Summer Heat: Be Proactive not Reactive

How Fast Can A Car Heat UP?

10 minutes = 19-degree increase
20 minutes = 29-degree increase
30 minutes = 34-degree increase
60 minutes = 43-degree increase

Just read where another baby got locked in a hot car. Fortunately, people found her in time. Without going into the particulars of the case, I’d like to share a few of the best suggestions I’ve heard about how not to forget there is a child (or pet) in the back seat when you jump out and run into the store, office, bank, etc.

  1. Put your left shoe in the back floorboard/seat. When you get out, you will see or feel your shoe missing and will look & find it and the child too in the back.
  2. Put something you MUST have or need in the backseat. Wallet, purse, briefcase, anything you normally remember to take inside with you, in the back seat. Find your item, find the child.
  3. Place large reminder note saying LOOK in the Back Seat BEFORE Getting Out somewhere on your dash so you will see it as your drive and when you turn off the car.

People and parents are not perfect and in the stressful lives we live, it is possible to forget a child or pet is in the back seat, especially if you aren’t the one who normally drives the child to daycare.

Best to be: PROACTIVE for the possibility you might forget rather than REACTIVE to a preventable tragedy.

Also, if you don’t have the time to take your child out of its car seat when you “run in” for something, go through the drive through window, get it/do it later when you don’t have the child, or do without. What is more important than the safety of your child or pet? The correct answer is A.) nada, nothing, zilch, naught, zero

Stay cool and safe this summer. Thanks for stopping by,


Deborah & Jasmine

Deborah & Jasmine


Breaking TWIG eBook now on sale $0.99 at

Breaking TWIG
eBook now on sale $0.99 at


Characters in Corsets Revisited

by Karen Wills

I write historical fiction, so I convinced my writer pal, Shirley Rorvik, to register with me for the Historical Novel Society’s 6th North American Conference in Denver last month. We split up workshops in order to learn as much as possible. I lucked out and attended Kim Aulerich-Mahone’s session. Kim is a knowledgeable historical costume designer and creator.

Why does attention to fashion matter? The immediate answer is that repeat historical fiction readers generally have a favorite place and time period. They’ll quit reading and won’t recommend books with blatant errors. (See Susanne Alleyn’s book, Medieval Underpants and other Blunders.) I learned that e-bay notwithstanding, Edwardian hats had big brims, and Victorian hats were small. Women didn’t wear sweaters before 1920. Men used to have trousseaus, too. There were no calicos in America in 1747, but in 1790 there were. In 1913, women went for straight silhouettes. The difference between silk and satin is all in the weave. Lily Langtree made black a trend. Queen Victoria’s many pregnancies ushered in the high waist, the better to hide a baby bump.

The clothes a character wears can show time period, location, mood, economic status, and ethnicity. Remember the March sisters in Little Women? Fashion can be symbolic like the protective cape worn in Willa Cather’s, Song of the Lark. We can depict and understand characters from what they wear.

Happy Fourth Of July

I am ready for the Fourth O July.  Red, White and Blue Flowers, Stars and Stripes are hung, and Peach Cobbler is made to take to my daughter’s.  I am happy to see a son and his family, and my daughter and her family for the Holiday.

Everyone be safe and enjoy your Holiday.

Red and White

Red and White



Stars and Stripes

Stars and Stripes

Peach Cobbler

Peach Cobbler

July Book News

July. The height of summer, and a glorious time in these parts. We hope it’s lovely where you are, and that you can make time to relax with a tall glass of something cool—and a good book.

Butter Off Dead (final)

Leslie Budewitz is delighted to announce the publication of BUTTER OFF DEAD on July 7 (Berkley Prime Crime/Penguin Random House). The third installment in the Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries takes us to the deep mid-winter, and the first annual Food Lovers’ Film Festival.

On Saturday, July 11, from 1-3, Leslie will sign books and talk with readers at Montana Book & Toy Company in Helena.

Leslie and Christine Carbo  will be interviewing each other at Fact & Fiction Books in Missoula on Tuesday, July 14, at 7 p.m. Join these Montana mystery writers for a chat on the writing life, their books, and a few surprises



The Wild Inside

Christine Carbo  is excited to be heading to New York City for Thriller Fest 2015. When she returns, she’ll be heading to Missoula to Fact & Fiction on July 14th  to meet Leslie Budewitz (see above paragraph) and to Bozeman to the Barnes and Noble for an event/signing at 7 pm on July 15th. If you’re in either area, please stop in.

And for those of you in the Seattle area, she’ll be at the Seattle Mystery Bookshop on July 18th at noon to sign books and chat.

Christine is also thrilled to have THE WILD INSIDE (Atria Books/Simon and Schuster) chosen as an alternate feature selection by the editors at Mystery Guild for the month of July, to have it included in the Chicago Tribune’s roundup of new paperbacks (July 5th) and for it to make Backpacker Magazine’s list of “Modern Novels Set in National Parks!”

Stop by one of these very cool bookstores in our Northwest communities and visit Christine and Leslie!