Tag Archives: Rebecca M. Hale

A Day in the Life of the Mojito Man by Rebecca M. Hale

Aground on St. ThomasI’ve been sick for a while. Cancer. Doesn’t really matter what kind. It’s spread through my entire body. Stuff is eating me away from the inside out. I only have a few weeks left to live. That’s what the doctors told me.

I’ll get the last laugh, though. I’m going out with a bang. I had all I could take of the hospital. Those dreary white walls, blocking you in. Don’t get me started on the food. And those oncologists, I tell you, they have no sense of humor.

So I bought a one-way ticket to the Virgin Islands. I’m going to lie in the sun, chill out on the beach – and suck down as many Mojitos as the bartender can mix up for me.

I’ve booked all the rooms at Blackbeard’s Castle. For the next month, I’ve got the place to myself. That should pretty much do it. It’s a fantastic view from up there. You can see everything: the harbor, the sea…every detail in the city below.

Of course, I didn’t expect all this hullabaloo with the governor. I guess he got caught with his hand in the cookie jar, and now he’s on the lam. Charlotte Amalie is crawling with G-men. The place is on lockdown until they find him.

Me, all I’m searching for is the perfect Mojito. This government upheaval is causing a major disruption in the supply of mint leaves, and you can’t make a proper Mojito without fresh mint leaves.

People keep asking me what I saw up at Blackbeard’s Castle the other night. To tell you the truth, I don’t rightly know. That was after my nightly medication. Things get kind of fuzzy once the drugs kick in. They should just leave me alone.

I came here to die. And to drink Mojitos… Hey, do you know where I can get some fresh mint?


You can read more about Mojito Man in Aground on St. Thomas, the third book in the “Mystery in the Islands” mystery series, published by Berkley Prime Crime. The first book in the series is Adrift on St. John.

GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment by 6 p.m. eastern on December 25 for the chance to win a copy of AGROUND ON ST. THOMAS. The giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.

About the author
NY Times bestselling author REBECCA M. HALE worked for almost ten years as a patent attorney in the San Francisco Bay Area before taking time off to write her first novel, HOW TO WASH A CAT. She is now the author of nine Penguin titles and a growing list of ebooks released under her own imprint, Green Vase Publishing. Her writing is often influenced by her travel experiences and the people she meets on her journeys.

Rebecca lives in Western Colorado with her feline writing associates, that is, when she’s not off researching future books set in San Francisco, the Caribbean, or wherever else her wandering spirit takes her.

Author website: www.TravelingWithBooks.com

Author Showcase ~ How to Paint a Cat by Rebecca M. Hale

How to Paint a Cat
WHAT’S WRONG WITH THIS PICTURE?

San Francisco isn’t the biggest city in the country, but it feels pretty vast when you’re canvassing its neighborhoods looking for clues to your missing uncle’s hidden location. Aided by my two cats, Rupert and Isabella, I try to follow Uncle Oscar’s painted clues on a trail that leads from Coit Tower’s famous murals through San Francisco’s New Deal art—all while hoping my uncle’s sudden disappearance is unrelated to the murdered intern at City Hall.

Just when it seems our search has hit a wall, we receive some surprising help from beyond. But will it be enough to save us from our own brushes with death? Here’s hoping we don’t paint ourselves into a corner…

Release: March 2014
Series: Cats and Curios #5
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime

GIVEAWAY: Comment on this post by noon EST on March 31, and you will be entered for a chance to win a copy of HOW TO PAINT A CAT. One winner will be chosen at random. Unless specified, U.S. entries only.

Meet the author
Rebecca M. Hale is a graduate of Colorado State University (Biochemistry 1994) and Vanderbilt School of Law (JD 1997). After almost ten years working as a patent attorney in the San Francisco Bay Area, she took time off to write her first novel, HOW TO WASH A CAT—and never looked back. She primarily writes fiction in the form of quirky mysteries that reflect her travel experiences and many of the people she meets along the way.

She now lives in Western Colorado with her feline writing associates, that is, when she’s not off researching future books set in San Francisco, the Caribbean, or wherever else her wandering spirit takes her.

Visit Rebecca at her website, on Twitter and on Facebook.


Follow dru’s book musing on Facebook for book giveaways, contests, posting about discounted books and some of my reading musings.

A Day In The Life With Adam Rock by Rebecca M. Hale

Afoot on St CroixThe perfect job? I’ve got it.

I’m a traveling air conditioner salesman.

What’s so special about that? My sales territory spans the Caribbean. Ah, I thought that might catch your attention. That’s right. I get paid to travel from island to island, using my sizeable expense account to woo clients.

