Thursday, March 26, 2015


Book 3 in the Natural Remedies Mystery series
Chrystle Fiedler 


When a local doctor is found dead in Willow McQuade’s medicinal garden, she must find the killer to clear her boyfriend’s name in this third clever book in the Natural Remedies Mystery series.

Dr. Willow McQuade, owner of Nature’s Way Market & Café, has put the finishing touches on a new medicinal plant garden for Greenport’s annual Maritime Festival and is ready for the festivities to begin. But it’s not all flowers and sunshine at the grand opening, when Willow discovers the body of another contestant, Dr. Charles White, face down in her garden.

Willow’s hunky boyfriend, Jackson Spade, immediately becomes a suspect due to a recent fight with Dr. White. Willow knows she has to remedy the situation, but it won’t be easy with the other applicants’ vendettas and vandals wrecking her garden at every turn. And when she finds buried treasure in her garden that just might belong to the legendary Captain Kidd, the stakes become even higher. Was Dr. White searching for that treasure? Did someone kill him to get to it first? With the help of Jackson and her eccentric ex-boyfriend, Willow follows the clues to uncover the truth that someone wants buried…

But can she dig up enough evidence before she becomes the killer’s next victim?

A word from Chrystle

Why I Write Cozy Mysteries

Reality is over rated. At least I think so. Instead, I find comfort escaping into the world of a cozy mystery. Before I wrote cozy mysteries, I read them, Agatha Christie’s tales of Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple, Sherlock Holmes and Dashiell Hammett and watched them; Midsomer Murders, Inspector Morse, and Murder, She Wrote.

Recently, I’ve been enjoying Grantchester on Masterpiece Mystery, a new TV series based on the Sidney Chambers mysteries by James Runcie. The mysteries take place in a charming village, with a vicarage full of kooky characters and a black Labrador named Dickens. It’s the very definition of a cozy mystery.  

Whether it’s by reading these mysteries or watching these shows, I escape to the coziness of quaint country villages, dappled country lanes, inviting stores on the high street, and of course, lovely rose covered cottages; inside, a pot of steaming hot tea, waiting to be poured.

Of course, the world of the cozy is in stark contrast to the murderous crimes committed there that shatter the peace and serenity. But we also know the detective will figure out the puzzle, catch the killer and put things back in their proper place. As a writer, I to have the power to put things back into balance with my amateur sleuth, and that’s really satisfying.      

My natural remedies mysteries are also set in a classic cozy setting, in this case, a real, idyllic fishing village on the East End of Long Island in NY called Greenport. When I was growing up the area was somewhat depressed but within the past two decades, Greenport has come into its own as a tourist destination with upscale eateries and boutiques, sandwiched between Mom and Pop hardware stores, diners and retro stores.  Forbes magazine has even named Greenport one of the prettiest villages in the U.S.

I’ve always had an interest in natural medicine so I made my cozy protagonist, Willow McQuade, a naturopathic doctor who takes over a health food store – Nature’s Way Market & Café  - after her Aunt Claire meets an untimely end. The store is located in a lovely 3 story yellow Victorian house across with a water view. Inside, it’s cozy too, with a homey feel, yummy cooking smells and the scent of essential oils, herbs and flower essences. 

To complete my cozy universe, I gave Willow, a hunky ex-cop love interest named Jackson Spade, an adorable rescued dog and two rescued cats, loyal friends and workers and the spirit of her Aunt Claire to guide her.

Writing the natural remedies mysteries also gives me a chance to share what I’ve learned about natural cures with readers. In the Garden of Death, my latest cozy mystery, I’ve focused on medicinal plants like aloe, chamomile and calendula and the benefits they provide at the beginning of each chapter. For example, you can put an aloe plant on your windowsill and if you have minor burn or sunburn, you just cut the leaf and use the gel as a natural remedy. A cup of chamomile tea is a simple way to relax and calendula can be found in many lotions and salves for skin irritation and inflammation and minor wounds. It’s amazing what you can find in your kitchen and garden that can soothe and heal you. That’s a cozy feeling too.

