"All the best stories in the world are but one story in reality -- the story of escape. It is the only thing which interests us all and at all times, how to escape."
--Author Christopher Benson



Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Cozy Wednesday - With Elizabeth Lynn Casey - Giveaway too!!

I have been so excited about this guest post. I absolutely love this series. If you have read my blog for a while you know I used to sew and quilt a lot. It was definitely one of my passions. Sewing and quilting are now harder for me to actually do so I feed my passion by reading books with sewing as a theme. One of the best series I have read is the Southern Sewing Circle Series by Elizabeth Lynn Casey. The latest Deadly Notions - A Mystery, the fourth book in the series, hit bookstores yesterday! I am thrilled to Welcome Elizabeth Lynn Casey to Dollycas's Thoughts today to talk about the most important part of any book.
Welcome Elizabeth!!
Thanks, Lori. I am happy to be here.

If you ask ten readers what lures them back to a beloved series again and again, I suspect the most common response you’d hear is “the characters.”

Think about it. If you’re a fan of a particular television program, you might like the show’s themes, but as the season progresses, it’s the people, the characters that bring you back each week. Because as you watch them from episode to episode, you start to feel as if you know them—what makes them tick, their fears, their goals, their triumphs, and, sometimes, ways in which you, as the viewer, identify with them on a personal level.

The same holds true for series. Particularly cozy mystery series.

Sure, the writing needs to be good and the mystery engaging, but, in the end, I believe most readers return with each new book because of the characters. Book by book, the cast of characters in a series become more like friends. We know how they sound, we know how they react (most of the time), and having a chance to visit with them again after six months or so, is a treat.

At least that’s how I hope my readers feel.

When I began writing the Southern Sewing Circle Mystery Series two years ago, Tori and Leona and Margaret Louise and Rose and the rest of the crew were relatively new to me. I knew that Tori was a librarian, Leona an antique shop owner with an eye for men in uniform, Margaret Louise a devoted grandmother and avid cook, and Rose was the retired school teacher with a lot of spunk. I knew a few more details, of course, but the depth of their personalities…and my affection for them…has grown with each new book.

Suddenly Leona has a reason for being the way she is (stay tuned for book 5 this fall), and Rose’s spunk is put to the test in this week’s release, DEADLY NOTIONS. Margaret Louise may be a devoted, happy-go-lucky grandmother and loyal friend to Tori, but cross her, or one of her loved ones, and, well, look out. And Tori, the put-together new librarian has some very real vulnerabilities and fears compliments of her cheating ex-fiancĂ©e.

Every time I sit down to write the next book in the series, I am downright giddy to get back into Tori’s world, to spend time with the Sweet Briar Ladies Society Sewing Circle because they’ve become my friends. They make me laugh with escapades even I didn’t see coming, explaining nuances of their personalities that I hadn’t planned yet they were determined to share. They get me all choked up when they do something nice for one another. And they make me feel as if I belong.

That’s what brings me back as a reader.

And that’s what keeps me writing.

If you’re a fan of my series, thank you. If you’ve never read my books, I hope you’ll give them a try. Because everyone—sewing enthusiast or not—is welcome in the Sweet Briar Ladies Society Sewing Circle.


Thank you Elizabeth so much for being here today. In my review of the last book in this series Pinned For Murder  I called the characters and their friendships the foundation of these wonderful books. Her post above explains exactly why am proud to be one of her biggest fans and why I love the women of Sweet Briar so much.

Cover Design
by Judith Lagerman
Cover Illustration
by Mary Ann Lasher
A Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
A Division of Penguin Group
4th In The Series
Available Now

Tori is helping to throw a birthday bash at the library for the daughter of one of the Sweet Briar Ladies Society Sewing Circle members. All the Ladies get involved to make the event extra special. One of the mom's of another child in the class, Ashley Lawson, has set the bar high when it comes to birthday parties as her daughter's parties are pretty lavish affairs. Ashley arrives with her daughter to the party and verbally attacks almost every woman in the place. Of course, the other women share a few nasty comments about this extremely insulting woman between themselves. So when Ashley Lawson turns up dead, no one is really surprised because each of them all wanted to strangle her at one point or another, but none of them actually would do it or would they?

