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A Fatal Collection

A FATAL COLLECTION begins the new Keepsake Cove Mystery Series!


Callie Reed thinks it’s time to make a major change in her life, and she’s come to her Aunt Melodie on Maryland’s Eastern Shore for moral support. Enchanted with her aunt’s fairy tale cottage and her music box shop, one of many keepsake and collectibles shops in charming Keepsake Cove, Callie’s delight takes a plunge when she discovers her aunt’s body. But was it a fatal accident, as the police claim, or was it murder?


As she struggles to keep the music box shop running, Callie tries to find out the truth while also apparently getting messages from Aunt Mel through one special music box. Or is she?

The Pickled and Preserved Mystery Series

Scene of the Brine

Business is booming at Piper’s Picklings in Cloverdale, New York. But not all is sweet in the life of Piper’s number one customer and friend, local caterer Sugar Heywood. Sugar is dating wealthy realtor Jeremy Porter, but his family doesn’t approve. After their unscrupulous accountant finds some dirt on Sugar, the family quickly urges Jeremy to throw her out like rotten fruit.


Things are further spoiled after the accountant is found poisoned, and all evidence points to Sugar’s son, Zach. With the Porter family determined to avoid scandal, it won’t be easy for Piper to preserve Zach’s innocence. And after someone falls victim to a poisoned jar of some of her brandied cherries, Piper’s got a peck of trouble to deal with herself…


Lisa Ks Book Reviews: “Stellar writing along with a killer plot...this series is still on my top favorites list!”

License to Dill

Piper’s ex-fiancé, Scott, has returned from his world travels to settle in Cloverdale, turning Piper’s budding relationship with Will on edge. Then Piper’s favorite dill farmer, Gerald Standley, finds himself in a jam. His old nemesis, Raffaele Conti, has arrived as manager of an Italian soccer team that’s come to play the Cloverdale All-Stars. Raffaele stirs up murderous thoughts from several others, but when his body is found in Gerald’s dill field, all eyes turn to the dill farmer. What a pickle!


Library Journal: Hughes’s second series entry (after The Pickled Piper) will delight fans of culinary cozies….Fans of Susan Wittig Albert’s “China Bayles” series should enjoy this plucky heroine.


Richmond Times-Dispatch:  A pleasing puzzle, "License to Dill" preserves Hughes' stature as a first-rate mysterian who specializes in homemade food and homemade homicide.


Dru's Book Musings:  The action-filled drama kept my interest from beginning to end with a well-stocked storyline that was light and fresh and continued to build to that final moment when the killer's identity was revealed.

THE PICKLED PIPER, first in my new Pickled and Preserved mystery series, is available now in paperback and ebook!

Meet Piper Lamb, who’s returned to Cloverdale, New York, the scene of many, happy childhood summers, to indulge her simmering passion for all things pickled, canned, and preserved. She’s set up Piper’s Picklings, and to promote the shop and its wares, Piper has snagged a booth at the annual Cloverdale Fair. Things are going great – until the body of the town’s boisterous and blustering bagpiper is discovered in her new pickle barrel!


Join Piper, Aunt Judy and Uncle Frank, and an assortment of Cloverdale friends and foes, as Piper works to uncover the murderer, all while continuing to process every variety of fruit and vegetable into tasty pickles or delicious jams. She’ll even share the recipes with you!

A 4 star review from Romantic Times! "Hughes introduces an entertaining cast of characters in the first book of the Pickled and Preserved mystery series.  The plot is well done, with solid pacing.  Readers will especially enjoy meeting the cast and look forward to more in the new series."

The Richmond Times Dispatch: "Readers will relish Hughes’ series opener and will look forward to her next installment, which promises to provide another peck of pleasure."

The CRAFT CORNER MYSTERIES are available as ebooks!


Jo McAllister only wants to run her craft shop and teach classes on wreath making, beading, and paper-crafts. Unfortunately, murder intrudes in her small town of Abbotsville, Maryland.  Each book includes directions for a craft project! Follow Jo’s adventures in:

"Readers will want to fire up their glue guns and join the goings-on at Jo's Craft Corner.  There's wreath-making, stamping, and murder investigation 101. Hughes launches her series with a feisty, likable heroine and a savvy group of craft hounds." - - Romantic Times

Also available as ebooks, The Maggie Olenski Mysteries:

“... The characters are engaging, the plot has more twists than a tough ski slope, and there is plenty of cozy ambience, thanks to a charming cat, much attention to food, and the ski resort setting. Fans of Diane Mott Davidson's series or Leslie Meier's novels should add this series to their lists” Booklist review of A Taste of Death

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Copyright 2017 Mary Ellen Hughes