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@heatherdgilbert @dollycass ~ Spotlight Tour/#Giveaway ~ Belinda Blake and the Snake in the Grass by Heather Day Gilbert

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About The Book

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Belinda Blake and the Snake in the Grass (An Exotic Pet-Sitter Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Lyrical Underground (June 25, 2019)
Paperback: 192 pages
ISBN-10: 1516108841
ISBN-13: 978-1516108848
Digital ASIN: B07HVYQ9XZ

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Purchase Links

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When exotic pet-sitter Belinda Blake moves into a carriage house in tony Greenwich, Connecticut, she’s hoping to find some new clients. Instead she discovers a corpse in the garden—and a knack for solving murders . . .

Pet-sitter Belinda Blake doesn’t rattle easily, but move-in day has been eventful, to say the least. The python in her care tried to slither to freedom—just as she met Stone Carrington V, her landlords’ disarmingly handsome son. With the constrictor back in its cage, she heads out to the garden, only to discover a designer shoe poking out of the boxwood hedge—attached to a woman’s dead body.

The victim, Margo Fenton, was a Carrington family friend, and no one in their circle seems above suspicion. Between client trips to Manhattan and visits to her family in upstate New York, Belinda begins to put the pieces together. But though she’s falling for Stone’s numerous charms, Belinda wonders if she’s cozying up to a killer. And soon, daily contact with a deadly reptile might be the least dangerous part of her life . . .

~ Guest Post With Heather ~

Growing up reading Agatha Christie mysteries, I realized that one of my favorite elements of her books was the believable family relationships portrayed. I definitely try to work that into my books, and Belinda Blake and the Snake in the Grass is no exception.
Belinda is kind of a girl-next-door kinda gal, someone who doesn’t over-think decisions and doesn’t focus on the past or the future—she lives for today. I actually “built” her around a very specific Myers-Briggs personality type.

But her sister, Katrina, is the perfect “foil” for Belinda, and is quite opposite her in many ways. While Belinda is an exotic pet-sitter and video game reviewer who doesn’t like being locked down, Katrina is a married psychologist who’s pregnant. Katrina is always exhorting Belinda to back off her investigations, fearing she’ll get hurt. Many times Belinda will “hear” what Katrina would advise her to do in her head in dangerous situations—sometimes she listens, and sometimes she doesn’t. 😉

I loved writing both sisters, and I based their names off sisters in stories my dad used to make up for us on long car trips. Belinda, Katrina, and their dog, Blitz (who’s also mentioned in a childhood flashback), got into all kinds of adventures. I remembered a particular tale my dad had contrived about these girls, and I managed to work it into one of my books, so you can watch for that in this series. Since my dad had a sudden widow-maker heart attack last April (and thankfully, he survived, thanks to four stents), I dedicated this book to him. I’m so thankful to say he’s retired as of this year and although he hasn’t slowed down much, he and my mom are some of my biggest reader-supporters.

That brings me to Belinda’s dad Drew, who is a veterinarian. What better aid for an exotic pet-sitter than to have a dad on call for her pet emergencies?

And Belinda’s mom, Leanne, is a back-to-nature kind of woman, who’s always working to try to get their little farm off-grid. She’s owned numerous small farm animals over the years, so Belinda has been exposed to all kinds of animal situations. Leanne was a delight to write, because she constantly makes me chuckle.

It might fly in the face of everything, but I wanted Belinda to have a relatively normal family life and parents who love each other. I know dysfunctional families are often the fuel for sleuth’s tragic backstories, but why can’t twenty-something sleuths like Belinda rely on family to back them up as they discover their path in life? In that respect, I wanted Belinda to be a little like Nancy Drew, whose lawyer father, Carson, often seemed to be around to help her with questions.
I truly hope you enjoy meeting Belinda, Katrina, and their parents in the Exotic Pet-Sitter mystery series. Goodness knows I’ve hung around with them long enough to feel like I know the Blake family—quirky as that family might be.

AUTHOR BIO:

Heather Day Gilbert, an ECPA Christy award finalist and Grace award winner, writes contemporary mysteries and Viking historicals. Her novels feature small towns, family relationships, and women who aren’t afraid to protect those they love. Like Belinda Blake, Heather plays video games, although so far she hasn’t done any exotic pet-sitting or hunted any murderers. Find out more on HeatherDayGilbert.com.

About The Author

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Heather Day Gilbert, an ECPA Christy award finalist and Grace award winner, writes contemporary mysteries and Viking historicals. Her novels feature small towns, family relationships, and women who aren’t afraid to protect those they love. Like Belinda Blake, Heather plays video games, although so far she hasn’t done any exotic pet-sitting or hunted any murderers. Find out more on HeatherDayGilbert.com.

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7 thoughts on “@heatherdgilbert @dollycass ~ Spotlight Tour/#Giveaway ~ Belinda Blake and the Snake in the Grass by Heather Day Gilbert”

  1. Love that you included the character names from your dad’s stories into your own story.

    Like

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