Whether I am writing my cozies, reading or watching them, I experience the same comfortable, homey, and safe feeling, knowing that no matter what happens, that all will be well in the end. Where else can you get that guarantee? Cozy mysteries are one of the best antidotes to reality I’ve found. How about you?


Gardening is one of my favorite natural remedies. I can think of no better pursuit than plunging a trowel into the moist, brown earth, removing enough dirt to create a space for a beautiful, health-giving plant, and watching it grow. 

It was the third Friday in June, and I was up to my knees in dirty and loving it. The last few weeks had brought pastel-blue skies, billowy clouds, and the the delicious summery scent of sea air drifting in from the bay. In the tree above me, cardinals and catbirds twittered and cawed. It was a perfect day for gardening. 

I finished digging, picked up a chamomile plant, gently placed it into the hole, shoveled in some earth, and patted the ground around it. Then I pulled off my gloves, sat back on my heels, and reviewed what I'd done so far that afternoon. I'd planted over a dozen plants in the garden's Medical Herbs for Heart Health section. The leaves and flowers fluttered in the sea breeze, but the roots of the plants were secure. 

I dispense natural remedies, but as a naturopathic doctor and as the owner of Nature's Way Market & Café.


GARDEN OF DEATH, book 3 in the Natural Remedies Mysteries, is a well written story with an excellently crafted mystery. It’s a wonderful addition to a great series.
I was quickly drawn in and soon found my attention so focused on the story, everything around me faded away. I was completely wrapped up in trying to figure out who the killer was, and why it happened. It’s my guess that many people will be unable to guess the ending.

There are some really interesting characters in the story. I’d love to spend a few hours over coffee, well, maybe herbal tea, and talk with protagonist, Dr. Willow McQuade about her passion for natural remedies.  

A great feature of the book is the way each chapter starts with Willow McQuade’s Favorite Medicinal Plants. You’ll learn about uses for plants like Flaxseed, Evening Primrose, Echinacea, and more, along with common (we have all heard of them) plants like Garlic and Aloe Vera.

Give GARDEN OF DEATH (this is the third in the series, so you may want to start at the beginning) a try. I think you’ll find it to be an entertaining mystery, as well as educational!  

is now available for purchase.

Suspicion is unearthed when an outspoken surgeon turns up dead in Willow McQuade’s medicinal herb garden.
A bitter battle has sprouted in the village of Greenport on the eve of the annual maritime festival: Willow McQuade has transformed a vacant lot alongside Nature’s Way Market & Café into a beautiful garden of healing plants—as much a tribute to her late aunt Claire, the shop’s beloved founder, as an enlightening educational center. The town board awarded Willow the plot fair and square, but that’s not how some folks see it—including Dr. Charles White, who invested in plans to develop a high-end hotel on the property. When the belligerent surgeon publicly threatens Willow during the festival, Willow’s boyfriend, Jackson Spade, ratchets up the hostile confrontation to defend the woman he loves, sowing seeds of guilt that take root by the time Dr. White’s corpse turns up amongst Willow’s chamomile and ashwaganda plants. To prove Jackson’s innocence, she must dig deep to bring a killer to light.

More about author 
Chrystle Fiedler

CHRYSTLE FIEDLER is the author of the previous Natural Remedies mysteries, Scent to Kill, and Death Drops, as well as six nonfiction books on natural healing and herbal remedies. Also a freelance journalist specializing in alternative health topics, her work has appeared in Natural Health, Spirituality & Health, Mother Earth Living, Green Living, Better Homes & Gardens, Prevention, Vegetarian Times, and Remedy. She lives in Greenport, New York with her 3 dachshunds and 2 cats, three of which are rescues. Visit, or follow her on Facebook, and Twitter.

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  1. Garden of Death sounds delightful. Thank you for the review. :)

  2. Happy Thursday, Lisa! This sounds like such a good series (and it's for sure the author knows what she's writing about).

  3. Sounds interesting. You hear so much about plants and what they can do.

  4. I really enjoy this series.

  5. This sounds like a great book; your review is great! Makes one want to rad it. Thank you for being part of the blog tour!!

  6. Oops - jeaniedannheim (at) ymail (dot) com

  7. This sounds like a great, new to me series. I am interested in how each of the chapters will tell us about the use of a new herb. Thanks!