Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Holiday Book Give-away

Sandra Parshall

It’s the gift-giving season, and time to put some new mysteries in readers’ hands, in the hope of making more fans for the authors. Take a look at these recent releases and leave a comment with your top three choices (to increase the chance that you’ll win a book you want). Then send an e-mail with your mailing address to I’ll notify the winners tomorrow. Happy reading!

To start, here are three Christmas-themed mysteries:

In A Holiday Yarn by Sally Goldenbaum, the Seaside Knitters are turning richly hued yarns into gifts. But when a guest is found murdered on the local B and B's snowy porch, the knitters set aside their needles to pursue justice and restore joy to the season.

Mistletoe and Mayhem by Kate Kingsbury takes readers back to the Pennyfoot Hotel (a place as dangerous as Cabot Cove!), where Cecily is decorating for Christmas festivities. Soon, however, someone is found dead and another person goes missing, and the hotel sleuths must find the killer and restore holiday cheer.

The Fat Man by Ken Harmon is something completely different. In this North Pole noir tale, the disillusioned 1,300-year-old elf Gumdrop Coal decides to give a wake-up call to parents who can’t keep their kids off Santa’s naughty list. When somebody murders a parent, Gumdrop is framed and has to solve the crime to clear his name.

 If you’d rather forget about the holidays for a few hours, there are plenty of read-anytime mysteries to provide distraction. Try one of these:

A Marked Man by Barbara Hamilton brings back Abigail Adams (wife of John) as a thoughtful sleuth in this unusual and beautifully written series set in Colonial America. John takes the case when young Henry Knox is accused of murdering a royal representative to the colonies. Was the killing prompted by rivalry for a woman’s affections, or was it politically motivated? While John works to clear his client, Abigail pursues the killer – and soon the killer is pursuing her.

In Threats at Three by Ann Purser, cleaning woman Lois Meade once again moonlights as a sleuth in the English village of Long Farnden. After a fundraiser event for the highly contentious restoration of the Village Hall, a dead body turns up in the canal. Is the murder connected to the restoration dispute? Can the police solve the crime without Lois’s help?


 Murder at the PTA by Laura Alden is a debut novel and first in a series featuring Beth Kennedy, owner of a children’s bookshop. Soon after Beth reluctantly joins the board of the elementary school PTA, the unpopular principle is murdered. When the local gossip blog fans the flames of speculation, Beth races to find the murderer before he – or she – kills again.

Shroud of Dishonor by Maureen Ash continues the historical Templar Knight mysteries featuring Bascot de Marins. The shocking discovery of a strangled prostitute in the Templar chapel throws the order into disarray. Alongside the corpse is a purse containing 30 silver coins – the same amount Judas received for betraying Jesus. Is the murder revenge for a Templar brother’s betrayal? Has one of their own broken his vow of chastity? The order’s preceptor enlists Bascot to determine whether an outsider is seeking to dishonor the Templars or a murderer walks among them. One thing soon becomes clear: the killer’s work is not yet over.

To be entered in a drawing for a free book, leave a comment naming your top three choices, then send your mailing address to (Your address will not be used for any other purpose.) And when you go shopping, remember that books make great gifts!


E. B. Davis said...

Sure, I'd love a book! 1)A Holiday Yarn. 2)The Fat Man 3)Mistletoe and Mayhem. What a great idea!

Sarah said...

Mistletoe and Mayem, The Fat Man, and Shroud of Dishonor all sound particularly wonderful to me!

Kate said...

Wow these all look great, a really hard choice. But here goes (I'm closing my eyes and picking with my pencil because it's too hard to choice.)

1)A Holiday Yarn
2) Threats at Three
3)Murder at the PTA

Oh, a drawing. I've got my fingers crossed.

Nancy Adams said...

I love the premise of The Fat Man.

Shroud of Dishonor appeals to my interest in historical mysteries, and I haven't read any in this series.

Threats at Three sounds like a good present for my sister since she loves cozies.

Thanks so much to Sandy and the authors for these wonderful Christmas treats!

Carol M said...

These are my top three picks. Thank you for the giveaway!

