A Holiday Quintet

You’ll have to catch it early today, 10 AM (noon, ET), but John Charles will be hosting a quintet of Kensington authors who will talk about their holiday mysteries. Don’t forget to look for their books in the Web Store! https://store.poisonedpen.com/

 A Kensington Quintet of Cozies  Saturday December 5, 10 AM (Noon ET) Watch the event on Facebook Live!   The Poisoned Pen Bookstore 4014 N Goldwater Blvd Scottsdale, AZ 85251


Coco, Nancy. Have Yourself a Fudgy Little Christmas ( $8.99). In Coco’s eighth Candy-Coated Mystery, Christmas on Mackinac Island brings a flurry of festive activity for fudge shop owner Allie McMurphy-but also a body in a snow bank. With fun recipes, cute pets, quirky characters, and an endearing young protagonist, the Candy-Coated Mysteries serve up the perfect holiday ingredients. 

Corrigan, Maya. Gingerdead Man ( $8.99). This holiday season Bayport, Maryland, is a dead ringer for Victorian London. Val and her grandfather are taking part in the Dickens of a Holiday festival. Val is hosting a private tea party serving the festival’s costumed volunteers, who range from Dickens divas like Madame Defarge and Miss Havisham to Ebenezer Scrooge and old St. Nick himself. But one costumed reveler may have gotten the holidays mixed up. The winner of the creepiest outfit, robed in black with a gift bag covering the head-okay, Ghost of Christmas Present, Val gets it-hands out gingerbread men with white icing skeleton bones. This year’s sour Santa has none of the big fellow’s mirth but plenty of his appetite, and it’s no secret Santa loves cookies. But when the man in red turns blue, Val and Granddad have a cookie-cutter killer to catch before the New Year…. Includes delicious five-ingredient recipes! 

Day, Maddie. Candy Slain Murder ( $8.99). Christmas cheer has sent the griddle into overdrive at Robbie Jordan’s popular country store and café. And this year, there’s a new seasonal special to feast on: murder… As December sweeps through South Lick, Indiana, Robbie’s life seems merry and bright like the string lights glistening around town. But strange happenings signal a bumpy ride into the holidays. First a man raises eyebrows at Pans ‘N Pancakes when he claiming to be the long-lost half-brother of Robbie’s assistant. Then a fire destroys the home of a controversial anesthesiologist, exposing skeletal remains in his attic. Helplessly intrigued, all Robbie wants for Christmas is to stop her winter wonderland from becoming a real nightmare. With a decades-old mystery taking shape, can she run as fast as she can in pursuit of a killer who’s harder to crack than a stale gingerbread man?

Ireland, Liz. Mrs. Claus and the Santaland Slayings ($15.95). Set at the North Pole, this exceptional series launch from Ireland features such delightful characters as Old Charlie, a snowman; Blitzen, a reindeer descended from the Blitzen of “The Night Before Christmas” fame; and Jingles, the elf steward at frigid Castle Kringle. All of them are potential perps in the murder of Giblet Hollyberry, a notoriously unpleasant elf, but the chief suspect is Nick Claus, the acting Santa of Santaland. Constable Crinkles is soon on the case, along with detective Jake Frost, but it’s going to be up to April Claus, Nick’s wife, to clear her husband’s name. Rumors have circulated since the death of Nick’s older brother, Chris Claus, that Nick had something to do with it, because he coveted Chris’s job as Santa, and now an elf is dead. April has only a few days to find the killer before Christmas. Meanwhile, she must cope with the quirks of the extended Claus family. This fun, well-plotted mystery is the perfect holiday entertainment. 

*Redmond, Heather. A Christmas Carol Murder ($26). December, 1835. Nothing says Christmas like caroling outside the counting house of Emmanuel Screws, and nothing dampens the Christmas spirit like having a chained corpse fall from an overhead window to the ground before the eyes of Charles Dickens and his horrified fellow carolers. Soon after the killjoy is identified as Jacob Harley, Screws’ partner, his body inside its coffin vanishes from the custody of the undertaker Dawes. But that’s the least of Charles’ headaches. He’s already scrambling to disprove the allegation of serving maid Madge Porter that he fathered Timothy, the son of Madge’s late sister, Lizzie. Moved by the holiday spirit and simple humanity, Charles has taken up the infant and placed him with pregnant actress Julie Aga, the wife of his fellow journalist William Aga. His solicitude for the defenseless child is a distinctly bad look for his fiancée, Kate Hogarth, and a worse one for her father, George, who, as editor of the Morning Chronicle, holds a great deal of power over his employee’s future. When the prospective publisher of Sketches by Boz begins to back away from his contract, it seems the only thing that will redeem Dickens is proof that he’s not Timothy’s father. Oh, and solving what by now is a pair of murders as well.”-Kirkus Review