Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Free Podcast of my Short Story, Taking Care

Super busy, but still need a little mystery in your life?

Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine has a free podcast of my short story, Taking Care, available on their website. They also have other free stories available by podcast on their site. Perfect to listen while you sneak in a walk, or finally get that closet cleaned. 

Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine also recently announced that they are launching a bigger podcast beyond the website. So stay tuned for more great mystery shorts. 

Monday, May 13, 2024

Russell & Holmes Day with Laurie R. King


It's the 30th anniversary of the beloved Mary Russell series by Laurie R. King. Laurie is celebrating with Russell and Holmes Days before major mystery conventions. I recently went to the Maryland edition and it was great fun. In addition to hearing from Laurie, we heard from a 1920s costume historian and Holmes expert Peter Blau. We were also treated to a knife throwing demonstration.  

I've been a big fan of the Mary Russell series starting with book number one, The Bee Keeper's Apprentice. The heroine, Mary Russell, is an intellectual match for Sherlock Holmes and the stories are great adventures. The time period and Mary's problem solving is always fun. 

Laurie's latest book is The Lantern's Dance. This mystery involves secrets involving Sherlock's son, Damian, and Sherlock's uncle. Lots of puzzles and mystery. 

The last Russell and Holmes Day is in Nashville at Bouchercon on Tuesday, August 27th. Russell fans won't want to miss this one. 

Speakers include:

Andrew Gulli has been the editor of the revived Strand Magazine since 1999. He has published hundreds of new and established mystery writers, and in his role as literary sleuth, has discovered and published previously unknown stories by masters ranging from Tennessee Williams, Ernest Hemingway, and John Steinbeck to James M. Cain and Joseph Heller. He uncovered fifteen previously unknown short stories by Dashiell Hammett, a J.M. Barrie play spoofing Sherlock Holmes, an H.G. Wells ghost story, and a novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald. 

Ciciley Hoffman is an award-winning costume designer, wardrobe stylist, image consultant, and fashion editor who designs costumes for film, television, and music videos, advises for fashion brands, and consults with artists and recording artists, creating looks from rock to vintage, avant garde to country, haute couture to period, and everything in between.  She volunteers with Fashion Is for Every Body, committed to normalizing inclusion in life through the art of fashion. She is an embroiderer and vintage enthusiast with extensive knowledge of the history of fashion, clothing customs, and construction. She holds BA degrees from Oberlin College in Theatre and German Studies with Honors, with an enduring interest in cats and hats.

Honeytree Meadery of Nashville is both an apiary and a meadery: they keep bees, and they use the honey to make a series of fabulous and creative meads (honey wines.) What is so fascinating about bees? How does living with them teach us about our place in the world? Sherlock Holmes would know—and so our speakers from Honeytree. As they say, “At Honeytree Meadery, it starts with the bees and ends with a buzz.”

Friday, May 3, 2024

Mystery Writers of America Announces 2024 Edgar Award Winners

Mystery Writers of America announced the winners of the Edgar awards this week. The list is a great place to find new reads for your TBR pile. Congratulations to all of the winners. 

Best NovelFlags on the Bayou by James Lee Burke (Atlantic Monthly Press)

Best First Novel by an American Author: The Peacock and the Sparrow by I.S. Berry (Atria)

Best Paperback Original: Vera Wong’s Unsolicited Advice for Murderers by Jesse Q. Sutanto (Berkley)

Best Fact Crime: Crooked: The Roaring '20s Tale of a Corrupt Attorney General, a Crusading Senator, and the Birth of the American Political Scandal by Nathan Masters (Hachette)

Best Critical/Biopgraphical: Love Me Fierce in Danger: The Life of James Ellroy by Steven Powell (Bloomsbury Academic)

Best Short Story: Hallowed Ground by Linda Castillo (Minotaur)

Best Juvenile: The Ghosts of Rancho Espanto by Adrianna Cuevas (Farrar, Straus and Giroux BFYR)

Best Young Adult: Girl Forgotten by April Henry (Christy Ottaviano)

