Saturday, April 21, 2018

On My Table April 14th -21st

This week I got more reading done that I have in a while. It felt wonderful and it helped having so many wonderful books. Down the Aisle With Murder by Auralee Wallace did not disappoint and I have that review coming up early next week. I even made charm bracelets to match, with a charm representing all of Auralee Wallace's books in the Otter Lake Series and the one that comes up after this one. I am a huge fan of this series...

I had some books I could not put down and Witches Gone Wicked is going to be reviewed tomorrow. Watch for this one.

Oh Terry Lynn Thomas' book had me transported in time. I loved this one and I know you will too. 
Magick Run Amok by Sharon Pape was also a great escape and read.
Arrived safely in the mail to review this week is Murder She Wrote, I did not request this one but I will do my best to get to it shortly. 
I love the cover and it is such a great series I consider myself very lucky.
I found a lovely well used teacup with yellow flowers at the hospital thrift store this week. A  lovely cheerful Royal Grafton teacup and saucer rescue from the local hospital charity shop. The inside gold and rim are faded and worn with age. Meaning this was once a treasured and cherished set. Just the way I like it. Oh the stories this cup could tell, tales of comfort, celebration and quiet reflection. 
It feels pretty great to have it on my table and being used again.
I hope you have a lovely weekend. I am off to baseball and if I am very lucky some time to read and write later today. 
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Friday, April 20, 2018

Fancy Friday Finds...Lovely ways to steep your tea

This past week I sent out my tea swap and was looking for some creative ideas for sending tea care packages and I found some great ideas on Etsy. I love this idea, A matchbook that contains tea bags for your loose leaf tea.
The Luna Tea company sells these adorable filters in their etsy shop which you can find by clicking here.

Next up are tea nests made with wood and really lovely, made in the USA by the Albion Tea Company These are truly unique and beautiful. Click here for Etsy listing and to view the website. 

These tea buddy tea balls caught my eye and I love how the kitten hands on the side of the mug. Offered by the Other Lab's Etsy Shop this would make a charming tea gift for a tea and kitten lover. Click here for shop and listing. 
Thank you all for joining me here for this weeks Fancy Friday Finds. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Murder on Mokulua Drive by Jeanne Burrows-Johnson


Murder on Mokulua Drive by Jeanne Burrows-Johnson is a true mystery readers delight. Perfectly situated in one of the best armchair traveler locations of Hawaii, this is Natalie Seachrist Hawaiian Mystery will have you guessing. Great character development and a bibliophiles dream. This one is out now and published by Artemesia Publishing

The warm welcome they receive from Miriam Didión (a widowed human rights activist) sets an ideal tone for life in their delightful shoreline neighborhood. By the time Natalie throws Keoni a birthday party, she has become close to Miriam and her personable housemates Joanne and Izzy, and their new housekeeper Samantha. Even Miss Una, Natalie's feline companion, has embraced the women who live next door, as she keeps watch over their property each night. Unfortunately, the bliss of seaside living evaporates when Natalie experiences a horrifying vision of a scuba diver garroting a woman. The following morning a body is discovered in the neighbor's maid's quarters and Natalie is forced to reveal her murderous vision to Keoni's former partner, Honolulu Police Detective John Dias. Hoping her unique skills will again prove useful, the Lieutenant asks Natalie and her twin Nathan (a psychologist) to examine the victim's journals. The decades-long commentary proves fascinating although it yields no clues. But when a nefarious suspect's body is found at Diamond Head Beach, the case appears solved. Believing that her life of semi-retirement is back on track, Natalie plans a tour of historic Kawai Nui Marsh. Too soon the day of playing tourist devolves into a nightmare. When Keoni points out the possibility of an unexpected threat Natalie realizes that she and her new friends are caught in the cross hairs of a dangerous adversary. Does resolution of the gruesome murder lie in the deceased's transnational past? Or in the visible present among innocuous seeming companions?

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@gmial.com

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Cinco de Murder by Rebecca Adler


I love Texmex, how can you not? Cinco de Murder by Rebecca Adler is about more than family, more than mystery and more than food. But there are some great recipes in the back of this one. I liked the premise of this cozy and this the third book in the Taste of Texas series will not disappoint fans of this series. A fun and feisty family, great town and out now!

