Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Deadly Reservation by CeeCee James

I finished Deadly Reservation by CeeCee James last night. This is the second in the Ocean Side Hotel Mystery Series and it is a steal at $1.00 right now! This is a series about a young lady who manages a hotel, lives at the hotel with her Southern, Soap Watching Mother and her basset hound named Bingo. This was a fun and very quick read for me. Main character Maisie stubbles on a sleeping beauty while out exploring the ruins of an old church. When she returns to the hotel she is alerted that a maid has found a client who is also in a similar state. With Sleeping Beauty already in the hospital and now a hotel guest Maisie can't help but look for a way to connect them. This story has fun twists, quirky town history and hierarchy and a whole lot more.



When Maisie Swenson stumbles onto the site of an ancient church steeped in pirate folklore, she's thrilled to explore it. She never expects to find a young woman lying in the churches yard clutching flowers like a real live Snow White. And just like the cartoon Snow White, this woman cannot be awakened.As Maisie tries to puzzle through that situation, one of her guests is found in a coma, too. Only this one is mysteriously clutching a necklace. Can she ever sort through all the crazy clues to find where the pirate and ghost stories end and a real life killer begins? Or are the folklore tales true after all?

This book is out now. You can find Deadly Reservation by CeeCee James on Amazon by clicking here.

Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a cozy mystery review. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Monday, May 29, 2017

The Curious Affair of the Somnambulist & the Psychic Thief by Lisa Tuttle

I finished The Curious Affair of the Somnambulist & the Psychic Thief by Lisa Tuttle last night. I chose this book to review from Netgalley based solely on its title and I did not know at the time that Somnambulist is the correct term for someone who sleep walks. This is a period mystery, a bit cozy and a very respectable paranormal. Great  main character, Miss Lane, who finds herself with ut a job and answering the call to become a detective assistant to a very charismatic man who calls himself detective. Living largely by her wits and abilities of observation Miss Lane is a fascinating character. The mystery is especially exciting and somewhat elusive. I hated to put the book down and I found myself thinking about it when  had to put it down and walk away. Lisa Tuttle wrote this book for mystery lovers like you and me. I enjoyed The Curious Affair of the Somnambulist & the Psychic Thief. 
Their talents are rare . . . as are their customers. So when Jesperson and Lane are hired to track the nocturnal wanderings of a sleepwalking London business owner, they’re simply happy to be working again. The case begins as a window into the séances and other supernatural parlor games that are so popular these days, and takes a sinister turn as the intrepid investigators pull back the curtain on the cutthroat rivalries underpinning polite society.But after several mediums go missing, it’s clear that Jesperson and Lane are in over their heads. For they’ve uncovered a presence beyond their understanding—an evil force that won’t hesitate to kill in order to achieve its nefarious ends.
Find this book on Amazon now by Lisa Tuttle, by clicking here
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a cozy mystery review I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Gnome More Cancer, A Short Walk For A Long Journey

Years ago when I met my brothers wife Sarah I was given a great gift, not only her friendship but I got to meet her friend Debbie.  Debbie was fighting a very serious brain tumor. My sister in law has the most amazing support system of friends who I have had the pleasure via social media to get to know and it was there I began to follow her friend Debbie's journey. Debbie is in remission from brain cancer and she is along with her team of Gnome Warriors walking today to raise money and awareness for those who are battling brain cancer in Victoria British Columbia today. They are called Gnome More Cancer.
This is Debbie this morning from her facebook post with the caption  "This Gnome is ready to roam XO!"


Debbie and I share a love of Gnomes, but for very different reasons.  Debbie's amazing friends started Gnome'ing her house during her battle and what started as a laugh quickly became very powerful medicine and magic. What started as a laugh has turned into quite a mission!

 This amazing support system was there for her all through her treatment and her recovery.  They also all got Gnome Tattoos in support of Debbie and their mission.
Debbie and her friends inspire me. If you would like to learn more about Debbie please click the link below, or to donate to her walk today.

