Wednesday, August 13, 2014

From Short Stories to Cozy Murder Mysteries {+ Giveaway}

9780425270288_large_Well_Read,_Then_DeadI’m delighted to welcome author Terrie Farley Moran back to Thoughts in Progress. On this visit Terrie joins us to talk about the debut release of WELL READ, THEN DEAD, the first installment in her new cozy murder mystery series, Read ’Em and Eat.

Terrie stops by to share some background on this delightful new murder mystery. In addition, thanks to Terrie and the lovely Danielle at Penguin Group, I have a print copy of WELL READ, THEN DEAD to giveaway. Please see the end of the post for more details.

As I said earlier, this is the first in a new series. Here’s a brief synopsis (and the book includes a buttermilk pie recipe):

        Nestled in the barrier islands of Florida’s Gulf Coast, Fort Myers Beach is home to Mary “Sassy” Cabot and Bridget Mayfield—owners of the bookstore cafe acute;, Read ’Em and Eat. But when they’re not dishing about books or serving up scones, Sassy and Bridgy are keeping tabs on hard-boiled murder.
        Read ’Em and Eat is known for its delicious breakfast and lunch treats, along with quite a colorful clientele. If it’s not Rowena Gustavson loudly debating the merits of the current book club selection, it’s Miss Augusta Maddox lecturing tourists on rumors of sunken treasure among the islands. It’s no wonder Sassy’s favorite is Delia Batson, a regular at the Emily Dickinson table. Augusta’s cousin and best friend Delia is painfully shy—which makes the news of her murder all the more shocking.
        No one is more distraught than Augusta, and Sassy wants to help any way she can. But Augusta doesn’t have time for sympathy. She wants Delia’s killer found—and she’s not taking no for an answer. Now Sassy is on the case, and she’d better act fast before there’s any more trouble in paradise. 

Let’s give a warm welcome to Terrie and find out more about Sassy and Bridgy.

I am so happy to be visiting Thoughts in Progress today and I thank Mason Canyon for the kind invitation.

Readers often say they think of me primarily as a writer of short stories and often nourish short stories at that. In fact I was here visiting Thoughts in Progress about four years ago to talk about the Mystery Writers of America anthology CRIMES BY MOONLIGHT, edited by the magnificent Charlaine Harris. I am still honored that a paranormal story I wrote called The Awarenesswas included in the anthology. I am back again but it may come as a surprise to folks who visit Thoughts in Progress that this time I’m going to talk about my new cozy mystery novel titled WELL READ, THEN DEAD, which was released by Berkley Prime Crime just last week.

You know the old saying: “when life gives you lemons just… move to the beach.” Sassy Cabot and Bridgy Mayfield have been besties their entire lives. They even grew up on the same street in Brooklyn, but when both their lives hit major snags they packed up, headed south to live in the fabulous town of Fort Myers Beach, Florida, an island town on the Gulf of Mexico.

When the girls decide to run their own business, they follow Sassy’s dream of owning a bookstore and Bridgy’s vision of a casual breakfast and lunch café. Meld the two together and you have a bookstore and café called the Read ’Em and Eat. And for the longest time, things went along quite nicely, until their chef, Miguel Guerra, fell in the kitchen and broke his leg.

Bridgy’s Aunt Ophelia, she of the well mannered ladies conventions and mile high heeled shoes, drove down from Pinetta, just south of the Georgia border, to help out with the cooking but before Ophie could get settled in in the kitchen, Cady Stanton, reporter for the Fort Myers Beach News stops by to let Sassy and Bridgy know that one of their favorite book club and breakfast regulars, Miss Delia Batson, has been found dead. Then Sassy discovers that Miss Delia’s cat, a sleek black Maine Coon, named Bow, is missing. While the search is on for Bow, there is another life threatening assault on the island. 

Miss Delia’s cousin, the strong-willed seventy-something Miss Augusta Maddox presses Sassy to help find her cousin Delia’s murderer, and Sassy is inclined to try to assist, so that Miss Augusta knows her friends are standing by her side. 

I know it sounds like a there is a lot of danger and difficulty, but this is Fort Myers Beach, so there is still time for book club meetings, meditation on the beach and kayak trips along the bay. 

So when you get a chance, come visit the Read ’Em and Eat. You might enjoy a glass of sweet tea, a slice of Buttermilk Pie. And the friendly atmosphere will make you feel right at home. 

Terrie, thanks for visiting with us again. Sounds like the Read ‘Em and Eat is the perfect place to visit for a good meal, a great book and a wonderful mystery.

Now for those who aren’t familiar with Terrie, here’s a bit of background on her.

Terrie Farley Moran is the author of WELL READ, THEN DEAD, the first cozy mystery in the Read ’Em and Eat series published by Berkley Prime Crime. She also writes short mystery fiction which has been published in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine and various anthologies, including the Mystery Writers of America anthology Crimes by Moonlight. Her work has been short-listed twice for Best American Mystery Stories. 

For more on Terrie and her writing, visit her website and connect with her on Facebook and Pinterest. You can also find her blogging amid the grand banter of an eclectic group of writers known as the Women of Mystery.


This giveaway is for one print copy of WELL READ, THEN DEAD. The giveaway is open to U.S. residents only and will end Thursday, Aug. 21.

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 Terrie Farley Moran’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 during Terrie’s visit. Don’t you just love the cover of this book? It looks so inviting. Would you like to own a business like the Read ’Em and Eat or at least have a shop like that nearby to visit?

*This post contains affiliate links. a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Congratulations on a full length novel release, Terrie.
    And I've been to Fort Myers - my grandmother used to live there.

  2. Looks like a fun series to read, thank you!

  3. Terrie, thanks again for joining us. You've taken two really neat elements - a bookstore and a cafe - and combined them for an entertaining place we'd all like to visit.Wishing you much success.

    Hi everyone, thanks for stopping by.

  4. Congrats to Terrie on the new release! We visited Fort Myers years ago, and really enjoyed it.

  5. the title of the book made me giggle :)

  6. Sounds like a wonderful read—thanks for the opportunity to win a copy!

    skkorman AT bellsouth DOT net

  7. Mason - Thanks for hosting Terrie.

    Terrie - I like that combination of scones and books. It works :-) - And that's an interesting premise to have two people who've known each other always set up a business together. I wish you much success.

  8. I SO want to read "Well Read, Then Dead"!

    patucker54 at aol dot com

  9. Congratulations and best wishes on the release of this captivating book. Florida and beaches are my favorite. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  10. It is wonderful to be back at Thoughts in Progress. Thank you all for your kind welcome. I have to say: "food and books" two of life's necessities.

  11. I would like to have a place like this in my town.

  12. Congrats on the beginning of a new series! I've never been to Fort Myers but my grandparents spent winters there back in the 50s/60s and loved it.

  13. congrats to Terrie!!!
    I'm excited to start a new cozy!!!

    cyn209 at juno dot com

  14. I love bookstore books. My dream is to own a used bookstore one day.

  15. I would love to visit this establishment!

    lag110 at mchsi dot com


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