Book Review: Pierced Peony

PP2CoverFull600I love this series. Motts and her friends are wonderful characters. Dahlia does a wonderful job building this world and these characters. I can’t get enough of them. I am eager for the next book already. Great job Dahlia.

~ 5 Stars, Kathy W.

Book Review: Pierced Peony

PP2CoverFull600I found the sleuth very well crafted . The suspense was enjoyable and kept me guessing to conclusion. I loved all the characters and especially Mott. She is kind, compassionate and fiercely independent. I look forward to further books in this series.

~ 5 Stars, Cozy Cat Reviews

Book Review: Pierced Peony

PP2CoverFull600“The mystery had me very much entertained and intrigued, and Dahlia Donovan has proven to have a knack for cozy mysteries. Her writing is always on-point and she knows how to hook her readers and keep their interest throughout. I need more! I’m giving 4.5 stars Pierced Peony.”

~ Dog-Eared Daydreams

Excerpt: Pierced Peony

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Excerpt

A cat, a turtle, and a stranger face off in the garden. The stranger blinks first. Right. The joke still needs some work.

“Do you always let your turtle and cat out in the garden together?”

“They’re friends. They like to gossip.” Motts set her trowel to one side and got to her feet. She dusted the grass and dirt off her knees. “They both need fresh air and sun in moderation. Are you lost?”

The man didn’t seem lost despite having popped up beside the back fence around her garden. He looked like a police officer. Though not quite as broad-shouldered, he stood as tall as Teo Herceg, the detective inspector she’d met in April and had been dating for over a month.

“I’m hoping to speak with Pineapple Mottley.” He sounded like a policeman. His suit, while nice, appeared rumpled from driving; his short grey hair, however, was gelled and styled perfectly. “I’m Detective Inspector Dempsey Byrne with the Metropolitan Police’s cold case unit.”

“Cold case?” Motts’s heart stuttered in her chest. She rubbed her fingers together nervously. “Jenny. You’re here about Jenny.”

Jenny Cleverly had been her lone best friend through her early childhood. Motts had stumbled across Jenny’s lifeless body on her way home from primary school while walking through a park, hidden behind a hedge. She still had nightmares about finding her.

The unsolved crime had haunted Motts. She’d developed an obsessive curiosity about cold cases as a result. And at least once a year, she searched online to see if anyone had been arrested for Jenny’s murder.

“Ms Mottley?”

“Motts.” She had a sudden sense of déjà vu; she’d had a similar conversation with Teo in April. He’d been investigating the murder of a Rhona Walters, who’d been buried in the garden behind her cottage. It had been an auspicious start to her life in Polperro. “Cactus.

Her beloved Sphynx cat had leapt onto the fence and then over to the detective’s shoulder. Detective Inspector Byrne didn’t bat an eyelid. He simply reached up to pat Cactus on his head.

Well, he certainly approves of the random strange man intruding on our afternoon.

Intruding inspector intrudes introspectively.

Introspectively?

Not my best alliteration.

“I don’t often see a flowerless garden.” He glanced slowly around at her rows of fruits and herbs. “None at all?”

“My allergies try to drown me if I’m around them for too long.” Motts kept flowers far away from her cottage. Real ones, in any case. She made and sold origami and quilled floral arrangements as part of her small business, Hollyhock Folded Blooms. “Why don’t you come in for tea? Cold case curiosities can converse comfortably.”

Don’t frighten the fancy London detective with your peculiarities.

The judgmental voice in her head sounded suspiciously like her mum, who meant well but couldn’t always relate to Motts’s more unique traits. She didn’t understand her wayward autistic and asexual daughter. Motts had given up trying to fit into neurotypical moulds.

I am who I am.

Alliterations and all.

Oh, fun accidental alliterations are the best.

“I wouldn’t want to impose.”

“Wouldn’t you?” Motts stared blankly at the man, unable to decide if he was being polite or not. “You drove from London. At least a five-hour drive on a good day. Tea isn’t imposing. Sleeping in my garden and trampling the herbs would be.”

https://books2read.com/motts2

Excerpt: Poisoned Primrose

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Excerpt

Lemon curd on buttered toast soothed a multitude of problems. Motts had made three slices to get her through the morning. She hadn’t quite recovered despite spending an entire day alone in the cottage.

Although needing more time to recover, Motts had several early meetings. Vina had helped her connect with a few shop owners in Polperro. She hoped to convince them to consider commissioning some of her paper flower arrangements.

Motts stared mournfully into her empty mug. “Can I take a sick day?”

Meow.

She ran her fingers gently over Cactus’s head, rubbing behind his ears. “Is that a yes or a no? Or do you not want to be left behind?”

I could have another piece of toast.

Procrastinating won’t erase your need to meet Marnie and Peggie.

It helped Motts that she knew both women. She’d met them several times on the Mottley family holidays to Polperro. They were lovely people who’d make her feel welcome and comfortable.

And yet, her anxiety refused to settle.

She had a lifetime of experience forcing herself to get through dealing with the world. Her autistic diagnosis had come late—in her mid-thirties. She’d felt relief at having answers, yet in some ways, even four years on, she continued to struggle to adjust to the paradigm shift.

Changing out of her comfy pyjamas into jeans and a long-sleeved flannel shirt, Motts stood in front of the full-length mirror on the back of the bedroom door. You can do this. Origami flowers are your bread and butter. Talk about the paper arrangements—you don’t need to make small talk.

Motts redid the buttons on her shirt. “I’m Motts.”

You don’t have to introduce yourself. You’ve met them before. They know your name.

 

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/31oK3cb
All links: https://books2read.com/motts1

 

Cosplay Killer Sale

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Cosplay Killer is 99c until April 25th!

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/3cqaPET
books2read.com/cosplaykiller
Osian Garey and Dannel Ortea live together in a colourful flat in Covent Garden. They run a podcast and throw themselves wholeheartedly into Cosplay, video games, and musical theatre. This year, they’re all fired up to attend their annual convention with a group of first responders.

When Osian finds a paramedic friend murdered in the middle of the crowded venue, the police immediately turn their attention to him.

They have one question on their mind.

Is he the first witness on the scene or the killer?

As the mystery unfolds, Osian has to face the trauma of his last job as a paramedic. Somewhere in those memories, a killer waits to exact revenge. They’ll have to prove Osian’s innocence and fight for their own survival when the killer puts them both in their sights.