Tex-Mex waitress and part-time reporter Josie Callahan serves up more Lone Star justice in this spicy mystery from the author of The Good, the Bad, and the Guacamole.It's fiesta time in Broken Boot, Texas, and tourists are pouring into town faster than free beer at a bull roping for the mouthwatering Cinco de Mayo festivities. Tex-Mex waitress Josie Callahan, her feisty abuela, and even her spunky Chihuahua Lenny are polishing their folklórico dances for Saturday's big parade, while Uncle Eddie is adding his own spicy event to the fiesta menu: Broken Boot's First Annual Charity Chili Cook-off.But Uncle Eddie's hopes of impressing the town council go up in smoke when cantankerous chili cook Lucky Straw is found dead in his tent. And when Josie's beloved uncle is accused of fatal negligence, she, Lenny, and the steadfast Detective Lightfoot must uncover who ended the ambitious chilihead's life--before another cook kicks the bucket.

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

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

The Silent Woman by Terry Lynn Thomas

Oh My where to start, The Silent Woman by Terry Lynn Thomas, wow. I did not want to put it down and when I did I felt so guilty and desperately wanted to get back to it. Do not try to adult while reading this book. I promise you are going to want to sit and read this in one sitting. You are going to want to shut the world off while you devour this spy mystery. Set in England, just before the second world war there is so much historial intrigue and mystery in this one, that it reads like a more serious version of a Rhys Bowen novel. I found that while this story was not technically a cozy it made me feel quite cozy in the end. I found that the main character "Cat" was completely relatable, her unassuming nature and the feelings of being stuck because of her place in society was palpable. Her heartache and loss struck a chord with me and endeared her to me almost immediately.    There are some truly great twists in this book, historical hierarchy and great questions raised about British and German society. I absolutely loved this book. The imagery that the words written by Terry Lynn Thomas wrote will stay with me for a long time to come. If you are a cozy mystery fan, a historical mystery fan this is a great read for you. Mystery, intrigue and a must read. This book is out now and I love the cover!

Would you sell your secrets?


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

Monday, April 16, 2018

V.M. Burns Read Herring Hunt...

I thoroughly enjoyed Read Herring Hunt! I have no idea how V.M. Burns does it but in this book you get two very different and wonderful cozy mysteries. I am in awe of her writing talent and I could not put this book down. There is something so wonderful in the way that main character Sam has taken so many painful things in her life and found a way to start moving on, even under the most imposible of circumstances. I love her relationship with her Grandmother, and the way her employee has become like family to her. You get this deep feeling of love and family in this story, love that stands the test of time, disease, anger and anguish. A great group of supporting characters and two wonderful little dogs. I loved this book and I am excited ready for book three! This one is out April 24th, so you don't have long to wait!
Mystery bookstore owner Samantha Washington is about to find out it's not so easy to play Monday morning quarterback when it comes to murder. . .  To the town of North Harbor, Michigan, MISU quarterback Dawson Alexander is a local hero. To Samantha Washington, owner of the Market Street Mysteries Bookstore, Dawson is more than a tenant—he’s like an adopted son. But to the police, he is their prime suspect after his ex-girlfriend is found murdered. It’s more than enough real-life drama for Sam to tackle, but her role as a mystery writer also calls. Returning to the English countryside between the wars, she finds Lady Daphne Marsh in quite the quandary. Someone has tried to murder the scandalous American divorcée Wallis Simpson, for whom Edward VIII so recently abdicated his throne. It seems finding a suspect is no small challenge when most of England has a motive . . . While Sam’s lawyer sister Jenna rushes in to build Dawson's defense, Sam and her lively grandmother, Nana Jo, huddle up to solve the mystery and blow the whistle on the real killer. With the tenacious members of the Sleuthing Senior Book Club eager to come off the sidelines, Sam and her team just might stop a killer from completing another deadly play . . .

You can find this book on Amazon for pre order 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, April 15, 2018

Magick Run Amok by Sharon Pape...

Sharon Pape has such a fun paranormal cozy series and in Magick Run Amok I truly enjoyed the twists and the turns the story took. It is light hearted, fun, funny and was such a good ending too. The characters in this series I love from main character Kailyn, her Aunt Tilly and Lovely Merlin, yes the very same Merlin you are thinking of, get up to some pretty amazing things in the tiny town of New Camel! The setting, the cats and the visits from beyond make this one of my most favorite and treasured paranormal series. This one is out in May and you are going to want to read the entire series. I cannot wait to find out what happens next, and I love the covers of Sharon Pape's series.


