Thursday, August 16, 2018

Tail of the Dragon by Connie di Marco | Blog Tour with Excerpt, Review, and Giveaway

Connie di Marco is back with her latest Zodiac Mystery!

The Blurb

San Francisco astrologer Julia Bonatti never thought murder would be part of her practice, but now, Julia’s former boss and current client has asked for help. He has serious problems at his law firm. Two attorneys and a paralegal have received death threats and the only common denominator between all three is a case long settled — the highly publicized Bank of San Francisco fire. Julia’s convinced a woman is behind the threats, perhaps even the widow of the man who died in that same fire, but no one wants to listen — they can’t believe astrology could provide a clue. Before Julia can help her client, two lawyers are dead and her own life is threatened. Can she unmask the killer before he (or she) takes another life?

Tail of the Dragon by Connie di Marco
Series: A Zodiac Mystery, #3
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Publisher: Midnight Ink
Publication Date: August 8, 2018
Paperback: 336 pages
ISBN-10: 0738751065
ISBN-13: 978-0738751061
e-Book File Size: 512 KB
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The Excerpt

I followed the curve from Sutro Heights down to the Great Highway.  Here, the road runs parallel to Ocean Beach.  Sheets of sand had blown across the highway and formed dunes every so often high enough to block the ocean view.  Waves crashed against the concrete abutment sending salt water spray across my windshield.  I turned east on Ulloa away from the roiling Pacific and spotted Sarah Larkin’s address on the opposite side of the street.  The wind off the ocean picked up, blowing east.  Particles of dust and beach sand hit my face as I climbed out of the car.  Keeping my head down for protection, I hurried across the street.  

I climbed the long stairway to the front doors where a sign indicated 3102-3104.  At least here, in the shelter of the entryway, there was respite from the wind.  I pressed the buzzer to the door on the right.  After a moment, a woman called out.  “Who is it?”  

“Hi.  My name is Julia Bonatti.  I’ve come from Meyers Dade & Schultz.” 

The door was quickly yanked open by a woman in her late forties.  Her face was round and slightly puffy.  She wore no makeup and was dressed in a nondescript brown jumper over a black sweatshirt.  Her long hair, streaked with gray, was combed back behind her ears. 

She peered at me.  “For God’s sake.  What now?  I told him I didn’t want anything from him or his damn law firm.”  Her eyes were thin puffy slits.  

“I... I’d just like to talk to you about your brother.  I was hoping maybe you could help us in finding his murderer.”  

“His murderer.... I’d give his murderer a prize if I knew who he was,” she sneered.  She looked me up and down and finally decided she’d talk to me even if it was only because I offered a sounding board for her bitterness.  “Come on in,” she said resignedly. 

“I gather you and your brother weren’t close, but I am sorry for your loss.”  

“Don’t be.  Wasn’t a loss.  Believe me.  I haven’t talked to Jack for years.  Since my son died.”  

“Oh, I’m so sorry.  I didn’t know.”  A familiar pain flickered in my chest.  My loss seemed small in comparison.  

“Nicky was sixteen when he died.  He had a drug problem.  He got mixed up with the wrong kids and they were into some heavy stuff.  I was sure if he had one more chance... a good chance, he might make it.”  Her voice trailed off.  “I begged Jack for the money.  I never asked him for a thing in my life.  Never.  But I begged for that.”  

“He refused?”  

“Said he didn’t see why he should pay for rehab or counseling.  The other places hadn’t done Nick any good, so what difference did it make?”  She looked at me, her eyes betraying a deep well of pain.  “Jack never really loved anyone in his life.  How could he possibly understand what it’s like to love a child?  I didn’t have anyone else to ask.  My husband was killed in a car accident when Nick was seven. Our parents are dead, and Jack had plenty of money.  Big, successful lawyer... but he didn’t give a damn about me or Nick.  Yeah, I hated him.  I still hate his guts.  I don’t care if he’s dead, I only wish he had suffered more.”

The Review

I just read a really good book, y'all — Tail of the Dragon by Connie di Marco, Book Three in the Zodiac Mystery series. Let me tell you a little about it.

The Zodiac Mysteries star Julia Bonatti. Julia is a professional astrologer in San Francisco, who lectures about astrology, advises private clients, writes astrology books, and writes a weekly advice column, Ask Zodia. Normally, these produce enough income to pay the bills. Because of some unexpected recent expenses, Julia agrees when her former boss and current client David Meyers asks her to fill in for his vacationing secretary for a week. 

On Julia's first day at David's law office, an attorney is found dead — one of the three people in the firm who've received death threats. Even though David closes the office because of the murder, Julia still has a job to do — only now, as a sleuth.

Julia uses her sleuthing and her astrology to uncover several likely suspects and motives for this murder and another in the law office. Author Connie di Marco kept me guessing until the end. The climax is quite thrilling. In sub-plots, Julia investigates a sculptor, and uncovers new information in the hit-and-run death of her fianc√©. All of these investigations make Tail of the Dragon fast moving. 

Julia is likable, intriguing, clever, and fun to read about. I love the support system she has, consisting of her grandmother Gloria and her BFFs Gale and Cheryl. There's a wonderful dynamic between them.

I recommend Tail of the Dragon to all cozy mystery fans. I think readers who are astrology buffs, residents of San Francisco or wannabe residents, and fans of the Soup Lover’s Mysteries by Connie Archer will especially like it. 

I really enjoyed Tail of the Dragon by Connie di Marco, and hereby bestow upon it Four Kitties!

Four out of five kitties
Note: I received a complimentary copy of Tail of the Dragon, and voluntarily reviewed it. 
All opinions shared are 100% my own.

You can find another excerpts from Tail of the Dragon, and a Guest Post, on my blog for June 27 and July 31.

The Author

About Connie di Marco

Connie di Marco is the author of the Zodiac Mysteries from Midnight Ink, featuring San Francisco astrologer, Julia Bonatti. Tail of the Dragon, third in the series, will be released on August 8, 2018.

Writing as Connie Archer, she is also the national bestselling author of the Soup Lover’s Mystery series from Berkley Prime Crime. Some of her favorite recipes can be found in The Cozy Cookbook and The Mystery Writers of America CookbookConnie is a member of International Thriller Writers, Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime.

Find Connie on the web at

The Giveaway

Connie di Marco will award a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card
to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the tour to read other excerpts and reviews.
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