KAREN SHUGHART

Author

Meet The Author

I love to write and always have. I wrote my first poem when I was five and have continued writing throughout my life.  I’ve written as a public relations professional, teacher, editor and head of a non-profit organizations. I’ve written newspaper columns, feature articles for daily newspapers, guides for chambers of commerce and newsletters.

Several years ago, I was inspired to write my first book, Pennsylvania Bed and Breakfast Guide and Cookbook, after my husband and I took a trip to New England and stayed at charming historic inns with wonderful food. My second book, Creating Profitable Special Events, came about at a time when I served as a board member, volunteer and chairperson of special events with non-profit organizations in south central Pennsylvania, where our family lived for many years. Now I’m writing Cozies, gentle mysteries with no graphic violence, explicit sex or profanity.

My inspiration for writing Cozies began many years ago when, during a driving trip one weekend, my husband and I discovered a charming village in the northernmost part of the Finger Lakes on Lake Ontario, the smallest of the Great Lakes. The village was within proximity to Canada and seemed to embody everything we could possibly want as a place to live:  family values, kind and caring people, a strong sense of community, burgeoning wine scene, fruit orchards, lots of history and culture, spectacular scenery, and within short driving time to two cities: Rochester and Syracuse. One visit was all it took for us to decide that we wanted to live here, and after many years of spending vacations and weekends, we retired and realized our dream.

All books in the series, this first one and ones to come, take place in the fictional village of Lighthouse Cove, NY, which is very much like this lovely village where we now live. Murder in the Museum: An Edmund DeCleryk Mystery, is solved when the investigator discovers a map dated 1785 and a manuscript written in 1847 that were unearthed during an archaeological dig in Toronto, Canada.  I’ve just started writing the second book, Murder in the Cemetery, that links the murder to the War of 1812, and the third book, Murder at Freedom Point, will link that murder to the Civil War and Underground Railroad. See the historical thread here? Ed’s wife, Annie, helps Ed solve crimes, but she also likes to cook. The recipes for dishes she prepares are at the end of each novel.

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MURDER IN THE MUSEUM

Early one gray November morning, retired Lighthouse Cove, NY police chief, Edmund DeCleryk, finds Emily Bradford’s body on the beach at the base of the bluff where the local museum and historical society stands. At the same time, a break-in has been reported at the museum, and Emily’s coat and purse are found hanging on a peg in the museum’s gift shop where she worked. Was her death the result of a burglary gone bad or something more sinister?

PENNSYLVANIA BED & BREAKFAST GUIDE AND COOKBOOK – CENTRAL REGION

Bed and Breakfasts and country inns offer a unique alternative to the conventional lodging-cozy atmosphere, personal attention, and really good food. This book is both a guide to 56 inns of Pennsylvania’s central region and a cookbook that features 196 of their trademark recipes for breakfast and brunch fare — and even some gourmet dinner specialties.

CREATING PROFITABLE SPECIAL EVENTS: FROM DOLLARS TO DESSERT

This book will help your non-profit organization make money! Arts’ and human service agencies, PT0s and non-profit economic development groups will benefit from reading this book. By following the simple steps described in this guide, those working in the non-profit world, whether as volunteers or staff members, are guaranteed to learn not only how to coordinate effective special events, but also how to maximize profitability and gain visibility for their organization.

Discussion Questions: Murder in the Museum


Murder in the Museum: An Edmund DeCleryk Mystery
By Karen Shughart

1. What are the clues to the murder in Murder in the Museum, and how does the author hide them in plain sight?

2. Are there any themes in the book?

3. How do you view the village of Lighthouse Cove and the people who live there?

4. How do you view Ed and Annie’s relationship?

5. What Lighthouse Cove characters did you like the most and why? Least?

6. Is the book only about murder or is there something else?

7. How important is the use of description in the book to set the scene and frame the story?

8. Doe the interweaving of history with the quest to find the murderer enhance or detract from the story?

9. The characters in the book are a diverse group. Why do you think the author did this?

Cozy Cat Press
Ladies of Mystery
Hometown Readers
Amazon

MURDER IN THE MUSEUM

Early one gray November morning, retired Lighthouse Cove, NY police chief, Edmund DeCleryk, finds Emily Bradford’s body on the beach at the base of the bluff where the local museum and historical society stands. At the same time, a break-in has been reported at the museum, and Emily’s coat and purse are found hanging on a peg in the museum’s gift shop where she worked. Was her death the result of a burglary gone bad or something more sinister?

When the police chief is called out of town for a family emergency, he hires Ed, now working as a criminal consultant, to assist deputy police chief, Carrie Ramos, with the murder investigation. After several leads don’t pan out, the chief, now back in Lighthouse Cove, decides to close the case. Confident that with more time the murder can be solved, Ed is determined to continue investigating on his own, with encouragement from his wife, Annie, the museum’s executive director.

Several weeks later, while in the basement of the museum, the couple discovers a copy of a map dated 1785, and Ed’s instincts tell him it may be connected to Emily’s death. On a hunch he and Annie travel to Toronto, Canada, where he learns of the original map and a manuscript written in 1847 that were unearthed during an architectural dig. The manuscript contains information about a ship that capsized during a fierce storm on Lake Ontario -- in 1785. Now Ed has clues as to why the murder occurred, but he still doesn’t know who committed the crime. Or does he?

Annie loves to cook. The end of the book contains recipes for meals she made for friends and family while the murder in the museum was being investigated.

PENNSYLVANIA BED & BREAKFAST GUIDE AND COOKBOOK- CENTRAL REGION

Bed and Breakfasts and country inns offer a unique alternative to conventional lodging-cozy atmosphere, personal attention, and really good food. This book is both a guide to 56 inns of Pennsylvania’s central region and a cookbook that features 196 of their trademark recipes for breakfast and brunch fare --- and even some gourmet dinner specialties.

CREATING PROFITABLE SPECIAL EVENTS: FROM DOLLARS TO DESSERT

This book will help your non-profit organization make money!

Arts’ and human service agencies, PT0s and non-profit economic development groups will benefit from reading this book. By following the simple steps described in this guide, those working in the non-profit world, whether as volunteers or staff members, are guaranteed to learn not only how to coordinate effective special events, but also how to maximize profitability and gain visibility for their organization.

If you are a novice, you’ll learn how to develop an agenda, generate ideas, create your committee, construct a timeline, establish a budget, and work with volunteers and staff. You’ll also learn how choose a venue, develop a menu, decorate on a shoestring, promote the event, and maximize the bottom line through cash and in-kind underwriting and events within events. If you are an experienced events’ planner, you may gain some fresh ideas and insights plus ways to streamline procedures to make your special events even better than ever.

The author uses personal and true-to-life examples to support her goal of making special events planning a simple, enjoyable and lucrative experience.
A resource guide at the end of the book includes actual fundraising ideas with detailed planning instructions.