You can read more about Debbie's Story by clicking here.
You can find out more about the walk or to donate to the walk by clicking here 

This morning I lift my cup in support of Debbie and her Gnomes and all those who are battling brain cancer today.
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a cozy gnome spotlight!
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Saturday, May 27, 2017

On My Table and In My Cup May 20th-27th

Saturday morning and another week has flown by. Long cold winter and wet spring have given way to mid summer temps and the windows are open to get that much needed cross breeze and with the warm weather the ants have returned, and I am again at war....

 Several memorable events and activities this week, birthdays X3, a baby shower, honor choir concert, which I preformed in, a bake sale and more. This did not lend itself to much reading this week.

 I did however get a few reviews in, like Asking for Truffle by Dorothy St. James, This one is not out until September but one to preorder for sure. I really enjoyed how it read. Great mystery and start to a series!
The bake sale was Thursday and I baked more than 120 cookies this week to help support my son's upcoming Europe trip in 2018, the bake sale looks like it was a great success and I was thrilled to be reviewing an upcoming Holiday Cookies Cookbook, the Red Velvet Chocolate Crinkle Cookies turned out brilliantly. Some really great cookies in this book and the photos are fantastic. Out in September also this would make a really nice gift for a friend or yourself.
Maddie Hatter and The Deadly Diamond was another book I read and finished this week. It was a fun adventure mystery for those about 12 and older. Great Steampunk feel and adventure.
I am currently working my way through The Somnambulist and the Psychic Thief by Lisa Tuttle.
I hope where you are this weekend you are able to enjoy the more gentle weather and company of those you like most.
Thank you for joining me here for a cup of tea and a cozy mystery review. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Friday, May 26, 2017

Fancy Friday Etsy Favorites

Friday morning and I did not get a chance to finish reading anything to share today so I will share some of my Fancy Friday Etsy Favorites with you today. I love the look of embroidered tea towels this one is hand stitched from Mary Stitches and More Etsy shop and you can find it and some really lovely items by clicking here.
Fandom Tea Etsy shop offers a fun Friday Afternoon Sampler you get 8 of their flavors in one box! Love this idea, tea tasting party in a box! Click here for this shop and listing.
Thursday's and Fridays in my house for many years now have been tea party days with a toddler. My niece PB  ( and her sisters TB and LB before here) come to my place and we have tea parties and they wear tiaras. Earlier this week it was National Tiara day and this t-shirt  is perfect for both! I may have to order some for my nieces and one in my size too! Click here for shop and listing.

I hope you enjoy your own Fancy Friday, trying to dress things up a bit with my red shoes!
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a Fancy Friday post! I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Asking for Truffle by Dorothy St. James


Asking for Truffle by Dorothy St. James was a delightful and surprising cozy that is coming out in September 2017. I feel really excited to share about this first in series put out by Crooked Lane Books. I kept waiting to for this book to have some truly "Magical" revelations but it didn't and it read so well I was never quite sure right up until the end. I was sure this would turn out to be a paranormal cozy but it did not! There was so much suspect activity in this book, suspense and amazing chocolate. Great back story for main character Penn, fun way for her to finally come into her own. I appreciated the complexity of the relationships in this book and while the author could have taken some really tidy and easy ways out, she didn't. I was guessing until the very end and I so enjoyed that! I think this could be a really great cozy series. Look for it now and put it on your list, you are going to enjoy this early fall read!
You can pre order now on Amazon by clicking here.
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a cozy mystery review. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Holiday Cookies by Elisabet der Nederlanden