Best Television Episode Teleplay: Escape from Shit Mountain–Poker Face by Nora Zuckerman & Lilla Zuckerman (Peacock)

Robert L. Fish Memorial Award: The Body in Cell Two by Kate HohlEllery Queen Mystery Magazine, May-June 2023 (Dell Magazines)

The Simon & Schuster Mary Higgins Clark Award: Play the Fool by Lina Chern (Bantam)

The G.P. Putnam’s Sons Sue Grafton Memorial AwardAn Evil Heart by Linda Castillo (Minotaur)

The Lilian Jackson Braun Memorial Award: Glory Be by Danielle Arceneaux (Pegasus Crime)

Special Awards

Grand Master: Katherine Hall Page, R.L. Stine

Ellery Queen Award: Michaela Hamilton, Kensington Books

Sunday, January 29, 2023

The Agatha Award Nominees


Hurray! The Agatha Award nominees have been announced. Winners will be chosen at this year's Malice Domestic Conference in Bethesda, MD, April 28-30. It's a great conference for those who love traditional mysteries. 
Best Contemporary Novel
Bayou Book Thief, Ellen Byron (Berkley Prime Crime)
Death By Bubble Tea, Jennifer J. Chow (Berkley)
Fatal Reunion, Annette Dashofy (Level Best Books)
Dead Man's Leap, Tina de Bellegarde (Level Best Books)
A World of Curiosities, Louise Penny (Minotaur)

Best Historical Novel
The Counterfeit Wife, Mally Becker (Level Best Books)
Because I Could Not Stop for Death, Amanda Flower (Berkley)
The Lindbergh Nanny, Mariah Fredericks (Minotaur)
In Place of Fear, Catriona McPherson (Mobius)
Under a Veiled Moon, Karen Odden (Crooked Lane Books)

Best First Novel
Cheddar Off Dead, Korina Moss (St. Martin’s)
Death in the Aegean, M. A. Monnin (Level Best Books)
The Bangalore Detectives Club, Harini Nagendra (Constable)
Devil’s Chew Toy, Rob Osler (Crooked Lane Books)
The Finalist, Joan Long (Level Best Books)
The Gallery of Beauties, Nina Wachsman (Level Best Books)

Best Short Story
"Beauty and the Beyotch," Barb Goffman (Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine, Feb. 2022)
"There Comes a Time," Cynthia Kuhn, Malice Domestic Murder Most Diabolical (Wildside Press)
"Fly Me to the Morgue," Lisa Q Mathews, Malice Domestic Mystery Most Diabolical (Wildside Press)
"The Minnesota Twins Meet Bigfoot," Richie Narvaez, Land of 10,000 Thrills, Bouchercon Anthology (Down & Out Books)
"The Invisible Band," Art Taylor, Edgar & Shamus Go Golden (Down & Out Books)

Best Non-Fiction
The Life of Crime: Detecting the History of Mysteries and Their Creators, Martin Edwards (HarperCollins)
The Handbook to Agatha Christie: The Bloomsbury Handbook to Agatha Christie, Mary Anna Evans and J. C. Bernthal (Bloomsbury Academic)
The Science of Murder: The Forensics of Agatha Christie, Carla Valentine (Sourcebooks)
Promophobia: Taking the Mystery Out of Promoting Crime Fiction, Diane Vallere Ed. (Sisters in Crime)
Agatha Christie: An Elusive Woman, Lucy Worsley (Pegasus Crime)

​Best Children's/YA Mystery
Daybreak on Raven Island, Fleur Bradley (Viking Books for Young People)
In Myrtle Peril, Elizabeth C. Bunce (Algonquin Young Readers)
#shedeservedit, Greg Herren (Bold Strokes Books)
Sid Johnson and the Phantom Slave Stealer, Frances Schoonmaker (Auctus Publishers)
Enola Holmes and the Elegant Escapade, Nancy Springer (Wednesday Books)

Friday, July 9, 2021

THE CORPSE WITH THE IRON WILL and Bombay Bramble Breakfast Bubbles

Cathy Ace is back with the latest installment of her Cait Morgan mysteries with The Corpse with the Iron Will and a delicious beverage that breathes summertime....

