Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Great Escapes Blog Tour, Review, and Giveaway: How to Book a Murder by Cynthia Kuhn


Today I'm participating in the How to Book a Murder Great Escapes Blog Tour. In this post you'll find information about the book and author along with my review. And be sure to enter the giveaway contest via the link further below for a chance to win a digital copy of the book and a $20 gift card.

About the book . . .

How to Book a Murder (A Starlit Bookshop Mystery)

Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Publisher ‏ : ‎ Crooked Lane Books (December 7, 2021)
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 336 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1643858599
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1643858593
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08QVJFZZK


Synopsis . . . Perfect for fans of Jenn McKinlay and Kate Carlisle, in award-winning author Cynthia Kuhn’s series debut, small-town bookseller and literary event planner Emma Starrs is out to close the book on a killer intent on crashing the party.

To help save her family’s floundering Colorado bookstore, Starlit Bookshop, newly minted Ph.D. Emma Starrs agrees to plan a mystery-themed dinner party for her wealthy, well-connected high school classmate, Tabitha Baxter. It’s a delightful evening of cocktails and conjecture until Tabitha’s husband, Tip—hosting the affair in the guise of Edgar Allan Poe’s detective C. Auguste Dupin—winds up murdered.

In a heartbeat, Emma and her aunt Nora, a famous mystery writer, become suspects. Emma is sure the party’s over for Starlit events, until celebrated author Calliope Nightfall, whose gothic sensibilities are intrigued by the circumstances, implores the bookseller to create a Poe-themed launch event for her latest tome. Throwing a bash to die for while searching for additional clues is already enough to drive Emma stark raven mad, but another shocking crime soon reveals that Silvercrest has not yet reached the final chapter of the puzzling case.

Someone in this charming artistic community has murder on the mind, and if Emma cannot outwit the killer, she and her beloved aunt will land behind bars, to walk free nevermore.


My review . . . When Emma Starr returns to her hometown of Silvercrest, Colorado after earning a PhD, she has no idea how busy and interesting her life is about to become. Helping her sister Lucy manage the family's bookstore and restore its profitability--and revising her own novel for publication--are enough to fill more hours than there are in a day. But spontaneously volunteering at the last minute to coordinate a Poe-themed mystery dinner party for the Baxters is not only a schedule-breaking decision, it's also a deadly one. There's a lot riding on the success of the dinner party both personally and business-wise given the fact that Tabitha is Emma's former high school nemesis and Tip is Emma's Aunt Nora's boss at Silvercrest College. 

Shockingly, Tip is murdered during the dinner, and Emma and Aunt Nora are considered prime suspects. Emma's overflowing to-do list now includes defending herself and her aunt  from murder charges and finding a killer--all while organizing a Halloween book launch for Aunt Nora's eccentric faculty colleague Calliope Nightfall, who insists on another Poe-themed event. 

Who killed Tip Baxter? As Emma discovers, there are many persons of interest among the Silvercrest faculty and his country club friends. And when the killer strikes again, it's a race against the clock to prove Emma and Nora's innocence and bring a murderer to justice.

How to Book a Murder introduces readers to Emma Starr, a relatable protagonist, and a well-defined cast of calculating faculty members, scheming self-promoters, artistic types, and everyday people. The novel's plot provides lots of action and red herrings, which are conveyed in timely, satisfying fashion. The  cozy bookshop setting and book-related activities contribute additional charm to this new series. Readers will find themselves rallying behind Emma as she returns to her childhood home, where she must reconcile with the mean girls of her high school years, while helping her family and planning her own future. This first book in the Starlit Bookshop mystery series is a delightful read. It nicely plants the seeds for future developments between characters and reader interest in upcoming installments. The next book can't come soon enough.

About the author . . . Cynthia Kuhn is an English professor and author of the Starlit Bookshop Mysteries and the Lila Maclean Academic Mysteries. Her work has also appeared in Mystery Most Edible, McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, Copper Nickel, Prick of the Spindle, Mama PhD, and other publications. Honors include an Agatha Award, a William F. Deeck-Malice Domestic Grant, and Lefty Award nominations. 
Originally from upstate New York, she lives in Colorado with her family.
Author links . . .

Website: cynthiakuhn.net

Twitter: @cynthiakuhn

Facebook: www.facebook.com/cynthiakuhnwriter

Bookbub: www.bookbub.com/authors/cynthia-kuhn

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/39587.Cynthia_Kuhn

Blog: chicksonthecase.com

Newsletter: https://bit.ly/2MPiEMh


Purchase links . . .
            AmazonB&NKoboGoogle PlayIndieBoundBookshop 
Giveaway . . . Enter for a chance to win a digital copy of How to Book a Murder and a $20 Bookshop gift card by clicking this link. 
Tour Participants . . .

December 6 – The Book Diva’s Reads – SPOTLIGHT

December 6 – The Book’s the Thing – REVIEW

December 7 – Mochas, Mysteries and Meows – CHARACTER GUEST POST

December 7 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – REVIEW

December 8 – Literary Gold – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

December 9 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 10 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW

December 10 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW

December 11 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

December 11 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW

December 12 – Laura’s Interests – SPOTLIGHT

December 13 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 13 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – REVIEW

December 14 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

December 14 – Book Club Librarian – REVIEW

December 15 – Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic – SPOTLIGHT

December 15 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

December 16 – Mysteries with Character – GUEST POST

December 16 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW  

December 17 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

December 17 – Diane Reviews Books – GUEST POST

December 18 – Author Elena Taylor’s Blog – REVIEW

December 19 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT  

Note . . . I received a complimentary copy of How to Book a Murder from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
This Blog Tour post was originally composed and/or compiled and published by Catherine for the Book Club Librarian blog.  It cannot be republished without attribution.