Murder at the PTA
Shroud of Dishonor
A Marked Man

mittens0831 at aol dot com

J. Bard- said...

Would love one of these books
1.a Marked Man - Barabra Hamilton
2.Shroud of Dishonor - Maureen Ash
3.Threats at Three - Ann Pursar

I am a fan of history particularly American History so Barbara Hamiltons book is my first choice.

they all look great
Have a Happy Healthy Holiday

Kathleen Delaney said...

Wow. Not sure how you choose among all these, but, after much thought, I'll pick these three.
Broken Places
Mistletoe and Mayhem
A Marked Man

Katreader said...

I love a Christmas mystery-and I love Kate Kingsbury's mysteries. It's a hard pick (I'd love all of the books, lol) but I'll say 1. Mistletoe and Mayhem 2. A Holiday Yarn and 3. Murder at the PTA (I've heard good things about this book, but haven't read it yet.

Sandra Parshall said...

Remember that if you don't win a book that interests you, you can always buy a copy. :-) Books make great gifts, not just for others but also for yourself.

susied said...

My choices would be Shrous of Dishonour, A Holiday Yarn and The Fat Man, though all sound wonderful!

Pattie @ Olla-Podrida said...

How exciting! I love a good holiday mystery. Here are my choices:

The Fat Man
A Holiday Yarn
Mistletoe and Mayhem

In no particular order, really, I mean, who could decide?

Janel said...

Oh, some lovely choices. Merry Christmas, Sandra!!

1) A Holiday Yarn

2) The Fat Man

3) A Marked Man

Thank-you for the chance to win one of these great books!

Kari Wainwright said...

What a delightful offer. If I'm lucky enough to win a book, my top choices are:

Shroud of Dishonor
A Marked Man
Mistletoe and Mayhem

gkw9000 [at]

NRNMG said...

Gollee so many good choices! I think I would like to read:

1. Murder At The PTA
2. A Holiday Yarn
3. Mistletoe and Mayhem

Jane said...

My top choices are:
1--Threats at Three
2--Holiday Yarn
3--Murder at the PTA

Sally said...

Ho ho ho! Brighten my holidays with new books! Mistletoe and Mayhem, The Fat Man and A Marked Man would fit nicely in my stocking.

shirley said...

They all sound great, but if I have to choose - A Marked Man, Murder at the PTA, A Holiday Yarn. Thanks for the giveaway.

boots9k at wowway dot com

Kaye George said...

This is great!
Murder at the PTA
The Fat Man
A Marked Man

But they all look great!

Kay said...

Neat idea for a contest! My top three are A Holiday Yarn, Shroud of Dishonour & Murder At The PTA. Thanks for throwing my name in the hat!

Deb Salisbury said...

Oh, how fun! Thanks for having this contest, Sandra!

My top three are: The Fat Man, A Marked Man, and Threats at Three.

Chris V. said...

Oh these are great! I love the Fat Man idea, Shroud and Mistletoe soujnd great! (but they all do!)

Allene said...

I have read, and re-read the descriptions of the books and find I really can't choose just three. So, I will leave it to powers that be, if I am chosen to receive a book I will feel fortunate to have the opportunity to read any of them!

Anonymous said...

What fun!

Like Allene, I don't know which of the three to pick as all sound interesting. If I am lucky enough to win, I'll leave it up to you to choose which one.

Anonymous said...

Correction -- I meant ALL of the books sound interesting.

It was fun to read about each one of them.


pennyt said...

I always love the chance to win books and I'd love to read any of these. But my top three choices are:
Marked Man
Holiday Yarn
Threats at Three

Thanks for the chance to win.

Sandra Parshall said...

Don't forget to send your snail mail address to It's also okay if you've sent your address to my other e-mail account -- just so I've got it in case you win! I'll pick winners tomorrow.

Norma Huss said...

What a great idea!

1. A Marked Man
2. Mistletoe and Mayhem
3. A Holiday Yarn

MaxWriter said...

These all sound wonderful.
A Marked Man
Murder at the PTA
Mistletoe and Mayhem