Cait Morgan is a Welsh Canadian professor of criminal psychology, who cannot help but trip over a dead body whenever she travels…which she does often. But, this time, a corpse is discovered next door to our sleuth, so she’s faced with a particularly difficult challenge – assessing her neighbors in moody, mountainous British Columbia as potential murder suspects. 

If you enjoy Christie-like traditional mysteries, and you like to travel to a different location every time you work to untangle to the clues and red herrings, then Cait Morgan is the sleuth for you. Ably abetted by her partner in crime and life – retired homicide detective, husband Bud Anderson – Cait applies her academic smarts to a case that’s, on this occasion, far too close to home for comfort.

This is the tenth book in the award-winning series, which is being developed by UK production company Free@LastTV (Agatha Raisin) as a recurring series of 90-minute, made-for-TV movies. 

(Photo taken by the author, in her front garden – the book’s “natural habitat”.) 

“Bombay Bramble Breakfast Bubbles”

If you put fruit in a drink, it’s officially a drink you can have for breakfast/brunch, right? If that’s something you agree with, this tipple is for you (though it’s refreshing and delicious at any time of day). Both Cait Morgan and Cathy Ace enjoy the odd G&T, so when Bombay Gin launched their Bramble version (with the flavours of bramble, blackberry, and raspberry) the author felt she had to taste it, on behalf of her character. Having tested (relentlessly!) various combinations, this is now a favourite. Using frozen fruit is best – it gradually melts as you sip, and you get to eat fruit when you’ve finished the alcohol, which makes this close to being a health drink. 

Pop the ice, frozen berries, and gin into a large glass, top up with your choice of lemon/lime soda (or British lemonade, which will make for a sweeter drink, so if you use that, add a dash of lemon juice/a slice of lemon) and enjoy. Cheers, folks!

Bombay Bramble: 1oz (or more, if you want…maybe you’re brunching at home, so no driving required)

- 7-Up/Sprite: whole can

- Frozen berries 

- Ice

You can find Cathy on Facebook: Cathy Ace - Author | FacebookTwitter: @AceCathy and Instagram: @cathyace1

Friday, December 11, 2020

Drink with Reads: Madness of the Q


Gray Basnight joins us today on Drinks with Reads to celebrate his new book, The Madness of Q, jus tin time for the holidays...


Glad to be back with Drinks with Reads. Here’s a stiff one, in honor of cryptologist and math Professor Sam Teagarden who makes his return in Madness of the Q.  He’s begrudgingly recruited by the FBI and CIA to help global chaos triggered by discovery of a 1st Century document found beneath an ancient church in northern Israel. Apparently written by Christian monks, it causes mass madness among cults and fanatics. Is it the encoded missing gospel, known in the theology world as the Quelle Document, or Q Document?  


Sam Teagarden accepts the mission to find out, only to learn that his main job, which has him careening from New York to Israel, Venice, Rome, and Berlin—is his own survival.  So Sam, if you make it back to New York, mix one of these, take a deep breath, and sip slowly. 


Have a Q-Tonic while devouring Madness of the Q

  • Mix 3 oz of Quince brand gin with a dash of Quassia brand bitter spice and shake with ice; then strain over fresh rocks
  • Add desired amount of Q Tonic brand tonic water (which contains real quinine, so take note if you have health issues) 
  • Sprinkle two drops of Bénédictine sweet liqueur in honor of the mad monks who may have caused a 21st Century stir of another kind
  • Instead of a twist, garnish with little men scrambling up and out of the glass, reflecting the madness of it all
  • Sip and enjoy

There you have it, a tangy version of the classic Gin and Tonic to accompany and soothe the fictional frenzy invoked through Madness of the Q.


More About Madness of the Q


The Quelle Document (German for the word “source”), widely known as The Q Doc, is a theorized missing source for much of the New Testament.


In Madness of the Q, it’s no longer a mere theory.  It’s real.  And when news of its existence leaks, Jonestown-style suicide erupts across the globe among two fervent groups who alternately fear or cheer that it may repudiate the foundations of Christianity. Because of his fame as a cryptologist in the prequel Flight of the Fox, math Professor Sam Teagarden returns to help determine its authenticity and end the spreading madness.  

