Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Dead
One of the challenges of writing about an amateur sleuth is balancing her detective work with the demands of a pesky day job. As a florist who specializes in bridal bouquets, Audrey Bloom spends a good share of her time arranging flowers, but also attends a fair number of weddings. This has turned into more of an opportunity than a challenge.
Modern weddings are often much more than a dress, a church, and a cake. If one can believe Pinterest, many ceremonies have become triumphs in creativity and planning. Hence, the “theme wedding”: a chance for brides to pour their creativity, personality, time, energy, and a boatload of money into one day. High expectations. Incredible stress. Patience ready to snap. What other situation could provide the better backdrop for a murder mystery?
I’ve tried to include an interesting wedding in each book. In BLOOM AND DOOM, the mayor’s daughter is married in a 1950s wedding, complete with vintage dresses, a jukebox, and classic cars. In FOR WHOM THE BLUEBELL TOLLS, Audrey prepares flowers for a wedding filmed as part of a reality television show. The bride is bonkers for bells, so she wants bell-shaped everything, from ice sculpture to flowers, to the bells woven on her dress. Even a bell choir performing disco at the ceremony. (Anita Ward’s “You Can Ring My Bell” has serious earworm potential.)
In FLORAL DEPRAVITY, the bride is a bit of a historical nut, and has planned a medieval hand fasting at a local re-creation camp. So not only will the guests be in costume for the ceremony (knights, swords, horses and all kinds of medieval pageantry), but that will continue the whole week at the camp. And many in attendance are serious historians, too, ready to spontaneously combust at the slightest anachronism. If guests want to be there, they will look and act the part.
(Of course, there are also craftsmen out to make a buck, and others of the less serious variety who smuggle in a six-pack or two, and are just out for a few days of fun and swordplay and running around in tights.)
But the bride’s plans are in place. Of course, she’s arranged for Audrey Bloom to provide the period-accurate blooms. An officiant dressed as a friar (Audrey thinks there’s something familiar about him) will make it legal. The ceremony will be held within the bounds of the castle, currently under construction. Rumor has it that a reality TV crew might be there to film the wedding. (Could Audrey’s ex, Brad, be coming back?) There’ll be trumpets and pageantry, and perhaps a Princess Bride reference or two, followed by a grand feast (catered by Audrey’s boyfriend, Nick Maxwell).
What could go wrong?
Series: A Bridal Bouquet Shop Mystery (Book 3)
Publisher: Berkley (October 6, 2015)
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Buy: Amazon, Kindle, IndieBound, The Book Depository
In the latest Bridal Bouquet Shop mystery, florist Audrey Bloom creates an arrangement for a one-of-a-kind wedding, but ends up pruning a one-of-a-kind criminal… As the co-owner of the Rose in Bloom Flower Shop, Audrey knows how to put together unique wedding bouquets, but this one takes the cake. The daughter of a local historian is getting married in a medieval-themed, hand-fasting ceremony, and Audrey is responsible for providing period-accurate blooms. But making sure she gets her roses right turns out to be the least of Audrey’s problems. Shortly after the vows are exchanged, the father of the groom suddenly drops dead. When Audrey discovers the man’s death stems from monkshood poisoning, it’s a clear-cut case of murder. Now, faced with a suspect list that rivals the guest list, Audrey needs to root out the toxic killer…
Thanks to the publisher, I have one (1) copy of Floral Depravity to give away.
Giveaway open to residents of the US only.
Giveaway ends on October 31st
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Winner will have 48 hours, from the time of notification to confirm their win or another winner will be chosen.
Barbara Early (A.K.A. Beverly Allen) grew up buried in the snowy suburbs of Buffalo, NY, where she developed a love for all things sedentary: reading, writing, classic movies, and Facebook Scrabble. She holds a degree in Electrical Engineering, but her penchant for the creative caused her to run away screaming from the pocket-protector set.
She taught secondary English and science for several years before home schooling her daughter successfully through high school. Barbara cooks up cozy mysteries with a healthy dose of comedy and sometimes a splash of romance.
When not reading or writing, she enjoys cooking, crafts, home-improvement projects, and spending time with her husband and daughter.
Bridal Bouquet Shop Mysteries