Wednesday, August 27, 2014

A Little Night Murder {+ Giveaway}

A Little Night Murder coverAn accidental murder causes major gossip in the newest Blackbird Sisters mystery, A LITTLE NIGHT MURDER, by Nancy Martin. I’m delighted to welcome Nancy here today to share a bit of ‘gossip’ about herself.

When the daughter of aging Broadway diva Boom Boom Tuttle is found dead in place of her mother, the original target, Nora Blackbird and her wacky sisters have to deal with the drama of the high-profile murder case in this 10th installment of the Blackbird Sisters Mystery series. Thanks to Nancy and the lovely Kayleigh at Penguin Group, I have a copy of this fascinating tale to giveaway. Please see the end of the post for more details.

Here’s a brief summary of A LITTLE NIGHT MURDER:

Murder under the stars...
          Nora Blackbird—pregnant at last!—is spending summer afternoons wallowing in the Bucks County pool of her best friend, Lexie Paine, who has just been released from prison. At night, Nora is covering Philadelphia’s high-society events for the local newspaper. And this time she doesn’t have to look far for a good story.
          Next door, a Broadway show is in rehearsal at the estate of Toodles Tuttle, the long-deceased but ever-legendary composer. Reigning over the estate is Toodles’s diva widow, Boom Boom. The demanding old broad still rules with an iron fist, and considering the chorus line of enemies she’s racked up over the years, her death has been a hotly anticipated event. So imagine everyone’s dismay when it’s her beloved daughter, Jenny, who drops dead—from a cause that is anything but natural—just as the lights are set to go on for the lucrative new Toodles musical.
          Yet murder is only an overture to the drama to come....
          Nora’s sister Libby, a soon-to-be-grandmother, has gotten herself into a sticky situation, wooed by both a lowly bug exterminator and a cheesecake-loving Broadway impresario. Edgy sister Emma has a dangerous new boyfriend who may jeopardize her show-jumping exploits. And the love of Nora’s life, Mick Abruzzo, has been desperate to prevent Nora from meeting the most notorious member of his mobbed-up family—his mother.
          Now Nora has to deal with the bump-and-grind of her personal life, and also bring the curtain down on a daring killer—before he forces her to exit stage left, permanently.
Please join me in giving a warm welcome to Nancy as she graciously answers some gossipy questions. Welcome, Nancy.

Mason - Where do you do most of your writing?  

Once upon a time, I saw a photo of Mary Higgins Clark in her lovely study--yellow chintz everywhere, tidy bookcases, an immaculate desk, sunlight streaming from tall windows. But alas, I write in a recliner with my laptop on my knees, in my living room, which is very pretty and has lots of light, but no chintz. And my books and Post-It notes are thrown all over the place. I have a view out the window to see what's going on in the neighborhood.

Mason - Are there specific things you need to have around you as you work? What do you love most about your workspace? If you have a desk, do you have any favorite objects on your desk or things you use often?  

My desk is where the desktop computer is, where I do my business, but not really much writing. We bought this house because it was built by a federal judge, and I commandeered his library for my office, so I am surrounded by books--some dating back to when I was a kid and first fell in love with stories. I have the fat, single-volume encyclopedia my dad took to college in 1939. In it, Hitler is a small-time politician, so it's good for history, but not much else. 

Hanging across from my desk is a photo of Mr. Rogers who was a friend of the family. (Among my favorite Mr. Rogers lines:  "Girls are fancy on the inside." Which I choose to think of as a different kind of metaphor than he intended.) At my elbow, I keep a statue of Buddha with the hope his serenity will influence me, and on the other side I have a silver urn stuffed with pencils and a magic wand from a birthday party and a magic feather that fell from the sky into my lap many years ago, and I took it as a sign I should keep close. The rest of my desk is littered with Post-it notes. I keep Post-It notepads all over the house and write little snippets of dialogue on them as they occur to me, or maybe strong, pithy words that I noticed in my reading. By the end of a book project, I am ankle-deep in Post-It notes. My desk is currently awash in them.

Mason - What’s your writing beverage? What do you love to drink while you’re writing?  

My favorite beverage used to be gin and tonic. Light on the tonic. Now it's Diet Coke. Do I write better now? Well, at least I'm in a better state to make that call.

Mason - What are some of your worst writing distractions?  

I gave up all computer games. I had to go cold turkey.  

Mason - What was the last book you read or movie you saw?  

