The Winter Market in the French Quarter is in full swing, but murder isn’t taking a holiday in the latest from the New York Times bestselling author of Parchment and Old Lace…
The holidays are a busy time for scrapbook shop owner Carmela Bertrand—but not so hectic that she doesn’t have time to enjoy browsing the booths at the Winter Market with her best friend Ava. The last thing the ladies expect to see is a lurching man stabbed by a serving fork, dying in front of them.
The victim is loathed restaurant critic Martin Lash, who posted his scathing reviews on the Glutton for Punishment website. And the prime suspect is New Orleans restauranteur Quigg Brevard—who was seen giving the critic a tongue-lashing minutes before someone stuck a fork in him. An old flame of Carmela, Quigg asks for her help, which does not please her current beau, Detective Edgar Babcock, to say the least.
Before her relationship is the next victim, Carmela needs to find a murderer who had no reservations about punishing the culinary curmudgeon…
Scrapbooking tips and recipes included!
Guest Post by Carmela Bertrand,
main character in Crepe Factor by Laura Childs and Terrie Farley Moran
I’m one of the luckiest girls in the world because I live in New Orleans, a city that prides itself on being magical, crazy, and downright irreverent. I also own Memory Mine, a scrapbook and craft shop located in the French Quarter, and hang out a lot with my BFF, Ava Gruiex. She’s a self-proclaimed hoochie momma, wearer of all things leopard, and owner of Juju Voodoo. For some reason, we just loooove getting into trouble together.
In fact, trouble found us again just the other night. Picture this if you will – we’re walking through the French Quarter Winter Market when suddenly a sourpuss food reviewer (that nobody likes) comes staggering out from behind one of the food tents with a ginormous kitchen fork stuck in his neck!
Now the fun really begins, because Quigg Brevard, one of my ex-ex-boyfriends, gets accused of the murder. Though I’m not exactly a trained investigator, I can’t resist getting involved. There are plenty of suspects – people who seriously didn’t like this guy – so it’s not easy to sort out true motivation for murder from plain old New Orleans crazy. I mean, we encounter greedy real estate developers, strange environmentalists, and seriously toxic suspects.
Everything gets so dang complicated, in fact, that Ava and I have to enlist the aid of Squirrel and Moony, a couple of good old boys from the Baritaria Bayou, along with their motley hound dog Cooter. When we finally narrow down the killer, we decide to make a mad dash to the ultra-fancy Hotel Vendue and confront him. Unfortunately, when we all spill out of my car, muddy and sun-burned, onto a red carpet, we look pretty shocking to all the guests who are dressed for a fancy black tie gala.
No matter. We all rush in and point fingers at the killer, get into a knock-down-drag-out fight, and manage to topple a gigantic ice sculpture before the cops arrive. On the upside, the killer is brought to justice and the dog Cooter gets to lap up spilled caviar and champagne.
Whether we’re hanging out at Dr. Boogie’s Jazz Club, chasing through the bayous, or having a fling at a wild Mardi Gras party, Ava and I have tons of fun throughout Crepe Factor. Probably almost as much fun as you’ll have reading it!
All my best,
About the Authors
Laura Childs is the New York Times bestselling author of the Tea Shop Mysteries, Scrapbook Mysteries, and Cackleberry Club Mysteries. In her previous life she was CEO/Creative Director of her own marketing firm and authored several screenplays. She is married to a professor of Chinese art history, loves to travel, rides horses, enjoys fund raising for various non-profits, and has two Chinese Shar-Pei dogs.
Laura specializes in cozy mysteries that have the pace of a thriller (a thrillzy!) Her three series are:
The Tea Shop Mysteries – set in the historic district of Charleston and featuring Theodosia Browning, owner of the Indigo Tea Shop. Theodosia is a savvy entrepreneur, and pet mom to service dog Earl Grey. She’s also an intelligent, focused amateur sleuth who doesn’t rely on coincidences or inept police work to solve crimes. This charming series is highly atmospheric and rife with the history and mystery that is Charleston.
The Scrapbooking Mysteries – a slightly edgier series that take place in New Orleans. The main character, Carmela, owns Memory Mine scrapbooking shop in the French Quarter and is forever getting into trouble with her friend, Ava, who owns the Juju Voodoo shop. New Orleans’ spooky above-ground cemeteries, jazz clubs, bayous, and Mardi Gras madness make their presence known here!
The Cackleberry Club Mysteries – set in Kindred, a fictional town in the Midwest. In a rehabbed Spur station, Suzanne, Toni, and Petra, three semi-desperate, forty-plus women have launched the Cackleberry Club. Eggs are the morning specialty here and this cozy cafe even offers a book nook and yarn shop. Business is good but murder could lead to the cafe’s undoing! This series offers recipes, knitting, cake decorating, and a dash of spirituality.
Webpage – http://www.laurachilds.com/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/laura.childs.31
Short-listed twice for The Best American Mystery Stories, Terrie Farley Moran is delighted to introduce mystery fans to the Read ’Em and Eat café and bookstore, which debuted with Well Read, Then Dead. followed by Caught Read-Handed and Read to Death released in July of this year. The only thing Terrie enjoys more than wrangling mystery plots into submission is playing games and reading stories with any or all of her grandchildren.