I am of the mindset that there’s nothing better than having a ripe, juicy strawberry on top of my dessert, and I’m beginning to believe the same rule applies to cozy mysteries! CC Dragon’s promotion card caught my eye last fall at a conference in Colorado. There was something about it that was familiar—her cover styles were attractive and appealing—as it turns out, we have the same cover artist! So it makes sense, that I was drawn to her books as much as I am to strawberry topping.
I looked for her at the conference, to no avail and ended up stuffing her promotion card in my bag to contact her after I returned home.
I hate to say, that swag bag didn’t get emptied until the holidays, but what a great gift it turned out to be! If I’d contacted CC last fall, she would have only had two books out in her series, but as of January, she has three Strawberry Top Mysteries for you to gobble up;) Now that’s a delicious treat!
Kym: Please welcome CC Dragon to Fresh Fiction’s Cozy Corner!
CC: Hi! Thanks for tracking me down ?
Kym: CC can you tell us a little bit about your Strawberry Top Mystery series?
CC: Sure! Stacey is a smart Southern woman who is coming back to her home town in Tennessee after a divorce. She left for college, became a pastry chef, and got married but caught her rich hubby cheating. Now she’s back home surrounded by old friends/ frenemies/ and ex-boyfriends—plus Mama and Grammy! Don’t forget the cats—Salt and Sugar. She’s helping her mama at the café and trying to start her own little business with the help of her best friend but when things go missing, she can’t help herself.
Kym: The series is made up of three refreshing novella length mysteries. Did you find that harder or easier to write your mysteries in a shorter format?
CC: Considering that they aren’t murder mysteries, no it was actually a nicer length. People can read them quickly and get a dose of small town sass with recipes and heart without a huge time commitment.
Kym: Tell us about your heroine, Stacey Fields, what drove her to put on her sleuthing hat?
CC: That ex-husband of hers…she married right out of college and it was love. He happened to have money and a good family business…so she signed a pre-nup to prove she’s not a gold digger. But he was a cheater and luckily she got a lawyer to check over things before she signed.
However, to get the payout from the fidelity clause, she had to prove he cheated. She wanted what he promised and since he wasn’t faithful, she was going to get her share of the money…so she put on her amateur sleuthing cap and got the proof!
Kym: Stacey isn’t solving the latest small town murder, her investigations are crimes that will nag you to death if they go unsolved. What made you take this route with your series?
CC: Everyone does murder…lol. But really, if visit a small sweet town where people know each other and have manners…how many murders are there? The odd one from a stranger? A random teen high on drugs accidentally kills someone? The town isn’t big enough…if there were that many murders, Stacey would move her Mama and Grammy out of town!
The fun thing is, you can still have a compelling mystery when no one is dead. Something meaningful goes missing. Or someone in a bad financial situation is stolen from or loses something valuable. That stuff can happen all the time. Bad people with a little power can mess with others and it’s not front page news. That’s a more authentic small town…and I hope it makes the stories a bit more fun/believable.
Kym: You also have a full length Helena Morris Mystery. What is your favorite thing about that novel?
CC: Helena’s sister has an alcoholic poodle…with a real diamond collar. The dog is so funny, I wish I could’ve found more scenes for it!
Kym: I Love Helena’s nickname—Hel—what made you give her that name and how does it fit her?
CC: Oh, it fits her. Hel isn’t afraid of anyone. She’s a martial arts instructor with multiple black belts. She can take care of herself and her sister (who has a stalker). She’s not your standard cozy mystery heroine…she was married to an FBI agent so she’s pretty fearless and connected. She packs a gun but doesn’t need it to beat up bad guys or punch a rock star who gets out of line.
Kym: I love the name for your paranormal cozy series, A Deanna Oscar Paranormal Mystery, it’s full of southern charm and glamour. Who would you cast in the role of your heroine, Deanna Oscar and why?
CC: I love it too! It’s New Orleans so really anything is possible.
I don’t know. Probably a younger Sandra Bullock would play Deanna in my dream world.
Kym: Which you you like writing more, paranormal or regular cozy mysteries? Novels or Novellas?
CC: I really like it all or I wouldn’t do it…Paranormal is tricky because you don’t want to make it too easy to solve the murder. It’s not magical or supernatural solutions. Novellas are fun because I can get them out to readers faster and see if they like them.
Kym: On your website you mention that you are working on a romantic suspense, is there one in the works? If so can you give us a hint about the chemistry between the characters?
CC: I can that it involves a former government agent and a current psychiatrist working together to catch a dangerous criminal. The former agent wants our shrink to give up the files and medical info and she’s not giving an inch…
Kym: What are you working on now?
CC: Right now? I’m actually working on a YA series (I seriously have genre ADD and bounce around. But I always come back to mystery/suspense).
Book 1 releases 3/12: SUNFLOWER TOUCHES
Book 2 will come out 3/26 so get addicted to this blended family with 6 teenage girls!
Kym: Can you tell our readers where they can find you on social media?
Kym: Thank you for joining us at the Cozy Corner!
CC: Thanks for having me!!
PS: If anyone wants to grab all 3 of the Strawberry Top Mysteries, it’s cheaper to grab the boxed set: Amazon
CC will be giving away one print copy of the Strawberry Top Mystery set along with some awesome swag to one commenter on this post. Don’t miss your chance for a great series that will whet your appetite for more! (Must have a U.S. shipping address)
About C.C. Dragon
A loyal Chicago girl who loves deep dish pizza, the Cubs, and The Lake! CC Dragon is fascinated by the metaphysical and paranormal. Loves creating characters, especially amateur sleuths who solve mysteries. Also a coffee and chocolate addict who loves fast cars. Still looking for a hero who likes to cook and clean…so she can write more!
Until next time, get cozy and read on!
Kym Roberts is a retired detective sergeant who looks for passion, mystery and suspense in every book she reads and writes. She can be found on the web at kymroberts.com, on Facebook at Kym Roberts (author) and on Twitter @kymroberts911. Look for her newest release, FLIRTING WITH THE DEVIL, A Noble Pass Affaire Novella available now.