Along the way, I stay in beachfront hotels and resorts, eat tons of fresh seafood, and drink my fill of my favorite beer. Have you ever tried an ice cold Jamaican Red Stripe? I assure you, there’s nothing like it.

Financially speaking, the Caribbean is an excellent sales assignment. The region is always in need of the latest and greatest developments in artificial cooling. The people are culturally diverse – West Indians, East Indians, Puerto Ricans, Arabs, Ex-pat Americans – but I have a way of getting along with just about everyone. I’m quite skilled in the art of persuasion.

I recently made a trip to St. Croix, the southernmost island in the Virgins. Christiansted is the main town. Lots of little brewpubs and restaurants are set up along the boardwalk that skirts the harbor. I had a fantastic meal while I was there.

I also met a lot of interesting people on that visit to St. Croix. Let’s see, there was a construction contractor trying to reunite with his ex-wife and kids, an Italian opera singer who practiced his singing each day in the park by the old Danish fort, and the stylish wife of a Saudi grocery store owner. That last one, she had an obsession with women’s shoes. Green high heels, I believe.

Speaking of feet, they have a legend on St. Croix. They say a creature called the Goat Foot Woman roams the streets after dark. She’s half human, half goat, and she’s got a reputation for eating little kids. I think it’s just a fairy tale they tell children to try to get them to behave. “Don’t stay out late, or the Goat Foot Woman will get you.” Silly right?

The tourists like that sort of thing, though. That’s another aspect I enjoy about the Caribbean – all the tourists it attracts, especially the ones that travel alone or drift off by themselves, tempting me with their tiny delectable toes…

Sorry, I drifted off there for a moment. Well, we all have our secrets, don’t we? You never know what skeletons people might be concealing under the outer shell they present to the world.

Or what goat-like appendages might be hidden beneath an air conditioner salesman’s left shoe.


You can read more about the happenings on St. Croix in Afoot on St. Croix, the second book in the “Mystery in the Islands” mystery series, published by Berkley Prime Crime. The first book in the series is Adrift on St. John.


Thanks to Penguin, I have one (1) copy of “AFOOT ON ST. CROIX” to give away. Leave a comment to be included in the giveaway. Contest ends October 31; US entries only per publisher’s request.


Meet the author
Rebecca M. Hale is a graduate of Colorado State University (Biochemistry 1994) and Vanderbilt School of Law (JD 1997). After almost ten years working as a patent attorney in the San Francisco Bay Area, she took time off to write her first novel, HOW TO WASH A CAT – and never looked back. She primarily writes fiction in the form of quirky mysteries that reflect her travel experiences and many of the people and animals she meets along the way.

Rebecca now lives in Western Colorado with her feline writing associates, that is, when she’s not off researching future books set in San Francisco, the Caribbean, or wherever else her wandering spirit takes her.

Rebecca is on Twitter and on Facebook. Her main author website is www.TravelingwithBooks.com.

Books are available at retail and online booksellers.

The Fictional Face of Rebecca M. Hale

We zoom in on a quiet corner of downtown San Francisco and a three-story red brick building lying on a tree-lined street in historic Jackson Square. A short step up from the sidewalk leads us to a glass door with a decorative iron frame. Green lettering on the door identifies the store as the Green Vase Antique Shop.

Looking inside, we find a woman with long brown hair and bifocal glasses seated on a stool behind a cashier counter. Several books are piled up in front of her; most appear to be texts of California history.

Two white cats with orange-tipped ears and tails rest nearby. Isabella, a shorthaired beauty with sharp blue eyes, perches on top of a bookcase. Toward the back of the store, her fluffy round brother Rupert snores with reckless abandon as he sprawls across the leather cushions of a dentist recliner, a relic from the days of the Gold Rush.

The door creaks open, and the woman’s head jerks up from the books. But her startled expression quickly fades as she pushes the stack aside and smiles sheepishly…

Oh, hello. Yes, you found me. Please come in. I was just doing some research. Nothing of importance, really. A little casual reading. It doesn’t have anything to do with hidden treasure, I assure you.

She glances down at the counter and nervously flips the top book over so that the front cover – and its picture of Mark Twain – are no longer visible.

I guess you’re here about the Cats and Curios Mystery Series. I’m the narrator – in some of the chapters at least. Most of time, I’m simply referred to as Oscar’s niece. I prefer to do my part anonymously, but I guess it slipped out at the end of HOW TO WASH A CAT that my name is Rebecca M. Hale.

