Posted in Cozy, Guest Post, mystery, Spotlight on June 14, 2016

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Murder On The Menu: A Romantic Comedy Culinary Cozy Mystery (A Celebrity Mystery Book 1)
File Size: 1093 KB
Print Length: 266 pages
Publication Date: September 24, 2015


After Lizzie’s new boss, celebrity chef Armand, is stabbed in his own kitchen, Lizzie finds herself at the top of the suspect list.

Determined to clear her name she’s forced to enlist the services of her new neighbour, Celebrity Crimes Investigation Agency (CCIA) special agent Jack Mathis, who’s been suspended from his duties for reasons unknown.

Can Lizzie save herself from getting arrested and manage to resist her special agent sidekick’s considerable charms and gorgeous smile? Will they solve the culinary murder mystery or will she end up in a prison cell?


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Guest Post

Books On Location

I think where a book is set can influence whether or not we are tempted to read it. Do you find yourself drawn to a cozy mystery because it’s set in a certain place, such as a sunny beach resort or a trendy and bustling city? I know I do. These days Amazon even lets us select cozy mysteries we want to read in categories such as small town, island, beach or mountain! Personally, I much prefer rural settings to urban ones but generally speaking, I don’t mind the country the story is set in, though the majority of books I’m drawn to are usually in the UK or the USA.

Like I said, I’m not much of a city person but that hasn’t stopped me from being intrigued by plots and drawn to reading books set in bustling cities such as London, Sydney and New York.  I certainly still enjoyed the books despite the locations not holding much appeal to me initially, so I guess location isn’t everything but I think you can safely say that the setting is something of a supporting ‘actor’ to the characters in a novel and can really help to bring the book to life.

city view motm

I admit to having a particular weakness for books set in Scotland, and some of my absolute favorite books have been set in Ireland as well. One book set on a fictitious island off the west coast of Ireland made me feel as though I was on holiday there with all the characters. I could smell the sea air, stroll along the lanes and see the little cottages dotted amongst the landscape, it was wonderful.

Books set overseas can make fascinating reading and allow you to learn more about the customs, traditions and the lifestyles of those who live there. I used to be a travel agent many moons ago and still love to watch travelogues on TV. I’ve learned much about destinations as far flung as Alaska, Hong Kong, the Australian outback, Quebec and Montreal, North Carolina and New England from reading novels set in these places.


Murder On The Menu (Book one in my Celebrity Mystery series) is set in the English Lake District – one of my favorite places to visit in the whole wide world. My husband and I have had numerous short breaks in the Lakes, spending a few hours each morning walking up the hills to sit and savour the stupendous views or strolling around the picturesque lakes themselves. Afternoons were usually spent perusing the local art galleries, craft shops and outdoor gear stores followed by a reviving drink and cake in a coffee shop. Ah, bliss!


My other books have been based in different parts of the UK (and further afield) in places that I have enjoyed visiting on holidays. From the rugged Yorkshire coast to the Highlands of Scotland. In my Amber Reed Mystery series, each book has a different location as Amber travels around for the Celebrity Crimes Investigation Agency (CCIA) tackling cases for the rich and famous. The stories start out in glorious Derbyshire (not far from where I live) which is Amber’s home and then move to a remote Scottish island, a luxurious French ski lodge and, in the latest book, venture all the way to fantastic Vancouver in Western Canada, a place where my husband has relatives who we visited a few years ago.

Grasmere Lake

So, how important do you think the location is in the books you read? Do you prefer hot and sunny or cold and snowy settings for books? Are you a city or country girl at heart? Do you think the location adds another layer to the mystery aspect of a novel? I’d love to know!

StoreyBook Reviews here answering Zanna’s question – I usually like warmer weather (not necessarily hot!  I live in Texas after all).  I love the city but there is something so peaceful about the country.  And YES!  Location does add something to the books, I like to imagine the town where the book is taking place and picture myself living there and what I might enjoy doing in that location.

Thanks for stopping by Zanna!

About the Author

ZannaMI write romantic comedy mysteries and when I’m not writing I can be found gardening (trying to grow tomatoes in the British climate is a major challenge!) walking the dogs or reading.

I’m a former therapist, a fan of the great outdoors – especially Scotland, the Lake District and Derbyshire’s Peak district – and also something of a dreamer!

Home is a village on the Derbyshire / Leicestershire border in the UK with my husband, our 4 Labrador dogs, a vegetable patch that’s home to far too many weeds and an ever expanding library of books waiting to be read.

At every opportunity I can be found scribbling down notes on scenes for whatever novel I’m working on and I love it when the characters in my work in progress novels take on minds of their own and start deviating from the original plot!

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