November in upstate New York can be chilly, but Kailyn Wilde’s shop, Abracadabra, is a cozy respite where you can find lotions, potions, and plenty of warm, feline company. But what customers don’t know is that the proprietor has some unusual powers—and unusual friends, including the renowned magician Merlin, who’s been transported into the modern world. All of which comes in handy when there’s a murder to be solved . . .
 Investigative journalist Ryan Cutler has perished in a car accident in New Camel, and his friend, Travis, suspects foul play—especially when the reporter’s notes reveal a mysterious list of dead men’s names. Kailyn wants to help, but she’s also got her hands full with the curmudgeonly Merlin, who’s not exactly maintaining a low profile. Between keeping the wizard under wraps and mixing up cold remedies that work like magic, she’ll have to tap into her many talents to figure out a killer’s fatal formula . . .

This one is out in May and you can pre order now on Amazon by clicking here. 
Thank you so much 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@gmmail.com 

Saturday, April 14, 2018

On My Table and In My Cup April 7th- 14th

I had the best of intentions and the heaviness of eyelids. Sorry this post is so late. I had every intention of writing this before I fell asleep on the couch last night but sleep over took me and when I woke up, I moved myself to my bed and not the computer.  Today is the start of our Challenger Baseball Season, if the rain can hold off just a few more hours, that is. I also have hockey later this afternoon and have not had a ton of time to read this week. I am playing catch up in lots of areas right now...
I would be lying if I told you that things are somewhat normal here. We are all still reeling from the Humboldt Broncos tragedy, showing our support as shown here with our sticks by the door and our jerseys on. It is nearly impossible for me to not reflect on the loss to the community and the hockey world as both a parent and fan of the game. 

I did not get much reading done this week as I said earlier but I am almost done Sharon Papes upcoming book.
I needed a paranormal cozy and I am so thankful this one crossed my path!

My to be read pile continues to grow and I need to get back at it so I shall leave you here. I hope you have a wonderful rest of the weekend. 
Thank you for joining me here today for a cup of tea and a week in review. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com 

Friday, April 13, 2018

Fancy Friday Birthday Finds...

Today's Fancy Friday Finds are in anticipation of my birthday in a couple of weeks. Actually in my family we have 5 April birthdays. My sister in law, sister on the 18th and 19th and my twin nieces and I on the 26th.  As birthday gifts to me from me this one is high on my list! I have been wanting this teacup and saucer for over a year but the shipping to Canada is twice the cost of the cup and saucer. I have looked for this for a while and found the Happy Anniversary but not this one. This setting is offered on the EtagereAntique Etsy Shop. Click here for shop and listing. 

Next up is this pillow, I love the colors and the message! So many people I could get this one for! Click here to see it in the Brickhousependant Etsy shop. 

When I see this I think I want to buy one of those machines so that I can print of the vinyl lettering and make my own signs! I love this one too! You can find this simple and totally awesome sign at Milkandhonelyluxuiries by clicking here...

Thank you for joining me for this week,s Fancy Friday Finds, I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Thursday, April 12, 2018

An Afternoon Tea To Remember but not in the way I had hoped...

This week my friend Anna and I tried a new place for tea. This was a tea to remember and not for the good food. It was more for the wonderful company and great view.  Sadly the "tea" part of the was not at all what I would expect from a restaurant offering tea.

While it looks really nicely presented, I am a very firm believer that when you offer "afternoon tea"  you offer at least one type of scone, usually two, none were offered.
Also you may notice on the top that there are burgers and fish tacos on the top layer.  I will say the burger tasted pretty good, but I had phoned the week before to make sure they knew about my allergies to shellfish and seafood as well as mango and was assured I would not be allergic to anything on the plate, (I had my epi pen and did not need to use it but I was very disappointed in what they thought passed for afternoon tea)
While the bottom tray had a lovely assortment of desserts what it lacked was the correct size and the ability to actually eat and remove the items from the plate without them falling apart.  The Tiramisu in the cups was delicious and I loved the Macarons. Both cakes offered did not hold their shape or transfer easily.
While I was mostly disappointed with what was served because it was not as described at all or expected, I did enjoy the company. The tea itself that was offered was a line of bagged teas from Mighty leaf. Not a bad tea but standard restaurant fair.  This tea was presented like a tea but was really an appy plate and a selection of desserts. I was disappointed. I had wanted to share a great experience with a friend and I was disappointed with restaurant. The company and view was exceptional though and I am glad she was able to join me.
If you are coming to West Vancouver for tea avoid Bay Moorings Restaurant for tea but do check them out for lunch or dinner, the burger was pretty great and the desserts not half bad.

