Friday, October 17, 2014

A Crafty Christmas by Mollie Cox Bryan: Guest Author, Review & Giveaway

A Crafty Christmas

All Aboard—Scrapbooking and Murder on the High Seas

By Mollie Cox Bryan

Sometimes I have to pinch myself to make sure it’s all real. My fourth book in the Cumberland Creek series is now out—A CRAFTY CHRISTMAS. Count’em: four books, plus an e-novella. Squueee!

Now, you know I love my fictional setting of Cumberland Creek, Va. and know its streets, parks, and mountains like the back of my hand. I populated it with plenty of quirky characters, which was (and is) a great deal of fun. While there’s plenty of my imaginary small town in A CRAFTY CHRISTMAS, some of my croppers go off on a scrapbooking cruise together and leave behind Annie, Beatrice, and DeeAnn. (Yes, there are scrapbooking cruises!) I thought a change of scenery might do my characters good—and it does, well, until the murder, that is.

It turns out that a cruise ship is a fabulous place for a murder.

Like Matthew Kirtley, security chief on the ship says, “One of the interesting things about security on a ship is nobody’s going anywhere. Not even the murderer.”

How would you like to be on a cruise with a murderer? It does tend to damper the festivities. It also makes some people a bit paranoid. But in the case in A CRAFTY CHISTMAS, not everybody on the ship knows that the untimely death of one of the most famous scrapbook designers on board was the result of murder. But, of course, my main characters do because Sheila discovers the body—in a most inopportune and clumsy manner. As only Sheila is wont to do.

Poor Sheila suffers a concussion as the result of her mishap. She tries to get it together because she has several interviews lined up with major national design firms. She is mixing with the movers and shakers in the scrapbooking industry. Opportunity is everywhere, yet, Sheila is quite unwell and has a hard time functioning. Doesn’t it just figure?

As the Cumberland Creek group pulls together, we learn a lot about security on cruises, the scrapbooking industry, and a bit about the tumultuous past of some of their lives. Intrigued? I hope so.

About the author: Mollie Cox Bryan writes the Cumberland Creek Mysteries, published by Kensington. The first book, Scrapbook of Secrets, was nominated for an Agatha Award for Best First Novel of 2012 and was selected by B & N as a mystery to watch. The rest of the books in the series are: SCRAPPED, DEATH OF AN IRISH DIVA, SCRAPPY SUMMER (e-novella), CRAFTY CHRISTMAS and SCRAPBOOK OF THE DEAD (forthcoming 2015). She is also the author of the bestselling MRS. ROWE'S LITTLE BOOK OF SOUTHERN PIES (Random House 2009) and MRS. ROWE'S RESTAURANT COOKBOOK: A LIFETIME OF RECIPES FROM THE SHENANDOAH VALLEY (Ten Speed Press, 2006). She has worked for years as a freelance food journalist with articles published in Taste of the South, NPR’s Kitchen Window, and Grit Magazine, among others. She lives in Waynesboro, Va. with her husband and two daughters.

Author Links
Twitter: @molliecoxbryan

Purchase Links
Amazon B&N


Blurb: Christmas is just around the corner, and the ladies of the Cumberland Creek Scrapbook Crop are thrilled when Sheila wins the first place prize in a scrapbooking design contest: a ten-day scrapbook-themed cruise in the Caribbean. Vera and Paige decide to tag along, which should pose the perfect opportunity to learn some new techniques, mingle with fellow croppers, and get in some rest and relaxation before the chaos of Christmas. But when Sheila finds a famous crafter dead, and investigators determine she was poisoned, the luxury cruise veers toward disaster as Sheila becomes the number one suspect - or was she really the intended victim? Just as the croppers begin un-wrapping the truth, a storm strands them at sea, and they'll find it's harder than ever to survive the holidays with a killer on deck...

Tortie Shorties
Book reviews that are short and sweet...just like Truffles!

Nothing makes me happier than reading a cozy mystery set during the Christmas season at any time of the year. When I first read the blurb for this book though, I was a bit hesitant: how Christmas-y can a book be when the action takes place on a Caribbean cruise??? My concern was completely unwarranted as I loved every single minute of this action-packed adventure.

Sheila, Vera, and Paige are the scrapbookers on the cruise, and Sheila's incredible opportunity to further her crafting career get sidelined when she (literally) falls over the body of a famous cropper. The method of murder is ingenious, as it involves Sheila's award-winning scrapbook, which also ends up making her the main suspect. But as the ladies do a little detective work of their own (with the help of Annie and Bea back home in Cumberland Creek), they start to wonder if Sheila was actually the intended victim!

With a jaw-dropped final scene which will have you counting down the days until the NEXT book's release, put A Crafty Christmas at the top of your Christmas reading list!
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Who wouldn't like a Christmas, cozy mystery? :)

  2. It looks like the purrfect Christmas book ! Purrs

  3. Keeps you guessing up to the very end. Nice job Mollie. Can't wait to see what happens next to our group of lovely ladies.

  4. Just in time for reading when the snow starts to fly! Love the series.

  5. I would love to read this one. Who would ever murder a crafter?

  6. Every year starting around Thanksgiving, until New Years , I read nothing but holiday themed books.

  7. Think I'll make a scrapbook of all the great bloggers talking about this fun book. Then we'll all gather for a cruise and hope we don't murder each other trying to win this book!! Ronnalord(at)msn(dot)com

  8. I love to do crafts and I enjoy reading about other crafters.
    sounds like a fun read.

  9. I love reading & crafting. The book sounds stupendous . Thanks, for a chance to win.

  10. This looks like a fun read, and I'm going to enter. Thanks for the opportunity.

  11. Best part of Christmas -- reading Christmas themed cozies!

  12. Whoa! Merry Christmas! The plot thickens …

  13. I would love to read this book.

  14. Nothing is better than a cozy set during the holiday season.

  15. Sounds good, a murder on a cruise ship.

  16. Cozy & a favorite things!

  17. I can't imagine anything better then a Christmas cruise with a murder adding to the "fun". That combo in a good book to read by a fire on a cold winter day makes for a perfect cozy evening.

  18. I knew there was a reason why I never wanted to go on a cruise. lol ;)
    Sounds like a great snuggle up and read cozy!

  19. a great series!!
    thank you for the giveaway!!

  20. I'm looking forward to reading this book---I'll start reading Christmas cozies on November 1! :-)