Am I one and the same as the author? Well, no, not exactly. We do have a lot in common though. There’s our names, of course. You’ve already picked up on that. And, we bear a striking physical resemblance to one another. But then, I suppose there are a number of middle-aged, brown-haired women walking around San Francisco.

Let’s see. We both once worked in the city’s financial district. She was a lawyer at a firm over on Montgomery Street; I had an accountant position in a high-rise office building a few blocks away. I think we’re much happier in our current professions. (She’s a full-time writer; I’m an antiques dealer.)

I guess we both enjoy some of the same activities – running, hiking, exploring San Francisco, and learning about its history. Like me, she also has two cats named Rupert and Isabella. I see from her Facebook page that she’s picked up a few more recently. I don’t know about you, but I’m not sure I could live with that many cats.

Isabella lifts her head from her paws and chirps out a crisp Mrao, as if in agreement.

The niece strokes her chin, reflecting.

You know, there are a couple of odd things about that author-Rebecca. For one, she has this strange fascination with frogs. She’s always studying them online, going to visit them in zoos. She even went to a frog jumping competition out in Calaveras County, if you can believe it. I don’t particularly care for the slimy creatures myself. Funny, I seem to come across an unusually high number of them here in the Green Vase. Hmm.

Recently, Rebecca’s developed an interest in alligators. She went to see one at a science museum in Golden Gate Park. Maybe it’s just a coincidence, but in the latest book, HOW TO TAIL A CAT, I found an albino alligator in my basement.

She shudders with remembrance.

What’s that? You want to know about the original owner of the Green Vase – my Uncle Oscar?

Just then, a loud bump echoes up from the basement.

The niece leans over the counter and stares worriedly at the floor. Isabella leaps off the bookcase and stealthily creeps toward the back of the store. Rupert bolts from the top of the recliner and scoots underneath it.

After a second crashing thump, the woman hurries around the counter and ushers her visitor out the front door.

Uh…sorry to cut this short, but you’ll have to excuse me.

As soon as the door swings shut, the niece secures the tulip-embossed lock and joins Isabella at the rear of the showroom. Bending to the floor, she reaches into a small recess in the flooring for a metal handle. As she tugs up on the handle, a square hatch opens, revealing a set of rickety steps leading down into the room below.

Grabbing a heavy-duty flashlight, the woman begins a tentative descent into the basement…


** Thanks to the publisher, I have one (1) copy of HOW TO TAIL A CAT to give away. Contest open to residents of the US only. Contest ends September 16. Leave a valid-email address with your comment. The book will be shipped directly from the publisher. **

Meet the author
Rebecca M. Hale is the NY Times bestselling author of the Cats and Curios mystery series and the Mystery in the Islands series. She and her cadre of cats live in Western Colorado. Visit Rebecca on Facebook or Twitter.

Books are available at retail and online booksellers.

Adrift on St John by Rebecca M. Hale

Adrift on St. John by Rebecca M. Hale is the first book in the new “Mystery in the Islands” mystery series. Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime, March 2012

No one knows better than resort manager Pen Hoffstra that the idea of a tropical paradise is an illusion. So when a young woman named Hannah Sheridan disappears and a water taxi sinks mysteriously off the island of St. John, she is not surprised that all is not what it seems to be.

Pointing out Hannah’s resemblance to the Amina Slave Princess from the 1733 slave revolt on St. John—whose ghost is rumored to haunt the island—the local community quickly latches on to the belief that her spirit is behind the sinking and the disappearance.

Only one person on the island knows the whole truth, and it’s not what anyone suspects.

I like it. This was an easy flowing, narrative tale that took a different path in its storytelling. Snapshots of historical folklore were interspersed with the present as the tension built as to how this drama will unwind. Pen, the heroine in this mystery is a mystery herself and that in itself kept me turning the pages as we are introduced to some of the local flavor of the island from the laid-back approach; to the local dialect and the people that have become a part of her circle. This is not your typical cozy, but an intriguing and adventurous jaunt on a tropical island. This is a good read and I look forward to the next excursion in this likable series.

Full Disclosure – The publisher sent me a copy of this book

A Day In The Life Of Fred the Bodysurfing Iguana by Rebecca M. Hale

Penelope Hoffstra here. Coming to you from an un-named resort on the Caribbean island of St. John. Nice to meet you. Pen, is fine, thanks.

I’m about to take my regular afternoon siesta on the balcony outside my office. It’s a tough job, managing this place. I’m joking, of course. Why don’t you join me? I’ll just grab this stack of papers from my inbox, and we’ll head through the sliding glass doors. After you.

