Tuesday, July 30, 2013

ParaCozyMysMo - Interview with Liz Cooper from the Mind for Murder Mysteries by Rochelle Staab - July 30, 2013

Please welcome Liz Cooper from the Mind for Murder Mysteries by Rochelle Staab. Despite investigating mysteries that all have occult elements Liz is still a skeptic!

TQ:  Hi Liz, welcome to The Qwillery

Liz:  Thank you! I’m thrilled to be here for Paranormal Cozy Mystery Month.

TQ:  After your first three mysteries are you still skeptical of ghosts and all things occult?

Liz:  An odd night with a voodoo spell book, and then two eerie coincidences with tarot cards and Santeria coconut divination shells gave me a momentary pause, but the mind is glorious tool and a nasty trickster—isn’t it? Similar to a Rorschach test, we see what we need to see. I’m certain there’s a logical reason those predictions came true. I never believed in paranormal activity or superstition, and recent events haven’t changed my opinion.

TQ:  What is an average day for you as a psychologist, when you're not solving mysteries?

Liz:  (Laughing) All talk! I counsel three to five clients at my Studio City office from morning to early afternoon. In the fifty-minute sessions we discuss whatever the client chooses. Body language tells me a lot. I’ll call him or her out if I sense a lack of connection or if I know they’re purposefully avoiding a painful issue. Arguing is fine, crying is good, and laughter is wonderful therapy.

TQ:  What is it like working with Nick Garfield, an occult professor?

Liz:  He can be frustrating, but he’s always interesting and often fun. His knowledge base is provocative. I admire Nick’s passion for his work and I enjoy spending time with his, um, unique group of friends. At least the ones not lusting for him (I’m on to you, Horus.) I don’t even mind when Nick pontificates—the man is brilliant. I depend on his strength of character and the balance he brings to our relationship. We tackle mysteries from opposing viewpoints, supernatural versus science. Did I mention how sexy he is?

TQ:  What has been your biggest case so far?

Liz:  My best friend Robin’s plight in Who Do, Voodoo? took the most out of me because we’ve been such close friends since childhood. The criminals in Bruja Brouhaha were the most dangerous group Nick and I encountered. But clearing myself of the murder charge in Hex on the Ex had to be the scariest challenge to my sanity. And when the truth came out…wow.

TQ:  Have you ever thought you might need counseling after some of your adventures?

Liz:  All the time! I don’t seek professional help (at least not yet) but I do talk out my concerns and anxieties with my friend Robin, a wonderful sound post and great cook. And of course, Nick and I rehash our experiences. Talking—whether with a professional, with family, or with a good partner or friend—is the essence of therapy.

TQ:  What do you do to relax?

Liz:  Nick is on a mission to educate me on classic old movies. He brings the DVDs and I make the popcorn. We stretch out on the couch, my head on his shoulder and my cat Erzulie on his lap. We already finished the Tracy/Hepburn collection and now we’re on to the John Huston classics, starting with 1941’s The Maltese Falcon. Alone I listen to music and I recently developed an urge to read Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot series. I love curling up under the covers with a good mystery. A busman’s holiday maybe?

TQ:  What went through your mind when you were accused of killing your former friend Laycee?

Liz:  A horrible, sickening moment. I had already felt guilty when I heard about Laycee’s murder—I hated the woman and, at times, wished her dead. But kill her? Detective Pratt’s accusation jarred the living hell out of me.

TQ:  What piece of advice would you give our readers who wanted to follow in your footsteps?

Liz:  To become a psychologist, select a good school and find a wise mentor. To investigate murders with an occult twist? Well, it definitely helps to hook up with a strong, intelligent, and opinionated religious philosophy professor with a wicked cute smile and a taste for the absurd. Whichever you choose, make your decisions with confidence and keep an open mind.

TQ:  Thank you Liz for joining us at The Qwillery.

Liz:  Thank you for a fun interview and for introducing your readers to the Mind for Murder Mysteries!

Mind for Murder Mysteries

Who Do, Voodoo?
A Mind for Murder Mystery 1
Berkley, November 1, 2011
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

WHO DO, VOODOO? the first novel in Rochelle’s thrilling new Mind for Murder Mystery series features no-nonsense Liz Cooper, a Los Angeles psychologist forced to embrace the occult to clear her best friend of murder...

When Liz Cooper’s friend Robin Bloom finds an unusual tarot card tacked to her front door, Liz writes it off as a prank. Robin refuses to ignore the omen—her late husband drew the same card, the three of swords, in a reading the night before he was killed in a car accident. As more cards and darker threats appear, Liz realizes someone very dangerous is upping the ante.

