Critical praise for Christy!

For "Murder Hooks a Mermaid:"
"Author Christy Fifield creates the kind of characters that stay with you for a long time. Fifield’s new Haunted Souvenir Shop mystery, Murder Hooks a Mermaid has it all: a sunny, relaxed setting, captivating locals, delicious food, and—of course—murder! Delightful amateur sleuth Glory Martine is back with her wisecracking parrot and charming group of friends in this thoroughly entertaining adventure. Don’t miss it."—Julie Hyzy, National Bestselling author of the Manor House Mysteries and the White House Chef Mystery series
"A whodunit with a dose of the supernatural, "Murder Hooks a Mermaid" is a worthy successor to the series opener and showcases Fifield's talents for plotting, characterization and humor." - Richmond Times-Dispatch
"Quirky and unique, a heroine for whom you can't help but root. The story sucks you in." - The Maine Suspect
"With a lovable cast of characters, good conversations and a great setting, this well-written book is a terrific read." -- Dru's Book Musings

For "Murder Buys a T-Shirt:"
A refreshing new sleuth! - Lynne Maxwell, Mystery Scene Magazine
"A fun book that will make the dreariest of days a little brighter! Socrates' great Book Alert" - Socrates' Cozy Cafe
"An entertaining and clever Florida whodunit" - Harriet Klausner
"Hilarious! A great murder mystery with well-written characters" - Paranormal & Romantic Suspense Reviews
For the Georgiana Neverall Series:
"Christy Evans will find legions of fans with this new series" - Sheldon McArthur, Lincoln City News Guard
"Funny and entertaining -- a solid mystery filled with likable characters." - RT Book Reviews"
Cute cozy mystery debute -- wry humor -- adorable dogs" -Publisher's Weekly
"Will have you giggling out loud! Four Stars." - Kathy Fisher, The Romance Readers Connection"The Book is good! Keep them coming, Ms. Evans!" - Mystery Scene
"Evans delivers a fast-paced mystery with admirable finesse!" - Sharon Galligar Chance,
"Christy Evans has a hit on her hands" - Harriet Klausner,
"Christy Evans is aces. I'll be very suprised if Sink Trap isn't an instant hit with cozy readers!" -

Monday, February 22, 2010


OK, much celebrating here in Christy-Evans-land. I am loving the cover for LEAD PIPE CINCH, and wanted to share. I don't have final cover copy, but that should come in the next couple days.

In the meantime, here's the blurb from the preliminary Amazon listing:

Georgiana Neverall never pictured herself knee-deep in a muddy trench building a moat-part of a state-of-the-art castle that would soon house a retired Microsoft engineer.

She also never imagined being a murder suspect, but that's exactly what happens when a floater in the moat turns out to be her ex-boyfriend.

Yep, we start digging into Georgie's past as she continues digging the moat for Chad McComb's castle, and dealing with her mother, her current sort-of boyfriend, and her two adorable Airedales.

Stay tuned here for more guest bloggers, upcoming appearances, and some fun surprises as we get ready for the release of LEAD PIPE CINCH on April 6th.

And thank you all for your support of Georgie, and of me.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Adventures in Plumbing

As promised, I am getting back on track. Here's the first of February's guest blogs, the fabulous Krista Davis!!

I love houses. It’s silly, I know. I adore looking at houses and
checking out their nooks and crannies and architectural features. So
it probably comes as no great surprise that I was very involved with
the building of my house.

There are some things that anyone can do. Running phone wire, for
instance. You don’t need special training for that. But I recognize
my limitations. I left the electric matters to the pros.

So then there came a long weekend. I was alone in the house (probably
running more phone lines) and getting pretty tired of leaving the
house to, well, to pee. Shiny brand new toilets waited to be
installed. They called to me over and over. I found myself circling
them, daring to run a hand over that cold porcelain. I examined the
holes in the floor where they would be positioned.

I wouldn’t be electrocuted. I couldn’t set the house on fire. The
worst that could happen would be a flood and that seemed unlikely.
Most of all, though, I was tired of running down the hill just to use
the facilities.

Instructions, there must be instructions. Apparently, toilet
installation is such a no-brainer to everyone except me that toilets
don’t come with instructions. The only hint was on the wax ring the
plumber had told me to buy. “Install wax ring.” Oh good! That
helped a lot. The wax ring was about the size of the hole in the
floor, and it was obvious that something had to join the toilet to
that hole. In went the wax ring. Surely there was more to it than

There was. Do you know how much a toilet weighs? Honest to goodness,
the hardest part was hauling the toilet over to the hole on which it
would sit. But I struggled, determined that I would not run down the
hill one more time to use a bathroom. I planted the toilet on the wax
ring and tightened the nuts on the sides. It rocked. That couldn’t
be right. I sat on it and wiggled to set it. I tightened the nuts
more and the rocking stopped. A quick attachment to the water supply
in the back, (it screwed on, even I could do that!) and I was ready
for the flood. I opened the water supply, ready to shut it off again
-- fast!

