Books · Heroine Interviews

SRP Heroine Interview: Cora Chevalier from Assault and Beadery

ASSAULT AND BEADERY BANNER 640

Assault and Beadery coverPlease tell us a little bit about what is currently going on in your life?

All of my dreams are coming true. Since moving to Indigo Gap, North Carolina, I’ve been blessed with a great boyfriend, a lovely home, and a booming craft retreat business. But on the eve of my first Crafty Mom’s Escape Weekend, tragedy strikes again in Indigo Gap. This time, it’s curtains for Stan Herald, the disagreeable director of the local theater group, who’s murdered on the opening night of their new production. Worse, my friend Zee is accused of the crime.

I’m determined to prove my friend’s innocence, but Zee’s mysterious past is making that difficult. And with a list of suspects longer than a double spool of satin cording, getting a bead on the real culprit won’t be easy. With my friends Jane and Ruby at my side I must string together the clues and solve Stan’s murder before the killer gives an encore performance.

What made you decide to take on such a risky endeavor?

My friend Zee is innocent. I know it. I have to help. It doesn’t seem like the police are helping her.

Did you ever imagine yourself being involved in fighting crime?

No, I never did. Even though I used to work at a women’s shelter, I have never been involved in a murder investigation until I moved to Indigo Gap.

Who would you say is the least pleased about your additional career choice of amateur sleuthing? Or is detective work your only career?

I run a craft retreat and I’m a craft blogger. As to who’s least happy about my sleuthing, that would be a toss up between the local police and my boyfriend Adrian.

What are your strengths and weaknesses?

I’m a people pleaser, which I think is a good and bad  trait. I want to help, but sometimes people  take advantage and I get myself into trouble. I’m creative and love to craft and write, but am not so good with details, like paying the bills and making things add up in the books!

Describe what being a self-rescue princess (a strong, confident woman) means to you.

Being able to rely on yourself, know that you can handle just about any situation. Also, part of being confident and strong is being vulnerable at times. Showing vulnerability is not a weakness.

What one advice/wisdom would you like to pass onto young women?

Listen to that little voice inside of you and act on it.

What was one lesson you learned during this challenging time in your life?

People can fool you—and themselves.

Do you plan on dabbling in amateur sleuthing in the future, or have you hung up your detective hat?

I’ve hung up my hat—for now!

Books · mystery · Scrapbooking · Writing

Release Day! Altered to Death

It’s here, it’s here! Release day for Altered to Death, the sixth book in the Scrap This Mystery Series. I still have a hard time believing that the sixth book in this series is out. It seems not too long ago I was angsting over the first book finding a publisher and now the series has six titles (Cropped, Designed, Embellished, Framed, Masked, and now Altered is added to the family).

AlteredToDeath front sm (2)Even knee-deep in planning her wedding, Faith Hunter finds herself distracted by the town scrapbook she was commissioned to create. Eden’s oldest mystery, the founding family’s exodus nearly a hundred years ago, remains unsolved. When a search through the family’s abandoned mansion leads to the uncovering of bones on the property and ex-boyfriend Steve Davis announces a surprise heir has staked a claim, Faith is determined to dig up the truth left behind.

Meanwhile, family friend Wyatt Buford asks Faith to look into his deadbeat father’s disappearing act and his connection to the murder. Her quest for answers unearths secrets past and present that some would prefer stay buried at any cost. Faith’s resolve to present the facts and nothing but about Eden’s history could lead to her own future being cut short.

Here are the stops on my blog tour, please stop by and visit:

November 27 – Celticlady’s Reviews

November 27 – A Chick Who Reads

November 28 – Books,Dreams,Life

November 28 – Deal Sharing Aunt

November 29 – Varietats

November 29 – A Holland Reads

November 30 – T’s Stuff

December 1 – Teresa Trent Author Blog

December 2 – Laura’s Interests

December 3 – Babs Book Bistro

December 4 – View from the Birdhouse

December 5 – Melina’s Book Blog

December 5 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy, Too!

