Claws For AlarmIt’s another typical fall day here in Cruz, California. The sun is shining, the air is crisp, and I am getting ready to open the store I inherited from my mother, Hot Bread, for business. I’m expecting another busy day, with all the usual suspects coming in for their breakfast specials – and maybe some not so usual ones too. My friend Oliver J. Sampson (affectionately known as Ollie) will be here, looking for his favorite Howard Stern breakfast special: egg and sausage on a garlic bagel. My friend Chantal will be here to help with the noon lunch rush, if her brother Remy can spare her from Poppies that is.

And when all else fails, I can always count on. . .Nick.

The chubby black and white cat I adopted (or did he adopt me?) is always around, sort of a furry black guardian angel, if you will. Nick and I have a penchant for stumbling into mysteries (and stumbling across dead bodies) a habit that frustrates my boyfriend, FBI agent Daniel Corleone, and which also frustrates another lawman, one everyone will have the pleasure (??!!) of meeting soon. As an ex-crime reporter I can’t resist a good puzzle, and apparently neither can Nick. Chantal and I often ponder just how he does all the things he does. The reporter in me hates to leave any sort of loose thread hanging, and there is so much about Nick I don’t know. . .or about his former owner either. Most of the time I think maybe I’m better off NOT knowing.

One thing I’m sure of, though. As long as there are Scrabble tiles in the world, my cat will be one happy camper. At least until the next dead body comes along. . .

You can read more about Nora in Claws For Alarm, the second book in the “Nick and Nora” mystery series, published by Berkley Prime Crime. The first book in the series is Meow If It’s Murder.

GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment by 12 a.m. eastern on November 16, 2015 for the chance to win a print copy of Claws For Alarm. (US entries only, please.) Good luck everyone!

About the author
Toni (T. C.) LoTempio is the national bestselling author of Meow if its Murder, the first in the Nick and Nora Mystery Series. Toni resides in New Jersey along with her roomies, her cats Gata, Maxx and of course, ROCCO, who not only provides the inspiration for the character of Nick the cat in the Nick and Nora mystery series, but who also writes his own blog and does charity work for Nathan Fillion’s charity, Kids Need to Read!  Visit Toni at

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