by: Carmen Radtke
Series: Adriana and Genie Darling Mystery
Genre: Paranormal Cozy Mystery
Release Date: September 30, 2023
New York jewelry designer Genie Darling has returned to her childhood home in quaint Cobblewood Cove for one reason only: to sort through generations of old family heirlooms and hand anything of historical interest over to the local museum.
But after a failed mugging attempt, and the appearance of a beautiful but ghostly young stranger in a vintage evening dress, Genie realises there’s something suspicious – and spooky – going on.
The glamorous and friendly spectre turns out to be Genie’s own great-great-aunt Adriana, who died in 1929 in mysterious circumstances.
When there are more attempts on Genie and her home and her main suspect dies in a suspicious accident, she decides to get to the bottom of the mystery.
Does it have anything to do with Adriana’s death and reappearance?
With her unflappable, pet-whispering aunt and cat Cleo by her side, Genie sets out to lay this ghost to rest by solving the mystery and unmasking the culprits.
But digging up the past can be deadly…
Good morning! We’ve just returned from a rescue mission. Talk about charming a bird off a tree – literally. The poor thing had only just left its nest and been slightly too adventurous. What a good thing the animal grapevine leads to my great-great-aunt.
Before we get started, can you please introduce yourself to readers?
Hi, I’m Genie (or rather, Geneviève) Darling Hepner. Although my family has deep roots in Cobblewood Cove, I’ve grown up wherever my dad’s job took us. I always thought I’d keep on moving around – as a freelance jewelry designer and occasional food blogger I don’t need much for my work – but somehow, I feel as if I’ve found my true home after all. I hope that my friend Jilly will join me here. We used to share a work studio until recently and I’d miss her. There’s a lot to be said for a small coastal town, with its slower pace and friendly people. Yes, that includes a few attractive men, not that I’m looking for romance. I’ve got my hands full enough.
Can you please tell us about some of the people we’ll meet in your story?
The fact that I’m a Darling and thus a member of one of the founding families carries a lot of weight. It also helps people fondly remember my mother Aimée. The Schuyler sisters, who practically rule the roost, were the first to welcome me home. Little did I know what kind of adventure awaited me here, or which of the people hid criminal intents behind a kind façade. Luckily, a few were above suspicion, like my new friend Jolene, handywoman extraordinaire.
What were your thoughts/feelings the moment you came face to face with your great-great aunt Adriana?
At first, I simply took her for a burglar. I mean, I came back from a party, and there she was, dressed up like an old time movie star. The next thought was that I’d suffered a concussion. A ghost, and one that wasn’t simply a spooky apparition but as real as you and I? That took some mental adjustment. Only Cleo, our cat, accepted Adriana right away.
What’s your most prized possession?
Good question. Until a few weeks ago, I’d have said, my late dad’s cashmere scarf. I wear it whenever I’m in need of comfort. Nowadays, a brick from the Darling villa is the most important thing for me. My reasons will become clear when you read Genie and the Ghost!
Why do you feel the need to put on your sleuthing hat and investigate murders?
I wish I didn’t have to! But when there’s scary goings-on, and nobody else takes it seriously, or the police look in the wrong direction, what am I supposed to do? Let evildoers get away with murder?
Not to mention that I believe there is a specific reason why Adriana only materialized now, almost a century after her death. And that it would be next to impossible to hold her back! She’s always pictured herself as a gumshoe…
Was there ever a moment when you thought you were in over your head?
More than I care to admit! But somehow, I have the sneaking feeling that Adriana is more than a ghost. She’s my guardian angel, although sometimes an exhausting one.
What’s next for you?
We’re going abroad! My new mission in Ghost Takes A Vacation is to search for Adriana’s former belongings. There’s going to be an auction in Italy where I can hopefully buy a few things she needs to make her existence as enjoyable as possible. Keep your fingers crossed for us!
Genie, thank you so much for your time.
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The Adriana and Genie Darling Mystery Series:
Ghost Takes a Vacation releases November 11, 2023
Ghost Stirs the Pot releases December 25, 2023
She has worked as a newspaper reporter on two continents and always dreamt of becoming a novelist and screenwriter.
When she found herself crouched under her dining table, typing away on a novel between two earthquakes in Christchurch, New Zealand, she realised she was hooked for life.
The shaken but stirring novel made it to the longlist of the Mslexia competition, and her next book and first mystery, The Case Of The Missing Bride, was a finalist in the Malice Domestic competition in a year without a winner. Since then she has penned several more cozy mysteries, including the Jack and Frances series set in the 1930s.
Genie and the Ghost is her first paranormal cozy mystery.
Carmen now lives in Italy with her human and her four-legged family.
Places to find Carmen Radtke:
You can follow the Genie and the Ghost Blog Tour here.
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