Interview with Mystery Characters by Ritter Ames

Cozy Holiday EscapesInterviewer: Hello readers! Welcome to our Christmas issue of Cozy Sleuths Magazine.

I’m interviewing several interesting characters today who play roles in several of the yuletide-themed stories in the new Cozy Holiday Escapes anthology available now at a special price, with eight stories in all. We’re thrilled to have characters from four of those tales here today to talk about how their lives took a turn toward mystery.

Amanda, let’s start with you. Tell us how you began in the pet sitting profession. I understand you feel it started with your name.

Amanda: I often asked myself how I ended up with this name, Amanda. Hardly a family name. My mamma was Italian and my father American, maybe they figured that was a good compromise, easy to spell and pronounce on both side of the ocean. Then I found out it means lovable, worthy of love, and it all made sense. In my opinion, every creature is worthy of love, even Cheech and Chong the two mischievous cats or Sam, the friendly dog I’m pet sitting at the moment.

Interviewer: And I understand you have a very distinctive pet you’re currently caring for—

Amanda: Matilda. A desert tortoise. Hard to miss, due to her size. She is very quiet and of course slow moving, here, see? That’s her compound, in the yard. Wait a minute…Matilda? OMG!!! Where is Matilda?

Interviewer: Well, Amanda needed to run find Matilda, so let’s move on to Barbara Marr. Barbara, how did a movie blogger’s life turn into mystery solving?

Barbara: I’m just an ordinary mom living in the ordinary suburbs. I have three beautiful daughters, a super sexy husband who looks like George Clooney, a dog, two cats, and a duck.

Interviewer: Come on…I’ve heard there’s more to it than that—

Barbara: Yes, I also find myself in dangerous situations every once in a while. You know, situations with guns and killers and such. Once there was a hand grenade. But deadly weapons and personal peril aside, it’s been a good life.

Interviewer: And this Christmas?

Barbara: This Christmas, something felt wrong. My heart wasn’t in it. Then I heard that those Finches were up to no good, and well, I couldn’t help myself. I pulled another Barbara Marr.

Interviewer: Readers, you’ll love reading this new adventure. Shuffling my notes here, next we have Sheriff Coleman Peters. We understand you’ve had to keep an eye on Sarah Booth Delaney again. Both professionally and romantically, I hear.

Sheriff Peters: Sarah Booth works hard to end up on the “nice” list each Christmas, but to be honest, I’d like to see her name on the “naughty” side. But only if she’s naughty with me. Sarah Booth and I have shared a few kisses, and she’s one special lady.

Interviewer: Once the mysteries are solved, Sarah Booth is out of trouble, and bad guys are locked up, do you have any special plans, Sheriff?

Sheriff Peters: I’ve planned a private Christmas Eve complete with eggnog, a gift or two, and some mistletoe. I’m ready to take my relationship with Sarah Booth to the next level, and that’s what I’m hoping Santa will bring me. Merry Christmas!

Interviewer: Sounds promising. We wrap up with our final guest, Kate McKenzie. Kate, I understand this is your first Christmas in your new Vermont hometown.

Kate: It is, and I’m really enjoying the whole Currier and Ives feeling of Hazelton’s hometown festivities. My best friend and neighbor, Meg Berman, is making sure I see and do everything this season. She even believes she’s going to get me to eat fruitcake.

Interviewer: So all your organizing tasks are done, and the mysteries are solved this year?

Kate: Not exactly. Some puzzling things are happening around Hazelton. They might all be coincidences, but I’m getting the feeling there’s more to it. Meg is always ready to investigate. But I’m trying to be good since I promised my husband to stay out of trouble this Christmas. I hope I can keep my promise.

Interviewer: It sounds like everyone is trying to stay on Santa’s Good List. Readers, to hear what happens to these four sleuths, as well as stories featuring four more sleuths from other bestselling mystery series, get a copy of Cozy Holiday Escapes.

Besides these stories by Maria Grazia Swan, Karen Cantwell, Carolyn Haines and Ritter Ames, there is a Kiki Lowenstein story and a Cara Mia Delgatto tale by Joanna Campbell Slan, Leslie O’Kane included an Allie Babcock story, and there’s a new Bodies of Art short by Ritter Ames.

All of us at Cozy Sleuths Magazine give the collection our highest critical review—five magnifying glasses. It’s specially priced at 99 cents, but get it quick—just like Santa, this anthology disappears after the holidays!

