Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Exclusive First Read of...The Root of Award-Winning Lauren Carr! Pre-Order for March 25 Availability!

They found the bridal shop’s manager shaking her head at Poppy, who looked dejected. “They don’t have her gown,” Izzy told Cameron and Tracy with a frown. 
Taking note of the wall to wall dresses and gowns around them, Cameron said, “Have they looked?” 
“She should have ordered it two months ago for a March wedding,” the manager said. “Did you just get engaged?”
“What do you have?” Cameron asked. “Nothing with gold lace,” the manager snapped. “Nothing like what she is describing.” 
“Gold lace?” Cameron turned to Poppy. 
“It’s a mermaid gown, but has a huge detachable train,” Poppy said. “It’s my dream gown.” 
“Every woman has a dream gown,” the manager said. “The thing is, when it comes to ordering their gown, they have to come back to reality.” 
“No.” Poppy shook her head. “Ever since J.J. and I have gotten engaged I’ve been dreaming about my wedding. I can see everything like I’m there. It’s always the same gown— one of a kind.” 
“Custom designed.” The manager folded her arms across her chest. “That’s impossible.” 
“Don’t you have some puppies you need to go kick?” Cameron asked. 
With a huff, the manager stormed away to find a more reasonable bride-to-be to deal with. 
“Is it always the same gown that you dream about?” Izzy asked. 
“Always,” Poppy said. “Look, I’m not a big dream person, but this dream is so real. It’s like I’m there. And before I go down the aisle, I look in the mirror— and I’ve never felt so beautiful before— I feel like a princess— there’s this woman behind me in the mirror. In my dream, I know her. And I feel …” Tears came to her eyes. “I feel like she’s my mother.” She wiped a tear away. “But she’s not. No way.” 
Cameron felt her heart skip. They were Poppy’s family. Before the Thorntons, Poppy had no one— except her Appaloosa horse Gulliver. Poppy’s father had gone missing when she was a child and was presumed dead. Her mother had gotten remarried to a man who had raped Poppy when she was a teenager. After Poppy had killed her stepfather in self-defense, her mother disowned her. Since then, Poppy had been on her own— traveling across the country— just her and Gulliver— until she happened onto Russell Ridge Farms, where J.J. hired her to breed and train his champion Quarter Horses. 
“What does this woman look like?” Cameron asked. 
“Long blond hair,” Poppy said. “Blue eyes. Very pretty. She blows me a kiss before I go down the aisle … to marry J.J.” 
“Well, if that’s the gown you’re meant to wear, then we’re going to keep on looking until we find it.” Izzy pushed herself out of her seat...
Maybe you saw it in a magazine—” 
Poppy was shaking her head. “No, I dreamed about it before I even looked at any bridal magazines.” She clinched her fists. “I have to find it. It’s important that I wear that gown.” 
“Then let’s keep looking,” Izzy said. “There’s more than one bridal shop around. You’re only getting married once and if that gown is the one you’re meant to wear, darn tootin’ we’re gonna find it...

“What’s your song?” 
Unarmed with that information, J.J. paused while Poppy answered promptly, “We want to do the Viennese Waltz to ‘Endless Love.’” 
Madison took a step back. Slowly, she looked at Poppy, dressed in jeans, riding boots, and a western hat in hand, up and down. “The Viennese Waltz?” Her lip curled up. “That’s not exactly for newbies. I’m sure J.J. could handle it but—” 
“I danced in the children’s company of the Rocky Mountain Ballet Theater for five years.” Poppy put on her hat and cocked her head to look at Madison out of the corner of her eye. “I can handle anything you throw at me.” 
Madison let out a sigh. “I’m sorry. I misjudged—” 
“That’s okay.” Poppy winked at her. “You’re not the first one to underestimate me.” 
“Being underestimated is Poppy’s superpower,” J.J. said...

The Root of Murder
Lovers in Crime Mystery

By Lauren Carr

As I finished the latest book by international best-selling Lauren Carr, I found myself thinking back over the entire book, and found that, for me, one of the most impressive, and, therefore, important, parts of Carr's book is that she never stops with just the meat of the book. She serves an appetizer, a main course, and then a delightfully delicious dessert for her readers. This time, throughout the book, a couple, Poppy and J.J. are preparing for their wedding, and have merged it with the opening of their new Bed and Breakfast! I'll leave the details of that latest adventure, with Tracy, J.J., sister, as a partner, out; however, the simple pleasure and enjoyment of being involved with all the family activities, concerns, and fears, especially about finding Poppy's dream wedding dress, is a special bonus that Carr always provides in addition to a fantastic, impossible to solve, murder mystery... And, the added bit of ghostly attendance to these arrangements was simply...adorable!

The lead-in to the murder mystery disrupts a joyous touch of intimacy between Cameron Gates, a homicide lieutenant with the PA State Police and her husband, Joshua Thornton, the County Prosecuting Attorney, one of the first set of lovers to be introduced in this fascinating series. As an admirer of a strong female leading character, I've an avid fan of Cameron. In basic police case management, she reminds me of another favorite cop, J.D. Robb's, Eve Dallas.  

But a body set on fire in the woods of a small farm in Hookstown discovered by the elderly couple who live there, has Cameron moving fast to get to the new scene.  That couple happens to be the grandparents of Madison, one of J.J.'s old girlfriends. Let's just say that J.J. has had many girls fall for him in the past. He thought he could play the field by telling the truth--that he was not interested in a long-term relationship at the time. Of course, we all know that doesn't stop a girl from...hoping... In fact, two of those young women had become enemies during the period when J.J. played the field...

And one of them was the daughter of the man who'd been tossed and set on fire.

Ironically, the wife and the daughter, the other of J.J.'s girlfriends, reported that their husband/father had not returned from his last trip as a trucker hauling cargo...

Carr successfully dangles potential crime solutions for readers, then yanks them away to move on to another option--leaving us, her readers, trying to deal and, hopefully follow the many options she's presented. And, in the meantime, bring in most of the Thornton legal family officials,  much to the chagrin of a new State police officer who has been assigned to work for...not with, Cameron Gates. Like many readers, I would imagine, I have come to trust that Carr will bring to her readers the best possible and most complicated mystery for us to struggle with. Me, by now, I just sit back and enjoy each twist or turn that she is so rich in developing.

Of course, there are many animal characters complementing the story, but there is one surprise attendee for the wedding ceremony that is both heartwarming...and hilarious! Carr is one of the best mystery writers around. With a family orientation that is based upon love, extended family, and concern for others, well, you just cannot go wrong in picking up any of her books. This one, especially, should be considered. A ghost, a wedding, and a murder mystery or two, with so many more surprises! You can't pass this one by!


This is the trailer of the first book in series. Check out the various
multiple acts being investigated...Put in all the family issues and you got
Lovers in Crime Mysteries!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, Glenda! So glad you enjoyed this exclusive first look at THE ROOT OF MURDER. I'm sure you followers will enjoy it as well!