Tuesday, July 17, 2012

ParaCozyMysMo - Kari Lee Townsend - Fortune Teller Mysteries

Please welcome Kari Lee Townsend to The Qwillery as part of ParaCozyMysMo! Kari writes the Fortune Teller Mysteries featuring psychic Sunshine Meadows.

TQ:   Welcome to The Qwillery!

Kari:  Thanks! I'm happy to be here.

TQ:   Writing quirks! What are some of yours?

Kari:  I started writing so long ago that the only free time I had was during naptime. Even though my children are older, I still seem to do my best work during the afternoon. And I always have a diet soda while I'm writing.

TQ:   Who are some of your favorite writers?

Kari:  I love funny authors like Donna Andrews and Janet Evanovich. I also love witty, spunky authors like Liz Lipperman.

TQ:  Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Kari:  I tend to be a pantser when I write my romances, but for my teen superhero series and my mysteries, I find I have to be more of a plotter. But I still don't completely plot. I tend to be a bit of both.

TQ:   What is the most challenging thing for you about writing?

Kari:  Trying to outdo myself. I don't want to ever become stale or boring or predictable. I am always trying to find ways to surprise the reader and come up with a book that tops the last one. I put more pressure on myself than anyone else puts on me.

TQ:   Your most recent novel is Corpse in the Crystal Ball (A Fortune Teller Mystery 2). What inspired you to write mysteries with paranormal/supernatural elements?

Kari:  I find the paranormal fascinating so I wanted to write a paranormal mystery series. After having had my tea leaves read once, I was hooked. I really wanted to learn more about all sorts of fortune-telling tools, and I thought it would be fun to share what I found out with my readers. And I thought if I focused each book on a different fortune-telling tool, that would make the series more unique. Throwing in an immortal cat and a haunted Victorian house were just added bonuses :-)

TQ:   Do you base your paranormal/supernatural elements on existing lore, make things up or both?

Kari:  I find with each new fortune-telling tool I research, there's always a few differences. So I try to take all that I find and combine them to create the main character, Sunshine Meadows', way of predicting what's going to happen next or peeking into the past.

TQ:   What sorts of research have you done for the Fortune Teller Mysteries? What is the oddest bit of information that you’ve come across in your research.

Kari:  As a mom of 4, I don't have time to do the fun hands-on research I'd love to do. So I pretty much do all of my research on the Internet. There's so much out there that I find more than enough material to give me a good grasp on each technique. I haven't really found any odd information yet, just surprising information on how much there is to reading each tool. I was really fascinated with the preparation work that goes into grounding oneself before going into a trance-like state so you aren't vulnerable to negative energies out there. The same with preparing each tool as well as cleansing each tool when the reading is over to rid it of all energies, both positive and negative, that were picked up during a reading.

TQ:   Tell us something about Corpse in the Crystal Ball that is not in the book description.

Kari:  The entire town thinks the ancient Victorian house that Sunny lives in and nicknames Vicky is haunted, but Sunny suspects the large white cat she found residing within is the one doing the haunting. She thinks he might be immortal so she names him Morty, but it's clear from the start that she belongs to him more than he belongs to her. Vicky is his as well, and for some reason, even though he doesn't like most humans, he's taken a shine to Sunny and has decided to let her stay.

TQ:   In Corpse in the Crystal Ball who was the easiest character to write and why? The hardest and why?

Kari:  In book two I introduced a new character. Sunny's grandmother Gertrude. Granny Gert is for sure the easiest to write because she is based off my rea life Granny Gert and my mother, Marion. They give me so much material to work with, it was impossible not to put them in a book :-) The hardest characters to write are Sunny parents, Donald and Vivian Meadows. They don't get along and that is so opposite from my real life. I'm trying to keep that tension going among them all, yet I want to show they really do care in their own way.

TQ:   Which character in the Fortune Teller Mysteries has surprised you the most?

Kari:  Detective Mitch Stone. I just love brooding wounded alpha males. Yet he's more soft on the inside than I thought he would turn out to be. And even though he doesn't believe in Sunny's "gifts" and she drives him crazy most days, he does give her credit when credit's due and respect the information she digs up, even if she does so in unconventional ways.

TQ:   What's next?

Kari:  Book 3, Trouble in the Tarot, comes out in March 2013 and I am just starting on book 4, Peril in the Palm. I'm also working on more romances under the name Kari Lee Harmon.

TQ:   Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery.

Kari:  Thank you so much for having me. To find out more about me and all of my books, check out my website at www.karileetownsend.com

Fortune Teller Mysteries

Corpse in a Crystal Ball
A Fortune Teller Mystery 2
Berkley, June 5, 2012
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

Psychic Sunshine Meadows makes a dark discovery in the woods...

After clearing her name as the prime suspect in a murder, Sunny Meadows hopes she can finally enjoy some serenity in the idyllic town of Divinity in upstate New York. She’d also like a second chance with Detective Mitch Stone. But when Mitch’s gorgeous ex-girlfriend Isabel Gonzales shows up, Sunny’s not sure she can compete. Then Isabel mysteriously disappears.