December 6 – Girl with Book Lungs

December 7 – A Blue Million Books

To celebrate Altered’s release, the ebook edition of Designed to Death (Book 2 in the series) is on sale for 99 cents! The sale price is for a limited time.

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00F1IFYJ8
Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/designed-to-de…/1115700257…
iBooks:https://itunes.apple.com/…/b…/designed-to-death/id703561501…
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/designed-to-death

Everyday Life · mystery · Writing

Overwhelmed by Changes

I feel like I’ve been missing-in-action for months on my blog and Facebook. I can’t believe it’s been since mid-June that I’ve actively engaged in this part of my life. And I do enjoy it. I love being able to keep with family and friends, share what’s been going on in my life, finding new crafts to create and books to read. But since this summer things…okay time, to be exact, got away from me and I allowed myself to wallow just a little too much in the overwhelming sea of changes going on in my life.

I’m a planner and having unexpected changes pop up throws my whole being into a sense of chaos. I find it hard to get my bearings and put together a new plan to merge all the must-dos and need-to-dos  into order. In the scheme of issues and problems one has to face, mine weren’t that horrible or unmanageable. Just a few too many unexpected ones at the same time.

IMG_2109There was the foot injured that was likely a stress fractured and kept me out of my garden, and pretty much house bound, except for work during the whole summer. It wasn’t easy walking around in the boot, or going up and downstairs, which the doctor told me was the whole point in it, keeping me off my foot. The treachery of navigating stairs had me writing on a laptop upstairs rather than in my office. On the bright side, at least I wasn’t in the boot while we were in California. It would’ve made getting around Disneyland, the Safari Park, and all the wineries difficult.

I hated not being able to tend to my garden as it was a hobby I enjoyed. Sadly, the lack of attention, combined with the heat and humidity, left our plants in dire condition. We didn’t get much produce, and a lot of the plants succumbed to the heat and squash bugs that attacked the garden.

Then came the unexpected home renovation bathroom project which my friend named Armageddon. We had a recurring mold issue in our bathroom, and got tired of cleaning it, so we called a mold specialist to remove it, figuring it would be gone once and for all. And it is–actually the whole bathroom is gone. Eliminated.

 

For someone who does better with plans, this chaos, along with our decision to start rearranging the house, threw me for a huge loop. And I’m not big on twisty, turning roller coasters which is what I felt I’ve been on for the last few months. Every plan I had made kept getting thrown out.

As for the rearranging of the house–that was the result of another change I knew was coming but just not now. I knew our college junior would be leaving home soon. Just not mid-August soon. I had figured he’d stay until he graduated in two years, instead he moved to where he could go to college and was also being considered for a job with the police force. Since our last child was leaving the nest, we decided to move some of the rooms around to better suit our needs (moving my husband’s office from the room at the far end of the garage into my old office, and my office and crafting studio upstairs as it has more natural light (better for crafting). I’ll admit, I wasn’t ready for the change of having no children at home. I still struggle with it as being mom has been the major part of my identity for such a long time–since I was twenty-one. But time moves on. And I know my children need to move on, and forward, to accomplish their goals and dreams.

Which bring me to my writing, my dream, and the new-to-me dilemma of having my main character snub me. I finished Altered to Death, the sixth Scrap This mystery (release date Nov 28! pre-order is available), and was excited to begin a new book in the series. I sat down to write…and nothing. I had two main plot ideas and played around with them, but it was going nowhere. Then I tried writing a short-story featuring Faith and again it went nowhere. It was like Faith didn’t want to be in it. She didn’t want to talk to me. I tried getting her engaged in the plot but everything sounded to me like the author (me) was moving the character around the scenes. She wasn’t coming across as being an active participant. The story was going nowhere.

What was I to do? There were other ideas for books I had wanted to write, a romantic suspense I wrote a few years that I could polish or rewrite to send off. Or…I wasn’t sure. It had been a long time since I wasn’t sure what to write, where I didn’t have an idea chasing me around demanding to be written.