Another great book in this series!!!! The author continues to blow me away with her insights. The way she portrays these women making them so true to life, they jump right off the page and into your heart. They are all so different and come together effortlessly to form a truly entertaining story. She also stitches in another wonderful mystery. The sewing project in this book (complete instructions included in the back of the book) is so cool and creative too.

There is only one problem with this book, it ended too soon!!!! and we have to wait for the next book Dangerous Alterations until November. I can't wait to enjoy Spring and Summer but my calendar already has a big star on November 1st, marking the day this new book will be released.

Be sure to purchase this one today. All the books are available at you neighborhood bookstore plus I have included links to Amazon below so you can have them all delivered right to your door. You can even pre-order the new one to be released in November.

Elizabeth Lynn Casey is the best-selling author of the Southern Sewing Circle Mystery Series with Berkley/Penguin. DEADLY NOTIONS—the fourth book in the series—is now available! For more information about Elizabeth and/or her books, visit her website: www.elizabethlynncasey.com. Or visit her fan page on Facebook!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Berkley Prime Crime, a division of Penguin Publishing. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

Thanks to the fantastic people at Berkley Prime Crime 
I have two copies of this extraordinary book to giveaway!!!


Cathy Kennedy said...

In appreciatin to you, please visit my blog to claim your Blogger Appreciation Award!

~Cathy Kennedy, Children's Author
The Tale of Ole Green Eyes

PS: How are you feeling today?

DarcyO said...

Welcome Elizabeth! The women of the Sweet Briar Ladies Society Sewing Circle sound like they're a fun group. I'm putting your series on my TBR list. Thanks for stopping by today.

PoCoKat said...

Hi Elizabeth, sounds like a great read! Thanks for the opportunity to win a copy!

Carol M said...

This sounds like a great series. I know I would enjoy it!

Anonymous said...

I have been meaning to start reading this series for some time. I love getting involved with characters in a mystery series and it definitely is what makes me come back again and again. Best wishes!

Carol N Wong said...

Welcome Elizabeth! I had not heard of your series with the sewing theme before. Have added 'Sew Deadly' and 'Pinned for Murder' to my buy list. Will probably read all of your series. If this the fourth, then I have missed a title. Will do some hunting. Sew glad that you have chosen sewing as a them! LOL


Dru said...

Hi Elizabeth,

I love this series and can't wait to read all about Tori and the gang's adventure in Deadly Notions.

dollycas aka Lori said...

I am so happy you are dropping by today!!!!

Lilk13 said...

This is really an exciting giveaway. I love cozy mysteries! I wish I was able to drive down to the local book store and get the whole series, but the Borders here in Kona closed its doors for good and I'm really wishin' that B&N will take the space and continue on. There's just something about actually going to the book store and touching and seeing the book in person. Books like these I want to have the real deal and not an electronic version of it.

Thanks for the great guest post and awesome review of this book, it makes me want them all.

Karen / lilk13
kkappleby at msn dot com
http://thebookendsreviews.com (coming soon)

thecoolmom said...

I loved reading your thoughts on characters, Elizabeth. It is so true that the characters will pull you back to a series over and over. I would very much like to read this one. I somehow managed to miss this series, but I will be correcting that oversight as soon as possible. :)

Linda Kish said...

This sounds fun. Cozy mysteries is my new favorite read.

Lisa said...

Sounds great and congratulations on the positive comments. Lisa

Jules@OneBookShy said...

Thank you for the chance to win!

I agree with Elizabeth on the love of characters being what draws me back to a series. I've found that while the plot is also highly important, if I don't like the people populating the story I won't come back.

onebookshy at yahoo dot com

Tore said...

Hi, Elizabeth. Your book sounds very good. Tore923@aol.com

holdenj said...

Congrats onthe new release! I enjoyed your comments about cozies. One of my favorite genres!
JHolden955 at gmail dot com

Elizabeth Lynn Casey said...

Thanks for stopping by, everyone! I hope you love the series as much as I love writing it!

InnocentButler said...

I'm not huge in to the crafting cozies but I like the looks of this one!


The Book Heroine said...

This looks like it will be a great read! Congrats!

mike draper said...

This seems like a good one.
Mike Draper