Daily Archives: August 15, 2014

Blog Tour With Kate Reilly by Tammy Kaehler

Avoidable ContactOccupation: Racecar Driver

I’m the first to admit, I have a pretty cool job. I race cars—amazing cars (Corvettes) in some incredible locations, including Long Beach, Monterey, and the beautiful countrysides of Wisconsin, Connecticut, and Georgia.

But while I love my current job and team, there’s more I want to accomplish. There’s a great, big world of racing out there that I’m going to be part of. High on my racing bucket list are tracks like the Nürburgring in Germany and Suzuka in Japan, as well as events like the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Daytona 500.

And now there’s the new number one race on my list: the Indianapolis 500.

When I attend a race I’m not competing in, I feel a lot of conflicting emotions. Sure, there’s part of me enjoying the race-day atmosphere without the pressure of the competition—but it’s a very small part of me! Because I’m always disappointed and frustrated I’m not competing, and I’m jealous of the drivers who are. Multiply those emotions by twenty-three, and you might get close to what I felt as I experienced the Indy 500 for the first time last May.

Everything about the event is huge. The track itself is gigantic—a 2.5 mile oval so big you almost can’t see the stands at the other end of the long straights. The occasion is also enormous—practice is two weeks before the race and qualifying takes place the weekend prior. The drivers participate in a variety of state fair–like festivities the day before, including the third largest parade in the nation through downtown Indianapolis.

But the biggest aspect of the race is the weight of its history. This year was the 98th running of the Indy 500 on a track that’s more than a hundred years old. I stood on pit lane early race-day morning and squinted, sure I could see drivers from decades past sweeping out of Turn 4 and roaring down the front straight.

Not gonna lie: my fingers twitched and my right foot tried to feather the throttle. I desperately wanted to be on that straightaway, topping 220 m.p.h. average lap speed, testing my car and skill against the field…

The best part of my Indy weekend was that I spent it in the company of my friend and fellow racecar driver Pippa Mann, the only woman in the Indy 500 field this year. (Yes, we agreed that’s a statistic that must change. I’ve got ideas.).

I should clarify my statement: I was Pippa’s guest for the race, but I didn’t spend more than a few minutes here and there with her. When Pippa wasn’t driving the car, meeting with her race engineer, or fulfilling sponsor and media commitments, she was stealing moments away to interact with fans. I didn’t expect anything more, because I know how a busy race weekend goes (and I’ll give her the same treatment when she comes to visit for the next Petit Le Mans!). The value for me in being there, however, was spending time in her garage or pits, talking to her team and crew, and getting a feel for the rhythm of an IndyCar team. Now I know what Indy feels like.

Instead of just watching the Indy 500 on television this year, I was there—and that’s one step closer to racing for the trophy myself. I learned it’s a long race day and a long month, but one of the most epic events a racer can be part of. Each race has a personality all its own, and I got to know the Indy 500. I made new friends and business contacts. I got a taste of the energy in the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

And I’m determined to be back. In my own car. Soon. Start your engines!

This is the last stop on the Avoidable Contact Great Escapes Virtual Book Tour. For other stops on this tour, click HERE

You can read more about Kate in Avoidable Contact, the third book in the “Kate Reilly Racing” mystery series, published by Poisoned Pen Press. The first book in the series is Dead Man’s Switch.

GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment by 6 p.m. eastern on August 19 for the chance to win a copy of DEAD MAN’S SWITCH. The giveaway is open to U.S. residents only, unless specified.

About the author
Tammy Kaehler created the Kate Reilly Racing Mystery Series to share the dramatic, competitive, and friendly racing world with readers. Mystery fans and racing insiders alike praised the first two books, and Tammy takes readers back behind the wheel for the third time in Avoidable Contact. Find out more: website, on Twitter, or on Facebook.

My Musing ~ Three Dragons Doomed by Keith Donnelly

Three Dragons DoomedThree Dragons Doomed by Keith Donnelly is the fifth book in the “Donald Youngblood” mystery series. Publisher: John F. Blair, July 2014

Outside the small town of Saddle Boot, West Virginia, a bulldozer uncovers a long-buried body. Only four living people know it’s that of drifter Johnny Cross. But Johnny Cross was not who he appeared to be.

In the early-morning hours a few days later, in Mountain Center, Tennessee, a body is dumped in a downtown back alley, a young female dead less than twenty-four hours. Over the next few weeks, two more dead females turn up in East Tennessee. A serial killer with an unusual signature is on the loose.

