Most of the book reviews I’ve sought out have been with bloggers and folks who review on Amazon and Goodreads. But someone recently suggested I get in touch with the St. Paul Pioneer Press’s book reviewer, Mary Ann Grossmann. She makes it a point of regularly covering local small press and indie authors. (Many newspapers won’t even look at indie-published books.)
Well, I dropped off copies of both King Harald books a few weeks ago and last week heard back from Ms. Grossmann. She wrote me that she loved King Harald and ran a really nice review yesterday. Pretty cool. In fact, the review gave me a little bump in Kindle sales—always welcome.
Here’s Ms. Grossmann’s takeaway: “This series is as much about small-town life as it is about crime. The human characters are likable, and Harald is a big, happy dude who doesn’t know he’s a crime sniffer. He just does his doggie thing — rambling around town, worrying about The Boss, chasing squirrels and following his nose wherever it takes him. Which usually means trouble for Andy.”
For paperback fans in the Twin Cities, King Harald’s Heist is now available at two leading bookstores. You can find it at Garrison Keillor’s Common Good Books in St. Paul; or at that beloved mystery bookstore in Minneapolis, Uncle Edgar’s.
This is just a heads-up that the first novella in my Mary MacDougall historical mystery series will be available for free from Amazon Kindle Select, beginning tomorrow (Friday, Feb. 27) through next Tuesday (March 3).
This story launches the career of my budding sleuth, Mary MacDougall, as she investigates the Minneapolis kidnapping of two young women in 1901. She suddenly comes face to face with a terrible dilemma. The prime suspect is a man she finds herself very much attracted to. Is he really the talented artist he appears? Or a diabolical criminal?
Get the book here.
That is the question.
Right now I’m in the process of working on the third Mary MacDougall mystery, tentatively titled The Widower’s Wrath. But buried in the story—barely noticeable—are some references to a relative of our heroine who seems to have fallen on hard times. Her name is Jeanette Harrison and she is a first cousin of Mary’s mother. What’s her significance?
Well, in the first, original Mary novel—written years ago and published by Xlibris in 2001, now out of print—the tale was told by Jeanette. That first Mary came into being as a mashup of Jeremy Brett’s Sherlock and Helena Bonham Carter’s Lucy Honeychurch. And she needed a Watson. Enter Jeanette.
The second canine cozy mystery in the King Harald series is coming ever closer to publication. And last week I finalized the cover art with designer Steve Thomas. Once again, my cover boy is Fiver—alas, no longer with us. I had two enjoyable backyard photo sessions with Fiver and there are enough good shots for a long series of books. I’m so grateful to Fiver’s “boss”—my friend Kelly—for allowing me to use his image.
Up until now my two Mary MacDougall mystery novellas were only available as e-books, leaving out folks who are not fond of e-book readers. (Sue and I were at a party recently and just about everyone we encountered had nothing good to say about Kindles and Nooks.) Well, now readers who prefer their books not on an LCD screen can read the two historical mysteries on good old-fashioned paper. At the moment, the nearly 300-page paperback is only available on Amazon. Click here for a look. But in coming weeks it will become available at Barnes & Noble and any other book retailer who sells print-on-demand books.
My new Mary MacDougall mystery, The Stolen Star, is fast approaching the finish line. And I just wanted to show off the novella’s cover. Steve Thomas did a great job on the design again, using public-domain art that Sue and I found. The painting is “Girl in White” by Alfred Maurer. Interestingly, the painting itself resides in the collection of the Weisman Art Museum, just a couple of miles up the Mississippi from where we live.
We’re still a month or two out from publishing The Stolen Star as an e-book. For those who prefer paper books, we’ll be doing a print-on-demand edition pairing Star with its precursor, A Pretty Little Plot.