Category: Cosy Mystery

Author Guest Post | Can Reading Mysteries Help Children Build Grit? by Robin Newman author of the #earlyreader mystery series Wilcox & Griswold: policemice detectives!

Posted Thursday, 25 June, 2015 by jorielov , , , , 0 Comments

Author Guest Post Banner created by Jorie in Canva.

In conjunction with my review of The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake I wanted to give the author Robin Newman a chance to write a Guest Post on a topic of her choosing to help compliment my own thoughts on behalf of her series debut! This is a series for Early Readers in particular, but as I highlighted on my review, I think it would be an excellent addition to the selections adult readers in literacy programmes are given as a clever way to engage them in a story that keeps your eyes on the humour and the beautiful illustrations which compliment the story-line!
Ms Newman happily picked a topic that won me over as soon as I saw the question it proposed because I grew up reading cosy mysteries (a la Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys right alongside Dame Agatha Christie: see my review of the new Poirot for more insight) and can attest that mysteries went a long mile towards helping me expand my perception and view of the world. They are stimulating as they are cheekily humoured and the reason my preference is for cosy over hard-boils (except for when I read a hard-boiled *this!* side of cosy; yes, my own definitive difference!) is due to the nature of the tone, violence, and the inclusions therein.
I didn’t just read Cosies, I watched them on tv and inside motion pictures too! My favourites these days are police procedurals with a family knitted into the heart of the characters (i.e. Rizzoli & Isles, the Mentalist, NCIS (pick one, I love all 3!), Murdoch Mysteries, Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries, and Castle; to name a few!) or most of the mysteries put out by the BBC!
Finding stories writ for younger readers or readers just starting to get their feet wet into this wonderful world of imagination and story-craft with a clear bent of joy stitched inside them is a joy for me! I love showcasing authors and publishers who are getting it right and doing a lot of good with their published works. It is my pleasure to bring Ms Newman to my blog and to share with you her thoughts on the benefits of reading mysteries!

The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake by Robin NewmanCaptain Griswold and Detective Wilcox are two hardboiled police mice and MFIs—Missing Food Investigators. When Miss Rabbit’s carrot cake goes missing the day before her big party, Griswold and Wilcox must investigate a farm full of fun, colorful suspects—and it will take smarts (and a delicious dose of humor) to crack the case.

An easy-to-read mystery with plenty of clues to point readers in the right direction, the book includes the recipe for Miss Rabbit’s tasty carrot cake from bestselling cookbook author, Mollie Katzen, and comes with a downloadable curriculum guide available for classroom use which teaches problem solving, logic skills, and storytelling.

Children will love this funny, friendly twist on classic mystery and detective stories as they follow the clues through pages filled with engaging illustrations and an entertaining, interactive story.

Genre(s): Early Reader | Cosy Mystery | Foodie Fiction

Illustrated Stories | Imagination Friendly

Wilcox & Griswold No. 2 due out Autumn 2016: The Case of the Poached Egg

Published By: Creston Books, LLC (@CrestonBooks)

Converse via Twitter: #WilcoxAndGriswoldMysteries, #earlyreader, #KidsLit and #JKSLitPublicity

About Robin Newman

Robin Newman

Raised in New York and Paris, Robin Newman has been a practicing attorney and legal editor, but she prefers to write about witches, mice, pigs, and peacocks. She lives in New York with her husband, son, goldfish, and English Cocker Spaniel, who happens to have been born on the Fourth of July.

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Posted Thursday, 25 June, 2015 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, Animals in Fiction & Non-Fiction, Art, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book Trailer, Bookish Discussions, Bookish Films, Children's Literature, Cosy Mystery, Early Reader | Chapter Books, Illustrations for Stories, Indie Author, JKS Communications: Literary Publicity Firm, Reader Submitted Guest Post (Topic) for Author

Book Review | Children’s Lit arrives on #JLASblog: “The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake: A Wilcox and Griswold Mystery” by Robin Newman with illustrations by Deborah Zemke An early reader gem to engage your child into the joy of sleuthing!

Posted Thursday, 25 June, 2015 by jorielov , , , , 0 Comments

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Acquired Book By:

I was selected to review “The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake” by JKS Communications: A Literary Publicity Firm. JKS is the first publicity firm I started working with when I launched Jorie Loves A Story in August, 2013. I am honoured to continue to work with them now as a 2nd Year Book Blogger. I received my complimentary copy of The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake direct from JKS Communications in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Happily supporting Children’s Lit:

One of the best blessings in 2015 is being able to bring a spotlight on Children’s Literature a bit more than I could originally as a 1st Year Book Blogger. I have been actively seeking out opportunities to review Children’s Lit, inasmuch as I have quite a heap of selections I want to pursue through my local library as next reads which I hope will potentially become future showcases on my blog.

