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Death on the Danube: A New Year’s Murder in Budapest
(Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery Series)
by Jennifer S. Alderson
About Death on the Danube
Death on the Danube: A New Year’s Murder in Budapest (Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery Series)
1st in Series
Traveling Life Press (November 28, 2019)
Print Length ~200 Pages
Who knew a New Year’s trip to Budapest could be so deadly? The tour must go on – even with a killer in their midst…
Recent divorcee Lana Hansen needs a break. Her luck has run sour for going on a decade, ever since she got fired from her favorite job as an investigative reporter. When her fresh start in Seattle doesn’t work out as planned, Lana ends up unemployed and penniless on Christmas Eve.
Dotty Thompson, her landlord and the owner of Wanderlust Tours, is also in a tight spot after one of her tour guides ends up in the hospital, leaving her a guide short on Christmas Day.
When Dotty offers her a job leading the tour group through Budapest, Hungary, Lana jumps at the chance. It’s the perfect way to ring in the new year and pay her rent!
What starts off as the adventure of a lifetime quickly turns into a nightmare when Carl, her fellow tour guide, is found floating in the Danube River. Was it murder or accidental death? Suspects abound when Lana discovers almost everyone on the tour had a bone to pick with Carl.
But Dotty insists the tour must go on, so Lana finds herself trapped with nine murder suspects. When another guest turns up dead, Lana has to figure out who the killer is before she too ends up floating in the Danube…
Introducing Lana Hansen, tour guide, reluctant amateur sleuth, and star of the Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery Series. Join Lana as she leads tourists and readers to fascinating cities around the globe on intriguing adventures that, unfortunately for Lana, often turn deadly.
Feel-good stories about friendship, travel, and celebrating new experiences. Coming soon: Books 2 and 3 in the Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery Series!
Guest Post by the Author
Creating a Cozy World
I love to read mysteries of all kinds, but lately have found myself drawn to cozies. When I decided to start a new mystery series last year, cozies were a natural choice.
During the research phase, I was surprised to come across several checklists for what a cozy mystery should include! Most of these posts offered advice about choosing a setting, the types of characters, and even the sorts of murders most often committed in cozies.
Though these posts were incredibly helpful as a starting point, I do admit my new Travel Can Be Murder series does differ slightly from a ‘typical’ cozy. My choice of setting is probably the most marked difference. In contrast to most cozies, I knew I did not want to set it in one place. I love to explore new parts of the world and wanted to make traveling a part of this series. That ultimately meant the stories would be set in several locations, not just one town.
Because I had been considering what kind of world I wanted to create for quite some time, I had several ideas for the settings, a case of reoccurring characters, and their personalities. After months of scribbling down ideas for what my cozy mystery series could be about, sitting down to flesh out the characters and world they would live in, was more like a process of elimination.
Deciding on my amateur sleuth’s profession took the most time. I debated having Lana be a well-traveled fitness instructor, a travel agent, stewardess, architect, and several other traveling professions. Ultimately I settled on her being a travel guide because it allowed her the most interaction with the tour group that would be exploring each new city. To expand her skillset, I gave her a variety of past experiences, including working as investigative journalist, magician’s assistant, kayaking guide, and yoga instructor. Her many talents come in handy during her investigations!
Once I decided on her profession as travel guide, I had to figure out how to create a familiar world for the readers. Cozies are typically set in one town because it gives readers a chance to connect to the cast of reoccurring characters and watch them evolve and grow.
Even though each of my stories takes place in a different city, they all start and end in Lana’s hometown of Seattle, Washington. While there, she interacts often with her good friends, in particular Dotty and Willow. In each story, her friends also travel with her – either literally as guest on her tour or by offering advice via video chats and phone calls.
Choosing the first three locations for Lana’s tour group to visit wasn’t too challenging. I am an avid traveler so I used places I have been to as the settings. I decided on Budapest, Paris, and Amsterdam because they are cities I know well and enjoyed visiting.
Honestly, since I began writing this series, all of my vacations have become potential settings for a new story! So much so, when discussing where we should take our next vacation, my husband asked where I would like to write about next! It’s a pretty great way to combine business with pleasure.
Once I had the framework for the series, it was surprisingly easy to create Lana’s world in Seattle, a set of good friends to keep her company, and a series of whodunit mysteries that I hope will keep readers guessing to the end!
Thanks for offering me a chance to share my new Travel Can Be Murder series with your readers!
If you enjoy heartwarming stories about friendship, travel, and celebrating new experiences, I invite you to follow along on Lana Hansen’s journeys! The first book in the Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mystery series – Death on the Danube – is about a New Year’s trip to Budapest and will be released on November 28, 2019. The next three books in the series – Death by Baguette: A Valentine’s Murder in Paris, Death by Windmill: A Mother’s Day Murder in Amsterdam, and Death by Bagpipes: A Summer Murder in Edinburgh – will be released in 2020.
About Jennifer S. Alderson
Jennifer S. Alderson was born in San Francisco, raised in Seattle, and currently lives in Amsterdam. After traveling extensively around Asia, Oceania, and Central America, she moved to Darwin, Australia, before settling in the Netherlands. Her background in journalism, multimedia development, and art history enriches her novels. When not writing, she can be found in a museum, biking around Amsterdam, or enjoying a coffee along the canal while planning her next research trip.
Jennifer’s love of travel, art, and culture inspires her award-winning mystery series—the Zelda Richardson Mysteries and Travel Can Be Murder Cozy Mysteries—and standalone stories.
November 29 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – GUEST POST
November 29 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT
November 30 – I Read What You Write – CHARACTER GUEST POST
December 1 – A Blue Million Books – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 2 – TBR Book Blog – REVIEW
December 2 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW
December 3 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 3 – The Book Decoder – REVIEW
December 4 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW
December 4 – Hearts & Scribbles – SPOTLIGHT
December 5 – View from the Birdhouse – REVIEW
December 5 – Here’s How It Happened – REVIEW
December 6 – StoreyBook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
December 6 – Brooke Blogs – GUEST POST
December 7 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
December 7 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT
December 8 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 9 – Diane Reviews Books – REVIEW
December 9 – This Is My Truth Now – SPOTLIGHT
December 10 – Book Club Librarian – REVIEW
December 10 – eBook addicts – REVIEW
December 11 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
December 11 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
December 12 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT
December 12 – That’s What She’s Reading – GUEST POST
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