Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Guest Blog by Dawn Eastman - Crystal Haven's Roots - and Giveaway! - July 1, 2014

Please welcome Dawn Eastman to The Qwillery. Be Careful What You Witch For, the 2nd novel in the Family Fortune Mysteries, is out today. Please join The Qwillery in wishing Dawn a Happy Publication Day.

Crystal Haven’s Roots

Many, many, years ago, I stayed with a relative in Lilydale, New York. Located in Southwestern New York near Cassadaga Lake, Lilydale started as a spiritualist campground in the 1870’s. Since then, it has become both refuge and mecca for psychics, mediums, and those seeking to connect with loved ones who have passed on.

My mother, my cocker spaniel puppy, and I piled into the car and drove from Michigan to check out the spiritualist community. During that visit, we stayed in a reportedly haunted cottage. While I didn’t have an encounter with the ghosts, the puppy seemed decidedly spooked and refused to stay in the house alone.

We attended healing sessions and ceremonies at inspiration stump where messages are relayed to members of the audience. What was striking to me was not that most of the residents were mediums, or that people had conversations with loved ones who had died years before, but that it seemed like such a normal small town. It is a beautiful little town with a turn-of-the-last-century feel. There is a beach, picnic areas, a post office, a fire station, several restaurants, gift shops, and a library. The streets are lined with adorable Victorian cottages, making it a great place to visit even without the psychic draw.

When I started planning my cozy mystery series I decided it would be fun and would add a unique element to the stories if it were set in a town like Lilydale. My favorite vacation spot is Western Michigan with its beaches, forests, and beautiful summer weather. I combined the two and Crystal Haven was created. My fictional town is not just dedicated to spiritualism. Its residents branch out into herbalism, tarot cards, crystals, and palm reading. I wanted to create a place that would be fun to visit over many stories and also to explore the types of people who would choose to live there.

The result has been a lot of fun for me to write. Crystal Haven has “regular” people as well as psychics, but not many of its citizens question the validity of messages from other realms. In fact, my protagonist – Clyde Fortune, a psychic herself - is one of the biggest skeptics. The psychic element leads to lots of assistance in solving crimes. Not all of it is helpful.

The cocker spaniel puppy who joined us on that long-ago trip was one of many well-loved pets. So, it was a given that the series would include animals. Violet Greer, Clyde’s aunt, is a pet psychic with more confidence than talent. Pall in the Family, the first book in the Family Fortune Mystery series begins with a shih tzu who is a witness to murder. Violet’s efforts to interrogate the dog are confusing at best.

Be Careful What You Witch For is the second book in the Family Fortune series, and is set around Halloween. A murder occurs at the annual Fall Festival and someone close to Clyde is a suspect. She gathers her family and friends to help clear her friend, but as she gets closer to the answer, she also puts everyone closer to danger.

I invite you to come visit Crystal Haven. Pets are welcome.

Be Careful What You Witch For
A Family Fortune Mystery 2
Berkley, July 1, 2014
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

Leaving a traumatic police career behind, Clyde Fortune has returned to her seemingly quiet hometown of Crystal Haven, Michigan. In spite of the psychic powers of its residents, there’s no telling what trouble is brewing in this burg…

The highlight of this year's fall festival in Crystal Haven is a bonfire with a witch’s cauldron resting over it. Clyde’s best friend, Diana, leads a ritual to divine the future, but it seems no one foresees that one of their own will drop dead—or that Diana will be a prime suspect.

Clyde already has her hands full with her eccentric family, runaway nephew, and burgeoning secret romance with a hunky homicide detective. But after another coven member is attacked, Clyde suspects there’s a witch hunt afoot and focuses her psychic and sleuthing skills to clear her friend’s name and catch a killer.

Pall in the Family
A Family Fortune Mystery 1
Berkley, August 6, 2013
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

The aptly named Crystal Haven is the destination for tourists seeking psychics, séances, and the promise of contacting the spirit world. In this small western Michigan town, everyone knows the Fortune family. Rose is gifted with tarot card readings. Her sister, Vi, is a self-proclaimed pet psychic. And Rose’s daughter Clyde is…

A cop. A cop on leave from Ann Arbor, more specifically, who’s come home to kooky Crystal Haven to reevaluate her life. Mom and Aunt Vi can’t wait for Clyde to finally embrace her own psychic gifts and join the family business. Clyde would prefer the low-stress lifestyle of a dog walker and the low-key company of her nephew, Seth.

But when a local psychic is killed, leaving behind a traumatized Shih Tzu, it seems to be in the cards for Clyde to get involved. With her old flame Mac leading the investigation, that may prove awkward. Whether she uses her skills as a cop or her long-denied psychic abilities, it’s up to Clyde to divine a killer’s identity before someone else suffers more misfortune.

About Dawn

When I was ten years old, my two favorite things were climbing trees and reading. As a bonus, I discovered if I combined the two, I could hide from my mother when she wanted me to clean my room. Nancy Drew and I spent many afternoons solving crimes and avoiding chores. Eventually, I moved on to Hercule Poirot, Sherlock Holmes, and Stephanie Plum. I improved my housework-dodging ploys.

After many years in Michigan, I now live in Iowa with my husband, son and daughter. When I...m not writing or chauffeuring kids, I keep busy catering to the whims of a bossy bichon-shih tzu mix who wants to rule the world.

Website  ~  Facebook  ~  Twitter @DawnAEastman

The Giveaway

What:  One entrant will win a Mass Market Paperback copy of Be Careful What You Witch For by Dawn Eastman from the publisher. US ONLY

How:  Log into and follow the directions in the Rafflecopter below.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a US mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59PM US Eastern Time on July 9, 2014. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. thank you for the chance to win :)

  2. I love the series and would love to be the lucky winner here.

  3. these look and sound like a lot of fun :) Thanks for sharing!

  4. I think all books should have dogs in them so I'm definitely going to check out Pall in the Family.

  5. Cozies with dogs are so much fun---and with a little of the spirit world should be even more fun. Thanks for the contest.