Wednesday, December 9, 2020

A Deadly Edition by Victoria Gilbert | Blog Tour with Excerpt, Guest Post, and Giveaway


A Deadly Edition: A Blue Ridge Library Mystery by Victoria Gilbert

About A Deadly Edition


A Deadly Edition: A Blue Ridge Library Mystery
Cozy Mystery
5th in Series
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books (December 8, 2020)
Hardcover: 368 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1643854762
Kindle ASIN: B085N3KN7L


'Til death do us part" could be closer than the bride realizes in Victoria Gilbert's tantalizing fifth Blue Ridge Library mystery."

The pursuit to acquire a rare illustrated book turns deadly, and on the eve of her upcoming wedding, library director Amy Webber is drawn into a web of treachery and betrayal that could derail her happy day -- and maybe just claim her life.

Planning a wedding can be murder -- sometimes literally. At a party celebrating their upcoming nuptials, Taylorsford, Virginia library director Amy Webber and her fiancé Richard Muir discover the body of art dealer Oscar Selvaggio -- a bitter rival of their host, Kurt Kendrick.

Both had been in a heated battle to purchase a rare illustrated volume created by William Morris's Kelmscott Press, so suspicion immediately falls upon Kurt. Amy knows that Kurt has a closet-full of skeletons from his past -- but she can't believe he's guilty of murder. 

Amidst an avalanche of wedding preparations, Amy begins an investigation with the help of her aunt Lydia Talbot and the new mayor of Taylorsford, Sunshine "Sunny" Fields. Much to Lydia's dismay, her boyfriend, art expert Hugh Chen, becomes convinced of Kurt's guilt and launches an investigation of his own. As the case hits painfully close to home, the stakes become impossibly high -- and the danger all too real.

About the Excerpt

Richard paused on the path that led into the trees surrounding Kurt’s manicured backyard. “To be honest, I really just wanted a moment alone with you.”

“To do what, exactly?”

“Kiss you properly, for one thing,” he said, pulling me behind the screen formed by a tall lilac bush before proceeding to do so.

Some time passed before I was aware of anything besides the two of us, but at one point, as Richard lifted his lips from mine, I caught a glimpse of something moving through the trees to my right. There was a flash of purple amid the green undergrowth. I stepped back, pulling free of Richard’s arms. “Someone’s out there, walking through the woods.” 

“Probably a guest getting some air.” Richard turned to follow my gaze. “Wait, that’s Adele. What the heck is she doing, tramping through the woods?” He frowned. “She’s had some balance problems lately, and when I talked to her earlier, I noticed she was wearing pretty flimsy heels. She has no business hiking across uneven ground.”

“That is odd. Kurt doesn’t clear his woods either. He says he likes to allow them to remain natural for the benefit of the wildlife. So trying to navigate that area in heels has to be rough.”

“Good way to break a leg.” Richard rubbed his jaw with his clenched fist.

“Speaking of Kurt, there he is, popping out of the woods on the other side of the yard.” I glanced up at Richard. “What’s going on here? Some strange game?”

“A secret assignation?” Richard widened his gray eyes. “Kurt and Adele have known each other for a long time . . .” 

“True, but they’re old enough not to have to sneak into the woods for a rendezvous. Anyway, I’ve never gotten the impression that they were that close, and Adele could just as easily stay after the party if they wanted private time alone. Who would know, or care?”

“No one, I suppose.” Richard’s gaze followed Adele as she crossed the yard and entered the house through the back door.

Kurt, who’d paused at the edge of the yard until Adele went inside, waited a few additional minutes before following her. As he opened the back door, I was surprised to see my brother stroll around from the other side of the house. That’s right, he went out for a walk for some reason, I thought, reaching for Richard’s hand.

“This is starting to remind me of one of those French farces — people coming and going from all directions.” Richard’s fingers curled around mine.

Looking over the area as if to make sure no one was watching, Scott also used the back door to enter the house. 

“It is peculiar,” I said, “but I’m sure there’s some reasonable explanation.”

A loud crash silenced Richard’s response.

“Sounds like it came from that direction,” he said, dropping my hand to sprint down the path.

I followed, running to match his longer strides. The path curved off to the right, ending at a wooden garden shed.

Richard paused, grabbing the edge of the half-open door. “Hold on,” he said as I reached him. “We should be careful. It could be some sort of wild animal, and if we back it into a corner, it could turn violent.”

“But it also could be hurt,” I said, pulling the door wider to peer inside the shed. “Can’t see much.”

There’s something on the floor.” Richard pointed toward a large, shadowy object sprawled across the center of the small room.

I backed away. “Not a bear, I hope.”

“It’s not moving. Maybe just some tarps that tipped off that top shelf.” Richard grabbed a rake that was propped next to the door.

As he crept closer to the shadowy object, holding the rake like a weapon, I stepped in behind him and moved to the side to allow light to spill in through the door.

It was a tarp — a cracked blue tarp dusted with mold. But it was draped over something else. Richard tentatively reached out and flipped up an edge of the thick plastic covering.

I gasped as an expensive leather shoe was revealed.

We both rushed forward to fling back the rest of the tarp. Then stood in silence, holding hands, as we stared down at the body of Oscar Selvaggio.