When the police turn to Sunny for help, her visions lead to the discovery of Isabel’s corpse in the woods. Before she died, Isabel scrawled a message in the dirt implicating Mitch in her murder. Now Sunny must help the man she’s falling in love with as she sets out to find the real killer. But this time Sunny’s clairvoyant abilities might not save her—as what she doesn’t see can hurt her...

Tempest in the Tea Leaves
A Fortune Teller Mystery 1
Berkley, August 2, 2011
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

In the fortune telling business there are a lot of pretenders, but Sunshine Meadows is the real deal—and her predictions can be lethally accurate...

Sunny is a big city psychic who moves to the quaint town of Divinity, NY to open her fortune telling business in an ancient victorian house, inheriting the strange cat residing within. Sunny gives her first reading to the frazzled town librarian and discovers the woman is going to die. When the woman flees in terror, Sunny calls the police, only she’s too late. The ruggedly handsome, hard-nosed detective is a “non-believer.” He finds the librarian dead, and Sunny becomes his number one suspect, forcing her to prove her innocence before the real killer can put an end to the psychic’s future.

About Kari

Well what can I say about me? I live in Central NY with my very understanding husband, my three busy boys, and my oh-so-dramatic daughter, who keep me grounded and make everything I do worthwhile ... not to mention provide me with loads of material for my books :-) I am a long time lover of reading and writing, with a Masters in English Education. I have been both a winner and finalist in several online writing contests, including the Amazon Breakout Novel Contest, as well as being a freelance editor. I am also a member of several writing organizations and love attending writing conferences. These days you will find me at home with my children, doing what makes me happier than anything I’ve ever tried ... writing books! I write both teen and adult books: fun and exciting stories for any age set in small towns with mystical elements and quirky characters.

Trust me, people, my life is my material :-)

The Giveaways

There is a giveaway of Corpse in a Crystal Ball (A Fortune Teller Mystery 2) with this interview. You can also enter to win the Grand Prize by using the Rafflecopter. The comment you leave to enter to win Corpse in a Crystal Ball may also be used to enter to win the Grand Prize. Both Giveaways are open internationally.

To Enter to Win a Copy of Corpse in a Crystal Ball

What:  One commenter will win a copy of Corpse in a Crystal Ball (A Fortune Teller Mystery 2) by Kari Lee Townsend. The novel is generously provided by Penguin.

How:  Leave a comment.

Please remember - if you don't leave a comment your entry will not be counted.  You must also leave a way to contact you. Entries without contact information will not be counted.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Saturday, August 4, 2012. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

To Enter to Win the Grand Prize

How:  Fill out the Rafflecopter

Terms and Conditions

1) There will be one winner of the Grand Prize.

2) The Grand Prize is separate from any giveaway associated with individual author visits during Paranormal Cozy Mystery Month.

3) You must leave a way to contact you with your comment. If you do not leave a way to contact you, your entry will not be counted.

4) The Grand Prize Giveaway is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address.

5) Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

6) Giveaway Terms and Condition are subject to change at any time.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. You had me at 'immortal cat' ;-)

    Now added to the infinity list.

    april dot vrugtman at gmail dot com

  2. Hmm. Now this sounds interesting...


  3. A rugged cop as a love interest? Sounds great! Thanks for the giveaway!


  4. I have Tempest on request at the library and am really looking forward to reading it.


  5. I came across this series a very short while ago and it really has my fingers itching. I can't wait to meet Sunny, Mitch, and Granny Girt (she sounds like a hoot). Thank you for taking the time and effort to share with us today :)

  6. Sounds like this book is a fun read!

    debbie at burdeen dot com

  7. I love brooding wounded alpha males as well! Mitch and Sunny sound like people I'd love to get to know better. Thanks for introducing me to this series!

    Mel S

  8. I've never read a book about fortune-telling. Sounds good.


  9. This is a new series for me and I like to read these types of books. I love that you have an immortal cat. It reminds of a story that happened in Beyond Belief Fact or Fiction about a girl able to see her deceased cat. Will add this series in my books to read.

  10. The FORTUNE TELLER MYSTERIES look fabulous.


  11. This book sound fun to read. I am curious about this series :)

  12. I have the first book in this series and would love to win this one!


  13. I've had my eye on this series for a while! Awesome giveaway!

  14. Sounds like a great series to get away from reality with.
    darn177 at hotmail dot com

  15. Nice interview. Fortune telling sounds like fun research.


  16. What a talent that Kari has, sounds like my kind of books.
    Corpse in a Crystal Ball looks clever love the art of the cover, too.
    dayleb at telus dot net

  17. I just loved, loved 'Tempest in The Tea Leaves' and I can't wait to read 'Corpse in a Crystal Ball'. I'm looking forward to meeting your newest character, Granny Gert!
    Luvdaylilies at bellsouth dot net

  18. Fortune teller and cats. Looking forward to read the books.
    Thanks for the giveaway :)

    sawamura_foxman AT yahoo DOT com

  19. Anytime a cat is in a cozy--it's a must read for me.

  20. You had me at "Morty" the immortal cat... ;)

  21. I just added this to my wishlist at Amazon. :) Thanks for the giveaway!!

    jennirv4967 at gmail dot com

  22. An immortal cat and a rugged cop ... this is definitely going to my wishlist.


  23. Add Fortune teller mysteries to my must read list. Thanks