A Conversation with Author Lena Gregory

 This summer local diner owner Gia Morelli will have to deal with a more dangerous kind of heat—when she’s hot on the trail of another murderer . . .– Whole Latte Murder (All-Day Breakfast Cafe Mystery Book 5) by @LenaGregory03

What inspired the idea for your book?

 In A Waffle Lot of Murder, All-Day Breakfast Café #4, Gia’s friend Harley ends up in danger, and there’s nothing she won’t do to help him. Gia and Savannah are such good friends, sisters really, and I got to wondering what Gia would do if Savannah was ever in danger.

If you were friends with a character in this book, what kinds of things would you do together?

 I would love to hang out with Gia and Trevor for a day. We’d start the day with omelets and home fries at the All-Day Breakfast Café. After that, I’d love to go kayaking through the Florida wilderness with them and see the cypress trees, monkeys, manatees, and just enjoy the peace and sunshine, maybe take a long hike with Thor. Then, we’d end the day with ice cream at Trevor’s ice cream parlor, Storm Scoopers.

What does it mean to you to be called an author?

 It’s so thrilling to me to be called an author. I’ve loved to read ever since I was young, and I’ve always wanted to write. Since I didn’t get to start until I was older, it was something I never thought I’d accomplish. So, being an author means the world to me.

How do you define success as an author?

 I felt successful when I finished writing my first book, then again when I got my first contract, and my agent, and the first time I picked up one of my books in a book store, but for me, the most successful I’ve ever felt is when readers reach out to me and let me know my books have touched them in some way. I don’t think I could ever feel more successful than in those moments. 

What do you look for in a story as a reader?

 As a reader, I enjoy the same things that I strive for as a writer. I usually enjoy reading a series much more than a stand-alone story. I love to follow characters as they grow and change throughout a series. I enjoy guessing how they’ll react to a situation based on what I know about them. And I enjoy envisioning myself as part of the community the characters live in.

What has been your favorite reader feedback?

 First, I love when a reader enjoys my stories! It makes my day to have someone get in touch to tell me they connected with a character or they can’t wait to read the next book in the series or when a reader leaves a good review. Some of the best reader feedback I’ve ever received was probably when a reader who is a huge Nancy Drew fan compared my books to the Nancy Drew books and my characters to Nancy, Bess, and George. Another reader wrote a poem about one of my books as a review, which I thought was amazing. And the most touching feedback I’ve ever received was from a reader who lost her brother and had chosen to donate my books to a library in his memory. Since I lost my younger brother to lung cancer ten years ago, that meant more to me than I can ever express.

How do you interact with your readers?

 I absolutely love interacting with readers, and I’ve made many friends on social media. I love doing facebook parties and chatting with people from all over the world. I am an incurable insomniac, so I often spend time on facebook late at night, and I enjoy chatting with fellow authors and readers.

What was the defining moment that made you say to yourself, “Today, I am going to write a book that I will publish.”?

 When my youngest son was born and didn’t sleep through the night and I wanted a job that allowed me to work from home with him, I decided to give writing a try. Ten years later, I finally retired from my day job to write and edit full time.

What are you reading now?

Right now, I am re-reading J.D. Robb’s In Death series. It’s definitely not a cozy, but it does have fantastic characters, great mystery plots, and an interesting setting.

What would your dream library look like?

 My dream library has floor to ceiling books shelves, three stories high. I think I’d like curved walls, maybe a circular room. I would have soft, cushy chairs and bean bags spread throughout on a thick, dark green carpet, a table or two with computers for research, but mostly just a comfortable place with one picture window and an amazing view of a garden or waterfall where I could kick back and relax.

**Thank you so much for having me! I’ve enjoyed visiting!

The All-Day Breakfast Cafe Mystery Series has been fun to read since the first book. The friendship between Gia and Savannah has been at the core of it from the beginning. Always well written with a twisty turny mystery. Whole Latte Murder, no exception, is a terrific addition to the series. 

 When Savannah goes missing it is up Gia to investigate her disappearance and solve the murders surrounding it. Like always the cast of characters, both recurring and new, is strong and well developed.  There is plenty going on to keep the reader’s attention and to keep the pages turning at a steady clip.  The mystery is a mystery right up to the end with a great batch of suspects. Like always we will be waiting for the next book to see what happens next.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Ex-New Yorker and local diner owner Gia Morelli is still getting used to the sweltering Florida sun. But this summer she’ll have to deal with a more dangerous kind of heat—when she’s hot on the trail of another murderer . . .

Summer in Boggy Creek has arrived, and Gia’s best friend, successful real estate agent Savannah, is getting hitched. Now she’s enlisted Gia’s sleuthing talents in a desperate search for the perfect wedding dress. But when Savannah mysteriously vanishes after showing a mansion to a bigwig client, Gia investigates the house Savannah was trying to sell. The first clue she finds is Savannah’s car in the driveway. Inside the house, they stumble on Savannah’s potential buyer—dead. Someone had apparently closed the deal—with a two by four full of nails to the client’s head. Soon afterward, a woman’s body is fished from the lake near the same house. The townsfolk are now sweating bullets over the murders, and the heat comes down on poor Gia to find her missing friend, and track down the killer . . .

Buy Links: Amazon    Barnes & Noble      Kobo    Kensington     Apple    Google Play

Lena Gregory is the author of the Bay Island Psychic Mysteries, which take place on a small island between the north and south forks of Long Island, New York, and the All-Day Breakfast Café Mysteries, which are set on the outskirts of Florida’s Ocala National Forest.

Lena grew up in a small town on the south shore of eastern Long Island, but she recently traded in cold, damp, gray winters for the warmth and sunshine of central Florida, where she now lives with her husband, three kids, son-in-law, and four dogs. Her hobbies include spending time with family, reading, and walking. Her love for writing developed when her youngest son was born and didn’t sleep through the night. She works full time as a writer and a freelance editor and is a member of Sisters in Crime.

To learn more about Lena and her latest writing endeavors, visit her website at http://www.lenagregory.com/ and be sure to sign up for her newsletter http://lenagregory.us12.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=9765d0711ed4fab4fa31b16ac&id=49d42335d1.

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1 Comment

  1. Thank you so much for having me and for sharing the release of Whole Latte Murder! And thank you for such a lovely review! I’m so happy you are enjoying the series.

    Liked by 1 person

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