If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.

July Interviews

7/1 Lena Gregory, Scone Cold Killer
7/8 Jessica Baker, Murder on the Flying Scotsman
7/15 TG Wolff, Driving Reign
7/22 Leslie Budewitz, The Solace of Bay Leaves
7/29 Cynthia Kuhn, The Study of Secrets

Saturday Guest Bloggers

7/11 Mark Dressler
7/18 James McCrone

WWK Bloggers:

7/4 Valerie Burns
7/25 Kait Carson


Congratulations to our two Silver Falchion Finalists Connie Berry and Debra Goldstein!

Paula Gail Benson's "Cosway's Confidence" placed second and Debra Goldstein's "Wabbit's Carat" received Honorable Mention in the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable 2020 short story contest. Congratulations, Paula and Debra!

Susan Van Kirk's Three May Keep A Secret has been republished by Harlequinn's Worldwide Mystery. The WWK interview about the book can be accessed here. We're so glad another publisher picked up this series.

KM Rockwood's "Burning Desire," and Paula Gail Benson's "Living One's Own Truth," have been published in the anthology Heartbreaks & Half-truths. Congratulations to all of the WWK writers.

Please join Margaret S. Hamilton's Kings River Life podcast of her short story "Busted at the Book Sale" here. Congratulations, Margaret!

Look Margaret S. Hamilton's short stories in the new Mid-Century Murder by Darkhouse Books. Margaret's story is titled "4BR/3.5BA Contemporary."

Grace Topping's second novel in Laura Bishop staging series, Staging Wars, was released by Henery Press on April 28th. Look for the interview here from April 29th.

Annette Dashofy's 10th Zoe Chambers mystery, Til Death, will be released on June 16th. Look for the interview here on June 17.


Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Krista Davis Interview by E. B. Davis

Maybe I wouldn’t be able to spring Nellie. Maybe Nellie had committed the crime. But
I knew two things—I couldn’t let Aly down, and I couldn’t bear to live my life, having fun,
even just waking up in the morning and seeing the sun shine, with the knowledge that
Nellie might have been wrongly incarcerated and that I hadn’t bothered to try to help.
Krista Davis, The Diva Sweetens the Pie, Kindle Loc. 1117

In New York Times bestselling author Krista Davis’s new Domestic Diva mystery, Old Town’s annual Pie Festival crumbles into chaos after a celebrity judge is murdered, leaving it up to entertaining maven and sometime-sleuth Sophie Winston to dole out justice . . .

Nothing heats up Old Town quite like the annual Pie Festival, and this year is no exception, especially since Sophie’s professional rival, Natasha Smith, is barred from participating. Sophie, meanwhile, has been asked to oversee the pie eating contest. But the drama really rolls out when celebrity judge, Patsy Lee Presley, host of television’s most popular cooking show, bites the crust during the competition, and Sophie’s friends are suspected of the crime.

As the folks of Old Town dish, the tough truth about Patsy’s meteoric rise to domestic stardom begins to leak. It turns out that Patsy’s sweet exterior hid a secret sour side, which alienated many of her closest allies, including a jilted ex-husband, a bitter ex-mentor, and a jaded ex-best friend. With the festival falling apart, and her friends in danger of being boxed up for murder, Sophie must cobble together the clues and stop a flakey fiend from serving up any more deadly desserts.

While reading Krista Davis’s twelfth Diva mystery, The Diva Sweetens the Pie, I wondered—is it possible to gain weight just reading about pies? But the way Krista Davis writes food—the ingredients, the techniques, the texture, smell, and taste—the virtual pies slipped into my mouth and onto my hips. I’m blaming Krista!

Nevertheless, I always feel like I’m coming home to Sophie, her posse of friends, and Old Town Alexandria when I pick up a Diva book. It’s something about the warmth of friendships gathered around the brick fireplace in Sophie’s kitchen or the outdoor cooking area with hearth where the neighborhood gathers to commune.

But the other factor is the caring—enough to solve murders of those acquaintances nearby—and protect all that’s right with the close-knit community of friends and families—a significant factor in this book. You’ll have to pick up your copy to find out why.

Please welcome Krista Davis back to WWK.                                                                                    E. B. Davis 
My pie dough recipe calls for vinegar, but vodka is the secret ingredient revealed by a pastry chef in your book. Would vinegar and vodka have the same nature in the dough?

It’s all about gluten. I’m not a scientist, but my understanding is that both vinegar and vodka will make the dough flakier because they don’t contribute to the formation of gluten. You can try other liquors as well!

Nina has a unique palate compared to most people, which may explain why she loves Sophie’s baking and cooking. How many people have this ability?

If you watch cooking contests, you’ve probably seen contestants do blind tastings. It can be fun to see how wrong they are. Scientifically speaking, about 25 % of us are super-tasters because we have more papillae (little bumps) on our tongues. One of my friends, (Norwood, one of the people after whom Nina Reid Norwood is named) has this ability. The example of garlic on a cutting board actually happened. I used a cutting board to mince garlic. It was washed and dried that evening. The same cutting board was used to cut fruit in the morning. Norwood could taste garlic on the fruit! One person present couldn’t taste the garlic at all and didn’t understand what Norwood was talking about. I could pick up on it, but not like she did!

