Title: Coffee is Murder (Episode 9 of the McKinley Mystery Series)
Author: Carolyn Arnold
Genre: Cozy mystery, private investigator
Release date: May 27th, 2015
Length: 155 pages
Blurb: A cup a day won’t kill you, but a few might.
Their first case as private investigators have Sean, Sara, and Jimmy neck-deep in coffee beans trying to find a killer. With their client certain that her mother was poisoned through her coffee of the month club, it has them setting out to Williamsburg, Virginia. But instead of approaching matters from the traditional standpoint, Sean and Sara brew a robust plot and stir Jimmy into the blend, all to get close to their top suspect and grind out the truth.
Going undercover at Tasty Beans, the coffee company, the three of them work to expose the culprit before anyone else dies.
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THE MCKINLEY MYSTERY SERIES ventures outside of the typical crime genre, lending itself to the cozy variety with no foul language or graphic violence. The series combines romance, mystery, humor, and adventure for a lighthearted, easy read. Each episode is a standalone read, meaning it’s not necessary to have read previous instalments.
About the author:
CAROLYN ARNOLD is the international bestselling and award-winning author of the Madison Knight, Brandon Fisher, and McKinley Mystery series. She is the only author, in her genre, with POLICE PROCEDURALS RESPECTED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT.TM
Carolyn was born in a small town, but that doesn’t keep her from dreaming big. And on par with her large dreams is her overactive imagination that conjures up killers and cases to solve. She currently lives in a city near Toronto with her husband and two beagles, Max and Chelsea. She is also a member of Crime Writers of Canada.
A Moment of Appreciation
FOR SARA, COFFEE WAS ONE of life’s greatest—and simplest—pleasures. Every time she took a draw of freshly brewed java, her eyelids automatically lowered in appreciation of the robust flavor. Somehow, when drinking it, life seemed less complicated, or maybe it was just how it coated the palate and calmed her nerves despite what some scientific studies might say.
She was in her home office, seated behind her desk, staring at the blinking cursor on her monitor, but it wasn’t because she had writer’s block. Her wrists needed a break. Better yet, she needed to indulge in this cup.
Leaning back in her chair, she swiveled from side to side and closed her eyes, savoring the aroma of the dark beans. While they were ground at the time she pressed the button, the only way to get it any fresher was picking the beans off the plants in Brazil. With their money, she supposed it was an option.
She let herself get caught up with the thought. It might not be a bad idea. As her daydreaming grew in scale, she laughed. She wasn’t going to board a plane to South America for a cup of coffee, even though it might be the best she’d ever had. She wasn’t that obsessed—was she?
Sean knocked, but entered without awaiting a reply. He held on to a glass of orange juice and she admired his self-restraint. For some reason, his body required only one coffee a day when he first woke up. Otherwise, he moved on to juice or water.
If Sean had his way, Sara would drink only one, but coffee was a habit she wasn’t willing to break. Maybe she was an addict, although, that word carried such a negative connotation. She wasn’t an alcoholic simply because she enjoyed an evening beverage, so her coffee indulgence shouldn’t be considered an addiction. Even her thoughts betrayed her. Indulgence.
“Good morning, darling.” Sean kissed her forehead and then her lips. “I hope I’m not interrupting.” He glanced at the screen. “I guess I’m not.”
She smirked at him, realizing only a chapter number was showing. “I’m just taking a small break. I can’t always be typing, you know. I’m not a machine.”
“The way you’ve been holed up in here lately, I’m starting to wonder.”
She pouted. “Are you feeling lonely?”
“A little bit like a writer’s widower actually.”
“Well, let me make it up to you.” She stood, cupped his face with her hands, and kissed his mouth.
When they parted, any pleasure she derived from the coffee had diluted. It was replaced by the need to hold her husband.
“Hmm. Not bad,” he said.
“You have coffee breath. I have orange juice breath. Still, the kiss, not bad.”
She narrowed her eyes and was about to say something when the phone on her desk rang.
Sean answered. “Hello…yes, Helen…all right, make the appointment for two hours from now.”
As she listened to her husband speak, she had a good idea what this was about. There was a job.