Hillary writes cozy mysteries about smart, persistent women looking for the truth. She lives in Oregon with her family and many pets. She loves to bake, make pottery, and drink coffee.
Sleigh Bells Wing by Hillary Avis
The Chapman clan’s preparing for a cozy Christmas, their last one at the old family farm before they finally put it on the market. But Ruth’s holiday cheer is history when she finds the potential buyer has been killed in cold blood. Will the New Year bring new hope to Honeytree—or a new victim?
What quirky Christmas tradition does your character do every year?
Ruth and her family have a yearly tradition of stringing popcorn garlands to decorate their Christmas tree. After the holiday, they hang the garlands in the apple orchard to feed the birds.
Speaking as your character, what is your (their) favourite thing about Christmas?
Ruth: “I love the excuse to round up my relatives for a ham-stravaganza of a potluck dinner. Nobody has to do too much work, and everybody gets to have too much fun.”
If you had to describe your character in three words, what would those three words be?
Bossy, big-hearted, and brave.
Your story is set in a small rural town. Why did you choose that as the setting for your book?
I was born in a tiny town where everyone knew everyone, and you could walk from one side of town to the other in about fifteen minutes. It was a great place to grow up, and I wanted to capture that sense of close-knit community in my cozy mystery series. Like my real hometown, the fictional town of Honeytree, Oregon, is a place where there’s always someone to loan you the right tool for the job, give you a ride home, or sleuth out who’s been stealing apples off your tree.
How does this story connect with your other books or series?
Sleigh Bells Wing is a prequel to my Clucks & Clues Cozy Mystery series. This story’s a peek at life in Honeytree before the main sleuth moves to town to start her chicken farm. It features several characters who make regular appearances in the rest of the books!