Monday, August 18, 2014

Being a Storyton Hall Guest {+ Giveaway}

9780425265598_large_Murder_in_the_Mystery_SuiteWith summer winding down and fall just around the corner, now’s a great time to get away from it all. I have just the place to visit, the storybook resort of Storyton Hall featured in MURDER IN THE MYSTERY SUITE by Ellery Adams.

Ellery joins us today to talk about ‘A Day in the Life of a Storyton Hall Guest.’ In addition, I have a print copy of MURDER IN THE MYSTERY SUITE to giveaway, thanks to Ellery and the lovely Danielle at Penguin Group. Please see the end of the post for more details. 

Here’s a brief synopsis of the book, which is the first installment in Ellery’s new Book Retreat Mystery series:

        Tucked away in the rolling hills of rural western Virginia is the storybook resort of Storyton Hall, catering to book lovers who want to get away from it all. To increase her number of bookings, resort manager Jane Steward has decided to host a Murder and Mayhem week so that fans of the mystery genre can gather together for some role-playing and fantasy crime solving.
        But when the winner of the scavenger hunt, Felix Hampden, is found dead in the Mystery Suite, and the valuable book he won as his prize is missing, Jane realizes one of her guests is an actual murderer. Amid a resort full of fake detectives, Jane is bound and determined to find a real-life killer. There’s no room for error as Jane tries to unlock this mystery before another vacancy opens up… 

Please join me in giving a warm welcome to Ellery and learn what it’s like to be a guest at Storyton Hall.

Dear Honored Guest,

      Your journey to Storyton Hall begins at the train station. The moment you alight from the train car, a man dressed in impeccable blue and gold livery will raise a placard bearing your name. After collecting your luggage, your chauffeur will lead you to one of Storyton’s fleet of vintage Rolls Royce sedans. It looks like you’ll be spending the forty-five minute drive to the resort in the luxurious comfort of a Silver Shadow.
      While you gaze out the windows at the tree-covered hills and the endless blue sky, your driver will remind you of Storyton Hall’s technology restrictions. Because the resort caters to readers, we don’t want anything to disturb the tranquility of the public areas, so you may only use cell phones, tablets, e-readers, or computers in the privacy of your room. At first, this might cause you some anxiety, but you’ll soon find that it’s a boon to be able leave the cares of your busy life behind for a spell.
      Ah, here comes your first glimpse of Storyton Hall now. Do you see how magnificent it is? How its central clock tower reaches toward the hills and its two long wings seem to reach out and out like a pair of arms opening to embrace you? As for the sweeping expanse of front lawn, you might chose to play croquet on the Lewis Carroll lawn or stroll around back to Milton’s Gardens. But for now, kindly step into the manor’s elegant lobby.
      Note the high ceilings, brilliant chandeliers, and the numerous groupings of plush chairs and sofas. But before you continue your tour, Mr. Butterworth, Storyton Hall’s butler, would like to offer you a glass of champagne. All of our guests are greeted in this manner. Consider the bubbly just the beginning of the delightful surprises you’ll discover during your stay.
      Once you’ve unpacked, perhaps you’d like to check out a book from the Henry James library and then make yourselves comfortable in the Jane Austen Parlor or the Daphne Du Maurier Sunroom. Or, you could have a bite of lunch at Kipling’s Café or the Madame Bovary Dining Room. But don’t overindulge, because we serve afternoon tea every day in the Agatha Christie Tea Room. And believe me, you don’t want to pass up Mrs. Hubbard’s Victoria sponge, scones served with homemade jam and clotted cream, or her tantalizing tea sandwiches.
      And make sure you have enough energy for this evening. We’re opening the Murder and Mayhem Week here at Storyton Hall with a costume ball. I hope you’re prepared to dress up as your favorite detective. Of course, I won’t be able to tell who’s who tonight. With all the Miss Marples, Hercule Poirots, and Tommy and Tuppences, a guest could get away with murder and I’d never know it!
      One last word of caution: Storyton Hall is a paradise for readers, but like many old houses, it has its own secrets. In fact, there’s an entire library hidden in a fireproof, temperature-controlled room in the highest turret. The treasures housed within this room could be called the Eighth Wonder of the World. So valuable are they, that many a person has come to Storyton Hall bent of stealing them. If you intend to commit a nefarious act, I must warn you: those of us who live and work here are not quite what we seem, and we will stop at nothing to protect our guests, our property, and our secrets. 
       Enjoy your stay!
                Yours truly,
               Jane Steward, Guardian of Storyton Hall

Ellery, thanks for joining us today. After this introduction, I’d love to spend at weekend at Storyton Hall (minus the murder, of course).

Now let me share a bit of background on Ellery.
Ellery Adams grew up on a beach near the Long Island Sound. Having spent her adult life in a series of landlocked towns, she cherishes her memories of open water, violent storms, and the smell of the sea. 

Ellery has held many jobs including caterer, retail clerk, car salesperson, teacher, tutor, and tech writer, all the while penning poems, children’s books, and novels. She now writes full-time from her home in Virginia.

For more on Ellery and her writing, visit her website and connect with her on Facebook. She also has a monthly contest at Cozy Chicks.


This giveaway is for one print copy of MURDER IN THE MYSTERY SUITE. The giveaway is open to U.S. residents only and will end Monday, Aug. 25. 

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 Ellery Adams’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 Ellery’s visit. Does Storyton Hall sound like a place you’d like to visit?

*This post contains affiliate links.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I won't try and steal those books in the tower then.

  2. Ellery, Storyton Hall sounds like the perfect place for book lovers to visit. Love the cat on the book cover. Wishing you much success.

    Hi, y'all.. Thanks for stopping by.

  3. Some people couldn't handle walking around without their phones. They might implode.

  4. Mason - Thanks for hosting Ellery.

    Ellery - Thanks for sharing Storyton Hall with us. I could certainly spend a wonderful time there! I wish you much success.

  5. Murder and Mayhem week sounds intriguing.

  6. love the kitteh on the cover :)

  7. Take me to Storyton Hall...

    patucker54 at aol dot com

  8. Sounds like a good book to read.

  9. How intriguing. So many good books lately to read. This one also has a great cover.

  10. This book sounds fascinating and intriguing. Thanks for this great giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  11. Someone please tell me there actually is a place like Storyton Hall somewhere in the world. If there is it's going right at the top of my to-go-to list. Thanks for the chance to win.

  12. I like the idea of this book. I would like to visit Storyton Hall. Thanks for the introduction.

  13. Great post today! I love the premise of the story and wouldn't mind staying there, from the sounds of it! Thanks!

  14. Love the cover - would cause me interest if I saw it in the store.

  15. I love trains - so I'm coming to visit!

  16. Sounds like a great book in the tradition of Agatha Christie.

  17. I like houses that hold secrets. I would definitely dress up as an Agatha Christie character.

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

    skkorman AT bellsouth DOT net

  19. I love 1st books in a new cozy series!!!!
    thank you for the giveaway!!!


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