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Thursday, September 24, 2020

Peachtree Publishing presents... THE CANDY MAFIA by Lavie Tidhar - REVIEW + TOP 5!

HI there! 
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.

Today, we're joining Peachtree Publishing for a SWEET celebration.  It's a blog tour featuring a Middle Grade Fiction title that puts a tasty spin on the detective genre, both with the featured characters, and the treats that are at the center of the mystery.  Sound right up your shadowy alley?  Well then, get your sweet tooth under control as we step between the pages and into a city where candy is outlawed, and kids can be caught up in criminal activity all over the milk chocolatey goodness of a candy bar, in today's book of choice...

Lavie Tidhar
Illustrated by
Daniel Duncan
Peachtree Publishing Company

About the book...
In a city where candy is a crime and sugar is scandalous, Nelle Faulker is a 12-year-old private detective looking for her next client.

When notorious candy gangster Eddie de Menthe asks for her help to find a missing teddy bear, Nelle Faulkner is on the case. But as soon as the teddy turns up, Eddie himself goes missing! As a seemingly innocent investigation unravels into something more sinister, Nelle and her friends quickly find themselves swept up in a shady underworld of sweets smugglers, back alley deals, and storefront firebombs.

If Nelle has any hope of tracking down her missing client, first she’ll have to unmask the true faces behind the smuggling ring. Can Nelle and her friends find a way to take the cake? Or will they come to a sticky end…?

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory meets Bugsy Malone in this page-turning mystery from World Fantasy Award-winning author Lavie Tidhar. With moody spot illustrations by Daniel Duncan, readers will be sucked into the action-packed narrative as Nelle pulls the curtain back on the black market candy ring.


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This is one story that gives new meaning to the words...gum shoe!

Picture it...midafternoon on a non-school day, and there's a knock at the "office" door.  Ignore the fact that the office is a shed and the detective's mom is outside gardening because we have bigger fish to fry, or rather sugar levels to lower, as our guest is none other than Eddie de Menthe.  Who is he a guest of?  Glad you asked.  That would be our resident gum shoe, Nelle Faulkner.  She's never met a case she can't crack, or a candy she disliked...not that she partakes that often, after all...being the law (of a sort) comes with setting an example, so breaking the rules isn't quite getting the right message across.  Anywho...

Nelle is coming off a three month break after cracking the Sweetcakes case wide open, and creating an enemy in the process but that's a tale for another day...or at least a different part of the story.  She's high on time, low on funds, and her afternoon sweet stash is running out.  Eddie's case seems perfectly timed and fairly open shut.  He's had something taken, he wants it back, and he's prepared to not only pay, but give Nelle access to do her due diligence to retrieve this beloved item.  What it is, I'll leave a mystery, but the why it's so important is the TRUE truth hidden in plain sight that needs to be solved.  Things are going to get a whole lot more murky before they get even a smidge better.  Nelle and her friends, acquaintances, and informants, will have to face very REAL danger before they ever even get close to evening the score, and once the source of everything is uncovered, there's still more truths to uncover that will change more than one life for good.

Honestly, I really enjoyed this one and admit fully to reading it with a bit of old school detective swagger in my voice throughout the story.  Oh come on!  It practically SCREAMS to be read that way, and being privy to the case as it unfolds makes it all the sweeter!  I loved the characters from Nelle to Eddie, Sweetcakes to Waffles, Colin to the butler, and even the bad guys in between!  In fact, some of the baddies are reason enough to follow through because you just know that they're going to get their just desserts!  Tag along as Nelle does what she does best and see if you can solve the mystery before she does...even if you do, they'll be surprises along the way from good guys, bad guys, and plot twists you won't want to miss!

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...with author Lavie Tidhar

The great thing of going around the world is trying all the different sweets, isn’t it? Though trying to narrow them all down to a top five is always so hard!

5. Mochi
Most recently I got pretty addicted to Mochi, the Japanese rice cake sweet. They come in so many flavours and fillings! There is something indescribable about their chewy goodness. Red bean paste is a must, I think, though they also come in chocolate. Speaking of flavours—

4. Durian Ice Cream
I had to spend a few months in Jakarata, Indonesia a few years ago, and one highlight of my visit was a trip to the mountains one Saturday, where I got to try home-made durian ice cream for the first time. Durian, the “king of fruits”, is famous for having an overpowering aroma, and is much loved throughout South East Asia. No wonder, either. There is something almost hypnotic about the flavour and the smell and, combined in the coolness of ice cream; it is a taste that will haunt your dreams.

