5-18 Powell's City of Books, World's Largest Indie Bookstore by Judith Ashley and Sarah Raplee

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Snuggle With a Book This Month

by Madelle Morgan

The October fall colors were spectacular in Ottawa, Canada.

In contrast, November is grim. It's cold, damp, and dreary. Outside my wet window, bare, dripping tree branches are silhouetted against a leaden sky.

The bikes and patio furniture are put away. My husband has overhauled the snowblower, and we've stocked up on salt for the steps and path. We're ready for snow and ice.

November is a good month to curl up under a blanket and enjoy the peace and quiet before the hectic holiday season. My thoughts turn to... you guessed it. The To-Read pile of novels in my bookcase and ereader!

My choices aren't as overwhelming as in this picture below, but I do have quite the selection amassed over the busy summer months.

How I Find a Good Story

So far I'm usually an ebook buyer rather than a borrower from the library, but I'm totally cheap. I rarely buy a book or boxed set that costs more than $4.99. Even when there's a must-read new release from one of my favorite trad-published authors, I'll wait months or over a year until the ebook price drops to something reasonable. When I love an author's voice and characters, I usually binge read the rest of the series.

I discover new books to read in at least four ways:

  • I subscribe to a free daily newsletter that recommends deals; 
  • I check out books recommended to me by Amazon based on my buying history;
  • I buy $0.99 or bargain box sets that include first-in-series novels by several authors; and
  • I review my lengthy Amazon Wish List to see if any of the books I've saved have dropped in price.

I'm not quite ready for holiday-themed stories. I'll wait until snow is on the ground. In the meantime, stories set in warm climates are very appealing to me right now!

Since I write straight contemporary romance, for entertainment I like to read mystery with romantic elements. I also like to learn something, such as in these series below involving psychology and wine, respectively.

My latest discovery is the Talk Radio Mysteries series by Mary Kennedy. The protagonist is a psychologist with a Florida radio show. Her cop love interest and ditsy actress mother are great characters. 

Another fun, light series I enjoyed was A Wine Lover's Mystery series by Michele Scot set in Napa Valley, California. The heroine has not one but two hunks in love with her. Decisions, decisions...

With so many novels to choose from, how do you decide what to read? 

Do you have any romantic cozy mystery series to recommend?

Happy reading!


Madelle Morgan writes the Hollywood in Muskoka series. Her hot latest release, Seduced by the Screenwriter, is set in the dead of winter with lots of snow.

Love scenes wearing movie costumes—a hot romance with a playlist!

Ex-cop Catrina Turner is lonely. After a traumatic recovery dive she quit the force and ran away to remote Muskoka with Titan, her retired police dog. They provide winter security for luxury lake houses owned by rich celebrities. Her PTSD, a closely-held secret, makes a relationship impossible…until a handsome visitor makes a tempting proposal.
Screenwriter Chett de Groot needs a hit to save his career. He accepts a film star’s offer to use her secluded lake house as a writing retreat, and discovers a closet full of her old movie costumes.
Bored, freezing in Muskoka and desperate for inspiration, Chett entices the beautiful security guard to wear costumes and role-play in seduction scenes. They discover how satisfying acting can be. Soon Catrina is ad-libbing passionate lines in scorching “performances” that knock Chett’s thermal socks off.
A film producer makes Chett an offer that will put him back in the game. But if Catrina finds out what Chett did to close the deal, will he lose her forever?
Catrina’s path to love and healing is Book 2 in the Hollywood in Muskoka series. This curl-your-toes romance can be read as a stand-alone short novel. Love music? Enjoy the optional “soundtrack”—a playlist.
Buy the Ebook  or paperback on
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Madelle writes romance set in Canada. Find all her books on


Judith Ashley said...

I've enjoyed Alyssa Maxwell's mysteries set in the rarefied environment of Connecticut mansions.

I will pay for a mass paperback of a favorite author but these are my keeper books. I also cruise the new/used book stores for additional books of favorite authors. E-books? I do buy them but unless they are craft books, it can be months/years before I read them. I don't find reading on an e-reader/tablet relaxing because I have to pay attention to how much battery is left and if I set it down to get another cup of tea I have to start it up (power, password, etc.) and then it is harder for me to pop back and reread something from an earlier place in the book. I'm sure if I read on them all the time, I'd figure something out or it wouldn't bother me but...

All that being said, when I travel by means other than automobile, it is my tablet that I take with me for the majority of reading although I do have two paperbacks for the to and from flights. So much easier to take the tablet than 10 books!

Madelle Morgan said...

Judith, I found the first two books in Alyssa Maxwell's A Lady and A Lady's Maid series in my price range. I'll give them a try. Thanks for the tip!

I love to discover new-to-me authors and it doesn't matter to me how long ago the books were published. Usually the price is right and the writing is great - that's what matters. :)

Judith Ashley said...

Madelle, I haven't read that series. She has one set among the mansions. The Breakers sticks in my mind because I've seen some other shows filmed there...which then gave her book new life in my mind. These are the summer "cottages" people like the Vanderbilts, Astors, Carnegies, etc. built...