FDC Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive any financial compensation.
Goodreads Summary:Spring is in the air, but the ladies of the Cumberland Creek Scrapbook Crop hardly have time to stop and smell the roses. Not when famed Irish dancer Emily McGlashen is found murdered in her studio just after the St. Patrick’s Day parade–and one of the Crop’s own members is the prime suspect. Vera’s dance studio may have suffered when Emily waltzed into town, but the croppers know she’s not a vengeful murderer. Lucky for her, co-scrapbooker Annie is a freelance reporter eager to vindicate her friend. What she discovers is a puzzling labyrinth of secrets that only add question marks to Emily’s murder. Just when it seems they’ve run out of clues, an antique scrapbook turns up and points the croppers in the right direction–and brings them face to face with a killer more twisted than a Celtic knot. . .
I am please to be a part of this Great Escapes Virtual Book Tour hosted by Lori over at Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book. Click here to see the other blogs on the tour.
My review: This is the third book in a very entertaining series. I had not read any of Mollie’s books prior to signing up for this tour. I chose to go back and read the first two books in the series (Scrapbook of Secrets and Scrapped), but you could easily start with Death of an Irish Diva. However, you should treat yourself and read the other books, too. They are a good read.
What I like so much about Death of An Irish Diva and the series in general is that it has very realistic feel. It’s as though any of the characters could be my neighbor or co-worker. The characters are all well developed and incredibly likable (I hate it when an author throws in a recurring character whose only purpose seems to be an thorn in the side of the main character.) I also enjoyed how several of the characters take on key roles throughout the story. It is truly an ensemble cast. I think my favorite character is a toss up between Beatrice (Vera’s mother who is in her 80s) and Annie, a freelance reporter and mother of two (maybe I like Annie because in a former life I spent a summer working as a newspaper reporter.)
This is a delightfully fun series to read and I highly recommend it to anyone who loves cozy mysteries – oh and the scrapbooking tips are a wonderful bonus.
What is your favorite genre to read?
I read all over the place. I’m more attracted to certain stories and writers than I am to a specific genre. I just finished a really wonderful book that was essentially a fantasy. But I don’t normally read in that genre. I love mysteries, of course, but I tend not to read them when I’m writing a first draft of a mystery novel. (I don’t want to mistakenly borrow something from another writer.) I read a lot of non-fiction and biography, too, as well as a few romances. You see? I am everywhere when it comes to my reading!
Do you have a set routine you follow when writing?
I write during the day when my kids are in school. I used to run every morning then sit down and write. I try to do that now, but with my freelancing schedule, it’s a bit more difficult. If I have a tight deadline, I have to get that first. But I do try to exercise in the morning, whether it’s running or going to the gym for a Zumba class. I find it really helps get my creative juices flowing—that along with several cups of coffee! Then, ideally I’ll sit down and write a couple of hours. Sometimes, I wake up very early in the morning—around 4 a.m. and I sit down and write then before the day really starts.
I love the characters in the Cumberland Creek Mysteries. Thanks so much!
Are they based on people you know? Not really—though I will say that I think there’s a little of myself and of some of the people I am close to in each one of my characters.
Did you always want to be a writer? I think so—or rather I knew I love creating characters and stories from a very young age. I had thought for a long time I would be a dancer or an actress. But even during that time, I was always writing.
If you couldn’t be a writer, what would be your dream job? It’s hard for me to imagine anything better than writing. I feel blessed every day that I am living my dream. When I teach, I find enormous satisfaction in helping others achieve their dreams and goals. I love teaching. But I think a dream job would be managing a fund of some kind where I could help creative people achieve a certain measure of financial security. Teaching is one thing—to light a fire—but to keep it going and be supportive though money, well, that would be awesome.
If you could invite any book character (from one of your books or another author’s) to dinner, who would it be and what would you serve?
Chief Inspector Gamache and his wife, Reine-Marie, from Louise Penny’s series. I really like him, you know? But I’d be very intimated cooking for him and his wife—they have sophisticated tastes. So I might rather make it a very relaxing invite and make homemade pizza, salad, and some very good wine. For dessert, I serve apple pie with cinnamon ice cream.
To learn more about Mollie check out her website here.
Thanks to the publisher I have one copy of Death of Irish Diva to give away to one lucky commenter. The rules are simple. Leave a comment (including your email address so I can contact the winner) telling me your favorite scrapbooking tip – or if you do not have a favorite tip, tell me something you would like to learn about scrapbooking. Contest ends at midnight on February 13th.