Why was Natasha banned from entering this year’s pie contest? Would she be considered a professional or amateur?

I’m quite certain that Natasha would be offended by the mere suggestion that she might be an amateur. I don’t want to give anything away but the previous year, her entry sent the judges to the hospital . . .

In what ways is Natasha not like Martha Stewart?  What’s the charcoal trend?

Natasha doesn’t have Martha’s dedication. Instead of focusing, Natasha jumps from one trend to the next, hoping it will be the thing that catapults her to stardom. But you have to give her credit. She keeps trying!

Charcoal is thought to have some health benefits and is being used in everything from toothpaste to facial masks, as well as food. It’s supposed to impart a smoky flavor.

What drinks do Moos & Brews serve? Is it based on any place real?

It is not based on a real place. Moos & Brews serves coffee-based drinks and takeout food.

I’ve never heard of caffeine powder. Can anyone buy it?

Caffeine powder is highly concentrated caffeine. A teaspoon is equivalent to over 20 cups of coffee. Imagine drinking that much all at once! The FDA has issued warning letters and advisories, but I see it readily available online.

Even though Patsy Lee, a cooking-show celebrity and a pie judge, started out in Old Town, I didn’t like her. Who announces themselves in third-person? Do show-biz types have separate personas?

I suspect that a lot of public figures present themselves in ways that suit their images. They’re always telling us to be true to our brand. If I hear that, I can imagine that a big celebrity must hear it all the time. This is Patsy Lee’s style.

Even though I hate eating contests, when Alex enters and wins the pie eating contest I was surprised, but Sophie was surprised, too. How long have Sophie and Alex dated? Do they know each other well?

Sophie and Alex have dated for years. He’s a fairly private person and his eating contest talents had never come up!

What are parmesan tuiles? 

Parmesan tuiles are rounds of grated Parmesan heated in the oven. When they are still warm, they can be formed into rounded shapes and will cool that way.

What looks like one murder, morphs into two murders, started by blackmail and then a near-fatal beating when Sophie connects all the pastry chefs to Apex Pie, a place where all the chefs worked years ago. But the first murder, precipitated by blackmail happened years before and one of the chefs was convicted. What makes Sophie think they all might be connected?

They all seem to involve the same group of people. When everything comes back to the same group of friends or former friends, one has to think there could be a connection.

I didn’t understand the directions for the S’mores Pie (yes, one Sophie developed after helping at the pie contest!). Does the chocolate mixture firm up when cooled or does it thicken as it cooks? Do the marshmallows lining the pie crust float and melt?

This is so ridiculously good that I could barely keep it in the house long enough to put the top layer of marshmallows on it! The chocolate melts as it cooks. When it’s poured over the marshmallows in the pan, it thickens as it cools around them. And it’s yummy just like that! The top layer isn’t even really necessary!

Patsy Lee and her then husband Peter launched her career as a TV cooking-show hostess by stealing recipes, starting rumors about other chefs, and using their personal history as their own. Have you researched TV chefs? I always thought that perhaps at that level there would be at least some professionalism, such as Alton Brown appears to be, is that not the case?

I, too, would like to imagine that everyone is strictly professional and well behaved. However, I’ve read accounts that there is some backstabbing and squabbling. “Accidents” happen, people sneak ingredients away from others, and some portions of the shows land on the cutting room floor. Let’s face it, people will be people and that means they do the unexpected.

What’s next for Sophie and the gang?

I’m just working on The Diva Spices It Up. Sophie is going to help ghostwrite a cookbook!

Here are a few of the foods Sophie and her friends eat in The Diva Sweetens the Pie. Just warning everyone!

Potato pancake topped with sour cream, sliced salmon, and garnished with caviar.
Crab ravioli with Hollandaise sauce.
Sliced duck breast with bourbon-laced peach sauce, roasted asparagus, and creamy Parmesan duchess potatoes.
Ice-cream pie with chocolate sauce.
Grilled Cheese BLT
Pancetta and Gruyere Croissants
Ham and Asiago Panini

Recipes Included:
Piled High Strawberry Pie
Quick and Easy Blueberry Cobbler
S’mores Pie
Salted Caramel Apple Pie
Ice Cream Pie
TiJuana Odum’s Easy Chicken Pot Pie
Grilled Cheese BLT
Strawberry Bourbon Lemonade
S’mores Cocktail



Jim Jackson said...

Hey Krista - congrats on your latest. Keep the Diva coming!

Margaret S. Hamilton said...

congratulations on your new release!

Kait said...

Congratulations, Krista. This is one of my favorite series, and the recipes are yummy.

Grace Topping said...

Hi, Krista -- Great seeing you here. My husband and I have bottles of vodka left over from a wedding, and we don't drink it. I'll have to try it in the pie dough. Sounds like a good use for vodka. Love Sophie and all your books. Congratulations on the publication of this recent one.

KM Rockwood said...

Thanks for telling us about a new addition to a beloved series!

Krista said...

Thanks, everyone! It's always a pleasure to visit with you. Grace, you can also make your own vanilla with vodka. No kidding! Just pop vanilla beans into a bottle of vodka and let it stand for a few months. Tastes awful in drinks but it saves a lot of money on vanilla!

Gloria Alden said...

Congratulations Krista. I can't wait to read another book in your series.