The Murder at Astaire Castle Guest Post/Review

Book Description:


Never tell Mac Faraday not to do something.


Spencer’s police chief, David O’Callaghan, learns this lesson the hard way when he orders Mac Faraday to stay away from the south end of Spencer’s mountaintop – even though he owns the property. It doesn’t take long for Mac to find out what lies on the other side of the stone wall and locked gate, on which hangs a sign warning visitors to Keep Out!


Topping the list of the 10 top haunted places in America, Astaire Castle is associated with two suicides, three mysterious disappearances, and four murders since it was built almost a century ago – and Mac Faraday owns it!

In spite of David’s warning, Mac can’t resist unlocking the gate to see the castle that supposedly hasn’t seen a living soul since his late mother had ordered it closed up after the double homicide and disappearance of Damian Wagner, a world-famous master of horror novels.

What starts out as a quick tour of a dusty old castle turns into another Mac Faraday adventure when Astaire Castle becomes the scene of even more murders. Mac is going to need to put all of his investigative talents to work to sort out this case that involves the strangest characters he has run into yet – including a wolf man. No, we’re not talking about Gnarly.


Buy the Book:   Amazon  ~  Audible

My Review:  4 out of 5 stars

This was a great murder mystery story. I really enjoyed it. The characters were great. The Narrator did a good job on telling the story. I listened to this as a audiobook and really could see myself in the story when I closed my eyes while listening to the narrator.

The characters were very well liked funny and entertaining. Loved listening to what happened with them. The plot was good you just need to give this book a listen or read.

 I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my review.

Author’s Bio:

Lauren Carr is the international best-selling author of the Mac Faraday, Lovers in Crime, and Thorny Rose Mysteries. The twelfth installment in the Mac Faraday Mystery series, Candidate for Murder will be released June 2016.

Lauren is a popular speaker who has made appearances at schools, youth groups, and on author panels at conventions. She lives with her husband, son, and four dogs (including the real Gnarly) on a mountain in Harpers Ferry, WV.

Connect with Lauren: Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook

Guest Post:

Practical Tips for Beginning Mystery Writers
By Lauren Carr
So you want to be a mystery writer? Well, I assure you, it’s not as easy as it looks. It isn’t just a matter of writing up a murder. There’s some tips and tricks to it.
Let’s try to break down into some easy to digest tips.
Number One: Research. Research in mystery writing is very important. However, I strongly advise against hands-on research in murder mystery writing. No matter how good you may be, if you kill your ex-husband, they’re going to catch you and you will go to jail. Then you will be spending so much time fighting off a muscle-bound, tattooed roommate calling you “Cupcake” that you won’t have time to write your book.
It is best to do your research online. Google is a good starting source. There is an unbelievable wealth of sources on the Internet now, geared specifically toward writers for research in law enforcement and forensics. I know one author who found a video on YouTube on how to build a bomb.
Number Two: Once you’ve done your research into murder, you now need to come up with a story line. The best place to start is to come up with a protagonist. Another word is hero. Some writers base their detectives on themselves. Others base them on their fantasy hero. At this point, ask yourself: Who do you want to save the day? You or some dashing, sexy, man with piercing eyes and a big gun? …
Number Three: Your victim. You can’t have a murder mystery without someone getting killed. You may already have a murder victim. Many murder mystery writers have victims in mind before they have even thought of writing a book. If they are honest, many mystery writers were driven to write murder mysteries because of their victims.
This is the one case where it is okay to ask: Who do you want to kill? Bosses are a favorite. Once at a book event, a reader told me that she had two ex-husbands that she wanted me to kill between the pages for her.
Number Four: How are you going to kill your victim? If you are basing your victim on someone in particular, you may already have a murder method in mind. Or you may have so many ideas that you don’t know which one to choose from. It is all a matter of preference. Do you want your murder victim to go out with a whimper or a bang? Is he or she worthy of going out in a blaze of glory? If not, maybe you want a particularly tortuous death, like being dined on by a komodo dragon. Or, you could have him die “off-stage”. In this case, you don’t need to write it out. You could simply have the reader hear about it later.
Number Five: The solving of the case. This is where many mystery writers get tripped up. They have so much fun with steps one-through-four that they’ve forgotten that someone has to solve their victim’s murder. Maybe because subconsciously, they don’t want their victim’s murder solved. That is something for the writer to take to Dr. Phil to sort out.
As much fun as it was killing their boss or ex-husband or nasty neighbor or lawyer who rolled over and played dead in divorce court or—Your mystery does need to be solved. After the murder, you need to lead the reader on the path through the detection, solving of the crime, and the capture of the killer.
That’s right. In the end, the killer is captured by the detective.
That’s why in the beginning I warned you not to practice this in real life at home.
Unless you want to evade capture when they find out by getting cosmetic surgery, dressing up like a member of the opposite sex, joining a rock band and then spending the rest of your life on the lam—which is another blog post.
Happy Mystery Writing!

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