So, I decided fine, I just won’t write for a month. I’ll use the time to put my house back together. And of course that’s when the next book came to me…a new character. A new series. A new mystery featuring a crafting heroine who will be trying to move forward with her dreams as her children are seeking hers. She’s talking to me. A lot. I’m enjoying getting to know her.

And I know I’ll hear from Faith again. I guess we just needed a little break from each other. At least her new adventure will be out soon. Here’s what she’ll be up to:

AlteredToDeath front sm (2)

Even knee-deep in planning her wedding, Faith Hunter finds herself distracted by the town scrapbook she was commissioned to create. Eden’s oldest mystery, the founding family’s exodus nearly a hundred years ago, remains unsolved. When a search through the family’s abandoned mansion leads to the uncovering of bones on the property and ex-boyfriend Steve Davis announces a surprise heir has staked a claim, Faith is determined to dig up the truth left behind.

Meanwhile, family friend Wyatt Buford asks Faith to look into his deadbeat father’s disappearing act and his connection to the murder. Her quest for answers unearths secrets past and present that some would prefer stay buried at any cost. Faith’s resolve to present the facts and nothing but about Eden’s history could lead to her own future being cut short.

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Altered-Death-Faith-Hunter-Mystery-ebook/dp/B0758DG23P

Barnes and Noble:https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/altered-to-death-christina-freeburn/1127044022?ean=2940158764622

Books · mystery · Scrapbooking · Self-Rescue Princess · West Virginia

Release Day–Framed to Death

Framed to Death CoverIt’s here…release day for Framed to Death. I hate picking a favorite (and I probably say this with every book) but I have to say this cover and the story is one of my favorites. It wasn’t the easiest one to write, to be honest it gave me huge fits at times, but it holds a special place in my heart. My character grew a lot from the ending of Embellished to Framed. I loved writing this journey for her and having her take on an issue causing havoc in her community.

I’ll be making some guest appearances around the world wide web, and I’ll also be at Malice Domestic this weekend. Please stop by and say hi at my stops to enter into a giveaway.

Here’s my schedule:

April 25 – Back Porchervations – REVIEW

April 26 – A Holland Reads – GUEST POST

April 27T’s Stuff – SPOTLIGHT

April 28The Girl with Book Lungs – REVIEW

April 29Tea and A Book – REVIEW, INTERVIEW

April 303 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, &, Sissy, Too ! – SPOTLIGHT

May 1Island Confidential – INTERVIEW

May 2LibriAmoriMiei – REVIEW

May 2Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

May 3Musings and Ramblings – GUEST POST

May 4A Chick Who Reads – REVIEW

And now a little introduction about Framed to Death:

Eden has turned into a hotspot of crime, and Faith finds herself smack dab in the middle of the flare-up. When a favor for a friend links Faith to the synthetic marijuana problem invading her town, no good deed goes unpunished becomes the title of her life. The town accuses the police of favoritism toward her, putting a strain between Faith and Ted, and a new officer is determined to prove Faith’s guilt.

When the criminal is outed, Faith’s relief is short-lived. A fire takes out the store—along with the suspected dealer—and she’s now number one on an officer’s suspect list. Faith sets out to prove her own innocence, and her digging sparks the truth to life. Instead of the truth setting the town free, Faith finds out it might destroy Eden, the friends she holds dear, and smother out her own life.

Buy Links:

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

iBooks

Kobo

 

Books · Excerpt · Scrapbooking · West Virginia

Celebrating Valentine’s Day: A Little Romance from Designed to Death

Thank you so much for spending time with me this weekend to help celebrate Valentine’s Day. This is my last celebration post and is from Designed to Death, the second book in the Faith Hunter Scrap This Mystery series.

Designed to Death:

Blurb: Faith Hunter planned the perfect event at her grandmother’s shop, Scrap This, featuring local scrapbooker and Life Artist Diva, Belinda Watson. But the extravaganza goes up in a cloud of glitter when Belinda and her cousin, Darlene, brawl over scraplifted designs. Faith attempts to break it up, but only makes things worse. Then when Belinda turns up dead behind the Scrap This store, Faith’s involvement goes viral.