I love being able to draw a circle of joy around the writers who are truly underwriting a lot of innocence and light into their literary ideas for children; because not all stories need to be rooted in realism, as I still believe that even in the world of Children’s Lit, sometimes the undertone can run too dark. It’s been awhile since I could scout out Early Reader | Chapter Books at a local book shoppe, so imagine my happy joy in finding the Wilcox and Griswold Mysteries!? They appear to be the perfect starter for a budding mystery lover and a great opening door for a Mum (such as I will be) who wants to help encourage her (future) children in a direction to intersect with one of her most beloved sections of literature!

Mysteries are wicked awesome because they get you thinking outside the box and they give you a measure of mirth towards understanding different points of view. I happen to appreciate illustrators and writers who stitch in a happy thread of childhood wonderment and joy into their stories, and it’s a pleasure to be honoured with showcasing Creston Books as an Indie Publisher of Children’s Literature! They are definitely a publisher to keep an eye on for new releases and I cannot wait until August, when I will be giving my impressions on behalf of one of their picture books: In a Village by the Sea by Muon Van and April Chu!

Equally impressive is one of their Autumn new releases: Ada Bryon Lovelace and the Thinking Machine by Laurie Wallmark with illustrations by April Chu! A step back into the footfalls of history where science and mathematics were constantly being elevated by new discoveries, this is a story set against the backdrop of Lord Bryon (as Ada has a famous Da!) whilst on the verge of computer technology being coded for the first time!

I came across the author behind How to Be Human (as Florida Frenz is her pen name) quite by accident, as I was following a thread of convo on Twitter. Coincidentally, shortly thereafter I was offered to review The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake and knew quite instinctively I was meant to find this Indie Publisher! At some point I am going to see if I can ILL a copy of How to Be Human but the best part is that the front list and back list of this Indie is beaming strongly crafted stories into the lives of young readers! A mission I will always be happy to champion and support!

Book Review | Children’s Lit arrives on #JLASblog: “The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake: A Wilcox and Griswold Mystery” by Robin Newman with illustrations by Deborah Zemke An early reader gem to engage your child into the joy of sleuthing!The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake
by Robin Newman
Illustrator/Cover Designer: Deborah Zemke
Source: Publicist via JKS Communications

Captain Griswold and Detective Wilcox are two hardboiled police mice and MFIs—Missing Food Investigators. When Miss Rabbit’s carrot cake goes missing the day before her big party, Griswold and Wilcox must investigate a farm full of fun, colorful suspects—and it will take smarts (and a delicious dose of humor) to crack the case.

An easy-to-read mystery with plenty of clues to point readers in the right direction, the book includes the recipe for Miss Rabbit’s tasty carrot cake from bestselling cookbook author, Mollie Katzen, and comes with a downloadable curriculum guide available for classroom use which teaches problem solving, logic skills, and storytelling.

Children will love this funny, friendly twist on classic mystery and detective stories as they follow the clues through pages filled with engaging illustrations and an entertaining, interactive story.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

Also by this author: Author Guest Post by Robin Newman

Series: Wilcox and Griswold Mysteries,


Genres: Children's Literature, Early Reader Stories, Illustrated Stories, Foodie Fiction, Cosy Mystery


Published by Creston Books LLC

on 12th May, 2015

Format: Hardcover Edition

Pages: 40

Genre(s): Early Reader | Cosy Mystery | Foodie Fiction

Illustrated Stories | Imagination Friendly

Wilcox & Griswold No. 2 due out Autumn 2016: The Case of the Poached Egg

Published By: Creston Books, LLC (@CrestonBooks)

Available Formats: Hardback

Converse via Twitter: #WilcoxAndGriswoldMysteries, #earlyreader, #KidsLit and #JKSLitPublicity

About (Illustrator) Deborah Zemke

Deborah Zemke puts words and pictures together in unexpected and lively ways. The author and illustrator of more than twenty children’s books and a frequent contributor to Ranger Rick magazine, her most recent book with Creston is Cock-a-Doodle-Oops!, a farm caper.