I didn’t need to. I flushed. It worked. I was brilliant! What a
handy dandy skill -- I could install a toilet! Now, if the bathroom
only had a door . . .

About the Author:

Krista Davis is the nationally bestselling author of the Domestic Diva
Mystery series. Her first book, THE DIVA RUNS OUT OF THYME, was
nominated for an Agatha Award. Her second book, THE DIVA TAKES THE
CAKE is a fun romp for anyone who loves weddings.

In her just released third book, THE DIVA PAINTS THE TOWN, Sophie
Winston could hardly turn down her deceased neighbor’s last request
for a bequest party, but she had no idea that the crafty old man
brought the guests together for a reason . . .

Krista blogs at, where mystery writers
cook up crime ... and recipes! Learn more about Krista's books at

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Passing of a Hero

I was all set to spend some time today catching up on things that got backed up while I was traveling (Note to self: Better preparation next trip!), but instead I have to take time out to mourn the passing of one of my favorite writers, Dick Francis.

A three-time Edgar Best Novel winner, and an MWA Grand Master, Mr. Francis started puiblishing mysteries in 1962, and has one book yet to be published - a career that spanned an incredible 48 years. I started reading Mr. Francis's racing mysteries in the mid-60s, and loved them from the beginning. I fell in love with Sid Haley, and was overjoyed when he came to the small screen in the short-run ITV series, The Racing Game.

Mr. Francis provided me with many, many hours of reading enjoyment over the years, and he will be missed. Tomorrow I'll work on that whole "catching up" thing, but for today I am going to go to the bookshelf and find my old paperbacks of "Odds Against" and "Whip Hand" and fall in love again, just for a little while.

Farewell, Dick Francis, and thank you for sharing your stories with the world. And with me.

Monday, February 1, 2010

No Plot? No problem, or, what I learned about plot from writing mysteries

Melissa Yuan-Innes is an amzingly talented writer, mother of an active preschooler, and an emergency-room physician. Don't ask me how she does it all, I'm in awe of her energy and ability to keep a balance in her life. She's our guest blogger, and I'm pleased to present her thoughts on the things she's learned from trying her hand at mysteries.

1. Conflict

"The cat sat on the mat" is not a story. "The cat sat on the dog's mat" is a story. --John Le Carré

Dean Smith and Kris Rusch define a mystery story like this: a crime occurs and must be solved in a satisfying way.

It doesn't have to be a murder, although that's classic. But you need to have that crime. You probably already knew that, but it's cool to think of that cat sneaking over to the dog's mat.

Also, I like when people think outside the box for crime or conflict. My friend and talented writer Steve Mohan wrote a thriller novel, Paper Eagle, that opens with a man trying to get a trainload of food into North Korea. I love this. So many thriller novels make up some overdramatic "world hanging in the balance" Hollywood garbage, but this is a real crisis in real time. So have fun with your conflict, whether it's a stolen ribbon or nuclear Armageddon.

2. You should have an idea of two stories: the story of the crime and the story you are unfolding for the reader

A police officer friend pointed this out to me. I'd had so much fun with my detective's love life, I hadn't properly plotted out the crime and sprinkled red herrings or thought out the timeline.

In my defense, I write 1000 words a day and I don't have much time. And I get bored easily. So just plunge in and write, write, write, even if it's awful. When I go back, I find a lot of it is pretty good, but the plot might not hang together. If you prefer to plot it out first, more power to you.

Either way, you've got two stories to work out.

3. The antagonist should be three-dimensional

It's nice to blame things on the Big Bad. Very convenient to have some sociopath mincing people for fun. And in truth, I'm sure there are some people like that. But it's cool if you can add some sort of twist to it. In From the Corner of His Eye, Dean Koontz wrote about a murderer who thoroughly enjoyed his work, but vomited violently after each killing.

You can take it a step further. In my latest novel, High School Hit List, I spent a great deal of time and words trying to figure out why my antagonist, Sickle, made up a hit list of five people at his school.
I wrote my way out of it. I let Sickle talk (lots of macho bragging), I let his girlfriend talk (more interesting, but it didn't end up in the book), I let people talk about him. Finally, someone mentioned that his sister had Down's Syndrome. I ran with that until I finally figured out how Sickle went rogue.
In the end, two of my first readers said that was what pulled them through High School Hit List: trying to figure out how Sickle went from normal to psycho.

To sum up, you need a conflict, preferably using a 3D antagonist, and you need to figure out how to tell that story.Thanks, mystery genre, for teaching me.

Melissa Yi's story, "Indian Time," will debut in Indian Country Noir this year. She tackles real-life mysteries as an emergency doctor and creates imaginary insanity as a writer outside of Montreal, Canada. Her short fiction has appeared in everything from Nature to Weird Tales. Say hi on Facebook, Twitter, or