Monday, May 19, 2014

Great Escapes Virtual Book Tour & Giveaway for Hanging by a Hair by Nancy J. Cohen

Welcome to my stop on the Virtual Book Tour for Hanging by A Hair by Nancy J. Cohen, presented by Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours.  Please leave a comment or question for Ms. Cohen to let her know you stopped by and to enter to win an ebook copy of Shear Murder.  Please be sure to include your email address with your comment.  You can also enter her tour wide giveaway by filling out the Rafflecopter form below. My review will post later tonight. 

The Mystique of Bones by Nancy J. Cohen

The word “bones” connotes something dead and decomposed. It’s an evocative term to attach to a mystery as we think of mysterious events, unsolved murders, and buried secrets. Or else it brings to mind ravenous beasts tearing the flesh off a bone, or perhaps a clever dog hiding a treat from its master. Whatever image pops into your head, it’s likely to induce a shiver up your spine.

I learned what happens when you dig up bones while researching Hanging By A Hair, #11 in my Bad Hair Day mystery series. Archeological finds aren’t uncommon in sunny South Florida, where my hairstylist sleuth Marla lives with her new husband, Detective Dalton Vail. So when a neighbor infers that human remains have been discovered nearby, she does her research.

Florida had once been home to generations of Native Americans. Many tribal names have been lost to time, but most of the people followed specific burial practices. Unmarked human remains often originated from the era before European contact, more than five hundred years ago. These remnants are usually found in burial mounds also called prehistoric shell middens.

Florida cemetery law includes these mounds or any monuments containing related artifacts. If anybody uncovers human skeletal remains while excavating, they have to halt operations, secure the site, and notify local law enforcement. If they fail to report their find, they face a second-degree misdemeanor. This step starts a process involving modern Indian tribes, medical examiners, and archaeologists. Remains less than seventy-five years old fall under the jurisdiction of the medical examiner.

Marla compares the story she’s researching with the one about the Miami Circle in the excerpt below. She’s conversing with the shaman of a local tribe.

 “The Miami Circle is an archaeological site discovered in 1998 and believed to be nearly two thousand years old. A perfect circle is cut into the limestone bedrock.”

Marla thought of crop circles mysteriously found in fields out west, presumed by some to be alien landing sites. “Who put it there?”

“Possibly the Tequesta. They were one of the first natives whom Ponce de León encountered when he set foot in Florida.”

“How was the Circle unveiled?”

“An apartment complex stood on the property. A new buyer tore it down, planning to build a luxury condo building. According to Miami’s historic preservation code, he had to conduct an archaeological field survey before starting construction. The excavation revealed a series of twenty-four holes arranged in a circle and cut into the limestone. They uncovered numerous artifacts as well.”

“So what happened?”

“The developer wanted to relocate the circle and continue construction. Preservationists filed a lawsuit to stop further activity. Their injunction was denied, but the builder agreed to wait until the archeologists finished their work. In the meantime, the Miami–Dade County Commission filed a lawsuit to take ownership of the property. The developer agreed to sell and ended up making a profit on the deal.”

“Was the Miami Circle a burial site?”

“No evidence was found to that effect. The holes were believed to hold posts supporting a structure on stilts, possibly a religious building.”

“So what’s there now?”

“It’s a park. The circle itself lies buried.”

What lies buried in Hanging By A Hair will be your secret to uncover. It’s fascinating as a writer to learn these tidbits of information as we conduct our research. I like to learn something new with each book. If I’m excited by this knowledge, my readers might be interested, too. A different angle gives the work added depth and helps keep the series fresh.

When you think of bones, what comes to mind? 

All commenters on this blog will be entered into a drawing for an ebook copy of Shear Murder.

Hanging By A Hair
By Nancy J. Cohen
Bad Hair Day Mysteries, #11

Publisher:  Five Star
Release Date: April 18, 2014
Genre:  Cozy Mystery
Length:  287 pages
ISBN: 978-1432828141

Buy Links:  Amazon | B&N  

Add to Goodreads

About the book: 

Marla’s joyous move to a new house with her husband, Detective Dalton Vail, is marred by their next-door neighbor who erects an illegal fence between their properties. When Dalton reminds the man of the local permitting laws, tempers flare—and worse, the neighbor is found dead the following day. Dismayed when Dalton is removed from the case due to a conflict of interest, Marla decides it’s up to her to find the killer. Can the intrepid hairstylist untangle the clues and pin down the culprit before he strikes again?

About The Author
Nancy J. Cohen writes the humorous Bad Hair Day mystery series featuring hairdresser Marla Shore, who solves crimes with wit and style under the sultry Florida sun. Several of these titles have made the IMBA bestseller list. Nancy is also the author of Writing the Cozy Mystery, a valuable instructional guide for writers on how to write a winning whodunit. Her imaginative romances have proven popular with fans as well. Her titles in this genre have won the HOLT Medallion and Best Book in Romantic SciFi/Fantasy at The Romance Reviews.

Active in the writing community and a featured speaker at libraries and conferences, Nancy is listed in Contemporary Authors, Poets & Writers, and Who’s Who in U.S. Writers, Editors, & Poets. Currently, she is serving as President of Florida Chapter Mystery Writers of America. When not busy writing, Nancy enjoys reading, fine dining, cruising and outlet shopping.

Author Links:

Website –

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule
May 13 – Socrates’ Book Reviews - Review, Guest Post
May 14 – Melissa’s Eclectic Bookshelf – Interview
May 15 – Thoughts in Progress – Review, Interview
May 16 – Read Your Writes Book Reviews - Spotlight
May 17 – Chloe Gets A Clue - Interview


  1. Archeology is the US interest me. I look forward to reading a 'take' on the Miami Circle.

  2. It was interesting to read about this site. I'd never heard of it before researching this book, and I had lived in Miami.

  3. Always knew hairdressers knew all the answers. Interesting sounding book!! Ronnalord(at)msn(dot)com

    1. If hairdressers don't have the answer, they probably know who to ask! I hope you will give this book a try, Ronna.

  4. I am in the middle of reading "Hanging By A Hair". I love it!

  5. Sounds like a great read! I love discovering new series. Rachel Lepree rlepree(at)musfiber(dot)com

    1. Anonymous, I hope you will try one of my Bad Hair Day mysteries.

  6. some of the books in this series are in my TBR......
    thank you for the giveaway!!!

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. I hope you get to those books in your TBR pile soon! LOL

  7. Thanks for sharing the best information about the hair transplant in gurgaon

  8. Patg has won the ebook copy of Shear Murder. Please contact me with your email address.