I’m delighted today to welcome author Kate Carlisle to Thoughts in Progress to talk about her recent release, THIS OLD HOMICIDE, the second installment in her Fixer-Upper Mystery series.
During her visit, Kate offers us ‘A Secret to a Happy Life,’ as well as giveaway one print copy of THIS OLD HOMICIDE. First, here’s a brief description of this fun new mystery.
From the New York Times bestselling author of the Bibliophile Mysteries and A High-End Finish comes the second Fixer-Upper Mystery…
Contractor and part-time sleuth Shannon Hammer specializes in improving the quirks and flaws of the Victorian homes in Lighthouse Cove, California. The quirks and flaws of their residents are another story.…
Valentine’s Day is approaching, and while Shannon is delighted to be friends with not one but two handsome men, not everyone in town is feeling the love. After her elderly neighbor Jesse Hennessey fails to make his daily appearance at the local diner, Shannon swings by his place to check on him. Not only does she find Jesse dead—of an apparent heart attack—but she also realizes that his home has been ransacked.
Someone suggests that a thief was searching for a priceless necklace Jesse claimed to have retrieved from a capsized sailing ship, but Shannon doesn’t believe it. Everyone knows Jesse had a penchant for constructing tall tales—like the one about him having a hot new girlfriend. But his death is soon ruled a homicide, and shady suspects begin popping out of the woodwork. When another victim turns up dead, Shannon is convinced she must find the killer before someone else gets nailed.…
Now please join me in giving a warm welcome to Kate. Welcome, Kate. What’s your secret?
I don’t claim to have *the* secret to a happy life. I’m not that wise or all-knowing. But I can say without reservation that I have one of them.
Being creative—in whatever form that takes for you—is one of the secrets to a happy life. Making something that didn’t exist before. Something you can look at (or listen to) and feel the soul-deep satisfaction that comes from knowing it came from you.
It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. It can be as simple and fun as decorating cookies or making flower arrangements. (You can get amazing ideas from Pinterest! Find me there at www.pinterest.com/booksbykate.) My creative outlets are writing, as you might have guessed, and also bookbinding and paper arts. (The free pattern for these paper gift boxes can be found in the Secret Room at KateCarlisle.com.)
Even if a person doesn’t have opportunity for creativity in her professional life, she can find ways to be creative at home. Baking, knitting, quilting, drawing, making music, decorating your home, gardening… all of these are creative outlets that make life richer.
(This quilt pattern is available for free in the Secret Room at KateCarlisle.com.)
Have you noticed that the protagonists of pretty much every cozy mystery series have jobs or avocations that are creative? The same is true of my mystery series. Brooklyn Wainwright, heroine of the Bibliophile Mysteries, is one of the preeminent bookbinders in the
world. There’s a lot of creativity involved in restoring a rare book. And Shannon Hammer, heroine of the Fixer-Upper Mysteries, has a very creative job, too, renovating Victorian homes in Lighthouse Cove, California. When a home is 130 years old, you can’t just run down to the local hardware store to find all of the parts you need. You have to fashion a lot of them from scratch.
A sneak peek at THIS OLD HOMICIDE:
It was weird to return to the house while the sun was shining, weird to think that I’d found Jesse’s body all those days ago. It was no longer a crime scene. Jane’s cleaning crew had come through and done a great job. I couldn’t see a trace of that fine black soot the police liked to leave on every surface after they’d dusted for fingerprints. I knew how hard it was to get rid of that powder residue because the police had dusted for fingerprints in my garage a few months ago and had left it for me to clean.
I was actually looking forward to doing the work on Jesse’s dilapidated home, even though he was no longer here to enjoy it. I’d offered to help him fix the place a bunch of times over the years, but he’d never taken me up on it. His house was charming, or it would be once I was finished with it.
It was one story, but it had a steeply pitched roof and a large attic with a dominant front-facing gable. The porch was roomy enough to create an outdoor sitting room if someone wanted to, and the widow’s walk that circled the attic was instantly appealing from the street.
I had my computer tablet with me and as I walked through the main living areas, I took pictures and typed out notes. Later, I would prioritize the work. On most jobs, that meant starting with the basement, reinforcing the support posts and beams before doing anything else. Otherwise an old house like this might collapse on top of itself.
I ignored the instant chill that shot up my spine. After finding that body in the basement a few months earlier, I got a little flash of terror whenever I had to go down into the bowels of a house.
What creative outlets do you enjoy?
Kate, thanks for joining us today and sharing this secret. Being creative in various ways does make for a happier life.
Here’s a bit of background on those who aren’t familiar with Kate.
Golden Heart and Daphne du Maurier Award winning author Kate Carlisle spent over twenty years working in television production as an Associate Director for game and variety shows, including The Midnight Special, Solid Gold and The Gong Show. She traveled the world as a Dating Game chaperone and performed strange acts of silliness on The Gong Show. She also studied acting and singing, toiled in vineyards, collected books, joined a commune, sold fried chicken, modeled spring fashions and worked for a cruise ship line, but it was the year she spent in law school that finally drove her to begin writing fiction. It seemed the safest way to kill off her professors. Those professors are breathing easier now that Kate spends most of her time writing near the beach in Southern California where she lives with her perfect husband.
A lifelong love of old books and an appreciation of the art of bookbinding led Kate to create the Bibliophile Mysteries, featuring rare book expert Brooklyn Wainwright, whose bookbinding and restoration skills invariably uncover old secrets, treachery and murder. She loves to drink good wine and watch other people cook. Kate is a member of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, International Thriller Writers and Romance Writers of America®.
Kate’s first Fixer-Upper Mystery, A HIGH-END FINISH, debuted at #9 on the New York Times bestsellers list. THIS OLD HOMICIDE is available in paperback and eBook wherever books are sold.
For more on Kate and her writing, visit her website and connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.
Now I’d like to share my thoughts on this entertaining story.
Author Kate Carlisle has created a fascinating protagonist in Shannon Hammer. She a bit unusual in that she’s a contractor who restores homes. She strong and determined, but loyal with traits readers can relate to.
The small-town setting draws readers in as the cast of delightful characters entertains with their interaction. The story flows smoothly at a good pace with just enough twists and turns to keep you guessing.
THIS OLD HOMICIDE is an engaging cozy that will hold you spellbound from beginning until end.
This Old Homicide by Kate Carlisle, A Fixer-Upper Mystery Book #2, Obsidian, @2015, ISBN: 978-0451469205, Paperback, 336 Pages
FTC Full Disclosure – A copy of this book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review. The thoughts are completely my own and given honestly and freely.
This giveaway is for one print copy of THIS OLD HOMICIDE. The giveaway is open to U.S. residents only and will end at 12 a.m. (EST) on Sunday, Feb. 15.
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 Kate Carlisle’s Tour’ in the subject line, just so you know what to watch for (in case it goes into your spam folder).
Have you ever dreamed of buying a run-down Victorian home and restoring it? Or have you already realized your dream, but maybe it wasn’t a Victorian? Thanks so much for stopping by today. Hope we’ve enticed you to check out Kate’s THIS OLD HOMICIDE.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway