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Sugarplums and Scandal Mass Market Paperback – October 31, 2006
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About the Author
Dana Cameron is a professional archaeologist, with a Ph.D. and experience in Old and New World archaeology. She has worked extensively on the East Coast on sites dating from prehistoric times to the nineteenth century. Ms. Cameron lives in Massachusetts. Ashes and Bones is her sixth novel featuring archaeologist Emma Fielding.
Mary Richardson Daheim is a Seattle native with a communications degree from the University of Washington. Realizing at an early age that getting published in books with real covers might elude her for years, she worked on daily newspapers and in public relations to help avoid her creditors. She lives in her hometown in a century-old house not unlike Hillside Manor, except for the body count. Daheim is also the author of the Alpine mystery series, the mother of three daughters, and has three grandchildren.
After serving in the Air Force as a registered nurse, Lori Avocato decided to give up nursing to write fiction. She lives in New England and is a member of the Mystery Writers of America, PASIC, NINC, Romance Writers of America, the Author's Guild, and Sisters in Crime. She's raising two teenage sons (heaven help her!), and one darling dog, Spanky. Lori is the author of six novels featuring Pauline Sokol: A Dose of Murder; The Stiff and the Dead; One Dead Under the Cuckoo's Nest; Deep Sea Dead; Nip, Tuck, Dead; and Dead on Arrival.
Kerrelyn Sparks is the bestselling author of the Love at Stake series, which has hit as high as number 5 on the New York Times list and 22 on the USA Today list. Kerrelyn is honored that her band of merry vampires and shifters is spreading love and laughter worldwide in fourteen different languages.
Sometimes when you write a special book, the characters move into your heart and take up residence. This was the case with the cast of Hysterical Blondeness. I enjoyed my time with each and every one of them and I hope you do, too.
Peace, Suzanne Macpherson
Cait London is a national award-winning, bestselling author who fully enjoys the perks of her career, like traveling and meeting readers.
Cait's contemporary, fast-moving style blends romance with suspense and humor, and brings characters to life by using their pasts and heritages. Her books are filled with elements of her own experiences as a scenic and wildlife artist, a photographer, a mountain hiker, a gardener, a seamstress, a professional woman, and a homemaker. She also enjoys computers and reading, aromatherapy and herbs.
Of German-Russian heritage, Cait grew up in rural Washington State. She is now a resident of Missouri and the mother of three daughters, all taller than she.
The best events in her life have always been in threes, her good luck number. Cait London says, "I enjoy creating romantic collisions between dangerous, brooding heroes and contemporary, strong, active women who know how to manage their lives. I believe that each of my books is a gift to a reader, a part of me on those pages, and I'm thrilled when readers say, "That was a good book.'"
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All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth, Lori Avocato (3 stars)
Medical Insurance Fraud Investigator Pauline Sokol, with a little help from the sexy Jagger, decides to do a good deed and help poor Leonard Niski get his bridge work back in time to chow down on some Christmas ham. However, when Pauline starts looking into the jolly dentist, Dr. Elfin Santana, she finds things are way more complicated than she expected. Has she bitten off more than she can chew? (Sorry, I can never resist a truly horrible pun.)
The Lords of Misrule, Dana Cameron (4 stars)
In Dana Cameron's contribution, Miss Margaret Chase helps to solve a Christmas Eve crime involving theft and murder - with a little help from her brother and his enigmatic friend. Set in 1722, The Lords of Misrule is a classic English manor house mystery and was my favorite in this collection. The mystery was well plotted, the characters intriguing and the historical setting warm and inviting.
The Ghost of Christmas Passed, Mary Daheim (2 stars)
Mary Daheim delivers a Christmas miracle, of sorts, in The Ghost of Christmas Passed. When amateur sleuth and innkeeper Judith McMonigle Flynn gathers her boisterous extended family together for their traditional Christmas Eve celebration, conversation turns to her mother's brother Bart, who disappeared many years ago. As Judith learns more about her mysterious Uncle, it seems like his spirit may be looking for a way to join the family gathering. This story was a bit confusing for me. I felt like I would have appreciated more if I had read some of the books in Ms. Daheim's series featuring Judith.
Partners in Crime, Cait London (3 stars)
I liked this story, but I would have liked it more if it had been longer. It felt like bits and pieces (and not inconsequential pieces) had been cut out of a longer story to make it the right size for this collection. Cecilia Lattimore gets a little holiday help from an unexpected source in this story by Cait London. A professional organizer, Cecilia's being threatened by someone who's breaking into her house and throwing her things into disarray. When a homeless man comes to her aid, Cecilia decides to organize his life as a way to say thank you, but Joe Berenger isn't quite as down on his luck as he has led Cecilia to believe.
Holly Go Lightly, Suzanne MacPherson (2 stars)
In Suzanne MacPherson's story, Nick Fredericks can't seem to get his dead ex-fianceé off of his mind. After spending all of Christmas Eve thinking about Holly, Nick finally realizes her spirit is trying to tell him something important. When Holly's ghost leads him to a seaside bungalow early Christmas morning, Nick discovers true Christmas Joy. This story was sweet, but not very believable, and I'm not talking about the ghost here. The way Nick and everyone in his family takes the presence of Holly's spirit so calmly didn't ring true for me, nor did the events in Carmel after Nick's arrival.
A Very Vampy Christmas, Kerrelynn Sparks (2 stars)
In this campy, funny tale a newly made vampire suffering from amnesia gets help from his fangy soap-opera co-star when he goes searching for his lost past. The story is well- written, and the ending is satisfying, but all in all, it was a little bit cheesy. And not in the laugh-out-loud-meant-to-be-cheesy kind of way the author was aiming for (at least, I think she was). Just, you know, cheesy.
Then Dana Cameron has a story that takes place in the past where a murder in mannor capture one interest.
Mary Dahein story was among my least favorites as instead of a regular ghost story as I had home it more like being haunted by memory lane as 4 generations of family get together for ghost of christmas past.
other stories don't get much better till you come to Kerrelyn Sparks Very Vampire Christmas which is the best story in the book and sort of a follow up to her Vamp in the City with vampire soap star Don Orlando looking for his family and hope to regain his memory with co star and lover Maggie at his side. While Maggie family had tossed her out with barely the clothes on her back when she came out to them this story shows even a vampire can expect a christmas miracle to happen.