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Teresa Cross | Fresh Fiction Reviewer Top Reads of 2019
Author Guest / December 23, 2019

Today, senior reviewer Teresa Cross is sharing her top reads of 2019!  As a first-grade teacher in North Carolina Public Schools, my favorite past time is to read. After reading children books all day I love to snug up under a blanket with a great author and I have exceeded my goal of 50 novels this year. I love reading mysteries and thrillers with a lot of suspense. Even cozy mysteries are fun to read. This year started out with a lot of great novels and is ending with some that are just as amazing! After reviewing for Fresh Fiction since 2014, I have to say this year had the best novels. I will run down some of my favorite that I have reviewed.  I will start with my favorites first. BREWED AWAKENING written by Cleo Coyle is the top of all my novels that I read this year! Coyle has the greatest series, The Coffeehouse Mysteries and this is the 18th one. I started reading this author years ago when I picked up her fourth one in the series not realizing it was not the beginning of the story. Before I could read anymore, I had to get the…

Cleo Coyle | Exclusive Interview: BREWED AWAKENING
Author Guest / December 2, 2019

By Fresh Fiction Senior Reviewer Teresa Cross *** First, I have to tell you how excited I am that I get to interview you. This is an amazing wish come true as you and Marc are my favorites of all authors. So, all questions can be answered by just one or both of you two! Your Coffeehouse Mysteries are my favorite cozy mysteries as I love coffee, I hang out at coffee shops and I have a daughter who is a barista. What inspired you to write this series with a coffee shop? Marc and I are honored to know how much you’ve enjoyed our work, Teresa, thank you! And please give your barista daughter a hug from us. One of the things we discovered while doing research for our Coffeehouse series was how passionate the people are who work in the coffee trade—from the farmers who grow it and the “coffee hunters” who source it, to the master roasters who create the blends and the baristas who serve it. They continually provide inspiration for our characters and storylines. As for the origin of our series, that reaches back to 1985, when I was working as a cub reporter for…

Cleo Coyle | Top 5 Reasons Readers Demanded More Haunted Bookshop Mysteries
Author Guest / September 24, 2018

Some characters haunt you long after the book is done. That’s what fans of our Haunted Bookshop Mysteries told us after we stopped writing them. For nearly ten years their emails, notes, and posts implored us to revive the series. With this month’s publication of The Ghost and the Bogus Bestseller, we finally did. We even dedicated the book to our readers, who wouldn’t rest until we brought Jack back. And who is Jack? THE HARDBOILED GHOST A tough PI from the mean streets of New York, Jack Shepard lived on the seamier side of life. His death (in 1949) was no picnic, either, leaving him with a hardened outlook, especially when it comes to judging people and their motives. Despite his troubled spirit, Jack has a wicked sense of humor, and he can’t help cracking wise about the absurdities of modern life—from bottled water and “smart” phones to television cop shows. THE PRIM BOOKSELLER A young widow with a little boy, Penelope Thornton-McClure once believed in spirits, until a succession of tragic losses took her faith away. Slowly, Jack Shepard is restoring that faith, and though Pen bristles at his retro male attitude, she’s encouraged by the strangest irony…

Cleo Coyle | Once Upon a Grind and a Magic Bean Necklace Giveaway
Author Guest / December 6, 2014

Do you have a favorite fairy tale? Mine is Cinderella, but I am no Disney princess. While I love pumpkins, I’d rather turn one into a pie, cake, or muffin than a sparkly carriage. Unlike Snow White, I’ve cooked more birds than sung to them, and my snoring alone disqualifies me as Sleeping Beauty. My character Clare Cosi has the same suspicious view of perfect princesses. A single mom in her forties, Clare manages a thriving coffeehouse business and cherishes her grown daughter—the best thing to come out of her early, disastrous marriage. Now she’s struggling with a second-chance relationship. While NYPD Detective Mike Quinn is a very good man, he’s also a dedicated cop—maybe too dedicated. Between his career and Clare’s fear of going through the pain of a second marriage Fail, her happy ending is still a fairy tale. At the start of ONCE UPON A GRIND, Clare is living separately from Quinn, whose expertise in narcotics has landed him a temporary position with the US Justice Department in Washington. Missing him greatly, she throws herself into her work by helping her merry band of baristas give their shop’s coffee truck a Jack-in-the-Beanstalk makeover for a children’s festival…

Cleo Coyle | Billion Dollar Brew and a Latte Cup Giveaway
Author Guest / August 25, 2014

My amateur sleuth grew up much like I did, in a family of food-loving Italian Americans. By the age of eight, I was learning to cook at the elbow of my dear Aunt Mary, an experience I’ve treasured so much that I’ve lent it to the main character in my long-running series of culinary mysteries. Clare Cosi may have been raised in her grandmother’s little Italian grocery, but she’s come a long way from making espressos in her nonna’s battered stovetop pot. Now a master coffee roaster, Clare not only works with one of the best bean hunters in the business, she manages a century-old coffeehouse in one of New York’s most picturesque neighborhoods. In many ways, Clare’s life is rich, unfortunately her bank account isn’t. At the start of BILLIONAIRE BLEND—just released in its brand new mass market paperback edition—Clare is trying to find the funds to overhaul her Greenwich Village shop’s aging façade when a car bomb explodes on the street outside. Amid the fire and chaos, Clare comes to the aid of an anonymous customer, an intense young man who turns out to be billionaire tech whiz Eric Thorner. Eric is so grateful to Clare for saving…

