Guest Post

Romance & Murder | Erin McCarthy

I love a good mystery. And I love a good romance. So as you can imagine, I truly adore a romantic mystery. What’s not to love? You get the unfolding mystery of a whodunit perfectly meshed with the tension of the growing attraction between the hero and heroine.

As a child, I loved shows like Moonlighting and Remington Steele. These shows were a perfect combination of solving the weekly mystery, while giving me just tidbits of the developing romance between the main characters.

This love influenced my reading choices. I read books like Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier and Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. And I eventually found current authors who also handled mystery and romance brilliantly. Authors like J.D. Robb and Janet Evanovich. I’ve even found current romance authors who deliver the gothic mystery and romance I love so much. Authors like Eve Silver and Erica Ridley.

From the gothics, I discovered I also loved a paranormal aspect to my romantic mysteries. Shows like The Originals with mystery, romance and vampires. Awesome! Even Twin Peaks, with its twisted mystery, strange romances and paranormal elements drew me right in.

So it was no surprise that I would want to write my own take on the stories I have always loved. When the idea for my Murder by Design series came to me, I knew I had to write it. The story of a house stager, who becomes a reluctant amateur sleuth seemed current and fun. Did I mention I’m also an HGTV junkie? I think you can see how this idea all came together.

But I wanted her impetus to solve the very first mystery in Gone with the Ghost to be something unusual. I decided she had to be pushed into her new role as a detective by her ex-crush. But the ex-crush is dead. And a ghost. A ghost only she can see.

The third book in the series is out today. Once Upon a Ghost leads my heroine, Bailey and her ghostly sidekick, Ryan on another strange and fun and sassy mystery. But don’t you fear, there is also a very much alive romantic interest for Bailey—Ryan’s former partner Jake.

So this series is my take on all the romantic mysteries I love. In fact, it’s a take on many things I love. Home decorating, things that go bump in the night, sexy policemen and a dead body or two. Okay, I don’t exactly love that last one, but you know what I mean.

So what are your favorite romantic mysteries? Do you have a favorite book or show? And why do you love them like I do?

Erin_McCarthy_PersonalAbout the Author

USA Today and New York Times Bestselling author Erin McCarthy first published in 2002 and has since written over seventy novels and novellas in teen fiction, new adult romance, paranormal, and contemporary romance. Erin is a RITA finalist and an ALA Reluctant Young Reader award recipient, and is both traditionally and indie published.

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With Bailey Burke’s design and staging business booming- it turns out tangling with a serial killer is the best advertising ever- she has no time to lament her lack of love life, or wonder where her dead friend Ryan’s ghost has gone. She hasn’t seen him in months, but when she finds a body in a home she’s been hired to stage she’s hounded by the dead man’s ghost.

Having been a medium before, this guy is by far the most irritating ghost she’s ever met, with his constant need to talk over her and flick pennies at her head. Without Ryan to guide her, she’s on her own to figure out what the dead man needs from her. On top of all that, cop Jake Marner is back in her life, ostensibly to protect her, but mostly to confuse her as to whether they are dating or not. 

Before she can say “Put It Where?” Bailey finds herself immersed in mob dealings, the secret world of male-only sweat baths, and double dealings. When another body turns up, there is no doubt that she’s in over her head, again.


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