3. Sugarcane Juice
There is nothing more pure than, well, taking a lot of sugarcane and pulping it into sweet, sweet juice. Chilled with ice, it is the ultimate sweet yet refreshing beverage, one I got to enjoy everywhere from Malawi to Vietnam. Of course, you can just peel and chew on a sugarcane instead.

2. Turkish Delight
Ok, no, I lie. I don’t like Turkish Delight! A staple of my Israeli childhood along with halva, many would defend it to the death, but it’s just not my thing. It does make the list, though, for famously being the sweet that Edmund requests from the White Witch of Narnia in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. Of course, it’s just magic—but thinking about the logical implications of manufacturing or smuggling Turkish Delight to Narnia under the White Queen’s reign is something that often keeps me up at night! Were there candy gangs in Narnia? Was Mr. Tumnus actually a daring candy bootlegger armed only with an umbrella? I’d like to think so.

1. Astronaut Ice Cream
Mostly because I never tried it. I did buy it once, in a shop in Covent Garden, as a present. It keeps me awake at night. What does it taste like? How long does it last? Can I go to space? I’d like to float there in the International Space Station with a view of Earth below, while savouring an ice cream. Wouldn’t it be amazing? Or eat it while orbiting over the far side of the moon? Astronaut ice cream is freeze-dried and was developed by NASA for the Mercury astronauts. Isn’t that cool? I think it’s cool. I am going to get myself one just as soon as I can get on a train again.

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About the author...

Photo credit_Photograph by Kevin Nixon
 © 2013 Future Publishing.

LAVIE TIDHAR is the author of many award-winning novels for adults, including Osama (2011), which won the 2012  World Fantasy Award for Best Novel, besting novels by Stephen King and George R. R. Martin. His works cross many  genres, combining detective and thriller modes with poetry, science fiction, historical and autobiographical material. He is  also a books columnist for The Washington Post. He lives in England. 

About the illustrator...

DANIEL DUNCAN is a freelance illustrator inspired by stories, films, old, photos, and sports. Highly commended by  Macmillan UK for the Macmillan Prize for Illustration in 2013, he was also shortlisted for the 2014 AOI Awards for the  Children’s Books New Talent Category. He lives in England. 

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Special thanks to Elyse at Peachtree Publishing Company Inc for the copy for review as well as the chance to bring this tour to you.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the author, the illustrator, or the publisher, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available now, so click on over to your favorite online retailer to snag your copy today!  Don't miss the other stops on the tour offering more bookish content and fun...

Monday (9/21): The Library Voice
Tuesday (9/22): Teachers Who Read
Wednesday (9/23): Mom Read It
Saturday (9/26): Beagles and Books

Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

RRR presents a SUPER SECRET Cover Reveal featuring... CHRISTMAS IN COCKLEBERRY BAY by Nicola May!

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.

Today, we're SUPER EXCITED to be sharing a SUPER SECRET COVER REVEAL with you via Rachel's Random Resources!  It's the next release in a series you know from an author you've probably read, and it's all set to get you in the holiday spirit!  I know, I may seem early for decking the halls, but you know what?  2020 has been anything but "the norm" so I say...WHY NOT?  Ladies and gents, feast your eyes on today's big reveal...

Christmas in Cockleberry Bay
Nicola May
RELEASE DATE:  12/04/20

About the book...

Meet old and new characters in the Bay for Christmas fun and frolics.

With both the Corner Shop and Cockleberry Café in safe hands, Rosa turns her attention to Ned’s Gift, the charity set up in memory of the great-grandfather whose legacy turned her life around.

Over at the Ship Hotel, Lucas has his work cut out with his devious new girlfriend and the mystery poisoning of an anonymous hotel inspector. Will the hotel still get its 3-star Seaside Rosette?

Will Mary find true love at last? Can Titch cope with the demands of the shop and being heavily pregnant. And can Rosa, with a baby of her own, pull off the Cockleberry Bay Charity Christmas Concert in time?

Christmas in Cockleberry Bay is a festive delight for fans of Rosa and her cheeky mini dachshund Hot, delivering a feast of unpredictable events and surprises.




About the author...

Nicola May is a rom-com superstar. She is the author of eleven romantic comedies, all of which have appeared in the Kindle bestseller charts. Two of them won awards at the Festival of Romance, and another was named ebook of the week in The SunThe Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay became the best-selling Kindle book in the UK, across all genres, in January 2019, and was Amazon’s third-bestselling novel in that year.

She lives near Ascot racecourse with her black-and-white rescue cat, Stan.



Special thanks to Rachel at Rachel's Random Resources for the chance to bring this tour to you. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, this promotion, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. 

Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!

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