About Robin Newman

Robin Newman

Raised in New York and Paris, Robin Newman has been a practicing attorney and legal editor, but she prefers to write about witches, mice, pigs, and peacocks. She lives in New York with her husband, son, goldfish, and English Cocker Spaniel, who happens to have been born on the Fourth of July.

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Posted Thursday, 25 June, 2015 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, Animals in Fiction & Non-Fiction, Art, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book Review (non-blog tour), Book Trailer, Bookish Discussions, Bookish Films, Children's Literature, Cosy Mystery, Early Reader | Chapter Books, Illustrations for Stories, Indie Author, JKS Communications: Literary Publicity Firm

Blog Book Tour | “Quicksand: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery” by Gigi Pandian Readers who appreciate Lara Croft or Tia Carrere’s ‘Relic Hunter’ will happily find a new Professor Adventurer who finds extreme joy in digging up the past!

Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2015 by jorielov , , , , , 1 Comment

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Acquired Book By:

I was selected to be a tour stop on the “Quicksand: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery ” virtual book tour through France Book Tours. I received a complimentary spiral-bound* ARC copy of the book direct from the author Gigi Pandian, in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

*This is my first spiral-bound ARC copy of a novel to receive, as what is unique about it is the layout of the pages, as there are ‘two pages per sheet’ of the ARC itself! The flow of the narrative goes from right to left, as the first ‘page’ is set to the right and then the first full page shifts back to ‘left to right’, then if you turn to the third page, it’s in the right order but all the pages are double-sided. It goes with saying I had to adjust to reading it in this style, as at first I thought it was all in reverse! It is the first time I can honestly say I understand other dyslexics and how reading can cause you unexpected problems, as I never had the issue with left to right or right to left, but as I’m finding as an adult dyslexic, everything changes once you leave your childhood years!

A notation on why I love my local library: I borrowed the first two novels in the series via ILL (inter-library loan) in order to understand the flow and pace of the character’s journey. The unique part is that both paperback copies of “Artifact” and “Pirate Vishnu” arrived from public libraries in the PNW: Pacific Northwest! This is an example of how blessed I am for being able to use inter-library loan via my local library and how awesome WorldCat is to connect us to books which are outside the collections of our local library systems! This is one key reason I link books I am highlighting on my blog to WorldCat because depending on where you live, the book will let you know if it’s available to request; either locally or through ILL’ing!

“Artifact” arrived via the North Central Regional Library in Wenatchee, Washington whereas “Pirate Vishnu” arrived via the Timberland Regional Library in Turnwater, Washington. Both copies were paperbacks and only lightly read which made the experience for me as a book blogger discovering a ‘new to me author’ truly enjoyable! I have added the entire series and the novella to my “Book Wishes” List on Riffle! I hadn’t realised there was a ‘prequel’ to the series hidden inside of an anthology until after I received the books via inter-library loan; much to my delight the anthology is also available to borrow in the future!

This is why I stress that local libraries are a wicked resource for readers everywhere to use, not just for those of us who blog our reading lives but for anyone who is curious about an author, a book, or a non-fiction topic to research: a local library and the resources they can provide you with are unparallelled! When I am being writerly I can happily attest I love conducting my research via my local library as well, because you can quantitatively gather materials you cannot have on hand otherwise.

Why adventure and archeological artifacts interest me :

A very little known fact about myself is the original dream I had as a youngster, wells, wait, if I were to be truly honest, the second dream I had as a ‘field of choice’ was to become a Historical Archaeologist. Mind you, I was greatly attached to the aspects of being a Paleontologist prior to settling on archaeology, but my interests wavered a bit to settle on ‘historical’ as I toyed with the idea of ‘Nautical’ (although that would need a PADI certification to achieve!) before uncovering Forensic Anthropology; for the 80s this was a radical idea of thought as the 90s were only just on the fringe of beginning. Not quite your typical rising sixth grader who had a penchant for parapsychology ontop of digs, bones, and the past hidden below the ground!

I was always quite intrigued and motivated by the ‘explorers’ in fiction, as my favourite childhood adventurer series was penned by Frank Perretti and called the Cooper Kids Adventure Series. Ironically or not, it’s not a trilogy or a quad, and has more books in the series now than when I first read them as I have the original boxed set with the original illustrations! Smiles. It was a natural curiosity to become attached to Indiana Jones (movies 1, 3, and 4 respectively; the Young Indiana Jones Chronicles serial most definitely) and Lara Croft as brought to life by Angelina Jolie in the motion pictures. I truly loved Tia Carrere’s serial as well (Relic Hunter) but only had the pleasure of seeing it sporadically. Definitely a serial to see if I can borrow on dvd whilst I’m not gathering a ‘new to me’ BBC serial! (Hallo, Foyle’s War and Last Tango in Halifax!)