As accusations against her turn vicious, Faith sets out to prove her nemesis, Darlene, committed the crime, only to realize they are both innocent. Now they must team up or the murderer’s plan will come together seamlessly with the frenemies sharing a jail cell–or worse, a funeral.

DESIGNED TO DEATH front under 2mbExcerpt:

Steve’s lips turned up slightly. “I know this isn’t my business, but my advice is don’t trust Darlene again.”

I let out an unladylike snort. “There’s a warning I don’t need.”

“I’m thinking I should check your place tonight. I don’t like knowing Karen had the photographer following you around.”

This was one of my concerns of ‘officially’ dating Steve. He’d think it was his duty to protect me and look after me. I didn’t need looking after, or being told what was in my best interest. “She had him watching the store. Not me. I’ll be fine.”

Steve fought a frown.

I knew he meant well. And, I did like the fact he was annoyed with Karen. “It’s nice knowing I have someone I can count on. I kind of feel like I’m using you and I hate it.”

Steve faced me. “You can count on me. I’m here for you.”

“I know.”

Steve cupped my cheek. “That means a lot to me. I wish though you could trust me. I want the wall down between us.”

“There’s no wall.” I inched back, hating breaking the contact but also terrified of it. Butterflies had taken flight in my stomach and a heated feeling raced through me. Relying was enough at this point. I fooled myself for over a year, believing my only interest in Steve was in admiring him. One unexpected and soul-shattering kiss from Steve during my last “investigation” had me reconsidering my stance on no romantic entanglements ever. I still found myself wavering between forever single or trying again. Every guy wasn’t Adam.

“Don’t lie to me. Or yourself. You don’t mind talking as long as the conversation doesn’t steer toward defining what we are to each other.”

“You’re important to me. We’re friends.”

“I want more than just being your friend.”

I knew that. So did practically everyone else. I wanted more but then I didn’t. “You don’t want to be friends?” I gave him an innocent smile.

“I’d like more than friends.” Steve settled back into the driver’s seat. “If friends are all we’re meant to be, let me know. I’ll respect your decision.”

Why did I have to make a decision right now? I liked being friends and the flirting. Liked the will-we-or-won’t-we become an actual item aspect of our relationship. How long would Steve keep waiting for me to make some kind of declaration? Did he want the type of relationship I was satisfied with? What about Steve? Ted? Were all my confusing signals fair to him? Them?

Karen was making her intentions quite clear. So was Steve. He wanted a real relationship. Get married someday. Have children. Steve was a great guy. Successful. Nice. Considerate. Honorable. Hot. I couldn’t blame Karen. I’m surprised there weren’t a few more women trying to win his heart.

He deserved more than my insecurities. Heck, I deserved more than my insecurities and allowing Adam control of my life. People made decisions all the time and changed their minds. I married Adam, realized the huge error of that choice, and got it annulled. If I could alter that, I could decide to edit my rule about no more romantic relationships ever. Life should be more than living from guilt. Everyone made mistakes and deserved forgiveness. Including from myself to myself.

I undid the seatbelt and gave into the impulsive thought zipping through my head. Kneeling on the passenger seat, I leaned over the console separating me from Steve. I placed my hands on his shoulder for balance and kissed him. Good. I wanted him to know I was interested. Very interested in him.

Steve’s hand tangled in my hair, encouraging me. My blood was getting way too heated considering our location, a parked car near Scrap This. I did not want to be caught by Ted, or anyone else, making out in a car behind Home Brewed.

“Thank you.” I whispered the words onto his lips before pulling back. “I should go.”

I needed to tread carefully. Not for my sake, not because I viewed all men as untrustworthy, but I didn’t want to break Steve’s heart. He didn’t deserve it. When I made a commitment to him, I wanted to jump into it with my whole mind, heart, and soul. Not holding anything back.

*****

If you’re interested in reading Faith’s adventure, Cropped to Death is available at:

Mystery Loves Company (print copies)

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Apple

Audible