Thank you for joining me for a cup of tea and a look at one of West Vancouver's restaurants offering tea. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com   


Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Jenn McKinlay's Wedding Cake Crumble

Wedding Cake Crumble by Jenn McKinlay is the second wedding themed cozy I read this week. Normally I shy away from Wedding cozies but this was a really good read. I am starting to think Wedding Cozies are pretty cool. It helps when you have such outstanding characters and a fun and complicated coincidence, murders with twists and a whole lot of cupcakes. I was delighted with this mystery and some Kick butt characters! This one is out now and is one to pick up and binge read for sure!
For the Fairy Tale Cupcake crew, wedding bells turn to death knells in this latest mystery in the New York Times bestselling series.

With Angie and Tate's wedding just around the corner, it's a happy time for Melanie Cooper and the bakery crew. Not only are they finessing the last minute details of the big day, but their bakery, Fairy Tale Cupcakes, has just been hired to bake cupcakes for the blockbuster book signing of a controversial author who wrote a steamy bestseller filled with juicy local gossip.

But one by one, the people Angie has hired to work at the wedding begin turning up dead. As the body count rises, the bestselling author is the next to bite the dust. Mel quickly realizes she needs to figure out how the murders are connected and why--before the killer brings the entire cupcake crew crumbling down. After all, Angie and Tate deserve their sweet happily ever after.

You can find Jenn McKinlay's Wedding Cake Crumble out now and on Amazon by clicking here. 

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 

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Kate Carlisle's Buried in Books...

What a good book, what a good book! I very much enjoyed Kate Carlisle's upcoming book Buried in Books. Wow, I seriously could not put it down and was in awe of how Kate captured the feelings of wedding jitters and threw in a great murder mystery. The setting and theme of the book was beautifully balanced and perfectly laid out.  I loved the conflict between the characters and the way Kate makes the world of Librarians and Booksellers feel like an exciting James Bond Mystery. This was a great read and I am excited for you all to read it. Though not out until the end of June this is a must read for 2018!


In the latest in this New York Times bestselling series, matrimony and murder collide as San Francisco book-restoration expert Brooklyn Wainwright walks down the aisle...
Brooklyn has it all covered. She’s triple-checked her wedding to-do list, and everything is on track for the upcoming ceremony with the love of her life, security expert Derek Stone. 

Not everyone has been as lucky in love as Brooklyn. Her old college roommates Heather and Sara lost touch twelve years ago when Sara stole Heather’s boyfriend. Brooklyn was caught in the middle and hasn’t seen her former besties since their falling-out. When they both show up at her surprise bridal shower, Brooklyn is sure drama will ensue. But she’s touched when the women seem willing to sort out their differences and gift her rare copies of The Three Musketeers and The Red Fairy Book. 

Brooklyn’s prewedding calm is shattered when one of her formerly feuding friends is found murdered and Brooklyn determines that one of the rare books is a forgery. She can’t help but wonder if the victim played a part in this fraud, or if she was targeted because she discovered the scam. With a killer and con artist on the loose, Brooklyn and Derek—with the unsolicited help of their meddling mothers—must catch the culprit before their big day turns into a big mess.



Out in June but you can preorder it from Amazon by clicking here. I am not an amazon affiliate and I don't make money if you click. 

Thank you for joining me 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

Monday, April 9, 2018

The Enchanting Rose 12th Tea Cup and Mug Exchange...