About the Guest Post

A Late Bloomer’s Story


I’m definitely a late-bloomer when it comes to my professional writing career. This was not because I didn’t enjoy writing early on – ever since I was a child, I loved to read and to create things. Sometimes this creative impulse took the form of art or crafts, but I also wrote stories, plays, and poetry. Still, even though I always held onto the dream of becoming an author, I never actually completed a novel until about eight years ago.

Somehow, I allowed life to push this dream aside. Part of the issue was my need to develop a career I could use to support myself and my immediate family. I guess it’s not surprising, as a lover of books and reading, that I ended up as a librarian. Eventually, I became the library director for a visual and performing arts university, a position that was both fulfilling and demanding.

My work and family life didn’t leave a lot of time for other pursuits, but one day in late 2012, when I was 56, I decided to complete one book, if only to prove to myself that I could. I didn’t initially consider publication, which is good since my first two books weren’t “ready for prime time.” It was only after writing my third book, a YA Fantasy called CROWN OF ICE, that I seriously queried and landed an agent and a small publisher. I was 57 years old at that point. My age when CROWN was first published? 58!

In 2016, after I pulled my rights from my first publisher for… reasons, I decided to make another change. With the support of my wonderful agent, I tackled a new genre. Already 60, I knew I was taking another big leap into the unknown. But I was willing to give something different a try and completed my first cozy mystery, A MURDER FOR THE BOOKS, by the end of 2016. We began the submission process in early 2017 and were lucky enough to get a deal for a three-book series (which has now grown to seven books!) from Crooked Lane Books.  

In the meantime, in the spring of 2017, I reissued CROWN OF ICE with Snowy Wings Publishing, along with its companion book, SCEPTER OF FIRE – a mash-up retelling of “The Steadfast Tin Soldier” and “The Ugly Duckling.” (My other published YA book, a sci-fi, is currently out-of-print).

In December 2017, when I was 61, A MURDER FOR THE BOOKS was published. Now, at 64, three more books in the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series have been released – SHELVED UNDER MURDER (2018), PAST DUE FOR MURDER (2019), and BOUND FOR MURDER (2020). Of course, A DEADLY EDITION, the book being celebrated by this blog tour, came out Dec. 8th

I’m currently under contract to write books six and seven in the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series, and also have a new cozy series with Crooked Lane – the Booklover’s B&B mysteries. Book one in that series, BOOKED FOR DEATH, was published in August. (Book two, RESERVED FOR MURDER, will be released in June 2021). In addition, I’ve recently signed a contract with Crooked Lane for a new traditional mystery series – the Hunter & Clewe mysteries. Books one and two in that series will come out in 2023 and 2024. 

Let me be honest: if you’d asked me ten years ago whether I could imagine writing twelve books before I turned 65 – with ten of those published or soon-to-be-published, along with five more under contract – I’d have said such a thing was an impossible dream.

But as it turned out, I would’ve been wrong. It took time and hard work, as well as help from others – like my agent, critique partners, editors, and publishers – but I was able to make it happen. Not without some stress and disappointments, of course, but the books are out there (or will be out soon) and people can read them. That’s all that really matters!

So if you have a dream, especially one that’s been deferred, here’s my challenge – give it another shot. Don’t worry about how old you are, or if success seems improbable. Forget the odds and reach for that special, lifelong, dream. If I could do it, so can you. I’ll definitely be cheering you on!

About Victoria Gilbert

Raised in a historic small town near the Blue Ridge Mountains, Victoria Gilbert turned her early obsession with books into a dual career as an author and librarian.

Victoria writes the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series, the Booklover’s B&B series, and the upcoming Hunter and Clewe traditional mystery series for Crooked Lane Books. She has also published fantasy with Snowy Wings Publishing.

A member of Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime, Victoria is represented by Frances Black at Literary Counsel. She lives near Winston-Salem, NC with her husband, son, and some very spoiled cats.

Author Links
Website (includes blog):

Purchase Links - Amazon - B&N - Kobo - IndieBound

Blue Ridge Library Mystery series:

Booklover’s B&B series:

December 6 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT
December 6 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW
December 6 – Christy's Cozy Corners – SPOTLIGHT
December 7 – The Book Diva's Reads – SPOTLIGHT
December 7 – CelticLady Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
December 7 – Maureen's Musings – SPOTLIGHT
December 8 – Dee-Scoveries – SPOTLIGHT
December 8 – Ruff Drafts – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 8 – The Bookwyrm's Hoard – REVIEW, CHARACTER INTERVIEW
December 9 – Diane Reviews Books – REVIEW
December 9 – Jane Reads – GUEST POST
December 10 – I'm All About Books – SPOTLIGHT
December 10 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT
December 10 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
December 11 – Thoughts in Progress – SPOTLIGHT
December 11 – View from the Birdhouse – REVIEW
December 11 – Cassidy's Bookshelves – SPOTLIGHT
December 12 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW
December 12 – Sapphyria's Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
December 13 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW
December 13 – Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic – SPOTLIGHT
December 13 – I Read What You Write – SPOTLIGHT

Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?

You can comment as a guest, or with your DisqusFacebookTwitter, or Google account. To register for Disqus, or to post as a guest, click in the Name box under "Sign Up With Disqus."