To me, living vicariously through adventure novels (oh, I had forgotten I read the novels for Indiana Jones too! oh! I had forgotten to mention the Graphic Novels, too!) is a wicked sweet joy of mine! I do not read adventure novels often enough, and it’s definitely an under-read area of literature I’d like to explore in the future! I even have my eyes on Classical Lit offerings such as the Joseph Conrad novels, and of course, definitely reading about Aubrey and Maturin throughout Master and Commander! I love a wide range of adventures, from deep sea diving to archaeological digs to the high sea epics of the historical past to a contemporary jewel heist or an espionage thriller. Honestly, there is so much randomness to the adventure genre that you just never know what you will uncover next! Isn’t that the beauty of it?! For me, it definitely is! Hence why I am grateful to have found Gigi Pandian and Henery Press!

Blog Book Tour | “Quicksand: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery” by Gigi Pandian Readers who appreciate Lara Croft or Tia Carrere’s ‘Relic Hunter’ will happily find a new Professor Adventurer who finds extreme joy in digging up the past!Quicksand: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery
by Gigi Pandian
Illustrator/Cover Designer: Fayette Terlouw
Source: Author via France Book Tours

A thousand-year-old secret room. A sultan’s stolen treasure. A missing French priest. And an invitation to Paris to rekindle an old flame…

Historian Jaya Jones finds herself on the wrong side of the law during an art heist at the Louvre. To redeem herself, she follows clues from an illuminated manuscript that lead from the cobblestone streets of Paris to the quicksand-surrounded fortress of Mont Saint-Michel. With the help of enigmatic Lane Peters and a 90-year-old stage magician, Jaya delves into France’s colonial past in India to clear her name and catch a killer.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

Series: ,


Genres: Action & Adventure Fiction, Archaeological | Anthropological Historical Perspectives, Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945), Contemporary Romance, Cosy Mystery


Published by Henery Press

on 10th March, 2015

Pages: 280

Published By: Henery Press (@HeneryPress), part of their Mystery Collection
Available Formats: Hardback, Paperback and Ebook

{ Book One: Artifact: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery }

Add to Riffle + Public Library

{ Book Two: Pirate Vishnu: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery }

Add to Riffle + Public Library

{ Prequel Novella of the series: Fool’s Gold part of ‘Other People’s Baggage’ Anthology }

Uniquely it is mentioned all three novellas in the set are inter-connected!

Add to Riffle + Public Library

Converse on Twitter via: #JayaJones

About Gigi Pandian

USA Today bestselling author Gigi Pandian is the child of cultural anthropologists from New Mexico and the southern tip of India. After being dragged around the world during her childhood, she tried to escape her fate when she left a PhD program for art school. But adventurous academics wouldn’t stay out of her head.

Thus was born the Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery Series (Artifact, Pirate Vishnu, and
Quicksand
). Gigi’s debut mystery novel was awarded a Malice Domestic Grant and named a “Best of 2012” Debut Novel by Suspense Magazine.
Her short fiction has been short-listed for Agatha and Macavity awards, and she also writes the new Accidental Alchemist mystery series.

She takes photos of gargoyles wherever she goes, and posts them on her Gargoyle Girl blog.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Read an Excerpt of the Novel:

Quicksand by Henery Press

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

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Posted Wednesday, 29 April, 2015 by jorielov in 21st Century, Action & Adventure Fiction, Amateur Detective, ARC | Galley Copy, Archaeology, Art, Art History, Artwork Provenance, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book | Novel Excerpt, Book Cover | Notation on Design, Book Cover | Original Illustration & Design, Bookish Discussions, Bookmark slipped inside a Review Book, Compassion & Acceptance of Differences, Contemporary Romance, Cosy Mystery, Crime Fiction, Equality In Literature, France, France Book Tours, French Literature, History, Indie Author, Lady Detective Fiction, Library Catalogues & Databases, Library Find, Library Love, Local Libraries | Research Libraries, Modern Day, Multi-cultural Characters and/or Honest Representations of Ethnicity, Postal Mail | Letters & Correspondence, Scribd, Travel, Treasure Hunt