The only thing that connects these events is private investigator Donald Youngblood. Don knows the identities of the body in West Virginia and the dead women dumped in East Tennessee. He also knows the bodies are personal messages for him from a killer seeking revenge. A new and deadly game has begun.

In this unique double sequel to Three Days Dead and Three Devils Dancing, Youngblood wrestles with two separate and distinct cases: finding the true identity of Johnny Cross and tracking down a serial killer who seems to be in a big hurry for a final showdown.

I really, truly love this series and I hope it never ends. Don is once again thrust into multiple investigations that become exceptionally personal and he tackles them with great aplomb. Of course, Don’s inner circle is back with Mary, Big Bob, Billy, T. Elbert, David and Lacy supporting him in his endeavors.

This fast-paced and action-filled drama quickly became a page-turner with its solid plot and a mystery that captured my attention from beginning to a finale worthy of Donald Youngblood. I love the pacing and how easily the chapters flow, pulling me deeply into each scene with anticipation of what will happen next. The author does a great job in delivering a dynamic tome that engages and entertains me with a perfect set-up and witty banter among the cast of characters. Don is so lovable and I adore his interactions with his family, friends and even his adversaries. This is the best book thus far in their terrific series and I can’t wait to see what exploits await Don and the gang.

Death of a Crabby Cook by Penny Pike

Death of a Crabby CookDeath of a Crabby Cook by Penny Pike is the first book in the new “Food Festival” mystery series. Publisher: Obsidian

At the San Francisco Seafood Festival, someone is steamed enough to kill a cook….

When restaurant reviewer Darcy Burnett gets served a pink slip from the San Francisco Chronicle, she needs to come up with an alternative recipe for success quickly. Her feisty aunt Abby owns a tricked-out school bus, which she’s converted into a hip and happening food truck, and Darcy comes aboard as a part-timer while she develops a cookbook project based on recipes from food fests in the Bay Area.

But she soon finds someone’s been trafficking in character assassination—literally—when a local chef turns up dead and her aunt is framed for the murder. The restaurant chef was an outspoken enemy of food trucks, and now Darcy wonders if one of the other vendors did him in. With her aunt’s business—and freedom—on the line, it’s up to Darcy to steer the murder investigation in the right direction and put the brakes on an out-of-control killer…

I like it. This was very enjoyable and I love the pacing and flow of this light whodunit. This mystery was hard to put down and I especially like the humor that was contained within the pages. Darcy is a wonderful character and I adore the relationship she has with her Aunt Abby and her cousin Dillon whose appearance is not what it seems. Jake and the other food truck vendors round out this delicious cast of characters and I can’t wait to read the next book in this delightfully entertaining series.

previously posted on the Cozy Chicks blog

Well Read, Then Dead by Terrie Farley Moran

Well Read Then DeadWell Read, Then Dead by Terrie Farley Moran is the first book in the new “Read Em and Eat” mystery series. Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime, August 2014

Nestled in the barrier islands of Florida’s Gulf Coast, Fort Myers Beach is home to Mary “Sassy” Cabot and Bridget Mayfield—owners of the bookstore café, Read ’Em and Eat. But when they’re not dishing about books or serving up scones, Sassy and Bridgy are keeping tabs on hard-boiled murder.

Read ’Em and Eat is known for its delicious breakfast and lunch treats, along with quite a colorful clientele. If it’s not Rowena Gustavson loudly debating the merits of the current book club selection, it’s Miss Augusta Maddox lecturing tourists on rumors of sunken treasure among the islands. It’s no wonder Sassy’s favorite is Delia Batson, a regular at the Emily Dickinson table. Augusta’s cousin and best friend Delia is painfully shy—which makes the news of her murder all the more shocking.

No one is more distraught than Augusta, and Sassy wants to help any way she can. But Augusta doesn’t have time for sympathy. She wants Delia’s killer found—and she’s not taking no for an answer. Now Sassy is on the case, and she’d better act fast before there’s any more trouble in paradise.

I love the idea of a bookstore café that becomes the backdrop in this debut novel in this lighthearted whodunit. The tone was comfortable and the pacing was perfect in this engaging mystery where the suspect list was plenty. The author did a great job in pulling it all together in a manner befitting a drama that kept me turning the pages until the end. I adore the cast of characters that includes feisty Sassy, Bridgy, her BFF and the ever-present Ophie. This is very enjoyable and I can’t wait for the next book in this delightfully appealing series.

previously posted on the Cozy Chicks blog