut is one that can’t be missed. Sit back, grab your copy, and enjoy the show!

“Death in Perspective is one fasten-your-seatbelt, pedal-to-the-metal mystery, and Cherry Tucker is the perfect sleuth to have behind the wheel. Smart, feisty, as tough as she is tender, Cherry’s got justice in her crosshairs, and Death in Perspective is an accomplished addition to this winning series.” — Tina Whittle, Author of the Tai Randolph Mysteries

“Loved it! I feel I might have dated Cherry Tucker once, she’s that real; she’s also funny, tough, and brilliant. Now she’s even involved in theatre–maybe that’s where we met.” — Phillip DePoy, Edgar Award Winning Author

Visit us on the Henery Press website to find out more. And as always, feel free to reach out if you have questions or comments – to the Hen House or Larissa. We’d love to hear from you.

Cheers!

Hen House Staff

Murder Hits the Gym! FIT TO BE DEAD

Murder Hits the Gym! FIT TO BE DEAD by Nancy G. West

Exercise Can Be Deadly…

FIT TO BE DEADToned, tight, and polished! We think the cover for Nancy G. West’s FIT TO BE DEAD shaped up beautifully. Grab your water bottles and get warmed up for an award-winning humorous mystery–FIT TO BE DEAD hits treadmills and bookstores everywhere on July 29.

Aggie Mundeen, single and pushing forty, fears nothing but middle age. When she moves from Chicago to San Antonio, she decides she better shape up before anybody discovers she writes the column, “Stay Young with Aggie.” She takes Aspects of Aging at University of the Holy Trinity and plunges into exercise at Fit and Firm.

Rusty at flirting and mechanically inept, she irritates a slew of male exercisers, then stumbles into murder. She’d like to impress the attractive detective with her sleuthing skills. But when the killer comes after her, the health club evacuates semi-clad patrons, and the detective has to stall his investigation to save Aggie’s derriere.

Be sure to Like us on Facebook  to find out more about what’s going on in the Hen House . And as always, feel free to reach out if you have questions or comments – to the Hen House or Nancy. We’d love to hear from you.

Cheers!

Hen House Staff

The Art of Murder – FATAL BRUSHSTROKE

The Art of Murder FATAL BRUSHSTROKE

by Sybil Johnson

FATAL BRUSHSTROKEA Brush with Death…

The gallery is open for FATAL BRUSHSTROKE, our newest vibrant work of art! Follow tole-painter Rory Anderson as she tries to paint her way out of a corner (and a murder charge!). Look for Sybil Johnson’s first Aurora Anderson mystery when it hits shelves November 18.

A dead body in her garden and a homicide detective on her doorstep…

Computer programmer and tole painting enthusiast Aurora (Rory) Anderson doesn’t envision finding either when she steps outside to investigate the frenzied yipping coming from her own back yard. After all, she lives in Vista Beach, a quiet California beach community where violent crime is rare and murder even rarer.

When suspicion falls on Rory, she embarks on a quest to identify the killer and clear her name. Can Rory unearth the truth before she encounters her own brush with death?

As always, feel free to reach out if you have questions or comments – to the Hen House or Sybil. We’d love to hear from you.

Cheers!

Hen House Staff

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