Monday, September 24, 2012

Shelley Freydont, Guest Blogger

I always enjoy the appearance of a new mystery series. Shelley Freydont's mysteries have dealt with dance companies, and Sudoku. Now, she takes us to a New York town, Celebration Bay, a town that celebrates its seasonal festivals. Today, I'm welcoming Shelley Freydont as guest blogger, the author of Foul Play at the Fair, the first Celebration Bay Mystery. Thank you, Shelley.

Freydont -Foul Play at the Fair

I love to write about small towns. They’re such great places for murder. Miss Marple has Saint Mary’s Mead, Jessica Fletcher has Cabot Cove. And I chose to place my new mystery series in a small upstate New York town called Celebration Bay. 

Its name may be a clue to the kind of town it is.  Here’s what happened. “When the cannery closed, throwing the whole town out of work, the inhabitants of Celebration Bay didn’t despair. They threw a party—and invited the whole county.  It was so successful they did it the following year, added a strawberry festival and Oktoberfest and a new industry was born—tourism.  Now everyday is a holiday in Celebration Bay.:"

Isn’t that just the kind of town you’d like to live in, with the kind of people who are resilient and industrious and know how to make lemonade out of a closed cannery? It is for me, and I’d like you to meet some of the inhabitants.

Celebration Bay has become so successful as a family destination town that they decided to hire a professional event organizer.

Enter Liv Montgomery, Manhattan event planner extraordinaire.  Liv is sick of the bridezillas, the mad men, the desperate housewives, the anything but sweet sixteens.  So the job of event organizer in a small, rural town sounds like just the new lease on life she needs. So she packs up herself and her Westie terrier, Whiskey, and moves north.

What happens next?

Liv rents a carriage house behind a big Victorian house owned by Miss Ida  and Miss Edna Zimmerman, two retired school teachers. They’re very kind, are great dog sitters, and have even been known to develop a lesson plan for investigating. Whiskey has his own yard where he loves to play, but you can imagine what the neighbors think when Liv goes to the door and calls, “Whiskey! Whiskey!”

Liv and Whiskey walk to work each day.  And you won’t catch Liv in four inch heels—ever.  Though she may have gone overboard on the plaids, corduroys and hiking boots she ordered from an on line catalogue.

Each morning she stops at the Apple of My Eye bakery for breakfast, usually of the sweet variety. (Lucky for Liv she’s a runner, though she hardly has the time to exercise with all her new duties.)
Next stop is the Buttercup Coffee Exchange where her new BFF dispenses lattes and tea for Liv and her assistant Ted, a man of a certain age and a mysterious past.

Everyone in town is friendly and helpful, when they’re not being stubborn and cantankerous. Well almost everyone.  There is Janine Tudor who used to be the town’s event person. She blames Liv for taking her job, which is so not true.  Liv merely answered the ad and they hired her. Janine’s a successful real estate agent, but her second job is trying to make Liv’s life miserable.  She’s good, but not as good as those  bridezillas and mothers of the bridezillas Liv used to deal with.  Still it would be nice if she’d just give it a rest.

The only other problem child—oops did I say that?— I meant person, is Chaz Bristow, editor of the local newspaper, the Celebration Clarion.  He has the body of a surfer, the mind of a mensa and is about as shallow as a bird bath.  He was an investigative reporter in LA, now he’s just lazy.  He thinks breaking news is the beginning of fishing season.

Mainly, Liv just tries to ignore him.

Now if she could just do something about those pesky murders.

Foul Play at the Fair is out this month.  I hope you’ll enjoy the folks of Celebration Bay as much as Liv, Whiskey and I do.

Thank you, Shelley! I hope we all enjoy Celebration Bay. And, good luck with Foul Play at the Fair.
Shelley Freydont's website is

Foul Play at the Fair by Shelley Freydont. Berkley Prime Crime. 2012. ISBN 9780425251553 (paperback), 298p.


Janet C said...

It's about 3 from the top of my TBR and now I'm looking forward to reading it even more.

Carol N Wong said...

Thank you for the guest review. I really enjoyed it.

Karen C said...

Oh, this sounds like so much fun - for a murder mystery! On the list.

Shelley said...

Thanks for having me today. I love sharing things about my new favorite town and people.

Lesa said...

Thank you, Shelley & thanks everyone. I think you're going to enjoy this book!