Southern Sass and Killer Cravings by Kate Young

A Review and Interview with the Author

Southern Sass and Killer Cravings (Marygene Brown #1) 5 STARS

Southern Sass and Killer Cravings, book 1 of the Marygene Brown Series, is not only the first in an amazing series, but the first Cozy Mystery by Kate Young. I am blown away. Kate Young hit a Grand Slam with this book (homage to the Braves references throughout the book).

Marygene Brown leaves her abusive relationship in Atlanta to return back her hometown of Peach Cove, a small island town of Southern Georgia. Marygene’s plan is to join forces with her sister, Jena Lynn, and run the beloved Peach Diner, passed down by generations of family. What Marygene did not plan on, was a regular customer dying in the restaurant and her sister being lead off in handcuffs. She also didn’t bargain for having her mama show up to guide her through it all. Did I mention mama is dead??

With the help of her mama and others in town, Marygene sets out to prove her sister’s innocence and find out what is going on in her small town. Can she find the killer before the killer finds her?

The character development, setting description, and story line are phenomenal. I instantly fell in love with the characters. There were moments of shock, laughter, intrigue, and emotion throughout the entire book. The mystery was great, I did have my suspicions of the killer from the get go but the road getting there was worth the trip. I laughed many times at the shenanigans of Marygene and Betsy. And somehow, Kate Young adds in the emotional issues of domestic violence. Marygene Brown is one of the strongest Protagonists I have seen in long time.

I cannot wait to continue my journey with Marygene and the Peach Cove Gang.

I read the digital copy awarded to me by NetGalley as well as the audio version of the book. The narrator, Tiffany Morgan, does a fantastic job.

INTERVIEW WITH KATE YOUNG

1. After writing paranormal fantasies, what made you decide to dive into the Cozy Mystery genre? Will you continue to write in other genres?

Mysteries have become my favorite genre to read. I love everything from cozies to heart pounding thrillers. I decided a couple of years ago to try my hand at writing one. I had to learn to write differently. Panster style wouldn’t work in this genre. I took several classes offered through Sisters in Crime and learned that writing a mystery took skill. A skill I had to learn and am still learning. I have great respect for long term writers in the genre. The plan right now is to focus on writing more mysteries.

2. They say write what you know. Being from a small town in Georgia, is Peach Cove based on a real town?

The inspiration for Peach Cove came from both Savannah and Seaside, Florida. The quaintness and beauty of Seaside and the old southern charm of Savannah.

3. Are any of your characters based off of people you know?

The Yvonne character is loosely based on my childhood best friend. The character has her likeness some of her mannerisms, and charm that merged beautifully with the character she became.

4. When can we expect from Marygene Brown and the town of Peach Cove?

There is a lot to come from Marygene and the Peach Cove gang. In book two, Southern Sass and A Crispy Corpse, our heroine is pushed to the limit and finds that her southern sleuthing grit is her saving grace. It’s a wild ride for sure.

To learn more and keep up with Kate Young…

https://www.kateyoungbooks.com/

https://www.amazon.com/Kate-Young/e/B0094KQZSS

https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKateYoung/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6527572.Kate_Young

https://www.instagram.com/kateyoungbooks/

The Callie’s Kitchen Mysteries by Jenny Kales

“A series that will make you hungry for murder”

Overall Series Rating 4.5 Stars (Books 1-4)

On the Chopping Block (A Callie’s Kitchen Mystery, #1)

Such a fun series. I am totally invested in Callie and Company and the future endeavors in Crystal Bay. As much as I love Callie, I think its all her friends and family that make me love this series so much. Callie is a hard working Greek bistro owner as well as a single mom, so of course she has time to be an amateur sleuth and mystery solver. Callie just has a knack for finding dead bodies.

Ms. Kales does a great job developing the lovable characters. The characters are so relatable. Yes its a small town and quite over the top in many cases, but the relationships and emotions, as well as day to day routines, are real. I feel like I have been in many of the same situations with family, exes, friends, budding romances, coworkers, etc.

The books have many plot twists that will keep you guessing until the end. Each book has a theme surrounding it. From a Cook Off to Christmas and Halloween to Murder Mystery Dinners, each book will offer you a new adventure in Crystal Bay, WI.

If I had to pick a favorite so far in the series, it would be Spiced and Iced (Book 2). In this book, Callie’s strength is tested, and tested hard. She has many trials thrown at her and she never breaks. Callie is a protagonist that I could truly admire, definitely a super woman. And let’s face it, its Christmas Time. Nothing better than a Christmas themed Cozy!!


The books also made me hungry, as I love Mediterranean dishes. There are several recipes in the back of the books that I will definitely try, especially the Greek Coffee Cakes!

I am impatiently awaiting Book 5. I highly recommend this series to anyone that already has a love for Cozy Mysteries or is looking to dive into the genre. Callie is a very strong woman, so even though this a cozy, you will enjoy this series if you love mysteries with a strong female protagonist. This series is also available on Kindle Unlimited.