Lacy Steele has moved back home and into Grandma’s house. She has no job, no friends and no fiance – since her sister stole him. When someone she loves is accused of murder, Lacy decides she won’t give up until the real murderer is found. As she digs deeper into the case, she finds out alarming family secrets. Add to that her growing attractions to both football star turned cop Jason and newcomer Tosh, Lacy is in over her head.

Sissy:  Bubby was skeptical when I told her to read this book.  Actually she was rude and sarcastic, bringing up my past dissing of cozy murder series’, and I had to say to her, “forget the past, forget the unreality of the same person constantly finding dead bodies in their small town, just read the book because it is good, and stop disrespecting your elder.”  Bubby quieted down and read the book.  Then she texted me something like “you are a bad influence.”  I didn’t know which of the many possibilities she was referring to, but when asked, she replied “ I am addicted.  I read all the books in the series.”  I gloated.

Bubby: Fabulous books. My teenage daughter and I positively devoured them. Am I glad that Sissy found them? Absolutely. Do I think this absolves her from her cozy murder mystery bashing of the past? Not in the least. Double standard, anyone? I guess I will let it go, just this once. But only because I am so glad to have found an author as entertaining as Vanessa Gray Bartal. A few weeks ago on American Idol (yes, I’m addicted to that, too) the song category was “songs you wished you had written”. Morning Cup of Murder is the book that I wish I had written. It’s jaw-breakingly hilarious, sarcastic and has a great plot.

Sissy:  Our heroine, Lacy Steele, is a former brace-faced band geek who has blossomed into a lovely woman.  That she doesn’t realize how attractive she is makes her all the more endearing.  She is smart but dorky, beautiful and curvy but uncoordinated, and reminds me of my sister, Bubby.

Bubby: Aww, Sissy, thanks! I think you are dorky and uncoordinated too!

Sissy: Fie!  I am so coordinated it’s sick!

Bubby: Whatever, Sissy. Anyway. I know that there are people out there that dream about going back to their hometown and showing all their old high school nemisis how wonderful they turned out and all. I am not one of these – and neither is Lacy. Going back home was never in her plans. Of course, having her sister steal her fiance wasn’t in her plans either. She loved the big city life of New York and having to fit back into a small town where EVERYONE knows your business is difficult at best for her. To add insult to injury, she has to move in with Grandma – a wonderful woman who loves and nurtures her family with large doses of sugar and butter. I can relate!

Sissy:  There are 4 more books in this series (Building Blocks of Murder, A Family Case of Murder, Arch Enemy of Murder, and Class Reunion of Murder), and all are worth a read.  There is also a Christmas novella, Christmas Steele, which I haven’t read yet but Bubby says was a little slice of Lacy Steele fun.  The author, Vanessa Gray Bartal, is self-published and has written over 50 books. Again, I ask what is wrong with those publishing companies?  Am I missing something?  They could do with more books like this and less smut fest fare like 50 Shades of Grey.   I will be trying her other books, count on it!  I will suspend my intellectual block about cozy mysteries for this one author!  One time only!  Unless I change my mind!

Bubby: I agree with Sissy – publishers take note! Vanessa Gray Bartal needs a contract and a large advance immediately! Maybe Sissy and I should form our own publishing firm and snatch up all these gems. Wish I could! In Morning Cup of Murder, our delightful heroine Lacy forms two connections right off the bat. One with new-to-town pastor Tosh and another with former high school football star Jason, whom she has known since a little before forever. The interplay between these three characters is nothing less than brilliant. So much fun to read. I wanted to climb into the book and be friends with these people, just so that I could be a part of their conversations!

Sissy:  Wait!  We could call our publishing company Bubble Bath Books!  I could get a face-lift and be on the Ellen show! As for climbing into the book and being friends with the characters–well, they are well-formed, but I think Bubby needs some therapy and face-time with real people.  Its healthier.

Bubby: Just going to ignore that one, Sissy. Yep. Ignoring you. La La La La La I can’t hear you La La La La . . .

Sissy:  Like I said…therapy.

Bubby: Still ignoring you . . .I highly recommend that all our readers put down whatever they are doing and rush to purchase Morning Cup of Murder. (It’s only 99 cents at Amazon. Totally a bargain!) And then buy everything else in the series. Loved them all. 4 ½ bubbles.

Sissy:  Great book, fun series, remember who found ’em first.  4 bubbles.

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