There, now that’s better. It’s nice and cool here in the shade. Please, take a seat on one of these lawn chairs I borrowed from the pool area a few years back. Make yourself comfortable. I’ll pour you a drink in just a second.

You’ll want to meet my iguana friend Fred. You may have seen videos of him on the Internet, bodysurfing the waves off our beach. He’s quite popular.

It’ll take me a minute to locate him. I’m sure he’s somewhere in this dense foliage that backs up to the balcony. His favorite limb is in this area, right about…

(A young iguana sits on a branch about two feet away, patiently chewing a leaf as he waits for the woman leaning over the railing to see him.)

Fred? Hey, Fred? Where are you?

Well, let me take a seat while I look for him. A little sip of rum usually helps to draw him out. There’s a pair of shot glasses on this plastic side table left over from my last chat with Fred.

(Setting the papers on the table, Pen reaches beneath her chair and pulls out a glass bottle. Holding it up to eye level, she squints at the liquid inside.)

I’d guess we’ve got, oh, three or four ounces of Cruzan left in here. I’ll just…whoo, whoo…blow out the cobwebs in these glasses, and we’re good to go.

(Pen pours rum into each glass, offers one to her guest, and takes a swig from the other. Her eyes soon widen as the lizard’s large body emerges from the greenery. The iguana blinks a welcome.)

Ah yes, there he is. Fred, you’re looking fabulous, as always.

(She nods to her guest.)

Look at those intelligent eyes and delicate cheekbones. I think he’s kind of handsome, don’t you? Well – for a giant scaly lizard.

(The iguana shifts his weight, gripping his branch bashfully. Pen waves her half-empty glass in his direction.)

Oh, Fred. Don’t be so modest.

(Draining the glass, Pen smacks her lips and lies back in the lawn chair.)

I suppose I should sign these invoices. You don’t mind? It’ll only take a minute.

(Pen begins flipping through the sheath of papers, absentmindedly scrawling her signature across each red-flagged line.)

Did you, uh, hear about the incident last night with the water taxi? The news is all over the island. The boat went down out in the Pillsbury Sound and sank before the Coast Guard could reach it. All but one of the passengers managed to survive by clinging to an inflatable raft.

(Pausing, she drops the papers to her lap. Then she reaches for the bottle and refills her glass.)

It’s a shame about the girl they lost – Hannah Sheridan was her name. They don’t think they’ll ever find her body. The currents must have taken it.

(Pen takes a long sip as Fred reaches for a red berry near his branch. Plucking it off with his sharp teeth, he rolls the fruit into his mouth and squishes the juice out onto his tongue.)

Of course, not everyone on St. John was all that sad to see the girl go. Hannah was stirring up a lot of trouble down here, running around pretending to be the ghost of the Amina Slave Princess from the island’s sugar plantation days.

The locals say it was the real Amina Princess who pulled Hannah from the sinking water taxi and dragged her into the ocean – as retribution for assuming her identity or some such superstitious nonsense.

(Pen plunks her now empty glass on the end table and shakes her head.)

Well, I can tell you, it wasn’t the Slave Princess that took Hannah from the water taxi. Of that, I am absolutely certain.

(The iguana turns his pointed gaze toward the woman on the balcony, causing her to clear her throat uncomfortably.)

Fred, you’re being awfully persistent this afternoon.

(The iguana leans forward on his branch and stares meaningfully at the resort manager. She reaches for the second glass, which remains untouched. Tilting it to her mouth, she drains the entire contents down her throat. Then, with a choking cough, she confides to the empty chair beside her.)

What Fred is not so subtly implying is that I am the one responsible for Hannah’s disappearance.


** Thanks to the publisher, I have one (1) copy of ADRIFT ON ST. JOHN to give away. Contest open to residents of the US only. Contest ends March 9. Leave a valid-email address with your comment. The book will be shipped directly from the publisher. **

Meet the author
Rebecca M. Hale is the NY Times bestselling author of HOW TO WASH A CAT and the Cats and Curios mystery series. Starring Rebecca’s cats Rupert and Isabella, the series takes place at an antique shop in San Francisco’s historic Jackson Square. The cats and their owner explore several aspects of Northern California history while hunting for hidden treasure. The fourth book in the lineup, HOW TO TAIL A CAT, is due out September 2012.

ADRIFT ON ST. JOHN is the first in Rebecca’s new Mystery in the Islands series, set in the US Virgin Islands. The second installment, AFOOT ON ST. CROIX is scheduled for release in 2013. Visit Rebecca at http://www.mysteryintheislands.com/

Books are available at retail and online booksellers.