About Cozy Holiday Escapes

Eight light holiday short stories by six bestselling mystery authors–

  • “How the Finches Stole Christmas” by Karen Cantwell, a new story in the popular Barbara Marr series. When a new couple moves down the block and Christmas decorations begin disappearing, Barbara investigates in her own humorous way.
  • “Organized for Christmas Wishes” by Ritter Ames is a Kate McKenzie Organized Mysteries short story. Kate and Meg sign up for a cookie exchange, and find a new mystery to solve.
  • “Cara Mia Delgatto’s White Christmas” by Joanna Campbell Slan, a short story in the Cara Mia Delgatto series. Cara spends Christmas with her new friends in Florida and learns what a recycled, upcycled, repurposed Christmas can mean.
  • “Bones on the Bayou” by Carolyn Haines, a Sarah Booth Delaney short story. A hometown Christmas event is tarnished by a practical joke, and Sarah Booth Delaney investigates after a foreign visitor goes missing.
  • “Christmas in Venice” by Maria Grazia Swan. Amanda finds she has to do more than pet-sitting over the Christmas holidays when Matilda the tortoise goes missing.
  • “A Dog-Gone Christmas” by Leslie O’Kane, an Allie Babcock short mystery. Allie Babcock and her mom are at the airport, heading for a holiday away from home, when Allie notices a dog-switch and has to find a celebrity’s canine.
  • “Kiki Lowenstein and the Secret Santa” by Joanna Campbell Slan, a Kiki Lowenstein scrapbook story. Kiki and her scrapbook pals think they’re just having fun with a holiday scrapping party, but there’s more to the Christmas story.
  • “Seasonal Switches” by Ritter Ames, a brand new Bodies of Art Mysteries story. Laurel Beacham stops a Christmas crime, and may be gifted something she’s wanted for months–and almost given up on receiving.


GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment by 12 a.m. eastern on December 11 for your chance to win a Kindle or Nook edition of Cozy Holiday Escapes. Five lucky commenters will be randomly selected. Good luck everyone!

59 responses to “Interview with Mystery Characters by Ritter Ames

  1. great interview…happy holidays…

  2. Loved the interview, and the book sounds like a fun read.

  3. Short stories are welcomed this time of year! They all sound terrific.

  4. These sound delightful and just the ticket for a Christmas mystery fan. Hope I win!

  5. Peggy Hyndman

    Cozy Holiday Escapes anthology sounds like a great set of short stories which are perfect for this busy time of year. Wonderful authors!! Thank you for this chance!!

  6. Barbara Hackel

    What a great collection of stories and authors! Thanks for bringing it to my attention Dru! Thank you also for the chance to win a copy. Please share that thanks with all the authors involved!

  7. Darlene Peterson

    I enjoyed the interview This is a perfect choice for this holiday season. Thanks for this giveaway opportunity. I’d love to win.

  8. I enjoy books that offer stories by different authors. They are the perfect book to take when you have an appointment somewhere and of course there is the wait time. Thanks for the giveaway opportunity.

    • This is nice to hear, robeader. It was fun writing these characters in the shorter format–rather than the novel length we normally see them in. And, yes, they’re the perfect size for busy December days. Good luck.

  9. This sounds like a fun and exciting collection. With little time to spend reading, the short story is the perfect answer. Thanks for the chance.

    • Yes, Nancy, the shorter lengths are great for reading when we’re all so busy, and we all loved putting our regular series characters into the shorter format. Thanks so much for stopping by, and good luck in the drawing.

  10. I think the stories will warm your heart and give you a laugh. I’m very honored to be included.

  11. Several of these authors I have not read and this seems like a good way to get to know their story characters. Thanks for the opportunity.

  12. Loved this book and met a couple of new authors who are now MY authors!

  13. Would like to win a copy to broaden scope of knowledge about authors writings. Short stories are always challenge for writer and delight for reader.

  14. Donna Braswell

    We are so lucky to have a story from Caroline Haines in this book!

  15. Donna braswell

    I may be incorrect – I’m using my iPhone – but it would be great I there was a link to the book. I would like to buy it but I’m not sure where. Thank you, Donna

  16. I love short stories this time of year when we’re so busy but want a little “soak in the tub” happiness in the form of a book! Plus it’s an excellent way to read new authors that I may not have picked up.

    • And it was a great way for us to put out something inexpensive to give readers for a holiday gift, Patty! Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting. Good luck!

  17. I love anthologies, especially holiday stories, and with the terrific group of authors you can’t go wrong. Thanks for the chance to win.

  18. Great interview! Will be putting the book on my list of must reads!

  19. Sounds like a winning combination of stories.

  20. I love holiday short stories. They are the perfect length when I need to sit down for just a few minutes and unwind.

    • JoAn, I know exactly what you mean. The holidays get so rushed, I really appreciate short stories for a small reading break. Thanks so much for stopping by today!

  21. What fun interviews and anthology! Thanks for the chance to win!

  22. Oh my, what fun! Entertaining stories by my favorite authors.

  23. The book is a really great read!! What a fun interview!

  24. Vicki Highley

    Great stories for the holiday season.

  25. Great interview – love holiday anthologies.

  26. Love short stories for the times I’ve run out of time

  27. Oh, me please!!!
    Thank you for the chance…..

  28. Patricia Lafferty

    A lovely collection and I hope I win. Happy christmas to all of the contributors.

  29. Thank you Ritter and Carolyn for commenting and interacting with my readers.

  30. Contest is closed.