I just read Ann B. Ross's ETTA MAE'S WORST, BAD-LUCK DAY and Rainbow Rowell's ATTACHMENTS---both from very different worlds, with very different kinds of characters, but both so beguiling. I was charmed by both. As for movies---if you mean first-run movies in a theater---the less said the better. I think we have all become numb to horrible violence.

Mason - Are you currently working on any new projects readers can be looking for?  

I am, but I don't want to jinx it. I worry about the karma. It's almost finished, though, so I'll know soon.
Nancy, thanks for joining us today and sharing a bit about yourself. I just recently finished reading and reviewing ETTA MAE’S WORST BAD-LUCK DAY too. It was a mesmerizing read. 

Now for those who aren’t familiar with Nancy, here’s a little background on her.

Nancy Martin is the winner of the 2009 Lifetime Achievement award for mystery writing from Romantic Times magazine.

Author of 48 pop fiction novels in mystery, suspense, historical and romance genres, Nancy created The Blackbird Sisters in 2002--- mysteries about three impoverished Main Line heiresses who adventure in couture and crime--as if “Agatha Christie had wandered onto the set of Sex and The City.” 

Nominated for the Agatha Award for Best First Mystery of 2002, HOW TO MURDER A MILLIONAIRE won the RT award for Best First Mystery and was a finalist for the Daphne DuMaurier Award. Nancy has also written the Roxy Abruzzo mystery series for St. Martin’s Minotaur, FOXY ROXY and STICKY FINGERS.

Nancy lives in Pittsburgh, serves on the board of Sisters in Crime and is a founding member of Pennwriters. 

For more on Nancy and her writing, visit her website, connect with her on Facebook, and check out her boards on Pinterest.


This giveaway is for one print copy of A LITTLE NIGHT MURDER. The giveaway is open to U.S. residents only and will end Thursday, Sept. 4. 

To enter, just click on the Rafflecopter widget below and following the instructions. The widget may take a few seconds to load, so please be patient. The winner from this giveaway will have 72 hours to respond after being contacted or another winner will be selected. The email will have ‘Thoughts in Progress Nancy Martin’s Tour’ in the subject line, just so you know what to watch for (in case it goes into your spam folder).

Thanks so much for stopping by during Nancy’s visit. Do you have a favorite place to write (whether it is writing books, letters or notes)? What would be your ideal place to write?

*This post contains affiliate links. a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Computer games have to go when I'm writing, but couldn't give them up completely. Congratulations, Nancy.

  2. I would love to read this book—thanks for the opportunity to win a copy!

    skkorman AT bellsouth DOT net

  3. Nancy, thanks again for stopping by and answering my questions. It's always fun learning about an author's writing habits. Wishing you much success.

    Hi all, thanks for stopping by.

  4. Mason - Thanks for hosting Nancy.

    Nancy - I love it that you surround yourself with books when you write. I do the same thing! I wish you much success.

  5. How great of Nancy to stop by and answer so many great questions. I thought it was interesting that Mr. Rogers was a family friend. And I hope the window and all the post-its keep us with the Blackbird sisters for a long while. Thanks!

  6. Looks like a fun read; hope I get a chance to read it :)

  7. I am not much of a writer but when I do, I sit on the beach in solitude.

    lag110 at mchsi dot com

  8. alhtough it seems interesting, I've never actually understood the genre of cosy murder mysteries.... how can a murder be cosy? Glamorizing such things is just one of the worst trends coming from USA

  9. Love the cover...

    patucker54 at aol dot com

  10. You had me at Boom Boom Tuttle! Loved the interview.

  11. Cute title! I love the play on "A Little Night Music (Eine Kleine Nachtmusik)" by Mozart.

  12. In my office or at my desk in the kitchen.

  13. Thanks for the fun interview and the chance to win this book. I do all my writing at my little computer desk. It has little doodads and mementos all over and plenty of post-it notes everywhere.

  14. Hi, Mason. Thanks for sharing about this book. Nice cover. I enjoyed the interview and getting to know the author.

  15. Love the cover, as for writing, I don't do much but I would love an office or library filled with books that I can shut myself in.

  16. I write letters, notes, cards, etc. at my computer desk. Love this series.

  17. many moons ago, I used to have over 100 pen-pals.....I would finish my homework quickly each day, then I would answer the letters until it was time to go to bed........
    now, I have to scrounge around just to find a blank piece of paper!!! LOL!!!

  18. omgoodness, I haven't heard of this series. I am going to have to catch up. They sound like such fun reads.


I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.