Fresh Pick | HOLIDAY GRIND by Cleo Coyle
Fresh Pick / December 4, 2010

Coffeehouse Mystery #8 November 2010 On Sale: November 2, 2010 Featuring: Clare Cosi 384 pages ISBN: 0425237885 EAN: 9780425237885 Paperback (reprint) $7.99 Add to Wish List Mystery Woman Sleuth Buy at Amazon.com Holiday Grind by Cleo Coyle Welcome to the Village Blend, where coffee and crime are always brewing… There’s nothing cozier than a winter evening in Greenwich Village. Streetlights shimmer through icy flakes. Cafés glow with welcoming warmth. Boots crunch along cobblestones, and a layer of snow dusts historic townhouses like powdered sugar on Christmas confections. Murder has no place in such a pretty picture, until now… Coffeehouse manager Clare Cosi has grown very fond of Alfred Glockner, the part-time comic and genuinely jolly charity Santa who’s been using her Village Blend as a place to warm his mittens. When she finds him brutally gunned down in a nearby alley, a few subtle clues convince her that Alfred’s death was something more than the tragic result of a random mugging—the conclusion of the police. With Clare’s boyfriend, NYPD Detective Mike Quinn, distracted by a cold case of his own, and ex-husband Matt investigating this year’s holiday lingerie catalogs (an annual event), Clare charges ahead solo and discovers Santa had…

Spotlight on Cleo Coyle
Author Spotlight / September 2, 2010

Murder with Recipes: the national bestselling author brews up a hot new culinary mystery… Most of the world knows about the bravery of New York City’s fire department on 9/11. For ROAST MORTEM, I wanted to go deeper. Almost every day I see these hunky, heroic guys in my Queens’ neighborhood. So I decided to research how they work and live and layer this background into my new Coffeehouse Mystery. At the start of ROAST MORTEM, an unknown arsonist begins torching cafés around the city. When firefighters come to the rescue of Clare Cosi, manager of the landmark Village Blend, she returns the favor by rescuing these fearless few from some seriously bad coffee. Then her new firemen friends begin to die in suspicious ways, and Clare finds reason to believe their deaths are connected to the serial arsonist. A single mom in her forties, Clare has a passion for cooking, coffee, and sleuthing. While tracking down this killer, she continually faces off with an overly-flirtatious fire captain who won’t stop putting the moves on her. But she doubts his motives are pure. This strapping firefighter obviously has something to hide, and as Clare starts to dig deeper, someone threatens…

CLEO COYLE | Latte Cup Giveaway and My Recipe for Blueberry Firehall Pancakes!
Author Guest / August 14, 2010

Who love pancakes? Raise your hand! I’ll bet you all have special memories associated with a tall, hot stack, drenched in butter and swimming in sweet syrup. When I think of pancakes, I think of firefighters. Why? Because although I now live in big, bad NYC, I was born and raised in a little town in Western Pennsylvania. Unlike the Big Apple’s 11,000-member force of professional firefighters, my tiny town had a volunteer fire department that raised money with fish fry dinners and pancake breakfasts. (Hence that pancake connection.) I was going to put this tasty recipe in my new Coffeehouse Mystery, Roast Mortem. The book’s storyline was inspired by New York’s firefighters. Of course, we all know about the FDNY’s heroism during 9/11. But I wanted to go deeper. I see these hunky, heroic guys almost every day in my Queens’ neighborhood and decided to research how they work and live—the research is layered into my latest mystery. If you’re not familiar with the Coffeehouse Mysteries, watch the trailer below. I just put it together to help new readers understand the series’ basic set up. What do you think? Oscar worthy? Now for that blueberry pancake recipe! Just click…

Fresh Pick | ESPRESSO SHOT by Cleo Coyle
Fresh Pick / October 8, 2009

Coffeehouse Mystery #7 October 2009 On Sale: October 6, 2009 Featuring: Clare Cosi 368 pages ISBN: 0425230767EAN: 9780425230763Paperback (reprint)$7.99 Mystery Woman Sleuth Buy at Amazon.com Espresso Shot by Cleo Coyle Coffeehouse manager Clare Cosi rarely gets steamed. But ever since her ex-husband announced his plans to remarry, she’s been making some vows of her own . . . Roped into creating a gourmet coffee and dessert bar for her ex-husband’s wedding, Clare faces off with the bride-to- be. Wealthy and sophisticated, the snarky Breanne has never been a low maintenance kind of gal, and now she’s in full- blown bridezilla mode. The only way Clare can possibly deal with her is to focus on business. But murder is Clare’s business, too, and when fatal accidents begin befalling people close to Breanne, Clare becomes suspicious. Is someone trying to sabotage this wedding? Kill Breanne? Clare decides to investigate. But what she uncovers, between steaming cappuccinos and roasting the world’s rarest coffee beans, may just get her burned. Now in paperback, this starred reviewed entry in the nationally bestselling coffeehouse mystery series also features delicious bonus recipes, including Italian wedding cookies, and coffee-making tips. Previous Picks Visit FreshFiction.com to learn more about…