Liz turns to her brother’s ex-college roommate, occult expert Nick Garfield. As Nick leads her into the voodoo community to locate the origin of the deck, she can’t ignore their attraction to each other. Then a woman is found murdered and Robin becomes the prime suspect. Determined to clear her friend, Liz joins forces with Nick to unravel otherworldly secrets and seek help from beyond—or risk being outwitted by a cunning killer...

Bruja Bruhaha
A Mind For Murder Mystery 2
Berkley, August 7, 2012
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

Practical psychologist Liz Cooper and occult professor Nick Garfield are enjoying the sixteenth wedding anniversary celebration for their charming hosts Paco and Lucia Rojas, devout Santeria practitioners who own the historic Botanica Rojas near MacArthur Park. But the small group of friends is left horrified and confused when the evening ends in tragedy.

Devastated by loss, Lucia, a Santeria priestess, blames the locals for the escalating crime in her beloved community. She casts a vengeful hex on the neighborhood, leading strangers and friends alike to dub her bruja—Spanish for witch—and turn on the elderly woman. Lucia may be in harm’s way, and it’s up to Liz and Nick to unravel a mysterious disappearance and solve a murder before more lives are lost...

Hex on the Ex
A Mind for Murder Mystery 3
Berkley, May 7, 2013
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

From the author of Bruja Brouhaha and Who Do, Voodoo?--the new Mind for Murder Mystery!

When her ex-husband encounters a mysterious death omen, psychologist Liz Cooper turns to occult professor Nick Garfield for help in solving an all-too-real murder…

At a Dodgers game to celebrate her father’s birthday, Liz is forced to watch her ex—star player, Jarret—on the pitcher’s mound. To make matters worse, her former best friend, Laycee, is in the stands as well. Having betrayed her trust by having an affair with Jarret, Laycee is the last person Liz wants to see.

But when the appearance of a white pigeon—an omen of death—sets the superstitious Jarret off balance, it’s a game changer both on and off the field. Because the next morning, Laycee is found dead in Jarret’s home—and Liz is on deck as the prime suspect…

About Rochelle

Rochelle Staab, a former Los Angeles radio programmer and music industry marketing executive, blends her fascination with the supernatural and love for mystery in the bestselling Mind for Murder series featuring L.A. psychologist Liz Cooper and occult expert Nick Garfield. According to Library Journal, “Staab sets her fairly sophisticated blend of the occult in a flashy West Coast locale for great escape reading." Her debut, Who Do, Voodoo? garnered Agatha, Anthony, and Eureka! Best First Mystery nominations; the follow-up, Bruja Brouhaha, won the Left Coast Crime Watson award for Best Sidekick and was nominated for the 2013 Daphne du Maurier Award. Hex on the Ex, the third Mind for Murder Mystery, was released in May.

Website  ~  Facebook  ~  Twitter @rochellestaab  ~  Goodreads

The Giveaway

What:  One commenter will win an autographed Mass Market Paperback copy of Hex on the Ex (A Mind for Murder Mystery 3) by Rochelle Staab from Rochelle.  US/CANADA ONLY

How:   Log into and follow the directions in the Rafflecopter below.

Who and When: The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a US or Canadian mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59 PM US Eastern Time on August 10, 2013. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change.*

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  1. Not unless you count sleepovers when I was a tween, lol.

  2. Wow, didn't we all do the spooky sleepover thing when we were tweens, Rebe? I did. :) Thanks for stopping by!

  3. I have with Tarot Cards ,one of my friends gave me a reading, and I thought it was interesting what she said. Also with palm reading my cousin is very good at it. she does it at a side as a free time. I am amazed on how well she can read peoples palms. They are always in shock when she tells them how they are. :D I love it.

    1. Palm reading mystifies me! I had my palm read once. The woman came up with information about me that NO ONE knew. It's like someone searching through your closet :)

      Thanks for visiting!

  4. As a teenager I remember going to the Ouija board about boys---but that's about all.

    1. Ah, the Ouija board. My friends and I still talk about a rainy afternoon we spent with a Ouija board when we were high school sophomores. That board helped spawn my continuing fascination with the occult.
      Thanks for the comment, Sue!

  5. Can't say I have ever dabbled. Must be from growing up in Catholic school!

  6. I have a Tarrot Card deck. sdylion(at)gmail(dot)com

  7. I use tarot cards...but have NEVER, EVER have used a ouija board.

    Thanks for the amazing giveaway!
    elizabeth @ bookattict . com