In case you are wondering why today, 214 days before Christmas I have decided to share a review of an upcoming Holiday Cookies Cookbook the reason is simple, I love cookies. Motivated only slightly by a bake sale I volunteered to bake for in a fundraising attempt of the honor choirs upcoming trip to Europe next year, I thought I would give one of these recipes a try from author Elisabet der Nederlanden and Ten Speed Press. This book is coming out this September 5th and is worth pre ordering. The photos are fantastic and these Red Velvet Chocolate Crinkle Cookies are far superior to my own recipe!
From Icebox Pinwheel Cookies to Red-and-White Meringue Kisses to Apple Cider Caramels, find new inspiration for the best of seasonal baking with Holiday Cookies. This instant holiday classic is packed with 50 recipes, each gorgeously photographed and meticulously tested, along with dozens of decorating and packaging ideas. Filled with reimagined favorites like Giant Molasses Spice Cookies and Hazelnut Sandwich Cookies; confections like Peppermint Bark, Smoked Almond and Cacao Nib Brittle, and Dark Chocolate–Hazelnut Fudge; and detailed instructions for gorgeous gingerbread houses, cookie place cards, and edible ornaments, this is a cookie book like no other. Because the recipes are easy to scale up or down, Holiday Cookies is perfect for cookie exchanges, gift-giving, and just enjoying throughout the season. From a veteran baker and recipe developer, each cookie in this collection is guaranteed to be a stand-out, and destined to become your new Christmas classic.

Currently on sale on Amazon pre sale for $20! Click here to pre order.
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a cozy recipe book review I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Maddie Hatter and the Deadly Diamond by Jayne Barnard

I bought myself this book on Saturday and I read Maddie Hatter and the Deadly Diamond by Canadian Author Jayne Barnard over the weekend. This is a Steampunk Adventure Mystery currently recommended for readers of 12 and older. It was a fun read, I can totally see why younger readers and not so young readers like myself have so many wonderful things to say about this book. We set off on a grand adventure over land, sea and sky with Maddie who is undercover as an investigative journalist and navigating a world that is expectedly beneath her stature as the daughter of a Steamlord! So much to love in this strong and industrious main character. Her clockwork bird is more than a pet, more than a constant companion and a brilliant addition to the story. I loved this story and found it really easy to imagine, even plausible in an implausible way. Lovely read and first in what I hope is a long running series.



Monday, May 22, 2017

Sweet Tea and Spirits by Angie Fox

I finished Sweet Tea and Spirits by Angie Fox last night and it was a great ghost mystery with a fun and exciting twist I did not see coming when I sat down to read it. Now I am almost convinced I read an earlier book in this series as I felt so at home in this paranormal cozy. 
What makes this a fun read is the hierarchy of the community and social status not just among the living but also with the very active community of the undead as well.  I would absolutely read another book in this series happily!

Southern girl Verity Long is about as high society as her pet skunk. Which is why she’s surprised as anyone when the new head of the Sugarland social set invites her to join the "it" girls. But this is no social call. Verity’s new client needs her to go in undercover and investigate strange happenings at the group’s historic headquarters. But while spirits are whispering hints of murder, the socialites are more focused on Verity’s 1978, avocado-green Cadillac. And when Verity stumbles upon a fresh body, she's going to need the long-dead citizens of Sugarland to help her solve the crime. Good thing she has the handsome deputy sheriff Ellis Wydell on hand, as well as her ghostly sidekick Frankie. The bad thing is, the ghosts are now whispering about the end of a certain ghost hunter.

You can find Sweet Tea and Spirits by Angie Fox on Amazon by clicking here.
Thank you for joining me here for a cup of tea and a cozy mystery I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Sunday, May 21, 2017

A Saturday To Remember...

Happy Sunday Morning to you, while I had hoped to share a book review this morning, I had a very busy day yesterday and did not get a chance to finish the book I was reading. Yesterday was a baseball day,  my Son's birthday and birthday party here and a surprise party/paint nite for my friend Jo's birthday, this was a very busy day indeed.
My sister and 5 of my friends and I had a blast and we made the theme of my friends birthday a Sunflower Themed.
My friend Anna and I made up these birthday Corsages, with a pin of our friend in the middle. They were fun and easy to make and pulled the evening together.
Getting to spend time with my sister and my friends is a luxury for sure, and not something we often do. I feel very blessed to have these amazing women in my life and had a day to treasure always!