I have just joined something called the Enchanting Rose Tea Cup and Mug Exchange. This is the 12th exchange on the Enchanted Rose Blog.
I got an email invite yesterday and I am so very excited to be able to participate.
I am in absolute awe of the beautiful photography and photos of past swaps on this site click here to see what I am talking about! This is the link to the reveal of last years swap! 
I cannot wait to start putting together something for my partner, and then sharing with you the swap I receive. As this is my birthday month I thought that this would be the perfect way to celebrate!
Thank you for joining me here for a cup of tea and something so exciting! I look forward to sharing more with you tomorrow. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com

Sunday, April 8, 2018

A Tell Tale Treasure by Megan Marple

A Tell Tale Treasure by Megan Marple is not at all what I thought it was. When I started it I thought I had made a mistake but found I could not put it down. By the cover I at least was sure I was reading a cozy mystery about adults but I quickly found the main character was a child. Still I kept reading and I am so glad I did. This stories cover is misleading but the story is a nice little paranormal light cozy with a few well placed twists. I promise though it reads like a YM mystery in the end you will be pleasantly surprise. I really enjoyed it and I hope you will too. I found it on Amazon and I would read the series based on this first book.

A hidden treasure, a talking bird, spooky ghosts, and a boy named Bigfoot - all just another day on the island for young Edie Allan!It's August and Edie's best friend is away at camp, leaving Edie in an end-of-summer misery that can only be cured by a jug of Nana's sweet tea, and some good old-fashioned mischief. With her talking pet raven, Poe, and a new kid in town named Bigfoot, she's on the hunt for a treasure that's sure to change their lives. Maybe then she can stick it to all the mean girls in school... Armed with her wits, a couple of shovels, and the map, Edie and Bigfoot try their best to uncover the clues hidden under the blazing Lowcountry sun. But trouble has a funny way of finding Edie, and the only thing that might save her from it is a friend of the ghost variety...

You can find this book on Amazon by clicking here. 
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

Saturday, April 7, 2018

On My Table and In My Cup March 31 - April 7th

It is Saturday morning and normally I write my posts the night before but I just could not yesterday. This week has shown me a multitude of situations and feelings that are not easily processed. I woke up to the news that there are 14 confirmed dead hockey players who were simply just trying to make their playoff game and the sadness as a parent, hockey parent and human is shocking.  Exactly one week ago we were playing our own first game of our hockey tournament and the unexpected highs and lows of our own tournament came to mind along with extreme gratitude for our own bus driver whose careful driving and experience  got us to Kelowna safely through the snow and a mix up of dates and times.
I will get to tea and reading I swear but I wanted to share that during the trip my youngest son who is a goalie took a slapshot to the front of his mask and had his bell rung.


In my heart of hearts I knew that the mask did it's job and that he would be okay but nothing could have prepared me for what would happen next.
A bit of background is that I am a hockey mom of two players with Special Needs. The tournament was made of up teams of hockey players who all face different special needs challenges. In that moment that my son had the wind knocked out of him something more extraordinary happened. The goalie from the opposing team left his net and not only skated to check on my son's well being but he made a choice to play for our team and cover my sons now empty net.
There is something so moving in that very gesture. Something that can not accurately be put into words.  Eventually the goalie from another team who was going to play after us, took up the vacant net of the other goalie and they both played as if they were on their own teams for the glory of the game.

After the game was done and Alex was on the mend, these two met and embraced off ice, traded stories and tips and formed an amazing bond. We Drafted goalie Drury to play with us for the last game and he and Alex took turns in the net.

This amazing goalie, who has come through insurmountable struggles with his own health,  played 5 games on a day where three was all that was needed. We lost every game but it never mattered. I took away and so did the team, parents and volunteers so much more . May we all strive to be a little more like Brandon Drury.

Over that weekend I read Midsummers Night's Mischief which was the only book in the Wiccan Wheel series I had not yet read. I loved it.
I read another P Bodi cozy mystery shor and I was very impressed. I have become quite a fan of these cozy shorts and I recommend checking them out.
I hosted a release day party for Kathleen Bridge and her new book Death by the Sea, this was such a fun event and I hope you got a chance to stop by.
I did more writing this week than reading which is unusual but I did share a flash fiction piece I worked on for what I hope will become a cozy over time. You can find that story by clicking here. 

This week I have been sustained by my Murchie's Vanilla Black tea, treated to some lovely Darjeeling tea from one of my tea swaps and had a few herbal teas as well.

Thank you for taking the time to join me today for a cup of tea and a cozy mystery week in review. I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment here or email me at karenmowen@gmail.com