Unfortunately, no one figured on a former Mossad agent hired by the Vatican to kill anyone who gets close to the truth, or an opposing atheist cult bent on making sure the truth is revealed.


Thomas Perry says: “Madness of the Q is a wild and breathless pursuit with Sam Teagarden on the run, desperate to connect with the right people and evade the wrong ones from New York to Israel to Italy to Germany in a non-stop plot that reminds us of Dan Brown, Ludlum, Fleming, and maybe even a bit of Umberto Eco.” 

— author of The Butcher’s Boy, The Burglar, and, A Small Town.



Comments are welcome via my website or at graybasnight.com.  



About the author: After almost three decades in broadcast news, where he wrote fact-based stories, Gray Basnight now writes fictional ones. Originally from Richmond, Virginia, he’s lived in New York long enough to consider himself a native. His latest book Madness of the Q (Down & Out, December 2020), brings back math professor and decryption expert Sam Teagarden in an international thriller sparked by the discovery of an ancient, encoded Biblical parchment.  Prior books include Flight of the Fox, a political thriller introducing Professor Teagarden, who inadvertently uncovers revelations that could change 20th Century American history (Down & Out, 2018); The Cop with the Pink Pistol, a modern NYC detective mystery/romance; and Shadows in the Fire, a historical novel about two young slaves on the edge of freedom as the Confederate capital of Richmond falls in April 1865. Gray is a member of the Mystery Writers Association, Authors Guild and Thrillerfest.

Friday, October 2, 2020

Holiday No-Egg Eggnog with Maddie Day

 Holiday No-Egg Eggnog

By Maddie Day

Thanks for having me back to Drinks with Reads! I’m celebrating the release of Candy Slain Murder, my eighth Country Store Murder, and I’ll give away a copy to one commenter.

Yes, you got it right – it’s a Christmas cozy mystery. Robbie Jordan has her country store all decorated for the holidays, and she and her assistants think up fun Christmas-colored specials to serve, like a spinach-red pepper egg bake. 

Robbie’s also fond of Four Roses bourbon. Funny, so is her author. Eggnog is a classic winter drink, and I happen to love it. But I know many shudder at the thought of raw eggs in a drink. I don’t, because I get my eggs at a trusted local small farm. Plus the sugar, cream, and alcohol offset the egginess.

So I came up with a no-egg eggnog to go with the book. As it’s currently September, not December, I don’t have a single candy cane in the house. Rest assured, if I did, one would be sticking out of that glass as a stir stick. I also realize I left the sugar and cream out of the photo. Oh, well. You know what those look like, right?

Holiday No-Egg Eggnog

Serves one

Stir two tablespoon sugar into eight ounces of cream, half and half, or whole milk (or a combination) until dissolved.
Add two ounces Four Roses bourbon or the bourbon of your choice, and one ounce peppermint schnapps.
Sprinkle with ground nutmeg.

Enjoy with your favorite new Christmas cozy mystery.

Readers: What’s your favorite holiday drink? Are you an eggnogger or not?

In Candy Slain Murder, Country Store owner Robbie Jordan’s life seems merry and as bright as the Christmas lights glistening around South Lick, Indiana – until a man claims to be the long-lost half-brother of Robbie’s assistant. A fire destroys the home of a controversial anesthesiologist, exposing skeletal remains in his attic. The twin of the long-dead woman is murdered. Unavoidably intrigued, all Robbie wants for Christmas is to stop her winter wonderland from becoming a real nightmare. 

Maddie Day pens the Country Store Mysteries and the Cozy Capers Book Group Mysteries. Agatha Award winning Edith Maxwell writes the historical Quaker Midwife Mysteries and short crime fiction. With twenty-three mysteries in print and more underway, Day/Maxwell lives with her beau and their energizer kitten north of Boston, where she writes, gardens, cooks, and wastes time on Facebook. She hopes you’ll find her on social media under both names, on WickedAuthors.com, and at her web site.