Today we welcome Elle Brooke White to the blog. Her debut mystery Dead on the Vine was published by Crooked Lane on April 7. I had the pleasure of reading an Advance Reader Copy. Here’s what I said about it.
“Buckle up for a crazy ride when Charlotte Finn inherits the family farm—and her family’s darkest secrets. Did these secrets spawn a murder? Author Elle Brook Finn kept me in my seat around every curve to the very last page.”
Take it way, Elle!
It all started with my annual, exuberant welcoming of spring on social media.
When the first strawberries begin showing their green, cone-shaped heads I begin concocting their life stories. The first year the berries luxuriated by the pool. The next they were invited to Harry and Meghan’s royal wedding, and then last year they were introduced to creatures of the two and four-legged variety.
So it was only natural that a book about a farm would blossom from my imagination. Enter Dead on the Vine, a Finn Family Farm mystery. The Santa Barbara Mountains presented the perfect backdrop for this story due to their natural beauty, their elixir of both sea breezes and the smell of rich, ripening vegetation, and, conveniently their proximity to the author.
Dead on the Vine is the first book in the NEW “Finn Family Farm” cozy mystery series.
Reluctant farmer Charlotte Finn needs the help of the livestock to sleuth a mysterious death.
Charlotte Finn never wanted to inherit the family’s produce farm–much less plow a heap of money into it. Her plan is to hammer a great big FOR SALE sign into the farm’s fallow furrows–but Charlotte’s sunny hopes of a quick sale succumb to a killing frost when she finds a dead body entwined supine in the tomato vines. The poor man, it seems, was run through…with a pitchfork?
Now, Charlotte is stuck with running the farm in the midst of a murder investigation. Charlotte’s knowledge of farming is smaller than her bank balance, so she relies on caretakers Joe and Alice Wong and their farmhands. Can she trust them? She doesn’t know them. There’s also farmer Samuel Brown, who still carries a childhood grudge. But the case gets personal when Charlotte learns that the victim might have been her own kin–and seeds of suspicion grow into a fertile field of suspects.
Charlotte turns to the farm’s baby pig to help root out the killer. Soon, the goats, geese, and horse join in, but will Charlotte harvest a murderer–or buy the farm?
About Elle: Born in Shaker Heights, Ohio, Elle Brooke White became a world traveler at a young age when her family moved to Europe. She grew up in Paris, Brussels and London until returning to the US to attend Vassar College. She then moved to New York City and took a job in advertising– a career that spanned two coasts and a number of years. But writing was always her passion because it took her to “a world of pure imagination”.
Reader Question: Do you believe that your pets dream in the language you’ve taught them or their native species tongue?