Paint Nite was a fun way to spend time with friends, create something I did not think was possible and got to take something home to be proud of.  Paint Nite did not make me an artist but it did make me want to keep painting. This was a day I will cherish for years to come and promise to get back to reading now! Click here to learn more about Paint Nite.
On my table now is Maddie Hatter and the Deadly Diamond by Jayne Barnard at time of posting on sale now at Amazon.ca for 99 cents! 
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a cozy Saturday to remember. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Saturday, May 20, 2017

On My Table and In My Cup May 13th-20th


On my table this week I had the great honor of having Bloodline by Vicki Vass on my table.  This is a new Paranormal Cozy Mystery with a lovely dedication and I was honored and thrilled to find that Vicki Vass had included my name in her book. This story is one that loved and was thrilled with the story, mystery and dedication. I loved this book so much I wish I could purchase it for you all!

I am currently reading through Angie Fox's book Sweet Tea and Spirits it is a very intriguing mystery.
I also shared a review of  a great resource boom by Laura Temest Zakroff , this series is by Llewellyn.
It has been very much a paranormal cozy mystery weeks with Bailey Cattrell's Nightshade for Warning, loved the idea of this cozy and can not wait to read another!
Putting up the tea tent felt like a huge victory this weekend, thankful that my dad and niece were able to help put up and partake in the first "tea"
This has been a truly wonderful week for me, the books, the company and the tea tent have brought so much joy to each day.
Thank you for joining me here for a cup of tea and a cozy mystery week in review. I look forward to sharing more with you again tomorrow.  I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Friday, May 19, 2017

Tea Tent Is Now Up and Open To Receiving Guests!


Yesterday was the first really nice day here this week and my dad an my niece came over to help me erect the tea tent.  For my 40th birthday a little while ago a friend bought me an outdoor tent that I transformed into an outdoor escape. I called it the tea tent the old one is shown above.

Well sadly on December 10th,  just before we moved the original tea tent collapsed under what I thought was a freak ice/snow storm. We just don't get snow like that here normally so I never thought to take the tea tent down.  I was devastated, so many happy memories in that tent!
My dad found one online and on sale in December to replace my special place. It has sat in my basement since we moved. We had 4 more major snow storms during and after we moved so I had not even dared to put it up. This weekend however is the May long weekend for Victoria Day, a celebration of  Queen Victoria's Birthday and for us in this house a 4 day weekend.

The tent we put up yesterday is  a little different, lighter weight and easier to put together ( so taking it down in the fall should be easier too).  This is a photo of my first two guests who helped me put it together yesterday. My dad and my niece PB who's sisters were shown in the tea photo above and who at the time was too little to enjoy a tea party.  She and I get to spend a lot of time together so we will have many more tea parties to come.
Even though everything in my life feels so different now in the new house, new neighborhood I started to feel a bit more at home as soon as I hung up my chandelier.  If you are a long time reader you may recognize it, I turned this once indoor candle holder into a solar powered outdoor chandelier for the tea tent and it is one of my most favorite repurposed items ever .
I am happy to say the tea tent is now open to receive guests as early as this weekend, I think I need to go bake some scones now...
While they are baking I will go read a bit more of Sweet Tea and Spirits by Angie Fox.
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a cosy tea tent update.
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Thursday, May 18, 2017

The Witches Cauldron by Laura Tempest Zakroff

The Witches Cauldron by Laura Tempest is a book from a series I love from Llewellyn Books. There is a wonderful amount of information on the use of cauldrons, and their place in witchcraft history and modern day. This is a useful and lovely resource for those who like me love learning about witchcraft history and it is a very interesting read. This is a book I can not wait to have a print copy of.


While I have this book as an e-copy I am considering purchasing this one for my own collection. 
Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a "magical" book review. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment below or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com